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(Phys Org2)   California's "three strikes" law has done exactly jack shiat to lower crime, but it's been great at bankrupting the state   (phys.org) divider line 128
    More: Obvious, California, minimum sentence, felony convictions, elections, quality of lives  
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6873 clicks; posted to Main » on 13 Oct 2012 at 7:58 PM (1 year ago)   |  Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



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2012-10-13 03:58:55 PM
"There is not a single shred of scientific evidence, research or data to show that three strikes caused a 100 percent decline in violence in California or elsewhere in the last 20 years," Parker said,


Wouldn't a 100% decline mean the elimination of violence?
 
2012-10-13 04:09:16 PM
bankrupting the state

I'm pretty sure the War On (Some) Drugs hasn't helped either.
 
2012-10-13 04:27:45 PM
It also allows politicians to sound tough on crime. Sounding Like someone who makes wise decisions plays much better than someone who actually makes wise decisions.
 
2012-10-13 05:16:09 PM
Advocates of "tough" on crime are meatheads. Try being smart.
 
2012-10-13 06:53:15 PM
There's little evidence the severity of the punishment lessens crime, except when you start doing things like applying the death penalty to every single crime. Punishment generally deters people with attachments to society, in other words those not likely to commit the crimes in the first place. For the most part, people commit crimes because they feel a personal benefit from doing so.
 
2012-10-13 07:00:20 PM
C'mon now, those for-profit prisons aren't going to fill themselves.
 
2012-10-13 07:24:58 PM

fusillade762: C'mon now, those for-profit prisons aren't going to fill themselves.


that's an excellent point
 
2012-10-13 08:01:35 PM

GAT_00: There's little evidence the severity of the punishment lessens crime, except when you start doing things like applying the death penalty to every single crime. Punishment generally deters people with attachments to society, in other words those not likely to commit the crimes in the first place. For the most part, people commit crimes because they feel a personal benefit from doing so.


You sound rationalLieberal.
 
2012-10-13 08:02:54 PM
I voted to revise it this election. This thing has been crap since it started.
 
2012-10-13 08:03:01 PM
But my voter's guide said it was effective just the way it is!
 
2012-10-13 08:07:11 PM

Techhell: You sound rational Lieberal.


Rationality and liberalism are basically synonymous these days. Rational conservatism died with Barry Goldwater.
 
2012-10-13 08:07:15 PM
As I understand it, the law only applies to people who steal a slice of pizza. How big of an impact can that really be?
 
2012-10-13 08:12:18 PM
Even without three strikes, Sacramento would still find a way to bankrupt the state.
 
2012-10-13 08:12:56 PM
3 strikes and you're exiled sounds a lot better in most cases
 
2012-10-13 08:13:17 PM
Approximately 23,000 individuals have been incarcerated under three strikes.

Perhaps it hasn't materially lowered the crime rate. But 23000 serial felons aren't committing a fourth (or higher number) felony. Imprisonment isn't just about deterrence. It's also punishment.
 
2012-10-13 08:15:43 PM
The state spends approximately $57,500 to house one inmate for one year

So the state spends more money than I've made in the last five years combined on one prisoner in one year. No farking wonder the prisons are full. A couple years ago I spent some time working in a prison, and while most of the inmates wouldn't come out and say they wanted to be there, they were pretty safe, had lots of order in their lives, got plenty to eat, free medical care, free exercise facilities, and could sit around and read, watch Oprah and a bunch of stuff like that all day. As long as they didn't get in trouble, they had all sorts of great stuff available to them - education and training programs,etc. PhD students wish they could sit around and read for hours a day without having to take out loans or work jobs to support themselves and put food on the table. What a bunch of malarkey.
 
2012-10-13 08:16:40 PM
The problem is what constitutes a strike.
 
2012-10-13 08:17:38 PM
Here's California's crime stats for the last 50 years.

Three strikes was enacted in 1994.
 
