Author: James Collins
You might have heard that Peter Reynolds is suing people. That’s what litigious, slimy conmen do; they wield the law as a cudgel against those who would stand up to them.
It’s the same behavior that truly powerful people in our world engage in, but on the pettiest of levels. This is because the con artist is addicted to power. They want to be in control, they want to manipulate your perceptions and dictate the rules of engagement. They want to hold the reins, but because they aren’t truly powerful they must engage in acts of petty tyranny to get their fix.
Sometimes, however, they fall off the carriage.
So there it is, Peter filed him some lawsuits and then got smug. It was easy to assume that it was only a matter of time before Peter won. Launching spurious lawsuits had silenced some of his critics, who had more respect for the process that was initiated than Peter did. This created the illusion that they were afraid of Peter. This was never the case, but that dark cloud has hung over the heads of a few decent people for months.
Well we can all see clearly now, can’t we?
The first decision in those court cases was actually a settlement. Alun Buffry, activist and author, decided that rather than spend countless hours navigating the complex legal system as a litigant in person, he would sign a settlement agreement with Peter. It was the most costly agreement to disagree in the history of activism to my knowledge, costing Peter Reynolds over two thousand pounds to obtain. For a guy who calls himself a proud Tory he doesn’t seem to grasp the concept of fiscal conservatism.
This probably felt like a victory to Peter. It wasn’t. Alun is a pacifist and by nature he avoids conflict when at all possible. Since he already had little to nothing left to say on the subject of Peter Reynolds and CLEAR, this wasn’t hard for him to sign. In fact, it doesn’t even stop him from making statements about those things – it only prevents him from discussing Peter’s personal life. On his end Peter must agree to do the same.
The functional gag is on both parties. Alun won as much as Peter did. It was a draw, except that Peter was the one who got to pay out a small fortune to obtain it. Peter can’t say Alun should cut his beard and Alun can’t say Peter shouldn’t whip his dick out on the internet. With that kind of payoff on his investment Peter no doubt assumed that the rest of his cases would go gangbusters, because he’s a little slow that way.
Enter Sarah McCulloch. Now I enjoyed a little giggle at the prospect that Peter Reynolds was foolish enough to sue this young woman. Having encountered her in activist circles I can say without reservation that Sarah is easily amongst the five most intelligent people advocating for legalization in the United Kingdom. Peter is playing a little out of his league.
Actually, to be more accurate, he might as well have challenged the alumni of the Manhattan Project to a mathletics competition.
Sarah had previously written in her blog about what a racist, misogynist, arrogant, abusive dickhead that Peter has been both to her and others. He now-infamously referred to her as a “genetically confused half-woman half-werewolf” in one post, because I suppose he felt that was a scathing indictment of her criticisms. Then in his infinite wisdom he decided that of the two parties involved in this exchange he was the one who had been victimized.
Peter is very, very stupid; and probably smelly.
As this rather public clash escalated in scale Peter finally decided that he would head on down to the Royal Court and file a spurious lawsuit against her. He filed without representation ostensibly because he couldn’t afford a lawyer, but I speculate because nobody who managed to pass the bar would be irrational enough to touch his case with a ten foot pole. It appears that his plan was to tie her up in litigation while he rebuilt his shattered reputation, rather than to actually obtain any compensation out of someone who is a student. He has not been allowed to do as much, largely because he has more enemies than he can afford to sue. Also, because he’s not capable of doing anything productive enough to make himself appear like anything other than a bumbling joke of a man.
The litigation dragged on, with Peter sending letters to Sarah all but begging her to let him win the case and give him money. Seriously, he did that, check out the letter for yourself. There is a copy here but I personally recommend that you take in Sarah’s blog post on the topic. It’s a fantastically good read, aside from being a cautionary tale for anyone who has ideas of using lawsuits as a means to control the course of public discussion.
Peter had actually tried to drop this lawsuit, quoting “mental illness” as his reason; his assertion being that Sarah was just too crazy to be held accountable for her actions. You like how he does that? Even when he is capitulating victory to the opposition he frames it in defamatory terms. This is the fucking guy who has the audacity to sue people for their criticism, and all the while he continues to engage in the behavior he claims to be above. It wouldn’t make credible fiction!
