21 years for 77 lives, congrats Norway!!!

Discussion in 'Ethics, Morality, & Justice' started by Syzygys, Aug 24, 2012.

  1. Balerion Banned Banned

    They never said nobody gets more than 21 years. Where are you getting this crap? Do you really find the structure of their justice system so impenetrable?

    So what? The effect is the same.

    You can't seem to make up your mind what you're upset about. First it was the fact that he has the chance to go free, now it's that they might have already decided to collude that he never does regardless of how mcuh he changes. Why don't you pick a battle and go with it, instead of changing tack whenever I try to raise a point against you?

    You asked "Why don't they just get rid of him?" The answer is that they don't have the death penalty. What about that requires further explanation? And are you really suggesting that they revert to a system they abandoned over a century ago for just one man?

    What the hell does that have to do with this discussion? Norway didn't abolish the death penalty due to its cost; they abolished it because they don't agree with it in principal. Therefore, no one is going to argue the economics of the death penalty in Norway (what makes you think the cost of the death penalty would be less over there anyway?)

    Are you kidding me? You think 21 years in prison is nothing? And are you intentionally overlooking the ability of their justice system to keep offenders deemed to be threats incarcerated indefinitely, or did you just forget?

    You say you like arguments, yet you haven't made one for why their system is flawed. So far all you've done is get the details completely wrong and fantasize openly about killing other human beings.

    I'm talking about you. You seem to think that at a certain point, human life no longer has intrinsic value. I find that to be incredibly disturbing. I'm not saying there's no room for justified killing, but your casual attitude towards taking a human life is troubling. Especially since you haven't been able to argue from principal, and instead simply describe the ways you'd like to see them killed.

    Why not?

    Norway incorporates graduated punishment, as well. 21 years is a maximum sentence, not simply what they give to everyone from murderers to jaywalkers. That's not where you disagree with Norway's justice system.
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  3. Syzygys As a mother, I am telling you Valued Senior Member

    You know kids, it does help if you guys are not completely clueless of the topic at hand...

    It is called a fact:


    The weather. Mostly the weather.

    To summarize my position: I would execute the dude, but if Norwegian law says he should get freed after 21 years and an evaluation, he should get a real chance of being free at some point.Otherwise the whole system is just a farce and not better than others..

    Clear now?

    I just don't get what society gains by keeping him alive, that's all. There would be several advantages of icing him...

    When you have internet and a treadmill? Piece of cake...

    Apparently the victims didn't have any...

    See? You just answered your very first question...
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  5. Balerion Banned Banned

    You're being ironic, right?

    It's called reading. From your own link:

    Even the name gives it away: The indeterminate penalty. What about "indeterminate" don't you understand?

    First of all, Norwegian law does not say he should be freed after 21 years and an evaluation. Norwegian law says that after 21 years, if he is still deemed to be a threat, his sentence can be extended by five years, and the process can repeat indefinitely. But yes, I agree that he should be treated like everyone else and have an actual evaluation. I just wouldn't blame them if that wasn't the case.

    That's extreme. Of course, you're getting worked up over nothing, since you have no cause whatsoever to believe that he won't be treated just like any other inmate.

    The flaw in your thinking is that his death is the default position. We're talking about human life, which is supposed to have intrinsic value. If not, then no legal system works. In other words, it shouldn't be about what society gains by keeping him alive, it should first be about whether killing a criminal is justified, and then about what advantages killing him brings to society.

    This is now your opportunity to actually provide some substance to your argument, and tell us what those advantages would be...

    Um, you're full of shit, first of all. Second, he doesn't have internet access. He has access to a laptop, presumably because it's the 21st century. Inmates in the US have similar amenities. Prisons in the US are legally mandated to provide exercise time to inmates, so why are you getting so worked up that he's got access to stuff? American inmates use computers, read books, lift weights, play sports, watch television, etc..

    Clearly they do, otherwise he wouldn't be in prison for killing them.

    Can you really not grasp the idea that they can extend the sentence in five-year intervals, or are you being intentionally obtuse?
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  7. superstring01 Moderator

    False dichotomy. I would rather NEITHER. The US system has some massive flaws, I'm not defending them. But identifying the flaw of setting a mass-murderer free doesn't mean we prefer every ounce of the screwed up American system.

    At the very least, the freedom portion of it.

    At some point in time I guess you just have to have a system with judges that make decisions you trust. Norway actually legally limits the length of time in prison. Identifying this as a potential issue doesn't mean de facto preference for all the bad things prevalent in, say, the American system.

    Well. You know, the 77 dead people sort of speak to that point.

