Thursday, February 26, 2015


The Unconventional Gazette
February 26, 2015

Mexican tap water
A porcupine with a "'pet me" sign
An elevator ride with Ray Rice
Taking pills offered by Bill Cosby
A Bigfoot sighting
A Palestinian on a motorcycle
A Hillary Clinton war story
Gas station sushi
Charlie Manson
Jimmy Carter
Bernard Madoff
Brian Williams news reports
Pete Carroll coaching decisions
Eddie Ray Routh
Loch Ness monster sightings
Iran’s word about enriching uranium for peaceful purposes only
Bill Clinton saying “I did not have sexual relations with that woman”


The attorney general seems intent on taking one more jab at the police before leaving the Justice Department

By Jason L. Riley

The Wall Street Journal
February 24, 2015

When all was said and done, the events that unfolded in Ferguson, Mo., last summer were not extraordinary but rather all too familiar. Eighteen-year-old Michael Brown, a black robbery suspect, resisted arrest, attacked a police officer and was shot dead. We’ve seen this movie many times before. But what might have prompted a helpful discussion about high crime rates in black communities has instead prompted a dishonest debate over police behavior.

Professional agitators in the civil-rights community push false narratives to stay relevant, but we should expect more from the Justice Department. Instead, we have Attorney General Eric Holder channeling Al Sharpton . Last week Mr. Holder said that he will soon announce the results of his Ferguson investigation. CNN, citing “sources,” reported that Darren Wilson, the police officer involved in the shooting, is unlikely to be charged but that Justice is preparing to sue the Ferguson police department “over a pattern of racially discriminatory tactics used by police officers, if the police department does not agree to make changes on its own.”

After months of looking into the incident, the Justice Department seems to have come to the same conclusion as the Ferguson grand jury and found no grounds for a criminal prosecution of Mr. Wilson. Mr. Holder might now be trying to justify his bigfooting by suing the city, but there is probably no basis for that, either. Hence, the leak to the media that a civil lawsuit may be in the works. The leak was an egregious breach of protocol and, in effect, a threat. We’ve seen this movie before, too.

In 1994, Congress passed a bill that made unlawful “the pattern or practice” of conduct by police “that deprives persons of rights, privileges, or immunities secured or protected by the Constitution or laws of the United States.” Since the law’s inception, the Justice Department has taken action against more than 50 state and local police departments, and nearly all have opted to settle rather than litigate. Investigations often come at the urging of groups like the NAACP and ACLU. Settlements typically involve a police department adopting “best practices” that can encompass the entire realm of policing—hiring, training, supervision—and are drawn up by Justice Department lawyers with little or no experience in law enforcement.

“This is about expanding federal power in the police departments,” said Hans von Spakovsky, a former Justice Department attorney, in an interview. “The lawyers at Justice believe they are the ones who should be promulgating national standards of how cops should behave. And police departments are so afraid of bad publicity that they agree to settle the case with all kinds of rules that Justice wants to impose.”

Pretending that racist police departments (or prosecutors or sentencing guidelines) are a bigger problem than black criminality may line Mr. Sharpton’s pockets and excite the Democratic base, but it won’t prevent future Fergusons or make inner cities less violent and more hospitable to the mostly law-abiding residents who can’t afford to live anywhere else. And to the extent that federal intervention results in police officers becoming overly cautious, neighborhood delinquents gain the upper hand and the community gets more dangerous. After New York City police cut back on the use of stop-and-frisk—after a judge ruled against the policing technique in 2013 and Mayor Bill de Blasio ’s administration refused to challenge the ruling—gun violence rose dramatically. Over the past year, shootings have climbed by 23%. As one police officer told the Daily News, “Guys know they’re not going to get stopped, so they’re packing more now”—in other words, carrying guns.

