The Strawman Arguments
The Courts have had it with the Strawmen and now it is time to get with the program
Strawmen come from all walks of life. They come from a broad section of society usually unhappy with how the system has treated them. It is often a last ditch attempt to escape from financial hardship but often just opportunists. The Meads case was about the consequences of a simple divorce, but, in contrast, Hollywood actor Wesley Snipes used OPCA arguments during a tax evasion case and is currently serving a 3 year prison sentence as a result of his approach to dealing with his tax debt.
The beginning of the end of the Strawman argument came with a decision that will affect businesses, governments, and the litigation across Canada, and perhaps the rest of the world. Associate Chief Justice Rooke of the Alberta Court of Queen’s Bench has addressed a vexatious group of litigants who have plagued the Canadian legal system with their arguments that they are not subject to the laws of Canada.
The Court has named these people “The Organized Pseudolegal Commercial Argument litigants, or OPCA litigants for short.” To some, OPCA litigants may be better known by various labels such as Detaxers, Freemen-on-the-Land, Sovereign Citizens, and many others.
OPCA litigants are known for refusing to recognize bills, debts, tax assessments, or any other legal obligations. They frequently disrupt court proceedings in an attempt to escape from the laws of this country.
These Strawmen are part of a world wide believe that they are born free of the law and do not sign up for it. Although their arguments have been universally dismissed when presented in Court, OPCA litigants have never been effectively recognized as a defined or collective group warranting a coordinated response.
Now in the latest round; Justice Rooke’s comprehensive 188-page judgment in Meads v Meads, 2012 ABQB 571, appears to be the first decision anywhere in the Common Law world to thoroughly debunk every known Strawman strategy.
Justice Rooke references a vast collection of legal authorities upon which his decision provides a universal “go-to” authority to assist in the effective dismissal of OPCA claims at the beginning of any proceedings.
Because the Strawman argument has frustrated the system, this new ruling gives lawyers a powerful toolbox of legal remedies to use to protect parties against the typically high costs of defending vexatious cases.