Monday, March 13, 2006

Truth and Justice -- Part 1

Over the past year, a story has gradually been developing in my life. I haven't commented on it on this Blog yet, and have said next to nothing about it online or in print anywhere else. I was somewhat wary of publicizing it while it was still going on, as I didn't want to adversely affect the outcome of this story. But as it's beginning to look more and more as if justice will not be done, the only way I can keep the story from having a totally crappy ending is -- in the interest of helping to bring about future justice -- to pursue the truth.

While a friend and I were going over my father's financial records just after his death, we learned that his live-in caregiver had taken literally tens of thousands of dollars from him in advances on her paycheck. It's all there in black-and-white, and she herself described each of these -- in her own handwriting, on the "Message" line of each check -- as an "Advance." Go look it up for yourself. An "advance" is NOT a gift; it is a LOAN. Being from Poland, the woman may try getting cute and claiming she didn't know she had to pay any of it back, but I'm pretty sure that even in Poland, when you borrow money, you are expected to pay it back.

My attorney sent this woman a letter, telling her to turn in the minivan my father purchased for her just before his death. In the letter, he also demands she provide us with a full accounting of the funds she has taken. Of course she must have lied to her attorney and told him that all the checks were reimbursements for household expenses, because that is what her attorney claimed they were in his reply to mine.

By all rights, I ought to be able to blow her right out of the water. We have concrete proof that she took these advances, SHE HERSELF identified them as "advances" on the checks (any competent handwriting analyst could prove this in a matter of seconds) , and if her lawyer wanted to claim these checks were reimbursing her for things she had bought up-front with her own money, he'd get laughed clean out of any courtroom in the country. It defies common sense to believe that my dad would have made her spend seven thousand dollars of her own money to buy anything for the house -- and then get around, only afterwards, to issuing her a check paying her back. Several of these "advance" checks were that large, the smallest was for a thousand dollars, and they're all for nice, round, even amounts. Precisely where, pray tell, might she have had to pay a household expense coming out to exactly even a thousand dollars even (no change, no taxes, etc.)?

Further cooking her goose is the fact that there ARE a large number of "household expense" reimbursement payments on the books. These were MARKED "household expense" on the "Memo" line of the checks (or, more specifically, what the particular expense was: "groceries," "hardware," etc.), and -- as any reasonable person would expect -- they were not only for much smaller amounts (few were even for so much as one HUNDRED dollars, much less one thousand), but they were for odd amounts. We're talking "$59.95," "$32.68," "$12.10" -- y'know, amounts like that.

To this day, the woman has not paid back so much as a single cent. The fact that she lied about even having taken advances shows pretty clearly that she does not intend to pay anything back. There is a name for this. It is called THEFT, and it is a crime. Given the amount involved, I believe the correct term would be GRAND LARCENY.

Now, my dad also lent her daughter $3,500 to buy a car. Of this amount, $2,600 remains outstanding to this day. A further insight into the character of these people (or rather, the lack thereof) is that they don't intend to pay THAT back, either.

Perhaps they can try to claim that since they're from Poland, they didn't realize that when the man who lent you money dies, THEY STILL OWE THE FREAKIN' MONEY. They now owe it to his estate. But I would venture a guess that even in Poland such would be the case. If they had no means of accounting for this sort of thing, they would have no economic system whatsoever.

Lo and behold, my lawyer tells me that there's a wonderful, gee-whiz "Vulnerable Adults" law on the books here in Arizona. But what I am only just now finding out is that families victimized by crooked caregivers are expected, under this gee-whiz law, to hire their own attorney if they wish to seek justice. Tens of thousands have been stolen from my family, and now it's time for Judge Judy!

Let me explain to you what this "law" really does. It rewards thieves for being successful in their thievery. The more money a caregiver is able to steal, the less likely it is that the family will be in any financial condition to seek justice. This is a law that rewards evil and punishes the innocent.

And let's be clear about the consequences of this "caregiver's" actions. My mother is not only an elderly widow, but she suffers from Alzheimer's AND a brain tumor. This woman took tens of thousands of dollars that could have been used to provide for my mom's care. If I want to use the rest of it to fatten some lawyer's pockets, then maybe -- JUST MAYBE -- we can get some sort of a settlement. Few families in the same situation as mine will want to throw good money after bad.

