Harold W. Vadney III is a wannabe translator who lies about his credentials. In August 2007, I exposed him on the now-defunct Network of Independent Linguists’ Discussion Forum. He has now set up a blog devoted to telling lies about me and others. This is my reply. To comment or for further information write to Richard_Benham_AU-StopVadneysLies[at]yahoo.com.

Wednesday, 20 May 2009

Vadney's Wings Clipped (at last!)

Well, he has been asking for it for years, and finally he has achieved it. Not before time, a judge has taken a stand against Vadney’s vexatious litigation. Here is an excerpt from a recent order in the matter of Vadney vs Ross et al (State of New York Supreme Court, County of Greene, Index No 08-1361):
Finally, since Mr. Vadney has a history of abusing the civil justice system by bringing continued actions devoid of merit against the same defendants, he must be precluded from relitigating the same claims and issues and expending judicial resources. Therefore, Mr. Vadney is enjoined from bringing any future actions in the New York State Unified Court System against John Luckacovic, his agents or his attorneys without prior approval of the appropriate administrative Justice or Judge.

There is a similar order with an identical relevant paragraph, mutatis mutandis, in relation to Joan Ross.

Joan Ross and John Luckacovic are neighbours of the Vadney against whom he has filed several vexatious and frivolous suits in the past few years. It is good to see that the judge, Joseph C. Teresi, has finally put a stop to it. For some reason, although there are five defendants named in the recent lawsuit, including myself, the Vadney has elected not to serve on me or the Times Union, and served too late on Joan Ross and Scott Horne. (He has claimed to have served against me at my parents’ address in Australia, although he knew—and even stated on his blog—that I was not living in Australia or anywhere near it at the time. In fact, for several weeks during the period allowed for service, I had my then current street address on the main page of my website, which the Vadney was aware of, having made sneering references to it in his blogs....)

The Vadney did his best to butter up the judge with a couple of blogs devoted to defaming him (thinly disguised as blogs about the legal system in New York State, but somehow almost invariably picking him as an “example”). The astute reader may be wondering why Mr Teresi didn’t disqualify himself from hearing the case. Well, there would have been a bit of a problem finding any judge who had not at some time been the target of scurrilous attacks from the Vadney, often including attempts to have them removed from the bench for alleged misconduct. (“Judicial misconduct”, in Vadneyese, is any decision or action the Vadney doesn’t like. Note that, apart from a few ostentatious references to press articles he has seen, all examples of “judicial misconduct” he ever mentions are in cases to which he is a party, even if he frequently neglects to mention this.)

Reverend Deacon Vadney?

Recently, I had cause to note that the Vadney has been campaigning to have himself made a deacon of the Roman Catholic Church. Now the Roman Catholic Church has attracted a lot of criticism in its time (in this 15th-century German woodcut, courtesy of Wikimedia Commons, for example, note the form of the “golden cup [...] full of abominations” in the hand of the “Whore of Babylon&rdquo). It might have given the world the Crusades (for which, it could be argued, we are still paying in terms of the distrust between the Muslim world and the West), the trade in indulgences and the Holy Inquisition; it may have supported Franco and connived at Hitler; but surely it would not sink so low as to ordain such an odious and loathsome creature as the Vadney? Let us hope not! Deacons can actually make a difference to people’s lives, you know!

Anyway, there is something in common between the Vadney’s attempts to become a deacon and his attempts to win frivolous court cases, apart from the impudence and hopelessness of his efforts. As we have seen, he has been attacking the judge presiding over his case against his neighbours while the case was still in progress, surely not a very politic thing to do. So it is no surprise to find his efforts to obtain ordination accompanied by attacks on his bishop. It seems How-Old has some trouble with people exercising authority over him....

I am in discernment for the diaconate in the Latin rite but I have reservations about our bishop (he's saddeningly liberal) and have discussed seeking dual faculties in both the Latin and Byzantine (Ukrainian) rite with a Franciscan priest and Byzantine archymandrite (is that correct) at our friary.

[Catholic Answers Forum posting 08/01/2009]

We may note that the Vadney describes his bishop as “saddeningly liberal”. We shall have occasion to return to that question later. We may also note his pathetic attempt at spelling archimandrite. It would have taken less than a minute to look it up in an on-line dictionary, but the Vadney is not inclined to show even that minor level of respect for his readers. It also speaks volumes for his level of classical education: doesn’t he even recognize the Greek prefix αρχι- (as in archiepiscopal, to maintain the ecclesiastical tone)? In this regard, I would note his propensity to try to give the appearance of erudition with Latin quotations, which he almost invariably stuffs up. (It must be admitted that the ostentatious interpolation of blundered Latin is widespread on that forum.) For example, another post contains the alleged Latin sentence Laudate Jesu Christi! Perhaps the Vadney would care to explain why he has put Jesu Christi in the genitive...? Didn’t think so; so I will explain: He has lifted the quotation from a longer sentence in which he did not understand the grammatical relationships.

Returning to our muttons, it seems that How-Old has been told he is too old to enter the diaconate. He has made numerous postings to the Catholic Answers Forum about this, some of them addressing the issue of age directly, others just attacking his bishop with greater or lesser degrees of explicitness. For example:
In the meantime, I have received about 130 responses from about 161 dioceses across the USA re: whether the diocese has age limits on vocations (specifically the permanent diaconate).

Interestingly, many of the poorer performers (e.g. my own Albany NY diocese) have caps on vocations.


