J.A.I.L. News Journal
Los Angeles, California September 23, 2004
If ya ain't havin'
ya ain't doin' it
We only need one good watch dog,
and I have mine.
His name is J.A.I.L.
He is still a puppy, but he is growing
and learning and developing.
And like all puppies,
he loves to learn. I'm
feeding him and training him and loving him.
He is already waiting to sink his
teeth into someone. And when he becomes mature, he is going to be the
nastiest Junk Yard Dog
you ever saw. Everyone will
think more than twice before
they trespass upon my junk yard
'cause they know
I will turn J.A.I.L. loose upon
them in a heartbeat.
Shucks Bob, my "friendly
legislators" already know about
my puppy and he scares the hell out of them.
They are afraid J.A.I.L. will bite
-- Ron Loeber
Two Saturdays ago I was given a FREE
Ticket to the local annual Democratic chicken barbecue. What the hell... a
free meal is a free meal, so I went. After all... its just a bunch of my
neighbors... just the average Americans. I was enjoying visiting with them
when the politicians started arriving. You know how they are.
"Heh... I'm so-and-so and running in the Democratic Primary for
such-and-such", and pressing flesh.
But there was one who stood out from the
rest. He was dressed a little better then everyone else... casual, but
nice. He wasn't wearing a K-Mart shirt... that's for sure. He
wasn't running for office either, but he sure was pressing flesh.
Eventually he got to me. The conversation went pretty much like
"Hello, I'm Judge Cardona. I live over in
Westerlo" he said as he extended his hand.
[Westerlo is a neighboring town in very rural Albany County. The area is generally referred to a "the Hilltowns''. Its actually the boondocks. Cardona is the Presiding Justice of NYS Supreme Court Appellate Division Third Department in Albany. That's the Court that released me from jail. It is also the court that had to approve the censure of Teresi. It was reported that Teresi was the first Supreme Court Judge in 20 years to be censured. Don't know how true that is, but it was a big deal in Albany Politics.]
"Judge, its nice to meet
you. I'm Ron Loeber" I replied as I shook his hand.
"Ron Loeber... Ron Loeber. Lets see... I know
you. Did we meet at..." and he took a couple of
"Judge, What's your first
"Well Tony, its really nice to meet you. If I'm ever in your court it will be Judge Cardona. But up here its just Tony and Ron." And he took a couple more guesses....
"No Tony. You know me because I'm the guy responsible for the censure of Joe Teresi. I'm the guy Teresi threw in Jail." Well... you would have thought I hit him in the face with a pail of ice water. He wanted to terminate the conversation. But I wouldn't let him go. I continued with, "ya know Tony, when I walk into Traffic Court I expect to be screwed. But when I walked into NYS Supreme Court I actually thought I was walking into a legitimate operation. I would have never guessed it was Organized Crime of the first degree." He just wanted to get out of there. And then, over his objections, I gave him the nutshell of what Teresi did to me. Please understand that I still tend to get a bit emotional when I talk about what happened. Told him again how nice it was to make his acquaintance and wished him a great day at the picnic and let him go.
But that wasn't the end. A little while later the speech-making started. After Tony's speech, he was talking with a group of 4 big-wig politicians. Well... they thought they were important. Don't they all? That was an opportunity I couldn't pass up. And by now I had cooled off a bit and got hold of my composure. I walked right up to the group, interrupted them, and said, "heh Tony. Can I bend your ear for a few minutes before you go"?
"Uh... uum... yes. But not right now",
"I understand. Just come and get
me when you are ready. I'll be hanging out here for the afternoon enjoying
I'll be damned. He did. About a
half hour later he came to me and suggested a distant picnic table where we
could talk privately.
"What did you want to ask me Ron"?
"Tony, its not so much that I want to
ask you anything as it is I want to tell you some things. I'd like to tell
all of your judges some things. First... please understand, from my
perspective, that under the form of government in which we live the Office of
Judge SHOULD BE the most respected position in our society... above that of
Kings, Presidents, and Emperors.
You know the law. I don't have to
tell you the due process involved in Civil Contempt and the opportunity to
appeal a judge's decision. That potlicker Teresi didn't follow due
process. He had 2 men with guns, clubs and badges waiting in the courtroom
for me and told them to take me away. They put me in a cell in the
basement of the courthouse, then strip searched me, then shackled me in leg
irons and chains. Then... two hours later, they came back and asked me if
I was ready to sign the deed now. The Gulag Archipelago is alive and well
Since the censure Teresi, and
because of my affiliation with an organization advocating for judicial
accountability, I know what's going on publicly in the judiciary from one end of
the state to the other. I know about the scandals, the bribery, the
corruption. I know what judges are in prison. I get the
newspaper reports E-mailed to me from all over the state. I know what's
happening in NYC, Middletown, all the way to Buffalo.
