“If we really hope to scale back our sprawling prison system, we must send fewer people to prison for violent crimes and keep those we do lock up for less time. Fortunately, we can preserve the tremendous reductions in violence we have experienced over the past 25 years with smarter, safer and more humane approaches.” – John Pfaff in A Better Approach to Violent Crime [via wsj.com]

130 Responses to Quote of the Day: This is How Chicago Became Chiraq

    • In answer to your question, right at the beginning., John Pfaff equates rates of incarceration from one country to another as if that that is possible. Secondly Mr. Pfaff believes that “we” have an overall hoal of lowering the prison population without regard to civil safety. Finally, Mr. Pfaff is correct that crime rates are “still declining”, but a funny thing is happening in major metropolitan areas, significant rises in Violent Crimes, this is an important harbinger of things to come if not dealt with appropriately now.

      • Big cities and california…. the rainbows and unicorns out here have been actively implementing these joke policies (prop 47 2014) and crime has sky rocketed. Solution? More gun contol (prop 62 & 63 2016)!

        More street drugs + more street criminals = more street crime…… I don’t need to be a university law professor to understand that math.

      • We can lower prison populations while not increasing (indeed possibly even lowering) civil risk. It’s called a “death penalty”. When someone becomes too much of a risk to allow back into society, we get rid of them. They don’t clog our jails and suck our resources, and neither do they get let lose back on the street to endanger the general public. It’s a win-win.

        • No, the truth is that the death penalty costs citizens far more in legal expenses and keeps prisoners in prison a very long time. Besides that, we have a lousy record at not sending innocent people to prison or to execution.

          Want to whittle away at the problem? Just authorize guards to use lethal force any time there’s violence in prison. Prisoners will either learn to behave or we’ll have fewer — and in the time it takes them to learn to behave, we’ll reduce the numbers.

          But want to solve the problem? Make a national Castle Doctrine law for starters, then a national mild Stand Your Ground (the Funding Fathers held there was a duty to retreat, but their version lay somewhere between today’s liberal version of that and the Stand Your Ground laws; they called it “going to the wall”, as in being backed against a wall). If violent criminals get dealt with by the only folks with the moral authority to deal a “death penalty”, i.e. their intended victims, violent crime will drop — either as criminals wise up, or through evolution in action.

    • Start here. Pfaff is about age 41 (based on B.A. in 1997 JD, 2003; PhD (Economics), 2005). He has no knowledge of history, except from other college professors. While he was studying for finals, real cops and D.A.s were running Project Exile in Richmond, Virginia. The most violent offenders were, identified, the community was warned and the bad guys they were prosecuted to the max. The murder rate dropped 20 percent until local “civil rights” leaders ended the project because of “disparate impact”.

      • I don’t have a problem with his age. By 41, he’s had ample opportunity to experience made during his lifetime and to reflect on history as a whole. Whether he’s done any serious reflection is another matter.

        My objection is to his resume. He earned his B.A, J.D., and Ph.D. in quick succession all from the same university, University of Chicago. There’s no diversity of intellectual or cultural influence. Then he clerked for a federal court in D.C. before taking a professorship at Northwestern, also in Illinois. Now he’s a professor at Fordham in NYC. So basically his entire adult life has been spent in Chicago, D.C., and NYC.

        He’s a lawyer who has apparently never tried a case or even had a client. He’s an economist who’s never run a business. I can’t see that this guy has ever had a real job or has any experience in the real world. He may be a whiz at teaching from a textbook and writing for academic journals, but his perceptions of the real world are shamefully daft.

        • He’s a product of continual collegiate existence, surrounded by intellectuals who have never been outside their safe haven which they all entered into at age 18 and remain there today. He had no idea of how the outside world works, and has no idea that he doesn’t now, because everyone who ever taught him anything in the last 20+ years had never been in it either.

    • I’d start with reading the entire article, which unfortunately requires a WSJ subscription. (A quote out of context don’t you think there Mr. Zimmerman?)

      The author has a lot of misses but he puts a few shots on target.

      He misses the root of the problem by about 50 nautical miles but he’s right about two things: ending the WoD and stiffer sentencing are two non-solutions to a knotty problem. As long as we as the public, and politicians on both sides of the aisle, look for simple solutions the problem will be intractable.

      The root cause of this, in my estimation from having had these sort of people as neighbors, is a lack of hope for the future. When someone lives completely for today and their default assumption is that they will be dead or locked up in the near future they’re basically impossible to deal with. The first thing you have to do is get them out of that mentality. They’re not irrational, they have a worldview that makes their behavior rational. Unfortunately that worldview doesn’t jive with society (it never has) and friction is therefore inevitable.

      Don’t believe me? Ask yourself this: If you had it on good authority that you would be dead in the next six months to a year, would you start a four year degree program? A two year? Would you strive for a promotion at work? Would you do anything that lays the groundwork for the future 5-10 years down the road? No. You wouldn’t. Now, take that situation and apply it to when you were say, 16 years old, and what do you think happens? Maybe you’ll tell yourself “Well, even in that situation I’d have my shit together” and maybe you would but apply it to everyone you knew in high school. How many of them would take it too far? At least a few.

