Prisoner Production

Over the past five decades America has been invested in an ongoing policy aimed, supposedly, at cleansing our society of every imagined threat to our inherited, Victorian-style morality, or to our religious based 10 commandment style code of conduct. During the process of cleaning up our society we have made victimless crimes our number one priority. We have built thousands of prisons and jails sufficient to accommodate an influx of millions of new inmates, staffed them with hundreds of thousands of jailers, and then massively increased government payrolls for local and federal law enforcement officers to feed the funnel.

Court officials oblige the need for an ever growing prison population by sending everyone not financially able to afford an adequate defense to jail. If the truth were known, our court-appointed system for defending indigent defendants is a farce. Think about it. Why would any legislative body vote to spend as much money to defend the accused as they do to prosecute the accused? They might lose as many or more cases than they win which would be an obviously and egregiously, in your face, huge loss to society for prosecuting victimless crimes in the first place.

Nationwide statistics on time invested per case by public defenders on behalf of their clients indicates that court-appointed attorneys, on average, provide less than 8 seconds per defendant on any one individual case; this statistic includes capital murder cases where the death penalty could be in play. Folks, money talks, and most public defenders are dump trucks who’s real job is to speed the accused into jail, not to keep them out.

Bottom line is, if you’re broke, whether you are guilty or not, you’re going to jail.

We could save the taxpayers in this country a fortune if we weren’t concerned with providing the appearance of a fair trial. This is one of the best, or worst, arguments in favor of a dictatorship (what I say is what is true!). Image is everything in a democratic society and unless you can control your image by controlling the media you had better appear to be on the right side of law enforcement and the wrong side of crime (even if you are one of its biggest beneficiaries!).

This process seems to be irreversible. Since at any given time only about 2% of our society is behind bars, or in the system, most of us feel immune to prosecution. Our society, however, delights in seeing our neighbors go to the gray bar hotel if for no better reason than to provide fresh gossip for the coffeehouse. The interesting thing about the prisoner production process is that sooner or later it may expand to the point where it includes you.

By any objective world measure we are a jail happy, uniform crazy society. Our solution to the inevitable erosion of an obsolete moral code is to “fight another war” against all perceived immoral behavior. Legislators pass laws which they know will statistically slide another slice of our society into jail. Society rolls over on its brother and accepts another limit on the freedom of expression here in America.

Fellow Americans, we have been so successful at identifying and prosecuting nonviolent victimless offenders of obsolete morality statutes that fully 86% of our prison inmates are in jail for victimless crimes. We are spending 2 billion a week prosecuting and incarcerating, for the most part, pot and sex offenders, whose only crime is sharing a different moral code of conduct than our legislators act like they adhere to.

If you follow the headlines in any given week you could get the very real impression that the lawyers who write the laws don’t follow their own laws. If Congress was held to a strict honor code and members were forced to admit to their own law violations, I wouldn’t care to guess how many congressmen would remain seated but I can guarantee that the members remaining wouldn’t amount to a quorum.

As more and more citizens become outraged by the massive amount of money being squandered by law enforcement trying to enforce antique moral codes still on the books, legislators will be forced to find fresh meat to prosecute. Until citizens everywhere realize they are being swindled on a massive nationwide prison scam, more and more of our money will be wasted on harvesting new and different slices of society to feed our prison system.

The next time a politician puts pen to paper it could be your own slice of vice on the line and your own freedom in jeopardy. Beware!

Victimless Crimes

Almost everybody understands a robbery or murder. These are crimes, no question, and the people who commit these types of crimes are criminals. Everybody understands violence, or threats of violence, and the people who commit these types of crimes are also criminals, no question. The only question in my mind is how long do we keep these people in cages?

Unfortunately, most crimes are not that well defined. There is always a gray area between what the law says is illegal and what people think and do. If you can visualize a crime pie you’ll see that a gray area covers the entire pie. No part of the pie is absolutely guilty nor is any part positively innocent.

The victimless crime is in my opinion a crime apart from other crimes. Wikipedia defines “victimless crime” as a term “used to refer to actions that have been ruled illegal but do not directly violate or threaten the rights of another individual.” I googled the term victimless crime and discovered this top five list of someone’s.

  1. Soliciting Alms Without a Permit: (panhandling) (That’s ALMS, not arms. ed)
  2. Failure to Dog or Cat or Ferret Vaccination (expired pet vaccination tags)
  3. School Attendance Law Violation ( woman withheld child from school to provide better education at home)
  4. Failure to Secure Child Under the Age of 16 (seat belt removed by teen while car in motion)
  5. Possession of Marijuana (legal in some states; possession laws in some states ridiculous)

All of the above incidents resulted in someone being taken to jail in handcuffs. The fact is, folks, we are bankrupting ourselves with our outsized and overblown criminal justice system. My question is simply this. Are we out of our freaking minds? We are, in my very informed opinion, wasting money by the trainload incarcerating nonviolent defendants whose crimes don’t include any victims.

The European people, who over the many centuries have grown far more mature than we, have come to realize that people do not need to be put in cages for violations which have no victims. They spend the money saved by not putting people in jail on free education and healthcare for their citizens and vacations that last on average 2 to 3 times longer than ours.

In my opinion this European attitude toward public priorities makes total sense. In some places in our country attitudes are beyond ridiculous. So people, let’s get a grip on the idiots (I am sorry but there is no other more suitable name for the people who write ridiculously counterproductive and horribly expensive laws) who are wasting our money on false pursuits.

Consider paying for a trip for yourself and your family to the beach instead of paying to send someone to jail. On average we’re spending close to $50,000 per year to keep someone in a cage. Freeing half the people in cages in our country would make no difference whatsoever to your life should they be released.

Here’s what a change of priorities would look like to me.

First we let every nonviolent offender currently housed in our prison system out of jail. Gee, we could save enough for free higher education for the entire nation with this move. For victims of fraud or theft we could actually afford a relief fund.

Now let’s let all the low-level druggies, potheads, and prescription perpetrators go free. With that move we now have enough federal and state savings to give everyone within our borders free healthcare.

And last, let’s let all the sex freaks out of jail. Forget about sending women to jail who don’t require a “lasting relationship” to become intimate. And as for their counterparts, let’s forgive men for being shallow and superficial and for believing that a “date” need not last longer than 20 minutes to be worth the price of an evening. Why is that anyone else’s business anyway?

With that last move toward saving money we can now afford to give everyone in the country an extra 10 days (stretched out to two weeks with weekends) paid vacation. Finally, I have some skin in the game! This works for me and mine!

So people let’s change the laws on victimless crimes and give ourselves and our children a better future with the money we save. Make sense; sound fair?

For a look at some startling statistics follow this link:

www.libertariannews.org/2011/09/29/victimless-crime-constitutes-86-of-the-american-prison-population/

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