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davidbfpo
08-26-2012, 11:13 AM
Hat tip to a "lurker" for this article in The Economist, the full title is:
America’s safer streets. The great crime decline continues. No one is sure why

Link:http://www.economist.com/node/21560870


The truth is that no one predicted America’s great crime decline, and no one has a definitive explanation for it. Particularly confounding has been an acceleration in the drop since 2008; many observers thought a poorer country would be a less law-abiding one....an ageing society like the United States should expect to experience less violent crime. Immigration also matters, he says: studies have repeatedly shown that cities with large immigrant populations experience lower rates of violent crime......in states with a particular fondness for imprisoning citizens, such as California, the policy may have done more harm than good.

Some of the comments are interesting.

As Chicago had its own thread a while back:
Most striking is an unexpected spike of gang-related violence in Chicago, where murders are up by 28% so far this year. Against a backdrop of a long-term decline in all crime in the city, as well as a 10% decline for the year, the sudden unrest has caused some alarm.

The previous Chicago thread (2008-2012):http://council.smallwarsjournal.com/showthread.php?t=5319

Bill Moore
08-26-2012, 05:37 PM
http://www.npr.org/2012/01/03/144627627/falling-crime-rates-challenge-long-held-beliefs


And I give a lot of the credit to the police, who were focused on the changing of behavior because we have finally come to appreciate that crime is not caused by, but influenced by, the economy sometimes, by the weather sometimes, by demographics sometimes, by poverty, by racism. Those are influences which for 30 years criminologists, academics and politicians told us that they were the causes of crime.

The cause of crime is quite simple: It's human beings who decide intentionally to commit a crime, criminals, or many others who get caught up in the moment of passion under the inducement of alcohol or drugs and commit crimes. That's what police exist for, to control behavior.

Break


New York City is the principal feeder of the New York state prison system. New York state is, in fact, closing prisons because the prison population has declined. Effectively, it goes back to my point again about the emphasis on police changing behavior, controlling behavior to such an extent you change it.

We are going to be tested in the next several years as a large part of that prison population is being accelerated out of prison because of budget issues, et cetera, and coming back into an environment where, in many cases, they're not going to be under supervision of parole agents or probation agents.

David, this is your area of expertise, but as you know I'm a strong opponent of the poverty theory which now is seriously being challenged with statistics and in my view it has been disproven. A contributing factor yes, but not the cause.

It is a behavior choice, and a choice that can and has been influenced by the actions of the police and community at large. I think we would be remiss not to give police departments that are learning organizations credit where it is due. Obviously good policing isn't the only factor, but I suspect those other factors will at best remain hypothetical and different for each city. I also suspect that the level of crime will increase and decrease over time due to various factors. Some things I would like to see considered are:

- Demographic trends: what has changed from the peak crime time frame to the low crime time frame in age, gender, race, economic status, etc.? This could lend support or a challenge to the birth control/legalized abortion theory.

- Gang distribution/competition: have the gangs come to agreement on turf and what part of the black economy they control? Seems to me from outside observer perspective that much of the violence in high crime areas is competition for control. For example, the violence in parts of Iraq was reduced after one ethnic group was largely forced out of an area.

- Increase or decrease in funding for: police, drug rehabilition, mental hospitals, prison system, etc.

- The impact of our education system on the kids (perhaps installing values in the inner city where some families that are families in name only, do not).

Enforcement is one thing, but it is a crying shame that up to 1% of our populace is locked up at anyone time. We need to take a hard look at ourselves and figure out what is going on.

Fuchs
08-26-2012, 05:54 PM
Some reasons are really simple, such as improved anti-theft protection of cars based on their increasingly complicated electrical system.

Germany's car theft statistic experienced a 60-70% decline of such thefts since the early 90's.


(The again, some Germans would say quite disrespectful things about Poland in this context. ;) )

carl
08-26-2012, 09:05 PM
One of the things that I think is overlooked in trying to figure why crime rates differ from city to city is something that can't be quantified, which is why it may be overlooked. Do the criminals have a degree of de-facto political power? If they do, the critical things that must be done, prosecution, conviction and genuine penalties being given, won't be done. That was one of the things that seemed to exist in New Orleans. Criminals who fled to Houston after Katrina were shocked that they were actually going to be locked up for a long time for things that would have gotten them little or no time in New Orleans. It seemed to indicate that the crooks and all their relatives and friends were having a real effect on how the law was enforced in New Orleans.

I saw this once in a minor way. A very high ranking police officer I knew retired and ran for magistrate judge. One of appeals he made to voters was not what you would have expected from a high ranking retired cop. He said that he would make sure people who came before him were dealt with more leniently. He did that because he expected it to get votes. In a minor way he was appealing for the votes of law breakers.

I wonder if something similar has happened in Chicago. I looked at the thread David linked to and found these quotes.

Majormarginal said this.


We have had a version of Compstat for years. We also have courts that consider enforcement of broken windows theory arrests to be Police harassment. Chicago Officers have been in Federal Court facing civil charges of violating civil rights. In my experiences the truth means nothing in Federal Court.

Our State's Attorney's office has to approve felony charges except in the cases of drug offenses. Felony charges are usually not approved. Even in cases of battery on a police officer unless there are serious injuries sustained by the officer felony charges will not be approved. Offenses committed outside of Cook County will often result in felony convictions that would not even go to felony court in Cook County.

An arrest situation can result in the death of an officer, time spent in Federal Court answering civil rights charges, injury, or prison for the officer. If you want to feel betrayed by your country be a cop in Federal Court.

The vast majority of shootings I have encountered involved players who would still be in prison if they served their full sentences after conviction.

We do not lack the physical and moral courage to do our jobs. The entire system is dysfunctional.

Watcher in the Middle said this.


Matt, a bigger part of the problem is Cook County government. Remember, the City of Chicago doesn't run the judicial system - it's Cook County or State of Illinois. There's where the real problems exist. The corruption and patronage is so bad in those areas, and it has so hamstrung law enforcement efforts in different areas, that I am just amazed that people just sit there and take it.

