Via Reason Hit and Run, I see that New Hampshire is suspending civil jury trials for a month to save $73,000 during tight economic times. Reason reasonably asks whether they weighed the right to a jury trial in civil cases against other government expenditures, providing a partial list from the state budget.
Among the items they note:
Barbering, Cosmetology, and Esthetics Board
Bicycle/Pedestrian Information Center
Boxing and Wrestling Commission
Christa McAuliffe Planetarium
Commission on the Status of Men
Oddly, the Commission on the Status of Men doesn't seem to have a item in the budget, though I note that the Commission on the Status of Women is slated to cost nearly $150,000 in 2009, or more than two months of civil jury trials. If the Commission on the Status of Men is anything like that, I'd like to offer to take over its functions for free so that civil litigants in New Hampshire can have their grievances heard by a jury of their peers. Report: men are hungry, somewhat tired. They would enjoy a beer, a hummer, and maybe a nice chop, though really a decent burger will do. And a nap. You're welcome.
How else can we preserve the right of the pleasant libertarians of New Hampshire to have their cases tried by a jury, as in olden times, this month?
You could cut out-of-state travel. For instance, the Employment Security department is scheduled to spend $55,000 on out of state travel in 2009. Are those trips more crucial than jury trials? Maybe they could teleconference.
Maybe the liquor commission could install some of those fluorescent bulbs and even wear sweaters. They've got five employees but a budget for $200,000 in heat, electricity, and water.
And that's after about five minutes of looking.
I'm just saying.
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