Monday, September 12, 2011

ZenTiger Efficiency over justice

At first and second glance, I find myself in agreement with No Right Turn.  And WhaleOil.  That can't happen often, surely?  So why are we all worried about significant changes to Law and Order in the NZ Justice system?

For my part, I have little faith in legislators making good legislation, and when efficiency is the driver, I have even less faith.  And I'm usually a guy with a fair bit of faith.

Just not in National.

The biggest issues in this for me are the abolition of juries for being judged on any crime under 3 years (currently three months) and also that the changes to the presumption of innocence and right to silence are all part and parcel of a rushed bill with a very weird "compromise" that is looking and quacking like a duck, but I'd also accept that it's a dog.

And we are all just slow cooked frogs.

6 comment(s):

KG said...

I look at the proposals and ask myself what the objective is here. If it's greater "efficiency" then why not go the whole hog and simply abandon trials altogether? Accept the police evidence and let a clerk in some Wellington office decide on a verdict.
It smacks of incompetent and dishonest politicians wanting to be seen as "doing something" and to hell with legal conventions which have stood the test of time.
Of all the problems facing NZ I'd have thought this would be a very low priority indeed.

KG said...

As for faith in the judiciary, if this site is any guide I'd prefer to take my chances with a jury, thanks very much!
http://kiwisfirst.co.nz/index.asp

leftrightout said...

The world is indeed a strange place when I find myself siding with whale, KG, Zen Tiger.

But they are all right, as is Idiot Savant.

These "reforms" are not reforms that improve justice, they are the stripping of long held rights that protect each of us.

It is the same as all the other knee jerk laws this government has brought in each time a court doesn't align with the government;'s views.

Psycho Milt said...

Well, yes - but let's not pretend it's something the current govt invented on its own. The previous govt adopted Bradford's S59 repeal bill because it shared her view that juries shouldn't be permitted to reach decisions in these cases that they felt were inappropriate. Power's just taking that a few steps further.

KG said...

I'll be interested to see how Adolf the relentless Key-booster tries to spin this.
Or will he simply ignore it because it doesn't fit with his rose-tinted view of the National Party?

ZenTiger said...

Indeed PM. It fascinates me that the government, as a machine, seems to move in a particular direction irrespective of those elected to steer it.

I voted for National to get Labour out. There isn't really an option to vote the entire government out (well, Libz I guess, but I don't really want to go that far)

Instead of being distracted by the mechanics of the electoral system I'm now more interested in the BORA, a constitution, maybe an upper house, maybe a different approach to legislative review etc.

Trouble is, who could I possibly trust to steer a reasonable course through any of those topics? It's probably better to have no constitution than a very bad one.

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