The Justice Department lawsuits imply that blacks are disproportionately targeted by police due to their skin color, not their behavior, but most serious research refutes that notion. “Contrary to frequently voiced accusations and despite a voluminous literature intent upon demonstrating discrimination at every turn, there is almost no reliable evidence of racial bias in the criminal justice system’s handling of ordinary violent and non-violent offenses,” Amy Wax, a former Justice Department official who teaches at the University of Pennsylvania Law School, wrote in “Race, Wrongs, and Remedies” (2009). “Rather, the facts overwhelmingly show that blacks go to prison more often because blacks commit more crimes.”

Attorney General Holder accuses Americans of being afraid to talk honestly about race relations, then uses his office to scapegoat police departments for black pathology. The conversation that Mr. Holder wants to have about race assumes facts not in evidence. It is also the wrong message to send to the young black men responsible for so much violent crime. These lawsuits make excuses for behavior that ought to be condemned and distract from a much more consequential debate about black cultural attitudes toward work, marriage, parenting and the rule of law. What ails these black communities are the Michael Browns, not the Darren Wilsons. And Mr. Holder’s war on cops won’t change that.

Mr. Riley, a Manhattan Institute senior fellow and Journal contributor, is the author of “Please Stop Helping Us: How Liberals Make It Harder for Blacks to Succeed” (Encounter Books, 2014).

Wednesday, February 25, 2015


Rene ‘Boxer’ Enriquez, who murdered and ordered the murder of numerous victims, has been recommended for parole after cops praised him for being a rat

Gov. Jerry Brown did right by the people of California when on Friday he blocked the parole of multiple-murderer Rene ‘Boxer’ Enriquez. The former Mexican Mafia gang leader had been recommended for parole by the state’s parole board. Several police agencies, including the FBI, had advocated and supported his parole because he had ratted out his former gang members.

The Associated Press reports that:

Enriquez drew attention last month when elite Los Angeles Police Department officers cleared a downtown Los Angeles building so Enriquez could speak to a gathering of police chiefs and business leaders about the growth and operations of a prison gang that has evolved into a transnational criminal enterprise.

The Los Angeles District Attorney's Office opposed his parole request, although he had letters of support from the FBI; several deputy district attorneys; a deputy state attorney general; three assistant U.S. Attorneys; and several officers from local forces and the California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation.

Enriquez had been convicted of two murders, multiple assaults and drug trafficking conspiracy. Even after Enriquez took the Fifth during his parole hearing when asked about any other murders he may have committed, the parole board still recommended this filth for parole.

Dr. Richard Krupp says, “I guess inmate Enriquez will still be able to continue his consulting job. Will this extend his lecture schedule? What about book signings? Things are probably up in the air now after this temporary setback.”

I hope Dr. Krupp is wrong when he calls the blocked parole a temporary setback. The courts could overturn the governor's decision.

Let’s give Jerry Brown a well-deserved pat on the back for this one.

And shame, shame on the cops for advocating and supporting the parole of this murderous slimeball! Even if Enriquez had ratted out and brought down the whole Mexican Mafia, he still would not deserve to be paroled … ever!


According to liberals, there are two ways to police America, one for the white middle class and one for the black underclass

As I mentioned last week, NYPD’s ‘Broken Windows’ approach to crime, also known as ‘Quality-of-Life Maintenance Policing,’ has been criticized by liberals as imposing a white, middle-class morality on urban populations. In other words, according to those liberal critics, there should be two standards of morality in America, one for the white middle class and one for the black underclass.

The term ‘Broken Windows’ arose out of the concept that those who commit minor crimes, like breaking windows in low-income housing projects, should be arrested because sooner or later they are bound to commit serious crimes. Those who commit minor crimes disrupt the lives of the community residents just as those who commit serious crimes. Broken Windows holds that by enforcing all laws, the quality of life for residents is improved and crime is reduced.