      You don’t have to look at rap music to see this. Country has it covered as well. Tim McGraw’s song Live Like You Were Dying covers this well. What does the guy who thinks he’s dying do? He completely throws caution to the wind. Instead of worry about consequences (Who gives a shit? I’m dead anyway.) as he would have before his diagnosis, he goes and does dangerous things. That’s what you see in bad neighborhoods. It’s that “Fuck it, I’m dead anyway” mentality.

      The head gaskets are blown. You ain’t gonna fix this with just a screwdriver or a hammer which is what nearly everyone wants to reach for, metaphorically speaking.

      • or perhaps we could just hold criminals accountable for hurting other people? Perhaps encourage people to have moral values of right and wrong before they start having more kids? The Chicago chief of police said last week 80% of those doing the killing or being killed had multiple former convictions, including using guns in crime commission. Sounds to me we are not being hard enough on those who commit violent crimes.

        • In Chicago they are definitely not being hard enough on violent criminals.

          However, if you think locking them up forever is going to be the solution you’re mistaken. Others will take their place and the violence will continue because the “deterrence” value of long sentences is nothing when the person in question doesn’t give a fuck about tomorrow, never mind five years from now.

          When people look at prison as “better than the morgue”, and that’s the totality of their analysis, prison is no deterrent and that’s if they even think this far, which based on my experience, 90%+ don’t.

          Like I said, talking about incarceration only is a simple solution to a complex problem. It will not work. It’s part of the solution, the same way a screwdriver is part of getting the heads off a car so that you can replace the head gaskets. Without other tools you simply won’t get the job done.

        • There is a way to deal with the problem.

          Back during the Los Angeles riots, after rioters started shooting firefighters, the U.S. could have sent some bombers from Edwards Air Force Base and bomb the shit out of the rioters. this would have been followed up by the Army seizing control of Los Angeles. For “[y]ou don’t fight a junkyard dog with ASPCA rules. What you do is you take the leash off your bigger, meaner dog”. And this would be a permanent state of affairs. Civil administration in Los Angeles would be abolished. Soldiers would patrol every street, occupy every point. And there would be zero tolerance for the slightest of disorderly conduct. Any disorderly conduct will be met with lethal force. There will also be arbitrary arrests and searches, and even the slightest resistance would be met with lethal force.

          This would cause the people to fear the U.S. military, And this fear would keep them in line. Thus, Los Angeles would have become the safest city on Earth. The model of governance- ruling by the fear of force- would no doubt have been followed by other cities. There would be no more mass shootings, because fear would keep the population in line.

          What would have been the downside of “tak[ing] the leash off [our] bigger, meaner dog”?

      • “The first thing you have to do is get them out of that mentality”

        AH! Why didn’t I think of that?! What do you think, should we pass a law?

        Idiotic statement. Similar to saying you have discovered we should just get them to obey the law. Stating the goal as being the process is idiotic.

      • Superb insight, strych9, but I think you missed a point: if we’re talking about gang members, prison is no deterrent, either — it’s either a mark of status, or irrelevant because in prison they’re still part of their gang.

        The emperor Augustus had a gang problem, and found that even throwing gang members into the legions didn’t help; it just meant the gangs had influence in the legions. So he realized that the only solution was to eliminate the gangs — totally. He did that by picking the most civilized gang in each city, helping them wipe out their opponents, and THEN taking the survivors into the legions (or off to the mines as slaves, if they screwed up in the legions). That’s the only solution here, too: the gangs have to be ended, period. At root that means that the conditions which enable and feed the gangs have to be fixed — which leads us back to addressing the problems that leave any thought of a future out of people’s concept of life.

    • You start by targeting the violent criminals who pose the greatest threat to the citizens. When you catch them, you remove them from society for whatever length of time as is necessary. You certainly don’t return them to the streets with a slap on the wrist. That only encourages them to commit more violent crime.

  1. Let’s see how he feels about that when one of his short-timer catch-and-release thugs is crawling through his bedroom window at dark-thirty in the morning to rob him (and maybe even kill any witnesses…)

  2. If you want to limit the burgeoning prison population, try limiting sentencing for non-violent offenders. Mere drug dealers ‘hurt’ far less people than bartenders and liquor stores, and they only ‘hurt’ the willing. That, and get the non-violent mentally ill back into (reopened) nuthouses if you’re so worried about humanity.

    Violent criminals – rape, serious assault, murder are the exact people that need to be incarcerated for long terms. We need to make more room for them.

    • There is no such thing as a non violent offender only offenders who haven’t been caught, charged or found a reason to be violent. Under the law Al Capone was a nonviolent offender. His “only” crime was failure to pay his taxes.

      • Sooo, everybody is a violent offender, they just haven’t been caught yet? Really? All speeders just haven’t found a reason to shoot a traffic cop? Tax dodgers just haven’t found a reason to kill an IRS agent?

        • So you think Al Capone wasn’t a violent criminal?

          Your equation of speeding with criminal activity does not help your argument. It only shows your lack of one. Your basic “nonviolent” imprisoned drug offender is a gangbanger who plea bargained a more serious crime down so the prosecutor can get a violent criminal off the street for a while. Johnny Jock and Suzy Coed don’t go to jail for mere possesion. Legalizing drugs has the perverse effect of increase violent crime because law enforcement and the judicial system loses a tool to get gangbangers off the street. Colorado, especially Denver, has seen violent crime go up since legalization because fewer gangbangers are being put away possession charges. Unlike other leftists, where it takes decades to prove them wrong, Faux Libertarians claims about crime have been falsified in a matter of weeks.

