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Even Silicon Valley's Prison Inmates Have Their Own Startup Incubator

samzenpus posted more than 2 years ago | from the prison-angel-funding dept.

Businesses 88

pigrabbitbear writes "There's a specific and stereotypical set of activities that spring to mind when you imagine what prison inmates do with their spare time. If there's a yard, they probably hang out, lift weights, get in fights, organize gangs. If there's not a yard, they might read books, write letters, get in fights, organize gangs. They don't write business plans and get giddy over startup ideas. But that's exactly what's happening at San Quentin State Prison, about an hour north of Silicon Valley. For the first time this year, the Last Mile program at the maximum security facility helped five inmates learn the ins and outs of social media and entrepreneurship in an effort to connect those who've been inside for several years with the technological reality of life on the outside. The tricky part about the future forward program is that many of its participants have never used a computer, and, since prison regulations forbid any contact with the outside world, won't be able to use one until they've served their sentences."

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Niggers (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40665765)

I hate niggers! And faggots, too.

Re:Niggers (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40665817)

Rick? Rick Santorum? Is that you buddy?

Re:Niggers (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40666069)

No, pretty much anyone from the GOP could have posted this...

Re:Niggers (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40666139)

or Obama

Re:Niggers (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40666161)

Why would I be a part of a party full of adulterers and faggots?

GOP = Grand Old Perverts.

Re:Niggers (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40665981)

But what about the white people in prison?

Re:Niggers (0, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40666209)

Don't trust whitey...

Re:Niggers (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40669677)

Piggers. P ( (ink) - N ) + iggers. [Actually "P" could represent pink, police (my preference) or both--depending upon your predilections.]

Forcing inmates use Failbook? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40665779)

Sounds like a cruel and unusual punishment!

Haven't used a computer before? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40665797)

Sounds like a lot of the people offered as "consultants", especially from India.

Lack of computer not a problem (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40665827)

People in my university finished CS without buying one, doing most of the work with pencil on paper (some bad people said knee on the floor...). After all, aren't we in an industry where the higher you go up the less you know about tech?

CS is not IT and the higer ups are MBA's (2)

Joe_Dragon (2206452) | more than 2 years ago | (#40665907)

CS is not IT and the higer ups are MBA's

Re:CS is not IT and the higer ups are MBA's (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40666107)

yeah, MBAs with no technical/computer knowledge.

Re:CS is not IT and the higer ups are MBA's (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40666137)

Exactly! I have worked under people like this and it is a pain in the ass. They want want want, but don't understand what it takes to get results. The company I currently work for in a tech department wants 80% of issues to be resolved in 24hrs. However, the dick who runs the department has never worked in this position, NOR does he know how to do our job and wants 90% of issues to be resolved in 24hrs.

I'd love to go to this asshole and say, "sure, we will all do that...once YOU can." I don't because I don't want to get fired.

Re:CS is not IT and the higer ups are MBA's (3, Insightful)

HornWumpus (783565) | more than 2 years ago | (#40666725)

Jesus kid don't you know anything? Get people to put in routine, bogus easy to resolve issues. Make them put in 9 gimmes to get you to look at the 1 real one they entered.

For every stupid metric there is an easy game to play. It's you duty to your employer to game the system.

Social medial consultants (0)

hackula (2596247) | more than 2 years ago | (#40665835)

So so called "Social Medial Experts" really are crooks? I knew it!

Re:Social medial consultants (1)

MickyTheIdiot (1032226) | more than 2 years ago | (#40665855)

SEO experts too... don't forget about them.

Local network? (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40665843)

They seriously can't set up a local network so they can skype/email/whatever between stations at at their computer lab? Run blog software that is served locally so they can try creating content and replying? Learn how to use FTP, Gopher, irc, etc.

Maybe they can't do Facebook, but can't they learn everything else this way?

Re:Local network? (4, Insightful)

SuricouRaven (1897204) | more than 2 years ago | (#40666969)

I don't know what it's like at that particular prison, but I know that in some parts of the US being too nice to prisoners results in either the locals getting upset that you are being 'soft' or the state politicians getting involved to make sure the prisoners are properly miserable and mistreated. There seems to be a natural instinct for justice, or at least a desire to see more suffering inflicted upon wrongdoers regardless of the impact on rehabilitation and reoffending. It seems people don't want to see prisoners turned straight so much as they want to see prisoners lives properly destroyed, even if this leaves them no option but to return to crime upon their release.

