Shutting down the police is a right-wing extremist shorthand. The real goal is to redirect some funding to address issues like mental health, drug addiction and poverty... -From an email
There is a ton of material in these two sentences to chew on. In the interest of staying focused, let's concentrate on the second sentence.
The rush to main-stream the mentally ill
The mentally ill have been "main-streamed" into society at large. The effort was applauded by both the right and the left.
It was perceived as being exceptionally cost effective to main-stream the mentally ill because mental (emotional) healthcare is both expensive and it is very, very difficult to measure the outcomes.
It was also seen as an outgrowth of the American Disabilities Act. Why would you discriminate against somebody for something they had no control over? They MIGHT surprise everybody and perform swimmingly in society. In fact, many have.
The treatment of the mentally ill has improved greatly but the one constant is that the mentally/emotionally ill person has to want to improve. They have to take their meds. They have to go to counseling. They have to work at controlling themselves all the time.
There are many people who will refuse to take their meds, go to counseling or exert any effort to "regulate" themselves unless there is a constant and real chance they will be tossed in the klink.
Given that utopian mental health care is very expensive compared to tossing somebody in the hoosegow and forcing them to take their meds and attend counseling, the bottom line is that fewer people will be receiving mental health care if a big chunk of the police are vaporized.
From an outcomes standpoint, how effective are the addiction programs Progressives intend to fund?
When you look at drug addiction issues they start looking a lot like mental health issues. In fact, they look like people with emotional issues self-medicating.
Details? If Progressives have an anti-poverty program that works, one must wonder why they have kept it a secret since Lyndon B. Johnson.
The kid who becomes involved with the cops is almost never the kid quietly coloring in the corner.
Trying to clone suburbia in the inner-city. Sports programs in suburbia run on parent volunteers. As often as not, the fathers of the children in the programs. In the absence of a culture-of-volunteering, sports dies a quick death of not-enough-money.
Modern education is the tar-pit that trapped many of these police involved peoples. It created the culture of victimhood and you-owe-me-dat.
What is the alternative? Teaching declension of nouns and conjugation of verbs to people who speak non-standard English? Teaching vocational skills when rich, suburban high-schools cannot retain instructors?
Behind the smoke screen
Legacy cities are in a budgetary death spiral.
Under-funded public pensions are rapidly turning into unfunded, public pensions. Public employees who retire before age sixty-five typically have some or much of their healthcare insurance premiums paid by the city they retired from, at least until Medicare kicks in.
Larger-and-larger chunks of revenue are absorbed by the under-funded or unfunded pensions. That money is not available for current operations. The police departments are being defunded, not to fund 'social programs' but to paper over the widening gap between revenue and promises made.
The tax-donkeys are flying out of the legacy cities. They see the handwriting on the wall. Why should they pay, pay, pay more taxes for the privilege of being victimized by the gimme-dats?
Property base will tank. Property taxes will plummet. A few super-virtue-signaling corporations like MS and Amazon might say in the municipal tax-base but most businesses without pricing power (read, monopoly) will flee. Income taxes will crater.
The situation that is currently dire will soon become dystopian.