Talk:Kent Hovind/Discussion moved from SB

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Kent Hovind Sues Us (sticky)[edit]

For those who have not seen yet File:Hovind Complaint RationalWiki.pdf. Tmtoulouse (talk) 14:32, 28 February 2014 (UTC)

I suppose it was a matter of time until somebody did. So what do the lawyers think of all these goings on? --Kels (talk) 14:40, 28 February 2014 (UTC)
Blocked. Can you upload it to the wiki itself? Might be good to include in the Kent Hovind article. Zero (talk) 14:49, 28 February 2014 (UTC)
By my reading the court could barely stop themselves from collapsing in hysterical laughter - or have I got it wrong. IANAL. Placeholder (talk) 14:53, 28 February 2014 (UTC)
I can't comment on the merits of a pending Lawsuit, but I can say that regardless of how frivolous (or not) a lawsuit might be, we still have to defend it and that takes resources! Tmtoulouse (talk) 15:00, 28 February 2014 (UTC)
Does RW have a legal defence fund? Bismarck (talk) 15:04, 28 February 2014 (UTC)
It consists of Trent blackmailing Nutty Roux a la Dorian Gray. He then proceeds to show up in the courtroom drunk and without any trousers, and quoting random Latin phrases and ListenerX's less coherent anti-Reds ramblings (the RWF meetings are a weird place). After that, he spouts the Chewbacca defense and slaps the plaintiff with a fish before flying off in his YEC butthurt-powered jetpack.--Raysenn Get the paddles, he's having a cancer! 17:14, 28 February 2014 (UTC)
Pardon me. I do not put forth anti-communist ramblings in Foundation meetings. My ramblings there are mostly to advance the entirely ludicrous proposition that the Foundation's meeting minutes, having been approved for publication, should be published. Mjollnir.svgListenerXTalkerX 05:26, 11 March 2014 (UTC)

However I do want to emphasize this is a great opportunity to make the article the best we can, as it is likely to get press. Tmtoulouse (talk) 15:02, 28 February 2014 (UTC)

I'd suggest sending it to media outlets already (Phil Plait, NCSE etc.) The suit features a copypasta of the current text regardless.
With Barbra Streisand's blessing, of course. Osaka Sun (talk) 15:39, 28 February 2014 (UTC)

Legally, it's a joke. It falls at the first hurdle, that being Section 230. The Wikimedia Foundation has helpfully won this precise fight using Sec 230 to get a complaint thrown out in summary judgement. Mr Hovind (or, to use his proper academic title, Mr Hovind) could subpoena the RWF for the IPs of anyone who's edited the article ... if we still have them in the logs. Then sue and lose against them personally.

I did the grunt work and the first usage of the word "fraud" was by an IP [1] is an "Easynet" IP. Good luck with "discovery", Kent. ħumanUser talk:Human 01:43, 4 March 2014 (UTC)

This could cause us fuss and annoyance, and cost a small amount of money. The most painful bit will be that the trustees now have to actually think seriously about legal threats and how to deal with them. Which is inherently annoying.

It's our/their only job. ħumanUser talk:Human 01:43, 4 March 2014 (UTC)

I fully expect that the skepticsphere will come here in great numbers to look, and may even shower our legal fund with sharpened pennies. So the greatest threat is well-wishers knocking the bloody server over again.Just wait till PZ gets wind of this. Tralalala ... - David Gerard (talk) 16:01, 28 February 2014 (UTC)

