Friday, July 29, 2011 Love Letters

Read the love letters on sometime dear reader.

Sadly they can be summarized. And I'll do just that.

They are a collection of immaturity. Nothing more. There is no deep, winding soul-twisting angst. Just immaturity, irresponsibility, angst and fear. Perhaps every deep love problem only boil down to that also. I don't know.

Many of the letters are from women, of course. Most are from women who have found a man they met when they were young (and stupid). Fair enough. But too many boil down to the same thing over and over again. She's playing the man. He's playing the woman. She makes more money than he does, or else, all the money. He is unemployed. She claims he's depressed, not ambitious enough or else needs to get some better education. She basically supports him to some extent. This creates massive havoc for the same reason it always does. Every boy and girl since time began have one ultimate goal: the family. How will the family be structured? The easiest and most convenient way seems to work the best. Its just something time has shaken out for us.

She will have the baby because she is the woman. Then the baby needs milk and breastfeeding is best for the baby, so she must do that. Pretty tough to have a baby nursing on you while you're at work. And what if there is another baby? And who is going to cook for the family? And what about regular house duties? "Home" is no longer a place to hang your hat. Its a job in itself. Parents and grandparents went through this for DECADES. But when they tried to tell the kids "Look, this is what will happen; you'll meet, fall in love (or lust), a baby comes, there are bills, duties, you need food, money, you'll have RESPONSIBILITIES. You need to consider what role YOU will play.

The kids shrugged. "Everyone will do everything" they said.
"Men and women are the same."
"We will both work."
"We will communicate on every thing."
"We will cooperate."
"We will be one."

Sure you will. Women secretly winced when they heard "we will both work" and men secretly winced when they heard "we will communicate on everything."

Women don't want the burden of rearing kids AND working. Why not just marry an alpha male who makes a lot? I don't blame them.

Men don't want the burden of calling home 5 times a day when they're trying to kick ass at work. Men know women and men communicate much differently to boot. I don't blame them.

But we "rolled" with the new "plan" anyway. It blew up in our faces. It worked for some, sure. Kind of. She works part time and he works full time and he chips in a bit more, but not much changed for those people.

The letters on are for couples who thought they could pull a role-reversal. Down in flames they went. The man feels like an inept pussy and the girl feels like the lifestyle-supporting man, not the romanced-by-Mr.Big woman.

Not. Going. To. Work.

They both resent the other and eventually someone breaks up with the other. Go figure. Grandparents must be rolling over in their graves.

Other letters are the "Friends, Sort Of" kind. A guy and a girl, friends. One of them dumb enough to think they will be friends forever. Usually the guy. Girls are programmed to hunt for alphas. So if a guy just wants to be "chummy" with her, she thinks "he's a low-testosterone, half-girl" and secretly pities him a bit. He has absolutely no idea what she's thinking. Its a fact that men typically fantasize about sex with female friends. This essentially means that some of these guys don't have the balls to make a play for their attractive female friend. Or else they're scared to have no female attention so they try to ignore the fact that the relationship will eventually boil down to sexual relationship or else nothing (unless she is unattractive). If he gets a girlfriend, that girlfriend is going to wonder about this female friend who he keeps close and trusts so much. And he may very well have to chose one over the other. If she gets a boyfriend he'll feel like the half-woman she considers him to be - good enough to confide in, but she's screwing someone else. If he doesn't find her to be attractive, he won't care and they actually will be friends. But this is pretty rare.

I have two female friends - one an ex-roommate who is just a real stand-up, moral girl that isn't my type physically speaking, and the other an old college friend who is funny, insane, and also not my type, physically speaking. One is married, one is not (and the married one, I do "couples" things with). Only one do I speak to regularly and when she gets married, I expect that will stop.

They are my two "exceptions."

For young guys.... give me a break. There are no exceptions. Or only those that are quite rare - that is, clever, crazy and not your type, physically speaking. Otherwise, the girl is wondering when you're going to start acting like a man and not an anxiety-filled little girl. Sorry, but that's more or less correct. Why? Women are programmed to attract hairy, testosterone-filled, dinner-killing alpha males. If that's what you were, she would not care to be your "friend." She would be coyly waving her barely-covered ass toward you and giving you glances. And if you rejected her, her come back would not be "let's be friends."

Young girls collect male friends like handsome quarterbacks collect notches on their bedpost. It makes the girl feel romantically "wealthy" to have all that male attention. But they seldom (unless they are sad, desperate or drunk) sleep with any of those male friends. They go for alpha males instead.

Once upon a time, most men would resemble alpha males, or something like it. But like condors, every year there are fewer and fewer of them. Now you have love letters complaining of men's lack of achievement, drive, ambition, earnings, etc... You would've never heard of such complaints 50 years ago. Isn't feminism WONDERFUL ladies!

Listen to this kid:
" About three months ago I told a friend of mine that I had feelings for her. What I didn't know -- and neither did our other friends -- was that she had been seeing a guy for a couple of weeks before I told her. She told me right after I told her how I felt. Obviously, if I had known, I wouldn't have said anything. I told her that I wanted to remain friends and she said she did too."

We went without talking for three months and then I contacted her.

So, I now have a friend again and I'll be trying to get us back to where we were before all of this. However, I still have feelings for her and if she became single today, I'd want to ask her out after an appropriate time period passed.

So, to my question. Is it OK that I'm now in a position to go back to being friends even though I still have feelings for her? I'd never interfere, interject, etc. in her current relationship and I'm obviously not going to broadcast that I still have feelings for her. I guess I need some advice on how to handle this situation."

Poor bastard.

He was friends with a girl his instincts told him to go after. But he didn't go after her. Now she has a real man and he suddenly wants her? The girl is thinking to herself: He either has no guts, doesn't think he himself is too great of a catch, and/or just wants me because I'm with someone else." All red flags. She doesn't even want to be friends with him. Why?

Because she has no respect for him.

With respect, trust and love can follow. Without respect, you're just a big ball of wasted space guys.

