WTF Headline Of The Day: GOP Senator Says "US Is Under-Incarcerated," Should Lock Up More People

Tyler Durden's picture

Nobody in the world loves locking people behind bars as much as Americans do.  As we noted previously, we have more people in prison than any other nation on the planet.  We also have a higher percentage of our population locked up than anyone else does by a very large margin.  But has all of this imprisonment actually made us safer?  Well, the last time I checked, crime was still wildly out of control in America and for the most recent year that we have numbers for violent crime was up 15 percent.  The number of people that we have locked up has quadrupled since 1980, but this is not solving any of our problems.  Clearly, what we are doing is not working.

Here is U.S. imprisonment rate per 100,000 people since 1880:

Screen Shot 2015-02-12 at 3.05.01 PM

Land of the free indeed...

So, just in case anyone needed a little more crazy to end the week, Senator Tom Cotton (R-AR) is here to help.

Recall that last year the Arkansas Senator said that there were too many empty beds in Guantanamo...

"In my opinion the only problem with Guantanamo Bay is there are too many empty beds and cells there right now. We should be sending more terrorists there for further interrogation to keep this country safe. As far as I'm concerned every last one of them can rot in hell."

Enjoy...

 

It appears as though the only thing on Cotton's mind is filling up jail cells, because now the Senator wants to enlarge US prisons so they can be filled up further. At a speech at the Hudson Institute, Cotton said that if anything, the US has an under-incarceration problem.

"There's a bill in congress now that would sharply reduce mandatory minimums for a slew of federal crimes. The bill's advocates contend that we're locking up too many offenders, for too long, for too little, and we can't afford it anyway, and we should show more empathy toward those caught up in the criminal justice system. These arguments put simply are baseless. Take a look at the facts. First, the claim that too many criminals are being jailed, that there is over-incarceration, ignores an unfortunate fact. For the vast majority of crimes, the perpetrator is never identified, or arrested, let alone prosecuted, convicted, and jailed. Law enforcement is able to arrest or identify a likely perpetrator for only 19 percent of property crimes and 47 percent of violent crimes. If anything, we have an under-incarceration problem."

Relevant portion begins at 9:20

* * *

Some fact bombs...

There are 2.3 million Americans in prison or jail. The U.S. has 5 percent of the world’s population but 25 percent of its prisoners. One in three black men can expect to spend time in prison. There are 2.7 million minors with an incarcerated parent. The imprisonment rate has grown by more than 400 percent since 1970.

 

Recent research suggests that incarceration has lost its potency. A report released this week from the Brennan Center for Justice at the New York University School of Law finds that increased incarceration has had a very limited effect on crime over the past two and a half decades.

 

– From Five-Thrity-Eight article: The Imprisoner’s Dilemma

Unfortunately for Mr Cotton, if jails could become larger and become more full than they already are, all of the world's problems would not simply go away. Perhaps Cotton should join a central bank so he can be amongst fellow "magic people," and live in denial of anecdotes, history, and facts.

Perhap the following are 21 amazing facts about America’s obsession with prison might help Mr. Cotton…

#1 There are more than 2.4 million people behind bars in America as you read this article.

#2 Since 1980, the number of people incarcerated in U.S. prisons has quadrupled.

#3 The incarceration rate in the United States is more than 4 times higher than the incarceration rate in the UK and more than 6 times higher than the incarceration rate in Canada.

#4 Approximately 12 million people cycle through local jails in the U.S. each and every year.

#5 Overall, the United States has the largest prison population and the highest incarceration rate in the entire world.

#6 Approximately one out of every four prisoners on the entire planet are in U.S. prisons, but the United States only accounts for about five percent of the total global population.

#7 The state of Maryland (total population 5.9 million) has more people in prison than Iraq (total population 31.9 million).

#8 The state of Ohio (total population 11.6 million) has more people in prison than Pakistan (total population 192.1 million).

#9 Incredibly, 41 percent of all young people in America have been arrested by the time they turn 23.

#10 Between 1990 and 2009 the number of Americans in private prisons increased by about 1600 percent.

#11 At this point, private prison companies operate more than 50 percent of all “youth correctional facilities” in this nation.

#12 There are more African-Americans under “correctional supervision” right now than were in slavery in the United States in 1850.

#13 Approximately 90 percent of those being held in prisons in the United States are men.

#14 The incarceration rate for African-American men is more than 6 times higher than it is for white men.

