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Boot camps – Key doesn’t know best

Written By: - Date published: 7:15 am, December 17th, 2012 - 106 comments
Categories: crime, john key - Tags: , ,

One of the defining characteristics of this government is their arrogant “we know best” attitude. Forcing through national standards against all advice. Ignoring environmental warnings and attacking the scientists that raise them. Likewise with a certain journalist and Afghanistan. Trampling local democracy in Canterbury in case elections deliver the “wrong” result. On these and many other matters John Key prefers to “advise himself” rather than listen to the facts.

Trouble is he’s getting advice from an ideologically blinkered idiot.

Take boot camps. If I might be permitted to plagiarise myself, recall that boot camps were the central plank of the Nats’ “Youth Plan”. Key told us that they would “fight a growing youth crime wave and ensure young people get into education or training” and “defuse these unexploded human time-bombs”. Key was warned (and warned and warned and warned) that boot camps don’t work. But the Nats were determined to carry on regardless. Even when roundly “booed” by his audience Key plaintively insisted that “they actually do work”.

Well, actually, no they don’t. Further confirmation last weekend:

‘Boot camps’ criticised over high re-offending

The Government’s so-called “boot camps” for young offenders are copping criticism following news nearly two-thirds of graduates surveyed broke the law again within six months. At $18,000 a head, the question is now being asked, was it money well-spent?

It’s been five years since John Key campaigned on the scheme – good old-fashioned army discipline to sort out New Zealand’s worst young criminals. But Kim Workman, director of Rethinking Crime and Punishment, says it was never going to be a success.
“I think the problem was that it was pronounced as a silver bullet, but was devoid of gunpowder,” he says. …

“Within two years of release you would expect the numbers to go up to between 85 and 90 percent, which is about the sort of rate you’d expect if you did nothing at all. So it’s a disappointing result.”

Key was wrong about boot camps. He’s wrong about education, the environment, the democratic rights of Canterbury, the miraculous power of cycleways, the economy, New Zealand’s international obligations on climate change, and much more besides. Every year in office this arrogant government does yet more damage.

106 comments on “Boot camps – Key doesn’t know best”

  1. higherstandard 2

    Shorter r0b

    ‘I hate Key wah wah wah’

    Take a break away from the blog and put your feet up with the family.

    • infused 2.1

      Pretty much.
      There is no point to the post, it’s just a rant.

      • felixviper 2.1.1

        Umless you actually read it of course.
         
        If you did, you’d have noticed that it’s about yet another one of Key’s pet no-evidence projects turning out to be yet another massive waste of time and money for no result.
         
        Just like we all said it would all along. I might have to go back and find out what you and hs were saying back then…

        • higherstandard 2.1.1.1

          Retroactive stalker tr0lls should get a life.

          • felixviper 2.1.1.1.1

            There’s not a hint of irony in your last two comments, is there hs?

            • higherstandard 2.1.1.1.1.1

              Perhaps a bit of tungsteny.

              • felixviper

                Lead.

                • higherstandard

                  Boron

                  • NoseViper (The Nose knows)

                    Clever riposte.   At least you RWNJs have been good for a laugh this morning.   Thanks.

                    • higherstandard

                      What is a RWNJ ?

                    • TheContrarian

                      I believe it stands for Right Wing Nut Job but applies broadly to ‘anyone who disagrees with me’.

                    • higherstandard

                      Indeed the same kind of bizarre invective you get on most blogs – a bit like wee Draco’s ‘there’s no one to the left of me and everyone to the right of me is a rabid rightwinger.’
                       

                    • felixviper

                      Err no, Contrarian, it applies to right wing nut jobs.
                       
                      You, for example, often disagree with me but you’re not a rwnj you’re just frequently wrong about things 😉
                       
                      higherstandard isn’t a rwnj either, he’s a sensible apolitical disinterested party who pretends to be a doctor because he thinks it gives his common sense views more weight (it hasn’t worked yet). His views, totally by chance, just happen to match almost perfectly with everything John Key says but he regularly assures me that’s entirely coincidental.