          Crimes of violence get plea bargained down to nonviolent offenses all the time. And violent criminals get caught for nonviolent offenses all the time. If you find yourself between a “nonviolent” offender and his escape route be prepared to find out how violent they can become.

        • The same place you start with any troll, by showing that they pull their ‘facts’ out of their extremely voluminous rear asse(tt)s:
          “In just one short year the number of homicides dropped by 52.9%. Sexual assaults were reduced by 13.6%. Robberies were down by 4.8% and assaults were down by 3.7%.”
          Read more at http://thefreethoughtproject.com/denver-crime-rate/#b20PB6dpGkzT6YiC.99
          “Three of the four main categories of violent crime that are tracked in the data — homicide, sexual assault and robbery — are all down from the same six-month stretch last year.”
          http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2014/07/17/marijuana-crime-denver_n_5595742.html
          Etcetera…. Etcetera…. Etcetera….
          remember that 90 percent of people just make up their ‘facts’ on the spot. The other ten percent just repeat whatever they ‘heard’ from ‘somebody’, somewhere’, ‘sometime’…
          And much less than 1 percent do the logical and reasonable thing, post their sources and stats for all to examine.

      • Do you advocate imprisoning people for what they are capable of rather than what you can prove they have done? Would you enjoy prison that much?

      • I hate to point out the obvious, but isn’t that the same logic that leads to “some guy shot some people with a handgun, so we need to ban all handguns”?

      • With Capone, he had the Chicago municipal leadership running interference for him.

        I wonder what Chicago would be like if it had that kind of corruption today.

      • Wow, Itdiinva, you have issues.

        I’ve worked with screwed-up kids, and I can assure you there are lots of non-violent offenders. There are thieves who will only steal from stores, never from people, others who will never steal from local stores, only large corporations; there are people who will never commit any crime if people are present; here are even some who, if they unintentionally hurt someone during the commission of a crime, turn themselves in.

        Your position is no different from that of the feminazis who say that there are no men who aren’t rapists.

    • Bingo.

      I’m pretty much agnostic on the issue of drug legalization, but drug users/dealers are taking up prison space better utilized for permanent residence by violent criminals.

      Of course, prosecutors need the…intestinal fortitude to prosecute those violent criminals. Sending potheads to prison is much easier, and looks good on their resume.

      • Or, you know, you could quit closing prisons. The reality is that there is no such thing as a non-violent drug offense. Everybody who uses drugs either committed a violent crime or is an accessory to a violent crime. I say lock up the addicts and hang the dealers.

        • I would definitely not say everyone who uses drugs, or even sells them is a violent criminal. With drug users, I would guess 3/4’s of them are non violent, they are just going day by day stoned out of their minds. They are almost certainly committing crimes but those crimes are most often identity theft, prescription medicine fraud, shoplifting, home breakin’s, etc. They are looking for drugs or a way to get money for drugs.

          Even drug dealers, many are not violent. There are some in cities and elsewhere that are violent, killing over turf or bad deals but there are a lot that are not violent.

          There is violence associated with drug sales, although that violence may be 4 steps removed from some dealers.

          Drug users often need treatment and punishments that get them off the drugs and cleaning up their lives. Drug dealers need prison and harsh sentences. I agree with you, they are killers who are making money off killing others or at minimum destroying their lives.

        • Sergei, 99.9999+% of all drug transactions and buyers are completely non-violent. That some gang-bangers and others up and down the distribution chain are violent is merely because of the illegality of the product, and therefore it’s profit margins. This is exactly what happened when alcohol was illegal, remember? No one stopped drinking, people paid too much for crap, people died, and there was so much money that corruption was rampant. Just like pot, coke, heroin, and the hundreds of “designer” drugs that are created merely to skirt rules. Difference is, booze is legal, pure, and regulated. Harder for kids to get than heroin too…

          Beyond that, it’s your right to alter your brain chemistry anyway you want. You can be a whirling dervish, jog, climb mountains, eat, or put something into your body that’s merely more of what your brain already makes and has receptors for. They all do the same thing.

          Freedom of choice means that it isn’t our business which one other people choose, especially when it realistically it has no impact on me, or my life. And it doesn’t.

        • I fully support you in this. As long as you start with drunk drivers, the bar tender at the VFW, and the guy from work who hosted the Christmas party. If you are unwilling to do this you are intellectually dishonest. (For your edification. https://www.bjs.gov/content/pub/pdf/ac.pdf)

          Perhaps you are simply a psychopath who hiding behind a facade of righteousness. It’s people like you that have built the gulags and death camps throughout history. If push comes to shove with the lefties, I won’t be concerned about them. Them, we can handle. The real danger will be the bloodthirsty would-be tyrants who claim our side.

        • The only reason there is violence in the illicit drug business is because they’re illegal.

          When was the last time Anheuser-Busch sent some thugs to do a drive-by on a Coors brewery?