And Zenpundit said this.


What Chicago does not have - and what you will not see due to Daley machine alliances with organized crime, including street gangs - is gang control

So it may be that the problem in Chicago has more to do with the local political climate than with how well the cops are doing their jobs or what specific laws are on the books. This is all a guess on my part from watching from afar. What do others think of this idea?

Majormarginal
08-26-2012, 11:09 PM
With the increased quality of anti theft features on cars carjacking has increased.

Fuchs
08-26-2012, 11:59 PM
With the increased quality of anti theft features on cars carjacking has increased.

Not in my place...

Bill Moore
08-27-2012, 01:25 AM
Posted by Carl


So it may be that the problem in Chicago has more to do with the local political climate than with how well the cops are doing their jobs or what specific laws are on the books. This is all a guess on my part from watching from afar. What do others think of this idea
?

I think it can definitely be a factor. Friends in NYC told me the mob was alive and well, but due to an under the table agreement that don't conduct visible crimes in the streets because the people don't want to see the crime. The crime is still there, but not visible, and not accounted for statistically (good ole measures of effectiveness and measures of performance, they make liars out of all of us). Not sure how much this is exaggerated, but it seems reasonable.

Maybe this what Covey would call the third alternative?

Fuchs
08-27-2012, 01:55 AM
I think it can definitely be a factor. Friends in NYC told me the mob was alive and well, but due to an under the table agreement that don't conduct visible crimes in the streets because the people don't want to see the crime. The crime is still there, but not visible, and not accounted for statistically (good ole measures of effectiveness and measures of performance, they make liars out of all of us).

We had something similar in Germany.

Albanian, Russian and even Chinese organised crime took over red light districts et cetera during the 90's, often times with a degree of brutality that made our German 80's gangsters look nice.
The unofficial response was to allow the rise of the "Hell's Angels" and "Bandidos" so-called "rocker" gangs, who were German organised crime gangs, albeit even using official clubs. The "rocker" gangs took over red light districts, and in turn made them calm, peaceful and chased away the overt drug dealers and addicts so police would tolerate their business (and business would prosper with more customers!).

That gentlemen's arrangement broke down when several chapters of Hell's Angels and Bandidos clashed in an unacceptable way. Authorities would have tolerated indoor brawls, but some idiots went so far as to use a bazooka.
That clearly went beyond the limit, and authorities began to enforce Landfrieden (state monopoly on violence, outlawing of feuds) again.
Authorities had accumulated enough intel on the German-language criminals (easier than with Albanians et cetera!) to crack down thoroughly in some cities.
The stupid chapters were dissolved, the remaining ones had learnt the lesson.


Meanwhile, Germany is still a typical exile and money laundering place for Italian Mafia, but they, too, learnt after some murders during the late 90's to be invisible again.

Bill Moore
08-27-2012, 02:43 AM
Fuchs,

That was an educational post. I was aware of Hell's Angels going global, I had no idea that the Bandidos went global. Would love to read how and why that happened. Let's see I'm in Germany and I want to open a Franchise, McDonalds or Bandidos? I am poking fun at a serious issue, but seriously would like to understand how they go global. I would assume if they're trafficking drugs or people they would just make a deal with another crime family or gang in that country, but doesn't appear to be the case.

I was aware of the Eastern European mafias throughout Western Europe, but didn't consider the challenge that their language presents, another excellent point. However, it is a point I am well aware of in the U.S. with the Russia and Chinese (among other nationalties) mobs. I also wonder if a lot of crime is happening in these communities that doesn't get reported because they're scared to do so, or have a hard time finding a police officer that speaks their language? Perhaps a bit of a reach, but I suspect it is a still a factor.

carl
08-27-2012, 03:58 AM
I also wonder if a lot of crime is happening in these communities that doesn't get reported because they're scared to do so, or have a hard time finding a police officer that speaks their language? Perhaps a bit of a reach, but I suspect it is a still a factor.

That isn't a reach at all. That is definitely a factor. In this country the reluctance comes from fear of being deported if the victim is an illegal. If illegals are commonly dealt with, a lot more can be gotten out of them if they are assured that their immigration status is immaterial and local and state officers don't much care about Fed laws. That applies to victims. For bad guys, things are different.

slapout9
08-27-2012, 05:18 AM
Toffler was right after all!
In general (I say this very cautiously) the recent crime decrease is because there are more unemployed males at home ready and willing to defend there homes and property and or give good descriptions that the Police can act on quickly. Criminals don't like defended targets and they don't like being identified. At the same time theft of copper from unguarded businesses has gone through the roof. Some crimes against persons (personal attacks) have gone up at least in my area.

Fuchs
08-27-2012, 12:24 PM
Would love to read how and why that happened.

One of the murders that triggered the crackdown was rewarded with the permission to open a new Hell's Angels chapter in a city in Poland.

It appears that's how it works.

uwew
08-27-2012, 05:38 PM
Fuchs,

That was an educational post. I was aware of Hell's Angels going global, I had no idea that the Bandidos went global. Would love to read how and why that happened. Let's see I'm in Germany and I want to open a Franchise, McDonalds or Bandidos? I am poking fun at a serious issue, but seriously would like to understand how they go global. I would assume if they're trafficking drugs or people they would just make a deal with another crime family or gang in that country, but doesn't appear to be the case.


Some German clubs -most remarkably Hannover's "Bones"- became part of the Hells Angels. That put pressure on the remaining clubs to either join the Angels or find some international affiliation. Enter Bandidos (from Denmark AFAIK). Since then many more local crime crime gangs have seen the pros to openly wearing colors and now we have Outlaws and Mongols as well.

And it looks like the German chapters of the Outlaw MCs are cooperating with other international organizations too. The former president of the Angel's most important chapter in Germany had a club in Hannover's Steintor. This building houses an Italian cafe too. This cafe calls itself "Little Italy" and looks like Tony Soprano's Satriale's. I am sure that there is a message in this ;) .


