TO: Mosey Rathbun files multi-million dollar lawsuit against CoS for harassment

Discussion in 'News and Current Events' started by rickybobby, Aug 21, 2013.

  1. Quentinanon Member

    Everything Marty says and does makes sense in Marty's world.

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  2. When you spend nearly twenty years demonstrating the best journalistic traditions of fairness, integrity and scruples while remaining focussed on the facts, you cannot help but gain the trust of your readers.

    That is how I know that Marty's attempts to smear are empty and devoid of any merit whatsoever.

    I will revise my opinion should Tony Ortega ever appear on video in his wife-beater, the green volumes as his backdrop, to debrief us.
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  3. I have been wondering the whole day what comes next. Another lawsuit maybe: Mosey Rathbun sues Tony Ortega and the Underground Bunker for defamation. Legal counsel will be provided by some CoS proxy attorney, provided by Gary Soter.
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  4. There was a settlement. Period.

    As I and others have quoted above, Marty says there is no settlement. If words have any meaning, then there was a settlement regardless of what Marty says.

    Marty is, at best, engaging in semantics to the level of redefining words.

    As also noted above, in her Request to Lift Stay, Monique states:

    * * * * * BEGIN QUOTATION * * * * *

    my husband and I have effectively achieved the primary purpose that the lawsuit was originally intended to serve by our own independent efforts.

    * * * * * END QUOTATION * * * * *


    The only conceivable way in which Monique and her husband, Marty, could have "effectively achieved the primary purpose that the lawsuit was originally intended to serve" -- i.e., the termination of their harassment by the Church of Scientology and its agents -- is by some sort of contract, agreement, understanding, etc., -- i.e. a settlement -- with the Church of Scientology. There is simply no other way to do it.

    Think about it. Party A has harassed Party B. Absent an injunction, court order, judgment for damages creating deterrence, or other legal intervention, what is to stop Party A from harassing Party B in the future? Only by some sort of contract, agreement, understanding, settlement, etc.

    Marty might think that in this context there is some meaningful distinction (or for an old-hand Scientologist, "differentiation") between a contact, agreement, understanding, etc., on the one hand, and a "settlement," on the other hand, but he would be wrong.

    Note, I am not in this comment saying Marty and/or Monique received any money or other compensation. I am simply saying that in order to have "have effectively achieved the primary purpose that the lawsuit was originally intended to serve" they must have reached some sort of agreement with the Church of Scientology -- in other words, a settlement.

    Finally, the statement that Monique and Marty "effectively achieved the primary purpose that the lawsuit was originally intended to serve by [their] own independent efforts" is risible and, indeed, would be insulting to the intelligence of an orangutan. Without Ray Jeffrey they would have been screwed. The efforts of Ray Jeffrey were the only reason they "effectively achieved the primary purpose that the lawsuit was originally intended to serve" (assuming they did so). And in return they threw Ray Jeffrey under the bus.
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  5. BLiP Member

    I saw that. On Disqus, blocking someone does not result in their comments being deleted.
  6. fishypants Moderator


    Given that the judge had just decided that the issue would go to a full hearing - with all the dirty-laundry-airing that would entail - it would make sense for Scientology to make a "stop the lawsuit and we'll stop harassing you" offer at that point. Given that a 'settlement' usually means a financial settlement, M&M could still say truly (if a bit disingenuously perhaps) that there hadn't been a settlement.

    At that point, given that M&M's lawyers had already done a load of work on (my understanding is) a contingency fee basis, M&M would need to find a reason to fire them other than "we've reached an agreement with Scientology", otherwise M&M would (I imagine) be liable for their side's legal fees so far.

    The problem with that scenario would be that if I were in M&M's shoes then I straight-up wouldn't be willing to believe that Scientology would stand by an agreement not to harass them in the future.

    Even if such an agreement were legally enforceable, I'd expect Scientology to try saying "t's not us doing it, it's just some Scientologists acting independently" (i.e. the 'squirrel busters' gambit they tried before).


    Ah well. I'm sure it'll all come out in the end.


    There is that.

    The only criticisms of TO that I'd want to make are that:

    - IMO he's given Marty Rathbun a relatively easy ride sometimes in the past, in terms of believing what he says without independent corroboration, and in terms of not challenging him about his own Scientology past (although I suppose one can't be doing that all the time); so quite the opposite of what Marty claims; and that

    - his handsomeness is assuming devilish proportions.

