Herbert Alexander and Gerald E. Caiden (1985) The Politics and Economics of Organized Crime Lexington, Mass.: Lexington Books. In the short run, nothing much will be effective against organized crime unless some long term responses are in place: 1. Political corruption has to be eliminated. Without political corruption, organized crime loses much of its protection. 2. Strengthen professionalism in law enforcement. 3. Law enforcement coordination is a must, on an international level. 4. Develop central data banks on an international basis. Organized crime no longer knows international boundaries. 5. Illegal markets need to be made unprofitable: a. supply - crack down on supply lines, distributors, make the cost go up by stopping the supply of drugs; this has not worked well because demand is so high, so both are needed. b. demand - the high level of lawlessness in America is due to the fact that Americans love to do things that they also desire to prohibit; it is not the supply of criminals, it is the demand for deviant goods and services that is the real problem. 6. The public has to be educated on the full extent of organized crime and made aware of its terrible costs in lives and dollars. 7. More research into organized crime, its structure, techniques, and its impact on society is needed so police will know how to respond. Questions like, what is the next hot drug? Where are the drugs being grown? How is this mob group organized? How are they getting the drugs/diamonds/ chemicals, etc. into the country? What is the latest technique in money laundering? What are mobs doing with their money these days? Furniture business hot for a while. Some short term ideas are also proposed. In short, Alexander and Caiden suggest that the police must engage in dirty tricks. If they don't and police play by the rules, the mob will win. There are no absolute rules out there. Intimidation is the weapon of organized crime. Its leaders can be superficially courteous, but compassion is reserved for some family and true friends, not for business associates, not for the general public, not for the police. Alexander and Caiden propose the following specific ideas: 1. Plant undercover agents (i.e., deceive and lie). 2. Become a friend with the presumed targets. 3. Make contracts and work with the organized crime syndicate to kill off particularly bad guys. 4. If necessary, engage in selected acts of deviance/crime. In other words, assassinate particular people or as in point #3, pay to have someone killed. 5. Use proactive selected target tactics. Go after one person or one organization at a time and really go after them. No holds barred. General problems with their ideas: 1. Moral problems - Machiavellian ends/means argument. Is the government justified in going after people for using tactics that the government itself is using against those very people? Consider the words of Justice Louis D. Brandeis - "In a government of laws, the existence of the government will be imperiled if it fails to observe the law scrupulously. Our government is the potent, the omnipotent teacher. For good or ill, it teaches the whole people by its example. If government becomes a lawbreaker it breeds a contempt for law: it invites every man to become a law unto himself. It invites anarchy." But if government plays by the rules, the mob will win! 2. Often, the hunters begin to sympathize with the hunted and join with them as a partner, or at least as a double agent. Vice, narcotics and gambling squads are notoriously prone to compromise and corruption. Insurance assessors, business regulators and auditors are just as susceptible. 3. Organized crime has a trump card - it can go over the head of the police and buy off prosecutors and/or judges. Only one weak link destroys the value of the chain. 4. Organized crime and law enforcement co-exist. Mutual though begrudged co-existence. They both need each other because they both need information and protection. Open warfare between the two serves nobody's interest. 5. Eliminate political corruption? While we are at it, let us stop cold north winds from blowing in January. This is nothing but a feel good, political platitude that has no place in an academic treatise. It is true, just as having no cold north winds in January would make Nebraska a nicer place to live, but there is nothing that can be done about it.