Northern Valley Beacon

Information, observations, and analysis from the James River valley on the Northern Plains----- E-Mail: Enter 'Beacon' in subject box. Send to:

Sunday, October 02, 2005


What is a nation of laws when the laws are stupid?

As the state attorney general pointed out in an Argus Leader story today (and we pointed out in a post yesterday), state law gives the governor special dispensation on the use of state airplanes, and other conveyances of his choice.

South Dakota Codified Laws give a lot of special dispensation to officials and their cronies. On some days, if it weren't for the climate, you could believe you are in Aruba.

If you are a rat, South Dakota Codified Laws look like a huge hunk of Swiss cheese. They provide a lot of fodder for legal palavering, but are full of holes that let those who wish to take advantage of their fellows to do all manner of things without being held accountable.

Using a state-owned airplane as one's personal craft is a case in point. The Governor is taking advantage of taxpayers and exercising exorbitant privileges of office because the law allows him to do so. If South Dakotans wanted to live in a democracy where its officials had to observe the same rules as other people, they would not tolerate laws that give such broad and arbitrary privilege.

South Dakota is a banana republic in the wheat belt. Its laws are deeply rooted in the traditions of special privilege for some and denial of basic democratic processes for others that characterize republics run by dictators.

If South Dakotans want fair play and to live in a place where citizens have some basic rights of equality, they need to insist that some laws be upgraded to meet the standards of equality, justice, and freedom set in our founding documents.

Here are some areas where laws need severe revision:

These are a few places where the law could be brought up to standards that assure equal justice and freedom from oppression. At present, if you want these things guaranteed to you as a citizen, you have to move to another state.

David, I like your blog, but you did make a mistake in your points there. There is a Miranda in SD. It's located west of Redfield on highway 212. It's closer to Faulkton, and probably has a population of 50, or less.

I got carried away. I was referring to the Miranda rule which requires police to read the rights to people apprehended by the police.

David N.
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