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Thread: What is more important?

  1. #31

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    Quote Originally Posted by r3volution 3.0 View Post
    Alright. So lay out for me the procedure for determining guilt/innocence which would be infallible.
    Do you want me to make a list of all the system's failings? It would take all night.
    Here's a start:
    First: Eliminate victimless crime.
    Second: Mandate that actual peers are jurors
    Third: Instruct jurors about nullification
    Fourth: Reject any case that is purely circumstantial
    Fifth: Mandate attorney representation for all police interrogations.
    I could go on, but it's bedtime.

    edit: Forgot to add the elimination of Qualified Immunity.
    All modern revolutions have ended in a reinforcement of the power of the State.
    -Albert Camus



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  3. #32

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    Quote Originally Posted by otherone View Post
    Do you want me to make a list of all the system's failings? It would take all night.
    Here's a start:
    First: Eliminate victimless crime.
    Second: Mandate that actual peers are jurors
    Third: Instruct jurors about nullification
    Fourth: Reject any case that is purely circumstantial
    Fifth: Mandate attorney representation for all police interrogations.
    I could go on, but it's bedtime.
    And you think those changes would mean that no innocent person would ever be convicted?

    It would be impossible?
    "For the average person, all problems date to World War II; for the more informed, to World War I; for the genuine historian, to the French Revolution."

    - Erik Maria Ritter von Kuehnelt-Leddihn

  4. #33

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    Quote Originally Posted by r3volution 3.0 View Post
    And you think those changes would mean that no innocent person would ever be convicted?

    It would be impossible?
    That was your dichotomy, not mine.
    All modern revolutions have ended in a reinforcement of the power of the State.
    -Albert Camus

  5. #34

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    Quote Originally Posted by otherone View Post
    That was your dichotomy, not mine.
    That's not "my dichotomy," that's logic.

    Either conviction of innocents is possible or it is not: A or not-A.

    Which is it?
    "For the average person, all problems date to World War II; for the more informed, to World War I; for the genuine historian, to the French Revolution."

    - Erik Maria Ritter von Kuehnelt-Leddihn

  6. #35

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    Quote Originally Posted by r3volution 3.0 View Post
    That's not "my dichotomy," that's logic.

    Either conviction of innocents is possible or it is not: A or not-A.

    Which is it?
    That's not logic, it's a false choice. What you are saying is the system can never know whether an individual is guilty of a crime or not.
    Do you not convict an individual who goes on a videotaped shooting spree, just in case he's innocent?
    All modern revolutions have ended in a reinforcement of the power of the State.
    -Albert Camus

  7. #36

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    Quote Originally Posted by otherone View Post
    That's not logic, it's a false choice.
    It is logic, the law of non-contradiction: innocents can be convicted, or innocents cannot be convicted - there is no possible third option.

    What you are saying is the system can never know whether an individual is guilty of a crime or not.
    I'm saying that the system (whatever system, however organized) cannot know with 100% certainty that every single person convicted is guilty.

    That, even if the odds of convicting an innocent person are 1 in 100 trillion, sooner or later, an innocent person will be convicted.

    Do you not convict an individual who goes on a videotaped shooting spree, just in case he's innocent?
    I'm saying you do convict that person, because the odds of him being innocent are tiny, and society will collapse if criminals are not prosecuted, so it's worth it to risk a 1 in 100,000,000,000,000,000 chance of convicting an innocent person. It is you who are, apparently, saying that he should not be convicted; that it's better to allow every criminal in the world to go free than to take the tiniest risk of convicting an innocent person.
    "For the average person, all problems date to World War II; for the more informed, to World War I; for the genuine historian, to the French Revolution."