        • Everybody who uses drugs either committed a violent crime or is an accessory to a violent crime.

          There’s the rub: they’re not being prosecuted, convicted, and sentenced for said violent crimes. As others have said: they’re either subjected to “catch-and-release”, or they’re being plea-bargained down to lesser (e.g. drug) crimes.

        • Chip, you should go to some courts for a few days and see what goes on, you really don’t have a clue.

        • Ah… the libertarian stoner brigade is out in force. No, you do not have a right to use illegal drugs that turn you into a burden on society. There is no “right” to get stoned out of your skull. So sorry. Wishing does not make it so.

        • You are only a burden on society if society allows it. The world is overpopulated, let them starve in the streets. That is completely fair. What is NOT fair is to assume that YOU are needed to control someone else’s actions, to protect them from themselves. A guy worth a billion bucks does not need your permission to get stoned, no matter how much you wish that level of control over others.

        • Actually, yes, yes he does. We are a country of laws. Since there is no overriding right in question, you will follow the law, or you will face the consequences.

        • … and no, I am not protecting them from themselves. If they want to mainline cyanide, go for it. I’m protecting MYSELF from the psychotic episode they will have sooner or later.

        • “Everybody who uses drugs either committed a violent crime or is an accessory to a violent crime.”

          Seriously, get in touch with reality. Many immorally-illegal drugs in this country have no connection at all with violence except that imposed by the state if they catch those people engaging in the exercise of their God-given freedom. Out in small towns and rural areas, things are made or grown locally, and bought and sold locally, with no violence except by the police.

          So unless you want to accuse people who get attacked by the state of inciting the police to commit violence, you’re are out in fantasy land.

    • Actual mere drug users fine. Problem is, most who are in prison for mere drug use, plea-bargained down from dealing.

      And the problem with drug dealers, is that hardly any of them are mere drug dealers. That’s where all this gang violence comes from in the first place.

      • Legalize drugs, and there’s not enough money in it to support even the bullet to kill someone. Water dealing would be a violent gangland as well, if selling and using water was banned.

        In general, as far as laws are concerned, Moses pretty much got the enumeration right. And complete. Kind of easy, I guess, with the help he got from above. The rest of cooked up, man made, so called “laws,” are nothing more than subsidies for the legal and coercive classes.

        • Yeah legalize drugs and all the dealers will fall back to their previous engineering and doctoral occupations and crime will decrease. Brilliant.

          Since I live in the far suburbs I’m willing to let the potheads and leftists run with their grand social experiment because I’m guessing that the majority of the probable large increases in robberies, muggings, personal crimes will not occur in my neighborhood. It indeed will be interesting to see what all these gang members will transition their criminal activities towards.

          So bring it on, lets see what happens.

          Here is why I’m sure it will fail….because the idea originates from the Left. Nearly every big “idea” that originates from the Left makes things worse.

        • There’s nothing particularly leftist about neither limited government, limiting oneself to the Law as received by Moses.

          What did originate with the left, is the idea that government and it’s arbitrarily enacted laws and bans can be some sort of force of good.

          Just stick to the laws that governed what later was to become the Wyoming territory, back when Jefferson was president, and call it a day. No gun laws, no drug laws, no pretty much any laws. That’s what made America a civilized nation, as well as a beacon for the oppressed saps everywhere else, who did have to endure bans on all manners of nonsense a gaggle of tax feeders decided was “bad” for them. Or worse, for “society” or “the community.”

      • Many who plead down from distribution charges to mere possession only got charged with possession because a prosecutor knew he couldn’t make a distribution charge stick in court and wanted a quick conviction, so he inflated the charge and then “bargained” it down.

        I know people who’ve spent time in jail because their vehicle “smelled like” drugs, and the cops found a ziplock bag or two, or paper bags, and used that to inflate the whole thing into distribution, when there weren’t even any drugs present — and in order to save their jobs and families, they took probation on a possession charge. I know a guy who had a roll of ziplock sandwich bags in his trucks, cops stopped him for something and planted a bit of marijuana, and because of the bags he got charged with distribution — a total frame-up.

        Cops get points for making arrests. They don’t lose those points if people go free, they just rack them up regardless. So they do what they “have to” to get arrests. Until numbers of arrests are taken out of the promotion game, cops are going to manufacture crimes and criminals.

    • Okay, let’s say we take that to the logical conclusion and legalize all recreational drugs. That way we’re not paying to incarcerate (translate: feed, shelter, clothe) a large chunk of people.

      However, the only way that really saves any money is if we also cut social services for those same drug dealers and users. If you’re on drugs, you don’t get the safety net; it’s all on you. Use too much whatever and get yourself fired (or can’t hold a job in the first place)? That’s your problem, it shouldn’t be mine.

      • No, only legalize those God gave us, which is to say those that you can grow in your own garden. If it takes toxic chemicals and/or a lab to make, keep it illegal.

        Cocaine tea? Fine. ‘Shrooms? Fine. LSD from mold? Fine. Marijuana? Fine.

        But meth and other purely chemical substances not derived from plants — no.

        Oh — and only legalize production by family businesses, i.e. owned and run by family, and no imports unless with a 25% tariff.

