The folks at Freakonomics seem to have determined that the cost to society of locking a criminal away is approximately the same as the cost to society of the crime he commits.
From the point of view of a properly cold-blooded actuary, this may be true, and in many cases, an insurance policy would cover the losses.
OTOH, if we cut the cost of keeping a prisoner by say eliminating his gym membership, his designer clothing, his free law degree complete with free legal tutors, perhaps prisons might look more cost effective. Sheriff Joe in Arizona comes to mind, and his methods and practices need to be documented carefully before he retires.
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If you think that the methods of Sheriff Joe Arpaio should emulated, please turn in your libertarian credentials.
If all the horror stories about this thug doesn't convince you that he shouldn't be idealized, then perhaps this will.
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