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More on inequality
This is an update for my last blog where I provide a brief summary of the state of inequality in American society. Shortly after posting this blog, I accidentally discovered some truly incredible data in Mother Jones magazine.   The charts (found here ) do an even better job than Inequality.org.  Here's what the charts say. To begin with, the huge income growth for the top 1% was helped by the fact that from 1992 to 2007 when their income grew by 392%, their tax rate dropped by 37%.  Because…
Inequality in America
As promised in my last blog , I will summarize the current level of inequality in the United States.  In a word, it is ugly!  By most measures, we are far behind other democratic societies, such as Canada, most European countries and Australia. One of the most common measures of income inequality is known as the Gini Index of Inequality (a value of 0 means perfect equality--everyone earns the same amount; and a value of 100 means perfect inequality--one person earns all), has gone up since…
Social class and education
In my last blog I discussed the importance of social class as a determinant of everything that matters in life.  In this blog I quote a study that stated "Poverty and social disadvantage are most strongly associated with deficits in children's cognitive skills and educational achievements."  Social class strongly correlates with the level of education one receives including the probability of dropping out, which in turn strongly relates to crime and delinquency. Two recent studies further…
Class counts
A recent CJCJ blog by Selena Teji brings up a point that is rarely discussed these days, namely "social class" which is two words rarely heard in public discourse -- except when republicans holler about "class warfare."  Social class does count -- a lot more than anything else.  Indeed, social class is one of the most important factors in human life. Social class position has some direct and indirect consequences, especially in terms of what sociologists refer to as life chances (which is…
Most support alternatives to school discipline policies
I recently wrote a blog called School Discipline and the Prison Pipeline which was a follow-up to a more detailed commentary on my web site .  Recently there was a survey called "California Statewide Survey on School Discipline Issues" (conducted by Fairbank, Maslin, Maullin, Metz & Associates) which was based upon a telephone survey of a random sample of 803 California voters.  About 80% of those polled supported reforms in the ways in which school discipline was practiced. For example,…
School Discipline and the Prison Pipeline
A New York Times story cites research by the Department of Education that concludes that "Although black students made up only 18 percent of those enrolled in the schools sampled, they accounted for 35 percent of those suspended once, 46 percent of those suspended more than once and 39 percent of all expulsions" during the 2009/2010 school year, based upon national data. Not surprisingly the story drew more than 400 comments from readers.  A few readers asked the very important question of…
School-to-prison pipeline [video]
CJCJ's Senior Research Fellow, Randall Shelden, discusses the school-to-prison pipeline in this video blog.  He notes, "dropping out should be seen as a process, not an event." His most recent publication blends theory, research, and applications into a superb overview of the complex issues surrounding juvenile delinquency and society's attempts to address juvenile crime: Randall G. Shelden. (2011). Delinquency and Juvenile Justice in American Society, 2nd ed. Long Grove, IL: Waveland Press .…
And the rich get richer
Here's some news that should surprise no one: the richest 1% made out just fine during the last decade.  For everyone else, well, let us all eat our foreclosures and our life savings! This news comes from a brand new study by a noted expert in the area (who has written about this subject many times), Emmanuel Saez.  His report can be found here . It is a short report and if you look at Table 1 you will find this statement at the bottom: "For example, from 2002 to 2007, average real family…
Part IV: Give me that old time religion [video blog]
CJCJ's Senior Research Fellow, Randall Shelden, discusses his blog series "Give me that old time religion" in this video blog.  The series explores the inside of Christian homes for troubled teens and uncovers a multitude of abuses. Read the whole series here: Part I: $1cjcj.org/news/5403$4 Part II: $1cjcj.org/news/5406$4 Part III: $1cjcj.org/news/5408$4 To view Randall Shelden's blog, please visit www.sheldensays.com
Cops in Schools
The evidence is clear: having police on school campuses creates more problems than it solves.  This evidence has been provided by a detailed report from the Justice Policy Institute (JPI) called "Education Under Arrest: The Case Against Police in Schools ." The reported noted that between 1997 and 2007 the number of "school resource officers" (SRO's) increased by 38%, largely as a result of zero tolerance policies enacted during this time.  Paralleling this growth has been the increase of…
Wall Street is without a doubt a gang
A new report by two noted experts on corporate crime reinforces my contention in the previously posted four part series called "Is Wall Street a Gang?"   The report is "White Collar Criminology and the Occupy Wall Street Movement" co-authored by Henry Pontell and William Black.  It has just been published in the latest issue of The Criminologist , the newsletter of the American Society of Criminology. Pontell and Black argue that the frauds committed by some of the largest financial…
Corporate Crime [video]
CJCJ's Senior Research Fellow, Randall Shelden, discusses his recent blog series "Is Wall Street a gang?" in this video blog. Read the whole series here: Part I: http://www.cjcj.org/post/public/policy/wall/street/gang/part/i Part II: http://www.cjcj.org/post/public/policy/wall/street/gang/part/ii Part III: http://www.cjcj.org/post/public/policy/wall/street/gang/part/iii Part IV: http://www.cjcj.org/post/public/policy/wall/street/gang/part/iv To view Randall Shelden's…
