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No Surprise, Violent Criminals Among Those Released Early

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Don Thompson reports for AP:

Inmates convicted of violent crimes are among those being freed early from California jails to save money, despite lawmakers' promises that they would exclude most dangerous prisoners and sex offenders.

An Associated Press review of inmate data shows that some of the freed criminals were convicted of assault with a deadly weapon, battery, domestic violence, and attacks on children and the elderly.

Even if we accept, for now, the dubious premise that convicts can be neatly classified as violent or nonviolent based on offense of commitment, the promise that only "nonviolent" criminals would be released was a lie.

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The only surprise would be if the "promise" had been kept.

The cost argument is, as I have pointed out elsewhere, a make-weight. Indeed, it's not even sincere except in the sense that those asseerting it sincerely hope it will work to achieve their ultimate objective. It's nothing but an add-on to support their pre-existing position, namely, that we imprison too many people for too long. Some of that sentiment in turn derives from the view that the criminal is the victim. Since the culture of criminal-as-victim doesn't waste a whole lot of energy differentiating the violent from the non-violent (Why should it? They're all equal in their victimhood.), we should have expected that not a whole lot of energy was going to be exerted in making this distinction, to the extent there is one, in release decisions.

The whole thing is a fraud designed to mask the underlying engine, that being severe doubt about the moral authority of the supposedly racist, militarist, etc. United States to imprison anyone for anything.

Not all of the let-'em-loose crowd believes this whole hog, but I am conviced that they all believe it to a greater or lesser extent. There is simply no other coherent explanation for consistently favoring the interests of the crimnal over those of the public.

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