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Blog Scan

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Public Shaming Instead of Incarceration:  At Sentencing Law and Policy, Doug Berman posts on a Pennsylvania district attorney's decision to pursue probation instead of incarceration for two women who were arrested for stealing a gift card from a nine-year-old girl on her birthday.  The two women were arrested for swiping a gift card that the girl set on a shelf while a Walmart employee helped her.  The women have agreed to hold the signs in front of the Pennsylvania courthouse, reading "I stole from a 9-year-old girl on her birthday!  Don't steal or this could happen to you!" Of course, shaming punishment can only work on people who have a sense of shame, which seems to be a diminishing portion of the population.

Becker-Posner Book:  Gary Becker and Richard Posner, the editors of the Becker-Posner Blog, have published a book of greatest hits from their blog. The book includes a chapter on crime and terrorism.

D.C. Sniper Claims Ineffective Assistance to SCOTUS:
  Yesterday, D.C. Sniper, John Allen Muhammad asked the U.S. Supreme Court to halt his November 10th execution.  Today, Doug Berman posted a link to Maria Glod and Josh White's Washington Post article on the appeal.  According to Glod and White, Muhammad's petition alleges that his trial attorneys were ineffective for failing to object to Muhammad's demand to represent himself at trial.  The petition alleges his attorneys should have argued that Muhammad's mental problems made him unfit to present his own defense.  Berman also links to this SCOTUSblog post describing "the legal particulars" of the case.  Berman speculates that the Supreme Court will decline to take up this high profile case.  With only six days left before the scheduled execution, we will know the answer soon enough.  Wall Street Journal's Law Blog also has this post by Ashby Jones.

What Election Results Could Mean for the Next Supreme Court Vacancy:  At NRO's Bench Memos, Ed Whelan comments that after testimony in Justice Sotomayor's confirmation hearings "exasperated and disgusted many of her supporters," the "Left will be pushing for the next nominee to be an ardent advocate of the progressive vision of constitutional decisionmaking."  Whelan believes that, after results in yesterday's elections, the Left may not get its wish. 

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