Breaking China--Legally

 

by Walter Brasch

 

        Chinese President Hu Jintao's visit to the United States this past week has been met by both praise and political posturing. Hu, an intellectual with a strong sense of culture, hopes he is leading what he wishes to be "a Harmonious Society" with peaceful development. To that end, Hu said his government was prepared to “engage in dialogue and exchanges with the United States on the basis of mutual respect and the principle of noninterference in each other's internal affairs” on human rights questions. Although it seems as if Hu is saying that he wants each nation to continue to conduct its business without interference, he also acknowledged that “A lot still needs to be done in China in terms of human rights."

           But, some politicians, apparently feeling a need to make sure their home base knows they aren't weak on Communism, have called him a dictator, gangster, and emperor. Very few have spoken out about American-owned companies downsizing and outsourcing everything to China from toys and clothing to book printing and building materials.

           Although China is the world's second largest economic power behind the U.S. and this country's largest creditor, there is no need to fear either its economy or its military power. It has already sown the seeds of its own destruction.

           In 1996, there were almost no lawyers in China. By 2000, there were 110,000. There are now almost 200,000.

           With a society of lawyers, China is likely to collapse. Let's take an example. Ling Chou is riding his bicycle on Chairman Mao Boulevard. He starts to turn left, but is hit by a bicycle being ridden by Chang Liu. Under the principles of Confucianism, before there were lawyers, the two would see if each other was hurt, help out if necessary, and apologize profusely. If a bicycle was dented, the other person would fix it. If there weren't injuries or dents, they would shake hands and go their own ways. With lawyers, you don't do that. Ling grabs his lawyers; Chang grabs his own lawyers. It takes six inches of paperwork, a preliminary hearing before a magistrate, and two, maybe three continuances before the case comes before a judge. Then there are the bailiffs, marshals, clerks, typists, stenographers, and court reporters. After a three-day trial—during which three doctors from each side testify, and get paid very well for their conflicting opinions about back injuries and mental trauma—the judge decides the case. The whole thing takes a year. Maybe two.

           Now, let's look at the criminal side of law. In the past, Chinese citizens could walk down any street late at night and wouldn't even worry about a "Boo!" Now, with lawyers, you have to have criminals. So, the crime statistics go up. More lawyers show up. Some to prosecute. Some to defend. Before lawyers, China had work camps. Now there will be guards and wardens and rehabilitative counselors and parole boards and committees for prisoner rights, followed by committees for victim rights.

           With everyone suing, defending themselves from criminals, or being criminals, the Chinese won't have time to sew cheap coats or launch any wars.

           However, in the past couple of years, President Hu's government has gotten wise to the proliferation of lawyers. The licensing tests have become harder—only about one-fifth of the applicants pass them; and the annual fees have increased significantly.

           This has caused even greater problems. When lawyers get tired of being lawyers, they become politicians, just as in the U.S. And, as in the U.S., it isn't scientists, social workers, teachers, and other decent people who are running our government. Imagine what will happen when the lawyers finally take over the Chinese government. In a country with four times America's population there will be four times as many mortgage crises scandals, four times as many morals scandals, and four times the number of self-serving statements that they weren't responsible for whatever it was that went wrong in the country.

           More important, there will no longer be just one Communist Party, but at least two, each one screaming at the other one, fighting meaningless battles, and filling radio, television, and the Internet with equally meaningless blather. It'll only be a short time until the lawyer-led political system paralyzes a 4,000-year-old civilization that has given us great literature, music, sculpture, fashion, architecture, cuisine, and the use of martial arts for peaceful reasons.

           With the rise of lawyers and political parties, even America's corporations wouldn't outsource their products to a nation like that—not for all the tea (parties) in China.

 

[Walter Brasch is a multiple award-winning humor and general/politics columnist in competition sponsored by the National Society of Newspaper Columnists, Society of Professional Journalists, National Federation of Press Women, Pennsylvania Press Club, and Pennsylvania Women's Press Association. social issues columnist and He is the author of 17 books, most of which are available through amazon.com. You may contact him at walterbrasch@gmail.com]

 

 

Legendary NY District Attorney calls the way we treat immigrants "a national disgrace"

From Restore Fairness blog

90 year old Robert Morgenthau, New York's legendary District Attorney for 35 years is recently retired, and has already dived into his new role at law firm Wachtall, Lipton, Rosen and Katz where he has committed to fighting for the rights of all immigrants in the United States.

