Sunday, November 30, 2008

Libel vs. Truth?

"Everyone has the right to freedom of opinion and expression; this right includes freedom to hold opinions without interference, and impart information and ideas through any media regardless of frontiers."
- Article 19, Universal Declaration of Human Rights

Information reached us that the convicted felon Lourdes “Lulu” Navarro, who owns Universal Placement International, wants to shut this blog down. Navarro and Universal Placement International have filed a libel case against one of us teachers whom she suspects to be behind this blog.

We pity our colleague who, while also a victim of the harassment and schemes of PARS-Universal, has nothing to do with this blog and has not contributed any article to us. We however have high regard to this teacher, who has the guts to stand up for the truth, the courage to defend her rights and the conviction to resist oppression.

This crook Navarro who has been engaged in a lot of illegal and questionable activities would like to stop us from telling the truth because according to her: her reputation is being tarnished, her reputation is being damaged! Can you repeat that, Lourdes “Lulu” Navarro? What did you say, Lourdes “Lulu” Navarro?

We can’t seem to understand your point here, Mrs. Navarro. Forgive us if we don’t seem to comprehend the depths of your analytical scheming mind. The way we see it, you can only destroy something that is well and functional in the first place. The way we see it, you can only break something that is not broken in the first place. Come to think of it, you can only tarnish something that is clean to begin with.

Lourdes “Lulu” Navarro, we think you need to do some serious reality checking. How can we damage your reputation if it’s already as good as thrash? How can we even taint your name when your name is already synonymous to fraud and intimidation? Simply put, how can we tarnish your “good” reputation if it is nothing but.

Please do not give this blog so much credit for something you have done to yourself. Thanks, but no thanks. We don’t deserve that credit. May we remind our colleagues and our readers of some undeniable facts below that will show that Navarro’s reputation suffered from self-inflicted damage.

1. Navarro’s conviction on felony counts of Medi-Cal fraud, grand theft, money laundering and identity theft in the State of California. (Click here to read complete news report.)
2. Navarro’s treatment of Filipino teachers deployed in California that led to an exchange of lawsuits but eventually to an amicable settlement.
3. Navarro’s treatment of Filipino teachers deployed in Louisiana. See other posts in this blog for more details.
4. The questionable operations and oppressive schemes of PARS Placement Agency and Universal Placement International that has victimized hundreds of Filipinos. PARS’ license in the Philippines was suspended at least once in connection with these shady methods.
5. Navarro’s unspeakable behavior against Filipino communities including here in Louisiana. Add to this, Navarro’s arrogant advice to Filipino teachers recruited through her agency that we should not reach out to the Filipino community, contrary to the advice of the Philippine embassy.
6. Navarro’s attitude of shouting and treating people like animals which many of us have experienced.

Lourdes Navarro, do not pretend that you are only trying to protect your reputation for clearly you are a lawbreaker and tyrant with a notorious reputation. What is clear is that you simply want to harass this blog so we will be cowed and stop from exposing more of your anomalies.

Our best defense against this attempt to silence this blog through Navarro’s frivolous libel lawsuit is TRUTH. This blog simply showcases our truthful and sad experiences under PARS and Universal, under the heartless and notorious Lourdes “Lulu” Navarro. Our postings here are all accurate and no one has yet given any intelligent and convincing argument against the information we have asserted in this blog.

Further, this blog just like any other publication and any other individual’s right to free speech is protected under this country’s constitution as well as other international human rights declarations. The First Amendment of the U.S. Constitution stipulates: “Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.”

While there are certain limitations to the right to expression and freedom of speech; sharing an experience, offering an opinion and exposing anomalies and abuses by the powerful are certainly not one of them.

Now, as we have previously declared, no amount of lawsuits can stop us from standing up for the truth; no amount of harassment can stop us from raising our fists for our rights. No amount of bullying can stop us from doing all we can to stop these exploitative recruitment practices, so other Filipinos who are hoping to find work as migrants will never experience what we went through.

