Government to Steal on Behalf of Criminals

Wednesday, February 03, 2016

I thought I'd seen it all until I saw the headline: "DC Bill Would Pay People Stipends Not to Commit Crimes:"

Under the bill, city officials would identify up to 200 people a year who are considered at risk of either committing or becoming victims of violent crime. Those people would be directed to participate in behavioral therapy and other programs. If they fulfill those obligations and stay out of trouble, they would be paid.

The bill doesn't specify the value of the stipends, but participants in the California program receive up to $9,000 per year.


[Councilmember [sic] Kenyan] McDuffie argued that spending $9,000 a year in stipends "pales in comparison" to the cost of someone being victimized, along with the costs of incarcerating the offender. [bold added]
There is no word on whether, among many other things, participants in the program might find a way to extort even more money for not (obviously) participating in crime.

Obviously? You might ask. That becomes clearer when we consider a matter that McDuffie completely leaves out of his cost-benefit analysis: the whole purpose of his job. That would be to protect individual rights. Taking that small matter into consideration, we can better see just how preposterous this proposal really is. Since we do not currently finance our government by voluntary means, any stipend money would have to be looted from the law-abiding and productive, basically meaning that the government would commit theft, a real crime, for the alleged purpose of preventing crime. This is worse than too late, coming as it does from the very entity that is supposed to be protecting us from crime.

It is tempting to offer the following hollow praise of Kenyan McDuffie: At least his humble proposal is superior to the entire political program of every wealth redistributionist politician before him. Those programs simply initiate theft without even the pretense of preventing crime. But in this day and age, I risk being taken the wrong way seriously, since too few seem to appreciate the importance of the principles that show theft to be wrong (and especially at the hand of the government). Committing a crime to fend off a crime does not mitigate the fact that a crime has been committed.

-- CAV


Vigilis said...

Gus, what could possibly go wrong with such an "enlightened" proposal to fight crime?
1. How long does anyone suspect it may be before trial attorneys sue (class action) the D.C. government on behalf of clients for equal rights failure (limiting the payments only to "200 selected" criminals)?

2. How soon will it be before D.C. Mayors (no history of criminal corruption there) direct the selection of the criminals receiving such payments?

Still, goofier crime-fighting methods are still proposed and fail:

"BUCHAREST, Romania (AP) — Romania's government has suspended a controversial law that made prisoners eligible for a reduced sentence if they had written a book.

The law had sparked controversy after anti-corruption prosecutors investigating suspicions of abuse said one 212-page book was apparently written in seven hours, leading to suspicions that works were plagiarized or ghostwritten. ...Prisoners can have their sentences reduced by 30 days for every "scientific work" they publish, subject to a judge's decision on whether the book merits it.

The justice ministry says 340 books were published by prisoners last year, up from 90 in 2014." - Published Wednesday, Feb. 3, 2016.

Gus Van Horn said...

Heh! You mean, "What ELSE could go wrong?"