Despite opposition from experts, the Conservatives are determined to build more prisons for unreported crime. Apparently the budget of between 10 and 13 billion includes $67,000 for crystal balls, because we have no idea how to incarcerate imaginary prisoners.
But since they refuse to listen to Canadians who tell them this is a recipe for disaster, maybe they should listen to their fellow Republicans. Newt Gingrich has already come out and said that too much incarceration is unsustainable.
But there is also this story to consider: Republican lawmakers paying for tough crime laws:
When Harry Coates campaigned for the Oklahoma state Senate in 2002, he had one approach to crime: "Lock 'em up and throw away the key." Now, Coates is looking for that key. He and other tough-on-crime lawmakers across the country, faced with steep budget shortfalls, are searching anxiously for ways to let inmates out of prison faster and keep more offenders on the street.Suggesting that prison expansion will create jobs is nonsense. It's going to break us.
Oklahoma's preferred answer for crime has collided head-on with a budget deficit estimated at $600 million, and prison costs that have increased more than 30 percent in the last decade. For years, lawmakers have pushed each other to lengthen prison sentences and increase the number of criminals behind bars. Not now: This week, new Republican Speaker of the House Kris Steele is expected to unveil a package of proposals that would divert thousands of nonviolent lawbreakers from the prison system and ramp up paroles.