The following concepts and definitions provide guidance to maximize
effective communications using Actions Motions Plus 2K10. These concepts
and terms relate both to the subject and substance of the communication.
The concepts identified here work well in both oral and written
The concentric statements concept is helpful both in writing the
motion and in the strategic subpoena aspects of Actions Motions Plus
2K10. It is easy to visualize this concentric statements concept by
associating it with concentric circles. This concentric statements
concept involves compartments of information, with the most specific
part of the information being included in each successively larger
description of the information. As the name “concentric” implies,
each compartment of information encompasses the information included
in the smaller compartment or compartments it includes.
It is not required that the beginning description start at the
most particularized portion of the information. The initial
description or boundary could be the broadest description of the
information and the last description be the most particular. It is
only important that the end product have an identifiable center or
core of the information which is the most specific description of
the information and each of the other descriptions of the
information in a progression encompass the other descriptions of the
Each progressively larger description of the information will
include a description that includes the information or item included
in the smaller boundary of information.
To more specifically state how this concept works, lets use a very
simple request for information in a Brady type of motion. The
boundaries of the most particular description of information
requested would be a very specific item, the boundary of the next
information would encompass the specific item within the first
described boundary but would include additional very similar items.
The next boundary would include a larger range of information.
However, the description of the information would be broad enough to
include everything in the two previous more particular requests. So
go the bounds of the request until they reach the outer limits of
reasonableness. Obviously we could start the request in inverse
order and the principles of the concept are still operative.
For example, Joe Jones seeks the picture of a gun taken from the
wallet of the victim. Joe Jones seeks all pictures taken from the
wallet of the victim. Joe Jones seeks all pictures taken from the
scene of the crime. Joe Jones seeks all pictures relating to this
case. And so widens the concentric descriptions of the information.
This concept is not limited to a request for information or an
item but can also include the manner in which you describe or
disseminate information. A simplistic example of this use of the
same concentric concept follows. Joe Jones was shot in the hand. The
gunshot wound to Joe Jones's hand created a series of problems.
First he lost use of his arm because of the wound to his hand. After
Joe Jones lost the use of his arm because of the gunshot wound to
his hand he was unable to work. The concept goes much as the nursery
rhyme about the trip to St. Ives. As you remember, it was on the
trip to St. Ives, where first there was a meeting of a man with
seven wives, each with seven cats, each with seven lives, etc.
The benefits of the concentric statement concept in the legalistic
reasoning basic system of advocacy is that you meet the ever
increasing demands of particularity with our encompassing
surrounding descriptions to cover the overlooked or unexpected
possibilities. The benefit to the persuasion basic system of
advocacy is the repeated inclusions of the core description.
This concept of concentric statements can apply to an entire
document or entire oral presentation as well as just part of the
document or presentation. The concept is that the document or oral
presentment will be so multipurpose that it is an ocean with an area
of specificity where a gnat may drink, while at the same time
serving the purpose of providing a bathing place for an elephant.
closely related concept is identified as looping. This simply means
taking a part of a previous statement and including it as part of
the current statement. Sometimes this can be done to move from one
concentric description to the other.
Looping is most frequently used in the direct examination of a
witness. The written use of looping can be much the same as the
following example of looping in an oral examination.
Q: Mr. Jones, did
you get in your car?
Q: After getting
in your car, what did you do?
A: I started the
Q: Now after
getting in your car and starting it, what did you do next?
A: I backed out
of the driveway.
Q: Now after you
started the car and backed out of the driveway, what did you do?
Looping for written documents can be as simplistic as the example
or, more realistically, it can become very sophisticated using the
related concept of cut, paste, accumulate and incorporate. As you
imagine this means taking a previously used document and importing
parts of it or the entire document into the new document. This can
be done by identifying the previously used material or by simply
reusing the material without identifying its previous use. News
articles are good material to be incorporated. Often law enforcement
officials made statements to the media about the case that can be
The benefits of this looping and cutting, pasting and
incorporating in communicating both orally and in writing in the
persuasion basic system of advocacy are that the essential
descriptions of the information to be conveyed is repeated.
repeaters can derive benefits similar to looping. This term,
repeaters, is used to describe the multiple use of a word, sentence
or phrase to start a new paragraph or expression. Needless to say,
the repeaters should be buzzwords.
information that needs to be communicated. Drip, by drip, by drip,
continue to percolate the information or request until your
communication has saturated both your opposition and the other
triers of fact. To percolate the information means simply to create
a vehicle whereby you can continuously pound your point across. This
concept has an application within a single document as well as
throughout the litigation.
apparently opposite end of the spectrum from the percolate concept
is the bomb concept. This is when you deliver the big surprise for
dramatic effect. Just as important as the effect of the drip by drip
continuous delivery of information is the Big Bomb impact of
devastating information. After using the information for the bomb,
the same information can become even more beneficial when used as
subject for the percolate concept.
“teasers,” as the television and radio industry call this concept,
heighten the anticipation of the next motion.
the opposing party that you plan to act in a particular case can
demonstrate fairness to the trier of fact. This warning is most
often effective in the form of a letter.
contained in the dragnet clause of financial documents is
considered to be the outer limits of all-encompassing descriptions
of information. These dragnet clauses are in most of your client's
loan documents that pledge security as collateral.
clause in security agreements often reads as follows.
Or any renewal of the whole or any part thereof and any and all
other indebtedness now due by grantor to grantee or hereafter
incurred by grantor, whether directly or indirectly, as principal,
endorser, guarantor, or otherwise.
security agreement dragnet clause includes all future financial
obligations incurred by the borrower to the lender. The clause is used
by lenders to obtain as much protection as possible.
legalistic reasoning basic system of advocacy there is substantial case
law in most every jurisdiction that supports various forms of dragnet
clauses and description. The use of this case law to meet the
criminal proceedings requirements of particularity is valid.
additional concept before we venture into heart of Actions Motions
2K10. This is the “May I be heard?” concept.
times during proceedings when rulings or statements by the Court seem so
outrageously unfair that our frustration causes us to react with a
“B-B-But Judge!” or a, “You can't do that!”, statement as a
preface to a oral motion. Reactions like these do not satisfy the
dignity of the courtroom, and often so anger the judge that there is
little or no opportunity to obtain a fair reconsideration of the court's
ruling. The frustrations that accompany an unjust ruling can be relieved
just as effectively and with a better chance of both prevailing and
creating an adequate record if we habitually respond with the phrase, “May I be heard?” There are probably no words that better preface
efforts to protect due process any more directly as any problem arises
than, “Your honor, may I be heard?” If you are denied your request
to be heard, the next response should be a request to make an offer of
proof. The injustice in being denied these basic rights solidifies the
showing of a violation of rights for post-conviction review, and
measures the true unfairness of the proceeding.
basic communication skills dictate that any lengthy communication have
the components of an introduction, body or detailed statement and a
summary. Tell `em you're coming, arrive, and then tell 'em you have been
there. Then remember, return again, again and again. When
the people in the courthouse call you “Duracell” you are getting the
All of the
terms described in this section are buzzwords that identify the style of
communicating best suited to accomplish the goals necessary for the
representation model you use.