Re:Local network? (2)

petsounds (593538) | more than 2 years ago | (#40667067)

No, I think most people want to see prisoners rehabilitated, though this is hard to follow through on when they are released into the same economic and cultural mess that got them into trouble in the first place.

What I think people don't want is to see prisoners be provided things like cable TVs with their tax money, when they can't even afford such a luxury themselves.

Then there are private prisons, which don't want to see prisoners rehabilitated at all because that takes away a "resource" from their industry.

Re:Local network? (4, Insightful)

s73v3r (963317) | more than 2 years ago | (#40667873)

What I think people don't want is to see prisoners be provided things like cable TVs with their tax money

Cable TV keeps prisoners docile and distracted. Distracted and docile prisoners are much easier to guard, and cause far less problems.

I would bet that providing them Cable TV actually saves the prison, and therefore the taxpayer, money over the long run (assuming it's not a private prison).

Re:Local network? (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40668903)

I would bet that having cable TV (and whatever else) to keep them ''docile'', is counter-productive to the lesson that the incarcerated are there to learn.

You want to be productive, and rehabilitate criminals? You gotta get the message across that ''This shit is not tolerated!" and then you need to actually do something to positively point them in the right direction. Otherwise, the ''rehabilitated'' are fucked, and likely to re-offend.

Entertainment is not necessary. Real rehabilitation would be nice.

Re:Local network? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40672295)

I can't speak for other states, but in Michigan the prisoners have cable tv because they pay for it themselves. Prisoners in Michigan have (limited) access to a fund called the "Inmate Benefit Fund" from which they can pay for cable tv, buy sports equipment, and other minor luxeries. Each prison has a "store" from which the prisoners can buy snacks, hygiene items, stationary, and other minor items; a percentage (I believe about 8% averaged markup) of sales from theses stores fund the Inmate Benefit Funds and thus replenish the system.

The idea that tax money buys cable tv for prisoners is, at least in Michigan, mistaken.

Re:Local network? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40673473)

You know, computers are tools. They can be used for entertainment, they can be used for work, and they can be used for teaching. I don't think many people would mind prisoners having to work. And I guess most would also not mind the criminals being taught something (at least as long as they make sure they don't just teach them to become more effective criminals, of course). People might object if the computers in prison are used to entertain the prisoners (but then, maybe some carefully selected or even purpose-written computer games could be a quite effective way to teach them better social behaviour).

Re:Local network? (1)

tehcyder (746570) | more than 2 years ago | (#40671053)

Learn how to use FTP, Gopher, irc, etc.

Have you just come out of prison after twenty years?

In Soviet Russia... (2, Funny)

Midnight_Falcon (2432802) | more than 2 years ago | (#40665851)

Startup incubates you!

Re:In Soviet Russia... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40666225)

OH come on!

How about "startup rapes you?"
It is prison after all...

No problemo (4, Funny)

vlm (69642) | more than 2 years ago | (#40665881)

The tricky part about the future forward program is that many of its participants have never used a computer

This was not a problem in dotcom bubble 1.0, I'm not thinking it'll be a problem in dotcom bubble 2.0.

Re:No problemo (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40666349)

...well, 2.5, no?

Should be able to use a offline computer at least (4, Insightful)

crazyjj (2598719) | more than 2 years ago | (#40665915)

I have never understood why prisoners should be forbidden from using an *offline* computer. Okay, so maybe they're blocked from the internet--but couldn't they at least learn the stuff they could do offline? Not even letting older prisoners understand how a modern computer even WORKS puts them so far behind the times that it's pretty unlikely they'll ever catch up.

Re:Should be able to use a offline computer at lea (4, Interesting)

preaction (1526109) | more than 2 years ago | (#40665943)

Isn't that part of the punishment/revenge we want to inflict on those in prison? Never being able to function in society again, so they reoffend and stay the hell out of the way of the good, righteous, god-fearing folk.

Re:Should be able to use a offline computer at lea (2)

tomhath (637240) | more than 2 years ago | (#40666061)

FTA:

3) Practical Technology Training Provide basic computer training in the critical software tools that are utilized in today’s business sector. Access to the internet is NOT required for this training.

The headline and blog entry are wrong.

Re:Should be able to use a offline computer at lea (2, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40666083)

You forgot that the US prison system is privatized with 48 states signing a contract that they will make sure all prisons at at least 90% full.

