Defining Progress

Defining Progressby Benjamin T. Moore, Jr.

Defining Progress – What Is Progress? What Does It Mean??

“Don’t stick a knife in my back 8 inches, pull it out to 4 inches and tell me we’re making progress.” ~Malcom-X

When defining progress, it is important to realize progress is relative to something or some state that already exists. It is thus defined by where you are or what you have and where you want to be or where you want to get. If you ask me to tear down a building and hand me a sledgehammer and a crowbar, I can make progress on your project. Depending on the size of the building and whether or not I have any assistance, it might take me quite awhile… or, it might prove impossible.

I could not bring down a skyscraper with just a crowbar and a sledgehammer. That’s not going to happen. If you gave me a bulldozer I could probably make quick work of a house, but a skyscraper? Not going to happen. Although, I could certainly get to work on the project and day after day you could say, “I was making progress.”

If I were worth say, $8 billion dollars, and you were the trustee over my estate, charged with releasing money as needed, you could give me a couple of million dollars a year and with compound interest, I would die before ever actually acquiring my full $8 billion. You could argue that $2 million a year was nothing to sneeze at and call that “progress.” However, if my goal is to take over my complete estate, I may asymptotically approach that goal, but I’ll never reach that goal. All along the way it might be said that “I was making progress towards achieving my goal.”

Understanding An Asymptote

An asymptote is a line that continually approaches a given curve but does not meet it at any finite distance. It will forever approach the curve – destination – but never touch or reach it. When we talk about progress in the struggle for the civil rights of Black people in these United States, we’re looking at an asymptotic relationship.

Slavery is no longer economically viable. Free the Slaves. Progress. But what did that actually mean? Yes, suddenly we had a large population of African-Americans who were no longer enslaved, but whom had none of the wealth of this nation they were so vital a part of its building. “Give them all 40 acres and a mule.” First understand that very few freed Slaves actually received 40 acres and a mule… but let’s say they did. They had no money to buy seed. If they had seed, they needed implements to clear the land and till the soil. What exactly were they supposed to eat or live on until their first harvest? Were they making progress? that certainly was the argument. The question is, “progress towards what?”

Remember, progress is relative. They were making progress away from their previous state, but what were they moving towards? The only goal they could be moving towards in this country is full equality under the law as defined by our Constitution. It is 2015 now. Slavery ended in 1865 with the passage of the 13th Amendment. It’s been 150 years now and we’re still making progress.

Your True Intentions Are Showing

 If I owe you $5,000 dollars I can do one of several things. I can write you a check and clear my debt. I can pay you in cash, get a receipt and clear my debt. If I don’t have the full amount, I can offer to make payments – progress – if you will accept that. Whether or not you accept anything less than payment in full, depends entirely on your assessment of what I am capable of paying you.

If you owe your bank $5,000 and your balloon payment comes due, the bank will simply take it out of your account. Why? Because they know you have it. The payment is due. It now becomes their money. What about other types of debts?

Defining Progress - Governor's GazeboThis actually happened to one of my brothers-in-law years ago. He was driving down a street and noticed this beautiful gazebo sitting on this park like lawn. There was a stately mansion in the distance but as there were several parks in the area, he and his wife figured it was a park, pulled over and took their picnic basket and set up in the gazebo to enjoy an impromptu picnic on a nice summer’s day.

They were surprised when shortly into their meal a golf cart pulled up and two men in dark suits got out. Come to find out, they had picked the Governor’s mansion to have a picnic. Security was cordial and allowed them to finish. They could have made them leave immediately. When you’re trespassing on someone else’s property, you owe them your immediate removal. The security detail after determining they were no threat allowed them to make progress in leaving. “We’ll give you 45 minutes to finish but this is private property… be advised.

If you live next door to me and you throw a party and some of your guest are blocking my driveway or park on my lawn. Depending on my mood or what projects I’m engaging in, I might tolerate it for just that one occasion. I do try to be a good neighbor. However, it happens again, I’m going to speak with you about it. If it happens after I speak with you about it. I’m going to make an adjustment in my thinking and conclude you’re doing it intentionally. At this point I’m calling the police and a towing company. Why? Because your true intentions are showing.

