Judicial Power and Virtue. The 3 Temptations of the Magistrate
The citizens of a free and democratic State can only stand the powers conferred to the judge if they are Virtuous, otherwise the powers entrusted upon them would be but a tyranny. This virtue, which essentially shows itself through the independence of the judge may be challenged in three ways. - The judge may be corrupted by money but if examples may be given it is in fact only a school case. - The judge may be servile towards the Power, and to facilitate his promotion do a favour to powerful persons to which Politics has given power. Since the reformation of the career and the promotion of magistrates, this suspicion is disappearing. - The judge may be imbued with fashionable ideas to the point of losing his virtue of independence. This, d'Aguesseau called the slavery of Prevention. The judge, to be fully virtuous, must be independent from preconceived ideas, traditional or revolutionary ones and be independent of the judicial routine.
Key Words : mgistrate, judge, power, virtue
t. 42, 1998, p. 235-240