2012-10-13 08:20:58 PM
"There is not a single shred of scientific evidence, research or data to show that three strikes caused a 100 percent decline in violence in California or elsewhere in the last 20 years"

Of course not. There could not be, unless violence had been completely eliminated, which I tend to doubt since somebody violent is probably sneaking up behind me as I type.

Don't sociology degree programs require any math courses?
 
2012-10-13 08:21:37 PM

fusillade762: C'mon now, those for-profit prisons aren't going to fill themselves.


What percent of prisoners in the US are housed in for-profit prisons?
 
2012-10-13 08:22:33 PM

BoxOfBees: The state spends approximately $57,500 to house one inmate for one year

So the state spends more money than I've made in the last five years combined on one prisoner in one year. No farking wonder the prisons are full. A couple years ago I spent some time working in a prison, and while most of the inmates wouldn't come out and say they wanted to be there, they were pretty safe, had lots of order in their lives, got plenty to eat, free medical care, free exercise facilities, and could sit around and read, watch Oprah and a bunch of stuff like that all day. As long as they didn't get in trouble, they had all sorts of great stuff available to them - education and training programs,etc. PhD students wish they could sit around and read for hours a day without having to take out loans or work jobs to support themselves and put food on the table. What a bunch of malarkey.


So, you makes less than $12k a year? And you envy prison life?
Why don't you start robbing banks? At the worse, you'll have your dream vacation. If not, you're rich!!!
 
2012-10-13 08:22:57 PM
So which political party should I vote for if I oppose the drug war?

Oh, that's right. Neither of them.

/Both sides are bad
//So stop voting for them
 
2012-10-13 08:22:58 PM

AbsentFriends: Approximately 23,000 individuals have been incarcerated under three strikes.

Perhaps it hasn't materially lowered the crime rate. But 23000 serial felons aren't committing a fourth (or higher number) felony. Imprisonment isn't just about deterrence. It's also punishment.


57K per year, for life. That's probably a crap ROI. I don't have a problem with "three strikes" laws for repeat serious violent offenders (hell, I don't mind "one strike" rules for murderers, rapists, and molesters) but there are people in CA who pulled a life sentence for breaking into a vending machine. For my money, paying in-state tuition for five college students is a better bet than paying for a car thief's room/board/medical.

/don't make me post my lecture notes on deterrence and diminishing returns
 
2012-10-13 08:26:16 PM

dahmers love zombie: /don't make me post my lecture notes on deterrence and diminishing returns


I double-dare you. Just because I'd like to know.


/Science!
 
2012-10-13 08:27:08 PM

fusillade762: C'mon now, those for-profit prisons aren't going to fill themselves.


So, the suggestion, then, is that an individual who has committed three violent felonies is no more likely to commit a fourth than a random member of the public?

The law isn't about deterring that third violent felony; it's about removing individuals who have repeatedly demonstrated that they are significantly more likely to commit violent crime from the general population.
 
2012-10-13 08:27:15 PM
Thisnis what happens when lobbyists get to write legislation in the form of a ballot initiative instead of letting the legislature write laws.
 
2012-10-13 08:27:26 PM

I do everything Alton Brown tells me to do: Here's California's crime stats for the last 50 years.

Three strikes was enacted in 1994.


Their point was that, compared to non-three-strikes states, CA's crime rate hasn't reduced to a greater extent. Crime has been decreasing a LOT over the last fifteen years or so. Violent crime even more so. If you're a sound-bite politician, "crime has decreased every year since our three-strikes policy became law" is technically correct, but seriously misleading.

tomasso: Don't sociology degree programs require any math courses?


Stats. Which is embarassing and ironic. Don't you think?
 
2012-10-13 08:28:43 PM
", suggesting that three-strikes laws are not the deterrent that law enforcement officials, politicians and the public would like to believe."

If they are in prison, they aren't committing crimes against the general public. So I'll go ahead and say with absolute certainty, it is a deterrent.
 
2012-10-13 08:30:44 PM
but shouldn't all public policy be based on bumper sticker slogans?
 