  7. The Wrong Guy Member

    Scientology confirms it won’t oppose Monique Rathbun’s plans to ditch lawsuit

    By Tony Ortega, The Underground Bunker, May 4, 2016

    According to the Texas Supreme Court’s online docket, the Church of Scientology has confirmed that it is unopposed to the motion filed last week by Monique Rathbun, who has asked for a stay in her case so she can dismiss her lawsuit outright.

    Meanwhile, at his blog, Monique’s husband, Mark “Marty” Rathbun, announced Monday that “there was no settlement” to end the case.

    Our Texas legal expert, an attorney who has handled appellate matters there and goes by the handle “TexasLawyer,” had told us that it appeared to him the case was ending without a settlement, even though many of our readers have assumed that the Rathbuns must have worked out some kind of financial agreement with Scientology after news broke in February that Monique had fired her entire legal team in the three-year lawsuit.

    Continued here:
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  8. Random guy Member

    If there's money involved, the Rathbuns are in a catch 22. If the cult decides to break any such agreement, going to court over it means admitting to have kept Jeffrey & Co in the dark about the settlement. Damned if you do and damned if you don't.
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  9. anonysamvines Member

    I agree with what you say here obviously as I pointed this out out when highlighting the same words upthread.

    One thing being skimmed over is that "Monique" is attributing those highlighted words to Ray J et al.
    That has MASSIVE implications.
    "She" isn't just saying that her and Marty achieved their primary purpose independently.

    "She" is stating that not only did they have contact with Co$ And the SB's outside their own lawyers - ALL 3 parties (Rathbun's, Co$ and SB's) breaking the temporary injunction - but that Ray J et al were informed of it after the fact and applauded it ( said they have effectively achieved). Tho I doubt the SB's were involved in any negotiation lol they have to be included for this purpose as a seperate legal party.

    No law team worth their salt would ever do this. There are so many reasons why they say and enforce all contact must be done through the legal teams - the extra billing being the least of them.

    Co$ and their lolyers have also primed a massive footbullet just awaiting the trigger.

    If ever Ray J et al do sue the Rathbuns - either for their legally enforceable cut of any monetary settlement (once discovered - Ray J et al have no time limit in finding any such and recovering their share, that has already been lodged with the court after their dismissal) or for the statements made in this Application for dismissal of suit - then it opens Co$, $lappy AND their lolyers up to a whole world of hurt.

    Monique and Marty would both have to testify and validate exactly when and how they achieved their aims. How they never received one dime either.
    Even/Especially Marty would want SOMETHING traceable back to Co$ - no matter how slight or at arm's length it may appear. He knows $lappy too well. He knows he needs something to enforce Co$ to keep their word. I would also presume he has other methods of verifying what happened too. Not all of Marty's paranoia is unwarranted - the majority is very warranted.
    $lappy and co know this too. A nice Mexican stand off is in place.

    A Mexican standoff that depends on Ray J et al NOT ever suing Monique ....

    Neither Co$ or Marty can control that. They are just counting on them not to.

    They could have, by doing as was done in the Debbie Cook and PI's case - by negotiating a settlement and ending the court case properly. Ray J et al's share of the settlement effectively silences them and stops them using any knowledge gained purely in this case in any future cases.

    Cutting them out just merely makes it personal not an accepted downside of the profession. Doing so with such blatant smears makes it doubly so.

    It may have been satisfying to $lappy to have spat in Ray J et al's eyes but it could (and probably will) come back and bite his arse. Ray J et al may never wish to negotiate a settlement in court should they ever sue. They may wish to fight it in court all the way since it is so personal. A mere cash settlement to go away is unlikely to be acceptable.

    If ever it comes to court then Co$'s law team is also fucked good and proper too.
    No way was any negotiation done without their input.
    No way would $lappy not try to throw them under the bus in his attempt to weasel out of it - see Yingling on 20/20 state that the lawyers hired the PI's to follow Ron of their own volition.
    Client/attorney priveledge goes out of the window when fraud/complicity in criminal act comes in.

