All of the briefs have now been submitted to the ARDC, and you can check them out at this link:
Unlike the ARDC blog, this blog has everything, and we will post whatever you request that makes this blog fair sided and even.
Favorite quotes from our Appellate Brief:
An appellate Court must independently examine the entire record in First Amendment cases to ensure that “‘a forbidden intrusion on the field of free expression’” has not occurred. Bose Corp. v. Consumers Union of United States, Inc., 466 U.S. 485
“designed and intended to remove governmental restraints from the arena of public discussion, putting the decision as to what views shall be voiced largely into the hands of each of us, … in the belief that no other approach would comport with the premise of individual dignity and choice upon which our political system rests.” Cohen v. California, 403 U.S. 15, 24, 91 S.Ct. 1780, 29 L.Ed.2d 284 (1971). As relevant here, the First Amendment safeguards an individual’s right to participate in the public debate through political expression and political association. See, Buckley, 424 U.S. at 15. McCutcheon v. F.E.C., 12-536, 2014 WL 1301866 (U.S. Apr. 2, 2014) (Emphasis added).
It is, however, a basic First Amendment principle that freedom of speech prohibits the government from telling people what they must say.” Rumsfeld v. Forum for Academic and Institutional Rights, Inc., 547 U.S. 47
(now don’t we all know that the IARDC would love to own and control this Blog–a Blog that attracts thousands of visitors each month?)
“At the heart of the First Amendment lies the principle that each person should decide for himself or herself the ideas and beliefs deserving of expression, consideration, and adherence.” Turner Broadcasting System, Inc. v. FCC, 512 U.S. 622
(“The government may not … compel the endorsement of ideas that it approves.”). Were it enacted as a direct regulation of speech, the Policy Requirement would plainly violate the First Amendment. The question is whether the Government may nonetheless impose that requirement as a condition on the receipt of federal funds”.Agency for Int’l Dev. v. Alliance for Open Soc’y Int’l, Inc., 133 S. Ct. 2321
“[G]overnment has no power to restrict expression because of its message, its ideas, its subject matter, or its content.” Ashcroft v. American Civil Liberties Union, 535 U.S. 564
Note that the cases we cite are all SCOTUS or US Sup. Ct. Cases.
What does the ARDC cite in its brief in response?
The ARDC ignores the issues of the First Amendment, and just say the case is all about the disciplinary proceeding (no) so the IARDC should have immunity, a probate case that Ken and I were personally involved in (no) so the GAL’s should have immunity.
The gravamen of their complaint was that they
were prevented from engaging in the practice of law in the matter of Estate ofMary Sykes, No. 09 P 4585, filed in the Circuit Court of Cook County, CountyDepartment, Probate Division. R. 1, at ¶5; R. 39, Exhibit (“Ex.”) E.
They of course, mention the letter to Dr. Patel (who did nothing with the letter and just put it in the file), as follows
Ditkowsky sent a letter to Mary Sykes’ doctor and falsely represented
that he had been contacted to represent Mary’s interests and would be
requesting the doctor’s medical records as soon as he filed his appearance in the guardianship proceedings. R. 32, Ex. 1, at 2; R. 39, Ex. E, at 3
I assume that they are hoping the 7th Circuit won’t read the letter because it uses the words “after I appear” for Mary Sykes plainly and clearly. Of course, the ARDC Tribunal ignored those words and claimed that Ken falsely state he did appear in the letter. Remember, if you work for the ARDC, never, never post that letter. Shhhhh. Someone might realize you cover up inconvenient facts and truths to get what you want.
The truth is also not important to them in whose blog is whose:
Farenga enclosed copies of pages from Denison’s internet blog,
ProbateSharks.com, in which Denison printed writings by Ditkowsky that accused Farenga and Stern of criminal conduct and “gross improprieties” in their role as guardians ad litem for Mary Sykes. Id., at A3-4.
Everyone knows that the Probate Sharks blog is NOT my blog. It belongs to Ken Cooper, pursuant to Whois.net–the official site for ownership of blogs. No matter, the facts do NOT stop the ARDC.