2012-10-13 08:33:09 PM

themindiswatching: bankrupting the state

I'm pretty sure the War On (Some) Drugs hasn't helped either.


Or the PG&E bailout. Our elected officials are just full of good ideas.
 
2012-10-13 08:34:00 PM

AlanSmithee: dahmers love zombie: /don't make me post my lecture notes on deterrence and diminishing returns

I double-dare you. Just because I'd like to know.


/Science!


Eh, my PowerPoints are boring. I'm a lot of fun in lecture, but the notes themselves sorta suck. The upshot is that for any crime, there's a sharp "s" curve of deterrence. Murder is a great example. Ignoring the REAL reason that most people don't murder (conscience, morality, etc.), the thought of even a relatively modest prison term, if CERTAIN, would deter the vast majority of the remaining few people who would contemplate murdering someone. Increasing the penalty from ten years to execution does not deter a lot of people, because almost 100 percent of people fit into the groups a) would be deterred by ten years in prison and b) wouldn't be deterred by ANY sentence. This is why the death penalty is a lousy deterrent. The group of people who WON'T be deterred by life without parole, but WILL be deterred by the death penalty, is virtually nonexistent.
 
jvl
2012-10-13 08:34:38 PM
Three Strikes doesn't lower crime rates? How exactly does that work? Do other people in society suddenly get the urge to commit the crimes that otherwise would have been caused by recidivists?
 
2012-10-13 08:35:26 PM

fusillade762: C'mon now, those for-profit prisons aren't going to fill themselves.


What for profit prisons? Perhaps you haven't been to California.

dahmers love zombie: 57K per year, for life. That's probably a crap ROI. I don't have a problem with "three strikes" laws for repeat serious violent offenders (hell, I don't mind "one strike" rules for murderers, rapists, and molesters) but there are people in CA who pulled a life sentence for breaking into a vending machine. For my money, paying in-state tuition for five college students is a better bet than paying for a car thief's room/board/medical.


If they had violent priors, yes. They are recidivists with a history of violence.
 
2012-10-13 08:37:09 PM

jvl: Three Strikes doesn't lower crime rates? How exactly does that work? Do other people in society suddenly get the urge to commit the crimes that otherwise would have been caused by recidivists?


Population growth faster than people being removed from society. Kind of like the jobs problem. And it's not the good kind of population growth, since California attracts people more likely to commit crimes because of their socioeconomic status.
 
2012-10-13 08:39:20 PM
make an arrangement with some third world shiathole that would like to make some money. take all the 57,500 lifers and ship them to their new country at a one time 57,500 per head fee. what the new country does with them is not our problem. one way ticket, no backsies.

/see ya wouldn't wanna be ya
 
2012-10-13 08:39:37 PM
Bring back the prison workfarm and see what effect that has on recidivism rates.
 
2012-10-13 08:39:40 PM
A 100% reduction in crime? Wow, that sounds pretty f@#$ing successful. Now we can shut down all the courts and police departments.
 
2012-10-13 08:42:10 PM
Until we see a shift from the "thug" mentality; that modern culture seems to idolize; we are not going to see a reduction in violence. It's not a gun problem; it's not a racial problem; it's not even a drug problem; what the issue is, is the glorification and exceptance of the criminal elements that have become exceptable in modern culture.

Until that changes; and the factors that started that shift in culture are corrected; violence and lawlessness will only increase.
 
2012-10-13 08:42:33 PM

meanmutton: fusillade762: C'mon now, those for-profit prisons aren't going to fill themselves.

What percent of prisoners in the US are housed in for-profit prisons?


1.6 million: Total number of state and federal prisoners in the United States as of December 2010, according to the Bureau of Justice Statistics

128,195: Number of state and federal prisoners housed in private facilities as of December 2010

Link
 
2012-10-13 08:44:24 PM

bhcompy: If they had violent priors, yes. They are recidivists with a history of violence.


