Fw: * * An Excellent Dissertation on the Jury System * *
- A winner from one of the JAILERs!Tim Kiley----- Original Message -----From: jail4judgesSent: Wednesday, January 29, 2003 11:28 PMSubject: * * An Excellent Dissertation on the Jury System * *J.A.I.L. News Journal
Los Angeles, California January 29, 2003
A Excellent Dissertationon the Jury SystemDear George Rosquist:Thank you for your genuine expressed concerns regarding our American jury system and the way it works, or as the case may be, does not work. I would like to use your email as a model for the benefit of others who have similar concerns, and I will address my comments innerspirsed within your text in maroon.First, let me say that not even our Founding Fathers anticipated a perfect justice system out of juries made up of imperfect people since only God Himself is the perfect Judge. They knew that since we do not have the benifit of God currently sitting in immediate earthly judgment, they would have to do the best they could with imperfect people. Thus, injustices will occassionally occur even under the best of circumstances, but the objective is to severally reduce the occassions of injustice. To this end, our Founding Fathers gave power to the head of the executive branch to arbitrary grant pardons as he saw fit when he, in his judgment, deemed a possible injustice was being done against one convicted of a crime. The objective was that it is better that ten guilty men go free than to punish one innocent man.Most all your concerns are understandably expressed in light of the current jury system to which we are all accustomed. But I would like to take us beyond the current state of affairs to what I envision post-J.A.I.L.The effects of the passage of J.A.I.L. upon society will be so tremendous so as to take America to levels most of us have never experienced or even envisioned. I have often thought of writing my own version of Martin Luther King's, "I Have a Dream," but have forbeared because people generally find themselves adversed to change even if it be to the good. Truth, Honesty and Integrity can be perceived to turn an entire society "upside down," which is in reality turning an upside down society right-side up. Now to deal with your jury concerns from a right-side up perspective.~ * * * ~
I don't disagree with you that the jury system needs to be fixed. The J.A.I.L. Initiative is good work, important work and would go a long way to resolve many problems. But what can not be ignored is that the biggest problem is that the people themselves are inconsistent in their view of jury trials. They expect and rely on jury trials, and in fact demand them, when it is their civil matter or a criminal charge that affects them personally, yet you would be hard pressed to find many who would not jump at a chance to duck jury duty with one excuse or another when they are called to serve on someone else's case.All in all people are good and well meaning in nature, but most operate on the perception that their rights are more important and that is what they extend in their minds even to encroach on someone else's rights - these lines are vague and that is why we have courts for the purpose to resolve these conflicts. People, in general, see the world from their own perspective and the issues that are most important to them, indeed the only issues they mostly see, are those that effect them directly or that
they perceive so. It is a world of "us" and "them" in every aspect and way society can be divided on social, economic, and political grounds.You have urged an excellent point. Let's analyse why people feel this way. It is my perception that people are, by and large, totally disolutioned with our justice system, and do not seen justice as an objective. There are now so many laws to violate that they perceive that everyone is guilty of violating some law or other. The jurors have actually come to disrespect law because there is so much of it. They often think, "I hope they don't get me for some rinky-dink law" and "I'm glad they are prosecuting him and not me." Let's not forget that God gave us few laws to obey, but the government has given all of us hundreds and hundreds of thousands of laws to obey of which no one could possibly be knowledgable of them all, and yet we are told that "Ignorance of the law is no excuse." People more and more are viewing law as hypocritical and a means of rasing revenue for the insatiable appetite of government for their hard earned dollars.J.A.I.L. will, of course, dispose of many of these rinky-dink laws based upon Constitutional challenges made by America's citizens in the courts. I anticipate that 90% of the federal agencies of government will have to be closed down completely for lack of Constitutional justification for their existence. And there are currently provisions within the federal Constitution, that if obeyed, would turn all governments within all 50 states on their ears. I do not care to reveal what it is I am talking about now, but we can be sure that ahearance to federal Constitution will certainly be urged by intelligent pro ses. Governments, both state and federal, will be forced under J.A.I.L. to go back to being incidentals they once were, and cease to be a dominance in society.Also, there are economic considerations people consider in serving on a jury. California, for instance, paid their jurors only $5 per day, which schedule prevailed for 54 years without a raise. Only recently did they raise jury duty fees to $15 a day. Now tell me who lives on $15 a day in this day and age? Government shows its total disrespect for the jury system. They tell them they must serve, like it or not, that they will be paid only $15 per day, and when we are finished with your compelled labor as a jury, we can choose to disregard your decision and change the decision to one that will suit them. Who, in their right mind would want to willfully appoach serving jury duty with a sense of dedication to the cause of justice when they are forced to be the first victim of injustice going in? Our federal Constitution says, "Neither slavery nor involuntary servitude, except as a punishment for crime whereof the party shall have been duly convicted, shall exist within the United States..." XIII Amend. Has everybody in America been convicted of a crime to which they are now compelled to have to perfom "involuntary servitude" as a juror? J.A.I.L. will cure this problem. What's more, county Grand Jurors are paid here in California at $25 per day for a full year. One has to be independently wealthy in order to consider serving as a Grand Juror even if they wanted to be selected. This is why J.A.I.L. pays its Special Grand Jurors at the rate a trial judge is paid. We are told theses judges need to be paid so much because we need to attract good judges. Taking the system at their word, we deem that if it is good enough for judges, then it is good enough for the citizens who are overseeing judges. J.A.I.L.'s Special Grand Jury will eventually become the model for every county Grand Jury in the country. Oh, am I looking forward to that day. Judges and politicians will be scrambling in that day!Juries are no more than people - with preconceived notions, attitudes,