Teachers, let us strengthen our ranks and buckle up for a bigger battle.

Mabuhay ang Gurong Pilipino!


Concerned Filipino Migrant Teachers
Louisiana, USA

26 comments:

  1. Stand Up And Be CountedDecember 1, 2008 at 11:29 AM

    Because of the courage of this blog, we can see that Lulu is now trying to win our hearts with the free christmas party and other gimicks. Haha, thank you bloggers! Let's continue this fight. Let's us not fall into the gimicks of Lulu. She fooled us once. We should not allow ourselves to be fooled again.

    ReplyDelete
  2. do not be swayed! KEEP THE FIGHT.

    ReplyDelete
  3. I love your website and am sickened that this woman feeds off the hard working Filipino teachers through threats and intimidation. What I don't understand is why you all let her get away with this? You should be filing complaints and asking your employers the the individual school board members why they are doing business with a bogus and convicted felon? I am sure the state legislative auditor would be interested in hearing your stories. Take your fight directly to this pinoy witch. Her most recent address, according to federal reports excluding her from participating in any program of the federal government, is 1850 Calle Suenos, Glendale, California 91208.

    ReplyDelete
  4. please share on the latest news on the lawsuit/case filed by Lulu on the teacher.

    ReplyDelete
  5. November 26, 2008 11:26AM PHT

    By Partido ng Manggagawa (PM)

    A group of Filipino migrant teachers in Louisiana, US is battling their illegal recruiter and is organizing for the redress of their grievances using the blog as a tool. In early November, the “Concerned Filipino Migrant Teachers of Louisiana, USA” have been using what they called the Pinoy Teachers Hub (www.pinoyteachershub.blogspot.com) as a venue for discussion of their plight.

    The teachers are accusing their recruitment agency, among others, of overcharging of placement fees and the premature collection of the same which is tantamount to illegal recruitment and a violation of Republic Act 8042 or the Migrant Workers and Overseas Filipinos Act of 1995.



    Keywords: Education, Communities, Human Rights, Social Issues, Economy, Government,

    At least 200 teachers were placed through the agency and deployed in five different school districts in Louisiana but the bulk of them are in the East Baton Rouge Parish School System. They were issued a 1-year working visa (H1B) instead of the usual 3-year H1B visa.

    Their recruitment agency is the PARS International Placement Agency with a Philippine address at J&F Divino Arcade, 961 Aurora Boulevard, Suite 407, Quezon City and the US-based Universal Placement International of 3345 Wilshire Boulevard, Suite 407, Los Angeles, California. These two entities are owned and operated by one family. A certain Lourdes V. Navarro is the owner of Universal while is Emilio V. Villarba is the agent of PARS.

    In the information provided on the blog, Section 1.A.3 of the teachers’ contract stipulates that 10% monthly gross for 2 years shall be paid to agency. However, the teachers paid upfront in advance 20% of “expected” gross income for 1 year. Further, “expected” gross income is bloated so as to make teachers pay the maximum advance payment.

    A check with the POEA (Philippine Overseas Employment Agency) website last September showed that the license of PARS has been suspended but the suspension was recently lifted.

    The teachers allege that Navarro has threatened to sue those who voice their opinions and share their bad experiences in the blog. But according to a Partido ng Manggagawa liaison officer in the US, the teachers are standing their ground despite the intimidation and are coordinating with their group for the filing of cases.

    The teachers are also claiming that their contracts were signed and its contents disclosed to them only several days or even a day before their scheduled flight. Also the teachers are practically in debt bondage since they were forced to take out loans to pay the $8,000 to $10,000 placement fees. The placement agency referred the teachers to its own partner lending agency that charged an onerous 4% per month in interest.
    The agency also entered into lease agreements without the knowledge and consent of teachers. The teachers forced to live in dilapidated, pest-infested apartment units in Baton Rouge chosen by agency despite the presence of better, safer, cleaner and cheaper apartments around the area. Moreover the published rent of a unit is only around $800 a month but teachers are charged $310 each with each apartment unit housing 4 individuals and at times up to 8.