I was aware of the Eastern European mafias throughout Western Europe, but didn't consider the challenge that their language presents, another excellent point. However, it is a point I am well aware of in the U.S. with the Russia and Chinese (among other nationalties) mobs. I also wonder if a lot of crime is happening in these communities that doesn't get reported because they're scared to do so, or have a hard time finding a police officer that speaks their language? Perhaps a bit of a reach, but I suspect it is a still a factor.
No, it is a widespread problem. Many immigrants are either scared or distrust local police and they have good reason for both.

Fuchs
08-27-2012, 05:49 PM
On top of that there's the impossibility to infiltrate foreign nationals gangs. How do you find a policeman to infiltrate an Albanian gang or a Chinese gang?

The Chinese triads even have pseudo-secret (=not widely understood) finger signs for some communication which makes police work even more difficult. Only specialists are effective and a microphone or even a single camera are not sufficient.

The Italians in Germany largely limit themselves to money laundering - very difficult to deal with. The typical German restaurant or bar has a third of its earnings as grey income, invisible to the tax collectors. All you need to do for money laundering in such a context is to tell the tax authorities your actual, correct turnover...

uwew
08-27-2012, 06:51 PM
On top of that there's the impossibility to infiltrate foreign nationals gangs. How do you find a policeman to infiltrate an Albanian gang or a Chinese gang?

The Chinese triads even have pseudo-secret (=not widely understood) finger signs for some communication which makes police work even more difficult. Only specialists are effective and a microphone or even a single camera are not sufficient.

The Italians in Germany largely limit themselves to money laundering - very difficult to deal with. The typical German restaurant or bar has a third of its earnings as grey income, invisible to the tax collectors. All you need to do for money laundering in such a context is to tell the tax authorities your actual, correct turnover...

According to BKA's Lagebild OK 2010 the Italians are ranked third, with 30 groups that were investigated. If this report is true, their main activities are drug trafficking and counterfeiting. But the official statistics looked always a bit optimistic to me. Already during the 80s there was widespread racketeering of Italian restaurants and businesses in Germany. If you are interested, read Dagobert Lindlaus "Der Mob" about international OK in Germany during that time. Since the German public and officials are in a state of denial about organized crime, I can see no reason why anything should have changed.

Steve Blair
08-27-2012, 07:34 PM
That isn't a reach at all. That is definitely a factor. In this country the reluctance comes from fear of being deported if the victim is an illegal. If illegals are commonly dealt with, a lot more can be gotten out of them if they are assured that their immigration status is immaterial and local and state officers don't much care about Fed laws. That applies to victims. For bad guys, things are different.

And it's always been a factor. Nothing new there, really.

davidbfpo
09-04-2012, 08:43 PM
Chicago's leading police blogsite:http://secondcitycop.blogspot.co.uk/ Not sure why it has a UK address, normally it is the other way round for those who can be controversial.


CompStat is under fire everywhere: Milwaukee has been caught downgrading serious assaults; New Jersey cities were caught lying; New York is about to pay Officer Adrian Schoolcraft $50 million for his whistle blowing on the CompStat fraud while two New York professors (one being John Eterno a retired NYPD Captain and Eli Silverman) have a book that spells out, step-by-step, how CompStat fudges numbers and lies to the public, all for political gain. Chicago politicians and police brass have bought into the system that may cost taxpayers millions in the years to come. And why is it that the FBI won't accept Chicago crime statistics for their annual crime report?

Wiki on NYPD Adrian Schoolcraft and his current civil legal claim:http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Adrian_Schoolcraft

Website for the book 'The Crime Numbers Game: Management by Manipulation' :http://unveilingnypdcompstat.blogspot.co.uk/ and Amazon:http://www.amazon.com/The-Crime-Numbers-Game-Manipulation/dp/1439810311

Steve Blair
09-04-2012, 08:48 PM
I think the address may have more to do with your location than that of the blog. It comes up as secondcitycop.blogspot.com in the US.

They've talked about Compstat a great deal on that blog, and it's never really been in good terms. It's an interesting read for those with an interest in some practices of US law enforcement and Chicago politics.

Majormarginal
09-05-2012, 04:47 AM
A great deal of police work is politics.

Bill Moore
09-05-2012, 07:02 AM
The fudging of the numbers is an enduring political behavior. We of course do the same thing in Afghanistan to paint the picture we want people to believe. This is one reason I'm strongly opposed to our over reliance on measures of effectiveness, it is just another vehicle for the brass to mislead the American people and Congress, which in turn provides more support for ill conceived policies and strategies. Until we as a nation learn to value the truth we will not effectively evolve our approaches to address serious security problems whether they be crime or insurgencies.

Majormarginal
09-05-2012, 11:49 PM
"over reliance on measures of effectiveness" is a great phrase.

Dayuhan
09-06-2012, 12:15 AM
"over reliance on measures of effectiveness" is a great phrase.

If you torture statistics enough they will tell you whatever you want to hear.

Fuchs
09-06-2012, 12:33 AM
Statistics don't lie to people.
People lie to people.

Bill Moore
09-06-2012, 05:08 AM
People lie to themselves.

slapout9
09-06-2012, 05:24 AM
Adult Warning Label! this is considered controversial by many people but the research is supposedly top notch.


Link to University of Chicago explanation of the crime drop.
http://pricetheory.uchicago.edu/levitt/Papers/DonohueLevittTheImpactOfLegalized2001.pdf

carl
09-06-2012, 12:58 PM
Maybe rather than looking at why crime dropped, it would be more fruitful to look at why crime increased in the 60s and 70s. Those were the years the welfare state really took off and with it corrosive effects upon family structure. Those were also the years affected by the Warren court and the sort of change in view about what caused crime. If I remember correctly crime had been diminishing during the years prior to those decades.

So perhaps one of the reasons crime has been going down lately is it just took the country some time to get back on the track it had been on prior to the 60s and 70s.