                    • higherstandard

                      Really ?

                      Does John Key regularly call Parata and his other ministers buffoons and troughers and support higher taxes?

                      More importantly does putting smiley faces in comments signify that one is not actually desperately trolling and smearing in the hope of a bit of internet bif ?

                      And regarding who I am – it’s not hard to find out my actual identitiy I did actually post under my own name for a bit back just after i started my own trolling at this site do some more stalking you’ve clearly got too much spare time on your hands today.
                       

                    • felixviper

                      lol hs.
                       
                      Sorry mate, you don’t get to be proud of your trooling and simultaneously expect to be taken seriously in any way.
                       
                       

                    • higherstandard

                      Why not ? You seem to have your own little club of sychophants that lurve your trooling and general gadabout lying all over the internet.

                    • felixviper

                      Not trooling, not lying. And no club, just a humble cynic who’s sick of tory fuckwits like you.

                    • higherstandard

                      You’re a well known liar and troll Felix.

                    • felixviper

                      Sure I am doc.

                    • higherstandard

                      Well done.
                      Coming to terms with you internet illness is the first step along the road to recovery.

        • David Viperious H 2.1.1.2

          I read it and it is a an informative list of failures from the Currency Trader.  Because thats all he is, he has not got a fucking clue on how to run a country, he only knows how to divert great amounts of other peoples money into his, and his mates pockets. 
           
          HS and Infused.  If you think it’s so much bullshit, go and write your own columns, instead of crying like little fucking girls, everytime you don’t like what you read. Cue crying.

          • Raa 2.1.1.2.1

            It’s a sad commentary on the depth of talent in the ‘national’ party which does not reflect the diverse history of this country.  It reflects the views of the current financial backers of the ‘national’ party formed by the  “greed is good” ethos of the dot.com mania and other bubbles deliberately generated by the low interest rate, easy money, policies of Greenspan and his successors in which Key thrived. Give him some credit – he had enough self-awareness to get out while he was ahead – but is that a basis on which to develop a small economy with long term, property-related, debt proportionally rivalling that of Greece ? The mantra is ‘austerity’, hence Collins with Thatcherian pretensions is wheeled out to manage decline .. on their terms. The image of a lifeboat economy in the South Pacific for the Wall St elite must be very seductive when desperate people a few suburbs away discover they cannot return to the life they lived before Cyclone Sandy.  
             
             

      • karol 2.1.2

        So, the evidence that the boot camps aren’t working are wrong?  Do you have evidence that they are working.
         
        So you aren’t interested in the fact that key’s government has been spending money on policies and initiatives that are not successful?  And you don’t think it’s a problem that in a recession they aren’t doing anything that’s helping?
         

        Key was wrong about boot camps. He’s wrong about education, the environment, the democratic rights of Canterbury, the miraculous power of cycleways, the economy, New Zealand’s international obligations on climate change, and much more besides. Every year in office this arrogant government does yet more damage.

        Do you have any evidence or reasons for saying this is not the way it is?  Or doesn’t it matter to you that Key fiddles while the country goes down the gurgler?
         
        PS: Thanks Lynn, blockquote button now seems to be working on Chrome.

        • Tracey 2.1.2.1

          Why would Nat supporters require evidence of anything? They continue to support a man who “misspeaks” quite regularly about facts/truth and a man who likes reports if they support him and won’t read them if they don’t. It makes sense that his supporters won’t be interested in evidence or truth or things that actually work, otherwise they wouldn’t be supporters any longer. It’s ok to have believed him in 2008, but to have continued to believe him and vote for him in 2011 and to (even if we forgive 2011) continue that support now beggars belief.

          I wonder if it is because human nature being what it is people would rather look like idiots than admit they are wrong. And that comment is aimed across the political spectrum not just at Nat supporters. Many who supported the previous government defended the indefensible because it was “their lot”.

