Friday, April 10, 2020

Clive Bibby: Free world justice system under attack

The unanimous verdict of the Australian Supreme Court (7 to nothing) to overturn the Appeal Court decision that upheld the conviction of Cardinal George Pell on sexual assault charges is a timely reversal of a trend that is endangering the very existence of our modern democratic society.

I say timely because this was the last opportunity for justice to be served in a case that epitomised the growing influence of popular movements that have wreaked havoc throughout the legal systems in many Western countries, especially those that have based their laws on the British version - the United States, the U.K., Australia and even here in New Zealand.

During the last year or so, there have been a number of examples of high profile individuals fighting to save their lives in a atmosphere where the old tenants of "innocent until proven guilty" and "justice must be seen to be done" have lain on the cutting room floor.

What l find interesting in virtually all these cases is that there are denominators  common to most of them.

While prosecuted under different judicial systems, many of the charges against Pell are not dissimilar to those bought against President Trump during his impeachment trial and previously during the Mueller investigations of his fitness to hold the office he legitimately occupies. Also in the United States, we have watched the nomination of Justice Brett Cavanagh being trashed to the extent that it came close to being withdrawn - due to what proved to be baseless allegations.

But, as with the Pell case, these ordeals were close run proceedings that could well have had tragic consequences for the individuals concerned and society in general.

The common characteristics l refer to are not hard to identify.

Most charges of impropriety were lodged with the backing of the shrill voices of the "Me Too" movement in all its forms - Pro abortion, Anti free speech, Anti Christianity (especially Catholic), Anti pale, stale, males - the list goes on and includes many of the popular liberal causes of the moment.

What's more, these self described crusaders for human rights have, in the process, managed to secure the assistance of much of the free press who in turn have wasted little time using their considerable influence obtaining convictions that shouldn't even have come to charge let alone make it as far as they did through the farcical legal system.

Yet, if you had taken the time to watch or read the Australian media reaction to the Pell verdict, you would be left with the unmistakable conclusion that the decision to acquit was itself a miscarriage of justice. Their warped "lynch mob" mentality has no bounds.

On the contrary, close examination of all the examples l have used in this piece clearly shows that many of the current judicial systems operating in the Free World are under threats that could have greater consequences for the safety of civilisation as we know it than anything the Corona virus is responsible for.

It would appear that most (including parts of the police administration of each country) are in need of dramatic overhaul.

We need to get back to a position where the sworn oaths of serving officers in all legal  jurisdictions are honoured when performing their duties.

Otherwise, we allow the naked political persuasion of minority pressure groups in the media and the courts to dictate who lives and who dies.

If our complacency as sovereign communities ensures that unfortunate outcome, we might be next to get the chop.

Clive Bibby is a commentator, consultant, farmer and community leader, who lives in Tolaga Bay.


Unknown said...

What is not clear from this article, is whether the author felt that the prosecution of Cardinal Pell was unjustified outright on the grounds of the evidence available to police, or because any prosecution might usefully coincide with a certain political agenda.

Nothing wrong with a political agenda (savory or otherwise) being advanced en route to a claim being made, and robustly tested and a determination being made based on the best available evidence and argument.

Surely nothing wrong with having an agenda when making a claim, so long as all evidence and argument presented are supplied in good faith, and are able to be rigorously contested.

Equally, an opposing political agenda was served by the acquittal - but that does not appear to offend the author.

John Brett said...

I am an OUTLAW. 25 years ago, at the time when Peter Ellis was convicted, just after the last (failed) Telethon claiming that most girls were sexually abused by their fathers, I was charged with indecently assaulting my daughter. It was clear that I was to be GUILTY UNLESS PROVEN INNOCENT. Fortunately my daughter resisted all the leading questions from interrogators, attempting to force her to DISCLOSE abuse. In the end my daughter made VERY CLEAR to the Child Psychologist that I LOVED HER FAR TOO MUCH TO EVER HARM HER, and other pretty assertive statements along similar lines.
The case against me was 'Dropped' however I hold the Court system IN CONTEMPT and have avoided any contact with children (including my grandchildren) for 25 years. So as I do NOT respect the implementation of the rule of law, therefore I AM AN OUTLAW.

Unknown said...

