On Thursday, the confirmation process of Elena Kagan will enter the stage where the Senate Judiciary Committee will entertain witnesses both in favor of and opposed to Kagan's nomination. Of particular interest is one witness who will be testifying against Kagan, William J. Olson, Esq. of William J. Olson, P.C. -- a law firm that is heavily involved in all sorts of conservative cause celebres, from the standard-issue, to the totally bonkers.
Olson's lent his services to a pair of high-profile cases in the past year. His firm has filed amicus briefs in the Citizens United case as well as the recently decided Supreme Court case that overturned Chicago's gun ban. Olson's firm has also taken up the quixotic Tea Party cause to recall New Jersey Senator Bob Menendez. From there, however, things take a turn for the outlandish. Highlights include:
The Search For Fort Knox Gold! An organization called the Gold Anti-Trust Action Committee (GATA) is worried that the U.S. Government has been secretly flooding the market with gold from Fort Knox in order to keep it's value low. Well, Olson's firm has taken up the cause:
It has hired the Virginia law firm William J.Olson, PC, to test President Obama's promise to bring "an unprecedented level of openness" to the Government and next month it will file several Freedom of Information requests for a full disclosure of US gold ownership and trading activities.
"We're taking the President at his word," said Chris Powell, of GATA. "If you go online you can find out how to build a nuclear weapon but you won't find any detailed records on central gold reserves."
Maybe the Obama administration plans on blasting Fort Knox's gold with radiation, like in the movie Goldfinger! We'll never know if this important case doesn't proceed.
Jesus Will Cure Your Cancer With Food Supplements! Olson's co-counsel, John S. Miles, took up the cause of Daniel Chapter One, a Christian Ministry that ran afoul of the FTC for running advertisements for miracle cancer cures "with Web headlines like 'Brain Tumor Gone!' and on a two-hour weekday Internet radio program filled with virulent attacks on contemporary medicine."
In response to the appeal, FTC lawyer Elizabeth K, Nach said the First Amendment does not apply to commercial speech that is deceptive.
But Daniel Chapter One lawyer John S. Miles said the Supreme Court only prohibits commercial speech that is "actually misleading."
Nach said there is no violation of freedom of religion because Feijo is not promoting a religion. Products are "sold to consumers regardless of religious affiliation, the products are not used as part of a religious service or ritual, and the advertisements are essentially devoid of religious content," she said.
Miles said DCO is actually a Christian ministry, so that standard doesn't apply. "DCO understands the Word of God [is] to teach the use of natural products, not to use artificial drugs."
In the appeal to the FTC, DCO lawyer Miles said that "placing faith in so-called scientific studies is like unto building a house on sand."
On the other hand, the FTC contends that "deceptive marketing of 'cancer cures' places especially vulnerable consumers -- those suffering from cancer -- at grave risk of injury."
You Just Knew There Would Be Some Birther Junk Up In The Mix! Another one of Olson's co-counsel's, Herb Titus, shows up on this article on the birther-mad website WorldNetDaily:
A one-time vice presidential candidate who is considered an expert on the U.S. Constitution says it is up the electors from the 50 states to make certain President-elect Barack Obama is a natural-born U.S. citizen before they cast votes for him in the Electoral College Dec. 15.
"If they do their duty, they would make sure that if they cast a vote for Mr. Obama, that Mr. Obama is a natural-born citizen," Herb Titus, the Constitution Party's running mate to Howard Phillips in 1996, told WND today.
"I think it should be resolved. The duty is in the Electoral College. Every Obama elector that is committed to casting a vote on the 15th of December, they have a constitutional duty to make certain whether Mr. Obama is a natural-born citizen," he said.
Titus makes a return appearance in WorldNetDaily in August of 2009, talkin' birther-conspiracy:
Herb Titus, a one-time vice presidential candidate considered an expert on the U.S. Constitution, says it was probably the responsibility of the electors from the 50 states or members of Congress to make the determination whether President Obama is a "natural born" U.S. citizen. Congress does have the option of challenging the results of the election, but it was not used in the 2008 contest.
Titus also said, however, the likely most important factor in the argument should be the president's loyalties.
"The reason for the concept of natural born citizens is so a country can't just throw you out willy-nilly," Titus told WND. "Your citizenship is in God's sovereign decision-making. You were born of certain parents.
"If you follow that kind of reasoning, Obama cannot be a natural-born citizen, even if he's born in Hawaii," because of his parents, he said. "One was Kenyan and one American."
Furthermore, if the Founders wrote "natural born citizen" to ensure a candidate's loyalty, Titus suggested, Obama's dual citizenship would create a dilemma:
Citing Obama's major writing work, "Dreams From my Father," Titus asked, "Did he write a book about his [American] mother?"
So, that's the incredibly true story about how tomorrow, the head of a barking mad law firm will attempt to "Bork" Kagan, with Birtherism.