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Old 16th August 2019, 01:40 AM   #121
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Originally Posted by theprestige View Post
Caring more about one than the other isn't the same as not caring about the other.
But you only care about punishment.

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And you can't punish people for victims they haven't yet created.
I didn't day you should. But again you are only caring about punishment. Your 'concern' for the victims is merely a mask to cover your need to punish. And if your approach creates more victims you don't care.
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Old 16th August 2019, 01:48 AM   #122
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Originally Posted by ahhell View Post
This is almost certainly false where ever you live. With rare exception, crime rates have been decreasing for 20 years. We* are actually safer than we were 20, 30, and 40 years ago.


https://www.newscientist.com/article...he-rich-world/

https://knoema.com/atlas/topics/Crime-Statistics

https://www.brennancenter.org/public...-crime-decline

If your society doesn't seem safer and you are in a developed country, they you can blame the media. The media has increased time and space devoted to crime reporting while crime rates have been decreasing.

https://www.pewresearch.org/fact-tan...me-in-the-u-s/

So the thread is based on a false impression of reality. Probably, it is possible the OP does live in one of the areas were crime isn't actually at a 50 year low.

That being said, it is unclear if tough on crime legislation actually works to reduce crime. Crime went up in the 60s and 70s, lots of tough on crime legislation was passed in the 80s(mostly in the US) then crime starting decreasing in the 90s and has been ever since. When isn't if obvious that tough on crime legislation, including minimum mandatory sentences worked? Crime decreased pretty much everywhere in the developed world, even where other less harsh tactics were tried. It decreased more in the US by the way, so its not quite clear that tough on crime policies didn't work at all.

Personally, I'm ok with mandatory minimums so long as there are also mandatory maximums and that the range is reasonable. It seems reasonable to have a legally prescribed range of punishments for a particular crime, that should reduce to impact of bias at least.

Some other things that correlate with the decrease in crime rates; legalized abortion, bans of lead paint and leaded gasoline, the aging of the boomer population past the age of violence.


*Almost everybody who i snot in a nation currently torn by war.
That crime has been falling, is why some think that the policies of tough on crime are working, as they think tough on crime is the cause of the falling crime.

The fact that no causal link can be established between tough on crime and linger sentences does not matter to those people.

Scotland had a knife crime problem (and violence in general). The police with the backing of the judiciary and politicians, started to stop and search hundreds of thousands of people to deter knife crime and to arrest in all instances of domestic violence.

Violence went down, the policies were vindicated.

That there were clearly other causes to the drop in violence has been ignored, as the police especially patted themselves on the back for a job well done.
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Old 16th August 2019, 01:50 AM   #123
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Originally Posted by arthwollipot View Post
The thing is, we know that prisons don't work. A stay in prison increases the likelihood of reoffending, and does not serve as a deterrent. So why on earth are we talking about making the problem worse?
Because of the feel good feeling being "tough" on crime generates and because it is easy to think that being tough on crime has caused the drop in crime.
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Old 16th August 2019, 04:38 AM   #124
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Originally Posted by theprestige View Post
I opened this conversation with my statement of what the end goal should be. I've stood by that statement ever since.

I opened this conversation with my statement of what result I expect. I've stood by that statement ever since.
Maybe but it isn't clear to me at all. Punishment for its own sake, then? If not, what?

Quote:
"What if we feel like X is working but it's not?"
Then either do Y instead, or fix X.
Ok, so then if we want to lower the crime rate but our current system is not doing that, then we should change it even if we feel like it's working?

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I repeat my entreaty to you, to simply say what you think should be, and why.
What what should be? Sorry, I lost track here.
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Old 16th August 2019, 04:41 AM   #125
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Originally Posted by arthwollipot View Post
But as I just pointed out, punishment is not a deterrence.
No you said prison is not a deterrence.
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Old 16th August 2019, 07:47 AM   #126
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Originally Posted by Archie Gemmill Goal View Post
But you only care about punishment.



I didn't day you should. But again you are only caring about punishment. Your 'concern' for the victims is merely a mask to cover your need to punish. And if your approach creates more victims you don't care.
You are wrong. I'm only making an argument about punishment right now. I do care about more than punishment.
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Old 16th August 2019, 07:52 AM   #127
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Originally Posted by Belz... View Post
Maybe but it isn't clear to me at all. Punishment for its own sake, then? If not, what?
You asked this, and I answered it, right at the beginning of this conversation.

