Monday, December 10, 2007

News of the Day, Monday, December 10, 2007

  • The housing slump taking its toll in the states. According to Stateline, almost half report being affected, 19 are below their revenue forecasts for the year, and 4 are specifically already facing shortfalls in corrections spending. And most credible analysts are predicting the housing problems to go for at least another year or more.
  • And, of course, as reality hits, our policymakers decide to fiddle. CT legislators are jawing about a special session while contesting over three strikes and plans to make all burglaries eligible to be counted as violent offense strikes, which will basically explode their prisons. (Did I mention that CT was one of the 4 states already with corrections spending problems above?) And VT leaders [sic] are battling over demon weed penalties, with the enormously disappointing gov there arguing that a pro-sense state's attorney's treatment of defendant diversion encourages drug abuse . . . while conveniently ignoring that he's favored a very similar diversion in the past. (Did I mention that VT is named as a state facing severe Medicaid budget problems in that post above?) Meanwhile, is that smoke we're smelling?
  • USA Today is reporting that theft of personal data has tripled in the last year, which is a major concern that could be controlled by users and providers, not prisons. That self-government thing, you know.
  • Part two of that excellent series the Boston Globe is now running on the increase of suicides in prison and the difficulties (self-imposed or not) that the prisons have in getting it stopped.
  • "Alterations in the genetic coding for a nerve cell receptor, which detects a chemical signal that is key to behavioral change, could point the way to designing therapies most effective for patients suffering from schizophrenia, drug addiction and other mental illnesses." TECHNOCORRECTIONS!!!
  • Finally, we often talk about those offenders who get put on sex registries who really aren't a threat and get hammered anyway. Well, here's an interesting article about folks in UT who probably should be on a registry but didn't get there because of pleas or different charges. Just proof that leaping before looking goes both ways in what we do in corr sent.

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