In the past, penology 101 was about rehabilitating, where the inmate had a chance at a job once out. Then it was the incapacitation aspect, where a crook wasn't on the streets. Finally the deterrence aspect of "oh shit, if I do this, I'll end up behind bars."

Now, the goal is simple: The goal is to warehouse every warm body put in the system for the rest of their lives. Rehab? That means an inmate may not commit a new offense and wind up back (which means less money going to the private prison industry.) Judges know this, but are forced to have a conviction ratio or else they will be replaced come election season by a judge who will convict. Cops know this, because if they don't get enough "points" by arrests, the guy who whips out the handcuffs first and asks questions later will get the raises and rank.

You think a private prison who pares staff to the bone and pays their COs $8.00 an hour (compared to the county jail that pays a living wage) gives a shit about computers in the big house? All they care about is that their beds are full, and that there is no footage of riots or gang rapes that will ever leave their walls.

Re:Should be able to use a offline computer at lea (2)

TheSpoom (715771) | more than 2 years ago | (#40666159)

48 states signing a contract that they will make sure all prisons at at least 90% full.

Can you cite / link to that contract?

Re:Should be able to use a offline computer at lea (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40666215)

48 states signing a contract that they will make sure all prisons at at least 90% full.

Can you cite / link to that contract?

No, apparently I was just trolling...

Re:Should be able to use a offline computer at lea (5, Insightful)

HarrySquatter (1698416) | more than 2 years ago | (#40666275)

This [huffingtonpost.com] is probably among the most reputable links to be found.

Re:Should be able to use a offline computer at lea (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40666343)

Some company making an offer is not the same as states signing a contract. Typical FUD from HuffPost (and you should never refer to them as "reputable", they're not).

Re:Should be able to use a offline computer at lea (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40666573)

How is it FUD if the states agreed to the terms (which they did)?

Re:Should be able to use a offline computer at lea (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40666881)

Please pont out where in the linked article it says even one state agreed to those terms. I can't find it.

Re:Should be able to use a offline computer at lea (1)

tehcyder (746570) | more than 2 years ago | (#40671095)

Some company making an offer is not the same as states signing a contract. Typical FUD from HuffPost (and you should never refer to them as "reputable", they're not).

No, only Fox News is reputable. Eveyone else is just left wing propaganda.

Re:Should be able to use a offline computer at lea (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40666211)

In the past, penology 101 was about rehabilitating, where the inmate had a chance at a job once out.

Rose colored glasses... Early penology (late 18th, early 19th century) focused on deterrence by increasing the relative cost of crime, and that's where many of the humiliating punishments came from, like stocks. Rehabilitation is a relatively recent occurrence, 1950s and on, that only came about with modern psychology, and many early rehabilitation therapies were pretty horrible, such as lobotomy or shock therapy.

Re:Should be able to use a offline computer at lea (2, Insightful)

techno-vampire (666512) | more than 2 years ago | (#40666341)

Judges know this, but are forced to have a conviction ratio or else they will be replaced come election season by a judge who will convict.

Fail. Epic fail. In the USA, judges don't convict people, juries do. It's prosecutors that have to worry about a conviction rate, not judges. Step away from the keyboard, go back to school and stop cutting your Social Studies classes to post ignorant slop on Slashdot.

Re:Should be able to use a offline computer at lea (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40666819)

the vast majority of cases never make it to jury, so there. =P

Re:Should be able to use a offline computer at lea (0)

lister king of smeg (2481612) | more than 2 years ago | (#40668689)

the vast majority of cases never make it to jury, so there. =P

citation please. and all of them at least have the option to have trial. maybe the ones that plea out do so because they commit the crime but they don't want as serve as long of a term as they would probably get if they go to trial.

Re:Should be able to use a offline computer at lea (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40668935)

the vast majority of cases never make it to jury, so there. =P

citation please. and all of them at least have the option to have trial. maybe the ones that plea out do so because they commit the crime but they don't want as serve as long of a term as they would probably get if they go to trial.

More than 90 percent of criminal cases are never tried before a jury [slashdot.org]

Re:Should be able to use a offline computer at lea (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40667075)

Actually, if it's not a felony, then the first trial normally is handled by a judge. You only get your "right to a jury trial" if you appeal that judge's decision. And these very judges are elected, and often run on their stance of being "tough on crime."