Quote:
Ok, so then if we want to lower the crime rate but our current system is not doing that, then we should change it even if we feel like it's working?
Asked and answered.

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What what should be? Sorry, I lost track here.
If you've lost track of the central point we're debating, then this is probably a good place to stop the conversation.
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Old 16th August 2019, 07:55 AM   #128
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Originally Posted by arthwollipot View Post
But as I just pointed out, punishment is not a deterrence.
That study seems to have analysing the deterrence impact of harsher sentencing. I'm happy to accept that harsher sentencing doesn't have a deterrent impact, but that doesn't suggest that current sentencing doesn't deter more than zero.
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Old 16th August 2019, 08:08 AM   #129
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Originally Posted by The Atheist View Post
And a series in 2016, by the original writers. Updated to the main character being Norman Stanley Fletcher's grandson. I have the entire original series.

Unsurprisingly, it was immensely popular in prisons.
My cousin, who has only just retired from a career in HM Prison Service, said that the old-timers (staff, not prisoners) reckoned it was the most accurate depiction of contemporary British prison life.
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Old 16th August 2019, 08:13 AM   #130
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Originally Posted by theprestige View Post
You asked this, and I answered it, right at the beginning of this conversation.

Asked and answered.
Again could you point to the exact post, or repost your answer? It seems here that you're unwilling to repost because it might, actually, not answer the question.

Quote:
If you've lost track of the central point we're debating, then this is probably a good place to stop the conversation.
Wow, talk about a dishonest response. You know full well that that's now what I lost track of. If you're uncomfortable with your own position on this matter, don't take it out on me.
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Old 16th August 2019, 08:44 AM   #131
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Originally Posted by Belz... View Post
Again could you point to the exact post, or repost your answer? It seems here that you're unwilling to repost because it might, actually, not answer the question.
http://www.internationalskeptics.com...4#post12786954
http://www.internationalskeptics.com...1#post12787141
http://www.internationalskeptics.com...4#post12787154

Quote:
Wow, talk about a dishonest response. You know full well that that's now what I lost track of. If you're uncomfortable with your own position on this matter, don't take it out on me.
If it's not what you lost track of, then why are you asking me what it is? Just state your position on that point.
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Old 16th August 2019, 09:01 AM   #132
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Originally Posted by theprestige View Post
I don't see much in those posts that responds to my question. Best I can tell, you're in favour of a justice system that gives the appearance of justice, whether it has any actual effect on crime or not.

Quote:
If it's not what you lost track of, then why are you asking me what it is? Just state your position on that point.
What point? What do you feel I haven't stated already?
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Old 16th August 2019, 09:09 AM   #133
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Originally Posted by arthwollipot View Post
For those who are too young to get the reference, Porridge was a British comedy show from the 1970s starring Ronnie Barker.
I take it this would be a bad time to bring up the reboot?
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Old 16th August 2019, 09:30 AM   #134
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Originally Posted by Belz... View Post
I don't see much in those posts that responds to my question. Best I can tell, you're in favour of a justice system that gives the appearance of justice, whether it has any actual effect on crime or not.
Pretty much. I think reducing crime is something that has to be elsewhere than the justice system.

A rehabilitation program in addition to or parallel with (or even integrated into) the justice system, for example. But not rehabilitation-as-justice or deterrence-as-justice. The point of the justice system should be, first and foremost, justice. But now I'm repeating myself again.

You've already figured this out, so it really does seem like a good place to leave off. If you come up with anything new, not simply re-hashing ground we've already covered, feel free to pick it up again.

Quote:
What point? What do you feel I haven't stated already?
The point of a criminal justice system.

Actually, now that I think about it, yeah! Let's do this: You tell us what you think is the point of a criminal justice system, and why, and I'll ask you whatever questions I feel like for a bit. Sound good?
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Old 16th August 2019, 10:40 AM   #135
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Originally Posted by Belz... View Post
I don't see much in those posts that responds to my question. Best I can tell, you're in favour of a justice system that gives the appearance of justice, whether it has any actual effect on crime or not.

Adding emphasis there, because I don't think that's been emphasized enough in this discussion; and it's absolutely fundamental.

Should a justice system be about true justice, or should it be about about the appearance of justice?

