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I'm Not A Lawyer, But I Play One On The Internet

Well, ACORN is just the gift that keeps on giving. They're suing the two young people who got so many of their employees to go along with the most absurd illegal plans, along with those who didn't make the videos but merely reported on them.

They might have some very, very smart lawyers (the best our money can buy), but what might work in a courtroom is utterly doomed in the court of public opinion. And as a non-lawyer who once toyed with going into law, I see several areas where a judge (especially in very, very blue Maryland) might rule in their favor, by the precise letter of the law, but most people would laugh in their faces.

For example:

Standing. ACORN is suing on behalf of the videotaped employees, claiming that their right to privacy was violated. Unfortunately, those are ex-employees -- ACORN fired them for what they were caught doing on the videos. Further, ACORN's CEO -- I'm sorry, "chief organizer" -- publicly thanked the people they're now suing for helping bring these former employees to light.

Expectation of privacy. The crux of the argument about the taping being illegal is that the ACORN employees were conducting themselves out of the public eye. But in the videos, other people keep wandering into and out of the office. Kind of hard to argue that one reasonably expected privacy while others keep popping in and out of the room.

Bill Of Attainder: ACORN says that the Constitution's prohibition of Bills Of Attainder -- laws enacted to affect only a single individual -- keeps them from having their funding blocked. They might have a technical, legal argument, but there are some common sense observations that apply here.

For one, ACORN isn't a person, but an organization. Corporations might be, in many ways, the equivalent of people in the eyes of the law, but they just aren't.

For another, while they might have an argument under the "equal protection" clause, there is simply no legal right to get money from the federal government. It's a privilege, and privileges can be restricted or revoked at any time. Should the government decide that they don't want to subsidize ACORN, then that's just fine. If ACORN has let itself grow entirely dependent on government funding, and will not survive without it, then that's their problem. (Not likely; they have plenty of wealthy friends who will bail them out.) The government has no obligation to keep giving them money.

I'm certain that ACORN's lawyers will construct very solid legal arguments on each of those grounds, with lots of precedents and case law and reams and reams of footnotes. They very well might even win their cases.

But they'll lose in the court of public opinion. And, I believe, they'll lose their unspoken goal -- to scare future critics into silence. They want to make an example out of these young people by hounding them with this lawsuit, and they want to make nervous the "deep pockets" at Fox News and Big Government for airing the videotapes.

ACORN is going down. At this point, they're just trying to not go down alone.


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Comments (82)

Nor does any video prove a ... (Below threshold)
Adrian Browne:

Nor does any video prove a crime occurred.

$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$
The Court of Public Opinion will be interested in who funded the videographer's trips to different cities (they attempted to entrapment people in about twelve separate places) to make these videos. That's a lot of time and money.
$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$

Good luck!

Adrian clearly has not paid... (Below threshold)
Frank Author Profile Page:

Adrian clearly has not paid attention. The young man and young lady have already stated they paid their own expenses. Also they aren't government officials, so how does "entrapment" apply?

Adrian, they've already sai... (Below threshold)

Adrian, they've already said who funded it -- the filmmakers spent just under $1500 of their own money.

And really, Adrian. "they attempted to entrapment people?" You're so worked up over this, you're not even speaking clearly.

A cheap-ass camera, tawdry outfits, and dozen or so tanks of gas ain't really that much. Just watching the videos shows that the did this on the cheap -- there are no big bucks (say, David Axelrod astroturfing figures, like they've paid out to Winner and Associates for their fine efforts) visible in this story.

Give it another try, Adrian. I'm confident you can do better.

J.

You know how people in the ... (Below threshold)
Adrian Browne:

You know how people in the Court of Public Opinion just love being secretly videotaped and entrapped by other private citizens with an agenda.

Besides, all the money spent on those videos could have bought Sarah Palin a whole new wardrobe.

Good luck!

What is Adrian saying? That... (Below threshold)
iwogisdead:

What is Adrian saying? That ACORN is going to be looking good to the public when all is said and done? Sheeez.

Notice how when liberals get agitated about something and start ranting, they bring up Sarah Palin? Used to be that they'd bring up Richard Nixon.

ACORN operating in Maryland... (Below threshold)
Louis:

ACORN operating in Maryland Illegally.
http://www.investorsiraq.com/showthread.php?t=133745


ACORN, Inc.-the parent organization of all things ACORN-forfeited its corporate charter in Maryland in 2006. ACORN Housing forfeited its corporate charter in 2008. Any ACORN office in the state of Maryland is potentially operating illegally."

Adrian: "Nor does any vi... (Below threshold)

Adrian: "Nor does any video prove a crime occurred."

Clearly a crime occured...whether a shiny-suited lawyer could get the evidence excluded is an entirely different matter.