Mind you, this is in cases where a trial even happens. In something like 95% of cases, there is no trial but rather only a prosecutor using the threat of our incredibly draconian mandatory minimum sentencing guidelines to extort confessions out of people who may or may not actually be guilty in what is referred to as "plea bargaining."

Re:Should be able to use a offline computer at lea (1)

sumdumass (711423) | more than 2 years ago | (#40668299)

Actually, the cut off is imprisonment of 6 months or more or a fine of $1000 or more (both in consideration with outside penalties like loss of a license and requirements to seek treatments like drug and alcohol counseling and so on) which makes misdemeanors fall within that scope.

This right to jury trial changes from state to state also in which some state Constitutions or laws lower the threshold in which someone is guaranteed a right to jury trial Vermont and Virginia, if memory serves me correct, even allow jury trials for parking tickets if the accused is willing to pay for the jury costs. Virginia I think actually allows a redo in a court just above the magistrate level if you lose an initial trial without a jury on a petty or minor offense.

As for being tough on crime, you do realize that whoever violated the law knew there were penalties before they violated it and somewhat agreed to be punished according to the strictest penalty when deciding to do so. I don't think the tough on crime stick adds anything as none of the penalties are created after the fact unless it is a matter of someone unjustly being convicted which can hurt the elected Judge and Prosecutor just the same.

Re:Should be able to use a offline computer at lea (1)

tehcyder (746570) | more than 2 years ago | (#40671147)

As for being tough on crime, you do realize that whoever violated the law knew there were penalties before they violated it and somewhat agreed to be punished according to the strictest penalty when deciding to do so. I don't think the tough on crime stick adds anything as none of the penalties are created after the fact unless it is a matter of someone unjustly being convicted which can hurt the elected Judge and Prosecutor just the same.

The way you are "tough on crime" is to convict everybody who comes before you, as long as there is a vaguely coherent prosecution case, and sentence them to the maximum allowed by law. You don't take any extenuating circumstances into account, you don't apply any relativity or equity, and you make sure that as many people as possible are bullied into confessing due to the threat of a longer sentence.

All this you do legally.

Re:Should be able to use a offline computer at lea (0)

sumdumass (711423) | more than 2 years ago | (#40674101)

I agree with everything except the bullying confessions and convicting everyone.

First the bullying. If someone commits a crime, they are looking at the max sentence regardless of the judge being tough on crime. The do not make sentence guidelines up on the spot and they are available to being known well in advance of the crime. I find complaint about getting the max sentence for a crime someone is convicted of to be a non sequitur. It is like complaining that you purchased a 12 pack of beers and there was only 12 beers in it.

Now the convict everyone who comes before you. This simply does not happen unless there is enough evidence to get a conviction in which case it is already proper. No matter how tough on crime a judge wants to appear to be, if his judgement is constantly getting overturned on appeal, or there are thousands of complaints or wrong doing, he will look like an imbecile. If he looks like an imbecile long enough, the state bar or other jurisdictional body will seek punishment or sanctions including removing the right of the court he serves on to hear cases and in some cases publicly recommend his impeachment to the governing legislation body. It all depends on the extreme nature and how much of a solid case they have. If a pattern of gross misconduct is present (convicting everyone whether they are guilty or not), his immunity from civil liability can be removed too.

Those possibilities are all reasons why they won't do that- or do it for very long. This is a story of a juvenile judge in PA who was tough on crime doing exactly this with the exception of getting kickbacks from the private jails and detention centers. http://abcnews.go.com/US/mark-ciavarella-pa-juvenile-court-judge-convicted-alleged/story?id=12965182 [go.com]

Believe it or not, there are watchers watching the watchers.

Re:Should be able to use a offline computer at lea (4, Informative)

crankyspice (63953) | more than 2 years ago | (#40666759)

I have never understood why prisoners should be forbidden from using an *offline* computer.

Actually, they're not, at least in California. I personally know several inmates who are taking college courses "behind bars." The computers aren't Internet-connected, and the instructor collects the flash drives they store their work on between classes, but they have access to computers for educational purposes. Some inmate clerks also have access to computers (non-networked) for typing and other clerical tasks.

In the federal system, they're even experimenting with the very limited and locked down TRULINCS [bop.gov] email system for inmates...

What's not accurate is the summary's claim that "prison regulations forbid any contact with the outside world." Inmates routinely contact the outside world through telephone calls, letters, and contact and/or non-contact (and in California and New York, for most inmates, the possibility of "family" a/k/a "trailer" a/k/a/ "conjugal") visits...