Its like the sweet girl you know, men, who is extremely plain. When you see her, are you thinking SEX? Nope. You're thinking "friend." Or your thinking nothing. The sexy girl with the curves, who may even be a bit stuck up? Yeah, you're thinking SEX. Its sad, but true. We're all animals.

After maturing a bit and being with someone for a while, your values will change a bit and your decision will be affected by it. But for young men and women? This is the way it is.

The women are disappointed and the men depressed and sexless.

I'm so glad we took the last 30 years to make all this "progress."

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Math for the Slow

From Karl Denninger, some rudimentary math, which pols apparently cannot do:

The facts are this:

  • Their [Democrats] plan has a CBO score of $2 trillion in deficit reduction over 10 years.

  • S&P [ratings agency] says it must be FOUR TRILLION. Four is greater than two - by 100%.

Therefore, no matter what sort of crap the Democrats spew, until and unless they put a credible plan on the table that achieves four trillion in actual deficit reduction neither party is serious.

No, this is not a pass for the Republicans. They haven't put forward a credible plan either.

The fact of the matter is that both parties are well-aware that addressing the problem will cause an immediate contraction in GDP. If you get rid of deficit spending it's an immediate 12%+ hit. If you cut in half it's 6%.

Pick one - there's no resolution that actually fixes the problem and avoids this.

Either come up with a $4+ trillion plan which is still going to produce a monstrous amount of damage and will only extend the time before we blow up - not fix it - or shut up and go home.

The markets are done with the bullcrap - they know the Democrats and Republicans are lying and they're not going to believe either of you any more. Either cut it out Reid - and Boehner - or watch the markets crash and, once the downgrades come, you will risk getting too close to the critical point in the gravity well at which point disaster is inevitable.

From David Beers on Kudlow, who puts it in pretty-clear language. Argue with him if you wish - S&P only asked for half of the problem to get resolved (which gives enough time to find a political solution to the rest.) I don't think that's going to do it, but they'll pass on that - at least for now.

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Dr. Phil: Wrong Again.... and btw... he's not a Doctor

Look up "Dr. Phil" dear reader. Research him. This self-appointed moral leader is nothing of the kind. Nor is he even a licensed Doctor. His doctoral thesis was "Rheumatoid Arthritis: A Psychological Intervention." That's right people, arthritis is all in your head. Magraw's license is currently listed by the Texas State Board of Psychology as "retired" and he holds no other active licenses to practice in any other state. Dr. Phil dabbled in business his whole life. He wanted to be rich. And now he is. And he told more than a few lies to get there. The man is on t.v. giving advice on how to live and claims to be a doctor. However, Appearing on the Today Show in January 2008, McGraw said that he has made it "very clear" that his current work does not involve the practice of psychology. He also said that he had "retired from psychology".[19] According to the Today Show, the California Board of Psychology determined in 2002 that he did not require a license because his show involves "entertainment" rather than psychology.

I guess you're supposed to watch the Dr. Phil show and know its nothing more than some guy giving people advice for purpose of entertaining you instead of actually helping the people who come on the show. Its done under the guise of treatment when Dr. Phil is not licensed to give any psychological treatment. That's borderline Fraud.

So, "Dr. Phil" (who's not really a Doctor, but plays one on t.v.) has an opinion on domestic violence - women are always the victim and men are always wicked and evil. Its not hard for Phil to say such things. Faking and lying seem to come naturally to him.

Dr. Phil: Wrong Again on Domestic Violence

July 15th, 2011 by Robert Franklin, Esq.

Dr. Phillip “Dr. Phil” McGraw gave inaccurate and biased testimony to the Senate Judiciary Committee on VAWA. He testified on Wednesday on behalf or reauthorization of the Violence Against Women Act. He was called by committee chairman, Senator Pat Leahy, D-Vt.

Over the years, “Dr. Phil” has taken on a number of issues related to fathers on his television program. To say that he has an anti-father bias is putting it mildly. A few years ago he had a show dedicated to showing how lazy fathers are. Hey, he and Jeff Pearlman should team up; great minds think alike.

Then there was the “Dr. Phil Show” in which he asserted that abusive fathers routinely get custody of their children. One of the “examples” he gave was that of Sheldon Creek (a pseudonym) in which the mother accused the dad multiple times of child sexual abuse of his young daughter. The only problem was that every single doctor, nurse, clinic, hospital, custody evaluator, guardian ad litem and child welfare agency that investigated, concluded that there had never been any form of abuse. Into the bargain, the judge concluded that the mother fabricated the accusations shortly before court hearings on custody.

To Dr. Phil that meant the father had abused his daughter. What apparently didn’t mean much to him was that the child had to undergo five separate medical examinations due solely to her mother’s false claims of sexual abuse against her dad. That concerned the girl’s guardian ad litem as well as the judge. From Dr. Phil? Not a peep.

Glenn Sacks demolished the “Creek” case here.

So when Dr. McGraw showed up to testify on behalf of VAWA, we knew we were in for a rough ride. And so we were. Here’s a transcript of his testimony.

In keeping with so much commentary on domestic violence, Dr. Phil evinces no awareness that women ever injure their male partners. In that he’s reading directly from the Joe Biden handbook. Biden, who’s proud of nothing more than his support for VAWA, has no notion that women ever perpetrate domestic violence or that men are ever their victims.

(As an aside, a matter of hours before his testimony, Catherine Kieu of Garden Grove, California, drugged her husband’s food and, when he went to bed feeling sick, tied him to the bed, cut off his penis with a kitchen knife, and ground it up in the garbage disposal. She did nothing to stop his profuse bleeding and the 60-year-old man was listed in serious condition at the hospital. Kieu told police “he deserved it.” The two are in the middle of divorce proceedings. In keeping with the Biden/Dr. Phil take on DV, no article has yet called her actions “domestic violence.” Here’s one article on the case (NBC Los Angeles, 7/14/11).