          It takes courage to change your belief or admit you were wrong about something. When it comes to politics very few have that kind of courage.

          ” A biased mind, which never sees the complete picture, cannot grasp the reality. And any action that results from such a state of mind will not be in tune with reality. As such it causes a lot of problems.” – D Lama

          • Draco T Bastard 2.1.2.1.1

            I wonder if it is because human nature being what it is people would rather look like idiots than admit they are wrong.

            The Authoritarians
            It’s the nature of authoritarian type people to always support their leaders no matter what.

          • Dr Terry 2.1.2.1.2

            Many Key supporters are desperately clinging to his coattails in the hope that eventually he will save their bacon, and even the problems of the country. They only have to give him “long enough”, the question is “how long is too long?”

        • Colonic Wiper 2.1.2.2

          Ok, lets go back to just locking them and forgetting about them. Nothing to learn here at all, its all wrong etc. etc . etc.

          • felixviper 2.1.2.2.1

            Yes, it is all wrong.
             
            That’s what all the available facts demonstrate, and always did.
             
            Sorry to disappoint.

            • Colonic Wiper 2.1.2.2.1.1

              What available facts Felix as usual, there is plenty of supporting evidence on how good discipline , structure, outdoor pursuits linked with good mentoring can turn lives around.

              Outward bound for years has put through a number of young offenders through their programme, and yes they come out pretty fit as well.

              What is your approach for these offenders Felix.

              • karol

                I noticed some reports suggested that the government was considering adding post-boot camp mentoring to the programme.  I would have thought such individualised mentoring would have been the main plank of any approach.  Not all people will respond to the boot camps regime in the same way.  Better to find some positive initiatives that suit each person.

                • McFliper

                  ISTR that when boot camps were initially raised it was pointed out that the few programmes that were anything other than dismal failures recidivism-wise all included extensive counselling and supervision after the “boot camp”.
                       
                  Once again the damned tories took the punitive parts of an idea and ran with them, while dropping the “pc gone mad” ingredients that actually made the concept work.

              • Draco T Bastard

                And yet the MAC program is failing dismally.

              • One Tāne Viper

                Evidence. Perhaps Colonic Wiper was too busy wiping to do a simple Google search. Or perhaps incapable of even that basic task.
                 
                Some context:
                 
                NZ prison recidivism rate ≈ 50%
                National Party la-la land bullshit camps recidivism rate ≈ 60%
                Norway prison recidivism rate ≈ 20%
                 
                The National Party and its parrots aren’t interested in doing what works: they just want their sick vengeance fantasies fulfilled.
                 
                 

                • Colonic Wiper

                  I don’t think you are interested in what works either One as long as your party is in power.

                  • One Tāne Viper

                    I was interested enough in what works to go and find out some of the facts around the issue, to learn a bit about Te Hurihanga for example.

                    I expect you will ignore this evidence and cling to your bias like a security blankie.

                    PS: My Party? Who I vote for is yet another thing you know less than fuck-all about.

              • felixviper

                Hi Colonic Wiper,
                 
                It’s nice that you think boot camps are a good idea. Unfortunately they don’t work, as this clusterfuck of a National Govt has just proven.
                 
                Unless the plan was to increase the reoffending rate, the plan has failed.
                 
                 

                • One Tāne Viper

                  “…increase the reoffending rate…”
                   
                  Wiper doesn’t care about the extra crime that results so long as the vengeance fantasies get fulfilled. What a low-life.

              • Dr Terry

                Outward Bound’s “raison d’etre” is NOT to fix young offenders, I wonder if you ever heard of a single one? You are very good at sliding off the point.

                • felixviper

                  I don’t think he’s particularly good at it. Just very keen on trying it.

                  • Colonic Wiper

                    pfffft,   some more tough man bully comments from a bunch of lightweights.  what vengence fantasies are these dimwit. And so Dr tell me more about Outward Bound?
                     