    - Erik Maria Ritter von Kuehnelt-Leddihn

  8. #37

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    Quote Originally Posted by r3volution 3.0 View Post
    I'm saying you do convict that person, because the odds of him being innocent are tiny
    Of course. You convict only those with incontrovertible evidence. That way, innocents aren't imprisoned. Problem solved. It's the "throw it against the wall and see if it sticks" approach that fouls things up. IRT your opinion that the inevitable conviction of an innocent keeps the streets safe, remember that when a guilty party is not held accountable because they got the wrong guy, he is still free to commit crimes.
    All modern revolutions have ended in a reinforcement of the power of the State.
    -Albert Camus

  9. #38

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    Quote Originally Posted by otherone View Post
    Of course. You convict only those with incontrovertible evidence. That way, innocents aren't imprisoned. Problem solved.
    There is no such thing as incontrovertible evidence; it's always a matter of probability (not certainty).

    A. The vast majority of crimes would never be solved if we required video tape of them doing it, or DNA, etc.

    B. Even when there is video, DNA, etc, that's still not 100% certain (how about planted evidence?).

    Bottom line: you have two options - (a) accept a risk [however small] of convicting innocents, or (b) prosecute no one for nothing.

    Once again, I choose the former, because a world of criminals run-rampant will result in far more innocents being victimized, in the end.
    "For the average person, all problems date to World War II; for the more informed, to World War I; for the genuine historian, to the French Revolution."

    - Erik Maria Ritter von Kuehnelt-Leddihn

  10. #39

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    Quote Originally Posted by r3volution 3.0 View Post
    There is no such thing as incontrovertible evidence; it's always a matter of probability (not certainty).

    A. The vast majority of crimes would never be solved if we required video tape of them doing it, or DNA, etc.

    B. Even when there is video, DNA, etc, that's still not 100% certain (how about planted evidence?).

    Bottom line: you have two options - (a) accept a risk [however small] of convicting innocents, or (b) prosecute no one for nothing.

    Once again, I choose the former, because a world of criminals run-rampant will result in far more innocents being victimized, in the end.
    What is the purpose of a Justice System?
    All modern revolutions have ended in a reinforcement of the power of the State.
    -Albert Camus

  11. #40

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    Quote Originally Posted by otherone View Post
    What is the purpose of a Justice System?
    To secure property rights by punishing those who violate them.
    "For the average person, all problems date to World War II; for the more informed, to World War I; for the genuine historian, to the French Revolution."

    - Erik Maria Ritter von Kuehnelt-Leddihn

  12. #41

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    Quote Originally Posted by r3volution 3.0 View Post
    To secure property rights by punishing those who violate them.
    Does the system do this?
    All modern revolutions have ended in a reinforcement of the power of the State.
    -Albert Camus

  13. #42

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    Quote Originally Posted by otherone View Post
    Does the system do this?
    The existing system?

    To some extent, it could be much better obviously.
    "For the average person, all problems date to World War II; for the more informed, to World War I; for the genuine historian, to the French Revolution."

    - Erik Maria Ritter von Kuehnelt-Leddihn

  14. #43

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    Quote Originally Posted by r3volution 3.0 View Post
    Since any judicial system inevitably errors, it's necessary to wrongly convict some innocents in order to rightfully convict criminals.

    The alternative is to never attempt to punish any criminals, which is obviously much worse (more innocents ultimately being victimized).
    Really? How do you reason this, because the logic is not at all apparent.

    "The fact is that the average man's love of liberty is nine-tenths imaginary, exactly like his love of sense, justice and truth. Liberty is not a thing for the great masses of men. It is the exclusive possession of a small and disreputable minority, like knowledge, courage and honor. It takes a special sort of man to understand and enjoy liberty - and he is usually an outlaw in democratic societies."
    -- H.L. Mencken

  15. #44

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    Your thinking here is deeply flawed.

    Quote Originally Posted by r3volution 3.0 View Post
    But my point is that there is no possible alternative, except to not even attempt to punish any criminals.
    False dichotomy FAIL. You are saying that one must accept the wrongful conviction of innocents or do nothing pursuant to justice. That's nuttier than squirrel poo.

    Do you disagree?
    I'm think that I do.

