What You Can Do To Take Back Our Courts

Here are my suggestions to start cleaning up our county courts and following those suggestions are suggestions in a new article in Chicago Mag by Whet Moser-If you read the Clean up the courts.WordPress.com Blog, and Mosers following article you should share my outrage:
> Let’s get an outside assessment of the efficiencies of our courts-let’s get rid of the ‘waste’ and hire more teachers and /or police officers or take the wasted money and lower our taxes. Let’s no longer leave it to the ‘fox in the hen-house’ with a $300 million dollar annual budget!-Think about that every time you buy anything in Cook County or look at your tax bills (Judges get 90% pay for retirement)!
>Let’s form a citizens’ board that is empowered to really look into judicial abuse, with the power to do something about it-not make legal judgments, rather, to make moral ones to give ‘we the people’ somewhere to turn to and be protected; that wasn’t concocted by the very people we need the protection from-and one that doesn’t take money to get justice.( The last ‘Bad’ Judge taken off the bench was 14 years and 6,500 complaints ago)!!!! YOU just reelected them ALL in the very last election INCLUDING a Judge that has been deemed LEGALLY INSANE!
> Be informed, research these Judges in the newspapers and the Illinois Bar Association website BEFORE you vote (You can’t name 3 Cook County judges right now) It’s shameful
Under our system, one bad and unjust Judge is worse than probably 50 good ones, for we are a nation of laws and fairness and justice and the last people who should ever not uphold those rights and expectations are the very Judges we have entrusted to do so people died for those rights!
So simply start by dusting off your apathy, let your State Representatives know, start cleaning up these courts, or at the very least, start holding them all accountable.
Let’s, ‘we the people’, impose our own and badly needed ‘term limits. THERE HAS NEVER BEEN A COOK COUNTY JUDGE NOT RETAINED!
If we do not get ‘our retain none button’-let’s simply take the extra 5 minutes, while voting, to clean up the Cook County Courts ourselves and replace them all DO NOT RETAIN any Judge, one by one-(remember, they are counting on your laziness and apathy not to vote them out) until the good Judges stop looking the other way and do something about the bad ones-we cannot afford the bad ones in our judicial system-not even one!
Remember, they do not all come up for retention at the same time, so in reality, we may just be NOT retaining maybe 50 Judges out of 400-but what it will do is force them to be 100% more efficient immediately, send a very clear message to the next ‘batch’ of Judges coming up for retention and shift the power back to where it belongs; ‘we the people’
I also believe we will immediately find we probably didn’t need the majority of them after all. (Detroit rid themselves of 43 Judges and saved MILLIONS)
If you just can’t bring yourself to vote all of these nameless Judges off the bench, again, will you, at the very least, read what the newspapers and the Illinois Bar Association has to say about these Judges and go to the polls, informed.
Ironically, either way, it may not matter, for here’s another little power they gave their ‘dark cloaked club’ that you know nothing about-you can vote them off the bench and the Illinois Supreme court can immediately reinstate them-AND THEY ARE! (see Tribune12.23.12-Front page)
Did you read that last line?
If that doesn’t demonstrate how they have hijacked our courts, our money, our trust, for their personal gains-then you are hopeless.
So in a sense, your vote may not really count after all-so let’s force it to count; a mass vote removal from the bench would probably draw too much attention to their putting them all back-and they don’t like attention focused on their ‘feathered nests’.
They are making and costing us millions upon millions!
We also will finally send a clear message; these are our courts, we elect you, you work for us and if you destroy that trust and honor we bestowed upon you, you need to go and the ‘Free’ ride is over-‘we the people ‘are taking back our courts.
They should stand and thank us, when we walk into a court room, not the other way around.


How to Fix Cook County’s Judge Problem 

OBJECTION!: In Illinois, it’s easy for bad judges to stick around for life. Time for a change

By Whet Moser

You’ve heard of Cynthia Brim, right? The 54-year-old Chicagoan made headlines last March when she was charged with misdemeanor battery for pushing one sheriff’s deputy and throwing her keys at another (a court-appointed psychiatrist declared her “legally insane” at the time). She has also racked up 18 years of near-universal negative ratings for performance at her job: judge for the Circuit Court of Cook County. Yet last November, nearly 64 percent of voters chose to retain her.

In fact, county residents voted to retain every single one of the 57 candidates on November’s circuit court ballot—including four judges deemed “not qualified” by most bar associations. This happens in nearly every judicial election around here: Since 1990, the retention rate has been 100 percent.

You already know part of the reason. Voting in judicial retention elections is like cramming for a test in a class you always skip: cribbing notes from someone who was there (in this case, the voting recommendations of the bar associations—all 11 of them) and trying to remember the answers when it comes time to pencil in all those arrows. “Staying informed is like a full-time job,” says Matthew Streb, a political science professor at Northern Illinois University.