Considered the inspiration for Law & Order, New York's highest prosecuting office was presided over by Morgenthau, and was responsible for tens of  thousands of cases, including many high-profile trials. That's why, when he speaks of the need to ensure the basic constitutional rights of every single person, particularly those at the margins, we need to pay attention.

In an interview with WNYC, Morganthau did not mince words on expressing his views on the current system.

Brian Lehrer: You've also been thinking about immigration law and the interface between criminal courts and immigration courts and immigration detention. This is something you said you were going to work on after your retirement and now you are. What have you been thinking about?

Robert Morgenthau: I think, the way we treat immigrants is a national disgrace and I’m ashamed of what we do. I think anybody who’s here in the United States, legal or illegal, is entitled to the full protection of the law and they’re not getting that. I set up an immigration program in the D.A.’s office and I publicly announced, over half a dozen times, that we would turn nobody over to the Federal authorities, as long as they continued to deprive these undocumented immigrants of their constitutional rights. And it’s a very, very serious problem, and again its a stain on our reputation. There are 2 problems one is the problems with laws themselves, and second is the way they are applied.

Morgenthau also spoke passionately about the need for a fair trial, whether in relation to the trial of 9/11 suspect Khalid Shaikh Mohammed, or to a “friend of the court” brief by the Brennan Center for Justice he recently signed backed by 62 prosecutors who are calling for more funding for indigent defendants. While this particularly applies to the criminal justice system, it is also an acute problem with the immigration system. More than half of of the people in deportation proceedings and 84% of people in detention do not have representation.

Brian Lehrer: Why is a prosecutor arguing for more defense attorneys?

Robert Morgenthau: As a prosecutor, I always slept better at night if i knew the defendant was well represented. I mean, our criminal justice system is an adversary system but for it to work you've got to have competent lawyers on both sides of the table... it's critical to our system of justice.

When those fully immersed in the legal system speak out on the injustice of immigration law, we need to pay attention.

Photo courtesy of www.nytimes.com

Learn. Share. Act. http://www.restorefairness.org

How To Not Hire An American - MUST SEE VIDEO

Cross posted on Dailykos

Our goal is clearly NOT TO FIND a qualified and interested U.S. worker.

It's on video, believe it or not, and even presented as a selling point to peddle their services by Cohen & Grigsby Law Firm.  That's right, this group of attorneys put an entire seminar on how to screw over the American worker on YouTube. Imagine that, a seminar from lawyers on how to make sure one doesn't have to hire an American worker!

There's more...

Harriet Miers is Not My Grandmother

I'm back!

As my internship and my graduate work keep me very busy, I imagine I will continue to post less frequently than I'd like, but I at least hope to find a little time here and there to make this site worth checking out again.

So here are some thoughts on the recent (though admittedly non-electoral) stink over the firing of U.S. Attorneys: I find this notable not because we're finding out that work within the Gonzales Justice Department is politically motivated (no! You're KIDDING!), but for what it reveals about Harriet Miers.

When she was nominated by Bush for the Supreme Court, we heard a lot of complaints about her, but we rarely heard from the woman herself. The result, for me anyway, was to give the impression of a well meaning, grandmotherly, semi-competent old lady ("I've been nominated for the Supreme Court? Oooh, goodness gracious me, I should bake some cookies for the nice Senators!"). How nice, but why would Bush nominate her to the nation's highest court? We all kind of cocked our heads at that. Now we find out that she was the one who came up with the idea to clean house in the DOJ, firing all US Attorneys in order to stack the department with attorneys friendly to the administration.

   This is not something my grandmother would do!

Suddenly, it looks like Miers is a cutthroat political hatchet woman, at whose site even low-level bureaucrats should quake.

Of course, now it's no mystery why Bush nominated her for the Court. Yes, Bush likes appointing buddies and people with whom he's comfortable to lofty positions in government, but in Miers Bush not only had a friend, but a loyal minion, a henchwoman eager to clear him a path of least resistance. Did we luck out?

Digg this article, and then come and argue with me some more at FifteenNineteen!

Diaries

Advertise Blogads