    If so, then - again - explain to me how any judicial system could have 100% accuracy in determining guilt.
    100% accuracy at WHAT is the question. Such a system can err on the side of option 2 such that some guilty escape justice (likely temporarily) and nobody innocent is likely to be wrongly held accountable. That is how you fix the problem in the real world. You also enact law that puts the most draconian punishments on anyone in the judicial and investigative chains knowingly withholding exculpatory evident. Prosecutors, police, and even defense attorneys found to have done so should spend the rest of their lives in solitary confinement, and be given a cyanide capsule which they may elect to take at any time during their imprisonment. I would attach as further risk the loss of all personal properties including jointly owned estates, say, with one's spouse. That places the threat at the feet of relatives, children, and so forth. This business of the public trust should be taken seriously, or we should openly abandon it and more properly call it what it damned nearly is: a free for all.

    Until the risks attaching to tyranny grossly outstrip the benefits, we are going to continue to suffer under the Man's thumb. It is quite that simple.

    "The fact is that the average man's love of liberty is nine-tenths imaginary, exactly like his love of sense, justice and truth. Liberty is not a thing for the great masses of men. It is the exclusive possession of a small and disreputable minority, like knowledge, courage and honor. It takes a special sort of man to understand and enjoy liberty - and he is usually an outlaw in democratic societies."
    -- H.L. Mencken

  16. #45

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    Quote Originally Posted by osan View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by r3volution 3.0
    explain to me how any judicial system could have 100% accuracy in determining guilt.
    100% accuracy at WHAT is the question.
    ...at determining guilt.

    Such a system can err on the side of option 2 such that some guilty escape justice (likely temporarily) and nobody innocent is likely to be wrongly held accountable.
    I didn't ask whether there could be a judicial system in which it is unlikely for innocents to be convicted (there can be).

    I asked whether there could be a judicial system in which it is impossible for innocents to be convicted (there can't be).

    That is how you fix the problem in the real world. You also enact law that puts the most draconian punishments on anyone in the judicial and investigative chains knowingly withholding exculpatory evident. Prosecutors, police, and even defense attorneys found to have done so should spend the rest of their lives in solitary confinement, and be given a cyanide capsule which they may elect to take at any time during their imprisonment. I would attach as further risk the loss of all personal properties including jointly owned estates, say, with one's spouse. That places the threat at the feet of relatives, children, and so forth. This business of the public trust should be taken seriously, or we should openly abandon it and more properly call it what it damned nearly is: a free for all.

    Until the risks attaching to tyranny grossly outstrip the benefits, we are going to continue to suffer under the Man's thumb. It is quite that simple.
    All of that reduces the probability of an innocent being convicted; it doesn't make it impossible for innocents to be convicted.

    So, again, explain to me what what judicial system would be 100% accurate in determing guilt.

    ...not 99% accurate, not 99.999999999% accurate - 100% accurate.
    "For the average person, all problems date to World War II; for the more informed, to World War I; for the genuine historian, to the French Revolution."

    - Erik Maria Ritter von Kuehnelt-Leddihn

  17. #46

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    Quote Originally Posted by r3volution 3.0 View Post
    There is no such thing as incontrovertible evidence; it's always a matter of probability (not certainty).

    A. The vast majority of crimes would never be solved if we required video tape of them doing it, or DNA, etc.

    B. Even when there is video, DNA, etc, that's still not 100% certain (how about planted evidence?).

    Bottom line: you have two options - (a) accept a risk [however small] of convicting innocents, or (b) prosecute no one for nothing.

    Once again, I choose the former, because a world of criminals run-rampant will result in far more innocents being victimized, in the end.
    There has to be some trade off otherwise no one would ever get convicted. And some of the comments I see in this thread and others on this topic about punishment not working are wrong.

    Singapore has very little crime. They certainly don't protect civil liberties but it is a very clean country. Clearly what they do to deter crime works. Crime in New York City dropped 70% under Giuliani's reign. Where would rather live: a New York City where you have to carry a pistol on a subway like Bernie Goetz and worry about getting stabbed with an AIDS needle by a homeless guy or NYC after Giuliani cleaned it up with aggressive policing?