New York Police Commissioner William Bratton had been and continues to be a strong advocate and supporter of Broken Windows even though liberals accuse the program of being responsible for the death of Eric Garner, a 350-pound asthmatic with a history of heart disease. Garner, who had a rap sheet of 30 arrests since 1980, had been arrested multiple times for selling single cigarettes, known as "loosies," from cigarette packs which had not been taxed. On July 17, 2014, NY cops responded to a complaint from Staten Island merchants that Garner was selling untaxed cigarettes again. When they attempted to arrest him, the 350-pound giant resisted. When it was all over, he was dead.

Liberals claim Garner should never have been arrested for such a ‘minor’ offense because selling untaxed cigarettes was an accepted way, among other unlawful activities, of earning a living in New York’s black neighborhoods.

Whenever and wherever a white cop shoots a black man it becomes a flashpoint resulting in demonstrations against the police. It seems as though the ‘community’ believes that no shooting of an African-American man by a white cop is justified. It used to be that if a cop believed he faced an imminent threat to his life, he would be justified in resorting to deadly force. Them days are history. Now, unless the officer can prove the threat was for real, as opposed to in his mind, he will find himself in deep trouble, especially if it’s a white cop shooting a black man.

This begs the question: Should America’s minority neighborhoods be policed differently from white middle class neighborhoods? I say yes, but not in the way liberals want to do it.

Liberals want us to stop “imposing a white, middle-class morality on urban populations.“ Now that is absolutely absurd. We cannot have a set of rules for one group of our population and a different set of rules for another. For laws to be justified, they must apply to and be enforced on all citizens. People should not have the right to choose which laws they want to obey and which laws they want to defy.

Here is what Riverside, California experienced in applying a double standard to policing divergent neighborhoods. Back in the ‘70s, Riverside had a very progressive police chief. He had some innovative ideas such as having his officers spend a penniless day and night on L.A.’s skid row and having his officers locked up in a jail overnight. He believed it was important for his officers to know first-hand what it was like to be homeless and to be locked up in jail. He also decided to take a radically different approach to policing Casablanca, a crime infested Mexican-American neighborhood, plagued by the Chagolla (sp.?) gang.

It seems as though the Chagollas convinced the Casablanca residents, probably through intimidation, that they would do a better job of protecting the community than the cops. When the liberal police chief met with some of the residents he agreed that his cops would no longer patrol Casablanca. How did that nonsense work out? No too well. The gang extorted money from the residents in return for their protection. If a cop happened to venture into Casablanca, he was met with gunfire.

Finally, after the residents had had their fill of Chagolla law and order, they asked the cops to return. But it wasn’t all that easy. The cops literally had to fight their way back into the neighborhood. In order to avoid being targeted by the Chagollas, they even changed their uniforms by eliminating badges, shoulder patches and sergeant stripes, collar insignia and other items that could reflect street lights in the darkness, adopting non-reflective cloth materials instead.

How should the black community be policed when its members have a deep mistrust of the cops? Certainly not by letting the Bloods and Crips take over maintaining order like the Chagollas did in Casablanca. And not by ignoring low-level crimes that may be acceptable to the community.

I have previously advocated that only black cops should be assigned to maintain order in black urban neighborhoods. For that I was severely criticized and accused of practicing segregation. My answer to that is: Despite court orders to the contrary we still have all black schools and all black housing. Besides that, I did not suggest that only white cops police white neighborhoods. Furthermore, let me also point out that the tribal lands of American Indians have their own police forces.

So criticize me if you like, but I still believe that only black cops should police our black communities. With black cops policing black neighborhoods, the community will become more trustful of the police and will eventually embrace the Broken Windows concept of enforcing all laws. And if a black cop shoots a black man, no one can say that racism lurked behind the shooting.

If it’s not all black cops in all black neighborhoods, does anyone have a better suggestion?

Sunday, February 22, 2015


Guantanamo is a Club Med resort compared to the hellhole that was Andersonville

President Obama is determined to shut down the terrorist detention camp at the U.S. Naval Base in Guantanamo Bay, Cuba. Obama and his liberal supporters are upset that suspected Islamic terrorists are being held there without charges and under inhumane conditions.

