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2012 November 06 Tuesday
Convictonomics: Revoke Citizenship And Deport Criminals

Writing for Wired David Wolman advocates for a rational economic approach to deciding how long to lock up criminals. He does not go nearly far enough. Rather than release criminals because they cost too much to look up I say we should think more outside the box and move criminals off our books. What the British did with criminals sent to early Australia serves as a useful template.

Our criminal justice system is a disaster. The incarceration rate in the US quadrupled between 1980 and 2000. It now costs more than $70 billion a year to keep 7 million people behind bars, on parole, or on probation.

Reality check: Is $70 billion a lot of money? The US economy is about $15 trillion for GDP. Well, incarceration and other controls on felons cost us less than one half of one percent of GDP per year. We spend over 10 time as much on defense spending. Even that is probably an underestimate since a lot of national security spending is spread over different budgets to hide its scale. Since criminals are a greater threat than other nations it seems clear that we should shift spending from defense to criminal control.

Convictonomics: Good idea. But we need a non-wimpy approach.

What we need is convictonomics: a coldly rational economics-based approach to crime and punishment.

What would a non-wimpy approach to convictonomics look like? We'd seek to shift the cost of dealing with criminals onto the criminals. How? Create separate countries for criminals and deport criminals to those countries. Get criminals off our books. We do not need them in civilized society. Strip them of citizenship and send them to different countries ranked by the threat they pose.

How to create countries for criminals? Buy up islands and pay smaller populations to move elsewhere. Then put the criminals on those islands. This could even be done with the Alaskan Aleutian islands.

Share |      By Randall Parker at 2012 November 06 08:40 PM 


Comments
Mike M said at November 6, 2012 11:19 PM:

OK, but it would be more appropriate to send them to an island in a blue state like Hawaii.

bbartlog said at November 7, 2012 4:22 AM:

Heinlein wrote a short story along those lines: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Coventry_(short_story)
Historically some prisons have also evolved into a kind of independent quasi-city, e.g. Mexico's Pueblito prison.
However, your proposal doesn't really make sense in a world where productive land is becoming scarce. The British case is something of a historical anomaly, where they happened to gain control of a vast chunk of previously unexploited territory. It was hostile enough and far away enough that people didn't want to move there voluntarily (much) but rich enough in resources that people who were sent there could not only support themselves, but produce a surplus. Not only that, but from my vague memories of reading 'The Fatal Shore', the Brits were actually moderately sensible in who they ended up sending: political agitators, whores, and young petty crooks, yes, but not axe-murdering psychos or older people with a lifelong history of crime.
In today's world, you'd either have to give the criminals some crappy land (sort of like what we did to the native Americans) and watch them create a miserable Bantustan, or else give them some decent land and have people complain about the considerable unfairness of giving felons the equivalent of frontier claim.

Black Death said at November 7, 2012 7:45 AM:

I think $70 billion is a small price to pay for keeping violent criminals off the streets. The cost of allowing them to run free and prey on innocent citizens is much higher.

I've always liked the movie "Escape from New York," starring Kurt Russell. It depicts the island of Manhattan as sort of a free-range maximum security prison, surrounded by high walls and plenty of heavily armed guards. (The scene near the end where Donald Pleasence machine guns Isaac Hayes on the George Washington bridge is especially pleasing). Anyway, we should create our own island fortress for the long-term incarceration of violent criminals. I always thought spots in the Aleutians such as Attu or Kiska might serve admirably. Lots of land (Attu is over 50 miles long), completely isolated, probably the worst weather in the world - what could be better?

Check it Out said at November 7, 2012 2:47 PM:

"The incarceration rate in the US quadrupled between 1980 and 2000. It now costs more than $70 billion a year to keep 7 million people behind bars, on parole, or on probation."

I know, it is alarming, but not because of the cost in dollars, but the cost in human suffering.

"Create separate countries for criminals and deport criminals to those countries. Get criminals off our books. We do not need them in civilized society. Strip them of citizenship and send them to different countries ranked by the threat they pose."