I am listening to Thomas Sowell's The Vision of the Anointed and that prompted this thought (he may have actually said that but I haven't finished it yet).

davidbfpo
09-06-2012, 07:47 PM
Moving from the USA to Germany regarding organised crime, specifically biker gangs. First a news report (background to site not researched, perhaps our German readers can assist there? It appears anti-establishment):http://www.heise.de/tp/artikel/37/37477/1.html

Oddly the official German state response appears to have "leaked" to the Hells Angels; the cited report is in German and its size defies Google translation:
A "sub-committee leadership, commitment and fight against crime" (UA FEK) had established a federal-state task force "crime-fighting strategy Rocker conceptual framework" (BLPG BR-RK). The aim of the project group is the coordination of joint action against rocker crime. She has released a document that says, "Report of the federal-state task force of the UA FEK 'Rocker crime reduction strategy - conceptual framework' [BLPG BR-RK]". It comes from the Ministry of the Interior and Sports of Rhineland-Palatinate, is characterized as "VS - ONLY FOR OFFICIAL USE (iS IFG not able to be released)," and it started a few weeks ago on a publicly accessible website of the Hells Angels . It looks real.

Bill Moore
09-06-2012, 07:54 PM
Posted by Carl
Maybe rather than looking at why crime dropped, it would be more fruitful to look at why crime increased in the 60s and 70s.

I suspect part of the answer is this is when we implemented a number of new drug laws, and I'm sure we created other laws that turned previously legal behavior into now illegal behavior. If there was no war on drugs it is unlikely we have seen abuse evolve into meth and crack and the current crime epidemic that fosters. We're not reducing drug abuse with the drug war, but we are filling up our prisons, and pushing real criminals (rapists, murders, etc.) back into the streets because the prisons are full and prosecuters are focused on lesser crimes.

carl
09-06-2012, 08:29 PM
Bill:

I am thinking there is more a big cultural thing going on. The murder rate peaked at around 9.7 in 1933 then fell pretty steadily until it started to climb again in the 60s and stayed at high rate sort of near the 1933 rate from the 70s to the 90s.

The early part of the century saw the urbanization of the country. Mass immigration from Europe and mass migration from the South to the North and from other parts of the country to the West. We handled all that then comes the 60s and everything starts to go to hell again for about 20-30 years until we began to get a handle on it again.

Improved policing may be part of our culture getting a handle on the thing again.

Fuchs
09-06-2012, 08:38 PM
Moving from the USA to Germany regarding organised crime, specifically biker gangs. First a news report (background to site not researched, perhaps our German readers can assist there? It appears anti-establishment):http://www.heise.de/tp/artikel/37/37477/1.html

Oddly the official German state response appears to have "leaked" to the Hells Angels; the cited report is in German and its size defies Google translation:

Many words with little actual content or a specific accusation.

The author sounds as if he's still under the influence of the experience how certain politicians and authorities pushed for internet censorship under the most flimsy justifications, which were clearly disproved by activists.

( http://boingboing.net/2010/09/30/only-17-of-sites-blo.html )
heise.de - being a news blog with emphasis on internet stuff - kept its readers informed about the so far abortive plans to censor the internet in a way that most traditional media did not; it was leaning against the plans, as was the vast majority of people who had an idea how the internet works and what internet users are capable of.

The authorities (ranging from city top leadership of police to federal minister of the interior) have tested the patience and tolerance of Germans with lots of domestic spying, data collection and even censorship proposals for the last ten years. Lots of people have reacted with adopting a rather critical stance towards this domestic security establishment (which, btw, failed spectacularly in some cases).

It's a bit similar to the far left wing suspicions about police and authorities from the 70's and 80's, but different. This time it's not about a political wing, but rather about a generational conflict.

Fuchs
10-13-2012, 09:06 AM
Massive drug control spending has no effect on addiction rate (http://boingboing.net/2012/10/12/massive-drug-control-spending.html)

http://boingboing.net/wp-content/uploads/2012/10/Screen-Shot-2012-10-12-at-12.18.43-PM.jpg

(Chart shows only federal drug control, $1.5T refers to all costs associated with drug prohibition.)

Bill Moore
10-13-2012, 05:12 PM
The above chart (even if the numbers are exaggerated) prompts a couple of questions that we really need to understand the answers to before we throw more money at this war.

- Why are we waging a war on the drugs in the first place? What is "real" threat?

- Why is the drug problem getting worse after we spent billions on "combating" it?

- Why don't we wage a war on political correctness (both left and right) which include the argument that we have to wage the war in the first place? It is political dogma and the associated propaganda that traps us indefinitely in a bubble of stupidity. Pop the bubble and we'll have freedom of thought which will enable us to actually come up with more intelligent solutions to real problems.

AdamG
10-15-2012, 05:00 PM
Two teenagers were killed and 24 others were wounded across Chicago Saturday night through Sunday morning. Police said 15 of the victims were affiliated with gangs.

http://www.chicagotribune.com/news/local/breaking/chi-2-shot-in-separate-south-side-shootings-20121013,0,5277041.story

tequila
10-15-2012, 05:24 PM
States could be test cases for marijuana legalization (http://seattletimes.com/html/localnews/2019235344_marijuana23m.html)



The test case instead could be Washington, where voters on Nov. 6 will decide whether to directly confront the federal ban on marijuana and embrace a sprawling plan to legalize, regulate and tax sales at state-licensed pot stores.

Speculation on the potential federal blowback is rife.
Would the Obama administration pick a legal fight over states' rights to try to block Initiative 502? Would federal prosecutors charge marijuana growers and retailers, even if they are authorized by state law?

Or would — as some opponents and supporters predict — federal authorities denounce the law but largely leave Washington alone?


Apparently marijuana legalization is on the ballot in Colorado, Washington, and Oregon, and leads in Washington.

Fuchs
10-17-2012, 04:09 PM
http://www.thedailyshow.com/watch/tue-october-16-2012/exclusive---eugene-jarecki-extended-interview-pt--1


http://www.thedailyshow.com/watch/tue-october-16-2012/exclusive---eugene-jarecki-extended-interview-pt--2 (http://www.thedailyshow.com/watch/tue-october-16-2012/exclusive---eugene-jarecki-extended-interview-pt--2)

Firn
10-18-2012, 05:52 AM
States could be test cases for marijuana legalization (http://seattletimes.com/html/localnews/2019235344_marijuana23m.html)



Apparently marijuana legalization is on the ballot in Colorado, Washington, and Oregon, and leads in Washington.

