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Forums - Politics Discussion - What's your political typology? (Quiz)

sundin13 said:

First of all, these are not necessarily "criminals" we are talking about. These people have not been convicted, they have been accused. It is somewhat alarming how easily people are willing to call these people criminals and say we need to lock them up for months or years without a trial.

But also, if you believe this, should we not have a system designed around harm prevention and not around money? If we truly believe that an individual is dangerous, why would we say "Okay, if you can pay us we'll let you out"? That seems nonsensical. Not only does it mean that rich dangerous people can just walk free, like you mentioned, but it also means that poor dangerous people can walk free if they make an agreement with a bail bondsman (which is an exploitative private system leeching off of the injustices of cash bail). 

The US doesn't need cash bail. It needs to stop using our criminal justice system to enrich private enterprises and start using it to prevent harm. I understand the fear of eliminating cash bail, and I'm sure you will hear the media make a lot of noise about what individuals who commit crimes waiting for trials, but I personally can't stomach these injustices and the damage that this system does on the basis of an unproven fear.

I was not attempting to presume anyone's guilt or innocence per se, but to simply assess that many people who quite frankly are clearly guilty and pose an obvious danger to those around them wind up free as a result of terminating the cash-bail system and we can plainly see the real-world results in those communities that have already done so. They're not good. The results are, as you might expect, more crime, including more violent crime. That is the bottom line here from my perspective.

Harm prevention is of course a great thing, but let's be serious here. The mindset too many progressives embrace when it comes to criminal justice is akin to arguing vis-a-vis health care that we could prevent the need for hospitals if we just closed them all and redistributed their funds into preventative health care. You know that's not how that works!

Last edited by Jaicee - on 02 December 2021

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Jaicee said:
sundin13 said:

First of all, these are not necessarily "criminals" we are talking about. These people have not been convicted, they have been accused. It is somewhat alarming how easily people are willing to call these people criminals and say we need to lock them up for months or years without a trial.

But also, if you believe this, should we not have a system designed around harm prevention and not around money? If we truly believe that an individual is dangerous, why would we say "Okay, if you can pay us we'll let you out"? That seems nonsensical. Not only does it mean that rich dangerous people can just walk free, like you mentioned, but it also means that poor dangerous people can walk free if they make an agreement with a bail bondsman (which is an exploitative private system leeching off of the injustices of cash bail). 

The US doesn't need cash bail. It needs to stop using our criminal justice system to enrich private enterprises and start using it to prevent harm. I understand the fear of eliminating cash bail, and I'm sure you will hear the media make a lot of noise about what individuals who commit crimes waiting for trials, but I personally can't stomach these injustices and the damage that this system does on the basis of an unproven fear.

I was not attempting to presume anyone's guilt or innocence per se, but to simply assess that many people who quite frankly are clearly guilty and pose an obvious danger to those around them wind up free as a result of terminating the cash-bail system and we can plainly see the real-world results in those communities that have already done so. They're not good. The results are, as you might expect, more crime, including more violent crime. That is the bottom line here from my perspective.

Harm prevention is of course a great thing, but let's be serious here. The mindset too many progressives embrace when it comes to criminal justice is akin to arguing vis-a-vis health care that we could prevent the need for hospitals if we just closed them all and redistributed their funds into preventative health care. You know that's not how that works!

Again, if they are "clearly guilty" and "pose an obvious danger", why in the fuck would we let them free if they paid us enough? That is just garbage policy and frankly, it is a weak crutch for supporting cash bail. 

Further "you can plainly see the real world results", isn't really true. There is little academic evidence of this claim. 

As for your assertion of the "progressive mindset", I honestly don't care about your opinion on the progressive bogeyman and the fact that you think that is an argument here is embarrassing.



sundin13 said:

Again, if they are "clearly guilty" and "pose an obvious danger", why in the fuck would we let them free if they paid us enough? That is just garbage policy and frankly, it is a weak crutch for supporting cash bail. 

Further "you can plainly see the real world results", isn't really true. There is little academic evidence of this claim. 

