The New United States Retirement System.

Discussion in 'Politics' started by SouthAmerica, May 21, 2006.

  1. .

    May 21, 2006

    SouthAmerica: Frontline on PBS just had a program showing how American retirement system is in real bad shape for most people.

    But there is a group of people that the US government doesn’t care how much money the US government spend for each retiree.

    The US government and also of the states in the USA don’t spare any expenses regarding this group of Americans and illegal immigrants. And they cost a ton of money to the government on an annual basis.

    The New American Dream..


    AP – Associated Press – May 21, 2006
    “1 in 136 U.S. Residents Behind Bars”
    By ELIZABETH WHITE, Associated Press Writer

    WASHINGTON - Prisons and jails added more than 1,000 inmates each week for a year, putting almost 2.2 million people, or one in every 136 U.S. residents, behind bars by last summer.

    The total on June 30, 2005, was 56,428 more than at the same time in 2004, the government reported Sunday. That 2.6 percent increase from mid-2004 to mid-2005 translates into a weekly rise of 1,085 inmates.

    Of particular note was the gain of 33,539 inmates in jails, the largest increase since 1997, researcher Allen J. Beck said. That was a 4.7 percent growth rate, compared with a 1.6 percent increase in people held in state and federal prisons.

    Prisons accounted for about two-thirds of all inmates, or 1.4 million, while the other third, nearly 750,000, were in local jails, according to the Bureau of Justice Statistics.

    Beck, the bureau's chief of corrections statistics, said the increase in the number of people in the 3,365 local jails is due partly to their changing role. Jails often hold inmates for state or federal systems, as well as people who have yet to begin serving a sentence.

    "The jail population is increasingly unconvicted," Beck said. "Judges are perhaps more reluctant to release people pretrial."

    The report by the Justice Department agency found that 62 percent of people in jails have not been convicted, meaning many of them are awaiting trial.

    Overall, 738 people were locked up for every 100,000 residents, compared with a rate of 725 at mid-2004. The states with the highest rates were Louisiana and Georgia, with more than 1 percent of their populations in prison or jail. Rounding out the top five were Texas, Mississippi and Oklahoma.

    The states with the lowest rates were Maine, Minnesota, Rhode Island, Vermont and New Hampshire.

    Men were 10 times to 11 times more likely than women to be in prison or jail, but the number of women behind bars was growing at a faster rate, said Paige M. Harrison, the report's other author.

    The racial makeup of inmates changed little in recent years, Beck said. In the 25-29 age group, an estimated 11.9 percent of black men were in prison or jails, compared with 3.9 percent of Hispanic males and 1.7 percent of white males.

    Marc Mauer, executive director of The Sentencing Project, which supports alternatives to prison, said the incarceration rates for blacks were troubling.

    "It's not a sign of a healthy community when we've come to use incarceration at such rates," he said.

    Mauer also criticized sentencing guidelines, which he said remove judges' discretion, and said arrests for drug and parole violations swell prisons.

    "If we want to see the prison population reduced, we need a much more comprehensive approach to sentencing and drug policy," he said.

  2. Ricter


    So true. My own jail was holding more remand inmates, as a percentage of the population, every passing year. It's a big problem. It contributes to overcrowding, and it ends up mixing more of the incidental lawbreakers with the career lawbreakers.
  3. Your post is quite disjointed. First your commentary on the US retirement system, and then a pasted article about incarceration rates . . . unless you are suggesting the US retirement system is to go to prison, ha ha.

    As far as the retirement system, the US senate can't "fix" social security, but last week voted to give it away to illegal aliens; people who can "prove" that they paid into the system while working here illegally. Good grief.

    Regarding the high incarceration rates, so what? What is your solution? Did you know that you can't have a society without laws that have a consequence if you break them? That was very apparent in cities in Brazil last week.
  4. Ricter


    I believe it was Thoreau, in Civil Disobedience, who said basically, that in an unjust society, the proper place for a just man is in prison.

    Social security is not broken.

    Sure, societies have laws. There are no doubt laws in Hell. The more pertinent question to consider, but which may pull you away from your video game for an unbearable stretch of time, is why there is so much crime here that we achieve the pathetic condition of being at the top for incarceration per capita.

    "For every thousand hacking at the branches there is but one chopping at the root."
  5. .

