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Old 11-19-2016, 11:42 AM
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Nope moving all the discussion to this thread:

Originally Posted by bluewpc
Gonna be a while before I update MT again so I figured Id start sharing some articles from around the way. Very interesting commentary on pg. 37:

https://www.chathamhouse.org/sites/f...ools-giles.pdf
But that's just what all highly paid lawyers defending highly paid clients do - so is most likely not strictly related to Russia.

Actually this kind of thinking is strictly related to Russia. You shouldn't think of their actions, ideology, or doctrine, in western terms. A lawyer defending a client represents certain ideals which are absent in their system. In the west, and specifically here in America, the lawyer, as does the public, presumes innocence and even if guilt is assumed the lawyer must still work in the interests of his client as per law. I recall John Adams defending the soldiers of the Boston massacre. For russia there are no such ideals in their system and I wont say judiciary system because that is nonexistent in the sense that the west understands. But its not arbitrary either. Those who are in power are immune to the law so long as they hold the pleasure of the czar, that is putin. In reality the system is a façade meant to ensure a modicum of public order but more importantly to control the political atmosphere. It should never be mistaken as an objective institution of justice or an independent system. There is a wealth of information anent to that and I will provide those links tomorrow.

I think you have a very romantic notion of the legal system, what follows is my P.O.V.,

Four people are prosecuted for committing exactly the same crime;

Person 1 (has zero money) - gets the maximum for a person without a crminak record
Person 2 (has $10,000) - gets a reduced sentence cf Person 1
Person 3 (has $100,000) - gets community service and a prison sentence that does not need to be served (I forget the legal term)
Person 4 (has $1,000,000) - found innocent of all wrong doing

I would have thought paying for legal representation implies there is a cost associated with legal representation? QED?

@bottom of course there's a cost, there's always a cost. But in this country even if you can't afford a lawyer you are provided one. That is a relatively recent development within judiciary systems. So again I await your statistics

Well you acknowledged then promptly ignored it? Why does law cost and is the outcome correlated with the cost? If it is not there must be a lot of rich people spending money for no additional benefit.

No I'm not ignoring it. I'm asking for facts.

Now here's some links that might support your proposition:

https://creativedestruction.wordpres...ter-sentences/

http://www.ussc.gov/sites/default/fi.../2015/md15.pdf

http://www.prisonpolicy.org/reports/income.html

Now here is the thing. You pay for what you get. The better lawyer can provide a better outcome, costs more. But that is not to say that you're given a less fair trial. No evidence is added or subtracted, you don't get bonus witnesses. That's not inherent inequality that's inequality of outcome which I am perfectly fine with. What I am not ok with is corruption where the basic facts are twisted or omitted.

Also in your earlier post where you did not know the word for a sentence that did not have to be served I believe you were looking for the term commute.

Yes that's exactly it, money is correlated with a better outcome, I'm struggling to understand how that is not biased or how it is fair?

For example, a person (as an agent) with no money who commits a crime, and for example, has no prior conviction will be required to accept a penalty. A person (as an agent) with heaps of money who commits exactly the same crime in the former example, has no prior convictions should also be required to accept the same penalty. But in the latter example they receive a reduced or zero penalty.

How did the law magically change, and how can a poor person commit a future crime in the same manner as a rich person?

Because quite simply our legal system allows for degrees and mitigating factors. That's it. Sometimes those factors are taken into consideration, sometimes not. There's nothing magical about it.

I put it like this when I had to go to court I presented myself as best I could, articulated my defense to the best of my ability, and was I dare say somewhat eloquent. My fine was reduced and I got no points on my license. The many who went before me did not dress for the occasion spoke poorly and received heavier punishments. There are so many factors playing that to boil it down simply to economics is Marxist in my opinion.

Oh and since this thread is primarily for Information and Cyber Warfare and russia in general could we bud this off to a new thread?

Originally Posted by PickleBottom
Yes that's exactly it, money is correlated with a better outcome, I'm struggling to understand how that is not biased or how it is fair?

