Saturday, January 30, 2010

A Tale of John Edwards: A Poem About A Politician and Adultery

"A Tale of John Edwards"
By Richard Goolsby
John Edwards--Is he just a politician
Whose morals were lax?
Please pull up a chair,
As we examine the facts.
Son of Senaca, South Carolina,
From a poor ma and pa,
John earned a law degree
From the N.C. School of Law.
His career shot high,
Just like a shuttle rocket,
John could make jurors cry,
While he picked their pockets!
John earned millions from trials,
He was set for life.
John began a family,
With Elizabeth, his wife.
But John yearned for more,
This "giant among men,"
"Why not try politics,
With my Jimmy Carter grin?"
In '98, John first won
When he ran for the Senate,
He made more women swoon
Than Buble to Bennett.
John was as slick a politician
As politicians can get.
John was so slick he could swim
Without getting wet!
Then, in '04, John lost
As Kerry's running mate.
Then, he lost again,
On his own, when he ran in '08.
His true colors were clear,
No if's, ands, or buts,
We all saw his hypocrisy
With his two hundred dollar haircuts!
In his hypocritical campaign
About "Two Americas,"
One day, out of the blue,
There..."She" was!
That day, John met Rielle,
A young film producer,
Did he think it was wise
When he began to seduce her?
How low did John go
When he began to romance her?
Should you consider he left home
A wife sick with cancer?
An affair in hiding,
A marriage defiled,
A career in ruins,
A little love child.
Still lower did John go?
How much did it bother
When he first denied the affair,
And then, that he was the father?
Did he make a sex tape?
Will the feds eat his dinner?
Will an aide's "tell-all" book
Make John a loser or winner?
Now, you can decide,
Is John a lecher, or a faker,
A player, or a cheater,
Like in the Benatar song, "Heart Breaker?"
Or will you decide
We should forgive and forget?
Is John Edwards no worse
Than the Clintons we've met?
As for me, it is clear
About this grinning "mouse among men,"
I never want to hear
About John Edwards again!

Friday, January 29, 2010

Divorce and Not Believing Everything You Hear!

Do you want some good advice? The advice is: Don't believe everything you hear! This advice is particularly true in divorce or child custody cases. If you aren't careful, you may get some really bad information "out there."
Believe me, as a divorce lawyer, I know what I am talking about. Every day, we get telephone calls and email from people who have questions about divorce, adultery, child custody, or some other aspect of Georgia family law. (Our divorce attorneys offer a free initial consultation to anyone who has a question about divorce, so, as you can imagine, we get a tremendous number of calls). And one thing we have learned is that there is a lot of bad information "out there" which people sometimes rely upon to their detriment.
For instance, I recently received one telephone call from a person who wanted to know if it is true that, in Georgia, you can no longer get alimony. Also, another caller wanted to know if it is true that, in order to prove adultery in Georgia, you have to catch your spouse and their lover in bed. In each case, we carefully answered "no" and discussed what it takes to get alimony, or to prove adultery.
The bottom line is that you can't believe everything you hear about divorce law, or about anything else! Instead, you should consult with an experienced divorce lawyer before jumping to any conclusions! And that is the best possible advice I could give to anyone today!

Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Divorce: Elizabeth and John Edwards?

By now, we all know all about the allegations made against former Presidential candidate, John Edwards, concerning his alleged adultery while he was running for President and while his wife was cancer-stricken. We also all know that, initially, he allegedly tried to get an aide to claim that he, not Edwards, had actually had the affair and had gotten his paramour pregnant. We also have all heard about Edwards' denials that he was the father of her love child, only to recently hear Edwards confess that he is, in fact, the child's father.
Now, it has been reported today, by numerous sources, that Elizabeth and John Edwards have finally separated. Who, on the planet Earth, could possibly blame Elizabeth Edwards if she has, in fact, finally kicked him out? What would you do?
Is this the end of the story? Will other shoes drop? What, if anything, will happen in the on-going federal criminal investigation concerning whether or not Edwards improperly used campaign funds to pay his paramour?
'Nuff said...for now.

Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Divorce, Child Custody, and "Bad Mouthing" Your Spouse In Front of the Children

Divorces are often emotional, traumatic experiences for adults. And divorces can be particularly traumatic for children of divorce. If you are going through a divorce, what can you do to make it easier for your children?
Child psychologists and other experts have written extensively about this topic and offered many solutions about how to make your divorce less traumatic for your children. But in this post, I simply want to focus on one good idea: Do not disparage, or "bad mouth," your spouse in front of the kids!
As divorce lawyers in Augusta, Georgia, we generally recommend to all divorce parties to include such language in every settlement agreement or parenting plan. We simply want to encourage everyone, (including your worthless spouse, "Sluggo"), to agree not to talk badly about their ex-spouse in front of the kids.
Isn't this a good idea? Is it so hard to follow, for your kids' sake?