It is true that most of the remaining detainees have been held at Guantanamo since shortly after 9/11. We are at war with Islamic terrorists, a war they started when they flew those airliners into New York’s World Trade Center and into the Pentagon. It is a dirty war fought without any international rules of engagement. That is why I believe that we are justified in imprisoning suspected terrorists without any formal charges. A few of the detainees may even be innocent.

By holding the terrorists outside our country, they are not subject to the Constitutional rights and protections granted to people within the United States.

If Obama thinks those Islamic terrorists are being held under in humane conditions, then he does not know the meaning of ‘inhumane.’ The prisoners at Guantanamo are well-fed, clothed and sheltered. They receive good medical care.

I just got through watching a rerun of the TV movie ‘Andersonville.’ Compared to the hellhole that was Andersonville, Guantanamo is a Club Med resort.

The Confederates held 45,000 Union soldiers at the prisoner-of-war camp in Andersonville, Georgia. The only shelter they had were some makeshift tents. The only clothing they had were the clothes they were wearing when captured. They were not given enough to eat. The camp had an inadequate water supply. There was no sanitation. The prisoners were given no medical care. 13,000 prisoners died of scurvy, diarrhea, and dysentery.

Mr. President, Andersonville was inhumane, not Guantanamo!


The Bayou City leads the nation in bank robberies and armored car robberies

My pal Bob Walsh seems to take great pride in his hometown’s homicide rate. While Stockton may rank high in the number of murders, it can’t hold a candle against my hometown in other crime areas.

The FBI notes that Houston leads the nation in bank robberies and armored car robberies. And while Stockton may beat us in homicides per 100,000 people, Houston probably has more murders in one day than Bob’s hometown has in a month.

Texas proud and Houston proud! Bob, eat your heart out.

Saturday, February 21, 2015


A small Texas police department provides a safe place for Craiglist shoppers

Shopping on Craiglist and similar social media websites can be a risky business. Not only can you get ripped off while buying or selling on Craiglist, but you are literally risking your life dealing with strangers. Crooks are using the sites to prey on innocent victims. Last month, a Georgia couple was murdered after they drove to a secluded area to buy a vintage car listed on Craigslist. Last year a Houston man thought he was buying a Sony PlayStation when he was robbed and shot to death. Craiglist shoppers throughout the country have been ripped off, robbed and assaulted.

Fulshear, Texas is a small city just west Houston. Its police department is now providing Craiglist buyers and sellers a safe place to conduct their transactions. They are being encouraged to meet in the police station’s parking lot or inside the cop shop’s lobby if they prefer.

Fulshear Police Chief Kenny Seymour says, “You are dealing with the unknown you are meeting people for the first time you don't know, generally these involve cash transactions, the criminal knows that and is where he is taking advantage of these individuals.”

The parking lot is covered by eight surveillance cameras. Those cameras would discourage a crook from attempting to rob his intended victim.

Chief Seymour said his officers will also check to see if any items being bought or sold are stolen. "Just to ensure that everything is kosher with these transactions, we are willing to take the items if they have identification numbers to make sure they are not stolen.”

What a great idea! By providing its parking lot or police station lobby as safe transaction places, the Fulshear Police Department has put real meaning in the police motto: To Protect and To Serve.


A forensic psychologist testified that Eddie Routh had marijuana-induced psychotic symptoms when he killed Chris Kyle and Chad Littlefield

On Friday, forensic psychologist Randall Price testified that Eddie Routh was not insane when he killed Chris Kyle and Chad Littlefield. Price, who had interviewed the defendant for 10 hours, testified Friday that Routh had "cannabis-induced psychotic symptoms" caused by constant pot smoking, combined with heavy drinking.

Price testified that Routh has a paranoid personality disorder, not a mental disorder. “I think he was experiencing psychotic symptoms, but I think it was because of the drugs, the marijuana.” Price said that is called “voluntary intoxication,” not insanity.