But the bigger problem is that in Illinois, unlike in the majority of other states where judges get reelected, you don’t get to choose between the current judges—who have mostly been picked by the powerful ward and township committeemen in Cook County—and new candidates for the job. When jurists’ six-year terms are up, you simply get asked whether you want to retain them or fire them. Because most people don’t bother to vote in retention elections—or they just mark “yes” on a straight party line—even bad judges get electoral mulligans.

The irony of all this is that judicial retention elections—instituted by Illinois in 1964—were meant to combat the power of the political machine. Originally, they were the idea of Albert Kales, a law professor at Northwestern University, who observed how dominant parties controlled judicial appointments through partisan elections. Kales proposed that the governor select judges based on merit, using recommendations from a board of lawyers and nonlawyers, after which voters would decide whether to retain them. The process was meant to be a compromise, even though it was a sop to politics in its own way.

Isn’t there a better approach?

Yes—and it’s been happening in Colorado, says Elizabeth Monkus, a project director at the nonprofit Judicial Performance Commission of Cook County. In that state, an appointed committee (a mix of lawyers and nonlawyers) interviews judges, analyzes court data, and surveys everyone from litigants to social service workers. The result: detailed evaluations—published in a guide mailed to all Colorado voters—that compare judges not only to a universal standard but to other judges in the system. In the 11 election cycles since the program was created in 1988, ten judges have been voted out. “That system works really well,” says Monkus.

In Arizona, which adopted a similar procedure in 1992, the system has improved the judiciary by scaring bad judges away. “Rather than face the public humiliation of such a rating on the ballot and in the voter publicity pamphlet, these affected judges chose to retire,” a study of Arizona’s system found.

Could that happen here too? Chicagoans don’t scare easily. But it’s worth a try


2 thoughts on “What You Can Do To Take Back Our Courts

  1. Pingback: What You Can Do To Take Back Our Courts | cleanupthecourts

  2. Recently, my male relative was in front of
    “Judge” Reynolds to cease support since the minor, his son who is estranged for over a decade is 18yrs old. My male relative had a formidable attorney. The X- the mother of the male adult had a D- level atty. Well, my relative was in the witness stand answering questions from HIS OWN ATTORNEY and the opposing atty was looking at papers.
    Judge Reynolds started ACTING AS OPOSING COUNSEL! Judge Reynolds was looking at the opposite counsel to object to the my relative’s atty’s questions, but he didn’t. As far as we were concerned, that’s on the opposite counsel to be on his game. But, OH NO!!!
    Judge Reynolds, started OBJECTING, herself! And, OBJECTING, saying, “Foundation??? Foundation??” Judge Reynolds acted as opposing counsel and cross examined the witness.
    That is so wrong. It is the Judge’s position to remain unbiased.
    It is not Judge Reynolds’ job to help out sub-par attys that are representing women.
    Maybe, Judge Reynolds, if you listened to testimony, you would hear that this 18yr old adult is on drugs and flunking school, but you will not let any one speak except a female/mother and/or her attorney. -?- Nice. Isn’t that called a “dictatorship?

    PS: I am curious why you do not post all the responses that I am sure you have received about Judge Reynolds. She is breaking the law on so many levels. A Judge can not pick a side and start helping out an attorney against a witness just because he is a man and has a penis.
    I mean if there were multiple postings from different private individuals, you might have more support from the public and media. Like an Angie’s list.
    (If people post anything with personal information/names/court numbers, you could black that out.).

    I am really surprised there is not more people posting complaints for others to view about Judge Reynolds.

    (Just added some below-Thanks for writing)

    This judge is a farce. She goes by personal relationships and who has the most money. Attorneys are afraid to go against her because if they do she treats them unfairly in other cases. She should be removed from the bench immediately. She shows her bias and the fact that she can’t remain impartial when making her rulings.
    View Detail Send e-mail to this poster 4/26/2013 9:38:33 AM

    Comment #: IL668
    After watching her court room numerous times, it is clear that she has a personal issues and does not dish out equally.
    View Detail Send e-mail to this poster 4/20/2013 10:14:21 AM

    Comment #: IL548
    Rating:Not Rated
    This Judge acts as attorney and Judge for women. More then three attorneys, told me they refuse to even practice in her court room. “One told me the ‘joke’ is that any attorney who takes a male client before this Judge, should be held for ‘legal malpractice’ So, “ as a woman, they don’t need a lawyer if they get this Judge”
    View Detail Send e-mail to this poster 9/16/2012 10:21:03 AM

    Comment #: IL526
    This Judge is a disgrace to the Bench. The fact that she continues to handle family law matters when she is blatantly anti-male/father is shameful. She is so horrible she cannot even enforce her own Orders.
    View Detail Send e-mail to this poster 8/14/2012 3:04:26 PM

    Dear clean up the cook county courts,

    Thank you for your candid and accurate revelation of Judge Reynolds of Skokie IL.