When Black people are denied their voting rights, their neighborhoods do not receive the same funding as white neighborhoods, their schools are under funded, their roads are not repaired, predatory policing tactics are employed against them, your true intentions are showing.

We see these intentions in Fortune 500 companies. Certainly they all employ minorities… in their lower levels. However, as one moves up their corporate chain, minorities rapidly begin to disappear. In fact, females begin to become scarce as you approach the top levels. Rather than promote a minority or a female from within their corporation, they will go and hire a white male from outside the corporation, put them over the people who’ve been there and actually have a much better understanding of the business. This is neither accident nor coincidence. This is strategy. The people from within the corporation have worked with and formed relationships with the people on and below their level. They feel a responsibility and a sensitivity to these people who’ve helped them achieve their success. The people brought in from the outside only have an allegiance to the people at the top who brought them in.

We’re No Longer Interested In Just Progress

When President Barack Obama was elected, many people marvelled and patted themselves on their backs and pointed to all the progress we’ve made and how far we’ve come. Of course on the very night of his inauguration, a group of racist Republicans was meeting to decide that no matter what he tried to do, they would block him at each and every turn. Some would call this treason! At the time President Obama took office, we were in the middle of not one but two wars. Our economy was in free fall. Major banks were failing, our housing market had collapsed, our automotive industries were teetering on bankruptcy and the President the American People had elected to fix all this mess… They were conspiring to thwart and oppose at every opportunity.

Do Black people now have the right to vote? Technically yes. However, Republican controlled districts have been busily closing polling places in areas where African Americans vote, requiring new and unnecessary identification – a poll tax – to target poor and minority voters. For instance, Texas won’t recognize a Student ID but they will accept a gun permit.

Let’s look at what all is involved in getting a gun permit. Since I happen to own one in the State of Indiana, you’ve got to first go and get two money orders. One made out to the State Police and one made out to your local police department. You then have to go and get fingerprinted. Struck me as odd since my local police department did it all over again once I got down there. You have to fill out the application form on-line which of course requires a computer and Internet access. I suppose you could go to your public library and use their computers. All in all, I had to go to 3 different places to assemble the documentation I needed. My total cost since I opted for a lifetime permit – going through this process, once is enough –  was around $130.00 not including my gas, time and parking. Of course implicit in this is that you actually own a firearm.

How many poor people have that amount of money or time to spend? How many even own handguns? Accepting a gun permit is facilitating a certain segment of the population in voting while trying to exclude another segment. If you don’t own a car, why would you need a driver’s license? Not to mention, driver’s licenses are not free! Okay, so they will give you a free State ID for voting. However, to get that ID you must first assemble all the other documentation they require and get to a License Branch. Of course if you don’t own a car, that too becomes problematic. This is a strategy plain and simple. Telling me I have the right to vote is not progress when you then turn around and make it difficult if not impossible for me to fulfill my franchise.

If you’ve got my 40 acres and a mule, don’t give me an acre, rent me my mule and tell me to take it slow. I want it NOW! There’s no debate, no discussion and no negotiations needed… just do it!

No Unarmed Person Of Any Race Should Ever Die Being Arrested Or In Police Custody

This is a very simple proposition. We train them, give them vehicles, radios and technology. If they cannot arrest an unarmed civilian without murdering him or her or causing serious bodily harm, they should be fired immediately. No debate. No negotiation. No taking it slow. Right now… no, make that yesterday!

Ask yourself why cities will pay out multiplied millions in “wrongful death” suits and keep these Cops on the force? Cities will pay out multiplied millions in overtime pay to control a population inflamed by the murder of an unarmed Black 18 year old and still keep the murdering Cop on their payroll. If you owned a restaurant and the dishwasher broke over $100 dollars worth of your plates, you’d fire him. Yet these cities are willing to keep and pay Cops who’ve cost them multiplied millions of dollars. Why?