On a related topic, anyone remember the Wired article on Roy Wahlberg [wired.com] ? "Roy Wahlberg hacked a man to death, then hacked his way into a million-dollar software business behind bars."

So, 4 of them have never used a computer. (3, Insightful)

vlm (69642) | more than 2 years ago | (#40665967)

helped five inmates learn

5. Five. 1 2 3 4 5. That would be "five". Given any arbitrary selection criteria, the membership count of the set of prisoners X in that selection criteria set are the natural numbers from 0 to 5 inclusive. Come on /. after you add UTF-8 how about MathML?

many of its participants have never used a computer

Why the vagueness? OK we're operating from five. Remember paper logic puzzles? I used to turn them into prolog statements and let the solver solve them. This was back when a XT with turbo prolog was cutting edge. But I digress. OK its /. logic puzzle time. Rule out 0 because they would have skipped this topic. Rule out 1 because they would have wrote "a" and rule out 5 because they would have written "all". We can rule out 2 because they would have written "a couple" unless they avoided that phrase WRT prison sex and so forth. Which is more, "many" or "several". I believe the informal ranking order is "many" is greater than "several" so of the remaining options 3 or 4, we can circle "4" as the answer.

Thats how I figured out exactly 4 inmates have never used a computer.

Re:So, 4 of them have never used a computer. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40666131)

5. Five. 1 2 3 4 5. That would be "five".

Which means, by typical journalistic standards, "some smallish number I heard during the interview but didn't bother to write down."

Re:So, 4 of them have never used a computer. (1)

CatsupBoy (825578) | more than 2 years ago | (#40666147)

This post is the only good thing going for this article....

Let me add that "many" simply means the greater part of, so 3 or 4 could be the answer. If they had said "some" I could believe that to have been 2 or 3. But since the point was to emphasize how little the group knew, If the number was 4 I think they would have preferred to say "most".

So, my take is the actual number is 3.

Re:So, 4 of them have never used a computer. (1)

Zontar The Mindless (9002) | more than 2 years ago | (#40666487)

Let me add that "many" simply means the greater part of...

It does not mean any such thing, except possibly in your imagination. "Many" means:

1: consisting of or amounting to a large but indefinite number

2: being one of a large but indefinite number

So I'm inclined to judge the rest of your post as being of equally dubious value.

Re:So, 4 of them have never used a computer. (1)

vlm (69642) | more than 2 years ago | (#40673201)

Hmm so did he have "many" or "several" dubious statements in his post. I'm thinking exactly three, which would imply the word "several" ...

... hang out, get in fights, organize gangs ... (3, Funny)

PolygamousRanchKid (1290638) | more than 2 years ago | (#40666019)

That pretty much describes behavior on the Internet to me.

Those folks should have no problems on the outside.

Re:... hang out, get in fights, organize gangs ... (1)

o_ferguson (836655) | more than 2 years ago | (#40666097)

brilliant. You win one internets.

Re:... hang out, get in fights, organize gangs ... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40666595)

If they set up a local network (no outside access) with an FPS game some of them won't leave even after serving their term.

Duh... (1)

o_ferguson (836655) | more than 2 years ago | (#40666047)

America is a Prison Industrial Complex. Get over yourselves.

Why rehabilitation is so neglected (2, Insightful)

fiannaFailMan (702447) | more than 2 years ago | (#40666257)

The incentives of the system reward high occupancy. If there were more funding for wardens and prisons who had lower recidivism rates then there'd be less of a clamour for tougher sentencing laws funded by the prison industrial complex, America wouldn't have such an obscenely high incarceration rate, and there'd be a lot less crime committed by inmates after release since there would have been more investment in rehabilitation.

Re:Why rehabilitation is so neglected (1)

gestalt_n_pepper (991155) | more than 2 years ago | (#40666893)

That and the fact that it rarely works, unless by "rehabilitation" you mean "execution" which is 100% effective and which I would recommend for all armed robbers, con men and wealthy people who double-park.

Re:Why rehabilitation is so neglected (1)

fiannaFailMan (702447) | more than 2 years ago | (#40666971)

That and the fact that it rarely works, unless by "rehabilitation" you mean "execution" which is 100% effective and which I would recommend for all armed robbers, con men and wealthy people who double-park.

Oh really? And how, pray tell, does executing predominantly black people, many of whom may be innocent, prevent crime?