    • ‘Mere drug dealers ‘hurt’ far less people than bartenders and liquor stores…’

      I’ve got to call BS on that one, since 100 people die every day of drug overdoses in this country.* You also seem to be insinuating that bartenders and liquor stores are responsible for the actions of their clients yet drug dealers are not. Bar tenders and liquor stores are legitimate business people selling a legal product that is used responsibly by billions of people.

      Personally I’m mostly on board with libertarian philosophy including the liberalization (in the classic sense) of our drug laws. But at some point libertarians fall into utopianism. Legalizing drugs and eliminating the black market for them will no more eliminate the violent criminals from our society than ending prohibition put an end to the mafia. There will always be those in society that will refuse to earn an honest living. Taking away one single source of illicit income will not change that. These people are not going to take minimum wage jobs flipping burgers. They will find new crimes and many of them will not be crimes of consent. And when they die another new generation of criminals will rise up. You cannot fix nor can you ignore human nature.

      * https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/wonk/wp/2014/02/07/100-americans-die-of-drug-overdoses-each-day-how-do-we-stop-that/

      • I don’t share the Libertarian glee for legalizing drug sales and consumption however I would be willing to eliminate all drug laws congruent to eliminating all gun laws.

      • 10K people per year die in alcohol-related car accidents per year.
        2K die per year from straight-up alcohol poisoning.
        20K+ from alcohol related disease (most cites are around 80K)

        8K-ish people die from an opiate OD per the CDC. The Whack-a-doo-Post I have no idea….
        .
        Interestingly, you can live your life for decades on opiates, with few (if any) side effects. Unlike alcohol which is horribly destructive. Want to stop the opiate deaths (save for suicides?) give them all the opiates they want. They cost almost nothing to manufacture, and the key to keeping them alive is purity and dosage consistency. That’s what kills every addict – inconsistent purity. This latest round of Puritannical nonsense is now taking away opiates from chronic pain sufferers, and guess where they turn? Yup, heroin. Unlike their pills though, they never know quite what they’re getting…

        • If there’s one thing I can’t stand it’s illiteracy. – ‘In 2010, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, there were 38,329 fatal drug overdoses in the United States…’

          Like I said, where libertarianism fails is where it descends into utopianism. It’s the same shortcoming of communism, the denial of human nature.

        • Intent is usually the determining factor between “homicide” and “murder”, with a charge of murder implying malicious intent to kill, rather than accidentally, negligently, or justifiably (as in a defensive situation). “Degrees” are generally decided by whether the murder was premeditated or not.

      • “100 people die every day of drug overdoses in this country”

        And not one would have ever contributed shit to our country or the world. Adios, goombye, sayonara. tough shit.

    • There is difference between genuine non-violent offenders and those in prison for non violent offenses. A large amount of Cook County offenders plea deal weapons and assault charges down to drug charges.

      Many of the people that Obama released off executive action were people who had pleaded down weapons and even murder charges.

  3. Not surprising; the goal of the leftist is the destruction of Amercia (and western civilization in general). What better way to do it than build a permanent class of violent savages who are beyond the reach of justice. Meet your enemy.

  4. Yeah right,we don’t live in Kansas toto.well violent and early release can all stay at your home with your family!!!!!
    LMFAO LOSER

  5. Or you could use the death sentence, swiftly I might add (not on death row for 30 years), for violent crimes such as murder, serious assaults, aggravated rape, sexual assault on children, etc. This solves the overpopulation problem of the prison system. But then again, this Fool will the. Be worried about the overpopulation of the cemetery.

    • I’d say narcotics distribution is grounds for summary execution. Basically, drug dealers are slow paced serial killers.

      • I deliver narcotics daily for a subsidiary of CVS. A lot of the people I deliver them to do die. Some in short order. Some even from the narcotics. Does the fact that they are dying slowly and miserably from cancer qualify as mitigating circumstance? Or do you want to kill me and everyone working for similar pharmaceutical companies?

        • You’re right, they’re not the same. More Americans die from prescription drugs every year than illegal ones. And that’s not even counting prescription drug abusers and overdoses – that’s just people dying from bad reactions to prescriptions taken as directed by their doctors. So much for all that “FDA testing”, I guess.

    • Keeping someone on death row for 30 years is horrifically expensive, in the *millions* of dollars range.

      The concept of the death penalty I’m kinda OK with, but TTAG’s JWT has convinced me that a government being in the business of killing it’s citizens against their will is not a good idea.

      So, how about removing the ‘against their will’ part? Allow convicted murderers who are truly remorseful the option of euthanasia.

      Instead of decades of expensive warehousing, the victims families can get a modest pension in exchange for the guilty’s life.

      The state gets a massive savings, and the victim’s family’s get something tangible for their loss.

      Face it, the concept of ‘blood money’ is very much a thing today in parts of this world…

      Just say’in, mind you…

    • I’m all about the death penalty. The catch is you have to give the convicted the appeals process. People have been wrongly put on death row. Some have even be executed to later be found that they did not commit the crime.

      • I absolutely agree about the appeal proces . I mean straight to the chair when multiple good witnesses observe the crime, or irrefutable evidence exist Etc.

  6. I think he is on to something… criminals by definition, are those who break laws. Reduce the number of laws and you reduce the number of criminals. Get rid of the NFA to reduce the load on our prison system!

