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The Death of Common Sense: How Law is Suffocating America [Paperback]

By Phillip K. Howard (Author)
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Item description for The Death of Common Sense: How Law is Suffocating America by Phillip K. Howard...

In this attack on legal regulations and bureaucratic red tape, a corporate lawyer shows how rules interfere with common sense and have taken away citizens' power to make decisions

Publishers Description
This concise and eloquent manifesto shows how the excess of government regulations does not protect Americans but instead acts as legal quicksand, stifling growth and creating paralyzing overbureaucratization. Using blood-boiling examples of government regulations run amok, Howard reveals a society in which rules have replaced thinking--allowing law to infiltrate the nooks and crannies of everyday life.

Citations And Professional Reviews
The Death of Common Sense: How Law is Suffocating America by Phillip K. Howard has been reviewed by professional book reviewers and journalists at the following establishments -
  • Wilson Public Library Catalog - 12/31/2008 page 258
  • New York Times - 03/03/1996 page 28
  • Wilson Public Library Catalog - 01/01/1998 page 184
  • Publishers Weekly - 02/19/1996
  • Wilson Public Library Catalog - 01/01/2004 page 187

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Item Specifications...

Studio: Grand Central Publishing
Pages   213
Est. Packaging Dimensions:   Length: 7.9" Width: 5.2" Height: 0.6"
Weight:   0.5 lbs.
Binding  Softcover
Release Date   Mar 1, 1996
Publisher   Grand Central Publishing
ISBN  0446672289  
ISBN13  9780446672283  

Availability  0 units.

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Product Categories

1Books > Subjects > Law > Procedures & Litigation > Courts
2Books > Subjects > Nonfiction > Government > Legal System
3Books > Subjects > Nonfiction > Politics > U.S.
4Books > Subjects > Nonfiction > Social Sciences > General
5Books > Subjects > Nonfiction > Social Sciences > Sociology > General
6Books > Subjects > Nonfiction > Social Sciences > Sociology

Reviews - What do customers think about The Death of Common Sense: How Law is Suffocating America?

We reap what we sow.  Oct 10, 2007
This book says the things we all have thought when we have heard of nonsensical law suits and the lack of common sense in our society. An easy read, this book intends to put a fire under people.
Deflecting responsibility from his own profession  Jul 7, 2007
The anecdotes are indeed maddening; of course the law and bureaucratic process can be described as "inefficient". However, over and again, Howard says, "Anyone can accuse anyone of anything," which is true, but he acts like the ability to accuse someone is the same as rendering judgment, and therefore our right to call someone to task in a court of law should be abridged. He neglects the fact that, once in the court of law, it is up to the lawyers and judges, and juries when appropriate, to dismiss cases that have no merit. If that is not being done, it is not the problem of us American citizens "having too many rights" but that his slimy profession is without any moral compass. And his book, while thought-provoking and entertaining, is at heart a call for less oversight of those in power, because those without power are slowing them down. I expect he's very happy with Bush and Cheney and their dismantling of so many of our inconvenient "rights". Read it, but with a pile of salt.
Death of Common Sense  Jan 14, 2007
Well-written and well-researched book that presents the frightening picture of the beast that law in America has become. The author provides good historical background for the reader to appreciate the insidious development of what has become our current laws, how these laws have actually become impediments for progress and justice, and good discussions regarding the challenges facing any rational correction of this quagmire.

Very worthwhile and insightful reading.
It's okay  Mar 17, 2006
Not bad, but just too obvious. I suppose as an introduction to someone recovering from a desire for Government regulation it mayh be helpful.
An Abdication of Responsibility  Sep 21, 2005
Rarely do books become more important years after they have been published.
That is the fate of Philip K. Howard's "The Death of Common Sense".
This short book details how America has deviated from being a bastion of freedom to being a nation subjugated by laws.
Mr. Howard presents a wonderful case against government-induced regulation---laws so far removed from reality, so unworkable in practice and so disastrous for productivity.
It would not be difficult countering some of his arguments, however I would deem it unlikely to rebut his central thesis which is that until Americans retain responsibility for their decisions instead of looking to arcane rulebooks, we should not expect the buck to stop anywhere.
Hence the reason this book is more important now. As we look at the Sarbanes-Oakley act, a reaction to the Enron scandal, and the McCain-Feingold bill for campaign finance reform, we have to ask ourselves if the pill is not worse than the pain. Inherent in finely written law is the ability to subvert them, as was seen during the 2004 elections. Why should we citizens take the risk?
The chapter "A Nation of Enemies" was illuminating. Quoting Isaiah Berlin, "Liberty for the wolves is death for the lambs," he advances the claim, which some deem legimitate, that enumerated rights can be antithetical to each other. Others definitely would argue to the contrary.
Therein lies its beauty: the ability to teach without hectoring, to dispute without hurling invectives.
Read this highly educative book and discover why "Relying on ourselves is...commonsense."

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