American Corruption and Injustice

One of the Seven Wise Men of Greece was wont to say: "That laws were like cobwebs, where the small flies were caught, and the great break through."-Francis Bacon, Apothegms

They are corrupt! Judges do not judge fellow judges, prosecutors do not prosecute fellow prosecutors, and the police do not police their fellow police. Prosecutors become judges, and judges become prosecutors. Prosecutors know the judges, who know the prosecutors. Prosecutors are friendly with judges, and vice-versa. Prosecutors and judges, who have the exact same employer, have the same employer as the police. The offices of the prosecutors and judges are often in the same building.

John Fleming

(St. Louis, Missouri, USA)

The corruption employs double standard. Prosecutors can indict you, but you cannot indict prosecutors for the malicious prosecution they should be prosecuted for. The judges, although not judging judges, arbitrarily judge you into prison but you cannot judge them. The police can arrest you for any lie they make up but you cannot arrest them for illegal arrest. There are written laws and unwritten laws; the unwritten laws are actually followed and bear but a faint resemblance to the written laws. The unwritten law in the federal government, in each state and in counties and cities is that prosecutors and judges and police have de facto immunity from prosecution and from policing, although with some justice turds, such as federal prosecutors, the unwritten law has been consummated into written law guaranteeing immunity from prosecution-which is always an open invitation to crime. The police, committing the crimes of false arrest, testilying in court, assault and destruction of the Bill of Rights-the first ten amendments to the Constitution, but not the Ten Commandments-are pre-innocent and never guilty even when known to be guilty. The LAPD goons who beat Rodney King were found "not guilty" of beating Rodney King. The prosecution of a judge, prosecutor or policeman is as rare as a Bush or Gates donation to charity.

   Supposedly it is better to let ten guilty men walk than to convict one innocent man, but prosecutors, judges and police, unconscious of their corruption, barking out es muß Strafe hier geben, adhere to the exact opposite idea: No "criminal" walks past these criminal creeps, who decide just who is criminal. I invite anyone who does not believe this to talk to "law enforcement" and to sit through some court sessions. Strangely, the courts are abandoned, empty, during many working hours of the day, only to suddenly become packed with pre-guilty chain gangs of black men in orange or brown jumpsuits, and with the rest of the pre-guilty jumpsuited-and-chained jailed people, all of whom, in hurried proceedings, as though each defendant were also guilty of hogging precious court time, and as though the judge and prosecutor were doing them a favor by showing up, are denied bail and then found guilty as circular-reasoning, begging the question charged. Studies show that those who appear in jump suits or chains in court are more likely to be convicted, other things held constant. "The quality of mercy is not strained," though, according to Shakespeare in The Merchant of Venice. "It is twice blessed: It blesseth him that gives and him that takes.... Though justice be thy plea, consider this, that in the course of justice none of us should see salvation." We show mercy to others to receive mercy in turn.

   The corrupt double standard also causes nonenforcement of laws against white collar crime. The prosecutors, judges and police "enforce" only those laws they agree with and do not enforce pesky laws against excessively paying yourself as a CEO, insider trading for the respectable, and pharmaceutical and big oil price gouging of the public. (M. Parenti, Democracy for the Few, and passim in other works of his.) As another example, the nasty chicanery of supermarkets and retailers like Walgreens of charging a higher price at the register than the marked "sale" price does not bring the police to their doors for fraud. Money hungry religio-creeps on television are not arrested for bilking and shearing their flock; you cannot call the police on born again hoodlums to claim you were sold a phony Himmelfahrt, as in the days of the sale of indulgences. Instead, the beloved laws of the authorities deal with assault, armed criminal action, robbery, trespassing, permitting peace disturbance, disturbing the peace, "conspiracy" of all types (the "prosecutor's darling"), and social deviance. The police rubberstamp the lies of a witness, arresting a pauper without getting his side of the story; the judge rubberstamps arrest and search warrants, being one never to let the criminals walk, and prosecutors rubberstamp police reports and then judges rubberstamp convictions based on their own rubberstamped warrants! Since they are all the same, it does no good to ask for recusal or a change of venue. Going after corporate or white collar criminals would yield enormous money and forfeiture to government coffers of illegal profit, but well-groomed men in suits breaking the law in suites are not deemed criminals.

   Fighting the sophistry of prosecutors with an auto-indictment under their belt is like the frustration of punching out of a paper bag. They play by their own rules. Judges, prosecutors and police lie like a politician. They twist and distort everything you did and said. Judges ignore your motions until the last moment, thereby keeping you there longer if you are in jail. Despite an obvious conflict of interest, the prosecutor's office is for some unheard of, cockamamie reason entrusted with handing over documents to the defendant; the office opportunistically delays delivery of police reports, warrants, hospitalization reports, criminal records, driver licenses, etc., until the last moment or not at all, thereby severely hindering a defendant, but in the meantime the prosecutor has it all from the get go. And woe to those who do not "cooperate" in their own imprisonment by authorities, who maliciously though insidiously portray the punishment as "good" for the defendant. As is well known through reality television cop shows, the police are allowed to lie to suspects-and do they ever, but just where the lying ends and the nose of justice-Pinocchio stops growing cannot be portrayed in a mere four hours of programming.

