The California Supreme Court Has Agreed to Hear My Case Against the LA Times

Against long odds, the California Supreme Court has granted my Petition for Review. We are asking the high court to vacate the LA Times’ abusive anti-SLAPP motion against me as granted by the two lower courts. The successful Petition was drafted by my attorneys Jeff Lewis and Roger Lowenstein.

Breaking precedent where newspapers are usually on the side of free speech, seven First Amendment organizations issued amicus briefs against the Times and its billionaire owner, Dr. Pat Soon-Shiong. These groups are:

Association of American Editorial Cartoonists

Cartoonists Rights Network International

Comic Book Legal Defense Fund

Index on Censorship (UK)

National Coalition Against Censorship

National Writers Union

Project Censored

Thank you SO much to these groups and their members for their courageous support in my struggle against censorship by the police.

Both sides will file briefs in preparation for oral arguments.

This is a momentous day.

As many of you know, I have been fighting the corrupt LAPD-LA Times alliance, two billionaires (Austin Beutner and Soon-Shiong) and a media establishment that refuses to cover my case for fear of losing anti-SLAPP protections if I prevail. My first attorney bailed on my days before a key hearing and I was forced to represent myself before finding Jeff and Roger. Both lower courts ruled against me, ordering me to pay the Times–the criminals!–hundreds of thousands of dollars.

Even the LA Times Newspaper Guild refuses to acknowledge my existence–because they’re sucking up to Soon-Shiong.

Now all that may be about to change. No one knows how the California Supreme Court will rule, but generally speaking they don’t agree to hear appeals from the Court of Appeal unless they believe something has gone seriously wrong and needs to be addressed.

I have gone from believing that my case was almost lost to believing that we will probably win, and then go to trial where I will finally have my case heard by a jury.

Thank you so much to those of you who always stuck by me and believed in my case. I will never forget you; I will always be there for you. Thank you.

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About Ted Rall

Ted Rall is the political cartoonist at ANewDomain.net, editor-in-chief of SkewedNews.net, a graphic novelist and author of many books of art and prose, and an occasional war correspondent. He is the author of the biography "Trump," to be published in July 2016.

21 thoughts on “The California Supreme Court Has Agreed to Hear My Case Against the LA Times

  1. Right on, Ted! That’s wonderful news i was not expecting. Admiring your bravery and tenacity.

    Joe Ondrechen

    • Nor was I! Thank you. I can’t recommend this fight to anyone. It has taken a toll on my health, my soul, my career, my friendships. But I couldn’t abide what they did.

      • Perhaps I’m straining a point too far, but I don’t think it damaged any of your friendships. Your friends don’t walk away from you when something like this happens. It might sting to find out how many hypocrites were attached to you, but I speak from personal experience. The people who left you–as Emily Post would have said–with your ass in the wind and your dick in your hands were not your friends. I can count my real friends on the fingers of one hand. I used to think I had a lot more.

        And when does the court announce the next date? And be real, real careful Ted that you aren’t “accidentally” pulled over and shot seven times in the back of the head with a six-shooter in an apparent suicide between now and then.

        I also wonder what vintage wine will be best for the depositions to come. Should I lay in a supply of Pringles chips, or would that be too obvious a metaphor?

      • Of course you’re right. I didn’t lose any friends, I merely found out that some of the people I thought were friends really were not.

        Billionaire theme: a wine from Austin Texas mixed with Dr. Pepper might be best.

      • Been there, done that. I sued a former employer, and it was illuminating to see how quickly my friends didn’t stand up for me.

        I talked to a former boss who I thought was my friend, a guy who made lots of noise about how he was independent of the company, had a big pair and didn’t care what anybody in management thought. He told me he’d be happy to tell the truth and nothing but.

        Got him under oath and he told everything but. He couldn’t remember things we talked about a few days before, stories he’d told for years, etc. I thought he was going to stand up and start singing the Corporate Anthem. I lost all respect for a man I’d formerly had a lot of respect for.

        Yeah, it’s a lot to ask for someone to endanger their career for you. They’ve got bills to pay and mouths to feed. But I have been in the situation of standing between management and people who work for a living and I did stand for my people in spite of the damage it might have done to my job/career. (and it probably did.) At least I can look myself in the mirror. I wonder what former boss thinks of his hyprocracy.

