Good news!

In the wake of having his fishing expedition of a subpoena against autism blogger Kathleen Seidel quashed, it would appear that lawyer to the mercury militia Clifford Shoemaker and his clients Seth and Lisa Sykes have decided to voluntarily dismiss their lawsuit against Bayer and no longer pursue it.

Of course, that brings up the question of just what the heck Shoemaker’s attempts to dragoon unrelated parties such as Kathleen Seidel and Dr. Marie McCormick into the proceedings with dubious subpoenas was supposed to accomplish. Were such actions a sign of increasing desperation, a parting shot against people the Sykes didn’t like, or a little of both? Either way, there was no excuse for such legal thuggery.

Here’s hoping the Sykes can put this behind them, stop blaming vaccines for their child’s autism, and get back to the business of taking care of their child, a task for which I only wish them the best even despite their hooking up with an ambulance chaser like Shoemaker.


  1. #1 isles
    May 3, 2008

    How I’d have loved to hear that attorney-client conversation. If they’re both as delusional as they seem, it would have been a real lulu.

  2. #2 DLC
    May 3, 2008

    No doubt Shoemaker and the Sykes couple will mutter dire mutterings about the Big Pharma conspiracy and how “They”
    control the courts. Their child’s welfare will remain lost in the shuffle. A sad tale.

  3. #3 Bob Dowling
    May 3, 2008

    Presumably this does nothing to block the court’s order that Shoemaker account for his actions.

    Attorney Clifford Shoemaker is ordered to show cause within 10 days why he should not be sanctioned under Fed R Civ P 11

    That was on the 21st of April, I think, so his ten days are up. If he has to show cause does he need to do it to the open court or just to the judge?

  4. #4 Kathleen Seidel
    May 3, 2008

    To every deadline a few days are added to allow for service of papers. I’m not sure whether weekends count towards the total. Any response should appear on the motion docket, which I’ve been checking frequently. If nothing shows up on the electronic case filing system by Tuesday, I plan to call for an update.

  5. #5 trrll
    May 3, 2008

    It sounds like Shoemaker may be running scared after his abusive fishing expedition directed toward Kathleen Seidel blew up in his face. He may be hoping that he’ll be let off the hook now that the matter is moot. I can’t help wondering whether the Sykes were in accord with the decision to drop the suit, or whether Shoemaker, after leading them on, simply dropped them like a hot potato when it became clear that he might be facing sanctions.

  6. #6 Rev. BigDumbChimp
    May 3, 2008

    Presumably this does nothing to block the court’s order that Shoemaker account for his actions.

    I would hope. Just because the suit has been abandoned doesn’t change the fact that he took that action. Hopefully a judge somewhere is grabbing a very large book.

  7. #7 Athena
    May 3, 2008

    this is definitely good news…….

    but I can’t help but wonder if this voluntary dismissal of the lawsuit…….is done to prevent Shoemaker from being sanctioned for that idiotic subpoena?

    Just wondering, I have no idea whether the two events are connected……..him getting sanctioned and that lawsuit……….

    I hope he gets sanctioned………..


  8. #8 gerald spezio
    May 4, 2008

    Lawyerman Shoemaker’s suit is almost surely not cheap – by definition.

    And his shoes, too!

    Cheap suits offend the scrupulously dressed lawyer/judge who demands that respectful lawyers dress according to their status in the elite industry of the law.

    “In MY COURT, you will dress appropriately – your mystifying professional status demands it.”

    It’s the judge’s court!

    Milking the public requires that the milker gets respect from the cows.

    The corrupt system is still in place and will deliver continued milking.

  9. #9 gerald spezio
    May 4, 2008

    Kathleen Seidel, so glad that you are free of the horrors of lawsuit.

    Here is a true classic and the best analysis of what you have endured.

    “The Practice of Law as a Confidence game,” by Abraham S. Blumberg.

  10. #10 Phoenix Woman
    May 4, 2008

    Athena, see Kathleen Seidel’s comment. The sanction threat does not go away with the lawsuit.

    In the meantime, I highly recommend that those people reading this blog on anything other than Firefox immediately go to the Firefox site and download it tout de suite. Once you do that, go to the Greasemonkey site and download Greasemonkey. Once you’ve done that, go to and get the killfile userscript for Greasemonkey. Whenever you see a post by a troll, you can click on the “hide” or “kill” options next to the troll’s name. Et la voila! You’ll never see the troll’s comments again, from that point forward.

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