Doug Casey’s REAL State of the Union – The 6th Amendment, Part II
[Ed. Note: The following conversation continues on from Part I, which you can catch up on HERE.]
Joel: It used to be that a defendant would face his accuser, look him in the eye. His reputation would be weighed amongst his peers, and people would know if the man was a scumbag or someone of good reputation and standing. That scene is little more than a quaint anachronism now.
Doug: Which is a pity. The best solution to this is that put forward in Tannehill’s book, where arbitration agencies are mutually agreed upon by the defendant and the victim, with the State and politics having basically nothing to do with it.
In a free market justice system, everybody’s got an interest to move things along quickly to an equitable result. The exact opposite of what we have today. In other words, like almost every government function, the court system should be privatized.
Joel: Moving down the institutions of criminal justice in the U.S., what about law enforcement? That could ostensibly be privatized as well, correct?
Doug: Oh, no question. It’s just a fact that people who go into cop work generally have an extra Y chromosome. Meaning they tend to be brutish, aggressive, and overbearing.
There’s an alternative to public employees working eight-hour days on minimal salaries, anxious to put away the tools on one hand, and assert their authority on the other. I would rather have private individuals who are incentivized the way Mike Hammer, or Magnum P.I., would be.
Joel: And instead of being incentivized to prosecute more crime in order to justify bigger budgets, competing security agencies would sell themselves to the market by showing a downtrend in crime, proving that they were doing a good job. Plus, they’d have reason to be polite and courteous to the community that was employing their services.
Doug: Of course. And since they wouldn’t be arms of the state, if they act improperly they would be subject to lawsuit, like anybody else that commits a criminal aggression. They would be private detectives, specialists in tracking down crimes. As opposed to state employees, essentially gun-toting DMV or Post Office workers. Government employees have different agendas and motivations than entrepreneurs.
Look, there’s nothing inherently magical about police work. It’s a service with a market value. Just like dentistry or roofing or lawn mowing. As such, it should be subject to the same market pressures as any other service. That way, companies that provide the best service to their community become profitable and grow. And those that violate people’s trust and use excessive force, for example, go broke because nobody will want to hire them.
Joel: And of course competition would drive down costs, making neighborhood security more affordable for communities at the lower end of the economic bracket, which would stand to benefit the most.
Doug: That’s right. You wouldn’t have to worry, if the police were privatized, about people breaking down your door at 6 a.m. in the morning, like what happened to Roger Stone recently. Or happened to the Branch Davidians in Waco. Who in their right mind would voluntarily pay for such a “service”? No. These clowns would be out of business immediately. Or working to pay off damages adjudicated against them.
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