Monday, July 07, 2008
One of the virtues of being a blogger is being able to trumpet things in your own life now and then.
I am therefore announcing that I'll be In The City of Hope's Underwear Affair.
It's 10k/5K run/walk August 2, here in Los Angeles. It benefits research for research for cancers like prostate, colorectal, cervical, ovarian, kidney,bladder, testicular and uterine. Broadly speaking the "Lance Armstrong Region".
Oh...and as the name implies...we all run...um...in our underpants.
So if you feel inclined to contribute to my total public humiliation please go to the following link:
Then search for my last name and contribute as much as you can.
For a small donation I'll email you a photo of me in my "attire".
For a large donation I won't send you one.
Kathleen Seidel, a librarian/blogger has a website where among other things she discusses the alleged mercury-created autism epidemic. I haven't read her work but the sense I get is that she's skeptical of a linkage. Well along comes Clifford Shoemaker, Esq. who it seems makes his living suing people for giving children autism (whether that's actually possible is a side issue). Mr. Shoemaker decides that Ms. Seidel is bad for business and hits her with a subpoena which:
commands production of “all documents pertaining to the setup, financing, running, research, maintaining the website http://www.neurodiversity.com” — including but not limited to material mentioning the plaintiffs - and the names of all persons “helping, paying or facilitating in any fashion” my endeavors. The subpoena demands copies of all of my communications concerning any issue which is included on my website, including communications with representatives of the federal government, the pharmaceutical industry, advocacy groups, non-governmental organizations, political action groups, profit or non-profit entities, journals, editorial boards, scientific boards, academic boards, medical licensing boards, any “religious groups (Muslim or otherwise), or individuals with religious affiliations,” and any other “concerned individuals.”
It seems Mr. Shoemaker has come to believe that Ms. Seidel is part of some enormous conspiracy with the pharmaceutical industry, not some innocent citizen expressing her First Amendment rights.
Fortunately the judge was not amused.
Shoemaker has not offered a shred of evidence to support his speculations. He has, he says, had his suspicions aroused because she has so much information. Clearly he is unfamiliar with the extent of the information which a highly-competent librarian like Ms. Seidel can, and did, accumulate. If Shoemaker wanted to know if Ms. Seidel was in part supported by or provided information by Bayer, he could have inquired of Bayer or limited the Seidel subpoena to that information. Instead he issued the subpoena calling for production of documents and a deposition on the day before he stipulated to dismiss the underlying suit with prejudice. His failure to withdraw the subpoena when he clearly knew that suit was over is telling about his motives. His efforts to vilify and demean Ms. Seidel are unwarranted and unseemly....
I find that Clifford Shoemaker violated Fed. R. Civ. P. 11(b)(1) and Rule 45(c)(1).... The 11(b)(1) violation may also violate Virginia’s Rules of Professional Conduct .... Clifford J. Shoemaker’s action is an abuse of legal process, a waste of judicial resources and an unnecessary waste of the time and expense to the purported deponent.
Score one for the little guy.
When Barack Obama asks us to believe in one of his changes, it is never quite clear whether the rubes to be fooled are the Great Unwashed who agree with the Flop or the naifs who agreed with the Flip. The eternal question always is, "who are the rubes"?
Well, in what is obviously a gust-busting turn, the editors of the New York Times are beginning to worry that they are the rubes. In this morning's lead editorial ("New and Not Improved"), they detail and denounce many of Obama's post-Hillary pivots to the center. As their irritation builds, I'm thinking that there are only three positions that could explain this editorial. First, that the editors genuinely believe that Obama could win the general election with his primary season policy ideas. It is believable that they think this because they live inside a Manhattan cocoon, but silly. Second, that the editors would rather that Obama lose than compromise his principles. This seems unlikely in the cold light of a November morning, however satisfying it might feel to spew such romantic drivel on the Fourth of July. Or, third, the editors know that Obama's pivots will be much more believable to the swing voters if the Times denounces them. This theory holds that the editors are pretending to be outraged so as to further deceive the rubes who prefer the Flop to the Flip.
It is so hard to know which explanation to believe.