For example, a person (as an agent) with no money who commits a crime, and for example, has no prior conviction will be required to accept a penalty. A person (as an agent) with heaps of money who commits exactly the same crime in the former example, has no prior convictions should also be required to accept the same penalty. But in the latter example they receive a reduced or zero penalty.

How did the law magically change, and how can a poor person commit a future crime in the same manner as a rich person?
When I was in college, I was busted for possession with intent to distribute and other drug related crimes. My parents weren't inclined to help and couldn't really afford to, but fortunately for me, my brother took on my legal expenses.

While serving my 3 weekends in jail and subsequently through volunteer work with parolees and people on probation, I've met people who had similar and even lesser offenses who did serious time and/or where saddled with much harsher sentences. Some naively go before the judge without a lawyer. Most are assigned overworked and inexperienced public defenders.

I had a lawyer who had lots of experience with my offense. He finagled a court date in front of a judge he knew. He told me what to do before my court appearance to make it look like I was cleaning up my act. He told me to keep my mouth shut unless I was specifically addressed. I stood before the judge, contrite, clean cut and white in my new suit and I got a slap on the wrist.

Most of us are aware of the inequities, but until you see it up close, I think it's hard for people to imagine how lopsided things are. Money makes all the difference. It's like there are two different legal systems.

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  #2  
Old 11-19-2016, 12:58 PM
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Originally Posted by bluewpc View Post

Now here is the thing. You pay for what you get. The better lawyer can provide a better outcome, costs more. But that is not to say that you're given a less fair trial. No evidence is added or subtracted, you don't get bonus witnesses. That's not inherent inequality that's inequality of outcome which I am perfectly fine with. What I am not ok with is corruption where the basic facts are twisted or omitted.
But a lawyer can find witnesses and introduce evidence. An overworked public defender with a close to impossible case load is not going to have adequate time to investigate or prepare, so essentially, the jury may never see important evidence or hear from witnesses whose testimony could lead to a not guilty verdict or a shorter sentence.

Otherwise, the vast majority of felony cases never go to trial. Public defenders simply don't have the time or resources so they'll recommend a plea. And in many jurisdictions, defendants will often meet with a public defender for only a few minutes before going in front of the judge.

In my case that you quoted above, which I don't believe is atypical, my lawyer was totally familiar with my case and otherwise prepared. Not sure how he did it, but one of my charges had already been dropped. I was well-coached and had already taken steps to show the judge I was cleaning up my act.

So you get what you pay for, absolutely. But if you can't pay anything at all, there's little chance your going to have even adequate representation compared to what you'll get with a competent private attorney.

That sure seems like inherent inequality to me.

Last edited by Myers; 11-19-2016 at 02:10 PM..
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  #3  
Old 11-19-2016, 01:32 PM
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Bluewpc:

Other factors such as whether the defendant is white? <eek emoticon>

It would seem to me by convicting a person who is already socially disadvantaged would further disadvantage them. I think if the law is lenient towards some citizens it should be lenient towards others, or vice versa harsh (like the war on drugs) towards some it should be harsh towards others.
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Old 11-19-2016, 02:24 PM
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@Myers We both agree that you pay for quality services and that good investments typically lead to good outcomes. It sounds then very much to me that your concern is not inequality in the system itself but in the lack of resources that allow it to run optimally. There will never be and should not be equality of outcome but neither should it be totally disparate.

Thus in your case the route forward is clear. Research and then formulate your argument, create a petition, garner support and mail your congressman and senator. Agitate until you get the desired result.

I would also mind you that I did exactly what you did without the need of a lawyer because I researched the law and knew how to present myself.

@pickle No actually. Race is not a factor to me. I'm not white my middle name is Chong my last name is Vargas I do not care for this privilege shit that's been floating around these last few years.

And the idea of not convicting someone for a crime because they're not at the top of the social hierarchy is madness. Equality of outcome is intensely dangerous because if you apply it to one sphere of life then you can apply it to them all.

If I create a music record and you create a music record and yours does better than mine should I have recourse to say well money should be taken from you and given to me because you had better equipment?

