Radiolab episode on jury nullification is less bothered by state abuse of power than public desperation to fight back.

It should come as no surprise that public radio’s RADIOLAB would take government’s side against the growing grassroots effort to awaken citizens to the repressed potential of jury nullification. Any attention to the subject helps inform ordinary jurors of the power they have to stand up to the regular abuses of our judicial system. The benefit is tempered of course when liberal gatekeepers lean in with theatrics to fearmonger about anarchistic challenges to law and order and security. That’s exactly what Radiolab achieved though given plenty of material with which to have taken a more honest tack. Their program “Null and Void” aired May 12 and painted nullifiers as irrational extremists, giving a pass to the judges who purge juries and break the law by having nullifiers arrested.

I had high hopes when contacted by a producer for Radiolab in March. Our federal injunction protecting Denver jury nullification outreach efforts against an order by the Second Judicial District’s Chief Judge Michael Martinez was coming to trial in April. I imagined reporters would be sympathetic to our predicted success making our injunction permanent and the similar likeliness of our prevailing on contempt charges in a hearing which was to follow. I faciliated Radiolab’s access to Mark Iannicelli, who Denver arrested in violation of our injunction, and whose dismissed charges of felony tampering continue to be appealed by our legal adversaries. Thus far it’s a simple story of hoisting a chief justice on his own petard, using the justice system against itself, in defense of the people’s historical power as jurors.

Heicklen
But Radiolab had an alternate narrative in mind. Their story would center on a jury nullification champion who they could characterize as coming off the rails, the celebrated frequent arrestee Julian Heicklen. Septegenarian Heicklen became tired of judges warning him of arrest, despite his continued legal victories. By November 2016, Heicklen issued a manifesto of sorts, asking for armed backup to preempt a judge from making good on his renewed threat to arrest him. Heicklen posted this warning online and called it to everyone’s attention. Presumably it’s what drew Radiolab’s attention. Heicklen had put it out there, hoping to spark a John Brown-esque conflagration, I’d call it a bluff, meant to curtail the court’s continued abuse of power. It’s obvious from Heicklan’s hyperbole. I attach the significant excerpt in the notes below.

Radiolab didn’t reference this tract, nor mention their and the court’s foreknowledge of it. As they interviewed Heicklen, they asked him about his cause and even brought him to tears as he explained his distress about the injustice of the system, which continues to reinforce inequity and deny jurors their prerogative to step in its way. Then Radiolab prodded Heicklen to explain what he anticipated would happen when he showed up at the courthouse in defiance of the judge’s threat. On cue, Heicklen repeated his entreaty that supporters show up with guns to enforce his right to pass out fliers and avert the judge’s illegal threat to arrest him.

Many of us might share the elderly activist’s frustration with being habitually arrested then exhonerated, each time without apparent progress being made. Radiolab’s pretend reaction was to cue ominous silence, let the pin drop, cue indignant alarm, ostracize Heicklen, cue a spontaneous meting of Radiolab minds to elect to call the cops on Heicklen lest law enforcement personnel be shot.

Radiolab didn’t call the Chief Judge Frederick J. Lauten to question the irregularity of his repeating an illegal threat. How absolutely insane for a judge, already proven to be in the wrong, to keep asserting his authority to have a citizen falsely arrested?

When Heicklen showed up to the courthouse, with a friend, both without weapons of any kind, and without the backup support of “Tyranny Fighters” he’d hoped to mobilize, Heicklen was arrested for the more serious charges involving threats.

Radiolab may or may to have exacerbated Heicklen’s arrest. They certainly took credit for it, which is the least they could do for having exploited Heicklen as their straw man extremist.

Because Radiolab makes little effort to conceal their liberal bourgeois elitism. FIJA, the Fully Informed Jury Association was founded, according to Radiolab, in a Montana “bunghole”, which they qualify, they are entitled to call Helena, the capitol of Montana, because one of the show’s producers is from Montana.

Wolverine
You might ask, what’s Wolverine got to do with this? Anyone who’s read Ariel Dorfman knows better than to bring superheroes into political discourse. Radiolab didn’t know how better to distinguish between a citizen’s right, as proscribed by the Bill of Rights, and a power, something grown from common law. Whatever, they’re wrong. Juries are guaranteed by the sixth amendment, now commonly understood to be “a jury of your peers.”

Radiolab never uses that phrase, it’s too everyman. But they do riff ad nauseum on Wolverine, who’s a superhero with superpowers, namely CLAWS, which for Radiolab described this aberrant power that jury nullification advocates are promoting. The public as beast, and mutant power threatening elitists like a werewolf’s claws. Someone adds, as a further irrelevance, that Wolverine’s real superpower is regenerative, the power to heal but nevermind. They say that, and it’s the only trivia that actually does apply to jury nullification. Radiolab autistic savants.