If it should be about true justice, then there will be many case where the mob will be dissatisfied with the results, because true justice is incompatible with an irrational lust for vengeance.

If it should be about the appearance of justice, of appeasing the mob, then any travesty, any atrocity, can be justified as long as the masses believe it to be an acceptable response to the case. Scapegoating becomes not only acceptable, but necessary, it becomes a feature of the system, not a defect; because it doesn't matter if the punished person is innocent, as long as enough people believe said person to be guilty. For example, Trump's persistent vocal demands for the execution of five black children is not a travesty of justice under such as system, it is justice; it's an example of the system working as designed. Show trials, kangaroo courts, torture, extorting false confessions, demonization of minorities, executions of innocents, all of that becomes normalized as long as mainstream culture is convinced that they're getting what they want -- a self-righteous sense of vengeance and moral superiority.
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Old 16th August 2019, 11:19 AM   #136
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Originally Posted by luchog View Post
Adding emphasis there, because I don't think that's been emphasized enough in this discussion; and it's absolutely fundamental.

Should a justice system be about true justice, or should it be about about the appearance of justice?

If it should be about true justice, then there will be many case where the mob will be dissatisfied with the results, because true justice is incompatible with an irrational lust for vengeance.
It's a question of who gets to decide what is true justice, and on what basis.
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Old 16th August 2019, 11:25 AM   #137
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Originally Posted by theprestige View Post
Pretty much.
That sounds weird to me. I value real results over perceived results.

Quote:
I think reducing crime is something that has to be elsewhere than the justice system.
Fair enough, but I disagree. I think reducing crime is a fundamental aspect of the justice system, even if it's shared with other social programs and aspects.

Quote:
The point of a criminal justice system.
Ok I think I've answered that already. I think the whole point is to reduce crime, or way or another.
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Old 16th August 2019, 12:01 PM   #138
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Originally Posted by Belz... View Post
That sounds weird to me. I value real results over perceived results.
If the desired result is a change in perception, then a change in perception is a real result.

Quote:
Fair enough, but I disagree. I think reducing crime is a fundamental aspect of the justice system, even if it's shared with other social programs and aspects.



Ok I think I've answered that already. I think the whole point is to reduce crime, or way or another.
Next time, please consider just stating your counter-opinion, and the reasoning for it, to begin with. Instead of getting so bogged down in repetitive questions that you lose track of what we're actually talking about and what your opinion might be.
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Old 16th August 2019, 12:17 PM   #139
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Originally Posted by theprestige View Post
If the desired result is a change in perception, then a change in perception is a real result.
I think if we were to poll people they would want real results. You're essentially discussing meta-justice.

Quote:
Next time, please consider just stating your counter-opinion, and the reasoning for it, to begin with.
I HAVE.
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Old 16th August 2019, 12:41 PM   #140
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Originally Posted by Belz... View Post
I think if we were to poll people they would want real results. You're essentially discussing meta-justice.



I HAVE.
I must have missed it. Would you mind re-posting it, or at least linking back to the post where you did so originally?
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Old 16th August 2019, 06:41 PM   #141
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Originally Posted by theprestige View Post
Pretty much. I think reducing crime is something that has to be elsewhere than the justice system.

A rehabilitation program in addition to or parallel with (or even integrated into) the justice system, for example. But not rehabilitation-as-justice or deterrence-as-justice. The point of the justice system should be, first and foremost, justice. But now I'm repeating myself again.
Sure, but you've also only been asserting this as though it were an obvious truth. Okay, it's your opinion that the justice system should be about "justice". If someone else says it should be about entertainment you'd probably expect an argument as to why, but so far you haven't actually presented anything. If you're just trying to communicate your opinion that's fine, but if you think you've supported that opinion, I don't think you have, and I think that's what Belz has been asking for.
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Old 16th August 2019, 07:00 PM   #142
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Originally Posted by theprestige View Post
Actually, now that I think about it, yeah! Let's do this: You tell us what you think is the point of a criminal justice system, and why, and I'll ask you whatever questions I feel like for a bit. Sound good?
Sure thing Bob, then we can all prove we aren't brains in jars.

This whole "Broaden every discussion out until we aren't talking about anything of context" routine is getting stale.
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Old 16th August 2019, 07:57 PM   #143
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Originally Posted by theprestige View Post
It's a question of who gets to decide what is true justice, and on what basis.

