Saturday, March 06, 2010

Groundhog Day - again!

This week has been yet another week when absolutely nothing worth mentioning has happened. Every day is Groundhog Day here.

However, another old friend came from Whitemoor and lives quite close to me again, much like at Whitemoor. I can't name him so he will have to be given a code-name and, seeing as he weighs about three stones more than a somnolent rhino, I will call him Twiggy - it seems appropriate somehow.

Yesterday Twiggy was in my cell, and it occurred to me that my comfortable little kennel had been set out much the same as at Whitemoor. Just then another old friend from Whitemoor went past the cell door yelling at his pal, who was ignoring him. The old pal was from Whitemoor too!

I then yelled at the yeller, "SHUT UP! STOP SHOUTING!"

Of course we then realised that I used to yell exactly the same thing at the same person for the same reason at Whitemoor. Nothing has changed apart from the postal address.

This morning when I went into the kitchen to talk bollocks to Twiggy, there were five men in there - each and every one of them an old Whitemoor graduate. What is the point of just moving people around from arse-hole to breakfast time when it simply means that it is all the same people and just the locations change. Still, I suppose a move gives us all a chance to see the new cars on the roads.

As I said earlier , every day is Groundhog Day in the prison system and not one of those days has any point to it other than keeping hooligans away from their families and off the streets. What a wonderful policy!

Ah! But the prison system has been charged with rehabilitating its guests too! They can't do it of course, never could and never will. Rehabilitation can only come from one source and that is inside each and eyery one of us. It has to be something the prisoner desires him or herself, and it certainly cannot be imposed.

That is the error heing made by the prison system. They only have one answer to every problem - force. Force does not bring about change - never has. Oh it may bring about changes in the short term, but these changes will be entirely superficial and only maintained until such time as they are no longer needed to fool the overlords.

I had a chat the other day to a fellow taking part in the CSCP programme [Cognitive Self-Change Programme - ed.] and he told me that in the sessions everyone was telling horror stories of violence and mayhem and the young psychologists were loving it all. The cons were actually making stories up just to titillate the silly young women. My pal said that he had started to have bad dreams because of the rubbish being spouted - the violence and bragging. It was affecting his mind, and not in a good way.

This is the same CSCP programme which almost every prisoner is being forced to take part in these days to get the right ticks in the right boxes. It's a farce, a joke. It even borders on fraud as far as the public are concerned because they think that prisoners are being honestly and genuinely rehabilitated. If they were, why would the figures for re-offending be rising steadily? Ask the Howard League for Penal Reform about the figures, don't take my word for it. The re-offending rates are actually higher amongst those who have done the courses than amongst those who haven't.

All that notwithstanding, let's get back to what started this diatribe in the first place - Groundhog Day. I've just had Twiggy at my door asking me if I wanted any cheese on toast! It's just like being back in Whitemoor - and everywhere else I've been over the years.

It's Groundhog Day - again.

The Voice In The Wilderness

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