According to WFAA:

Price told jurors that cannabis-induced psychotic symptoms are more visual or smell-oriented, and can last for days or even a month. Jurors have been told Routh was upset by Chad Littlefield's cologne. Price said Routh has a "paranoid personality disorder," or a person who always thinks someone is trying to take advantage of them. He said a disorder is not mental illness. Price testified that marijuana abuse would increase the paranoia. "It heightens their suspiciousness," he said. "He angers easily."

Both Dr. Price and Dr. Michael Arambula, a forensic psychiatrist, agreed that Routh did not suffer from PTSD because as a Marine he never saw any combat during a deployment to Iraq and he never handled any dead bodies of hurricane victims while stationed in Haiti.

During the opening phase of the trial, Routh’s uncle James Watson had told the jury that he and his nephew smoked “strong” pot together just before Kyle and Littlefield picked Routh up on that fateful trip to a firing range. Watson testified that after he and his nephew ended their pot smoking session, his “buzz” lasted for another three hours. It stands to reason that Routh remained high for a similar period of time, thus putting him under the influence of marijuana at the time of the killings.

And they keep saying that smoking pot is harmless. Yeah, right. And pigs can fly.

Friday, February 20, 2015


Utah anti-death penalty crowd again is off target

By Greg ‘Gadfly’ Doyle

PACOVILLA Corrections Blog
February 20, 2015

The anti-capital punishment/anti-death penalty folks never cease to amuse and frustrate me. Perhaps it is because the press grants them way too much attention. It is as if those who oppose the death penalty are the only voices that matter in the public discourse over executions.

Does it matter to anyone in the anti-death penalty camp that voters in many states continue to demand, vote for, and affirm the need for State executions of heinous murderers? Are they concerned that the highest court in the country has continued to allow executions to move forward in States where it is sanctioned (hence, it is legally justified)?

The answer appears to be a resounding, “No!” It is very clear that those who oppose capital punishment believe there is no acceptable manner in which any State should dispose of a condemned prisoner, other than to allow that inmate to expire from more compassionate and natural causes.

The question I ask is this: What makes the life of a convicted and condemned criminal (who determined to unlawfully and viciously take someone else’s life) more important than the rest of society? Why do we, who abide by the law and live peacefully among our neighbors, have to endure the existence of heinous, brutal, and brazen killers?

Is it morally unjust to terminate a human life under ANY circumstance? No. Though I find it morally reprehensible, our justice system justifies abortion (killing unborn human life) under general circumstances. Soldiers are permitted to kill their opponents on the battlefield. Peace officers are allowed to engage threats to life with deadly force. And American citizens are allowed to defend their own lives and kill assailants when justified.

And according to the law in most States, executing condemned prisoners (for murder) is completely justified. Morality is about judgment—a determination of what is right and wrong where human behavior is concerned. And if, through the process of a legal proceeding, a jury and judge determine execution is justified, then it is morally sound based upon the law.

What is morally wrong, in my estimation, is the perpetual delay of justice and circumvention of the law through endless and, in most cases, superfluous appeals.

And one of those perpetual appeals from anti-death penalty advocates is focused upon lethal injection and its chemical agents. Wait a minute! Wasn’t lethal injection the alternative to the electric chair, hanging, firing squad, and gas chamber because those methods had the appearance of medieval torture? Weren’t we appalled at the images of condemned men and women writhing at the end of a rope, smoldering in a chair, gasping for one last breath, or shuddering from the report of a bullet?

So the alternative was putting the condemned to sleep, so they would not have to experience outwardly what was coming inwardly. Our sensibilities and consciences could remain in tact using lethal injection.

That argument was nothing more than a scam; forgive the pun—a con job. The condemned are just as dead whether being hanged, electrocuted, gassed, shot, or injected. But how we, as a society, feel about ourselves afterwards is what is at stake.

Didn’t electrocutions just make you feel dirty? Aren’t those hardhearted prison guards just itching to toss Lefty into the chamber and drop the pill on him? How dreadful a sight to see Mugsy walked up the steps of the gallows for a necktie party? Doesn’t anybody have compassion anymore?!

