Being physically unable to commit a crime is no defense against a system that has been fine tuned for prosecution


#1

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#2

Of course!
One does not become number one in the world without being extremely efficient.


#3

If I could wave my magic gavel and be granted just one judicial reform, it would be this: prosecutors and public defenders work in the same office and are drawn from the pool to fight for one side or another, more or less by lot. Some might be tasked for six months or a year to one or the other, but hermetically sealing these two things from one another has created all kinds of perverse incentives for career advancement.

A “win” is a conviction or (more commonly) a plea, instead of a “win” being truth and justice. And that sets aside the fear of a prosecutor of being overturned on appeal – a fear so bad that in Texas (god help us) there are cases where the plea deal is conditioned on the DESTRUCTION OF THE EVIDENCE, eliminating any possibility of having a claim of actual innocence be heard. Likewise, I do happen to believe that there is a lot of nonsense of endless appeals of guilty folks do choke up the system. It’s overstated, but it’s real. Some folks deserve the lifetime sentence.

Yet – in my own legal career (not criminal) – I’ve found most lawyers to be basically fair minded. Merely having to switch sides now and again would probably cut down on the worst excesses of the judicial conveyer belt.


#4

Any prosecutor can convict a guilty man. A great prosecutor can convict an innocent man.


#5

Or, an unethical prosecutor, working with corrupt cops, overseen by an apathetic judiciary.


#6

After reading this, The Divide and this WaPo article someone else linked here earlier, I’m really quite depressed about the state of the ‘Justice’ system.

Edit: Credit where credit’s due. @idiosynchronic posted the link earlier.


#7


#8

[quote=“JeffreyBeaumont, post:4, topic:40571, full:true”]
Any prosecutor can convict a guilty man. A great prosecutor can convict an innocent man.
[/quote]Convicting an innocent man does not make one great, it does not. ~ Yoda


#9

i immediately thought about the article you linked to as i read the piece here.

i’m actually surprised that workhouses and imprisonment for poverty haven’t been put into effect in republican dominated states. don’t forget that at least one supreme court justice is on record as saying that proof of actual innocence is no reason to overturn a death penalty if the defendant received a fair trial. http://www.thedailybeast.com/articles/2009/08/18/scalias-death-row-lunacy.html


#10

Makes one wonder what his definition of a “fair trial” encompasses.


#11

A big part of the problem is that there are close connections between support for authoritarianism and white racism. One of the things I’ve been avoiding admitting to myself is just how common this is.

Check out this article: Teachers wear NYPD shirts to school despite union warnings

The United Federation of Teachers, in New York City, endorsed a rally in protest of the recent murder of Eric Garner by New York Police. In protest of the protest, and apparently in support of police murder of young black men, these teachers are wearing NYPD tee-shirts.


#12

I realize it’s Staten Island instead of one of the other boroughs, and the group pictured is probably only the teachers who wore the shirt as opposed to the entire teacher population at the school, but still: they’re all white, around the same age, and female (except for the one outlier). That’s wrong on all three counts.


#13

Sadly no. A mediocre prosecutor can convict an innocent man.


#14

The dry husk of a recently raptured prosecutor could convict Jesus himself.
Or anyone else of Palestinian heritage.


#15

I’m not sure that you’re correct in the assessment that workhouses and imprisonment for poverty aren’t already a thing. They are. A lot of people who can’t pay fines for minor offenses find themselves jailed, with more fines added. Goods are absolutely produced in prisons, by prisoners, in the US. Maybe these institutions don’t match the definition of workhouses and imprisonment for poverty that existed in the past, but the function is very much the same.


#16

From what I hear, Staten Island is where a lot of NYPD cops live. So a lot of these teachers probably have cops’ children in their classes, and I wouldn’t be surprised if a lot of them have husbands who are cops.


#17

i was being ironic and indirect in that part of the comment. you are correct in your assessment of the facts on the ground. i’m often appalled at what my country has been becoming.


#18

I worked for a computer accessories company in Redmond Washington in the late 1980s (not Microsoft) that lost a lot of work when one of our customers took their contract away from us and gave it to a local prison that provided cheap labor.

It’s good that the prisoners had a chance to make a few cents an hour but our paychecks took a noticeable hit.


#19

I thought the exact same thing, and you beat me to it. The line of thinking that “The Process beats Truth” is overpowered in the US, and needs to be nerfed.


#20

Actually, the man who had his hands handcuffed behind his back was shot in the chest (according to the coroner). Magic!