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MSNBC reports "Jobless rate up, but crime down: What gives?"
Americans, take solace: While your chances of landing a job these days might not be great, you’re also less likely to be murdered, or robbed or to have your car stolen.
The rate of major crimes in the U.S. continues to drop – even during the recent recession and its aftermath – and crime experts aren’t sure why.
"I am surprised by the overall decline in both violent and property crime during and since the recent recession. I’ve studied crime trends in relation to economic conditions for some time, and the 2008-09 recession is the first time since WW II that crime rates have not risen during a substantial downturn in the economy,” says Richard Rosenfeld, a professor in the Department of Criminology and Criminal Justice at the University of Missouri-St. Louis and past president of the American Society of Criminology.
“What’s pushing it down is the mystery meat in the recipe of recent years,” says Franklin Zimring, a criminologist and UC Berkeley law professor who has written several books on crime-related topics.
Hell, I dunno either. But I'm interested into theories as to why this is true. The article posits that the lack of inflation may be the key, that's about as good a guess as I can come up with.
People don't often get desperate because the present sucks. They get desperate when they have no hope for the future. Americans believe 100% that the economy will eventually get better once the politicians stop fucking about.
I think it's the entertainment factor. Pretty much everyone in the USA can get on the internet somehow and waste hours upon hours of time. Back in the day if you didn't have cash you had nothing but boredom and the harsh reality of inequality was unavoidable, now folks play facebook games and watch youtube vids for 10 hours a day when they're unemployed and feel unwanted.
That's no doubt true, but Egypt and Libya also had net access. It is fairly passive behavior, but it seems to me a symptom of America's blind faith in our system. Even with all the blatant mismanagement over the last decade or so, the protests we do have tend to blame a fairly nebulous group of "rich people," who are perverting our obviously perfect system of government. The countries that took action saw flaws in their very system; I have never seen a serious call to overthrow the government here. We assume the system will sort everything out despite temporary incompetence in leadership, and that it is only a matter of time. Moreover, we assume it won't take very long. Any shred of evidence that things are getting better is enough to keep us going. The news will breathlessly report that we've now only lost over a million jobs in the last few years, and we employ some sort of doublethink, rejoicing that recovery is nigh even while we know that the unemployment numbers are no longer remotely accurate.
I don't think Egypt and Libya are really comparable with the US. The entertainment I'm speaking is definitely cultural targeted towards us. I'm not sure what the Egyptian equivalent to free online streaming episodes of South Park is, but I doubt that they'd like it as much as we do anyhow. Also, a dictatorship is easy to target at being at fault. A 'democracy' is a lot harder to find a single source to place the blame on. That's kind of why the occupy movements have no true target.
Maybe, but I doubt it. I would presume that Egyptians and Libyans are capable of making websites that appeal to them, and are not entirely dependent on the U.S. to keep them occupied online. I would also argue that they did not choose a single target. They didn't oust their dictator and install a different one. They rose up against their entire system. The problems Egypt had were not so different from the problems we are having; the problems were more intense but they were largely the same in nature: inequitable distribution of wealth, high unemployment, and a militarized police force more interested in serving the state than in protecting the people. I disagree that the Occupy movements have no target; I think that narrative comes from their opposition. It is true that there is no one person to blame, but that doesn't mean they have no target. Choosing a face would be arbitrary.
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