    Asguard, I know your limited comprehension abilities get in the way and your pissy and prissy attitude regarding the USA occlude whatever remaining intellectual skills you may have had left, but read this slowly: there is no "YOU" here unless you're willing to personally take responsibility for every crime / pecadillo / mistake ever committed by your country and ancestors. Nobody here -- that I know of -- is excusing what happened in Texas. So stop being an asshole for five minutes.

    May well be. But you don't have the moral respectability -- and I'd happily quote the instances where you forfeited it -- to identify individual responsibility on the part of SciForum's members.

    So is your inability to use spell check. Fucking, "sickerning"? Seriously, download the Java applet.

    Again. We are not individually responsible for every mistake / poor decision that happens in other legal divisions of the USA.

    You get on these idiotic rampages against every American like you're so perfect and like Australia and your system is perfect (not that I have a problem with Australia). You're such a crybaby when it comes to the USA. You're so filled with annoying critiques that nothing you say even remotely approaches respectability. I mean, if you could step off your little bitch-stand for a second and actually (a) spell and (b) make a coherent point that is supported with something more than rhetoric, maybe then. But since we haven't seen it yet, I'm afraid that all we're left with is the usual garbage you spill out because . . . Why again?

  8. Balerion Banned Banned

    False dichotomy my butt. We're comparing systems here, and if I had to choose (rather, if I could choose) I'd opt for the Norwegian one. I'm not saying those are the only two choices.

    Who said it dird? We're dealing with someone in Zyzgryzryz who says openly that they prefer the US system to this one for this exact reason. Pointing out the shortcomings of the US system is a fair response to that.

    Does it? My urncle killed a bunch of people in Vietnam. I don't know if it was 77, but it was a lot. Was his life forfeit, or does it only count when you're not wearing a uniform? I'm just saying, we need to argue first principals here. It's not enough to say his life is forfeit because he killed 77 people as if the act itself inherently warrants the death penalty.

    Fuck, I wish I was allowed to talk to other posters like that. Holy hell.
    Last edited: Aug 27, 2012
  9. Syzygys As a mother, I am telling you Valued Senior Member

    That's exactly what it says. If the evaluation is positive (no threat), he is free after 21 years. 21 years is the max. penalty.

    It is not a default, it is a reward for taking others' lives....

    Why is his life so valuable suddenly???

    Lemme think:

    --dead man kill no more
    --closure for victims' families
    --organ donation helps others, payback to society
    --saving money on his keep
    --community can start to heal
    --there is no disadvantages
    --if ever released it will cost a shitload to keep him NOT getting murdered/harrased


    I don't care... If he is sane, I want him to suffer. Or die, whichever is less sadistic in your view....

    P.S.: You never explained WHY he should be kept around? What is the gain?
  10. Fraggle Rocker Staff Member

    The gain is for us. If we kill someone because he killed someone, then we are no better than the Hatfields and McCoys. It's just revenge, the ugliest of all human emotions. His children (or brothers or friends) will take revenge on the people that killed their daddy. Then your children will take revenge on them. Before you know it, you've got a war and nobody knows why they're killing each other.

    The fundamental rule that makes civilization possible is: You are never permitted to kill someone except in self-defense against a lethal threat. In other words, the other person chose to become uncivilized first and you have no other way to save your own life.

    But once the cops capture the murderer, put him on trial and lock him up, he is no longer a threat. The only reason anyone has for killing him is revenge, and revenge is uncivilized. It makes cavemen out of all of us. We forget that everyone, even murderers, have people who love them. By killing this guy we're causing them the same grief we suffered when he killed our people--and they don't deserve that grief any more than we did.

    Two wrongs don't make a right. Two assholes trying to kill each other do not make the world a better place.

    Of course the universe is not perfect and there are a few exceptions. If you catch a terrorist and put him in the most secure prison, his buddies will kidnap twenty of your people and promise to kill them by the end of the week if you don't let him out. You have no choice but to execute killers who belong to terrorist groups and other evil cults.

    If you catch a mob boss and put him in the most secure prison, he has so much influence and power that he'll be treated like royalty in prison and he'll continue to run his empire. You have no choice but to execute mob bosses--although we often don't.

    All we want to do is preserve civilization by stopping the killing. Becoming killers ourselves does not preserve civilization; it erodes it.
  11. superstring01 Moderator

    I can't disagree with what you're saying. Yet, I'm left with the feeling that it's horrifically flawed that a person can kill people and not serve at least 1 year for every life extinguished.

    I know it's comfortable to compare wartime settings to peacetime settings. But I cannot abide by that. Maybe every soldier should suffer some kind of penalty for their involvement in state-sanctioned killing in the battlefield. I won't argue that here. But I will argue that it's ridiculous that this guy can potentially get out of prison and walk free.