Interestingly enough, on pp. 28-29 of their brief, the ARDC skips the entire jurisdiction requirement–Summons, Service of Petition upon the Respondent 14 days advance notice of time, date and place of hearing, and upon the elderly sisters. They just say “guardianship has to be in the best interests of the ward”. Okay, as determined by whom? The Illinois state government? The 18th floor of the Daley Center? What about our state legislature and US constitution providing due process, a summons and proper complaint to a defendant? Do we now arrest people and drag them into star chambers and off with their heads? Is the ARDC sanctioning jurisdictionless guardianships without notice and without an opportunity to be heard and to object? Circa 1780 we were promised these rights were inalienable and would endure forever, now, in one swoop, the18th floor takes away these rights and the ARDC skips the rights in its responsive brief and says we don’t have a US and Illinois constitution when and if certain court appointed attorneys are involved.
Do you think that the ARDC, in filing this brief, could be less caring about seniors and wards of the State of Illinois, giving purchase to the miscreants of the 18th floor who will determine if and when anyone in Cook County needs a guardianship, without notice, and without due process?
They for sure do not address the human and civil rights violations in doing so, and that violates US treaty law on Elder Abuse and Financial Exploitation, which is not only rampant in the US (see GAO reports published on NASGA website), but also apparently elsewhere in the world. Seems to be an universal problem that miscreants can’t keep their mitts of of a ward’s honey pot.
Another interesting quote from the ARDC brief:
The ARDC is the body created by the Illinois Supreme Court for the
purposes of the administrative supervision of the registration of, and
disciplinary proceedings affecting, members of the Illinois bar. Ill. S. Ct. R. 751(a). Jerome Larkin, as Administrator, is the principal executive officer of the Commission, having been appointed to that position by the Commissioners with the approval of the Illinois Supreme Court. Ill. S. Ct. R. 751(e)(1), 752.
But try and call them and ask why no one at the ARDC files Ethics Reports according to the Illinois Ethics Act of 2009 mandated by government agencies, and Janet Phelan, who has done so will tell you that she was told the ARDC was a “private entity”, not subject to mandates for Illinois agencies. So, on one hand the ARDC wants immunity, so it puts in its briefs it is a government agency that gets 11th Amendment immunity. BUT when you call them on the carpet for not following the mandates of Illinois Ethics laws for manadatory reporting of all attorneys and management, suddenly it is not a government agency.
I want to know why the IARDC isn’t be guardianized itself for clearly having MPD or Multiple Personality Disorder?
Even more interesting is the claim of “litigation privilege” by the ARDC on p.22 of its brief–a claim neither Denison nor Ditkowsky were able to make during their trials:
Illinois law provides an absolute litigation privilege in favor of
attorneys, which protects anything said or written in the course of legal proceedings relative to claims made in the lawsuit. As noted by this Court:
Illinois law recognizes an absolute litigation privilege
which protects anything said or written in the course of a
legal proceeding. The only qualification to this privilege is
that the communication pertain to the litigation. This
requirement is not applied strictly, and the
communication need not be confined to the specific issues
involved in the litigation . . . the rationale for the privilege
is to secure for attorneys as officers of the court the
utmost freedom in representing clients. The absolute
privilege is afforded even when malice is assumed to
have motivated the attorney. All doubts are to be
resolved in favor of finding that the privilege applies.
Steffes v. Stephan Co., 144 F.3d 1070, 1074 (7th Cir. 1998).
Isn’t it quite odd that the ARDC claims this privilege for itself, but it does not allow Denison or Ditkowsky to assert it, because in fact all Denison did was write this blog and tell the truth, and all Ditkowsky did was attempt to investigate a case upon which he did not appear in.
Here we go again, the ARDC claiming it IS a state agency and therefore entitiled to immunity:
Defendant Larkin, in his position as Administrator of the ARDC, is a
state government actor, and this Court has held that the ARDC is the legal equivalent of the State. Johnson v. Supreme Court of Illinois, 165 F.3d 1140, 1141 (7th Cir. 1999); see also Bilal v. Wolf, 2009 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 55579, 55596-97 (N.D. Ill. 2009).
But then why don’t they Ethics Report as mandated by law? And why don’t they publish salaries, as 99% of all other state agencies do to ensure that bribes aren’t being taken?
All good questions for the 7th cir. to figure out.
