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Illinois, Chicago Set To Become More Dangerous As Cash Bail Ends

Illinois, Chicago Set To Become More Dangerous As Cash Bail Ends

Authored by Ted Dabrowski and John Klingner via,




Illinois, Chicago Set To Become More Dangerous As Cash Bail Ends

Authored by Ted Dabrowski and John Klingner via,

Illinois’ new “no-cash bail” provision – the most extreme cash bail abolition in the country – goes into effect September 18, continuing Illinois leaders’ long-running move to decriminalize and decarcerate the criminal justice system. 

The SAFE-T Act, originally passed in Feb. 2021, increases public safety risks for Illinoisans – Chicagoans, in particular – by increasing the number of criminal defendants on pretrial release. Chicago is already well on its way to hitting a post-2019 high in major crimes, as we reported recently.

The criminal justice system is also likely to end up less equitable than before, despite “equity” being the core justification for bail reforms. The end of cash bail could mean more minority defendants being detained pretrial and even more minorities ending up as victims.

The implementation of the no-cash-bail system is the culmination of more than two years of legislative and judicial conflicts over the SAFE-T Act. The act made major changes to law enforcement regulations and court procedures, but the elimination of cash bail was its most contentious provision. The law was halted for a time, but the Illinois Supreme Court ultimately upheld the law.

The original 2021 law was even more radical than what’s now going into effect, to the point where it had to be amended three times after its initial passage. Prior to the amendments, it was nearly impossible to detain many potentially dangerous felony defendants. The law was changed only after lawmakers faced intense pressure from 100 of Illinois’ 102 county prosecutors.

But though the law is now much better than its original, it still opens the door to more lawlessness in a state already experiencing a crime crisis – of shopliftingrobberiesmob actionslow arrest ratesunanswered 911 calls – and with no plan to deal with it. 

Here’s why the SAFE-T should eventually be unwound:

1. More defendants out before trial means more risk to Illinoisans 

Under the previous cash bail system, all felonies were potentially detainable by a judge. That is no longer the case under the SAFE-T Act. Defendants accused of many low level “Class 4” felonies, like criminal damage to property, are simply non-detainable now.

More defendants out before trial will, necessarily, increase the risk to ordinary Illinoisans. It’s simple: more defendants on the street equals more potential for crime. 

Proponents of the SAFE-T Act will argue they’re simply trying to keep “nonviolent” offenders out of jail before trial, but as the City Journal’s Rafael Mangual argues, “Nonviolent Crime” Is a Myth. “[There’s an] important reality that progressives working to ease up on supposedly nonviolent crimes don’t seem to appreciate: even ‘minor’ offenses like retail theft, open-air drug use, and smoking on subway platforms are frequently backed by a threat of violence.”

In other words, “what progressives seem not to understand is that “minor offenses” are often manifestations of the broadly antisocial dispositions of individuals who likely have a much greater propensity for violence than the law-abiding.”

CWB Chicago has compiled a long list of cases where felony defendants awaiting trial committed additional crimes. In 2022 alone, there were 82 victims of murder and attempted murder by defendants already awaiting trial for a felony in Chicago.

There’s far more evidence than that. The ongoing impact of Cook County’s 2017 bail “reforms” (which resulted in no or low cash bail in the county) offers a glimpse of what the rest of Illinois may face under no-cash bail: a growing number of pretrial defendants out on bond who end up charged with new crimes. As we wrote last year:

Quarterly reports from [Cook County Chief Judge Tim] Evans’ office show that by halfway through 2020 nearly 9,500 defendants released before trial had been charged with new offenses. By mid-2022 that number had grown to 15,086. That was 18 percent of defendants set loose before trial. 

Of those 15,000-plus alleged crimes by pretrial defendants freed from late 2017 through mid-2022, 2,841 were classified as violent offenses, or “person offenses” such as battery, assault, or child neglect. Another 1,594 crimes were weapons offenses.

