Techdirt's Tim Cushing highlights some of the more Kafkaesque moments in modern American justice — handcuffed men who shoot themselves in the back, men who are arraigned for crimes they allegedly committed while in jail, and comes to this conclusion:
Gone is the right to effective representation. If a defense attorney is present, he or she is only there to advise on the choices presented, not defend his or her client. The judge is not there to weigh evidence or even see if the charges should be dropped. The judge is there to accept pleas. Full stop. Anything else — even something that would take 30 seconds to verify — is ignored in favor of pushing grist through the judicial mill.
The Miraculous Works Of The Criminal Justice System [Tim Cushing/Techdirt]