Saturday, June 4, 2011

Crooked Timber takes another whack at the prison system

Crooked Timber tends to come at issues from an academic's angle. Not always scholarly and not always literary, but highfalutin enough to ward off the kiddies who have just learned to keyboard and post. Not always right, but they tend to think through posts before they go live. Often a bit smug and ivory-tower and detached (exception: when one of their own was affected by the Wisconsin protests of late winter), but usually self-aware enough to know they're doing it.

Yesterday, CT's Eszter Hargittai put up a side-door post about the recent narrow Supreme Court decision that admonishes the California prison system for its perennial overcrowding and lack of health services. This ties back to a recurring TOTF theme.

The CT commenters are covering the bases fairly well from their perspective, with a bit less snark than is their norm (yes, a bit less) so take a look, in the spirit of well-roundedness. They do tend to belabor and over-argue certain points that may be self-evident to some of us. (OK, fair enough, "some of us" would probably include anyone who's been a person of color in the US for more than three days.)

Haiti is not rebuilt but we must have our priorities

While the media and many in the blogosphere are seemingly obsessed with how a couple of politicians' personal lives are melting down, I'm reminding by rikyrah at Jack and Jill, who was reminded by BooMan, whom I don't cite often, that Haiti is still under the imperial thumb of yore.

Believe me, if I had a better term than "imperial thumb" I'd use it. But the same external influences (socioeconomic, cultural, religious) that have been punishing Haiti since it dared attempt independence are still in full play...

And if nothing else we should remember that they had an earthquake too.

Because BooMan breaks it down like a fraction* better than I can paraphrase on this rainy Saturday morning, I will just link through. Enjoy and be enlightened.

This also reminds me that I'm overdue for a contribution to Partners in Health, one of the few NGOs that seems to just stay there and help people directly, before, during and after earthquakes. I'll take care of that today.

*Don't worry, I will stop saying "breaks it down like a fraction" after a while.