I have to confess it midly irritates me when local papers here make a great fuss of a couple of plants hidden in some forest or some garden. The allocation of law enforcement ressources seems hardly be ideal, especially in the light of the massive scandals which have shaken Italy in those last months.

---

In the so-called Controlling (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Control_%28management%29) courses I enrolled a big topic were the limitations of (and manipulatable) key performance targets, especially if they were tied up with a bonus-malus system. We humans are humans and too often like the easier path more. If the pressure is high and the target difficult to achieve (or sometimes out of our reach) the incentives are big to do something about the yard stick. Professional and personal experience have confirmed it.

carl
10-18-2012, 03:42 PM
The above chart (even if the numbers are exaggerated) prompts a couple of questions that we really need to understand the answers to before we throw more money at this war.

- Why are we waging a war on the drugs in the first place? What is "real" threat?

- Why is the drug problem getting worse after we spent billions on "combating" it?

- Why don't we wage a war on political correctness (both left and right) which include the argument that we have to wage the war in the first place? It is political dogma and the associated propaganda that traps us indefinitely in a bubble of stupidity. Pop the bubble and we'll have freedom of thought which will enable us to actually come up with more intelligent solutions to real problems.

There are a lot of rice bowls that would be broken if the current system were to change. The first link that Fuchs provided highlights that. Billions and billions are involved along with all the LE jobs that go with those billions. Combine that with good old fashioned Puritanical moralism (sic) and you have a very firmly established system.

Bill Moore
10-19-2012, 06:20 AM
Carl,

I watched the links Fuchs provided and found them very interesting, but on the other hand little new, since I was very aware of those issues for some time. I conducting a security survey of a U.S. prison in the early 90s to assess the security for putting what we now call a HVI there for a while. Spent a fair amount of time with guards, and they were all critical of the drug war back then for the reasons stated in the video.

The point of the questions were to clarify intent of the war for our national leadership. They need to openly discuss why are we waging it to begin with it? What is the real threat? Why is the problem getting worse after 40 years or so of fighting the drug war? What are the consequences of fighting the drug war?

The world was going to end if we legalized alcohol, but somehow we survived. We haven't outlawed tobacco, just made it tougher to use, yet we manage to survive. We can discourage drug use my limiting job options with drug tests, etc. at much less cost than what appears to be tragic waste of dollars and ruining people's lives with the label of felon if they were busted for drug use. You are right though, that would threaten a lot of livelihoods tied to the drug war.

slapout9
10-19-2012, 10:25 PM
Link to Real News Network interview of Law Enforcement Officers against Prohibition. Never new there was such a group:eek:



http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Kjwv6awznKk&feature=g-all-u

carl
10-20-2012, 01:10 AM
The point of the questions were to clarify intent of the war for our national leadership. They need to openly discuss why are we waging it to begin with it? What is the real threat? Why is the problem getting worse after 40 years or so of fighting the drug war? What are the consequences of fighting the drug war?

Bill:

Sorry I misunderstood.

I think the smart ones have asked all those questions. Their answers to themselves are that it doesn't work and the whole thing needs to be radically changed-ie. legalization to some extent of some to all of it. But they won't admit that openly because they are afraid of the 'But what about the children?' argument.

Here in Colorado the legalization of marijuana is on the ballot. The radio commercials for are what you would expect, it doesn't work, it treats adults like children, tides of money for the cartels and marijuana isn't actually all that bad. The radio commercials against are variations of the 'But what about the children?' argument. We'll see how it plays out.

A fellow I know, a magnificent old gentleman who has done things only a handful of people in the world have done, decided to vote for legalization because he said it just sort of occurred to him that the current course doesn't make any sense. He can't be the only one out there, so maybe things will change.

Fuchs
11-06-2012, 06:43 PM
I cannot confirm this is legit, but it#s certainly interesting if it is:

http://www.good.is/posts/black-and-asian-teens-have-the-lowest-rates-of-drug-use


A study published today in the Archives of General Psychiatry says that black and Asian teens are less likely to use drugs and alcohol than white people their age. In a survey of more than 72,000 young people conducted by Dan Blazer, a psychiatry professor at Duke Medical Center, 39 percent of white teens and 37 percent of Latinos reported having abused substances in the past year, compared to 32 percent of blacks and 24 percent of Asians. When it came to drugs alone, 20 percent of whites, 19 percent of blacks, and 12 percent of Asians reported using.

coupled with


Juvenile Arrest Rate Trends
Drug abuse violation arrest rates were equal for white juveniles and black juveniles in 1980.
Juvenile Arrest Rates for Drug Abuse Violations by Race, 1980-2009
http://pre.cloudfront.goodinc.com/posts/full_1320779870arrestchart.png

makes the whole war on drugs look more like a race war that replaced segregation nation-wide than like actual policing.

ganulv
11-06-2012, 07:54 PM
I cannot confirm this is legit
The journal is published by the AMA (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/American_Medical_Association) and is considered perhaps the flagship U.S. psychiatric journal. That does not necessarily, of course, insure lack of issues in research design, the usual problems inherent in the peer review process, or lack of intellectual integrity on the part of the authors, but I would say it qualifies the article as legit.


[M]akes the whole war on drugs look more like a race war that replaced segregation nation-wide than like actual policing.
False dichotomy!

I have not read the article, but I do wonder how the numbers breakdown by locale. For example, does anyone know if drug-related arrests take place at a higher rate in urban vs. rural areas?

Fuchs
11-06-2012, 10:36 PM
False dichotomy!

