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Why We Don’t Have Principled Politicians

Why We Don’t Have Principled Politicians

Politicians choose their stances on issues based on public opinion, not principles.

Recently, Senator Chuck Schumer introduced a bill that would decriminalize marijuana on the federal level. He stated that the legality of marijuana should be a matter left up to individual states. This ringing endorsement of federalism might carry a little more weight if Senator Schumer hadn’t spent a large part of his political career trying to micromanage Americans’ behavior at the national level. Hillary Clinton is widely considered to be a staunch supporter of the LGBT community; however, she was publicly opposed to marriage equality until 2013. These are just two of the innumerable examples of politicians changing their stances on policy issues in the face of evolving public opinion. This is not a new phenomenon or exclusive to a single political party. Not only is it common for politicians to modify their positions of political principles to match changing public opinion, you’d be hard-pressed to find one who doesn’t. We are dealing with political followership, not political leadership. So, what does that get us? Antony Davies and James Harrigan talk about this and more on this week’s episode of Words and Numbers.

Is America a Police State?

Is America a Police State?

The current state of the United States’ criminal justice system, if it can even be called that anymore, is truly appalling.

Recently, in a small town in Pennsylvania, an insurance agent for Nationwide Insurance noticed a certain plant growing in a garden on the property he was inspecting. This insurance agent identified the plant as marijuana and notified the police about this nefarious behavior. An elderly couple lived at that property, and while the husband was out at the time, the wife was dragged from her home, in her underwear, while police proceeded to ransack the home for four hours. They found nothing illegal. And that marijuana plant that started this whole debacle? Actually a hibiscus. This is only one of countless examples of this exact sort of “raid first, ask questions later” mentality that police forces in this country have adopted. But it’s only natural that this sort of bad behavior has evolved because of the huge problem of overcriminalization. And when the difference between “criminal” and “lawbreaker” is more than just splitting semantic hairs, something needs to be done. Special guest Clark Neily of the Cato Institute joins James Harrigan and Antony Davies to talk about this and more on this week’s episode of Words and Numbers.

The public-choice dynamics behind overcriminalization

57-year-old grandfather from India partially paralyzed by a cop while visiting his son in Alabama — cop charged with assault but jury hung; charges dismissed

Philadelphia police captain slugs woman because he mistakenly believed she threw water on him. The officer was terminated by the police chief, but reinstated by an arbitrator with back pay.

Phila. cop who punched woman gets job back
6abc.com

NYPD officer nearly kills bicyclist by pushing him into a curb. The officer was convicted of lying about it in court but not punished.

Ex-Officer Guilty in Critical Mass Confrontation
www.nytimes.com

…click on the above link to read the rest of the article…

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