Thursday, January 25, 2007

One Odd, One End

He doesn't brag on himself much, but Kim and the DC commission he directs have completed some substantial work on evaluating the district's experience with guidelines. For those of you interested in advisory guidelines, Kim's conclusion is "Our preliminary assessment seems to demonstrate that voluntary guidelines schemes are not only constitutional, but can work under the right circumstances - although it is reasonable to be skeptical that such schemes will always work." If you'd like to review the full report, have at it here (under "publications"). (And here you can find the key conditions for an effective advisory commission from an article Kim and I published a couple of years back if you want more to digest. We haven't heard of it coming back up on anybody yet . . . ew, sorry.) . . . And here's a link to the recent BJS report talking about how death rates in prison are less than in the general population. One thing that struck me as odd, telling, and sad. Non-black inmates apparently had a slightly higher death rate than the general pop, but the reason the stats came out as they did was because the death rate of African-American inmates was 58% below the rate for African-Americans in the general population. I'll leave it to you to parse out what that means. I don't think I really want to hear your explanation.

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