Enemies of the truth

For the avoidance of doubt, there is no sarcasm in this blog post. Feminists don’t have a sense of humour.

The legal profession has been in a proper tizz this week (it’s all been a bit dicey, fnar). Foolishly, we thought that Parliamentary sovereignty meant that it was up to our elected representatives in Parliament to make big decisions, but what do we know? It seems it means that the government should do whatever the loudest and most vile newspaper says the people want it to do. Because we all know that tabloid headlines are a simple reflection of the will of the people, right? So it’s practically democracy in its purest form to do what the headlines scream or insinuate we should (get rid of the judges, especially the gay ones, grab our pitchforks and run out into the street on bonfire night looking for something to blow up).

But I’m not daft enough to go down that particular rabbit hole in this blog post. After all, we have the noble office of the Lord Chancellor to fulfill the important role of defending Her Madge’s Judges and my efforts would be wholly superfluous… #tumbleweed

Anyway, enough of that. I thought, since this is a family law blog and all, I would deal with the Daily Mail’s pre-match pull out setting out the form of the 11 Judges of the Supreme Court in advance of the Brexit appeal in December, since there are (surprisingly, you may thing) some bits of family law bits in it (As a side note, I’m thinking I might patent Match Attax or Top Trumps for judges. They could have points for lifespan, number of times appealed, level of court and special powers).

Here is the article in question :

Radical feminist who is a long-running critic of marriage, the judge happy for the law to be seen as an ass and ‘the cleverest man in Britain’: The Supreme Court judges who’ll rule on Brexit

It comes as no suprise that they direct most of their bile towards the only female judge of the lot, Baroness Hale. After all, she is an evil feminazi, which practically disqualifies her from being human, let alone from holding office. It will, I am sure, inevitably be almost ALL Baroness Hale’s fault if the Supreme Court make the “wrong” decision on the Brexit case, nevermind her being outnumbered 10 to 1 and often in the dissenting minority. It will all be a part of her secret evil masterplan for world domination by fembots.

So, let us begin :

A feminist, Baroness Hale is a long-standing critic of marriage although she has been married to her second husband for nearly 25 years.

I can only think that her marriage of some 25 years is part of her masterplan, perhaps she is attempting to subvert marriage from the inside? Poor old, long suffering Mr Hale. If only he knew a good divorce lawyer (I expect Mr Pink Tape would sympathise, but I don’t let him read the internet as he might get ideas or get distracted from his chores).

Next :

Lady Hale first came to widespread notice in the 1980s when she was appointed to the Law Commission. She drew up a law making it possible for a woman to get a court order throwing a man out of his own home if she accused him of violence. In 2014, a High Court judge condemned the way the law had been used to evict a father of six from his home after 20 years of marriage.

Gosh, she really does sound evil doesn’t she? Let’s unpick this. The Law Commission, that’s the body that makes recommendations to Government and to Parliament about law reform. Recommendations that only become law if the Government thinks they are a good idea, and if Parliament agrees the law is a good idea. Damn that Parliamentary sovereignty. This is all supposed to be Hale’s fault (incidentally, she must have an evil supervillain name – Hale-fire peut etre?).

The law that is being referred to, by the way, is the Family Law Act 1996, specifically Part IV. This is the law about non-molestation and occupation orders. I guess Parliament can’t have thought the law was all that bad, since they haven’t got around to repealing it, and it’s used in courts up and down the country every day. In fact it is the law that women and men use to protect themselves against violent and abusive partners (sneakily giving you the impression that it is entirely gender neutral). It may not surprise you to know that the law is a bit more nuanced than saying you can chuck your ex out if you allege domestic violence (although non-molestation injunctions are made more readily, occupation orders are rarely made until the accusation has been tested, and are never made unless there is some evidence of violence).

The 2014 case that is referred to is probably R v R [2014] EWFC 48, decided in December of that year, in which a judge dealt with an appeal in respect of a non-molestation and occupation order. The criticism in that judgment is of the application of Hale-fire’s law, and various procedural failings. What the case doesn’t say (and wouldn’t, because the job of a judge is to apply the law not to say what it ought to be) is that there is anything wrong with the Family Law Act, just that it wasn’t used properly in this case. The Daily Mail probably aren’t referring to this other case from 2014, because that is an example of the act being misapplied so as to cause injustice to a woman : JM v CZ [2014] EWHC 1125 (Fam) and that might make it look almost as if there is no evil feminazi plot at all, and as if it is simply as case of “sometimes the courts don’t apply the law quite right, but usually the other judges put it right on appeal”.

Such is her supervillainous legal genius though, that she has also somehow manipulated Parliament into passing yet another secretly evil benign sounding law, presumably through some sort of feminazi hypnotism (I think that falls under the Inherent Jurisdiction).

Lady Hale was also heavily involved in the preparation of the 1989 Children Act, held by opponents to have deprived parents of much of their say over their children’s lives.

