Receive "The World According to Tom Barnett" Brief
Where I Work
Search the Site
Buy Tom's Books
  • Great Powers: America and the World After Bush
    Great Powers: America and the World After Bush
    by Thomas P.M. Barnett
  • Blueprint for Action: A Future Worth Creating
    Blueprint for Action: A Future Worth Creating
    by Thomas P.M. Barnett
  • The Pentagon's New Map: War and Peace in the Twenty-first Century
    The Pentagon's New Map: War and Peace in the Twenty-first Century
    by Thomas P.M. Barnett
  • Romanian and East German Policies in the Third World: Comparing the Strategies of Ceausescu and Honecker
    Romanian and East German Policies in the Third World: Comparing the Strategies of Ceausescu and Honecker
    by Thomas P.M. Barnett
  • The Emily Updates (Vol. 1): One Year in the Life of the Girl Who Lived (The Emily Updates (Vols. 1-5))
    The Emily Updates (Vol. 1): One Year in the Life of the Girl Who Lived (The Emily Updates (Vols. 1-5))
    by Vonne M. Meussling-Barnett, Thomas P.M. Barnett
  • The Emily Updates (Vol. 2): One Year in the Life of the Girl Who Lived (The Emily Updates (Vols. 1-5))
    The Emily Updates (Vol. 2): One Year in the Life of the Girl Who Lived (The Emily Updates (Vols. 1-5))
    by Thomas P.M. Barnett, Vonne M. Meussling-Barnett
  • The Emily Updates (Vol. 3): One Year in the Life of the Girl Who Lived (The Emily Updates (Vols. 1-5))
    The Emily Updates (Vol. 3): One Year in the Life of the Girl Who Lived (The Emily Updates (Vols. 1-5))
    by Thomas P.M. Barnett, Vonne M. Meussling-Barnett
  • The Emily Updates (Vol. 4): One Year in the Life of the Girl Who Lived (The Emily Updates (Vols. 1-5))
    The Emily Updates (Vol. 4): One Year in the Life of the Girl Who Lived (The Emily Updates (Vols. 1-5))
    by Thomas P.M. Barnett, Vonne M. Meussling-Barnett
  • The Emily Updates (Vol. 5): One Year in the Life of the Girl Who Lived (The Emily Updates (Vols. 1-5))
    The Emily Updates (Vol. 5): One Year in the Life of the Girl Who Lived (The Emily Updates (Vols. 1-5))
    by Vonne M. Meussling-Barnett, Thomas P.M. Barnett, Emily V. Barnett
Monthly Archives
Powered by Squarespace
« Have a nice Labor Day weekend | Main | (Busy) »
11:31AM

The amazing - and continuing - drop in crime in US

Economist story about how "big city" PDs around US using Compstat (a data management system that allows crime stats to be worked in-depth for deeper understanding and response patterns) and how most cops feel like it's been a huge tool in the plummenting of crime rates across the US for the past 20 years - a trend that is absolutely amazing.

Yes, I know some think "three strikes and you're out" accomplished much, but many professionals say the key is big data, effectively wielded through better policing tactics.

Other theories abound, but to me, this is a sign of what happens when big data is worked: the whole complexity-out-of-control meme just isn't true.  The growth of networks is fundamentally freeing - not enslaving, and it offers more control over environments - not less.

Point being, if you believe that America is avatar of modern globalization, this is proof that growing connections and technology handles growing complexity much better than we - in our enduring fears - imagine.

Orwell continues to be one of the most stunningly incorrect futurists, but this is the plight of all dystopians.

References (3)

References allow you to track sources for this article, as well as articles that were written in response to this article.

