Wednesday, April 24, 2019


If I were to suggest that members of the Jewish faith living in the United States should consider suing the nation of Egypt because of the benefit it has derived for centuries from long-ago enslavement of Jews, readers would rightly think I’d lost my mind. 

Yet today here comes Richard North Patterson—lawyer, bestselling author, political functionary and elite Washingtonian—to remind us that 

the stark reality is that America’s grappling with race is far from done. As the distinguished conservative commentator Charles Krauthammer wrote: “The African-American case is unique. There is nothing to compare with centuries of state-sponsored slavery followed by a century of state sponsored discrimination.” Contemporary Americans, [Patterson says Krauthammer] asserted, were still bound by this dynamic: “Even when guiltless we remain collectively responsible for our nation’s past.” 

The emphasis is mine, highlighting the obeisance paid to the gods of statism and collectivism by Patterson and, sadly, the late Charles Krauthammer (who should have known better.) Even if we’re guiltless, we’re responsible! How’s that for a moral, religious, constitutional and legal principle?

Increasingly, Patterson has more and more company cavorting in the reparations follies. Patterson reports that presidential-candidate Senator Cory Booker and Representative Sheila Jackson Lee “have now called for a commission on reparations to, as Booker puts it, ‘bring together the best minds to study the issue and propose solutions that will finally begin to right the economic scales of past times’.” 

 Memo to Mr. Booker and Ms Lee: the “best minds” already know today’s reparations enterprise is merely another Jackson-Sharpton-type guilt-scam designed and effectuated to snare unnecessarily guilty whites and other Americans who had nothing to do with slavery. (For the record: Nor did I!)
Some brief history will remind Booker, Lee and their allies of what happened last time the reparations scheme was tried, and look at the law will inform them why any reparations case is doomed.

Back in the day, reparations lawsuits were brought in at least four United States federal courts. Non-slaves sued non-slaveholders because of the latter’s alleged benefit from Seventeenth, Eighteenth, and Nineteenth Century slavery.