Childish and shallow. Randall, remember that a country's justice system is not based on vengance or punishment, but on readaptating people back into society. We have learnt this centuries ago -even if some have forgotten- from the Enlightenment that marked the difference from the thousand-year cruel dark ages. If a society has such high rate of incarceration and criminals, you can swear by your god that there's something wrong with the social, political and economic system.

Randall Parker said at November 7, 2012 7:15 PM:

Mike M,

Hawaii is too small. Plus, why ruin such an excellent vacation spot? Better to ruin some island that either has terrible climate or high crime already.

Check it out, I can't imagine why you say this:

Randall, remember that a country's justice system is not based on vengance or punishment, but on readaptating people back into society.

Rehabilitation does not work. Recidivism rates are very high. Many methods have been tried to lower recidivism rates with little success to show for it.

Punishment? Not the top goal but certainly a worthy one. Protection of the innocent is the top goal of a criminal justice system. That works two ways: A) get dangerous people away from the innocent and B) to serve as a disincentive for law breaking.

bbartlog,

Yes, I read The Fatal Shore too. Terrible to waste Australia on criminals when the Aleutian Islands await. Canada, Russia, Britain, Norway, and other countries have suitable islands. Look at maps. How about St. Lawrence Island? Google Maps doesn't even have a name for this Alaskan island. The Brits could turn Ascension Island into a penal colony. 34 square miles. Lots of room for criminals. The Brits could deport all their criminals to Ascension Island. Ship in materials to build high rises for them and easily a few million could be stacked into the place.

The US has some unoccupied islands in warmer weather too that used to get used for military purposes. Check out Uninhabited Pacific Islands as tallied by Wikipedia. Johnston Atoll is 1 square mile. How about high rise apartments for criminals on Johnston Island? Manhattan has 70k people per square mile. But other cities have much higher densities.

Stephen said at November 7, 2012 7:29 PM:

Why do you create so many criminals in the first place? It seems like the US goes out of its way to criminalise everything.

Check it Out said at November 8, 2012 4:22 PM:

If rehabilitation does not work, then we have to change the system. There have clearly been great examples of low, almost free crime societies. Even if they are not our great blessed America, they must've done something right that we ain't doing.

I really hope you watch this, before they accuse you or me of some idiotic "crime" like staring lustfully at a girl's cute ass or selling lemonade without a permit or something like that.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nBiJB8YuDBQ

ziel said at November 8, 2012 5:29 PM:

Check it Out - you really must be living in a bubble. You haven't noticed the difference between high-crime locales - the kinds of people take great effort to avoid and pay enormous sums to avoid living in - and low-crime locales? Crime-free societies are those that have near-zero criminals living in them. The only thing they've done right is taking great pains to make sure no criminals take up residence. And if any criminals to crop up, they treat them very, very harshly (ala Singapore).

Fubu said at November 8, 2012 7:46 PM:

"If a society has such high rate of incarceration and criminals, you can swear by your god that there's something wrong with the social, political and economic system."

NAMs are the problem, you stupid git.

Big Bill said at November 9, 2012 4:00 AM:

Check it Out, wherever NAMs move, crime follows and whites are ethnically cleansed.

That is why NAMs are constantly trying to escape other NAMs around the world and move to European and Asian countries, cities, towns and villages where they can be taken care of by Europeans and Asians.

NAMs know what needs to be done to NAM criminals. Search www.modernghana.com for "lynch" and read the plethora of articles. NAMs are going to have to do something. NAMs have ethnically cleansed Europeanss from huge portions of Chicago, Detroit, Camden, St. Louis, Baltimore, Philadephia, not to mention Malmo, Oslo, and Brussels. There are now some 750 ZUS (Zones Urbaine Sensibiles) across France where NAMs permit no central government authority (or Frenchmen) to enter. [The French government thoughtfully provides maps of each ZUS: http://www.danielpipes.org/blog/2006/11/the-751-no-go-zones-of-france]

Back in the USA, having murdered/expelled/ethnically cleansed Europeans from American cities, NAMs are now moving out through the rest of the country to set up Obama-funded Section 8 colonies. In this way they can ethnically cleanse the smaller cities and towns. There just aren't enough Europeans left in the cities they have consumed and convulsed to take care of them. NAMs from the now-closed Robert Taylor and Cabrini Green projects in Chicago have been settled all across Illinois and Wisconsin. From Appleton, to Milwaukee, From Wausau to Galesburg, from Peoria to Rock Island. The ethnic cleansing never stops.

