Closing prisons from the 19th century is surely a good idea, but I have no faith that the Conservative Party cares to replace them with anything progressive based on research from any time since the 19th century.
So here’s a Canadian prison Shock Doctrine perfect storm:
- The Conservatives [Reform Party] want to spend billions on new prisons because they believe prisons are good. I expect them to be privately run, for profit.
- Prisons are over-crowded already so we need more, but ideally more that are effectively designed and operated. Don’t hold your breath. Dickens-era prison philosophy is in vogue among the radical right these days.
- Then with a new crime bill designed to round up pot miscreants [and maybe debtor prisons next?], there will be an expected increased demand for prison space.
- Then, for dessert, close a couple prisons to further aggravate the over-crowding and reduce the system’s capacity to lock up all the 420 pot enthusiasts who will be arrested in 364 days, and the Occupy movement.
- Then, retire to the drawing room for port and cigars as…wait for it…we absolutely MUST build new prisons now.
So what can you do?