The ACORN employees who willingly, even EAGERLY participated in aiding and abetting O'Keefe and Giles had no idea that this was NOT a REAL scheme to enslave these girls. Yet they wilfully participated in full view, broad daylight, in an open office. They didn't even say: "Come back after closing", or "Meet me at Pier 12 at midnight", or some such. Their openness and complete lack of anything resembling a "second thought" shows that they felt enabled by the organization they worked for, ACORN, to do whatever they wanted in situations like these...and they seemed accustomed to dealing with situations just like these!

How many times have REAL pimps and prostitutes made similar pitches to ACORN, with or without underage girls?? And how many illegal operations are now in full swing because of ACORN?

ACORN, Inc.-the pa... (Below threshold)
Stan25:
ACORN, Inc.-the parent organization of all things ACORN-forfeited its corporate charter in Maryland in 2006. ACORN Housing forfeited its corporate charter in 2008. Any ACORN office in the state of Maryland is potentially operating illegally."

That alone leaves ACORN without a leg to stand on. They do not have any legal recourse to recover anything in the way of compensatory damages or any other damage awards that they might seek to redress. Any attempt to do so, is a clear case of fraud. Thus, any judge that decides to hear this case, should be thrown out too.

I wonder how many other states that ACORN is doing business in without a charter or business license? Would be very interesting to find out. What is really needed here, is for the states to file a rico case against ACORN. This way, the government can go through all of ACORN's records with a fine tooth comb.

You know how people in t... (Below threshold)
Jay Tea:

You know how people in the Court of Public Opinion just love being secretly videotaped and entrapped by other private citizens with an agenda.

Yeah, how dare citizen journalists pull that stunt? Who the hell do they think they are? This ain't "60 Minutes" or "To Catch A Predator!"

Besides, all the money spent on those videos could have bought Sarah Palin a whole new wardrobe.

Actually, Adrian, it adds up to about two pairs of sneakers for Michelle Obama, if you factor in sales tax.

Talk about a "shoestring" budget...

Wanna keep playing, Adrian? Or have you started to learn the first lesson of holes?

J.

Why does Adrian defend an o... (Below threshold)
Michael:

Why does Adrian defend an organization that wanted to sell underage girls?
An insight into Adrian's character? Does Adrian like underage girls?

Prove: To establish the tr... (Below threshold)
jim m:

Prove: To establish the truth or validity of by presentation of argument or evidence.

I would say that the video tape is proof of illegal activity.

1) It proves ACORN was operating in Maryland. Since ACORN is not licensed to operate in Maryland this itself is illegal.

2) It proves that ACORN employees were willing to actively abet and conceal illegal activity. Their discussion potentially constitutes a conspiracy to commit several crimes including prostitution, violation of immigration laws, slavery, tax evasion, obstruction of justice by concealing crimes from the police etc. Conspiracy to commit crimes is a crime in itself.

Adrian- as far as I know there is no one who has contradicted, much less provided any evidence that the statement of O'Keefe and Giles that hey spent less than $3000 on the whole project. Furthermore there is no reason to doubt their story as the whole production is really pretty simple and cheap.

If there was such a strong reason to suspect foul play on their part I sincerely doubt that Congress would be sprinting away from ACORN with such determination.

It's not that Adrian suppor... (Below threshold)
jim m:

It's not that Adrian supports the enslavement and prostitution of underage girls (at least not necessarily) but he supports the activities of ACORN that support the Democratic party.

In his mind support for the Dems excuses ALL illegal or unethical activity. There are no ends that do not justify the means.

As Alinski said: "The most unethical of all means is the non-use of any means"

and: "The third rule of ethics of means and ends is that in war the end justifies almost any means...."

Adrian does not understand why what ACORN did was wrong since they were doing it in support of the Dem cause.

"There is no good or evil, there is only power and those too weak to seek it" - Prof. Quirrel/Voldemort in Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone

I think that last sum it up pretty well.

excellent summation, jim m!... (Below threshold)

excellent summation, jim m!!

Please pardon Adrian while ... (Below threshold)
GarandFan:

Please pardon Adrian while he pulls his head out of his ass. He can't understand why he's being challenged. His arguments always work over at DK and HuffPo.

Two wrongs don't make a rig... (Below threshold)
Victory is Ours:

Two wrongs don't make a right. If the filmmakers broke the law, in the eyes of the law it really doesn't matter what they uncovered in the process.

Robbing a bank to feed hungry children is still a crime.

"The young man and young lady have already stated they paid their own expenses."

And Brietbart stated on Fox that no Acorn office threw them out, and that's turned out to be a lie.

Now that we know they are lying the only question is how much are they lying?

Vic

ADRIAN!!!!... (Below threshold)
Rocky:

ADRIAN!!!!

VIC:prevarications... (Below threshold)
epador:

VIC:

prevarications do not an argument make

Vic: "And Brietbart stat... (Below threshold)

Vic: "And Brietbart stated on Fox that no Acorn office threw them out, and that's turned out to be a lie"

A "lie"? Really? Says who? Bertha Lewis, capo di tutti capi of ACORN? I think Bertha's "credibility" is non-existant at this point.