predispositions, prejudices, preferences and perceptions all formed by their own personal experiences and what they have learned or have been taught to believe is reality and truth. Our government and the media misinform them on a regular basis.Just as high-tide raises all boats, honesty and integrity within government brought about by J.A.I.L. will enfluence all society, create a positive and hopeful outlook for the future, as well as actually create jobs by the absence of government interferances. J.A.I.L. will set the atmosphere for one to desire to work instead of stealing, thus crime will decrease. J.A.I.L. will stimulate the desire to own a business and prosper because they get to keep what if rightfully theirs. Positive outlooks of the future of America will cause investments to increase, which will elevate everyone. This is only the logical conclusion, and there will be many, many more benifits of the passage of J.A.I.L. People will receive a thousand times over on their investment into J.A.I.L. Within the first six months everyone will have received much, much more that whatever they invested into J.A.I.L's passage. It will amaze everyone!
Juries have convicted people of crimes on no more than the person charged, as they perceive, "looks like the sort who would have done it" with the flimsiest of circumstantial evidence to suggest guilt, and they have also let others go free regardless of mountains of evidence against them because, as they perceive, "they look like the sort who would never commit a crime." Sometimes they convict people because, as the perceive, if he/she didn't do it they "must have done something." Juries have awarded damages in civil cases just because they liked the plaintiff on no more than a perception of what that person is really like or have not awarded damages because they did not like the plaintiff by the same criteria.Experiments have been conducted by mock trials before juries that believed they were real trials with the same evidence and same testimony and the same legal arguments by both sides with the only difference being the race or economic class of the mock defendant and the results have been diametrically opposite verdicts. Even experiments with witnesses have been conducted and it is shown that eye witness accounts are actually the least reliable form of evidence.Confessions have been coerced from defendants too. Yet people are sent to death row on these basis. The point is that at best a jury trial is a crap shoot no matter which side you are on in most cases. However, it is a public crap shoot not a government lynching by organized political control.As I have said, your concerns here will be greatly taken care of by less laws, less crimes, less government, and less trials as a result of J.A.I.L, and combine this with the growing desire to achive a propserous future for one's self. What's more, history has proven in all civilizations, that when a nation's people are oppressed, they start looking for their oppressors, and generally they will perceive their oppressors to be of another class than that of their national culture. Hence, J.A.I.L. will reduce the inclination to prejudices and bias. I personally believe that J.A.I.L. in America will influence all nations. Who knows but if the reduction of prejudices in America, and against America, could deminish the need for "War on Terrorism." But we can be sure of one thing, and that is that such zeal to go after perceived terrorists will be tempered by existing Constitutional constraints placed in our Constitution over 200 years ago. And what's that worth?What you explain is true that the pool for selection of potential jury
members is not representative of every social and economic class, or
political class either so it is loaded. Only one-third of America voted in
the last election and there are many who do not register at all for whatever reason - maybe to avoid jury selection lists. I think in this state they select from driver's license databases but that doesn't include every
economic class either because many don't drive, particularly from NYC,
because you can't afford to park here either so many rely on public
transportation, use bicycles or just walk. Lotteries of volunteers will load the juries with a certain class of people with an even narrower set of
preconceived notions, attitudes, predispositions, prejudices, preferences and perceptions.Another of the positive effects of J.A.I.L. will be that people will come forth out of the woodwork to vote again for their future, for they will feel there is something positive to vote for, and that they can vote without feeling they are setting themselves up for a criminal sentence of involuntary servatude as a juror, in which they can have a decision on what affects their daily lives. J.A.I.L. is a win-win situation for all without a downside, unless one is benefiting off the government corruption.That they would seek to get on juries to make the world better is reason enough to eliminate them from the selection process.Now I disagree with your conclusion here. We want people to get on the juries to make the world a better place, and we believe the labor is worthy of their hire. We should hire jurors, not compel them against their will, and them threaten and punish them with a $1,500 fine for failing to "volunteer." Under J.A.I.L. the jurors will once again become the respected people intended, holding more power than the judge who serves merely as a referee.Lotteries from voter registration and driver license records is still from
the same pool in general. For petite juries in both civil and criminal cases both sides challenge jury selectees to eliminate those that they feel will
be predisposed one way or another. One of the best paying areas of the
practice of law are specialists in jury selection on a case by case basis.