Therefore there can't be anything like any rational basis for justice, and therefore any atrocity is fine and no on can ever say that the wholesale judicial murder of innocents is wrong because hey that's just their personal preference.

And this is where we get into the intellectual and ethical bankruptcy of moral relativism. Taken to its logical conclusion, it undermines its own arguments; becoming nothing more than an evasively pretentious restating of "might makes right".

Fortunately for those of us in the real world, there is actually a rational basis for a system of justice that can be derived from first principles: the reciprocity principle, and the principle of least harm.
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Old 17th August 2019, 02:43 AM   #144
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Originally Posted by JoeMorgue View Post
And that's the "You get the first one free" problem. It leaves no place for justice of any kind for the initial crime that was committed. It is, essentially, a freebie.

It's essentially saying on a societal level, that no crime was committed against Bill's initial victim.
Heh.
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Old 19th August 2019, 07:26 PM   #145
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plead guilty or face a long time in prison

Originally Posted by Mumbles View Post
You're headed towards the US system - "tough on crime" measures led to mass incarceration. In the US, this also helped lead to:

Widespread voter disenfranchisement;
Less discretion from judges, period;
The rise of private prisons and use of prisoners for cheap labor (often for jobs - such as firefighting - that they are barred from upon release!)
The increasing use of plea bargains regardless of guilt.
Highlighting mine. Long sentences are one reason* why people plead guilty despite being innocent. IMO this may explain what happened in Tulia, TX some years ago in regards to certain drug-related convictions, just to provide one example.
*another is pre-trial incarceration if bail is set very high
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Old 20th August 2019, 07:05 AM   #146
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Originally Posted by theprestige View Post
This seems like a non-sequitur.

It wouldn't be forever because we as a society don't think that burglary should carry a life sentence. A few years of incarceration seems to satisfy in most cases, and then they can return to society. Whether or not they're rehabilitated by the process is irrelevant.
If your goal is simply punishment (and it is certainly coming across that way) then rehabilitation is irrelevant. The problem is that many of the "tough on crime" effects such as disenfranchisement, being barred from jobs because of a record, etc. do have a lifetime effect regardless of the length of the sentence which tends to render any rehabilitation efforts almost moot.

If a person is convicted of burglary and incarcerated for 2 years, then that person is classified as a felon, and depending on where that person is resident, may have forfeited democratic voting rights, the ability to participate in most professions and even some jobs. This makes it harder to get meaningful legitimate employment to support oneself and makes returning to a life of crime almost a certainty.

And this tends to lead to the individual going back to prison, where the cycle repeats.

Quote:
Depends on what you mean by "working". My position is that a punishment "works" when it comports with our consensus view of what a fair punishment should be. In that sense, feeling that it's working is literally it working.

If, in addition to the perception of justice, or instead of the perception of justice, you want the punishment (is it even punishment, then?) to do other work - deterrence, rehabilitation, etc - then sure, you'll probably get a mismatch between perception and reality from time to time. Those should be sought out and corrected, of course.
This is where education comes in. Education as to the cost to society of not only the upfront costs (prison maintenance, feeding and housing inmates, etc) but also the costs to society when people reoffend due to lack of practical choices.

Education that a judicial sentence is not just punishment - we need to make better efforts to rehabilitate to reduce the overall cost to society, both in human terms and in economic terms.

If all you want is punishment, then you won't ever reach the other goals (deterrence, protection of society, rehabilitation). People don't worry about what will happen if they get caught and convicted - they get deterred by the certainty of being caught and punished. The Georgian "Bloody Code" is a good demonstration of how deterrence was not improved by harsh punishments. A staggering array of offences were punishable by death under the Bloody Code, yet the rate of those offences happening remained staggeringly high. It was not until policing and public prosecutions were introduced that rates started to drop. Actual economic improvements and higher levels of education also were responsible for lowering the crime rate, but that's a bit outside this discussion.

It can be argued that tough on crime rules/judicial punishment do not serve to make society safer overall. If you're in a jurisdiction with a "3 strikes" law and you're on your third strike, well are you going to stop short of violence, or will the desperation to not get caught drive you to do violence to ensure a get away?

And we only need to look at child rearing to figure out that punishment on its own does not have a rehabilitative effect - the ultimate effect is to teach people how to conceal their offences better.

In this case, the common sense approach isn't very sensible.
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