Minnesota public defenders question i...

Minnesota public defenders question if justice is served

There are 95 comments on the TwinCities.com story from Aug 16, 2010, titled Minnesota public defenders question if justice is served. In it, TwinCities.com reports that:

When it comes to keeping the wheels of justice rolling, all is not well in Minnesota's 3rd Judicial District, and public defenders across the state are standing up to take shuddering notice.

Join the discussion below, or Read more at TwinCities.com.

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tww

Saint Paul, MN

#86 Aug 26, 2010
Kettle wrote:
<quoted text>
The simplicity of this equation is that, the prosecutor works for the state, and so does the PD. Both sides are eager to come to a consensus as soon as possible, and move onto the next poor sap--who doesn't stand a chance in a system run by a state hungry for justice and in love with litigation.
It's the very nature of job security for lawyers. In the end, there are very few of the "noble" ones left who will act in your best interest. Due process is an oxymoron.
Due process and rule of law were overturned by Obama in the auto bail-out. Bond holders were first in line for the assets of GM under bankruptcy law, not the unions. The government can and will do what ever it wants and you cant stop it.
Kettle

United States

#88 Aug 27, 2010
tww wrote:
<quoted text>
Due process and rule of law were overturned by Obama in the auto bail-out. Bond holders were first in line for the assets of GM under bankruptcy law, not the unions. The government can and will do what ever it wants and you cant stop it.
Due process was overturned long before Obama. The very nature of our great nation is to keep the rich rich and the poor happy enough to not revolt...lawyers are just there to make sure this process goes smoothly.

Since: Feb 10

Inver Grove Heights, MN

#89 Aug 28, 2010
Unfortunately how much more will the middle class and poor endure, when the legal system which is designed to keep our soical and economic structures functional and civilized fail?

Won't the result be that we end up with anarchy and a breakdown of the ecoinomic structures we assume are solid and rely upon, and thereby end the society we believe is "civilized"...?

“Sustainability Now!”

Since: May 08

Vadnais Heights

#90 Aug 28, 2010
DDAweb wrote:
Unfortunately how much more will the middle class and poor endure, when the legal system which is designed to keep our soical and economic structures functional and civilized fail?
Won't the result be that we end up with anarchy and a breakdown of the ecoinomic structures we assume are solid and rely upon, and thereby end the society we believe is "civilized"...?
If you are suggesting that the veneer of Civilization is thin and brittle -- I agree. We don't have a civilized country by accident nor magic: we created it one law at a time. We have always been willing to incur the cost of enforcing those laws with police, courts, and prisons -- knowing that the cost of NOT doing so is too horrible to contemplate.

Now some conservative whiners want to keep a fistful of dollars for themselves, and to heck with everyone else. They are too short-sighted to see that the stability and order we have been funding is the foundation for the economic growth and prosperity they hold so dear. Their ability to move goods and services rapidly and cheaply, and attract a stable workforce, is the cornerstone of Success -- yet, for a few dollars more (for themselves) they will happily condemn a fabulous infrastructure to long-term decay and expensive tragedies (35W bridge).

The same crowd that worships a literal interpretation of our Constitution appears willing to give up some of the protections that set America aside from dictatorships around the world: the presumption of innocence and the right to a speedy trial among them. "Why should I have to pay for the rights of thugs?" they ask. How quickly they forget that they are just one police/prosecutorial misjudgment away from alleged "thug" status themselves. Just look at the Lee case!

Public Defenders are needed for the good, the bad, and the ugly. Access to counsel and a fair trial ARE the American Way. Those who don't want to support it, are free to emigrate to one of those low-tax havens where suspects are presumed guilty, and have the burden of proof to establish their innocence. They can enjoy their prison stays knowing that little money was wasted on food, medical care, and conditions for "thugs" like themselves.

Since: Feb 10

Inver Grove Heights, MN

#93 Aug 30, 2010
DDAweb wrote:
Unfortunately how much more will the middle class and poor endure, when the legal system which is designed to keep our soical and economic structures functional and civilized fail?
Won't the result be that we end up with anarchy and a breakdown of the ecoinomic structures we assume are solid and rely upon, and thereby end the society we believe is "civilized"...?

If you are suggesting that the veneer of Civilization is thin and brittle -- I agree. We don't have a civilized country by accident nor magic: we created it one law at a time. We have always been willing to incur the cost of enforcing those laws with police, courts, and prisons -- knowing that the cost of NOT doing so is too horrible to contemplate.

