OR, "ONCE A "PUBLIC" PROSECUTOR, ALWAYS A PROSECUTOR"
The Founding Fathers never imagined, or saw a "Public" Prosecutor. The fair and equitable system they designed was led and controlled by a Grand Jury. This is not the wannabe grand jury of today, but the one described in our Constitution. Though still the law that "presentments" of a grand jury are the process, our state and federal governments have discarded the true purpose and means of prosecution in exchange for a 98.6% conviction rate. Such a rate of conviction does not tolerate truth or justice as anyone who has suffered today's system can quickly tell you....and you don't have to look far to find someone who can explain it. According to the Department of Justice, approximately 25%...one in four Americans....now have a "criminal" record.
In fairer days, the grand jury controlled the prosecution process and was especially effective in ferreting out corruption that involved government officials. Perhaps that is why the grand jury has been reduced to nothing more than a rubber stamp to give the "public" prosecutor the indictment he or she wants. They don't want 'We the People' to have such power anymore, because "We" might go after them!
But for starters, let's talk about what a grand jury used to be. It was an open affair where the grand jury investigated allegations of wrongdoing, called their own witnesses, and sought out evidence of innocence or guilt. The accused was allowed his or her witnesses and advisors, as the grand jury was after facts, not indictments. If criminal conduct was likely, a true bill or indictment was issued. If not, the person was released of suspicion.
The prosecutor was a person from the community, usually an attorney, chosen by the grand jury, who had to be fair because he might be representing the jurors or defendants in his regular practice in the future, and could not afford to be seen as being unfair or malicious.
In contrast, the grand jury of today is spoon fed only what the "public" prosecutor wants heard. In my experience of working on many federal cases, I have never reviewed a single grand jury transcript where it could not be proven that government's attorneys lied, put forth or encouraged knowingly false testimony by its witnesses, withheld exculpatory evidence, and/or presented false evidence to garner an indictment.
Former judge and U.S. Attorney of the Eastern District of North Carolina, Samuel T. Currin, once told me, "Before I die and meet my Maker, I must go to every prison in the Southeastern United States and get down on my knees to beg the forgiveness of those I put there." I was shocked to hear those words, and asked Sam why he would say such a thing. In response, he said, "We lied, we made up charges, fabricate evidence, gave informants time-cuts for telling lies on the stand, falsified evidence, hid evidence and did any and every thing necessary to win."
When I asked why he did that, he replied that the system is now structured to reward convictions, not fairness. He said advancement as an Assistant U.S. Attorney was based on just two things:
1) the number of convictions a public attorney could get, and
2) the number of years the defendants were sentenced for those convictions.
And guess what these "public" prosecutors often do for a living after they've committed such serious crimes against 'We the People?'
All too often, they become judges, just like Sam did. A leopard doesn't lose its spots just by putting a black robe over them. It's still a dangerous animal and still has those spots. Judges who once broke the law for a living, are unlikely to enforce it just because they change sides of the bench on which their chair sits. Former prosecutors should never, ever, be appointed or elected as judges after serving in present day American system.
And don't try telling me the myth, "But it's still the best system in the world," as that simply is no longer the truth. Statistically, the United States judicial system is now one of the least fair on earth. We have more prisoners than any other nation in history and the highest conviction rate ever known. We have more police (18,000 separate organizations) and the greatest number of laws with prison as penalty (314,000 at the federal level alone). That is a really terrible situation, and it will not get any better until prosecutors and judges who violate our rights go to prison, or we take back our grand jury process from these thugs.
But we are unlikely to ever get back our grand jury from the "public" prosecutor, so I have an alternative idea. Let's start making these prosecutors and former prosecutors ( called "judges") live by the law themselves. They obviously are not going to prosecute each other, so I suggest we force Congress to create non-partisan elected offices of Ombudsman under Article III in every federal district with the authority to:
1) prosecute government officials who violate law or the rights of citizens, and
2) grant immediate relief to those citizens so violated
It would be even better if we just go back to the rule of law and our U.S. Constitution and get our grand jury back, but that won't happen until one in two of us have a "criminal" record. Yeah...a devolution. That's what we need. Go back to what worked and was fair.