    Nick Leeson Jr: Your post is quite disjointed. First your commentary on the US retirement system, and then a pasted article about incarceration rates . . . unless you are suggesting the US retirement system is to go to prison, ha ha.


    May 23, 2006

    SouthAmerica: I was trying to give you the big picture without having to spell out in plain English.

    As Americans cut as much as they can all kinds of US government programs designed to help the poor people – Americans don’t care about how much money they spend with one major program - the United States prison system. In reality the US prison system is a disguised retirement system for blacks and other minorities.

    Regarding the high incarceration rate no other country in the world got more stupid than the United States on that issue and on my book I have an entire chapter (about 90 pages) with all the details of the American prison system program and I refer to it on the book as the “Brain Dead” strategy.

    When many states in the US are spending more money with their prison system than with their educational system it can’t get more stupid than that.

    What is the US government goal?

    Be the first country to lock up 5 million people in prisons and in jails?

    When Americans are going to reach that goal?

    I understand that this must be an important US government strategy on their effort to creating jobs for Americans that can’t be outsourced to other countries – lock up the poor bastards and in the way create a job to millions of Americans and in the process also help bring back communities that were in the brink of complete collapse by placing these prisons in strategic locations to generate local cash flows and business.

    Since Americans are losing an edge in how to create new businesses and they are losing their advantage on R&D to other parts of the world – Americans had to do something about it – and for many years one of the industries with the highest rates of growth in the United States has been in the area of building an extensive prison network system throughout the Unites States and in the way making the laws and setting up a system that believes that this is the way to go as a society.

    The beauty of all is that they are doing that with the blessings of the American people and the American mainstream media - as usual - is missing in action as the United States is building this “Pathetic” system that wastes billions and billions of American tax payers year after year – and this is a system that can’t be cut overnight because of fluctuations of the business cycles – the governments federal, state and local just can’t go to the prisons and say sorry guys we don’t have the money and we need to let you guys go.

    It does not work that way.

    When the hard times comes back these are expenses that can’t be cut very easily – mainly when the entire system is designed to just keep building more prisons and filling them up as fast as possible when they are completed.

    In the early 1970’s California had one of the best educational systems in the country – from the early 1970’s to the middle 1990’s a period covering over 25 years – California did not build a single new university, but during the same time they built 25 new prisons to incarcerate their poor population – By the year 2000 California was in the bottom of the states in the rankings related to education – that decline in quality was a direct result of the “Brain Dead” strategy being used by most states in the US in the last 30 years.

    Today we have a global economy and you don’t have to be a Rocket Scientist to figure out that the “Brain Dead” strategy will have a massive impact in the US in future years – This time will not be California alone that will be going to the bottom – it will be the US as a country.

    I have been aware of this trend for at least 10 years (when I spent months and months studying that subject for a chapter of my book) and at the same time this is going on there is no debate happening on in the United States on this subject - if this is the right way to go and continue investing heavily federal and states resources in that area of the US economy.


    Nick Leeson Jr: …Regarding the high incarceration rates, so what? What is your solution? Did you know that you can't have a society without laws that have a consequence if you break them? That was very apparent in cities in Brazil last week.


    SouthAmerica: Today, the US criminal system it is in a Pathetic shape and it is in shambles - and it does not matter which way you analyze it.

    Regarding the incarceration rates most advanced cultures around the world have better solutions than spending a fortune in tax payers’ money in a system that will just make things worse in the future for the entire country – you can’t lock up this people up forever and when they come out they are not a bunch of happy campers – it is payback time against a society that treated them like animals during a long period of time.

    You said: “Did you know that you can't have a society without laws that have a consequence if you break them?”

    But in the United States it is estimated that around 20 percent of the people behind bars are there because they can’t afford good lawyers or they just fall thru the cracks of a very obsolete and inefficient American judicial system - we are talking about 500,000 thousand people at least that should not be in prison in the US, but they are.

    The United States is incarcerating today at least 500,000 thousand people who should not be in prison and that number is twice as much people than the total number of people who are in federal, state and local prisons in Brazil today. That is a disgrace right there.

    Today, for each person who is in prison in Brazil – the United States is incarcerating ten people.

    And for each person that Brazil is incarcerating the United States is incarcerating two people who should not even be in prison at all.

