An easy solution to violent crime

There is a way to prevent and cure violent crime.

O.K., there is no way entirely to prevent violent crime, but it can dramatically be reduced.

First, let me remind you about what doesn’t work.

  1. Mass incarceration doesn’t work. We’ve tried that.

    Wikipedia: “In October 2013, the incarceration rate of the United States of America was the highest in the world, at 716 per 100,000 of the national population.

    “While the United States represents about 4.4 percent of the world’s population, it houses around 22 percent of the world’s prisoners.”

    Mass incarceration has minimal (if any) effect on crime, but it creates a huge subset of the population that is stigmatized.

    Stigmatization encourages future crime, as many legitimate jobs are closed to convicted felons.

  2. Guns in the hands of “good guys” doesn’t work. We’ve tried that.

    No one knows who the “good guys” are today, and who they might be tomorrow. The mild-mannered librarian can turn into a raving lunatic on the road.

    A “good guy” who loses his job, his house or his wife, can become a “bad guy” instantly.

    And an untrained “good guy” can be an unintentional menace to other good guys.

  3. The “war on drugs” doesn’t work. We’ve tried that.

    By now, America’s disastrous experiment with Prohibition should have taught us that prohibiting something people want, only encourages consumption — and crime.

    Gun owners surely understand the concept. Every time there is a concern guns might be banned, gun sales go up.

To prevent violent crime, we first must identify the people who most commit those crimes, the places where they commit them, and their motivation.

And that is fairly obvious, isn’t it?

Criminals live and operate in high-crime areas (a tautology), and high-crime areas are relatively poorer areas.

People commit crimes to satisfy their wants, and it is human nature to want at least as much as your neighbor has.

If no one had a TV set (as was the case in the 1800’s) those lacking TV sets would not feel the desire to steal one. But if some people have TV sets, those lacking sets are motivated to steal them.

Generally, criminals steal the way they know best. People whose educational and social background helps them to understand accounting, salesmanship, psychology and other paths to scamming, prefer “white collar” crime.

It usually is not violent. Upscale suburbs, for instance, seldom see violent crime.

Violent crimes in upscale city neighborhoods generally are committed by lower-income non-residents.

The crime low-income people know best is more confrontational and violent. They have seen it and been victims of it. They understand it, well.

If relatively low income is a common precursor to violent crime, the prevention of violent crime requires the elimination of relatively low income.

Why should we deny social benefits to those poorer than us, only to spend time and money protecting ourselves from violent crime? Wouldn’t we be wiser, and much safer, to lift the poor out of poverty, so to give them less motivation to attack us?

Yes, some may resent so-called “lazy” welfare recipients, receiving money and other “free stuff” without working.

But does it make any sense to encourage people into violent crimes that will hurt us? Rather than advocating mere punishment, wouldn’t we be smarter to add a nice, juicy carrot to that stick?

Implementing Steps #2 – 5 of the Ten Steps to Prosperity immediately would reduce America’s poverty rate and reduce America’s violent crime rate.

It would grow America’s economy, enrich you and your loved ones, and make you and your family safer.

Just because it’s obvious and easy, doesn’t make it wrong.

Reduce violent crime by reducing poverty. Reduce poverty by implementing the Ten Steps to Prosperity.

Rodger Malcolm Mitchell
Monetary Sovereignty

Ten Steps to Prosperity:
1. ELIMINATE FICA (Ten Reasons to Eliminate FICA )
Although the article lists 10 reasons to eliminate FICA, there are two fundamental reasons:
*FICA is the most regressive tax in American history, widening the Gap by punishing the low and middle-income groups, while leaving the rich untouched, and
*The federal government, being Monetarily Sovereign, neither needs nor uses FICA to support Social Security and Medicare.
This article addresses the questions:
*Does the economy benefit when the rich afford better health care than the rest of Americans?
*Aside from improved health care, what are the other economic effects of “Medicare for everyone?”
*How much would it cost taxpayers?
*Who opposes it?”
3. PROVIDE AN ECONOMIC BONUS TO EVERY MAN, WOMAN AND CHILD IN AMERICA, AND/OR EVERY STATE, A PER CAPITA ECONOMIC BONUS (The JG (Jobs Guarantee) vs the GI (Guaranteed Income) vs the EB) Or institute a reverse income tax.
This article is the fifth in a series about direct financial assistance to Americans:

Why Modern Monetary Theory’s Employer of Last Resort is a bad idea. Sunday, Jan 1 2012
MMT’s Job Guarantee (JG) — “Another crazy, rightwing, Austrian nutjob?” Thursday, Jan 12 2012
Why Modern Monetary Theory’s Jobs Guarantee is like the EU’s euro: A beloved solution to the wrong problem. Tuesday, May 29 2012
“You can’t fire me. I’m on JG” Saturday, Jun 2 2012