They recorded Mark Iannicelli in front of the Denver courthouse, that was our single consolation!

It’s no surprise that Radiolab takes the government’s side against the public’s growing inclination to “burn it down.” Radiolab got great quotes from Mark, but chose to demonize other jury nullification pamphleteers who were so frustrated with being arrested that wanted to deter future arrests with guns.

By the show’s end, the white privileged NPR broadcasters feel more comfortable with the law in the hands of “unelected, white” judges over inexpert jurors described as “twelve random jerk-offs from the street.” They’re taking about your constitutionally protected jury of your peers.

Hopefully listeners will glean the great information offered by this piece and nullify Radiolabs’s privileged condescension.

NOTES:
1. Julian Heicklen’s post of November 24:

Hi Tyranny Fighters:

Orlando Courthouse: I plan to be at the Orange County Courthouse in Orlando, FL distributing Fully Informed Jury information from 10:30 am – 1:30 pm, unless arrested earlier, on Monday-Wednesday, December 5-8, 2016. All of you are invited (urged) to join me. Bring your guns. I have requested protection from the Florida Militia, the Department of Homeland Security, and the Governor of Florida. None of them responded to my requests. Copies of the letters to the Department of Homeland Security and the governor were sent to the Clerk of the Orange County Court and to you in my previous report.

I have not received replies from any of these people. However I have received a letter from Frederick J. Lauten, Chief Judge, Ninth Judicial Cicuit of Georgia. Here is his letter:

Dear Mr. Heicklen:

A copy of your letter to Rick Scott dated October 13, 2016, was given to me. In your letter, you stateit is your intent to “distribute flyers regarding the duties of jurors and witnesses at criminal trials” at the Orange County Courthouse during th first week of December.” This letter is a reminder that such conduct continues to be proscribed on courthouse grounds under Administrative Order 2011-03 which governs expressive conduct taward summoned jurors. Enclosed is a copy of Adminiustrative Order 2011-03 for your perusal.

As you know, this Administrative Order is constituional as the Fifth District Court of appeal had “no difficulry upholding Administrative Order No. 2011–03 as reasonable, viewpoint neutral regulation….” Schmidter & Heicklen v. State, 103 So. 3d 2663,270 (Fla. 5th DCA 2012)(a copy of which is enclosed). This Court, as well as the Orange Cpounty Sheriff, qill enforce the provisions of Admionistrative Order No. 2011-03 to ensure the fair and orderly conduct of jury trials and to prevent dissruptions or interference with that basic right.

Based on the Administrative Order’s continuing validity, you may wish to reconsider your intended course of action and find alternative means in which to disseminate your message. If you intend on distributing materials to jurors, you will be issued a trespass notice and if you then remain on courthouse grounds, you could be arrested for trespass.

Sincerely,

Frederick J. Lauten

Chief Judge

____________________________________

Unfortunately there seems to be a disagreement between the Florida court and the United States Federal Court. I was one of the appellants in the Florida case. The decision was based on lies and incorrect information introduced by the state attorneys. The judges should have know this, since I carefully pointed out the errors, but they did not care. They had made up their minds before hearing the case.

Previously I was arrested 5 times for distributing this literature at the the U. S. District Court in Manhattan, NY. I was arrested and charged with jury tampering. After 17 months of trial, Judge Kimba Wood declared that distributing this literature was not jury tampering because I did not discuss any case with a juror sitting on that trial. She dismissed my case. Her decision is at: http://constitution.org/jury/pj/10-cr-01154-KMW_order.pdf This decision was published in many journals. The NY Times publication is at: http://www.nytimes.com/2012/04/20/nyregion/indictment-against-julian-heicklen-jury-nullification-advocate-is-dismissed.html

Other publications can be found at: http://search.myway.com/search/GGmain.jhtml?p2=%5EC73%5Exdm007%5ETTAB02%5Eus&ptb=304CD70B-562C-491B-9E0F-EEEA96D81532&n=782b17fd&ind=&tpr=hpsb&trs=wtt&cn=us&ln=en&si=CJSjz-LK7s4CFdgQgQodEmkJvA&brwsid=343148da-648b-46c2-8171-a9e312ac5776&searchfor=Jury%20nullification%20case%20of%20Julian%20Heicklen&st=tab

I was invited to Harvard University Law School to give a lecture on my case. Also I have been informed that my case is being taught to all students at Yale Law School. Presumably it is being taught elsewhere as well.

