Friday, February 09, 2007

Pentonville ..The Liberal Folly I don1t get links here any more blogger)

Now I usually try to keep the blue end up, here in the topsy turvy land of Iz by getting in the letters page of the local Papers. Yesterday therefore , as usual , I was combing through the lost cats for something to disagree with. This is my prey for this week . Greg Fox is the Lib Dum Hillrise councillor and that is my ward . I met him around at the hustings and he`s not a bad fellow really , although somewhat pleased with his inner goodness. Since bumping into each other at Chartwell, (avec familles ), of all places, we’ve become somewhat friendly. Nonetheless his letter looks like an open goal to me containing the usual muddled Lib Dum thinking .

What I usually do is look up the background, fling some press cuttings in the air and wait for the muse to snuggle up, but I thought I would try begging instead this week. So; if anyone can be bothered have a look ,please give me any useful links and / or ammo to lob into the their nest of Liberalsim.

OUR prison system is failing. Our prisons are so crowded that convicted criminals are being kept in our police stations.

Re-offending is at an all time high. And while prison numbers rise, incidents of violent crime also rise, people don't feel safe.

The UK has the highest prison population in western Europe, we also have some of the highest crime rates. In simple terms if prison worked, high numbers of prisoners should mean falling levels of crime.

The conditions in our prisons are appalling and little is done in prisons to stop people re-offending.

At a recent council meeting, we condemned the conditions at Pentonville Prison which have been widely reported as intolerable.

Not all councillors backed the motion which suggests that some are still unaware of how the prison is falling to rehabilitate its prisoners, many of whom are Islington residents and who will be released in due course back onto Islington streets to re-offend.

That is why I have asked council leader James Kempton to arrange a visit so that all councillors can see for themselves the conditions inside Pentonville Prison. - Councillor Greg Foxsmith, Liberal Democrat Member for Hillrise, Islington Council, Town Hall, Upper Street, N1.

OK that’s Greggy with the usual mildly expressed wish that things were somehow nicer. This is the sort of area of attack
1 The fact that crime is a good career option for those caught in the poverty trap of marginal taxation is the fault of him and his kind
Tough on the causes of crime ? You are the cause…
2 By what madness do you conclude that by making prisons nicer places to be in people will want to go to them less?
3 Rehabilitation is not the aim of prisons it is punishment and safety. Rehabilitation should be separated and handled by other agencies so as not to confuse it with Justice
4 The moral frame work that used exist in the communities form which criminals come has been eroded to destruction by the sort of patronising welfare based policies you support and your insistence on the false doctrine of NO BLAME.

That’s as far as I have got. Any ideas concrete example and facts are the thing ,impact at a premium and entertainment essential. We are minority here and we have to be twice as good ass the Jobs worth Coucillors of the two main parties.

Kevin , you have police experience
Croydonian , you know everything
IT and CU always clear on policy and political background
Anyone ?

Or anything you might have to add to the hive brain….I usually get in and I `ll tell you if we are successful.

Right I `m off to bleed money at the dentists then working , then child minding .it’s a tough life eh.


istanbultory said...

N, of course, your four points are perfectly correct and logical. I find myself in complete agreement. As for the wider picture....from NuLabour, we have had tough on crime, three strikes and out, on-the-spot fines, night courts, drugs tsars, no less than 60 criminal justice bills and countless pieces of meaningless drivel. To say nothing of a PM twice questioned by the police during a criminal investigation. As for prisons…..
In 1961, at the height of the long post-war boom, there were 31,500 people in prison in Britain. A quarter of a century later that number had risen to 51,000. The prison population has now reached 80,000, exactly double what it was 12 months earlier. There are currently 137 prisons holding men, women and children in England and Wales.Yet, even The Guardian was discussing the issue five years ago. The dangers of prison overcrowding were much debated back then. And long before then. This is not a new problem.

Clearly, the government has failed to act on prisons because it has had more important issues to spend tax-payers money on.In August 2006, we learnt that developing the ID cards scheme has cost the government £46.4 million over the past three years. To put that figure in perspective, Kilmarnock Prison which opened in 1999 and is able to hold up to 700 prisoners was built at a cost of £33 million.
Two weeks ago, John Reid, the Home Secretary, felt compelled to write to judges reminding them that they should hand out prison sentences only to the most serious and dangerously recidivist criminals. In the few days after Mr Reid sent that letter, judges have spared paedophiles, child pornographers and drug dealers jail.
Can things really get any worse? Perhaps the Lib Dems could get serious on this issue.Finally.

