21 years for 77 lives, congrats Norway!!!

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

  1. Syzygys As a mother, I am telling you Valued Senior Member

    Where do we get these moralising history professors???

    Occasionally you should study the Roman Empire. It lasted like 900 years and if I recall there was murder, torture and so on going on and the society was just fine with it... So history isn't on your side, but you can try again...

    Actually, I can turn it around and make a rule: no society lasted long where there wasn't capital punishment...


    For Balerion about humans" intrinsic value: His intrinsic value is negative....
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  3. Balerion Banned Banned

    You're being intentionally obtuse. You complained that there was no consistency in the sentencing, but you prove yourself wrong with this post. If there is no threat, yes, he can walk. But if there is, he can't. Thus, 21 years is not the maximum amount of time he can spend in prison.

    Hence, the default.

    There's nothing sudden about it. He's a human being, and his life shouldn't simply lose all its value because he committed an atrocity. We still have standards for execution and imprisonment. We still can't be cruel in our punishment of him, even if that punishment is death. Even if he killed 77 thousand people, it wouldn't give us the right to dig a hole and throw him in it.

    The same is accomplished by keeping him incarcerated.

    That's presumptuous. You simply assume his death will bring closure to the families of the victims, but not everyone thinks like you do. No doubt some of them don't believe in the death penalty.

    That's the first legitimate advantage, but it's an extremely small one.

    You just said not to argue economics!

    The community begins healing the moment the killing stops. People have to go on with their lives, and the ultimate fate of Anders Breivik is of no consequence to that.

    So is prison. Given Norway's exceedingly low violent crime rate, I'd say their indeterminate penalty is quite effective as such.

    There are no disadvantages, you mean. Anyway, you're wrong. Morally, there are several consequences to killing prisoners, including the loss of moral highground when condemning the killing of others. And again, we're talking about human lives. Going by your logic, so long as there are no disadvantages to killing your neighbor, that should be okay as well. But obviously we need more than "It has no drawbacks" to justify it.

    What? He doesn't get any special protection upon release. He's just another citizen. And again, Norway isn't the United States. There are not likely to be townsfolk gathered with torches and pitchforks looking to string him up from the nearest tree.

    Yeah, exactly. At this point, you sound like Charlie Brown's teacher to me. Nothing you say has any merit or makes any sense whatsoever.

    This whole thing began by you citing the alleged superiority of our system to theirs. I'm pointing out how ignorant your statement was, nothing more. If you disagree with Norway about having access to fitness equipment and computers, then you also disagree with the US, because they provide many of the same amenities. I'm just educating you to the facts, which you seem to be completely devoid of otherwise.

    As I already said, I don't have to list the positives of keeping a human being alive. Life's value is self-evident. But I believe I have made enough of a case already. If you can read, then you already know where I stand on this.
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  5. Syzygys As a mother, I am telling you Valued Senior Member

    To simplify it for you: the maximum penalty is 21 years in Norway. It is called the penalty phase. If a person stays longer in prison, that is not because he didn't serve his penalty, but for prevention, protecting society. But again, as usual, I was right, the maximum penalty IS 21 years...

    According to you. According to me, his value has just gone NEGATIVE...

    According to you. Also, societies based on principles like those, disappeared very quickly...

    Same with your thinking.

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    In your mind. healing usually begins after justice. Him writing his racist epitomes on his laptop doesn't help healing...

    Do you know who else had the moral high ground? Native Americans.. Where are they now??? They also lost their real estate grounds beside their lives...You can shovel your imaginative moral high ground (there is no absolute morality) in your ass, but at the end the might is just....

    Don't go there. Going by your logic, having a few strong words with the criminal should do the punishment and rehabilitation.

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    There was a similar guy like this and upon release he was given a new identity and lives in a secret location. My guess is that using government money...

    I never said such a thing, otherwise you could quote me. I simply criticized the Norwegian system.

    Because it is a short list?
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  7. Balerion Banned Banned

    Sigh. Let's take this from the top, shall we?

