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Sunday, July 04, 2010

David Davis: Piggy in the middle

David Davis: Piggy in the middle

In between the Old Guard's view, "Prison works", uttered by Michael Howard and "Prison does not work" recently stated by Kenneth Clarke, we have the Captain Mainwaring-like David Davis and his slogan is "Make Prison Work".

It is indicative that if David Davis is shouting "Make Prison Work", then he is accepting that "Prison does not work". That is, it is not effective. And, certainly not cost effective. In these economic hard times, Ken Clarke has come up with an alternative strategy - make less use of costly prison and more use of the vastly cheaper community punishments. David Davis is claiming that this is a false economy because those who fail will cost money by reoffending. But, isn't prison not working because of the amount who go on to reoffend?

I am now Prime Minister, I sack Kenneth Clarke on the ground that he is not fit for purpose, and appoint David Davis as Justice Secretary. He has got just one brief, written on the back of a fag packet, "Make Prison Work". The Joke Shop has run out of magic wands. How is he going to achieve this? Over to you David Davis...

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