Becky Mowbray breaks down the 5th Circuit panel assigned to the drilling moratorium case. Slabbed provides some additional analysis.

As the country watched in horror as the Katrina Who Dat Judge Martin Feldman violated basic judicial ethics by presiding over a case where he had a clear conflict of interest Slabbed was already getting background from our legal team on the chances of Feldman’s tainted decision being reversed at the 5th Circuit Court of Appeals. Needless to say I suspect the financial disclosure forms of the 3 Judge panel at the 5th circuit has received quite the workout lately in light of what we dug up on the Who Dat Judge but rest assured this panel is not conflicted except possible by proximity to the scene of the crime. Before I chip in some analysis let’s visit with Becky who does a good job on this story:

Three judges from the 5th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals will hear arguments Thursday on the federal government’s request to keep the deepwater drilling moratorium in place while it appeals a lower court decision overturning the ban. …………

Curiously, the government hasn’t requested that the appeal of Feldman’s June 22 moratorium decision be heard on an expedited basis. The government’s appeal brief is due Aug. 9; Hornbeck Offshore Services Inc., the marine services company that is the lead plaintiff in the case, will have a few weeks to reply, and the oral arguments have yet to be scheduled. Continue reading “Becky Mowbray breaks down the 5th Circuit panel assigned to the drilling moratorium case. Slabbed provides some additional analysis.”

Judge takes transparency to a new level (it’s not Martin Feldman)

“This internet is truly amazing…it’s a great medium to disseminate information.”

Judge Larry Primeaux, 12th Chancery Court District of Mississippi

As a general rule, “you have to be the news to make the news” applies to the decisions a judge makes in a significant case.  As Martin Feldman now knows, it’s even bigger news when the decision is subject to question and the Judge releases financial report, raising more questions as Rebecca Mowbray reported.

Mississippi Chancery Judge Larry Primeaux is an exception to the general rule.  Judge Primeaux has a blog.  He not only makes the news, he reports it!

You can read about the court’s procedures and guidelines here, and pick up useful information about recent cases and other developments that impact practice in our court.  You’ll find some food for thought, practice pointers,humor and some pure horse sense.

If you could see all the corrections the various court clerks enter on Pacer, you’d understand why a judge would want to make “the court’s procedures and guidelines” more user friendly – and, if you read any post on Judge Primeaux’s blog, you’ll also know that Mississippi has yet another another gifted writer! Continue reading “Judge takes transparency to a new level (it’s not Martin Feldman)”

Putting in the fix and giving them the Feldman Part 2: Slabbed explores the seemingly foreign concept of recusal in the Louisiana Eastern District Federal Courts as we tie a few more things together.

Subsection 455(b)(4) requires disqualification where a judge “knows that he, individually or as a fiduciary, or his spouse or minor child residing in his household, has a financial interest in the subject matter in controversy or in a party to the proceeding, or any other interest that could be substantially affected by the outcome of the proceeding.” Section 455(d)(4) defines “financial interest” for the purposes of section 455(b), and provides specific exemptions, such as investment in a mutual fund or ownership of government securities. Note that, apart from such exemptions, even the smallest financial interest (e.g., ownership of a single share of stock) requires recusal. It is a judge’s duty to keep abreast of all of his or her financial interests.

Te above text from Recusal: Analysis of Case Law Under 28 U.S.C. §§ 455 & 144 found at the Federal Judicial Center has provided us with a treasure trove of information. As is often the case what appear to be unrelated events in Louisiana there are often common roots.  My research on the landmark recusal case I cited yesterday on Jim Brown’s Common Sense, Liljeberg v Health Services Acquisition Corporation led to this post which is also one heck of a story, one that will bring us from that case in the 1980s to the current impeachment of disgraced Louisiana Eastern District Court Federal Judge Tom Porteous and several points in between.

We need to catch our readers up to a key concept that we’ve highlighted several times here on Slabbed in the concept of control in politics and the judiciary. Many times those that run for office or nominated for judgeships are mere lackeys for monied interests. A very wealthy South Mississippian that is well respected in the business community told me something long ago that introduced me to the concept:

Some people want money. Some people want the power. I always wanted money because money rents power. Continue reading “Putting in the fix and giving them the Feldman Part 2: Slabbed explores the seemingly foreign concept of recusal in the Louisiana Eastern District Federal Courts as we tie a few more things together.”

Is award winning editorial cartoonist Tim Lockley a member of the Slabbed Nation?

Slabbed reports you decide. (H/T Mrs Sop from today’s Sun Herald print edition)

Did I say award winning? Team Sun Herald did very well at the Mississippi Press Association’s recent annual award ceremony. Included in that Continue reading “Is award winning editorial cartoonist Tim Lockley a member of the Slabbed Nation?”