So McGraw’s testimony to the Senate Judiciary Committee was both wrong and biased. It’s wrong because women perpetrate domestic violence at least as often as do men and possibly more. It’s wrong because, while men are more likely to injure women than vice versa, over one-third of DV injuries including deaths are suffered by men. And of course, we’ve known this to a certainty for 36 years, ever since the first major study was done for the National Institute of Mental Health in 1976.

And yet Joe Biden and Dr. Phil can still tiptoe merrily through the tulips pretending we don’t know what we’ve in fact known for decades. Keep in mind, this guy was testifying before a senate committee charged with gathering facts - facts, mind you - about domestic violence, VAWA, it’s shortcomings, its strong points, etc. Wouldn’t you think they’d want informed people before them? Wouldn’t you think they’d demand accuracy? After all, there are hundreds of millions of dollars at stake and national policy is being made.

But Dr. Phil didn’t stop there. He came out with this doozey:

Domestic violence is now the most common cause of injury to women ages 15 to 44.

No, actually it’s not. According to the Centers for Disease Control, it’s nowhere in the top five, being far outstripped by things like falls, motor vehicle accidents and overexertion. Indeed, anyone who’s ever taken a defensive driving course would hesitate to say that anything causes more injury to the young than do motor vehicle accidents. The least regard for accuracy would have stopped Dr. Phil from making the patently untrue claim and the committee from hearing it.

From the outright false, McGraw improved to the merely misleading. For him, all DV is done by men and all of it is serious. He’s like so many in the DV establishment who are pleased to inflate the definition of DV to include every minor push or shove and every raised voice. That’s on one hand; on the other they call all DV “battering.”

That allows them to vastly exaggerate how many instances of DV there are and at the same time pretend they’re all life-threatening. They shift their definitions without letting on they’re doing it. And so it is with the august Dr. McGraw.

2,000,000 women a year are victimized meaning as we sit here today in the 1st hour of this hearing, 228 women are being beaten, terrorized and intimidated, all behind closed doors, all undoubtedly feeling very alone.

See what I mean? If you define DV to include imagined slights, shouts and minor pushes and shoves, then yes, 2 million women may indeed be victims. But if you define it as being “beaten, terrorized and intimidated,” the number is a small fraction of that. Indeed, the Scottish study I’ve referred to frequently found that there was no injury at all or only a minor cut or bruise in 80% of domestic violence incidents, i.e. far from “battering.”

Dr. Phil, like so many in the DV establishment, wants to define the term as he wishes when he wishes. He wants to have it both ways.

Reading what McGraw said to the committee, the untutored might actually believe he meant it. How’s this for a clarion call?

And so I pledge to you today our campaign to End the Silence on Domestic Violence is just beginning. With legislation like VAWA we can turn obstacles into stepping-stones. I will continue to use the Dr. Phil platform to raise awareness and educate the public. We will advocate for victims of violence and partner with others, from the roadhouse to the Whitehouse until we can at last, lay down our swords.

Stirring stuff, no? Well, it would be if he had any intention at all of “educating the public” or “advocating for victims of violence.” But, based on his previous behavior and his testimony to the committee, he has no such intention.

Dr. Phil will no more educate the public about male victims like Catherine Kieu’s husband than the man in the moon. He has no intention of advocating for men. To him, male victims of violence at the hands of their intimate partners are just so much collateral damage in a war declared long ago - a war in which Dr. Phil is a high-ranking officer, a war on the truth, a war on male victims of female violence.

Phillip McGraw talks about ending the silence, but he himself silences every male victim of domestic violence. It’s how the DV establishment likes male victims - voiceless.

He added,

I long ago resolved to never speak unless I could add something to the silence.

Would that it were true.

The Subservient

You may not complain. You may not criticize. You may not argue. You may not fight. You must simply take being financially raped (no hyperbole) and being forced to deal with a potentially mentally unstable woman because "its what is best for the children." Bullshit. Its what's best for psychotic ex-wives and girlfriends no one wants to be around because they do and say crazy (mean, outlandish, twisted, unreasonable, violent) things. You are told you have to "take care" of or "deal with" your ex as if she were a child herself and it was the year 1910.

Judge Orders Father to Take Down Website Critical of Judge, Mother
July 22nd, 2011 by Robert Franklin, Esq.

Pennsylvania judge Diane Gibbons ordered a father to take down his website critical of his ex-wife. Read about it here (Philly Burbs, 7/21/11).

Apparently, Anthony Morelli and his ex-wife Allison Morelli have been divorced about seven years. At some point, Anthony and his girlfriend, Misty Weaver-Ostinato, put up a website he says to air his complaints about his experiences with the post-divorce process. They called the site “The Psycho Ex-Wife.”

”We are NOT anti-mother or simply pro-father, we believe all children deserve BOTH parents, unless there are serious issues which prevent one parent from providing a stable, loving environment. An environment where the children are encouraged to love and be loved by both parents.

“We offer a view few judges will ever see. For attorneys, custody evaluators, guardians ad-litem, and judges, a custody case ends with their decision. They make a ruling and walk away with nary a care as to how clients can, and do, go against the orders they have handed down.”

Anthony admits that the site was somewhat inflammatory for the sake of attracting readers, but claims he’s never identified his wife or children by name. He also says he went to great lengths to keep the site secret from his kids.

But eventually they found out about it and so did Allison. She went to court to get it taken down and the judge agreed. Predictably, she defends her decision as in the best interests of the children.

“This is about children,” said the judge during a June 14 hearing… The judge characterized the original website as containing “inaccurate and denigrating, belittling comments about mother. It is not just venting that I have read in these pages. It amounts to outright cruelty.”

Since the site’s been taken down, it’s hard to know just what was on it, but the linked-to article’s most demeaning quotation has Anthony referring to Allison as “Jaba the Hut but with less personality.” Not flattering, but not actionable either.

Anthony Morelli and Misty Weaver-Ostinato have appealed the order saying it violates their right to free speech. To be blunt, they’re right. Judge Gibbons’s assertion of a “best interests of the child” exception to the First Amendment’s guarantee of the right of free speech has, as far as I know, no precedent in constitutional law.

