wonkette goes to court

Wonkette Operative Is Legal Hero At Wall Street Occupation

Here’s a quick report from the Occupy Wall Street camp before your correspondent takes a shower break in Brooklyn: Veteran Wonkette commenter and former executive director of the National Lawyer’s Guild Riverside68 is fighting the cops, in court! We met with him at the “legal table” in Zuccotti Park, to discuss what he and his lawyer pals are plotting. (Proving he was truly a veteran Wonkette commenter, he even gave us a bottle of tasty Wolaver’s Pale Ale Vermont beer!)

Anyway, here’s what’s up:

“We’re filing a summary judgment motion to whether or not the NYPD can close off a block and arrest every single person on that block. And that’s what they did in 2004 [at the GOP convention here], and that’s what they’re doing now, and we’re saying that’s unconstitutional — and our part of that motion will be filed on Monday.”

But what is a “summary judgment motion”? We asked a friend whose dad represented people in the Watts Demonstrations. Here is what he reported back, on Gchat:

It means you walk in with overwhelming evidence so that the judge says, ‘Oh, there’s no question, we don’t need to go to a trial.’”

There is some specific technical standard for establishing that there is no question: Summary judgement means everyone agrees to the facts. There’s no controversy and the court should grant the relief sought. The protesters are saying, ‘it’s clear. here are the facts: they arrested everybody…’ Compare with the People’s Park arrests in Berkeley in the early 70s. They said it was an illegal gathering and then started arresting people. That doesn’t mean the arrests are lawful…

Go Riverside68!

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About the author

Riley is an "internet blogger." He has written for such internet websites as True/Slant and the terrible Brangelina gossip emporium "The Huffington Post." Riley lives in northeast DC, near H Street. Maybe you do too and want to hang out?

View all articles by Riley Waggaman

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50 comments

      1. MissusBarry

        I had my first first-comment today. Not my best material, for sure, but I admit it was still kinda exciting.

  1. PalinzADummy

    Since I am already in srs luv with Riverside, and also too the FIRST commenter on this thread, I now consider myself full of WIN.

  2. MissusBarry

    This is just Wonktastic. Fingers and toes crossed for that judgement. Perhaps Riverside could get some sort champagne-on-balcony taunting injunction, too?

  3. Callyson

    whether or not the NYPD can close off a block and arrest every single person on that block
    Why doesn't the NYPD cut to the chase, and just arrest everyone not working on or cashing in on Wall Street?
    Or better yet, why don't the cops just take a good look at what is happening to their pension funds?
    What was that line from the classic film "Goodfellas"? I think it was "Why don't you go down to Wall Street and arrest some real criminals!"

    1. Tommmcattt

      Yes, I think of them among my favorite freaks, which, if you know me, is my highest term of approbation.

  4. Goonemeritus

    Three cheers for the brave Wonketteers fighting back against the man.
    I have to know is he the Skoal Bandit?

  5. Mumbletypeg

    Wow. Sorta surreal to cogitate that this is good news for – - for once.
    I haven't felt this elated to read about a mobilized effort since those Democratic senators boarded a bus out of wacky Wisconsin in a plea of sanity.

  6. BarackMyWorld

    THIS IS CLASS WARFAER!!!! HOW WOULD UR LIFE BE ANY BETTR IF THEIR WEREN'T NO RICH POEPLE?!?!? ECONMY IS LIBRULS FAULT!!!!

  7. V572 Moon!

    Cops arrest everybody. Seems fair to me. It's not as if free speech or the right to peaceably assemble or seek redress from the government are guaranteed in the Constitution or anything.

    And good for you, Riley, for going to the root of all evil and calling it by name.

  8. Spurning Beer

    Summary judgment, inna rub-a-dub style:

    Wall Street robbed American home-buyers.
    Wall Street then robbed American taxpayers.
    Wall Street then bought American legislators, yet again.
    Wall Street "earned" billions in bonuses for their brilliant services in valuing imaginary assets inaccurately.
    Wall Street then demanded that investment income continue to be taxed more lightly than earnings.
    Wall Street pretends to be populated with "job creators," when in truth they want to minimize payrolls at any cost in human suffering.
    Wall Street then called in the local constabularies to shut up the protesters.