Again, yes, I don't have an issue with long sentences for multiple violent offenders. But someone with one ag assault, one burglary, and one car theft doesn't need us to spend two million bucks housing him for 40+ years. Personally, I'd like it if 90-95% of the prisons were occupied solely by people with violent crime convictions.
 
2012-10-13 08:45:49 PM

KrispyKritter: make an arrangement with some third world shiathole that would like to make some money. take all the 57,500 lifers and ship them to their new country at a one time 57,500 per head fee. what the new country does with them is not our problem. one way ticket, no backsies.

/see ya wouldn't wanna be ya


Arnold tried to open a California prison in Mexico. People didn't like that idea. I say fark em. If they're lifers, who cares where they are as long as their rights aren't being violated.
 
2012-10-13 08:45:56 PM

BarkingUnicorn: meanmutton: fusillade762: C'mon now, those for-profit prisons aren't going to fill themselves.

What percent of prisoners in the US are housed in for-profit prisons?

1.6 million: Total number of state and federal prisoners in the United States as of December 2010, according to the Bureau of Justice Statistics

128,195: Number of state and federal prisoners housed in private facilities as of December 2010

Link


Florida governor Lex Luthor gave a mighty attempt at doubling that number earlier this year. Didn't work.
 
2012-10-13 08:49:34 PM

dahmers love zombie: BarkingUnicorn: meanmutton: fusillade762: C'mon now, those for-profit prisons aren't going to fill themselves.

What percent of prisoners in the US are housed in for-profit prisons?

1.6 million: Total number of state and federal prisoners in the United States as of December 2010, according to the Bureau of Justice Statistics

128,195: Number of state and federal prisoners housed in private facilities as of December 2010

Link

Florida governor Lex Luthor Voldemort gave a mighty attempt at doubling that number earlier this year. Didn't work.


ftfy
 
2012-10-13 08:52:55 PM

iheartscotch: Until we see a shift from the "thug" mentality; that modern culture seems to idolize; we are not going to see a reduction in violence. It's not a gun problem; it's not a racial problem; it's not even a drug problem; what the issue is, is the glorification and exceptance of the criminal elements that have become exceptable in modern culture.

Until that changes; and the factors that started that shift in culture are corrected; violence and lawlessness will only increase.


The only problem with this viewpoint is that it is decreasing. Sorry.
 
2012-10-13 08:56:46 PM

iheartscotch: Until we see a shift from the "thug" mentality; that modern culture seems to idolize; we are not going to see a reduction in violence. It's not a gun problem; it's not a racial problem; it's not even a drug problem; what the issue is, is the glorification and exceptance of the criminal elements that have become exceptable in modern culture.

Until that changes; and the factors that started that shift in culture are corrected; violence and lawlessness will only increase.


If that's true, we also need to eliminate the glorification of winning by cheating investors and employees and customers and voters. If society seems like corrupt hypocrites top to bottom, then choosing street crime is that much easier to rationalize.
 
2012-10-13 09:02:31 PM

Evil Canadian: iheartscotch: Until we see a shift from the "thug" mentality; that modern culture seems to idolize; we are not going to see a reduction in violence. It's not a gun problem; it's not a racial problem; it's not even a drug problem; what the issue is, is the glorification and exceptance of the criminal elements that have become exceptable in modern culture.

Until that changes; and the factors that started that shift in culture are corrected; violence and lawlessness will only increase.

The only problem with this viewpoint is that it is decreasing. Sorry.


I agree; the notion that getting away from the thug culture and fixing the factors that caused it; is a minority view at best.

Until communities stand together to get rid of the violence; until everyone says that enough is enough; the violence will never stop.
 
2012-10-13 09:03:12 PM
I think we need to separate the ideas of deterrent, rehabilitation, and punishment.

For crimes where thought is involved, penalties will generally do as DLZ suggests, with rapidly diminishing returns. That is, casual offenders will be generally deterred by a moderate punishment, and those desperate enough to go through with it will likely do it anyway.

