Frustration

The Hogman question.

158 posts in this topic

I'll start by saying there's a lot of different ways to judge morality. On the question of morality as a whole, that would be easiest to discuss first with the Jasnah incident. If you study philosophy or theology (as I did), you'll notice that all the major philosophies and religions can be divided into three categories. These categories are based on whether morality is ultimately judged by intent, action, or result. For example, Utilitarianism (morality is doing what's best for the majority, or causing more good than harm) judges based on the result of your action. If you benefited the majority of people, moral. If you hurt the majority, immoral. This philosophy obviously isn't as popular anymore, but it's still pretty storming useful! As a side note, people most often judge by intent, governments by action, and philosophies by result. I say all this to tell you that this is what Jasnah is saying, in a roundabout way. Shallan then reads many philosophers who talk about this and comes to the conclusion that morality should be judged by intent, as most people do, and she finds Jasnah's intent to be evil.

Jasnah sought out men to kill. She knew the men were 'evil' and sought to stop them.. She intentionally created opportunity for the men to commit 'evil'. The men took that opportunity. She killed them for it.

Her intent was to cause men to do evil things and to kill them. Her action was killing and breaking the law. Her result was defending herself and her ward, stopping evil men from preying on the travelers on that road, and discouraging other men from taking their place. Under utilitarianism then, by her result, she was moral. She caused more good than harm. But many say that killing is inherently wrong, or that causing men to commit evil is evil...…judge her as you will.

However you may judge morality, by intent, action, or result, it's important to know by what you're judging so that you can actually judge each situation equally and fairly instead of  jumping around on half-baked "feelings."

Now for the Hogmen. The Lord's job is to protect the people of his town from further harm, but also not to harm innocent people and uphold the law. Banishment for all four is the easiest solution under these circumstances, as a compromise between Taravangian and Dalinar's philosophies. It's the best thing for the town; the Lord has done his job. But outside of that limited view, the question of morality still remains if you care about poetic justice. The punishment of the innocent and the lack of punishment for the wicked may bother some people, as well as the dilemma of possibly sending three murderers to plague another town.

Therefore let us judge in the easiest and most successful at getting people to agree way I know: by all three! First, the Lord's intent for his potential action can be assumed the same each time, and I think we're mostly agreeing that the intent to stop men from committing more evil is superior to the intent to punish past evil actions. (and yes, don't be silly. Murderers are murderers and murderers will murder. Further evil will happen without intervention) Now the intent of the Lord is to prevent further evil; the Lord may be judged moral by his intent. Next, his actions of banishment, kill them all, or imprisonment for all. Without context of innocent or guilty or of the law and the Lord's full authority, the actions cannot be judged, so moving on. The result of banishment would be to prevent further evil in that town, but not prevent further evil overall. Imprisonment prevents further evil at the cost of freedom for three guilty men and one innocent. Hanging them all prevents further evil at the cost of life for three guilty and one innocent. Life outweighs freedom by complexity, that is, loss of life is also loss of freedom over a great deal of things, so imprisonment outweighs hanging! The Lord was correct; he chose the most moral path of the options presented to him.

 

As for everything else, I gotta say, the extreme is always wrong. Always. When you don't agree with someone, please refrain from taking their viewpoint to the extreme interpretation to try and show that's wrong. If someone says "We must punish the guilty" don't say "So we should punish everyone in the town because they might be guilty?" or anything as equally ridiculous. It's bad manners in a debate, and it makes the debate frustrating. 

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@Returned I think I understand you more. And I’ll use a poor example that shows the strength and weakness of my argument. 
The USA has an “innocent till proven guilty” policy and if I remember correctly about 50% of murders in Miami go nowhere. But people believe that 0.5% of people in prison are innocent.
where as Japan has a 99% conviction rate. And an estimated 1500 per year that are most likely innocent about 3% of the people convicted are innocent by one study.  
USA is considered 36th in the most dangerous country of the world 

where as Japan is considered 153th place literally in the top 10 most peaceful countries. 
so peaceful that it’s not unnatural to see a 4 year old doing errands by themselves.

