Hot on the heels of the realisation that there is no correlation between levels of funding and pupil performance, we see too that there is no correlation between police numbers and levels of crime. Raedwald thinks 'the buggers are putting bromide in the tea or something' (hat-tip and image, click to enlarge). I used to question the numbers under New Labour, fiddling stats etc., and now I question them under the Coalition - playing with numbers - but it is definitely happening and some of the reductions are marked: "In fact, almost every category of criminality that you can think of is declining. Here is the even better news. This is not a blip. The downward trend is now very well established and can be traced back over many years." says Andrew Rawnsley, writing about this 'crime mystery' in today's' Observer.
It is similar in the US (no, really! since the 1990s); it's going down, but no one really knows why although a number of theories are espoused. I think the lead in petrol hypothesis a bit weak, and no doubt the real reason is a blend of several complex issues that I am ignorant of but my own personal theory is the 'equalisation' of everyone: we don't have everything we want but we are more than comfortable; I am over-generalising grossly but everyone has a 'flash' TV, everyone has a smart phone and everyone has access to the Internet and there are now so many TV channels. Added to which barely anybody in the West is really in poverty or starving so what happens? We can't be bothered, we don't 'need' to steal; the only ones committing crime are the sickos who always will, no matter what, or those from a not-so-developed country/culture that they haven't been 'equalised' yet.