I wonder if it would make sense to introduce into the prisons an actual currency they could use. Something specific to each prison. Their own type of prison bucks. Maybe the warden and his assistants could be on the bills. I guess that would only work if the prisoners believed they had value.In other words, scrip. When I was in, the prison kept a separate commissary account for each inmate, containing the wages from your work and contributions from relatives. Work didn't get you very far at two cents per hour, but the external contributions could make life much more bearable. [Tobacco will get you through times of no freedom better than freedom will get you through times of no tobacco.] This work-based money was abstract and unavailable. If you wanted to trade within the walls, you had to buy Koo from the commissary. All trading was done with Koo because the prison was run by black** inmates. Since white boys smoked Marboras or Bugler, Koo was only 'trading smokes' for whites. Koo had real value for the ruling class. The scrip idea would reconnect work to value, which is an important part of real rehab. Doing something useful, seeing results at the end of the day, and getting paid for it, changes your mindset. You'd get scrip for your work and you could then spend it in the commissary, OR you could spend it to buy sex or protection from sex, depending on your race. = = = = = ** Footnote: There was one exception to this rule. In those years black males smoked Koo and black females smoked Newport. The commissary carried Newport for exactly one 'female' inmate. Miss Columbus was a remarkably realistic tranny who sashayed around the grounds in full wig and makeup, and appropriately smoked Newport. I hadn't thought about it until now, but obviously the guards and administrators were getting some of 'her' favors. Allowing 'her' to sashay in public, helping to smuggle in the wigs and makeup, ordering the commissary to sell Newport.
Polistra was named after the original townsite of Manhattan (the one in Kansas). When I was growing up in Manhattan, I spent a lot of time exploring by foot, bike, and car. I discovered the ruins of an old mill along Wildcat Creek, and decided (inaccurately) that it was the remains of the original site of Polistra. Accurate or not, I've always liked the name, with its echoes of Poland (an under-appreciated friend of freedom) and stars. ==== The title icon is explained here. ==== Switchover: This 2007 entry marks a sharp change in worldview from neocon to pure populist. ===== The long illustrated story of Polistra's Dream is a time-travel fable, attempting to answer the dangerous revision of New Deal history propagated by Amity Shlaes. The Dream has 8 episodes, linked in a chain from the first. This entry explains the Shlaes connection.