Next the ARDC on pp. 41 argues against an injunction on the grounds, such conditions are unlikely to happen again. But the Sykes case is going on, and so are other cases that Denison blogs on, and she gets told in court, after one of the attorneys points it out to the judge and makes a request, to stop blogging. Stopping court watchers from blogging and taking notes continues to this day on the 18th floor and every time it happened in the Sykes case, AS, CF and PS all asked or agreed with the court’s decision to prevent blogging by Denison. Atty Ken Ditkowsky continues to write emails, faxes and letters to the authorities about the Sykes case–what about all of that is not over? The US Supreme Ct has made it clear that note taking is a constitutional right in numerous decisions with which Tim Evans and Sheriff Dart do not agree. Denison has asked them repeatedly to instruct their deputies, allow the public laptops and tablets to blog and note take efficiently–all denied. Never responded to–except perhaps by Sheriff Dart refusing to issue Denison an attorney ID! I have FOIA’d the reason for that and they have asked for an extension of time. I faxed in the earlier requests and they were not responded to, so the last one I dropped off in person and asked to deliver it to counsel personally. I suspect that some employees probably didn’t like the FOIA and it would conveniently fall into a circular file, but I digress.
The IARDC then cites the Palmisano case, and basically says that all of you peons out there who are not in “the club” or have a law license are stupid and need to be protected. Get a load of this quote they liked:
Indiscriminate accusations of dishonesty, by contrast, do
not help cleanse the judicial system of miscreants yet do
impair its functioning–for judges do not take to the talk
shows to defend themselves, and few litigants can
separate accurate from spurious claims of judicial
misconduct. In re Palmissano
That’s right, it’s now official. The public is stupid, you don’t know your constitutional rights, and therefore, the ARDC has to strictly control the speech of Denison and Ditkowsky because Schmeidel, Farenga and Stern have all acted as saints in the Sykes case. Gimma a break. The public CAN read the Illinois Probate Act and follow it closely. The pubic knows when there is no valid service of a summons and complaint there is NO JURISDICTION and the proceeding is fake or under “color of law.”
Many probate victims, I have found, after being fleeced of life, liberty and property read and know the Illinois Probate Act, the Elder Abuse Laws, backwards and forwards, in and out. They may be terrorized and beleaguered, but they are NOT stupid.
Next it can be noted on p. 45 the ARDC admits:
While it is not clear from the plaintiffs’ complaint that they are alleging a First Amendment retaliation claim, the arguments in their appellate brief appear to focus on allegations of being deprived of their First Amendment rights to blog, email, send letters,
call for investigations or communicate with each other.
Note that while we are not entitled to an injunction because past conduct will not dictate future harm, the ARDC admits that the complaint is based upon the defendants preventing Ken and I from blogging, sending emails, faxes and other communications to third parties (family members and friends of Mary, the authorities and other probate victims). This blog has not stopped. Our communications have not ceased. The ARDC filed disciplinary proceedings against us to stop our communications to the authorities and others. The repeatedly struck and ignored motions, facts, witnesses and evidence that our communications spoke the truth. We alleged a cover up and the cover up continues unabated and our communications and investigations continue. We are clearly entitled to an injunction.
From my brief filed yesterday, written by Ken and edited by myself:
Main premise (fn 1)
1Gentile cited by defendants on page 29 of their brief provides no comfort for the
defendants as it points out that:
“The prohibition against vague regulations of speech is based in part on the need
to eliminate the impermissible risk of discriminatory enforcement, Kolender v.
Lawson, 461 U.S. 352, 357-358, 361, 103 S.Ct. 1855, 1858-1859, 1860, 75
L.Ed.2d 903 (1983); Smith v. Goguen, 415 U.S. 566, 572-573, 94 S.Ct. 1242,
1246-1247, 39 L.Ed.2d 605 (1974), for history shows that speech is suppressed
when either the speaker or the message is critical of those who enforce the law.
