Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Do Your Duty: Part 2

The plan is a simple one: To get out of Jury Duty, you’d just need to pay a fee of say . . . $200. Not too much, but not inconsequential. You would then be free to go back to your regular life, trying to run over squirrels with a monster truck.

“But wait!” some of you are shouting, scaring the people next to you. “Though I love your blog and am secretly stalking you, hoping to bear your children, what about the poor people? They can’t afford to pay $200 to get out of Jury Duty! Your plan is discriminatory! And please shift the copy of the ‘Making Money’ by Terry Pratchett on the third shelf of the bookshelf in your bedroom. It’s blocking my video feed.”

Good point, but I thought of that. Use the $200 fee to pay the jurors who DO show up! Look at it this way. Most people will pay the fee. Let’s say that 1000 people are called and 900 decide to pay the fee instead. That’s . . . crap, math . . . ummmm . . . carry the two . . . divide by pie . . . lemur something . . . about 50 bucks.

Wait, let me get a calculator. That’s actually $180,000 dollars. You could easily pay $200 bucks a day to the jurors that showed up and still have money left over. And considering you need jurors every month that would be $180,000 per month for $2,160,000 bucks a year. Bigger cities would probably make even more.

Frankly, poor people would WANT to get jury duty. People would volunteer for long cases, simply because they’d make 2k a month while doing it.

Of all the phenomenal ideas I’ve ever had, this is easily the best one. Even better than the ‘Trout Gun.’

Anyone know how to get a bill into the State Legislator?



"gunner" said...

jury duty, been there done that, boring but necessary. sent the perp up for 5 to 7.

TX_Val said...

Actually, for $200 a day, I'd go to jury duty. I've been called in a few times, and usually don't get picked. I stayed at one to see the process, and laughed when they sent the guy away. He tried to represent himself, and started out trying to make the officer look unreliable, and incompetent. He didn't have anything prepared so it was more like.. Are you sure.. how do you know, but you could have made a mistake. Obviously the officer gave answers along the lines of, It's procedure, I've had extensive training in Lemur manipulation and won many medals as a fleet commander.

It was glorious to see.

Anyway, being from Texas, unfortunately we seem to believe Drunk Drivers deserve 823 chances. The last time I was called to jury duty, I tried to think of it differently. I complain about the system, and how light the penalties are. I've lost a number of friends and family to drunks over the years, and hate thieves, so I started thinking I need to do my part in fixing what I complain about.

I'll stop rambling, I'm sure you get my point. No one really likes it, but I'm starting to realize how important it might be.

My last friend that was killed, and his wife turned into a carrot (while the drunk walked away [actually ran and hid in the woods, where they pulled him out of]), had already been to prison for hurting someone while drunk driving, and was out on bond while awaiting trail for a DUI/DWI in another county. There was a warrant out for his arrest for breaking probation, and he had already been convicted of a hand full of other DWI/DUI's. That's just to let you know why I was saying our (my state) system gives to many chances.

The more I read the papers the more it appears that's the case when people get killed due to this.

Not trying to rant, I get the funny here, and agree, to an extent. It would save time if we just let some people buy their way out, and paid people for being there. The only problem would be, it would be like what's his name in your story. The guy that was a professional prep. We'd end up with professional Jurors. I mean, i'd go sit down at trials all year round, for $200 a day.

Hmm that could grow into a select few people that would actually want to be there. Heck, you could probably write a book on how society was changed by a small group of professional jurors that tilted the law of the land to a certain view, being they made the punishment decisions.


Jason Janicki said...

I get what you're saying TX_Val and obviously, I'm not actually advocating the system. However, most people do want to get out of jury duty, so I figured a legitimate way to do so and a way to provide something for the people that do go would be great. I am truly sorry to hear about your friends.

TX_Val said...

Well I hope i wasn't coming off like I was pissy or some insane soap box commander.

I was just saying, I personally feel like everyone else when I get that summons, I have just started trying to convince myself to change m attitude.

I like you're idea though. It could bring in extra money for the county. I imagine there would be some scams revealed though. All of a sudden the "random" summons pool "happens" to call 80% of it's people out of the wealthy sections of the city, every single time.

Man, could be some good book idea's. Some 1984ish idea's. Speaking of which, I just listened to it (1984) on CD while taking a trip this weekend. I had forgotten how great it was.

Already lined up the dark elf Trilogy for my next trip.

*rubs his hands together in anticipation*

Ian Wendt said...

If you really want to get out of jury duty, just tell them that you're a firm believer in jury nullification. I'll pretty much guarantee you that you won't get selected to be on the jury.

"gunner" said...

ian, on my turn at jury duty we had a wimp foreman, we did finally agree on two of the charges did deadlocked on the more minor "simple assault". the foreman was waffling, not leading, so i suggested we convict on "forcible confinement/kidnapping" and the second, more serious assault charges and let the simple assult slide. the foreman said "can we do that?" i replied "we're the jury, we can do any dammed thing we please!" as i posted above we sent him up for 5 to 7 years.

Jason Janicki said...

Interesting, Ian. I need to read more about that. Thanks!

I actually have a brother, a cousin, and an uncle who're cops and was a community service officer in college for four years, so it's pretty unlikely that'll get picked :)

Good for you, gunner! I also need to read up on what powers the jury has, just in case :)

Toil3T said...

Yeah, the hardcover version of "Making Money" is pretty large.

I don't know much about jury proedures here in Australia. I assume we just copy-pasted America's system. I could ask that magistrate I know (always handy to be on their good side), so I know whether or not I may be called up at some point.

Jury powers... that sounds cool. I can just imagine a jury of super heroes, fighting crime and then convicting the criminals they captured.

Jason Janicki said...

Huh, didn't know you were an Aussie, Toil3t. I think you actually copied England's system, but I'm not 100% on that.

Jury powers . . . hmmmm. The ability to stay awake through boring depositions! The bladder control of a Titan! And the ability to know B.S. when heard! These are the powers of . . . the Jury Twelve! -cue music-.

Heh, could be fun ;)