Daily Archives: January 7, 2011

Precedent Is As Precedent Does

Part VI of the continuing “is-does” series.

Jeff Gamso is a fine writer and no doubt a fine lawyer.  But we have our disagreements.  He thinks you can argue with those simple creatures we call judges and they’ll listen despite their brutish sycophancy to the powers that gave them their positions.  I think not, at least not until they can feel some heat from the other side.  Thus, this blog.

Jeff cites a case in favor of his position and makes his argument well, as usual.  It’s the Supreme Court of Iowa, and they have ruled – putting their state in the minority – that “inconsistent verdicts” by juries will not stand.

Bravo.  A victory for logic, reason, the constitution I suppose, and the disfavored litigant – a criminal defendant.  All of this is rare.

Which tells you something:  the first three of those should ordinarily govern; but what should ordinarily govern has been reduced to an anecdote, a freak occurrence so rare that we write about it on blogs.  The public, largely and silently disgusted if they are not completely disinterested – unless, of course some “criminal” “gets off” –  stopped caring a long time ago.

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