Remember when she said it was ONE office that aided and abetted sex-slavery for little girls? Then it was TWO rogue offices? Then THREE...FOUR...FIVE??? drip, drip, drip...

Let's say these young folks visited 10 offices (they didn't have tmie or money to do many, if any, more). IF we have already seen the ONLY 5 offices that were EAGER to aid and abet sex-slavery for little girls, then that still makes FIFTY PERCENT of ACORN offices that did so.

And Breitbart has indicated there is indeed more to come!

Adrian, ACORN said they wer... (Below threshold)
Jay Tea:

Adrian, ACORN said they were turned away from several other offices -- until the couple released videos proving that wrong.

ACORN's CEO said they were grateful that the "bad apples" were exposed -- then sued them for doing it.

ACORN said they filed a police report in Pennsylvania, but it used the guy's real name... and they were using aliases.

ACORN said... well, I could go on, but it's really not necessary.

Now that we know they are lying the only question is how much are they lying?

Good point, Vic. I think that's your first one.

J.

Hey VIC, how much is ACORN ... (Below threshold)
GarandFan:

Hey VIC, how much is ACORN paying you?

There are two real losers h... (Below threshold)
MPR:

There are two real losers here. The American people and Obamalala. The American people lose because the gazillions of dollars that has been sucked up by ACORN already and may continue. Obamalala loses because it is one more part of his past that adds to the shadiness of it. It isn't a far leap from advocating illegal tax advice, sex slave trafficking and prostitution to voter fraud. Americans are waking up to the possibility that Obamalala is in the White House because a tax payer funded ACORN helped him over the top in key precincts using bogus voter registration and fraud. When the left lost to Bush because of a few hundred votes in Florida they went apoplectic when Kerry lost in 04 because of a relatively few votes in Ohio. They weren't going to let that happen again. They pulled out all the stops. Something about your vote not counting that grates on Americans no matter what your party affiliation. This, I believe is a large part of the voter rage at the Town Hall meetings.
The winners here will be the lawyers on both sides. Giles and what's his name will have their 15, maybe 20 minutes of fame. Their lawyers will be paid for by a well funded defense fund. The "fired" ACORN workers will have their lawyers paid for and are either receiving severance or working at another job. After all, their civil rights have been violated and they could be in for a jack pot.

In 15 of the 40 states ACOR... (Below threshold)
GarandFan:

In 15 of the 40 states ACORN operates in, workers have already been convicted or indicted for voter fraud.

Bertha's got a lot of 'cleaning up to do'.

Wonder what the next ACORN tape will reveal.

" In 15 of the 40 states AC... (Below threshold)
Les Nessman:

" In 15 of the 40 states ACORN operates in, workers have already been convicted or indicted for voter fraud. "

And that was during a time period when many who are supposed to be enforcing our laws or were supposed to be reporting, were willfully NOT looking in to this.

The tide has turned a great deal, as far as acorn is concerned.

More and more people are not going to look the other way now. And acorn people, or those affiliated with acorn, are more likely to expose past or present wrongdoing, out of fear of going down with acorn.

Pass me the popcorn.

Hey VIC, Adrian, SAUD:... (Below threshold)
GarandFan:

Hey VIC, Adrian, SAUD:

Durable goods and housing sales reports are in. Both dumped in August. How's that "Stimulus" working out?

VIC - Bertha Lewis... (Below threshold)
jim m:

VIC -

Bertha Lewis claimed 5 offices that threw O'Keefe and Giles out. 2 of those 5 have already been shown on video doing the exact opposite. On that basis I find it rather hard to credit her assertions and find Breitbart to be more believable.

And while two wrongs do not make a right, if indeed O'Keefe and Giles did wrong in the taping of their meeting (and I do not concede this point) that does not in any way excuse the wrongs being perpetrated by he ACORN employees. You seem to be crying about how O'Keefe and Giles were wrong and your argument creates he impression that you feels that this in some way exonerates ACORN. It does no such thing.

Notice how when liberals... (Below threshold)
Paul_In_Houston:

Notice how when liberals get agitated about something and start ranting, they bring up Sarah Palin?
...
5. Posted by iwogisdead
|

A new version of Godwin's Law emerging?

-

Thank FSM someone has the c... (Below threshold)
jp2:

Thank FSM someone has the courage to stand up to ACORN. I just hope poor Blackwater, Lockheed and KBR will be ok after this legislation.

Where does it say in the Co... (Below threshold)
Stan25:

Where does it say in the Constitution that gotcha journalism is illegal? CBS, ABC, and NBC practice that form all the time. Even when they reporting so-called straight news. Their news magazine shows have raised to a fine art.

CBS is the one that started the whole concept with 60 Minutes and the others followed suit with the same type of format. ABC with 20/20 and NBC with Dateline. It is the standard practice of the left to use this method.

Now that some enterprising students (conservative) did this to a liberal icon, the left screams bloody murder. Seems to me that for all of their harping on tolerance, the left is the most intolerant bunch of people that has ever come down the pike. If these students had been on the left and dug up dirt on George W Bush and Dick Cheney, they would be treated as heroes and given a show of their own.

