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Thursday, January 17, 2008

Another Deviation From Research Plan

I finished the autobiography of the compulsive gambler and, skimming a good deal because much of it comprised stories relating to his twenty years spent in prison, finished a second, amazed at the brutality and psychological suffering the man endured, the work mentioning that long sentences for property-only crimes are counterproductive because they harden the criminal and lead him to hate the society that sentenced him, leading him, or her, to strike back at society when their incarceration ends by committing more crime(s), and also that the US imposes the longest sentences on criminals of any nation in the Western world (and has, I read somewhere, the highest percentage of its population in jail of any nation in the Western world--so much for the efficacy of harsh sentencing). I read a couple of poems by William Bronk (to whom I gravitate because I lived in the Bronx for nine years) on a Sorrentino recommendation but they were fizzles; hoped to find something I could quote here but no soap.

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