Thursday, September 3, 2015

Go Directly to Jail!

Rowan County Clerk Kim Davis was taken to jail Thursday by U.S. Marshals after a federal judge found her in contempt of court for ignoring his order to issue marriage licenses.
U.S. District Judge David Bunning ordered Davis to remain in jail until she agrees to comply with his Aug. 12 order.
Davis has refused to give anyone a marriage license since the U.S. Supreme Court legalized same-sex marriage June 26, citing her religious objections. A half-dozen local couples are suing her. 
The judge stated that financial fines were not enough because of Kickstarter.

Will Someone Please Marry This Man?

Miami lawyer Michael Garofola is looking for love on every reality show he can:
Earlier this year, Garofola, a former Davis Polk & Wardwell associate and federal prosecutor, took a break from his job as general counsel for Trans Pacific Polymers and Gulf Energy and Chemical Company to appear on "Bachelor in Paradise," a spinoff series of the reality TV hit "The Bachelorette." In 2013, he took an even longer break from the U.S. attorney’s office in Miami to appear on a season of the original show featuring fashion designer Desiree Hartsock.

Garofola was eliminated from "The Bachelorette" in the seventh episode, when Hartsock passed him over for other suitors. His run on "Paradise" ended just two weeks ago, when he was edged out by other contestants vying for the attentions of Tenley Molzahn. ("She's just not that into [I.Q.],” Garofola tweeted to his nearly 16,000 followers.)

If Garofola is smarting from the rejection, he doesn’t let on. “I’m proud of all of my decisions,” he said in an interview after the show. “They’ve all been net positive, and I really wouldn’t change a thing.” And he has no patience for those who would question the choice to flaunt the search for love.
Lawyers enjoy reality shows as much as everyone else, Garofola said. But among reality TV’s critics, they’re “the most hypercritical and judgmental group.”

"I don’t fit that mold,” said Garofola, insisting that he’s always embraced risk. His biggest fear, he said, is having regrets.
Wait a minute -- his biggest fear is having regrets?

That's like answering a job interview question about your biggest weakness by saying "I care about my work too much."

Ladies -- he's still available!

Good luck Michael!

Wednesday, September 2, 2015

3d DCA Watch -- It's Hot Out There Edition!

It's wet and wild Wednesday in the bunker, and the judicial juices are flowing!

Let's partake of the nectar of the (concrete) gods:

Key West Seaside v. Certified Lower Keys:

Close your eyes and imagine a world where the offer of judgment statute and related rule operate perfectly, and no one is the least bit confused or unclear as to how to works.

Now wake up:
Key West Seaside, LLC, (“Seaside”) appeals from an order denying its motion for attorney’s fees and costs pursuant to the offer of judgment statute, section 768.79, Florida Statutes (2010), and Florida Rule of Civil Procedure 1.442. Because a final judgment of no liability was entered in favor of Seaside, and because the trial court made no finding that Seaside’s offer of judgment was not made in good faith, we reverse and remand with instructions to determine reasonable attorney’s fees.
Other than that the trial judge got it just right!

But Judge Logue says not so fast:
For me, the dispositive legal point in this case is Seaside’s failure to provide a copy of the transcript of the evidentiary hearing which formed the basis for the trial court’s detailed and well-reasoned order. The order under review specifically states it is based on testimony taken at a hearing on August 22, 2013. Without reviewing the evidence presented and any findings the trial court made orally at the hearing, we are not in a position to opine that the trial court abused its discretion in denying Seaside attorney’s fees for its nominal offer of judgment.
Such a stickler for details!

Aghion v. Franco:

Oops, somebody filed a frivilous appeal:
Because we find that Aghion’s appeal was frivolous as taken in disregard of the law of the case below, sanctions against Aghion and his counsel are warranted under both section 57.105 and Rule 9.410. Aghion filed this appeal after the Court had already denied his motion to enforce the mandate in Corkidi v. Franco Investments, LLC, 40 Fla. L. Weekly D755 (Fla. 3d DCA Mar. 25, 2015), and issues raised in this appeal had earlier been decided adversely to Aghion in the original appeal, Corkidi v. Franco Investments, LLC, 100 So. 3d 91, 92 (Fla. 3d DCA 2012). Aghion subsequently filed motions for rehearing and certification with respect to the mandate order. On June 17, 2015, this Court denied the motions, with concurrence by Judge Shepherd that bears repeating
The filings by his counsel in this Court alone now exceed the number of pages contained in the Affordable Care Act, 42 U.S.C.A. §§ 18001, et seq. If necessary to end this saga, the trial court should re-issue the Final Judgment against Mr. Aghion forthwith. Enough is enough.
An interesting reference!

