Thursday, May 8, 2008

Crime is bad - from 1994

It's getting to the point that if one more well meaning
person tries to help, we will be finished. The proliferation
of things being done on our behalf or in the name of society
have begun to tax (pun intended) the system on which we all

There are perfectly rational and altruistic reasons given for
the necessity of these things. There's the wars on: drugs,
poverty, illiteracy, homelessness, hunger, disease, crime,
violence and cruelty to name but a few. There are also the
day to day things like police, fire, sanitation, water,
social services departments, schools, libraries, hospitals,
churches, parks, highways, bridges, sewers and utilities.

The staggering cost of supporting these things falls upon the
people, as it should, but it is the duty of those who wield
the public checkbook to do so in a cost effective way. On
them falls the task of discerning between what is needed and
what is wasteful. On them falls the duty to account for money
spent by showing tangible results.

It won't be long now until crime is a thing of the past. At
least that's what proponents of the, now passed, Crime Bill
would have us believe. The logic on this bill escapes me, but
with things governmental and bureaucratic this is not

Crime has traditionally been a Republican button to push. Law
and Order has now become the turf of the Democrats. This bill
when signed by the President will provide: More crimes, more
police and more prison space as a means of curbing crime in
society. The price tag is an additional $30 billion over the
next six years. The results, I fear, will not lessen anyone's
chances of becoming a victim and opens the door for future
looting of the public in the name of providing protection.

Jocelyn Elders went out on a logical limb when she stated:
``If drugs were legalized; there would be fewer criminals.''
The government has crawled out with a new twist. The way to
reduce crime is to make more things criminal while providing
more police to make arrests and more prisons to hold the
resulting increase in the criminal population. To me, this is
bureaucratic problem solving at its apex. What percentage of
the population will have to be incarcerated in order to
achieve this goal?

While the statistics point to a relatively stable crime rate
in recent years, the general public's perception is that
crime is rampant and increasing. It is also widely held that
gun violence is at an all time high. There is a feeding
frenzy going on in the personal protection industry that has
seen the price for exercising one's second amendment right
soar three-fold, and more, due to basic laws of supply and
demand. Security companies are using fear to convince people
of the need for monitored security systems by painting every
neighborhood as potentially high crime. The N.R.A. even has a
half-hour infomercial that drives home the message; No one is
safe...even in their own home.

The random nature of most violent crime would seem to defeat
the purpose of turning our homes into some kind of fortress
and our pantries in to arsenals. Neighborhood watch styled
programs stress an awareness of your surroundings and enlist
all residents in providing the monitoring. Combined with good
communication with local police a watch program is an
extremely cost effective tool.

My prediction? Six years from now we will not be any better
off, the $30 billion will be spent and crime will still be a
problem. The reason given will be a lack of resources to
effectively fight it. The money spent, will be forgotten and
legislators will open the checkbook once again.

I'd love to be less cynical about it. I'd like to believe
that there is a government solution that would make things
better. I'm tired of the cyclic escalation of resources that
doesn't bring us any closer to a solution. I would like an
accounting of what was done and why it didn't work before
committing more money as the only way to make the
results come out differently.


Anonymous said...

War on drugs.
War on crimes.
War to help leave no kids behind.

Nah, failures across the board.

Then, and now.

Success can only come when the leadership and owners of our lives and our country really WANT to help the disenfranchised, the drugged, the abused, and such.

As far as I know, hell has NOT frozen over yet.

And is likely NOT to do so in my lifetime.

We fight on. N there's LOTS to fight for.


Anonymous said...
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Anonymous said...

Ya know, Rehctaw, it's kinda like parts of Waterworld, the Costner movie.

Dennis Hopper is George Bush.

And they both represent, support and are elected and paid by the same people.

While on shipdeck, they are giving rightous and motivational speeches while throwing out cigarettes to the huddled masses and telling them they will increase the liquor rations.

Behind closed doors in the cabin, the order is given to single out a few of the loudest whiners and shoot them as an example.

And declare a holiday and let them get drunk for a few days.

Then, full of MAJOR hangovers, proclaim an emergency and make them row the SHIT outta their souls to make that aircraft carrier move them closer to DryLand! We're Almost There!

Wonder who'll they'll shoot this next week.

We got Beirut, Lebanon and Sadr City, Iraq in flames.

Better set some examples to take the potentially mutinous crews mind off the bad shit.

Good time for them to try and to do Iran, I think.