                     

                  • felixviper

                    Is National planning to ditch their disasterous experiment with boot camps and send young offenders to Outward Bound instead?
                     
                    No?
                     
                    Then what the fuck are you on about?

          • Draco T Bastard 2.1.2.2.2

            No, we’ve learned a lot. We’ve learned that good rehabilitation works and that the delusional policies of National don’t. Thing is, we learned that before National got voted into power in 2008.

    • ak 2.2

      Shorter liarstandard

      I love you scum

  2. vto 3

    This government and its disciples have also been proved wrong around the whole philosophy of free enterprise, for example self-regulation of the mining safety sector. It doesn’t work. Yet they continue down the route of self-regulation of the heavy trucking safety sector. Dumbos. Dangerous dumbos.

  3. Tracey 4

    How many (percentage is fine) of them went straight from Boot Camp to a job?

    • David Viperious H 4.1

      Not as many that went back into crime, with a whole new set of skills, and fitness to run from the cops.

      P.S Lynn Sometimes I get a whole editor sometimes i get a blank page that I have to click a couple of times to get the typing started I am using FF17.01

      • Tracey 4.1.1

        That’s why I am wondering if the programme would have been more effective as “discipline and physical activity + a job? Perhaps they can alter the plan to add that tot he mix?

        • One Tāne Viper 4.1.1.1

          What jobs? 
           
          The National Party creates the conditions under which crime flourishes (deregulation, underfunding, John Banks) and then complains about the inevitable response.

          • felixviper 4.1.1.1.1

            Good question.
             
            This government, by its own monotonously regular admission, can not create any jobs.
             
            Other governments can, have, do, and will. But not this one.

            • anthony bull 4.1.1.1.1.1

              What jobs do governments create?  Thats absolute rubbish if you believe that is what government is for.
               
              Public servantry is not something to aspire to.

              • Napkins

                That’s nonsense of course anthony bull. Serving the public and aiding the common good is the highest calling of any man or woman.
                Its typical of neoliberals and neocons to think otherwise. To them, serving private capital and working in the interests of private shareholders is the only thing they want to see happening in society. Its not really working out that well for most people, is it, although the corporations and the banks are no doubt lovin’ it.

              • felixviper

                What jobs do governments create? 
                 
                All of them really. Without our democratic state we wouldn’t have any “jobs” as we know them.
                 
                We’d be working, sure, but I don’t think I’d go as far as to call slavery a “job”.

          • Tracey 4.1.1.1.2

            OTV
             
            That was most of my point… this is about gainful employment, amongst other things, something this government refuses to accept is important, except by reducing the living wage

      • NoseViper (The Nose knows) 4.1.2

        Me too or if I get an editing window it comes with a panel of formatting icons at top.
        And sometimes my comment just disappears up the boo-iye.

  4. One Tāne Viper 5

    On the one hand I think there’s a case for automatic independent judicial review of all arguments and evidence heard in select committee and cabinet: a deliberate move to evidence-based policy.

    On the other I think it’s quite pathetic that MPs can’t get these basic things right for themselves. What is it about political beliefs that makes people think they are immune from reality?

    There’s nothing wrong with “new” ideas – have a test trial, set goals etc. etc, but stubbornly going back to the same failed nonsense over and over again is just embarrassing, like Collins’ response to Binnie.

  5. Pascal's bookie 6

    Lol at the tories charging in to explain that they weren’t really wrong just because their stupid knee-jerk of an ‘idea’ that was predicted to fail, failed, just as predicted.

    They sure are fans of accountability.

    ‘It was just random failure or something! Who could have known? Sure, some people predicted it would fail when we suggested it, but that’s just random too!’

    • One Tāne Viper 6.1

      No, the dregs of society who promoted this policy and their supporters are responsible for the extra harm they have caused, just as the Dept. of Corrections is liable for William Bell’s actions.
       