This concept destroys nuance and forces conformity. Its a very sinister telos that looks good only on paper.
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Old 11-19-2016, 04:35 PM
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Originally Posted by bluewpc View Post
@Myers We both agree that you pay for quality services and that good investments typically lead to good outcomes. It sounds then very much to me that your concern is not inequality in the system itself but in the lack of resources that allow it to run optimally. There will never be and should not be equality of outcome but neither should it be totally disparate.

Thus in your case the route forward is clear. Research and then formulate your argument, create a petition, garner support and mail your congressman and senator. Agitate until you get the desired result.

I would also mind you that I did exactly what you did without the need of a lawyer because I researched the law and knew how to present myself.

@pickle No actually. Race is not a factor to me. I'm not white my middle name is Chong my last name is Vargas I do not care for this privilege shit that's been floating around these last few years.

And the idea of not convicting someone for a crime because they're not at the top of the social hierarchy is madness. Equality of outcome is intensely dangerous because if you apply it to one sphere of life then you can apply it to them all.

If I create a music record and you create a music record and yours does better than mine should I have recourse to say well money should be taken from you and given to me because you had better equipment?

This concept destroys nuance and forces conformity. Its a very sinister telos that looks good only on paper.
The race comment (card) I used demonstrated an outcome of the system but I used the <eek emoticon> because it is an aside (not a trivial one) to our discussion.

If the law should not be equal than it should not be advertised as unbiased and fair; if there is not an equality of outcome.

With regards to your second last paragraph, allowing bias in the system forces conformity, furthermore I am not stating everything should be equal, only allowed to operate within a threshold of reality (related to the goal of having a society).
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Old 11-19-2016, 06:01 PM
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Originally Posted by bluewpc View Post
@Myers We both agree that you pay for quality services and that good investments typically lead to good outcomes.
Who wouldn't agree with that?

Originally Posted by bluewpc View Post
It sounds then very much to me that your concern is not inequality in the system itself but in the lack of resources that allow it to run optimally. There will never be and should not be equality of outcome but neither should it be totally disparate.
No, my concern is inequality. The inequality is caused by a lack of resources. That is a problem with "the system itself." And in jurisdictions across the country the public defender component of the system barely runs at all, never mind anything close to "optimally."

Originally Posted by bluewpc View Post
Thus in your case the route forward is clear. Research and then formulate your argument, create a petition, garner support and mail your congressman and senator. Agitate until you get the desired result.
I see. So if you recognize a problem and discuss it, you are then compelled to try and solve it. If you're inclined to think or talk about the human condition, that could be rather exhausting.

Originally Posted by bluewpc View Post
I would also mind you that I did exactly what you did without the need of a lawyer because I researched the law and knew how to present myself.
Good for you. And what was at stake? A bigger fine? More points on your driving record?

Could just be me, but I think if you've been charged with multiple drug offenses and you're facing real prison time, that might not be the best time to play amateur lawyer.

Additionally, the people we're talking about who can't afford a lawyer — I'll go out on a limb and say that most of them wouldn't have the capacity or basic skills required to go before a judge on a serious charge.

Anyway — you know what they say about a man who represents himself...

P.S. I noticed you didn't address your idea that witnesses and evidence are just the same regardless of your lawyer's competence or resources which somehow assures you're not "given a less fair trial." Are you going to stick with that one?

Last edited by Myers; 11-20-2016 at 11:47 AM..
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Old 01-16-2017, 02:26 PM
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@Meyers I heard an interesting article on NPR today which is I think quite pertinent to your concerns about judicial fairness here and would be a very good way of conquering the problem especially as its already established in limited form.

http://www.npr.org/2017/01/16/510096...arking-tickets

http://www.donotpay.co.uk/signup.php

If you're truly interested in providing good representation to the working poor then you may consider contacting this man and offering or volunteering your services.
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Old 01-16-2017, 02:50 PM
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[QUOTE=Myers



I see. So if you recognize a problem and discuss it, you are then compelled to try and solve it. If you're inclined to think or talk about the human condition, that could be rather exhausting.


[/QUOTE]


Oh the mirth.


Apologies, O.P.
I know y'all need to keep on bein' live serious in the post.
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Old 01-16-2017, 07:27 PM
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@pierce it's ok I rode into Baltimore earlier on a horse and choked out a whole alley's worth of hookers so I'm good for the moment.