#15 An astounding 37.2 percent of African-American men from age 20 to age 34 with less than a high school education were incarcerated in 2008.

#16 Police in New York City conducted nearly 700,000 “stop-and-frisk searches” in 2011 alone.

#17 The “SWATification” of America has gotten completely and totally out of control.  Back in 1980, there were only about 3,000 SWAT raids in the United States for the entire year.  Today, there are more than 80,000 SWAT raids in the United States every single year.

#18 Illegal immigrants make up approximately 30 percent of the total population in our federal, state and local prisons.

#19 The average “minimum security” inmate in federal prison costs U.S. taxpayers $21,000 a year.

#20 The average “maximum security” inmate in federal prison costs U.S. taxpayers $33,000 a year.

#21 Overall, it costs more than 60 billion dollars a year to keep all of these people locked up.

*  *  *

Finally, we wonder just how much funding Mr. Cotton gets from The Deep State private prisons?

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SolidSnake961's picture

Let's put Cotton in jail

Hitlery_4_Dictator's picture

Cotton should pick his own damn cotton. We should have left the blacks in Africa while we just sucked it up and picked our own cotton. Now we have to deal with what we got now. 

knukles's picture

In that first pic he looks a tidge like Ed Norton, no?  Justa little.
Talk about crazy shit!
Who, me, Tyler?  I dinin say nuffin!

juangrande's picture

Cotton is right! We're short about the same number of people who work in the Beltway!  not counting the servants

santafe's picture
santafe (not verified) juangrande May 20, 2016 7:37 PM

Evil is as evil does. America is definitely cursed.

http://goo.gl/keHdpZ

0b1knob's picture

People not in jail who belong there:  Jon Corzine.   Hillary Clinton.   Bill Clinton.   ETC ETC ETC,

He has a point.

cheka's picture

i agree with him.  too much catch and release going on

NidStyles's picture

That is one stupid Ranger.

BuddyEffed's picture

Wouldn't it be ironic if someone found some dirt on this guy?

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Jne9t8sHpUc

I wouldnt be surprised if Cotton got a little more scrutiny because of this. Some mindsets out there would accept this as a challenge.

The Saint's picture
The Saint (not verified) BuddyEffed May 20, 2016 10:34 PM

The violent crime rate has been falling for decades.  That is until Obama started letting the criminals out early.

CuttingEdge's picture

Kim Jong-il eat your heart out.

Stuck on Zero's picture

Nearly half of the criminals are immigrants to this country. That means we're incarcerating the criminals of many other nations. The other half were bred here under Great Society programs.

Pickleton's picture

"It appears as though the only thing on Cotton's mind is filling up jail cells"

 

Aaaaaannd done...  Sorry, couldn't read any more once the author correlated a statement on Guantanamo to the filling domestic prison cells.  Sorry, I know that works for some of those with lesser standards here, but I cant make that kind of ... hack.

Shemp 4 Victory's picture

Too much catch, release, and re-elect going on.

(Fixed it for you.)

Tall Tom's picture

The problem is that we are locking up the wrong people.

 

Let's first make a simple definition. A VIOLENT PERSON is one that VIOLATES YOU OR YOUR PROPERTY RIGHTS. Theft is a violent crime.

 

Do violent offenders need to be locked up? Of course.

 

Do people who deal in Illegal Drugs need to be locked up?  It depends.

 

Are they violent? If they are VIOLENT...sure... then sure...put them away.

 

If they are not violent then they do not need to be in cages.

 

The Prison Population explosion began with the prosecution of the FAILED War on Drugs.

 

That is who is being locked up.

 

MEDICALIZE Drug Addiction. Decriminalize it and MEDICALIZE it.

Cruel Aid's picture

Right on again Tom, drug war is a racket and police state enhancer. Some people are ruined when they were just partying a bit and self financing. Once you get the big F, you are screwed. I will never forget Mercury Morris, got like 20 years for very small amt of mj. Boom no more football... jail cell! Very wrong.

The scumbags declared 'your drug is alcohol only' after the prohibition social lesson for all times. They banked it, its an industry now and an employment figure.

Dude stay where you are, your local vote and input is invaluable, but you are welcome to visit. Sorry but I just dont think i could live there, id stroke out.

RafterManFMJ's picture

It's important to keep the price of drugs as high as possible so the black ops can continue to smuggle it in, and make huge money to finance their games, and feather their own nests.