Viva la devolucion!
Author of "Justice Denied: the United States v. the People," and "The Way Back to America: a 10-step plan to restore the United States to constitutional government."
THE RUIN OF OUR REPUBLIC?
QUESTION- IF CONGRESS DID NOT PASS THE 300,000 LAWS NOW ON THE FEDERAL STATUTE BOOKS THAT CAN SEND US TO PRISON, WHO DID ???
Laws and penalties can only be meted out at the federal level through the passage of legislation, voted upon by elected by members of Congress. There is no other mechanism within constitutional authority for placing restraints upon the freedoms of the American public, or of imposing a penalty for exercising activities so restrained.
Under Section 8, Article I, Congress is restricted to the punishment of but two human behaviors:
Clause 6. To provide for the Punishment of counterfeiting the Securities and current Coin of the United States;
Clause 10. To define and punish Piracies and Felonies committed on the high Seas, and Offenses against the Law of Nations;
The only other crime which federal government was authorized to punish is treason, but that falls under the purview of the Supreme Court of the United States (Clause 1, Article 3), not Congress.
While Congress was also delegated the authority to regulate commerce, it was not granted the power to criminalize or punish it.
SO HOW DID ALL THESE "CRIMINAL" STATUTES COME TO BE?
Instead of following this constitutional delegation of powers, our Representatives have not only outlawed 14,000 human behaviors outside of granted authority (4,000 “crimes” under Title 18, and 10,000 civil regulations to which the criminal penalty of prison has been assigned) but have delegated lawmaking authority to dozens of agencies not authorized by or found in the United States Constitution.
These agencies of questionable origin and authority have now criminalized, sua sponte, in excess of 300,000 additional human behaviors, none of which were previously against the law (Source: American Legislative Exchange article, pasted below). No dictator, tyrant, or “evil empire” in human history has ever generated so many ways to send its citizens to prison. The ‘land of the free’ now has a total of 314,000 statutes with prison as penalty, resulting in the highest level of mass incarceration the world has ever seen.
These are the steps that must be taken to stop unconstitutional legislation:
1. Only legislation passed by Congress has force of law. Any legislation or rule by agencies or any entity other than the Congress of the United States, is null, void, and unenforceable.
2. Before voting for any legislation, each Representative should be required to go on record as having fully read the entirety of the proposed law or regulation. This would act to limit the length of legislation and restrain those outside of Congress who currently write many, if not most, of our nation’s laws, criminal statutes, and regulations, from overburdening our elected Representatives and passing unjust laws.
3. Require that no law be passed that does not require criminal intent on the part of the accused to be proven by government, beyond a reasonable doubt, before a penalty can be imposed. The principle of mens rea must be restored to rule of law.
4. Legislation by the Executive Branch is also unlawful. There is no provision in Article 2 of the United States Constitution for “executive orders,” and no such authority was ever so granted to the Executive Branch by ‘We the People.’ All Executive Orders must be declared advisory in nature, and legislation passed to preclude such unlawful attempts to legislate by the Executive and further attempts to be cause for impeachment.
5. Put an end to seizure of private assets by police or government until a citizen has a) been charged and proven guilty of a crime and b) a relation between those assets and the crime has been established beyond a reasonable doubt.
6. To end the current situation of “government for sale,” I would ultimately suggest that Congress follow the advice of Austrian Economist, Frederich von Hayek, who once said, “Pass one law. Make every statute written or advantage granted, apply equally to all. Only then will the legislature be unable to grant favors to one group, at the expense of, or detriment to, others.” Our government will no longer be for sale to the highest bidder
if this sage advice were followed.
Back to rule of law. We need to devolve back to our ultimatel law of the land….The United States Constitution. Viva la Devolucion!
Howell W. Woltz
Author, “The Way Back to America: a 10-step plan to restore the United States to constitutional government.”
Source of facts:
Born in North Carolina and educated at the University of Virginia, Wake Forest University and Caledonian University in Scotland, Howell now lives in Warsaw, Poland with his wife, Dr. Magdalena Iwaniec-Woltz. Howell is the European Correspondent for The Richardson Post and Chairman of The International Centre for Justice.