@Meyers heres a good series of videos that I think would be good for you to watch.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5pH-QZG9OpQ

Last edited by bluewpc; 01-16-2017 at 07:32 PM..
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Old 01-17-2017, 06:12 AM
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@bluewpc -- I would have assumed you were joking -- except you did equate a traffic ticket with a felony drug offense, so it's hard to tell.


If you were joking, ha ha!

If not, public defenders aren't assigned traffic and parking offenses, so...

But who REALLY needs a lawyer or a judge or a jury anyway -- if your innocent -- right? If they're guilty, lock 'em up. Yee haw!

And here is a good video that I think would be good for you to watch:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qREKP9oijWI
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Old 01-17-2017, 12:07 PM
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@Myers well the point being is that its not a far leap from generating a letter by having a defendant fill in a form, that is proven to increase the dismissal rate, to having AI lawyers who can serve as public defenders. Consider the evolution of cellphones from the electronic bricks of the 80s to the pocket sized computers of today. Yes it would take thirty years to develop such a thing but it would go a long way in solving the inequality you see in the judicial system and what I am saying is if you truly believe that the system is unfair then put in the work to correct it and here is a way you can get your foot in the door working towards that.
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Old 01-17-2017, 02:11 PM
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Anything is possible.

With things like some drug offenses or more violent crimes, there is always the possibly of mitigating circumstances or recognizing the value of evidence or the testimony of certain witnesses -- and also recognizing who might deserve a lesser punishment or some opportunity for rehabilitation based on particular life circumstances or even attitude. Fairly subtle things.

The other problem is that a lot of defendants are poorly educated, barely literate or illiterate and likely not capably of navigating some kind of automated system without more nuanced human assistance.

It might help sooner than later if it was about a reallocation of resources from relatively straightforward cases like those mentioned to more serious crimes. But I'm skeptical, because any kind of savings from improved systems rarely go toward helping people that who need it the most.

Also, once again, I call bullshit on your suggestion that if I really care I would take some kind of action as subscribed by you after listing to a story on NPR and thinking about it for a few minutes. As I said, I already volunteer to help people who are coming out of the other end of the judicial system. And yes, if it was more efficient and equitable, there might be fewer of them -- but that's not how I choose to serve.

Adopting technology to make the system work better could definitively help, but I'm not personally obligated to support that effort -- just as I'm not obligated to help out with every single thing on the laundry list of social issues that concern me and that need to be part of the public conversation.

Otherwise, I do what I can, with the limited time I have. It's kind of a dumb tactic on your part, and a low-grade kind of "gotcha" -- that is if you really care about building awareness.

Last edited by Myers; 01-17-2017 at 02:45 PM..
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Old 01-17-2017, 03:01 PM
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Theres no gotcha in any of this. My exhortation is not an accusation (especially since I wasn't aware you already worked in the judicial system, if you mentioned it earlier I must have missed it). I thought you would appreciate the article. This isn't a competition. It's trying to make a better world. And fair enough if you don't want to work on this, I don't either but I honestly thought it would pique your interest.

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Old 01-17-2017, 03:59 PM
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Originally Posted by bluewpc View Post
Theres no gotcha in any of this. My exhortation is not an accusation (especially since I wasn't aware you already worked in the judicial system, if you mentioned it earlier I must have missed it). I thought you would appreciate the article. This isn't a competition. It's trying to make a better world. And fair enough if you don't want to work on this, I don't either but I honestly thought it would pique your interest.
You saw fit to start this thread by copying and pasting my comments -- and I clearly mentioned I worked on a volunteer basis with parolees and people on probation. If you do that, I suggest paying attention. Not much to ask.

Beyond that I might suggest you consider that people have some kind of experience beyond reading articles and listening to the radio -- because you never know.

Did the article pique my interest? Obviously -- or we wouldn't be having this exchange. In that respect, I appreciate the effort. Otherwise, if it's about making a better world, at least consider being less presumptuous and condescending.

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Old 01-17-2017, 04:19 PM
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Fair enough. Apologies.
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Old 01-17-2017, 04:35 PM
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I really appreciate that, bluewpc. It's all good.
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