Sunday, March 2, 2014

While we are on the subject...

Previously posted here, we discussed the prison system.  There is another trend in this system.  For profit prisons.  Basically, anyone and their brother can start a company that specializes in incarceration.  You can get a contract with the state (both state and federal governments), and get paid to house inmates.

This is a problem, as it means that if the private prison does not have enough inmates to fulfill its contract it can and will sue.  Hey, they are in it to make money, not punish people, and certainly not to reform/rehabilitate them.  The punishment is taken care of, feed on around 5 bucks a day, if they are lucky. 

You know I do not care for Sheriff Arpaio, he is a relic of a time gone by.  A time when prisoners were punished in almost cruel ways.  A time when we should have learned punishment alone does not work.  I am not saying we should coddle people who are incarcerated, but these people will ultimately be released back into the public.  And with the way he does things, these people are going to come out not wanting to go back, but not necessarily reformed.  Just smarter than when they went in.

For-profit prisons operate in the same way, hey he learned from the private sector.  They do the bare minimal, but making matters worse, the pay isn't that great either.  But this also leads to another problem.  And I am not talking about shoddy pay to put up with people who need to be reformed.

That is, donations to judges and sheriffs.  These people are the backbone of the system, but they are also the weakest link in the system.  But here is what happens in some cases, and this has actually happened.  These for profit companies that run prisons donate.  I mean they really donate to the judges, sheriffs, and prosecutors.  I mean they give till it hurts, with a single goal in mind.  Put people into those offices who will ensure they have an adequate population inside their facilities to turn a good profit. 

Judges sentenced kids, who would otherwise get probation, to jail, in return for kick backs donated to their next campaign.  Prosecutors go that extra mile, and keep pushing for maximums on every little thing.  Sheriffs and their officers looking for any little thing.  It all benefits their donors, so they will do it.  And that is not true justice.  That, my friends, is a police state. 

How do I know so much about the workings of the system.  I studied it, I spent several hours, and at least two years studying just the system.  If given the opportunity, I will spend several more hours, and years studying this system, so that when I get into it, I know what to do to fix it.  The problem is, rather than pay the government directly to operate the system, we want it to be free market.  People who can do the best job, for the cheapest price.  That is the problem, we want short cuts, and when it comes to reforming criminals, we cannot take shortcuts. 

Sure some can never be reformed, some will always return to their ways.  Then we need someplace to house them long term.  But that is not something that should be done first.  First we need to see if we can get these people to contribute to society in a positive way, something that will never happen while we have for profit systems in place.

Don't believe me?  Go to Google, type in the search "Kids for Cash".  See what comes up.  Two judges selling off kids for things that are nothing to for profit prisons.  And if you think they are the only ones, you are fooling yourself.  The thing is, we don't often hear about corruption in the system.  If it became known just how badly the system was compromised we would be forced to act.  As it stands, we are able to turn our eyes to it.  Hide in the notion that the system works, but it is broken.  It is unable to be rebooted or fixed.  It will need to be completely replaced.