2. Judges have less discretion

The press is saying judges under the safety act will have more discretion than before. That’s not true. Illinois judges now have less discretion. Here’s why.

Before the end of cash bail, Illinois had a three-pronged pre-trial hearing system where a judge could (1) detain a defendant due to a “threat to the community,” (2) release the defendant on his own recognizance, or (3) a middle ground option requiring a defendant to post cash bail.

The middle ground is key. It let a judge release a defendant prior to trial while imposing a financial incentive to ensure good behavior – whether it was the defendant paying or somebody else posting bail. Without cash bail and the control it grants, judges no longer have such middle ground. 

But that’s precisely where the new law leaves judges today: just two options: (1) detain or (2) release. Discretion is gone.

3. The loss of bail is a threat to “equity”

The loss of discretion may actually do more harm to “equity” in criminal justice. With cash-bail gone, judges could: 

(1) Decide to err on the side of caution and detain “on-the-fence” risky defendants – locking up those who otherwise could have been out on cash bail. That means more minority defendants locked up instead of out on cash bail.

(2) Release potentially violent defendants who, without cash bail, have no financial incentive to behave. And that increases the risk to the general public.

And by general public, we mean minorities. They are the overwhelming victims of crime. Over 95 percent of homicides in Chicago are inflicted on minorities: 80 percent black and 15 percent Hispanic victims.

For overall violent crimes, black and Hispanic minorities are the victims 80 percent of the time. 

The SAFE-T is anything but safe

Chicago has led the nation in homicides for 11 years running. We’ve recently reported that 60 percent of urgent 911 calls in 2022 had no police to respond. Arrest rates for major crimes have fallen to a pathetic 5 percent.

And yet, there’s no plan to address the crisis. Instead, Gov. J.B. Pritzker, Chicago Mayor Johnson, Cook County State’s Attorney Kim Fox and Cook County Chief Judge Tim Evans have all decided to pursue decriminalization and decarceration. The SAFE-T Act is a key part of that agenda.

Tyler Durden Mon, 09/18/2023 - 17:00

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I Say We’re Setting Up For A Major Bottom

It’s almost impossible to call market tops and market bottoms using basic technical analysis tools like price and volume. Don’t get me wrong, that combination…



It's almost impossible to call market tops and market bottoms using basic technical analysis tools like price and volume. Don't get me wrong, that combination is my favorite during trend-following periods. But trying to spot bearish reversals is difficult when price action keeps riding higher and higher. The same is true in trying to spot bullish reversals when prices keep moving lower and lower. Maybe that seems unconventional to hard-core technicians, but I believe it's the reality. Too many folks say "when this line crosses that line, then this will happen". To me, that's following technical analysis and wearing blinders. Just my two cents.

I use technical price action to confirm what other signals are suggesting. We get plenty of signals on a regular basis - some short-term in nature, others long-term - if we're only willing to listen. While I've been bullish since June 2022, I do recognize short-term warning signals that tell us that risks of remaining long have increased substantially. In mid-July, I turned very cautious short-term and discussed those signals in a "Your Daily 5" episode that aired on July 19th. Let me pull up an S&P 500 chart, so you can see where U.S. equities stood when I fired this warning shot:

There were several reasons for the stock market bulls to hit quicksand. Tesla (TSLA), a Wall Street darling and a favorite stock of mine, suggested a possible 20% drop. That call aired the day of TSLA's top and TSLA fell closer to 30% in less than one month. These signals work and help us to manage risk! As I always say, they do NOT guarantee future price action, but they make us aware of increasing risk and that's how you invest more successfully. Since that July top, I've encouraged our EB members to tread very cautiously, whatever that means to each individual member. To some, it's being in cash. To others, it might simply mean to avoid leverage on the long side. But this cautious period is coming to an end.

If you want to see what was discussed on July 19th and why I felt the stock market was in short-term trouble, check out the Your Daily 5 recording on YouTube!

