Adventures in Illinois Law: A Voluntaryist Observes a Coercive Courtroom

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By: Shane Radliff

June 25th, 2015


mclean county law and justice center


To conclude my Adventures in Illinois Law series, I attended criminal court proceedings this morning.

I’ve written about the legislative branch when I attended the McLean County Board Meeting last month. However, this is not my first time in a courtroom, the first one being coerced by a jury summons last month. The only difference between then and now, is, back then, I was forced to attend with the threat of contempt of court for failing to do so; and also, the proceedings I attended today were not jury trials, or even bench trials, but rather plea deals and “pre-trial hearings”.

This will conclude this series, unless some other form of draconian legislation is brought before the McLean County Board or if I decide to take it to the next level, which I will more than likely do.

The preparation started a couple of nights prior to attending, when I started digging through the 14 day docket, which was easily available on the McLean County website.

My goal was to find a few I was interested in that were in the same courtroom at the same time, and I found just that.

At 10am in courtroom 3D, there were a few possession charges and a couple of disorderly conducts. That certainly seemed the most intriguing, as I was trying to avoid any violations of the non-aggression principle, property rights, and DUI’s (for obvious reasons, because I was trying to stick to victimless crimes).

This morning I woke up and headed to the McLean County Law and (IN)justice Center. Parking was much cheaper than I imagined, so that’s definitely a good thing.

I headed in and went up to the 3rd floor and waited until the proceedings began.

After standing there for a couple of minutes, the bailiff walked up to me and asked if I needed to check-in. I said “No, I do not.” That was all I ever said in this adventure.

10 o’clock rolled around and I was a little intimidated to enter, and rightfully so. I didn’t know the proper procedure for someone witnessing court proceedings. I knew it was legal, as a couple of folks did it when I served as a juror. Although, all I could remember is what I learned in attempting to not be ignorant of the law in my jury summons endeavor. The courtroom is literally the Judge’s little fiefdom and he can charge someone with contempt of court for whatever reason he makes up.

A couple of minutes later, I saw a number of people enter and leave the courtroom and I decided to slip in and sit down.

The first defendant was being charged with possession of marjiuana and residential burglary.

Obviously, that would be a violation of both the non-aggression principle and property rights. From how it seemed at the trial, it appeared to be two different charges and the only one being addressed today was the marijuana charge. The defendant took a plea deal; that is an extremely common trend. I remember, that when I served as a juror, the bailiff even said that jury trials have dropped significantly in the past two years and he only works about two weeks out of every month.

The second defendant was charged with criminal trespassing, obviously a violation of property rights. There were a couple of other things mentioned in regards to his case, but again, the defendant took a plea deal.

The third defendant was charged with disorderly conduct; a charge that could mean a lot of different things (drunk in public, loitering, “disturbing the peace”, etc.). A minor offense with no victim. There was no evidence presented so obviously there is no way to judge innocence or guilt. In addition to that, the only events in this certain case was that the trial was pushed back to a later date.

The fourth defendant was charged with only possession of cancelled or suspended license. As far as why it was suspended, the McLean County Public Access system only states, “ordinance violation”, prior to the charge. The only other open charge is consumption of liquor as a minor—nothing that explains why he had a cancelled or suspended license.

And let’s be honest here, who hasn’t drank as a minor? The drinking age laws are arbitrarily established by the hallucinatory entity known as the State.

Based off of public records, it appears this teenager will be spending some time on probation for not obeying the arbitrary laws of his masters, including their claimed monopoly on roads and complete disregard for his inalienable right to travel.

The fifth defendant’s only charge was possession of drug paraphernalia. He was the ONLY one that came in escorted by a cop, from the government dungeon, otherwise known as the McLean County Jail.

It was quite interesting to hear the Judge’s explanation. I don’t have a perfect memory so I will paraphrase: “We found a pipe in which the victim was going to ingest a controlled substance into his body, which is a misdemeanor offense that could be a year in jail or a $750 fine.”

Let’s recap. The ONLY one that came from the government dungeon (remember, there were charges of residential burglary and criminal trespassing, both actual crimes) was the one that did nothing wrong. This is also known as a “vice crime”; no victim but government’s very biased opinion on drugs claimed that it was wrong (not to mention their vested interest, i.e. expanding government from the “successful” drug war and also the CIA’s involvement in smuggling those same drugs in).

Let’s say that the government banned Mac & Cheese. No one could possibly have a moral objection to someone eating Mac & Cheese, and some would even pay a lot for it if it were to be arbitrarily outlawed. Now you have a black market in Mac & Cheese.

Sound absurd? In Wisconsin, there used to be a ban on margarine. You know what that created? A black market for margarine.

Black markets are only created by arbitrary laws, and everything that is black market today is only that way because the State makes a lot of money off of it and/or they get to increase the prison (slave) population.

