DECEMBER 9, 2005

These are the Ramblings of a small town, (Holden, population 2,700), Missouri, country lawyer. They contain my random thoughts and observations on current events and my life and experiences in the Solo Practice of law.
Compiled here are the Ramblings for 2002 - 2005.

I have decided to finish my legal career serving the citizens of Johnson County, Missouri as their Associate Circuit Judge.  I ask for your support. 


Archived Prior Ramblings

In Memoriam:
September 11, 2001

  02-22-02  03-30-02  04-05-02
  04-21-02  04-27-02  05-01-02
  05-03-02  05-10-02  05-17-02
  05-31-02  06-21-02  06-26-02
  06-29-02  07-04-02  07-05-02
  07-12-02  08-02-02  08-10-02
  08-21-02  08-23-02  08-30-02
  09-06-02  09-11-02  09-11-02F
  09-13-02  09-20-02  09-27-02
  10-04-02  10-11-02  10-18-02
  10-25-02  11-01-02  11-08-02
  11-15-02  11-22-02  11-29-02
  12-06-02  12-13-02  12-20-02

  01-03-03  01-10-03  01-10-03R
  01-17-03  01-24-03  01-31-03
  02-07-03  02-14-03  02-21-03
  02-28-03  03-07-03  03-14-03
  03-21-03  03-28-03  04-04-03
  04-11-03  04-18-03  04-25-03
  05-02-03  05-09-03  05-16-03
  05-23-03  05-30-03  06-06-03
  06-20-03  06-27-03  07-04-03
  07-11-03  07-18-03  07-25-03
  08-01-03  08-08-03  08-15-03
  08-22-03  08-29-03  09-05-03
  09-12-03  09-19-03  09-26-03
  10-03-03  10-10-03  10-17-03
  10-24-03  10-31-03  11-07-03
  11-14-03  11-21-03  11-28-03
  12-05-03  12-12-03  12-19-03

  01-02-04  01-09-04  01-16-04
  01-23-04  01-30-04  02-06-04
  02-13-04  02-20-04  02-27-04
  03-05-04  03-12-04  03-19-04
  03-29-04  04-02-04  04-09-04
  04-16-04  04-23-04  04-30-04
  05-07-04  05-14-04  05-21-04
  05-28-04  06-11-04  06-18-04
  06-25-04  07-09-04  07-16-04
  07-23-04  07-30-04  08-06-04
  08-13-04  08-20-04  08-27-04
  09-03-04  09-10-04  09-17-04
  09-24-04  10-01-04  10-08-04
  10-15-04  10-22-04  10-29-04
  11-05-04  10-12-04  11-19-04
  11-26-04  12-03-04  12-10-04
  12-17-04  12-24-04  12-30-04
  01-07-05  01-14-05  01-21-05
  01-28-05  02-04-05  02-11-05
  02-18-05  02-25-05  03-04-05
  03-11-05  03-18-05  03-25-05
  04-02-05  04-08-05  04-15-05
  04-22-05  04-29-05  05-06-05
  05-13-05  05-20-05  05-27-05
  06-03-05  06-12-05  06-17-05
  06-24-05  07-01-05  07-08-05
  07-15-05  07-22-05  07-29-05
  08-05-05  08-12-05  08-19-05
  08-26-05  09-02-05  09-09-05
  09-16-05  09-23-05  09-30-05
  10-07-05  10-14-05  10-21-05
  10-28-05  11-04-05  11-11-05
  11-18-05  11-25-05  12-02-05
Greets and Huggers. Posted the evening of December 9, 2005. Our professional lives are governed by the 7 Justices on or Supreme Court. Justice Wolff, Justice Stith, Justice Price, Justice Teitelman, Justice Limbaugh , Justice Russell and Justice White. Of the 7, only one has engaged in the solo practice of law: Justice Teitelman, (1973 - 1975). The Missouri Bar and the Office of Chief Disciplinary Counsel exist, at the pleasure of these 7 individuals. These 7 individuals control/dictate our Rules of Civil Procedure, our Ethical Rules and Canon 5, (the rules governing judges). In my opinion, all are honorable, caring, highly trained, intelligent judges, dedicated to the bench. But none have a clue about the solo practice of law and the unique challenges faced by solo and small firm lawyers. Of the 20,000 + lawyers licensed to practice law in Missouri, 2/3rds of us are Solo and Small Firm guys, (trench lawyers). There are changes to be made which would benefit us. How about a statute of limitations for bar complaints? How about a "vacation rule", so you and your family can take a vacation, (without you having to call in every day to make sure some motion has not been filed)? How about you get a copy of every bar complaint filed, whether or not the OCDC decides to investigate it, (with a mechanism in place to allow you to have it removed from your "file", so it can not be used against you later?) Wouldn't that benefit you? How can you make changes in the way you practice, if you have no notice that something you have done or failed to do, has hacked a person off enough to file a complaint? How many such actions does it take to "trigger" an investigation? As my Dear Lady Friend Sara R noted: "The fact of prior complaints will be used only to determine whether a new complaint is worthy of investigation as opposed to being an isolated situation ... it is true that a complaint that was closed does not mean that there was no misconduct, just as a decision by a prosecutor not to prosecute or a finding of "not guilty" does not equate with a finding of innocence. That doesn't mean there is any type of assumption of wrongdoing when a file is closed. It only means those in the discipline system are lawyers and think like lawyers in realizing the actual meaning of a decision to close a file." Seems to me to be a blending of civil and criminal mindsets/burdens of proof. So share with me ... once you are accused, you can never prove your innocence? The best you can hope to do is prove you are not guilty .... and that finding of "not guilty" can be used for the next complaint? Frankly, that does not coincide with my notion of fundamental fairness. As for asking Maridee Edwards about forwarding all complaints, whether the OCDC will investigate or not? ... "It is possible that someone who is concerned about it may have contacted the Chief Disciplinary Counsel to express their concerns, but I am not aware of anyone doing that." I chatted with Maridee at the November Bar meeting. She saw "some problems" with sending a copy of all complaints out. I didn't really have a chance to go into it, in depth, with her. Bottom line? I would have to agree with our brother Charles McC, when he noted that we need to support Solo and Small Firm guys running for judgeships across the State, (not just because I'm running) ... but because historically, the first step in being appointed to the Supreme Court ... is getting on a local bench. We NEED solo and small firm representation on our Supreme Court.