Reader Comments (5)

As long as there is a NRA and most Americans are allowed by their constitution to have their own weapons, the USA are a dangerous place--more killings per capita by guns than in any other country in the world. And the "3 strikes and you are out"-policy is putting hundred thousands of youngsters in prison, mostly just for a hedonistic life style which includes sex and drugs and rock´n roll, but not for rape, murder,etc . For the same criminal act you would get in Germnay only 1-2 years prison, but in the United States 5-15 years--smoking marihuana and get caught by the police the third time you can get to 10 years in the USA--that´s what a murderer gets in Germany. However, in Germany we have much less murder and violent crimes per capita than the USA--an important factor is that we have a social welfare state which prevents that you can get so poor that you have to commit crimes just to survive like in the USA.Romney´s new partner Paul Ryan wants to abolish the socalled welfare state in the USA--let´s see how the statistic on vionlent crimes will be influenced by this Ayn-Rand apporach in the future!!!

August 30, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterRalf Ostner

My thoughts....
Aborted generations and online gaming keeping kids away from the streets.
Most valued consumer goods available to all as well .
Every one can have a plasma screen ,games console and mobile phone, in every economic group over here in the UK .

August 30, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterJavaid Akhtar

Actually, one of the most plausible, well researched explanations is reduced lead poisoning of children (elimination of lead in gas, paint, etc.) resulting in reduced crime rates as those same children reach young adulthood.

August 31, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterMike Russell

The best theory I've ever seen for the drop in the crime rate is Roe v. Wade. The Supreme Court decision in 1973 legalized abortion, and then the crime rate fell permanently about eighteen years later. Young men in their late teens and early twenties commit a disproportionate number of crimes, and members of that group after 1991 were more likely to comes from stable homes.

It's also worth pointing out that the drop in Houston, which is more conservative and more likely to oppose abortion, is not nearly as dramatic as it is in the other three cities.

I'm skeptical of the technology argument since technology tends to be implemented haphazardly, depending on an individual institution's budget and its willingness to adapt.

August 31, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterGil Weaver

I worked the 90's as a cop in the Chicago suburbs. We fought with EVERYBODY. Not by choice that is just what was going on. Crack cocaine, very hot summers and some gang stuff that was just sorting itself out all contributed, at least locally, to the problem.

What has changed to lower the crime rate? (in my opinion) Exclude Chicago...it is more dangerous than Iraq, Beruit or Detroit and is a strange place politically. Kingdom of Cook (County), Duchy of Chicago.

Many hard core, repeat offenders are locked up or dead. They rarely die from involvement with the Police. Usually stupidity, particularly overdosing and usually (of late anyway) heroin.

More and better prosecution and incarceration for DUI, Driving Revoked / Suspended and Domestic Violence offenses. Cops have said this for years...the same people that do the big crimes are the ones that beat their partners and drive while DUI and w/o a license. Call it suburban / rural PD compstat.

Prescription drug addiction and heroin. The pinnacle of existence for some is a legitimate scrip for pain meds and a disability check. Again a significant portion of these persons are the same that used to commit crime and sometimes still do.

Cops are more connected to the data. I can get more and better information faster. The in car computer, fusion centers, Critical Reach and the cell phone have made a huge contribution to catching criminals and stopping crime before it starts. Few of these networks are formal. The ad hoc and informal ones actually work better as the worker bees are getting the data first hand, not filtered by bosses and sanitized.

Have to correct Ralf a bit. Smoking weed gets you a local ordinance ticket and you go to the same court as you would for a speeding ticket. Local stuff is (generally) non jail-able. I have scattered more weed to the winds and thrown more pot pipes into the weeds than I can count. I am not alone in taking alternative enforcement action for very minor amounts of weed. Not worth the time or effort to book someone unless said person just can't grasp being stoned and stupid is not a good way to go through life.

As I tell people about smoking weed...I have never booted a door in for anyone smoking weed. People OD'ed on heroin, crack heads, PCP, crazy people on or off their psychotropic meds, but NEVER cannabis.

Guns in the U.S. are not the problem. Guns and crazy / irresponsible people are the problem. Ban the guns and they'll use something else or just pay more for the same thing. The Chicago Sun Times ran a pretty good 3 part series on how gangs get guns in Chicago. Worth a look and a good insight into the mentality of the people buying and using the guns.

September 1, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterMark

PostPost a New Comment

Enter your information below to add a new comment.

My response is on my own website »
Author Email (optional):
Author URL (optional):
Post:
 
Some HTML allowed: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <code> <em> <i> <strike> <strong>