Whenever I hear my judicial brethren and sisteren speak of the law as a truth-seeking process, I have to laugh. Hahahahahahahahah.
The legal process is a faith-based ritual of assuring one another that we can know things and know how we know them. This is a collective delusion. For all we know we’re just the dream of a butterfly with indigestion.
Indeed, as Justice Cardozo said, “Life a dream is, though gently down the stream our boat we must row, row, row.” United States v. 99 Bottles of Beer on the Wall.
And as for the rules of evidence! Why should a dying declaration be reliable? Most dying people are out of their minds. Why should a duty to record make a document trustworthy? Most people with a duty to record hate their jobs and couldn’t care less. Do you consider your phone bill inherently trustworthy? If so, there’s a bridge in Brooklyn I can sell you cheap.
In practice, the reliability of a statement is based on how much money the speaker makes. That’s why judges need more money. How can we expect to get respect when every whiteshoe shyster in front of us makes more than we do?