Friday, January 22, 2010

Divorce Movies: "Along Came Polly"

Okay, after a serious post about cops and divorce, let's get a little bit lighter with another post about......divorce movies! The 2004 comedy classic "Along Came Polly" is another one of my favorite divorce-related movies! (In fact, I enjoy most of Ben Stiller's and Jennifer Aniston's comedies!)
Obviously, not many people in real life confront the problem of their new spouse going to bed with a scuba instructor while on their honeymoon! But the movie does address some problems which divorcing couples often face. For example, Stiller's character, Reuben Feffer, must address the problem of dating again after a break-up. (As a divorce lawyer, I would recommend to our divorce clients that, unlike Feffer, they wait until after their divorce is final before they begin dating...unless it's Jennifer Aniston, of course!) I also found it interesting that Feffer had gone along with his spouse's love of fluffy bed pillows, until after his break-up and introduction to Polly Prince, (Aniston's character).
Have you seen this movie about divorce? Didn't you enjoy it? Could you relate to any of the hilarious situations confronted by Reuben Feffer?

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Divorce and Police Officers

"If she doesn't work out, I'll just get me another one." Imagine my shock a few years ago upon hearing a state law enforcement officer, (who was not a client), make this brash statement about his FIFTH wife! Now, I realize his statement raises all sorts of issues! But the point I wanted to make here today is about the serious problem of police officers and divorce. Do you agree that, generally, the stress and nature of police work causes more divorces in that profession?
The statistics seem to support this conclusion. According to the Police Dynamics Institute, the divorce rate among police officers is 60-70% higher than for civilians. Also, police officers reportedly have the highest domestic violence rate of any profession.
So, assuming these reports are accurate, what can be done to help combat these problems? First and foremost, I would recommend higher salaries for law enforcement officers. Better pay might help address the financial stressors which affect police officers' marriages. Also, I would suggest that police departments abandon rotating shifts, which might have an impact on some officers' marriages. (Absence doesn't always make the heart grow fonder, does it?!) Finally, more police departments should promote more family-oriented cook-outs and other family get-togethers. This idea doesn't cost a lot and, who knows, it might help save some couples from the clutches of divorce lawyers!
Do you have any other ideas about how to help save more police officer marriages from divorce? No matter what, I suspect we will all agree that there are no solutions to help the state law enforcement officer, (described above), who boasts that "if she doesn't work out, I'll just get me another one!" Some people just don't get it!

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

Uncontested Divorces: What They Are and What They Aren't

As you know, if you and your worthless spouse, "Sluggo," can get an uncontested Georgia divorce, as opposed to a contested divorce, then it should save you a lot of money, because you probably won't have to go to court. However, "going uncontested" doesn't work for everyone. In other words, sometimes Sluggo won't listen to reason and won't sign a settlement agreement and the other uncontested divorce documents. And generally, that is what is required for an uncontested divorce, i.e. both parties must agree to all the terms and sign all the documents prepared by your divorce lawyer. If Sluggo won't promptly sign all the documents, or if he wants to negotiate child custody, property division, or other matters, then, by definition, it is NOT an uncontested divorce.
Here are some examples of other situations which are NOT uncontested divorces:
1. It is simply uncontested that you both want a divorce! Unfortunately, that is not enough for it to be an uncontested divorce! Again, both parties must ALSO be willing to sign all the documents, too!
2. It should be uncontested that you are right! Simply knowing, in your heart, that you are correct about who should win your child custody battle does not make it an uncontested divorce.
3. It should be uncontested that you will win. Sorry, but while you may ultimately win in court, if you must go to court, then, by definition, it is a contested divorce!
4. It is uncontested that your spouse, Sluggo, is worthless! Again, I am sorry! While that may be true, it doesn't make it an uncontested divorce! Now, if you can get Sluggo to sign all the documents, then it IS an uncontested divorce! And if Sluggo will sign, then maybe it's also uncontested that he isn't totally worthless after all!

