Wednesday, August 15, 2007

Losing War On Crime

The police are always at a definite disadvantage when it comes to crime. Criminals can decide to perpetrate a crime any place they choose. If the bad guys are fast, they can usually get away before the police arrive. Many new forms of crime only require a computer and an Internet connection. Meanwhile, the police are still trying to make their databases searchable ($423M FBI computer database project and Connecticut police issues). The only thieves that get caught are the very greedy or the very poor. Jack Abramahoff stole millions from Indian Tribes. Tom Delay wrote big checks to the wrong people. Congressman Jefferson had $50K in his freezer.
US Capitol
America's prisons are mostly full of poor people, some rural poor but mostly urban poor. They pulled a knife on somebody or shot somebody or sold drugs. Some guys stole other people's stuff, some women wrote bad checks, one guy was caught kidnapping people. You will not find someone like Paris Hilton sitting among the other women caught drunk driving in LA County. Rich people usually hire a lawyer to get them off the hook or at least into a jail that resembles a country club. Lawyers that poor people get are typically young new public attorneys fresh out of law school or other lawyers that are not good enough to get a job at major law firms.

Yes, there are a few talented lawyers that do some pro bono legal work for the poor. Others work in defense of the public hoping to reach the heights of former New York State district attorney Eliot Spitzer. Overworked public lawyers are overwhelmed with cases across the nation, to say the least. At this point President Bush steps in and orders his attorney Roberto to fire these overworked lawyers. Great way to boost morale in the Justice Department, Mr. President.

The rest of the hoodlums run free in the streets. They make variable-rate mortgages look attractive. They peddle credit cards to people who cannot pay. Real crooks talk old folks into taking a second mortgage on the old homestead. Now the house is worth less and the loan payment keeps going up insanely. First the loan payment was for $980 each month. Now that payment is $2,200 per month. That can't be right? Why won't the bank return my calls?

Crime takes so many forms. One company sells a product known to kill millions every year. Hospitals cannot keep up with the costs associated with just this one product. Health care costs eat up more family money every year. Even worse, every year this company hooks more and more children on tobacco. Crime pays when you have the U.S. Congress bought off.

Years ago organized crime made millions of dollars selling people numbers. One number would get picked each day. The people that bought that number for that day would get some money. The mafia grew fat on the numbers rackets. Today the U.S. States peddle numbers on every street corner. U.S. elected officials figure that people will gamble anyway so why not provide a legal numbers game, legal slot machines, legal horse race betting, and anything else people want. The ultimate cost to society is never considered. The people paid to consider the issues; politicians and public employees, ignore the obvious.

The really talented people go to work for private corporations anyway. Everyone knows that.

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