Re:Why rehabilitation is so neglected (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40667355)

Oh really? And how, pray tell, does executing predominantly black people, many of whom may be innocent, prevent crime?

Ask Margaret Sanger and Planned Parenthood.

Re:Why rehabilitation is so neglected (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40667801)

A man threatens a convenience store owner with a gun. Tell me again how it matters what "race" he is? He is of the "race" of people who will threaten to kill you with weapons for whatever reason. That's really enough for me.

Re:Why rehabilitation is so neglected (2)

fiannaFailMan (702447) | more than 2 years ago | (#40668003)

A man threatens a convenience store owner with a gun. Tell me again how it matters what "race" he is? He is of the "race" of people who will threaten to kill you with weapons for whatever reason. That's really enough for me.

I'm going to explain this nice and slowly because it's clear that you're a simpleton.

A white guy threatens a convenience store owner with a gun, and kills him. He gets life.

A black guy threatens a convenience store owner with a gun, and kills him. He gets death.

See the difference?

Re:Why rehabilitation is so neglected (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40668083)

Yeah, it's really unfair for the white guy who will do absolutely nothing at all for the rest of his life, but be forced to live it anyway.

Re:Why rehabilitation is so neglected (1)

tehcyder (746570) | more than 2 years ago | (#40671243)

Yeah, it's really unfair for the white guy who will do absolutely nothing at all for the rest of his life, but be forced to live it anyway.

Most peoplel would see life in prison as a preferable option to execution.

If you really have convinced yourself that the system is biased against white people because it doesn't execute the same proportion of them as black people, I worry for your sanity.

Re:Why rehabilitation is so neglected (1)

gestalt_n_pepper (991155) | more than 2 years ago | (#40668179)

Sure. Life is crueler, but more expensive to the taxpayer. Death is kinder and cheaper. In either case, the problem is solved regardless of jury biases.

You can't turn off the justice system because juries are bigots.

Re:Why rehabilitation is so neglected (1)

O('_')O_Bush (1162487) | more than 2 years ago | (#40669053)

Due to retrials afforded the accused, death penalties are often much more expensive than life sentences.

Re:Why rehabilitation is so neglected (1)

tehcyder (746570) | more than 2 years ago | (#40671275)

You can't turn off the justice system because juries are bigots.

Judges decide sentences, not juries.

Well, they do here in the UK. I suppose the assumption that the US legal system is no more stupid than the UK one is a bit of a dangerous one..

Re:Why rehabilitation is so neglected (1)

sumdumass (711423) | more than 2 years ago | (#40668517)

Well, if we are limiting the conversations explicitly to the recidivism rates, it appears to be about 60% in the US and 50% in the UK. Let's assume it is 50%.on average for the whole. Wikipedia lists the recidivism rates for burglary to be about 70% which would include armed robbery and 74% for larcenist which would include con men but lets drop the number for argument's sake.

From that, we can assume that about 50 out of every 100 people imprisoned for armed robbery and or larceny, regardless of being black or not, will be arrested for offending again. From disastercenter.org, it appears that the robbery rate was about 368,000 in 2010. Let's assume that just half of them were committed by the same people, and another 25% were committed by New offenders. We would be looking at rehabilitated offenders released from the penal system comprising of at least 25% of the Armed robberies if we did not consider their role in multiple offenses.

So on the face alone, executing people convicted of armed robbery would reduce armed robbery crime rates about 25% without regard to race that you injected. Life sentences or imprisonment until they become old and crippled could have the same effect too.

Re:Why rehabilitation is so neglected (1)

tehcyder (746570) | more than 2 years ago | (#40671345)

So on the face alone, executing people convicted of armed robbery would reduce armed robbery crime rates about 25% without regard to race that you injected.

Once you start executing people for armed robbery, you end up doing it for stealing a loaf of bread too. As a result, the murder rate goes up, as people adopt the "might as well be hanged for a sheep as a lamb" attitude, and don't have any scruples about killing bystanders, witnesses, etc.

The race point is that if you have a disproportionate number of black men in prison, you will end up with a disproportionate number of black men being executed, regardless of whether they are sentenced equally.

Re:Why rehabilitation is so neglected (0)

sumdumass (711423) | more than 2 years ago | (#40674451)

I'm not advocating killing people for armed robbery. I'm just showing it is only a matter of math because there are repeat offenders who offend after being released.

