Category Archives: General

New Report: Reduce crime by investing in economic justice and policing

Don’t miss this story from the Washington Post, which reports the conclusions of a new study on criminal justice reform by the White House Council on Economic Advisors (“Obama’s advisers just revealed an unconventional solution to mass incarceration“).

The report compares approaches to reducing the nation’s crime rate, and concludes that indirect solutions will result in greater crime reduction than simply spending more on prisons and incarceration.

According the Post:

They forecast that hiking the federal minimum hourly wage from $7.25 to $12 would reduce crime by 3 percent to 5 percent, as fewer people would be forced to turn to illegal activity to make ends meet.

That’s more than the 1 to 4 percent reduction projected to result from a $10 billion increase in spending on prisons.

Here’s another tidbit from the Post story:

The most effective way to reduce crime would be to spend more money on policing, the report projects. Research consistently shows that departments with more manpower and technology do a better job of protecting the public, and the United States has 35 percent fewer officers relative to the population than do other countries on average.

I’ve never seen that statistic before, and will have to check the report itself for additional information.

If it’s true, then we have substantially fewer police officers, but have far more people in prison than other countries.

In any case, the report itself can be found here.

Click here to view the highlights of the report in what appears to be a presentation about the report by the chairman of the Council of Economic Advisors.

Flying home from Colorado

Romeo We visited the Cheyenne Mountain Zoo earlier this week. It’s a sprawling zoo that runs up the hillside on the mountains on the outskirts of Colorado Springs. At this point, I don’t know whether this is a private or public zoo. But it is a wonderful and apparently popular zoo, and we had a great time exploring it. It’s a bit embarrassing to make the comparison to Honolulu’s now unaccredited zoo.

We happened to be entering this part of the bear’s exhibit when this bear decided to relax in its small pond.

Our friends asked the zoo staff whether the bear hunted the fish. Well, it seems the bear likes the shallow water, while the fish stay on the deep wide when the bear is around.

If you haven’t figured it out yet, this is a space saver. We’re on our way back to Honolulu starting very early today, Mountain Time, so won’t have a chance for a regular post today.

Hopefully I’ll be back here tomorrow morning.

In the meantime, click on the photo to see a larger version.

Throwback Thursday: Outside the Academy of Art in 2003

It was August 2002. We were just outside the front entrance to the Honolulu Academy of Art (now known as the Honolulu Museum of Art) for lunch. Judging from the late August date, I think this was a delayed celebration of my birthday.

My parents were both looking good. My dad was a year short of his 90th birthday, my mom would hit that landmark the a few months later. Both were still doing very well health wise, mobile and in possession of their mental faculties. And they each still had years of pretty good living ahead.

It’s a nice memory.


Meda gets the photo credit. Picture taken with a Canon G2 digital, at the time my favorite camera.

Feline Friday: It’s tax day, but our cats don’t pay taxes

At the windowYes, it’s Feline Friday. It’s also Tax Day, April 15. For the first time in years, I actually finished and mailed our taxes a day early. I don’t think the cats care at all.

So…this photo shows Romeo and Ms. Annie occupying one of the favorite spots for watching what’s going on in the front yard. They are often seen here in the early hours, around 2 a.m.

They look happy. But Romeo is actually very jealous. He saw me taking pictures of Annie in the window and immediately jumped up to be part of the scene.

And the same thing happens in our bed. It’s a place of major competition.

At the windowA typical scene…we decide to grab a short afternoon nap on a lazy weekend afternoon. As we head towards the bedroom, cats begin to gather. Duke’s first to jump on the bed, with Romeo close behind. Then I get there. Annie immediately jumps up, sees the two boys, and takes refuge on my chest. Duke comes up beside me to get pets, and Romeo quickly tries to push him out of the way, all while pretending to just being friendly. Meanwhile, Meda arrives, and Ms. Kili is trying to climb up onto her side of the bed. The chaos usually doesn’t last that long, because Romeo eventually clears the deck and gets most of the bed to himself. Except that Ms. Kili gets a pass. And sometimes Duke sneaks back a little later and claims an empty corner.

Oh, and did I mention that we sleep on a full size bed? Not King, not Queen, but Full. Not a lot of real estate for all this action.

I just booked Toby for a vet visit in a couple of weeks. We need to check out his limp again. We’ve probably put it off a bit too long, but of course the cats hate getting locked in a carrier, thrown into the car, and taken into the vet’s office, where they are likely to meet a dog or two on the way to the exam room.

Oh, well.

–> Click to view all of today’s Friday Felines.

Have you been kidnapped????

That was the question asked by a friend via email after noticing there was no update posted here yesterday.

No, I’m afraid it’s nothing so adventurous. The explanation is that we’ve been at the Pacific Sociological Association meetings most of the week in Oakland, California, and yesterday spent yesterday with friends before and after driving back down for an overnight stay near the San Francisco airport. Actually, in the midst of all the activity, I just forgot to prepare a daily post.

My bad.

I’m writing this as we prepare to depart for the airport and our return flight home.

So I’ll hopefully be back on schedule tomorrow (Tuesday).

In the meantime, here’s the view of Oakland from our downtown hotel a few mornings ago.