Who accumulated it? Who holds it? The answers are here.
Wednesday, August 10, 2011
Now that Ms. Diallo's has filed her civil suit in the Bronx, Le Figaro has an interesting comparison of French and US justice. In France, the civil and criminal cases would be inseparable. Assuming conviction on the criminal charges by a majority of at least 8 votes among the 9 jurors and 3 judges hearing the case, civil damages would then be decided by the three judges alone. In France, damages in a rape case would be unlikely to exceed 15,000 euros, whereas in the US the plaintiff might expect $20 million or more.
Timing is everything, and these two scholars are impeccable in their timing, producing a study of the relation between austerity and unrest just as London is consumed by riots.
We look at five different types of instability – anti-government demonstrations, riots, assassinations, general strikes, and attempted revolutions – in Europe over the period 1919-2009. The data comes from a large-scale international data collection (Banks 1994), and is based on an analysis of reporting in the New York Times. The individual indicators are then aggregated by summing them up for each country and year. This gives the variable called CHAOS. Figure 1 shows how it evolved over time since 1919, presenting the mean and the maximum. The interwar years show a high level of unrest, as does the immediate post-World War II era, and the period from 1970 to the early 1990s.
I’m still trying to make sense of this global intellectual failure. But the results are not in question: we are making a total mess of a solvable problem, with consequences that will haunt us for decades to come.