Book Discussion on Three Felonies a Day
Oct 1, 2009
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Harvey Silverglate talked about his book Three Felonies a Day: How the Feds Target the Innocent
(Encounter Books (September 1, 2009). In his book criminal defense attorney Harvey Silverglate explains how the body of .. Read More
Harvey Silverglate talked about his book Three Felonies a Day: How the Feds Target the Innocent (Encounter Books (September 1, 2009). In his book criminal defense attorney Harvey Silverglate explains how the body of federal law has grown to such an extent that the average white collar worker can commit several federal crimes a day and not know it. The author argues that the executive branch uses the law to gain greater control over upper-middle class and wealthy professionals. He blames the vagueness of laws that allow so much room for interpretation that people can not figure out how to not commit a crime and are vulnerable to sudden, arbitrary prosecution.
Tim Lynch talked about the book he edited, In the Name of Justice: Leading Experts Reexamine the Classic Article "The Aims of the Criminal Law" (Cato Institute; February 2009). This collection of essays considers changes in the theoretical underpinnings of criminal law on the 50th anniversary of the article by Harvard law professor Henry M. Hart, Jr. Mr. Lynch talked about the basic question of what should be a crime. He maintains that the justice system has drifted away from basic constitutional principles and that the runaway growth of the criminal law has been accompanied by the dilution of constitutional rights and safeguards.
Then both panelists responded to questions from members of the audience. "The Criminalization of (Almost) Everything" was a Cato Institute Book Forum at noon on Thursday, October 1, 2009. Tony Blankley was the guest moderator.
Harvey Silverglate is co-founder and chairman of Foundation for Individual Rights in Education (FIRE) and a regular columnist for The Boston Phoenix. He is also author of The Shadow University.