    I am a family member of multiple “good attorneys,” for generations. My one family member is a government attorney, others are private attorneys, one is a Judge in IL, an in-law was an International Speaker and attorney from a down town firm. My grandfather was an attorney from Harvard and Univ. of Chicago. I was raised around attorneys. I went to college to be an attorney, and then switched to medicine.

    My husband had a case in front of, unfortunately, Judge Reynolds regarding his eXwife and an MSA that was so ambitious that it predicated two investigative complaints with the ARDC. (Details certainly can/will be provided later.).

    The eX, a woman, boldly trotted up to the bench upon commencement of the trial and waived a $10,000.00 college bond that was in her name and my husband’s, and giggled and said to Judge Reynolds, “I need him to sign this!” My husband’s attorney, stated, “this has never been brought up in negotiations.. I have never seen this… I need to talk to my client….”

    Judge Reynolds stated, “I don’t care. Make him sign it.”

    (WOW… $10,000.00 GONE and the MSA stated that my husband has to pay half college expenses; yet, he received a big zero credit for his signature for a bond that has been around for almost two decades.).

    In addition, my husband is also in the Medical field. He also suffers from an Autism disorder. He becomes unglued under serious and unforeseen stress. His attorney divulged his disorder in open court and asked for his Fiancial Advisor to testify in place of him, regarding the monies that were fraudulently taken from him by his eXwife. Judge Reynolds refused testimony! Judge Reynolds inititated an unrelentless interrogations of the finances that he had during his previous marriage upon my husband!. He had no clue to the answers. (His eX handled ALL the financial affairs; by doing so, the eX was able to unilaterally move hundreds of thousands of dollars from his accounts into her own private account in WI during and after the divorce. My husband had no clue. It was only in 2012, upon disclosure, it was all revealed.).

    Judge Reynolds focused on him, like a Hawk, and was interrogating him, directly, over, and over, and over, and over…. Her eyes were wild. She was enjoying it! My husband stood there, like an “idiot;” and she made him look like such.

    – She abused a man with Autitism.

    I sat in the court room, and watched Judge Reynolds, as she wailed, and demeaned, and degrogated, and literally, made fun of an Autistic man. My husband stood there and stared out into space. She had belittled him to nothing.

    This Judge Reynolds is not human.

    Our current attorney is “on fire” regarding yesterday’s pleadings. He had another client, a gay man (now) that had a a child with a woman, in front of Judge Reynolds this week, and he told us that, she “destroyed him during a trial,” and he “felt sick to his stomach what this Judge is doing to men.”

    We are scheduled to see our attorney tomorrow. I am a Registered Nurse and my other family member has some friends in politics. I was horrified at Judge Reynolds behavior and I KNOW there was a reason that I found your comments. Please, call. I assure you, we are prepared to file complaints, notify politicians, and the media– whatever it takes.

    This Judge Reynolds is a monster. She is a sadist. She enjoys being the bearer of pain to harmless people.

    Thankyou. I look forward to hearing from you,

    Dear Cleanupthecourts,

    I appeared before her multiple times over the last couple of years, and endured her contradicting her own orders from previous rulings and basically holding me in contempt for following what she herself had ordered. Every time I appear before her it’s like a guessing game as to what she will find fault with and how she will demonstrate her dislike of me & I go into her courtroom feeling like I’m looking over my shoulder for what she might have up her sleeve, as opposed to simply being able to follow her orders and expect fairness. I have endured her cutting me off, chastising me publicly, and threatening me with discipline when I attempted to make a reasonable defense for my actions. I’m sure none of this surprises you.

    And what the hell is up with those long, unexplained recesses that make everything take three times as long as it should? Or waiting the better part of an hour to get a handwritten chickenscratch order that’s barely legible?

    In a way, it’s a bizarre sort of comfort to me to hear that it’s not “all about me,” but that she truly is an inconsistent wack job, as I suspected all along. Since I can’t afford a $350/hour attorney, I’m going to take my chances with her on the 19th as a pro se filer for past due support. Wish me luck!

    (These are just some of the comments-see a common thread? AND SHE WAS APPOINTED NOT ELECTED BY ‘WE THE PEOPLE’ You MUST start by getting rid of the Chief Justice in the next election -SPREAD THE WORD VOTE THEM ALL OUT)

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