To conclude, he plead guilty and was sentenced to 60 days in jail, but had already served 10. 2 months of your life is a LONG TIME, especially for a victimless crime.

The sixth defendant didn’t show up. I witnessed the public defender speaking to the State prosecutor, explaining that his client didn’t show up and that he had tried to call him and his assistant was currently trying to get ahold of him. Now, as far as him being a public defender, I don’t have any documentation for that, but seeing him speak to the State prosecutor with a grin on his face, was enough for me. That, and the body language that was shared by both of them. It seemed like they were at the very least, work acquaintances.

Surprisingly, the State went easy on him and just re-scheduled the hearing.

The seventh defendant was being charged with disorderly conduct. Again, that could be public intoxication, “disturbing the peace”, or loitering. As with the last one, no evidence was presented and the trial was pushed back to a later date.

All of this happened in just 30 minutes. The State ran seven citizens through the gauntlet in just half an hour, the majority of them being victimless crimes. They destroyed lives from reckless whims and had no regard for morality, as they were just “enforcing the law”. That is no fucking excuse. They are either authority obeying cowards or they are lusting for the power to control others. Both are wrong and they both need to be called out.

I also think it is important to touch on the way these government agents interacted with each other. For one, the court clerk’s unwavering servitude to the Judge really bothered me. She could be doing something good, but instead, she believes in authority, the (IN)justice system; much like my Statist cousin lawyer, trying for judge, a “Reaganite”, who believes in the Constitution, but cannot even understand the fact that her own occupation violates her own beliefs.

Unlike the McLean County Board Meeting I attended, where the occupants were humbled to be in the presence of ‘authority’, the defendants acted in a little different manner. They acted like they were “at the mercy” of the Judge, when in reality, their case was already decided when they took the plea bargain.

They couldn’t resist calling him, “Your Honor”, “Sir”, or any other title that resembles authority. Regardless of the status of their case, it was pretty clear to see that they still believed in this elaborate illusion called ‘authority’.

As I stated in my article on the McLean County Board Meeting, it seemed like the government employees and the defendants alike, ‘recognized’ that they were in the presence of some ‘authority’ figure.

To make another distinction, at the McLean County Board Meeting, it was (for some reason) a joyful atmosphere. The attendees were happy to be in the presence of their political rulers; but at court today, the defendants expressed a saddened atmosphere, and rightfully so.

Lastly, since I’ve mentioned my experiences in both the judicial and legislative branches, I think it’s important to mention that I have had prior events with the executive (enforcement) branch of government here as well.

Leaving out basic traffic infractions, the first ‘serious’ interaction I had with a police extortionist was when I was a reckless teenager. Even though they destroyed my car, they didn’t find the rest, or I would have gone to jail; you can put that on police incompetence or that I just had a really good hiding spot (both would be true).

I got my car towed (stolen) and only got tagged with an ordinance violation—doesn’t show up on my record as anything but that. You could (and you would be right) call it extortion. I had to pay my way out of incarceration. Keep in mind, this was all for a victimless crime.

The next experience I had with these police extortionists was when I got a DUI, a few years back. I got off relatively clean and it doesn’t show up on my record. I did owe the State a lot of money though.

So as you can see, I’ve had experience with all three branches of local government, and none of them good.

In the legislature, I could literally feel them reaching into my wallet and raping me of my hard earned dollars, otherwise known as taxation, which is theft. They also approved the Mental Health Action Plan, which has had involvement from at least 4 federal agencies and uses the “successful” War on Drugs as the precursor for the expansion of local government.

In the judiciary, I saw first-hand that they are not advocates of common law; to be more specific, they don’t believe that the punishment must fit the crime. I also saw the Judge advocate for lobbying and he also lied to the jurors, by saying that it’s not our job to judge whether a law is good or bad, completely ruling out jury nullification.

In the executive (enforcement) branch, I was a victim of extortion due to a victimless crime.

From my experiences, I have a unique perspective. I believe that government is immoral and goes against all values that us humans frequently hold precious. For example, we find way to solve problems in our lives without initiating violence or the threatening use of coercion, which usually are the only two options available to the State.

In addition to that, I have witnessed first-hand that no matter what level of government, the State is the most dangerous robber, theft, or conman that has ever existed on this earth.

They don’t give a damn about your life, liberty, property, or happiness. Governments throughout the history of the world (there is no shortage of empirical evidence) have always grown tyrannical and have always committed democide (murder by government), the inevitable end of Statism.

I have proven all of this at a local level; maybe not the executive branch from personal experience, but there have been plenty of examples of police extortionist corruption in this county.

So what does that say about the State in general? Well, to put it simply, a State is a State is a State. I don’t care if you call it “Federal”, “State”, or “County” or “Municipal”.

It’s time to get rid of this ridiculous hallucination of ‘authority’ and start being the moral, responsible human beings we all can be.

So, what’s it going to be? Freedom or slavery? You can’t be free with a political ruler.