The question is not whether discriminatory enforcement occurred here, and we
assume it did not, but whether the Rule is so imprecise that discriminatory
enforcement is a real possibility. The inquiry is of particular relevance when one
of the classes most affected by the regulation is the criminal defense bar, which
has the professional mission to challenge actions of the State. Petitioner, for
instance, succeeded in preventing the conviction of his client, and the speech in
issue involved criticism of the government. “ Gentile v. State Bar of Nevada, 501
U.S. 1030, 1051, 111 S. Ct. 2720, 2732, 115 L. Ed. 2d 888 (1991)
Thus, Gentile makes it abundantly clear that being critical of judicial officials is an act protected by the First Amendment. Larkin thus grossly exceeds his authority, as even the Supreme Court of Illinois lacks the authority to limit an attorney’s 18 USCA § 4 duty, his right to petition his government and or complain of corruption. Without delegation of authority, Larkin’s conduct is ultra vires and no matter how viewed he enjoys no immunity to deny a fellow citizen of his/her civil liberties and the right to speak out.
In particular, the defendants offer no authority or delegation to regulate Ms. Denison’s blog, or the content thereof, or their continuous attempts to silence Ditkowsky’s communications and contributions to other blogs, including Denison’s.2
2During the opening of Denison’s trial, incredulously the IARDC litigating attorney
compared Ms. Denison’s Blog to “shouting fire in a crowded theatre”– in an absurd attempt to bring it under the guise of “strict scrutiny”. Plaintiff Denison’s response to those assertions have been 1) don’t shoot the messenger; 2) the blog is not subversive dissent to be crushed by US authorities; 3) don’t blame the media for its content and 4) when offended, simply avert thy eyes.
The regulation of attorneys’ speech is limited-it applies only to speech that is
substantially likely to have a materially prejudicial effect; it is neutral as to
points of view, applying equally to all attorneys participating in a pending
case; and it merely postpones the attorneys’ comments until after the trial.
While supported by the substantial state interest in preventing prejudice to an
adjudicative proceeding by those who have a duty to protect its integrity, the Rule
is limited on its face to preventing only speech having a substantial likelihood of
materially prejudicing that proceeding. Gentile v. State Bar of Nevada, 501 U.S.
7Denison is being subjected to unique disciplinary proceedings in which it appears that transcripts have been altered – the IARDC refuses to provide the audio voice recordings that would verify the accuracy of the transcripts. Ditkowsky has been suspended from the practice of law for 4 years destroying a successful law practice of more than fifty years in duration. The injury to the plaintiffs foreseeably continues. All the injuries were caused by the plaintiff’s reporting to authorities that a senior citizen’s million dollars in gold coins had been reported removed from a safety deposit box without prior court order and was never inventoried by the plenary guardian, that a senior citizen had five unreported trips to an emergency room and lost 10% of her body weight, etc. All of the foregoing were deemed by the defendant IARDC to be
unethical communications, despite the fact that all were supported by affidavits by witnesses to the actual behaviors. None of the witnesses to the felonies and misdemeanors have been allowed to testify in court, not even in the Kangaroo Court of the IARDC . The ARDC systematically and strenuously bans adverse witnesses, motions, adverse discovery and any facts or motions it deems unhelpful to its case. The Tribunals it uses are not independent to the ARDC and Denison has witnessed conversations between her Tribunal members and staff at the ARDC. The ARDC
houses, selects and assists all Tribunal members at all times. Further, in contravention to the Illinois Ethics Reporting Act of 2009, no ARDC attorney or management files any Ethics report, as mandated by Illinois law. All of this embarrassing and crucial information is published at all times on Pltf Denison’s blog.
So, read the briefs and decide for yourselves who you want to be the official attorney censors–Jerome Larkin, who has “funny” property records, or Adam Stern, who has a $60k unexplained tax lien, Cynthia Farenga who has a husband with 100 property transactions, or Judge Stuart, and her changed testimony and altered transcript the ARDC refuses to provide the audio to, applying the whitewash brush again by saying “file an affidavit” and we’ll consider the affidavit.
Remember, it is the official position of the ARDC to insult the public’s intelligence. My tribunal insulted Kathie Bakken an older disabled woman with a walker by saying sour grapes you don’t understand, and Yolanda Bakken, an 85 year old plus woman who is frail and has mobility issues, again, family member, sour grapes to you–also insulting their intelligence.
The ARDC position is they will decide the facts, they will protect an attorney code of silence, they want to shut down this blog and the US govt will tell you what to think and do. 1985 was a banner year for them. They read the book and believed it and thought it was good–for them.