Friday, January 15, 2010

Celebrity Divorces: Dennis Hopper

According to news reports, actor Dennis Hopper, who reportedly has been fighting prostate cancer, has also filed for divorce against his wife of 14 years. This is reportedly the fifth marriage for the 74 year old actor. He has had a very long, interesting Hollywood career.
You might want to check out Wikipedia, or numerous other internet sources, to read more about Hopper's impressive acting and directing resume. It is amazing! He actually starred in "Rebel Without a Cause," (in 1955), with actor James Dean, and, of course, "Easy Rider," (in 1969), with Peter Fonda. Two of my other favorite movies of his include "Hoosiers" and "Speed." I also liked his performance in "True Crime." But the list of his fine work is virtually endless!
Here's hoping that things work out for the best in both of Mr. Hopper's current battles.

Thursday, January 14, 2010

Divorce "Joke of the Day!"

Okay, usually, we at The Goolsby Law Firm, LLC try to give you some good practical information and tips about Georgia divorce law to discuss with your own divorce attorney. But today, it's time to simply have some fun with another divorce "joke of the day!" (Tell this joke to your divorce lawyer!)
Do you know how bananas get a divorce? The simply make a "banana split!"
I know. I know. Some of you are saying, "When are we going to get a real divorce joke?!"

Monday, January 11, 2010

My Experience As A Juror

Earlier in my career, when I was a federal prosecutor, I had an experience which has helped me tremendously as a divorce lawyer. I was actually summonsed and selected as a juror in two Augusta, Georgia divorce cases!
I was shocked that any of the divorce attorneys would want me, another lawyer, to sit as a juror in their cases. I don't remember much about one of the two cases, but, as to the other, I recall that we really stuck it to a wayward husband who had dumped his spouse for a "sweet young thing," after his spouse had worked hard helping him to build a nursery and landscaping business. I am confident that his lawyer wished that he had never put me on that jury! But I was thrilled to get selected and learned the following lessons from my "jury experience:"
1. Prospective jurors get tired of sitting and waiting! By the time I was chosen as a juror, I was already "bored out of my goard!"
2. Jurors expect the trial lawyers to be prepared and professional. I also learned firsthand, as a juror, that jurors get frustrated when a trial lawyer fumbles around with documents and appears to be unprepared.
3. Finally, I learned that jurors sometimes wish lawyers would get to the point and sit down. This is probably the most important lesson I learned as a juror. As a result, I have always tried, since then, as a trial lawyer, to be so prepared and organized that I can avoid wasting time, and can get to the point, and sit down!
Have you ever served as a juror? What did you think about the lawyers who presented the cases? What do you think about your own jury experience?

Friday, January 8, 2010

Divorce and Domestic Violence: When Do you Take Back An Abusive Spouse?

Divorce lawyers don't always have all the answers! I certainly don't! For example, consider the situation of actor Charlie Sheen, as recently reported in the news.

According to news reports, Mr. Sheen and his wife are now trying to reconcile and work out their issues. The couple have two children and, according to published reports from her attorney, they hope to get past the "bad night," when he allegedly held a knife or made threats against her. Aside from published reports, no one really knows what happened in that situation. And arguably, it is no one else's business, is it? I suppose we all should hope that they can work out any problems they may have between them.

But what about other situations in which domestic violence occurs? In other words, if you were a victim of serious spousal abuse, would you ever "go back" and give your spouse another chance? Would you insist that your partner seek counseling as a condition of returning? Also, should it matter whether or not you have children? Of course, children are often victims of an abusive marriage, too, aren't they? There are so many questions in family law matters, like these questions, which can be difficult to answer!

Wednesday, January 6, 2010

Divorce: Yelling and Jailing!

Have you heard about the latest trend from Paris? No, I am not referring to the latest fashion trend! Instead, I am referring to the new French law which apparently criminalizes yelling at your spouse! Believe it or not, the new law, which purportedly attempts to outlaw "psychological violence," can lead to fines, restraining orders, and even jail time for violators in that country.
In my opinion, this is just another one of those "good ideas," on paper, which don't actually work in real life. For instance, it will, in most cases, be difficult to prove it occurred and it will always be virtually impossible to enforce. Moreover, it will inevitably lead to all sorts of subjective interpretations about what constitutes illegal yelling, or "psychological violence." On the other hand, wouldn't it be nice to call the police and get "Sluggo," your worthless spouse, locked up the next time he yells at you?!
What do you think?

Monday, January 4, 2010

Divorce: A New Record

How did you start the new year? A man in Jerusalem has reportedly begun the new year with a record eleventh divorce! He also reportedly indicates that he likes to get a new spouse every couple of years! Here's hoping that your new year starts out a little bit different! Don't you agree?