Croydonian said...

Try this site. He's one of us, and a nice chap to boot.

electro-kevin said...

There is something you haven't included and that is the effect of cautions and non-custodial sentencing on the prison records. Comparing 1961 with 2007 prison populations is not going to produce like-for-like comparisons, but will (I suspect) be weighted heavily in favour of the leftist argument. There should be a lot more people in prison if standards were the same.

The weighting of criminal acts has been reduced over the years.

I've been on google for over an hour but simple statistics on this are really hard to find. I need a degree !!! Got 3 years MN ??

I just want the number of offenders put on community service then and now (any given period). You'd think it would be simple wouldn't you !

D'ya get my point, NM ?

Well done IBT and Croydonian - hugely impressed of Devon here.

Any ideas ? Anyone ??

electro-kevin said...

The Probation Service is discussed under Croydonian's Prison Works site. I didn't see any raw stats there, but some good rhetoric.

In my travails I ended up at the Probation Services' home page and waddaya know ??? First sentence:

"Crime is a complicated issue ..."

Yeah, it is if you want it to be you empire building w*@%£4$ !

Stan said...

You might like to point out that despite our high prison population we actually imprison fewer people per incidence of crime than any comparable western nation.

Or that, despite massive improvements in forensic science, the detection rate for crime is half what it was in the 1960's.

Newmania said...

Great thanks for all that...nice of you all.Working now but will have a mull( as C puts it) and churn out the usual outrage this weekend.

Really appreciate it , thanks

Apparently there is only one month left to register your objection to the 'Pay As You Go' road tax. The petition is on the 10 Downing St website but they didn't tell anybody about it. Until recently only 250,000 people had signed it and 750,000 signatures are required for the government to at least take any notice.

Once you've given your details (you don't have to give your full address, just house number and postcode will do), they will send you an email with a link in it. Once you click on that link, you'll have signed the petition.

The government's proposal to introduce road pricing will mean you having to purchase a tracking device for your car and paying a monthly bill to use it. The tracking device will cost about £200 and in a recent study by the BBC, the lowest monthly bill was £28 for a rural florist and £194 for a delivery driver. A non working mother who used the car to take the kids to school paid £86 in one month.

On top of this massive increase in tax, you will be tracked. Somebody will know where you are at all times. They will also know how fast you have been going, so even if you accidentally creep over a speed limit in time you can probably expect a Notice of Intended Prosecution with your monthly bill.

If you are concerned about this Orwellian plan and want to stop the constant bashing of the car driver, please sign the petition on No 10's new website (link below) and pass this on to as many people as possible. Sign up if you value your freedom and democratic rights -

David Allen said...

You could pass a sop in their direction by suggesting that all new prisoners receive a mental health and literacy/ numeracy assessment. There should be a much more extensive prison education service _ not teaching bogus sociology degrees to a few malcontents, but focusing on addressing the lack of functional literacy/ numeracy which makes so many prisoners unemployable and therefore more susceptible to the lure of a life of crime! Equally, I suspect that a lot of inmates have an undiagnosed mental illness which needs to be addressed.

CityUnslicker said...

Nick Clegg said this:

Liberal Democrats would divert the £1.5bn John Reid has earmarked for more prisons to expanding the provision of secure and semi-secure mental health and drug treatment facilities for offenders. About half of prisoners have some form of mental health problem, and one in 10 are estimated to be "functionally psychotic". But there are simply not enough mental health beds: special hospitals offer only 1,150 and court diversion schemes that recommend treatment for offenders are held back by the lack of beds.

i.e. The Liberals policy wouild be to create less prison places. This is at odds with their policy of making prisons a nicer place to live. Quite how you decide who is mentally ill and who is not out of a bunch of people already convicted is also a key point overlooked here.

Newmania said...

Quite how you decide who is mentally ill and who is not out of a bunch of people already convicted is also a key point overlooked here.

That whole area is one I` ve thought a lot about CU.

As you pointed out though I cannot dally in working hours for long ...oo that stung...very very true

Newmania said...

K and DA thanks , later as above

DA/..will be having a "soirre" soon which it would be nice of you would attend .I `ll let you know

David Allen said...

