Wednesday, April 8, 2009

Some link economy with crime wave

At least 8 mass homicides have claimed 57 people over the past month

In Binghamton, N.Y., a Vietnamese immigrant upset about losing his job burst into an immigration center and killed 13 people before killing himself. In Pittsburgh, police said a gun enthusiast recently discharged from the Marine Corps opened fire and killed three police officers. And in Graham, Wash., investigators said a man whose wife was leaving him shot and killed five of his children in their mobile home before taking his own life.

The carnage that occurred during less than 48 hours last week capped a recent string of unusually brazen mass killings, which crime experts say have touched more people and occurred in more public settings than in any time in recent memory. Comparative statistics are difficult to come by, but during the past month alone, at least eight mass homicides in this country have claimed the lives of 57 people. Just yesterday, four people were discovered shot to death in a modest wood-frame home in a remote Alabama town.

The factor underlying the violence, some experts think, is the dismal state of the nation's economy. Criminologists theorize that the epidemic of layoffs, the meltdown of storied American corporations and the uncertainty of recovery have stoked fear, anxiety and desperation across society and unnerved its most vulnerable and dangerous.

And if the eocnomy doesn't get better soon, crime and social disorder will explode. Once again, the consequences of the government not supporting output and employment because of a warped belief system that says if we do this, it's Socialism. By corollary, it means that everyone who thinks that way is okay with rising violence, social unrest and perhaps, ultimately, war.

Read full article here.


Ryan Harris said...

Why do so many smart, good people, in our media and government and public misunderstand the basic macro economic principles and maintain these warped beliefs? Is it a lack of education or leadership or what needs fixed?

mike norman said...

That is a very profound question and I'm not sure I know the answer to it. I can only say that much of these ideas are no longer taught in economics classes (or "taught" to show that they don't work) and a lot of this thinking is just habit. There is also the "supply-side" phenomenon, which had been so successfully marketed and became an inseparable part of policy for the past 25 years. Finally, there persists to this day a gold standard mentality that is pervasive among the world's central banks and policy makers. Greenspan made note of it once, saying that although we are no longer on a gold standard, we still behave as if we are.

googleheim said...

Great points.

Getting back to Mike's point that the government is obliged by the framer's of the consitution to "promote the general welfare of the people", the people who are in the phrase "government by the people."

The very act of bashing the helping of peoples who are in distress by calling it Socialism is a real-time factor which causes some of this mess - namely that sort of bashing is a precursor violence which generates discontent in people who need help from the government, from charities, and from good folks.

Let's take the attitude of "PHIL'S GANG" on bizradio - " remember guys throw your pocket change to the cancer kids " - However Mr. Phil does not even look at the possibility of free health care for extremely sick people such as cancer kids

What about gun control ? OK 25,000 people die per year from handguns. Our tax money goes to paying for the clean up whether to police, fire, or ambulance services.

The expenses of such could have paid for free cancer care for kids.

But that's socialist and not American ?!?!

mike norman said...

Bashing the government is fashionable. I just got back from Washington D.C. with my kids and had a wonderful time. We visited so many museums and monuments, which were awesome and free! Some of the best collections of art, history, and examples of human achievement that you can find anywhere in the world. The sites were well run and totally accessable to everyone who wanted to go. All government run. Go try to visit the Empire State Building in my city of New York. It's a privately run tourist attraction. Be prepared to pay a lot of money for long lines, awful, cramped, un-airconditioned waiting areas while you try to get to the observation deck. Maybe that's a lame example, whatever, but much of the criticism of gov't is undeserved. Look at the military and what it just did to save that sea captain who was being held hostage. Who else could have done it? Blackwater?