At the time, the Washington Post reported that “descendants of black American slaves in New York and San Francisco filed lawsuits against several major corporations . . . contending that the companies should pay reparations for reaping profits on the backs of people who worked without pay. * * * The complainants argue that corporations benefited from an immoral institution and conspired to continue profiting from slavery even after the practice was outlawed. They seek unspecified damages.”
The cultural and political absurdity, not to mention the immorality, of those reparations lawsuits—let alone the whole idea of reparations—has been exposed with unanswerable logic by David Horowitz in his Uncivil Wars: The Controversy Over Reparations For Slavery (Encounter Books), and there is no need to repeat here Mr. Horowitz’s devastating deconstruction of the entire reparations enterprise.
What has not been addressed, however, is the fact that reparation lawsuits, are legally, baseless. They are frivolous in the extreme. As such, anyone who brings such cases risks serious consequences.
Rule 11 of the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure (and comparable provisions in state law) establishes certain standards that lawyers and their clients must comply with whenever they bring a lawsuit. Rule 11 provides for sanctions if those standards are violated.
The statutory language aimed at baseless lawsuits is clear-cut: “By presenting to the court [any] paper, an attorney . . . is certifying that to the best of the person’s knowledge, information, and belief, formed after an inquiry reasonable under the circumstances,  
1.      that [the paper] is not being presented for any improper purpose . . . . [Rule 11(b)(1)]; and
2.      the claims . . . and other legal contentions therein are warranted by existing law or by a nonfrivolous argument for the extension, modification, or reversal of existing law or the establishment of new law [Rule 11(b)(2)]; and
3.      the allegations and other factual contentions have evidentiary support or, if specifically so identified, are likely to have evidentiary support after a reasonable opportunity for further investigation or discovery . . . . [Rule 11(b)(3)].” 
In sum, Section (1) requires a proper motive, Section (2) requires some basis in law, and Section (3) requires present or reasonably anticipated factual support.
If any one of these provisions are violated, the culpable lawyers, law firms, and/or parties can be sanctioned by the court. Subject to certain limitations, the sanctions can be monetary in order “to deter repetition of such conduct by others similarly situated.” And the monetary sanctions can be substantial.
As a predicate to the following analysis it needs to be understood that the purpose of civil litigation is to resolve actual disputes between individuals and/or entities arising out of conduct deemed by the law to violate recognized rights (whether those rights have been created by common law, or through the enactment of statutes). Proof of damages is essential, except in actions to declare the rights of parties (e.g., who owns a disputed painting).
Most observers know what civil litigation is supposed to accomplish, so let’s zero in on the motive for reparations litigation. For proof that reparations litigation is not properly motivated, we need only read a March 31, 2002 article in The New York Times by Harvard Law School Professor Charles J. Ogletree, Jr., co-chairman of the then so-called Reparations Coordinating Committee. Among other things, Ogletree wrote that:
Bringing the government into [reparations] litigation will . . . generate a public debate on slavery and the role its legacy continues to play in our society. The opportunity to use expert witnesses and conduct extensive discovery, to get facts and documentation, makes the courtroom an ideal venue for this debate. A full and deep conversation on slavery and its legacy has never taken place in America; reparations litigation will show what slavery meant, how it was profitable and how it has continued to affect the opportunities of millions of black Americans. Litigation is required to promote this discussion because political accountability has not been forthcoming. (My emphasis.)
Translation: Because Mr. Ogletree’s political agenda was unsuccessful, because his naked purpose was to subvert the proper function of civil litigation in order to stir up a national debate about slavery and reparations, he and his political bedfellows shifted their activism from an openly political forum—where ever since 1989, the late Representative John Conyers introduced a bill to study slavery reparations, only to see it die each time—to the venue of the federal courts.
Moreover, and more important, America had a very costly “full and deep conversation on slavery.”
It is called the Civil War.
Ogletree’s motive was a clear violation of Rule 11(b)(1).
As for Rule 11(b)(2)’s requirement that the complaint in a lawsuit have some basis in law, let’s be clear about the statute’s intention. The only relevant question is: Can what the plaintiff is complaining about be legally redressed? In other words, a jilted woman cannot sue her ex-boyfriend for jilting her because the law does not recognize ungentlemanly conduct as legally actionable conduct. On this score, then, reparations litigation complaints fail miserably—in more ways than there is space here to deal with. I’ll spell out just four major deficiencies:
o    There are no legitimate plaintiffs. Reparations lawsuits have been bought and threatened today by people who were not themselves slaves, and thus have no grievances. Indeed, in one case, the plaintiffs were described as descendants of slaves. Even if they could prove they were descendants (which is well-nigh impossible), they would have no legal standing to complain about what happened to others—even their relatives—centuries ago.
o    There is no cognizable legal claim. Apart from the undeniable fact— as reprehensible as it was— that pre-Civil War slavery was a legal institution, not since the inception of this country has there been what we lawyers call a recognized civil “cause of action” (e.g. trespass, breach of contract, assault and battery) for slavery, or for anything even remotely connected with that obscene practice.
o    There are no legitimate defendants. Back in the day, the reparations enterprise sued railroads, banks, insurance companies, and the like. Putting aside whether these entities or their predecessors even existed while slavery existed, there never was, nor can there ever be, the requisite causal connection between the acts of those entities (e.g., lending money to slaveholding plantations) and today’s plaintiffs (e.g., alleged descendants of slaves).
o    There are no provable damages. If the concept of legal causality has any meaning, today’s reparations plaintiffs could not prove they suffered any damages from the conduct of companies over a century ago, let alone from whomever would be the named defendants.
Given these fatal flaws in reparations litigation complaints generally, it is not necessary to examine other problems those cases would suffer from even if they survived predictable motions to dismiss them—notably, defenses such as the legality of slavery, statutes of limitations, and the constitutionality of retroactive liability. Clearly, Rule 11(b)(2) would be violated.
Finally, Rule 11(b)(3), which is directly connected to Rule 11(b)(2), requires factual support for a complaint’s allegations. Accordingly, there could not be a shred of factual support that:
o    Any potential reparations litigation plaintiff would have the requisite personal stake in the outcome of such a case.
o    Anything legally actionable was done.
o    Any would-be defendant did anything—actionable or not—to any plaintiff                             
ny reparations litigation plaintiff could have suffered any damages.

 Even if the plaintiffs, the defendants, and the cause of action requirements of a nonfrivolous complaint were satisfied, no case would survive the expired statutes of limitations after the passing of centuries.
Rule 11(b)(3), like the other two sections, would be violated.
It has to be emphasized that there is much more at stake concerning reparations lawsuits than safeguarding the integrity of our civil justice system. It is important for us to prevent race hustlers like Jackson, Sharpton, and some of the current democrat presidential candidates from enlisting the judicial process in a campaign of extortion, one that has already infected our political and economic system. At stake, as well, is the integrity of our federal judges. They must recognize reparations litigation for what it is and reject its insidious attempt to induce, and capitalize on, undeserved collective guilt.
In the Civil War and its aftermath and in the wounds that continue to divide Americans today, our Nation in many ways—not often fair to those of us who are innocent—has paid many times over the reparations the race hustlers then wanted, and their successors want today: Extracting through moral extortion from innocent Americans through dubious legislation and baseless lawsuits undeserved money and other entitlements.
It is time that the likes of Jackson, Sharpton, Sanders, Booker, Lee and the countless others who have jumped on the statist-collectivist reparations bandwagon be told by our legislators, courts, and individual Americans that enough is enough. That we the innocent reject the pernicious idea that “even when guiltless we remain collectively responsible for our nation’s past.   