This is the second post to the thread, which How-Old himself started, on “Scriptural Bases for Agism” (not to be confused with another one of his threads, Scripture and Agism: Any Refuting Passages?). In other words, he was replying to himself. There is no indication in either this posting or its predecessor as to what he is on about, but it seems from yet another thread that he is referring to a report on the per-capita level of ordinations by diocese. He apparently is trying to claim that there is some correlation between the “success” of a diocese in attracting vocations and its lack of age limit. He uses this as a platform for another irrelevant and gratuitous attack on his bishop:
Fr Roger Hunter-Hall and his co-author Steven Wagner, despite what appears to be a methodology problem, have nevertheless produced a very valuable contribution to our understanding of the state of the Catholic Church and the situation of the dioceses and their CEOs, the bishops.

In summary, Hunter-Hall and Wagner, provide us with five very convincing characteristics of the successful bishop:
(1) successful bishops [...].

Hunter-Hall would have been more complete if they were to have enumerated the same number of characteristics of the unsuccessful bishop. I'd like to propose the following based on the Hunter-Hall model of the 5 Characteristics (with the proviso that I am using my own bishop and Roman Catholic Diocese of Albany (NY) as a general model):

(1) an unsuccessful bishop abuses discretion or relies too heavily on underlings or delegates his authority to subordinates in matters requiring his personal pastoral and paternal attention; discretion takes the place of the Holy Spirit;
(2) an unsuccessful bishop is not cheerful or joyful and does not inspire his flock with evangelical enthusiasm and joy in their faith;
(3) an unsuccessful bishop delegates his responsibility for outcomes to subordinates;
(4) an unsuccessful bishop is not personally involved in discernment for vocations and uses discretionary authority as a weapon rather than a tool; he fails in promoting the morale of his priests, ministers, and flock; he fails in his pastoral and paternal obligations and fails in his teaching and evangelization obligations by not inspiring the faithful to build the church, becoming overly focused on ulterior activities;
(5) an unsuccessful bishop accepts the decline of his dioceses faithful, parishes, vocations, ministries and does not take proactive and decisive steps to ensure that his diocese flourishes;
(6) an unsuccessful bishop surrounds himself with administrators and bureaucrats, insulating himself from his priests, religious, and flock;
(7) an unsuccessful bishop is not paternal or fraternal but is arrogant and distanced;
(8) an unsuccessful bishop frequently is too long in the one diocese and is literally burnt out and ineffective;
(9) an unsuccessful bishop becomes the victim of his own unwieldy administrative system and its lethargy;
(10) an unsuccessful bishop does not seek his flock's inputs and concerns; he ceases to himself discern.


Note that the Vadney does not even name his bishop (Howard J. Hubbard), but makes it very clear that the reference is to him, by citing his diocese “as a general model” and referring to “an unsuccessful bishop”. So which bishop did you have in mind, How-Old? This is standard practice for him: he just happens to take Judge Teresi, who heard his case, as an “example” for his attack on the judiciary, just as I was an “example” of an “Internet troll” (I wonder whether he ever worked out what that term actually means), because I happened to be involved in his exposure as an impostor and fraud.

Funny that he should attack the bishop as too “liberal”, though. Does the Vadney know the Roman Catholic Church’s position on homosexuality? His own views seem somewhat “liberal” by comparison, for example:
I am pretty well read in Holy Scripture and would be hard-put to cite any outright statement that condemns homosexuality and those that are interpreted by some as lending support for such condemnation are less than convincing on closer scrutiny.


While not "homosexual" myself, I do know many homosexuals who are pretty well-balanced and would put some agressively
[sic] Christian people to shame in terms of caritas, generosity, faith, etc. I know of some homosexuals who are in long-term relationships that any Christian would be proud of and many Catholic divorcees should have endeavored to have emulated. I know some brilliant and saintly religious who are homosexual. Are all of these to be lumped together and prime candidates for prime property in Gehenna?


One has to wonder why the Vadney has put the word “homosexual” in quotes. Cynics might cast doubt on his disclaimer, pointing out that almost all the Vadney’s public utterances, whether they concern Suzuki dealers, judges, bishops or translators, are self-serving. Those same cynics might even ask why the Vadney posted to the Gay Bombay mailing list. But let us not let such uncharitable thoughts detain us. Let us assume that the Vadney’s threat to stick his “big red dick up [Mr Edward Hayes III’s] ass”, reported in the depositions the Vadney was always promising to post but never did, was some kind of abstruse metaphor. The Vadney provides enough occasion for nausea without the need to delve into his private life. The fact remains that his views are in direct opposition to Roman Catholic doctrine. So why does he even want to be a deacon? Why does he bag his bishop for being “liberal” when his own views (on that particular subject) are so incompatible with traditional doctrine? I think I can answer both questions. The Vadney wants to be ordained to give him a feeling of power and importance, and he is bagging the bishop because he apparently is an obstacle to the Vadney’s latest pet project.

To round off this post, a Latin (mis)quotation of my own....

Ceterum censeo Vadneium esse delendum

Note that I have adjusted the case-endings to fit the change of object. Pity the Vadney can’t do that.

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About Me

I am a professional translator in the combinations French>English and German>English. I hold qualifications from the University of Adelaide (BA, DipCompSc), the Australian National University (LittB), the University of Geneva (Certificat de spécialisation en linguistique), and the the UK-based Institute of Linguists (Diploma in Translation for both my language combinations). I am an implacable opponent of bullshit in all its forms.