Fat Steve's Blatherings

Monday, November 28, 2005

Breakthrough in Criminology!


        The real story of Hurricane Katrina and crime in New Orleans.

  • They evacuated the city.

  • The drug dealers and users left with the everyone else.

  • The dealers and users didn't come back.

  • The murder rate fell to zero.

  • The rate of all other crimes is near zero too.

  • I know it's against all common sense, but apparently, as James Taranto put it, the root cause of crime is criminals.  Who'd a thunk it?

At Length:

        I know you will find this hard to believe.  I had trouble with it myself.  But it seems the New York Times has discovered how to get rid of crime.  Literally.

        Before Hurrican Katrina, the murder rate in New Orleans was the highest in the U.S.  Currently it's the lowest, approximately zero.  There wasn't a single known murder after the hurrican hit, through November 10th.

        You see, when they evacuated the city, all the drug users and dealers left too.  They hadn't come back, as of a few weeks ago, and it turns out they were the ones doing the murders!  No dealers and users, no murders.

        I know you'll find it almost impossible to believe.  I boggled too.  It goes against all common sense to think that just getting rid of the criminals reduces the crime rate.  Don't we have to address root causes?  Don't we have to remake society?  Isn't it all the fault of the middle class and the non-criminals?  Apparently not.  Knock me over with a feather.

        Hmm, I wonder if this could have something to do with the paradoxical fact that the crime rate has been going down while the prison population went up?  Could it be that if we just locked up enough criminals, the crime rate would fall to near zero?

        Nah.  The whole story's too outrageous to be true.  Must be a coincidence, or a practical joke from the Times.

        Hat tip: James Taranto.

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