Not only that, but people from one end
of the state to the other contact me and tell me their stories of woe and ask
for my help and advice. I'm not licensed to give advice. But with
what happened to me, and with everything I have learned, I advise them
to invest in toilet paper and ammunition.
You got some serious problems, Tony. I don't have the answers, but even if I did... I don't have the power to impose the solution. But guys like you do have that power. [I just didn't think this was the time or place to explain J.A.I.L. My purpose here was to plant the seed for future dialogue.] But not you, nor Chief Judge Judith Kaye, nor anyone else is going to be able to solve the problems in the judiciary until you understand that courts are not just a way for lawyers to make money. The courts are for the people too.
Until guys like me can walk into your
courts with full confidence that our rights will be recognized, declared, and
protected, and that our papers will be read for their substance instead of form,
there is no reason for us to even go into your courts. We would all be
better off settling our disputes in the manner of the Old West. At least
we would feel we got some measure of justice."
"Ron, I cannot comment on that", he said.
"Tony, I know you can't. But if
Chief Judge Kaye is serious about cleaning up the mess, she has to know how the
ordinary guy thinks and feels about you guys if she is gonna accomplish anything
worthwhile. The lawyers sure aren't gonna give it to you
"I hear you, Ron. I understand what you are
saying", he said.
"Good. Tony, I walked into Teresi's courtroom alone because I had three
lawyers tell me they wouldn't touch my case with a ten foot pole because of the
players involved. Last year a lawyer was doing some work for my
wife. But he was talking to me because I had the technical knowledge of
the problem he was trying to solve for her.
After a half an hour he looked up
at me and said, 'I know who you are. You are the guy Teresi threw
in jail. That's what this mess is all about that I'm working on. If
you had come to me for help back then I would have turned you down. If I
had taken on Teresi I would have received nothing but adverse decisions from him
and all his buddies. I'd be spending all my time in the Appellate
Division. My clients can't afford it and I'd be run out of the law
business'. Tony, that is one hell of an indictment of
"I'm listening to you, Ron. I hear what you are
saying." And he repeated it looking me right in
"Tony, I can't ask for more. On second thought I can. The day Judge Spain ordered my release from jail pending the hearing of the Article 78 Proceeding I wanted to write him a thank you letter. But I was told it would be most inappropriate."
"Yes, it would have been... and still is", he said.
"Tony, because of the manner in which I
was brought up, I owe Judge Spain a 'thanks'. I know he was just doing his
job. But I still owe him a thanks. But not a month goes by that
I don't think of him. You probably have coffee with him once in a
while. If there is any way you could express my sentiments to him for what
he did for me, I would consider it a personal favor."
"I can do that for you, Ron", he said with a smile. We shook hands and
I don't know what will come of if... if
anything at all. But he is the Presiding Justice of the appellate
court that covers my area. There is no question he is a man of
influence. He may even be the biggest crook of the bunch for all I
know. But that Saturday he got a candid look at me... his neighbor... the
real me... not just some dry legal papers he may have read three years
ago. I'm hopeful I will be able to "bump into him" again. I'm
hopeful that Saturday was the start of something. I'm hopeful that one day
I may be able to present J.A.I.L. to him under favorable
As a side note to this, two candidates
for Family Court Judge introduced themselves to me. One had the
endorsement of the political machine for the primary. The other
didn't. When I told them my name, bells rang. Yeah... while
they were searching their memory I told them who I was. They
remembered! I told them both I hope they would get elected, and if they
did we would be keeping them in our sights. Told them that if they got
elected I expected the first thing they would do is sign an Oath of Office and
file it with the County Clerk. If they didn't, June Maxam was coming after
them and I would give her any help I could. They didn't quite know how to
take that, but they seemed to know what I was talking about.
If ya ain't havin' fun, ya ain't doin' it
"..it does not require a majority to prevail, but rather an irate, tireless
minority keen to set brush fires in people's minds.." - Samuel Adams
"There are a thousand hacking at the branches of evil to one who
striking at the
-- Henry David Thoreau