Prison as an institution is but one possible punishment that can act as a deterrent. More law enforcement and programs designed to help who might turn to crime are also deterrents because they can prevent crime in some way.

Prison alone is not and should not be a means of rehabilitating and reforming a prisoner/criminal. The ones that can be helped are few and far between and should be able to enter rehab programs, but expecting a felon entering prison to come out a changed man is not a realistic outcome. For one, our prisons are far too nice and comfortable. Yes, bad shiat happens in there, but you generally have a lot of perks if you play your cards right. Reduce meals to once a day, take away any sense of security and comfort, and make prison a true nightmare, and then maybe more people will take it seriously and reform or be deterred.

This is where punishment comes in. For prison or any punishment to work, it has to be sufficiently impacting. Sending a kid to his room for doing something is bad, but if he has a computer, toys, video games, etc. and is only restricted from coming out, is that really a punishment? Now, sending him to a room without any of these and depriving him is more likely to work.

Ultimately, our prison system and means of handling lawbreakers is really poor as we only warehouse everyone, and make no distinctions in how people are handled. For it to be effective, then the punishment must be separate of the rehabilitation, and such programs must be accessible on a merit basis by a general population of the punished. That is, earn a place where perks and rehab programs aimed at returning you to society are available. fark up, get thrown back in the hole.

Also, the curve of points, as it were, should be skewed by the crime committed. Petty theft and other lesser crimes would make it damn near impossible not to get intone rehab program and fast tracked to get back into society provided adequate progress is made. On the other hand, violent crimes and crimes of particularly heinous nature should be weighted to be damn near impossible for someone to earn perks and a spot in a rehab program.

Recidivism also plays into this because if you come back after a second chance, then it should be much more difficult to earn your way out for a second time. Third time, even harder, etc.

As for crimes that make little sense, like drug busts, legalization and/or genuine rehab programs would be far better than prison terms.
 
2012-10-13 09:05:35 PM

iheartscotch: Evil Canadian: iheartscotch: Until we see a shift from the "thug" mentality; that modern culture seems to idolize; we are not going to see a reduction in violence. It's not a gun problem; it's not a racial problem; it's not even a drug problem; what the issue is, is the glorification and exceptance of the criminal elements that have become exceptable in modern culture.

Until that changes; and the factors that started that shift in culture are corrected; violence and lawlessness will only increase.

The only problem with this viewpoint is that it is decreasing. Sorry.

I agree; the notion that getting away from the thug culture and fixing the factors that caused it; is a minority view at best.

Until communities stand together to get rid of the violence; until everyone says that enough is enough; the violence will never stop.


I think you mean acceptable, not exceptable.

Sorry, pet peeve
 
2012-10-13 09:08:25 PM

Nem Wan: iheartscotch: Until we see a shift from the "thug" mentality; that modern culture seems to idolize; we are not going to see a reduction in violence. It's not a gun problem; it's not a racial problem; it's not even a drug problem; what the issue is, is the glorification and exceptance of the criminal elements that have become exceptable in modern culture.

Until that changes; and the factors that started that shift in culture are corrected; violence and lawlessness will only increase.

If that's true, we also need to eliminate the glorification of winning by cheating investors and employees and customers and voters. If society seems like corrupt hypocrites top to bottom, then choosing street crime is that much easier to rationalize.


That is a factor; but a huge factor was the extreme poverty that some segments of the community found themselves in.

Then came drugs; then quick and easy money. After that; it was only a matter of time before violence started.

Another huge factor was the exceptance of this criminal element; the vilification of all authority figures and the closed nature of the communities themselves.

/ it wasn't so much a hypocracy thing; so much as it was a survival thing
 
2012-10-13 09:14:16 PM

BullBearMS: So which political party should I vote for if I oppose the drug war?

Oh, that's right. Neither of them.

/Both sides are bad
//So stop voting for them


About any party besides the Democratic Party and the Republican Party should do fine.
If you support the two-party system, you are part of the problem. 

Gary Johnson's position on Drugs
 
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