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Wednesday, January 07, 2009

WEIRD

GOOD MORNING. That cold front we were expecting has arrived. It' 59 degrees this morning at 7:00 AM.  The high today should be 75 and that pattern of lows in the high 50's and highs in the mid 70's should last through next Monday. 



New West Palm Beach State Attorney Michael McAuliffe is proposing to use private attorneys as part time prosecutors in County Court. The Attorneys, mostly former prosecutors, would volunteer and assist in misdemeanor cases so the State Attorney can concentrate resources in Felony Court. Talk about new ideas!!  Maybe someone could discuss that with our State attorney when she gets back from vacation? 


CAN I PLAY?
And in Florida's own mini-replay of the Senate controversy, Palm Beach "Judge" William Abramson has not been seated and sworn in, despite winning the election. Governor Crist has not yet issued the certificate necessary for Abramson to be sworn in.  Abramson joins "senators" Burris and Franken as those desperately seeking an election certification. 

One thing about Florida, under no circumstances will we let the national government take the weird spotlight away from us. 

The West Palm Beach Post here quotes the Chief Judge of the Circuit as noting that the 91 day suspension is what makes this a problem, as after the 91 days, Abramson still needs to apply for re-admission to the Bar. What if he is not accepted?  Hmmmm. The Bar wouldn't do something like that would they?   

UPDATE:  After Burris met with Senate Majority Leader Hang em High Harry Reid,  Reid and the Democrats, following a "wink and a nod" from the President Elect, indicated that Burris would be seated "sometime before the end of the year or when we can get around to it". 


Anyway, we're on the downside of the first week of the new year. One down, 51 to go. (sigh). 


Here's a little personal financial advice: If you're thinking about buying a house- do it now. If you have an ARM, refinance now. In a year from now interest rates will be through the roof. Think late 1970's and 10%  plus. 

Why? 

President elect Obama recently warned of budget deficits above a trillion dollars. Someone has to finance this deficit spending. And China, which financed our current spending crisis through the early part of this decade, is signaling an unwillingness to continue buying US Debt. 


Plus, if you think about it, even if the Chinese or any other nation wanted to buy US Treasury Notes, they need cash to do it. And in this global recession, many nations no longer have the spending power they once did just a few short months ago. Even the oil nations have less spending money as oil has fallen over $100 a barrel since the spring. 

What does this mean? If the US can't find a sucker to buy our debt, the government can no longer pump cash into the economy through the FED.  Less available cash= higher costs of borrowing = higher interest rates. 

Just watch these dominos fall. It won't be pretty, unless you have cash now. If you have cash, hold it, and when those interest rates hit double digits, start buying bonds and secure your retirement. 

One of the many reasons we don't sleep well at night. 

19 comments:

Anonymous said...

Volunteer Prosecutors is nothing new. The State Attorney here in Miami tried that more than five years ago, but it didn't work out for numerous reasons.

Anonymous said...

They ended up with right-wing civil lawyers looking for a power trip. None of them knew crap about criminal practice.

SHUMIEAWARDCOMMITTEE said...

The Shumie Committiee awards its second Shumie of 2009 to..... ASA HOWARD ROSEN.

For investigating Larry Seidlin, and finding NOTHING- not even one of the hundreds of DUI cases he presided over. For not finding a damn criminal thing wrong with that little gonnifff taking 400K from a lonely and elderly woman, Dade ASA HOWARD ROSEN get the second SHUMIE AWARD OF 2009.

SHUMIE2009-0002=HOWARD ROSEN.

CONGRATS

Grey Tesh said...

McAuliffe is going to be a good State Attorney. He's smart, fair and is humble enough to listen and take the advice of veteran prosecutors.

There's an article in the Sun Sentinel today about Bill Abramson. Bill is in Tampa today. Yes, he's away from the judge's charm school in Tallahassee. The JQC subpoenaed him Tuesday. He must show cause why the JQC shouldn't recommend to the Supreme Court to axe him. That's legal speak for ya.

They can't have it both ways. If he's not a judge, JQC can go pound sand. No jurisdiction.

Also, as Bruce Rogow correctly points out in the Sun Sentinel article today, there is a due process issue.
You sir, have less than two days to prepare and be present in another city for a hearing that will determine your entire future.
Hope you have a lot of coffee.

Anonymous said...

"SHUMIEAWARDCOMMITTEE"--Your criticism of Howard Rosen is unwarranted. Howard is about a straight a shooter as they come and a true asset to the SAO. If you read his report carefully, which I doubt you did, he noted that there were no criminal charges against Seidlin that could likely be proved beyond a reasonable doubt. It is obvious that he, and his investigators at the SAO and with the FDLE, spent significant time and consideration with the report.

However, Howard noted potential ethical violations that Judge Seidlin may have committed and reported these both to the Florida Bar and the JQC. In many instances there is a big difference between unethical and criminal behavior.

Perhaps you may have wanted some right-wing nut to just charge Seidlin, burden of proof be damned. Howard Rosen is not that type of guy. He should be commended for the job he did.