Another Avian Flu death announced today. An analysis of autopsies done on the Indonesian victims of Avian Flu suggest that 50% of the victims actually died from Pneumococcal disease, not the virus itself. Apparently H5N1 weakens the lungs, (even in healthy people), making the lungs susceptible to bacterial infection, ( Streptococcus pneumoniae). "When these bacteria invade the lungs, they cause the most common kind of bacterial pneumonia and can then invade the bloodstream (bacteremia) and/or the tissues and fluids surrounding the brain and spinal cord (meningitis). The infection kills thousands of people in the United States each year, most of them under two years of age or over 65 years of age." Pneumococcal disease is 100% preventable: there is a safe, cheap, readily available vaccine, (in fact, two years ago, Susan and I received our flu shots and pneumonia shots concurrently ... the shot is good for 5 years). Should you get one? "Each year in the United States, pneumococcal disease accounts for an estimated 500,000 cases of pneumonia (infection of the lungs), 60,000 cases of bacteremia (bloodstream infection), and 3,300 cases of meningitis (inflammation of the tissues and fluids surrounding the brain and spinal cord)." What do you think? .... <whispering> ..... humor me, get you quarantine stash put together ... and go get a pneumonia vaccination.

VERNON, New Jersey (AP) -- Bear hunts set to begin in New Jersey. Hunters, animal rights advocates disagree on need for cull. "New Jersey hunters take to the woods Monday for a controversial season aimed at thinning the state's growing population of black bears, whose hungry foraging has frightened suburban residents. Up to 5,000 hunters were expected to take part in the six-day hunt -- only the second in New Jersey in 35 years -- which begins at sunrise Monday." Actually only 4,434 permits were issued. Says alot about the skill of New Jersey hunters, when 4,434 of them running around the New Jersey woods, for six days, managed to bag only 264 black bears. Course, then there is the Pennsylvania hunter: HARRISBURG, Pennsylvania (AP) -- Bear shot by hunter bites back, dies. "A black bear bit and clawed a hunter who had just shot it four times in what game authorities said appeared to be a first for the state. Samuel H. Beauchamp, 47, said he was approaching the downed 320-pound bear in Rothrock State Forest in central Pennsylvania on Monday, the first day of bear-hunting season, when it came after him." Years ago, my brother Roy was stationed in Alaska, (Ft. Greely). Before he deployed, we went to a gun store to buy him a handgun, for self protection. When asked what the most effective self defense weapon against bears, was ... the owner replied, "Someone who runs slower than you." I guess from the standpoint of New Jersey bears, for these past 6 days .... they have had access to 4,434 MRE's, (Meals, Ready to Eat!)