    I won't justify either. But I do think there's a difference between what goes on in wartime and what one evil individual does to 77 innocent people. And, of course, if a soldier kills innocents, I will say the same thing.

    While I favor the death penalty as an ultimate punishment for very, very severe crimes (serial killing, war crimes, mass murder, serial rape, pedophilia + rape), I'm not so passionate about it that I would demand it. What I do believe is that a line is passed, and I clearly will state that I don't always know where that line is (and I don't think that you should legislate it necessarily -- only allow for "special circumstances within the court system for such a penalty), but that a person should forfeit all the freedom he has for the remainder of his days for serious, egregious crimes. 77 deaths due to a racist, Nazi is clearly grounds for being locked in a dark cage for the remainder of your days.

  12. superstring01 Moderator


    You have an argument where there's even a shred of doubt: If he's killed and later found out to be innocent, it cannot be reversed. That's fine. If there's even a remote possibility that a person could be innocent, then you could make that argument. There is no such doubt here. He committed a massive crime against humanity. By your logic we shouldn't lock people in cages, because only monsters do that (and monsters have!). Government, for better or worse, is a super-human entity. It has the power to take my money, but you don't. It has the power to compel me to act on behalf of the state, you don't. It has the power to lock me in a cage, you don't. It has the power to defend the nation with machinery and methods that are so horrific that they could annihilate nations, you don't. The state, by the definition, is our extension to carry out duties that we cannot nor should do as individuals or clans.

    I mean, LOOK AT THOSE MONSTERS! Locking up human beings in cages for their entire lives! That's terrible. But alas, reasons exist. In this case, clearly, a person has committed the most horrific crime imaginable to us: killing of children. There's little reason to allow such a person to continue living.

  13. madanthonywayne Morning in America Registered Senior Member

    Yeah. Laugh out loud. Murdering 77 people is a laughing matter. It's all a big joke.
    Am I God? You really think it takes a God to recognize that murdering 77 people is wrong or that the perpetrator of such a heinous act must pay for his crimes? Do you have any sense of justice at all? Do you have any concern for this man's victims?
    No, he doesn't. His rights ended when he decided to violate the rights of others. And he didn't just violate their rights, he ended the lives of 77 innocent people. He took away all of their rights. He took away their right to life, their right to liberty, and their right to pursue happiness. He did this 77 times over. Yet you say he has as much right to live as anyone? On what basis?

    Rights are a two way street. A result of the social contract. Basically an agreement that I won't fuck with you if you don't fuck with me. Well this guy has violated the social contract in a spectacular fashion.

    There is no way he can ever pay back the damage he has inflicted and there is no reason to believe that he won't repeat his crime if ever given the chance. The only reasonable and just course of action is to execute the scumbag.

    Or, to put it more succinctly: YES, HIS LIFE IF FORFEIT.
    Last edited: Aug 27, 2012
  14. iceaura Valued Senior Member

    Allowing a government to kill its citizens, deliberately and with forethought, as a policy, in the absence of immediate threat or emergency, is a very dangerous and historically unwise violation of any reasonable social contract informed adults would make in forming said government.

    The guy's life may be forfeit - but not to the State.
  15. Liebling Doesn't Need to be Spoonfed. Valued Senior Member

    Part of the understanding of a rehabilitation system, is understanding that the entire process is intensive and based on many mental health practices and studies. He will not be unmonitored the whole time he is incarcerated. During this time he will be subjected to all sorts of mental rehabilitation, including diversity training, intense psychological examination and many other methods in an attempt to change this human beings life. It will also give them time to study and understand what made this man do the things he did so that we can learn how to recognize and possibly prevent tragedies like this in the future not just of one man, but of possible generations to come. We have time to study his brain and how it works, and his socialism and upbringing as well to understand. To become a better society, we have to learn how it became what it is or we will be destined to repeat it. What purpose does killing him serve other than revenge? Do you think that we would get more value out of understand what made him tick, or more value out of just ending his life?

    Could it be possible that once rehabilitated, he could not only become morally responsible and remorseful but actually help his victims families by assisting in the healing process? I know it seems a foreign idea to us, because of the way our system works but I personally don't see a body for a body type of value system working for us in the long term. Quite the opposite really.

    You cannot undo what has been done, and it is a great tragedy with a tremendous loss of life. An amount of suffering and loss that really cannot be measured by any scale we have in existence. So many lives uselessly ended before they had a chance to really live. But how does killing him change anything? Does that somehow change what happened? Does it make it better for the families? Is their child not still dead? Right now, all they have is questions and no answers. All they have is the fear that it could happen again at any given time. Wouldn't learning how to prevent it be a better cause?