Tuesday, September 1, 2015

Make Millions with Spencer Aronfeld (Not Even Involving Cruise Ships)!

All you have to do is expose massive government fraud!

(And hire Spence!)

Thrice Divorced Traditional Marriage Advocate!

There are many jobs that I would not take because they conflict with my deeply held moral convictions. For example, I have a deeply held conviction against stealing money from the sick and the old so being a televangelist is out of the question for me.  Kentucky Clerk of the Court Kim Davis should take a cue from that.
The latest on a Kentucky county clerk who has refused to issue same-sex marriage licenses despite a U.S. Supreme Court ruling against her (all times local):
Two gay couples have asked a federal judge to punish a Kentucky clerk who has refused to issue them marriage licenses by fining her, but not sending her to jail.
Lawyers for the couples filed the motion to hold Rowan County clerk Kim Davis in contempt of court on Tuesday morning, shortly after her office refused again to issue the licenses — this time despite a U.S. Supreme Court ruling against her.
Davis says her office is doing so "under God's authority."
The latest motion in the case asks U.S. District Judge David Bunning to hold Davis in contempt. Bunning will probably hold a hearing for the gay couples to present evidence, which could include testimony from Davis herself. Bunning would then decide on punishment. That could include fines, jail time or both, but the motion asks the judge to impose only financial penalties.
If your deeply held religious beliefs prevent you from doing your job, get a new job. Davis likes traditional marriage so much she's had four of them, just like the bible says!

Monday, August 31, 2015

The NY Times Hates the Rent Boy Raid

Some important points here...
The criminal complaint is so saturated with sexually explicit details, it’s hard not to interpret it as an indictment of gay men as being sexually promiscuous.

“Based on my investigation,” Susan Ruiz, a Homeland Security special agent, wrote in the complaint, “I have learned that a sling, also known as a ‘sex sling,’ is a device that allows two people to have sex while one is suspended.” Later, she helpfully explained that “the term ‘twink’ is a slang term for a young, gay man with an effeminate manner, thin build, and no body or facial hair.”

Prosecutors can credibly argue that the site’s operators were breaking the law. But they have provided no reasonable justification for devoting significant resources, particularly from an agency charged with protecting America from terrorists, to shut down a company that provided sex workers with a safer alternative to street walking or relying on pimps. The defendants have not been accused of exploiting sex workers, featuring minors on the website, financial crimes or other serious offenses that would warrant a federal prosecution.

Amnesty International announced this month that it would be pushing for the decriminalization of consensual sex work worldwide. After a lengthy and at times fraught debate, the organization’s experts concluded that sex workers were less likely to be harmed and exploited in places where the trade is lawful. Several gay and transgender rights organizations, including Lambda Legal and the Gay & Lesbian Advocates & Defenders, issued a joint statement supporting Amnesty International’s position.
Hey, don't knock the sling until you've tried one. It's all about the angle!

Friday, August 28, 2015

It's Friday, Right?

Ok just checking, because this legitimately crazy story involves Miami attorney Ray Rafool and his client Joanna Krupa.

Based on Ray's demand letter, there is apparently an important evidentiary issue that will need to be resolved -- possibly involving the use of cutting-edge forensic technology:
In a letter exclusively obtained by 'Life & Style,' attorneys for 'The Real Housewives of Miami' star Joanna Krupa inform Beverly Hills Housewife Brandi Glanville that she will be sued in a Florida court for “slander, libel, defamation and/or intentional infliction of emotional distress.”

What exactly did Brandi do? On a 2013 episode of Bravo’s 'Watch What Happens Live,' she told Andy Cohen that Joanna slept with Yolanda Foster’s now ex-husband Mohamed Hadid — and that Mohamed said her, um, “p---- smelled.”
But Brandi is not taking these olfactory contretemps laying down and is demanding the proof, dammit!
Brandi's lawyer has fired off a series of written questions which Joanna must answer under oath, notably:
"Is it your contention in this lawsuit that your vagina and/or vulva are odorless? If yes, please explain with specificity why your vagina and/or vulva are odorless."
And that's why you should read this blog -- for its hard hitting look at important legal, political, and societal issues!

Happy Friday, truth-seekers!

Thursday, August 27, 2015

Love 4 Sale Rent!