So this is the real deal? As opposed to all previous threats consisting of posts to talk pages going "I'm going to sue!!!111!!!!" Nebuchadnezzar (talk) 16:04, 28 February 2014 (UTC)
I tweeted PZ about it about an hour ago, we'll see if anything comes of that. --Kels (talk) 16:08, 28 February 2014 (UTC)
YOU BASTARD AAAAAAAAAA - David Gerard (talk) 16:37, 28 February 2014 (UTC)
Kent Hovind is like the gift that keeps on giving to sceptics. If he didn't exist, we'd have to invent him. --JeevesMkII The gentleman's gentleman at the other site 16:18, 28 February 2014 (UTC)
A wise fictional character once said you can always judge a man by the quality of his enemies. In this case rationalwiki has managed to seriously piss off one of the most intellectually and morally bankrupt yet influential demagogues in creationist history into launching arguably the biggest attack he is capable of (given his imprisoned condition) against the site. Personally I think all those who have contributed to the article and associated pages should be feeling rather proud of their work right about now. Judge HoldenThe Judge Smiles 16:26, 28 February 2014 (UTC)
I was seriously troubled John doe Author would have to pay a fine here, or maybe I should call him by his real name: Dr. John doe Author. Bismarck (talk) 16:35, 28 February 2014 (UTC)
Don't lawyers get disbarred for taking up baseless cases like this? --Raysenn Get the paddles, he's having a cancer! 16:44, 28 February 2014 (UTC)
Considering each claim about Hovind on the page seems to be backed up by reputable (if not straight from Hovind's mouth) sources, coupled with the aforementioned wiki case and accusations of Libel needing some genuine evidence of malicious and intentional lying in print alone (with cases regarding the internet being so much more difficult to peruse), and finally keeping in mind Hovind's habit of issuing baseless lawsuits in the past....yeah this does seem to be a textbook vindictive lawsuit aimed to scare legally un-savvy people into compliance. Considering Hovind's oft stated contempt for basic freedoms and democracy its not surprising to see him acting like a wannabe authoritarian even in prison. Judge HoldenThe Judge Smiles 16:55, 28 February 2014 (UTC)
Schlafly's still at it. Redchuck.gif Генгисevolving Moderator 17:01, 28 February 2014 (UTC)
You can sue people while you're in prison!? Huh. TIL. --Raysenn Get the paddles, he's having a cancer! 17:14, 28 February 2014 (UTC)
Why wouldn't you? A prisoner still has most of their legal rights, including property, assets, intellectual property, & the right to legally defend any of these. WèàšèìòìďWeaselly.jpgMethinks it is a Weasel 20:05, 28 February 2014 (UTC)
It is easy to show that John Doe never edited Mr. Hovind's article. Sprocket J Cogswell (talk) 17:16, 28 February 2014 (UTC)
He's filing it all by himself, pro se - David Gerard (talk) 17:26, 28 February 2014 (UTC)
Could "Berlin Federal Prison Camp" be the greatest return address ever given on a complaint for libel? Hilarity. -- Codeine (talk) 17:31, 28 February 2014 (UTC)
Why does he focus on February 8, 2014? That was a pretty mundane edit. Is it because it happened to have been made by an editor with what appears to be a real name? TeenageWasteland (talk) 17:32, 28 February 2014 (UTC)
Is David Gerard even his real name!? --Raysenn Get the paddles, he's having a cancer! 17:38, 28 February 2014 (UTC)
Not every reader checks or understands the page history, but the bottom of the page always says "This page was last modified on [date, time]". The 8th Feb revision was the last edit before a BoN blanked some large sections on 19th Feb, the same date as Hovind's letter of complaint. The page this BoN viewed (before editing) would have said "last modified on 8 February 2014" so he or she may have assumed this was the date of posting. Presumably the BoN was - if not Hovind himself - somebody connected with him who either brought this article to his attention or vice-versa. WėąṣėḷőįďWeaselly.jpgMethinks it is a Weasel 20:38, 28 February 2014 (UTC)
That IP resolves to a dynamic address allocated to a CenturyLink subscriber, an American ISP. I suspect that was one of Ken's friends acting on his behalf -- I'm going to laugh extremely hard if Ken tries to use the BoN's wiping as "proof" that RW tried to burn the evidence...before receiving notice of the suit. Of course, it could just be garden-variety wandalism that's of little significance and cleaned up with undo/rollback. Ochotona princepsnot a pokémon 20:01, 1 March 2014 (UTC)
You've got Demyer on the brain. His name is Kent Hovind. Redchuck.gif ГенгисIs the Pope a Catholic? Moderator 07:39, 2 March 2014 (UTC)
I don't know why I kept missing seeing that t. I think it's because I recognize him by "Hovind" and try not to think too hard about the other details lest the stupid be infectious. On that note, Kendoll suing us would just be depressing to watch. Ochotona princepsnot a pokémon 21:16, 2 March 2014 (UTC)
Can we get him to pay our legals fees, should we win? Because that. would. be. awesome.--"Shut up, Brx." 17:53, 28 February 2014 (UTC)
In theory, almost certainly - this suit is as frivolous as a frivolous thing. In practice, the IRS is first in the queue for any money he has - David Gerard (talk) 19:33, 28 February 2014 (UTC)

