The very bright and always provocative Judge Posner flabbergasted Australian jurists with what sounds utterly sensible to me: secret trials for terrorists and more surveillance of Muslim populations in North America:
TOP-RANKING US judge has stunned a conference of Australian judges and barristers in Chicago by advocating secret trials for terrorists, more surveillance of Muslim populations across North America and an end to counter-terrorism efforts being "hog-tied" by the US constitution.
Judge Richard Posner, a supposedly liberal-leaning jurist regarded by many as a future US Supreme Court candidate, said traditional concepts of criminal justice were inadequate to deal with the terrorist threat and the US had "over-invested" in them." [snip]
"We have to fight terrorism with our strengths, and our strengths evolve around technology, including the technology of surveillance," said Justice Posner, a prolific legal scholar who sits on the US Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit.
"Are there terrorist plots that are at a formative stage among the large US Muslim community of two to three million people? In the 600,000 Canadian Muslim population, are there people planning attacks on the US?
"What we have to do is discover the extent of the terrorist threat to the US. There is a danger, and it demands a rethinking of some of our conventional views on the limits of national security measures.
"We should think of surveillance as preventative, not punitive. We should think of controls that have nothing to do with warrants or traditional criminal justice to prevent abuses."
Judge Posner said the US temper and culture could not sustain repeated terrorist attacks.