This piece will be a bit different. A case from a decade ago has helped bring a particular type of vexatious litigant to the public’s consciousness: Organized Pseudolegal Commercial Argument (OPCA) litigants.
A bit of a disclaimer: this isn’t to suggest that everyone who employs such techniques does so for an underhanded purpose. There are true believers out there.
The case referenced is Meads v. Meads, 2012 ABQB 571 (CanLII). The facts themselves aren’t really as interesting as the background research that has been done in preparing this ruling. It contains a wealth of information from tactics and habits of such OPCA. litigants. While there is typically some truth in what they espouse, it’s rarely the full story.
 This Court has developed a new awareness and understanding of a category of vexatious litigant. As we shall see, while there is often a lack of homogeneity, and some individuals or groups have no name or special identity, they (by their own admission or by descriptions given by others) often fall into the following descriptions: Detaxers; Freemen or Freemen-on-the-Land; Sovereign Men or Sovereign Citizens; Church of the Ecumenical Redemption International (CERI); Moorish Law; and other labels – there is no closed list. In the absence of a better moniker, I have collectively labelled them as Organized Pseudolegal Commercial Argument litigants [“OPCA litigants”], to functionally define them collectively for what they literally are. These persons employ a collection of techniques and arguments promoted and sold by ‘gurus’ (as hereafter defined) to disrupt court operations and to attempt to frustrate the legal rights of governments, corporations, and individuals.
 Over a decade of reported cases have proven that the individual concepts advanced by OPCA litigants are invalid. What remains is to categorize these schemes and concepts, identify global defects to simplify future response to variations of identified and invalid OPCA themes, and develop court procedures and sanctions for persons who adopt and advance these vexatious litigation strategies.
 One participant in this matter, the Respondent Dennis Larry Meads, appears to be a sophisticated and educated person, but is also an OPCA litigant. One of the purposes of these Reasons is, through this litigant, to uncover, expose, collate, and publish the tactics employed by the OPCA community, as a part of a process to eradicate the growing abuse that these litigants direct towards the justice and legal system we otherwise enjoy in Alberta and across Canada. I will respond on a point-by-point basis to the broad spectrum of OPCA schemes, concepts, and arguments advanced in this action by Mr. Meads.
While one can make valid arguments that Canadian laws are grossly insufficient or inadequate, that is not entirely the point with OPCA litigants. Instead, they allege that laws don’t apply. That can be very dangerous when it comes to institutions like the Canada Revenue Agency.
Unsurprisingly, there has been a surge of people who’ve lost faith in the judicial process in the last few years. There’s good reason for that, and it’s tempting to give these arguments another look.
 OPCA strategies as brought before this Court have proven disruptive, inflict unnecessary expenses on other parties, and are ultimately harmful to the persons who appear in court and attempt to invoke these vexatious strategies. Because of the nonsense they argue, OPCA litigants are invariably unsuccessful and their positions dismissed, typically without written reasons. Nevertheless, their litigation abuse continues. The growing volume of this kind of vexatious litigation is a reason why these Reasons suggest a strong response to curb this misconduct.
 Beyond that, these are little more than scams that abuse legal processes. As this Court now recognizes that these schemes are intended for that purpose, a strict approach is appropriate when the Court responds to persons who purposefully say they stand outside the rules and law, or who intend to abuse, disrupt, and ultimately break the legal processes that govern conduct in Canada. The persons who advance these schemes, and particularly those who market and sell these concepts as commercial products, are parasites that must be stopped.
By selling commercial products, this typically refers to seminars or guidebooks on how to assert certain rights and avoid consequences. The courts view this as exploiting vulnerable people.
Starting at paragraph 99, the ruling lists other Canadian “gurus”, including:
- David Kevin Lindsay
- John Ruiz Dempsey
- Robert Arthur Menard
- Eldon Gerald Warman
- David J. Lavigne
- Edward Jay Robin Belanger
Such OPCA litigants are often seen as busybodies in the Courts. Many have been declared “vexatious litigants” for repeatedly initiating (and often appealing) baseless proceedings. While the techniques employed are interesting — as an observer — it’s hard to argue against the allegation that they seem designed to frustrate the function of Courts.
There’s no question that the courts in Canada are lacking in many ways. However, the techniques employed by OPCA litigants have essentially a zero percent success rate. Certainly, don’t pay them for their “services”.
Would society be better off if we were sovereign citizens and exempt from taxes and licenses? Certainly there’s a case to be made for that. However, Courts have never upheld this.