Cost-benefit analysis of crime/punishment.
The comparison: the crime-savings from prison vs. the fiscal cost of prisons.
THE RIGHT COST.
But the social costs? In academic cost-benefits?
(Why? why don’t we? why don’t those paper express horror and outrage that we don’t? why aren’t their following papers efforts to fix that? But I digress.)
We just shrug, and use the easy $50B.
That $50B tax bill IS the cost to me. I don’t directly experience those shocking social costs.
Our failure to use the right cost isn’t random.
But @john_majoreason has also shown that in the South, prisons are in disproportionately minority areas: the economics are… complicated.