Precisely, the line between real civilization and a corrupt totalitarian state and/or anarchy if fine and brittle.

The "American Way" or not, universally civiilizations have depended on some stabel legal system to retain a sound economy and workable, peaceful social structure, whatever the country or nation.

Please feel free to research,- my research tells me that since the Magna Carta. the "crown" or state, has been required to state the criminal charges against any "free" person. inlcusive a statement of facts relied upon, as without this before any trial no defense can possibly be prepared, a surprise ambush at trial is not enough to guarantee this right. These rights lead the way for the middle class to develop in Europe and the USA, as without those rights citizens were slaves.

Many US Supremem Court cases confrim this right: See: http://www.angelfire.com/mn3/mj4mayor/WSPcase...

Prosecutors should and by law are required to be respecting this right. They do not and have not for a long time and seem determined to undermine those rights. The reasonsn why are likely complex, but ultimately seem to be self destrutive and destructive of the civilation in which we live.

Public Defenders certainly should be respecting these rights, but are not. These rights would decrease the workplad of PD offices as they would insure many cases would be dismissed by simple motioons. In part the PD offices ap[pear to want to use their high case load as leverage to get more pay and funding. The objective of more fuinding is very fiar and right, the tactics of allowing prosecutors to undermine basic law to get leverage is not.

Until recently judges, if presented with appropriate motions, would check propsecutors, but at least in Dakota County, this does not appear to be happening any longer. Perhaps, when the Dakota County Attorney is caught witness tampering ans till runs again for office, and when judges are sanction by the judiical board and still run for office again, there is no longer any shame.

This enitre scope of the behavior described above appears to be aptly characterized by the image of a fool, sitting on the edge of a branch on top of a massive tree, blissfully sawing off the branch he is sitting on, unconcerned that the fool will also be falling to the ground along with the branch.
Bill

Atlanta, GA

#94 Aug 31, 2010
Madaman wrote:
<quoted text>
If you are suggesting that the veneer of Civilization is thin and brittle -- I agree. We don't have a civilized country by accident nor magic: we created it one law at a time. We have always been willing to incur the cost of enforcing those laws with police, courts, and prisons -- knowing that the cost of NOT doing so is too horrible to contemplate.
Now some conservative whiners want to keep a fistful of dollars for themselves, and to heck with everyone else. They are too short-sighted to see that the stability and order we have been funding is the foundation for the economic growth and prosperity they hold so dear. Their ability to move goods and services rapidly and cheaply, and attract a stable workforce, is the cornerstone of Success -- yet, for a few dollars more (for themselves) they will happily condemn a fabulous infrastructure to long-term decay and expensive tragedies (35W bridge).
The same crowd that worships a literal interpretation of our Constitution appears willing to give up some of the protections that set America aside from dictatorships around the world: the presumption of innocence and the right to a speedy trial among them. "Why should I have to pay for the rights of thugs?" they ask. How quickly they forget that they are just one police/prosecutorial misjudgment away from alleged "thug" status themselves. Just look at the Lee case!
Public Defenders are needed for the good, the bad, and the ugly. Access to counsel and a fair trial ARE the American Way. Those who don't want to support it, are free to emigrate to one of those low-tax havens where suspects are presumed guilty, and have the burden of proof to establish their innocence. They can enjoy their prison stays knowing that little money was wasted on food, medical care, and conditions for "thugs" like themselves.
I agree with much of what you said. As a conservative, I think government spends and wastes too much. But, the courts are just one of those basic rights that actually should be funded and is a legitimate use of tax money. Although, you are way, way off in your criticizing those who want to actually take the Constitution seriously and actually interpret it yes - "literally." It's not a "breathable" document that we can change at whim.
patricia olayiwola

Inver Grove Heights, MN

#95 Nov 19, 2010
really in needed of a publie definder
patricia olayiwola

Inver Grove Heights, MN

#96 Nov 19, 2010
please help me problems that i dont know about

“Sustainability Now!”

Since: May 08

Vadnais Heights

#97 Nov 20, 2010
Bill wrote:
<quoted text>
I agree with much of what you said. As a conservative, I think government spends and wastes too much. But, the courts are just one of those basic rights that actually should be funded and is a legitimate use of tax money. Although, you are way, way off in your criticizing those who want to actually take the Constitution seriously and actually interpret it yes - "literally." It's not a "breathable" document that we can change at whim.
As a Liberal, I also think the Gov't spends and wastes far too much. How great that Justice is one thing that Liberals and Conservatives can actually agree upon!

