Why Socialized Law – like Socialized Anything – Is a Bad Idea
2014 02 12

By Logan Albright | Information Liberation

In order for a legal system to be just, it must treat everyone equally and fairly, giving special treatment neither to the rich nor the powerful, and protecting the rights of all individuals wherever they are being violated. Justice, as they say, should be blind. It’s a noble goal, but one that proves difficult in practice. We have all experienced frustration at the Justin Biebers and Paris Hiltons of the world receiving slaps on the wrist while the young, impoverished and disadvantaged members of minority classes are subject to much more severe, often life-destroying ramifications for their crimes.

This is a recognized issue with the current legal system, but there are disagreements over how it should be resolved. Noam Scheiber, over at the New Republic, has come up with the radical suggestion that the problem stems from wealth inequality among defendants, and their correspondingly diverse means for employing legal council. The lawyers of a Donald Trump will naturally, if you’ll excuse the pun, trump those of an inner city black kid, and hence the unequal outcomes we see in the courts. His recommendation for remedying this sad state of affairs is a complete socialization of the legal profession.

Much like Britain’s National Health System, a socialized system of attorneys would provide equal council to whomever required it, all at the expense of the taxpayer, of course. On the surface, such an idea may sound appealing. The equality it would promote seems in keeping with the values we expect of the legal system. Upon closer examination, however, it falls apart as such egalitarian pipe dreams always do, because of a lack of understanding of human nature and incentives.

The first thing to point out is that, historically, socialized systems have not eliminated the benefits of financial or political privilege at all, but have in fact exacerbated them. In the Soviet Union and Cuba, the policies intended to make everyone equal only brought poverty to the masses while concentrating wealth in a few chosen elites. These may seem like extreme examples, but public choice theory teaches us that the more influence government has over a process, the more sharply will political access be rewarded. As Mark Twain once observed, "History doesn’t repeat itself, but it rhymes."

Additionally, we must consider the effect a socialization of lawyers would have on attorney supply. When all attorneys are doled out equally and salaried by the state, the wages they are able to command will necessarily go down. We already see this with district attorneys making far less than private defense lawyers, hence a lack of good DAs. With the incentives to invest large sums of time and money into law school decreased, we would also witness a far smaller stock of available lawyers. While many may view this as a good thing, the fact is that we do occasionally need these people to help defend our rights and an insufficient pool of available attorneys does not serve the interest of the common man.

What progressives often fail to understand is that, in a world of scarce resources, rationing is unavoidable. When the price mechanism is removed as an available rationing tool, we must instead ration based on time. What happens in a system of socialized law when there are more defendants than there are lawyers? Some will have to wait to have their day in court, potentially a very, very long time. The United States Constitution guarantees the right to a speedy trial, and a system in which accuser and accused alike are forced to wait indefinitely to resolve their legal claims hardly seems like the fair application of justice we are after.

[...]

Read the full article at: informationliberation.com



Related Articles
The New Social Class Structure Of The United States
Corporate Socialism: GM Says No Way It Will Pay Back $10 Billion
Forced C-section ‘the stuff of nightmares’: Social Services Forcibly Remove Unborn Child From Womb
Russell Brand’s Fantasy of a Socialist Egalitarian Utopia - Red Ice Commentary
Russell Brand Calls For “Massive Redistribution of Wealth”, “Socialist Egalitarianism”
Witch Hunt: Under the pretext of promoting mental health, the DSM stifles dissent
Sweden’s health system ’worst in the Nordics’
England’s National Health Service: "Cruelty Became the Norm"
Corporatocracy: No Bid Government Contracts
US Government Lobotomized 2,000 WW II Veterans As ’Treatment’
The Facts Are In, More Government Means Less Growth
Government ‘Shut Down’ Doesn’t Prevent Opening of $2 Billion NSA Spy Center


Latest News from our Front Page

Right into enemy hands? ISIS shows off new weapons allegedly airdropped by US (VIDEO)
2014 10 23
Islamic State has published a new video in which a jihadist shows off brand-new American hardware, which was purportedly intended for the Kurds they are fighting in the Syrian border town of Kobani. The undated video, posted by the unofficial IS mouthpiece “a3maq news”, sees a jihadist showing several boxes of munitions with English-language markings, with a parachute spread out on ...
STAGED INFECTION: Has The Ebola ‘Outbreak’ Narrative Fallen Apart?
2014 10 22
Over the past month, the ‘pandemic’ propaganda surrounding the deadly Ebola virus seemed to reach vitriolic levels – raising serious questions about the validity of this current viral outbreak… On Monday of this week, it was reported that 48 people were released and cleared after a 21-day quarantine due to their contact with the now deceased Ebola-stricken patient Thomas Eric ...
6,000-Year-Old Temple with Possible Sacrificial Altars Discovered
2014 10 21
A 6,000-year-old temple holding humanlike figurines and sacrificed animal remains has been discovered within a massive prehistoric settlement in Ukraine. Built before writing was invented, the temple is about 60 by 20 meters (197 by 66 feet) in size. It was a "two-story building made of wood and clay surrounded by a galleried courtyard," the upper floor divided into five ...
What happened to Journalist Serena Shim? Assassinated? Find out what happened to Serena, Press TV director calls on Turkey
2014 10 21
Press TV news director Hamid Reza Emadi says the “suspicious death,” of the news channel’s correspondent in Turkey is a tragedy for “anyone who wants to get the truth.” Emadi made the remarks in an interview with Press TV on Sunday following Serena Shim’s death across the border from Syria’s Kurdish city of Kobani, where the ISIL terrorists and Kurdish fighters ...
Ancient Roman Nanotechnology Inspires Next-Generation Holograms for Information Storage
2014 10 21
The Lycurgus Cup, as it is known due to its depiction of a scene involving King Lycurgus of Thrace, is a 1,600-year-old jade green Roman chalice that changes colour depending on the direction of the light upon it. It baffled scientists ever since the glass chalice was acquired by the British Museum in the 1950s, as they could not work ...
More News »