Obviously he isn't trusted with a printer: he has to write his legal work on a type-writer.... --larron (talk) 17:51, 28 February 2014 (UTC)

Welp, here comes the flood! --Kels (talk) 18:40, 28 February 2014 (UTC)

I love it. The RationalWiki School of Internet Lawyering and Stuff. You guys are great. Nutty Roux100x100 anarchy symbol.svg 21:20, 28 February 2014 (UTC)

And you are? Just mocking and adding nothing. You might want to stay out of this. ħumanUser talk:Human 02:08, 4 March 2014 (UTC)
I've been on the sharp end of enough Intarweb legal threats that I have unfortunately gained a practical understanding of this stuff ... tell you what, escaping unscathed from legal threats from Scientology means NOTHING LESSER CAN FAZE ME (which is why I use my real name everywhere) - David Gerard (talk) 21:25, 28 February 2014 (UTC)

I love the smell of SLAPP suits in the morning. It smells like, Victory. --Revolverman (talk) 21:36, 28 February 2014 (UTC)

Tell me, Revolverman. How much does it cost to pay a lawyer in another state to litigate even a frivolous case through summary judgment? Is that victory? Nutty Roux100x100 anarchy symbol.svg 21:48, 28 February 2014 (UTC)
Sometimes, it doesn't cost anything...if you raise the Popehat signal. Seriously, it's his raison d'etre. --Castaigne (talk) 14:40, 1 March 2014 (UTC)
Okay. Is it a tinfoil Popehat? WëäŝëïöïďWeaselly.jpgMethinks it is a Weasel 15:29, 1 March 2014 (UTC)
Hovind is basically judgement-proof at present; filing pro-se gibberish costs him nothing and passes the time. It is possible he will have money in the future (e.g. from fans), but right now he just isn't effectively sanctionable. Unless we have to properly lawyer up, in which case we could properly propose he be ruled a vexatious litigant. But don't expect that to come easy - David Gerard (talk) 22:14, 28 February 2014 (UTC)
I made an edit that I think makes sense, in terms of summary judgement. [2] Common language versus legal terms and all. ħumanUser talk:Human 02:08, 4 March 2014 (UTC)
Presumably there's a good likelihood we'll be awarded costs if it is basically the case that this gets thrown out in summary judgement? I don't really know how the US court system handles such things. Other than losing for whatever reason, is there any case where we'll actually end up out of pocket here? --JeevesMkII The gentleman's gentleman at the other site 22:31, 28 February 2014 (UTC)
And who would pay the costs? Hovind? He's essentially broke, as I understand it. The state? Not likely. So, even if we win, the costs might remain, or so I gather. Octo8 (talk) 22:38, 28 February 2014 (UTC)
Can we troll Andy Schalfy to take the case? This thing will get only more hilarious and, with Andy as Hovind's lawyer, we'll be guaranteed to win. --Night Jaguar (talk) 22:52, 28 February 2014 (UTC)
As unlikely as this is to happen....I reaaaaaaalllly hope this somehow happens. Judge HoldenThe Judge Smiles 23:32, 28 February 2014 (UTC)
Federal judges in at least some districts, and especially the ones where Federal penitentiaries are found, often examine prisoner lawsuits for facial merit, especially since they're very often accompanied by motions for leave to proceed in forma pauperis. Wait to see if a summons actually issues. - Smerdis of Tlön (talk) 03:44, 1 March 2014 (UTC)
Kent Hovind sues Rationalwiki. James Randi's forum has noticed this. Proxima Centauri (talk) 08:54, 1 March 2014 (UTC)

Something or other is going on with Hovind and PZ Myers now, see Kent Hovind challenges me. Proxima Centauri (talk) 18:47, 10 March 2014 (UTC)