@Frustration I now see the fulfillment of your name. I can respect that you don’t trust government, and that you and I can’t agree in this subject. So I’ll just put a stop here but I feel like I can’t talk to you about this because it goes against core principles in my life. 
 

@CameronUluvara 
thank you for summing up a complicated problem in an unbiased way. My father taught me the basics of utilitarianism and it’s really hard to disprove using straight logic. 

Edited by Rg2045
Had to thank someone
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2 hours ago, Rg2045 said:

I think I understand you more. And I’ll use a poor example that shows the strength and weakness of my argument. 
The USA has an “innocent till proven guilty” policy and if I remember correctly about 50% of murders in Miami go nowhere. But people believe that 0.5% of people in prison are innocent.
where as Japan has a 99% conviction rate. And an estimated 1500 per year that are most likely innocent about 3% of the people convicted are innocent by one study.  
USA is considered 36th in the most dangerous country of the world 

Talk to a defense attorney, especially a public defender, and I think you might come away with a different impression of how "innocent until proven guilty" works in the U.S. I don't know anything about the murder rate without convictions in Miami, or anywhere else. That people (which people?) believe that 0.5% of people in prison are innocent strikes me as about as meaningful as the percentage of people that believe in leprechauns-- it doesn't matter what people vaguely assume is probably true. That's kind of the point that I'm making-- observation of a vaguely defined belief that something is one way isn't an argument that that thing is that way, and to use it as evidence that that thing is that way is tautological.

For the record, Japan also has a presumption of innocence for criminal defendants. There are obviously a lot of differences between the U.S. and Japan, and I don't think that it's reasonable to assert that an absurdly high conviction rate in Japan is the cause of of its relative safety compared to the U.S. Consider, for example, that in 2016 0.04% of the population in Japan was in prison, while 0.66% of the U.S. population was in prison in that same year. The U.S. version of the presumption of innocence didn't prevent a much larger slice of the population from ending up in prison. And even then, the U.S. was then (and is now) vastly more dangerous than Japan. There has been a substantial amount of research over the last several decades on the U.S. justice system. There is not a great correlation between intensity of prosecution, conviction rates, incarceration rates, etc. and changes in crime rate. For whatever reason or reasons, the U.S. is simply more dangerous than most of its peer countries, including those with similar strong protections for those accused of crimes.

I do disagree with your conclusion on the hogman problem, but my bigger issue is with the reasoning which has been presented to support it. We can only evaluate an answer to a problem like this by considering the reasoning that justifies it. Even if I were to accept (which I don't) the purely pragmatic case you're presenting if you're offer an argument like "doing [A], we get good thing [X], which outweighs the harms due to injustices which we all agree inherently follow [A]", then a major part of your burden is to demonstrate that we do indeed get good thing [X]. What I've seen so far are bland assertions that we do get [X] (however vaguely and variably defined), followed by further assumptions that this obviously justifies an unspecified amount of guaranteed injustice. That's pretty shaky, especially since the fact that the injustices will be inflicted on the innocent is not in dispute. Efforts to reduce the intensity of punishment of the innocent underscore this: if we definitely get [X], and [X] so worth it, and [A] is the only way to get it, why the unease and reluctance to commit?

I'm not suggesting that this is all that there is to your position, or even a good summary of it. I appreciate that an internet forum is not an ideal place to make such lengthy, intricate arguments. I know I'm rarely, if ever, as clear as I'd like to be online (or anywhere!). But the argumentation that has been presented to me I find unpersuasive at best.

 

2 hours ago, Rg2045 said:

so peaceful that it’s not unnatural to see a 4 year old doing errands by themselves.

I love Old Enough as much as anyone, if not more (はじめてのおつかい何時までもよ!). But it's a reality TV show, with a lot of adults constantly around the children at all times. It would be very unnatural to see a 4 year old in Japan doing an errand on their own, completely unsupervised. But your point stands that Japan is vastly safer than the U.S.

