Smarter Policing Trumps More Policing, From Ferguson to Kansas City and Beyond

By: Saturday March 14, 2015 10:00 am

Interstate 70 is the main east-west highway across the state of Missouri, with St. Louis on one end and Kansas City on the other. While the events in Ferguson during this past week have garnered the attention – the continuing protests stemming from the release of the DOJ report; the departures of Ferguson’s city manager, police chief, two police officers, the city’s municipal judge, and the clerk of the municipal court; and the shooting of two police officers – a radio interview in Kansas City shines a very powerful spotlight on what’s underneath the unrest in Ferguson.

 

The DOJ Report on Ferguson, US Catholic Bishops, and the Failure of Very Sternly Worded Letters

By: Saturday March 7, 2015 10:00 am

I’ve pored over the report from the DOJ about Ferguson, and read and re-read Eric Holder’s remarks upon releasing it. They are powerful documents, filled with page after page of discriminatory and racist behavior, with story after story of specific episodes of documented unnecessary use of force. They paint an ugly picture, and a sadly familiar one to those who have lived in Ferguson, North St. Louis, and North St. Louis County.

It was also familiar to me because it reminded me of the way in which prosecutors handled allegations of child sexual abuse by Catholic priests. And not in a good way.

Supreme Court Rules in Favor of TSA Whistleblower Robert MacLean

By: Monday February 9, 2015 9:00 am

Whistleblower laws exist because government officials do not always act in the nation’s best interests. The Obama administration, in its war on whistleblowers, just lost a major battle. Major in its venue — the Supreme Court — and major in its implications for future whistleblower cases. The Court’s decision in Department of Homeland Security v. [...]

On the BBC Defending Not Torturing People

By: Wednesday December 17, 2014 10:00 am

I joined fellow whistleblower and former chief Guantanamo prosecutor Colonel Morris Davis on the BBC’s World TV recently to speak out against torture. Because most “journalism” these days defines objectivity as having people from bizarrely opposite sides of an issue yell at each other until time is up, I found myself “rebutting” a handful of [...]

FDL Book Salon Welcomes Brandon L. Garrett, Too Big to Jail: How Prosecutors Compromise With Corporations

By: Sunday November 9, 2014 1:59 pm

Six years after the Financial Crisis of 2008 — with its $13 trillion global price tag, including $2 trillion in property values lost, 8.7 million jobs destroyed, and evidence of corporate lawlessness seemingly in plain sight — the public policy problematic might boil down to a single question: where are the prosecutions?

Government Claims Right To Create Fake Social Media Accounts From Stolen Identities

By: Wednesday October 8, 2014 7:06 am

Is the government sending you a friend request? The DEA has claimed in court documents that it has the right to use information obtained from someone arrested to create a fake social media account in order to further a drug investigation.

The Culture of Non-Accountability, Ferguson Edition

By: Saturday September 27, 2014 9:37 am

The shooting of Michael Brown in Ferguson, Missouri and the continuing actions of Ferguson and St. Louis County officials are providing a textbook case study in avoiding accountability. There are lots of steps along the way, but at the end, the big lesson is that the protection granted by a culture of non-accountability is only for those in power.

DOJ and Treasury Schooled by College Athletes

By: Saturday August 9, 2014 9:00 am

First it was former Northwestern University quarterback Kain Coulter and his football teammates taking a chunk out of the NCAA, and yesterday it was former UCLA basketball player Ed O’Bannon and 19 other former college players. They did what few thought possible in going after a Too Big to Challenge institution, and won.

You know, the president is a sports-loving guy. Imagine what would happen if he called the attention of the DOJ and Treasury to these college athletes: “This is how you go after Too Big To Challenge institutions.” . . .

Parallel Construction: Unconstitutional NSA Searches Deny Due Process

By: Wednesday July 23, 2014 2:18 pm

The NSA sits at the nexus of violations of both the Fourth and Fifth Amendments with a legal dodge called Parallel Construction.

Parallel Construction is a technique used by law enforcement to hide the fact that evidence in a criminal case originated with the NSA. In its simplest form, the NSA collects information showing say a Mr. Anderson committed a crime. This happens most commonly in drug cases.

CIA, Senate and a Constitutional Crisis Resolved (not in favor of the Constitution)

By: Friday July 11, 2014 3:50 pm

The CIA attacks on the Senate, designed to impede, alter or influence the outcome of a report on torture, coupled with a lack of concern from the White House and the Department of Justice, as well as apparently by the chair of the Senate Intelligence Committee itself, are another example of our new world, a Post-Constitutional America where the old rules of an aging republic no longer apply.

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