   "Justice" is the play thing of the rich. It could hardly have been any different at Old Bailey. Bail is based on the presumed viciousness of the crime and the judge's swirling emotions. A mean judge may revoke the one-tenth rule, which otherwise would allow a defendant to post ten percent of the bail instead of the whole nominal amount. Obviously, the rich, who are usually dealt with in the first place administratively, thereby avoiding the brutality of jail, prison and hospital-prison, can easily put up bail. One is unable to prepare his defense if stuck in jail. Rich defendants, unlike the poor, can afford private detectives, expert witnesses, long delays in the trial, filing motion after motion, fees for discovery interviews, secretaries, stenographers, dedicated and motivated multiple attorneys, expenses for witnesses from out-of-town, and so on. For example, the wealthy rapist William Kennedy Smith made a clean getaway from prosecution for rape. The poor man, however, in addition to being stereotyped as the criminal type, may not be able to post bail and must rely on a public defender lawyer, who has no enthusiasm for his client's freedom, since the county, state or federal government pays his salary or fees. Public defenders are overworked and have little time for each client. The lawyers could make considerably more money in a private practice. Often jails and hospital-prisons are used as punishment in lieu of a conviction that the unscrupulous prosecutor cannot secure, or in lieu of a conviction on a minor charge. Many jail prisoners wait years or many months merely for their trial or an after-arraignment court date. Studies demonstrate that those who plea bargain receive in exchange no lesser punishment. So according to Oliver Goldsmith, "Laws grind the poor, and rich men command the laws."

   In the classic Spoon River Anthology by Edgar Lee Masters, The Circuit Judge was "deciding cases on the points the lawyers scored, not on the right of the matter." Knowing that American juries base their verdict on impressions and images, rather than on evidence and reasoning, swaggering prosecutors putting on airs play to the hilt the officialness of the indictment and of their own official position, contending that he is only doing his job and that he would not be there unless there were something to the indictment. In reality, the truth of an assertion depends on evidence, not authority. Many evil mindless juries time and again have convicted innocent men, executing them or permanently imprisoning them. That Americans do not think and have no compassion is part of the problem. Crime lab technicians may corruptly be informed of the desired outcome of a test and lie about the result. Despite all their corruption, unholy law enforcement creeps sanctimoniously don a façade of just doing their job, working up self-righteous fury at the suggestion that their own class and cultural prejudices render them biased. Supposedly, merely because you did not know the authorities before their insistence on imprisoning you means that they are impartial, yet they in truth stack the deck against you. The judge, wearing a robe of black, the color of death and hence a symbol of his grave authority, sits on high, elevated above everyone else, and pretending to be like Jesus at the Sermon on the Mount. His henchmen the bailiffs assault a defendant or his lawyer on the mere nodding of his honorable honor's head. Specifically why or how the judge deserves the appellation "your honor"-actually because he has immediate unmitigated power over others-is never made clear or brought into question. The court employs other chicanery to further obedience, such as requiring all who enter court to take off their hat and rise when the judge comes in, and the decoration of the bench with official seals and flags.

   Legal jargon and procedure are deliberately mystified to increase the power of law professionals by reducing everyone else to uncomprehending dependence. Many legal terms are in Latin or obscure English from a century long ago. Common sense is frowned on and is replaced by recondite rules and stare decisis. Statutory law and case law are buried in libraries or costly computer databases not to be found and understood without much practice. Common law is a nightmare of the annihilation of justice and equality by mortmain, the dead hand of the past.

   The courts are studded with extraordinarily mean judges whom the bar association judgment and recall systems fail to remove. The failure, however, is actually institutionalized deliberateness. The judges are appointed for the most part and elected by noone. The recall on ballots is a farcical façade intended to head off serious judicial reform. Voters know nothing about the judges listed on the ballots and thus have no desire to remove them. (But I myself enjoy selecting the "no" choice in answer to "shall Judge --- --- be retained?" and then gleefully hitting the "select all" lever to let the political cronies have it!) St. Louis Countians are aware of a hardass judge in Clayton, the County seat and hence capital of local graft. This judge is so mean he would imprison his own mother-so mean that he gets off on exercising brutal random power over anyone unfortunate enough to appear in court before the misanthropic sadist. Clearly he should be removed and punished for his Draconianism, but lack of democracy has thus far prevented it.

   In conclusion, American justice is corrupted by class warfare. Apodictically U.S. prisons are full of the poor and hold only extremely few rich people, far disproportionate to the number of rich who commit formal crimes. Blacks are overrepresented in prisons and as victims of the justice system. Also, in comparison to men women are becoming a larger part of the prison population, where they are raped by male guards. Political and white collar criminals continue to get away with their crimes. Crime is mainly defined by the elite as something done by the poor that threatens its power or economic profit.

(References: M. Parenti, Dirty Truths; Power and the Powerless; Francis Bacon, Essays; R. Hofstadter, The United States; E. Goffman, The Presentation of Self in Everyday Life; L. Coser, Masters of Sociological Thought)



John Fleming is the author of a book entitled Word Power, available







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Author`s name Timothy Bancroft-Hinchey