They look for the narrower set of preconceived notions, attitudes,
predispositions, prejudices, preferences and perceptions that are likely to vote in favor of their case, not on the law, but on the personalities, the
jobs, social or economic class or whatever of their clients and look for on that basis to eliminate those who may not.There is a science that they go by and they are very serious about it. But if you have a "budget" representation (public defender or lower cost less established attorney or are pro se) that science is not equally available to you. And in the final analysis, trial judges still can give judgements "n.o.v." (notwithstanding the verdict).They determine what the jury knows in the charge to the jury (what does the law apply to and how is it to be applied). They administer the trial and can allow one side to prejudice the jury simply by not stopping them or not stopping them in time as they play courtroom games and tricks.Are you not here defining "Jury Tampering?" Hmmm, I wonder how the judges across America will fair before J.A.I.L.'s Special Grand Juries on a criminal charge that the judge engaged in "Jury Tampering?" Maybe a few years in prison by a number of judges will bear in on this concern of yours. I am convinced that the judges in America will get a quick short course in learning to respect the sword effect of J.A.I.L. I also believe that the judges will accumulate a healthy respect for the citizenry they serve as they ought to do, rather than demonstrating themselves as overbearing tyrants.
As for Grand Jurors and Special Grand Jurors - in this state, they are
presumably selected from the regular pool but screened by questionnaires to qualify for a Grand Jury. First off Grand Juries sit for much longer than petite juries and people don't even want to sit on petite juries. They will answer those questionnaires accordingly hoping not to qualify. Those questionnaires are geared to select levels of education just to select people who will comprehend the complicated issues that are brought before them but that also eliminates social and economic classes from that process. And then when all is said and done the Grand Jury will see only the case a prosecutor presents to them to the extent of the diligence and competence applied and that is where the real problem lies.Even when a Grand Jury hands down an indictment, the prosecutor can use the same tactics at a petite jury trial. In fact a prosecutor can go straight to the petite jury without going to the Grand Jury at all.As I said, the very existence of J.A.I.L.'s Special Grand Jury will enfluence the operations of the hundreds of Grand Juries around the country, and what a day that will be. No more free rides for governments at the public's expense, and no more cake walks for prosecutors.
Would raising the jury fee from $20 a day make a difference? I think so, but by how much should we raise it. We should fairly compensate a jury for their lost time, gas or travel expenses and such but what is a fair amount. If we raise it to an average daily income that will make minimum wage workers prefer jury duty to going to work and will still make those who earn more then the average still not want to serve at all. The last thing we need is a professional jury pool and that would still eliminate many social and economic classes anyway. But a professional jury would soon render verdicts they think will get them another gig.
However, all this still is besides the point if your [civil] case is summarily dismissed without ever getting to a jury trial at all. That is what is going
on in a big way. That is politics in the courts where it should not be. But
the same sick mentality in the Executive and Legislative branches is who
puts these judges there and keeps them there because they can be relied upon to have the "correct" politics and to run the courts accordingly.On of the beautiful things about J.A.I.L. is that there will be little desire for judges to just summarily dismiss cases out of hand because of the denial of due process of law clause contained within the innerworkings of J.A.I.L. It will put the judge on the road to looking for a new career very fast under the three-strikes provision.And the commissioners of all those government agencies (mostly quasi judicial legislative agencies) are also put there and kept there by that same political agenda as are the prosecutors who want to be judges or run for Congress or something one day too. Prosecutors are railroading people into prison just to pad their resumes with a list of convictions for political ambition. They look to impress the same political agenda.The only hope for better juries and better government with an agenda for the interests of the people is in an aware public. Not one that waves the flag when it is fashionable and let the symbolism rule them without the substance of what it was meant to represent. The Patriot Act, etc., is a political crisis for this country and is takeover of our government.
Regards,George RosquistGeorge, it has been my delight to explore your above concerns about the jury system. Many people will be educated and inspired as a result of this communication. God bless you.-Ron Branson-J.A.I.L. is an acronym for Judicial Accountability Initiative Law
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