 

2 hours ago, Rg2045 said:

[utilitarianism is] really hard to disprove using straight logic. 

You just have to be really, really precise (and correct) in how you're defining and evaluating utility. Otherwise it can justify literally anything.

Edited by Returned
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9 hours ago, Nameless said:

A king who refuses to protect his people is not a good king.

  A king  who understands that, what his people needs protection from the most is himself, is a wise king.

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8 hours ago, Rg2045 said:

@Returned I think I understand you more. And I’ll use a poor example that shows the strength and weakness of my argument. 
The USA has an “innocent till proven guilty” policy and if I remember correctly about 50% of murders in Miami go nowhere. But people believe that 0.5% of people in prison are innocent.
where as Japan has a 99% conviction rate. And an estimated 1500 per year that are most likely innocent about 3% of the people convicted are innocent by one study.  
USA is considered 36th in the most dangerous country of the world 

where as Japan is considered 153th place literally in the top 10 most peaceful countries. 
so peaceful that it’s not unnatural to see a 4 year old doing errands by themselves.

@Frustration I now see the fulfillment of your name. I can respect that you don’t trust government, and that you and I can’t agree in this subject. So I’ll just put a stop here but I feel like I can’t talk to you about this because it goes against core principles in my life. 
 

@CameronUluvara 
thank you for summing up a complicated problem in an unbiased way. My father taught me the basics of utilitarianism and it’s really hard to disprove using straight logic. 

 

 

  Utilitarianism Is is only valuable when using a strictly pleasure and harm morality system ( A  Morality system only found in the modern West)

 If you use any Other more complete morality system it falls apart.  (the loan stranger dilemma) . 

 

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8 hours ago, Emery the Steelrunner said:

What if we caught them on camera, had DNA evidence that it wasn’t a lookalike, and knew that they didn’t have a twin?

The DNA could have been planted. The camera could have been faked. You can be 99.99% certain, but never 100% certain.

8 hours ago, Frustration said:

I agree that it should be made to protect people. However I would say that the justice system itself presents the most immediate and potent danger at any given time.

That is true. And a big reason why one person shouldn't be making the decision over the lives of his subjects. Juries and whatnot are a better option. That shouldn't stop the ruler from doing his job.

8 hours ago, Frustration said:

By that logic you can't prove anything.

Yep. You can't prove anything. You can show that something is almost certain, so much so that assuming it is a 100% certainty isn't going to cause any harm, but actually proving something 100%? Impossible.

8 hours ago, Frustration said:

I wouldn't even say suffering, as in my experience most suffering is self inflicted.

Okay, in that case, it should be based on preventing suffering caused by other people as much as possible. Protect society from itself. And from you, of course.

8 hours ago, Frustration said:

That asteriks there intrests me, what is the boundary line ther, would you say?

In general, I'd say no cameras in people's homes.

4 minutes ago, bmcclure7 said:

 If you use any Other more complete morality system it falls apart.  (the loan stranger dilemma) . 

I'm not familiar with that dilemma. Could you extrapolate?

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50 minutes ago, Nameless said:

The DNA could have been planted. The camera could have been faked. You can be 99.99% certain, but never 100% certain.

That is true. And a big reason why one person shouldn't be making the decision over the lives of his subjects. Juries and whatnot are a better option. That shouldn't stop the ruler from doing his job.

Yep. You can't prove anything. You can show that something is almost certain, so much so that assuming it is a 100% certainty isn't going to cause any harm, but actually proving something 100%? Impossible.

Okay, in that case, it should be based on preventing suffering caused by other people as much as possible. Protect society from itself. And from you, of course.

In general, I'd say no cameras in people's homes.

I'm not familiar with that dilemma. Could you extrapolate?

 The dilemma usually used to  Illustrate difficulties with the Utilitarianism.  Namely  That it is overly fixated with harm and pleasure  And not concerned enough about other aspects of morality such as Justice, authority,  Sanctity, and so on. 

