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In any country, prison is where society sends its failures

03/29/12

In any country, prison is where society sends its failures

Conservatives enjoy taking a "tough on crime" posture, so you might wonder why a hardcore conservative rag like The National Review would publish "Injustice System" by Conrad Black:

The United States has 5 percent of the world's population, 25 percent of the world's incarcerated people, and 50 percent of the world's lawyers. Ninety percent of its criminal cases are determined by accused people forgoing their constitutionally guaranteed right to trial in favor of an agreed sentence. It was accepted by the Supreme Court in the cases decided last week that defendants frequently receive inept advice. It is also frequently the case that the government spuriously seizes the assets of defendants as ill-gotten gains - on the basis of fraudulent affidavits in ex parte actions - so that the defendants can't engage the counsel of their choice, and then stays those proceedings while the criminal case is decided without the presence of a serious defense counsel.

It is also usually the case that the public defender, provided in response to the much-mythologized Gideon v. Wainwright case of 1963, is an underfunded and docile dupe of the prosecutors, who is paid according to the number of clients he represents and not his performance, thus incentivizing minimal service and maximum turnover. And it is very often also the case that whatever is agreed between the prosecutor and the defense counsel is not followed by prosecutors after the plea is entered, or is ignored by the judges, most of whom are unregenerate ex-prosecutors.

Conrad is probably the only National Review writer who would sympathize with the accused, decry the size of America's prison population, or note the massive immorality of the prison-industrial complex. Coincidentally, he's also the only National Review writer doing 13 months in federal prison.

  12:41:00 pm by Ragamuffin, Categories: Politics

2 comments

Comment from: AngrySquirrel [Visitor]
AngrySquirrel

That's actually the other TNR, The National Review, who are clearly making sure we understand that our justice system is only unfair when it puts wealthy old white dudes in prison.

03/30/12 @ 14:24
Comment from: ragamuffin [Member]
Ragamuffin

I suck. Thanks for catching that.

03/30/12 @ 18:50
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