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Do you accept all court decisions without question?

 
 
Lash
 
  1  
Reply Fri 25 Mar, 2005 11:08 am
blueveinedthrobber wrote:
Lash wrote:
The informants are always treated to (rightful) character assasination--and hardly ever believed.

Remember Robert Blake's hired killer? Testimony that Blake had hired him to kill Bonnie Bakely. You'd think that would be good enough evidence, eh?

But, Blake is on the streets. Because it was hearsay from an impeachable witness....


The Blake case provided no opportunites for political gain within ones power base. Apples and Oranges.

Come on. You can do better than that. It is a case with similar aspects. Hearsay was believed in one case, and disbelieved in another.

Bella--

Well, I agreed with it completely so far! I thought we sort of all considered court cases privately--and arrived at our own decisions, based on the evidence. We all saw OJ's trial...Blake's...some interesting cases on Court TV...
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Lash
 
  1  
Reply Fri 25 Mar, 2005 11:09 am
Oh damn! I never had an AUTO SPAM FILTER ATTACK before.

I mentioned a TV show featuring court cases...
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Bella Dea
 
  1  
Reply Fri 25 Mar, 2005 11:12 am
OJ is exactly the reason we need to challenge court decisions! Everyone knows he did it. Every single person on this plant I think, believes he did it. And yet, somehow, he got away.....

The problem with Terri is that her court case should never have been. This decision should never have been made by the system. Whether or not you believe that she should be taken off her food tube or not, the judicial system should never have had any say. Period.

Someone made a comment about wanting an uninvolved party making the decision about her life/death. I completely disagree. This isn't like a murder case or a rape case or something that someone has done to endanger society. This is a personal, private decision and event that the courts should have simply said "we will not make that decision".
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Walter Hinteler
 
  1  
Reply Fri 25 Mar, 2005 11:13 am
Do you accept all court decisions without question?

Certainly not. And if I it is my case, and if I would like the decission, I would try to go up to the highest pssible instances.

Generally, I think, there's only one way to change these decissions: voting for other lawmakers who then would make laws, how I will like them.

(Un-)Fortunately, in Germany laws must apply generally and not merely to a single case or person (ยง 19, constitution/Basic Law) :wink:
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sozobe
 
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Reply Fri 25 Mar, 2005 11:16 am
I very much agree with FreeDuck's take here.

I think it's all part of the social contract. The roads need to be paved -- but it's not something I personally do.

So to me the most compelling question is, where is the evidence that there was legal wrongdoing in this case? Not a subjective judgement of what should have been done, an objective and evidence-fuelled allegation that something illegal occurred?

I am not going to examine every one of the millions of court cases that come through the system every day. That is not my niche or responsibility. My responsibility is more general than that -- to stay informed, and to be willing to take action if I feel that the system has broken down in some way.

Nothing I have seen -- and I've done a lot of reading -- makes me think that the system has broken down in this case. In fact, the system is standing up to a rather powerful assault, and I think that's a very heartening thing.

The powerful assault itself, however, I think is appalling, and so I exercise my general responsibility -- staying informed, being willing to take action if the system has broken down in some way -- by criticizing the extraordinary expenditure of political capital and energy on this case.
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Bella Dea
 
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Reply Fri 25 Mar, 2005 11:17 am
Lash wrote:
Oh damn! I never had an AUTO SPAM FILTER ATTACK before.

I mentioned a TV show featuring court cases...


I think I know which you are speaking of....I watch all that stuff all the time. CSI for fun....a lot of crap on the court channel (beat the spam attack!), Forensic Files, etc....

Laughing
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Lash
 
  1  
Reply Fri 25 Mar, 2005 11:18 am
I understand your opinion.

I only want to clarify that I didn't think an uninterested person should make the decision. I would only trust an uninterested person with pertinent testimony.

I agree it is a private decision. I just think that the personal, private decision is hers to make, and in absence of proof of her wishes, we shouldn't kill her.

But, moot point, likely.
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FreeDuck
 
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Reply Fri 25 Mar, 2005 11:20 am
sozobe wrote:
Nothing I have seen -- and I've done a lot of reading -- makes me think that the system has broken down in this case. In fact, the system is standing up to a rather powerful assault, and I think that's a very heartening thing.

The powerful assault itself, however, I think is appalling, and so I exercise my general responsibility -- staying informed, being willing to take action if the system has broken down in some way -- by criticizing the extraordinary expenditure of political capital and energy on this case.


Emphatically agree.
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Cycloptichorn
 
  1  
Reply Fri 25 Mar, 2005 11:21 am
She's already dead. That's the part ya don't seem to understand.

There are a huge body of doctors who agree that the brain scans of this lady and lack of EEG readings are indicative of a mind which does not function. She doesn't even have the areas of her brain anymore that deal with higher thought. They do not exist. She's not going to get better.