I absolutely LOVE when my signals take the opposite view of the masses. And now that everyone believes we're resuming the prior bear market, my signals are saying HOGWASH. Could we continue to proceed lower? Sure. There are never any guarantees with the stock market. But I see signs that suggest shorting is a VERY HIGH RISK strategy, with those risks growing every day. I'm discussing one major reason why in our FREE EB Digest newsletter that will be published early Monday morning, before the stock market opens. If you're not already an EB Digest subscriber, it's 100% free with no credit card required. Simply CLICK HERE and enter your name and email address. I'll discuss Reason #1 to turn bullish tomorrow morning. And I'll also focus on other reasons to be thinking bullish thoughts when I publish the EB Digest on Wednesday and Friday. Don't wait until it's too late. Check them out NOW!

Happy trading!


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Highlights from My Week’s Reading

Natalię Dowzicky, “How Florida Beat California to High-Speed Rail,” Reason, September 20, 2023.
Not only is Brightline the first privately…



Natalię Dowzicky, “How Florida Beat California to High-Speed Rail,” Reason, September 20, 2023.


Not only is Brightline the first privately funded intercity rail line in the U.S., but it’s also the fastest train in the country outside of the northeast corridor. Topping out at 125 mph in Florida, it will travel from Miami to Orlando in about three hours. For comparison, the Amtrak in the area takes about six and a half hours to complete that same trip.

Mike Reininger, CEO of Brightline, told Reason that passenger rail makes commercial sense under specific conditions, such as the case in Florida, where it connects two populous, tourist-friendly cities that are about 250 miles apart. At that distance, Reininger says, “It is too far to drive and too short to fly. You can approximate the time of flying significantly, improve the time of driving, and you can offer it at a price point that makes it an economic proposition.”

Not surprisingly, though, Brightline has become a subsidy sucker.

Romina Boccia, “Social Security Benefits are Growing Too Fast,” Cato at Liberty, September 21, 2023.


When a Social Security‐​eligible worker’s benefits are first calculated, this worker’s past wages are indexed to bring them to the same level as today’s earnings. This is called wage indexing and is based on the growth in average wages in the economy. When the Social Security Administration (SSA) first indexes a worker’s lifetime covered earnings, it does so using the SSA’s Average Wage Index (AWI). The AWI includes all wages that are subject to federal income tax, including wages in excess of the taxable Social Security maximum payroll tax threshold.

Wage indexing gives retirees a benefit amount that reflects the increase in the standard of living over their working careers—even if they didn’t earn commensurate wages. It’s like giving workers retroactive credit for improvements in the economy, including for wage improvements among the highest income earners.

Definitely worth reading carefully.

Christopher Wilcox, “Truck This: Why I’m Leaving the Long-Haul Industry,” American Institute for Economic Research, September 21, 2023.


More recently, environmental regulations requiring manufacturers to reduce emissions gave us the diesel particulate filter (DPF), an exhaust treatment system that replaces a standard muffler. While there is no current federal mandate requiring a DPF, the filters are required by the 2008 California Statewide Truck and Bus Rule, which has incentivized many nationwide fleets to adopt them. The problem with DPFs is the filter system clogs. A lot.

When DPFs go down, trucks roll to a stop. Truckers report having to have a DPF serviced as often as every 5,000 miles, which means lots of lost productivity and stranded cargo. I’ve had four breakdowns over the past two years, and three were due to my DPF. A tow truck driver I spoke to on one of those occasions told me half of his business comes from malfunctioning DPFs. Repairs are a specialized affair, and replacements can cost up to $2,000. When my truck isn’t moving, I’m not earning. And these regulators have required that my truck stand still far too often.

Of course California is in the forefront of regulation.

Fiona Harrigan, “Biden Administration Announces New Measures to Get Migrants to Work,” Reason, September 21 2023.


