Wednesday, 31 March 2010

Shoot that messenger!

Poor old Parole Board chief Sir David Latham is concerned his latest utterances will be distorted and portrayed in a bad light. So, without further ado...

Latham wants to let more prisoners free. He tells us there are too many prisoners who pose only a small risk of re-offending. "Society has become risk-averse over whether to release them on licence". "Once the tariff period for the offence has been served, there needs to be a proper and rigorous justification to keep anyone in prison".

Okay, objectively speaking, there's not too much wrong in what this guy is saying. Unfortunately, the public isn't feeling in a very objective mood. Why? Because people like you, Sir David, in other words, hand-wringing establishment liberals, have sabotaged our criminal justice system. You want to release prisoners because you don't believe that wrong-doers should be punished; the concept is way too simple for an egg-head brain like yours.

Now, I am a libertarian, and there are many acts that are now deemed crimes, which do not deserve to be so, because they are matters of individual choice - I am mainly referring to drug prohibitions, and there are many other ways that our individual freedom is infringed unjustifiably - and insofar as people are being punished for such non-crimes, I do not approve. You can't steal from yourself or assault yourself. Even killing yourself is no longer a crime. You can't be victim and perpetrator of the same crime. Where there is no victim, there is no crime, or at least I can't think of an example of this.

Sir David is not wholly wrong, but the principles upon which he has constructed his argument are as solid as quicksand. What he wants to do is blame the public for their stupidity and for being 'risk-averse', when all the public ever reads about is how brutal, bloody crimes are being committed by evil men who have already proven their malice with prior convictions of a similar nature. Yes, it's true the press will linger on the extreme and sensational examples, such as below, where only yesterday one of the highest judges in the country decreed that a rapist can beat a deportation order so he can get married, but these cases are real-life, and there are many more that do not make the national press. Pick up any local paper and you will find grisly crimes and it's a racing cert that those crimes are being committed by people with long criminal records.

The key problem with people like Sir David is that he's been hanging around crooks too long and now swallows every self-pitying lie and sob-story he's given, that he can only see it from the point of view of the poor little crim, and we the public have heard it all before, and we're sick of it.

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