    The crisis in Brazil has to do with drug dealers and gangs getting so powerful because there is so much money being generated by the illegal drug trade. The last thing Brazil needs is to adopt the “Brain Dead” strategy and start building thousands of prisons as in the United States.

    The Brazilian problem can be solved only by making the illegal drugs legal and by the Brazilian government flooding the market with these drugs at below cost to drive everybody who participates in that business – out of business.

    If there is no way to make money from the illegal drug trade – then everybody has to close shop and find a new line of business to make money.

  6. jem


    please show your stat for regarding inceration of people who should not be there at all.

    I am willing to bet it is off a website for a justice project and not based in reality.
  7. jem


    I was typing quickly. However, I suspect the stats cited by SA about incarceration of innocents are from websites which pull them out of thin air. So I would like to see the source.
  8. .

    May 23, 2006

    SouthAmerica: Reply to Jem

    I know that it must be embarrassing for you as a lawyer and as an American for the United States to have so many people locked up on its massive prison system network – mainly when we consider that the United States market its country around the world as the “Land of the Free”.

    It is the land of the free if you don’t take in consideration the 2.2 million people who are locked up in American prisons in the United States – and just God knows how many more people are locked up and being mistreated in American prisons around the world.

    I did read a lot of material from multiple sources regarding the United States prison system when I was doing full time research on that subject for my book a few years ago – I did spend months reading newspaper articles, magazine articles, university and think thank research groups, and all kinds of federal and state material on that subject – and I saw the 20 percent figure for innocent people incarcerated in US prisons pop up time and time again.

    It does not matter how many sources I can produce to you regarding that subject – you will challenge all of them because you don’t want to believe that the US prison system is so screwed up – mainly when you are a lawyer and a part of that system.

    Over the years I have seen various television programs on PBS about the US prison system and in these programs they claim that an estimated 20 percent of the people in US prisons are there because of wrongful convictions, or they had incompetent legal help, or these people just fall thru the cracks of an obsolete system. (In many cases these are people who nobody cares about and a large number of these people are retarded or semi-retarded and they can't fight for their freedom for themselves.)

    The US prison system has been turned into a dumping ground for mental patients all over the United States and many of these people are crazy and not criminals.

    There are now pro bono defense clinics like the Innocence Project throughout the country, working to win innocent people their freedom. In 2004, the University of Michigan published a study of 328 criminal cases over the last 15 years in which the convicted person was exonerated, and concluded that there were thousands of innocent people in prison.


    “Study Suspects Thousands of False Convictions”
    April 19, 2004, Monday
    By ADAM LIPTAK (NYT); National Desk
    The New York Times
    Late Edition - Final, Section A, Page 15, Column 4, 1077 words

    A comprehensive study of 328 criminal cases over the last 15 years in which the convicted person was exonerated suggests that there are thousands of innocent people in prison today. Almost all the exonerations were in murder and rape cases, and that implies, according to the study, that many...


    “In America; How Many Innocent Prisoners?”
    July 18, 1999, Sunday
    By BOB HERBERT (NYT); Editorial Desk
    The New York Times
    Late Edition - Final, Section 4, Page 17, Column 6, 818 words

    One way or another Vincent Jenkins will be freed from the Green Haven Correctional Facility in upstate Dutchess County, where he has served nearly 17 years of a life sentence for a rape he didn't commit. The question now is when. DNA tests have ruled out Mr. Jenkins as...

  9. Let me explain SouthAmerica, poor people and minorites, and anyone else, do not end up in prison in the US, because they are poor and/or a minority, but instead because they are convicted of a crime. Until you understand this (and it is apparent that you do not) in all reality, you are acting as "brain dead" as whatever it is you were writing about.
  10. jem


    Look it is very obvious. There is no way someone can say 20% of the people in prison are innocent. Because if they could prove it they would not be in prison. That figure by definition must be bullshit.

    The reality is that it is all guesswork.

    So you have law enforcement saying less than 1% and you have a few large typically legit organizations guessing at a number closer to 2-5%.

    I will tell you right now having worked for a D.A. doing prelims and interacting with defense attorney everyone knows (including the Defendants that the defendants are guilty of something in almost every case. They are also very frequently guilty of being stupid beyond belief for getting caught in the first place. No experieced public defender is going to tell you 20% of their clients are innocent. That is just a crazy figure.
    #10     May 23, 2006