Saturday, April 6, 2019

'First they came........

Pastor Martin Niemöller's unforgettable words have powerful impact today, especially in light of what is happening today in the United States of America:
First they came for the socialists, and I did not speak out—because I was not a socialist.
Then they came for the trade unionists, and I did not speak out— because I was not a trade unionist.
Then they came for the Jews, and I did not speak out—because I was not a Jew.
Then they came for me—and there was no one left to speak for me.
The following essay is worth reading for at least two reasons. One is because it reveals some facts not widely known in the public forum. The other, sadly, is because of what may be the author's belief (though he hedges with "If you believe....") that human rights are a gift from God rather than inherent in the nature of mankind.


At the boiling point

April 3, 2019

I am sick to my stomach, at the boiling point with anger. The swamp gases of Jew hatred are seeping through the surface of civilization so rapidly that I cannot see how they can be contained, especially given the tepid response of so many, including my Jewish brothers and sisters. Jew hatred is a disease that corrodes the soul. It erupts periodically into epidemic proportions and we appear to be at the inception of just such an eruption. It unfortunately is to be expected in Europe, where it has festered for centuries, but it has now broken into a fever here in the United States and it is spreading like wildfire.

The Congress is infested with Jew haters. They didn’t spring full blown from nowhere — they were elected! The recent unmitigated manifestation of pure Jew hatred by Rep. Ihlan Omar (D-MN) is merely the tip of the iceberg. Rep Rashida Tlaib (D-MI) calls herself a “second generation Palestinian” and carries with her all of the Jew hatred that is imbibed with mother’s milk by those who claim to be Palestinian (a “nation” that doesn’t exist, never existed and was invented out of whole cloth in the 1960s by an arch terrorist and murderer). 

Omar and Tlaib are neophytes and nobodies of whom nothing can or should be expected, but what about the leaders of the Democratic Party — falling all over themselves to find excuses for the garbage spewing unchecked from the lips of Omar and Tlaib? It is reprehensible that Nancy Pelosi was unable to secure a simple resolution from her party condemning anti-Semitism.

The number three Democrat in the House of Representatives, James Clyburn of South Carolina, soiled himself with his comments excusing Omar. According to an account in the Washington Post, Clyburn stated:  “the experience of Rep. Ilhan Omar is ‘more personal’ than that of the children of people who have survived the Holocaust and other atrocities.” The Post asserted that Clyburn said that Omar “is living through a lot of pain” and drew a contrast between Omar’s firsthand experience and the perspectives of those whose parents or grandparents survived the Holocaust. He is quoted as having said “there are people who tell me, ‘Well, my parents are Holocaust survivors.’ ‘My parents did this.’ It’s more personal with her. I’ve talked to her and I can tell you she is living through a lot of pain.”

Really? So I guess Clyburn believes Omar’s “personal pain” must be much more searing and overrides that of the great-grandchildren of slaves who are his constituents, since slavery ended 157 years ago (159 in his home state of South Carolina). My response to that crock of manure is to Hell with Omar’s “pain,” and to Hell with Clyburn who stated that Omar’s “intersectional experiences” are simply too important to criticize her for Jew hatred. Whatever Omar went through and despite Clyburn’s arrant stupidity, nothing entitles anyone to negate the suffering of those who went through the Holocaust.

I personally know many Jews who survived the Holocaust. They suffered being penned up in ghettos and/or being sent to concentration camps where they watched their parents, brothers and sisters go to their deaths, or had their children wrenched from their arms and shot before their eyes. I know survivors who were partisans during the war, who lived and hid for years in holes dug in the ground in the depths of the forests, without protection from the freezing Polish winters, constantly being hunted by not only the Nazis but by their former friends and neighbors.

I know Jews who survived the Holocaust hidden, some for years, in dark basements or cramped attics in the homes of “Righteous Gentiles” who risked their own lives to protect them. I personally know their children and grandchildren, who also bear the scars of what their parents endured:  from earliest childhood, they were awakened by the shrieks and screams of their parents or grandparents, who relived their hellish experiences in their nightmares almost every night until their deaths, 40 and 50 years after the war ended. And from the survivors directly, I heard horrific stories of what they had been forced to endure. (For one such account, I refer you to my article entitled “Shifra’s Story” in the May 2015 edition of the Charleston Mercury.)

My dear friend, Joe Engel, who is well known in Charleston, spent three years in the depths of Hell, most of that time in Auschwitz and thereafter on the Death March. When Joe heard Rep. Omar’s filthy remarks and Rep. Clyburn’s callous attempt to dismiss them, he wrote a public letter to Rep. Clyburn. Here is what Joe Engel, Auschwitz survivor, wrote:

“Your statement in defense of the anti-Semitic slurs of Rep. Ilhan Omar was disappointing. The Nazis systematically exterminated six million innocent Jews in the most brutal and horrific way. They killed my family. I was there. No one deserves to be tortured or killed because of their religion or race and no one deserves to live in a ghetto or refugee camp. But you trample on the memory of my parents and my own survival by judging and measuring the pain of the Jewish community. Are you unable to condemn bigotry and anti-Semitism?”

