UNITED STATES COURT OF APPEALS FOR THE DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA CIRCUIT
May 14, 1982
TRAILWAYS, INC., ET AL., PETITIONERS
INTERSTATE COMMERCE COMMISSION AND UNITED STATES OF AMERICA, RESPONDENTS GREYHOUND LINES, INC., NATIONAL
Before: ROBINSON, Chief Judge, WILKEY and WALD, Circuit Judges
UNITED STATES COURT OF APPEALS FOR THE DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA CIRCUIT 1982.CDC.127
TRAILWAYS BUS SYSTEM, INTERVENORS
On Petition for Rehearing
On consideration of intervenor Greyhound's petition for rehearing, it is
ORDERED by the Court that the petition for rehearing is denied.
A statement of the panel is attached.
PER CURIAM DECISION
Per Curiam: We have carefully considered Greyhound's petition for a rehearing in this case and have reexamined our opinion to eliminate any ambiguities which might be misread as appellate-leval fact-finding. Except to the extent that it has enabled us to identify potential ambiguities (two minor changes), we find Greyhound's arguments unpersuasive. The purpose of the principal opinion in this case was to advise the ICC that it had overlooked or evaded an inquiry necessary to a reasoned decision. The opinion accomplished our purpose. We deny the petition.
In doing so we feel constrained to comment on the tone of Intervenor-Respondent's petition and to suggest that counsel who drafted it have cause to ponder their choice of words. The petition is cast almost entitely in terms of a personalized attach on the writer of the opinion, ignoring the fact that the court was unanimous and that the decision and opinion reflected the views of all three judges. In one paragraph, for example, it is asserted that the writer's "decision reflects antipathy toward the ICC," and that "[t]o cure what at most may be an inartistically written decision" the applicant on remand will be subject to an "unruly proceeding at which it will be the target for further character assassination." Intervenor-Respondent's Petition for Rehearing at 13-14. More could be quoted, but these excerpts give flavor enough.
We find such language repugnant to an atmosphere of decorum and civility in the appellate process. It would not be acceptable in referring to the brief of opposing counsel, much less to the opinion of a unanimous court. It is not only ill-mannered, it is ineffective.
In this case, we considered directing the Clerk to return this petition, but since from time to time there have been others couched in tones similar, we thought it more effective to state the court's reaction to this one and to reserve summary rejection for the next (if any) such petition filed.
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