This was his excuse, but I personally suspect he had other reasons for withdrawing in the way that he did. In the interest of accuracy, Sarah has been diagnosed with a form of autism, but this does not qualify as “mental illness” and indeed has not prevented her from pursuing educational and professional goals the likes of which Peter could only fantasize about. If anything you could say that Sarah has turned what some would term a “disability” into an asset and carved a place for herself in the world that takes advantage of her nature. At her young age Sarah has already accomplished more than the aging Peter will ever hope to, and she’s still in school. I imagine that upon reading her doubtlessly detailed and accurate defense of the subject matter he realized that he had entered into a battle of wits woefully unarmed. He assumed at that point he could drop the case unceremoniously, having wasted both Sarah’s time and the resources of the courts.
Not so much.
It seems that when you do start suing somebody, drag them through the process of responding, and then fuck off without further contact, you have to pay the person you did that to. It is considered an abuse of the legal process to sue people simply to inconvenience them like this, and in order to discourage such the courts like to award damages to the focus of spurious litigation. That is what they did in this case.
So, in short, Peter Reynolds spent thousands of pounds to tie up Sarah McCulloch in litigation for illustrating just how much of a racist, misogynist, homophobic, anti-Semitic, low-down dirty slime bag he really is. This venture failed. Not only did he forfeit the cost of filing that action in the first place, he now has to pay that amount or more directly to Sarah herself for his arrogance.
Isn’t it sweet? It’s like Hitler choking on gefilte fish.
I have received countless emails here at PRW from supporters of Peter, one in particular, who have boasted to no end that “the scumbags” were silenced by the brilliant strategy employed in this conflict. They have attempted to bait, harass and ridicule on the basis that the law would soon exonerate Peter of any charges of bigotry and then all would be well in the world of CLEAR. I quietly allowed them to rack up hubris points so I would have the chance to do this: HA-HA!
What does CLEAR and the allies thereof have to say about this development? A big, fat, hairy, sweet fuck all. They are offering no comment, and in fact censoring any reference to the issue on both the CLEAR site and UKCIA, the barren wasteland maintained by Derek Williams which has been so arrogant about this subject in the past. After spending almost a year bragging, boasting and bullshitting about the impending victory of Biblical proportions they have fallen mysteriously silent.
I guess silence tells the tale, doesn’t it?
Peter still has more defeat to look forward to. In the case of Sarah McCulloch it was a matter of two litigants in person facing each other down. That was silly of Peter, because Sarah is his intellectual and academic superior in absolutely every way. In the lawsuit against Chris Bovey he has an even bigger hurdle to overcome, the fact he is suing a man with the resources to hire really badass representation. Peter can’t win against a woman in her 20’s with no legal training that essentially used the power of Google and her own savvy to undo his bullshit. If that is the case you have to surmise that his attempts to win against the best libel lawyers in the business will be his Stalingrad.
What’s next for Peter? Well, for starters, he’s going to be rolling a lot of pennies to pay off Sarah McCulloch. If the tone of his letters begging for her capitulation can be interpreted in any way, that would be that Peter is pretty fucking hard up for working capital. The four suits he filed, only three of which he has successfully served cost him damn near ten thousand pounds just to initiate. So far he has gotten an agreement to disagree, and a judgement of costs awarded to the defendant of another.
Just wait until he has to pay posh lawyers to beat him in court. If he thinks the costs awarded to a litigant in person are painful he’s going to learn a whole new level of desperation and poverty after the law firm is done sucking his bank accounts dry. I imagine it’s only a matter of time before he appears in a video on his blog, ranting about the lizard man conspiracy against him, sweating and covered in a mixture of whipped cream and human feces.
To summarize: A bigoted, loudmouth, stumbling drunkard who spews venom and bile out of every orifice decided he would sue an intelligent and accomplished young woman for calling him on his bullshit. This dreadfully poor judgement now means he will have to pay her enough money to have kept him swimming in cheap hooch for the better part of a year.
Good show, Peter; well-played.