    Wall Street needs to be brought down a peg, and taxed properly. Miserable self-righteous sociopathic assholes.

    1. Biel_ze_Bubba

      Only one peg? These crooks are twenty pegs above the middle class schmos that they parasititze.

      I think the country needs a thorough de-worming.

  9. GhostBuggy

    This is inspiring…we, the Wonkette commentators, should band together and head down to NYC and really support them in massive wa- oh look, there's some rum.

    1. iburl

      Well, drinking rum and loudly and mindlessly repeating every thought that pops out of some random celebrity's mind could go together nicely.

  10. finallyhappy

    I wish I was an important Wonketteer- let me know if you are visiting DC – and I'll tell you if I am working with tourists that day- and where.

  11. Negropolis

    Wouldn't it be nice, if this grows to the point of where we can capture the feeling in a bottle, export it, and form a formidable opposition to the obstructionist tea party? Wouldn't it be nice if we could send them running for the proverbial hills so that Congress we could flip the Congress back like a muthafuck? God, I hope this really catches fire.

  12. riverside68

    The part that got lost in the translation is that I am working on the arrests from 2004 republican national convention.

    sigh, it is sad that only after 7 years have we reached partial summary judgement motions on mass arrests. BUT IF WE WIN, keep your fingers crossed, then mass arrests are not allowed (i.e. you get to collect damages when they do it).

    If we loose, forgetaboutit, WHOSE STREETS-COPS STREETS!

    But for now, TAKE TO THE STREETS, CAUSE WE DON'T KNOW WHO OWNS THE STREETS YET!

    (And the legal team loves all the publicity, particularly around pepperspray and toni balony, cause both are soooooo 2004, so get out there and get filmed getting sprayed!)

  13. Pragmatist2

    Oh, dear. When we start congratulating ourselves, there is a risk of stepping on the slippery slope to Huiffingtonpostism. No, that is not what Woody Guthrie died from. It is a slower and subtler disease in which the patient acquires money through a good divorce, starts a web site which she populates primarily with stolen content and the idiotic ramblings of her D List friends, and then requires that every third article reference her first name in the headline in a self-congratulatory way.

    1. tcaalaw

      Fortunately, Ken Layne doesn't have a funny accent and he didn't marry a closeted gay man, so we should be safe. And by "safe," I mean, "Not the HuffPo."

  14. paris biltong

    Sounds like a dragnet case. Used to be that drug convictions would be thrown own when the cops arrested everyone in an area and then sorted out the ones holding. No more so, I understand. They round up every suspicious-looking character and then figure out (or manufacture) whatever evidence they may need. No fun anymore.

  15. BornInATrailer

    Riley, will you PLEASE call Breitbart? Tubby, sobbing bitch keeps drunk dialing me to talk about you.

    1. GOPCrusher

      My father always advocated that the American working class should stage a general strike the day after Labor Day, but the idea never gained traction during the 60's and 70's.
      I'm afraid that after 30 + years of the Raygun Revolutionary War Between Labor and Management, the masses that do have jobs are either beaten down to the point where they are afraid to lose their jobs, or are the other end of the spectrum and believe that the American Worker should be thankful for the meager scraps thrown to them by the Corporate Overlords.
      Only the people of those Socialist European countries have the balls to throw a general strike anymore. Hell, at least the workers in India have the sack to kill the CEO when they are put out of work.

  16. Lazy Media

    What exactly do the protesters want? It sounds like I'd be fer 'em, but if they're just vaguely against capitalism like those anti-G-8 dipshits, I'll continue to not care. If they have an actual agenda (tax corporations and rich people more, spend the money on jobs programs), then OK. But the Paultard with the "End the Fed" sign is not impressing me much.

  17. chicken_thief

    I don't know, folks. We might be rushing things a bit. I did get a small raise last month, so maybe after 30 yrs or so of "trickle down" it's actually starting to work. Should we wait another 30 yrs or so just to be sure?

  18. Allmighty_Manos

    The First Amendment is pretty clear that protesting is limited to yelling about health care, guns, the gold standard and the fed. And the gays amd browns. The rest of you commies should move back to Vermont.

Comments are closed.