As for your assertion of the "progressive mindset", I honestly don't care about your opinion on the progressive bogeyman and the fact that you think that is an argument here is embarrassing.

You're right, people who clearly are guilty of like violent crimes and just as clearly pose a continuing danger to others shouldn't be released, period. Your class position shouldn't matter an iota before the law. That's how it would work in a better society than we have. But we don't live in that more perfect society. The only real-world effect of scrapping cash-bail and replacing it with jack squat is more, mainly poorer, people getting raped, maimed, robbed, and killed. That's just not my idea of justice or equality.

I don't mean to be a cynic about human nature, but I just think we have to be intellectually honest, not just idealistic.



Jaicee said:
sundin13 said:

Again, if they are "clearly guilty" and "pose an obvious danger", why in the fuck would we let them free if they paid us enough? That is just garbage policy and frankly, it is a weak crutch for supporting cash bail. 

Further "you can plainly see the real world results", isn't really true. There is little academic evidence of this claim. 

As for your assertion of the "progressive mindset", I honestly don't care about your opinion on the progressive bogeyman and the fact that you think that is an argument here is embarrassing.

You're right, people who clearly are guilty of like violent crimes and just as clearly pose a continuing danger to others shouldn't be released, period. Your class position shouldn't matter an iota before the law. That's how it would work in a better society than we have. But we don't live in that more perfect society. The only real-world effect of scrapping cash-bail and replacing it with jack squat is more, mainly poorer, people getting raped, maimed, robbed, and killed. That's just not my idea of justice or equality.

I don't mean to be a cynic about human nature, but I just think we have to be intellectually honest, not just idealistic.

Ignore the whole communism / capitalism angle, but you remind me a little of this, mostly the second part, about "the practical man": https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jytf-5St8WU



Jaicee said:
sundin13 said:

Again, if they are "clearly guilty" and "pose an obvious danger", why in the fuck would we let them free if they paid us enough? That is just garbage policy and frankly, it is a weak crutch for supporting cash bail. 

Further "you can plainly see the real world results", isn't really true. There is little academic evidence of this claim. 

As for your assertion of the "progressive mindset", I honestly don't care about your opinion on the progressive bogeyman and the fact that you think that is an argument here is embarrassing.

You're right, people who clearly are guilty of like violent crimes and just as clearly pose a continuing danger to others shouldn't be released, period. Your class position shouldn't matter an iota before the law. That's how it would work in a better society than we have. But we don't live in that more perfect society. The only real-world effect of scrapping cash-bail and replacing it with jack squat is more, mainly poorer, people getting raped, maimed, robbed, and killed. That's just not my idea of justice or equality.

I don't mean to be a cynic about human nature, but I just think we have to be intellectually honest, not just idealistic.

Removing cash bail does not mean replacing it with a system in which everyone charged with a crime has to be let free

I don't know why you seem to be unable to fathom anything other than a black hole to stand in the absence of cash bail. It isn't very complicated. A judge is simply tasked with making a determination whether an individual should be held in pre-trial detention or released. This decision is based on whether that individual poses a credible risk, either to public safety or to not show up to trial. 

You also continue to fail to demonstrate any substantial evidence to your implication regarding the negative consequences of removing cash bail. I will however say that if we wish to reduce crime, the easiest way would be to lock everyone up. You can't commit crimes if you are in prison, and a scenario with MORE murder and rape is hardly my idea of justice or equality so maybe just jail everyone? (The point, is that there necessarily must be some tradeoff between freedom and safety, as taking a hard-line safety stance will always devolve into oppression). 



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Farmageddon said:
 

Ignore the whole communism / capitalism angle, but you remind me a little of this, mostly the second part, about "the practical man": https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jytf-5St8WU

Yeah, one would have to "ignore the whole communism/capitalism angle" because you know which end of that spectrum I'm much closer to and it's not exactly the one you're implying.

