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How Can We Reduce the Prison Population in the U.S.?

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LuckyR
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Re: How Can We Reduce the Prison Population in the U.S.?

Post by LuckyR » January 25th, 2018, 3:00 am

Well, the OP asks: how to lower the US prison population. But before we want to answer that we need to know: should we lower the prison population. If the US should have a high rate, say because it has a higher crime rate, then the OP vanishes in a puff of smoke.
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Re: How Can We Reduce the Prison Population in the U.S.?

Post by Karpel Tunnel » February 16th, 2018, 12:14 pm

anonymous66 wrote:
January 19th, 2018, 8:40 am
It's a fact that the U.S. has less than 5% of the world's population and about 22% of the world's prisoners. Assuming that that's a bad thing....

What do we need to do to change our society such that we incarcerate fewer people?
Legalize drugs, that would make a huge change. And keep sentences low for selling.

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Re: How Can We Reduce the Prison Population in the U.S.?

Post by GE Morton » February 16th, 2018, 3:29 pm

Karpel Tunnel wrote:
February 16th, 2018, 12:14 pm
Legalize drugs, that would make a huge change. And keep sentences low for selling.
That would make some difference, but not a lot. While about 40% of federal inmates are serving sentences for drug offenses, only about 16% of state inmates are. 87% of inmates are in state institutions.

https://www.bjs.gov/content/pub/pdf/p16_sum.pdf

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Re: How Can We Reduce the Prison Population in the U.S.?

Post by LuckyR » February 16th, 2018, 5:29 pm

GE Morton wrote:
February 16th, 2018, 3:29 pm
Karpel Tunnel wrote:
February 16th, 2018, 12:14 pm
Legalize drugs, that would make a huge change. And keep sentences low for selling.
That would make some difference, but not a lot. While about 40% of federal inmates are serving sentences for drug offenses, only about 16% of state inmates are. 87% of inmates are in state institutions.

https://www.bjs.gov/content/pub/pdf/p16_sum.pdf
True, though incomplete. A significant number of property crimes in the states and locally occur either because folks are trying to pay for artificially expensive illegal drugs or because their addiction makes them unemployable
"As usual... it depends."

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Re: How Can We Reduce the Prison Population in the U.S.?

Post by Karpel Tunnel » February 17th, 2018, 6:46 am

GE Morton wrote:
February 16th, 2018, 3:29 pm
Karpel Tunnel wrote:
February 16th, 2018, 12:14 pm
Legalize drugs, that would make a huge change. And keep sentences low for selling.
That would make some difference, but not a lot. While about 40% of federal inmates are serving sentences for drug offenses, only about 16% of state inmates are. 87% of inmates are in state institutions.

https://www.bjs.gov/content/pub/pdf/p16_sum.pdf
47% according to the link in federal, that is about half
And then the statistics are organized by heaviest crime. which means that drugs may (and likely were in many cases) a) be one of the lesser charges and/or b) be causal. IOW violence occured in relation to a drug deal and the violence was the bigger offense.

I suppose my 'huge' in 'huge change' is vague, but we are talking about over 100,000 in federal and then at least that 16% of 1,270,000, so 203,000 with drugs as largest offense, and then all the others who might not have committed the largest offense crime if drugs had been legal.

300,000 right off the top is huge, to me. And I think once all the drug transaction, protecting drug turf, and other crimes related to the illegality of drugs are added in, it just get huger. :lol:

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Re: How Can We Reduce the Prison Population in the U.S.?

Post by GE Morton » February 17th, 2018, 2:24 pm

Karpel Tunnel wrote:
February 17th, 2018, 6:46 am

300,000 right off the top is huge, to me. And I think once all the drug transaction, protecting drug turf, and other crimes related to the illegality of drugs are added in, it just get huger. :lol:
I agree the number is substantial, but even if those inmates are subtracted from the totals the US incarceration rate would still be higher than any other developed country.

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Re: How Can We Reduce the Prison Population in the U.S.?

Post by LuckyR » February 21st, 2018, 11:37 am

GE Morton wrote:
February 17th, 2018, 2:24 pm
Karpel Tunnel wrote:
February 17th, 2018, 6:46 am

300,000 right off the top is huge, to me. And I think once all the drug transaction, protecting drug turf, and other crimes related to the illegality of drugs are added in, it just get huger. :lol:
I agree the number is substantial, but even if those inmates are subtracted from the totals the US incarceration rate would still be higher than any other developed country.
But the unspoken point of this thread is: why is that?
"As usual... it depends."

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Re: How Can We Reduce the Prison Population in the U.S.?

Post by Steve3007 » February 26th, 2018, 12:47 pm

GE Morton wrote:About 75% of the violent crimes and property crimes committed every day in the US are committed by thugs with prior felony convictions.
The first thing that springs to my mind on this subject is that there is an implicit assumption that imprisoning a large proportion of the population is a bad thing. Why? If the recidivism rate of multiple felons is 75%, it has been suggested that they should be thrown in prison for life. That would presumably increase the prison population even more. Is that bad? If so, why not execute them all?