  2. Jesus Jumping Christ. Are you sure you read it right, Ted? Maybe you went insane? I can’t believe you got them to review the case. I am so happy for you.

    • Ha, thank you, I had to read it three times! I can hardly believe it. Such a reversal. You know, when I win this shit, I need to throw a party for you and my other regular Rallblog commenters.

  3. One correction. You call the Times “criminals.”
    I believe the word you wanted was “pricks.”

  4. Especially pleased, as I imagine you also are, Ted, to see the Association of American Editorial Cartoonists stepping up to the plate. About time !…

    Best of luck – I hope that even your foreign readers, who persist, like those dastardly Russians, in interfering in US political affairs* (placing as we are told, a puppet of Gospodin Putin in the Oval Office) – by daring to comment upon them, will be invited to the party if you win….

    Henri

    *I propose a deal – I promise to stop interfering in US affairs if the US promises to stop interfering in those of my country. But given the record of the US government with regard to the agreements it signs and ratifies, I’ll have to find some way to see to it that it is enforced. Unilateral imposition of tariffs, for example ?…

    • I am very pleased that the AAEC and so many other organizations decided to support true press freedom rather than what the LA Times is arguing for, the right of large media corporations to fire and smear journalists in retaliation for criticizing the authorities.

      While the LA Times might have been able to credibly argue that their first publication of libel against me was the result of an innocent mistake, there’s no way to justify the second publication three weeks after they learned that the first one was false. Once they received the enhanced audio, they had a moral and legal obligation to take it seriously. Instead they engaged in a lame “cover your ass“ maneuver to avoid admitting what they had done: fired and lied about me in order to do a big favor for the LAPD and to send a chilling message to journalists thinking of criticizing the police.

      It’s impossible to know exactly what went through the minds of the judges in Los Angeles, but clearly the court based in San Francisco, the state supreme court, sees that this is not the kind of behavior that should be allowed to go on.

      Pure speculation but given how little attention the judge is in Los Angeles paid to the law — at this anti-SLAPP stage they were supposed to assume everything I said was true but in fact assumed that everything I said was false — I think they decided to side with powerful local entities, the LAPD and the LA Times, rather than an out-of-state cartoonist.

      You will probably not see anything about this in the media. Anything positive about me in this case will likely not be reported. Everything that was negative, my previous losses at the lower courts, of course were reported.

  5. Excellent, Ted!!!

    May the drive of your courage and integrity finally bring
    success in the struggle to publicly identify & expose the
    unadulterated, conspiratorial, criminal pricks.

  6. BOOYAH!

    Wonderful news, only wish it was all over if when they decide in your favor.

  7. As I find it not entirely unrelated to this topic, Ted, let me here thank you for your letter to the New York Times in support of the journalistic work of Julian Paul Assange, who was arrested by British police outside the Ecuadorian Embassy in the UK earlier today. Perhaps the most striking thing about the commentators’ thread is the large number o fposters who claim to support the work done by Daniel Ellsberg in making public the secret documents of those who rule the United States (as far as I know, Mr Ellsberg didn’t release anything about the Soviet leaders), but who in no uncertain terms condemn Mr Assange’s actions in doing the same. In doing so, they conveniently ignore Mr Ellsberg’s own views on Mr Assange and his organisation, as expressed less than a week ago in this video clip : https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PenS3lfJ9gY….

    All whistleblowers are equal, but some are more equal than others ?….

    Henri

    • PS : My own comment on this New York Times article, which addresses the points I make above, can be found here….

  8. While being able to look oneself in the mirror is paramount, so is retaining a few walls to hang that mirror on… excellent news, congratulations, I’m almost moved to regain a smidgen of belief in the system 😉

  9. Congratulations, Ted.

    I’m late to your good news because I’ve been fixing a hole where the rain gets in

    And stops my mind from wandering
    Where it will go

    You are amazing, Ted!

  10. I realize Ted’s probably doing a lot right now because of the California Supremes decision to review–making sure he’s got enough servings of crow to go around, for instance, laying in a supply of shovels so that he can clear away all the bullshit the other side’s gonna throw his way, etc.–but I would be fascinated to see if anyone in MSM finally, “at long last” starts reporting on this goddamned thing. If any of the regulars spot an article, if you could post a link in a visible spot ….

    • I doubt it. The way this has gone so far, all news negative to me has been reported and exaggerated. News favorable to me has been subjected to a news blackout.