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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…
Release the Real Low Risk Prisoners
As the state of California responds to the recent Supreme Court decision ordering the release of 30,000 or more prisoners, there needs to be an awareness of what kinds of prisoners pose the greatest risk of returning to crime.  It always seems to be the conventional wisdom that those serving time for property, drug and other non-violent offenders, plus parole violators, are considered to be "low-risk" offenders.  Thus any discussion of what kinds of prisoners that ought to be released tends…
Corporate Tax Cheaters, Part II
My last blog concerned the subject of how corporations and the super-rich are constantly finding enough loopholes to avoid paying taxes.  As I noted, I was barely scratching the surface for there is a lot more to the subject.  Now it is time to dig a little deeper. In a recent commentary Chris Hedges wrote that: "A fourth of the country's largest corporations--including General Electric, ExxonMobil and Bank of America--paid no federal income taxes in 2010. But at the same time these…
Corporate Tax Cheaters, Part I
April 15 has come and gone and like most Americans I struggled to fill out all the elaborate forms and all the confusing formulas the IRS has for figuring out how much to deduct or how much to pay (e.g., multiply this figure by .02 or that figure by .065 or whatever).  After all of that I ended up writing a check to the IRS. Which raised some obvious questions, such as: Where does this money eventually end up and why do so many corporations and the super-rich pay little or no taxes at all? A…
California and the Prison Crisis
California has been facing a prison crisis for decades and it has been constantly flip-flopping.  Back in 2007 Los Angeles Times writer George Skelton summed it up well saying that when it comes to crime both the politicians and the electorate "have demanded that California lock up the bad guys and keep 'em there for a very long time. But they haven't wanted to pay for it." At that point in time (February) the prison population was around 173,000 yet the capacity was about 100,000.  A…
Schools Still Safest Places for Kids*
Following the killings at Columbine and other schools around the country in the late 1990s, public officials reacted with a frenzy. It was a classic case of exception-based policies: a few, isolated cases that were clearly the exception rather than the rule became the basis for wide-ranging policies. One report noted at the time that "A moral panic swept the country as parents and children suddenly feared for their safety at school." One middle-school principal claimed school shootings could…
Children and the Recession
The recession that we are experiencing has impacted just about everyone except for the few who have become richer (more about that later).  At this point in time it is not easy to determine the impact on children since it takes time to analyze the toll.  However, as more and more information has become available we can make some assessment. One recent report noted that there have been "an increasing number of children leave home for life on the streets, including many under 13. Foreclosures,…
Education as Crime Prevention

It has become a truism among criminologists that there is an inverse correlation between education and crime: as the level of education increases the likelihood of committing crime decreases. One theory that helps explain this is known as "strain" theory. This theory was originally articulated by sociologist Robert K. Merton in the 1930s and has since become one of the most popular theories of crime.  The basic thesis of strain theory is this: Crime stems from the lack of articulation or…

The American Legislative Exchange Council
The American Legislative Exchange Council

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