Tim Cavanaugh, CBC Radio Say Eh to Prison Reform


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The word "Canada" appears twice in the Supreme Court's recent Brown v. Plata [pdf] decision ordering California's prison system to reduce its prisoner population to 137.5% of design capacity. Our neighbors to the north are swelled with brisk, unassuming Canadian pride about that – little suspecting that their own federal government is pushing the same kind of mandatory minimum sentencing laws and tough-on-drugs administrative penalties that turned California from hero to zero. 

At Canadian Broadcasting Corp.'s Day 6 radio program, Reason Senior Editor Tim Cavanaugh talks with host Brent Bambury about how the prison spree helped kill progressive California, why sentencing reform is a political loser, and why the California prison guards' union was able to lock up Golden State politics. 

Grab a 12-pack of Moosehead and some back bacon and listen in at

Commit any crime necessary to read Reason's July special issue "Criminal Injustice: Inside America's national disgrace." 

At the Naranja County Register, Steven Greenhut explains what makes Incarcefornia an unstable polity.