    It may take a long time but when it does POPCORN

    As I also said before upthread Co$ is still screwing Marty.
    They are also screwing themselves.

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  10. anonysamvines Member

    No doubt that tactic would be tried.
    And tha Marty possibly thinks it may be effective lol.


    To even consider that Ray J et al would not delve into EXACTLY how Marty and Monique achieved their aims, what they achieved and WHAT EXACTLY they mean by it is naive. Semantics and how they are applicable in law are a lawyer's stock in trade. No judge would let that fly without his own questions either.
    Ray J is no fool.

    Using your version of the Semantics get out clause You are also either agreeing with or missing the point that Moniques is stating that Ray J et al TOLD HER that "they [M&M] had independently achieved the primary reason for the case.

    She didn't actually state their independent achievement as a seperate statement of what they had independently achieved as a reason for dropping the case.
    It was said as a reason for firing her legal team BEFORE dropping the case. She was saying that Ray J et al were trying to get out of the case
    She stated (paraphrased from memory but close) she fired her team for two reasons - that as a part of her legal team's retreat strategy they made it abundantly clear to her that a) It wasn't financially viable. And b) that she and her husband had independently achieved the primary reason for the case

    Which does naturally implicate both her and Marty irretrievably as having negotiated with Co$ and the SB's behind her legal team's back and before firing them. But she hasn't explicitly said she has done so. She wouldn't succeed in court by trying to claim otherwise.

    As for the SB's being free to resume ops. And Co$ saying they are not responsible for what a third party does independently
    No, nope and no. Not against the Rathbun's at least.
    They were a named party in this case. Part of Co$'s defence already was that they were not responsible for the SB's, that the SB's acted independently of their own free will (just like everyone who disconnects).
    No " achievement of the primary reason for the case" could possibly in any circumstances not have included the permanent withdrawal of them. Either by direct negotiation with them (lol) or by Co$ guaranteeing it.
    Monique would never have settled, with or without any money, with or without Ray J et al for anything less than complete and utter withdrawal of the SB's
  11. anonysamvines Member

    To accurately quote a very famous response to someone else's denial in a British Court

    "Well (giggle) he would, wouldn't he?"
  12. fishypants Moderator

    You're right, I was missing that point.

    How perplexing.

    I didn't mean that the same people who made up the SBs in the past might come back and harass M and M some more, I meant some hypothetical future people could harass the Rathbuns, perhaps under the pretext of a protected-speech type of thing like a documentary, while claiming not to be connected to Scientology at all. I.e. what if Scientology tried the same trick again that it tried with the SBs, but made the facade more convincing next time.

    My more general point was that if I were in the shoes of the Rathbuns I wouldn't be prepared to believe that Scientology wouldn't find a way to weasel out of, or just ignore, any commitment it might make now not to harass them in the future.

    After all, by Scientology's lights the Rathbuns are 'Suppressive Persons' so under Scientology ethics can and should be "lied to, tricked, stolen from, destroyed utterly" by Scientologists.
    • Like Like x 3
  13. The Wrong Guy Member

    When TexasLawyer speaks

    By Tony Ortega, The Underground Bunker, May 5, 2016

    Last night, our Texas legal expert continued to dispense some wisdom about a legal situation that has left so many of us mystified, Monique Rathbun’s decision to fire her attorneys and then later dismiss her three-year lawsuit without a financial settlement. In case you missed these exchanges, we thought you might find them illuminating:

    deathtoallpoliticians: This pattern of behavior indicates to me that there is a secret settlement in place. Why do you think such an outcome is impossible?

    TexasLawyer: Not impossible. Just implausible in light of all available evidence. It’s also not impossible that the ghost of LRH returned to Earth, gave Marty his eternal blessing, and asked him to immediately fire the legal team and wait several months before getting around to asking to dismiss the lawsuit. Not impossible.

    Continued here:
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  14. JohnnyRUClear Member

    The popcorn is strong with these two.
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  15. fishypants Moderator

    So he thinks it's not a secret settlement and it's not ligitation fatigue.

    Any news on what he thinks it might be?
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  16. anonysamvines Member

    Absolutely a new improved non $cilon version could be started up and used.