If it were legal, then this illicit funding to the tune of hundreds of BILLIONS of dollars per year would dry up.

This will not be allowed.

So, it will continue. It's pretty straightforward once you figure it out.

Cruel Aid's picture

Amen brotha, private sector would explode with capitalism and profit

.gov would shrink but nothing else would change.

Cant have it... 2 very bad words with these scumbags

 

Edit: I say that but budwiser is no longer an American entity. 35% corporate tax must change!

SilverDOG's picture

Exception to expected private sector gain, new drugs manufactured and illegally dispensed.

Amazing (not) the approaching legalization of natures "drugs" and the new domination of addiction with synthetic drugs.

Utilize overview and time to gain perspective of the machine.
Slowly it may operate, it never, ever stops.

BeanusCountus's picture

Agree with a lot of it. But if there is no fear of incarceration.. there is no fear. What's rhe solution?

SilverDOG's picture

Fear is utilized when education is abandoned, for programming.
Primarily by cowards, to breed spawn, and it continues to flourish today.

Without Federation of States, the US Govt. has utilized fear endlessly for self promoting, power gaining control of the ignorant majority.

Excluding accidental death, and mainstain media (govt filtered and embellished upon) there is no fear fuel to burn.

Turn off the reactionary, fear medication, psychological programs.
90 second attention span without retention, seeds ignorance fear.
"There is nothing to fear, but fear itself."

Divide and conquer never ends until the TPTB implode into the darkness of their own bred fear. Sit back and enjoy the show, we are in the final 5th of 5.

"History does not repeat itself, it rhymes"
Brutally so if ones knowledge is more than "graduate" of any "school".

drivenZ's picture

sorry, but theft in and of itself is not a violent crime. If someone steals your wallet at knifepoint, that's violent. If someone steals your bike that's locked to a pole, that's not violent and that person should not be in jail if they don't have a prior violent crime history. community service and a check in with a counselor, fine. paying for them to sit in a jail cell, no.

Fiction Peddler's picture

It should be simpler than that.

"Crimes" with no victims ARE NOT CRIMES.

They even have FELONIES (meaning: heinous acts) where there is no victim.   Just who is helped by this? It's definitely not the victim, and it's not society at large.

 

StychoKiller's picture

But, but...Reefer Madness!  It could happen to you! :>D

Katos's picture

Usually when theee Douchebags like this come out with some moronic PSYCHOPATHIC idea like this, its only a matter of time before they're exposed as pedophiles or sexuals PREDATORS or something. I wonder what this idiots problem really is?

Bangin7PoundCocks's picture
Bangin7PoundCocks (not verified) knukles May 20, 2016 8:48 PM

I was thinking Tom Green in Freddy Got Fingered.

Allen_H's picture

Hi'Ya Knuks, The world is a stage as the saying goes, and you would be surprised how many of these jokers are actors, check out Wellaware1.com website, it should open a few eyes, we live in a matrix alright, guided by all these actors.

OpTwoMistic's picture

SS961, not just cotton, get most of them including Chucky.

reinhardt's picture

luv it

instant laugh - right outta the gate

 

reinhardt 

markpower49's picture

Sen. Cotton for Trump's VP. Lock up all blacks and progressives. Decent people have no use for them.

Zero Point's picture

Clearly a psychopath.

Favantian's picture

Sadly, it is a rule in our government, not exception...

herkomilchen's picture

It's simple cost/benefit math.  Create an institution that is above morality and can initiate violence against people with impunity.  Stands to reason the people willing to sacrifice the most to become its leaders are the ones who stand to gain the most from having that power - psychopaths.

peddling-fiction's picture

Then make money on the privatized incarceration.

ack's picture

Cotton comes by it honestly. Sociopath and psychopath DNA.

LetThemEatRand's picture

He's just saying what most of his fellow politicians believe, and certainly most cops -- everyone but them is just a criminal waiting to be caught.  Of course when there is a law the books criminalizing almost all human behavior, that is technically true.

Parrotile's picture

Carefully note Bullet Point 10: -  #10 Between 1990 and 2009 the number of Americans in private prisons increased by about 1600 percent.

If you need to "compete" with China / India / the Phllippines's "Sweatshop" economy, there's no easier (or more profitable) way than via your Private Prison System.