Freddie Gray

Defining Progress - Freddie Gray Arrest RecordI won’t say that Baltimore went up in flames, because in reality very few buildings were burned. The damage and unrest were actually limited to a relatively small portion of the city. The question nobody has asked as of yet, is “Why Did Freddie Run???” No, think about this for a moment. Think critically. I’m sure by now you’ve seen Freddie’s arrest record. What? Close to 20 felony arrests? Freddie was only 25 years old. Since juvenile records are sealed, we must assume that these felony arrests came after he reached the age of 18.

Any one of those felony arrests, had they got a conviction would have had him in jail or prison for at least 3 years. Any 3 felony convictions would have qualified him as a habitual offender and put him away for 30 years. He would not have been on the street walking around. He would have been in prison.

Next point. Did you notice that there were no outstanding warrants for Freddie Gray? It was not a case of “oh damn! It’s the ‘Po Po.'” They specifically said, “eye contact” was made and he ran. Ask yourself why. It is not like he’d never been arrested before. He knew he was clean, no warrants, so why run? Was something else going on?

Who Needs The Mafia When You’ve Got Cops?

Here in Indianapolis, the Cops control the drug trade and flow on our streets. I’m not making this up to cast disparaging remarks on my city. This is common knowledge on the streets. We’ve had numerous Cops arrested and sent to prison over narcotics.

Some years ago – back in the 80’s – there was a scandal involving at least 3 local police officers, speeding back from Detroit. They were doing well in excess of 100 mph in their personal cars. I believe a couple were driving a Porche and one was driving a Ferrari. Now I don’t know what they pay Cops up in Baltimore, but here in the “People’s Republic of Indiana,” Cops don’t make enough money to own those types of cars unless they married extremely well, or they’re dirty as hell! When they were pulled over by law enforcement for speeding, they flashed their badges, received “professional courtesy” and kept going. Several of the Cops who stopped them felt something just wasn’t quite right and reported them. It made the news. There were the normal noises about an investigation, and the story just sort of faded away. I figure it was a drug run.

I personally know of people who were small time drug dealers who were approached by the police to work for them and when they refused, they wound up dead. Execution style. I reported this to a homicide detective investigating one such murder and he dropped his head, nodded, indicated he knew about it and said that it was out of his hands and that Internal Affairs was looking into it. Well, they’ve been looking into it for over 15 years now evidently with no success. It is easy to overlook what you don’t want to find.

I remember the scene in the movie the “Untouchables,” where Sean Connery’s character is telling Elliot Ness, played by Kevin Costner, “everybody knows where the booze is. The question is how far are you prepared to go to stop it?”

What needs to be done isn’t easy. You cannot debate, negotiate or sneak up on it and tell yourself you’re making “progress.” Power is never ceded without force. Accepting the illusion of “progress” has now risen to the point of delusion. Everybody knows what needs to be done. If I walk into a convenience store and take a box of “Cigarillos,” that’s considered a justification for my murder. If a Banker loots the pensions, retirement plans of hundreds of millions of our Citizen, they don’t even worry about going to prison.

If a battered wife fires a warning shot into her own ceiling to stop her abusive husband, she faces over 20 years in prison. If two Cops murder a 12 year old boy in a park they’re not even charged. So, what are you prepared to do? How long will you settle for being told you’re making progress?

Poverty By Design – It’s No Accident

Poverty_By_Design_Headerby Benjamin T. Moore, Jr.

Poverty By Design – It’s Not An Accident

The poor define the middle class. The middle class define the wealthy. When social class becomes more important than the recognition of our common humanity, the upper classes will embrace policies that increase class differences.  ~Benjamin T. Moore, Jr.

The stratification of society inevitably leads to the stagnation of progress. Human genius and innovation are random blessings bestowed without regard to race, creed, gender or social standing. Thus, when the poor are excluded from educational opportunity, or the quality of the education made available to them is substandard, society has effectively cut itself off from access to the most powerful resource on this planet, the human mind.

When you examine history, the Renaissance, Industrial Revolutions and rapid technological advancement have always been marked by a collapse in stratification of the societies in which they occurred. If you look at the most modern and advanced societies in existence today, they are the ones in which the most freedom and social mobility exists.

Poverty By Design - Walled Enclaves

The wealthy will live in enclaves, the poor in squalor.