    You: "First, they say, nobody gets more than 21 years, then next day say, well, not so fast, some people will get life. Sounds BS to me..."

    To the grammar of your original statement, you are incorrect that nobody gets more than 21 years. The penalty in question is called "the indeterminate penalty," not "the 21-year-penalty." They call it indeterminate because there is no upper maximum. You are not guaranteed release after 21 years, you are merely guaranteed a hearing. That hearing can result in your freedom or an extension of your sentence by five years, and this process can go ad infinitum for the rest of your life.

    Do you understand now?

    As I said before, not everyone shares your bloodlust.

    What the hell are you talking about? The United States is based on principals like those. As I said before, we have standards for imprisonment and execution.

    True enough, but I'm not the one claiming that it is.

    The community has no choice but to heal. They'll get on with their lives like normal. They already have, no doubt. Of course, they may never completely get over it, but the idea that the perpetrator's death is a tonic is myth. It doesn't work that way.

    Wait, what? How did American Indians have moral highground? And what does "at the end of the might is just" mean?

    Wrong. You don't want me to go there because you argument has no logical foundation, as it is based on emotion. Feel free to address the actual point I made.

    Link? I've never heard of this. But even if he did, so what? You're arguing that human lives are only as valuable as the money they do or do not cost the taxpayers, which is a failed argument from the start.

    Actually, you're right. It was actually Buddha12 who made that comment. His post was directly beneath yours, and I must have mistook it for you. My mistake.

    Address the point made, troll.
  8. Repo Man Valued Senior Member

    There is little doubt in my mind that there will come a time when we fully understand human behavior (or at least understand it much, much better than we do now), and the people of that time will look back on our present treatment of criminals with the same fascinated horror that we now reserve for the way the mentally ill were treated when it was widely believed that mental illness was caused by demonic possession.
  9. Asguard Kiss my dark side Valued Senior Member

    It's amusing that STILL no one has bothered to post any links to "wide spread outrage" at this "unjust" sentence from NORWEGIAN sources. The only people calling it "unjust" are the yanks here. What actually makes you think you have the moral superiority to judge what THEY concider just to be unjust?
  10. Repo Man Valued Senior Member

    That may be exactly what ends up happening. I'd even go as far as to say that it probably will.

    Based on his statements in court, I doubt Breivik will ever change, and I doubt he will ever see the light of freedom, and I’m not troubled by that. Once his sentence ends, judges can keep him in prison for an endless succession of five-year terms if he is deemed a danger to society, which seems likely.
  11. Balerion Banned Banned

    I agree.
  12. Fraggle Rocker Staff Member

    The Bible... that same idiotic book which, on a different page, urges us to take an eye for an eye and a tooth for a tooth?
    I've said it before and I'll say it again: Bereaved people must not be allowed to make policy. They're overwhelmed with emotions.
    No, it hasn't been working. Some pretty awful things have been done. Unforgivable things, things for which no repentance is adequate. For example, the obliteration of two entire civilizations (Olmec/Maya/Aztec and Inca) by the Christians, who always claim to be such moral people.
    I made the same point in my post. There are indeed a few situations in which we have no choice but to execute. A terrorist, because his buddies will kidnap twenty of our people and kill them if we don't turn him loose. A mafia boss because his power is so great and so pervasive that he can continue his work from prison. But these are exceptions that don't justify killing every person who's been convicted of murder, or even mass murder.
    Huh? The first derivative of population went negative thirty years ago. The population is universally calculated to peak around the end of this century and then start decreasing.
    But those are just buzzwords. They have no meaning. What is justice? The fucking Bible that guides a large portion of the Earth's population says "an eye for an eye" on one page and then "turn the other cheek" later on. Which is correct?