So Adrian, jp2, vic and SAUD, when your left wing buds get a tit in the wringer, remember what goes around will come around. In this case, this is a doozy of a payback.

There is an alternative to ... (Below threshold)
Rick Caird:

There is an alternative to bringing up Sarah Palin. Usually, when the left wants to divert the subject away from ACORN, they scream "Haliburton!" followed quickly by "Blackwater!". But, when really questioned, they are not sure what the objections to Blackwater and Haliburton are, but they know the objections are serious.

Rick

I'm not a lawyer, but back ... (Below threshold)
Baron Von Ottomatic:

I'm not a lawyer, but back in high school I banged a chick who eventually ended up dropping out of law school.

True story.

And if ACORN is counting on... (Below threshold)
Baron Von Ottomatic:

And if ACORN is counting on the "supportive of an organization which receives federal funds but was caught red-handed conspiring to outwit the IRS" caucus to create a tidal wave of public support they're screwed.

RICO-la!

Big Labor and ACORN will come to regret filing this lawsuit.

Unfortunately for SAUD, VIC... (Below threshold)
GarandFan:

Unfortunately for SAUD, VIC, Adrian, jp2, et al; they're world is slowly falling apart. Nov 5, 2008 was their heyday. They owned Congress and the White House. The "Stimulus" passed easily. Crap and Tax sailed through the House easily. Republicans 'were no longer relevant'. The New Age was dawning. Universal "free" health care was next. Then things started falling apart. THIS WAS NOT SUPPOSED TO HAPPEN! Recovery? Stalled. Crap and tax? Stalled. Health Care? Stalled? The World was supposed to LOVE US! North Korea - stalemate. Iran - still working on nukes, thank you. Israel - Palestine, no movement.

Now all we get from the usual suspects is excuses. Hey guys, remember when you said Bush was a Cowboy and a fool? How Barry was going to 'CHANGE' everything? Well?

NEWSFLASH: Barry votes PRE... (Below threshold)
GarandFan:
Honest, non-rhetorical ques... (Below threshold)
JSchuler:

Honest, non-rhetorical question here: Assuming that the bill of attainder clause would apply to cutting ACORN's funding, wouldn't it also apply to giving ACORN federal funds in the first place? Wouldn't that kill off just about every pork-barrel project? If so, GO ACORN!

Look at this: <a href="http... (Below threshold)
Stan25:
As one noted (or notorious)... (Below threshold)
f1guyus:

As one noted (or notorious) Washington lawyer said "Don't tell me the facts of the case, or how the law applies to them. Tell me who the Judge is." ACORN and the Maryland Democratic establishment wouldn't have filed this suit if they didn't think the outcome was pre-determined.

JT: strictly speaking, corp... (Below threshold)
Xrlq:

JT: strictly speaking, corporations are considered persons in most legal contexts. Statutes that reference "persons" generally apply to corporations, while statutes not intended to include corporations generally use the word "individual" or the phrase "natural person" instead. Not sure how (or if) this affects the constitutional prohibition on bills of attainder, but FWIW, statutes affecting an identifiable group of individuals (which ACORN certain is, whether you acknowledge the corporate entity or not) can be viewed as bills of attainder. Better to draft a bill prohibiting funding to any organization that does not meet certain standards of compliance. That way, ACORN loses its funding, and no new, equally shady organization with a new charter, a new name and 99% of the old individuals can take its place.

Adrian: you keep using that word "entrapment." I do not think it means what you think it means. First, only the government, or those acting in concert with it, are capable of entrapment as a matter of law. Giles and O'Keefe didn't act in cahoots with the government; indeed, they'd have an easy defense to this crazy suit if they were. Second, and more importantly, it's only entrapment if the criminal disposition originated with law enforcement, not with the sucker who got caught. If an undercover cop manages to bully a generally law-abiding but morally weak person into breaking a law he really didn't want to break (e.g., undercover cops hounding Randy Weaver into illegally modifying a gun he didn't want to illegally modify before selling it to them), that's entrapment. There was no bullying here. The ACORN employees offered their criminal tips quite willingly; the only "trap" being the fact that the putative criminals they were offering their advice to weren't really criminals, after all. That's a classic sting operation, not entrapment.

Louis, Stan, Jim: All this talk of ACORN operating "illegally" in Maryland strikes me as both outdated and overblown. Of course ACORN conducts all sorts of illegal activity across the country, but I don't think they are doing anything illegal solely by virtue of being in business at all. As of today, the State of Maryland lists their status as revived, so presumably, sometime between September 19 and today their lack of good standing has been corrected. At the time of the video, it was a slap on the wrist violation for ACORN to operate as a corporation in the state while not in good standing, and it wasn't illegal at all for the individuals involved to do what they did in their private capacity, or even for a group of private individuals to call themselves "ACORN" with the national organization's permission (and if they acted without such permission, that's between them and ACORN).