All they are doing is laying this poor dead lady's body to rest; and about time. Imagine the hell she's been in for 15 years...

Cycloptichorn
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Ticomaya
 
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Reply Fri 25 Mar, 2005 11:27 am
Re: Do you accept all court decisions without question?
Lash wrote:
Are there really people here who blindly accept court decisions? ....


Not I. I have appealed many court decisions to the appellate courts.
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Ticomaya
 
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Reply Fri 25 Mar, 2005 11:28 am
FreeDuck wrote:
Lash wrote:
Hearsay is not evidence.

At least it's a famous sustained objection in all other cases...


Oh, but it absolutely is. What evidence do you suppose jailbird informants provide? And there are famous allowances in cases where the person who said the things is not available to testify, as in this case.


"Hearsay" is an out-of-court statement used in-court to prove the matter asserted.

There are many exceptions to the general rule that hearsay evidence (yes, it is evidence, the question is whether it's admissible) is not to be admitted by the court. Here is a site that discusses this in some detail: LINK

The exception you're thinking about, FD is probably this one:

Quote:
ADMISSIONS AND DECLARATIONS AGAINST ONE'S INTERESTS -- These involve long-established common law exceptions to the hearsay rule, and consist of various types, of which admissions (acquiescing in the statement of another or remaining silent in the face of accusations) are a special type. It may be helpful to think of this category of exceptions as similar to the way police investigators go about obtaining admissions or "soft" confessions. There are two main types of declarations against interests -- against pecuniary interest and against penal interest. The rationale behind this group of exceptions is the legal system's confidence in the notion of "probability of truthfulness." When a person says or writes something that isn't exactly in their best interests, the legal system assumes that those statements probably would not have been made unless they were true. At least such statements would be trustworthy if corroborated by other facts, and FRE 804(b)(3), which governs this exception, requires some corroborating facts. For example, if an arson-for-profit case involves the testimony of a co-worker who says he heard the boss say "this place would be better off burnt down," and the boss denies ever saying this, the testimony of the co-worker would be admissible as hearsay if there were corroborating facts such as evidence that the business was doing badly. This is an example of declaration against pecuniary interest, since the co-worker might be held liable in civil court by the insurance company for their part in the arson-for-profit scheme. What is much more common, however, are declarations against penal interest, in which the hearsay witness is at risk of being charged as a co-conspirator to the crime. In fact, declarations against penal interest are so common that at least one commentator (Davenport 1972) has called this exception the "co-conspirator exception." A typical scenario runs like this -- a drug dealer (named Joe) is arrested in a passenger vehicle, and none of the fellow passengers are charged with anything, but later police questioning of the passengers reveals that one passenger says "I often allowed Joe to store stuff he said were drugs in a closet at my apartment." The law would look upon this storage of extra drugs as a critical fact, and force this passenger to testify as a turncoat witness, even if that passenger had the foresight to obtain immunity from prosecution. The passenger is clearly a co-conspirator, but their statement is not taken as a confession, only as a self-inculpatory declaration against penal interest in order for the prosecution to get at Joe. The prosecution can always try to prosecute the co-conspirator later, but it will not be able to rely upon the co-conspirator's statement alone since it was used as hearsay in another case, and doesn't qualify as a confession. It only qualifies as a statement to get at the truth in the context of the present case. It may be helpful to think of this as the law looking favorably upon "uncooperative" witnesses as opposed to "cooperative" witnesses because the law looks down on snitches, who voluntarily sell out their friends in order to save themselves. In order for the truth to come out, the law assumes everyone must face the real risk of a penal sanction. That's what a declaration against penal interest means -- that the truth comes out when you are forced to say things that risk getting you in trouble.
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FreeDuck
 
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Reply Fri 25 Mar, 2005 11:29 am
Thanks for the link, Tico. Everything I know about the law I learned from Court (TV) and Law and Order.
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Lash
 
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Reply Fri 25 Mar, 2005 11:32 am
Damn! When I said that...Court (TV)...without the (), they hit me with a Spam Injunction...
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shewolfnm
 
  1  
Reply Fri 25 Mar, 2005 11:33 am
Cycloptichorn wrote:
She's already dead. That's the part ya don't seem to understand.

There are a huge body of doctors who agree that the brain scans of this lady and lack of EEG readings are indicative of a mind which does not function. She doesn't even have the areas of her brain anymore that deal with higher thought. They do not exist. She's not going to get better.

All they are doing is laying this poor dead lady's body to rest; and about time. Imagine the hell she's been in for 15 years...

