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Gender: Male
Hometown: Delaware
Member since: Fri Jan 20, 2006, 08:14 PM
Number of posts: 55,250

Journal Archives

I hope Trump gives us all the funeral we really want

That is all.

Jury Finds Roundup Caused Cancer

In the continued attack on the courts and other institutions of law, a fairly mundane evidentiary ruling and an admonishment from a judge about that prior ruling was, among the DU legal brain trust, proof-positive of the generalized corruption and untrustworthiness of the federal courts:


A few weeks ago, despite a mixed bag of rulings for or against either side, as is normal in litigation, an attorney for the plaintiffs in the primary Monsanto RoundUp litigation decided to violate a pre-trial ruling, and was rebuked by the judge for doing it.

This, naturally, meant the judge was bought-off, the fix was in, and the usual litany of accusations intended to erode and undermine confidence in the rule of law generally.

The silence from those quarters is deafening, now that the jury has ruled on the first phase of the trial - causation:


San Francisco jury rules Monsanto's Roundup caused Sonoma Co. man's lymphoma


Tuesday’s unanimous jury decision in San Francisco federal court was not a finding of Bayer’s liability for the cancer of plaintiff Edwin Hardeman. Liability and damages will be decided by the same jury in a second trial phase beginning on Wednesday.


Bayer had claimed that jury was overly influenced by plaintiffs’ lawyers allegations of corporate misconduct and did not focus on the science.

U.S. District Judge Vince Chhabria called such evidence “a distraction” from the scientific question of whether glyphosate causes cancer. He split the Hardeman case into two phases: one to decide causation, the other to determine Bayer’s potential liability and damages.

Under Chhabria’s order, the second phase would only take place if the jury found Roundup to be a substantial factor in causing Hardeman’s non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma. The jury found that it was on Tuesday.

SDNY Documents Expose Avenatti As Cheap Liar

Stormy Daniels' ex-lawyer Michael Avenatti has made it a regular part of his empty boasting to claim that he and/or his ex-client are responsible for the criminal investigation or prosecution of Michael Cohen.

The documents released by the SDNY in connection with the search warrants executed against Michael Cohen make it crystal clear that, as some have been posting on DU for quite some time, Michael Cohen was under investigation LONG before Avenatti ever met Daniels to take her for the malpractice ride that has resulted in her owing Trump $293k and having her contract and defamation cases dismissed.

Word began leaking out about the NDA in December 2017. In point of fact, the Tahoe romp was known about in 2016 because the model who they invited to come to the hotel room had already spoken to the press. The story didn't catch legs because Daniels would not comment on it at that time, having taken the $130k not to talk about it. Reporters following up on the story in 2017 were quite taken by her reluctance to comment at all, and by January 2018, the WSJ published an article about the payment from Cohen. This led Cohen to threaten Daniels with arbitration in late February, and she met Avenatti at that time and filed her first suit in the first week in March.

Because the search was executed in April 2018, Avenatti realized he could claim that he and/or Daniels had something to do with the Cohen investigation. He could get away with this lie, because federal prosecutors are professionals, unlike grandstanding carnival barkers. He briefly made a nuisance of himself in the SDNY proceedings, until the judge asked him whether he wanted to be a lawyer or a sideshow. He chose sideshow and left.

It was obvious then that the referral to the USAO-SDNY from Mueller didn't just happen within a matter of less than a month, but for the DU Avenatti Fan Club members who STILL don't understand that Avenatti's been lying to them, it is now perfectly clear that not only was Cohen featured in the Steele dossier, but the feds had been executing warrants against his emails, banking records, etc., going back to July 2017:


Federal authorities investigating Russian interference in the presidential election obtained search warrants for emails of Michael D. Cohen, President Trump’s former lawyer and fixer, beginning in July 2017, according to documents released Tuesday that provide a glimpse into the earliest stages of the inquiry into the president.

The documents show that Mr. Cohen’s business dealings had already been the subject of an extensive investigation by the time F.B.I. agents conducted a highly public raid on his home and office nine months later, in April of last year.

They also show how little the public knew about the Russian investigation in real time as prosecutors zeroed in on Mr. Cohen, revealing some of the investigative steps they took to obtain evidence through search warrants in Washington and New York.

John Fry, a career IRS investigator is now going to prison for letting Avenatti talk him into illegally obtaining bank records which the investigators already had.

Sucks to be him.

Stormy Daniels slams Avenatti, says Cohen is 'dumber than herpes' at DC event


WASHINGTON – Stormy Daniels called it “adorable” that ex-lawyer Michael Avenatti said he fired her during a speech to women at a private DC social club on Tuesday night.


She hinted in Washington that their interests hadn’t been aligned.

She said that “her lawyer” had wanted the non-disclosure agreement she signed to not talk about her alleged 2006 hook-up with President Trump to be deemed illegal so that he could pursue deposing the president.

“That was his agenda,” she explained. She said she just didn’t want to pay the $20 million penalty for breaking the NDA.


Imagine that. A lawyer who was spending his time getting his mug on TV wasn't looking after his client's interests. Gosh, who could have guessed that, right?

But if she just wanted to keep the $130k, talk about 90 seconds of bad sex, and not pay the $20M, then how was she going to find out about the parking lot thug?