Economic growth should include the “bottom” 99.9%, not just the .1%, the only question being, how best to accomplish that. Modern Monetary Theory (MMT) favors giving everyone a job. Monetary Sovereignty (MS) favors giving everyone money. The five articles describe the pros and cons of each approach.
4. FREE EDUCATION (INCLUDING POST-GRAD) FOR EVERYONEFive reasons why we should eliminate school loans
Monetarily non-sovereign State and local governments, despite their limited finances, support grades K-12. That level of education may have been sufficient for a largely agrarian economy, but not for our currently more technical economy that demands greater numbers of highly educated workers.
Because state and local funding is so limited, grades K-12 receive short shrift, especially those schools whose populations come from the lowest economic groups. And college is too costly for most families.
An educated populace benefits a nation, and benefiting the nation is the purpose of the federal government, which has the unlimited ability to pay for K-16 and beyond.
Even were schooling to be completely free, many young people cannot attend, because they and their families cannot afford to support non-workers. In a foundering boat, everyone needs to bail, and no one can take time off for study.
If a young person’s “job” is to learn and be productive, he/she should be paid to do that job, especially since that job is one of America’s most important.
Corporations themselves exist only as legalities. They don’t pay taxes or pay for anything else. They are dollar-tranferring machines. They transfer dollars from customers to employees, suppliers, shareholders and the government (the later having no use for those dollars).
Any tax on corporations reduces the amount going to employees, suppliers and shareholders, which diminishes the economy. Ultimately, all corporate taxes come around and reappear as deductions from your personal income.
7. INCREASE THE STANDARD INCOME TAX DEDUCTION, ANNUALLY. (Refer to this.) Federal taxes punish taxpayers and harm the economy. The federal government has no need for those punishing and harmful tax dollars. There are several ways to reduce taxes, and we should evaluate and choose the most progressive approaches.
Cutting FICA and corporate taxes would be an good early step, as both dramatically affect the 99%. Annual increases in the standard income tax deduction, and a reverse income tax also would provide benefits from the bottom up. Both would narrow the Gap.
There was a time when I argued against increasing anyone’s federal taxes. After all, the federal government has no need for tax dollars, and all taxes reduce Gross Domestic Product, thereby negatively affecting the entire economy, including the 99.9%.
But I have come to realize that narrowing the Gap requires trimming the top. It simply would not be possible to provide the 99.9% with enough benefits to narrow the Gap in any meaningful way. Bill Gates reportedly owns $70 billion. To get to that level, he must have been earning $10 billion a year. Pick any acceptable Gap (1000 to 1?), and the lowest paid American would have to receive $10 million a year. Unreasonable.
9. FEDERAL OWNERSHIP OF ALL BANKS (Click The end of private banking and How should America decide “who-gets-money”?)
Banks have created all the dollars that exist. Even dollars created at the direction of the federal government, actually come into being when banks increase the numbers in checking accounts. This gives the banks enormous financial power, and as we all know, power corrupts — especially when multiplied by a profit motive.
Although the federal government also is powerful and corrupted, it does not suffer from a profit motive, the world’s most corrupting influence.
10. INCREASE FEDERAL SPENDING ON THE MYRIAD INITIATIVES THAT BENEFIT AMERICA’S 99.9% (Federal agencies)Browse the agencies. See how many agencies benefit the lower- and middle-income/wealth/ power groups, by adding dollars to the economy and/or by actions more beneficial to the 99.9% than to the .1%.
Save this reference as your primer to current economics. Sadly, much of the material is not being taught in American schools, which is all the more reason for you to use it.

The Ten Steps will grow the economy, and narrow the income/wealth/power Gap between the rich and you.


4 thoughts on “An easy solution to violent crime

  1. Good to see something sensible on this front. Once the tetraethyl lead induced crime wave went down [ via improved gasoline], the crime wave has been subsiding as relative affluence improved. But it will rise again without concerted efforts to reduce poverty. The federal government has all the cards. It just needs a head transplant to fix its attitude.


  2. “But does it make any sense to encourage people into violent crimes that will hurt us?”

    Therein lies the rub. Comfortable suburban whites are not concerned with crime in inner city slums. They do not have the perception that “it hurts us”. It gives them, in fact, the satisfaction of feeling superior.

    Of course, I agree with you that sensible people would chose to reduce relative poverty as much as possible (for a whole host of reasons) and would receive a reduction in violent crime as a benefit. But pitching to the comfortable the reduction of violent crime as a primary reason to reduce relative poverty is bound to get a meh response. On the other hand, simply clarifying the connection between poverty and violent crime can help comfortable people understand the politics of the poor a little better, and perhaps reduce their hostility to good social and economic policy.


  3. Ban all guns except for Colonial hunting muskets. Mere possession of a banned firearm is 5 years in prison, no parole, strict liability. Commit a crime with a gun, 15 years. Shoot the gun during the commission of a crime, 20 years. Kill someone with a gun, (any gun), life without parole. Stiff penalties worked in battling the Mafia (drugs / RICO) and this solution will work as well. Plus it is a constitutional measure b/c all guns are not banned…hunting muskets are there for the ‘sportsmen’ who kill animals for sport. And for you gun collectors? Tough shit. Collect pictures of guns. Plato dispensed with the notion of ‘collectors anyways.


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