But let us take Peter Kropotkin's example of the peasant revolts against serfdom and the feudal codes. In your video, he cites an argument between two groups of intellectuals, liberal men and radical men (he specifically says "man" nearly every time he describes a group of people), and concludes that the radical ones were correct in their position. It's fitting that that was is his viewpoint of how history works -- one faction or another of intellectuals winning a debate and history moving on the outcome -- given that Kropotkin himself was born into an aristocratic land-owning family. In this historical debate over the proper fate of the peasantry -- the people who actually formed the overwhelming majority of the Russian population at the time -- by neither sex nor class position would I have had a place in this academic debate. Rather, someone like me would've been would've been one of the illiterate commoners; one of the serfs themselves. And yeah, it doesn't get much more practical than that. The serfs I guarantee you were not idealists, they were survivalists. Survival is the natural ideology (if you will) of the working poor in any age. They rebel when they lose the ability to survive. And that includes against parties that would subject them to needless violence and death for the sake of ideals.

Take this from someone who, for my most of both my teenage years and adult life, counted myself an anarchist (like Kropotkin). In earlier times, asked to cite a type of criminal justice system I'd like to see here, I'd have referred you to what the Zapatistas of Chiapas or more recently the Kurdish-led rebels of Northern Syria have implemented. I used to believe that you could just train everyone in police work for six months or so and then have the general public enforce the law instead of a specialized institution called the police, that crime is basically just a form of mental illness that should be organized around mending the relationship between the culprit and the victim, this sort of thing. That's not ancient history either, that's like last year me. At the start of the protest wave over George Floyd's murder, I was on the fence bordering on support for the "abolish the police" line and argument. My change of opinion has been gradual, but skews recent and is largely the result of just being a serious feminist, tbh. While the general programs of the Zapatistas and of Northern Syria's Kurds are far superior to the alternatives that exist around them and would like to see them destroyed, I can no longer get behind the idea of applying their ideas about criminal justice here because I've watched them fail victims of social violence, and especially survivors of sexual violence, far, far too often. And frankly, the recent localized experiments we've seen in this country even just moving in that same general direction with steps like ending cash-bail or the mere threat of cutting funding for police departments has consistently yielded nothing but higher crime rates, including of violent crime. It's been a wake-up call that has caused me to realize that my view of humanity has been a bit too optimistic in the past; that my thinking has been too youthful and in need of an injection of more common sense.

Last edited by Jaicee - on 04 December 2021

sundin13 said:

Removing cash bail does not mean replacing it with a system in which everyone charged with a crime has to be let free

I don't know why you seem to be unable to fathom anything other than a black hole to stand in the absence of cash bail. It isn't very complicated. A judge is simply tasked with making a determination whether an individual should be held in pre-trial detention or released. This decision is based on whether that individual poses a credible risk, either to public safety or to not show up to trial. 

You also continue to fail to demonstrate any substantial evidence to your implication regarding the negative consequences of removing cash bail. I will however say that if we wish to reduce crime, the easiest way would be to lock everyone up. You can't commit crimes if you are in prison, and a scenario with MORE murder and rape is hardly my idea of justice or equality so maybe just jail everyone? (The point, is that there necessarily must be some tradeoff between freedom and safety, as taking a hard-line safety stance will always devolve into oppression). 

The reason I see a gaping black hole in the absence of a bail system is because that's exactly what's been realized so far in those places that have ended cash-bail. These experiments tend to get largely reversed for good reason and that's because they don't provide judges with enough room for discretion on who goes free and who doesn't. The case of New York City serves as a perfect illustration. It took only a matter of days for the public to observe the negative consequences of just simply ending cash-bail after the city council did so in late 2019 and earlier this year even the Democrats (principally the black working class ones, in fact) voted to replace the city's current mayor with a (black) former police captain who favors reversing most of that policy after double-digit surges in violent crime.

But sure, my pointing that out is exactly the same as proposing that every single person on Earth should be thrown in prison for life. Exactly. The. Same.

Last edited by Jaicee - on 04 December 2021

Jaicee said:
sundin13 said:

Removing cash bail does not mean replacing it with a system in which everyone charged with a crime has to be let free

I don't know why you seem to be unable to fathom anything other than a black hole to stand in the absence of cash bail. It isn't very complicated. A judge is simply tasked with making a determination whether an individual should be held in pre-trial detention or released. This decision is based on whether that individual poses a credible risk, either to public safety or to not show up to trial. 

