Back in the comments to this post, Stuart reminds me that whatever the letter of the law says, the State is not averse to putting the innocent through the mill anyway. Here’s another good example. Truth to tell, I’m not sure what the answer is to this sort of thing, but at least let’s call it what it is: political activism under cover of legal chicanery.
Right now, every attempt at reform of the legal system provokes Liberals to wax lyrical about the importance of judicial independence. The trouble is, it’s hard to see exactly how a politicised legal system would behave any differently.
See, this is how Liberals argue – or, more precisely, how they don’t. Liberals don’t like to talk about actual issues, instead they try and set the terms of debate so as to cast their opponents as deranged, or evil, or stupid, or…well, anything other than have to talk about their own insane ideology. That’s how we ended up with a situation where people who oppose the law being twisted to allow the persecution of the innocent are accused of wanting to politicise the law.
This is the central humbuggery of the soi dissant Tory modernisers’ position. They claim that the Tories can both indulge in touchy-feely consensus politics and bring through meaningful reform. There’s nothing touchy-feely about months of legal harassment of a guy who has committed no offence. Equally, the minute the Tories act to try and stop this kind of thing, the Liberals will crank up the outrageometer to 11. Why not ? They rather like the idea of harassing political opponents. Bottom line – there’s no middle ground here. If people are prepared to use the legal system to harass people who disagree with them politically, then there’s no ‘consensus’ to be had. You can take them on, or you can turn a blind eye. The real question is this: are the Tory modernisers stupid enough to believe they can somehow find a ‘Third Way’ or do they just think we’re stupid enough to believe they can ? Either way, why exactly would we want to trust them with power ?