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  • January 27, 2009
    By Harvey Silverglate

    Destruction – in both a literal and constitutional sense – has been left in the wake of the eight-year Texas tornado that was the George W. Bush presidency. Citizens are understandably upset, but criminal prosecutions of former (or current, for that matter) government officials, cathartic as they may first appear, are not the answer.

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  • January 22, 2009
    By Harvey Silverglate

    The Boston Globe’s metro columnist, Kevin Cullen, has a revealing piece in the January 22nd issue about Harvard’s cozying-up with Libyan dictator Moammar Khadafy, who is holding political prisoner Fathi Eljahmi, while Harvard Business School is hosting and promoting Khadafy’s son, Saif Al-Islam. (And, notes Cullen, the Globe published an op-ed by Khadafy after receiving an entreaty from the Libyan family’s New York-based public relations firm.

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  • January 12, 2009
    By Harvey Silverglate

    If Harvard Law School dean Elena Kagan is confirmed as the nation’s first female solicitor general – she’s been nominated to supervise all federal government litigation in the Supreme Court by HLS alum and President-elect Barack Obama – she would be addressed as “General Kagan” by the justices (and by others as well), New York Times Supreme Court reporter Adam Liptak noted on January 7th.

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  • January 02, 2009
    By Kyle Smeallie

    By Kyle Smeallie & Harvey Silverglate

    If you can’t beat ‘em, join ‘em – or at least have them join you.

    That appears to be the newly-adopted attitude of the Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority (MBTA), marking a logical denouement to the celebrated case this past summer in which three MIT students uncovered technological vulnerabilities in the fare collection system.



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  • December 09, 2008
    By Harvey Silverglate
    Every time I read something about the debate over whether captured suspected terrorists should be tried in one of President Bush's "military commissions" or in a regular federal court, I have to admit smirking a bit. As a practicing criminal defense and civil liberties lawyer, with considerable experience defending clients in the federal courts, I find that neither tribunal would do justice to, well, justice.

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  • October 23, 2008
    By Harvey Silverglate

    New York Times Supreme Court reporter Adam Liptak has thrown new light on the long-simmering battle over the Second Amendment's true meaning and import in a fascinating October 21 front-page piece. Liptak, who deftly took over the Times' Supreme Court coverage from the recently-retired and much respected Linda Greenhouse, points out that the text is anything but crystal clear: "A well regulated militia, being necessary to the security of a free state, the right of the people to keep and bear arms, shall not be infringed."

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  • October 14, 2008
    By Kyle Smeallie
    Jim Morrison and the Doors were scheduled to play their number one hit, "Light My Fire," on a 1967 episode of The Ed Sullivan Show, but there was one line to which the long-time host took offense. "Girl, we couldn't get much higher," sparked Sulivan's ire, and he demanded the line be re-written for the late-night show's performance.

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  • September 24, 2008
    By Harvey Silverglate

    The Supreme Court's illegitimate installation of the loser in the Oval Office following the deeply flawed - the cynics would even say "rigged" - 2000 presidential election, left more than a bad taste in many American mouths. For some, it was the straw that broke the camel's (or Donkey's) back - they were entirely repulsed at the political (and judicial, such as it was) process.

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  • September 15, 2008
    By Kyle Smeallie

    After years of self-imposed exile, former acting Governor of Massachusetts Jane Swift has reemerged onto the political scene. This time, rather than spending taxpayer money on babysitters and helicopter rides, she is heading - in all seriousness - the "Palin Truth Squad." This righteous group of fact-finding crusaders has come to the defense of Republican Vice Presidential candidate Sarah Palin, denouncing the nasty, truly despicable sexist slander cast by Obama and his camp.

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  • September 11, 2008
    By Kyle Smeallie

    You need not dig deep into the annals of history to find examples of religious bloodshed. From the Crusades to the Inquisition to the terrorist attacks seven years ago today, dogmatic interpretations of religious doctrine - spanning almost every set of beliefs - have contributed to countless deaths and persisting cleavages.

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  • September 05, 2008
    By Harvey Silverglate

    I'm as vicious a critic of cigarettes as there is - my father, who smoked four packs of Camels a day, befouled our small Brooklyn apartment (as well as his lungs and heart) and died of a massive heart attack two months before my college graduation, at the age of 48. But I think that the current mania for seeking to ban the nasty habit without actually outlawing the product has finally gone too far.

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  • September 05, 2008
    By Harvey Silverglate

    Despite breaching multiple security classification laws, former Attorney General Alberto Gonzales, who departed the office on Sept. 17, 2007 in the wake of multiple scandals, will not face criminal prosecution, the Department of Justice announced on Sept. 2. The documents, which Gonzales improperly carried to his home and failed to store in a safe, reportedly discussed aspects of the administration's top-secret wiretapping program.

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  • August 30, 2008
    By Wendy Kaminer

    Sarah Palin came to praise Hillary Clinton and to bury liberal feminism. It’s too bad for the rest of us, but don’t cry for Hillary; she provided the shovel. Relying on pre-ideological appeals to female solidarity, blaming sexism when she got stuck in second place, Clinton played the dangerous game of identity politics. Her loss is Palin’s gain.

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  • August 29, 2008
    By Harvey Silverglate

    I came upon an article in Wednesday's Boston Globe about possible reform measures for the Harvard University Police Department (HUPD) following recent allegations of racist conduct. I felt a sense of indignation, not only because I had seen this in the HUPD many times before, but because the reform mentioned in the article was, in my opinion, a prescription for failure.

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  • August 27, 2008
    By Wendy Kaminer

    "I'm a PUMA," the button festooned woman at the local Box Lunch declared. "Do you know what that is?"

    "I know what that is," I responded. "I think you're all nuts."

    She didn't take offense (I give her credit for a thick skin, although it may make her impervious to political realities as well as insults,) and we engaged in a brief discussion.



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