We can sit around and debate all day as to how wise it was for Dad to lend this creature all that money. He liked and trusted her -- just as most victims of a swindle do the con artists who fleece them. He had too much pride to let anybody oversee what was going on there at the end, and his "caregiver" wrote all his checks for him, bringing them in for him to sign. That last year of his life, his macular degeneration was so far advanced that he could scarcely see what he was signing.

Why did I trust her? Because he told me I'd damn well better. It WAS his money, after all, and she had him so totally fooled that he thought he couldn't do without her. He used to tell people that he was alive only because she was there. Any family member who tried to check up on her was banished to the outer wastelands, where there is weeping and gnashing of teeth.

All that said and done, the evidence clearly shows that he thought he was LENDING her that money. Again, an "advance" is a loan an employee takes from an employer, with the understanding that it will be paid back to him out of future paychecks. Not only was this not done, but he very generously paid her even more each month than the amount he received in claim checks from his long-term-care insurance company. She had, as I recall, one sob-story after another as to why she couldn't make do with even twice each month what her salary was supposed to be. As unrealistic as it was for my dad to hope he'd live long enough for her to pay him back (good Lord, I don't think the earth will be here that long), when you're old, sick with both congestive heart failure and lymphoma, dependent, nearly blind and desperate, I suppose hope is the last thing you can afford to lose.

The legislators who put this boondoggle over on the people of Arizona ought to be fired. They are unable to tell even the most basic difference between right and wrong. I am astonished that anyone who knows my story still wonders why I am a Libertarian.

Oh, but look how "pro-family" so many of them are! "Protecting families" by attacking the private-property rights of gays and lesbians and attempting to ruin the lives of their children. What they are is a pack of fiends, and I am going to expose those behind this fraud if it is the last thing I do.

Though many seem not to know the difference, a libertarian is not an anarchist. We don't believe in NO government -- we merely believe in LIMITED government. For crying out loud, if the government is worth even the powder to blow it to hell, it ought to enforce the laws it makes -- WITHOUT treating a major crime as if it were a petty squabble to be settled like a small-claims suit.

Our legislators believe it is their job to persecute innocent people -- again, for the sake of "family values" -- but when a family is ravaged by someone who has betrayed the trust of an elderly loved-one, these gallant "defenders of the family" look the other way. They are so far beneath contempt that merely dumping them in the next election is too lenient a punishment. This is legislative malpractice. It is political quackery.

I suppose I could have fudged this story a tad and said that it happened to "a friend of mine" instead of me. But as I am the LAST person involved in this who has any reason to be ashamed, I'm going to shout it from the rooftops. I can prove every damn thing I said -- and if I have to, I will. The only name I've named here is my own, and in any case, truth is still a defense in this country. I don't believe they've taken THAT away from us yet.

I am not going to shut up, I will not go away, and I have only just begun to expose the filthy frauds who run the government here in Arizona. As long as she has the good sense to steer clear of me, the caregiver probably has nothing further to fear. She stands to gain absolutely nothing by coming forward and identifying herself, and I have no intention of identifying her. Everybody who knows who she is already knew it long before I went public with the story on this Blog. But I will not rest until those who refused to seek justice here are exposed for what they really are: the enemies of vulnerable senior citizens, and the enemies of Arizona's families.

This is shameful beyond belief. Not only have our legislators done NOTHING to protect the families of seniors in Arizona, but they are lying to us all and telling us they have taken action. Arizona politics have been a cesspool for generations. The people who get elected here tend, morally speaking, to be about a dozen notches below child-molester.

I'm at least a hundred times angrier at the con artists who have gotten themselves elected to run our government here in Arizona than I am at the one who swindled Dad. Everybody who screwed us seems to think they're gonna get away with it. Well, we'll just see about that!

I am "coming out of the closet," you might say, in yet another way. I intend to go VERY public with this, and anybody who tries to retaliate against me will have to do it under the glare of the public limelight. The children of darkness, to paraphrase Scripture, hate the light. The quacks who think they're fooling us with bogus "family protection" laws are about to get dragged, kicking and screaming, out into the light. I intend to find out exactly who is responsible for this deceptive legislation, and make sure the citizens of Arizona know just what they have done.

Before I am through with this, you will be hearing it all over the Internet, on the radio, on TV and in the newspapers. This post is titled Truth and Justice -- Part 1 for a reason. Just stay tuned.


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