Remember how I mentioned that TJ Maxx had lent out our credit card number to thieves? Turns out we were in a select group of folks, only 45.7 million of us worldwide. . . . We've been having some trouble with our comments (best we can tell is it has to do with problems Google has been having with its g-mail, or maybe it's global warming). Anyway, our friend Teri Carns in AK (Alaska, not Arkansas) with their Judicial Council sent us this comment regarding a post we made about differences in rural and urban sentencing. Here's what they've found in the Great North: "My comment was just that in our felony report (about 2,300 1999 charged felons), we found that predisposition incarceration for rural people tended to be shorter. Non-presumptive sentences were longer, especially for drug offenses. Total time incarcerated was longer only for drug offenses; otherwise, the predisposition and non-presumptive time balanced out. Alaska ’s geography and distribution of resources, like the other rural areas you mentioned, left judges with fewer choices for dispositions." Thanks, Teri. . . . ANNOUNCING A GREAT NEW BLOG!!! Here are the details:
Launched on March 29th by Kathleen Pequeño, Nicole Porter and Judy Greene, Texas Prison Bid'ness is posting information about the growing prison-for-profit industry in Texas . Since the first prison-for-profit in the world – an immigrant detention prison operated by the Corrections Corporation of America in Houston -- opened in Texas in 1984, Texas has become home to scores of prisons of all shapes and sizes that are run for the profit of corporations. We'll be sharing information about the true costs of private prisons to individuals, families and communities in Texas and across the country. Post #1 by Kathleen Pequeño highlights advocates’ demands that CCA’s T. Don Hutto immigrant detention prison be closed down.
About the name, Texas Prison Bid'ness
Yes, this blog's name is indeed a tribute to Texas writer Molly Ivins, who wrote in 2003, “What happens if you privatize prisons is that you have a large industry with a vested interest in building ever-more prisons.” You can read her 2003 column on the push for privatization in the Texas legislature.
Have something to say? Our blog posts are open to comments, so you can comment or suggest other private prison news for us to cover. We'll be updating this blog regularly with more news, more background, and more facts about private prisons. If you want to know when new content is available, consider subscribing to our RSS feed.
. . . And finally, I've recommended a few times here the development of Kent Scheidegger's "science court" concept, folks who can supply needed expertise to judges on science issues, especially with technocorrections rising up the chart with a bullet. Well, turns out there already are some orgs out there doing this, providing "resource judges" for reference. One is a consortium of the OH Supreme Court and MD Court of Appeals called ASTAR (Advanced Science and Technology Adjudication Resources). Here's their website. I've bookmarked it and will try to keep you up on what they do. I guess it's better to have had a good idea and lost than never to have had a good idea at all. . . . don't say it.