Add a "to me" at the end and it'll be impervious to such criticism.

davidbfpo
01-26-2013, 05:39 PM
A catchy title from the NYT (thanks to a Twitter alert). Which opens with:
Now that the United States has the world’s highest reported rate of incarceration, many criminologists are contemplating another strategy. What if America reverted to the penal policies of the 1980s? What if the prison population shrank drastically? What if money now spent guarding cellblocks was instead used for policing the streets?

In short, what would happen if the rest of the country followed New York City’s example?

Link:http://www.nytimes.com/2013/01/26/nyregion/police-have-done-more-than-prisons-to-cut-crime-in-new-york.html?ref=nyregion&_r=0&pagewanted=all

Lots of links to explore.

Personally I wonder if crime and the better criminals have realised street crime is just too dangerous and not so profitable - fraud & forgery for example are generally safer for the criminal. Secondly, by jailing fewer NYC has reduced the educational impact of being in jail.

Bill Moore
01-26-2013, 07:14 PM
http://www.forbes.com/sites/alexknapp/2013/01/03/how-lead-caused-americas-violent-crime-epidemic/

How Lead Caused America's Violent Crime Epidemic


All of it points to one simple idea: violent crime rose as a result of lead poisoning because of leaded gasoline. It declined because of lead abatement policies.

There are three basic reasons why this theory should be believed.

Identified in the article

This quote is relevant to the Effects Based Operations crowd and their faith in measuring observables:


In particular, it’s important because this is precisely the kind of problem that people are uncomfortable about believing. It’s hard for us to see the link between cause and effect when there’s a 20+ year gap between one and the other. Additionally, none of us like thinking that our autonomy as human beings can be destroyed by forces beyond our control that we can’t even see.

But such time lags between cause and effect do exist.

Lot of interesting links at the article below. The article that kicked this off was in Mother Earth News

http://www.motherjones.com/kevin-drum/2013/01/lead-and-crime-linkfest

Lead and Crime: A Linkfest


Baselines vs. crime waves. Lots of things contribute to baseline levels of crime. But lead is uniquely able to explain why there was such a huge rise of crime above the baseline during the 60s, 70s, and 80s, followed by an equally huge reduction back to the baseline in the 90s and aughts.

Big cities vs. small cities. Surprisingly, it turns out that once you reduce exposure to gasoline lead, big cities aren't really all that much more dangerous than small ones after all.

ganulv
01-26-2013, 08:07 PM
http://www.forbes.com/sites/alexknapp/2013/01/03/how-lead-caused-americas-violent-crime-epidemic/

How Lead Caused America's Violent Crime Epidemic

Interesting! But I do wonder if the author has shown that the drop is basically unicausal as opposed to being due to policy changes of which the phasing out of leaded gasoline was but a part? My grasp of statistical methods is too poor to evaluate the findings at that level. :(

Fuchs
01-26-2013, 08:46 PM
Lead poisoning was quite widespread after the early canned food appeared.

A possible test to see if the correlation may point at a causality would be to look up if there was a crime wave 20+ years after introduction of canned food.
More specifically, crime amongst sailors (who ate much canned food AFAIK) should be well-documented (Royal Navy archives go back centuries in amazing detail).

Bill Moore
01-27-2013, 12:11 AM
Interesting observation on the canned food. From a futures perspective I wonder if we'll an upward trend in China and other developing nations that have a growing pollution problem (assuming lead is part of that equation)?

davidbfpo
01-27-2013, 11:22 AM
The exchange on lead in petrol, tins etc made me think of a new thread 'What's lead got to do with it?':D

Fuchs - don't worry a new thread is not coming.:wry:

davidbfpo
04-15-2013, 07:51 PM
A different way of looking at criminal justice and more in the USA, a left-leaning UK think tank has published a short paper to impact policies in the UK. It has some amazing statistics and quotes. This one is a stunner, even if the question "Are you on parole or probation?" features in some of our TV diet of US cops shows here:
The overcriminalisation of America has exacted a stunning toll: when you add those who are on probation or parole to the total number of prisoners, one of every 32 adults is under government control. That is a startlingly large swathe of our population to place in the hands of the government.

Link:http://www.ippr.org/images/media/files/publication/2013/04/criminal-justice-reform-american-right_Apr2013_10616.pdf

Bill Moore
04-16-2013, 05:37 AM
I think our legal system is trending downwards, especially when we detain people for using drugs and have privatized prisons. Selling drugs and the associated violence is a crime, but using drugs is just stupid, and we confuse being stupid with being a criminal and stress our justice system by doing so. For profit prisons equate to a profit incentive to keep people in jail that gains political power over time when those companies that run these prisons gain greater lobbying power with Congress.

However, all that said I think the rate of violent crime based on percentage of the population is higher in both Australia and England than the U.S.? We have a serious and growing problem with gangs, and while arresting and detaining these gang members may by us time, ultimately we have to find a better way to effective intervene and reduce this threat to civil safety. More prisons would indicate to me that we're failing on a deeper level.

davidbfpo
05-02-2013, 12:08 PM
A NYT article, with some surprising figures cited, having worked in an urban area plagued over ten years ago with street robberies for cellphones it tells a familiar story:
In San Francisco last year, nearly half of all robberies involved a cellphone, up from 36 percent the year before; in Washington, cellphones were taken in 42 percent of robberies, a record. In New York, theft of iPhones and iPads last year accounted for 14 percent of all crimes.

Some compare the epidemic of phone theft to car theft, which was a rampant problem more than a decade ago until auto manufacturers improved antitheft technology.

Link:http://www.nytimes.com/2013/05/02/technology/cellphone-thefts-grow-but-the-industry-looks-the-other-way.html?pagewanted=2&_r=0&nl=todaysheadlines&emc=edit_ee_20130502&pagewanted=all

Our experience with the manufacturers action to improve security may not end the problem, rather shift it and sometimes with a higher level of violence to the victim - "home invasions" for the keys for performance cars for example.