    The "eye for an eye" is the justice of the Bronze Age, when civilization was grappling with a new technology that made possible the first "weapons of mass destruction": metal blades and armor. The "turn the other cheek" speaks to the denizens of the Iron Age, an era characterized by stronger governments, permanent written records, formal education and philosophy. We've been through another paradigm shift since then, the Industrial Revolution, which brought about its own wrenching changes in morality, and we're smack in the middle of the next one, the Electronic Revolution, which promises to unite all of humanity through instant communication.

    I think it's fair, fitting, and necessary to come up with new rules. We don't have to behave like our ancestors. We can be better than they were, just as they could be better than their own cave-dwelling ancestors.
    You're not arguing with me at all. My diatribe is aimed strictly at capital punishment and the emotionally-overwhelmed people who think it has a place in the 21st century.

    People who cause trouble must be apprehended and stopped, and when possible restitution must be made. I've got no problem with that. If we think that a particular individual cannot be trusted to reform, with the benefit of all the means at our disposal to heal and retrain him, then obviously we have to separate him from society so he can cause no more harm. As for "making him pay," well sure. If he wrecked your car then he should reimburse your insurance company. But killing him doesn't result in anyone being compensated for their loss. It just incurs additional loss on his friends and family.

    What bothers me the most about this argument is that some of the participants seem to believe that because Mister X is a horrible man, that his mother and his father and his wife and his children must be horrible people too. That's the only possible way they can justify killing him and making all of those people feel like shit. Otherwise, they're no better than he is. Thoughtless, uncaring, overcome with their own emotions. I.e., uncivilized.

    And as I said, if it's okay for us to kill him because we're angry and grief-stricken, now that his entire family is angry and grief-stricken, why is it not okay for them to kill us? No matter how it's dressed up, the entire argument in favor of capital punishment is illogical. And that is precisely because it is driven by emotions rather than reason.
  13. madanthonywayne Morning in America Registered Senior Member

    You are completely correct that justice by vendetta is a flawed system that results in a never ending spiral of tit for tat reprisals. That is exactly why we instituted governments to ensure that justice was carried out in a fair and impartial manner. So long as that is the case, that is no argument against imposing the death penalty.
  14. Syzygys As a mother, I am telling you Valued Senior Member

    You don't see Texans crying about executing a prisoner either, so what is your big surprize??? And why can't we discuss world events? This tragedy couldn't have happened to nicer people but it also shows the problems of too much leeway. Well, we will see in a few decades....
  15. Syzygys As a mother, I am telling you Valued Senior Member

    You mean the general law principle what was used for thousands of years by hundreds of societies???

    When we will be able to change personalities, you will have a point...

    You are arguing against a point that nobody made in this thread...

    No, but because he broke the rules of the game thus he needs to be ejected from the game forever... But nice twist of logic, nevertheless...
  16. Oystein Registered Senior Member

    Yeah, this guy deserves some Texas justice. I normally despise most things Texan but they would know what to do with this creep.
  17. Liebling Doesn't Need to be Spoonfed. Valued Senior Member

    Oh yes, and it's working so well. Look at all the peace and lack of crime we have!

    Crime in Norway is very very low compared to the US and other countries outside of the Scandanavian countries. Could it be because they treat their humans like humans and not like an effigy of emotion?

    It may not be just about changing his personality, but more of understanding it. The more we study what makes him tick, the more we can spot those mental issues in others and prevent the tragedies from happening. This is what you seem to keep ignoring when I post it. Prevention of crime > Punishment for crime

    Life is not a game of wins and losses. It's not a competition or a challenge or fucking Survivor: Norway edition, there are no winners and losers. With your twisted logic, kill em all until no one does any harm. Weed em out at the gene level instead of treating people like the human beings they are. It doesn't matter that Brevik didn't treat his victims like humans, but if we do the same we are doing the same thing. He has value, in that we can learn from him even if it's against his will. People will study him for years, and hopefully we can learn from what was done to him in his life and try to prevent that.