      Sauce for the goose…

  6. Jaybob 7

    The Ministry of Youth Affairs produced a very comprehensive review of the issues around youth offending and rehabilitation in 2001 (Tough Is Not Enough – http://www.myd.govt.nz/documents/about-myd/publications/tough-is-not-enough-2000-nz-.pdf), well before John Key and the National Party came into power.

    I wish people would stop portraying “boot camp” as a National Party initiative, when in fact it is just a new development in multi-agency work that has been continuing for decades, involving the military, MSD, Min Justice, Corrections etc.

    MAC camps are not “boot camps”, more like wilderness activity or outward bound camps, run in an environment of military discipline, that build self-image and teamwork. I have spoken with a number of people involved with the kids in CYFs and the military – I had to be persistent with my enquiries to get to talk to people directly involved). All were very positive to extremely positive about their success.

    I suspect that if figures like costs and re-offending rates (what type of offence and when/how often?) were released to the public it would kick up an even bigger storm of ill-informed debate that would inevitably impact the trainees themselves, by devaluing their experience and damaging their pride in completing the course, also damaging the “esprit de corps” of the staff involved.

    Opponents cite the cost of the program. It is about the same as the cost of “residence with supervision” , which is the only alternative sentence a judge can hand down.

    Opponents also claim the course will make the offenders “fitter and faster”, making them more difficult to apprehend when they re-offend. This argument is only rhetoric. Surely nobody can seriously raise that as an objection to trying to turn young lives around and, in the same stroke, save the taxpayer millions of dollars in future prosecutions and imprisonments.

    I think MAC should be seen as a development from MSD, CYF, NZDF etc. that has been long in the making and is based on evidence. For the sake of the young people and their families involved, and those trying to help them, please don’t use this issue as a stick to beat the Government with!

    • higherstandard 7.1

      What do you think is the main reason for the high reoffending rate and what do you think could be done to lower it ?
       

      • One Tāne Viper 7.1.1

        The main causes for the high recidivism rate are fact-free right wing delusions. 
         
        It’s time to get tough on wingnut bullshit.

        • higherstandard 7.1.1.1

          That’s an immensely helpful comment, did you come with it all by yourself or was there a committee involved ?

          • One Tāne Viper 7.1.1.1.1

            As long as wingnuts are aided and abetted in having their dogma inflicted on others, the longer the harm they do will go unchecked.
             
            There is a solution to wingnut bullshit: it used to be called the fourth estate, now it falls upon fact checkers and the electorate. I think the process should be strengthened by introducing robust rules of evidence into policy making. 
             
            I can see no reason why misleading a committee of parliament shouldn’t be a criminal offence. Can you?

            PS: consider the way wittering ninnies like Sarah Palin have destroyed the GOP. Aren’t you ashamed that the National Party is hell bent on following the same path?

      • Jaybob 7.1.2

        Causes for high re-offending rate? I don’t think it’s been established that the re-offending rate is high. The only figures that were released (perhaps unwisely) relate to two initial intakes during a trial/setup period.I have worked in addiction treatment. It is very common for participants to relapse after completing a program – to fall back into the comfort of their old ways.
        But the treatment (usually) remains part of the story of their life – a milestone. They might stumble but that doesn’t mean they’ve failed or are not going to succeed eventually.Analysing outcomes would be difficult. It might make sense to compare re-offending rates with those of detainees in secure youth units. Also, need to look at the frequency and seriousness of offending.If a habitually violent offender is prosecuted for shoplifting after MAC, would that indicate that MAC has failed to stop their violent behaviour? Of course not!But if that violent young person does not show violent behaviour after MAC, surely that indicates success. They would count as “zero” in the re-offending rate.
        The thing about treatments that aim to help people transform their lives (into non-offending, non-addiction etc) is that each story is different, moves along its own timeline, and involves family and community influences post-treatment.
        There is no quick-fix, and results are not easily measured, where the aim is to cause people to radically change their lives. Change happens in different ways for different people over different times.The majority of crime and the most serious crime is committed by a hard-core of offenders. These are the people MAC is trying to work with early in their lives while change is relatively more easy to bring about. 
         
