Crime and Punishment (not the book)

Discussion in 'Law and Justice System' started by dilloduck, May 3, 2005.

  1. dilloduck
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    dilloduck Diamond Member

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    Certain matters have reminded me of a thread that I have always wanted to start. How fair really IS our judicial system- ya ya-i know it's the best there is but I don't see that as an excuse to not try and improve it or much less even discuss it.
    At the moment I can think of 5 forms of punishment used by America being death, imprisonment, fines,withholding of priviledges and community service.
    Are they doled out fairly or does ones' financial status, race, gender or social attitudes "grease the skids" for those "more fortunate" in one manner or the other?
    How big of a role does a judges personal life come into play in handing down sentences? Do they act in a manner that is politically favorable to them?
    Are we really judges by a jury of our peers or do we just get the ones who are willing, able and acceptable to psychologist advised attorneys. If one cannot afford an attorney, what kind of defense does he get? As good as OJ gets ?
    pick one if you're seriously interested.
     
  2. musicman
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    musicman Senior Member

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    Who was it that said (paraphrasing),"Going to trial means putting your fate in the hands of twelve people who were too stupid to get out of jury duty"?
     
  3. manu1959
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    manu1959 Left Coast Isolationist

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    my father was a politician and a criminal defense attorney in nevada

    he began young and idealistic, degree in political sciense from UNR, whos who of america, president of the university, elected state assembly at 24, went in to law practice with his father right out of school .... tryed to change the system as a politician and protect those wrongly accused as an attorney

    he once told me...........the system is so corrupt that only friends in high places, money and a good attorney can save you if you get in trouble......and if you end up in front of the wrong judge or a jury kiss your ass goodbye

    he died an alcoholic at 42.......
     
  4. dilloduck
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    dilloduck Diamond Member

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    Sorry about your dad----I feel his frustration---I guess we have to keep up the pretense of "fairness" or the whole damn system would crumble.
     
  5. William Joyce
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    William Joyce Chemotherapy for PC

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    I have mixed feelings. As a practicing attorney, I can tell you that there have been times when I know for certain that "the fix was in" on something --- and not just against me, but against opponents, too. By that I don't mean actual corruption --- just something that skewed things undeniably. (But you can read about the corruption in the papers, like the judge in NYC who took a lawsuit filed by her FRIEND without notifiying opposing counsel.)

    But other times, believe it or not, justice was done. Juries can be stupid. But they can also do the right thing.

    The thing you have to get comfortable with is, no system is going to be perfect. It's just a question of how much imperfection you're going to tolerate before seeking reform.
     
  6. dilloduck
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    dilloduck Diamond Member

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    How easy do you think reform would be with so many legislators being attorneys?
     
  7. pegwinn
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    pegwinn Top of the Food Chain

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    I think our criminal justice system all hosed up. Since it is arguably the best in the world that is saying a lot.

    I think the focus of the criminal court is what needs to change. In my view the ultimate aim of court should be to expose the absolute truth of the matter. To that end we need to come up with a truth machine that is 100% accurate. If the focus is truth, then actual justice can be achieved much better.

    WE need to ensure that no evidence is excluded at all, ever. If it was obtained illegially, then prosecute the obtainer.

    I have a beef with juries as well. I think juries should be drafted from the pool of registered voters. Jury shaping by either side is vile.
     
  8. William Joyce
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    William Joyce Chemotherapy for PC

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    You ask the right question. Easily more than 70 percent of the legislators in America --- from city councils to state legislatures to the Congress --- are lawyers (I am just guessing, I don't know the real amount, but read the bios some time). For lawyers, profits are to be found in complex laws only they can understand, endless lawsuits and litigation, etc.

    For instance. In New York, where I live, there are problems with out-of-control lawsuits, as there are in Texas, where you are, and pretty much everywhere else in the USA. But the NY legislature is CHOCK-FULL of what they call "plaintiff's lawyers," i.e., the people who bring the lawsuits. Not surprisingly, they are quite resistant to tort reform.

    One blog that follows these issues is called overlawyered.com

    http://overlawyered.com/

    It's a good blog.
     
  9. dilloduck
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    dilloduck Diamond Member

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    I remember a while back in Texas when they were trying to pass a law so that all laws would be written in "common" language so you average Joe could understand it. I knew it didn't stand a chance. There have been several small situations that I could have easily handled myself but was REQUIRED to have an attorney (or so I was told). Attorneys just simply have too much power and charge too much.
     

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