As a Liberal, I also take the Constitution very seriously. How we interpret it is always an issue. We cannot be "literal," in the sense that we need to use that great document in applications unthinkable to the Founding Fathers.

No one in the 18th century wrote anything about radio, television, the Internet, full-body scanners, et cetera. We could be Literal, and say that since those technologies are not addressed in our Constitution, they do not enjoy Constitutional protection. That would leave several multi-billion-dollar industries outside the pale of it, and leave us at their mercy.

To use this great document responsibly, we MUST interpret it in the context of OUR times -- we cannot and will not return to the 18th Century. The courts must be free to make the required interpretations of the provisions of our Constitution -- just as they interpret lesser statutes and laws.

Example: full-body scanners are not mentioned in our Constitution. Should a court not be able to interpret the 4th Amendment in regard to this new technology? I say these scanners are an embodiment of "Unresonable search." What do you say?
Not as Delusional as You

Saint Paul, MN

#98 Nov 20, 2010
Madaman wrote:
<quoted text>
As a Liberal, I also think the Gov't spends and wastes far too much. How great that Justice is one thing that Liberals and Conservatives can actually agree upon!
As a Liberal, I also take the Constitution very seriously. How we interpret it is always an issue. We cannot be "literal," in the sense that we need to use that great document in applications unthinkable to the Founding Fathers.
No one in the 18th century wrote anything about radio, television, the Internet, full-body scanners, et cetera. We could be Literal, and say that since those technologies are not addressed in our Constitution, they do not enjoy Constitutional protection. That would leave several multi-billion-dollar industries outside the pale of it, and leave us at their mercy.
To use this great document responsibly, we MUST interpret it in the context of OUR times -- we cannot and will not return to the 18th Century. The courts must be free to make the required interpretations of the provisions of our Constitution -- just as they interpret lesser statutes and laws.
Example: full-body scanners are not mentioned in our Constitution. Should a court not be able to interpret the 4th Amendment in regard to this new technology? I say these scanners are an embodiment of "Unresonable search." What do you say?
Unless you interpret flying to be a right, not a privilege, this is not an "unreasonable search". However, public opinion could sway Congress to do away with this

“Sustainability Now!”

Since: May 08

Vadnais Heights

#99 Nov 20, 2010
Not as Delusional as You wrote:
<quoted text>Unless you interpret flying to be a right, not a privilege, this is not an "unreasonable search". However, public opinion could sway Congress to do away with this
Your question raises a host of other questions, regarding the access to "public transportation" and the role of gov't agencies (TSA) in securing said public transportation from the probable cause of risk.

This is exactly why the Constitution MUST be open to contextual interpretation.
Not as Delusional as You

Saint Paul, MN

#100 Nov 20, 2010
Madaman wrote:
<quoted text>
Your question raises a host of other questions, regarding the access to "public transportation" and the role of gov't agencies (TSA) in securing said public transportation from the probable cause of risk.
This is exactly why the Constitution MUST be open to contextual interpretation.
I don't know that air travel qualifies as "Public" transportation. Amtrak, MTC, even LRT, public transportation. Air travel? Not so sure. Semantics, certainly, but.......

“Sustainability Now!”

Since: May 08

Vadnais Heights

#101 Nov 20, 2010
Not as Delusional as You wrote:
<quoted text>I don't know that air travel qualifies as "Public" transportation. Amtrak, MTC, even LRT, public transportation. Air travel? Not so sure. Semantics, certainly, but.......
Semantics are EXACTLY why the Constitution requires contextual interpretation.
Not as Delusional as You

Saint Paul, MN

#102 Nov 20, 2010
Madaman wrote:
<quoted text>
Semantics are EXACTLY why the Constitution requires contextual interpretation.
And why every time a decision is handed down, some are pleased and some are upset by the interpretation of the semantics.

“Sustainability Now!”

Since: May 08

Vadnais Heights

#103 Nov 20, 2010
Not as Delusional as You wrote:
<quoted text>And why every time a decision is handed down, some are pleased and some are upset by the interpretation of the semantics.
Well, of course! We all react from our individual contexts -- some align with a decision, some are appalled. You may have noticed that Democrats and Republicans operate from differing contexts.

The courts are charged with interpreting laws and the Constitution, and the lack of universal alignment is not a reason to refrain from this responsibility.

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