The race issue might very well reflect a problem with enforcement of laws and sentencing bias, but it really isn't an issue in this hypothetical situation. The disproportionate amount of blacks or minorities populating the prisons does not necessarily reflect the conviction rates of non blacks who might get off with lesser sentences. Remember. the op stipulated execution for all armed robbers. A black man getting 25 years while a white man got 3 would not make a difference if we catch, convict, then execute.

Also, I'm not sure that the number of blacks in prisons reflect the armed robbery convictions as a lot of inmates are convicted of crimes other then armed robbery. I know that a while back (late 70's early 80's), there was a mindset instilled with the black communities by the more aggressive civil rights groups like the black panthers encouraging crimes and crimes against the white man and whites man's laws.

Re:Why rehabilitation is so neglected (1)

Neil Boekend (1854906) | more than 2 years ago | (#40683081)

If you don't stop at the black people but kill all humans then crime would be solved.

Re:Why rehabilitation is so neglected (1)

Osgeld (1900440) | more than 2 years ago | (#40667807)

course a high percentage of this problem is in for a petty crime involving a plant.

Re:Why rehabilitation is so neglected (1)

gestalt_n_pepper (991155) | more than 2 years ago | (#40668193)

Which is just stupid. Plain and simple.

Re:Why rehabilitation is so neglected (1)

tehcyder (746570) | more than 2 years ago | (#40671359)

Do you really go to prison in the US for low level possession of weed?

Re:Why rehabilitation is so neglected (1)

tokencode (1952944) | more than 2 years ago | (#40676095)

Generally not if it is a first-time offense, but many people have gone to prison as a result of possession of small amounts of weed if they were either on probation or if there are multiple offenses. In a few states they have decriminalized varying amounts of weed making it essentially a traffic ticket, but in the majority of states it is still a crime punishable by jail time.

Idea (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40666289)

Conjugal visits APP? Find local girls who really want to show a man behind bars a good time

Re:Idea (1)

tehcyder (746570) | more than 2 years ago | (#40671391)

Conjugal visits APP? Find local girls who really want to show a man behind bars a good time

You'll need agile Cloud synergistic hosting to leverage the monetization of that paradigm.

eShank (3, Funny)

bradorsomething (527297) | more than 2 years ago | (#40666411)

Here at eShank, we match you with one of over 500 prison facilities, based on our comprehensive matching technology and a court-directed legal system. It doesn't matter if you're a child molester or an arsonist with a penchant for old-folks homes... you're gonna love eShank!

Disclaimer: you probably really won't love eShank

San Quentin (1)

ksruictkesn (2656281) | more than 2 years ago | (#40666447)

Seems pretty legit! They've been able to cook there for a long time, might as well have hot yoga and startup classes. Also, the location is fabulous for this, all they have to do is dial up some of the biggest VC's in the biz, just down the road in Tiburon! A lot better than when they had to write their startup ideas on a paper airplane and throw them in the direction of Tom Perkins' house or try folding one that'll make it to the Embarcadero!

Re:San Quentin (1)

Darinbob (1142669) | more than 2 years ago | (#40666797)

People just are clueless about high tech. High tech is not rampant with entrepreneurs. The vast majority of high tech people are workers, not the people who bet their life savings and family on a high risk roll of dice. Entrepreneurs are not everywhere you look here, despite a recent radio call in show that seemed to imply that was the "culture" here. Startups are a moronic thing to expect freed convicts to be involved with, they don't have any equity to put on the craps table to start anything, and when they inevitably fail they'll be back to a life of crime.

Re:San Quentin (1)

tehcyder (746570) | more than 2 years ago | (#40671527)

Entrepreneurs are not everywhere you look here, despite a recent radio call in show that seemed to imply that was the "culture" here.

An entrepreneur is just a normal person without the imagination to see beyond making money.

Making money is not that difficult if you don't do anything else in your life except work.

Yesssss! (1)

Alex Belits (437) | more than 2 years ago | (#40667663)

This is what we were missing -- violent criminals in position of control over other people!

Can we, please, have LESS "entrepreneurs"?

In Washington Inmates are taught to be Politicians (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40668927)

nothing else much to say about that.

Hello, I'm Johnny Cash (3, Funny)

moniker127 (1290002) | more than 2 years ago | (#40669337)

San Quentin, I hate every last mile of you.

Let me guess... (1)

metacell (523607) | more than 2 years ago | (#40670225)

Let me guess: They're in for computer crimes?

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