    In their blog, the teachers contend that the threat of the non-renewal of their contract for the second year has obliged many to endure the indignities and hardship at the hands of their illegal recruiter.

    There are also a lot of cases where teachers arrived in Louisiana only to discover that they do no have any school assignments but instead had to attend job fairs for placement. According to the Partido ng Manggagawa (PM) liaison officer in the US, in Baton Rouge alone there are at least 6 teachers who arrived and went without work for more than a month, and at least one teacher is up to now unemployed.

    The PM liaison officer also revealed that a common practice of the agency is to transfer the teachers assigned to a specific school to another school in a different district. The teachers are forced to agree to the transfer than to wait indefinitely for a placement despite the fact that it is illegal since the specific school district assignment is indicated on the teachers’ visa. In one specific instance, 7 teachers from the East Baton Rouge school district were transferred to the Avoyelles school district where salary levels are much lower.

    The teachers also assert that the agency, without any authorization, unlawfully opened their US social security numbers. Research conducted by the PM liaison officer showed that Navarro has a history of fraud conviction and identity theft cases in the State of California.

    To add to the abuse, agency prohibits the teachers from petitioning family members using other agencies or through other means. Teachers were also required to sign a waiver in the Philippines no to bring families within the period of one year.

    In their blog, the teachers however have declared an initial victory claiming that from $310 per individual per month, they were able to force Navarro to lower their rent to $275. And from $1800 to $2000 per individual, that they were able to lower the renewal fee to $1000. ###

    Partido ng Manggagawa is a political party of the Filipino Working Class.

    ReplyDelete
  6. concerned citizen --sbDecember 2, 2008 at 10:19 AM

    See no evil, hear no evil. Do you think she can do this without the help of someone? Some of them approached the employer regarding some issues- the issues go into the left ear and out of the right ear to the agent's ears. Do you think EBR is without the knowledge of this?

    Everytime there is a teacher meeting(Filipino teachers)to sort out things, this agent out of the blue, will show up and deliberately take control of the meeting. And nobody could speak out of fear.

    In another instance, several members of the Filipino-American Association of Baton Rouge were invited to new teachers orientation. They brought food and drinks for the new teachers. Guess, who showed up at the door uninvited,flew to Baton Rouge from her employment agency office in Wilshire Blvd, Los Angeles, CA to confront these people. Your guess is as good as mine.
    There were school officials present who witnessd this behavior. And they seemed helpless.

    One can only surmise that there is something beyond this arrogant behavior.

    ReplyDelete
  7. Sinong ksmahn nting titser ang kinasuhan? That is just purely a harassment.... Let us support her by any means. Libel won't hold water in court... She doesn't have sufficient evidence to do that... if she is only refering to this blog as proof of libel. Kwwa sya thats a desperate move... One more question , where did she file the case.?

    Tatang,

    ReplyDelete
  8. What is the legal collective move now? We cannot write on this blog forever! Our ideas could be very brilliant on this site...but what's next?

    ReplyDelete
  9. for a start, don't extend ur visa thru Lulu.

    ReplyDelete
  10. hayup ka lulu. hindi ka na naawa sa mga teachers basta pera lang iniisip mo . aanhin mo ang pera? di mo yan madadala sa impeyerno!!!!!!!!!

    ReplyDelete
  11. Contact the individual members of the East Baton Rouge Parish School Board. Ask any Americans you know to do this for you. If there are enough inquiries, the Board will have no choice but to act. Also, contact the local news media in Baton Rouge.

    ReplyDelete
  12. Commenter above said it best-- just don't use this thieving felon to renew your visas.

    ReplyDelete
  13. anyone willing to sign a formal complaint should come forward now.

    ReplyDelete
  14. "contact the local news media... blah blah"... still waiting for someone to take action on your complaints? what if it won't work? would the news be enough proof for libel then? get out all of you who feel being cheated, sign a formal complaint. best to settle it professionaly and get it over with.