Yesterday, the Biden administration announced new actions to help get recent immigrants to work, including offering almost half a million Venezuelans a status that will let them live and work in the U.S. legally for the next 18 months. The new measures come at a critical time, as labor shortages persist and cities struggle to provide for newcomers.

Certain Venezuelan migrants are eligible for temporary protected status (TPS), a designation offered to migrants who can’t safely return to their home countries due to armed conflict, environmental disaster, or another temporary safety hazard. Venezuela was first designated for TPS in 2021 due to a severe political and economic crisis perpetuated by Nicolás Maduro’s regime. Under that designation, Venezuelans who came to the U.S. before March 2021 qualified for protection; now, the status will apply to Venezuelans who arrived before the end of July this year. There are currently 16 countries designated for TPS.

If I understand the program correctly, it sounds good: let them work instead of forcing taxpayers to subsidize their living expenses. It’s win-win-win for immigrants, employers and consumers, and taxpayers.

James Herndon, “Keep the Washington Consensus,” Law & Liberty, September 21, 2023.


Despite those deliberate omissions, synergies still allowed the Consensus to exceed the sum of its parts. Opening up foreign direct investment eased privatization. Privatization enabled balanced budgets. Balanced budgets limited inflation, which encouraged foreign direct investment. The common denominators were respect and restraint: leaders had to trust that firms and citizens knew better than the bureaucrats how best to allocate their own labor and resources. That’s why the Consensus’ first beneficiary was always likely to be the poor. After all, funding for primary education and basic healthcare does far more to reduce poverty than subsidies for diesel fuel and national airlines.

In short, Williamson promoted policies that enabled sustainable growth in developing countries with respect for their autonomy and an emphasis on raising prospects for the least fortunate. The Left never forgave him.

It’s the nicest treatment of the Washington Consensus that I’ve read. Lots of good nuggets.



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Miss Universe denies link with recently unveiled coin project

The Miss Universe Organization said that there is no Miss Universe cryptocurrency or blockchain offering involved with the Miss Universe or Miss Universe…



The Miss Universe Organization said that there is no Miss Universe cryptocurrency or blockchain offering involved with the Miss Universe or Miss Universe Philippines.

The Miss Universe Organization has denied any association with the Miss Universe Coin project announced at the Philippine Blockchain Week (PBW) event held earlier this month. PBW said that they are in contact with all involved parties and will post an update soon.

Earlier this month, a project called Miss Universe Coin was announced at PBW. Donald Lim, the founder of the organization managing the PBW, said during the event that the PBW will “launch the Miss Universe Coin.” However, weeks after the announcement, the official organization behind Miss Universe has denied any association with the coin project and called it a fraud. 

Official announcement published on the Miss Universe Facebook page. Source: Facebook

On Sept. 22, the Miss Universe official Facebook page announced that the Miss Universe Organization and JKN Global Group, the company behind the pageant, are not associated with the coin project that was unveiled at the PBW event. According to the organization, it will be pursuing “all legal options with regards to this infringement.” 

“There is currently no Miss Universe cryptocurrency or blockchain offering, and these products are in no way involved with the voting or selection process for Miss Universe or the Miss Universe Philippines pageants,” they wrote.

Related: JPEX hikes withdrawal fee to almost $1K after Hong Kong watchdog warning

In a statement sent to Cointelegraph, a representative from the Miss Universe Organization claimed that the Miss Universe Coin is a "fraud," and they expect it to be further announced in other events across the globe. “We suspect that people may be planning to mention this at upcoming blockchain conferences in Dubai and Singapore. If you see it there, please do not cover, it's a fraud,” they said.

In a statement on X (formerly Twitter), PBW said that they are currently in contact with all of the parties involved and will announce an update as soon as possible. Cointelegraph reached out to the Philippine Blockchain Week but did not get an immediate response.

Magazine: Chinese billionaire’s $1B fraud charges, Kwon’s $11M bet, Zhu Su and Islam: Asia Express

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