Death is cruel, People—DON’T YOU GET IT?!!! The anti-death penalty people don’t like death. Death sucks. So don’t do it, please.

And because the lethal injection fight is becoming more difficult for States to endure, some states are suspending the execution of condemned prisoners to avoid legal entanglements in the courts. Not the State of Utah. There is serious consideration being given to bringing back the firing squad as a means of execution in their House of Representatives (for the full story see .)

The article said opponents of the firing squad cited one incident in 1879 where a bullet missed the inmate’s heart and it took 27 minutes for him to die. Hmmmmm. That is well over a century with only one mishap (botched execution.) Sounds like an effective execution method. Let’s sign California up before all our death row inmates die of old age.

If one incident in 1879 is the best they can cite for a reason not to use the firing squad, then the Utah anti-death penalty crowd (again) is off target.


After being chased out of a second floor window in a neighboring house, Chris tries another house only to meet a widow with a blazing gun

Christopher Lee Willis, 28, was not a very good burglar. He was a noisy burglar. He is now a dead burglar.

Chris was burglarizing homes in a Columbus, Ohio neighborhood during the early hours of Thursday morning. Instead of being quiet, Chris made a lot of noise by breaking windows to gain entry. Around 5 a.m. he got caught in one house where the occupants chased him out a second floor window. Undaunted, he picked himself up and smashed the window of a neighboring house, climbed in and … bang, bang, bang, bang … his body looked like Swiss cheese.

The house Chris broke into was occupied by a widow. Last week, her son had bought her a gun because he feared for his mother’s safety, living alone in a crime-infested Columbus neighborhood.

When the widow heard the window being smashed, she grabbed the gun, spotted ‘ole Chris inside her house and with the gun blazing away, perforated his body multiple times. The hapless burglar died in a hospital two hours later.

Chris not only flunked Burglary 101, but in his case the saying should go: If at first you don’t succeed … don’t try again!

Thursday, February 19, 2015


Pistol-packing momma shoots herself dead while adjusting her bra-holster

Reports are just now coming to light that on New Year’s Day a St. Joseph, Michigan woman accidentally shot herself to death while adjusting her bra-holster. Christina Bond, 55, was repositioning a handgun inside her brassiere when it accidentally discharged. She was looking down at the hardware when the errand round struck her in the eye.

St. Joseph Public Safety Director Mark Clapp said, "She was having trouble adjusting her bra holster, couldn't get it to fit the way she wanted it to. She was looking down at it and accidentally discharged the weapon.”

Christina, a Navy veteran who served as a shore patrol officer, was taken to Lakeland Hospital, then airlifted to Bronson Methodist Hospital in Kalamazoo where she expired the next day.

Bond had recently been elected as a Republican precinct judge. You could say that her term in office was rather short-lived due to a malfunctioning bra-holster.

Apparently bra-holsters are becoming popular with well-endowed women. However, they rank at the very bottom on my list of handgun holsters. They are absolutely useless in quick-draw situations and are obviously dangerous to women as well. My expertise in this area may be somewhat questionable since my boobs are not big enough to conceal a firearm.

Wednesday, February 18, 2015


The cost of incarceration and the impact of certain crimes on minorities fuel the demands for criminal justice reform

Recently Bob Walsh noted that because of Gov. Jerry Brown’s prison realignment program, California’s prisons are now “housing ‘real bad guys’ instead of pot smokers and hubcap thieves.” Very clever, that Bob. But it might surprise him that two mortal enemies – liberals and conservatives - are now allied in demanding new criminal justice reforms. Conservatives now agree with liberals that non-violent offenders should not be confined in our prisons. Of course though, each side is doing so for very different reasons.

