Creating crime rates to fill the new prisons they build
There is actually truth in this. Back in the 90s there were a few scandals in which construction companies sealed deals through corruption to build prisons. To justify these prisons and attempt to deal with a rising crime rate (a huge issue in 90s New York), laws and punishments were made more strict. The assumption was that harsher punishment would provide further disincentive for crime, when it actually just raised crime rates.
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