Big Bill said at November 9, 2012 4:24 AM:

"If rehabilitation does not work, then we have to change the system. There have clearly been great examples of low, almost free crime societies. Even if they are not our great blessed America, they must've done something right that we ain't doing."

Sure there are, Check it Out. My small white town was crime-free, too. So was Oslo, Norway until the NAMs started moving in and gang-raping the local women. In London, before the post-war NAM invasion, a girl could walk home after work, alone at 3 AM in perfect safety.

Heck, in Dharavi, the largest, poorest slum in the world people live non-violently. making less than $250 per year. Heck, Dharavians have jobs like hammering tin cans flat for a living and they don't rape and pillage. No one has any problem finding peaceful European and Asian towns and cities with "systems" that work. It is impossible to find a working "system" in Africa. What makes Africa violent is Africans.

So, no, we don't need to "change the system". It works just fine for us. Further, no one has any idea how to "change" it for NAMs. Even further, even if we did have the magic knowledge to change NAMs into Europeans we cannot afford the armies of social workers that Geoffrey Canada (Harlem Project) says are necessary. We cannot to reeducate entire black communities to "ack white". Bottom line: no "system" works for Africans. Not in Chicago, not in London, not in Malmo, not in Brussels, not in Nairobi, not in Jo'burg, not anywhere in the world.

But on a Deeper level, do we have the moral right to MAKE NAMs "ack white" and not slaughter each other? I say, "No". Let NAMs seek their own level, make their own world instead of Europeans trying to turn them into European clones. Let us respect their cultures and traditions, of which so-called "violence" (by white standards) are the rule. If they want to change and "ack white" they know what they have to do. But if they want to continue living their lives in the natural African/Indian way, that is fine, too ... as long as they do it "over there", not "here" where we live.

Which gets us back to ParaPundit's question: where do we send them to live the "violent" (by white standards) life they love so we can live safely in our own land?

Dystopia Max said at November 10, 2012 4:33 AM:

Exile? How about execution? Not a whole lot of recidivism in the dead.

Of course, this involves removing a lot of red tape and giving power to local courts instead of federal, but it's a darn sight better than ruining the last pristine places on earth.

R. Ellenstein said at November 11, 2012 1:49 PM:

The U.S. is already a prison, it's just that the people haven't realized because it has been forced upon them gradually. In fact they have asked for it, just because 3000 thousand of them died in buildings. They see all that surveillance as something good, like cameras in elementary schools spying on kids. And now, just like the Russians under the Soviet rule, they think that outsied their country everybody else is starving and miserable. Americans now flatter themselves and believe that everybody wants to live in their land and become they way they are. They really think that they rule. They are all tough talk, like "execute them", secure the borders, kick ass, invade countries because their leaders have beards, shoot immigrants because they confuse them with criminals.

Americans have grown full of hate and racism, because they don't know who to aim their anger againt. They've become too emotional due to all that Hollywood, Coke and McDonald's garbage they've been feed all their lives. They now believe that they are tough because they talk tough. Even those funny looking chubbies in baggie shorts and colorful caps that you find everywhere in the summer.

The U.S. is already a prison. A very stinky one. You can keep it.

R. Ellenstein said at November 11, 2012 1:56 PM:

Just give Dystopia Max some time before they throw his ass in jail for frowning at the next camera or for being confused with a real criminal. Then he'll find out that prisons are full of innocent without money to pay their way out, unlike those real white-collar criminals he admires so much. When the system finally executes him we'll all realize that the main proof of his inocence came just a little too late. Oooops! they'll say to his loved ones.


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