[conspire] [Off-topic] Always a bridesmaid...

Darlene Wallach freepalestin at dslextreme.com
Thu Aug 2 17:25:17 PDT 2007

Rick Moen wrote:
> Quoting jim stockford (jim at well.com):
>>this is because judges are trained to be referees with respect to the
>>issues of law rather than those of justice, yes?
> Not exactly (despite the Oliver Wendell Holmes quotation[1]).
> In a nutshell:  Jurors in normal circumstances are supposed to decide 
> the _facts only_, leaving all questions of law to the judge.  The judge
> decides on the basis of applicable rules of evidence what evidence and
> arguments the jury will hear.  Jurors are warned not to independently
> investigate the case or in any way research matters of law or evidence.
> They are told that they must not confer until the case ends, that they
> must confer with all jurors present, and that they must discuss the case
> with nobody else, period (until it's over).[2] 
> Civil libertarians -- but few judges -- argue that it's vital for jurors
> to hold in reserve, for exceptional cases where otherwise a miscarriage 
> of justice would occur, the power to simply refuse to apply unjust laws.
> There is room for debate among reasonable people, on this matter, in
> part because nothing guarantees jurors will overrule only _bad_ laws.
> One thinks, for example, of people justly arraigned on murder charges
> for lynchings during the Jim Crow era, wrongfully acquitted by juries
> even though the prosecutor proved his/her case.
> Note that there's an inherent asymmetry:  Judges can set aside
> criminal-case juries' guilty verdicts if the jury obviously erred and is
> committing a gross injustice, but cannot vacate "not guilty" verdicts,
> as that would lead to double jeopardy.
> [1] http://www.apexdigest.com/Online/fiction060403.shtml
> ...a recommended short story, if you like science fiction.  
> [2] It's always interesting to study engineered systems (even the jury
> system) by studying its failure modes.  Here's a criminal-defence law
> firm's very brief summary of acquittals recently won by charging that 
> the trial was tainted by jury misconduct:
> http://capdefnet.org/hat/contents/constitutional_issues/jury_misconduct/introduction1.htm
> Vastly longer, but interesting if you read selectively, is the text of
> California's standard jury instructions:
> http://www.courtinfo.ca.gov/jury/juryinst.htm


I would surely want you on the jury esp. if I was on

Thank you for so elequently explaining the wonderfully
corrupt "justice" system. It is small wonder there over
2 million people in prisons in this country more than
any other industrialized nation!

Darlene Wallach

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