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Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Post# 187 - My Proposal to Governor Snyder

I sent this to our Governor on 2/6/2011.

Dear Governor Snyder,

Somewhere, as I type this, someone is committing a felony.  Within a year, they will hopefully be sentenced to reside in one of our 40 federal prisons, along with over 50,000 others.  I didn’t ask them to choose a life of crime.  I didn’t ask for my share of the over $30,000 in taxpayer dollars per inmate that we must pay every year.

Therefore, I’d like to see a little return on my investment. 

I hate the idea of people relaxing in their cells, drinking toilet tank wine concoctions crafted from ketchup and fruit cocktail.  I’ve always been a fan of chain gangs.  When Governor Engler was in office, I suggested the “Behave or Pave” program – inmates fixing our constantly damaged roads.

Another idea that I’ve been considering involves recycling.  Many of us sort our garbage—paper, plastic, aluminum is set aside for recycling.  Not everyone does it.  Not everyone does it effectively.  Why not have the inmates sort our garbage.  There’s plenty of garbage and plenty of inmates.  Just a thought.

More importantly, I’m assuming inmates have health care.  I’m also assuming it’s costly, and probably better than what I, with my two technical degrees, am able to provide for my family.  Here are the tentposts to my idea:

  • It’s a commonly known fact that exercise improves health. 
  • Healthy inmates will require less medical attention and be more able to defend themselves in the classic “shower confrontations” that we all hear about.
  • Stationary bikes provide exercise in confined spaces (like prison cells).
  • Generators can be connected to exercise bikes, and provide resistance.
  • Power collected from stationary bike generators can be used to power society.

Here’s some quick math:

1)      There are roughly 4.5 million households in Michigan, according to 2010 census.
2)      An average household consumes 45 kWh per day.
3)      Michiganders, on average, consume 202,500,000 kWh per day.
4)      If each inmate were required to “burn” 1500 calories a day (500 before each meal), they’d collectively burn roughly 88 of these kWh per day.

Does the math make any sense?  Not in the least—they’d only power about two households.  However, once the word gets out on the street, nobody’s going to want to get sentenced to a lifetime of peddling.  And a healthy, able body doesn't require as much medical attention and can sort through our garbage more effectively.

Give it some thought!

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