I’m lost for words. John Reid yesterday announced his new plans for the criminal justice system. 8000 more prison places. Less chances of early release. It makes dire, dire reading. The Guardian’s article about it is here. I uttely loathe the Government’s let’s pander to the interests of the Daily Mail home affairs policy. Dire and repulsive.
The sad thing is that Labour party members (of which I’m not one, I hasten to add) who disagree with this policy will undoubtedly have no chance to properly air their views, let alone influence the decision. Democracy, New Labour style.
I wish they built MORE prison places in France: at the moment, this county has one of the worst human rights records in Europe, “thanks” to overcrowding of prisons.
Now, the question obviously is whether one builds more prisons to alleviate the outrageous living conditions behinds bars, or whether the aim is to actually put more people into jail, thus being “tougher on crime than on the causes of crime”.
Besides, I read quite a few positive points in the Guardian’s article:
– no amendment to the Human Rights Act
– no early guilty plea with an automatic one-third sentence (which would have favoured the efficiency of the criminal justice system at the expense of the search for truth and justice), a great improvement from David Blunkett’s 2003 act.
So it doesn’t seem all THAT bad. But then, I know I’m a conservative leftist…
I entirely agree. On “Yesterday in Parliament” this morning Reid was proudly making the point that Labour had locked up 19,000 more people than the Tories had managed from 1979-97. What an absurd thing to be proud of.