The amateurs beat the pros

The semi-undecided voters of the St. Louis area ask better questions than professional journalists. Or at least they did tonight.

Kevin Drum makes a point I haven’t seen elsewhere: the questions tonight were remarkably good, much better than in either of the previous two debates. They weren’t unvarnished citizens’ questions, since the moderator was filtering. But they weren’t constrained by the conventions of journalism or by the needs of insiderism, either. More, please.

Author: Mark Kleiman

Professor of Public Policy at the NYU Marron Institute for Urban Management and editor of the Journal of Drug Policy Analysis. Teaches about the methods of policy analysis about drug abuse control and crime control policy, working out the implications of two principles: that swift and certain sanctions don't have to be severe to be effective, and that well-designed threats usually don't have to be carried out. Books: Drugs and Drug Policy: What Everyone Needs to Know (with Jonathan Caulkins and Angela Hawken) When Brute Force Fails: How to Have Less Crime and Less Punishment (Princeton, 2009; named one of the "books of the year" by The Economist Against Excess: Drug Policy for Results (Basic, 1993) Marijuana: Costs of Abuse, Costs of Control (Greenwood, 1989) UCLA Homepage Curriculum Vitae Contact:

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