Repression of the people may protect the wealth and power of the aristocracy. However, it also leads to a dystopian society where the wealthy live in walled enclaves and the majority of the people live in squalor. The energy which would be directed toward communal advancement is turned to maintaining the status quo. This continues until a critical mass is reached and and total societal collapse occurs.

We are well down the path to a dystopian future unless we change course immediately. While the masses have slept, lulled by the illusion of equal opportunity, the wealthy have worked to enact laws to maintain their power and control. Our tax laws have been written to nearly exempt them from taxation. Loopholes allowing offshore accounts and tax havens have allowed them to profit from the labor of the working class without reinvestment of that wealth back into our society.

Opportunity is gradually being reduced like an ever tightening noose. To be considered for gainful employment, you need a college degree. The cost of college tuition is rising faster than the economy is growing. In order to pay for college, those who were not born wealthy must incur the debt of student loans, with no guarantee of employment upon graduation.

Poverty By Design - Overcrowded PrisonInner city schools are being de-funded and closed. Most children successfully completing our public education system, find themselves unprepared to pass college entrance exams. While they’re de-funding inner city schools they are funding prisons. In fact, prisons are a growth industry. More and more goods and services are now being produced with prison labor. Prisons have become the new plantations.

Connecting The Dots

Most of the wealth of the middle class was in their pension funds, 401k and in their homes. Remember Enron? Remember WorldCom? Those were the big ones. These companies were looted by their executives. However, what many people – those who’s 401k’s were not heavily invested in these companies – missed, was the 100’s of thousands of people who saw their retirement savings vanish virtually overnight.

The next big hit was the collapse of the real estate market. The family home was the bank account for the middle class. If all else failed, they could look to their equity in their homes to see them through hard times. The family home was the vehicle for the transfer of wealth from one generation to the next. When the real estate bubble burst and the housing market collapsed, people who had built up equity saw that equity evaporate leaving many of them upside down. Many lost their homes.

Poverty By Design - Reverse Mortgage

Fred Thompson for AAG. Separating people from their wealth.

You cannot watch television for any length of time without seeing a commercial for “Reverse Mortgages.” If you survived the collapse of the real estate market, a reverse mortgage might seem attractive. However, what they’re not telling you is, a reverse mortgage prevents you from transferring the wealth you’ve built up in your home to the next generation. When you leave your home – read die – the bank acquires your home… unless your children want to apply for a mortgage and pay the bank back at interest rates that more than compensate them for whatever they paid you.

These are not coincidences. This is a well planned strategy for the stratification of our society. The only question is, how many of these things have to fall into place before we wake up? This is poverty by design, and it’s no accident!


Zimmerman Acquittal – Lessons Learned (Part I)

Zimmerman Acquittal - Lessons Learned Headerby Benjamin T. Moore, Jr.

The Diagnosis – Part I

We are at war! We are not at war against all white people. Thankfully, the vast majority of white people are enlightened and committed to the same goals as we are. They are committed to creating a better world, a better life for their children and grandchildren, opportunity to grow and become the best they can be. If it were not for these white people – of all ages and economic brackets – coming out and voting in mass, we would not have elected President Obama. I have not forgotten – nor should you – that white people marched with Dr. King, had fire hoses and police dogs turned on them and some were even murdered for the cause. The following is an older white man expressing his outrage over the verdict in the George Zimmerman trial. (Warning – strong language and probably not suitable for work)

Merely because there has not been an official declaration of war, doesn’t mean you are not in a fight for your very existence nor does it mean that the higher principles this nation aspired to when it was founded are not under attack. The attack on Pearl Harbor occurred before a war was officially declared. The men and women who died that day are not any less dead because of this fact. There was not an official declaration of war prior to the attacks of September 11, 2001.

“As long as we play by these bullshit rules and the killer doesn’t, we’re gonna lose!” _Marion Cobretti (Cobra – Sylvester Stallone)

Rules Of Engagement

Zimmerman - Knights In BattleThe war that is being waged has been going on for thousands of years. It is about the wealthy maintaining power over the poor. You no doubt are familiar with the term “chivalry?” Most people upon hearing that word have visions of Knights in shining armour riding forth on their trusty steeds doing good for those less fortunate, rescuing damsels in distress and slaying dragons. The reality was quite different.

