done. keep up the good work
I've been particularly enjoying the assumptions parties have been making as to whether to direct mail my partner or me, based apparently solely on our electoral role addresses and occupations. Could they be more wrong?
I get the same thing with extreme social conservatives. One of the things that makes me wonder if the 'political spectrum' isn't actually a circle.
My theory is that it is like one of those bangles that doesn't quite join to create a full circle - the extreme ends are much closer to each other than either is to the middle - and ceratinly much closer than either end would care to admit.
Sean, it is on the order paper, but a looooong way down
andrew r - I did say I might be alone in thinking that written briefs might be a good thing. For my part I don't necessarily accept that they fly in the face of innocent until proven guilty - sure you would need some safegurads around how it would work (of which my latter suggestion was one), but its not the exchange of briefs themselves that work against the concept - all they do is ensure that the focus of the trial is on the matters that are actually at issue. The prosecution still has to prove its case, the defence has to prove nothing. All it means it that everyone knows what has to be proven. I think it would work both to ensure more, and more appropriate, guilty pleas and see more charges withdrawn when the prosecution realises how flimsy/unangelic their witnesses are or their case is.
I am also in favour of increasing the cost (in money or otherwise) of unsuccessful prosecutions, in order to dissuade unnecessary prosecutions and/or overcharging. Unfortunately the potential cost to the Crown makes that probably a pipedream.
...and (for the record) I do do more prosecution than defence work, but I still do some defence and (for that reason) would never just blame the defence bar for clogging up the system!
You are absolutely right - the reason they don't turn their minds to it is because they don't have to and that they have other things to do.
Also, the costs involved are not just the cost on the prosecutor, there is also the (not insignificant) waste of Court time, and the flow on effect for other hearings in an overcrowded system. I don't think there is any evidence of prosecutions not being taken because of pressure caused by cases in the system already. Your analysis assumes that there is a common purpose across the defendants - there might be an aggregate advantage, but not one that is predictable for any identifiable one.
Having been on both sides of the fence (prosecuting and defence), although admittedly not as often as some, I am pretty relaxed about pre-trial notification of issues. I perhaps wouldn't go as far as the Bill does but certainly a requirement to identify issues that are not disputed, well in advance, would be a good thing.
It seems to me that a good portion of our criminal bar rarely (probably because of the pressures of resources and time) turn their mind with any degree of focus to cases before the last minute. What that often results in is massive additional cost to the prosecution in proving matters that are not ultimately in dispute (with no countervailing advantage or protection to the defendant) and late guilty pleas.
Not sure how far I would go with disclosure of defences (but note some are required to be disclosed in advance already).
What would be interesting (but anathema to the criminal bar) would be a requirement for the defence to exchange briefs of evidence in advance, together with a restriction preventing them being used by the prosecution unless and until the evidence had been called... but I may well be alone in thinking that that might work
Labour should go back to digging around his house, that had traction at least
...mental image of Cunliffe and Mallard trudging up Messines Road of a dark evening, shovels at parade rest...
I dunno if that was Sebastien Chabal, but if anyone's playing for Team Evil it's him.
Clearly he is. My nine year old, everytime he sees a picture of Chabal chants (in perfect pitch)... Captain Caaaveman!
And I swear he has never seen the damn show. Clearly it is yet another example of franco-belezebub/jedi mind tricks...
...and yes.. I thought the teen angels were hot...