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Zero Tolerance, Naming, and Shaming: Is there a Case for it with Crimes of the Powerful?

Braithwaite, John
June 4, 2015

Source: (2002) The Australian and New Zealand Journal of Criminology. 35(3): 269-288.

Zero tolerance and public shaming are increasingly advocated for both crimes of the powerless and crimes of the powerful. In this essay, we argue against zero tolerance with respect to both kinds of crime. However, we defend naming and shaming with respect to crimes of the powerful Part 1 if the paper begins from the assumption that both zero tolerance and naming and shaming are policies that of not merit serious consideration with crimes of the powerless. It then goes on to consider harder questions: first whether zero tolerance and then naming and shaming have a place with crimes of the powerful. Drug abuse is used in Part 2 as a case study to explore these distinctions. I will be contended that zero tolerance is a prescription for increasing drug abuse, but that naming and shaming is essential to the prevention of drug abuse. This conclusion is reached by viewing the drug problem differently from conventional criminological analyses in a radically reconfigured context as a corporate crime and organizational regulation problem.


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