Yesterday, 03:15 PM
But what's so bad about hypocrisy?
Does it really matter if the system is "hypocritical" in some way? Do we care about that? If so, why?
Well, again I don't know that we should necessarily care about hypocrisy (but I could be convinced!). I don't want to be hypocritical (I don't think. Depending what that means), but I don't necessarily care if other people are being hypocritical. Let's say that all that matters is results. Just hypothetically. What result would we be trying to optimize for here? I think a sensible thing to optimize for would be "fewest number of innocent people killed per decade." So, what kind of system would minimize the innocent-person-killings (IPK)?
I think an argument could be made that brutal, public executions of murderers would be that optimized system we're looking for (or would be looking for, were we trying to optimize for that variable, IPK, discussed above). I think it would work pretty well. If we were to test out various systems in a parallel experiment on similar populations over a hundred year period, I think chances are good that a brutal punishment system would come out on top or near the top.
Eliminating IPK is a goal that we're very far away from. So minimizing it seems like a worthy interim goal. If we could bring it down from 150,000 per decade to 75,000, that would be massive improvement! We cut in half! That is not morally perfect, but I think that would still be a worthwhile accomplishment. Let's say we got it down to 10,000. Wow! If 90% of those 10,000 innocents killed had been killed by the State in erroneous executions (or misguided: witches, drug dealers, etc.), that's too bad, but that still would be a massive improvement in IPK. Then maybe at that point it makes sense to hone in on the 9,000 IPKs done at the hands of the State and whittle that number down, whereas previously maybe it made more sense to focus on the much larger number of IPKs done by private criminals. If what we actually care about is minimizing IPK, then we should do whatever sequence of actions will bring down that number as rapidly and as permanently as possible.