The future

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LogicFTW's picture
"Unless we take an A.I. and

"Unless we take an A.I. and let it rule."
Would have to create an AI that was not influenced by humans to do that.

David Killens's picture
@ Quetos

@ Quetos

"The point I'm trying to make here is, if we use the history of the human race as a stick to mark out our 'sociability' then it's all war, slavery, murder, rape... All the usual good stuff."

You see only the negative aspects of humanity, and are ignoring the positive stuff. Sadly, it is human nature to have conflict. But it is also human nature to learn, to advance, and improve. For most nations, their form of governance is gentler and more humane, medicine and many other disciplines of science have advanced tremendously, improving the quality of life for the average person. Life expectancy has risen, as well as the level of medical care.

Quetos, my impression is you are a nihilist, and pessimist. I am not.

boomer47's picture
@Old man shouts;

@Old man shouts;

Sorry to be a noodge, but I think the PRC might have the world's largest armed forces.

I understand . the US DOES spend more money (in dollars) than any other country. The US also seems to be one of the most aggressive nations on earth, having been involved in some conflict almost continuously since 1950.

"Killing sprees seem to be largely where gun control ( the lack of which is a product of unregulated capital) is lacking, and religion is forced upon the citizenry as a way of enforcing conformism. A system where "top dog" influence and influencers is prevalent from grade school and up and goes completely unchecked if not actively encouraged."

Spot on I think. Oz is much the same except for guns. Australia's last mass shooting was in 1996. Our government then introduced tough gun laws, to national applause. America 's loopy gun culture and what seems to be a wilful misinterpretation of the US Secondet Amendment bemuses at least this Aussie.

A fellow Aussie, Jim Jeffries pretty much sums up my attitude to gun control .Below, parts one and part 2.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0rR9IaXH1M0

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=a9UFyNy-rw4

PS I served 2 years conscript, infantry, crossed trained as medic . Rated marksman with 7.62 SLR. My basic attitude is that in a Democratic society, with rule of law, a urbanite has no reason to have a firearm .

Old man shouts at clouds's picture
@ cRanky

@ cRanky

"Sorry to be a noodge, but I think the PRC might have the world's largest armed forces."

Correct. My sentence should have read "supporting the largest military expenditure in the world."

Quetos's picture
@ cRanky + @ Old man shouts .

@ cRanky + @ Old man shouts ...

One of the big problems with the Media is they can push issues and it is easy to become susceptible to it's suggestions. Here's a list of Murder rates by country, 2019, taken from "Global Study on Homicide 2019" published by the United Nations:

The murder rate is the number of murders per 100,000 people:

1. El Salvador (61.80)
2. Jamaica (57)
3. Honduras (41.7)
4. Belize (37.9)
5. South Africa (35.9)
6. Lesotho ( Bahamas)
7. Brazil (30.5)
8. Saint Lucia (29.6)
9. Guatemala (26.1)
10. Dominica (25.7)

America (if I'm having a good counting day) comes in at 77th.

Interestingly, Japan has the lowest murder rate. The website states: "Japan, which has the lowest murder rate in the world of 0.2 per 100,000, has very strict weapons regulations. Obtaining a firearm involves a very lengthy application process, and murder is punishable by hanging."

So yes, good gun control is a good thing in preventing murders. And an equally strong argument can be made for capital punishment. So my ridiculous idea of: "Give the families base ball bats, and let 'em have at it." i.e. kill the person who murdered their family member isn't such a bad idea after all - if you want to decrease murder rates that is.

Reality is crazy - and definitely flies in the face of common sense and empathy.

This is one of the reasons I'm on this site. My, arguably pathetic, research has thrown up things which are completely against the PC, care for each other ideals I was brought up on. I can't find it, but I wonder what the murder rates were in Germany when the Nazi's were in power. Or Russia when Stalin was at the reigns.

Or, in other words, if we were to create an A.I., tell it to impose on us a political party which would lead to the minimum murders, would we end up under a brutal dictatorship? And the thing that makes me laugh is the answer is most probably yes!

You gotta love reality man - it's friggin nutz!

Sheldon's picture
The death penalty has long

The death penalty has long been shown not to work as a deterrent for murder. There are many European countries who have strict gun control, and correspondingly low instances of gun crime. I think you've added gun control to hanging and are simply assuming they're equally valid deterrents.

There is no evidence that the death penalty works as a deterrent quite the opposite. Though of course recidivism amongst executed prisoners we can at least assume is zero. That rather gruesome stat needs to be weighed against the massive miscarriages of justice that have executed people unjustly, not least in the US, where ethnicity, poverty and skin colour are massive indicators of demographic more likely to be convicted in capital crimes, as well as more likely to receive the death penalty based on those factors.

An example of your claim being refuted would be Norway. Norway has one of the lowest recidivism rates in the world, currently 20%, with approximately 3,933 offenders in prison, and one of the lowest crime rates in the world. Norway's prisons are renowned for being some of the best and most humane in the world.

The idea of gang vengeance by grieving families masquerading as justice is too preposterous to deserve a serious response. I do hope you're simply being provocative.

However the fact remains that the death penalty is not and never has been evidenced by research as a deterrent to violent crimes like murder. There are far more successful blueprints for both low crime and low recidivism among those convicted.
The DP isn't even the cheapest method in all cases, as the years of appeals can have a substantially higher cost than incarceration of even a lifelong term.

David Killens's picture
Texas has capital punishment,

Texas has capital punishment, yet 217 people on death row.

boomer47's picture
@David

@David

Re Texas death row; I understand Texas has more people on death row than the rest of the US combined.