    And any intermediaries used to hire and pay for it would have to be at such an arms length to make 7proxies look like riding bareback.
    Because for sure, some guys would be investigating funding and plans to show such documentary.
    Not forgetting that any wogs involved may actually have morals and ethics that overcome the $ - as was so in the Rathbun's case with the cameraman - sorry I forget his name.
    Using wogs is always so damn risky. They cannot be counted upon to put Co$'S and $lappy's Interests first above their own. They cannot be controlled by use of their folders, threat of disconnection, or threat to their bridge or eternity.

    If it did happen to the Rathbuns or anyone else then the first action should be to take out an injunction. It has now been proved that it is possible to get even a temporary injunction that is effective in shutting them down. And part of the injunction process would probably involve proving where funding comes from and that there is a legitimate reason for it.
    In fact anyone being harassed by Co$ in anyway could do this. I wish more had access to such fine lawyers as Ray J et al. Especially this one .

    This is what makes it so interesting that Co$ and the named SB's are not pushing for this to be resolved in court. For they didn't have to agree to the case and appeal to be dropped by being moot.
    Why Are they not pushing their advantage if they had in fact ground the Rathbun's down enough to just give in with no settlement?
    The right to harass people in such a manner being SUCH an important part of their religious freedom. why aren't they fighting it as hard as they have been?
    Why aren't they getting it enshrined in law?

    And yes your general point is absolutely valid.
    If there has been no settlement of any kind then why on earth would the Rathbuns drop the case and lose all legal protection?
    Especially when they are under NO illusion as to how untrustworthy Co$ in any shape or for is.

    The Rathbuns words say one thing.
    Their actions say another
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  17. anonysamvines Member

    He has to say that. He is a lawyer giving insight into the legal background of what is happening. He isn't stating his personal opinion but his professional one and not leaving himself open to being sued or reported to the bar should anyone know his identity.
    He is giving insight into how the Law views it.

    Take note of the words "in the light of all available evidence". They are very important. He is not saying he believes there was no settlement.

    There is NO actual evidence available ... Yet.

    Only circumstantial evidence which we use to justify our speculation. Circumstantial evidence can and has been used as in murder cases without a body but it is rare. Following the circumstantial evidence and motivation can often lead to the actual evidence.

    He also, in the way he demolished the litigation fatigue reasoning, showed what a crock of bullshit he thinks of the no settlement claim.
    He has similarly demolished all of the reasons Monique has given for firing her team and dropping the case.

    He knows they are trying to screw over Ray J et al.
    He knows that when they do find actual evidence then Co$, Co$'s law team and the Rathbuns will be very very sorry indeed.
    But he isn't actually saying it.

    Ray J et al are all doing the same thing. They are not showing their hands yet, why would they?
    They are being professional in public.
    A fly on their private wall would be telling a different story lol
  18. BLiP Member

    I've spoken to Alanzo. He did not delete his Disqus account and Tony Ortega did delete those comments by Alanzo. I am disappoint. Very disappoint. In terms of Alanzo's allegedly seeking to intimidate Rachel Bernstein, turns out Alanzo was actually making what, IMO, was a very good point . . .
  19. anonysamvines Member

    I have read Alanzo's blog you linked.
    Nowhere does it quote or mention what he actually wrote - I would like to know what he posted at Tony O's.
    He merely justifies what he wrote and thinks.

    I am not referring to any part of what Alanzo wrote at Tony's or whether Tony was justified in banning or deleting. Just Alanzo's blog post you linked to

    However, Alanzo and yourself are actually wrong (as he speculated he may be) in saying that Rachel breached the code of ethics.
    He actually not only read them but posted them on his blog as justification. Without understanding them or their limits.
    (Bold is mine - if it works )

    3.13 PUBLIC STATEMENTS: Marriage and family therapists, because of their ability to influence and alter the lives of others, exercise care when making public their professional recommendations and opinions through testimony or other public statements.

    3.14 LIMITS OF PROFESSIONAL OPINIONS: Marriage and family therapists do not express professional opinions about an individual’s mental or emotional condition unless they have treated or conducted an examination of the individual, [bold] or unless they reveal the limits of the information upon which their professional opinions are based, with appropriate cautions as to the effects of such limited information upon their opinions [/bold]

    Ok my holding didn't work

    or unless they reveal the limits of the information upon which their professional opinions are based, with appropriate cautions as to the effects of such limited information upon their opinions.