Respected constitutional scholar Eugene Volokh agrees.

“It’s not limited to libel, it covers all speech about the ex-wife. It’s clearly unconstitutional,” Volokh said.

Gibbons’ determination the site was abusive to the children is not sufficient cause to order it taken down, according to Volokh. “That’s not an adequate rationale,” he said.

The courts have ruled even national security is not reason to order a newspaper not to publish, the professor said, citing the example of the publication of the Pentagon Papers, which revealed the nation’s involvement in the Vietnam War.

“It’s one thing to restrict speech to children, but not to the entire public. At least attempt to narrow the limits of speech,” said the professor.

Volokh continued, “I rarely criticize judges, they have a very difficult job,” but, he said, “this is a blatantly unconstitutional exercise of her authority. She’s flouting the U.S. Constitution.”

That of course means the order will be overturned by an appellate court whose judges, apparently unlike Gibbons, took Con Law in school. That’ll be a good development, and a necessary one for maintaining our free speech rights.

But the victory that’s sure to come obscures the advent of a less heartening development that likely will as well. At the hearing in June, Judge Gibbons promised this:

“You may say anything that you would like to say. You may publish it. You may put it on a billboard. But you will not have your children, because that is abusive.”

Aye, there’s the rub. Her order is clearly unconstitutional and will be overturned, but if you thought that was the extent of her power over Anthony Morelli, you were wrong. He and Allison have some form of joint custody and, if he continues to exercise his free-speech rights, he’ll find his access to them denied. And again he’ll be told that it’s in the children’s best interests.

It’s odd how that works. He has some sort of custody now and has for seven years, during which time he’s been publishing various items on his website (at least until recently). But if he continues to criticize his wife online, he’ll all of a sudden become unfit to parent his kids.

That of course is pure bunk. If Gibbons denies him access to his kids because of his criticism of his ex, it’ll have nothing to do with child well-being and everything to do with punishing a father for exercising his right of free speech. But would an appellate court agree? I doubt it.

Of course if Anthony’s words had anything to do with parental alienation of his kids, that would be different. Parental alienation can and should always be grounds for limiting parental contact. But no one has said anything about his aiming his remarks at his children. On the contrary, he bent over backwards to ensure that they wouldn’t see the site, even though they eventually did.

No, the “take-away” on this is the power of family court judges. The U.S. Constitution contains no ‘best interests of children” restriction on the right of free speech, but family court judges can find any facts they wish about parental fitness. And if that includes taking children from a father because the judge doesn’t like what he says about the mother, so be it.

Also, it’s hard to avoid the conclusion that Gibbons’s plaint was only partly about what Anthony said about Allison. I’d say the judge is also angry about what he at least implicitly said about her. After all, he’s griping about how judges walk away from their custody decisions “with nary a care as to how clients can and do, go against the orders they have handed down.”

That’s a slam at the mother, but it’s also a swipe at the court for, I’d be willing to bet, it’s failure to enforce his visitation rights.

Family courts routinely intone the mantra of ”the best interests of the child,” while simultaneously doing the opposite. As long as there’s no more objective standard than that, we’ll continue seeing parents silenced by judges whose power regarding child custody continues largely unchecked.

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Monster's Ball

Thomas Ball was not a perfect dad. That is what most will take away from the story below. I want you to take away something else: the guy was screwed over. Period. Screwed. Into the ground. And think about what you would've done had it been you.

Basically he had a bad parent day - we all have them - and maybe it was not just one day. I don't know. But I'm guessing it was. Why? Because he was fighting like Hell to see his kids. A real jerk or monster doesn't - they just walk away and forget they ever had kids. The good guys try like Hell. So it seems he slapped his daughter one day - hard enough to draw blood. How much blood? Was it from a fingernail? I don't know. But that sounds pretty bad. And it lost him ANY AND ALL visitation to his own kids. Too harsh if you ask me. If he had a history of abuse, fine, he's unfit to see them. Even so, he should've taken and passed the court's program - it looked bad, Mr. Ball - you've got to go. Sorry.

But he didn't go. Mr. Ball refused the court's rehab program (for reasons I guess at later) and instead he fought for visitation the old fashioned way. He didn't get it. Not one day. The FAT child support bill - oh he got that. And paid it too. But no kids. Big bill - but for nothing, as you can't see your own children. What are you paying for? Someone else's kids. That's what.

Let's suppose for a second this guy isn't a beast. He still has to pay massive child support. 40% of his salary or more. That's HUGE. Back-breaking huge. Then he lost his job - now what? You STILL have to pay support even though you're broke, folks! That is the law! Nice, eh? Down on hard times? COUGH IT UP, CHEAP SKATE! That is the court's attitude. This is how dad's willing to pay support have to bite their lip hard enough to bleed to keep from saying "FUCK YOU JUDGE." You could pay $1,500 a month (shutup, there are men who pay more than that) for 10 years - that's over $150,000 - and the moment you lose your job, you find a way to pay or else go to jail. Yeah, Fuck You Family Law. Fuck You.

Now I'll speculate - let's suppose this guy has a wife who loves to spoil her kids (I sure as Hell don't know many female disciplinarians). Its an assumption, but not a terrible one. Let's further say, this guy doesn't feel comfortable disciplining his daughter because... well... she's a girl. And its always tough to yell or spank an infant girl as a dad. This is also likely. Next thing? Baby girl grows up to be a brat because no one enforces any limits. That's what. And she acts out, looking for limits - if you think this wouldn't happen you are a) a moron b) not a parent c) all of the above. Suppose one day this guy cracks and cuffs her - and guess what, when you're bratty child screams a fake, angry scream, for the 500th time in the hour and kicks you hard in the bare ankle with her shoes on, you'd be surprised how easy it is to forget how much you love her. And in a moment, Mr. Ball forgot. So he cuffed her. He didn't break her nose for Chrissake. It sounds like he slapped her - hard - a big mistake, of course. His daughter would cry, he would feel terrible, and mom would consider him to be a monster. Is he a monster? No. He's a dad that lost his temper. In the old days this was called "good for you." These days its physical violence, abuse and criminal. As always, the truth is somewhere in between.