First, remember that all the royal families were related. They were cousins. The King of England – or Queen – was related to the monarchs of France, Russia, Germany, Spain and Denmark. One big extended family controlling the world. They all had the same problem, namely peasant population control. Too much prosperity and the peasant population grew too fast. Most wars were to decrease the peasant populations. Hence the rules of Chivalry. Under Chivalry, a peasant could not strike or touch a nobleman or his horse.

Zimmerman - English LongbowmenWhen they lined up for battle, guess how they lined up. The Knights always lined up opposite the peasants on both sides. They would ride into them and mow them down. If a peasant struck a Knight or his horse, they would pause the battle and execute the peasant. Things didn’t change until the advent of the English Long Bow. Archers could strike from a distance and it was impossible to determine which archer had fired the arrow sticking out of a Knight’s chest. If you go back and study history, you will find that there was quite an uproar about the unfairness and lack of chivalry of this tactic.

This mentality has carried over to this day. Snipers are both loved and hated on the battlefield. Why? Because they target officers. Back during the revolutionary war, Officers were the favorite targets of Colonial sharpshooters. It was considered unsportsmanlike. Generals and officers used to be at the front of their lines commanding their troops into battle from horseback in perfect safety. War became real when the peasantry began fighting back. It is time we began fighting back again.

Casualties And Fallout

Currently Black people make up about 13% of the total population. We also make up about 60% of the prison population. These figures if nothing else should make it clear we are under attack.

According to the Bureau of Justice Statistics, one in three black men can expect to go to prison in their lifetime. Individuals of color have a disproportionate number of encounters with law enforcement, indicating that racial profiling continues to be a problem. A report by the Department of Justice found that blacks and Hispanics were approximately three times more likely to be searched during a traffic stop than white motorists. African Americans were twice as likely to be arrested and almost four times as likely to experience the use of force during encounters with the police.”

We have witnessed young Black males murdered by police while they were face down on the ground with their hands behind their backs.

As is always the case, the officers claim to be in fear for their lives. In the video you can see a compliant subject who puts his hands up, then two officers manhandle him face down on the hard concrete floor. One is sitting astride his back the other is kneeling on his neck and shoulders. Imagine two grown men sitting on you like that. Could you breathe? You might begin to squirm to relieve the pressure. Now ask yourself, why is it that Black people always decide to resist once there are two or more Cops on top of them and they’re being handcuffed? If you were going to resist, would you wait until then to make your move? Or would you put up a fight when you had a better chance of success? Zimmerman’s defense was the same defense used by these officers and every other officer who uses lethal force.

Zimmerman - Police Academy

Police Academy

“I was in fear for my life and the safety of others.” This is a phrase they hammer into all Cops at the law enforcement academy. Why? How do you measure fear? How do you prove that a person is not in fear? Notice, by focusing on the issue of whether or not a person is in fear and whether or not that fear is justified, just as in the Zimmerman trial, we ignore the choices and actions of that person leading up to the confrontation. Was he afraid or not? He was dealing with a Black male. Black males are scary! Get a predominately white jury and they find it very easy to imagine a fear that may not have actually existed. So immersed do they become in their imagining this spectre of fear, caused by interaction with a Black male, their latent racism causes them to forget the facts. If you invade my home at night, unannounced and uninvited, you should be afraid… be very afraid. However, let us not forget, that it was you who placed your life at peril.

The War On Drugs Is A War On Black People

The study, which was published Monday in the Archives of General Psychiatry, controlled for variables like socioeconomic status because rates of severe drug problems tend to be greater amongst the poor. Despite this, Native American youth fared worst, with 15% having a substance use disorder, compared to 9.2% for people of mixed racial heritage, 9.0% for whites, 7.7% for Hispanics, 5% for African Americans and 3.5% for Asians and Pacific Islanders.”