Anonymous said...

It may be a civil matter but criminal it is not for someone who is a very close friend who is worth over six million dollars to voluntarily give gifts to friends. He may be punished by the bar or JQC but thats the crux of it. Illegal NO, unethical to say the least YES.

MoveOn.Org already.

Anonymous said...

Kenny Weisman South Beach Restaurant RUKUS.

So BE Seating Scandal.

All the details on the NEw SOBE Restaurant-Legal Blog, dedicated to the Hot SoBe Restaurants, and the lawyers who frequent them.

shumie award committee said...

The Shumie Awards committee has received your objection to Mr. Howard Rosen receiving the second Shumie Award for 2009 (Shumie 2009-0002).

However, we regret to inform you that the decision of the committee is final and not subject to review or objection, even from interested parties such as yourself.

Thank you for your continued interest in the 2009 Shumie Awards. This will be an exciting year.

Sincerely,

E. Snoops
Shumie Award Committee, Ex-Officio.

Anonymous said...

Who exactly is on the shumie award committee?

Anonymous said...

Madoff's got a lot of balls, trying to send off $173 million in checks shortly before being arrested by the FBI and violating a court order by sending assets to friends and family that he tried to disguise as insignificant and just a few sentimental items.

No bond for you!

http://www.nytimes.com/2009/01/09/business/09madoff.html?em

Anonymous said...

I have been associated with the Dade SAO since 1999 and there has been no such attempt to utilize volunteer prosecutors. Nonsense, douchy.

GATOR HATOR said...

AND THAT'S ANOTHER TIM TEBOW INTERCEPTION!!!!!!!!!!

Anonymous said...

Jack Thompson is the Chairman of the Shumie Award Committee.

Anonymous said...

Volunteer prosecutors in Miami didn't work in large part because the office got what it paid for.........nothing. Unfortunately, way too many of the volunteers were more interested in bolstering their resumes than public service. They lost God only knows how many hearings and motions because they couldn't be bothered to prepare their cases. It was a disaster. And, will be in County Court too (unless the SA is smart enough to prohibit them from handling DUI, domestic violence and other victims cases).

BTDT

Anonymous said...

6:55..........there's been no attempt to use volunteer prosecutors? LOL> Hate to tell you bud, but the SAO was here before you started and will be here long after you're gone.

KFR made the attempt in the early to mid 90's. She should be credited for being innovative enough to try it, for sure. Unfortunately, the big firm lawyers and others who volunteered didn't put the necessary time in and the experiment failed (to be fair, they, like the rest of us, didn't learn nearly enough in law school to handle the felony cases and were overwhelmed by the very experienced and talented defense bar. Of course, this experiment occured on the felony level).

BTDT

PS---one other thought re using volunteer lawyers on county cases. Again, I don't see a problem if they don't handle DUIs or victims cases. If they're being used on all misdemeanor questions, then where do the ASA's get their experience? Also, DUI cases are among the toughest to prosecute. Unless the volunteers are well qualified, they'll be eaten alive by the DUI defense bar.

Anonymous said...

There actually was an effort to have private lawyers assist prosecutors - maybe before 1999. The ill-fated plan was to have these attorneys cover Arthur hearings so the ASA's could do other things. Of course, the plan was a complete failure because what ASA would allow a stranger (not even a prosector) to litigate the bond status of a defendant charged with a life felony. The plan was hatched after some Herald article about how overworked/underpaid prosecutors are. A group of former prosecutors wanted to appear that they were rushing to the aid of the SAO. The SAO administrators knew the plan would not work, but they couldn't reject the offer outright without looking ungrateful - so they just let the idiotic idea die a natural death.

Defense-lawyer-for-the-princess said...

8:49- HA!

Anonymous said...

Actually, 6:53, several prosecutors allowed the attorneys to handle their cases until........the attorneys blew some easy hearings because they didn't understand the law or hadn't prepared adequately. And, there was at least one large law firm that used those cases as training opportunities.......meaning young lawyers with no court experience showed up. It was a disaster.

I'll be curious to see how it works elsewhere. Again, as long as their voluntary efforts are limited to non-victim, non-DUI cases, it has a chance of working and, therefore, is worth exploring.

Anonymous said...

There were at least two long term volunteer lawyers, one, whose last name is Stone got an award or certificate in 1998 or 1999 for his long-standing, regular coverage of branch court calendars -- this guy did it every week for years--when a DUI or FPO or RD came up on the calendar, he sent it to the RGB. Kathy heaped praise on him for his help and he did make a difference, one more ASA body for a courtroom slot in the RGB.

You can get plenty of good, well meaning lawyers to sign up to help out but to have it be a regularly recurring role to fill is the tough part, these lawyers have bills to pay and family lives so it takes more ASA Admin time to juggle it around on the chess board of coutrtroom slots than its worth.

Lets look at Palm Beach's effort in 6 or 9 months and lets see how it pans out.

Mr Stone was a real gentleman and a true asset to the office and not to mention, quite a rare bird for being able to handle such a long-term committment to the office. we still thank him.