Currently I distribute the same flyers at both state and federal courthouses around the country. None of them arrest me. Three of these courthouses are state courthouses. They are in Fort Lauderdale, Fl; Pittsburgh, PA (last week); and Newark, NJ. The federal courthouses this year have been in Fort Lauderdale, FL; Newark, NJ; Manhattan, NY; Palo Alto, CA; Pittsburgh, PA (last week) and San Jose, CA; The state courthouses do not approach me. The federal courthouse Homeland Security officers at federal courts all threatened to arrest me until I told them to check it with a judge. They did, and none of them made an arrest.

December 5, 2016 will be a critical day in the history of the United States. I will appear at the Orange County Courthouse, 425 N. Orange Avenue, Orlando, FL and distribute “Nullification by Jury” flyers on the public sidewalk leading from the parking lot to the courthouse. I am asking all Tyranny fighters and anyone else to join me armed with loaded guns to shoot any courthouse employee or officer of the court (i.e. guards, Orlando police, State police, Sheriffs, or lawyers) that approach within 15 feet of me. One of 4 things can happen:

Neither the court personnel, the Tyranny Fighters, nor the press will appear. That will be the smoothest, but dullest, situation.

The Court officers only will appear and arrest me.

The Tyranny Fighters only will appear and protect me.

Both the Court officers and the Tyranny Fighters will appear. The gun battle for the return of a free country with a democratic republic will occur.

I am irrelevant. The future of the United States will be determined by the others or by you. Either we will continue the route to the gas chambers as described in the attached document, or we shall backtrack to a democratic republic. In either case I will have died by then.

The choice is yours—Julian

The Great American Hero

America lives in the heart of every man everywhere who wishes to find a region where he will be free to work out his destiny as he chooses. –Woodrow Wilson

Our understanding of history shapes our perception of the present, and informs our actions in the moment. This post, for example, is given additional flesh by the eviction of Occupiers from Zuccotti Park in Lower Manhattan last night by forces directed by 4.0 × 10-8 percenter Michael Bloomberg, one of the richest guys in the USA, and probably in accord with Federal direction. Zuccotti Park is a “Privately Owned Public Space,” (POPS), and that odd status has no doubt been notable in current discourse. Across the USA and elsewhere, including here in Colorado Springs, governments at various levels have utilized no-camping ordinances and public park hours to harrass Occupiers, often to such extremes as to soundly demonstrate some of the protesters’ most salient points. So what is the history of “property,” and how does it pertain to the Occupy Movement?

We citizens of the USA are virtually without foundation where historical discussion is concered, unless we educate ourselves beyond the standard drivel so ineptly foisted in our direction by teachers bound by our disastrously faltering public indoctrination system, mislabeled “education.” We learn a sanitized verion of our own history, and the European history from which ours so largely derives, focused on patriotic and Euro-centric hero-worship rather than on the genuine and controversial currents that have effected societal changes at various junctures in world history. We often become enraged when these inane presumptions are questioned, as i have personally witnessed when service veterans have come unglued when protesters suggested they ought not to have been engaged in foriegn adventurism for resources, or when Occupiers have come near to blows over rights or priveleges the foundations for which they often demonstrate but scanty comprehension.

The story of Christopher Columbus and his noble and brave explorations of a frightening unknown quantity for the lofty purpose of betterment of the human condition, followed immediately by even more noble American colonists’ successful efforts to throw off the shackles of monarchical tyranny culminating in the sacrosanct US Constitution is ingrained in our collective psyche like a Freudian complex. The quote from the nearly deified US President Woodrow Wilson at the top of this page is meant to illustrate this phenomenon. Wilson said some things that seemed to spring from a font of humanity, but he was demonstrably a heinous racist and an elitist, encouraging reestablishment of the KKK, turning US finances over to the Federal Reserve, propagating celebrated treaties he subsequently ignored, and intrepidly belittling any expressor of opinion contrary to his own, among other public sins. Columbus filled his own journals with tales of religiously inspired avarice as he gleefully reported his intent, and execution of his plan to conquer the lands and subjugate the peoples he encountered. The US Constitution, while serving to codify some dignified and egalitarian principles, was still seen as some as an instrument of avarice in its formative days, as has proven to be the case with Adam Smith’s doctrines when handed over to naturally acaricious men. Even the highest-minded of US founders–St. Jefferson springs to apperception–firmly established racist, misogynistic doctrine and elitism by excluding all but white, male land owners from the earliest US political process. Those Founders also knew themselves to be limited and allowed the mechanisms for change to exist within the document.