You spank kids on the bottom when they've lost their chance to correct their behavior when they are TOTALLY out of control: biting, spitting, kicking, punching - TOTALLY unacceptable behavior. My boy is an angel and HE has had those days; it happens to all kids. No way around it. And you cannot tolerate it. Not at all. If you do, I hope you like having a 40 pound dictator who acts disrespectfully to you at all times. I've seen kids - 9 and 10 years old - run up and kick their fathers - men 6'4" - right in the shin as hard as they can. Bad kids? No. Bad dad. One who didn't discipline the poor kid when he was 3 and 4. Now the kid is sad - SAD - when his dad gets angry while rubbing his sore shin.

So this dad had a bad day. And a worse moment. He eventually got divorced - a shock if his wife was Mrs. the-kids-can-do-whatever-they-want and he was not - very possible. It could somewhat resemble my situation with my ex - a woman who vied for the "stupidest parent alive" award. My son would come over to my place - at the age of 6 - and if he acted out, there were consequences. Not beatings mind you. But he was warned. ONCE. Next he was spanked. Harsh? When your child is sticking a metal object into the holes of a 120V electrical socket? I don't think so.

He would go home and an hour later I would get a call from his mother complaining he was running wild and that it must be because I was not disciplining him. I laughed hysterically and then tried to tell her it was more likely because my house has real rules and limits and consequences and hers doesn't (the absolute truth). She told me no, it was for her reason. I laughed some more. This continued until the poor woman eventually figured it out.... about 3 years later.

So Mr. Ball had enough. He went to court..... and burned himself alive. He knew he had been turned into a busted, used, worthless piggy bank - an empty one at that. So he was done. He had enough. He didn't want to go to jail - imagine that. He hadn't broken any laws besides not paying child support with money he didn't have. His ex-wife said he was "headstrong" and "prideful" (Either she's sugar coating the fact he was a monster or trying to spin the fact she divorced her children's father because he didn't like getting kicked in the shin. Also, please don't tell her those words were compliments to fathers 40 years ago). A close female friend said he was "a sweet, gentle person, just in a lot of pain." We'll never know who he really was, but my guess is, he was far from a monster and much closer to what his friend described than the article below captures.

Mr. Ball's story:

Thomas Ball, a troubled New England divorced father, took his own life in front of the door of the courthouse in Keene, New Hampshire on June 15. His suicide apparently was precipitated by Ball believing he would soon be jailed for being behind on a child support obligation he says he was unable to meet.

Ball left a lengthy narrative of his experiences with the court that detailed how he lost his children. It revealed a deeply troubled individual who nevertheless understood clearly the workings of family courts. Fathers and Families’ Board Chairman Ned Holstein, M.D. said:

The callous and disrespectful treatment of so many fathers by the family courts means that tragedies like this one are sure to befall the most fragile among them.

In his narrative, Thomas Ball’s pain and frustration are palpable. Anyone going through the loss of his children would understand his feelings. But that does not justify the violence Ball advocates in paragraphs 73-78 of his 15 page final statement. We sympathize with Ball’s ordeal in family court; we feel for his loss. We will never condone exhortations to violence.

Boston Globe reporter Mark Arsenault covers Ball’s suicide in his new piece Dad leaves clues to his desperation. Arsenault wrote:

On a mid-June afternoon, an unemployed history buff from Holden, Mass. announced cryptically on his Facebook page that “D-Day’’ had arrived.

“Time to climb down into the Higgins boat and take a bouncing ride to the beach,’’ wrote Thomas Ball, referring to the World War II amphibious landing craft.

Four hours later, the divorced father of three died outside a courthouse in downtown Keene after igniting himself in a gory self-immolation.

His death and final writings have resonated within the father’s rights movement, of which he was an active member, and revealed a stubborn man consumed by his court battles and, over time, sinking further into darkness.

Ball, 58, intended his fiery death on June 15 - planned and researched at least 10 days in advance - to be the ultimate profane gesture, according to his writings, interviews, and court and police documents. He was taking aim squarely at the courts he blamed for keeping him apart from his kids…

The courts and his former wife tell a different story. They paint a picture of a prideful and headstrong man who once lost his temper, slapped his 4-year-old daughter hard enough to draw blood, and then chose to remain estranged from his children rather than acknowledge he made a mistake and participate in court-ordered counseling.

Ball’s love for his children “made it impossible for him to accept that some of his actions were harmful to them,’’ his former wife, Karen, said Thursday in an e-mail. “He was unable to comply with the court’s requirement to meet with the children’s counselor because to do so would mean acknowledging that he had done something to warrant the requirement.’’

For years, Ball, acting as his own lawyer, filed one unsuccessful court motion after another seeking access to his children and to undo the requirement that he participate in counseling, which he rejected on principle….

Several divorced dads who knew Ball said that while they cannot condone what he did, they understand where his frustration came from.

“Tom’s story, other than its end, is pretty common,’’ said Ned Holstein, chairman of Fathers and Families, a court reform group Ball belonged to…

Trish Hamel of Milford, N.H., spoke to Ball frequently. They visited historic buildings and cemeteries together; she brought him to a blues concert several weeks before he died.

“He was a sweet, gentle person, just in a lot of pain,’’ she said. Most of the complaints in Ball’s last letter sound familiar from their many conversations, she said…

The Balls were due back in court this month for a hearing on a possible contempt finding against Tom, who had lost his job and had fallen several thousand dollars behind in child support. He wrote that he expected to be jailed…

The last words of his last letter were meant for his children:

“You are to stick together no matter how old you get or how far apart you live,’’ he wrote. “Because it is like Grandma always said. The only thing you really have in this world is your family.’’

