Collective Bargaining Against the State
Our freedom-hating, pain-loving War on Drugs depends on the tactic of "overcharging," and then offering attractive deals -- reduced charges, easier sentences -- in exchange for guilty pleas. Fewer than 5 percent of all drug cases ever go to trial.
Again, the drug war depends on this -- if every drug arrest led to a trial, the courts would be so swamped that some defendants couldn't be scheduled for trial dates for many years into the future. Their attorneys could then win complete dismissal of all charges based on the violation of the constitutional right to a speedy trial.
So all members of our new union need to do is this: Agree to demand a jury trial. No plea bargains -- no guilty pleas, ever. Otherwise, please don't join.
Today, no individual defense attorney can in good conscience advise any individual defendant not to take the deal. But all the drug war defendants have to do is sign up and agree that -- once an arbitrary number of drug defendants estimated to be 25 percent of all those currently charged have signed on -- a "D-Day" will be announced, and all brother members will immediately demand jury trials. Furthermore, they will advise their attorneys not to stipulate or agree to any delay in a trial date, even if the prosecutor choked to death on a chicken bone last night.
Union brothers will instruct their counsel to file for dismissal based on denial of a speedy trial on the 181st day, and keep filing, and publicize these filings with dramatic courthouse-step press conferences. Invite Amnesty International and the International Red Cross to participate. Mention what percentage of these defendants, being held without trial, are black or Hispanic. Mention it constantly.
What will the Fearless Drug Warriors do? Even with only 25 percent of drug defendants joining up and participating, trials that can now be started within a year will have to be scheduled at least three years into the future. The Drug Warriors will have no choice but to prosecute their "worst" cases first, turning at least two thirds of all drug defendants loose.
And once additional drug war defendants see this starting to happen, and proceed to sign up and demand their jury trials, those scheduled trials will start to stretch four, five, six years into the future. The freedom-hating thugs will be swamped!
Back in 2000, I had a similar idea about organizing to make the census worthless. Anyone who received the long form would give false answers to all questions--the more spectacularly erroneous, the better. Then, they would send an anonymous letter under separate cover to the Census Bureau telling them that they'd returned a long form filled with completely worthless information. Finally, they'd send copies of the anonymous letter to news outlets of their choice. If it were well publicized that a significant portion of long form recipients deliberately sabotaged the process, the Census Bureau and the general public would know that the resulting statistics were worthless.