20 March 2014

The U.S. prison population

"The United States locks up more people, per capita, than any other nation."
The United States not only incarcerates a lot of people, it also has a bewildering array of places to put them. There are, of course, jails and prisons: jails are usually run by local jurisdictions (cities or counties) and house either convicted criminals serving short sentences or people awaiting trial. Prisons, or penitentiaries, are run by states or the federal government, and house convicts serving longer sentences. But there are also juvenile-detention facilities, military prisons, immigration-detention and civil-commitment centres (used for court-ordered treatment of the mentally ill; they can be inpatient or outpatient) as well as jails and prisons in Indian and overseas territories, most of which are administered by different government entities...
Remember, though, that number is static: it does not capture the churn of people in and out of incarceration during a given year... Many of these have poor intent requirements, meaning people are being locked up not to keep the rest of society safe, but for technical violations of laws they may not have known existed.
Image source.  Via The Dish.


  1. Not to mention that many of them are for profit businesses that are backhanding judges to lock up as many people as possible.
    They have contracts that stipulate a given number of prisoners at any given time.
    The crooks now own the prisons and are using your savings as capital.
    If it makes a profit then the pension funds are in there and will vote, and are legally obliged to do so, for whatever makes the most profit.
    Your pension plan is destroying the world into which you are going to retire.

  2. Sending people to jail is a career path for many. Keepping people out of jail can be profitable (for some) but it doesn't provide the same access and path to power that prosecuttion does.

  3. Fast food and prisons, the economic engines of our time.


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