    Rachel and Tony did in fact reveal the "limits of the information upon which... ".
    They did so more openly than most.
    Many newspapers and magazines will similarly publish an expert opinion by someone bound by similar rules of ethics - psychiatry, counselling and plastic surgery come to mind easily. They often limit such disclosure to a footnote. A footnote merely stating X (the expert/dr.) has never met or treated Y.
    Tony put this informant right at the beginning of the main body of the article.

    You and Alanzo may think it distasteful for Rachel to speak out as she did. That is your opinion.
    Saying she violated her ethics is not. She didn't.

    I will also say that Alanzo also (in my opinion) miss the point of a great deal of what Rachel was saying.
    She was also very concerned about Cathy and how the way she is dealing with Taylor's suicide is harming herself. She wasn't just slating Cathy.

    Please do either post yourself or get Alanzo to post here what he posted at Tony's.
    It helps to give the whole story
  20. BLiP Member

    Huh? Please provide a link where I stated, or even suggested, Rachel Bernstein breached a code of ethics. Otherwise, DIAF. I only popped up to correct my earlier comment expressing doubt as to whether Tony would actually delete comments which were peripheral to those he claims amounted to intimidation. Silly me stated that was not Tony's style, and that the comments would disappear if someone deleted their Disqus account. That is not the case and Alanzo did not delete his account. My bad. At this stage, I think the main point Alanzo makes is valid, and there is some support for it from someone who should know. YMMV. Going forward, I'm not sufficiently engaged with this specific kerfuffle to bother seeking out further DOX. If reading the comments is of interest to you, there's a few over at MartyWorld he has posted to bolster his butthurt and contrived victimhood. If you want more, you could always ask Alanzo and or Tony directly. They're both contactable via their own sites and/or Failbook.
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  21. Random guy Member

  22. anonysamvines Member

    AS REQUESTED - so I will pass on the DIAF THANKS

    You said "Alonzo was making what, IMO, a very good point" and then link to Alanzo's now deleted blog stating that Rachel had breached her ethical guidelines and what those were.

    Alanzo has now replaced that blog with

    I wonder why he did that?
    And we still don't' know what was said in the deleted post.
  23. anonysamvines Member

    I can't download that attachment RG
    Any chance of a copy pasta
  24. TrevAnon Member

    FYI TOny's response.

    I quote:

    The speculation over at WWP is reaching a fever pitch.
    So to save some nerves over there, I'll just put this here.
    1. I don't know how it works at your website, but when we block an IP here, Disqus erases the last 30 days of comments that they made automatically.
    2. I chose to block someone recently not for a comment they made here, but for an attempt to intimidate a woman through the use of a creepy email that I considered out of bounds.
    I hope that helps explain a few things.
    • Like Like x 4
  25. Random guy Member

    It was just a dramalama, for some reason the forum wouldn't show it.
    • Like Like x 2
  26. TrevAnon Member

    In most cases you can download, rename to jpg and look.
    Here goes NuhghQusN0weGqCiNcjn1BEQihv8FiGz3Lsd7QiD1bjtlCY-lu.jpg
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  27. Random guy Member

    Thanks mate!
    • Like Like x 1
  28. fishypants Moderator

    So the only evidence I'm seeing here with any potential to support Marty's claim of an anti-Rathbun campaign from Tony O is his one-off use of the word "bizarre" to describe Mosey's filing firing her lawyers and dropping the case.

    Matter of opinion as to whether that term was justified - personally I think it was - but even if it wasn't, it hardly constitutes the 3-month campaign that Marty seems to be claiming.

    Seems to be blaming TO for things said by other people in the comments on his articles. Not TO's job to censor anti-Marty views.

    Also this whole "Tony said mean things about us" claim from Marty - and now this Alonzo whatever-it-is - just seems like a total distraction. None of this has the tiniest thing to do with the lawsuit, unless I'm misunderstanding something here.
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  29. Random guy Member

    • Like Like x 1
  30. DeathHamster Member

    Tony is leading an obvious covert campaign against Real Scientology by:
    • Running down L. Ron Hubbard.
    • Not acknowledging that there was a Golden Age of Scientology before Miscavige. (No one is quite sure when this golden age was, but never mind.)
    • Doubting that Scientology absolutely 110% works if you do it right. (which no one has even done, details.)
    • Like Like x 3
  31. GibbousWaxing Member

    "Seems to be blaming TO for things said by other people in the comments on his articles. Not TO's job to censor anti-Marty views."