  7. Yes. Because a slap on the wrist and a lollipop will turn them from their violent ways. And people wonder why we arm ourselves.

  8. I have a dream of forcing white progressive socialist at the point of fixed bayonets, to live in a black neighborhood were gun fire is heard daily, at night and during the day.

    Malcolm X was wrong. It is only the white progressive socialist who are devil’s.

    • A version of that has actually happened. A number of years back a convicted slumlord was sentenced to live in one of his own properties…

      • Yeah, as I recall he turned out to be surprisingly good at basketball and fell in love with one of the tenants or something…

  9. The recent trend has been restoring rights to criminals after their sentence is complete. The priority of course being voting rights. So lets go one step further. After you’ve completed you sentence for whatever crime you committed, you regain your rights automatically. Every. Single. One.
    Voting, holding office, owning firearms, all of them. To balance things out, we remove barriers to any citizen being able to defend themselves.

    • “After you’ve completed you sentence for whatever crime you committed, you regain your rights automatically. Every. Single. One.”

      I have no problem with government restrictions on a person’s natural, civil and Constitutionally protected rights being lifted after they have completed their sentence(s), including all time on parole or probation, with one proviso: Under no circumstances should the record of the offense and conviction that resulted in their incarceration be expunged! It should be and remain easily accessed public record. They are entitled to their rights, but the public also has a right to know their history.

  10. Here’s an idea: Let’s end the drug war and stop locking up people for non-violent drug offenses. We should only be locking up people who are a danger to society. Also, how about actually making the Death Penalty a real punishment that we actually use? Why the hell does it take 15 years and massive monies spent on appeals to execute someone? Of course, it should only be done if there’s no doubt as to the guilt of the perp, but every gangbanger in chiraq should have it in their heads that, if they murder someone, they’ll be dead within two weeks of arrest.

  11. Having been in every shite neighborhood in Chitaq I can relate what a loon this progtard is. Arm the good folks, chain gangs instituted, mandatory minimum of 10years hard time for violence and oh yeah enforce the law. Federalize it ala Al Capone and Elliott Ness. Chicago’s “finest” can’t be trusted…

  12. “8. And thus, in the state of Nature, one man comes by a power over another, but yet no absolute or arbitrary power to use a criminal, when he has got him in his hands, according to the passionate heats or boundless extravagancy of his own will, but only to retribute to him so far as calm reason and conscience dictate, what is proportionate to his transgression, which is so much as may serve for reparation and restraint. For these two are the only reasons why one man may lawfully do harm to another, which is that we call punishment. In transgressing the law of Nature, the offender declares himself to live by another rule than that of reason and common equity, which is that measure God has set to the actions of men for their mutual security, and so he becomes dangerous to mankind; the tie which is to secure them from injury and violence being slighted and broken by him, which being a trespass against the whole species, and the peace and safety of it, provided for by the law of Nature, every man upon this score, by the right he hath to preserve mankind in general, may restrain, or where it is necessary, destroy things noxious to them, and so may bring such evil on any one who hath transgressed that law, AS MAY MAKE HIM REPENT THE DOING OF IT, AND THEREBY DETER HIM, AND, BY HIS EXAMPLE, OTHERS FROM DOING THE LIKE MISCHIEF. And in this case, and upon this ground, every man hath a right to punish the offender, and be executioner of the law of Nature. [Emphasis mine] John Locke, Book II – Of Civil Government, 1690.

  13. That plan was already tried back in the 70’s and 80’s and resulted in record numbers of murders and violent crime. That fellow has shit-fer-brains.

  14. There were laws in some states as late as the 1940’s, I believe, that would execute repeat offenders. Even if it was a string of relatively minor crimes. I believe one term was ‘incorrigible’.

    • One argument against capital punishment is the chance of executing an innocent person.
      Keep coming before the justice for similar crimes and you are either the most cursed individual on the planet, or you are guilty beyond any doubt.

  15. ” Fortunately, we can preserve the tremendous reductions in violence we have experienced over the past 25 years with smarter, safer and more humane approaches…”

    How does he think we got those reductions in violence?

    There’s no simple, accepted reason with empirical evidence sufficient to prove it. But based on how we have been putting people in prison for 25 years I’m pretty sure NOT doing that isn’t going to be the reason.

  16. So what this snowflake suggest we do with violent offenders? Maybe he’ll take in a few violent offender to ease our burgeoning prison system!

  17. Johnny Pilaff there is argues utility, but what utility? Spending on all those prisons could be better spent on something else? Maybe he’s bugged by the land use – all that space should be parks?

    He doesn’t say what good we’ll get more of, by having less prisons.

    I think the goal is peaceful, responsible people doing what they want, without theft, threat, or coercion. There would be a lot of changes to prisons, and to gun laws if we took that persoective, consistently.

  18. Listen enough and truth is revealed. What he’s saying is criminal behavior cost civil society money government doesn’t want to spend. In effect pushing direct cost onto citizens in the form of robbery, assault, rape, and murder.

  19. If somebody were to carve him up with a chainsaw, I propose a fine of $1.00… refundable if the perpetrator didn’t kill anyone else… with a chainsaw… for six months.