On the merits of Hovind's claims (sticky)[edit]

It is worth drawing attention to this post about the liens:

(3) Hovind's complaint is that the RationalWiki article writes that he filed fraudulent liens to keep the govt from seizing his property; he disputes both that the liens were fraudulent and that he filed them.
The second of those claims is actually so stupid that it's funny. Hovind claims that he couldn't have filed them, since he was in jail when they were filed. He apparently forgot about this letter to the case agent, enclosing copies of the liens he signed. Which liens actually state that "Kent E. Hovind asks that this Memorandum of Lis Pendens be recorded as a lien", and were sent to the County Clerk of Escambia County, FL.
As to the first claim: Hovind notes that the District Court didn't find the liens "fraudulent". It is true that the opinion didn't use that word. Instead, the Court wrote that "Without question, [Hovind's] lis pendens were wrongfully filed" because the properties had already been forfeited and therefore no longer belonged to Hovind. The Court notes that Hovind's actions may well constitute a contempt, and invites the govt to file a proper order to show cause - which it has since done. But no, the Court did not use the word "fraudulent".
What a maroon.

— Unsigned, by: Ghnn / talk / contribs 2014-03-03T01:43:24‎

Regarding "tax fraud," that is the term used by the Pensacola News Journal and even the WorldNetDaily:

Jury deliberations took about three hours. A federal jury has convicted Kent Hovind and his wife, Jo, of tax fraud.

A Florida evangelist who founded a creationist theme park but was accused of tax fraud because he called his employees missionaries and paid them in cash has been convicted on those counts.

There are many more sources that use the phrase besides rationalwiki. Ghnn (talk) 15:19, 3 March 2014 (UTC)

That is gold. Perhaps we should cite those uses in the article - David Gerard (talk) 16:42, 3 March 2014 (UTC)
Added along with the US Tax Court ruling about Jo Hovind's appeal: "The record overwhelmingly establishes that she acted with fraudulent intent". Ghnn (talk) 18:29, 3 March 2014 (UTC)
Absolutely add those cites! And the quotes! ħumanUser talk:Human 02:17, 4 March 2014 (UTC)
A search through Google books for Hovind "tax fraud" produces these:
"A year later, Hovind would be convicted of tax fraud and sentenced to ten years in prison." (Lauri Lebo (2009) The Devil in Dover Page 144)
"Dinosaur Adventure Land, a park whose owner, Kent Hovind, was imprisoned in 2009 for tax fraud, contended that the dinosaurs were all killed by Noah's Flood, neatly explaining their extinction." (Brook Wilensky-Lanford (2011) Paradise Lust: Searching for the Garden of Eden Page 204)
"Capping a four-year criminal investigation, a Pensacola federal court in January sentenced the globe-trotting evangelist minister, creationist activist and businessman Kent Hovind to 10 years on 58 counts of tax fraud, including failure to pay $845,000 in employee-related taxes and threatening investigators." ((2007) Intelligence Report: A Project of the Southern Poverty Law Center, Issues 125-128 pg 4)
"On November 2, 2006, a federal jury found flamboyant young-earth creationist Kent Hovind and his wife Jo guilty on all counts in their federal tax fraud trial." (Reports of the National Center for Science Education, Volumes 25-26)
In chart: Kent Hovind, convictions: "Nov 2003, tax fraud (58 counts), FL. 10 years" (Jennifer Jefferis (2011) Armed for Life Page 80)
If that is not enough there are dozens of blogs all over the net that use the term "tax fraud" of which here are a few examples of those:
"Jurors convicted Kent Hovind on 58 counts of tax fraud last night." (November 06, 2006 "Pensacola Evangelist Who Founded Dinosaur Theme Park Convicted of Tax Fraud" The Rev. Kent Hovind Reporting Blog)
"Hovind is currently serving a ten year prison sentence as a result of a conviction on charges of tax fraud in 2007." (Bob Cull (February 25, 2014) "High School Biology Teacher BUSTED Using Creationist Propaganda To Teach Science Class"--BruceGrubb (talk) 14:13, 24 April 2014 (UTC)

And from Hovind's cellmate[edit]