On The Right Wing Talking Point That The VA Case "Had Nothing To Do With Russia"

It seems that a number of DUers have bought into Trump's framing that the Manafort case in Virginia had nothing to do with Russia.

It's kind of astounding, given the attention that was paid on DU to the hearing last may in which Manafort was challenging the authority of the prosecution on the premise that it was outside of the special counsel's scope.

Let's recap what you should know if you were paying attention:

1. This case was brought by the special counsel.

2. The special counsel's jurisdiction is limited to things having to do with the Trump campaign and Russia.

3. Manafort tried to get this thing dismissed on the basis of the right wing talking point you are repeating - that it has nothing to do with Russia.

So, yes, in order to get this show rolling, the connection with Russia was required to be proven.

That was the point of the argument in the transcript I posted to you already.

Here is how Ellis ruled on that issue, which was required to be proven:


In sum, ¶ (b)(i) of the May 17 Appointment Order makes clear that the Special Counsel’s investigation into the payments defendant received from Russian-backed Ukrainian officials was authorized because the investigation involved potential links between a Trump campaign official — the defendant — and the Russian government via the Russian-backed Ukrainian President. The May 17 Appointment Order also confirms that the Special Counsel was authorized to prosecute the crimes alleged in the Superseding Indictment because evidence of these alleged crimes was uncovered as part of the Special Counsel’s aforementioned investigation.

If anyone has trouble understanding that ruling, please let me know.

Again, there was a shitload of excitement on DU at the time, so it is amazing to me that people forgot that, yes, the prosecution had to prove that this case had something to do with links between the Trump campaign - i.e. its chair - and Russia - i.e. the source of the funds over which Manafort committed tax evasion.

An article from last year about Ellis and sentencing

For those wondering how Ellis handles sentencing for non-white defendants...


Manafort judge emerges as skeptic of long mandatory minimum sentences

In April, confronted by a 28-year-old armed robbery convict facing a mandatory minimum 82-year sentence, Ellis' frustration grew so intense that he balked at imposing what he called a "very severe" sentence. Instead, the judge recruited a high-powered law firm to scour the law in search of some way to avoid imposing what is effectively a life sentence on Lamont Gaines, who was convicted of a string of robberies of 7-11 stores and a check-cashing business.

The judge appointed Daniel Suleiman, a former aide to Attorney General Eric Holder, to come up with any argument that might help Gaines win a more lenient sentence.
Suleiman, a partner at Covington & Burling, set on one possibility: a Supreme Court ruling in April that invalidated a law very similar to the one requiring the lengthy sentence for Gaines.

It's interesting how folks are happy to express outrage, but unwilling to look deeper into the facts.

Faced with having to sentence a 28 year old African American man to the rest of his life, Judge Ellis used the court's resources to engage a top notch aide to Eric Holder to find a way to avoid doing that.

Ellis certainly has issues. But they are not what most folks think.

Judges who oppose harsh mandatory minimums tend to ignore sentencing guidelines when they have the opportunity to do so, as more of a protest against those very sentencing rules which decent people oppose. It's not about what you think it is.

Stormy Daniels' Case Thrown Out

Here's the judgment:


"Defendants have given Plaintiff exactly what she asked for in the FAC. Defendants agreenot to enforce or attempt to enforce the Agreement against Plaintiff. Instead of accepting victory, Plaintiff makes several arguments against this Court's holding that there is no caseor controversy before it. For almost all of these arguments, Plaintiff focuses on the remedy of "rescission," as Defendant EC does. (Opp'n. 13-16.) A rescission remedy, however,is irrelevant to the Court's holding here because the Court lacks jurisdiction over Plaintiff's declaratory judgment actions based on the Covenants Not To Sue. Without subject matter jurisdiction, the Court cannot provide Plaintiff a specific remedy, whether it is rescission oft he Agreement or anything else."

So, the contract case (the initial case filed to annul the contract) has gotten her bupkus in terms of monetary damages or sanctions. It did get her out from the contract, which is what she was formally seeking. However, even when the defendants conceded the contract issue and moved to dismiss for mootness, Avenatti tried to keep the thing alive to get some kind of monetary damages that he kept promising he would get after losing the defamation case against Trump.

So the final score in the federal action is: Daniels owes Trump approximately $300,000 from the defamation case, and Trump/Cohen owe her nothing.

The remaining claim, over whether or not Daniels needs to pay back the $130k to Trump/Cohen to rescind the contract is remanded to state court.

However, as noted at the tail end of the decisions, the "remand" is likewise formal. While there is no cause of action under California law for the same reasons, this case came in as a result of being removed from state court in the first place. Since the federal court has determined it does not have jurisdiction over a moot claim, then the federal court's decision denying jurisdiction sends it back to California state court to die.

You May Need A Lawyer Sooner Than You Think

I don't know how he intends to serve process, but we're all in this thing together....

Full complaint here:


At least we get to keep the sand.

Something to keep in mind when you read "according to papers filed in federal court..."

There are currently 591 candidates for president

Not happy with the selection so far?

Have a look at the full menu:


I'm torn between Refino Pig and Sexy Vegan, so I guess I'm going to have to wait until the debates.

Question about making almond butter

I have some almond milk that I have been churning all damned day long, and so far I have not gotten any almond butter out of it.

Is there a special kind of almond milk I need to buy, or is there some churning technique that I need to use?

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