Operating while not in good standing is an issue between corporation and the state. As to private litigants, it means very little; at most, perhaps the newly reinstated ACORN must re-file its papers to keep the suit in place. It doesn't mean anyone else can disregard the corporate entity. It would be fun if they could, though. I can think of few things more satisfying than to see Big-Mouth Bertha lose her house over some act or omission of some random ACORN employee in Maryland.

One of the posters above sa... (Below threshold)
RicardoVerde:

One of the posters above said that the videographers had been thrown out by an ACORN office. I haven't seen where they were thrown out by any office. Which one did so?

37:If ACORN was not ... (Below threshold)
RicardoVerde:

37:
If ACORN was not operating in good standing at the time this occurred then how can they claim damages for an affect on their operations when they weren't supposed to be operating at that time?

VICSAUDDid You rem... (Below threshold)
914:

VICSAUD

Did You remember to pay your eggcorn union dues this month?

Cummings v. Missouri states... (Below threshold)
jim m:

Cummings v. Missouri states:

A bill of attainder, is a legislative act which inflicts punishment without judicial trial and includes any legislative act which takes away the life, liberty or property of a particular named or easily ascertainable person or group of persons because the legislature thinks them guilty of conduct which deserves punishment.

But the difference here is that a bill of attainder inflicts a punishment on an individual or specifically defined group of persons. Withdrawing federal funding is not necessarily a punishment under the law. Defunding can not reasonably be construed as taking the life, liberty or property of ACORN. Receiving federal funding is not a right and the defunding of ACORN does not prohibit their activities or membership.

Xriq- my point as to the illegality of ACORN operating in Maryland was to demonstrate hat he video tapes did indeed prove something. Whether that something in particular is of consequence was not necessarily the issue.

But the difference... (Below threshold)
Baron Von Ottomatic:
But the difference here is that a bill of attainder inflicts a punishment on an individual or specifically defined group of persons.
Like AIG or other banking executives, for example?
Yes, taking their bonuses o... (Below threshold)
jim m:

Yes, taking their bonuses or levying special taxes etc is a great example of a bill of attainder. Too bad that the Dems in congress cannot figure that out.

Baron, I think I know that ... (Below threshold)
ODA315:

Baron, I think I know that chick.......she's a community organizer now.

vic - "And Brietbart st... (Below threshold)
Marc:

vic - "And Brietbart stated on Fox that no Acorn office threw them out, and that's turned out to be a lie."

My, My.

So easy to say wasn't it vic, especially when you provide zero proof of the statement.

Got anything? Something?

Other than hot air I mean.

You mean to say Fox didn't ... (Below threshold)
Victory is Ours:

You mean to say Fox didn't cover this? Fox let Breitbart LIE on the air and still hasn't corrected their reporting?

My, My - that's bullshit.

When the filmmakers tried this scam in Philadelphia they were thrown out of the Philadelphia office and a police report was filed

Breitbart lied. Fox let him get away with it.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8QjyIiDUyoY

Philadelphia ACORN Housing official: "[W]e called the police and filed this report." In a YouTube video, Katherine Conway Russell, ACORN Housing Corp.'s Philadelphia office director, stated that O'Keefe visited the office "[l]ast July" with "another woman." Russell stated that "[a]fter asking several general questions, [O'Keefe] began to veer off into suspicious territory." Russell said that O'Keefe eventually "asked about bringing girls from El Salvador and getting them papers, et cetera," but that "I told them that there was nothing we could do to help them, that I didn't know anything about what they were asking about." Russell also said that after she contacted another ACORN official and it became clear that O'Keefe "lied to get his appointment," they contacted the police.

Oh, and ACORN intentionally edit one of the videos to twist and distort the truth.

At least one video reportedly edited out a part of the filmmakers' visit. According to a report by CNN correspondent Casey Wian on the September 17 edition of Lou Dobbs Tonight, the filmmakers edited San Bernardino ACORN employee Tresa Kaelke's statement from one of the videos that ACORN would not associate itself with prostitution. Wian said: "Left out of the originally released tape but included in a transcript the filmmakers later released is Kaelke's statement that ACORN would have nothing to do with their prostitution business."

You remember Kaelke's video right? It was shown all over the place. BUT IT INTENTIONALLY LEFT OUT THE PORTION WHERE ACORN SAID THEY'D HAVE NOTHING TO DO WITH PROSTITUTION.

The truth is quite a bit different from the lies told by Breitbart.

Looks like Breitbart and his cohorts could face some serious legal consequences over this.

It'll come to light just in time for the 2010 elections.

The lies of the right will bury Republican chances to gain ground.

Gloat now, pay later.

Vic

vic - "Russell also sai... (Below threshold)
Marc:

vic - "Russell also said that after she contacted another ACORN official and it became clear that O'Keefe "lied to get his appointment," they contacted the police."

Show me the police report, any ACORN wench can hold up a piece of paper and claim it's a report.

Also note he wasn't wearing his "costume" as he did in the five released tapes, nor was the "prostitute" identified as one.