Let’s start with the conservatives. The former ‘lock ‘em up and throw away the key’ crowd has suddenly come to realize that their philosophy has driven taxes sky high. Apparently it never occurred to conservatives before that someone has to pay for keeping all the criminals locked up. And now that their pocket books are being emptied, they are calling for ‘community based rehabilitation’ and for the release from prison of ‘nonviolent’ criminals.

Liberals, on the other hand, are exercising their intellectual gray matter by claiming that our prisons are full of pot smokers and that incarceration for non-violent drug crimes disproportionally impacts minorities, especially young African-American men. Their solution is to legalize marijuana and, like their now conservative allies, are demanding community based rehabilitation for non-violent criminals.

How about all those pot smokers in prison? I’ll grant you there are a lot of inmates doing time for possession of marijuana, but is that really what they got busted for? The liberals would have us believe the prisons are full of inmates doing time for simple possession of pot. Nothing could be further from the truth! You can bet that the overwhelming majority of inmates doing time for possession were actually busted for sales of marijuana, and it wasn’t for selling just a couple of joints. These dope dealers were able to plea bargain the more serious sales charges down to possession in order to receive a lesser prison sentence. And you can also bet that some of these dealers committed acts of violence, charges for which were dismissed as part of the plea bargain.

Now, what about the disproportionate impact the imprisonment for drug crimes has on young African-American men? Liberals claim that whites get away with selling white powder cocaine while blacks get busted for selling a few rocks of crack cocaine. Even President Obama and Attorney General Eric Holder keep bellowing that mantra. I can’t argue with them. But there is a good reason for that. Those white white-powder cocaine dealers are much more sophisticated than those black crack dealers. They sell their dope clandestinely and are much harder to catch. Young African-American men can be found openly selling dope on every street corner in predominantly black neighborhoods. And by the way, many of their customers happen to be white.

Those pot possession prison sentences are not ruining the lives of young black men. Those men are ruining the lives of everyone they sell dope to. They should be locked up, no matter how disproportionate their numbers may be. They have chosen to make their livelihood selling illegal drugs on their own volition and, if caught, should be made to pay the price for their unlawful activities. That price should be incarceration in prison.

One last word about the liberal mantra that our criminal justice system is discriminatory. NYPD’s ‘Broken Windows’ approach to crime, also known as ‘Quality-of-Life Maintenance Policing,’ holds that in [minority] communities contending with high levels of disruption, maintaining order [by enforcing all laws] improves the quality of life for residents and reduces crime. The liberal critics of Broken Windows claim that it imposes a white, middle-class morality on urban populations. Say what? Are they serious? Do they really mean that the black underclass is to be held to a lower law enforcement standard than the white middle and upper classes? Obviously they do. Liberals emphasize that Eric Garner, who died while resisting New York cops trying to arrest him for the illegal sales of untaxed cigarettes, was a victim of Broken Windows because his crime was an accepted way, among other unlawful activities, of earning a living in New York’s black neighborhoods.

To lower taxes, conservatives no longer want to send Bob’s ’hubcap thieves’ to prison, opting instead for community based rehabilitation. Sounds good, but is it? The idea being that low-level non-violent criminals can be rehabilitated better in the community than in prison. Actually, those low-level criminals are not doing time in prison for the first time they got caught stealing hubcaps. Almost all first-time non-violent felons are given probation, a form of community based rehabilitation. And time after time, many of these probationers continue to commit new beefs before the courts have finally had enough and send these career criminals to prison.

Let’s have a look at Texas where a cost-conscious conservative legislature instituted some 'cost-saving’ criminal justice reforms. Here are some excerpts from a January 13 article in the Prison Legal News:

According to a November 2012 report published by the Texas Public Policy Foundation, a conservative think tank, the Texas state jail system is an expensive failure – with 90% of the cost of conventional prisons, but a much higher recidivism rate. The report recommends initially placing all state jail defendants on probation instead of incarcerating them and establishing a system of rehabilitation programs for those on probation and probation violators who are sentenced to state jails.

