"Bar" Group Going After Local Blog
The "re-elect" versus "retain" controversy appears to work out in Judge Jay Hurley's favor.
Speaking of courthouse controversies, have you heard about a local blog that's getting heat?
Seems the Broward County Bar Association (a voluntary group with no official connection to the actual bar) has decided it wants to go after JAABlog, the courthouse blog administered by local lawyer Bill Gelin. It started after Sentinel columnist Mike Mayo got an earful from a manic Chief Judge Victor Tobin, who was allegedly upset by anti-Semitic nonsense that appeared in the comments section of that blog.
If you want to know how Llorente, who is apparently an insurance-industry lawyer (high calling, that), really feels about JAABlog, read the following email Llorente sent Gelin last week that I obtained over the weekend:----------------------------------------
I am responding to your voicemail left at my office yesterday. Professional courtesy and common courtesy dictate that I return the call. However, I choose this medium for that return since the topic of your message is your jaablog. Please understand I do not and will not comment or discuss any matters whatsoever with gossip writers, gossip columnist or shock writers/reporters. In my opinion your writings and publications that I have observed, fit into one ormore of those categories. My self imposed restriction does not extend to legitimate journalist, reporters or investigative reporters. Accordingly, some of the information you seek or topics you wish to discuss may be found in the Dailey [sic] Business Review, if reported accurately.
Of course I recognize that even this brief communiqué and its intended purpose is subject to being used and abused. For that reason I am referring you to The Rules of The Florida Bar, Rule 4-8: Maintaining the Integrity of the Profession, in its entirety.
Carlos M. Llorente, President
Broward County Bar Association
"Maintaining the Integrity of the Profession," he says. My question: What integrity? From what I've seen, the legal profession has less integrity than the oldest profession. Sure there are honest lawyers out there (somewhere), but the profession simply reeks. From Rothstein Rosenfeldt Adler to Ana Gardiner to Dale Cohen to Tobin himself, it all reeks.
Can't have that truth known, so the vehicles that expose the truth are vilified as gossip. And Gelin? Well, to use an old Pulp slogan, don't shoot the piano player. I'm sure Tobin and Llorente usually love America's freedoms, so long as they don't inconvenience them and their perverse sense of entitlement. Then the First Amendment be damned.
"In Broward County everthing is backward," Gelin said to me. "The judicial administration seems to protect judges who abuse the people's trust. It's always left to people like Howard Finkelstein or people who use the blog anonymously to point out the problems here. It seems to be only media exposure that brings these folks into line and everybody knows that Broward has much more than its fair share of officials thumbing their nose at people who elected them."