The land owners so favored by the Founders above had been granted holdings either by monarchical fiat, or by purchase from those granted such holdings. Subsequent years were full of similarly motivated action, wh en”pioneers” once again ennobled by our propagandist history strode across North America claiming everything in sight by perfectly legal Homestead acts and the like, and killing or subjugating anyone not European, male, and white, assuaging their consciences with the absurd “moral” doctrine of Manifest Destiny. Many US citizens, usually white and of European descent, have blithely sloughed off Native American claims to the land here as anachronistic, habituating themselves to the notion that a couple of generations represent a lengthy historical stretch. “Indians,” many of whom don’t experience the epoch between, say, the gleeful rape and resettlement of their great-grandmothers as very lengthy at all, advocate for the removal of white Europe from “their” lands. This may not be anachronistic after all, but it has indeed become impractical, and it is no more nobly motivated than the insistence on Americans, or anyone else, to scarf up resources, such as but not limited to land, to which no human being enjoys a more legitimate claim than any other.

The uproar in Zuccotti Park last night is based on laws that derive from the notion of public versus private property. The Banks we Occupiers have been railing against hold the threat of eviction from private property over the specious doctrines of land ownership in this and other countries. The spats in Colorado Springs over tents, where they belong, and who belongs in them derive from the same set of doctrines, which i hearby proclaim to be bogus, in my opinion. The bad habit of human beings to either grovel or dominate is yet another matter.
One can follow the tendency to dominate and conquer, along with the development of Divinely appointed land control in western culture at least as far back as the dubitable stories of Hebrew escapades in the Levant, supposedly ordered by a loving god to kill, pillage, and rape in order to spread their doctrine of light. Ahem.

While the recalcitrant problems of aggression and slithery competitve spirits, as well as our quickness to condemn one another’s mere habits lead us deeper and deeper into an environmental cul de sac, we continue to pursue failed doctrine. The USA has, in apparently actual fact, presented the world with a still viable political framework within which to effect the sort of massive changes necessary for everyone involved, and it may well be our saving grace, if we acknowlege and rectify its initial errors and subequent abuses. Lots of thinking will be necessary. It’s awfully difficult to conclude that genuine unfettered Anarchism is likely to produce a civil society. Laws are not intrinsically bad unless they’re bad laws. Few really believe Libertarian suggestions that unregulated exploitation of natural resources can lead to anything but irredeemable destruction akin to the recent oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico, or the impending collapse of our fisheries.

Did you notice how comfortable my use of the term “our” felt, applied to a natural resource in that last sentence?
Capitalism and the American Constitution found themselves on private property ownership. Some things belong intrinsically to individuals and groups. Marxism denies any right to private property at all and kills innovation, in the argument of McCarthy’s legacy. Marx and Lenin were motivated by historical factors as well, even if their doctrines were no more effective at legislating kindness than ours have been. Most of us will agree that our bodies ought naturally belong to ourselves–the person whose consciousness centers in that particular body–and yet many of our laws belie that acceptance even now that we’ve abolished open slavery. We’ve built a gigantic and Byzantine body of law here in the US, and in countries all over the world, based on principles of subjugation and rapine that are in actual fact now fully anachronistic, using justifications that are fully mythological. The conquering of neighboring lands and their parceling for sale for personal enrichment, using armies fed a long and patriotic line of shyte about motives is simply not sustainable any longer. We can continue to fight over detritus after we, (by which i mean everyone and not just Europeans or Americans), collapse the entire playing field, or we can recognize our errors and take on the extraordinarily difficult prospect of admitting fault and rectifying our relationships with one another both here in the US, and everywhere else. Some things belong to everyone.

This post is largely about bad history, and partly about the failure of both Capitalism and Communism. I’ll be putting it up lacking a certain amount of flesh in order to have it in place. The natural aggression inherent in confronting some of the subject matter contained requires some additional referenceing, which i’ll add later. The characterization of both systems as failures could be entirely specious if i were unprepared to offer alternatives. This is not the case, and i’ll be addressing the whole kit and caboodle, whatever that means, at greater length in the future. The best suggetion i’ve come across thus far is from Henry George, and i hope you’ll investigate. But even if you don’t i hope you’ll give this the thought it warrants. My ideas are unlikely to be the best out there. Look around, though. The one’s we’re working with now are bullshit.

More links are forthcoming, but the take on history expressed here is largely indebted to Howard Zinn’s “Peoples’ History of the United States,” and James E. Lowen’s critique of history as taught in public schools, “Lies My Teacher Told Me.”

Looking down on petty usefulness

Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart died on this day in 1791 at the age of forty-five — allegedly at the hands of friend and fellow composer Antonio Salieri — while composing his final work, the Requiem. . .
Mozart-unfinished-Requiem 
If only everyone could feel the power
Of harmony like you! But no, for then
The world could not exist; no one would want
To spend time taking care of life’s low needs;
All would be given over to free art.
We are but few, we chosen, happy idlers
Who look disdainfully at petty usefulness
And form a priesthood serving only beauty.
Isn’t that so? But now I feel unwell. . . .

    -Mozart, moments before his death, in Aleksandr Pushkin’s play Mozart and Salieri.