plainjim | Arkansas news, politics, opinion, restaurants, music, movies and art

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Trying to remain sane in an insane world.

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  • Barth: Another Supreme Court's missed opportunity

    Even when blockbuster decisions are not being handed down almost daily by the U.S. Supreme Court, rules of procedure passed down by Arkansas's top court typically gain little attention.
    • Jul 4, 2012
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Recent Comments

Re: “Another take on the 2nd District Democratic primary, from the left

Rabid, you do not register as either a Democrat or Republican in Arkansas. The state has open primaries where anyone can run in either primary. You simply can't vote as a Democratic or Republican in the first primary, and then vote in the other party's primary if there is a runoff election. In Red Arkansas, I think the most logical choice for voters is Clarke Tucker, but i don't live in the district. However, progressives must realize Arkansas is a Republican state, and the best the party can achieve is incremental gains. Clarke Tucker seems to me, an outsider, to be the beet chance of achieving that, even though I like the political philosophy of Paul Spencer better.

0 likes, 1 dislike
Posted by plainjim on 05/21/2018 at 10:25 PM

Re: “Monday's open line and the daily roundup

What has happened to Smith's History the past few days, Cato? I always enjoy it and miss it when it does not appear.

1 like, 0 dislikes
Posted by plainjim on 05/21/2018 at 10:14 PM

Re: “Baker Kurrus will run for Little Rock mayor

Until the Chamber of Commerce crowd realizes that the best interests of the poorest minority residents of Little Rock represent also the best interests of the business community, there will be strife and disunity. One way to change the scenario is to change to a mayor-council form of government, where the voters control the political dynamics of city government--where there are no "at-large directors," who always seem to be the CofC candidates. The mayor-council form is the most democratic form of city government, and the most responsive to the concerns of the residents.

2 likes, 0 dislikes
Posted by plainjim on 05/21/2018 at 10:08 PM

Re: “Police find body in Arkansas River; apparently that of missing wedding guest

The people at the wedding party should have told him not to go running at night in downtown Little Rock.

2 likes, 0 dislikes
Posted by plainjim on 05/21/2018 at 9:56 PM

Re: “More suits filed against Rutledge over failure to approve ballot initiatives

I made a typo above. Of course, our constitution was adopted in 1874, not 1974.

Posted by plainjim on 05/21/2018 at 9:54 PM

Re: “More suits filed against Rutledge over failure to approve ballot initiatives

Your idea has been tried twice in my lifetime, Going for the record, and the voters turned the new constitution down both times. The problem is, that in the modern world, thanks to the influence of lobbyists, any new constitution would be completely an amalgamation of special interests, which offers few protections to the people. I would not risk getting rid of our 1974 Constitution in favor of anything that today's legislators, corporate interests and lobbyists come up with.

4 likes, 0 dislikes
Posted by plainjim on 05/21/2018 at 7:38 PM

Re: “Judges split on judicial attack ads

What is so troublesome about this entire episode is that the defamatory claims of the attack ads have just enough truth to them to survive a court challenge. Courtney Goodson did accept a lot of gifts, including W.H. Taylor's cruise, and John Goodson's expensive jewelry. W.H. Taylor has been trying to influence judges for years. Kenneth Hixson did rule the way he did on that criminal case, along with four other members of the Court of Appeals, because they thought the defendant's rights were violated. The dark money ads described this as a technicality, but if we ever come to the point where we pass violation of defendants' rights as technicalities, we have become another Russia, or another North Korea, or China. Do we really want to be like them? So many of our voters do not have the ability to distinguish these fine points. They think, "Well, Kenneth Hinson let a criminal off, so I will never vote for him," without even trying to discover what the facts of the specific case were.

This is why we must change the system by which we pick judges for the Supreme Court and the Court of Appeals. Voters do not know what the law requires, and they are, therefore, not qualified to pick the justices who are the final arbiters of legal matters. When I was a practicing private defense attorney, I always had one rule. If I thought my client was innocent, I would try him before a judge. If I thought my client might be guilty, I would try him to a jury. I could fool a jury much easier than I could fool a judge.

This effort to destroy our appellate courts will have resounding effects for years to come. People will distrust our courts, They will increasingly disrespect the law and the lord knows where this will lead the country. I think, if you really want the rule of law to continue in Arkansas, you need to vote for Kenneth Hixson for the Supreme Court. Sterling is a a radical nut; Courtney simply has too much baggage now to be a good justice.

6 likes, 0 dislikes
Posted by plainjim on 05/18/2018 at 9:38 PM

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