LAWRENCE, Kansas (AP) -- Professor treated for roadside beating. "A college professor whose planned course on Creationism and intelligent design was canceled after he derided Christian conservatives said he was beaten by two men along a rural road early Monday ... University of Kansas religious studies professor Paul Mirecki  said the men referred to the class when they beat him on the head, shoulders and back with their fists" Mirecki, who is the Chairman of KU's Religious Studies program, really hacked off the folks pushing "Intelligent Design": LAWRENCE, Kansas (AP) -- College course seeks to debunk intelligent design. "Creationism and intelligent design are going to be studied at the University of Kansas, but not in the way advocated by opponents of the theory of evolution. A course being offered next semester by the university religious studies department is titled "Special Topics in Religion: Intelligent Design, Creationism and other Religious Mythologies." "The KU faculty has had enough," said Paul Mirecki, department chairman. "Creationism is mythology," Mirecki said. "Intelligent design is mythology. It's not science. They try to make it sound like science." And so ... the final page in this little saga: Lawrence, Kansas --- Mirecki resigns leadership position. "The embattled Kansas University religious studies professor who drew ire from Christian conservatives for his derisive remarks on an online discussion board has stepped down from his post as department chairman. Professor Mirecki said he thought it appropriate to step down and did so on the recommendation of his colleagues in the department, and I have accepted his resignation, Barbara Romzek, interim dean of the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences, said Wednesday. This allows the department to focus on whatís most important ≠ teaching, research and service ≠ and to minimize the distractions of the last couple of weeks." hmmm ... "teaching, research and service"? ... and .... Topeka, Kansas --- KU could face heat in Topeka. "Top legislative leaders said Friday they were satisfied with Kansas Universityís decision to cancel a planned course on intelligent design because of the professorís controversial written remarks bashing religious conservatives. But if history is a guide, KU could face heat when the legislative session starts Jan. 9. And some ranking lawmakers have promised hearings in which professor Paul Mirecki and KU Chancellor Robert Hemenway would be called on the carpet." Well, gee ... so much for academic freedom. Wasn't the argument for including "Intelligent Design", as an alternative "theory" to "Evolution", to foster an open discussion/inquiry? Only reinforces my respect for our Founding Fathers staunch belief in the separation of Church and State.

PHOENIX, Arizona (AP) -- Arizona court: Killer can't practice law. "A convicted murderer who graduated from law school after getting out of prison was denied admission to the Arizona bar Wednesday he lacks "good moral character." James Hamm, who served 17 years for his part in a drug-related robbery that left two men dead, had asked the Arizona Supreme Court to allow him to practice law. The state bar association had recommended against his application, citing the seriousness of the crime and his failure to own up to his past. The five-member court unanimously sided with the bar association." Give me a break! Talk about restraint of trade!! What client wouldn't want to retain a "killer" lawyer to represent them? While here in Missouri, our brother on the SFIG, Bryan Lade, (without a doubt, a gifted lawyer), runs MOLEGAL.INFO ... a site, I think, which disseminates information about female moles, (MOLE GALs ... I don't think it's a porn site). Not sure how much of a market there is for that ... guess he may just have to go back to his day job, doing what he does best ... representing his clients :)

BOSTON, Massachusetts (AP) -- Girl's life support in court's hands. "A man accused of beating his stepdaughter tried Tuesday to convince skeptical justices on the state's highest court that he should have a say in whether the comatose 11-year-old is removed from life support. Jason Strickland, who could face a murder charge if Haleigh Poutre dies, wants the seven-member Supreme Judicial Court to overturn a juvenile court judge's decision that he has no parental rights over the girl, who is now in state custody." Another Schiavo case in the making. Haleigh Poutre was beaten so severely by Strickland, that she is "brain dead" and is being kept alive by a feeding tube and a respirator. The State wants to pull the plug ... and she will die. Mr. Strickland, humanitarian that he is, is fighting it. Really makes you have faith in human nature ... doesn't it?

