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Law, culture, and Catholicism...up in smoke!

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Feiger Proven Right: Markman is delusional with power

I'm not sure from what court rule Justice Markman's otherwise rule-citing dissent authorizes a Michigan Supreme Court Justice to find facts. Such power in Michigan is left to the trial court, the jury to be exact. Nonetheless, because Markman was defending Monaghan, he made his own rules up in the name of preserving the conservative ranks (which Markman is believed to do a lot in favor of insurance companies, too, in the opinion of many, many Michigan trial attorneys).

The Michigan Supreme Court has dissolved the Court of Appeals order staying enforcement of the trial court order compelling production of Monaghan's little yellow notes relevant to the professorial litigation. Open the zip file located at the June 12 MSC orders on the MSC website.

Poor Tommy has to wear big people pants and actually comply with discovery. Awww, it's a shame when the big boys have to live with rules the rest of us live by.

I feel bad for him because he's being treated like a normal person. I mean, really, it must be so degrading to be accountable for your words, especially when you tell the press that you seek to be more humble than anyone else. Poor guy!

Back to Markman, however, is a wierd footnote in Markman's vacuous dissent:

4 To further emphasize defendant’s concern regarding the trial court’s production order, plaintiffs have acknowledged providing Ave Watch, a public website that is apparently antagonistic to defendant, with copies of defendant’s notes that they consider relevant to this litigation. However, defendant has alleged that one of his notes, which had not yet been filed with the trial court and that defendant had not been afforded an opportunity to designate as “confidential,” was provided to Ave Watch. Defendant alleged that plaintiffs’ counsel used her cell phone to take a picture of this document, which she then sent to Ave Watch. Plaintiffs’ counsel denied this claim and stated that “I’m not even savvy enough to get this thing. I barely can print a blurry thing off my phone. But even if I had I wouldn’t have provided it to [Ave Watch.]” However, the note at issue did appear on Ave Watch, http://avewatch.com/?p=89 (accessed June 1, 2009), accompanied by the following narrative:
[Plaintiffs’ counsel], apparently, was visiting [defendant]’s office in accordance with an earlier Court Order to produce documents. [Plaintiffs’ counsel] was allowed to view only a select subset of [defendant]’s personal notes, and was then denied a request to have any of the notes copied. Why? One sample was preserved as a photo on [plaintiffs’ counsel’s] cell phone.
This note stated, “November 4 Goals; 5 down, 6 to go. 2 leaders gone. Now they are in the minority.”

Poor Justice Markman seems a bit confused among all the other rules as to what the purpose of an appellate court is. Outside of Louisiana, he can't find facts like that in a court opinion. It's also terrible because Poor Uncle Tom's note was only personal because it's damning evidence. By going so far out of his way to find the fact, Markman has betrayed that the only thing Monaghan is doing is hiding relevant evidence.

Somebody also needs to tell Justice Markman that unsealed cases are public record and that plaintiffs' counsel was apparently allowed to view the note because defendant was tendering it for discovery. For all we know, the Ave Watch blogger was sitting in the trial court when this order compelling the documents was argued. But to Markman, it's a vast conspiracy... and this is a Supreme Court Justice?