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May 23, 2012

Did Congress Pass a Law Stripping Citizens of the Right To Mention Brett Kimberlin's Felonious Past?

If not, why does Brett Kimberlin behave as if he's a prosecutor with the singular task of enforcing this law with his frivolous lawsuits and workplace harassment?

Do Congressmen know that Brett Kimberlin has now decided no one is permitted to mention his felonious past, and is exacting punishment on anyone who dares break his self-determined rule?

Michelle Malkin (who was always just waiting to publish about this) weighs in.

She mentions a show of solidarity. That's important. A media company has lawyers on retainer to fight off vexatious lawsuits and false criminal complaints; individual bloggers, many of whom are simply hobbyists (such as Aaron Worthing) do not.

So the proper response must be to band together to pool resources for cases like this.

I also think we have to exert our power as voting citizens in a Republic. We often act as if we have no control over our government at all; and it does often seem that way.

But we are supposed to have control over it. Our representatives are supposed to at the very least hear our concerns.

Here are some thoughts I have about agitating for positive legislative action.

First: Many states do not have vexatious litigant laws.

Vexatious litigant laws are wonderful. If a litigant is found to be vexatious by any judge, or to have filed three or more lawsuits found to be meritless, he gets put on the vexatious litigant list.

Once on the list, your ability to wage Lawfare is limited. You must post a large bond before filing suit -- that bond will be used to pay your target if the court awards him costs and legal fees (and any sort of punitive fine the judge might think sensible).

Even more importantly, a senior judge must approve of your lawsuits and motions and endless subpoenas before they issue.

Not only does this all make perfect sense, but it seems like the sort of thing conservatives generally support.

So let's start writing state representatives to urge them to adopt vexatious litigant laws -- especially representatives in Maryland.

And our representatives in the US Congress can act, too. 501(c)'s are nonprofit charities whose donors receive a tax deduction. That means Brett Kimberlin's litigious lifestyle choices aren't merely outrageous -- they are subsidized by you, the taxpayer.

When the Barbara Streisand Foundation donates to one of Brett Kimberlin's, uh, outfits, that's deductible, baby!

When Soros' Tides Foundation or Theresa Heinz's Heinz Foundation writes a big check for Brett Kimberlin's um, charitable endeavors, you kick in a little for that.

Now, the nation must perhaps tolerate some amount of harassment and abuse by convicted felons -- but does it also have to subsizdize it?

So here is something for the US Congress to consider: Given that a 501(c)(3) is not a "right," but a creature of the tax code, with very persnickety rules about how it shall be operated and what its principals must do--

Should the principal of a 501(c) be permitted to file vexatious lawsuits which are really SLAPP suits (strategic lawsuits against public participation -- lawfare against free speech)?

Or, rather, if someone is a vexatious litigant, should that person be permitted to hold a position as a principal on a 501(c) while continuing to abuse the legal system? Shouldn't they have to make a choice -- respect the legal system, or run a charity, but you can't be a principal of a charity while engaging in serial abuse of process?

Considering all the rules that must be compiled with for a 501(c)- shouldn't someone acting as principal for one be expected to comply with rules against harassment by meritless lawsuit as well?

And if they're not doing the latter, what are the odds they're scrupulously following the law as regards 501(c)'s?

Are those odds high? Or not so high?

Seems to me that you should choose whether you're going to be a thug or run a charity.

You can be a thug if you like. But you can do it on your own goddamned dime.

One last thing we can do: We can urge/request/demand our representatives read Brett Kimberlin's criminal history into the United States Congressional Record.

Why? Not for punitive reasons. Rather, to answer the question I posed in the headline.

Did the US Congress strip American citizens of their right to state demonstrably true facts without unending harassments? Did we lose that right simply because Brett Kimberlin has decided, as a Congress of One, that we should no longer have it?

If we have not lost that right -- if it is still legal to say, in America, that Brett Kimberlin was convicted of planting eight bombs in Speedway, Indiana, one of which took a man's leg, and then, distraught over his maiming, his life, via suicide -- if it is legal to say this, can we have it stated by a US Congressman for the record that it is still legal to say this?

My interest in this matter is not over Brett Kimberlin's criminal history as a bloody bomber. My interest in whose leg he amputated-by-explosive-force 34 years ago.

My interest is in what he's doing today.

Either Americans have the right to state that Kimberlin was convicted of the Speedway Bombing Spree or they do not.

If I no longer have this right, I would like Congress to pass a law stating that I no longer have this right. If we're repealing the First Amendment, let's make it official.

If, on the other hand, I retain this right, I would like members of Congress to reassure me on this point, by stating so on the floor of Congress, and entering the long and sordid history of Brett Kimberlin, aka the Speedway Bomber, into the Congressional Record.

And then let him try to claim that no one is permitted to mention this.

Who Is Brett Kimberlin? Sorry, I wanted to write about positive action; I didn't write about context.

Here's an excellent start: This 2010 Fox News piece on him.

Andrew Breitbart called him out for needing exposure of his thuggish tactics last year.

For an account of how one man's life was turned upside down for the apparent crime of mentioning that a convicted felon is in fact a convicted felon, read Aaron Worthing.

Ever see one of those movies about someone gaming the legal system against law-abiding people? Like Pacific Heights, with Michael Keaton? It's like that.

That's Aaron's preview. His actual post is very long and detailed (too long and detailed, I think; I think there should be some medium-sized post that gets into the details but not so many of them), but his preview at least gives you the sense of it.

Lots of stuff at Lee Stranahan, including the archived article from the Indianapolis Star about the Speedway Bombings.

Shall the Indy Star be sued, too, for telling the truth? Perhaps they already have been.

Stranahan also did this Part 1 of Kimberlin's unspeakable career:

Part 2, I imagine, will cover current harassments aimed at getting people to not mention the facts contained in Part 1.

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posted by Ace at 12:36 PM

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