Cycloptichorn



In this situation, I could not agree with you more.
Now, if only we can get YOUR words written in a law book somewhere.. Confused
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FreeDuck
 
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Reply Fri 25 Mar, 2005 11:38 am
Lash wrote:
Damn! When I said that...Court (TV)...without the (), they hit me with a Spam Injunction...


Laughing That's what made me careful.
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Joe Nation
 
  1  
Reply Fri 25 Mar, 2005 11:38 am
Hearsay: evidence based not on a witness's personal knowledge but on another's statement not made under oath.

First, the idea that courts are always right is ridiculous and the question was, I'm sure, made in the spirit I suspect, but when we determine to determine facts, courts are all we've got. I can go ferret out a real good fact or two and print them in my newspaper, put them out on the airwaves on radio or tv, I can post them here or put them in a book on the best seller list for nonfiction, but when challenged on the factual nature of those facts, the truth or error of them, I must rely on the determination and judgement of a Court of Law. It's an iffy situation. It always has been.

Judges have been crooked or bought or both. Evidence has been cooked up, made up, drawn from thin air or purchased from the lowest bidder. Judges have been wackos, or appointed by equally wacko pols, who had a twisted view of the world and it's denizens and who didn't mind massaging their own philosophy into every pore of every decision they were called upon to make. One of them presently is running for Chief Justice even as we speak.

It's all we've got though, finally, as the third leg of this chair called the US Constitution. I'm am happy to rest upon it.

As for hearsay: The person testifying regarding the statement of another person is the one under oath. Under oath means something.

Joe(Maybe we should go back to dueling)Nation
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Asherman
 
  1  
Reply Fri 25 Mar, 2005 11:47 am
A witness who testifies to the content of a conversation where they were a participant is not generally regarded as hearsay, though the conversation reported is not presumptive evidence that statements made in the conversation were factual, or true. In effect a witness is testifying only to the words, and not the truth or falisity of them. There are also safe guards intended to insure that the conversation testified to is accurate and did take place as described.

True hearsay is when a witness tries to testify to second-hand knowledge of a conversation. "Mrs. Jones told me that Mr. Doe admitted....". That sort of testimony is excluded. A notable exception is the dying statement. In that case, a person on their death bed (or believing that they were on their death bed) may make statements that can later be introduced in court by the person(s) overhearing the statements. For instance, a badly wounded robbery suspect believing they are about to die mutters to the attending physician that he and James Doe murdered a guy named Joe Schmoe in '96. The bandit dies and Jimmy Doe is charged with the murder of Mr. Schmoe, whose homicide had previously remained unsolved. The dead bandit's comments would be treated as a dying declaration, and would be a center piece to the prosecution's case against Mr. Doe. Of course, other physical and circumstantial evidence would be needed for conviction.
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Debra Law
 
  1  
Reply Fri 25 Mar, 2005 01:07 pm
FreeDuck wrote:
Lash wrote:
Hearsay is not evidence.

At least it's a famous sustained objection in all other cases...


Oh, but it absolutely is. What evidence do you suppose jailbird informants provide? And there are famous allowances in cases where the person who said the things is not available to testify, as in this case.


FreeDuck:

A "statement" is (1) an oral or written assertion or (2) nonverbal conduct of a person, if it is intended by the person as an assertion.

A "declarant" is a person who makes a statement.

"Hearsay" is a statement, other than one made by the declarant while testifying at the trial or hearing, offered in evidence to prove the truth of the matter asserted.

Hearay is NOT admissible except as provided by the rules of evidence.

A statement is NOT HEARSAY if it is an admission by a party-opponent. A jailhouse informant will offer the defendant's (declarant's) own statement (admission) as evidence against the defendant (a party in a criminal case). Accordingly, your example concerning a jailhouse informant is incorrect because the evidence the informant offers against a defendant is NOT HEARSAY.

Inasmuch as your first example was incorrect, we have cause to question whether you truly understand the hearsay rule. Although there are some exceptions to the hearsay rule, e.g., business records exception, Terri's alleged out-of-court statements do not fall within any of the recognized exceptions.
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FreeDuck
 
  1  
Reply Fri 25 Mar, 2005 01:11 pm
Whether or not I understand the legal definition of hearsay and whether or not the rules of admissibility apply in a civil case, the evidence in question was obviously allowed from both sides and so probably isn't "hearsay".
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DrewDad
 
  1  
Reply Fri 25 Mar, 2005 01:13 pm
Debra_Law wrote:
Inasmuch as your first example was incorrect, we have cause to question whether you truly understand the hearsay rule. Although there are some exceptions to the hearsay rule, e.g., business records exception, Terri's alleged out-of-court statements do not fall within any of the recognized exceptions.

Inasmuch as the court saw fit to accept the testimony....
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