One imagines that the Baroness has a large pond in the manicured garden of her mansion, in which the fricking koi carp have fricking lasers on their heads. And poor old sad faced Mr Hale is tasked with mowing up and down and up and down every day to keep it just so.

The 1989 Children Act indeed is held by opponents to have deprived parents of much say over their children’s lives. Those would generally be the opponents who the Judge has decided really shouldn’t have much say over their children’s lives, because they are so toxic. Because the Children Act 1989 tells the judges to make orders that are in the best interests of the child, rather than (say) in the interests of their dangerous parents. It’s quite hard to see how this fits in with Baroness Greenback’s (sorry, Hale – wrong supervillain) plan but no doubt she’s playing a long game. So far its 27 years and Parliament still hasn’t worked out it’s accidentally passed an evil law, and taken steps to repeal it. Useless stupid Parliamentary sovereignty!

Her dissenting judgment in Re B [2013] UKSC 33 (see pa 143 onwards), in which she was set out why she thought the other four judges (who thought the parents should have been deprived of a say over their child’s life) were wrong – was clearly a cunning double bluff to put us off the scent [h/t to James Turner QC who suggested the addition of the point set out in the preceding sentence shortly after publication]. And…

She has been a prominent critic of the male domination of the judiciary and the wearing of wigs in court. She has joined other Supreme Court judges in suggesting a special court should be set up to decide whether individuals should be given help to commit suicide.

Yep. Sounds evil to me. And what’s with the trivia about wigs and, you know, male domination of the judiciary? I don’t know what she’s complaining about. I mean, they’ve got a woman now, so problem solved.

Lord Mance is also a little bit evil, for disagreeing with the press including the people’s representative – The Daily Mail. He’s also done some Europe-ey stuff. However his hobbies include “tennis, languages and music” so perhaps he’s alright after all (no sinister sounding fencing).

The rest of the squad are just white haired white blokes whose descriptions are basically a splice of the Supreme Court Who’s Who page and Wikipedia (That’s what I call quality journalism).

Apart from trivial omission of the fact that Baroness Hale is Deputy President of the Supreme Court, which I am sure was entirely unintentional, the Daily Mail have gone to a lot of effort on their description of Baroness Hale. I wonder why they gave the only woman in the Supreme Court such very special treatment compared to her ten male colleagues? Perhaps they are piquing the interests of the masses ready for their Christmas expose of her evil masterplan. I expect the Lord Chancellor* is in on it too – probably explains #wheresliztruss.

*she’s female you know

23 thoughts on “Enemies of the truth

  1. You just couldn’t make it up. Well, actually, they did!

  2. What makes the Mail article the nastier still, is that they reserve all their bile for Lady Hale (with a side-swipe at Lord Mance for his temerity in criticising the press over the PJS case). All other law lords – yes, all lords – get press release type biog details. On any version of legal history Lady Hale (formerly Brenda Hoggett) will be seen as a beacon of lawyer’s concern for children (as witness the towering Children Act which you mention). Another reason why our ‘Lord Chancellor’ should stand up for judges and forget the politics…

  3. Pure deflection! Why have you not mentioned the primary point of the article?

    That Lord Justice Thomas was the Chair of the Working Group on the European Law Institute (ELI) and other EU integration projects?

    That Diana Wallis the President of the ELI is on video shortly after the Referendum, demanding the Commons overturn the Referendum?

    If you google Diana Wallis and Lord Thomas together you will see their links.

    Why didn’t Lord Justice Thomas absent himself from this case, bearing in mind that most fair minded observers would see him as having a bias towards the EU?

    Why have you and some other Lawyers skirted around the primary topic of the press’s outrage?

    • Um, because as I explained, I wasn’t writing about the High Court Judgment, but about an article which deals solely with the Supreme Court judges – not Lord Justice Thomas (he is mentioned once, to identify him as one of the judges who made the decision that the Supreme Court is going to deal with).
      Or, to put it more simply for you – I didn’t write an article about Lord Justice Thomas, so I didn’t mention him.
      If you want to read about Lord Justice Thomas I suggest you go and find an article which is about Lord Justice Thomas, or which is about the High Court case he ruled on.

  4. Far easier for you to ridicule the daft comments in the media, than address the real worries about lack of impartiality that were the main thrust of the media concerns.

    Lawyer blogs are deflecting from this primary concern of these tabloid papers and their readers, rather than deal with the real issue.

    It is easy to mock the nonsense in the tabloids (open goal) but why don’t these Lawyer blogs address the real concerns of many people in the country that most of these High Court and Supreme Judges are likely Europhiles.

    But at least they could try and provide a veneer of impartiality by not having a Lord Justice who is so obviously a fan of the EU, at the lead.

    The Judiciary could do themselves irrevocable harm if they are seen to be in cahoots with those who lost in the Referendum or even if they are simply used by these same people.

    People understand that Judges have political and personal biases, which is why the US President gets to choose his/her Judges.

