Saturday, October 9, 2010

*Tots and Truth : ""

"There are three kinds of lies:
         Damned Lies;
          and Statistics."
                                                           (Mark Twain)

If I were a pregnant woman today, I would be anxious about bringing a male baby on to the planet. VERY ANXIOUS.

Go ahead: Ignore Mark Twain's warning about statistics, and juxtapose the article (below, suggesting that  the death penalty is a sexist tool of oppression directed primarily against MALES), with Charles M. Blow's article in today's New York Times  (pointing out that each murder in the USA costs taxpayers 17.25 million dollars): And what do you get?


We train males from the moment they are born to use their strength and agility to OVERWHELM others in sports, law enforcement, and the military, and then we WONDER why over 90% of the inmates on Death Row are MALE?

It is almost satanic.

Denial is the most well developed of all human faculties.


Case Study:

Incarceration and the Death Penalty
(1) The Soviet Gulag
(2) Russia Today
(3) The Americas: Central America, Venezuela, Ecuador, Brazil, the United States

Incarceration and capital punishment are among the most gender-selective of all repressive institutions. In most countries of the world, the proportion of those incarcerated and executed is at least 95 percent male, often higher. Although Gendercide Watch does not consider incarceration "gendercidal" in and of itself, in certain extreme cases the associated death-toll may warrant use of the term. Orders of magnitude are also significant in deciding whether to apply the framework to capital punishment. But if the witch-hunts in early modern Europe are considered gendercides against women, then capital punishment -- a far more enduring and destructive institution -- may also qualify.

High Cost of Crime
Published: October 8, 2010
Still Murder Capital of the Industrialized World.

The New York Times

When times get hard and talk turns to spending and budgets, there is one area that gets short shrift: the cost of crime and our enormous criminal justice system. For instance, how much do you think a single murder costs society? According to researchers at Iowa State University, it is a whopping $17.25 million.

Those researchers analyzed 2003 data from cases in Arkansas, Florida, Georgia, North Carolina, New Jersey, Ohio, Oklahoma and Texas and calculated the figure based on “victim costs, criminal justice system costs, lost productivity estimates for both the victim and the criminal, and estimates on the public’s resulting willingness to pay to prevent future violence.” That willingness to prevent future violence includes collateral costs like expenditures for security measures, insurance and government welfare programs. It’s hard to believe that they could calculate the collateral costs with any real degree of accuracy, but I understand the concept.

(They also calculated that each rape costs $448,532, each robbery $335,733, each aggravated assault $145,379 and each burglary $41,288.)

By their estimates, more than 18,000 homicides that the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recorded in 2007 alone will cost us roughly $300 billion. That’s about as much as we’ve spent over nine years fighting the war in Afghanistan. That’s more than the 2010 federal budget for the Departments of Education, Justice, Housing and Urban Development, Health and Human Services, Labor and Homeland Security combined. Does anyone else see a problem here?

Although the annual murder rate in the U.S. has fallen to historic lows, it is still at least twice as high as that of any of the other rich countries in the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development, according to data from the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime. In fact, it’s even higher than in countries like Rwanda, Angola and Mozambique. And there are troubling signs this year as big cities around the country — New York, Philadelphia, Chicago, Detroit — are seeing sharp rises in murder rates.

Our approach to this crime problem for more than two decades has been the mass incarceration of millions of Americans and the industrializing of our criminal justice system. Over the last 25 years, the prison population has quadrupled. This is a race to the bottom and a waste of human capital. A prosperous country cannot remain so by following this path.

Many crimes could have been prevented if the offenders had had the benefit of a competent educational system and a more expansive, better-financed social service system. Sure, some criminals are just bad people, but more are people who took a wrong turn, got lost and ended up on the wrong path. Those we can save.

We have a choice to make: pay a little now or a lot later. Seems like a clear choice to me. But I’m not in Washington where they view clarity as an affliction of the weak.

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