"Of course, the overwhelming majority of judges are men and women of honor".
"Of course"? Even though those same "men and women" allowed themselves to be free, with immunity, from the very constitutional oath of office that allows them to draw their salary and benefits?
And when judicial discipline is virtually non-existent, and what exists is secret and does not allow for any independent review of statistics of the actual number of complaints filed against judges and of validity of those complaints?
It is easy to brand people who complain about judicial conduct in litigation as "disgruntled litigants", and after branding them so, dismiss their complaints as incredible.
Yet, judicial immunity was given BECAUSE judicial discipline was (allegedly) available for improper conduct in court proceedings.
And, judicial discipline for judges' actions in the court proceedings is adamantly NOT available BECAUSE an appeal is available (a very expensive and technically complex endeavor that not many people can afford).
And during the appeal judicial misconduct is always endorsed or dismissed as "discretion" of the judge to do whatever he wants. The circle came around.
Of course, the majority of men and women who come to the bench and know that they are protected by those rules, are honorable?
As well as the majority of the prosecutors, similarly covered by absolute immunity and similarly unreachable by discipline, to the point that in New York the Legislature is trying to establish a whole separate disciplinary body to discipline prosecutors, separately - as a confirmation that the existing disciplinary bodies would not touch prosecutors for discipline, no matter what they do.
So, district attoney's offices, those people who
- routinely put police officers on the stand and knowingly elicit perjury from them, to the point that lawyers invented a term "testilying" characterizing testimony of police witnesses;
- routinely withhold exculpatory evidence, even in death penalty cases;
- routinely prosecute in order to pursue personal and political interests, their own, their families', friend's or political or financial sponsors people -
The majority of these people who, statistically, make the majority of judges, are honorable?
Where is the statistics of complaints, where are the REASONED decisions of disciplinary bodies as to the merits of those complaints, so that such a claim would have any basis?
The same applies to the "overwhelmingly honorable" legislatures, such as the New York Legislature where first the head of one chamber, and then the other, were charged with federal crimes of corruption, within months from one another, and yet, the new Speaker of the Assembly that replaced the arrested one claims that - again - the overwhelming majority of men and women in the Assembly are honorable people.
But, rules of per diem travel must be changed because of those who are not that honorable, and right after the arrests of the leaders of both chambers of the New York legislature for federal crimes of fraud and corruption.
Given the fact that lawsuits against these honorable people are routinely dismissed on legislative immunity grounds covering, once again, malicious and corrupt acts, and discipline of legislators - other than efforts of the U.S. Attorney General's office - is unavailable, such claims of honor makes one clutch one's pocketbook closer.
But New York taxpayers will clutch their pocketbooks in vain.
This is what are the "revised" rules (makes me wondering what was before that).
Wait a second.
30 trips a year, when the Assembly is NOT in session, with reimbursement of transportation costs without ANY control, and trips over 30 under control of one person - the Speaker?
What is an "off-session trip"?
A vacation with family and friends?
A dinner party with a buddy pretending to be a meeting with the constituents?
Good job, legislators.
I will take out popcorn and watch who is going to be next on Preet Bharara's list of honorable men and women.
With all these honorable people doing all of those honorable things, what are my co-citizens, Americans, doing at this time - well, apart from fighting for survival, of course?
They are, actually, doing something.
With great admiration I see that more and more people take a stand - in the social media, on the streets, in letters to the government, in petitions on Change.org, against misconduct on all levels of the government.
Change is actually coming, in some branches of the government quicker, in some - slower, but it is coming.
It is extremely sad to see people who are badly hurt by the government, being blocked from access to courts to get any remedies - by yet another bunch of "honorable men and women".
This has to change.
We the People - the sovereign of this country - should be able to make sure that we are able to discipline or get rid our "public servants" of any branch and any level ("servants" is the key word), if they err.
To make this happen - a suggestion.
If anybody claims that "the majority of men and women", members of the XYZ governmental entity, are allegedly honorable, demand from the claimers, statistics of misconduct amongst the ranks of those honorable men and women and proof that disciplinary processes are set that are transparent and handled by neutral citizen panels, and not by members of the same class as the disciplined "public servant".
Otherwise reject those claims as a bad joke and continue to demand cleaning the stinking mess that this country's government has become.