    Marty censors comments on his own blog. He obviously thinks it's #The_Right_Thing_To_Do.

    Just as obviously, not everyone agrees with him.
    • Like Like x 5
  32. The Wrong Guy Member

    Monique Rathbun formally ends her lawsuit in Texas

    By Tony Ortega, The Underground Bunker, May 12, 2016

    Monique Rathbun’s harassment lawsuit against the Church of Scientology which she filed in August 2013 has now ended with a document she filed Tuesday in Comal County, Texas.

    The “motion for entry of nonsuit,” a two-page document that Monique filed, asks Judge Dib Waldrip to sign an order confirming the lawsuit’s demise, but our experts tell us that once Monique filed the nonsuit document with the court, her case was officially over.

    Once again, Monique blamed her former attorneys, whom she fired in January, for convincing her to drop the lawsuit, despite the winning streak she had been on, including a recent appeals court victory that seemed to put her in the driver’s seat.

    “1. While performing its [sic] exit strategy from this lawsuit my former lawyers made two things abundantly clear to me: a) my lawsuit is not worth it financially for former counsel or anyone to continue to litigate, and b) my husband and I have effectively achieved the primary purpose that the lawsuit was originally intended to serve by our own independent effort,” the document reads.

    Continued here:
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  33. The Wrong Guy Member

    Tony has posted this in response to some of the comments about today's update. Quote:

    Tony Ortega Mod an hour ago

    Speculate all you want, but please don't ignore these basic facts.

    If the Rathbuns were simply tired of the case, they could have asked their attorneys to end it outright, and the attorneys would have been obliged to do so. Instead, they were fired. And, as TexasLawyer pointed out last time, the lawsuit was not pulled at that point. It lingered as we all waited to see what the state supreme court would do. Only after the supreme court asked for a response did the Rathbuns pull the plug.

    If the Rathbuns were simply tired of the case, they could have asked Ray Jeffrey to negotiate a settlement so they and the attorneys could have walked away with millions. They were in a strong position after the appellate win, and TexasLawyer has indicated that there was a good chance that their position was going to get even stronger over the next year. Instead, the Rathbuns fired the lawyers and walked away with nothing.

    If the Rathbuns were simply tired of the case, they had a legal team that was actually doing all the work, was on a winning streak, and was costing the Rathbuns nothing. Instead, they were fired and the case was dropped, including a temporary restraining order that was protecting the Rathbuns from Scientology harassment.

    It's true that Marty Rathbun has not taken any money from David Miscavige. But he appears to be gagging himself unilaterally in the hopes that Scientology will leave them alone. So the effect is the same, but without millions in security for the Rathbun family and the attorneys who worked so hard for three years.

    OK, have fun speculating.
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  34. failboat Member

    Part of the analysis by TexasLawyer on Tony's post today reporting the official end of the lawsuit included this conjecture regarding the potential resumption of lawfare -

    'The Rathbuns were wise to make sure that this is being nonsuited ‘without prejudice’ to refiling. This is not a determination on the merits of the claims, and that means Monique can refile if they ever need to, for instance if the Squirrel Busters start up their activities again.'

    Mostly, I am bringing this up because it's probably the last chance I'll get to re-post this shoop for a while -

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  35. RightOn Member

    But but....
    when has the COS ever backed down? Not very KSW
  36. Anonymous Member

    WTF happened here? I know Marty is a douche, but this is cult level douchiness.
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  37. 257

    Marty is a wannabe cult leader.
  38. JohnnyRUClear Member

    Nobody knows yet. Opinions vary.
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  39. Marty Rathbun apparently responds to the controversy.

    Marty Rathbun: Arrogance and Ignorance

    * * * * * BEGIN EXCERPT * * * * *

    Arrogance and Ignorance

    Posted on May 15, 2016 by Mark C. Rathbun | 5 comments

    The following passage is taken from the novel Texas Tropics.

