You have the right to ask a computer for help

And hopefully that computer will be in a helpful mood:

PLS is a private, nonprofit organization under annual contract to provide inmates with meaningful access to the courts. That’s not an option for North Carolina. It’s a constitutional mandate, and for 30 years, PLS has satisfied it. Last week, the Senate abruptly canceled the state’s $2.89 million annual contract with PLS in favor of an unfunded mandate to provide inmates with digital legal libraries within five weeks. The proposal – a classic solution in search of a problem – will cost much more than PLS.

Once again, the NC GOP strives for achieving the least they can (or must) do for people. Navigating a legal library is difficult for attorneys and paralegals. Imagine how a group of people in which 4 out of 5 never graduated high school will fare. Make no mistake, this is not for economic or budgetary reasons, this is simply hard-heartedness. No finger should be lifted to help these people, even if they are being horribly abused:

In 2012, for example, after settling seven cases involving the rape or sexual abuse of female prisoners, PLS settled three other abuse cases with the Division of Adult Correction in which DAC agreed to implement a number of systemic changes to protect female prisoners from retaliation for reporting abuse.

In the mind of a Republican, any suffering associated with incarceration, even if it violates other laws or Constitutional concerns, simply falls under the "correction" category. And they wonder why they've been labeled the Tarheel Taliban.

And in another colossal false economy decision, this unnecessary cruel and unfair treatment will cost the taxpayers more money. From the Bounds v. Smith decision:

Legal services plans not only result in more efficient and skillful handling of prisoner cases, but also avoid the disciplinary problems associated with writ writers, see Johnson v. Avery, 393 U. S., at 488; Procunier v. Martinez, 416 U. S. 396, 421-422 (1974). Independent legal advisors can mediate or resolve administratively many prisoner complaints that would otherwise burden the courts, and can convince inmates that other grievances against the prison or the legal system are ill-founded, thereby facilitating rehabilitation by assuring the inmate that he has not been treated unfairly.[21] It has 832*832 been estimated that as few as 500 full-time lawyers would be needed to serve the legal needs of the entire national prison population.[22] Nevertheless, a legal access program need not include any particular element we have discussed, and we encourage local experimentation. Any plan, however, must be evaluated as a whole to ascertain its compliance with constitutional standards.[23]

Running a government is a complex operation, which must be done in the absence of prejudice and self-righteousness in order to attain the best outcomes. It is abundantly clear the current majority has neither the capacity nor the desire to pursue the most efficient routes, I just hope the voting public will realize that sooner than later.

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Speaking of asking computers for help

I asked one this morning. Here's what I got:

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“Don't tell me what you value, show me your budget, and I'll tell you what you value.”
― Joe Biden