We seem to have lost the ability to distinguish between reality and fantasy.
Perhaps one of the most significant changes in the 20th century was the emphasis on people's "feelings".

This was a consequence of western prosperity and the acceptance of unending economic growth and consumerism.

People accepted the irrational belief that they could not only have whatever they desired but were also ENTITLED to have whatever they desired because, as the marketing propaganda constantly reminds us, "we are worth it".

The 20th century is rightly called the "Century of the Self" in which greedy people utilized the knowledge about the workings of the subconscious mind to manipulate people to become irrational consumers of more and more products and services that they did not need or even really want.

The motivation for this excessive and wasteful consumption is "It makes me feel better about myself, so I must have it."

Reality unfortunately conflicts with emotions and feelings and so people have learned to avoid and deny it because it does not make them feel better about themselves.

One important reality has always been that everything in a natural system must provide something of value in return for what it receives.
There is always a price that has to be paid.

In order to deny this reality we have accepted an economic system in which currency can be created from nothing and loaned at low rates of interest to perpetuate the delusion that we can purchase solutions for all problems.

Our prevailing paradigm is that everything that affects us can be CONTROLLED by creating and spending more of this fake currency that does not really exist.
The escalating creation of this fiat currency is based on a delusion that we can have whatever makes us FEEL GOOD without ever having to pay the price.

We are living in societies of virtual reality, illusion and delusions. Most people do not even realize this because they have not experienced much reality.
Most people are living as though they are characters in their own reality TV show.

This response to a viral pandemic a good indication.
It is a global reality TV show in which everyone is participating, enjoying the drama and believing that it will have a happy ending because enough new currency will be created from nothing to purchase a solution that will make everyone feel good in the end.

I wonder how long this wonderful age of feelings and denial of reality can go on?

KP said...

I cannot agree more! Here in the Mid-West of NSW the attitudes are far more earthed and we look with amusement at the happenings in those strange places over the Great Divide.
There was speculation last week on how good a farmhand a Bondi barrista would make, and that we were all lucky the Govt would throw money at them to remain in Sydney.
This is the age of Feelz, not science, and sadly few of us will live long enough to see how it falls apart. I'm glad Covis19 is hitting the politicians, the talking heads and Nannys, the celebrities, it is the Great Leveler that will wake these people up. "Woke" indeed, laughable!

Empathic said...

Sexual abuse has long been targeted by feminists and one can understand their demands given the impression that complaints in the past were not taken seriously and, if against respectable men, appeared sometimes to be buried at various stages of the justice process. However, lawmakers have pandered to the women's vote in changing sexual offence laws including broadening definitions to allow criminalization of some normal, benign human interaction, step-wise erosion of protections against false conviction of innocent defendants, and hugely increasing punitive tariffs to become greater than those for many other crimes e.g. causing death or lifelong physical or intellectual disability.

Examples of erosion of protections against false conviction include:
- The removal of time limitations for complaints to be made.
- Prosecuting and allowing conviction on the basis of nothing but allegations.
- Allowing a jury to determine 'proof beyond reasonable doubt' on the basis of which party seemed more convincing.
- Removing the right of the accused to face the accuser.
- Hiding complainants and witnesses behind screens or walls to provide an impression to a jury that the defendant is dangerous.
- Allowing evidence-in-chief and increasingly other evidence to be pre-recorded under loose conditions, without oath and without the gravitas of the Courtroom.
- Reducing cross-examination that might upset complainants who are being tripped up regarding lies, or that might highlight their untrustworthiness, morality or credibility, while increasing the ability of prosecutors to do exactly that regarding the defendant.
- Allowing a jury to be informed of a defendant's previous convictions as 'propensity evidence'.
- Allowing an increasing range of 'propensity evidence' witnesses including those making totally unsubstantiated and untested allegations in order to damage the reputation and credibility of the defendant.

Many of these changes have been specific to trials for sexual rather than other types of alleged offending. The fact that a particular crime is especially difficult to prove does not justify changing the process to make convictions easier to achieve on the basis of the same inadequate evidence, but that is exactly what is happening for alleged sexual offending. As a result, Cardinal Pell's case is just one among many resulting in conviction on the basis of insufficient proof. Hopefully, the Australian Supreme Court's decision will lead to a fuller investigation of how sexual trials have become corrupted.