Wallow in your failure, you smug loser.
Cardassia is a fictional planet in the Star Trek universe ruled by a totalitarian state with a court system quite similar to our own. Trials on Cardassia do not to examine the charges against the accused, since a guilty verdict is foreordained. The defendant is assigned an attorney called a “public conservator” whose role is not to represent the interests of his client, but rather to assure “the productive functioning of our courts.”
“I’m here to help you concede the wisdom of the state, to prepare you to accept the inevitable with equanimity,” one conservator explained to a bemused client unfamiliar with the system. “Whatever you’ve done, whatever the charges against you, none of that really matters in the long run…. This trial is to demonstrate the futility of behavior contrary to good order. Everyone will find it most uplifting.”
The federal conspiracy trial of Ammon and Ryan Bundy and five of their associates was supposed to follow the Cardassian script – but the prosecutors lost the plot when they encountered defendants they couldn’t bluff or bully, defense attorneys who conscientiously represented their clients, and a jury that demanded actual proof of the charges being considered.
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