How confused can they get?

There was a priceless piece  in yesterday's U.K. Guardian. Aptly titled 'Prison Comfort,' it offers suggestions on how to eliminate the unpleasantness of incarceration and transform it into a positive, fulfilling and enjoyable experience (no, I am not kidding).

The article glitters with many instances of liberal inanity from fretting about prisoners' personal satisfaction to consulting them about 'what, in their opinion, might work best.'

The result is a proposal for a model prison which would feature, among other things, the sports field, the gym, the education block, the library, the debating society and the giant chess game.

Operating on the premise that prisons should function as some kind of leisure centers, the piece closes thus:

A prison is a valuable community resource and should function for the benefit of all, inside and out.

It never occurred to the writer to ask what the role of prisons should be in the first place. The idea that it actually may be to punish criminals and deter others apparently never crossed his mind. If it did, he may have concluded that some unpleasantness may, in fact, be called for. But, I guess, it is only those cruel conservatives who harbor such barbaric ideas. The enlightened know better which is why they worry about how to further prisoners' personal development and maximize their comfort.

The Guardian's article offers a striking illustration of the liberal tendency to completely miss the point and turn everything in its head. So earnest is the author in his confusion that the piece reads almost like a parody even though it is meant to be completely serious.

One would have a good laugh if not for a possibility that — in Europe's current climate — the proposed approach may soon get implemented.

Vasko Kohlmayer   3 21 06

Update:

The madness is not limited to the U.K. or Europe. The New York Post reports:

 A detailed questionnaire that allows felons to judge the performance of their parole officers has the officers up in arms, claiming the ex—jailbirds are in no position to evaluate their work.

The survey, a rough draft of which was obtained by The Post, asks ex—convicts about their employment status, drug use, living arrangements and how well their parole officers work with them — a query that makes the officers livid.

"Do you know what a field day these violent felons, these vicious criminals are going to have?" asked an incredulous Parole Officer Manuelita Clemente, a council leader with Division 236 of the Public Employees Federation.

A Manhattan parole supervisor agreed.

"It's despicable. It's absolutely outrageous! They are going to evaluate parole officers by the opinions of a parolee," said the boss, who requested anonymity.

According to law—enforcement sources, the questionnaire was e—mailed to regional directors and area supervisors from parole administrators in Albany late last week.

Sources also said the opinion polls will be distributed in waiting rooms of parole facilities, allowing ex—cons to fill the sheets out before their visits with the officers.

Hat tip: Joe Crowley

There was a priceless piece  in yesterday's U.K. Guardian. Aptly titled 'Prison Comfort,' it offers suggestions on how to eliminate the unpleasantness of incarceration and transform it into a positive, fulfilling and enjoyable experience (no, I am not kidding).

The article glitters with many instances of liberal inanity from fretting about prisoners' personal satisfaction to consulting them about 'what, in their opinion, might work best.'

The result is a proposal for a model prison which would feature, among other things, the sports field, the gym, the education block, the library, the debating society and the giant chess game.

Operating on the premise that prisons should function as some kind of leisure centers, the piece closes thus:

A prison is a valuable community resource and should function for the benefit of all, inside and out.

It never occurred to the writer to ask what the role of prisons should be in the first place. The idea that it actually may be to punish criminals and deter others apparently never crossed his mind. If it did, he may have concluded that some unpleasantness may, in fact, be called for. But, I guess, it is only those cruel conservatives who harbor such barbaric ideas. The enlightened know better which is why they worry about how to further prisoners' personal development and maximize their comfort.

The Guardian's article offers a striking illustration of the liberal tendency to completely miss the point and turn everything in its head. So earnest is the author in his confusion that the piece reads almost like a parody even though it is meant to be completely serious.

One would have a good laugh if not for a possibility that — in Europe's current climate — the proposed approach may soon get implemented.

Vasko Kohlmayer   3 21 06

Update:

The madness is not limited to the U.K. or Europe. The New York Post reports:

 A detailed questionnaire that allows felons to judge the performance of their parole officers has the officers up in arms, claiming the ex—jailbirds are in no position to evaluate their work.

The survey, a rough draft of which was obtained by The Post, asks ex—convicts about their employment status, drug use, living arrangements and how well their parole officers work with them — a query that makes the officers livid.

"Do you know what a field day these violent felons, these vicious criminals are going to have?" asked an incredulous Parole Officer Manuelita Clemente, a council leader with Division 236 of the Public Employees Federation.

A Manhattan parole supervisor agreed.

"It's despicable. It's absolutely outrageous! They are going to evaluate parole officers by the opinions of a parolee," said the boss, who requested anonymity.

According to law—enforcement sources, the questionnaire was e—mailed to regional directors and area supervisors from parole administrators in Albany late last week.

Sources also said the opinion polls will be distributed in waiting rooms of parole facilities, allowing ex—cons to fill the sheets out before their visits with the officers.

Hat tip: Joe Crowley