  20. There just needs to be more tragic fall accidents in prison. Those stairwells…so dangerous. Lost another one, but, there is now a vacancy.

  21. Not only does the recent spike in violent crime in major cities across America call for MORE prisons and LONGER sentences for violent felons, leftists arguing against these obvious conclusions is a call for opening more mental institutions to house them.

  22. Growing up, you didn’t break the law. Much less vandalize or steal. We weren’t watched by our parents 24/7.
    The reason was, we knew we’d get caught. The “snitches get stiches” was unheard of. Punichment was swift and certain.
    In Chicago, gun crimes are dismissed, dropped in plea bargains, or receive minimal jail time. How bad?

    The median prison sentence given for aggravated unlawful use of a weapon was one year.
    The median sentence for the more serious charge of aggravated UUW by a felon was four years in prison.
    Those charged with simple gun possession had an average of four prior arrests.
    Those charged with gun possession by a felon had an average of 10 prior arrests.
    About a third of those charged with simple gun possession and about half charged with being a felon in possession of a gun in 2012 were rearrested for another crime by the end of 2013.
    http://chicago.suntimes.com/news/gun-shy-lighter-sentences-in-cook-county-fuel-lock-em-up-debate/

    • Icabod- for all the “law and order” types, know that just walking out of your house in Illinois with a piece on you is a felony even for the “good guys” if you forget your Illinois state police issued FOID card or concealed carry license in your wallet.

      Under Illinois law, carrying a gun on or about your person without the permission slips is a “status offense.” The matter of intent to cause harm to others is not relevant in court.

      Back in the Bad Old Days prior to Illinois’ concealed carry bill, there were thousands of ordinary “law abiding” citizens (favorite bullshit term of Richard Pearson and the clowns at ISRA) who were convicted on felony UUW charges because they owned a business and had their piece on them when taking money to the bank or whatever. That’s an easy conviction for the state, and a no-risk arrest for the cops. Joe Citizen doesn’t usually “resist” arrest or fight back.

      Even if you have the Illinois carry license, EVERY violation of the hundreds of off-limits places is criminal, punishable by SIX MONTHS or ONE YEAR in jail. Since carry law violations are criminal, police have the excuse to use force to make the arrest. If you’re a licensed citizen, police can instantly escalate to deadly force since you’re armed. It’s just a matter of time until a police criminal executes an armed citizen here in Illinois, because the newly created “crime” of Duty to Inform in Illinois “NRA backed” carry bill is also a criminal offense, not a ticket like Missouri.
      Thanks Todd!

      The public murder of an armed citizen like Philando Castile in Minnesota will provide job security for NRA state lobbyist Todd Vandermyde to “fix” the shit bill he put up in the first place, since he gave the police unions Duty to Inform in 2013.
      That’s what traitors do, they work both sides.

      • dude, that was awesome. if you could somehow manage to convey this meaningful and timely information on a consistant and pervading basis you may be able to right these obvious shortcomings. of course it will take a lot of legwork and grasroots effort but i’m confident that with your eloquent explanation, as well as your lobbying skills in springfield that you can overcome.
        see you at igold 2017! i’ll be wearing my “los jacquitos” jacket. please wear brown, so i’ll know you.

        • You might be able to catch a ride to IGOLD from ISRA World Headquarters in Chatsworth. Assemble inside the grain bin and wait, “executive director” Richard Pearson will meet you there with the party bus! Don’t worry about the grinding noise, you can trust a man with Bryl Cream in his hair to look out for your best interests.

          Richard told me himself that, “there is no Duty to Inform (in Brandon Phelps carry bill) it’s only if the officer asks” But he may have been drunk at the time.

          If you have a Masonic ring like Richard and know the secret handshake, he may even give you gas money so you can make it to Chatsworth from your trailer park. ISRA has a financial assistance program for white trash, they need to puff up their numbers for pictures of the March of the Hicks- 2017. If bucks are still short, poach a few more raccoons.

        • then i will burn with her, for i would rather die than have people not know what restaurants i have been to.
          have a nice chat in worthville with the illuminati, coonass. and remember: wear brown. or just skip your weekly sponge bath. and get a new salt block.

    • Long prison sentences and harsh punishments mean nothing to people who live for today and don’t expect to live much longer.

      It’s really that simple. Prison isn’t a viable long term solution to this problem any more than taking Ibuprofen for a broken leg fixes the broken leg. Simply going with longer prison sentences is akin to going from Ibuprofen to Oxy but never setting the leg.

  23. Leave them on the streets, somebody will kill them sooner or later, one way or another. Any lives lost or property damage before they are killed is just a testament to liberal criminal rights movement. While we’re at it, how about walking away from the border and leaving it wide open? Need to start shipping muslims in by the boat load too. Non-violent offenders all. Worried about losing your rights? You are losing your country.

  24. Apologies for the length here:

    It’s too bad that the quote comes from an article on wsj’s website which requires a membership to read the entire article. The guy makes some good points. I don’t necessarily agree with all of his points and I think that he misses a couple big ones. He also doesn’t seem to think we can do multiple things at once, which is a deficit I note in a lot of “high-end” thinkers.

    Realistically he’s right. We can’t incarcerate ourselves out of the problem. Yes, we have too many people in prison and we handle the overall situation poorly. However he fails to realize that the real failure is that we don’t attack the underlying problem.

