Posted by: Jim | February 28, 2008

Quiz for the Day

1 out of 100 Americans are behind bars.

Good or bad?



  1. People behind bars is always a bad thing. That means someone was killed, raped, had something stolen, among other bad things.

    We have put them somewhere, especially so they can try to rehabilitate. If they can’t, what would the solution be?

    Hint (start with the upbringing)

  2. A bad thing, as it means 99 out of 100 Americans are free to do as they please. This freedom includes travelling to Guatemala and ruining my quality of life by standing in large groups blocking the sidewalk and taking twenty minutes to wrestle with the complexities of using an ATM. To top it all, the last month has seen an invasion of Menonites, wandering around ´doing good´in centuries old clothes and insisting on saying “Bwernerz Deerz” to everybody, by way of asserting their supernatural levels of empathy for their fellow humanoids.

    US prisons do not just contain those who left victims behind but many victims also, particularly of the total fraud of The War Against Drugs (the model for the equally fraudulent GWOT?), as well as the evidence of GOP attempts to felonize (a word?) as many blacks as possible in battleground states to keep them off voter rolls.

    This is not to take issue with Todd´s line, but just as a supplemental. A total rethink of the policy towards drugs would be a good thing, and a federal law that returned the franchise to felons on release would stop this strange practice and save a lot of unnecessary tax dollars being wasted on purely political shenanigans that have real world consequences.

  3. Kingfelix, you said exactly what I was thinking. Too many things that normal, non-criminals do are illegal.

    One of the greatest books (on ANY subject) that I have ever read is Peter McWilliams “Ain’t No one’s Business If I Do” … Subtitled “the absurdity of consensual crimes in a free society.”

    But … the thing about the GOP conspiracy to decrease the liberal voting population … that’s just a bit whacky. Do you have any proof?

  4. This disturbed me greatly. What percentage of the inmates are inside for non-sense drug BS with mandatory terms? It’s gotta be around 30-40%, and I would not be surprised if it were higher than that.

    Hussein Obama has said that he wants to decriminalize weed. I was never a heavy user, and haven’t smoked for years, but I would vote for him on that issue alone.

  5. Jim

    All kinds of documents here relating to voter fraud, voter intimidation, etc.

    The use of the prison system takes a few forms, from GOP operatives issuing misleading information that felons can’t vote in states where they can vote, or that they have to be signed off by a judge to vote (false) and so on.

    Likewise, there have been circulations of false information that anybody voting with outstanding warrants etc, will run risk of arrest, or that those with questionable immigration status and so on will be deported, etc.

    With privatisation of penal system it has become part of military-industrial complex, more people incarcerated = more profits. It’s arguable whether the ultimate goal is to simply imprison everybody in the US who is poor, at least, that appears to be the target demographic. What influence these private prison operators bring to bear through politics on judges etc in sentencing policy and so on is another issue, but you don’t invest in more capacity unless you can be sure that the sentencing policy to provide ‘clients’ is in place. This is real joined-up capitalism and is why I would argue against private prisons etc. It is quite possible that there is not ‘more crime’ in America, simply that the system is creating ‘more criminals’ to be processed for private profit with no regard to the personal and social costs of such activities.

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