I just sent this off to the governor of California. Arnold is having a lot of problems with prison reform. Perhaps this will give him some ideas on how to effectively deal with the problem.
Saturday, December 23, 2006
I couldn't sleep this morning. It's now 1:40 a.m. and I just watched part of a TV show entitled "Lockup". It outraged me beyond belief that we are paying for these animals, who have been sentenced to long terms in prison including life without parole, to be "rehabilitated" inasmuch as they are encouraged to "behave" so that they can be "released” into the general prison population. My immediate question is "Why?" As I see it, there is no reason to allow criminals to have any type of relationship with other criminals. All that results from such stupidity is to educate criminals on how to be better criminals. It also is the source of riots and mobs scenes. Libraries are full of books that document criminal's stories of how they learned to be better at beating the law in jail. And we're paying for it!
To my way of thinking, there is only one solution to crime. Anyone who is sentenced to jail time for any crime whatsoever should be in solitary confinement. Criminals inflict cruel and unusual punishment on their victims regardless of the severity of the crime. If you've never been the victim of a crime such as a mugging or a burglary of your home or a drunk driver killing one of your relatives, you probably have difficulty understanding it's cruel and unusual punishment for being a law abiding member of society. Any way you look at it, prisoners that have been convicted of a crime should not be allowed to learn how to commit more crimes in a more efficient manner. That simply means learning to commit crimes without getting caught. And that's exactly what U.C.I. (University of Crime Instruction) does for the bumbling fools that get caught. It makes them "better" criminals because they learn from old time criminals how to beat the system. They should also not be allowed to stir up trouble amongst the prison population. After all, isn't that their history from their earliest times in school?
When you actually delve into the prison systems that allow interaction between all members of a prison population, you find that about 80% of the populations of every prison system are recidivists (repeat offenders). When you study the prison systems that deal with solitary confinement, the repeat offenders are much less. When interviewing these former inmates, the information comes out that most of them swear up one side and down the other that they don't ever want to go back to prison like that again. Which makes them into good citizens and ex-criminals. Is there a message there? I think so.
Prison problems, particularly riots, are caused by interaction amongst the inmates. There are no riots in prisons that deal in solitary confinement. Look up the definition of "mob" and "riot" sometime. Both definitions revolve around a "crowd" of people, the definition of which is three or more persons. If you remove the "crowd" you cannot have a mob or a riot. That can only be accomplished in a prison with solitary confinement.
Let's look at how easy it would be to take care of a prisoner in solitary. There should be no meals delivered because nutritious food will come out of a faucet that is turned on for ten minutes three times a day at 6:00 a.m., 12 noon and 6:00 p.m. Don't laugh. Scientists can now produce a 100% nutritional slurry that can be pumped through pipes. It has all of the necessary nutrients to insure healthy living in all humans. Of course, the multi-billion dollar food industry that services just prisons will be really bent out of shape, won't they? The amount of bribery that takes place to insure that a company gets the contract to provide food to a prison is unbelievable. However, it does take place because there is a LOT of money to be made just with this one service. Check it out. People will do just about anything for a lot of money!
All cells should be 100 percent soundproof. One of the things that cause problems is a prisoner who goads other inmates with words. The only communication with a prisoner should be through the television via the computer. A camera mounted on the top of the television is adequate. If people wish to communicate with a relative or friend in prison, they can do it through the use of the computer. Do you realize that this will throw the prison guard union into an absolute frenzy? They won't be needed anymore to escort prisoners to and fro. The number of guards needed will decrease almost to zero and the subsequent savings in payroll will turn out to be astronomical.
How many times have you seen stories about prisoners carrying on about not being able to see their favorite shows on television? What kind of facilities are we running here? Education should be the primary reason for a television in an inmates cell. It should be installed behind bulletproof glass and should be on from 6:00 a.m. until 8:00 a.m. at night with one educational program after another on how to get along in society without being a crook. The inmate is not entitled to any control over what is shown on the television. They are CROOKS, not special members of some fancy club. They are NOT entitled to special privileges. The only control they should be able to exercise is voice commands to look at an educational show. In case you hadn't noticed, voice recognition software is now standard operating procedure for most big companies.
Access to a computer for education only can be provided with a flat table that comes out of the wall with a keyboard that has pressure sensitive keys - nothing that can be removed. The TV becomes the monitor. Fool with the table and it slides back into the wall.
Consider the cost of laundering a prisoner's clothes. If the prisoner does not get out into the elements, why is there need for more than one change of clothes per week, preferably simple clothes made out of paper? What a blow to the garment industry that is making a fortune at our expense to clothe these bums!
A portable shower can be wheeled up to the door of a cell and locked in place. The inmate has ten minutes to undress and take a shower. Soapy water comes out on voice command and rinse water the same way. Air-drying is just as good as towels.
A simple treadmill under a rollback door in the floor of each cell can provide daily exercise that will keep most of the prison population in good physical shape. Simple diagnostic machines can be used to monitor the health of each and every prisoner. Placing the hands on the computer keyboard table can give a very adequate readout of blood pressure. Bunks that fold up into the wall can prevent inmates from lying down when they are supposed to be exercising. A horn in the ceiling can generate a noise loud enough to encourage anyone to exercise when they are supposed to. For those who have mental problems, psychiatric care can be made available via the television since there is absolutely no excuse for face-to-face meetings between criminals and any other human being. They are CROOKS and have ended up in prison because of their anti-social actions. Until they have served their sentence, they should be denied all social amenities. They have given these up by committing crimes against other human beings.
Keep in mind that this is not supposed to be a country club. It's not supposed to be a place that someone would be willing to return to because the living is easier that being out in society making your own way. This is not cruel and unusual punishment when you consider it's a clear and just result for the pain and suffering that the inmates have inflicted on their victims.
Today, we are in the wrong era. In England in the late 1700's and early 1800's, the really hideously bad eggs were hanged and the rest were shipped off to the penal colony in Australia. Since they had no manufacturing base that could build the ships that would take them back to England, they never left Australia. And England became a low crime country. Why do you think the police there used nightsticks and no guns? They didn't need them.
A couple of hundred years from now, when space exploration is really part of the civilized world, humanity is going to come across a planet that is empty with a marginal, earth like climate. Then we can take the criminals, stick a parachute on them and push them out the door. As they go out the door, the message will be "You don't like living and getting along in our society? Well, here's a place where you can build your own. That's if you can survive. Goodbye!"
Now let's address the bleeding hearts who say that "Isolation has been documented as a cause of paranoia, problems with impulse control, extreme motor restlessness, delusions, suspiciousness, confusion, and depression." No fooling! All of those symptoms exist in just about every criminal BEFORE they ever end up in jail. Why do you think they're in prison to start with? I don't care if you've had a hard life, if your father was an alcoholic and your mother was a prostitute. Lots of upstanding citizens of all races, creeds and colors, came into this world under similar circumstances and are doing just fine. Because a person refuses to adapt because life has thrown them a bad hand is no excuse.
Once the word gets out that prison is the last place you want to be, there will be a radical change in the behavior of the young criminal. When they've had a taste of just how bad it can be, most of them will do everything they can to avoid going back. Isn't that true progress?