For example - http://www.pfaw.org/rww-in-focus/predatory-privatization-exploiting-financial-hardship-enriching-1-percent-undermining-d

And - https://www.aclu.org/banking-bondage-private-prisons-and-mass-incarceration - In 2010, the two largest private prison companies alone received nearly $3 billion dollars in revenue, and their top executives, according to one source, each received annual compensation packages worth well over $3 million.

As for the "let's fill Gitmo and leave them there to rot" - maybe he should have a long look at who is being detained without charge, and remember they have families / friends whose attitudes towards "America" will have been permanently altered by such illegal incarceration.

rejected's picture

Few want to hear that most of the furniture they buy "Made in the USA" are prison made. They also have contracts with government, State and fed. Many States have contracts with them guaranteeing a certain amount of new prisoners per year.

Also since 1990, the NAFTA and CAFTA trade Acts were ratified which caused, and still is causing, massive job losses. It's a fact that when an economy starts crashing crime rates increase.

Oh yea,,, this country is a real work. Exceptional for sure.

peddling-fiction's picture

I guess they are not only making license plates these days.

TradingIsLifeBrah's picture
TradingIsLifeBrah (not verified) May 20, 2016 7:08 PM

Look how many psychos are randomly slashing people all through NY.  Look at Chicago.  Do I even need to mention Florida?  I can't say I don't agree with him.  You shouldn't have the option to have 30 arrests for robbery or arrested for shoplifting 50 times but there are people out there like that.  They are career criminals.  Also pedophiles have no place on this earth.  There are a lot of people that should not be in society.

Billy the Poet's picture

The fact that many criminals are never caught does not justify imprisoning huge numbers of people for "victimless crimes" which is the way things stand today.

 

https://www.google.com/?gws_rd=ssl#q=victimless+crimes+prison+population

https://www.google.com/?gws_rd=ssl#q=non+violent+offenders+number

mkkby's picture

Just because a lot of people are in prison, doesn't mean it's too many. 

Get all the victimless crimes off the books.  If people want to get high let em.  Let the cops spend their time putting the real criminals behind bars.  Have a few federal prosecutors WHO DO NOTHING BUT scrutinize bankers and polititicans under a fucking microscope.

Billy the Poet's picture

Well that's fine but it's not the argument Cotton makes:

 

"There's a bill in congress now that would sharply reduce mandatory minimums for a slew of federal crimes. The bill's advocates contend that we're locking up too many offenders, for too long, for too little, and we can't afford it anyway, and we should show more empathy toward those caught up in the criminal justice system. These arguments put simply are baseless. Take a look at the facts. First, the claim that too many criminals are being jailed, that there is over-incarceration, ignores an unfortunate fact. For the vast majority of crimes, the perpetrator is never identified, or arrested, let alone prosecuted, convicted, and jailed. Law enforcement is able to arrest or identify a likely perpetrator for only 19 percent of property crimes and 47 percent of violent crimes. If anything, we have an under-incarceration problem."

beemasters's picture

He is clearly being misleading. One should know the percentage of prison population belonging to the violent crime category. For example, if the percentage is only 1% and total non-violent criminals are 99%, then we have over-incarceration problem.

His saying " Law enforcement is able to arrest or identify a likely perpetrator for only 19 percent of property crimes and 47 percent of violent crimes" doesn't tell anyone anything. For example, they could only have one prisoner involved in property and one in violent crime, where there should be 5 and 2. So what???

newdoobie's picture

Gotta call shenanigans on this one. 1.3 mil held in state prisons - 200,000 in Fed prison

Google number of people in Calf. prison for use of drugs = 0

Violent criminals are caught with drugs

Drug users do not equal violent criminals

Victimless crimes is not defined enough to mean anything. Numbers of drug offenses in Fed prison does not show other included offenses.

Feds don't lock up perps whose offense is use alone

Shemp 4 Victory's picture

 

There are a lot of people that should not be in society.

...and most of them, like Cotton, work inside the I-495 beltway.

KuriousKat's picture

He's auditioning for an "I'm your man" job with the Koch Brothers..they love this stuff..convertible private prisons become convertible migrant welcome centers. Win Win

MFL8240's picture

Excellent speech and great man.

Shemp 4 Victory's picture

Da, comrade, is good to having in politburo man like this who is true friend Amerikanski private gulag industry.

Is plain you are with such investments pleased, tovarisch.

ack's picture

Yep. Cotton is a neo-bolshevik.