    Justice for justice sake is a knee-jerk reaction. Treating people like humans takes humanity. Unfortunately, that fades more and more from society as we go along. We like to think we are evolving, but most days it looks to me like we are more animalistic from day to day.
  18. Liebling Doesn't Need to be Spoonfed. Valued Senior Member

    Because there is no moral outrage about this in Norway. You know, where the victims families AND the Norwegians have to live;

    So all these claims that the victims families want blood, are just you guys thinking your justice system is better then theirs, but you can't come up with a single reason why that would actually be the case. It's not your taxes paying for him, so what's the issue? The victims families are relieved. Norway is satisfied with the verdict.

    Bolded are the victims families statements and those of survivors of the attack.
  19. Captain Kremmen All aboard, me Hearties! Valued Senior Member

    If he did get out after 21 years, he would need a new identity.
    He would be given somewhere to live and enough money to live on.
    I'd imagine that they would have to release him under some kind of license.
    I don't know how they could do that, given that he would have served his full sentence.

    He couldn't be released to go wherever and do whatever he wanted.
    That would be a recipe for a lot of trouble should he return to his old ways.

    In this instance the judge may have wished to impose a longer sentence, say an indeterminate life sentence,
    with the possibility of parole after 21 years. The terms of parole could then severely limit his activities.

    I wouldn't be surprised if some people in Sweden asked for that law change.
    But "Hard cases make bad law" is a very true maxim.
  20. James R Just this guy, you know? Staff Member


    Your arguments for the death penalty don't stack up any better now than they did when we had a Formal Debate about the topic. Remember that? Here's the link:


    Recall that I rebutted all the arguments that you have repeated in the current thread. Maybe you should re-read and refresh your memory.
  21. GeoffP Caput gerat lupinum Valued Senior Member

    Very well, I'll say this much: certainly there are a variety of other legal approaches that could be used. As an individual at the mercy (although not quite) of the state, naturally one could propose a hundred different staggered solutions to the eventual release of Mr. Breivik; he could have a special parole, he could be ankle-braceleted, he could be licensed or watched or monitored from space. Any of these things could be done.

    Here's the thing.

    It's fairly likely they won't be.

    Without being an expert on Norwegian law (other than in the days when they used to pay out weregild and tie badgers together for fun), I speculate wildly that they have no ankle-monitors, will use no special parole aside from the minimum required by law, and are unlikely to task a satellite specifically to him. Now, it is possible that they really do have one or more of these things, or that they even acquire them 21 years from now. But such would require proactive law. Does such a thing exist? It is rare, and it would be exceedingly rare in the case of a single man to be released after what I'm Norway insists is a sufficiently punitive and/or reconstructive detention period and locale. To create special law or modify already existing ones - I assume he's the first of his kind? - would require a proactive law with some kind of tacit admission that standard law is or would be insufficient to handle Breivik, and this is something legal systems don't do, and which lawyers don't do unless someone is paying them.

    Breivik may well come out quite finely adjusted; so adjusted, in fact, that he could be used as a TV antenna by the mechanically inclined. But, given his stance on certain issues, this seems unlikely. And it is thus unlikely in parallel that Norway will adapt to the challenge of his particular...nature. Breivik will emerge, Norway will be unprepared and new tragedies will be planned. Or perhaps it's only my old pessimism.

    People run to the death penalty because it seems simple and direct. It satisfies revenge and keeps the public good order. Dead, one feels, is dead, and that's that. And it certainly would be, absent legal process. It's not perfect either, but it has the semantic feel of brushing the judges and their tomfoolery out of the way. I can sympathize, and I do. Frankly, I'd have had him shot.
  22. GeoffP Caput gerat lupinum Valued Senior Member

    Oh, and in what possible insane future do we live where a man's rage against a murderer is confined to throwing plates and yelling (but 'really hard'), this in the land of the descendants of the Vikings? Remember them? With the pointy hats (well, not really) and the dragon ships and the pillaging and murdering? What, did all the tough ones leave or something? Holy hell.
  23. elte Valued Senior Member

    Until war is done away with, 21 years almost seems too harsh.

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