    There is very little chance he will ever get out of the system in Norway. Despite how lenient the system seems to us here in the states, they love their citizens and want to protect them as much as we do ours. Once he has served his 21 years, he will be re-examined to determine if he is a threat to anyone. If he is a threat at all, he will spend another 5 years being rehabilitated. Every five years will be the same thing.

    In the states, we constantly let loose dangerous sex offenders because they have "served their time" despite the recidivism rates of sexual offenders being greater than 74%. In the Norwegian system, they have minimum sentences and often hold sex offenders to much longer terms than we do on average because of their threat to society.

    Yes, to most Americans it seems like a travesty of justice not to kill him outright. That is how our system works, we bury things we see as too ugly and too dangerous to deal with instead of taking the time to understand it.
  16. quadraphonics Bloodthirsty Barbarian Valued Senior Member

    The point is not so much that death would be an unjust penalty in this (or any) particular case as such, but that the systemic costs of having the death penalty (execution of innocents, brutalization of society, etc.) outweigh the (rather small) incremental justice interest in execution over very long imprisonment. Given the choice between having to worry about the downsides, versus settling for keeping this guy locked up forever (but still alive), I'll take the latter.
  17. Fraggle Rocker Staff Member

    Your "logic" is that of a child. "He smashed my art project so I get to smash his."

    The word "pay" means to execute a transaction in which both parties are happy that what they received is worth the same or more than what they lost. Do you think that these kids' parents are going to be a whole lot happier, living with the memory of this loss, just because the guy who killed them is also dead? Do you have kids? Would you happily sign a contract specifying that I am welcome to kill them, so long as you are then allowed to kill me?

    This is the reasoning of cavemen. We've spent twelve thousand years trying to elevate ourselves above their level, but apparently some of us have a few thousand more to go before we get it right.
    His victims are dead. What exactly do you plan to do that will make any difference to them? If you mean the second-order victims, the dead children's parents, well then surely some of them have your same Paleolithic attitude about vengeance and would like to see this guy killed. But there are a good many people who do not feel that way, who show up at the trial of their loved one's killer and beg for his life to be spared because killing him won't do them or their children any good but it will sure add one more grieving mother to the world population.

    You guys are so wrapped up in your own grief (which isn't real, you're just imagining it), that you can't even stop and realize that other people have parents and children too, and they don't deserve to be treated this way just because you can't control your Inner Caveman.
    All you're doing is yelling. You're not actually saying a damn thing except, "I'm really angry about this." I'm surprised you didn't put the whole thing in bold-face capitals. Now I see why you call yourself "mad." How about madashellanthonywayne?
    Yes. Including by dying.
    At least you finally have a point with this guy. Mass murderers can probably not be rehabilitated, so we're trusting the enormously expensive government, which we cherish as freedom-loving people, to do its job of keeping the guy locked up. If we can't trust them to even do that, then we've got a much bigger problem than a few mass murderers.

    Sure, in the Stone Age they didn't have jails because they hadn't invented buildings yet. So there was no practical way to keep a bad guy out of circulation, if you were fairly sure he was going to turn around and do it again. But we have better technology than they did.
    Sure. In the Stone Age. Which I wonder is where you would rather be living since your attitude would be the norm and nobody would call you uncivilized because civilization hadn't been invented yet?
    You both completely ignore the fact that almost everyone, even the most (in our eyes) despicable people, have family and (possibly) friends who love them. Not to mention their teachers, their priests, their coaches, everyone in their lives who tried to turn them into decent human beings and failed through no fault of their own.

    What gives you the right to play god with these people, to bring such inconsolable grief into their lives? As I noted earlier, feuds are usually started by a son avenging the death of his father, and he doesn't give a flying fuck whether YOU, in your infinite godly wisdom, thought it was a justifiable death. How do you think your friends and family will feel when he succeeds in taking revenge on you? Just spend some time in the Middle East, where they're still killing each other for reasons so far back in time that many of them don't even understand them anymore. It's just vengeance for the most recent atrocity by the other side, who also doesn't quite know why they're fighting.

    If a man is in prison, his children can visit him. Seeing his fate might help them choose a more righteous life when they grow up. But if you kill him, all they care about is that you're the motherfucker who killed their daddy. If "you" is an entire country of self-righteous jerks who think capital punishment is a civilized way to handle grief, then "you" is breeding a rather large underclass of very angry, grieving young people who won't have any respect for your so-called "civilization," but who WILL have been taught, by you, that violence is an acceptable way to resolve a dispute.

