December 30, 2012

The notion that technology is the reason the murder rate has fallen by half.


mesquito said...

How did someone as stupid as Robert Wright ever become an intellectual?

Shouting Thomas said...

How did someone as stupid as Robert Wright ever become an intellectual?

Sometimes, I think, the stupidity is a requirement.

Shouting Thomas said...

Violent crime in NYC has fallen dramatically because of stop and frisk laws that target the people who commit the violence.

The malefactors are then sent to prison.

These laws were instituted during Rudy Giuliani's mayoralty, because the city had degenerated into madness as a result of a couple of decades of liberal social engineering.

Moose said...

When they say the majority of homicides are among acquaintances they are not talking about family members. Like drug dealers killing other drug dealers - business acquaintances.
Robert's kind of a yutz.

Mr Evilwrench said...

"How did someone as stupid as Robert Wright ever become an intellectual?"

I think it must be because he can complete grammatically correct sentences at a rate that impresses the members of the intellectual club, even though they're devoid of sense.

Eric the Fruit Bat said...

deflecting bullets with their cell phones . . .

"That's gold, Jerry! Gold!"

Moose said...

Also - I don't think murder case closure rates have grown significantly - I think that the number of people committing crimes have gone down.

edutcher said...


Dante said...

Aggravated assault rates dropped from 433 per 100,000 to 252 crimes per 100K in 2010, a 58% drop. Homicide dropped from 9.8 to 4.8, a 48% drop. So perhaps technology does have an effect. The hospitals are keeping people alive, and who knows, perhaps cell phones get people to the hospital faster.

However, it is rather odd how Wright argues against that great liberal meme, that the consequences of murder do not alter the equation of whether or not one will murder.

Taking Wright's argument to its conclusion, punishment helps. Perhaps we ought to go back to public hangings for those convicted of first degree murder. Perhaps even more innocent lives might be spared. We could do this in crime ridden areas to start with, as an experiment to see whether it has an effect.

Renee said...

Most murders are domestic. While we only looking at rates, people have smaller families or likely to live by themselves. Fewer or no one around to kill, lowers the rates.

Which is why we look at the suicide rates and how they changed. If someone in my family snaps, they can kill five people. In most homes you can't do that, you can only murder a live-in partner.

Bruce Hayden said...

I think that the imprisonment argument is not that more drug dealers are off the street, but rather that more violent people are, and if they are in prison, they are off the streets, and the only violence that they can perpetuate for the time of their incarceration is upon other felons (some of whom are, unfortunately, there for non-violent offenses).

It is, of course, politically incorrect to point this out, because one central tenet of the left is that we are a fascist state because of the huge numbers of people we lock up (many for non-violent crimes), esp. compared to the rest of the world. And, yes, that a significantly larger percentage of those in prison are people of color, and, esp. Black, than they constitute in the general population, which is apparently evidence of lingering racism. (And, the natural corollary that we should attempt to eliminate disparate impact by releasing more Blacks - despite their far greater percentage of having committed violent crimes than the general populace).

I think that Wright, being a good lefty, is desperately trying to find something to attribute the decrease in violent crimes as gun ownership and incarceration rates have risen. Unfortunately for him, these rates track the decrease in violent crimes much better than, for example, the degree of cell phone penetration, esp. those with good digital cameras.

Dante said...

I think that Wright, being a good lefty, is desperately trying to find something to attribute the decrease in violent crimes as gun ownership and incarceration rates have risen.

The argument he is using only works if punishment/fear of punishment works. That's the basis for his argument "I'm going to get caught."

Meanwhile, I do think it is a shame we spend so much money incarcerating blacks. It's racist to whites, who don't have their criminals put in prison at the same rates. Why should I, a white suburbanite, have to pay to keep black enclaves safer? Especially when the entire justice system is deemed racist for doing it?

Let's stop this racist practice. We should have AA for criminals, giving blacks half the sentences of whites.

jr565 said...

I don't Wright is totally wrong in this case. So much of the crimes DO wind up on cameras somewhere.
The other day the news was playing the video of a guy who beat up an old woman in an elevator.
We know about the crazy woman on the train who killed then Indian guy because there was a camera.
i'd imagine then that cameras do play some role in law enforcement (hey, just watch the show Cops).

Are some potential criminals cognizant of cameras and commit their crimes outside of their range? Sure.

Its a much harder case though to suggest that the cameras themselves correlate to lowering of crime. One reason is becuase, if the camera were to actually have such an impact you wouldn't know about any crimes (since they aren't doing them in front of the cameras). It's hard to find correlation for things that aren't actually happening. But also, of the crimes that do happen the camera doesn't seem to actually get the criminals to stop the crime, since they are actually caught on camera doing them.

It's probably more accurate to say that it's probably easier to be caught if you commit a crime due to the prevalence of cameras.But not that cameras themselves are the reason for the lowering of crime.

Joe said...

The most convincing explanation I've read is that the reduction in crime and juvenile delinquency is directly correlated, and in this case correlation does equal causation, with the reduction of the use of lead paint and lead in gasoline.

Fred Drinkwater said...

I am compelled to congratulate Bruce Hayden for correctly using (and spelling) the word "tenet".
I was getting SO TIRED of hearing about political renters...

Mary Beth said...

E-Z Pass may know where he's driving but there's nothing like that where I live. Does that mean I can get away with murder?

"Even when you think about killing a friend, and face, I mean admit it, you've thought about it, right?" Do most people think about murdering a friend?

Cedarford said...

Cell phones that can have 911 calls out the second crime is seen happening..

Surveillance cameras on the streets.
Surveillance cameras in housing.
Surveillance cameras in stores, banks.

Far less societal tolerance of crooks claiming poverty, racism, "societal injustices" made them rob or assault or rape.

Advances in IT that have spurred police info sharing and better crime solving.

Less tolerance of drunks and belligerant fighting.

The fact that people in an age of credit cards do not carry the sums of cash robbers once counted on.

More career criminals spending time in jail.

More aborting unwanted fetuses, especially in the high crime black underclass. (The Roe Effect)

Tougher gun laws on criminals now beginning to be enforced, which the NRA endorses.

The underclass people that once saw a need to rob and steal and shoplift now wait for Obamachecks in the mail instead.

Hero Armed Citizens are somewhere on that list, but pretty low down the list, IMO.

Anonymous said...
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William said...

Robert Wright always gives off a My Dinner With Andre vibe.

Anonymous said...

As usual, a lefty male appears as a faggy, whiny, womanish, never-accomplished-anything little bitch. God I hope he meets a pack of "people who look like Obama's sons" late one night so he can explain how it's all whitey's fault to them.

Enjoy the decline, assholes!