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Is U.S. Justice Broken?
Recorded: Thursday, December 9, 2010

Part 1 | Part 2 | Part 3 | Part 4 | Part 5

From fingerprinting to criminal sentencing, from lawyer licensing to judicial selection, and from eminent domain to wealth transfers via class-action lawsuits, how do perverse incentives impact the law and what reforms would create a more just and efficient legal system?

Experts: David D. Friedman, Alex Kozinski, Edward J. López, David J. Theroux
Type: Independent Institute Event
Issues: Crime, Criminal Justice/ Prisons, Law Enforcement

       
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Drug War Crimes
Recorded: Thursday, May 6, 2004

Each year, the U.S. government spends over $30 billion on the drug war and arrests more than 1.5 million people on drug-related charges. Currently more than 318,000 people are behind bars in the U.S. for drug violations—more than the number of people incarcer-ated for all crimes in the United Kingdom, France, Germany, Italy, and Spain combined. Have current drug laws deterred drug abuse and reduced crime? What are the real costs of this country’s war on drugs? Is there a link between the homicide rate and the amount of resources given to drug prohibition? Please join us as Boston University economist Jeffrey Miron (author of the major new book, Drug War Crimes) and former San Jose police chief, Joseph McNamara, examine these questions and explore real alternatives to America’s “War on Drugs.”

Jeffrey A. Miron

Boston University Professor of Economics and author of the new book, Drug War Crimes: The Consequences of Prohibition. His articles on Drug Policy have appeared in Social Research, Boston Globe and the London Observer. He received his Ph. D. in economics from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.

Joseph D. McNamara

Research Fellow, Hoover Institution. Former Chief of Police, San Jose, CA and Kansas City, MO. He has published articles in the New York Times, the Los Angeles Times, the Wall Street Journal, the Washington Post, and other publications. He has been a commentator for NPR and has appeared on Meet the Press, Good Morning America, Sixty Minutes, and other programs.

Ethan A. Nadelmann

Founder and Executive Director of the Drug Policy Alliance, the leading organization in the United States promoting alternatives to the War on Drugs. Dr. Nadelmann received his Ph.D. and J.D. from Harvard University and a Masters degree in International Relations from the London School of Economics. His speaking and writings on drug policy have attracted international attention and appeared in Science, American Heritage, National Review, and others.

Experts: Joseph D. McNamara, Jeffrey A. Miron, Ethan A. Nadelmann
Type: Independent Institute Event
Issues: Crime, Criminal Justice/ Prisons, Drugs (Illicit), Government Waste/Pork, Law Enforcement

       
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The Drug War on Trial: Two Judges Speak Out
Recorded: Wednesday, September 5, 2001

Drug abuse is a serious problem, but the "War on Drugs" shows no sign of being won and has come with a heavy price tag. Critics say that its side effects- increased taxes, increased crime and corruption here and abroad, loss of civil liberties, decreased health, prison overcrowding, discrimination against African Americans and other groups, and the diversion of resources away from other problems- are even worse for society than the drugs themselves. Many public officials share this sentiment but fear political reprisals if they speak out. However, Judges James Gray and Vaughn Walker, having witnessed the Drug War up close, believe that the time has come to testify publicly about its ill effects- and to outline bold, new approaches to the drug problem.

Experts: James P. Gray, Vaughn Walker
Type: Independent Institute Event
Issues: Crime, Criminal Justice/ Prisons, Drugs (Illicit), Law Enforcement

       
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Truth and Propaganda in Politically Correct America
Recorded: Tuesday, August 14, 2001

Although comedian George Carlin's infamous routine, "Seven Words You Can't Say on TV," has become outdated, today many ideas are considered too 'politically incorrect' to discuss in polite society. According to popular Los Angeles talk-radio host Larry Elder, many sacred cows- about racism and sexism, health care, welfare, education, the family, drug laws, the media, crime, gun control, and more- are soft-headed distortions that have worsened America's social problems. If "the truth shall make you free," then, says Elder, these myths need a serious reality check- before we forget what truth and freedom look like. Larry Elder discussed what's really wrong with America and how a free people, rather than an intrusive government, can fix it.

