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View Diary: I am a fundamentalist (278 comments)

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  •  Reassuring words from a judge in the UK (12+ / 0-)

    In case anyone missed NY brit expat's rescued diary, the dark forces that would undermine civil rights and justice have taken a hit, at least in the UK, probably with implications for here.  I won't go into the case--the diary does a fine job of that.  But I will quote here from the ruling because I found it so thrilling to read these words reaffirming basic enlightenment principles of justice.

    It's not a great victory, I know, because this stuff is supposed to be basic, rights mostly won hundreds of years ago and honored ever since.  Anyway, these words are from Lord Neuberger, master of the rolls, Lord Justice Maurice Kay, and Lord Justice Sullivan

    A further fundamental common law principle is that trials should be conducted in public, and the judgments should be given in public.

    In our view the principle that a litigant should be able to see and hear all the evidence which is seen and heard by a court determining his case is so fundamental, so embedded in the common law that, in the absence of parliamentary authority, no judge should override it, at any rate in relation to an ordinary civil claim ...

    At least so far as the common law is concerned, we would accept the submission that this principle represents an irreducible minimum requirement of an ordinary civil trial.

    Unlike principles such as open justice, or the right to disclosure of relevant documents, a litigant's right to know the case against him and to know the reasons why he has lost or won is fundamental to the notion of a fair trial.

    We can have democracy in this country, or we can have great wealth concentrated in the hands of a few, but we can't have both.

    by geomoo on Wed May 05, 2010 at 01:50:09 AM PDT

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