 

 Basically the dilemma goes like this,  A beloved member of a small town is murdered,  A rumor starts that that the lone stranger passing through town is responsible,  But there is no evidence whatsoever to convict him.  The town is frustrated at what  They see as a Justice department unwilling to do their job  And they began to riot. The riot begins to get out of hand and you fear that several dozen people may lose their lives. With that in mind as as the police chief do you have a moral obligation to plant evidence on the lone stranger  In order to placate the crowd and save a dozen or more lives.

 Basically this is a Justice vs harm dilemma.  Your choice of answer is supposed to reveal which aspect of morality you value more.

Edited by bmcclure7
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2 hours ago, Nameless said:

Yep. You can't prove anything. You can show that something is almost certain, so much so that assuming it is a 100% certainty isn't going to cause any harm, but actually proving something 100%? Impossible.

So you're telling me that if you saw someone stab another person right next to you, and then stab themselves, you couldn't be 100% certain that the now dead killer had indeed stabbed the other man?

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2 hours ago, Experience said:

So you're telling me that if you saw someone stab another person right next to you, and then stab themselves, you couldn't be 100% certain that the now dead killer had indeed stabbed the other man?

Yep. You could have hallucinated the whole thing. Or there could be some completely unreasonable explanation. 100% certainty is impossible. You can get really close, but never actually reach it.

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1 minute ago, Nameless said:

Yep. You could have hallucinated the whole thing. Or there could be some completely unreasonable explanation. 100% certainty is impossible. You can get really close, but never actually reach it.

Yeah, but I guess this argument is kinda pointless. Yes, I guess you can't know perfectly that someone is guilty, but you can know beyond reasonable doubt and much farther past it in this case which is what we have to judge by in order to actually achieve anything, no matter where you stand on the matter. 

 

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Just now, Experience said:

Yeah, but I guess this argument is kinda pointless. Yes, I guess you can't know perfectly that someone is guilty, but you can know beyond reasonable doubt and much farther past it in this case which is what we have to judge by in order to actually achieve anything, no matter where you stand on the matter. 

I know. I was just pointing out that 'reasonable doubt' is never defined, so far as I know. Do you have to be 99% certain that someone committed a crime? Or 90%? Maybe you have to be 99.9%. You have to figure out what 'reasonable doubt' means.

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Just now, Nameless said:

I know. I was just pointing out that 'reasonable doubt' is never defined, so far as I know. Do you have to be 99% certain that someone committed a crime? Or 90%? Maybe you have to be 99.9%. You have to figure out what 'reasonable doubt' means.

I don't know if it's possibly to exactly define it in a percentage. Like I'm not sure what the difference between 99% and 99.9% would be. And what instance would fall under 90%? I feel like it is determined by the individual, as your answer has a high likelihood of being different to mine. 

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Just now, Experience said:

I don't know if it's possibly to exactly define it in a percentage. Like I'm not sure what the difference between 99% and 99.9% would be. And what instance would fall under 90%? I feel like it is determined by the individual, as your answer has a high likelihood of being different to mine. 

Well, the difference between 99% and 99.9% is the difference between convicting one in a thousand people wrongly and one in a hundred. (According to a quick google, between 2-10% of convictions in the US are wrongful, so it looks like 90-98% is considered 'beyond reasonable doubt'. Unless the statistic is wrong, which it very well might be.)

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Just now, Nameless said:

Well, the difference between 99% and 99.9% is the difference between convicting one in a thousand people wrongly and one in a hundred. (According to a quick google, between 2-10% of convictions in the US are wrongful, so it looks like 90-98% is considered 'beyond reasonable doubt'. Unless the statistic is wrong, which it very well might be.)

Oh. I was thinking the percentages were how much of the doubt you had, or how much proof you had.

