Evidence of global warming? Not around here. According to one of our many dim-wits in the statehouse, Arizona State Senator Sylvia Allen not only says the “Earth is only 6,000 years old,” but scoffs at global warming. And who needs environmental laws? Indeed, one local pundit says of Allen, who recently opted not to run for reelection, “if I ever miss her, I can always find her on YouTube, where her stupidity lives on ad nauseam.”
Global warming or not but with the first sign of sweat in the nether region, the snowbirds started stampeding for the exits weeks ago. It’s uphill on the thermometers now.
Living in a state where even the cacti are inclined to give you the middle-finger, that dumb joke about snakes not biting lawyers out of professional courtesy doesn’t apply.
I was out on a local golf course a few days ago. And bona-fide hacker that I am, I was hunting for my errant tee shot – – a bright orange golf ball last seen flying into the desert. I quickly found my ball but just as quickly, I also confirmed snakes and lawyers aren’t really simpatico.
As the rattlesnake edged protectively closer to my golf ball, I decided then and there that I really didn’t want that stupid orange golf ball after all. Besides, according to the Rules of Golf, a live snake is considered an outside agency and a free drop is allowed without a penalty.
Coincidental to my near snakebite, there was news this week of another possible snakebite albeit of the financial type and involving a now ex-lawyer. Defrocked but not necessarily defanged former Maricopa County Attorney Andrew Thomas and his disciplined cohorts may bear expenses of over half a million ducats for fees and expenses related to their disciplinary hearings. It’s a number likely to go up but which currently comes to “$577,000 Paid For Colo. Attorneys’ Work, Expenses In Ethics Case.”
This amounts to getting snakebit twice — first, getting disbarred and second, having to pay for it. It’s hardly a surprise, though. Under Arizona Supreme Court Rule 32(d) and (l) and the Court’s administrative authority, costs and expenses are imposed in lawyer disciplinary proceedings. See In re Shannon, 179 Ariz. 52, 876 P. 2d 548 (1994). Also see schedule of administrative expenses.
But of course, Thomas isn’t going to take it lying down. Pay these expenses himself? Why? Other county prosecutors have had their disciplinary expenses paid. And besides, Maricopa County already paid well over a million big ones to defend him in the disciplinary proceedings leading to his disbarment.
So why not ask the County and its taxpayers to pony up even more? In for a dime, in for a dollar. No wonder his lawyer already thinks“the county is liable for it.”
Which means the ones really getting snakebit — will again be the county’s taxpayers. Ever since Thomas and his acolytes got hauled before the disciplinary tribunal, it’s been a veritable feeding frenzy of county leaders, jurists, and staff lining up, hands out, and mouths open with a laundry list of alleged afflictions suffered at the hands of Thomas and company, “Oh the pain…now where’s my million bucks?“
Credits: “Flipping the bird,” by bigdadventures at Flickr via Creative Commons-licensed content for noncommercial use requiring attribution and share alike distribution;