You also continue to fail to demonstrate any substantial evidence to your implication regarding the negative consequences of removing cash bail. I will however say that if we wish to reduce crime, the easiest way would be to lock everyone up. You can't commit crimes if you are in prison, and a scenario with MORE murder and rape is hardly my idea of justice or equality so maybe just jail everyone? (The point, is that there necessarily must be some tradeoff between freedom and safety, as taking a hard-line safety stance will always devolve into oppression). 

The reason I see a gaping black hole in the absence of a bail system is because that's exactly what's been realized so far in those places that have ended cash-bail. These experiments tend to get largely reversed for good reason and that's because they don't provide judges with enough room for discretion on who goes free and who doesn't. The case of New York City serves as a perfect illustration. It took only a matter of days for the public to observe the negative consequences of just simply ending cash-bail after the city council did so in late 2019 and earlier this year even the Democrats (principally the black working class ones, in fact) voted to replace the city's current mayor with a (black) former police captain who favors reversing most of that policy after double-digit surges in violent crime.

But sure, my pointing that out is exactly the same as proposing that every single person on Earth should be thrown in prison for life. Exactly. The. Same.

You are misrepresenting both the text of the law and its effects.

The law in NYC did not simply release everyone pre-trial. It created a subset of crimes (most misdemeanors and non-violent felonies) in which cash bail was not permitted, however violent felonies, sex offenses and numerous other crimes were still eligible for cash bail or pre-trial detention without bail. This has since been amended to include some additional crimes and allow judges to take into account a person's legal history (both good changes imo). 

-Further, as an aside, NYC is far from the only place that has reformed cash bail. Illinois recently passed legislation to eliminate cash bail and did so by implementing risk assessment tools to allow the courts to decide whether an individual should be released or placed in pre-trial detention. Reforms in New Mexico and Maryland similarly provide courts with the power to make these decisions (though in these examples, they don't provide clear guidelines as to how these decisions are made). 

The idea that what we have seen in reality is that when cash bail is eliminated, everyone goes free is objectively incorrect.

As to the effects of the NYC law, yeah, people freaked out. Color me unsurprised. Let's look at what your article states about this:

"It's not gone," Funk said of what he called "attention-grabbing anecdotes that sway policy much more than the statistics that tell us which policies work and which don't."

"The hysteria around the situation completely ignores the fact that people have been released and accused of horrible things for a long time," said Michael Gianaris, the deputy Democratic leader of the state Senate, who sponsored the bail reform law. Under the traditional bail system, the people who got released "had the money to buy their freedom," he said.

"For every story that gets sensationalized, there are hundreds of people who have been able to keep their jobs and remain with their families while accused of low-level crimes," he said.

"I don't think there was a more difficult issue to work on than bail reform," Hertzberg said. "It's hard to understand and easy to derail. The people you are fighting for don't have money or much of a voice." And there is always the fear of "one bad story, one bad actor" who could make bail reform look dangerous, he said.

"I guess you can lock everybody up. But if you do that, the justice issue is huge and the cost issue is huge," Hertzberg said.

That article is largely a condemnation of people buying into the conservative talking points and selling of overblown anecdotes to drum up fear, so good job buying in. There simply isn't strong academic evidence that the effects of bail reform are disastrous, so Conservatives pick a story and sell you that instead, hoping that it'll scare you enough to trigger a knee-jerk reaction. 

Also, I am not claiming that you are proposing the imprisoning of everyone on Earth, I am claiming that your hard-line safety approach is not enough to demonstrate the moral imperative of cash bail, as it completely ignores concerns regarding freedom. Again, if we are always to err on the side of safety, we lose all freedom, so there must be some other calculus involved which you are either not stating or not recognizing which allows you to draw this line where you choose to draw it.

I'll ask you the question another way: How many people are you willing to lock up pre-trial to stop one crime?