Is Wall Street a gang? Part IV
The record of criminality within the boardrooms and offices of American corporations continues with no abatement. Their behavior fits the profile of a "street gang."   While not every corporation is literally housed on "Wall Street" they nevertheless are listed on the New York Stock Exchange.  And the SEC -- the cops of Wall Street -- continues to be quite busy, as are federal courts.   Here are two recent examples:   ~ "Twenty Nine Dead and Alpha Gets a Non Prosecution Agreement" -- so…
Is Wall Street a gang? Part III
As the "Occupy Wall Street" movement continues all across the country it seems to me to be increasingly important to bring to the forefront the horrific crimes perpetrated by corporations and their representatives. The extent of their criminality was partly documented in the first two parts of this series. I say "partly" for a good reason: there are more examples and the examples go back more than a hundred years. The extent of corporate crime was noted in a now classic study by Edwin…
Is Wall Street a gang? Part II
Not too many would note the irony that while police make hundreds of arrests for relatively minor offenses (e.g., disturbing the peace) -- which usually end up being dismissed in court -- within the confines of the buildings high above the "Occupy Wall Street" protesters there is rampant criminality.  I mean this literally, for over the years the "top 1%" has indeed engaged in some of the worst crimes, destroying millions of lives while raiding the U.S. treasury of trillions of dollars.  As…
Is Wall Street a gang? Part I
By now just about everyone has become aware of the social movement known as Occupy Wall Street .  It has occurred to me that one of the justifications for this movement is the massive amount of fraud committed by various corporations that constitute what is known as "Wall Street" in addition to crimes linked to specific individuals rather than corporations. I am in the middle of updating my book on gangs  and in the process have included a discussion of what exactly is a "gang" and it…
CJCJ's Research Fellow will present at the ASC Conference Nov. 17, 2011
CJCJ's distinguished Senior Research Fellow will be presenting at the American Society of Criminology (ASC) annual conference at the Washington Hilton Hotel in Washington, D.C. on November 16-19, 2011. Senior Research Fellow Randall G. Shelden , Ph.D., will present his paper The American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC) and It's Role in the Passage of Crime Control Legislation  on Thursday, Nov. 17, in the panel session The Politics of Punishment and Corrections , 12:30 pm to 1:50 pm in…
Money Talks [audio]
"Money Talks" By Randall G. Shelden, Ph.D. & Selena Teji, J.D. Center on Juvenile and Criminal Justice A political interest group is a group of individuals whose aim is to affect public policy decisions based on their common activities. This four-minute broadcast introduces listeners to the criminal justice special interest group landscape in California, highlighting key players and the strategies they employ to promote their agenda in California's criminal justice policymaking. …
Give me that old time religion III
In my previous two blogs I wrote about the investigations surrounding several so-called "Christian" homes for "troubled teens" as reported by Kathryn Joyce .  As shocking as these cases are, they are really nothing new, for such abuse extends far back in the history of juvenile justice.  The victims -- conveniently called "troubled teens" (thereby justifying their incarceration, all "for their own good") -- are like other teenage victims: they are at the mercy of adults who ostensibly love and…
Give me that old time religion II
My last blog covered a portion of an article about a so-called "Christian" home for "troubled teens. As promised, this is a continuation of that blog. As previously noted there were several rather sad stories about the abuse suffered by teenagers in a program called New Beginnings Ministries .  The writer of this story, Kathryn Joyce, noted that there are several of these kinds of "homes" that are part of an "Independent Fundamental Baptist" community that is "a web of thousands of…
Give me that old time religion: cruel and usual punishment inside Christian homes for troubled teens
From the very beginning of juvenile "correctional" institutions religion has been one of the driving forces.  Religion played a key role in the development of the New York House of Refuge in the early 1800s, as it did throughout the history of American prisons for both youths and adults.   The reformers of the late 18th and early 19th century spent a good deal of time and energy complaining about the "moral decline" of the country.  Little wonder that "immorality" would be a common charge…
Privatization of juvenile justice comes home to roost
Over the past three decades a continuous mantra among conservatives has been that the "free market" represents the best solutions to social problems.  The government is "too big" and is inefficient; the free market works best.  Let the market rule and social problems will disappear has been the thinking. One of the consequences of this line of thinking is the privatization movement where issues normally handled by the government should  be turned over to private businesses.  The profit motive…
California Special Interest Groups Information Sheet
California Special Interest Groups Information Sheet
CCPOA Information Sheet
CCPOA Information Sheet
The Casey Anthony Case and the Media Frenzy: What About all the Others?
I have been around long enough to remember the OJ Simpson trial and many other trials that fall under the category of what Samuel Walker calls "celebrated cases."  These are those rare cases that exceed normalcy, largely because of the nature of the offense (one recent example is the kidnapping of 11-year-old Jaycee Lee Dugard by Phillip Garrido who was held prisoner for 18 years) and often because of the celebrity status of those involved.  Another thing many of these kinds of cases have in…

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