Slabbed takes a second stab at explaining why clean impartial courts are important to everyone.

I mentioned earlier in a comment that I was practically overwhelmed with emails of late.  All were very respectful but several were like this one from a disturbed regular reader that asked:

Doug: Your “battle royale” with Feldman is “interesting”, but I’m not sure why you’ve stuck your neck out so far. If things are as “bad” as you believe them to be (and I’m not sure they are since we have only “limited” information since 2008), then won’t USDOJ and The White House go into an attack mode? Maybe I don’t understand, but don’t you BENEFIT from enjoining the moratorium? I know we all have to be “principled”, but don’t commit suicide.

Before I share the gist of my answer I think I need to share a little bit more about myself and how my previous life experiences translates into this highly successful project called Slabbed.

We don’t see things as they are, we see them as we are

Until Hurricane Katrina all my blogging was confined to the Yahoo finance boards, a strange and at times wonderous place where retail investors, money managers, corporate executives and paid shills come together. Blogging there means there is money on the line every time you press the post button.  After I ventured into individual equities in 2002 I had a good bit of luck early on playing certain publicly traded construction companies including one that had a special run. I followed all the rules and the sage advice from the talking heads and I scoured the SEC filings of the companies in which I invested. Continue reading “Slabbed takes a second stab at explaining why clean impartial courts are important to everyone.”

BREAKING: Who Dat Judge Martin Feldman owned Exxon-Mobile when he heard agruments in the deep water drill ban. Slabbed again calls for his immediate removal from the bench and impeachment.

So far the AP has mangled the story but the Wall Street Journal caught Feldman’s dirty little problem and it is there we begin:

Legal documents released Friday by the Administrative Office of the U.S. Courts reveal that U.S. District Court Judge Martin Feldman sold his holdings in Exxon Mobil Corp. on Tuesday, the same day he blocked the Obama administration’s drilling moratorium.

Exxon Mobil was among the companies using drilling rigs whose operations were suspended under the administration’s moratorium, according to Exxon spokeswoman Cynthia Bergman.

According to federal law, federal judges are required to step aside from cases that present financial conflicts. Continue reading “BREAKING: Who Dat Judge Martin Feldman owned Exxon-Mobile when he heard agruments in the deep water drill ban. Slabbed again calls for his immediate removal from the bench and impeachment.”

Anita Lee covers the coverers and writes a very nice piece on Slabbed's coverage of the Who Dat Judge and Nunny.

While the compliments we get from the Slabbed Nation sustain us it is nice to see our work recognized by professional journalists, especially those of the caliber of Anita Lee at the Sun Herald.

Thanks Anita!

sop

Giving them the Feldman Part 1: Slabbed explores a few earlier cases involving the little guy versus big business in Louisiana's Eastern District Federal Courts as we tie in litigation against big oil to the post Katrina litigation against big insurance.

Everyone has heard the old saying that a leopard does not change its spots and like many idiomatic expressions that its roots in antiquity, it accurately describes the human condition. Judge Feldman’s latest interest conflicted ruling regarding the drilling moratorium and the intense interest therein has opened the flood gates of information flow from the Slabbed Nation.  It was a reader sending me one of Feldman’s rulings involving a lawsuit against an oil company that resonated with me as the tactics dishonest corporate defense lawyers and their lackey judges evidently use with regularity in the court system pop up again and again in litigation, whether it is the ordinary citizens against big oil or big insurance.

Let’s begin with a case from the 1990’s before Judge Feldman where ol Marty tries gave an offshore worker that was hurt on the job the Feldman in an attempt to deprive the man of justice. I used the word attempt because Feldman’s conduct in court formed the basis of an appeal so it from the Westlaw analysis of the case Billy G. and Cheryl Bufford v Rowan Drilling Company that we begin:

Employee sued employer and supervisor to recover damages for injuries allegedly sustained in workplace. The United States District Court for the Eastern District of Louisiana, Martin L.C. Feldman, J., entered judgment for defendants after jury trial, and employee appealed. The Court of Appeals, Politz, Chief Judge, held that employee’s substantial rights to fair trial were impaired by defendants’ inferring that employee brought fraudulent claim from fact that his counsel had previously represented former co-worker in similar lawsuit, by likelihood that jury heard trial judge threaten employee’s counsel with jail during sidebar, and by trial court’s preventing employee’s counsel from countering defendants’ aspersions. Continue reading “Giving them the Feldman Part 1: Slabbed explores a few earlier cases involving the little guy versus big business in Louisiana's Eastern District Federal Courts as we tie in litigation against big oil to the post Katrina litigation against big insurance.”