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"Stunning": State Court Silences Climate Experts Set to Testify in Valve Turners' Necessity Defense Trial

"Stunning": State Court Silences Climate Experts Set to Testify in Valve Turners' Necessity Defense Trial

Jessica Corbett, staff writer

In an eleventh hour decision, a Minnesota court "eviscerated" the defense of three activists—whose landmark trial began Monday for their 2016 multi-state #ShutItDown action that temporarily disabled tar sands pipelines crossing the U.S.-Canada border—by barring


Please do not call these environmental, heroes “valve turners” I detest that term! That is a pejorative that is a persiflage! A mockery of a serious and brave attempt by these good people to bring attention to the devastation of what fossil fuels are doing to our environment.


From the article:

“I’m baffled by the surreal nature of this court’s decision and timing.”

If I had to guess, I’d say there’s probably a Federalist Society majority—speaking of surrealists—on the court. In general, the necessity defense will work if, for example, you trespass into a burning building to save a kitten; but if you pour blood on FBI records to protest a war, you’re on your own.


This ruling exemplifies a key way in which the “justice” system in the USA is inherently corrupt:

The court claims the right to prevent you from presenting your own actual defense.

In an honest justice system, you can make your own actual argument, and call your own actual supporting experts, without the “approval” of the court. And let the jury of your peers, hear your actual defense, not the defense that the court allows you to present.

A fundamental outrage against justice that goes generally unnoticed and unmentioned.

Love and blessings to the resistance warriors, those on trial and those in support.


Corruption spreads like a bad oil spill. Congress, the presidency, and now the courts are soaked in dirty oil money. We’ll need lots of luck cleaning up this black oily stain on our democracy. Voting is a start but the right is galvanized and, if the last election is a predictor, the left doesn’t think voting is all that important. Wake up people! Voting is the most important thing you can do right now!! Sometimes I feel like I’m preaching to a sleeping choir.


Yes, it should be called what it is: an injustice system because there is nothing just about; it is justice by the golden rule, the the fossil fuel industries have all the gold…so they rule! Thanks for calling these environmental activists " resistance warriors".


An Inconvenient Coup


The legitimacy of every single area of US government is the laughing stock of free societies worldwide. Only they aren’t laughing because the lives of all humans worldwide hang in the balance; theirs, and ours. Our elections, our courts, our foreign policy, our religious fundamentalism, our news media, our legislatures, our rhetoric; every aspect is a complete sham. It would surprise me if something along the lines of NATO was soon to form, imposing trade embargo’s and isolating the US politically was soon to form. Perhaps Europe, China, Japan, and Russia - something like that. Its already begun if you count the Paris accords.


Once the courts are hopelessly corrupted, non-violent revolution becomes impossible.


It may be possible to file an interlocutory appeal to overturn the court’s ruling on trial witnesses. The higher court explicitly allowed a necessity defense, and climate experts are necessary to that defense. The trial court’s order may well negate the higher court’s ruling by making the necessity defense meaningless absent the testimony of the experts. There are possibly procedural hurdles to such an appeal of which I am unaware, but this avenue seems much more efficient and fair than having to proceed through the trial without necessary witnesses and then appealing after the trial is over. Any experts out there on appeals procedures in the state of Minnesota?


Injustice is exactly what it is. The industrialists will have their way until after the coming collapse. Maybe the good will be the ones to survive, I surely hope so or this cycle will repeat, if that. This was a reply to Shantiananda above. I missed the way to use the quote exactly. Sorry.

The courts are corrupted.

Only We the People stand between sanity and chaos.

We are on the doorstep of Revolution.

Don’t freak out when it starts.

Join in and make history for future generations.

The chance may never come again.

“I’m baffled by the surreal nature of this court’s decision and timing.” …

… nothing “baffling” about it …

… it’s called “Sleazy-Whore, Traitorous Republicans” …

Minnesota District Judge Robert Tiffany has invited everyone to his house for Halloween. Trick or treat! Boo Bob!!

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This is an example of more and more injustice coming down the pike as long as the pig headed pricks are in charge of our government. Government has never been the problem but the vast sums of money that has corrupted all of these pig headed pricks and our entire electoral process IS and always HAS been the problem. If we really want a democratic republic we need to publicly fund all elections ONLY. And, term limits, Grassley has convinced me for the absolute need for term limits. To survive our coming climate catastrophe we need to get ALL the UNAWARE old pig headed pricks out of our government NOW! Fight for the future of our children, fight for the future of our grand children. Fight to assure that this planet will be able to support life into perpetuity.


“Justice” is blind

And seeks to keep us all in darkness


Wow, the effect of the now corrupted SuBPrime court of the soon to be home of crazy kavanaugh—well that corruption poison is swiftly spreading through the entire court system. Hmmm so I wonder if Minnesota, the land of 10,000 lakes, figures that with that many lakes--------what’s a little poisoned water? Ha! I betcha Nestle already owns all 10,000.

The judiciary is too politicized to show the way anywhere.

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This is a district court – the trial court – where there is only one judge, so he or she is a majority of one. According to the article, the appellate courts, where there are more than one judge, has already ruled that these defendants can put on a necessity defense. What this trial judge has done is beyond the bizarre – “yes can you put on a necessity defense, but you can’t put any witnesses on the stand to support it.” It’s clearly reversible error in my view.

As to why he did it? Minnesota judges are elected, so the first thing to do is to follow the money and go from there.


No, it just becomes more violent.