Wednesday, December 10, 2008
Aitken's Testimony on Prison Bears Stamp of Authority
He was disarmingly frank in the Radio 4 parliamentary report I have just heard. He explained how his Eton and Oxford education proved useful to his fellow innmates- many of whom he befriended and one or two of whom he even invited to his wedding- by drafting letters for them to send to loved ones on the outside. He recalled that, as a young Tory MP, he used to parrot the rightwing tropes like 'lock 'em up and throw away the key' and 'life should mean life'. Such an approach he now sees as total rubbish. Prison makes only a minimal attempt, he testified, to rehabilitate those whose lives have taken a seriously wrong turn and should be reformed from the top to the bottom.
It seems perhaps ironic that it takes a spell in chokey for a Conservative to realise the emptiness of their attitudes and policies on social policy but one is enthused to suggest that all of his erstwhile colleagues, presently serving in the Commons, should also be consigned to Her Majesty's prison accommodation for six months to improve their education on how life is led by those at the wrong end of society's social spectrum.
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