Firn
05-02-2013, 03:00 PM
A NYT article, with some surprising figures cited, having worked in an urban area plagued over ten years ago with street robberies for cellphones it tells a familiar story:

Link:http://www.nytimes.com/2013/05/02/technology/cellphone-thefts-grow-but-the-industry-looks-the-other-way.html?pagewanted=2&_r=0&nl=todaysheadlines&emc=edit_ee_20130502&pagewanted=all

Our experience with the manufacturers action to improve security may not end the problem, rather shift it and sometimes with a higher level of violence to the victim - "home invasions" for the keys for performance cars for example.

I'm not an expert on street robbery but going for the cell phones seems to be pretty rational as long it is not too difficult to avoid getting tracked down. I mean I hardly have a 100€ in my pocket most of the time and I think this goes for most people. However even little girls seem to play around more often then not with rather expensive smartphones.

Not quite as good as waving around 200€ in bills but rather attractive for your little street thug. I wonder how many cents on the $ the robber gets for the phone from his buyer.

Ok, it is on page 2:


In San Francisco, the resale market for stolen phones is thriving, with a new iPhone netting a thief $400 to $500 in cash, said Edward Santos Jr., a police lieutenant who investigates robberies. The starting price of a new iPhone 5, without a contract, is $650.

More then I would have guessed, I thought more about 50%. Such a high share does point to a quite smooth running and efficient operation with a lot of demand coming through the black channels.


“If you look at auto theft, it has really plummeted in this country because technology has advanced so much and the manufacturers recognize the importance of it,” said Chuck Wexler, the executive director of the Police Executive Research Forum, a nonprofit group focused on improving police techniques. “The cellphone industry has for the most part been in denial. For whatever reasons, it has been slow to move.”

If the black side can pay so much it there have to be rather efficient, likely competing networks behind the scene. If technology can make it much harder for those for just a slight increase in cost it could make a big difference. Getting the incentives right could make that sort of street crime far less attractive.

davidbfpo
05-19-2013, 12:39 PM
The actual title of this UK crime story is: 'How Jill Dando's death convinced me everything you know about crime is wrong': NICK ROSS tells the shocking truth about the murder of his friend and the real cause of crime' and the author Nick Ross is a well known, respected TV presenter:http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2326656/How-Jill-Dandos-death-convinced-know-crime-wrong-NICK-ROSS-tells-shocking-truth-murder-friend-real-cause-crime.html

Yes it is about the UK which is different from the USA, but contributes to the debate here.

slapout9
05-19-2013, 06:14 PM
The actual title of this UK crime story is: 'How Jill Dando's death convinced me everything you know about crime is wrong': NICK ROSS tells the shocking truth about the murder of his friend and the real cause of crime' and the author Nick Ross is a well known, respected TV presenter:http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2326656/How-Jill-Dandos-death-convinced-know-crime-wrong-NICK-ROSS-tells-shocking-truth-murder-friend-real-cause-crime.html

Yes it is about the UK which is different from the USA, but contributes to the debate here.

Excellent post David. Will have some comments later.

davidbfpo
07-19-2013, 09:22 AM
Two articles from The Economist, although they duplicate each other, oddly for this magazine:

The curious case of the fall in crime; Crime is plunging in the rich world. To keep it down, governments should focus on prevention, not punishment:http://www.economist.com/news/leaders/21582004-crime-plunging-rich-world-keep-it-down-governments-should-focus-prevention-not

Where have all the burglars gone? The rich world is seeing less and less crime, even in the face of high unemployment and economic stagnation:http://www.economist.com/news/briefing/21582041-rich-world-seeing-less-and-less-crime-even-face-high-unemployment-and-economic

Unusually this one starts by looking at Tallinn, so hopefully Stan R. will chime in with his views.

davidbfpo
04-24-2014, 03:44 PM
That is the BBC's headline, in what is becoming a controversial issue, although with little public engagement:
Overall crime in England and Wales fell by 15% in 2013, official figures show.

The Crime Survey for England and Wales reported (calculated after 36k interviews) 7.5 million crimes against households and adults in that year, the lowest level since it began in 1981.

Separate police figures showed a 2% fall in crime for 2013, with increases in areas such as fraud (25%) as well as a 17% rise in reported sex offences following the Jimmy Savile scandal.
Link:http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-27138921

This is an excellent review article:http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/uknews/crime/10782729/Crime-figures-is-this-the-end-of-the-age-of-violence.html

It ends with a former senior officer's comment:
To me, in a professional sense, it is dispiriting. The fact that we don’t really know why crime is now going down tells me that in 30 years’ policing, my actions didn’t make quite as much difference as I had hoped. On the other hand, I’m pleased – my children are going to grow up in a society where there is less crime.

For those who wish to delve deeper on the stats this is good too. It ends with:
Our data on different crime types is not what it's cracked up to be and most of the current explanations for observed crime trends are variously unevidenced and unconvincing.
Link:http://www.crimeandjustice.org.uk/resources/violence-decline
(http://www.crimeandjustice.org.uk/resources/violence-decline)

davidbfpo
11-25-2014, 04:07 PM
It is rare for a senior UK police officer to speak so directly about crime, so plaudits are due to Milwaukee PD's chief in this short news video clip:http://www.attn.com/stories/341/milwaukee-police-chief-speaks-harsh-truth-about-black-crime-during-press-conference?

The accompanying report gives some context:
Why are people interested in this video? Flynn shows us an example of a police officer who is deeply concerned with gun violence in his community. He has passion. He does not mince words.
Coming off the events in Ferguson, where some people believed the police were inconsiderate of the problems in the community, Flynn is a breath of fresh air. What you're seeing also in this video is a man who is stuck between two opposing sides. On one end, Milwaukee's black community feels like police are against them, and some of the protestors in that meeting showed Flynn their dissatisfaction in emotional ways. On the other hand, he commands a police force whose membership is angry with the firing of one of their fellow officers.

davidbfpo
01-04-2015, 07:39 PM
An optimistic review article, which opens with:
Los Angeles gave America the modern street gang. Groups like the Crips and MS-13 have spread from coast to coast, and even abroad. But on Southern California’s streets they have been vanishing. Has L.A. figured out how to stop the epidemic it set loose on the world?
Link:http://www.psmag.com/navigation/politics-and-law/the-end-of-gangs-los-angeles-southern-california-epidemic-crime-95498/