Dad Convicted of Not Being Clairvoyant

You have to love the "litmus test" the feminazis have handed to the legislature/judicial systems - and which those systems, palms greased, swallowed, hook, line and sinker without so much as a whisper of doubt or question. You see, in legal terms, courts like imaginary "tests" that they can use as criteria on which to base their judgement. Its notoriously unsound and easy to manipulate. For example, in the 70s, when people wanted pornography banned, but didn't want to limit free speech, they came up with the L.A.P.S. test. So that any pornography was banned unless it provided some measure of literary, artistic, political, or social value. So at the end of every porn, they'd flash a quick ad that said "smoking is bad for you" to satisfy the LAPS test. What a joke. Finally the courts had no choice but to rule, guess what, in a FREE country, adults can have sex and film it and sell it, as horrible as that is. This is the cost of freedom - some disgusting things are legal. Don't buy them, don't watch them - its your choice and not Big Brother's. That's the point.

So in feminazi land, er, I mean, the U.S. Family Court system, we have a similar test for whether grown men are allowed to see the children that they half-created. The cool part is, no one has any idea this test exists or that they will be judged by it. Further, if they do something on behalf of their family (that's everyone, not just mom, gasp!) and its not included in the family court's "LAPS" test for custody, well then, it just doesn't count. (Laugh or cry now, I don't care which).

For instance, the court has a line item in their "test" which demands a father "support the pregnancy." (as if the pregnancy were in some bubble on the back lawn and not in their wife/girlfriend). What it means of course, is that dad is judged on supporting his wife/girlfriend during her pregnancy (after all they are the one who is pregnant). I have no idea what this means and the courts refuse to elaborate. So if you didn't bring your hormonal, pregnant wife her slippers, this could be construed as "not supporting the pregnancy." If you don't make enough money to buy maternity clothes, that could be construed as "not supporting the pregnancy." If you got a woman pregnant AND WERE NEVER TOLD SHE WAS PREGNANT, you could be accused and convicted of "not supporting the pregnancy!!!!" Oh yes! The person who is pregnant? THEY ARE NEVER MENTIONED IN THIS LITTLE "TEST." So their actions HAVE NO BEARING ON YOUR "supporting" or "not-supporting (whatever that is)" the pregnancy! How Clever, no?

Legal folks are not stupid. They went to law school. And they know DAMN WELL what this is - a law written so broadly that nearly anything can be considered as "unsupportive of the pregnancy." ITS A SETUP. With the test so broad, not coming home every night after work/school (or both) and immediately putting a pillow under your wife's back could be considered a failure to support "the pregnancy." The language for this test was deliberately made so broad. Laws are typically quite specific in order to weed out the slimy lawyers who would use them for their own spurious lawsuits, accusations or tricks that the law was never intended to apply to. With a law like this so broadly written, it allows for any bad behavior of the person who is pregnant; it is essentially a "one-way" statute - designed to judge only one of the two people who created this "pregnancy." Mom could come home every night drunk and smoking and belly-butt her husband ten times - its not legally relevant so far as custody is concerned, under this statute.


This is a setup. And when something is a setup - you're bound to fail. Pretty much regardless of what you do. Period.

Below is the story of Christian Diaz. He has a son, born out of wedlock. The mother put his son up for adoption and split, it seems. She did not notify her son's FATHER. You may recall in the previous article the "best interests of the child" were often cited as the reason for doing one thing over another. Well in this case, mom is out of the picture and we should be grateful - if she's unstable enough to ditch her own child with THE STATE (who cares nothing about you, private citizen, do not be fooled) and not even notify her baby's FATHER, then she's no asset to her child, clearly. Further she could be considered very immature and possibly unstable. Additionally, let's all wake the Hell up for a second and treat this woman like she's not stupid - she had sex. She knows what sex is. She's old enough. She knows how babies are made. She's old enough. She decided to engage - as the father did - in risky behavior and have unprotected sex - this made a baby. Then she decided she made a mistake, and abandoned her child - this was very irresponsible of her. Why isn't the court passing judgement on her? Two people did something risky, and only ONE is coming forward to claim responsibility and the court's angle is "he didn't do enough to support the pregnancy?!?!?!?!?!" Does that sound like a big, fat excuse for mom's behavior to you? It does to me.

The baby is now in this world and he's a problem. He needs food and care and a family. His father is quite young BUT he does have a part-time job and is 18 years old. He also clearly loves his son and bought clothes and furniture while his girlfriend was pregnant. He has a stable family with whom he lives and is clearly able to care for his son's basic needs with the help of his family. The best situation? No. BUT - this IS the baby's FATHER - his FLESH AND BLOOD. This baby is HIS son. Not yours, dear reader. Not mine. Not the foster family's and not the judge's. In a FREE nation, like it or not, this man has the right to attempt to raise his son. He's not a drug user, dealer, alcoholic, criminal, or Dr. Evil. He's a 18 year old man growing up a bit fast. Such is life. He has a son and he intends to care for him. THAT IS HIS RIGHT. LIKE IT OR NOT. PERIOD.

The "court," which I struggle not to call a "kangaroo court," whips out their litmus test and holds the boy to it. They point out "..he was not married to the mother and didn't do enough to support her during pregnancy." Uh, What the fuck are they talking about? He wasn't married because he was in no condition to marry, #1. Not to mention, he may have wanted to marry his girlfriend but she split town or left him first. She gave up her baby to foster parents and didn't tell him about it. (Um, that's kidnapping and possibly fraud where I come from). Intentionally giving away someone else's family and not notifying them of it? What if I sold my girlfriend's car and didn't tell her? That would be a crime. And that's just some stupid car. This is a man's SON. HIS FAMILY. His family was given away and he was told nothing. Kidnapping is A FELONY. So his ex is a criminal and he's being accused of not marrying her (not a crime, last I checked), and not "supporting her during her pregnancy." Um, the best thing he can do to support his new family is work, graduate, and get a better job. Baby comes soon and that means the family needs money. All his girlfriend had to do here was have the baby and not leave the guy making money to support said baby, but she couldn't even do that much. He's already working and will be graduating soon. What the Hell else does the court want? Further, should he not be informed at some point that he may lose his rights TO HIS OWN SON if he does not abide by some made-up judicial test? Testing someone's behavior without their knowledge of that test and then condemning them on the basis of the test results is ENTRAPMENT where I come from. Further, what EXACTLY was he supposed to do that he didn't? They act as though his ex ABANDONMENT of his child was his fault, but he did nothing abusive or neglectful.

