The United States is a democracy. Right?
I never questioned that until 2012. Someone that I loved very dearly was subjected to severe abuse by the Probate Court. I was also subjected to abuse. I survived. Gretchen did not.
The lasting damage done to me by this experience was the destruction of my belief that people do not have to fear abuse by government in the United States.
It was not until 2016 that I finally realized the problem. The Probate Court is not a democratic institution. It is a dictatorship. It violates all the principles on which this country was founded.
The thing I find most frightening is that only a tiny fraction of the general population realizes the truth. I think the reason is that we are all blinded by our belief that the institutions of our government function in accordance with the principles of democracy.
In fact, anyone who has been involved in a guardianship case has all the information needed to know that the Probate Court is not a democratic institution. It took me 4 years of study and research before I finally saw the truth that was sitting in plain sight.
This is not to say that all the institutions of government violate the principles of democracy. However, the Probate Court is a glaring exception.
Somehow the judges and lawyers of the Probate Court have managed to eliminate all the protections of democracy designed to prevent abuse of power by government. The result is that the Probate Court has the ability to commit crimes with impunity.
The reality is that no one is safe from abuse by the Probate Court. This is a very strong statement. However, this statement is supported by extensive factual evidence. This evidence has been accumulated primarily by organizations outside the government.
Until recently the government has passively or actively swept the problem under the rug. The Probate Court has the ability to prevent the evidence of abuse from becoming public. Other branches of government have also cooperated in concealing the evidence.
Since this happened in 2012 I have filed complaints with all three branches of government with no effect. All my complaints have ended up in the hands of a lawyer who did nothing. One of the other parties in the case has also filed complaints with no effect.
The proof that the Probate Court is a dictatorship is lying in plain sight. It is a matter of seeing the obvious. In my case that took 4 years.
The foundations of democracy are the following:
The Probate Court violates both of these fundamental principles of democracy in multiple ways. In particular, guardianship is riddled with absolute power and conflict of interest.
The judge has sole control of guardianship:
The Constitution does not give anyone immunity. The court has given itself immunity.
The combination of absolute power and immunity has set up a system of legalized crime where GALs and guardians can commit crimes with impunity.
Marty Oakley who runs an internet talk radio show has been pointing out for a long time that the Probate “Court” is not a court. It is an administrative tribunal whose authority is derived from the Executive Branch, not the Judicial Branch.
Because it is not a court it is free to set its own rules as to how it operates. A person who goes before the Probate Court has no constitutional rights. The law is whatever the judge says it is. Responsibility for protecting a person’s constitutional rights rests with a court of law. The Probate Court is not a court of law.
The problem is that the Probate Court pretends to be a court and has usurped powers that can only be exercised by a court of law with due process. The Probate Court exercises the powers of both the Executive and Judicial branches of government. This is unconstitutional and violates separation of powers.
In December, 2016 I met with my state senator William Brownsberger to discuss my complaints with the way guardianship is managed by the Probate “Court”.
I pointed out that it violates separation of powers for a judge to be responsible for both appointment and accountability of guardians.
His response was “Please trust me when I say: Your argument that the guardianship system is unconstitutional is not correct legally, however powerful it may seem theoretically.”
I said I was not willing to trust him. I asked him to prove it.
He said “You are asking a little too much of me.”
He elaborated by saying “Separation of powers is not just a philosophical idea, it is a technical legal construct.”
The issue is not whether the present system is legal. The extermination of the Jews was legal under German law. Slavery was legal in the United States.
The issue is whether guardianship is consistent with basic principles of law, democracy, civil rights, human rights, and the constitution. In my opinion, the present system of guardianship violates all these basic principles. It is a stain on our democracy as bad or worse than slavery. It is a danger to everyone whether or not they realize it.
I was taken totally by surprise by the way the Probate Court handled my guardianship case. I would not have trusted the Probate Court if I knew then what I know now. The problem is that there is no appropriate system for handling guardianship.
The way to stop this abuse is to take away the secrecy that protects those who are committing these crimes. That can only be done by the free press.
I wrote an article in September, 2017 in Boston Broadside, Issue # 42 (Vol.4,No 9) describing what happened in my guardianship case. You can read it and decide for yourself whether this is the way you want guardianship to be handled.
The guardianship case is Docket Numbers 11P 2483, 11P 3682, 12R0085. The judge was Patricia Gorman. The professional guardian was Regina Bragdon. The GAL was Fern Frolin. My first attorney was Anthony Boczenowski. My second attorney was William Brisk. My first attorney developed cancer and had to withdraw from the case. My first attorney was a very honest person. In my opinion, he was the only professional involved in the case who did anything right.
Thanks, David. I know you have been through a lot.
You are correct in saying that the probate court is not democratic. The judicial branch is not democratic. Judges always have to make tough decisions and in the probate court, their decisions are especially tough.
The judiciary branch is part of a democratic system of government in three respects: (a) it is appointed by the duly elected Governor; (b) it is independent of the Governor once appointed; (c) it makes decisions based on laws, some of which are democratically enacted.
For litigants unsatisfied with the outcome in probate court, there is an appeals process within the judicial system to higher courts.
The system does depend on access to legal representation to make it work and judges and lawyers are all human and imperfect, but I don’t agree with your philosophical challenge to the structure of the system.
Please don’t hesitate to contact us directly for assistance!