Karl H. Timmerman M.A.J.D. 2002
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to the
MoBar Solo and Small Firm Internet Group

JANUARY 17, 2003
Greets and Huggers.  Posted the evening of January 17, 2003.  "Capital Punishment" is a difficult issue:  one, over which honorable persons of good will can differ.  I personally find the taking of human life morally offensive:  yet there are times when it is "justifiable". Not "right",  not "moral" but "justifiable".  "Justifiable" in the sense that there are times when you must take life,  in order to preserve life. Aren't our peace officers and our men and women in uniform, in that position?  Assuming that the taking of human life is only "justifiable" to preserve or protect human life, (can you think of another reason that the taking of  human life is "justifiable"?  If you can, please share it with me.),   how is "capital punishment" vs. "life in prison without any possibility of parol",  "justifiable"?  My dear friend Bob Sigoloff opined:  "I always, and only, justified capital punishment as society's ultimate deterrent  ...  the highest bar level preventative  ...  that if you did the crime, you paid the price.  And without such a deterrent, there would be more senseless killings, etc..."  That is indeed one of the arguments:  but a deterrent to whom?  ...   and  ...  senseless killing is just that, senseless.  I doubt a perp is really thinking about the consequences of their actions  .....   nor does a private execution, 10 - 15 years after the fact act as a deterrent to others.  When the process that determines guilt, which results in an execution, is flawed  ... when in fact, the execution, the taking of a life, is "punishment" rather than the "justifiable" taking of a life to protect life, (doesn't "life w/o parol" accomplish the same result?  ...  and isn't it more cost effective?)   ... we, as a society, have elevated ourselves to the position of  God: to judge and punish.  Once there, we can "justify" anything.  Please share with me, why,  I should be in favor of "Capital Punishment":  share with me why the taking of a life  ... in a "Capital Punishment " context  ...  is "justifiable". 

Should attorneys fees be part of the measure of damages in civil actions? Isn't that the real issue? Read good arguments, valid and well thought out for and against.  Really don't think the legislation is a conspiracy.  Just some legislation proposed by a non lawyer who may not understand the consequences,  if the awarding of  attorney's fees are mandatory.  Perhaps the ability to seek and recover attorneys fees in some cases, should be seen as a way to make a wronged or injured person "whole".  How could a wronged person be made whole, if they have to pay a third or half  of what they have lost in order to recover what they lost to start off with?  If  the measure of damages consists of financial loss, real and future, isn't the attorneys fee taken from that portion of the judgment awarded for pain and suffering and/or the loss of some body function?  Could it be, that this is the real reason lay persons view trial lawyers as scavengers?  Don't have an answer, but would be willing to allow the DISCRETIONARY recovery of attorneys fees in civil cases, like they have been in domestic cases for years.

Should we limit membership of the SFIG to only Solo and Small Firm guys?  No.  What would we gain?   One of the benefits of the SFIG is the diversity of  viewpoints, a sharing of the very many differing ways we view the law, our practice of law,  our day to day lives,  our society, our America.  Does it bother me that Bob Moss,
http://www.karltimmerman.com/sfigi-o.html  (certainly not a solo or small firm guy), is a member of this "Family".  Not at all!  I embrace his presence. His opposing views force me to examine mine.  Don't we all grow from the free exchange of ideas?  Isn't a limitation of membership, a limitation on where or who ideas come from?  Not my place to say  ....  but  ..... any person who signs up for membership in the MoBar Solo and Small Firm Practice Committee should be welcome in this "house".

Celebrated my 55th birthday on Wednesday.  Susan wanted to know what I wanted as a birthday present. Told her, "You healthy and safe".  After all, what could she buy me?  There is no material thing in this life you or I could not buy ... assuming the payments are small enough  ... and you have "credit life" :)  There are, however,  things no amount of money can buy: health, my love for Susan, my love for my friends  .... my love for my America.  There are also things which are flat out not for sale: they include the integrity of the vast majority of the members of this "family" and me :)

Had a lot on my mind this week.  Susan had an MRI on Tuesday ...  the results were inconclusive.  She will need to get a CAT Scan.  We have an appointment on Monday with the doctor who will do the needle biopsy.  Been sitting here sipping on some BBB, finishing these Ramblings and  thinking about what my life would be like if Susan was not a part of it.  Would have "the Damn Yorkies" to take care of  ... and all five of "the Damn Cats" ... and a very empty Ft Timmerman.  How could I sleep  ... just me in the bed  ...   hehehe ... and two Yorkies and five cats.   Sherrie Hansin has two male goats  .... and chickens!!  Hate to see what her bedroom looks like!  :)    All kidding aside, Sherrie is a very dear friend.  And, aside from being one hell of a good lawyer .. a very attractive Lady person  ... a tough advocate  ... she is also, for some strange reason, a person who has chosen to call me "Friend".   For every bad thing to think about  ... there is also a good thing:  you get to choose what you want to focus on.  Life Lesson:  A life worth living has balance.

Saw on the news this evening that there will be an "antiwar" protest in Washington, tomorrow.  Also saw on the news that UN inspectors have found "empty" chemical/biological weapon warheads.   More Marines are being deployed.  As yet, I do not see a consensus forming for the invasion of Iraq.  That troubles me.  War involves the taking of life:  can this war, this action, be "justified"?

These Ramblings are done.  Will sit here ... sip a little BBB, log on to the #SFIG and chat for a while, (maybe Sherrie, Pat R, Sig, Pat L, Bryan, David  ..  et. al. will drop by.   See you there?)   Keep telling myself that all will be well.  Have all three furnaces going ... as well as the fireplace.  It is COLD outside.  Will hold my Susan real close tonight as we drift off to sleep while saying a prayer for her ....  for our men and women in uniform  ... for our America .... and for me.  My glass is indeed, half full, (not half empty!!)

If my post offends, I apologize, that is not my intent.

Karl (the dumb ole country lawyer from Holden, Missouri)