"There is always a philosophy for lack of courage."—Albert Camus

Wednesday, February 01, 2006

Brisk Law - #2

A second area that the Brisk system innovates is the distinction between laws defined by their object and laws defined by their subject.

For example, a man has a furnace on his property that is not constructed according to code. A policeman comes by and gives him two tickets. One for a code violation. One for having a dangerous structure.

Again, his attorney claims double jeopardy.

The classic thinking would have agreed. Those two crimes are redundant, one and the same; the man has something dangerous.

The Brisk method sees the code as being a law geared to the object. The county determines that no such structure should be within its borders. It applies to the owner only as the trustee of that object. The second law applies to the person, and is a separate law obligating him to avoid having dangerous structures on his property.

What if the furnace was not his and had been on his property based on an easement? Now it has been abandoned by the true owner and the easement is vacated. Does this property owner have an obligation to remove the furnace?

The first system sees the code obligation as merely synonymous with obligating the furnace owner. Since the property owner does not own the furnace, he cannot be bound. The Brisk system sees the code as being a law on the object itself; it might then see the property owner as the natural trustee of the code compliance even though he does not have technical ownership of the furnace.

There are quite a few more of these distinctions, but these should give you an idea.

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