    ReplyDelete
  15. concerned citizen --sbDecember 15, 2008 at 9:45 AM

    Better yet, contact this agency, Office of Regulatory Services, Department of Labor.

    I have contacted this agency and confirmed that the agency in question does not have license to operate in Louisiana. For those who doubt me, contact this government agency and verify this yourselves. Perhaps this will enlighten those who do not believe or refuse to believe.

    http://wwwprd.doa.louisiana.gov/LaServices/PublicPages/ServiceDetail.cfm?service_id=2652

    Please read the following information:

    Department: Workforce Commission
    Agency: Office of Regulatory Services
    Category: Licenses, Permits, and Leases

    Service: Private Employment Service License
    Description: The Private Employment Service Section of the Louisiana Department of Labor (DOL) processes applications, issues licenses and enforces regulations related to private employment services.

    All persons, companies and entities which engage in job placement activities for which a fee is charged are required to obtain a Private Employment Service License from the DOL.

    All contracts must be submitted and approved by this agency.


    Any questions regarding this information should be directed to the DOL directly using the information provided below.

    Contact: Winnie J. Pace
    Phone: ( 225 ) 342 - 7825
    E-mail: wpace@ldol.state.la.us

    ReplyDelete
  16. You are all right. We should stop Lulu's evil ways.....Hindi nyo ba alam na marami pang teachers sa Pinas na merong visa na di pa nakakaalis and mapapaso na ang visa in few months.Nakakaawa di ba? Di nyo ba alam na si Kalbong Mel eh palaging nasa sabungan? At si high waisted na si Divine eh nakabili na ng sasakyan worth more than P1M.....Toyota Fortuner kapal talaga nila.....burn their souls to HELL!!!! Its about time to get Help from government since malapit na eleksyon kaya dapat we should make a clever move to bring these people behind jail....Alamko natatakot na si Lulu at Mel...Nagkakasakit na silang 2....ang KARMA nga naman but they deserve more than that!!!!!

    ReplyDelete
  17. Maligayang Pasko po sa lahat!

    If you have problems with Ms. Lulu, sue her and bring the issue to court. Not in this blog. I guess you don't have the guts because you are also afraid of her. You are COWARD!
    About the rent, ask Susan. Or if you think that the rent is too high, get out of Savoy.
    You don't represent all the Filipino teachers, so please wag mo kaming idamay na nananahimik dito. Sana lang kung di mo nagustuhan ang lahat ng agency fees, airfare, and everything, di ka na sana nagpunta dito, pwede mo namang i cancel ang lahat.
    If Mel is always in sabungan, it's none of your business!
    If Divine bought a new car, its none of your business too.
    Kung kumita man sila sa atin, natural dahil negosyo nila ito. Besides we were the ones who applied to their agency. Kung di mo kaya ang fees, di ka na lang sana nag-apply magpunta dito. Nag agree ka sa lahat therefore liable ka rin sa lahat.

    ReplyDelete
  18. Anonymous (ito ang mahirap dito eh, puro tayo anonymous). YOU ARE CORRECT in every point. They have to identify themselves. Hindi idadamay ang mga Filipino, hindi na man tayo lahat apektado eh.

    ReplyDelete
  19. Yah, there is nothing wrong with voicing out ones sentiments as long as you are not dragging anyone. Guys if you, then do not use the word Filipino, come out and identify yourselves. Huwag na man kaming idamay.

