Food for Thought Part 51
Almost every day you pick up the newspaper or hear on the news reports of Pennsylvania’s corrupt, dysfunctional judicial system, the judges and politicians that are running the show and more importantly the lack of accountability that jumps-off when they get jammed (caught).
The F.B.I is now investigating Penna’s Supreme Court Justice Seamus P. McCaffery over fees his wife (Lisa Rapaport) received for referring clients to personal injury law firms. McCaffery’s wife is paid an annual salary by the state of $75,395 as his chief administrative judicial assistant, which also raises eyebrows. It appears they are keeping it in the family, judges hiring family members to high paying positions, which is another subject for another time. There is a pattern of this in Pa. Anyway, there are all kinds of issues involved in this scheme. As a state supreme court justice McCaffery ruled on a number of cases that came before the court involving firms from which his wife received referral fees and did so without advising the lawyers involved in the cases about the fee arrangement. Many experts and authorities of ethics were consulted and felt his wife should not be paid for her referrals while being paid and serving as her husband’s judicial aide. She received a $821,000 fee in 2012 after a Philadelphia law firm settled a multimillion dollar medical malpractice case. This also shows the arrogance of the husband and wife team, if you remember just last year in 2012 she got a traffic ticket in Philly where she was suppose to pay a measly $200, but feeling they were above the law and could pick and choose which laws to follow, decided to get justice McCaffery to get the ticket fixed. Now keep in mind their combined annual salaries are just about $300,000 not including the referral fees. That’s where the arrogance turns into stupidity, in my opinion, to jeopardize your high paying jobs to get out of paying a mere $200 ticket.
A person that dumb shouldn’t even be on the court making life or death decisions, that’s idiotic!!! Anyway, Chief Justice Ronald Castille has been gang warring with Justice McCaffery for several years now, so it shouldn’t be any surprise he has horned in on this subject, taking pot-shots at McCaffery every chance he gets. Castille has been sharply critical of the referrals, saying he was troubled that a court aide would be collecting fees, while employed in a judicial chamber. He also accused McCaffery of violating the state ethics act by allowing his wife to make those referrals and earning fees. Castille says it’s definitely a conflict of interest.
The problem I got with this is both of these chumps are crooks and should be kicked off the bench and sent to prison, like any other common criminal. As I previously mentioned Castile turns 70 in 2014 and according to state law he must retire or take senior status, which limits his work and what he can do, etc. but this clown filed a lawsuit challenging the constitutional provision. Instead of him riding off in the sunset, he wants to stay on the court forever, continuing his lifetime of corruption with benefits, He’s been caught up in all kinds of scandals including his role in the troubled project to build a new family court building in Philly that ended up costing tax-payers millions, his so called oversight or lack of, in Philadelphia’s traffic court scandal and also his response to the “Kids for Cash” scandal where he failed to respond to the crystal clear warning signals. The average citizen that breaks the law is sent to prison or death row, but the same chumps that are sending people to prison and the row are breaking the law with no consequences. Why isn’t there any outcry?
Governor Corbett recently named Supreme Court judge Correale F. Stevens to replace former supreme court justice Joan Orie Melvin on the state supreme court. Hopefully, this new guy will serve with a little integrity and not get caught up in pity scandals and the on going gang warring between the justices now on the court.
It’s hard to believe much of the news reports coming from the major news outlets, including CNN, Headlines news, etc. Because they act like and feel they are extensions of the prosecution. Instead of giving an un bias objective account or report of investigations of crime, trials etc. much too often they only give the prosecutions point of view, getting their info from their office, as if they are a part of the prosecution team.
Just recently Bill Donohue, President and CEO of the Catholic league for religious and civil rights in N.Y.C exposed the hypocrisy of the Phila. Inquirer newspaper. The paper refused to run a two page ad in may 2013, which would have generated $58,000 payment for the ad. The ad pointed out how several priests where framed and railroaded by Philadelphia District Attorney Seth Williams in Mar.2012. Im not going to try to defend the Catholic priest that are raping and molesting children, I’m as outraged as anyone else, but jam the ones responsible. Don’t frame and railroad the innocent ones just because they are easy targets because of the past record of this kind of conduct in the church. The ad pointed out Ralph Cipriano’s blog bigtrial net and also www.catholicleague.org for an account of what jumped off.
Until Next time, Peace, Intensify the Struggle!!!
June 17th 2013 updated-
The state supreme court just shot down the challenge to the mandatory retirement of Pennsylvania judges, so judges still must turn in their robes at age 70. There is still a federal lawsuit pending, but most legal experts think that will get the same result,. So the citizens of Pa. will no longer have to put up with Chief Justice Ronald Castille. After 2014