Deadbeat Dads Rage Against the 'Money Machine' in CA

NCPs and advocates are encouraged to work together to end a splintered movement

Jim Untershine, GZS of LB, 09-04-03

The National Coalition of Free Men Los Angeles organized a rally that transpired on the steps of a Los Angeles courthouse on 08-26-03. The goal of the gathering was to promote unity amongst Father's, Men's, Children's and Family's Rights groups fighting for a common cause. The rally was reported to draw major media attention, including CNN, Fox News, the New York Times, and others.

Speakers at the rally was reported to include President of the National Coalition of Free Men Los Angeles - Marc Angelucci, California gubernatorial candidate - Warren Farrell, nationally-syndicated men's and fathers rights radio talk show host - Glenn Sacks, Executive Director of the American Coalition for Fathers and Children - Dianna Thompson, Coalition for Blacks' Best Interest - Warren Williams, and a paternity fraud victim - Daryl Crismon.

I caught wind of the protest a little too late to clear my calendar on that special day. I was predisposed to enroll my 16-year old daughter in high school and give my 19-year old daughter a ride to her work. I believe that every rally and protest of this type, regardless of turnout or media coverage, is a very important part of American history. Our children will learn of the abuse that their parents were forced to endure, and learn of those who chose to embrace the challenge, to rise up and demand "let our families go". Attendance and support of the Family Law revolution may allow you to point at a picture in your grandchild's history book, and proudly say "Look, that's me, shaking hands with Warren Farrell after I was released from jail following the famous 'Million Deadbeat Dad Surrender' of 2003. I was there, I fought the good fight, and if I didn't, I probably wouldn't be allowed to be with you today".

The Superior Court building that was chosen as the venue for the aforementioned protest was like a second home for me from 1999 to 2002. The deadbeat "cattle call" is a perpetual process that transpires on the infamous 5th floor of the building. I logged 20 court appearances during my 1,000-day ordeal, which allowed me to measure the mood in those hallways jammed with Fathers. The mood is predominately a sense of "despair" and if there was a meter to measure it, that meter would be pegged.

These "deadbeats" are the dads who had their driver's license suspended and their car impounded for 30 days and who might lose their job because of it. These are the dads that already lost their job due to excessive child support garnishments imposed on them in absentia, and would lose their apartment and everything they owned if they waited to get arrested. These are the dads that expect to see a glimpse of due process in Criminal court and expect to be allowed to confront their complainant, and even take their case to the jury box if necessary in their attempt to seek lesser injustice. The reason why deadbeat dads desire a jury of their peers to decide their fate, is the same reason why they are never allowed to have one. Mainstream America is denied visibility into the scandalous Family Law money machine that operates within the Civil and Criminal courts.

I was the deadbeat who was fired by my employer due to excessive child support garnishments. I was the deadbeat who refused to negotiate with a CSE agency that was no longer the legal recipient of current child support. I was the deadbeat who refused to set foot in Family Court to beg for a downward modification until CSE recognized the existing one. I was the deadbeat who was arrested and incarcerated and forced to stay in jail for 35 days before finally being allowed to enter a "not guilty" plea to my criminal nonsupport charge. I was the deadbeat dad on a blind date with destiny, and this time she ordered the lobster.

The price of my freedom was $73,844 on the day of my arrest for criminal nonsupport (8-12-01), the price of my freedom was $144,464 when I pled "no contest" to ignoring a court order (03-15-01), and the price of my freedom was $91,361 on the day of my surrender (05-08-02). During that 1,000-day siege I chose not to pay child support, chose not to remove graffiti or remove trash along the freeway. The conscientious objection and refusal to make crime pay resulted in my 60 day sentence as a high power, K-10, contempt of court keep away, in the Los Angeles County jail's medical wing down the hall from Robert Blake. I was incarcerated for 5 days and released.

The most interesting development during that deadbeat standoff was the complete lack of financial decorum regarding the Los Angeles County CSE agency. Prior to my arrest, a secret default dissolution of marriage set my child support arrearage at $63,165, set my current child support payments at $1,479 / month, and ordered my $32,000 retirement account to be paid to my ex-wife pursuant to a QDRO (Qualified Domestic Relations Order). A month later my ex-wife moved with my 3 daughters up to Carmel, CA and filed for enforcement in Monterey County.

LA County continued to bill me $2,200 / month while Monterey County continued to bill me $1,479 / month. $63,165 + $526 / month interest is all I would ever owe LA County, but they continued to fraudulently double bill me even after I pled "no contest" to ignoring the same court order I was desperately attempting to force LA County to recognize. Although it may seem like I knuckled under, the charge carried a 60 day sentence and I already had 35 days time served (it was a wash). I would have refused probation and surrendered immediately, but the District attorney promised a global solution with LA and Monterey County and promised to reinstate my driver's license. LA County released my driver's license but Monterey County didn't. LA County continued to fraudulently double bill me so, needless to say, I felt justified in refusing to remove graffiti or attempting to become current with child support payments.

On 06-03-01 the LA Times published an article entitled "County child support program's accounting under scrutiny by state", "Inflated figures could affect funding statewide. A private firm is hired to examine the system". The firm to conduct the investigation was Policy Studies Inc (PSI) of Denver, CO. On 12-20-01 LA County issued a credit report specifying my child support arrearage to be $233,957 and $346,053 a month later. On 01-05-02 the LA Times published an article entitled "Reformed child support system termed a success", " Glowing report comes on the two-year anniversary of the state agency that collects court-ordered payments, whose amounts doubled on average per case.".

How many other inactive accounts were toggled to reflect a $250,000 decrease in balance (collection)? Did LA County conspire with PSI to cook the books to deceive Grey Davis, or were they just defrauding the taxpayers?

Jim Untershine, 824 E Pass Rd #3, Gulfport, MS 39507, 562-439-2130,,

Jim Untershine holds a BSEE from Mississippi State University and has 13 years experience in feedback control system design. Mr. Untershine is currently using the Heisenberg Uncertainty Principle and the teachings of Henry David Thoreau (civil disobedience) to expose Family Law in California as the exploitation of children for money and the indentured servitude of heterosexual taxpayers who dare to raise children in this country.