    ReplyDelete
  20. I have been reading this blog for the past days. I am one of the teachers being deployed to the US by the Universal Placement and the Pars Placement. Yes, it is true that the first few years are extremely challenging but I will become smooth in years to come.
    We, teachers have arrived in the US with H1-B visa, meaning our stay is only temporary unless we will be petitioned by our employer to live and work permanently. We might lose our job any moment (I hope not). No one is ever sure who will have his job tomorrow. Some brag that we are competent teachers that the school districts will not give us up. Very funny and assuming!!! I thought it was rather a boast in its greatest sense. We are not citizens of the United States. We are petitioned only to fill in the gap on teacher shortage. Now that recession has been gobbling the country, many citizens have been interested in the job. I have a lot of friends employed in teaching and non-teaching jobs who are also in the brink of losing their jobs. Remember guys, that frugality is the name of the game in the US nowadays. Also remember, the doctrine FIRST-IN -FIRST OUT. It is already happening in California.
    Guys, it is good to have Filipino values and maintain them. However, such values might not work here in the US. We are here to solve employers’ problems and not the other way around. I thought it would be good to view the situations with a positive and hopeful perspective. Let us face our situation with grace and with a marked degree of professionalism. People who live in gossip, complaints and animosity will not see the beauty of life being intertwined with challenges. People want instant comfort. That might not happen here in an instant. It takes a great deal of perseverance and positive outlook in life. Many Filipino in the US started with a lot worse situation than we have now. Years of perseverance and patience, they reaped their success in the end.
    I remember the times when we lined up in the Philippines for interview for US teaching jobs. We were extremely nice. We signed the contract calmly. We knew it would cost us something. We knew what we would have to do the following year. Now, that the contract is in its execution, many of us are revolting. Why did we sign the contract in the first place? I assume that the contract is not the reason for your revolt; it is rather your loan in the Philippines and your personal obligation to your family. Do not attribute your financial difficulty to Universal Placement. Your financial difficulty is a product of your own decision. You did whatever had to be done. There are consequences in your own action.
    I am sure if it the agency were owned by Americans, we will not react the same way we react now. Because the agency is owned by a former Filipino citizen, you thought that Filipino values including an act of charity and benevolence should be in the picture. Business is business. I hope we know that. Contract is contract. It is a mutual agreement.
    I am very thankful to Lulu Navarro. I arrived in the US without a family and friends to start with. She found me a place to stay. It is not her job to look for housing but she did it because she knows that it is hard for us to find a place and have access to transportation initially. She is not a housing agency but she is going out of her way for us to continue with our life. It is challenging yes. Please forget about instant comfort as we are in an entirely new environment.
    Whether or not housing is good, what matters is we are housed. It is a lot better than looking for apartments or houses ourselves. I am sure we cannot find one as we did not have our SS number and credit history to start with. Did we have money to pay upfront for deposits and similar charges? Lulu did this for all of us. Some people are just inherently negative. All they want is to take and take and not give or share. Let us learn to be appreciative too.
    On the other hand, it is a fact that a number of us borrowed money from the financing agency in order to fly here. However, it is our choice to borrow. Never were we forced to borrow money from these financial institutions. It might have been suggested or recommended but it was never ever forced. I am in the same situation so I also experienced the same. All agencies in the Philippines have partnership with these financing institutions. I assume that the interests are big as they are loans without collateral.
    I just hope that our employers will not get tired of our drama. It is our personal drama and I do not see any reason why employers have to be included in the casting of our own drama. Employers do not want dramas. We solve their dramas. I am not surprised when our employer will get rid of us because of dramas. Now, will you still boast that you are competent teachers and that you are teachers to die for? I doubt it. I hope that we will not be labeled as drama queens and drama king because of our own action. I hope not. The worst scenario to happen is losing our job, the domino effect is more terrible than you imagine. Think about your own actions guys. I suggest that you just work and impress your employer within your job description. Do not include them in your drama. We are Filipinos and our employers are not. Chances of cultural differences and misunderstanding are at a certain degree. Filipinos have their own thinking so do foreigners. I hope you will not lose your job and your family will suffer very badly as a result. This is my opinion. Thank you very much.