         
         
         

        • higherstandard 7.1.2.1

          Do you know if the local DHB CADS are actively involved in the programme ?

          • Jaybob 7.1.2.1.1

            Higher Standard – No, sorry I don’t know if CADS are involved. CYFS do work with youth unit of ChCh men’s prison, as evidence of their using outside help.

            • higherstandard 7.1.2.1.1.1

              And Marty’s comment below, I always thought this was pretty mcuh standard practise these days due to the previous good results and data.

        • Tracey 7.1.2.2

          I agree, all results ought to be released or none at all. Do you know if the participants were also helped into full-time work at the end or shortly after the course?

        • bad12 7.1.2.3

          You make a reasonable point, boot camps are nothing but Detention Centre Training by another name, unfortunatley as the emphasis of ‘boot camp’ type training is predominantly of the ‘get em out of bed and keep them active’ type then the ongoing effect you talk of is in fact to improve the physical fitness of young offe3nders and this they will carry with them into the world of adult crime,
           
          Detention Centre Training was used extensively on young offenders in the 1970’s and was almost exclusivley focussed upon a militaristic version of ‘get em out of bed and keep em busy’ model of exercise, military marching,and, harsh manual labor, it turned out super-fit young criminals who in 80% of cases had by year 2 re-offended and been furhter sentenced to imprisonment…

          • Jaybob 7.1.2.3.1

            These are 15-17 year-olds who are probably quite fit anyway. If they weren’t sentenced to MAC, they would be organising their own physical training in a detention centre, as adult prisoners do in jail.

            The program is under the overall control of CYFS and the aim is to address the causes of offending (and treat addictions etc). 
            NZDF provide a secure unit, which is ‘home base’ for the trainees, and they run an outward-bound style introduction which has the effect building self-image. 
            I think MAC is an enlightened alternative to jail. Just because “boot camps” have been found generally ineffective (according to international research), doesn’t mean that any sort of involvement of NZDF will fail.

            • bad12 7.1.2.3.1.1

              It is,and, has been known for quite some time absolutely useless to take young people away from their society in an effort to address matters of addiction and offending and then to place those young people back into that society in the same conditions where their original addictions and offending manifested,
               
              Such a system is simply counter-productive, while giving such youth ‘the tools’ with which they might address their addiction/offending at some later date who is to say that around age 24 when most offenders with a reasonably long history of addiction/offending have began in their own way to do just that these targeted youth would not also have began to address their addiction/offending,
               
              You seem to think i give a toss who NZDF or CYFS is running such a program, i don’t, the delivery of such programs need be assessed upon out-comes, nothing else and the anecdotal evidence would suggest that the desired outcome of this particular ‘bootcamp program’ does not succeed on any statistical level,
               
              Simply put, for such programs to suceed the youth involved would need after the initial ‘bootcamp’ to be found employment and accomodation as far away as possible from their previous social setting,
               
              The fact is the only sucess emanating from the resurrection of ‘boot-camp’ style youth justice initiatives was the political points scored by Slippery the Prime Minister announcing the ‘bootcamps’ as some form of panacea for youth crime, as the ‘bootcamps’ have failed to stop re-offending they and the Slippery Prime Minister should be marked ‘F’ for Failure…
               

              • Jaybob

                But part of the “previous social setting” is the family. It’s true the community may be impoverished and dysfunctional but probably nobody has more stake in the young person’s success than the family. 
                The young people can’t be be “given jobs” because they’re still serving the remainder of their sentence – for 12-14 months, typically. Their offences are serious, and not isolated. Public safety is still a consideration, in the workplace.