    Only the gullible and naive would believe that Judges personal and political prejudices do not have an affect on their judgments, even if they would never admit it.

    Perhaps having 3 LJs who went to Cambridge on the same case, doesn’t help either.

    • Marmite,
      You may have noticed that I am a family lawyer writing a family law blog. Whilst your comments are interesting I think you are addressing them to the wrong person. I write from choice. As far as I am aware I have no obligation, professional, moral or otherwise to write on a topic of your choosing. If you want something covered do what I did – start a blog and write it yourself.
      If I wanted a debate about whether or not the High Court judges were biased (which I note the Government did not advance) I’d have written a blog post about it. I didn’t. I don’t.

      • I am sorry to have bothered you.

        I thought we might have a discussion about something more substantial than the inane.

        My mistake.

        • You’re on the wrong blog mate, sorry (although, for the record, I don’t personally think the ingrained and intentional sexism of the Daily Mail or its attacks on the judiciary for characteristics such as sexuality and gender to be either trivial or inane).

  5. But it must be a relief for Nicola Sturgeon to know that the Mail’s view of ‘the most dangerous woman in Britain’ has returned to Lady Hale.

  6. Why blame the Daily Hate Mail for being the Daily Hate Mail? You don’t blame a skunk because it stinks!

  7. The nasty surprise round the corner for The Mail is that after the imminent round of Supreme Court retirements by 2018 the three senior UK Supreme Court judges will be the deadly Lady Hale and 2 Jocks – Reed and Hodge. That is, if the UKSC hasn’t been abolished by referendum.

  8. “non-molestation injunctions are made more readily, occupation orders are rarely made until the accusation has been tested, and are never made unless there is some evidence of violence).”
    I know of a case where the husband and father of two was given a two-hour occupation order at 6pm on a Friday evening in January on the basis of a false accusation of violence with no evidence whatsoever. He already had a non mol order against her, but she and her lawyer went to a different court to obtain a non mol against him, then went back to their local court, cited that he had been arrested for assault, and got the occupation order. The arrest had been made on her false accusation; the police noted that she was drunk, had no marks of violence, he denied the accusation, NFA. She was the violent one, as the children later told the social workers. My point is that it is relatively easy for a vicious spouse to misuse the law to remove the other parent, retain the children, the house, and therefore the money. It can take years, and a fortune, to right such wrongs. Nothing to do with Baroness Hale, or her legislation, but everything to do with the way the law is applied by the Judiciary.

  9. I would have thought that when parliament decided that there would be a referendum there was a clear implication that parliament would accept the outcome;otherwise why hold it at all?
    I favoured “remain” but like Theresa May I think that parliament and government have to accept the verdict of the referendum they voted to hold.After all nobody raised this constitutional point when Blair took us into the Iraq war without a vote did they?
    After all not a single lawyer or politician seriously raised this constitutional point before the result was known.Yes parliament is supreme but if it chooses to renege on promises clearly made beforehand to trigger article 50 immediately if Brexit won that would be equivalent of telling 17 million voters that the referendum was a waste of their time and that the whole performance was just a joke.But who is laughing……….?

    • I don’t think it’s right that no lawyer raised these issues before the result. I saw many saying it was only advisory. It is shocking that the government failed to make this sufficiently clear, but the legal profession were certainly saying so. It just wasn’t heard in the frenzy.

      • Far worse than failing to make it ‘absolutely clear’, the government actually said precisely the opposite – they wrote to every household and said explicitly that the government would enact the result of the referendum. Of course, they only said that to try and scare people into voting remain – not as an honest prediction of future behaviour, but it’s certainly muddied the water.

  10. Bravo Mrs Pink Tape!

  11. A superb evisceration, thank you 🙂

  12. I think I am bewildered that in reality a lot of people have voted for what they thought the referendum meant, some of them may well be right, but nobody actually knows what they voted for. Brexit means Brexit is empty rhetoric given the government still don’t have a plan. The news today is that Trump is backing down on one of his election pledges re Obamacare, and keeping bits of it, we may find exiting the EU is similarly diluted. Perhaps the aftermath of both the referendum and USA election won’t realise my fears.

  13. Richard Williams

    There is no Mr Hale, which is her maiden name. [edited] As to why the Children Act 1989 has never been repealed, there are few political votes in family law. It was obsolescent upon enactment, and it is the UK statute with the greatest tension with the ECHR. It won’t be repealed unless a calamity befalls it. I understand that a petition is going to the ECHR next year, with a wording specifically to jeopardise the Family Division of the High Court’s status as a high value divorce centre (i.e. a wording specifically inviting ECHR states to refuse as a matter of public policy to enforce all English Family jurisdiction judgments until the Family Courts have got on top of the common law “implacably hostile” wives problem in England). Keep an eye out for it…

  14. […] Lucy Reed on her Pink Tape blog, Enemies of the Truth  […]

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