Assuming this is true this may have been his first visit attempting to see if the sting would work.

And as we've seen it did, at least 5 times.

"Wian said: "Left out of the originally released tape but included in a transcript the filmmakers later released is Kaelke's statement that ACORN would have nothing to do with their prostitution business."

And this alleged "transcript" is where?

That defies all logic why would they release a transcript that counters what's on the San Berdu tape or is at odds with all their public interviews?

Oh, Vic, don't be so quick.... (Below threshold)

Oh, Vic, don't be so quick...

The young filmmakers reportedly gave false names during their visits. The police report gives his real name. That raises suspicions about its validity to most thinking people, so I understand how you'd miss that.

And do you have any actual proof of that accusation of creative editing besides "a CNN reporter said it on a talk show?" And just when did Kaelke say that -- before or after she bragged about killing her husband? Before or after boasting about her own career in running a prostitution ring?

Besides, Kaelke was FIRED BY ACORN over this, so obviously she's got an axe to grind.

J.

"I'M NOT A LAWYER, BUT I PL... (Below threshold)
Still An Unrepentant Democrat:

"I'M NOT A LAWYER, BUT I PLAY ONE ON THE INTERNET"

That's not the only thing you play on the internet, that's for sure.

I can see it now:

Law Offices of Jay Tea and Marc Asshat
"We know nothing but we play at it on the internet."

...and the point behind tha... (Below threshold)

...and the point behind that last comment, SAUD?

Oh, I see, no real point -- like every other comment of yours.

Well, at least you're consistent...

J.

lol!The truth alwa... (Below threshold)
Victory is Ours:

lol!

The truth always wins out in the end. Breitbart lied. His motive was to do serious damage to ACORN.

When it comes to the court of law that action by Breitbart is going to take him down.

Vic

Oh, Vic, what a pretty worl... (Below threshold)

Oh, Vic, what a pretty world you live in.

A CNN reporter on a talk show says something, and that's gospel? That's your sole evidence?

News flash: CNN lies.

They spent years covering up Saddam Hussein's atrocities to preserve their "access." And their boss accused the US military of "targeting" journalists in Iran for assassination.

But keep telling yourself your little fantasies, SAUD. Whatever gets you through the night...

J.

Poor VIC, Poor SAUD, when y... (Below threshold)
GarandFan:

Poor VIC, Poor SAUD, when ya got nuthin' try to baffle 'em with bullshit. It always works over at DK and HuffPo.

SAUD - "Law Offices of ... (Below threshold)
Marc:

SAUD - "Law Offices of Jay Tea and Marc Asshat
"We know nothing but we play at it on the internet."

Law offices of Suckers, Asswipes, Undesirables and Dickferbrains (SAUD).

And as per your MO, you make zero effort to add anything of value to the thread.

Marc,Oh so clever.... (Below threshold)
Still An Unrepentant Democrat:

Marc,

Oh so clever.

Let me try one: Moronic Asshat Rightwing Crazy (MARC)

Thanks for adding something of "value."

GarandThanks for o... (Below threshold)
Still An Unrepentant Democrat:

Garand

Thanks for owning you got "nuthin." You do have a lot of bullshit but you're the only one that's baffled by it.

"Oh so clever."Goo... (Below threshold)
GarandFan:

"Oh so clever."

Good one SAUD. Now....what's the "value" part.

Come on SAUD! You're not t... (Below threshold)
GarandFan:

Come on SAUD! You're not trying! Barry would be oh so disappointed in you! I know it's hard, but THINK, man, THINK! You can do it! No one is ENTIRELY worthless!

Hey SAUD, link up with VIC,... (Below threshold)
GarandFan:

Hey SAUD, link up with VIC, it's often said two brains are better than one. Well....the two of you should be able to scrape up at least 1/2 of one. The world is waiting to hang on your every utterance.

Come on SAUD! I'm waiting ... (Below threshold)
GarandFan:

Come on SAUD! I'm waiting for some more witty repartee. Something really stunning. Maybe a "neener neener neener". You know, cute? Or mabe something bold! "Barry's gonna lock up all you assholes and throw away the key!"

Well, let's take a closer l... (Below threshold)
iwogisdead:

Well, let's take a closer look at Vic's claim in # 46. In fact, regardless of the videos shown (it's available in its entirety on YouTube), the only reason Wian knows about anything "edited out" of the video is because O'Keefe publicly released a complete transcript of the interview!! The entire transcript of the San Bernardino interview can be found here:

http://www.docstoc.com/docs/11439744/Full-Transcript-ACORN-Prostitution-Scandal-San-Bernardino


The only part I can find in which it is claimed that ACORN would "have nothing to do with prostitution" is this, starting at page 5 (I edited it for brevity and clarity):

[O'KEEFE:] So, just so that this is wonderful because we've been dealing with these bankers who they just they just it's like the most foreign thing to them. And I don't and we don't even come out with them say it out right. They just look at the way she's dressed [ . . .] and they just assume it and then we give some devo some more details and they're like we don't we don't want to have anything to do with prostitution or sex rings [ . . . ] or international sex rings.