    The real problem is not “criminal” in nature, it’s social. The author correctly points out that we didn’t incarcerate nearly as many people in 1970 as we do now even though violent crime, and crime in general, has dropped significantly from it’s high in the early 1990’s. However, he fails to grasp something that has changed since 1970: family structure. Thomas Sowell made something Walter E. Williams noted rather famous when Sowell quoted Williams as saying “The welfare state has done to black Americans what slavery couldn’t do, what Jim Crow couldn’t do, what the harshest racism couldn’t do. And that is to destroy the black family.”

    The issue however is not one, IMHO, of race. Government policy along these lines has a corrosive effect on all races and all people that fall into the trap the government has unwittingly (?) laid. The result is Generational Poverty, which breeds depression (of the mental variety), anger, anxiety and exactly the kind of “present mindedness” that the author points to as a problem.

    Further as the author points out, simply ending the WoD (something I support) won’t end this problem and neither will long incarceration terms or other harsh sentencing methods because the people who are acting this way aren’t thinking about tomorrow, never mind 20 years from now.

    As much as some people here will not appreciate what I’m about to say, it is nevertheless true. There is a certain amount of wisdom in some rap music. A wisdom I was ignorant of until I got the “privilege” to live in some really, really shitty places and see some shitty things on a day-to-day basis. The wisdom, in this case, that needs to be examined is exactly what the author covers when he says “…those who are most likely to engage in violence and antisocial behavior tend to be very present-minded.” That is 100% true of both violence and drug use.

    That’s something rap music talks about A LOT and it’s something we need to pay attention to. A lot of this violent bullshit comes from a lack of hope for the future. When people tell you flat out they don’t expect to be alive in a few years and are living for today you cannot talk to them about long term plans like going to school and getting a job. I know a lot of people here don’t want to hear what I’m saying and will rejoin this conversation with “Fuck that, lock ’em up” but that’s a hard line to take when the person you’re hearing this depressing shit from is a six year old kid who’s wrapped around your leg and just got done telling you how his daddy beats him and doesn’t feed him or his brother. When kids that age don’t expect to make it to 25 breathing and outside of prison you know there’s a serious problem and it’s not the burners or the drugs.

    This is one of those situations where there ain’t no simple solutions. It’s gonna take time and a sustained effort. Locking up more people won’t help and neither will simply relaxing laws. “Community organizing” (*snorts derisively*) won’t help either. We need to carefully examine what our dumbass policies have done and treat the underlying problems, which we have created, and stop just treating the symptoms.

    • 100% accurate. Problem is, it’s to late to fix this IMO. We are headed to a class war soon I fear.
      Absolutely spot on about the “black family”. Slavery couldn’t rip that family apart. Some how it became like that. What caused it?
      I couldn’t answer that but I can tell you who they blame. I’ve heard it in Detroit, while not Chicago, is getting bad too. I had the “pleasure” of living there.
      White people are to blame. We put them in poverty. We got them addicted to drugs. Hard cycle to get out of when that’s all you know.
      Strych is right when he says they have nothing to live for. It is social and some will kill you for looking at them wrong. What do they care? They’re basically living day to day. Dead.
      Drive around Detroit (please be armed) and look at some faces. You’ll see it.
      The seed has been planted, the tree is overgrown and it’s a matter of time.

  25. Good grief, where do these people come from? How can anyone be so far removed from reality that they can think like this? This fool must live in a fog that doesn’t allow the real world to show…

  26. Standard Dem fodder:
    – Release the prisoners.
    – Open the borders.
    – Take away firearms.
    – Oppose stand your ground.
    – Stoke racial, economic, and other divisions.

    – Expect societal harmony to result.

  27. Too bad the author was too ignorant (or left leaning) to at least mention some sort of E-Incarceration. With today’s tech, there’s no reason a prison MUST have bars with concrete walls.
    E-Incarceration would use extensive GPS monitoring to keep “E-Inmates” at home or at a job (and maybe 2 or 3 other places). The E-Inmate would be subject to search and drug testing at any time, just like a regular inmate. Any travel outside defined limits, drug use, or weapon possession gets them sent directly to Real Prison.

    This may work for 20% of the current prison population, IMO. Try it with well behaved inmates in the last few years of their sentence. Heck, if they’re getting out anyway, it may as well be under hyper surveillance.

    There have been some successes with similar strict parole systems (with near immediate jailing of parole violators).

  28. Chip Bennett
    If drug users did not steal to pay for their habit, they would not be in jail.

    If they did not commit rape, or murder, or beat someone with a metal pipe while under the influence, they would not be in jail.

    If they could maintain a regular job to pay for their drugs know one would care. But would a shop keeper want a person under the influence operating company vehicles or heavy equipment?

    Would you as a customer trust them to work on your car or other work for you?

    If drugs user continue to get welfare with no drug testing, does that help them and tax payers, and the rest of society?

    Does it make it better when drug dealers are sent to prison for income tax evasion?
    Al Capone was sent to prison for income tax evasion not for the 12 or more murders he committed or the 100 or more people he ordered to be killed.

    Do you believe street dealers will withhold for tax purposes?

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