Tuesday, August 07, 2007

Great ideas from politicians

Last week was a hard week to be against the prison-industrial complex. I was inclined to say things like: "I want prisons to be abolished, but Brad Shipton, Bob Schollum and Peter McNamara should be the last three allowed out." Which is a completely unprincipled, unsustainable position.

This week, it's much easier, since the government jerked its knees and announced that it would double the maximum penalty for belonging to a gang to ten years jail.

There are many, many different ways you could attack this idea. But I'm going to start with the most basic. Is there a single piece of evidence that making gangs illegal makes them less powerful? Or that prisons stop gangs?

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