[KAELKE:] And, see, you know, now okay and ACORN will tell you the same thing [ . . .] They will. Um, I don't. You might get an old timer like myself that that you know really knows what's up . . . and, and could care less.

Kaelke then goes on to detail how to run a successful underage prostitution ring without being caught. She also mentions that, although she thinks her supervisor may "shoot this down," Kaelke thinks she is doing this same type of thing "on the side."

Not exactly the sort of "don't darken my door again" rebuke by ACORN that Vic wants us to believe, now, is it?

The point is not whether ACORN's "official" stand is against child prostitution (what else could it be?), but that ACORN's workers are out there, on the public tit, engaging in this sort of behavior. ACORN either condones it or has no control over its employees.

Go on, put it to a jury and let's see what they think about all of this.

ACORN could have distanced itself from this sort of behavior, and claimed that they don't want this type of person working there, but instead it has aligned itself with it by attacking the reporters and Fox and by filing a goofy lawsuit. Voters won't go for this, believe me.

iwogisdead:VIC and... (Below threshold)
GarandFan:

iwogisdead:

VIC and SAUD are not interesting in facts. They just like blowing bullshit. Instead of owning up and saying "those people deserved to be fired", it's "lets kill the messenger, because ACORN always backs Democrats, ergo sum, ACORN always does right, just ignore what you see on the tapes." Then throw in some legal jargon some idiot on DK/HuffPo learned the last time they were in court, "Oh, it's ENTRAPMENT"! What a load of crap!

Garandfan:Entrapme... (Below threshold)
iwogisdead:

Garandfan:

Entrapment it most certainly ain't.

I've looked at the Maryland statute, and can't see any clear defense, except arguing that it wasn't a "private" conversation (and that may have some validity). And, even though there's a nominal damages provision, I can't see a jury giving ACORN or their knuckleheads any money even if there is a violation.

Clearly, O'Keefe and Miles could have gone on Hannity and said what they had heard the ACORN workers say. What's ACORN's argument to the jury? "We were damaged because O'Keefe got electronic proof of what our workers said to him."? What juror is gonna buy that BS? [Answer: the same juror who voted for Obama.]

I'll be interested to see w... (Below threshold)
GarandFan:

I'll be interested to see what ACORN's move will be when they get hit with a 'discovery' list.

I know they'll be in court asking for an injunction when the next ACORN tape is released.

If they can get over the "r... (Below threshold)
Xrlq:

If they can get over the "reasonable expectation of privacy" issue, either by convincing an OJ jury they had one or by convincing the judge that no such requirement exists (it's not explicit in the statute), they could surely get the nominal damages, and punitives to boot. The trouble is that if they claim nominal damages that's $1,000 per defendant, maybe tripled as punies, coming to a grand total of $12,000. To collect anything above that they'd have to show actual damages instead, which would entail calling even more attention to the scam they were running and would have gotten away with if it hadn't been for these meddling kids.

There are seven more tapes ... (Below threshold)
bobdog:

There are seven more tapes to be released over the next few weeks, you know...and the best are being saved for last.

I'm still trying to underst... (Below threshold)
GarandFan:

I'm still trying to understand how ACORN even has "standing" to file a lawsuit "on behalf" of the two employees THEY FIRED? They're obviously hoping they're going to get an "ACORN judge" to hear the case. I've a feeling whoever is assigned the case is going to go under a microscope.

Jay: standing isn't an issu... (Below threshold)
jpe:

Jay: standing isn't an issue, since the employees are named plaintiffs. They quite clearly have standing.

That said, Acorn has standing cuz its employees were taped on the job.

Pretty simple.

Garandfan, They are ... (Below threshold)
jpe, maggie: You're not get... (Below threshold)
GarandFan:

jpe, maggie: You're not getting it. "Standing" in law means you have the right to represent someone or "stand in their place". ACORN FIRED those employees. FIRED means severing all connections. How then can ACORN represent a FIRED employee? ACORN represents that those employees were FIRED for doing something that was NOT in their job description or their authority to do - as doing so help to keep their skirts clean (or so they hope).

Seems to me that ACORN is filing the case because those two employees have ZERO for cash to hire a lawyer. Not only that, their case has so little chance of success (and/or getting money from anyone) that no lawyer will touch it on contingency (where they can get 30-50% of any award).

The whole case then appears to be nothing but legal harassment of the people causing ACORN all kinds of monetary difficulties - like government withdrawal of funding. To say nothing of the bad publicity.

SAUD, this is a thread for ... (Below threshold)

SAUD, this is a thread for discussing the ACORN lawsuit -- not for you to go trolling for dates.

Keep it up, and you'll have to try your luck in the real world instead -- and we all know how well that's worked out for you in the past.

J.