Experts: Larry Elder
Type: Independent Institute Event
Issues: Culture/ Society, Entertainment, Free Speech, Freedom

       
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Guns and Violent Crime
Recorded: Tuesday, September 21, 1999

With the recent school massacre in Littleton, Colorado; the shootings of Jewish children in Los Angeles; and rampant drive-by shootings and other atrocities, what can and should be done to protect the innocent against violence in American society? Can government protect the citizenry against gun-related violence? What is the record of individual self-defense against violence in Britain and the U.S.? In this very timely Independent Policy Forum, acclaimed historian Joyce Lee Malcolm and civil rights attorney Don Kates will examine gun laws, violence, and rights.

Experts: Don B. Kates Jr., Joyce Lee Malcolm
Type: Independent Institute Event
Issues: Civil Liberties/ Human Rights, Crime, Criminal Justice/ Prisons, Culture/ Society, Gun Control, Law Enforcement

       
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Tiananmen Square: 10 Years Later
Recorded: Wednesday, June 16, 1999

In 1989, during a large peaceful student demonstration in Beijing’s Tiananmen Square, the Chinese government deployed its military to massacre hundreds of unarmed students and other civilians in order to stop a growing movement for democratization and individual freedom. Since then, tens of thousands who have spoken out have been imprisoned, tortured and killed, and the government has refused to even admit that such atrocities have occurred. This special Independent Policy Forum will feature three outstanding experts, including two of the leaders of the original Chinese student movement. They will discuss the events then and since, the current movement in china for freedom, and the implications of current Chinese government policies for Americans.

Experts: Timothy J. Brook, Jing Chang, Danxuan Yi
Type: Independent Institute Event
Issues: Free Speech, Freedom, Government Power, History (International), Political Ideology and Philosophy

       
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Stopping Violent Crime: New Directions for Reduction and Prevention
Recorded: Tuesday, December 3, 1996

Tuesday, December 3, 1996

Co-sponsored by the Independent Institute and Koch Crime Commission
University Theater, Garvey Fine Arts Center
Washburn University, Topeka, KS

Moderator:
Arthur R. Miller, Professor of Law, Harvard University

Participants:
Bruce L. Benson, Professor of Economics, Florida State University; Senior Fellow, The Independent Institute
Erika Holzer, bestselling author of book and major motion picture, Eye for an Eye
Wendy Kaminer, Contributing Editor, The Atlantic Monthly
William I. Koch, Chairman, Koch Crime Commission
Alan J. Lizotte, Director, Hindelang Criminal Justice Research Center, University at Albany
David B. Sentelle, Judge, U. S. Court of Appeals, D.C. Circuit
David J. Theroux, Founder and President, The Independent Institute
Richard L. Thornburgh, former U.S. Attorney General
Hubert Williams, President, Police Foundation
Marvin E. Wolfgang, Director, Sellin Center for Studies in Criminology, University of Pennsylvania
James R. Wyrsch, President, Wyrsch Hobbs Mirakian & Lee, P.C.

Violent crime continues to be a major social and economic problem in the United States and around the world. This important debate, held before an audience of 1,000 at Washburn University, features a panel of experts from diverse backgrounds and perspectives, including criminal justice officials, business and civic leaders, scholars, and best-selling authors.

In a lively and challenging exchange of ideas, the program addresses why the criminal justice system has become increasingly bureaucratized and politicized, ever less responsive and ever more costly. Topics include victim’s rights, crime and incarceration rates, restitution, civil liberties, illicit drugs, guns, racism, policing, privatization, and sentencing.

Co-sponsored by The Independent Institute and Koch Crime Commission, this program was distributed by Central Educational Network and appeared on the Public Broadcasting System.

Experts: Bruce L. Benson, Erika Holzer, Wendy Kaminer, William I. Koch, Alan J. Lizotte, Arthur R. Miller, David B. Sentelle, David J. Theroux, Richard L. Thornburgh, Hubert Williams, Marvin E. Wolfgang, James R. Wyrsch
Type: Independent Institute Event
Issues: Bureaucracy and Government, Civil Liberties/ Human Rights, Constitutional Law, Crime, Criminal Justice/ Prisons, Culture/ Society, Drugs (Illicit), Family, Gun Control, Labor and Employment, Law Enforcement, Political Ideology and Philosophy, Public Health/ Consumer Protection, Race Issues, Urban Issues, Welfare, Women’s Issues

       
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