What to do about crime. Crime is at 40 year lows the newspapers report. A slight uptick was reported last year though. Is crime down? Some point to the improvements in medical technology and ER triage training as a reason for reduced homicides. We also have a far more militarized police and more invasive policing policies today than 50 years ago. Handle's excellent article on the American judicial system is a great read. America's judicial system uses the plea bargaining system to maintain wonderful conviction rates but relabels horrendous crimes with new terms. Raping strangers becomes criminal confinement and sexual battery and you are out in three years. Murder becomes assorted levels of manslaughter, and that is if witnesses talk because snitches get stitches. Gov. Jerry Brown in California is asking DAs to not prosecute second offenses of criminals because of the state's three strikes law. Might I suggest one government policy change to engage the community and attempt to prevent crime, like Alexander, by cutting the knot rather than untying it. End all government aid, loans, social services to the criminals immediate family and the head of the household they may live in.
Execution and exile were good at keeping crime low in the past. Exile is not used anymore, execution is a joke in America and jail is now criminal college. I would love to bring back those two punishments at high rates, but that is doubtful and still will not do much to prevent crime. We're not going to fix the criminal afterwards, so why not try punishments that create incentives and punish those who enable and breed criminals. Ever know anyone sent to jail? Besides the horror of prison life, the family on the outside sees income loss, legal debts pile up and a big hit to their way of life. What of our underclass? When you are at the bottom of the socioeconomic order, you do not see a loss from someone going to jail. Uncle Sam is already funding your life. Funds never stop. There is no incentive to fostering good behavior in borderline children or young men. Per the progressives, there is nothing genetic to crime; it's a matter of culture and society, so why not tinker with the culture that surrounds them.
This is a punishment mechanism but also a crime prevention system. Many criminals, regardless of race, come from single parent households. The book Freakonomics pointed out the weird fact that drug dealers often lived with their moms despite working the corner and having some status in the hood. My proposal hits at that weird fact. A criminal is arrested and later sent to jail, we check his address, who is he living with, and boom, all programs end. Money stops to all who claim the same residence. EBT cards run dry. The first of the month yields no new checks. If everything is electronic now, a click of a button can end the flow of money instantaneously. Now this could make people disown rougher kids, but would that not give the rougher teen or young man or woman an incentive to straighten up rather than live ostracized by their community? Without a network of loose or strong support, someone will have to conform their behavior to receive support. In between prison stints, women might choose protected sex with their parolee paramours or hit up the abortion clinics at even greater rates than they do now.
Why did old tribes set fine systems up for severe crimes that were not punishable by death? The fines were usually too high for just one man to handle. The fine would have to be paid not just by the transgressor but his kin or he would face death/exile. What do you think the group pressure was to not commit crime or the group approach to laws and customs? I do not think it was a grey area of enabling criminals, no snitching and various other kow-towing behaviors to the criminal element. If we want to target the community that enables these criminals, we need to have the community feel an effect. Sure, most crime is directed at that same community, but the criminal's mom will be out there to claim he was a good boy despite murdering seven on a killing spree. The mother in that link had a restrainign order on the very son she claimed was a good boy. That "he a good boy" routine comes chronologically before the 10,000th candlelight vigil to end the violence. In a matrilineal and matrilocal tribe, which the modern American welfare class culture is, the effects have to be felt by the tribe leaders: the women. Those women need to have their benefits removed. Women who have kids and live with those criminals have to see an economic punishment for procreating with those men. The cadre of social workers who brave those hoods for forty-five minutes of anger management therapy need not stop by.
This is a reversal of the modern welfare society's treatment of dysfunction. Most of the Great Society was socializing the costs and burdens of mistakes and bad judgment on the backs of our formerly great society's economic production. That did not solve the dysfunction but created a support system for it. Let us try something new. Localize the costs and consequences. Humans respond to incentives. Modern policy wonks have reduced all problems to how much money it will take to fix it. Call their punditry bluff. Once one mother of four by four men has her teenage son jailed for a felony and see her benefits evaporate, what is she going to tell the younger children? What is she going to tell the other women in her apartment complex? How does an addict react when their network of support is removed?
It would be a rough transition period for possibly a generation, but mothers can be coached into teaching their kids anything especially when survival is on the line. In our criminal underclass, mothers are the molders of children due to the absence of fathers. Similar to my modest birth control proposal, this will never happen despite the technological capabilities of the modern state. The state works to encourage this dysfunction. A broken society needs a bigger government and social welfare system. It is a feature not a bug to create more problems to then demand more government balms and potions. The purpose of a government should be for the safety, security and prosperity of its people, but the purpose of our government is to beget more government.