The hardest part in this specific dilemma (in my mind) is the fact that the Lord holds multiple responsibilities. He is not only the Judge. If he were, it would be his responsibility to judge based on known rights and wrongs of the hogmen (and most likely let them go free). But he also has the responsibility as the towns Protector. The Protector would have to kill (or imprison or banish or something else) all four of them.  And so he cannot do everything that just a Judge or Protector would do. He must compromise. And it is his duty to compromise in a way that best aligns with that of the Judge and the Protector. I still can't decide what a moral (aligned to my personal morals) decision would be, though my initial reaction is going as close to the Judge as possible. 

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 Ah a day break, now back to the philosophy and/or mud flinging @Returned unsure why you wanted to disprove the 0.5% claim mostly because it was a point in your favor but definitely take a look at statistics of murder cases that are “closed” it’s a vary disheartening reality.especially when you realize that murder cases in big cities are more prioritized.

anyways I did the whole comparison thing as a pro/cons to a more “strict” (arguably bias/corrupt) judicial system to a more lenient one.

And I’m sorry I’m better at presenting facts in person. When I’m  Writing my mind splits off from my main point and I end up with the beginning of one sentence and the end of another making my argument seem choppy when I’m trying to make (what I feel like) is a simple point. 
 

like for example I remember hearing of one country that was relatively peaceful. But it was due to the strict but fair laws. 
caught stealing lose a hand. Steal again another hand. I don’t remember the county but I remember the principal. But it doesn’t matter that I know it, mostly because I lack the ability to know if it was real, how stable was the country, how did it fall, were those the laws or just morals people followed. I can’t ask questions without losing my original thought as to why I asked it. 
In other words you’re right this isn’t the place to have long deep  philosophical or meaningful debate. More a place to paint yourself on whatever side of the philosophical spectrum you reside on. 

On 4/24/2022 at 7:23 AM, bmcclure7 said:

 

 

  Utilitarianism Is is only valuable when using a strictly pleasure and harm morality system ( A  Morality system only found in the modern West)

 If you use any Other more complete morality system it falls apart.  (the loan stranger dilemma) . 

 

I don’t follow the philosophy, I don’t follow any really. I just like to pull apart different ideas and study them to an extreme. Some I’ll adopt others I’ll discard, but my world view is a paradoxical bubble. Something that I feel each person is to an extent. Anyone that’s too far one way or another ultimately can’t function, or falls into villainy. 
 

also thoughts on the lone stranger dilemma.

I say wile being the public image and condemning/planting evidence against the stranger you should secretly help the person leave town before something happens. Tell them that the town thinks he did it and that they are unreasonable and will try to kill him. If he stays he knows what he signed himself for. If he leaves then the town doesn’t riot and you just place a wanted sign in the town. If it’s more modern day then you simply don’t do anything. Just try to pacify the crowd. 
 

Now the final question if there is such thing as definitive proof. I would say no. You could say all evidence is Circumstantial. Memory? Way to unreliable, it’s chemical makeup changes every time you think of the thought. We live in a world where anything can be fake, half truths, or twisted to convince people whatever you want to convince them of. 

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17 hours ago, Rg2045 said:

unsure why you wanted to disprove the 0.5% claim mostly because it was a point in your favor but definitely take a look at statistics of murder cases that are “closed” it’s a vary disheartening reality.especially when you realize that murder cases in big cities are more prioritized.

True points are more important than convenient ones, and I don't know anything about the provenance of the number. Besides, my broader point about the reliability of  "some people think..." is the more important one to establish here. And I'm aware that the murder solve rate isn't anywhere near as high as we'd like, but that's tangential to what we're talking about. It would be more consistent with your position so far to start convicting people of those unsolved murders without any evidence just for the sake of saying the solve rate is higher (though not totally consistent with your stated goals-- I'm aware this isn't what you're advocating, but it follows from much of what you've presented and isn't easy to exclude).

 

17 hours ago, Rg2045 said:

And I’m sorry I’m better at presenting facts in person. When I’m  Writing my mind splits off from my main point and I end up with the beginning of one sentence and the end of another making my argument seem choppy when I’m trying to make (what I feel like) is a simple point.