    When I arrived Amerigo was as relaxed and content as the last time I interrupted his little fisherman’s paradise. As I pulled Lucille ashore, Amerigo grabbed my pole and turned to his shrimp bucket to bait up my line. He handed back the pole. He looked at me knowingly and said, “You’ve been busy, no?”

    I took the invitation to fill him in on my adventures. Amerigo did not show the kind of surprise or shock or wonderment you would expect any other human to exhibit in reaction to my story. When I finished, his only comment seemed to come randomly out of the blue, “Your father is wise beyond his years.”

    I wanted to say, ‘What about me almost getting killed? What about me standing up to Ramos? What about me being set up like a bowling pin? What about me standing trial with my life in the balance?’ Instead, the thing he found most interesting was the last thing I cared about at the moment. I took a deep breath. I looked out across the cove. I let my emotions settle and then calmly asked, “Oh, you mean teaching me about Zapata?”

    Amerigo smiled and shook his head in the negative.

    “Then what?”, I asked.

    Amerigo said, “He has discovered the secret of arrogance and ignorance.”

    “What do you mean?”, I asked.

    “Well, you asked him what drove him to do what you have told me most people characterize as evil, right?”, he asked.


    “And his answer was?”

    “He was too proud and too stupid”, I said. “Right, okay, too arrogant and too ignorant. And that – well, it does resonate with me.”

    “Why?”, he asked.

    “Because you can do something with it”, I said. “If he says instead, ‘it was evil’ it is like saying ‘I am evil.’ Where does that lead?”

    He asked, “Where do you think?”

    I thought out loud, “Isolation, imprisonment… Hell, I don’t know. It leads to labeling and distancing so you don’t catch any of that disease called ‘evil.’”

    “Out of sight and out of mind?”, he asked.

    “Maybe out of sight – which, I guess, is ignorance itself…and – come to think of it, arrogance too. But, I don’t think entirely out of mind.”

    Amerigo’s seemed pleased with my working it over. He continued fishing, his invitation for me to think it through some more. And I did.

    “Ok, Amerigo”, I said. “So, now I am thinking about judgment – like we talked about last time. When you judge, you use convenient labels like ‘evil’, hoping to put something or someone you don’t like out of sight and out of mind – or, at least, waaay over there.” I motioned toward the mainland with my hand for emphasis.

    Amerigo smiled. Then he carried on fishing.

    A few minutes later I added, “But the act of judging itself is an exercise in arrogance and ignorance.”

    “How so?”, he asked.

    “Arrogance…the act of judging gives one a feeling of superiority to whatever, or whoever, is being judged.”

    “And ignorance?”, he asked.

    “Judging, puts it out of sight”, I said. “Makes it no longer worthy of inspection or consideration. One makes oneself ignorant.”

    Amerigo winked at me. And in the micro second it took his eyelid to shut and open again it all came to me. I said, “And all this opens the door to resolution.”

    “Of what?”, he asked.

    “The vicious circle”, I said. “It is a dwindling process toward, well – really…evil, I guess. The more ignorance we demonstrate, the more arrogance we produce. The more arrogant we become, the more ignorant too. Finally, the arrogance is so great we feel just fine sitting in judgment of those we consider lesser than ourselves. And the ignorance is so great we resort to labeling, stereotyping and condemning so that we don’t need to exercise intelligence. We are unaware of, and – so, we don’t care about the consequences of our judgment. You know, the consequences to those we judge. “

    Amerigo was looking at me with interest.

    I said, “And so, judgment tends to create evil…out of arrogance and ignorance. Do you see, it all becomes a self-feeding circle?”

    “Yes”, he said. “And so, the resolution you spoke of?”

    “Well, what is the reverse activity of exercising arrogance and ignorance?”, I asked.

    Amerigo rolled his eyes and gave an impish smile, indicating he was going to consider the question. I was pleased. I thought maybe I had earned enough respect to ask deep questions of him and have him answer me for a change.

    “Humility and curiosity?”, he asked.

    “Right”, I said. “I had the concept but I couldn’t find the words. But, you are right on the money. And so when we feel compelled to judge, I mean in the judgmental sense – when we feel the compulsion arise to judge, label and reject…instead, maybe we hold off for a moment. Maybe we gather our wits. Maybe we exercise a little humility and a little curiosity.”

    * * * * * END EXCERPT * * * * *

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