GarandFan, I agree it's a s... (Below threshold)
Xrlq:

GarandFan, I agree it's a stretch to argue that ACORN has standing to bring suit on behalf of the employees it fired. Any long-term harm to them is their injury, not ACORN's. That doesn't necessarily mean that ACORN itself lacks standing, if the Maryland law is read literally to protect the privacy interests of all "persons" (including corporations) and not merely individuals. I haven't seen the complaint, but my guess is that the suit is technically brought in the name of the employees, not ACORN, and there's nothing to stop ACORN from paying for their lawyers if they want to. However, the lawyers have a duty to represent their clients' interest, not ACORN's, so to the extent the clients suffered distress not merely from being videotaped but also from being fired over it, they may want to name ACORN itself as a defendant, as well (assuming they can find some legal theory that would make the termination otherwise wrongful).

Maggie, I don't recall GarandFan having made an issue over ACORN's corporate good standing or lack thereof. Perhaps you've confused corporate good "standing" with "standing" (or lack thereof) to bring suit?

Xr: BINGO!"Howeve... (Below threshold)
GarandFan:

Xr: BINGO!

"However, the lawyers have a duty to represent their clients' interest, not ACORN's, so to the extent the clients suffered distress not merely from being videotaped but also from being fired over it, they may want to name ACORN itself as a defendant"

It will be an interesting dilemma for the lawyers. They know who's paying the freight, yet are required to act in the best interest of their clients. Could there be an "unwritten" agreement that the former employees won't turn around and bite the hand that's feeding them?

What do the employees have to gain? O'Keefe and Company don't really have any money to go after. As for getting anything from Fox News and Big Government - good luck.

"Standing" in law ... (Below threshold)
jpe:
"Standing" in law means you have the right to represent someone or "stand in their place".
That's awesome. No, that's not what standing is. Standing is the notion that one has suffered an injury that a court can address. ie, that there's a "case or controversy" before the court.

And, as I said already, the individuals are suing. ACORN isn't "suing for them."

The lefties always lie and ... (Below threshold)
gene:

The lefties always lie and twist the truth. The 2 college students may have broken the law in one state. The law saying it is illegal to record or video with out the other persons knowing is just a law that protects the illegal talking of a criminal. It only protects illegal persons. A person that does not break the law has no objection to being taped. This law only protects criminals from being caught doing illegal things. We have many laws that only protect criminals. Most of these laws were created by the far left to protect them from prosecution.

Cat got your tongue, SAUD?<... (Below threshold)
bobdog:

Cat got your tongue, SAUD?

Are you going to let Jay Tea and Garand Fan get away with THAT?!

Can I hold your coat for you?

jpe,<a href="http:... (Below threshold)
JustRuss:

jpe,

http://www.scribd.com/doc/20148646/ACORN-v-OKeefe-Complaint

Thats the link to the actual court filing that names ACORN and THOMPSON and WILLIAMS in that order as the plaintiffs.

Tell me again that the individuals are the ones suing?

And get your facts right next time, people will hang you out to dry if you can't back up your claims.

JustRuss: all 3 are suing. ... (Below threshold)
jpe:

JustRuss: all 3 are suing. It's not "Acorn for the employees," it's Acorn plus the two employees. That's how ya show co-plaintiffs on a court filing.

jpe jumps in (again) to pro... (Below threshold)
GarandFan:

jpe jumps in (again) to prove how 'cute' he is.

ACORN is suing "on behalf" of two people it FIRED. The relevant Maryland statute is about "the employees expectation of privacy" and therefore illegal taping. Get it? THE EMPLOYEE'S EXPECTATION OF PRIVACY. So once again, where is ACORN'S "standing" to do this?

ACORN lists the "plaintiff's" causes for action. ALL referencing the 'expectation of privacy'. ACORN jumps in at the end saying "it's reputation has been damaged".

Now that's really cute. WHO DAMAGED ACORN'S REPUTATION? Could it be the acts of two of it's employees? You know, the ones THEY FIRED?

"And as a non-lawyer who on... (Below threshold)
jack fate:

"And as a non-lawyer who once toyed with going into law. . ."

In other words: Pardon me while I speculate in some rank horseshit because I once thought about going to law school.

Why not just start the post with: "While I'm completely unqualified to comment on the topic with any legal expertise, though I did dream about becoming so qualified, let me offer you my legal expertise."

heh.

So you're saying everyone s... (Below threshold)
GarandFan:

So you're saying everyone should shut up and not voice an opinion unless they are an "expert" in that particular area?

ACORN isn't stepping into t... (Below threshold)
Xrlq:

ACORN isn't stepping into the shoes of the two people it fired. It is suing in its own name, and they are suing as co-plaintiffs in their own name, presumably all on ACORN's (and, therefore, your) dime, on the theory that both the employees' "reasonable" expectation of privacy and ACORN's institutionally were violated. They both strike me as unreasonable expectations, but for different reasons. The employees should have known they were being monitored because they were on the job, and had every reason to think their own employer might send plants every now and then to keep everyone honest. ACORN should have known it would be monitored because hello, they're a business.




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