Quoth Brian Doherty :
As I've written before, Silk Road was undoubtedly a net positive for the health, safety, and liberty of most of its customers and sellers.
This is factually correct.
That it is factually correct while at the same time never having been a point raised by the defense should give you pause.
This was clearly a case where the only person actually helping the community was standing accused, in the midst of a roomfull of moral-panic stricken busybodies with nary a clue as to what exactly the Sun shining outside is, or how this celebrated "not truck but collection of tubes" thingee even works, too busy screaming "things happened that we don't understand all too well ?!?!?! BURN THE WITCH!!111" to form any shred of genuine intellectual curiosity, which just so happens to be the fountainhead of all actual inquiry, which in turns happens to be the inescapable requisite of any sort of legal process.
Why was this case not presented for what it was, then ? Why weren't the first words opening the defense case exactly and verbatim "what we have here is a strange situation where a collection of corrupt government lackeys are prosecuting a man for having dared to try to be useful, and made a marginally effectual showing of it" ? The only way to carry out this defense was to speak truth to power. Instead, and to his undying, hopefully bankruptcy-bringing shame, Joshua Dratel chose to rob his client blind. What's worse : he did this calculatedly - he imagined that nobody will ever figure it out, or at any rate nobody that isn't working for the same employer as himself. It's not merely that he's inept, it's that he selectively scams the most vulnerable, the most naive, the most desperately in need among his clients. Even considering the (deservedly) low standing of lawyers in the public eye - this is cutting new ground.
So, yes, everyone there present except for the derpy kid in the cage was certainly a government clerk, engaging in the SOPS. They all have their passable excuses, such as those goi. They are, after all, engaged by a rogue state to do its deeds, and while that in itself may be a hangable offense, they can't really be accused of defrauding their employer. Yet not the same can be said of the defense counsel. These people are also officers of the court, but at least in fictive theory the difference between them and prosecutors or judges would be that they pursue without let or hindrance the interest of their actual employer, the accused.
The most cursory examination of the defense in this case shows that fiction for the sad charade it actually is. At no point throughout the proceedings have Dratel & co followed anything even remotely related to their client's interests. In fact, at no point throughout the proceedings can it be shown that out of the choices available to them, the defense team chose anything but the most damaging course for their client. This was, without a doubt, the worst defense ever fielded in the history of common law, and the notion that Joshua L. Dratel, P.C., the "nationally recognized, full-service law firm" would even continue in business is my idea of comedy.
The only moral of this story being : the next time some naive normie tells you that tired old "whosoever represents himself has a fool for a client", remember that whatever sort of fool you as the client may be, none could ever surpass the sort of fool that'd hire a US lawyer.ii———
- Only following orders of their employer, did not know about the concentration camps, standard fare. [↩]
- Yes, Joshua Dratel not having been yet disbarred over his appalling performance butchering his client means that the crime stands on the head of the entire profession. What Dratel did there is nothing short of the dentist who puts some old lady with a cavity under general anesthesia and then proceeds to give her a sex change operation while amputating both legs and part of the nose. It is a disgrace, it is in no sense anything else or anything short of a crime, and anyone harboring the guilty is tainted by that association.
Honestly, I don't think very much of a woman that wouldn't divorce after something like this. Infidelity, that's a minor concern by comparison. [↩]