                • bad12

                  Please, pull my other leg, it plays the aria Jesus My Lord Come unto thee, with the backing of the full New Zealand Symphony Orchestra,
                   
                  You have to be fucking joking, seriously, you have to be either fucking joking or there is something deeply wrong inside your head that from where i sit requires you to avail yourself of some serious professional intervention,
                   
                  So,after ‘bootcamp’ these young offenders are sent where??? back to the dysfunctional families in dysfunctional suburbs where there are a whole tribe of other kids dysfunctioning all over the place,so public safety is in fact of NO consideration,
                   
                  Admitt it, the ‘bootcamps were a cheap political trick used by Slippery the Prime Minister to score cheap political points by Him doing His best used car salesman act on the largly clueless electorate attempting to show He had a answer for youth crime,
                   
                  Fuck, what dribble are you going to come up with next, paerhaps a bit of tiaha training might provide a magical transformation…

      • marty mars 7.1.3

        Reoffending is reduced for many Māori through integrated cultural and rehabilition programs.

    • Dr Terry 7.2

      Which of all the other sticks would you prefer us to beat the government with?

      • Jaybob 7.2.1

        If MAC is used to attack the government, the victims hardest hit will be the MAC trainees. 

  7. mike 8

    The boot camps were never anything other than a PR exercise for Key. He doesn’t care about whether they work or not, they’ve served their purpose for him.

    Just like National’s other big ideas it reeks of something dreamed up around the whiteboard amid plates of Lampton Quay catering company canapes. It’s about idea that they think plays well with their supporters, giving the vague impression that they are doing something about something while getting those dang asset sales through.

    Key’s not stupid, he would listen to expert advice if he actually wanted to do something about crime. He just doesn’t. After all, how would that make him richer and/or get more votes?

    • Jaybob 8.1

      You’ve got to realise that government departments don’t just throw away all their research, policy analysis, and planning when a new party gains power.

  8. Tracey 9

    The fact that key called them boot camps show where his true intention was. HOWEVER if a by-product of his desire to be seen as a tough-mama is that some good has been done we should be pleased but doesn’t mean we have to credit him as such?

    I am aware of a few programmes which have worked very well to reduce re-offending amongst younger folks, including a couple this government stopped funding. presumably because they weren’t calle d”boot-camps”

    • Jaybob 9.1

      Tracey, I think you’ve hit the real story. I don’t recall Key calling this program “boot camp”. But he probably did – only he – and it stuck.NZDF has been involved with youth mentoring and activities since the 1970s, working with schools, the police, and many other agencies. An officer involved with the MAC program told me that NZDF now recognise youth work as an area of well-developed expertise with which they can serve the country.Note that NZDF and young offenders both have in common a greater representation of Maori than in the general population. 
       

    • Populuxe1 9.2

      What true intention. The fitness fanatics among the upwardly mobile also go on “boot camps”. I think you might be fantasising to try and shoehorn some secret Freudian slip from it to attribute to the perfidious Key.

      • felixviper 9.2.1

        Yeah I guess that makes sense.
         
        If you’re from another planet, just arrived the other day, and don’t know what “boot camp” means.

  9. tracey 10

    jaybob

    sadly bootcamp is the only way the nats would fund a programme. when in opposition simon made a great speech to one of kim workmans conferenxes. sadly when he had the chance his party stopped him puttibg his words into practice. sadder still he moved from politics to westpac which at times has the ethics of an alleycat

    • Napkins 10.1

      Child poverty, high youth unemployment, low wages, reductions in educational and training opportunities. These are all basic things which if tackled with real resources and vision would make a real difference to the lives of young people.
      Instead, we’re stuck in a discussion on how our soldiers have to become expert social workers for dysfunctional young people.
      Young people who when they finish these fancy MAC boot camps still have no job to go to, no way into a trade or training, and no place in society. Basically its a wasteful distraction and its no wonder the vast majority of Mac Kids end up in more trouble with the law.