Ooh, thanks, N! I shall polish my tiara in readiness.
Back to the thread: has anyone ever assessed the extent to which improvements in medical technology has REDUCED the murder rate? I suspect that the rate of murderous violence has risen far in excess of the headline murder gigures. Surely many of the people currently in prison for GBH would have been serving a murder term if their victims had received the medical care of 1950/60/ 70?

Newmania said...

murder gigures.

I `m sorry David but you know what a martinet I am about spelling. Can we keep it a little less sloooovenly please The fact that people keep living is one that Liability Insurers habitually bemoan. Some on going claims get so large that they are tempted to sneak into the hospital and finish the bugger off

Ellee said...

David Allen makes a good point, but the fact is, however much we help rehabilitate prisoners, it's the life they return to in civvie street that is important. If they have no job, no money, and no skills perhaps, what help is given to them then to stay on the straight and narrow?

electro-kevin said...

Gawd - I'm sorry to be such a disappointment to ya, but I'm not really much of a details man myself and couldn't get the details and decided to go down the pub so I'm a bit pissed. I do lots of comedy, ranting, music ... and lurrrv.

But I'd like you to say this to the rather 'nice' pinco-fascist Izlovian bastard...

"Look here, matey-boy, you've had your thingy-thangy with the 'care in the community' where I ain't seen not one scrote yet cleaning up the Grafitti, nor the litter. I seen that ASBO wot-not which is worn as a badge of pre-pubescent muff so as to get the girlies up the stick wedded to the welfare state teat. I also seen that useless bangle thingy worn round the ancle too big for that skinny-bastard hood so he slips off into the night an' gets his fix round the back of the station car park..."

I'm sure you get my drift here (we're on a wave-length, I can feel it - black leather jacket and jeans Hmmm ?)

What I'm saying is that your mate has already had two or three bites at this particular cherry and may play all innocent with you "It doesn't work ...what can we dooo ?"

But the above (rather flippantly put I agree) goes to show that these buggers want it all their own way and they want it all the way.

Good luck NM

I've just made an entry under Global Warming (or whatever) that should amuse you.

electro-kevin said...

If course I er ... didn't mean to disparage any care in the community people there ... of course I meant community service people as you well know.

The last bit would have read better like sooo : "These buggers want in all their own way and they want it ALL the way.

Oooof ! That's better.

Newmania said...

Lucky you Kev I am stuck at home ce soir so Mrs N can go to her book club..( ie piss up ) sigh...

electro-kevin said...


I suppose what I was trying to say there, with the aid of my friend John Bull was this:

A policy of NOT sending people to prison (we already have this policy) has been accompanied with a worsening of crime rates.

Most people in prison could already be considered to be recidivist because the court system allows many chances before recourse to incarceration.

So they wan't MORE of this ??? Is that right ?

Newmania said...

Allo K I `m off to stay with firends and then I`ve got a party on Sunday afternoon and ...oh what a glamorous whirligig it all is .

Full weekend of arguing and getting lost I expect

Philipa said...

N - I sent you details of "Quite how you decide who is mentally ill and who is not out of a bunch of people already convicted"

but hey, have a great weekend :-)

Anonymous said...

I was glad ffor him when I was inside... Its fucking horrible anyway.

electro-kevin said...

Interesting info on the Home office pages for 'justice, what happens at court'

Trials by judges/magistrates in criminal cases presently result in the following:

Discharges - 8%
Fines - 71%
Comm serv - 13%
Prison - 7%

David Allen said...

N, we miss your wit and wisdom at the weekends!

Newmania said...

I have had a busy one David , we went to stay in Hampshire and then went to alittle paty this PM , I am going to be back about shortly

Darkersideofbridgetjones said...

The thing to do is to observe good practice. Usually the scandanavian countries are very good at this sort of thing.

electro-kevin said...

Darkersideofbridgetjones's suggestion to look sideways at the methods of the Scandinavians is a good one; why not look backwards too at the methods of one of the most civilised countries to ever have existed ... my experience the surest way to get even the mildest lefty snarling.

But looking back at the figures I gave you at 2.41pm I did notice that the percentages do not add up to 100. I've checked and double-checked but this is a faithful reproduction of the Home Office report - there is 1% missing.

I had mused that this might be absconding asylum seekers and then came to me the vision of the elephant in the living room ...

how many non-British prisoners are housed at Pentonville at the moment ?

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