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These cases point up an anomaly of our criminal process: controlled by rules of  law protecting adversary rights and procedures at some stages, the process at  other stages is thoroughly unstructured.  Beside the carefully safeguarded fairness of the courtroom is a dark no-man's-land of unreviewed bureaucratic  and discretionary decision making.  Too often, what the process purports to secure in its formal stages can be subverted or diluted in its more informal stages.  That, we are told, is what happened here.

United States of America v. Bryant and v. Turner. Nos. 23957, 24105. (1971). 439 F.2d 642 (1971) United States Court of Appeals, District of Columbia Circuit.

Satan, n.  One of the creator's lamentable mistakes, repented in sackcloth and ashes.  Being instated as an archangel, Satan made himself multifariously objectionable and was finally expelled from Heaven.  Halfway in his descent he paused, bent his head in thought a moment and at last went back.  "There is one favor I should like to ask," said he.

"Name it."

"Man, I understand, is about to be created.  He will need laws."

"What, wretch! You his appointed adversary, charged from the dawn of eternity with hatred of his soul you ask for the right to make his laws?"

"Pardon; what I have to ask is that he be permitted to make them himself."

It was so ordered.

Ambrose Bierce, The Devil's Dictionary (Library BindingHardcoverHardcoverHardcoverHardcoverPaperbackPaperbackPaperback), quoted in Silverstein, J. The Devil and Ambrose Bierce, Harper's Magazine, 2002, February, p. 50.

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