L. Neil Smith's
Number 151, December 10, 2001

My fellow Tennessean (from the Western edge) Don Winfield makes a good point about individuals and leaders ...

One of the best comments on the subject I ever heard was a lecture by (of all people) the socialist "Small Is Better" advocate, Kirkpatrick Sale, which he gave as part of the Black Rose Collective's lecture series back in the late 70s or early 80s ...

The title says it all: "No more Leadershit!"

The difference between:

A) a "leader" who sets out on a course, sets a good example of conduct both personal and professional, and inspires people to join the quest; and

B) a tyrannical "boss" who claims control over the lives of the "flock" ...

is as clear as that between the presiding officer at a meeting seeking a clear decision of the body ... and a gavel-pounding autocrat who wants a rubber-stamp for whatever whim has most recently crossed her or his brow.

More important, a truly good leader can recognize the skills and desires of those who are "following" ... get them to buy into the shared vision ... and leave them mostly to their own devices, knowing they will get the job done the best way they know how ...

Steve Trinward strin@worldnet.att.net

[Just thought you might be interested in the following article that I've posted on various newsgroups, although very few people expressed any interest at all -- apparently I didn't get the message out very well.]

The State of Arkansas sells our 'federal' constitutional right to a jury trial, in some *criminal* cases, for $100.00. If you don't pay it -- in advance -- you don't get a jury, and can still be sent to jail for up to a year. Do other states do anything like that?

The U.S. Supreme Court has already said that anyone who faces the mere possibility of incarceration in excess of six months is guaranteed a jury trial by the Sixth Amendment to the U.S. Constitution; it has also said that the Fourteenth Amendment extends this 'federal' right even to prosecutions in state courts for violations of state laws, provided the possibility of confinement still exceeds six months. Because Class-A misdemeanors, including some traffic offenses, are punished in Arkansas by up to a year in jail, the 6th Amendment 'federal right' to a jury is thus clearly triggered. However, Arkansas does not honor or allow the exercise of that 'federal' right unless and until defendants first pay a $100.00 fee to reach the only judicial level where juries are available; in other words, it is impossible in most such cases to obtain a jury trial without first 'buying' it. This makes it easier for the rich to obtain a jury compared to those with modest incomes, in violation of equal protection. Moreover, even if defendants are found 'not guilty' by a jury, Arkansas refuses to refund the $100.00 fee, thereby punishing even innocent people who have been cleared of all wrongdoing.

In 1943, the Supreme Court ruled that: "A state may not impose a charge for the enjoyment of a right granted by the federal constitution". But, in charging a $100.00 fee for a jury in criminal cases punishable by a year in jail, isn't the State of Arkansas doing exactly that?

This is a constitutional violation affecting thousands of people charged in Arkansas each year, including many from other states. In December, 2000, I filed suit in U.S. District Court to challenge it, but the federal judge said that this is NOT a violation of the Constitution. I then appealed to the U.S. Court of Appeals in St. Louis, and in October, 2001, the 8th Circuit affirmed the lower court. Unless the U.S Supreme Court reverses it, we're stuck with that decision. What are the chances that the Supreme Court will review this case?? Probably less than one percent. Can't Americans count on the federal courts to protect our Constitutional rights? I'm interested in what other folks think about this, and whether there are similar laws in states other than Arkansas.

Please pass this message along to your friends to help spread the word. Maybe if we cause enough public out-cry, we can recover this important fundamental constitutional right that we have just lost here in America.

The Supreme Court cases for the above rulings are: Duncan v. Louisiana, 391 U.S. 145, 88 S.Ct. 1444 (1968), and Murdock v. Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, 319 U.S. 105, 63 S.Ct. 870 (1943).

William J. Velek billvelek@alliancecable.net
Attorney at Law (since 1981)
Greenbrier, Arkansas

"Individuals don't need leaders" is wrong, as Don Winfield mentions, because a leader can be someone who leads by their good example. Individuals need leaders because even as individuals we are social animals. Someone will organize a party, someone will build a device. Someone will lead, individuals do not need to be *led*.

I submit as a clarification, "Individuals do not need Rulers."

The very effective re-defining of "anarchy" to equal "chaos+violence" permiates the English language. Mention the idea of not needing rulers in "polite" company and watch as their brains light up with "But, that would be anarchy! People would have Guns! We'd all die! Warlords! Terrorists! I'll never see my pension!"

I'm disgusted every time I hear someone say, "Hey, dude, you Rule!"

Curt Howland

Howdy J. C.,

Hope the Thanksgiving season gave you and all the readership something to be thankful for. I was thankful my T.V. had a off button, so I didn't have to view the train wreck that is the World's Greatest Deliberative Body on C-Span. Hearing about "suspects being detained" pending charges or actions by the USgov is enough to make me (and any thinking person) sick.

Hearing concerned Republicrat leaders prattle about us alarmist civil libertarians over reacting, and calling their own GOP experts to assure that the Spirit of the Constitution was not violated made me grab for the Maalox. These security steps being taken by Bush Lite's folks are similar to the steps FDR's men took with Nipponese-Americans, and supported by a SCOTUS that felt it was Constitutional. Foreign nationals being confined and interrogated because of their guilt by association with terrorists brought the Ghost of Tail-gunners past back to the fore. All the while these bastards try to shame people into agreeing with them out of fear that disagreement would be unpatriotic.

Just recently on FNC, 06 Dec 2001, Charles Grassley (R) stated that DoJ should surrender all gun purchase records, to compare with the recent detainees for gun purchases. Sounds like something a mustachioed paperhanger did in 1933, doesn't it? Grassley went on (in a depreciating tone) that liberals are over-reacting to this additional trammeling of rights, indicating that such rights are difficult to interpret in black and white terms. Hell, he's starting to sound like Al Gore, with his hogwash about the Constitution being a living document, changing with the times. To Ashcroft's credit he has thus far resisted efforts to do so. He seems to be unilaterally opposed to the release of such data.

Recently stated in The American Zone, Neil Smith called it a sinking feeling that a Legislative juggernaut was about to steamroll over rights and liberties, again. As usual, Neil has hit the nail on the head again, that's the same feeling I had thinking about this stuff. Thought I should share it with you and your kind readership. Hope ya don't mind.

Peace out,

Jack Jerome paratime98@yahoo.com

Hi, John. Yes, two letters in one day.

Sci-fi writers deserve more space in The Libertarian Enterprise. Bruce Sterling gave a lunch-time talk at a Friday night beer bust at the Greenpeace HQ on November 20th:


He says a lot about choice, politics, who shot who, failed promises and the like. I recommend it to other TLE readers.

Curt Howland Howland@Priss.com

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