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You Know It's True, Otherwise Bonds Would Sue...

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Re: You Know It's True, Otherwise Bonds Would Sue...

Postby Art Vandelay » Fri Aug 17, 2007 11:21 am

knapplc wrote:It makes sense - if he's innocent and all these people are slandering him, then he could sue the pants off of them, right?

stepsinsc wrote:Odds are he won't sue, and for the same reason he didn't sue the authors of the "Game of Shadows:" because it's all true.


This is simply not true. It is nearly impossible for a public figure to win a libel suit. Bonds would have to prove a lot more than that the charges are false to win a libel suit. Even if everything in the book were false, he would have almost zero chance of winning a suit.

Also, this most recent claim is just postering. There's no chance he actually files suit against Schilling, nor should he.
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Re: You Know It's True, Otherwise Bonds Would Sue...

Postby AcidRock23 » Fri Aug 17, 2007 11:40 am

Bloody Sox wrote:Bonds vs. Schilling in court would be the highest of high comedy. I pray for it to happen!


+1. Ideally, it would need to be on Court TV or perhaps Judge Judy or Mills Lane? It would pwn all other celebrity trials in terms of the personality clash(es) that could erupt.

"Next witness, Pete Rose"

"Next witness, Dock Ellis"

"Next witness, José Canseco"

"Next witness, Rafael Palmiero"

the list could go on and on for weeks... :-)
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Re: You Know It's True, Otherwise Bonds Would Sue...

Postby Dan Lambskin » Fri Aug 17, 2007 2:42 pm

AcidRock23 wrote:
Bloody Sox wrote:Bonds vs. Schilling in court would be the highest of high comedy. I pray for it to happen!


+1. Ideally, it would need to be on Court TV or perhaps Judge Judy or Mills Lane? It would pwn all other celebrity trials in terms of the personality clash(es) that could erupt.

"Next witness, Pete Rose"

"Next witness, Dock Ellis"

"Next witness, José Canseco"

"Next witness, Rafael Palmiero"

the list could go on and on for weeks... :-)


if anything Palmiero should sue Canseco for slander/libel ;-7
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Re: You Know It's True, Otherwise Bonds Would Sue...

Postby Tavish » Fri Aug 17, 2007 3:13 pm

stepsinsc wrote:Odds are he won't sue, and for the same reason he didn't sue the authors of the "Game of Shadows:" because it's all true.


When it comes to Slander or Libel it doesn't matter if it is true, unless it already is proven to be true. Since Bonds' steroid use hasn't been proven as true, then the Judge/Jury in the Slander case would have go on the assumption that Bonds is innocent. This wouldn't be a trial of whether or not Barry did PEDs, it would be a trial of whether Schilling attacked Bonds' character with his opinion.
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Re: You Know It's True, Otherwise Bonds Would Sue...

Postby AllStar215 » Fri Aug 17, 2007 3:42 pm

Tavish wrote:
stepsinsc wrote:Odds are he won't sue, and for the same reason he didn't sue the authors of the "Game of Shadows:" because it's all true.


When it comes to Slander or Libel it doesn't matter if it is true, unless it already is proven to be true. Since Bonds' steroid use hasn't been proven as true, then the Judge/Jury in the Slander case would have go on the assumption that Bonds is innocent. This wouldn't be a trial of whether or not Barry did PEDs, it would be a trial of whether Schilling attacked Bonds' character with his opinion.


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Re: You Know It's True, Otherwise Bonds Would Sue...

Postby stepsinsc » Fri Aug 17, 2007 4:14 pm

Art Vandelay wrote:
knapplc wrote:It makes sense - if he's innocent and all these people are slandering him, then he could sue the pants off of them, right?

stepsinsc wrote:Odds are he won't sue, and for the same reason he didn't sue the authors of the "Game of Shadows:" because it's all true.


This is simply not true. It is nearly impossible for a public figure to win a libel suit. Bonds would have to prove a lot more than that the charges are false to win a libel suit. Even if everything in the book were false, he would have almost zero chance of winning a suit.


Zero chance? That's an overstatement. It's not impossible for a public figure to win a defamation suit. Actual malice, while an arguably unworkable and constitutionally flawed analysis, is not unobtainable by plaintiffs. Simple recklessness would suffice. Bonds' biggest problem is that he couldn't even prove falsity, which would have to be shown before malice. But assuming he could, why couldn't he prove recklessness? Arguably, the authors relied upon the words of a spurned ex-mistress. And given the added motivation from the fact that one of the most "sacred" and "hallowed" records in all of American sports was involved, why couldn't a straight-faced argument be made that the book was written with a degree of recklessness? In fact, there were several statements in the book that made me raise an eyebrow: such as when the authors made sweeping generalizations that no one could put on 15lbs of muscle in an off-season. Anyways, with regards to Schilling's comments, given his past propensity to brashly speak out a much better case could be made for recklessness on his part.

You're right he couldn't win, but I disagree as to why - not because it's impossible even if he was clean, but rather because he wasn't clean. The most interesting thing in Game of Shadows, in my mind, are all of the verifiable statements that Bonds' made to the press and sports journalists. These comments show such an unbelievable sense of detachment from reality, narcissism, and egotism that they provide all the motive to use steroids that one could possibly need. Schilling may be a jerk, but his comments were almost spot on. There's quite a large mountain of circumstantial evidence that Bonds used, and little evidence that he didn't (known to the public - other than some general amorphous idea of "innocent until proven guilty"). That's the reason he doesn't bring suit: he'd be opening a floodgate that he and his attorneys can only hope will remain closed forever.
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Re: You Know It's True, Otherwise Bonds Would Sue...

