William Cohn

William A. Cohn is a member of the California Bar and the author of “How Free is Free Speech?” He lectures on law, ethics and critical thinking at the University of New York in Prague and is a visiting professor of jurisprudence at New York University.

Articles by this author

To pardon a public official who refuses to obey the law (especially a direct court order) is to give the finger to the judiciary, and thus our constitutional order. Views
Tuesday, August 29, 2017
'Of Men, Not Law': To Make America Hate Again
Aristotle said the rule of law is better than the rule of men. Having law above us guides us – away from our corrupt destructive impulses, enabling greater peace, liberty, prosperity and security. The current head of the U.S. has wrought havoc on rule of law norms by inciting hate and lawlessness...
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Views
Saturday, January 17, 2015
Insult to Injury: A Tortuous Spin Cycle on US Torture
The long and winding road of headline news leads us to ignorance and docility. Consider the past month, in which the lead news item has shifted from U.S. government systemic use of torture and lies about it; to its claims that North Korean cyberterrorists hacked Sony, threatening U.S. national...
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James Risen Views
Sunday, June 08, 2014
Fighting the Sunlight: The James Risen Case in Context
When Noam Chomsky asked the audience at his June 3 talk in Prague to imagine that there was a free press, laughter erupted throughout the filled auditorium. Why? Because those who think about the theory versus the practice of free speech recognize its fundamental contradictions. A most recent case...
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Views
Saturday, January 25, 2014
Law as Farce: From Putin to POTUS the Rule of Law is on Life Support
After reading Thursday's NYT report which revealed that the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court legitimized NSA metadata collection for more than seven years without providing a legal rationale I thought of: The Emperor’s New Clothes; The torture memos from Bush 43’s Office of Legal Counsel; Putin’s release of his high profile foes from prison; and light vs.
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Views
Monday, December 30, 2013
As NSA Spy Debate Heats Up in 2014 Don’t Believe the Security Hype
A new year of media noise begins, and with it an avalanche of propaganda.
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