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Tuesday, December 22, 2009

NY Times EDITORIAL: "Restoring Access to the Courts"

Restoring Access to the Courts
The New York Times - EDITORIAL - December 22, 2009

In a lamentable 5-to-4 decision earlier this year, the Supreme Court discarded 50 years of legal precedent to make it significantly harder for Americans to assert their legal rights in federal court. The ruling, in the case of Ashcroft v. Iqbal, involved a Muslim man swept up on immigrations charges after the Sept. 11 attacks. The court’s conservative majority decided that he could not sue the high-ranking federal officials he deemed responsible for setting the policies behind the terrible abuse he said he suffered in detention. But the ruling’s damage went beyond the case or the national security sphere. The court altered the procedural rules for initiating a lawsuit, raising the bar in a fashion destined to make it far harder to bring valid actions and to allow wrongdoers to avoid accountability. For decades, a plaintiff filing a lawsuit needed to file only a short, clear statement of his claim and its legal grounds. That standard recognized that much of the evidence needed to prove claims may be in the hands of the defendant and not available before the pretrial discovery process. The Iqbal ruling, which followed a similar 2007 ruling applying to antitrust claims, abandoned that approach. Under the court’s new regimen, judges must assess the “plausibility” of the facts of an allegation before allowing the plaintiff to begin collecting evidence. That gives judges excessive latitude to bury cases based on their subjective views before the evidence emerges and can be fairly weighed. The practical impact in, say, an employment discrimination case, is to disadvantage the wronged employee, who is unlikely to have access at the outset to the records needed to prove wrongful conduct. Testifying at a Senate Judiciary Committee hearing earlier this month, John Payton, the president of the NAACP Legal Defense and Education Fund, expressed doubt that some of the major cases of the civil rights era could have survived the heightened standard. The courts have already applied Iqbal to dismiss numerous lawsuits prematurely. Representative Jerrold Nadler, a Democrat of New York, has introduced corrective legislation in the House. Senator Arlen Specter, a Pennsylvania Democrat, has introduced another bill targeting the problem. It is the responsibility of Congress to reopen the courthouse doors.

14 comments:

Hopeless for the holidays said...

The Judiciary Branch of our country- local, state and federal- has been out of control for a long time. It's run by a bunch or heartless, lawless thugs. Hopeless.

Anonymous said...

"The Nation which forgets its Defenders will itself be forgotten" This not only applies to our fallen heroes and the heroes currently fighting for freedom. They have and are sacrifying their lives and families for our "freedom", so these judicials whores can destroy our country and families.

Anonymous said...

the Judicial whores have forgotten the real laws, Vengeance is the Lords, partaking in denial of rights will bring on the real laws, we the victims were just trying to help you from your destiny!

Anonymous said...

so all the violations of rights, coercion, stalling, delays, changing of paperwork you will get back 10 fold

Anonymous said...

Isn't plausability subjective...and therefore really not a legal definition or determiner of law?
If a judge determines that a set of accusations are not plausable to him/her (it is exclusively up to the mind of ONE viewer in American "federal court" justice) so he/she can always and is willing to.... coverup misconduct, favor a corporate friend or just screw an employee brutalized by another judical branch.... and it also speaks to what AMERICAN citizens view as.... AMERICAN JUSTICE THAT TRULY EMPLOYS THIRD WORLD PRACTICES THAT ARE APPLIED TO THE WORDS... JUSTICE IN A DEMOCRACY.....SO THE USA CAN DOMINATE THE WORLD'S NEED FOR INTEGRITY AND CIVIL RIGHTS, BY PRETENDING TO POSSESS THE ONLY REAL SYSTEM OF JUSTICE....BUT IS JUST A TARP THROWN UPON THE EVIL THAT THIS WORLD HAS ALWAYS KNOWN!

Citizens need to come forward and take control of the AMERICAN justice systems...ALL OF THEM......and create a system that employs term limits, accountability and laws that perform for the PEOPLE...and not the government, judiciary or corporations.

We can do this...we just need a vehicle that unites and demands...it is called massive angry citizens willing to resolve...coming in the future....seriously!

Anonymous said...

Our new rulers have spoken! How dare anyone say anything!

Anonymous said...

if you call new rulers those who should be in jail or the insane asylum, which is the only type who will deal with the new rulers..
it will always be good vs evil.....

Anonymous said...

if you call new rulers those who should be in jail or the insane asylum, which is the only type who will deal with the new rulers..
it will always be good vs evil.....

Anonymous said...

Welcome our new monkey nobility. These noble judges have such insight from being lawyers. How long before their children replace them on the bench? See this in Suffolk County with its legacy judges.
Put black robes on a monkey and you still have a monkey. This was answered for us by by C. Heston in "Planet of Apes" before their court, "You're just a bunch of monkeys."

Anonymous said...

have not read this decision yet but doesn't it beg the question of How a judge could determine if something is "plausible" if the plaintiff and judge have not seen the evidence yet that would make it plausible and in fact real?

sounds like horrible change in procedural and substantive rights that will make it easier to continue the wrongful exercise of power by the judicial mafia and corrupted judicial members, some of whom may certainly be in the federal judiciary

hudson valley

Anonymous said...

I believe that federal court did not have to make any" plausability" ruling because corporations and the government employers......have already served the desired demands that all these state and federal courts are mandating.....regarding federally filed EMPLOYMENT CASES....and that is illegal RETALIATION of the pltf and everyone of their witnesses that have the guts to tell the truth that the "judicial branches' demand of all who are sworn under oath, plus many years of stalling and the acceptable usage of perjury to maintain these judicial orchestrated results.
The process of permitting employees to work in environments that mimic the early 1900's is already pledged by all American courts to remain as such...and prevents and voids any correction that changed it back then to the standard we had a few years back.
Hostile environment seems to be agreeable to the black robes of America...because THEY don't have to suffer from it..ever!

Jail4Judges said...

The courts don't want people going to court. They know that when people do go to court they can figure out very quickly that it's all a big fat fraud. Put them all in JAIL where they belong.

Anonymous said...

Regarding Gerald Garson's early release.

The parole commission has stated that as a matter of law, Garson completed programs that allowed him Eligiblity Merits to reduce his sentence by 1/6th against his minimum sentence of 3yrs.

Fact of the matter is that Garson was in protective custody, I believe, until May of 2009, and was not afforded the ability to participate in any such programs so as to keep him out of contact with the general poplulation. Now,I hear he went on work release, a benefit that is never given to the ordinary inmate at first asking.

The question that needs to be answered is how the heck did Garson earn his early release when it appears impossible that he was in a position to do so.

There are hundreds of inmates that participate in these type of programs only to have their hopes dashed on the rocks when they are routinely denied that which has been provided for by the Legislature and the Governor's office.

Parole, I am afraid is the last leg of the corruption that starts from the cop in the street all the way up to the appellate courts.

It is a disgrace.

Anonymous said...

Nice post & nice blog. I love both.

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See Video of Senator John L. Sampson's 1st Hearing on Court 'Ethics' Corruption

The first hearing, held in Albany on June 8, 2009 hearing is on two videos:


               Video of 1st Hearing on Court 'Ethics' Corruption
               The June 8, 2009 hearing is on two videos:
         
               CLICK HERE TO SEE Part 1
               CLICK HERE TO SEE Part 2