As a judge, I do not consider my role to be that of an instrument of public vengeance. In the words of Clint Eastwood in “Unforgiven,” – “We all have it coming.” In the words of Dustin Hoffman in “Papillon” – “Blame is for God and small children.”
Meantime, another judge found that the meth guidelines make no sense:
Sioux City-based U.S. District Judge Mark Bennett on Friday became one of a handful of U.S. judges to declare public opposition to federal sentencing guidelines for methamphetamine dealers.
He wrote that he considers them to be “fundamentally flawed,” not based on empirical data and too harsh for lower-level drug figures.
And yesterday, the Supreme Court ruled that applying a new version of a guideline violated the ex post facto clause if that guideline called for a higher sentence, even though the guidelines are now advisory.
What a mess.
The guidelines, and sentencing in general, has become a lot like the tax code. No one likes them, but no one has any really good ideas on how to fix them.
Sometimes, I think the solution is the state system, but then I see that Chad Ochocinco was sentenced to 30 days today even though the plea agreement called for no jail time because he congratulated his lawyer for the result by slapping his behind.
Maybe it's the Texas system where the jury issues the sentence...