Postby stepsinsc » Fri Aug 17, 2007 4:22 pm

Tavish wrote:
stepsinsc wrote:Odds are he won't sue, and for the same reason he didn't sue the authors of the "Game of Shadows:" because it's all true.


When it comes to Slander or Libel it doesn't matter if it is true, unless it already is proven to be true. Since Bonds' steroid use hasn't been proven as true, then the Judge/Jury in the Slander case would have go on the assumption that Bonds is innocent. This wouldn't be a trial of whether or not Barry did PEDs, it would be a trial of whether Schilling attacked Bonds' character with his opinion.


Truth is always a defense in defamation cases, so it does matter if the statement is true. And there is no requirement that the statement has to have been proved as true in another legal proceeding. So yes, it would become an issue of whether Bonds did PEDs. Because if a statement is true, it can't be defamatory. This isn't true with some invasion of privacy claims for statements made concerning a person, but those are inapplicable here.
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Re: You Know It's True, Otherwise Bonds Would Sue...

Postby knapplc » Fri Aug 17, 2007 5:28 pm

Tavish wrote:
stepsinsc wrote:Odds are he won't sue, and for the same reason he didn't sue the authors of the "Game of Shadows:" because it's all true.


When it comes to Slander or Libel it doesn't matter if it is true, unless it already is proven to be true. Since Bonds' steroid use hasn't been proven as true, then the Judge/Jury in the Slander case would have go on the assumption that Bonds is innocent. This wouldn't be a trial of whether or not Barry did PEDs, it would be a trial of whether Schilling attacked Bonds' character with his opinion.

I'm not going to pretend to be an expert in Libel suits but doesn't Bonds merely need to show that he has been damaged by Schilling's comments? I thought it was enough to show that Schilling's comments created a situation in which Bonds suffered some loss, whether that be financial, relating to "prestige" or any other such thing. Someone can attack my character whenever they want (First Amendment?), but if it doesn't cause me harm then I'm not going to prevail. In order to prevail Bonds would have to show that he has suffered some sort of loss, like less autograph sessions or even just a simple lessening of his public persona.

I just think it's interesting that everyone has been saying (me included, probably but I dont' recall) that if Barry hasn't used then he should sue for Libel, and here he just might. I would have to say that he probably will, otherwise this is a pretty silly thing to put out for the press to chew on.
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Re: You Know It's True, Otherwise Bonds Would Sue...

Postby Tavish » Fri Aug 17, 2007 6:11 pm

knapplc wrote:
Tavish wrote:
stepsinsc wrote:Odds are he won't sue, and for the same reason he didn't sue the authors of the "Game of Shadows:" because it's all true.


When it comes to Slander or Libel it doesn't matter if it is true, unless it already is proven to be true. Since Bonds' steroid use hasn't been proven as true, then the Judge/Jury in the Slander case would have go on the assumption that Bonds is innocent. This wouldn't be a trial of whether or not Barry did PEDs, it would be a trial of whether Schilling attacked Bonds' character with his opinion.

I'm not going to pretend to be an expert in Libel suits but doesn't Bonds merely need to show that he has been damaged by Schilling's comments? I thought it was enough to show that Schilling's comments created a situation in which Bonds suffered some loss, whether that be financial, relating to "prestige" or any other such thing. Someone can attack my character whenever they want (First Amendment?), but if it doesn't cause me harm then I'm not going to prevail. In order to prevail Bonds would have to show that he has suffered some sort of loss, like less autograph sessions or even just a simple lessening of his public persona.


I think you are misunderstanding what I said by focusing on just part of the quote. You definitely have to prove malice or damage by the statement, but I was referring to the need to prove if Schilling's statements were based in fact or opinion.
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Re: You Know It's True, Otherwise Bonds Would Sue...

Postby Tavish » Fri Aug 17, 2007 6:17 pm

stepsinsc wrote:
Tavish wrote:
stepsinsc wrote:Odds are he won't sue, and for the same reason he didn't sue the authors of the "Game of Shadows:" because it's all true.


When it comes to Slander or Libel it doesn't matter if it is true, unless it already is proven to be true. Since Bonds' steroid use hasn't been proven as true, then the Judge/Jury in the Slander case would have go on the assumption that Bonds is innocent. This wouldn't be a trial of whether or not Barry did PEDs, it would be a trial of whether Schilling attacked Bonds' character with his opinion.


Truth is always a defense in defamation cases, so it does matter if the statement is true. And there is no requirement that the statement has to have been proved as true in another legal proceeding. So yes, it would become an issue of whether Bonds did PEDs. Because if a statement is true, it can't be defamatory. This isn't true with some invasion of privacy claims for statements made concerning a person, but those are inapplicable here.


Truth is the best defense. But if I claim that Bonds "was found guilty of using steroids" then proving he used steroids in the Defamation case doesn't really come into play. Schilling's statements are a little more borderline than that. I'm not sure how leaked Grand Jury testimony is handled in a defamation suit, but Schilling's statement that Bonds' legal team is up in arms about is:

Curt Schilling wrote:“I mean, he admitted that he used steroids. I mean, there’s no gray area. He admitted to cheating on his wife, cheating on his taxes and cheating on the game."


The first part about steroids is defensible assuming the GJ testimony can be used, but I'm fairly certain Bonds never admitted to the taxes and wife parts.
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