Why are private lawyers even legal?

Submitted by kore in AskRaddle

Capitalism puts profit over morals. Private lawyers compete with others for clients and money. They get the most money if they win, not if justice is served. How are people even allowed to pursue profit when it comes to justice? Is our justice system really just that fucked? Maybe everyone else has thought about this already but I just realized it and I'm reeling.


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Cartoon_Cat wrote

If you stood accused of a crime that threatened the status quo and the state, would you want a state-appointed lawyer? Would you not want the option of an independent lawyer at your own cost that you are fairly confident is loyal to you?

I disagree with the existence of law and the penal system in its entirety, but in our current predicament I want private lawyers. They're a fucked up bandaid on a weeping, gangrenous wound.


kore wrote

Yeah I guess I'm not particularly sure about terms, but in the OP I wasn't referring to lawyers from e.g. the ACLU, who arguably defend people that threaten the status quo and state.


selver wrote

Well, if you have more money then you deserve an advantage in court!

I don't really understand how anyone could think that is a fair system. Even from a liberal standpoint it doesn't make sense. It's not even controversial to say that the justice system is rigged in favor of the rich, even non-radicals will admit that.


leftous wrote

In capitalism, the state only exists to protect wealthy and corporate interests. Even "small government" capitalists will happily admit this.

The justice system is just one of many myths liberalism relies on to sustain itself.


kore wrote

What's the alternative to the justice system in the absence of a state? Is it just like, the community gets together to decide if someone is guilty?


leftous wrote (edited )

I am not sure I have ever heard a state enact a actual 'justice' system that wasn't heavily skewed or favoring a particular class or group.

Regarding a 'non-state' justice system. I don't believe in mob justice. I think that as an anarchist, I wouldn't want to impose my personal view of what justice would look like. The way I see justice is that it is always a potential; not perfectly attainable. However, we can see what is unjust and seek to correct, and work toward a common understanding of it. Simply having a more equitable horizontal society on principles like anti-oppression, compassion, and humanity would eliminate most wrongs from being committed in the first place.

More practically, my thoughts are that a restorative form of justice where there's an emphasis on compassion and defense of the victim, and rehabilitation for the wrong doer would already be a 100 fold improvement over what we have now. How can a wrong doer be judged? I think an idea could be rotating groups of arbiters whose focus is conflict resolution, getting help for the victim, consulting with the wrong do-er on a plan for them, etc. It would be preferable if a culture of responsibility is established. In such a society, there will be more incentive for the wrong do-er take responsibility and find a solution where they can get the help they need. Rather than now where there is more incentive to lie, cheat, or pay your way to "innocence".

But this is just an idea, and I would want the community as a whole to work together towards a workable solution to this problem. In reality, a justice system has never been truly achieved before, so it could be a case of trial and error, and constant improvements. It's concerning that justice turns into a popularity contest or becomes 'reactionary' in the method you were mentioning, so I would advise against something like that where people vote or base justice on their immediate outrage.


rosalique wrote (edited )


kore wrote

Ah, this was very helpful, thank you. It seems that crime, which the author never specifically defines but it seems like it's just anything that feels like a wrong to the victim, is a result of the perpetrator of the crime feeling that there is simply no other satisfactory retribution for the wrong committed against them. I hope that someday people will feel that community arbitration will provide retribution and they won't have to resort to physical harm in all but the most severe of cases (physical danger to themselves or those around them).


Ant wrote

Yeah, it's just that fucked