When you view these statistics, it is important to bear in mind that Black people are only 13% of the population. White people compose over 70% of the population. So when you see that 5% of Black people are involved with narcotics, remember that’s 5% of the 13%. Yet we make up 60% of the prison population and the large majority are there for narcotics crimes. Roughly, this means that law enforcement officers have to walk past 6.3 white drug users to arrest the 1 Black user. Is there any wonder why we’re losing the war on drugs? This isn’t by accident, this is by design.

Rolling Back The Clock

If you need further proof that minorities and Black people in particular are under attack, consider the ridiculous lines at the polls. Governments cut the number of voting machines in minority districts and shortened the times that voting could occur. Meanwhile in the predominately white suburbs, there were plenty of voting machines. Just recently, after watching all of this, the Supreme Court gutted the Voting Rights Act. Although there has not nor will there be a “formal declaration of war,” ask yourself what they would do differently? They’re jailing us, murdering us and doing everything within their power to roll this nation back to the 30’s and 40’s.

If you find this objectionable and wonder what to do about it or what can be done about it, stay tuned for Part II wherein I offer a prescription.

Nu Jack Slavery – The Prison Industrial Complex

Capitalist no longer recruit and pay their labor force… They have them arrested!

“Don’t tell me what you value. Show me your budget and I’ll tell you what you value!” __Joe Biden

Years ago I was told how to cook a frog. I’ve never eaten one, however I filed that information away with all the other trivia neatly catalogued in my head. The trick is you do not toss a frog into boiling water. It seems that frogs take objection to this and will hop right out of the pot. The trick is you put the frog into cold water and slowly turn up the heat. The frog swims contentedly until it’s too late and he’s cooked.

It seems this method also works on us humans. I am amused by those people who have boosted gun sales and thus the profits of the firearms industry to record levels. “It’s coming!” “Any day now!” “I can feel it, you’d better get ready!” They’re stocking up on guns and ammunition. Some are storing food and water all preparing for the apocalypse they see just over their horizon. “President Obama is coming for our guns!” The facts are, under President Obama you now have more “2nd Amendment” protections than under any other President in recent history. President Obama is the first President whom I’ve heard state in public and on the record that he believed the 2nd Amendment applied to the individual and not a State militia. Under President Obama you may now go armed in our National Parks. You probably missed that one didn’t you?

Predator Drone in action

The United States government is not in the least worried about it’s citizenry being armed. Ask the Taliban. Ask the rebels in Afghanistan. Unless you’re packing something that can shoot down a “Predator Drone,” you and your group are not a threat. My advice? Don’t pick a fight where there isn’t any. Whatever you may think about the government, it is here to protect you and provide for the common welfare.

Know Your Enemy

It is said that if you know your enemies and know yourself, you will not be imperiled in a hundred battles…” Sun Tzu (Art of War)

The problem is not our government but the corporate interests who’ve been busy buying it. When they asked Benjamin Franklin what they’d arrived at as he was leaving “Independence Hall” at the close of the “Constitutional Convention,” his reply was, “a Republic if you can keep it.” I cannot help but wonder if old Ben might not have seen this coming? Someone said that a Democracy will only last as long as it takes the people to realize they can vote themselves money out of the public treasury. Having a Republic guards against that. Yet, there are techniques to pick the lock on the treasury vault under a Republic. Buy off the Representatives and the heads of the various branches of government. Corporations have been doing just that for all their worth!

Jack Abramoff

If you do not like a law, which is easier? Mounting a campaign and stirring up public sentiment to get that law changed? Or, identifying key legislators and buying them off? I’m sure we already know the answer.

Time for a quick refresher course on our philosophy of government. Man is endowed by the Creator with certain unalienable rights. I’m sure you’ve heard that somewhere before. We do not have a King claiming divine right of rule. Thus, each citizen gives up a portion of their power and grants our government some of our God given rights to rule over us. This is where the power of Government stems from. It comes from you, me, us individuals granting to our Government a portion of our power to use that power for the betterment of our society. This is why we say we have a government, “for the people, of the people and by the people.” That is how it is supposed to work in theory.

Corporations have been busy subverting this for nearly as long as they’ve been around. One such example is our Prison Industrial Complex. The following 5 minute video highlights an extremely disturbing trend.