      • Jaybob 10.1.1

        Of course they don’t go straight into jobs after MAC! They still have more than 12 months of their sentence to serve.

        The program is run by CYF. NZDF do not deliver “social work” intervention.
         
         

        • Napkins 10.1.1.1

          The MAC programme is run by CYF but how many CYF staff are there actually on each day of each MAC course. Or are they all at a desk somewhere far away?
          Why are our soldiers being made to do social work and baby sitting of dysfunctional youth. Its not a clever approach. Soldiering is about soldiering not social work and hand holding.

          • Jaybob 10.1.1.1.1

            1) Trainees travel daily to fully staffed CYF facility
            2) NZDF want to be involved as a way of serving the country. Their approach, I believe, reflects their culture: neither harsh, pointless discipline nor soft molly-coddling. 

  10. Peter 11

    It is doubtful that Key ever believed boot camps would work. In fact having listened to him over the years I doubt that he believes much of anything that he says. That is a considerable advantage if you need a mouthpiece to say what ever it takes to get elected. His electioneering was all about pushing the right buttons to gain power and then get on with the business of reducing perceived impediments to business, restructuring government and putting together some nifty little deals such as Sky City for his backers. Simple really!

  11. BM 12

    Boot camps don’t work because they’re not brutal enough.
    The only thing these young ones respect is whoever is the toughest and most bad ass.

    Boot camp shouldn’t be fun, you need to utterly destroy these kids and then reconstruct them.

    • Peter 12.1

      A nice simple answer to a complex question.

    • felixviper 12.2

      Yeah, reconstruct them as vicious sociopaths who identify brutality as a virtue and domination as success.

      • BM 12.2.1

        Disagree.
        I think one of the reason these camps,courses fail is because they’re not seen as punishment by the participants.
        Most, if not all of these kids that go to them are bad little fuckers, the state need to demonstrate that it is indeed the toughest and if you fuck with it, you will be fubared.

        Initial memories of boot camp should just about cause these kids to void themselves, later on after the fear and terror fades, the kids will have developed a new found respect for society and its rules.

        Otherwise it’s boot camp again.

        • felixviper 12.2.1.1

          Yeah, and rogernomics would have made us all millionaires but it just didn’t go far enough and made most of us poorer instead.

          Dream on. You’re going to need to provide some evidence for your wanking fantasies, because so far all the available evidence says you’re wrong.

        • One Tāne Viper 12.2.1.2

          BM, in your dreams you are going to invent things that are tougher than the lives these kids have already endured, and then you woke up.
           
          As Felix says, where’s your evidence? Or is your hard-on sufficient?

          • BM 12.2.1.2.1

            And the touchy feely liberal approach is working so well.
             
             

            • felixviper 12.2.1.2.1.1

              What touchy feely liberal approach are you talking about, BM? Throwing already brutalised young people into the even more brutal environment of 100-year old prisons to be further brutalised by older and more violent versions of themselves?
               
              It’s a persistent fantasy of the authoritarian/fac1st right that we treat young criminals softly, but it simply doesn’t match up with reality.

            • One Tāne Viper 12.2.1.2.1.2

              BM, finally you introduce a meaningful measure: “what works”. The evidence is that rehabilitation works better (note: “better” does not mean “perfectly”) than punishment.
               
              Did you register the recidivism rate in Norway’s penal system? You would start howling with outrage if we adopted it here, but can you explain why you think 50% recidivism is worth enduring, when a rehabilitative model achieves a 20% reoffending rate? 
               
              Are your fantasies that important to you that you would rather cling to them rather than see a reduction in crime? Can you see how I think that makes you a low-life?

              • bad12

                Indeed IF we can ever dispense with the failed notion that imprisonment acts as a deterrent against offending we might then begin to find the means of actually reducing such offending,
                 
                Finding employment for those at risk of entering a criminal life-style might be a good first step…

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