As we've blogged many times, cost effective justice requires as a minimum a doubling of prison places. What it doesn't require is the Home Office's proliferation of Panglossian liberal schemes like anger management courses for violent criminals.
This morning we hear that "prison managers have scaled down anger management courses for convicted armed robbers, wife beaters and stalkers because they can be counter-productive". The Home Office now say courses such as CALM actually help bad guys get back outside to start terrorising us again. They "have the potential to equip the offender with additional control mechanisms and increase his/her capacity to manipulate a situation to their advantage and power". Like persuading the Parole Board to release them early.
It really makes you scream. We've all known this for years, but it's taken the deaths of many innocent people- including John Monckton- to get the HO to see it. And you wouldn't want to bet on them not reintroducing it under another name.
We want those prison places NOW. Paid for as already proposed.
PS Tomorrow the HO is being grilled by the Public Accounts Committee on their shambolic accounting arrangements. As blogged previously, they are such a fiasco they failed to produce any reconciled accounts for 2004-05. The NAO discovered a trail of £1bn's worth of accounting "adjustments", and even then the books didn't balance. You'd have to think the Perm Sec would get the bullet, right? Er, well, actually Sir John Gieve was just given a new job: as Deputy Governor of the Bank of England in charge of financial stability!!!!. You couldn't make it up.