Is prostitution a human right? Amnesty International thinks so.
Has Amnesty International been hijacked by proponents of the global sex trade? When the human rights nonprofit convenes its International Council Meeting next week in Dublin, delegates from around the world will be asked to vote on a proposal to recognize prostitution as a human right. Amnesty is arguing that prostitution is a matter of free choice, a stance heavily promoted by the multibillion-dollar commercial sex industry. The group is putting forth the view that sex work is compatible with the principle of gender equality and nondiscrimination, as if it were a job like any other. “By definition,” Amnesty’s proposal states, “sex work means that sex workers who are engaging in commercial sex have consented to do so.”
I'm still enough of a libertarian to be OK with this, but let's differentiate between the voluntary and involuntary sex trade. An example of the voluntary sex trade can be found in Rent Boy. There are no pimps or controllers. "Models" pay a flat rate for ads and negotiate their own terms, keeping all the money for themselves. But that didn't stop Homeland Security(?) from busting down their doors.
Yesterday’s raid on the offices of, resulting in the arrest of seven employees, was a bizarre, unprovoked crackdown on people it’s easy for “respectable” folks to stigmatize or ignore. On the contrary, this thoroughly unnecessary bust should be the impetus to legalize and regulate consensual sex work. It should become the ‘Stonewall’ of sex workers, the moment in which they and their allies say: Enough. There is much that we still do not know about the arrests, coordinated by the Department of Homeland Security and the New York law enforcement. DHS’s involvement is the most curious element. If anything, this should be a matter for a vice squad—like the “Public Morals Division” now featured on cable television. Ostensibly, Homeland Security got in because of interstate/international commerce.
It's almost enough to make you miss the days of the Bush administration when gay prostitutes had the full run of the White House! Almost!

You've Been Out-Carned!

Judge Rosenbaum has really laid down the gauntlet:
Benjamin Franklin said, “[I]n this world nothing can be said to be certain, except death and taxes.”1 He was almost right. As this case illustrates, even taxes are not certain when it comes to matters affecting Indian tribes. In this appeal, we consider whether Florida’s Rental Tax and Florida’s Utility Tax, as applied to matters occurring on Seminole Tribe lands, violate the tenets of federal Indian law. For the reasons that follow, we find that the Utility Tax as it involves activities on Tribe land does not, but the Rental Tax does.
Well done, Judge!

Wednesday, August 26, 2015

3d DCA Watch -- The Other Side of Summer Edition!

From the foaming breakers of the poisonous surf
The other side of Summer
To the burning forests in the hills of Astroturf
The other side of Summer
Welcome to this very upbeat edition of 3d DCA Watch!

Get it:

Vargas v. Gutierrez:

New trial ordered --
We affirm the denial of Dr. Vargas’s motion for a directed verdict but reverse and remand for a new trial based on the plaintiffs’ violation of the “one expert per specialty” rule and for materially misrepresenting the evidence in closing arguments, both of which unfairly and materially prejudiced Dr. Vargas and denied him his right to a fair trial.
Congrats to Dinah Stein!

Come on people, let's get some basic appellate rules right: 
An order that merely grants a motion for summary judgment is not a final order. Lidsky Vaccaro & Montes, P.A. v. Morejon, 813 So. 2d 146, 149 (Fla. 3d DCA 2002) (“[T]he law is settled that an order which merely grants a motion for summary judgment and does not otherwise contain the traditional words of finality is not a final order subject to appellate review.”). For an order to be final, it must constitute an entry of a judgment: it is the final judgment that is appealable, not an order simply granting a motion. Id. (“An order granting only summary judgment merely establishes an entitlement to a judgment, but is not itself a judgment.”).

The order that Ball asks us to review merely grants a motion; it does not contain language that enters judgment. Accordingly, it is not a final order and the notice of appeal is premature.

Models for final judgments are contained in The Forms for Use with Rules of Civil Procedure, which the Florida Supreme Court has placed at the end of the Florida Rules of Civil Procedure. An appropriate order granting final summary judgment could be captioned “Final Summary Judgment,” although the title is not
controlling. See Boyd v. Goff, 828 So. 2d 468 (Fla. 5th DCA 2002).

For a plaintiff, a final summary judgment should have language that reads something like the following: “The motion for summary judgment is granted. Final judgment is entered as follows. The plaintiff [name and address] shall recover from defendant [name and address] the sum of $ . . . that shall bear interest at the rate of . .. % per year for which let execution issue. The court reserves jurisdiction to consider a timely motion to tax costs and attorney’s fees.”

For a defendant, a final summary judgment should have language that reads something like the following: “The motion for summary judgment is granted. Final judgment is entered for defendant [name] and against plaintiff [name]. The court reserves jurisdiction to consider a timely motion to tax costs and attorney’s fees.”
Particularly diligent judges and lawyers add the traditional language of finality for a defendant which includes the phrases “plaintiff shall take nothing by this action and defendant shall go hence without day.”

Shouldn't a lawyer know this kind of stuff before filing an appeal?

Somebody better hire Ms. Stein asap!