Jaicee said:
Farmageddon said:

Ignore the whole communism / capitalism angle, but you remind me a little of this, mostly the second part, about "the practical man": https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jytf-5St8WU

Yeah, one would have to "ignore the whole communism/capitalism angle" because you know which end of that spectrum I'm much closer to and it's not exactly the one you're implying.

I don't really know, and I wasn't implying anything either way about that. I said to ignore that just because that was not the point and it seemed like it had the potential to derail things.

Jaicee said:

But let us take Peter Kropotkin's example of the peasant revolts against serfdom and the feudal codes. In your video, he cites an argument between two groups of intellectuals, liberal men and radical men (he specifically says "man" nearly every time he describes a group of people), and concludes that the radical ones were correct in their position. It's fitting that that was is his viewpoint of how history works -- one faction or another of intellectuals winning a debate and history moving on the outcome -- given that Kropotkin himself was born into an aristocratic land-owning family. In this historical debate over the proper fate of the peasantry -- the people who actually formed the overwhelming majority of the Russian population at the time -- by neither sex nor class position would I have had a place in this academic debate. Rather, someone like me would've been would've been one of the illiterate commoners; one of the serfs themselves. And yeah, it doesn't get much more practical than that. The serfs I guarantee you were not idealists, they were survivalists. Survival is the natural ideology (if you will) of the working poor in any age. They rebel when they lose the ability to survive. And that includes against parties that would subject them to needless violence and death for the sake of ideals.

I don't think the example he's giving is that of simply an argument between two groups of intellectuals. Sure, he is talking about such arguments because the position he is arguing against was mainly that of "intellectuals", but it's not like the serfs were simply a passive topic of discussion. I also really don't think it's fair to say kropotkin viewed history as something to be settled on intellectual debates.

He did indeed seem to use a very man-centric language, though.

Either way, the point I was trying to make, and which I should have made more clear, was just that a lot of the time there seems to be a limit to what is deemed reasonable and/or practical, which eventually turns out to not really hold. I'm sure the same kind of thing happened concerning voting rights for women too, for example. The discussion you and sundin13 were having reminded me of this, in the sense that you were insisting on some degree of cash bail as being necessary and didn't seem too open to the idea of some deeper changer that would preclude the need for that.

But, just to be clear, I don't know you or your position on this, so I'm not even saying that's a fair characterization - just that it all remind me of this.

Jaicee said:

My change of opinion has been gradual, but skews recent and is largely the result of just being a serious feminist, tbh. While the general programs of the Zapatistas and of Northern Syria's Kurds are far superior to the alternatives that exist around them and would like to see them destroyed, I can no longer get behind the idea of applying their ideas about criminal justice here because I've watched them fail victims of social violence, and especially survivors of sexual violence, far, far too often.

Do you mean you've seen it fail on their specific cases, or more generally on leftist circles which would take them as inspiration?

Either way, yeah, that really is something that still has a long way to go, even though in my more immediate experience over the years I do think it has progressed.

That being said, do you think victims of sexual violence are failed less by a system such as the one in the USA?

Jaicee said:

And frankly, the recent localized experiments we've seen in this country even just moving in that same general direction with steps like ending cash-bail or the mere threat of cutting funding for police departments has consistently yielded nothing but higher crime rates, including of violent crime. It's been a wake-up call that has caused me to realize that my view of humanity has been a bit too optimistic in the past; that my thinking has been too youthful and in need of an injection of more common sense.

I can't really comment on these experiments - don't follow the stuff going on in the USA that closely -, but, in general, a small step in a given direction that's not supported by it's context is pretty much expected to fail, so I'm a little suspicious of giving that much weight. I think a lot of the time people bounce off a little too hard from experiences which are, on the grand scheme of things, not that large.

But yeah, again, I don't really know what did or didn't happen or anything about your thinking other the a couple posts I read here, and to be frank I wasn't really looking to get in the discussion about cash bail in the USA : p



New Jersey have gone nearly 5 years without cash bail and doing just fine. There no evidence that crime is worse in new jersey vs other states since January 1 2017 when they eliminated cash bail and shift in crime rates for new jersey follows trends we see in every other state who still have cash bail.

There system not perfect but I could not find any evidence that it worse then the old system.