    ReplyDelete
  21. I have been reading this blog for the past days. I am one of the teachers being deployed to the US by the Universal Placement and the Pars Placement.
    >> Being deployed? Is it still occurring? <<

    Yes, it is true that the first few years are extremely challenging but I will become smooth in years to come.
    We, teachers have arrived in the US with H1-B visa, meaning our stay is only temporary unless we will be petitioned by our employer to live and work permanently. We might lose our job any moment (I hope not). No one is ever sure who will have his job tomorrow.
    >> True. Even citizens are also affected by this crisis.>>

    Some brag that we are competent teachers that the school districts will not give us up. Very funny and assuming!!! I thought it was rather a boast in its greatest sense. We are not citizens of the United States. We are petitioned only to fill in the gap on teacher shortage. Now that recession has been gobbling the country, many citizens have been interested in the job.
    >>It is your opinion.>>

    I have a lot of friends employed in teaching and non-teaching jobs who are also in the brink of losing their jobs. Remember guys, that frugality is the name of the game in the US nowadays. Also remember, the doctrine FIRST-IN -FIRST OUT. It is already happening in California.
    >> I do not know what you mean by this, FIFO. There is also LIFO (last in first out). These concepts are used in merchandise.>>

    Guys, it is good to have Filipino values and maintain them. However, such values might not work here in the US. We are here to solve employers’ problems and not the other way around. I thought it would be good to view the situations with a positive and hopeful perspective. Let us face our situation with grace and with a marked degree of professionalism.
    >> You are hired to teach and not to solve employer’s problems. Those are not your concerns and are done on a different level.>>

    People who live in gossip, complaints and animosity will not see the beauty of life being intertwined with challenges. People want instant comfort. That might not happen here in an instant.
    >> I think you are wrong here. You deal with generalities without supporting these with facts. The people I met can not move about their
    personal business without the ‘prying’ eyes of the ‘tsutsu’. They just want their freedom to associate, meet or do anything. I have first hand information how the recruiter treated some teachers. For example, remember the incident that occurred in the orientation of the new teachers few months ago. They were witnesses.>>

    It takes a great deal of perseverance and positive outlook in life. Many Filipino in the US started with a lot worse situation than we have now. Years of perseverance and patience, they reaped their success in the end.

    >> I have sisters who dealt with employment agencies before. They did not pay a single dime. Sorry, I did not experience this and did not go through an agency.>>

    I remember the times when we lined up in the Philippines for interview for US teaching jobs. We were extremely nice. We signed the contract calmly. We knew it would cost us something.

    >> Was this the first time you signed a contract? Where did you sign the contract? Was there a third-party witness present when you signed this contract?

    Did you initialed each page? Was the contract notarized after you signed it?
    Did you ask if this was an “approved” contract? There are so many questions to be asked.>>

    We knew what we would have to do the following year. Now, that the contract is in its execution, many of us are revolting.

    >> If you have read my blog regarding the legalities involved in contracts then you would have an understanding why others are revolting. There is no need to elaborate here the concept since you only want to read what you want to read. Employment agencies under the law can only charge a fee of up to month’s salary- whether upfront payment or by installment. What language can’t you understand here?>>

    Why did we sign the contract in the first place? I assume that the contract is not the reason for your revolt; it is rather your loan in the Philippines and your personal obligation to your family.
    >>Your assumption is wrong. The reason is to recoup what is not supposed to be paid and to pay partially for the loan in the Philippines. Another reason is to stop this agency from doing business in the Philippines and the U.S.>>

    Do not attribute your financial difficulty to Universal Placement. Your financial difficulty is a product of your own decision. You did whatever had to be done. There are consequences in your own action.

    >> Of course, this is of personal responsibility. And now, it is being corrected
    by questioning the practices of the employment agency.>>

    I am sure if it the agency were owned by Americans, we will not react the same way we react now. Because the agency is owned by a former Filipino citizen, you thought that Filipino values including an act of charity and benevolence should be in the picture.
    >> Sorry. Your assumption is wrong again. Americans or not, the employment agencies are subject to US laws. Please go back what this person had done in the past. She was involved in Medi-Cal scam in the state of California. There is no need to elaborate here. Please read the other blogs not the ones you only want to read.>>

    Business is business. I hope we know that. Contract is contract. It is a mutual agreement.