Pravda -- Furious squirrels attack stray dog and tear it to pieces. "A pack of furious squirrels attacked a stray dog and tore it to shreds in Russia's Far East. The incident occurred in the center of the settlement of Lazo in the Dalnerechensky District. Three locals walking in a park were witnesses of the incident. They say the stray dog was barking at black squirrels jumping from one tree to another. Then the squirrels grouped and suddenly attacked the mongrel. The witnesses said the squirrels fiercely eviscerated the dog. When the people rushed to rescue the dog it was too late. The fight between the dog and the squirrels lasted for not longer than a minute. When the triumphant squirrels saw the humans approaching, they scattered carrying pieces of the prey in their mouths." Well, I guess Russian squirrels go after more than just nuts .... <shuddering> .... Wow!  Can you picture being cornered by a bunch of carnivorous Russian squirrels?

Al Jazeera --- Palestinians cheer Saddam as a hero. "Former Iraqi president Saddam Hussein remains a heroic figure in much of the West Bank and Gaza Strip, whose residents remember him as a rare example of an Arab leader who was prepared to challenge both the United States and Israel. "He'll be back in power, just you wait," says Abu Zaid, the owner of a cafe in Ram Allah." I seem to remember a long history of terrorist activities, by some of these folks. The killing of innocents. The Munich Massacre, ring a bell? [As an aside, Alexander B. Calahan submitted a Masters Thesis for his "Master of Military Studies" to the "Marine Corps Command and Staff College", which, without a doubt, is a fascinating read about how the Mossad hunted down and killed every one of the terrorists involved !!]   I also remember some Palestinian folks dancing in the streets after 9/11. Really hard for me to be sympathetic about their condition. But then, weren't they taught by the Hagana, Irgun and Stern Gang .... that terrorism, as a tactic, can work? Seems all these folks have more in common than they would care to admit. But then, isn't that the nature of the region and 5 thousand years of history?

NEW YORK, (UPI) -- Impotence drug sales falling short. "The market for impotence medicines appears to have fallen well short of what was once predicted ... In the United States, doctors prescribe impotence drugs about 17 million times a year to fewer than 5 million men, compared with nearly 40 million prescriptions for osteoporosis medicines and 100 million for antidepressants." These statistics really do make sense when you think about it. 5 million men get 17 million prescriptions. Doesn't that mean they are only getting some, a little more than 3 times a year? (While osteoporosis medications only stop bone loss, (not restore it) ... without these meds, some men would wind up with a dimple on their butt). No wonder there are so many scripts for antidepressants!! Bums me out, just thinking about it.

Sitting here checking links, sipping on some Cream Sherry and watching the evening news. It is COLD outside, but the fireplace is cranking out heat and warming the whole southern end of Ft Timmerman. Susan is in the kitchen making a lemon cake .... and there are 6 cats and 4 dogs sitting there watching her. Bought a set of high performance Pirelli snow tires, (mounted on Enkei rims),  on eBay. Sheesh! Talk about good timing. Also bought a set of "ground effect" side skirts. Miss Olga will have new winter shoes and a longer skirt :) Our judges used to have their chambers close to the lawyers lounge, at least in the older courthouses. The new courthouses are all "security conscious" ... with the judges being segregated from everybody, including the local bar. Kind of hard to keep on top of what the local bar is thinking ... isn't it? Kind of hard to convey changes, the local bar would like to see, isn't it? Kind of creates an "us" and "them" mentality, doesn't it? Aren't we all members of the same 3rd branch of our government? Officers, of differing rank, of the same court? I can not solicit funds .... but I can sure thank those of you who have supported my run for office. Thank you :)

Ft Timmerman is warm, safe and the home of all I hold dear, (even the Damn Cats ... and the Damn Yorkies .... they have never had it so good!!!) ... but most important to me ..... the Lady who makes my life worth living. Tonight, as I drift off to sleep, I will say a prayer of thanks .... and a prayer for the safe return of our men and women in uniform, (care to join me?) <whispering> .... Please, Please, Please .... let them come home safe .... and soon. Be and sleep well, stay warm, get your quarantine stash set up, and get your pneumonia vaccination .... and take a moment to appreciate all you have .... there are folks in harms way .... doing without their loved ones ... so you can. If my post offends, I apologize ... that is not my intent. As Always ...

A Warm Brotherly Hug

Karl (the dumb ole, running for a judgeship lawyer, from Holden, Missouri)

"Timmerman for Judge Campaign Committee": http://www.timmermanforjudge.com/


CLick here to read an Interview of the Author.

Karl H. Timmerman M.A. J.D. © 2005
All Rights Reserved

Click here to
Send a Comment to the Author