Those are the words of someone whose life was inexorably, painfully and permanently altered by Jew haters almost 75 years ago. Joe Engel does not spend his life playing “victim” or asking anyone to feel sorry for him. He spends his life screaming out a warning:  What happened there can happen here!

And now, the Jew haters are slithering out from under their rocks once again. I am beginning to fear the coming onslaught. Do you think that it can’t happen here in America? Did the Jews of Spain foresee the disaster that overtook them in the 15th century when the Inquisition gave them the choice of conversion, death or expulsion? Did the Jews of Germany, Poland or Lithuania, or those in Holland, France or Italy, foresee the catastrophe that overtook them in the 20th century and would result in the murder of six million Jews, a million and a half of whom were children? As a Jew, I refuse to hide my head in the sand, ignore reality and accept that such will be my fate, or the fate of my grandsons.

Here is a question for the Jew haters:  What are you afraid of? Are you jealous of the fact that the average verbal IQ score among Jews is 120? Are you envious of the fact that Jews, at only 1.4 percent of the American population, make up 22 percent of Ivy League students and 20 percent of America’s chief executives and have earned 25 percent of the Nobel Prizes awarded to American scientists (not including Jews born outside the U.S., such as Albert Einstein) since 1950 — 32 percent worldwide in the 21st century—and 52 percent (!) of Pulitzer Prizes for nonfiction? Does it bother you that Jews give far more to charity than others in the same income bracket and make up a greatly disproportionate number of America’s leading philanthropists (19 out of the top 53 and five out of the top six in 2015 according to the Chronicle of Philanthropy)?

If you believe in G-d, then you should understand that the Jews are a gift to mankind from a beneficent Almighty. In Genesis 12:3, G-d says to the Jews:  “I will bless them that bless thee and curse those that curse thee and in thee shall all families of the earth be blessed.” Historically, where the Jews have been permitted to prosper, the society in which they thrived also prospered. Where the Jews were persecuted, expelled or murdered, the society that tormented them ended up far worse. You might not like that historical fact, but fact it is and right now I am angry enough to blurt it out. If you excuse the Jew haters — if you enable them to spew their filth and do their vilest (BDS comes to mind) — then America will pay the sad price. Statistics indicate that since 2017, there has been a 70 percent increase in anti-Semitism in America. Regardless of the lies spread by Omar and Tlaib, no other minority group has endured the growth in hate crimes that have been committed against Jews.

For as long as we permit the Ihlan Omars and the Rashida Tliabs to go unchecked, for as long as we elect their like to local, state and federal office, the evil will continue to grow and the epidemic will spread until it consumes what has been the greatest nation known to mankind. For as long as we permit the James Clyburns, the Nancy Pelosis and the rest of their rotten camarilla to temporize and find excuses for the Jew haters like Omar and Tlaib and their sycophants like Alexandria Ocasio-Cortes, or the detestable Louis Farrakhan and his “admirers,” America’s downward spiral will accelerate.

Which brings me to my fellow Jews. Following Clyburn’s disgusting remarks I happened to be in a discussion with a friend of mine, a Jew, who remarked that Clyburn was a “friend” of his. He expressed surprise that Clyburn had made such “unfortunate” remarks. He said that he still considered Clyburn a “friend” of his and that he would “discuss” it with him. If Clyburn had been my “friend” before, he would be my “friend” no more. I would “discuss” nothing with him. I would let him know, on no uncertain terms, that he had earned my undying contempt. Anything less is playing footsie with the enemy. There should be no more Jewish support for Clyburn and his temporizing buddies.

So here is my manifesto:
·         I refuse to quietly accept the spreading sewage of Jew hatred;
·         I refuse to quietly accept the purveyors of the sewage of Jew hatred;
·         I refuse to quietly accept the temporizers for those who purvey Jew hatred; and
·         I refuse to accept anyone, Jew or gentile, who finds a way through a moral maze to continue a friendly relationship with any of the above.
And if the Jew haters come after me — or my family or friends or neighbors — I will be ready.

 Pastor Martin Niemöller, and countless others-- Jews, Gypsies, Gentiles, the old, the lame and halt, homosexuals, the mentally infirm, and literally uncountable other "undesirables--were not.

One wonders who in the land of the free and home of the brave will stand up and not merely be counted, and, for example, begin the process of expelling Omar and Tlaib from the House of Representatives. Although the these two anti-semites have the right of free speech, constitutionally the House is the judge of its membership.