I do wonder if the gangs have also changed their ways, less overt activity, but overall good news.

davidbfpo
01-06-2015, 03:38 PM
There is a long history to the theory of 'Broken Windows', let alone their implementation by policing, primarily in New York city by NYPD and the originator, George Keeling and NYPD's Commissioner, Bill Bratton have an article in City Journal - lots of stats are cited:http://www.city-journal.org/2015/25_1_broken-windows-policing.html

Taster passage:
The NYPD’s critics object, in particular, to the department’s long-standing practice of maintaining order in public spaces. This practice, widely referred to as Broken Windows or quality-of-life or order-maintenance policing, asserts that, in communities contending with high levels of disruption, maintaining order not only improves the quality of life for residents; it also reduces opportunities for more serious crime.

tequila
01-10-2015, 09:32 PM
Interesting article from Pacific Magazine:

http://www.psmag.com/navigation/politics-and-law/the-end-of-gangs-los-angeles-southern-california-epidemic-crime-95498/


Some of this is a state and national story, as violent crime declined by about 16 percent in both California and the nation from 2008 through 2012. But the decline has been steeper in many gang-plagued cities: 26 percent in Oxnard, 28 percent in Riverside, 30 percent in Compton, 30 percent in Pasadena, 30 percent in Montebello, 50 percent in Bell Gardens, 50 percent in El Monte.

Santa Ana once counted 70-plus homicides a year, many of them gang-related. That’s down to 15 so far in 2014, even as Santa Ana remains one of the densest, youngest, and poorest big cities in California. “Before, they were into turf,” says Detective Jeff Launi, a longtime Santa Ana Police gang investigator. “They’re still doing it, but now they’re more interested in making money.”

No place feels so changed as the city of Los Angeles. In 2014, the Los Angeles Police Department announced that gang crime had dropped by nearly half since 2008. In 2012, L.A. had fewer total homicides (299) citywide than it had gang homicides alone in 2002 (350) and in 1992 (430).

For the most part, Latino gang members no longer attack blacks in ways reminiscent of the Jim Crow South. Nor are gangs carjacking, assaulting, robbing, or in a dozen other ways blighting their own neighborhoods. Between 2003 and 2013, gang-related robberies in the city fell from 3,274 to 1,021; gang assaults from 3,063 to 1,611; and carjackings, a classic L.A. gang crime born during the heyday of crack, from 211 to 33.


The article credits the positive feedback of several factors: smarter, more community-oriented policing by the LAPD; gang injunctions to drive gangs off the street; Federal/state/local cooperation and the use of the RICO statute to arrest large numbers of gang members; gentrification, which broke up many traditional gang neighborhoods.

AdamG
03-14-2015, 09:57 PM
Initial reports were that a 'pistol' was used - note the range estimation from where the shooters were positioned. Sounds like a pistol-caliber carbine, possibly scoped.


(CNN)Almost two days after two officers were shot and wounded at a Ferguson, Missouri, protest, investigators were still seeking breaks in the case, authorities said Friday.


The shots rang out from a hill overlooking the station shortly after midnight Wednesday, at the end of a protest against the Ferguson Police Department. Officers saw "muzzle flashes ... about 125 yards away," Belmar said.

http://www.cnn.com/2015/03/13/us/ferguson-protests/

https://pbs.twimg.com/media/B_8Eik0UMAAHXR7.jpg

davidbfpo
03-19-2015, 02:43 PM
A new paper from the Brennan Center for Justice (USA), eighty pages minus tables etc and not opened yet here:https://www.brennancenter.org/sites/default/files/analysis/What_Caused_The_Crime_Decline.pdf

From the foreword:
This report addresses a critical question: What caused the American crime decline? Was it incarceration? Was it policing? Or was it something else? This groundbreaking empirical analysis from the Brennan Center shows that, on examination, the easy answers do not explain incarceration’s effect on crime.
This report presents a rigorous and sophisticated empirical analysis performed on the most recent, comprehensive dataset to date.The authors conclude that incarceration had relatively little to do with the crime decline. They find that the dramatic increases in incarceration have had a limited, diminishing effect on crime. And they have quantified those minimal benefits. At today’s high incarceration rates, continuing to incarcerate more people has almost no effect on reducing crime.

Bill Moore
03-19-2015, 08:20 PM
I'm sure there are multiple factors that contribute to this positive trend ranging from demographics to education. I also suspect we're incarcerating too many people for too long for relatively petty crimes, but I don't think anyone would want to see our prisons emptied. We have a lot really bad folks behind bars that need to stay behind bars, while the three strikes and you're out law never should have been passed in the first place.

There are some other views on why crime is falling at the link below.

http://www.economist.com/blogs/economist-explains/2013/07/economist-explains-16

Firn
03-20-2015, 06:10 PM
Just a personal thought on the Brennan paper:

Studies like the one cited by david confirm it once again: the considerable degree of autonomy of the states, united within a large and wealthy entity called the USA makes for some great studies and neat use of statistics. Lots of different experiments are thus going on at a considerable scale during the same timescale, giving a great deal of valuable data to many a scientist.

davidbfpo
02-05-2018, 07:38 PM
An extended book and policy review based on “Uneasy Peace: The Great Crime Decline, the Renewal of City Life, and the Next War on Violence” (Norton) by Patrick Sharkey.
Link:https://www.newyorker.com/magazine/2018/02/12/the-great-crime-decline

AdamG
08-02-2018, 11:41 AM
Sometimes answers to problems are blatantly obvious.


Seven suspects who were arrested in connection with an attempted robbery at a jewelry store in Texas over the weekend have been identified as Mexican nationals that were in the U.S. illegally. U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) has not determined when the suspects arrived and how long they’ve been here, Fox News has learned, but that is something that they’ll work to determine moving forward.

http://www.foxnews.com/us/2018/07/30/texas-mall-robbery-suspects-claim-to-be-mexican-nationals-police-say.html