Ohio Judge Tim Grendell Is Popehat's Censorious Asshat of 2015

The votes are in. With a commanding lead of 10.2% over the nearest challenger, Ohio Judge Tim Grendell is Popehat's Censorious Asshat of 2015.


Congrats, Judge Grendell.

Honestly Grendell wasn't my choice. But I can see how he won: he's emblematic of the vapid pettiness of power. Grendell abused his contempt power in a fit of pique at insignificant criticism and offered smug Youtube-commenter-level justifications when challenged. Like many censors, he wraps himself in the First Amendment when it suits him. Electing Tim Grendell isn't about just Tim Grendell; it's about how many censorship stories are the result of authority conferred upon mediocre minds and small spirits. Never stop fighting them.

Last 5 posts by Ken White


  1. Lagaya1 says

    I wanted to email a congratulatory message to him, but it seems his "contact" links don't work right now. I wonder why.

    Good choice, everyone!

  2. skaysee says

    For anyone who would like to congratulate Judge Grendell, his email is Grendell@co.geauga.oh.us

    Many of us in Ohio would like to see some ceremony attached to this award. Ken, do you have any interest in traveling here to make a presentation? So far, we've had a mild winter. If not, some sort of certificate, presentation, fanfare, publicity would be much appreciated.

    Thank you. Ken, for writing about Grendell in the first place, and thank you Popehat voters for making a great choice!

  3. Alex says

    His lead over the nearest challenger (the goddam college students on your lawn) is 8.6 percentage points (which are worth distinguishing from percent), not 10.2.

  4. Wesley says

    Perhaps the Honorable Judge should be sent something like this?

    I didn't vote for him, but he is a worthy winner, especially considering his doubling-down on the justification for his petty tyranny.

  5. albert says

    @Ken, et al,
    Even though I'm kinda disappointed that Bharara & Velamoor didn't win, Grendell would have been my second choice.

    May we all rally around that choice, and make it unanimous? Then the certificate can read "all XXX readers supported you for Asshat of the Year."

    With 3D printing becoming common, could someone design a trophy, perhaps a butt with a dunce cap? Once designed, it's relatively easy to cast copies in any medium, including a big one with individual name tags, like those sports trophies.

    Then only pictures need be distributed.

    A picture is worth a thousand words.

    . .. . .. _ _ _ ….

  6. Ryan says

    Being named after a monster of legend might have worked in Grendell's favor. Better (worse?) luck next time, goddamn kids on Ken's lawn.

  7. Howie says

    "Apart from the original stay, has anything come down from the Ohio Court of Appeals about this yet?"

    A week before Kasich announced he was running, and a deal was brokered by a retired big shot judge and Grendell dismissed the contempt against McArthur and the appeals case was supposed to be dropped. Don't know if that happened. But I do know, Grendell is known for trying to silence anyone who speaks out against him, both in his court and outside of it. Some things about politicians are only found in the community news. And, some things that happen in the secrecy of a juvenile court will never be made known by anyone involved. What a convenience that is.

  8. Anonymous says

    "Show me the money." That article doesn't say if the Appeal was dropped but I assume so since the fees were paid by the Commissioners. Wonder Why they changed their minds? So called Constitution Party members. LOL!

  9. Michael James Cobb says

    The Damn College Students On Your Lawn ™ are deeply offended by your exercise of privilege and demand that your site be converted to a re-education facility.

    Please forward your grovel to any administrator at Yale.

    Thank you.

    On a far more serious note, the DCSOYL ™ are a vastly greater threat to free speech than some asshattery judge. Their "thinking" is something that will color society for years to come. Don't you agree?

  10. BlueDanube says

    On a far more serious note, the DCSOYL ™ are a vastly greater threat to free speech than some asshattery judge. Their "thinking" is something that will color society for years to come. Don't you agree?

    The DCSOYL are simply a reflection of how out of touch with civil rights the legal system has become. The third branch is a CULT on all levels. The cult's members, lawyers and judges, are out of touch with civil rights because they give up their precious civil rights to be members of the cult. It is that simple. Beautifully simple. That is why Judges are abusing their power! The core reason has yet to be dealt with. Disband the cult people!

    I have a friend who is an attorney, who confirmed for me what I think about all this, and his answer with regard to changing it? "We aren't going to see things change in our lifetime." My answer to him? "No, not if lawyers themselves who understand how bad it really is, continue to sit on their hands about it. Money and greed are more important to them than fundamental rights and justice."

    My friend also told me he has to attend fundraisers and contribute to campaigns of potential and incumbent judges from both parties, just in case they win, so he can find favor with the dictators. And oh yea, he called them dictators. Oh my gosh, he violated the oath of the cult by speaking the truth to me! And we wonder why the truth is hard to come by nowadays, except through venues like Popehat.

    Life in America has become one big flipping sales pitch. Snake oil salesmen used to be looked down upon. Now we seem to crave them as a people, and so they are abundant.

  11. Anonymous says

    Given the history of retaliatory tactics in Geauga County politics, people who voted anonymously may be hesitant to comment publicly on this. The buzz that is surely following this will most likely be private. Geauga folks attempting to post their gratitude here anonymously is not likely, given the per capita income. Just sayin'.

  12. Czernobog says

    "On a far more serious note, the DCSOYL ™ are a vastly greater threat to free speech than some asshattery judge. Their "thinking" is something that will color society for years to come. Don't you agree?"

    Well, firstly, even if I did agree, you pun… er, reward, people for what they've done, not what you think they will do, that seems pretty basic to me. And what they've done so far isn't nearly as bad as what Bhara and Velamoor did.

    Second, I'm not convinced that their attitude will color society for years to come to such an extent. In the real world, these people aren't quite as coddled because unlike universities, society isn't a business that makes money out of keeping them happy. Consider shirtgate, for example. The backlash to Matt Taylor's detractors was far greater than their outcry, and in the end it was probably the best thing to happen to his friend's shirt-making business.

  13. Brandon says

    Wasn't my first choice, but definitely deserving.

    On another semi-unrelated note of judicial (over?)reach, IANAL, but I have a question for you, Ken. I know you've covered before when a judge tries to put someone in contempt or have them arrested (can't remember which) for protesting across from a courthouse on a public street, but can you tell me whether it's outside their jurisdiction if they protest by growling on the courthouse steps?

  14. Czernobog says

    I wasn't a reader yet back in 2011, was Obama in the running for the assassination of Anwar Al-Awlaki that year?

  15. Howie says

    This page is very informative as far as how bad it has gotten. The family/juvenile civil courts are harbingers for people whose consciences are numb and who are drunk with power. https://www.facebook.com/JusticeForTsimhoniChildren/?fref=photo

    What happened to the press being watchdogs over the courts? No such thing unless it is a case that will contribute to readership/viewers and so, advertising. The bottom line is the bottom line. Fortunately, the internet is still free.

  16. Eric says

    Thank you for bestowing this honor on Judge Grendell. It is well deserved as he is a despicable man who truly enjoys living his fantasy of ruling over his own kingdom as the final arbiter. Several commenters have asked whether the Court of Appeals has ruled on one or two cases that were appealed. What is interesting to note is his wife has been on the bench at the 11th District Court of Appeals since 2000. Obviously, she would have to recuse herself from litigation involving her husband, but the remaining justices are her colleagues that must work with her throughout the year.