October 7, 2006

Stephen Jones: Threat Or Menace?

Hatched by Dafydd

The Big Lizards Let the Cat Out of the Barn Award for this week goes to attorney Stephen Jones, of Jones, Otjen [Otjen?], Davis, Nixon [!], and Juhl in Enid, Oklahoma, who sent a nasty lawyer letter to some blogger named William "Wild Bill" Kerr, who runs Passionate America.

Evidently, Passionate America was the blog that broke the story that ABC accidentally identified one of the pages in the Mark Foley scandal as one Jordan Edmund. Edmund lawyered up, and now Stephen "Wild Steve" Jones is threatening Wild Bill with a gazillion-dollar lawsuit if'n he doesn't pull his post identifying Mr. Edmund.


I just Googled on "jordan.edmund foley"; the search returned better than 40,000 hits.

Now, I'm sure some of those are overlaps: some website mentions Jordan Edmund in two different posts, it pops up twice on Google. So let's cut it by four: let's say 10,000 distinct sites that mention Jordan Edmund in the context of the Mark Foley scandal. Including the Washington Post, the Washington Times, CNN, and more news sites than you can shake a leg at, if that's your idea of good time.

10,000. Maybe more. Some of them with even deeper pockets than Stephen "Barn Door Locker" Jones.

Counselor Jones, have you considered investing in a bulk mail permit?

Hat tip to Patterico, masquerading as one of his more obvious sock puppets, Justin Levine. (No, really, has anybody ever seen them together? And if you have, for God's sake, don't tell Patterica!)

Hatched by Dafydd on this day, October 7, 2006, at the time of 6:24 AM

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The following hissed in response by: RBMN

The only unique feature of Wild Bill's post about Jordan Edmund (at Passionate America) is that it begins with the instant messages, in image form provided by ABC, and methodically works backward to connect all the various dots that lead back to Jordan Edmund, very convincingly. I suspect that Stephen Jones intends to...unconnect...some of those dots. I don't see how. I think this smells of fear that Mr. Edmund may be facing some criminal charges as well.

The above hissed in response by: RBMN [TypeKey Profile Page] at October 7, 2006 8:10 AM

The following hissed in response by: Kenneth E. Lamb

I sent this to Mr. Kerr; feel free to publish it:

I read the email from the attorney.

His client is now what is known under the law as a "semi-public" personality, if in fact not a "public personality," given the scope of the story, the breadth of its dissemination, and the fact that his client is employed as a political operative in an active campaign for the governorship.

Unless the subject's attorney can demonstrate that you published "with a reckless disregard for the truth" in a "malicious manner," he can go pound sand. If the IM scammer thinks this is the best legal representation he can get, he's cooked.

I thought the most foolish part of his email had to do with premising you must have someone's "authorization" to run his client's name or photograph. The guy is a campaign staffer, and this is legitimate news affecting the campaign with which he is associated.

He appears publicly in connection with the campaign as a matter of his employment; does this attorney think news organizations around the world have to either get his client's permission to have his image in a photo, or else brush stroke the guy out if they don't? What a maroon.

Well, I guess you have to give the attorney 2 points for trying to bluff you into submission. While he is suggesting you seek an attorney familiar with civil and criminal liability, he may want to contact an attorney himself to stop having a "fool for a client" when considering exactly what you will be able to subpoena and depose if a civil suit is filed - multiplied infinitely if a criminal investigation began. There are no Fifth Amendment claims in a civil suit. Ask OJ Simpson.

To sum up what I would tell the attorney threatening me with civil and criminal liability: "Oh Br'er Fox - please don't throw me into that briar patch . . ."

All the remarks I've made are my personal opinion, and in no way should be constructed to reflect the opinion of the publications for which I write. Feel free to publish this if it will get the attorney to stop making a national fool of himself.

Kenneth E. Lamb

Program Host for
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Blogs authored by Kenneth E. Lamb / blogger profile listed at:

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bio: http://www.kennethelamb.com/bio.htm

The above hissed in response by: Kenneth E. Lamb [TypeKey Profile Page] at October 7, 2006 9:35 AM

The following hissed in response by: Patterico

Coincidentally, Justin and I will be together tonight. My wife, mom, he, and I are all going to the Magic Castle.

The above hissed in response by: Patterico [TypeKey Profile Page] at October 7, 2006 11:02 AM

The following hissed in response by: Dafydd ab Hugh


My wife, mom, he, and I are all going to the Magic Castle.

Patterica is a sock puppet, too. You put on a very convincing show, Mr. Patterico; but I could tell that the "Patterica" you brought to Lowenbrau Keller was an android: your mistake was in making her too perfect; no actual human being has such etherial beauty and ageless grace.

Bah, it's a classic error of all evil overlords.

Bring me back a hat with a rabbit inside. I'd love to try to make hasenpfeffer again...


The above hissed in response by: Dafydd ab Hugh [TypeKey Profile Page] at October 7, 2006 3:51 PM

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