Wednesday, October 15, 2014

More fun with state laws

Yeah, pretty much any excuse will suit me....

I'm really not trying to proof-read Charlie Pierce over the intricacies of Texas legal culture, and it's a minor point, but this is what i get for not being on Faceplace (or MyBook, or whatever it is.  I don't Twit, either.)

Charlie say:

(I do believe it would be very helpful if we could keep it out of an election for county judge in which the primary issue seems to be Who's The Biggest Yokel? More proof that an elected judiciary is the second-worst idea in American politics.)

But his link is to an article about the race for county judge in Dallas County.  That's a Constitutional position in Texas (under our Constitution, Rube-Goldberg mechanism that it is).  It's the presiding officer over the County Commissioner's Court, the ruling body over the county (we have 256 of them, if I recall correctly).  They have nothing to do with legal disputes.  They get to out yokel each other because they will be responsible for lots and lots of people, not just for criminals and parties to lawsuits.

In Texas, legal cases go to the County-Court-at-Law (with hyphens), a creation of the statutes.  Those judges, also elected (we'd elect janitors in Texas if they'd thought of it when the Constitution was being re-drafted after the War.  You know which war.), preside over courtrooms in black robes on "benches."  The County Judge does not.

Nor is the County Judge ever addressed as "Yur Honor."  Nor does anybody with business before the County open with "May it please the court" when they rise to speak.

Always liked getting to say that; kinda miss it, to be honest.

Anyway:  that's go nothin' to do with ebola or the CDC or why nurses in Dallas are probably overworked, underpaid, and under protected (I tend to believe the nurses who say they weren't properly trained and didn't have adequate protective gear.  I suspect everybody expected the first case of ebola to be in NYC, or El "A", or some bigger and more glamorous location than a Presbyterian hospital in Big D.  I also expect private hospitals to be cheap when it comes to staff, and stingy when it comes to protective gear they don't think their staff will ever need.  I'm cynical that way.)

Nothin' to do with anything important, as I say:  but now you know.  Carry on.

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