And this: "When he bought clothes and furniture for his baby during the pregnancy, the court actually criticized him for not sending them to the foster parents."

What the fuck is that? Is the court joking? This is what grown adults in family court deal with, dear reader. Shit so bizarre you must think the judge is literally just making this shit up as she goes along.

Lastly, consider your mom ditched you at birth and your father tried to take you in with he and your grandparents and some stranger called a "judge," decided to give you to total strangers instead based upon the fact that your father didn't make your mother not abandon you even though he had no knowledge she would do that. What sound reasoning.

Brilliant family court. Just frickin' brillant.

JOSE GASPAR: 18-year-old continues fighting for custody of son adopted to another family
BY JOSE GASPAR, Californian contributing columnist | Sunday, Jun 12 2011 03:31 PM

Last Updated Sunday, Jun 12 2011 03:32 PM

Next Sunday millions of families will be celebrating Father's Day, acknowledging the man who raised, loved and cared for them. Fathers hold a special place in a child's life. Dads can become involved in their child's sports, while others enjoy teaching their kids new skills or just spending precious time together. One young father admits it will be a difficult day for him.

"It's going to suck," said 18-year-old Christian Diaz.

That's because Diaz will not have his one-year-old son with him. You may remember Diaz from an earlier column. His then-girlfriend placed their son in adoption, without Diaz' consent. Both were teenagers when she became pregnant.

After a lengthy court battle, a Kern County Superior Court Judge ruled in January in favor of placing the baby with the adoptive parents. Diaz has never been able to see or hold his son, whom he has named Liam. The decision was a hard one for Diaz and his mother, Guadalupe, to accept. And it's taken an emotional toll on the family.

"He's been stressed over the court's decision denying him his father's rights," said Guadalupe, who also lost in having her first grandson.

In summary, the court never found Diaz to be an unfit parent. He has no criminal record and no record of drug or alcohol abuse. He holds a part-time job and plays football and baseball for his high school team. The court did find that he was not married to the mother and didn't do enough to support her during pregnancy. When he bought clothes and furniture for his baby during the pregnancy, the court actually criticized him for not sending them to the foster parents. Why should he send them to the foster parents when he is expecting to raise his own child?

"I tell him, 'Mi hijo, have patience, don't do anything rash. God is watching over this and he will help you'," said Guadalupe Diaz, a working single mother who's been supportive of her son's efforts.

The family is not rich by any means and had to rely on a court-appointed attorney to represent them.

"I feel helpless not being able to do anything," said Guadalupe Diaz.

She said her son who recently graduated from North High School is saddened by the court's ruling but is not giving up.

He has gotten help along the way.

The National Coalition for Men is supporting Diaz. And a nonprofit group devoted to family court reform called Fathers and Families got wind of the story and obtained the services of Marc Angelucci, a Glendale family law attorney to help out during the appellate process at no cost to Diaz.

Angelucci is convinced the Kern County Court erred against Diaz in several ways.

First, the judge denied Diaz a fundamental constitutional right to parent his child, for no good reason except that he's an unmarried father and that the court felt he did not support the pregnancy enough, said Angelucci. Second, the evidence did not support the decision; instead it was based on gender-biased laws that violate the equal protection rights of fathers like Diaz, claims the attorney.

Young mothers have a presumed right to their child; so should young fathers like Diaz, said Angelucci.

The baby turned one on June 4 and remains with his adoptive parents described as a well-to-do middle-class couple.

"I've been told that if I agree to consent to this adoption, I will get pictures of my son sent to me periodically," said Diaz. "There's no way I will ever agree to give up my son."

The issues involved in this case raise a host of questions over the legal complexities regarding an unmarried father's rights to gain custody of his child. In this case, the mother made the decision to give up her child for adoption most likely thinking it was in the child's best interest. But what is difficult to understand is how a father, who is willing to raise his child can legally be denied his own blood.

Last year around this time, President Barack Obama reminded deadbeat dads about their emotional and financial responsibility to their children. Kern County is a good example of that.

Now we have a case where an 18-year-old father who, well, wants to be a dad under all expectations but is rebuffed by a system many feel is biased toward single men.

In the meantime, Diaz still keeps intact the baby's room he set aside at his house, and it remains filled with a crib, clothing and everything a baby needs, in anticipation his dream may one day be fulfilled.

"I still don't have my son, so I don't have any plans for Father's Day," said Diaz.

Jose Gaspar is a reporter for "29 Eyewitness News, " and contributing columnist. These are the opinions of Gaspar, not necessarily The Californian's.

Thursday, July 14, 2011


The government does not make jobs. They are not Big Brother. They are not your mommy and daddy. They need to get out of the way. But now they're too deeply involved to get out. So in trying to make things better, they will make them FAR, FAR WORSE.

Women Earn Less: Not Due to a Conspiracy

5 Reasons Women (Should) Earn Less
Margaret Bogenrief, Beautifully Complex

Fact: “Women in financial activities earn only 71% of what men earned: women made $732 a week, compared to $1,039 a week for men.”

Fact: “Men (are) twice as likely as women to be at the CEO/senior executive level.”

Fact: “A recent study of 2,000 of the world’s top performing companies revealed that only 29 of them (1.5 percent) have female CEOs. Of the Fortune Global 500, 2.6 percent have female CEOs .”

We all know the broad-strokes, if not the specifics: women make less. They’re less “powerful.” They do not, in most women’s opinions anyway, get a “fair shake” in the finance/business world.