    One thing you don't hear about in Detroit are police abuses. 92% of crimes go unsolved there. It isn't libertarian heaven. I would rather the police be more active there. It works. http://www.nber.org/digest/jan03/w9061.html The goal should be to secure property and the anti-cop sentiment goes overboard.

  18. #47

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    Quote Originally Posted by Krugminator2 View Post
    There has to be some trade off otherwise no one would ever get convicted. And some of the comments I see in this thread and others on this topic about punishment not working are wrong.

    Singapore has very little crime. They certainly don't protect civil liberties but it is a very clean country. Clearly what they do to deter crime works. Crime in New York City dropped 70% under Giuliani's reign. Where would rather live: a New York City where you have to carry a pistol on a subway like Bernie Goetz and worry about getting stabbed with an AIDS needle by a homeless guy or NYC after Giuliani cleaned it up with aggressive policing?

    One thing you don't hear about in Detroit are police abuses. 92% of crimes go unsolved there. It isn't libertarian heaven. I would rather the police be more active there. It works. http://www.nber.org/digest/jan03/w9061.html The goal should be to secure property and the anti-cop sentiment goes overboard.
    Agreed

    Our present judicial system is increasingly an instance of anarcho-tyranny: prosecuting people for non-crimes while treating real criminals with kid gloves. Libertarians usually focus on the former (WoD, civil asset forfeiture, etc), but forget about the latter. For one thing, the entire penal system should be changed; eliminate prison as a punishment, replace with combinations of restitution and corporal punishment, depending on the nature of the crime. Gangbangers would be less cavalier, I assure you, if punishment were an appointment with the cat o'nine tails rather than a return visit to the prison they run.
    "For the average person, all problems date to World War II; for the more informed, to World War I; for the genuine historian, to the French Revolution."

    - Erik Maria Ritter von Kuehnelt-Leddihn

  19. #48

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    Quote Originally Posted by r3volution 3.0 View Post
    ...at determining guilt.
    That's not the relevant issue if protecting the innocent is more important than punishing the guilty.

    "The fact is that the average man's love of liberty is nine-tenths imaginary, exactly like his love of sense, justice and truth. Liberty is not a thing for the great masses of men. It is the exclusive possession of a small and disreputable minority, like knowledge, courage and honor. It takes a special sort of man to understand and enjoy liberty - and he is usually an outlaw in democratic societies."
    -- H.L. Mencken

  20. #49

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    Quote Originally Posted by osan View Post
    That's not the relevant issue if protecting the innocent is more important than punishing the guilty.
    I don't know what you mean.

    Do you acknowledge that no judicial system will be 100% accurate in determining guilt?

    That, no matter how careful we are, some innocents will from time to time be wrongfully convicted?
    "For the average person, all problems date to World War II; for the more informed, to World War I; for the genuine historian, to the French Revolution."

    - Erik Maria Ritter von Kuehnelt-Leddihn

  21. #50

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    Quote Originally Posted by r3volution 3.0 View Post
    I don't know what you mean.

    Do you acknowledge that no judicial system will be 100% accurate in determining guilt?

    That, no matter how careful we are, some innocents will from time to time be wrongfully convicted?
    What does any of this have to do with the original question of which is more important? Have we gone off on a tangent?

    "The fact is that the average man's love of liberty is nine-tenths imaginary, exactly like his love of sense, justice and truth. Liberty is not a thing for the great masses of men. It is the exclusive possession of a small and disreputable minority, like knowledge, courage and honor. It takes a special sort of man to understand and enjoy liberty - and he is usually an outlaw in democratic societies."
    -- H.L. Mencken

  22. #51

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    Quote Originally Posted by osan View Post
    What does any of this have to do with the original question of which is more important? Have we gone off on a tangent?
    If no judicial system is infallible, it follows that we must accept convicting some innocents in order to convict criminals.

    The only possible alternative being to never prosecute any criminals at all.

    You indicated that you disagree, I'm trying to figure out why.
    "For the average person, all problems date to World War II; for the more informed, to World War I; for the genuine historian, to the French Revolution."

    - Erik Maria Ritter von Kuehnelt-Leddihn

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