When a person violates our laws, the offence is considered to be against all of us collectively. Depending on the crime or infraction, it can also be against individuals. When they are punished we the people are collectively punishing them.

This poses a sticky question. When our prison system becomes a for-profit industry, hasn’t the doctrine of the collective will of the people been violated? A State run prison is an instrument of the people. If you escape it, you’re subverting the collective will. However, should you escape a corporate prison, it seems to me that is something quite a bit different.

The Forgotten Men

Privatizing prisons has become an extremely profitable international industry. With the down turn in our economy, bottom feeders have found a booming business. America’s largest private incarceration corporation – Corrections Corporation of America – has made an offer to the States. They will buy up their cash strapped penitentiaries and run them at a cost savings. There is however one catch. The States must guarantee a 90% occupancy. Think about this for a moment. How do you guarantee a 90% occupancy? What would you do if you found yourself falling short?

Are you feeling the temperature rise? Perhaps your swimming pool has merely become a hot tub? Nothing to worry about. Kick back and relax. What this does is create a monetary incentive for police officers to make more arrests, even in speculative circumstances. It creates incentives for corruption, the planting of evidence, the manufacturing of charges. It creates a bias in the court for judges to not only find you guilty, but to give you the longest sentence possible under the law. No leniency for first time offenders. Is this what we want?

The adage of, “well, you shouldn’t have done it in the first place,” really needs to be examined. Most cases do not go to trial. They’re settled by “plea agreement.” Yes, I understand you saying in the comfort of your Den, sitting at your computer, “well, I’d never take a plea.” Trouble is, when they come after you, they can make that plea look awfully appealing. Let’s say you were driving home one night through a construction zone. There are a lot of those around these days. I’m sure you’ve seen the signs that give out the increased penalties and fines in these zones.

Back Room Deals. Public Consequences

Let’s further say, they ended construction in a zone near your home but hadn’t gotten around to taking those signs down. Where I live there are quite a few deer. So, one night on your way home, “Bambi” jumps out. Reflexively you swerve to avoid the deer and clip a car in the on-coming lane. It spins out and someone is severely injured. The deer goes on about it’s merry way. You are the only one who saw the deer. The police estimate your speed at being 10 miles over the speed limit and they arrest you and file charges. Why? They’ve got a cash incentive. The prosecutor and the judge also have a cash incentive. The prosecutor tells your attorney he’s going for the 8 year maximum. Personal injury in a construction zone. They’ll offer you a 4 year plea deal. Do 4, get a day for a day and you’ll be out in 2 years. How’s it sounding now? Do you roll the dice? If you lose you’ll be in for 8 years. The judge also has an incentive to find you guilty.

Your wife or husband? They want you back as soon as possible. You’ve just lost your job. They’re not going to hold it while you’re in prison. Your attorney is not working for free. Or did you go with a Public Defender? You never thought it would come to this but here you are.


Nu Jack Slavery

How exactly does a private firm run a prison at a cost savings? They view the inmates as a labor force. You would be surprised at how many of the goods and services you use are provided by prison labor. Telemarketing is now done at some prisons. Think about that the next time you buy something over the phone. You may have just given your credit card information to a prison inmate. Corporations simply love it because if their product can be assembled by prisoners, they don’t have to pay minimum wage or supply benefits. Their profit margin increases. Corrections Corporation of America gets their cut and profits are made off of the injustice of destroying innocent lives. Nowhere but in America!

Smell something cooking? Might be you! We are silly enough to actually pay what we call “Legislators” to do nothing but pass laws. More and more laws are going on the books. You cannot make it through your day without breaking numerous laws. Most are obscure and unknown but should they want to get you, those laws exists as tools for them to use.

The drug war will go on even though off the record, everybody knows the solution is decriminalization. If you decriminalized drugs and took the money out of them, the drug industry would dry up within a couple of months. The violence would stop and society would be a much safer place. If everybody knows this, why then does it continue? Because the State also profits off of the drug war. Most of the people in prison are non-violent offenders. The perfect employees for the Prison Industrial Complex.