    I would really rather not live in your country. I wouldn't feel safe with all those angry children strutting about.
  18. RedRabbit Registered Senior Member

    Some people in here seem to be missing a glaring point.

    Breivik wanted to treat people who are different from him as dispensable human beings.
    Breivik wanted a society that didn't allow for justice for all.
    Breivik wanted a society that didn't see everyone as equal.

    Norway's justice system treated him as equal, gave him justice and didn't agree with his views on human life. Norway's justice system showed him that he failed.

    Fuck Breivik. Norway should be applauded.
  19. rpenner Fully Wired Valued Senior Member

    Is it permissible for me to use my Magic Wishing Rockā„¢ to ensure for the entirety of his prison sentence the 1982 tune "Ebony and Ivory" is playing in his cell (perhaps alternating with a Norwegian translation by Thulsa Doom)?
  20. Syzygys As a mother, I am telling you Valued Senior Member

    Morally, you might feel superior, but I assure you, Breivik is laughing all the way to his treadmill. He should be treated the same way as he wanted to treat others. Turning the other cheek only works in the Bible...
  21. Balerion Banned Banned

    It's a technical possibility, but consider what it must take to do the kind of killing Breivik did. Do you really think they'll be able to rehabilitate him? I just mean that it's not really something worth worrying about given the low probability of him actually serving less than the remainder of his life in prison.

    Why not? I mean, it's not like every war is just, or every act of war of is moral. Anyway, I was just pointing out that killing 77 people by itself isn't why you want him locked up forever. It's because he killed 77 innocent people, most of them children.

    Is it ridiculous because of the amount of killing he did, or because of how fucking crazy he is? I'm guessing it's because of how many people he killed, in which case I can agree that it's kind of sickening to think that he could potentially walk the streets one day, but I also recognize that I come from a culture where such a prospect is considered obscene precisely because we don't allow that to happen. I have to wonder if our sentencing were more like Norway's what we'd think of this.

    I don't think there's anything inherently different. There are sick and evil soldiers, as well. Look at what that one clown did recently in Afghanistan, killing 16 civilians in cold blood. I doubt you find that any different.

    I agree with that, and I fully believe he will be. No matter the ideology, you have to be seriously fucked in the head to do what he did, and that's never going to change. He might clean up his act, but I don't think they'll ever be at a place where they're comfortable letting him out on the streets.
  22. Syzygys As a mother, I am telling you Valued Senior Member

    A meaningless sentence, really. Talk to the victims' family and ask how they feel about it....

    The might is just. History is written by the winners and the losers are forgotten eventually. For thousands of years that's how it has been working, it doesn't matter what moralistic fairy tale you believe in.

    Did you miss my post about gassing? Have you heard of shanking? Ordering hits from prison? Man, I hate to repeat myself, and I also hate idealists... I also listed the advantages of killing him, rebute the list instead of dreaming...

    But 3 lefts do....

    You sure missed the latest news on overpopulation....
  23. superstring01 Moderator

    As decided by who, Fraggle? You? I'm sorry if I don't accept your personal, subjective logic on what constitutes maturity. I call that hubris, so spare me the condescension. Your example is puerile and not the typical fare I'd expect from you.

    The difference between you and me is that I accept the social-mob contract that: we the people cede mob powers to our government to enact on our behalf and with an eye towards fairness and justice. This power includes the right to lock people in cages, send them to war, take their money and even take their life.

    My concept of justice has nothing to do with "he smashed my art project". I'll ask you to take a break from a poor attempt at psycho-analysis and see that my reasoning is much deeper, for more thought-out. It has the emotional current that any society needs to see enacted: justice for crimes committed.

    Now, I'm in NO WAY demanding capital punishment. I've not asserted that it is required for a fair or crime free society. In fact, even though I believe it can be justified in horrific cases, I am not passionate enough about it to go out rallying for it. What I do believe is that the government's job is to create a balance in society and to see to it that wrongs are righted and that individual members keep up their end of the bargain or forfeit certain portions of their share of the franchise (sometimes all of it). If "righting that wrong" doesn't include lethal injection, I'm okay with that. But it should most certainly include a concept of "rights" which can be forfeit in rare circumstances, and in even rarer circumstances fore the entirety of a specific human lifespan.

    Now. It certainly appears that Norway has got a lot to brag about. A fairly crime-free society. Good rehabilitative processes in their penal system. I'm not going to damn an entire nation for what I consider to be one egregious injustice. It's just that no society is perfect and while I get that their system was set up to prevent overly-zealous judges from sending people away for times not deserved, I think we can clearly see that some people deserve the maximum and that maximum can be their entire life behind bars.


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