A couple of years ago I was reporting to J as one of ten developers, then moved under S, who is the manager of J. The reason was that I am looking after a piece of software (F) which required a higher scrutiny in terms of accepted change requests, and S had better visibility on this piece of software as well as the teams the change requests came from than J.
This went well for some years, but the arrangement since turned sour: Instead of giving the acknowledgement for F's success, it was a mere stepping stone for S's career; he got promoted soon after the arrangement started, without due credit to contributions and without passing on the success. At first I thought it is a single instance, and I laughed it off as something that just happens in Big Org, but it turned into a pattern: S constantly denigrates and trivialises my work, even the overtime I put in to meet deadlines, which are magically not critical any longer (there were back then when they were actually on). Other things S does include outright preferential treatment based on ethnicity (as silly as it sounds, and it's done in a way where it can't be challenged, even signed off by HR), writing non-truths about me in my performance review, attacking my character in said document and on go after me after reporting technical problems with our processes and software (despite having a non-retaliation policy in place). I have written a rebuttal to my performance review, but I doubt anyone actually cares.
S is not receptive to criticism even when this is phrased constructively (i.e. "here's the problem, here's how it affects me, here's a solution") and extremely carefully. I don't think he is acting maliciously. I rather think he is just clueless. He never trained as a manager, but believes he does everything right. He portrays himself as someone who has an open ear to everyone, yet he blocks out all criticism.
Due to all that and the fact that the requirement of S buffering change requests for product F is not more valid, I want to change back to J's team. At the very minimum, I won't be directly subject of S's harassment (for the lack of another word).
How do I go about it? Frankly, I just want to go to him, and tell (not ask!) him that I want the reporting structure changed based on the fact that there is no need for what I thought was a temporal arrangement, and that S needs to go to his manager and make the changes, and tell HR to do the needful (big org, requires changes in the employee databases in multiple backends). In particularly, I do not wish to engage in lengthy discussions why I really want this to have changed, i.e. his inability to recognise, his lie^Wtelling the non-truths in official documents and his failure to have his team members' backs. Such a discussion, as with every discussion I had with him, is an uphill battle that I've chosen to not fight any longer, due to it being a no-win-scenario for me.
(I know I should run, not walk. That's in the pipeline, but due to personal arrangements, changing jobs is not on the table for some time in the future.)
Secondary question: Is there anything I can do to address the lies about me in my performance review? Legal action? (This is Australia.)