In turn, a cottage industry has emerged making girls feel better about underperforming. Initiatives like “2020 Women on Boards” are gaining momentum. “Girl-in-Finance-Blogs” whine “I’m a pretty girl and no one takes me seriously!” while women cling to books like “Suits: A Woman on Wall Street,” a tome outlining one girl’s horrifying journey through the annals of banking…well, her 2 years of it, anyway. Until she quit, wrote a book about it, and now…travels the country, speaking about her harrowing 2 years spent in banking.

Here’s the one fact lost amongst the crying sisterhood: in this humble finance girl’s opinion, women DESERVE to be treated less seriously at work, in the boardroom, and on Wall Street. It’s their fault. Most behave, work, and operate against their own best interests.

Here are the 5 reasons why/how:

1) Opt-Out, Cop Out: This is the typical “Oh, I’ve put in a few years in finance, but don’t really want to put in any more ‘hard work.’ But I keep b1tching about how unfair the world is!’

Say there’s a girl – let’s call her JC – who fancies herself a finance mogul (or at least would be – if not for men!). Her resume reads impressively: A few years as an Analyst at one bulge-bracket, a Summer Associate at another (in addition to a few other “financey” jobs); she’s a Top-Tier MBA who now runs a web-start-up. Also, she never shuts the hell up about how much she’s doing to empower girls who should be, again, if not for men!, ruling the (business) world.

But what a girl like JC doesn’t (or refuses to) recognize, is that once you leave the finance/business game – you do your fashion, media, or web start-up or enter the often-less-demanding-corporate-ranks - you don’t matter anymore. No one cares (particularly men whose faces you're no longer in) about what you have to say (other than fellow women who want to believe it’s men – not their choices – that’s keeping them from the top ranks of power). Work – or, more importantly, success – does.

An average Opt-Out, Cop Out, like the author of “Suits: A Woman on Wall Street,” spends much more time concentrating on how difficult her career was in finance than she ever did actually becoming good at it.

2) Gender Ghettoization: “We girls need to stick together!” is seemingly the motto of every ridiculous woman’s group, gathering, and cupcake reception. “Screw boys – girl power!” is all but written in candy-colored icing consumed at these events, along with champagne and self-entitled self-righteousness.

My counter-point: yes, being in any minority is often extremely lonely. In my experience, it’s natural to want a connection with someone “like you.” This only works, however, to a point: by cornering in romantically-lit champagne bars, girls in finance/business are ghettoizing themselves.

To wit: if women make up such a low percentage of those in management ranks, doesn’t it make sense that instead of networking exclusively with each other, women should instead reach out to the power base in their fields, not other girls “oppressed” by the almighty-male? My anatomy has never excluded me from an industry-networking event. In my humble opinion, women would do better to network with those who matter, not those who look like they do. By gaining power from the inside, we will more effectively pave the way for those who come after.

3) “Men are why I don't make as much Ken Griffin!”: Here’s the thing, girls. I love that so many of you run web-start-ups, work at major fashion/CPG firms, and rock the marketing, human resources, and business development (and Associate – before most opt out) areas of trading and investment shops. These are not, however, profit centers.

On average, those who manage, invest, etc. money, make more than those who don’t. So, dear fellow women, while it’s great that you’re “focused on the sales part of sales and trading,” you ARE going to earn less than those who work in other, more central, roles (who are, coincidentally, mostly men). Same goes for quitting banks, funds, etc., for the corporate – or, even worse, non-profit - track. The attrition rate for women is atrocious, and is reflected in income, snr. management, etc. stats. Girls – if you’re comfortable quitting, supporting men in marketing, bus dev, etc. roles, or starting a “feel-good” company (i.e. motivational speaking, social-networking, etc.), your income/power stats will reflect that. These roles are accessories to those who make the money. And are simply worth less.

4) “But boys are so mean!”: Without naming names here – and giving press to those who don’t deserve it - I’m referencing here a terrifyingly mundane Private Equity Blog (msg me if you’re curious), written by one of the few girls in a PE shop on Wall Street.

PEB’s femme-de-finance spends her days gossiping about the mean boys of finance! how she is one of the few girls at her PE firm, and how she hopes the mean boys! who mistake her for an admin (which is a statistically-easy mistake to make) don’t drive her out finance.

In short, this girl sounds like a teenager upset ta boy tricked her into sleeping with her, then never called her back. PEB’s thesis about changing the finance world involves anonymously complaining and gossiping, then quitting PE (most likely to write a book about her tough few years in finance)? Look, I’m with her - it’s frustrating when a doltish-dude treats you like his assistant. But quitting isn’t going to change anything. Work harder, better, and smarter, and he’ll be working for you one day.

PS: should anyone who works or contracts for me be caught writing a blog like PEB’s, I’d be furious. Like, fire-you-so-fast-you-won’t-remember-your-name-furious.

5) And finally…Laziness, aka When you can't do, marry!: This is purely observational, but mesenses many girls go into finance because, well, graduating from an Ivy-League, getting immediately married, and putting-on-the-just-got-married-15 (while eschewing work) just isn’t done now-a-days.

So instead, many of my female “peers” go to college, work on Wall Street for a few years, do the MBA-thing (many treating grad school as their personal dating pools), then, after getting married, slowly and almost imperceptively stop working. Do these girls quit entirely? No. But they certainly take on less stressful, important, and central roles, retreating instead in the corporate, marketing, and HR ranks.

Nothing’s necessarily wrong with this, but these shifts from the career track to the mommy/social one is INEVITABLY reflected in income and power stats. Let’s be honest: most of these women were never REALLY into working in finance. Otherwise, why do so many leave so quickly (in my merely anecdotal experience, anyway)? To that end, let’s check in with PEB’s author in a few years and see where she’s at…I'm guessing the life-script will have written itself (and she's married to a guy in private equity.)

So there we have it. Sure, women, on average, earn less and have less power in the finance/corporate world. But it’s hardly the gender-war most girls would have you believe. Yeah, finance is tough – and I’ll concede it IS tougher as a woman – but so’s anything worth changing. Let’s hope at least a few girls read this, start focusing on taking over the world, and start working to do so. And hopefully become so competent in the process, we all stop crying like little girls and start performing like competent finance professionals.

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