In 1993, the Texas Legislature sought to reduce the overcrowding in the prison system by creating a new class of offense – the state jail felony. Many crimes which had formerly been third-degree felonies and some that had been Class A misdemeanors were reclassified as state jail felonies. The idea was to divert the low-level drug and property defendants out of a track that led to prison. To accomplish this, judges were required to first place convicted state jail defendants on probation, only sending them to a state jail for 60 days as a kind of "shock" probation or for a maximum term of two years if they violated the probation or were convicted of a subsequent state jail felony.

The state jails were also supposed to be part of the community supervision system and heavy on treatment and education to assist rehabilitation. Perhaps this approach was a little ahead of its time because, before it was fully realized and without any evidence of the success or failure of the state jail concept, the two subsequent Legislatures instituted changes that made state jails little more than warehouses for low level felons. Unlike prisoners in the state prison system, state jail prisoners had no opportunity to earn good conduct time. With no rehabilitation programs, industrial jobs, or good conduct time and few privileges, state jails became difficult to manage.

Eventually, the state jails were folded into the state prison system and prisoners incarcerated there were allowed to earn some good conduct time. Thus, they completed their transformation from an extension the judges' community supervision to a branch of the state prison system.

In 2012, 99.7% of state jail defendants were sentenced directly to state jail incarceration for sentences ranging from 6 to 24 months with no guarantee of rehabilitation or treatment options. State jails cost nearly as much as state prisons, yet state jails releasees recidivate faster and in greater numbers than those released from state prisons.

The reincarceration rate within three years of release for state jail prisoners released in 2007 was 31.9%. The 3-year rearrest rate for 2006 state jail releasees was 64.2%. This contrasts with a reincarceration rate of 26% and a rearrest rate of 48.8% within three years of release for prisoners released from state prisons. In short, the reincarceration rate for state jail releasees was 23% higher than the rate for state prison releasees. This also adds to the overall costs of state jails.

Why didn’t Texas fund any rehabilitation programs to go along with probation and those state jails? The answer is quite simple. The conservative legislators did not appropriate the money needed for such programs. Cost savings, you know.

So, to answer the question: Are our prisons really full of pot smokers and hubcap thieves? No they are not! They are full of career criminals, drug dealers, sexual predators and vicious thugs. And if those locked away in our prisons are disproportionately black, it’s because a disproportionate number of young African-American men chose to follow the path that led them to prison.


The Unconventional Gazette
February 17, 2015

The doctor said, "Harry, the good news is I can cure your headaches. The bad news is that it will require castration. You have a very rare condition, which causes your testicles to press on your spine and the pressure creates one hell of a headache. The only way to relieve the pressure is to remove the testicles."

I was shocked and depressed. I wondered if I had anything to live for. I had no choice but to go under the knife. When I left the hospital, I was without a headache for the first time in 20 years, but I felt like I was missing an important part of m yself. As I walked down the street, I realized that I felt like a different person. I could make a new beginning and live a new life.

I saw a men's clothing store and thought, that's what I need... A new suit... I entered the shop and told the salesman, "I'd like a new suit."

The elderly tailor eyed me briefly and said, "Let's see... Size 44 long."

I laughed, "That's right, how did you know?"

"Been in the business 60 years!" the tailor said.

I tried on the suit it fit perfectly.

As I admired myself in the mirror, the salesman asked, "How about a new shirt?"

I thought for a moment, and then said, "Sure."

The salesman eyed me and said, "Let's see, 34 sleeves and 16-1/2 neck."

I was surprised, "That's right, how did you know?"

"Been in the business 60 years."

I tried on the shirt and it fit perfectly.

I walked comfortably around the shop and the salesman asked, "How about some new underwear?"

I thought for a moment, and said, "Sure."

The salesman said, "Let's see... Size 36.

I laughed, "Ah ha! I got you! I've worn a size 34 since I was 18 years old."

The salesman shook his head, "You can't wear a size 34. A size 34 would press your testicles up against the base of your spine and give you one hell of a headache."