I have no problem with the concept of the death penalty for such offences as child murder and murder for personal gain. Imo society is better off without such people. I have only one caveat ; such convictions must be guaranteed to be 100% safe. This because it's not possible to un execute an innocent person

((((((((((((((((((((((((((((()))))))))))))))))))))))))))))))))))))))))))))))))))))))))))))))))))))))))))))))))))))

I missed if anyone addressed the claim that the US is the second most advanced nation on the planet. Pretty sure that';s far from the truth.

Just did some checking; Seems I was wrong about the level of the US' technical advancement. Ranks FIRST in a list of the 15 most technically advanced nations. Japan is second, Canada ninth, UK 13th. Australia does not appear on the list. This disappointing.

I'm mollified by the fact that Australia has almost always has three cities in the world's most liveable cities. This year, my own city of Adelaide is 10th. Canada also has several. The US has none.

https://www.theclever.com/most-technologically-advanced-countries/

https://www.businessinsider.com.au/most-livable-cities-in-the-world-2018...

David Killens's picture
@ cranky47

@ cranky47

"I have only one caveat ; such convictions must be guaranteed to be 100% safe. This because it's not possible to un execute an innocent person"

That is the prime reason why I oppose the death penalty. There have been examples where an innocent person was murdered by the state.

As far as what nation is the most technically advanced, I can understand why the US is number one. That is a metric hard to decipher because some nations may have a higher percentage of quality trained engineers and scientists.

These days, with very few exceptions, since the cheap inventing had already been done, it takes sheer numbers of people and buckets of money to accomplish an engineering goal. The famed Manhattan Project to build the first nuclear weapon was difficult, and since it was deemed critical to national security and had to be done as soon as possible, they just kept throwing more and more people, and more and more money at the project. No doubt, many of the technical accomplishments from the USA are staggering, such as the Apollo moon project, or the Space Shuttle. But they took a heck of a lot of people and money to accomplish their goals.

The Space Shuttle was amazing, but was it a success? I carried a lot of hardware into space, serviced the Hubble, yet it exceeded cost projections by a huge margin. And it's original mission was to deliver access to space on a much cheaper vehicle than what was in use.

I often ponder that measuring a nation's technical prowess is a dick-measuring contest, because those in the contest can brag. But I also look at a nations' technical prowess compared to their gross national product, how much money is available to the nation. I admire many nations for punching above their weight, including Sweden. They are a neutral nation, yet have managed to sustain the ability to design and field high quality jet fighters since the end of WW2.

Sheldon's picture
I think a criminal justice

I think a criminal justice system that can't keep prisoners incarcerated as long as they're a danger to society, is not going to be improved by adding the death penalty.

I also don't believe we can ever be 100% certain, Ted Bundy was one of the prolific mass murderers in American history, yet the evidence that convicted him was on only a small number of those murders, and might well be considered mostly circumstantial. Matching Bite marks on some of his victims was a relatively new technique, and by far the most compelling evidence.

That said I can have no real problem with his execution, given he confessed to many more murders at the 11th hour when trying to bargain for a stay of execution.

The simple fact is we can't base a criminal justice system on the revulsion we have of such crimes and criminals. The best we can do is improve detection rates, reduce recidivism, support victims, and make sure no one is released from prison who still poses a danger to the public at large. We should focus on detecting crimes early, and protecting people to minimise the number of victims. Focusing on empty revenge afterwards is pointless IMHO.

Ian Brady and Myra Hyndley died in prison, and rightly so, and I find it gratifying that for many years they begged to be either released or executed. The asinine attempts to release Hyndley fell on unsympathetic ears, and she never again was able to harm another child.

Paradoxically of course I'd have no problem with either of them being executed, but on balance I think we're better served by a criminal justice system without the death penalty. Though it's sometimes difficult to hold my revulsion at certain crimes in check, I believe that's why we have laws and a criminal justice system in the first place, or else It'd be a free for all of blood letting.

David Killens's picture
Well said Sheldon, I mirror

Well said Sheldon, I mirror your sentiments.

Society would be better served by being more proactive than reactive.

algebe's picture
@Quetos:

@Quetos:

I wouldn't be too hasty in attributing Japan's extremely low murder rate to weapons controls or the death penalty. Respect for human life and the law and also pacifism are deeply ingrained in Japan's postwar culture. New Zealand also has an extremely low murder rate despite having no death penalty and guns being relatively accessible and common.

These are very nuanced issues and need to be considered in social, historical, cultural, and religious contexts. My impression is that you're most likely to get murdered in a deeply Christian or Islamic country, but whether there's a causal link I'm not sure. Maybe these two religions appeal most strongly to murderers.

LogicFTW's picture
When comparing US gun

When comparing US gun violence to the rest of the world, one has to consider the amount of guns in the US. 400 million. or close to half of the world supply of guns in "private"non military hands. This is mostly a function of the US's wealth in the last century or so.

Those numbers break down to over 3 guns per household in the US. That is: every house, condo, apartment, hut, etc. Combine that with extremely open gun laws, where if you are willing to drive far enough (usually not very far,) you can buy almost any gun without any sort of ID, registration or background check. Just buy the gun from a private seller. There are people that make a nice living buying guns new from gun stores, and turning around and selling them privately for a substantial mark up. Even if the original buyer/seller of the gun is responsible, whos to say the next owner of the gun will be?

Compare this information to other nations and to me anyways, the picture becomes clearer.

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