File:Matthews Libel Suit.pdf - this one filed in Virginia - David Gerard (talk) 00:21, 11 March 2014 (UTC)

Can we get some big city pro boner lawyers like at the ACLU or NCSE or FFRF or something to fight this for us? Might get better press that way. Occasionaluse (talk) 19:24, 25 March 2014 (UTC)
You will be pleased to know your esteemed Board of Trustees is looking into that and alerting useful people to the serious possibility (seeing as dealing with this sorta shit is what the BoT is actually for). The present situation is that there's yet to be an attempt at service, let alone successful service.
The immediate threat model is that Hovind or Otis achieve successful service, and then we have to move quickly, because even ludicrously bogus suits like these would need to actually be dealt with in such a case (and that's the surprise Hovind was trying to spring on us before a helpful RW fan got wind of his suit and alerted us).
The longer-term threat model is that some day we're going to get legal threats from people who aren't hilariously incompetent, so it's a really good idea to get ourselves sorted out now. (Again, BoT's actual job.)
Personally I predict that if we get successful service and need serious help, the skepticsphere will rally to help us. But we do need to plan ahead for this, so we are - David Gerard (talk) 09:56, 26 March 2014 (UTC)
In that respect, the BoT can't quality control the entire wiki. All we need to do is be willing to respond to criticism. In many cases the wiki has responded to that well - e.g., dynamiclear, though that also rested on them not being douchebags who jumped straight to suing. But there have been cases of someone dropping a drive-by article and the subject of the article picking it up and complaining about it faster than regular editors could (suspicious, yes). In that latter case, the BoT can't really just vet every article at the beginning. Scarlet A.pngpathetic 11:24, 4 April 2014 (UTC)
Which is precisely why Section 230 - David Gerard (talk) 12:45, 4 April 2014 (UTC)

Popehat helped PZ Myers. Proxima Centauri (talk) 16:32, 10 April 2014 (UTC)

Another defendant?[edit]

File:Hovind v RationalWiki Case 3.14-cv-00094-RV-CJK Document 4i.pdf - we only have the response to that as yet, but apparently he tried adding another defendant and the court told him to go away and write it in something other than crayon. (Dig the signature - even the judge couldn't be bothered.) - David Gerard (talk) 18:32, 1 April 2014 (UTC)

The document is not double-spaced as required by N.D. Fla.Loc.R. 5.1(B)(3). = Inmate, go back to your typewriter Alain (talk) 19:17, 2 April 2014 (UTC)

Mr. Hovind was in the focus of our interest in March 2014...[edit]

Pages at RW in Mar 2014
Edits per page at RationalWiki in March 2014:
  • only non-anonymous edits are taken into account
  • slices indicate edits by top 10 editors for each page, shaded area the edits of all others

--larron (talk) 20:30, 2 April 2014 (UTC)

By "our", I guess you mean the three single-purpose accounts that are responsible for most of the last 400 edits to that page? WėąṣėḷőįďWeaselly.jpgMethinks it is a Weasel 21:56, 2 April 2014 (UTC)
Plot twist: Hopper89 is bizarro DeMyer. --Raysenn Get the paddles, he's having a cancer! 00:50, 4 April 2014 (UTC)
Why are there two circles for Hovind? Nebuchadnezzar (talk) 07:45, 6 April 2014 (UTC)
One represents the article, the other its talk page (see legend). --larron (talk) 07:51, 6 April 2014 (UTC)

more paperwork[edit]

Mr Hovind notices the RWF is now the RMF, and asks to add RMF as a defendant: File:Hovind adds defendant in RW libel suit.pdf - David Gerard (talk) 09:52, 15 April 2014 (UTC)

Too sticky?[edit]

This section is taking up half the Saloon Bar & only updated sporadically. Can we either unsticky it or move it somewheres else like the Kent Hovind article talk page? ŴêâŝêîôîďWeaselly.jpgMethinks it is a Weasel 11:58, 20 April 2014 (UTC)

Give it its own page (a sub of KH's talk page?) sticky-linked, obviously, from the talk page. Scream!! (talk) 12:15, 20 April 2014 (UTC)
Done. Sprocket J Cogswell (talk) 12:35, 20 April 2014 (UTC)