    >>I agree totally. The business is also under the laws of the U.S. and laws have to be followed. No business is above the law. Once again, you failed to include this very important concept in your argument. Please read the blog about contracts so will know certain aspects about contracts. Contracts are also governed by Civil codes under the state of California laws.>>

    I am very thankful to Lulu Navarro. I arrived in the US without a family and friends to start with. She found me a place to stay. It is not her job to look for housing but she did it because she knows that it is hard for us to find a place and have access to transportation initially. She is not a housing agency but she is going out of her way for us to continue with our life.
    >> There is no such thing as free lunch. Your response is elementary as if you are very innocent of what happened regarding the rentals snafu. Some teachers did not have a choice but to accept and live in the apartment complex. You paid rent which is above the published rate and your beloved Lulu got a total of $12,000 a month just to refer you and others to that apartment compound.
    And you are thankful.>>

    It is challenging yes. Please forget about instant comfort as we are in an entirely new environment.
    Whether or not housing is good, what matters is we are housed. It is a lot better than looking for apartments or houses ourselves. I am sure we cannot find one as we did not have our SS number and credit history to start with. Did we have money to pay upfront for deposits and similar charges? Lulu did this for all of us.

    >>I got an apartment when I got here and did not have a SS. I did this all by myself. Do you think Lulu will do this for free?

    ReplyDelete
  22. First Amendment Rights prevail to Subpoena
    Google for discovery purposes of bloggers

    Anonymous blogger gets a subpoena quashed
    The US First Amendment right to free speech prevails
    By Egan Orion
    Saturday, 22 December 2007, 00:50 ON FRIDAY, a New Jersey Superior Court judge quashed a subpoena seeking the identity of an anonymous blogger.

    Known only by the pseudonym "daTruthSquad" on Google's Blogspot service, the blogger was strongly critical of local government in Manalapan township.

    After the blog critic became especially outspoken about the township filing a malpractice lawsuit against its former city attorney, the township subpoenaed Google demanding that it divulge the blogger's identity, contact information, emails, blog drafts and "any and all information related to the blog."

    Manalapan's anonymous nemesis turned to the Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF) for legal representation. The EFF asked the township to withdraw the subpoena, terming it "frivolous" and unenforceable, an improper attempt to " unmask an anonymous speaker who was engaged in activity protected by the First Amendment." The township's lawyers told the EFF to complain to a judge.

    In late November, the EFF did just that, filing a motion to quash the subpoena.

    In a hearing Friday, Judge Terence Flynn granted the EFF's motion, ruling that the blogger has the right to anonymous speech under the First Amendment to the US Constitution.

    "We're grateful that Judge Flynn upheld the First Amendment rights of our client and recognized that anonymous speakers should not be intimidated into silence through the discovery process," EFF Staff Attorney Matt Zimmerman said in a statement. "Now 'daTruthSquad' can continue to discuss township business without fear of government reprisal."

    ReplyDelete
  23. Very soon you will discover a popular American term called "buyers remorse". Its the feeling of regret you get after a purchase done on impulse.

    The best way to prevent this feeling is thru using logic in our decision making process. First you do decide if the purchase is a "need" or a "want". If its a need you shop around for the best deal. Always, you should be prepared to "walk away" or say "NO". Only after you are totally convinced that you have the best deal do you take the plunge and make the purchase.

    The teachers who feel aggrieved by the "deal" they got is nothing more than an impulsive buyer who's bitten by "buyers remorse". Its sad that being "Teachers" and good ones at that, they did not do their "Homework".

    Look around you. You are not the only immigrant in town. The whole USA was built on the backs of immigrants. Do you think all of them got "Fair" contracts ? Of course not ! Did all of them "whine" and cried "Foul". Of course not ! Most of them moved on, made the best of their present circumstances, adapted, endured and prospered.

    ReplyDelete
  24. what happened since July 2009, no news, no more
    comments, Lulu dissapeared?

    ReplyDelete

IMPORTANT. The following comments will be considered spam and will be removed: (1) not related or connected in any way to the topic and issues being discussed, and (2) excessive use of ALL CAPS. Thanks.