The next thing is: Why is the recidivism rate so high? Presumably there are multiple reasons. Perhaps one reason is that the job opportunities available to convicted felons don't look very appealing when compared to continuing with a life of crime. If that is indeed one reason, should there be any attempts to do anything about it? Or would any such attempt violate the freedoms of taxpayers?

Suppose, for the sake of argument, taxpayers' money was used to fund massive compulsory training programs for released felons: They're forced to undergo training and education with a view to getting well paid jobs. Employers are also paid, using taxpayers' money, to take them on, if necessary. If they cause any trouble, lose their job due to their own fault or commit any more crimes, then they go back to prison for life, or get executed. This is constantly made very clear to them. Every day.

In other words, a huge very visible carrot and an equally huge, visible stick. Even if it worked, would this be completely unacceptable because it would be an unjustifiable infringement of taxpayers' freedoms? In a society which values individual freedom, would any attempt to preemptively reduce crime using methods like this be an unacceptable infringement of the individual freedoms of people (taxpayers) who have done nothing wrong? Would this be true even if such measures achieved their aims? Would this be true even if it resulted in those taxpayers being the victims of fewer crimes?

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Re: How Can We Reduce the Prison Population in the U.S.?

Post by Dark Matter » February 26th, 2018, 1:04 pm

anonymous66 wrote:
January 19th, 2018, 8:40 am
It's a fact that the U.S. has less than 5% of the world's population and about 22% of the world's prisoners. Assuming that that's a bad thing....

What do we need to do to change our society such that we incarcerate fewer people?
Shoot violent and repeat offenders.

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Re: How Can We Reduce the Prison Population in the U.S.?

Post by Dark Matter » February 26th, 2018, 1:06 pm

And those prisoners who are in this country illegally.

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Re: How Can We Reduce the Prison Population in the U.S.?

Post by LuckyR » March 1st, 2018, 12:09 pm

Steve3007 wrote:
February 26th, 2018, 12:47 pm
GE Morton wrote:About 75% of the violent crimes and property crimes committed every day in the US are committed by thugs with prior felony convictions.
The first thing that springs to my mind on this subject is that there is an implicit assumption that imprisoning a large proportion of the population is a bad thing. Why? If the recidivism rate of multiple felons is 75%, it has been suggested that they should be thrown in prison for life. That would presumably increase the prison population even more. Is that bad? If so, why not execute them all?

The next thing is: Why is the recidivism rate so high? Presumably there are multiple reasons. Perhaps one reason is that the job opportunities available to convicted felons don't look very appealing when compared to continuing with a life of crime. If that is indeed one reason, should there be any attempts to do anything about it? Or would any such attempt violate the freedoms of taxpayers?

Suppose, for the sake of argument, taxpayers' money was used to fund massive compulsory training programs for released felons: They're forced to undergo training and education with a view to getting well paid jobs. Employers are also paid, using taxpayers' money, to take them on, if necessary. If they cause any trouble, lose their job due to their own fault or commit any more crimes, then they go back to prison for life, or get executed. This is constantly made very clear to them. Every day.

In other words, a huge very visible carrot and an equally huge, visible stick. Even if it worked, would this be completely unacceptable because it would be an unjustifiable infringement of taxpayers' freedoms? In a society which values individual freedom, would any attempt to preemptively reduce crime using methods like this be an unacceptable infringement of the individual freedoms of people (taxpayers) who have done nothing wrong? Would this be true even if such measures achieved their aims? Would this be true even if it resulted in those taxpayers being the victims of fewer crimes?
Taxpayer "rights"? That's a good one. Name someone who doesn't pay taxes. Since everyone pays them, I guess that would be basic rights, having nothing to do with the tax system.

As to why the high recidivism rate, that is a bit downstream. Why did the felon do the first crime (let alone the second one)? If you divide crimes into those that profit the criminal (property crimes for example) and those that don't (crimes of passion or drivebys or school shootings, for example), the first group which is the majority of crime, could be considered the person's job, in the sense that that is how the criminal makes their livelihood. So if you don't like that, what would you have them do instead?
"As usual... it depends."

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Re: How Can We Reduce the Prison Population in the U.S.?

Post by Bayez » March 3rd, 2018, 11:57 am

anonymous66 wrote:
January 19th, 2018, 8:40 am
It's a fact that the U.S. has less than 5% of the world's population and about 22% of the world's prisoners. Assuming that that's a bad thing....

What do we need to do to change our society such that we incarcerate fewer people?

I have heard that if an SHTF situation happens in the U.S the Police (aka 'the Brotherhood) WILL be taking over All/Most of the Prisons within the U.S territory. They will be taking over the Prisons for strategy and tactical reasons. Now the dilemma was posed as a hypothetical SHTF:

What do you [the citizenry] want US (police) to do with these Prisoners? (killers/ rapers/ marauders)

In a **** Hits The Fan SITUATION... say a massive market problem or massive war etc., Would it be a good thing to have EXTRA problems on the streets? Criminals WOULD target preppers, and 'innocent' people, would not last very long.

The Police are pretty clear on what they would do in a SHTF situation. My question to you, the reader of this post: What do you think about these actions? Should the Police release the criminals into the Community ?

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