Art Pedroza has declared an end to the Orange County blogs wars and made himself a martyr to the cause.Â While it’s all great theater, it’s a song many of us have heard before.Â There isn’t a blogwar with the Orange Juice and Art, but there is the matter of a pending lawsuit.Â
And here I find myself correcting the record and reminding readers of facts of the case and will note Art’s multiple misrepresentations of the truth to suit his own purpose.
Â Seriously.Â How many times must we believe that Supervisor Janet Nguyen conspired with Ryan Trabuco to sell me a domain name once used by Art’s run for Santa Ana City Council?Â I’ve never met Supervisor Nguyen. I have never spoken with her.Â She has nothing to do with the lawsuit.Â My mother was in town last week for my son’s graduation and I had a post up Art had penned about the lawsuit.Â She asked me if what he wrote was true. My response was “this is the site I read to find out stuff I allegedly did that I had neither the time nor inclination to do.”Â It’s always nice to make your mom laugh.
Â So, here’s our fact check of Art’s “mea culpa” post from last week that never includes the words, “I’m sorry” or “I apologize” or “it’s my fault.” Instead, Art paints us all with the same brush and claims we share the blame for this situation. The reality is we acted within the confines of the law and he has not.
Â Let’s start with his images of torture victims, on their knees with a hood and headphones to cut off sensory perceptions.Â Oh please. And I have some fairgrounds in Costa Mesa I’m happy to sell you cheap.
Â Art wrote: “I am supposed to go tomorrow to the office of Todd Gallinger, the attorney the guys from the LiberalOC hired to sue me over what really amounts to a frivolous case.”
Â The truth: Art blew off a meeting to determine why he refused to turn over a single document for discovery purposes.Â We now have to pursue a court order for said documents which increases the legal costs of the case and Art could be cited for sanctions by the court which can include mandatory fines and, in rare cases, jail time.Â And this case is NOT frivolous. I’m fortunate to live in a neighborhood with several lawyers, all of whom have read the file and believe it’s an excellent case well managed by our lawyer.Â Nice job Todd & team.
Â Art wrote about trying to find a lawyer and coming close, but the lawyer didn’t know the law.
Â The truth: Art doesn’t know the law. His legal options are limited because he wants someone to represent him for free.Â No defense lawyer is going to do that. And even if he got representation, that lawyer would likely recommend Art accept our settlement offer. And Art having a lawyer would speed up the case.
Â Art wrote: “A few months ago, they were asking me to fork over $10,000. ”
Â The truth: It was $15,000; next month, it’s $20,000.Â And as the legal costs increase due to Art’s delays, the costs of the settlement increase.Â He could have settled months ago for $5,000 and gotten “his” domain back.Â
Â Art wrote: “I have made overtures to the Liberal OC bloggers, to no avail.”
The truth:Â Every settlement offer from Art includes no offer of reimbursement of legal fees and requires us to “give” him “his domain, give Sean Mill “his” domain (Sean’s not part of the suit, and I don’t own it), requires us to delete the posts related to Art’s financial troubles with the lawsuit for credit card fraud and his pending home foreclosure, and delete the posts and YouTube video related to his linking of contested domains to NAMBLA and gay porn.Â All for three years of free advertising on the Orange Juice Blog. Would you take that deal?
Â I have to wonder if Art is bi-polar.Â About a month ago, we went from offering to buy me lunch in an attempt to settle the suit to telling me to screw myself because he wouldn’t settle in about three days.Â Now, he’s claiming to take the high road for ending the blog wars and promises to “get off the hate train.”Â Must be refreshing to view life from the high road when you have a documented track record on playing in the gutter for so long. And as for “getting off the hate train,” well, there goes the conductor.
Â I especially like the line about how Art admits he saw red when he found out Ryan Trabuco sold me “his” URL.Â The closest he’s come to an apology was admitting he was wrong in “returning fire.”Â But one of the growing number of “former friends of Art” has already told us Art boasted about looking forward to profiting from the sale of those domains he acquired.Â And with Art’s well-documented financial difficulties, it’s easy to prove a motive for cybersquatting.Â And, as Claudio will point out later, why did Art go after Claudio Gallegos, Chris Prevatt and this blog when Ryan and I were the ones involved in the transaction?Â I can understand him wanting to go after me or Ryan.Â Does Art still own “MayorMiguelPulido.com” and all those domains related to Janet Nguyen? And what does it say about a person when your (former) friends (plural) are suing you?
Â The multiple paragraphs about how it’s not OK to go to a candidate’s house even if they are carpetbagging, and how it’s not OK to disclose someone’s personal financial troubles, and how it’s not OK to call someone’s employer to try and get them fired because they blog, etc.Â Art forgets to mention his blog and his bloggers (Tony Bushala’s visit to Harry Sidhu’s house counts since he cross-posts at OJ) have all done these things.Â But Art and his team clearly don’t like eating their own dogfood.Â Art wants to end the blogwar, but reserves the right to go after anyone who’s a consultant or an elected official, which is clearly his excuse to continue personal attacks on Matt Cunningham.Â Heck, I reserve the right to go after Matt on issues, but Art’s attacks on Matt are far more personal.
Â In comments, Art goes to great lengths to emphasize he is a blogger, not a journalist. But in his response to our discovery filings, he is claiming a journalist’s right not to disclose certain documents citing a shield law.Â Journalism shield laws are designed to protect anonymous sources on stories; there is no story at issue here.Â So on the blog, Art isn’t a journalist, but for legal filings, he is.Â Which is it?
Â Art also has launched an effort to have his friends contact us to get us to drop the suit and claimed a number of Democratic Party officials have joined the effort.Â The truth is, we got three calls — two from OJ bloggers. The common thread – all three didn’t know all the details of the lawsuit and didn’t know we made a settlement offer to Art that he has refused, but asked us to drop the case anyway.Â
But Art clearly subscribes to the “perception is reality” school.Â I have not received a single inquiry from a Democratic elected official or Democratic Party official about the case.Â President Barrack Obama could call me himself, and I’d ask him to mind his own business regarding this legal matter.Â In fact, most of the calls and emails we have received are from people urging us not to go soft on Art.Â Not to give him a clean slate by which to smear his political enemies with the bile Art lectured one of his commenters on in his Friday post. I’d caution any elected official or candidate about being perceived as being sympathetic to Art; we all know how well that worked out for Steven Choi, who’s assembly victory was guaranteed by Art.
The lawsuit was necessary, otherwise Art would never have given up those domain names.Â We are moving forward with the suit as planned.
Art Pedroza’s legal and financial troubles are of his own making.Â The lawsuit will not put Art out of his home.Â He was well on his way down that path when the lawsuit was filed.Â Remember readers, we’ve only published a few of Art’s hate-filled taunting emails.Â There are dozens more you haven’t seen.Â For Art to say he acted out of character for him on this manner is, in my opinion, inaccurate.Â I believe he acted completely in character.Â
For those friends of Art who want to help him, open your checkbooks and help him raise the money for the settlement.Â Art says he’s not mounting a defense.Â He doesn’t really have one having admitted to most of the material facts in the case.Â We have emails Â from him conflict with some of his answers on discovery.Â All he needs to do is sign papers from my lawyer admitting to the charges, pay the settlement fee and apologize.Â
I suspect the last item is considerably more difficult for him than the second one.