Again, no need to apologize. I get it, and have similar hurdles :( When my posts start to get noticeably long I tend to feel it's a bad sign (and I'm aware that this post looks long :P).

 

In any event, I'm still firm in my conclusion. To knowingly punish someone innocent of murder with a punishment thought to be suitable for a murderer, specifically because there is no evidence to point to the actual murderer, is a bad thing. Whether or not it might be necessary in some specific case is a separate matter. The reluctance to push the full punishment on the innocent party suggests that you believe this too, as does your statement that you would not accept the situation as just if you were the innocent hogman punished, as does a change of heart when the ratios are shifted (it's OK to execute one innocent and three guilty, but not two innocent and two guilty). Even if you (the collective "you", not @Rg2045 specifically) have some feeling that there there is some threshold ratio of innocent:guilty punishment that is morally right on one side and wrong on the other, the burden of that argument is to articulate what that ratio is and why. It is not reasonable to just assert that you can claim the benefits of being on the right side of it.

When the argument is that there are benefits to punishing the innocent, as above, which are to be balanced against the harms of that punishment, then relevant argumentation needs to express what those benefits are, how they will be achieved, and why they're worth the harm. This kind of thing is almost always hard, and a gut feeling like "there will be fewer murders" or "society will be safer" doesn't cut it, especially when these arguments are asserted to explain why we are or are not on the acceptable side of the innocent:guilty punishment ratio.

So in summary the argument that it's right to definitely execute the one innocent hogman in order to definitely execute the three guilty ones is definitely one that a person can make. But making that argument sets up some specific claims that need to be evaluated

  • If it reduces future murders, how many might be so prevented? If it inspires confidence in the government from its citizens, by how much and how necessary is that compared with any fear they might have that the government will execute them wrongly? If those are our goals, would it not be similarly moral to grab random people and convict them of difficult-to-solve crimes in show trials?
  • With or without the above bullet, a person taking the position that the innocent must be executed also has to contend with extensions of that argument. If it's right to execute at a 1:3 innocent:guilty ratio, how about 2:2? 3:1? 5:1? With the arguments presented, if a murder occurs and the killer is seen by a witness but only well enough to say that the killer has brown hair and there is no other evidence of any kind, should all of the brown-haired people in the area be rounded up and punished? If your answer is no, why not, when the hogmen case is such an obvious yes for you? The circumstances regarding guilt, innocence, and evidence are identical. At what point does the "right" punishment of the innocent become the "wrong" punishment of the innocent, and why is the dividing line where it is?

 

These are not easy questions to address but that doesn't mean that we can just skip them or assume that whatever immediate feelings we have will put us in the right. That's why my position is what it is: when the government is exercising arbitrary authority and power to punish citizens, it should make efforts to establish that the objects of that power deserves it. When the government can't do that, then at minimum it needs to be very clear about what it's getting in return for that injustice to even have a chance at claiming it's doing the "right thing". Appeals to fuzzy claims are not enough to prevent error.

 

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So... speaking as someone who has been in leadership, judgment, and other positions of authority only a handful of times, this feels like a situation I hope never to be in. I don't know exactly how I would act, because the parable is specifically limited on detail, but normal life isn't like that. How was the first man killed? Was it in the dead of night? Was it as part of a brawl in a pub? Was the man clubbed in the back of the head or was he gruesomely mutilated? How old were the supposed murderers? I know none of these details. Should these details matter? I don't know, not without knowing what they are exactly. It's why I think judges are needed, because you just don't get situations like this, or if you do I hope it's very rare.

Should Wax have let Wayne live or hang?

I'm guessing most of us will never be in as extreme of a situation as the hogman parable, but say you are a parent that comes home to find that someone had stolen money from your emergency fund. The only people in the house are the three kids, but none of them will admit it. What do you do? That is a situation I could believe happening to me in a decade or two. I hope it doesn't, but it could. Another I hope doesn't happen, but what if you come home and it's not money that is missing, it's the gun from your safe, sharpest kitchen knife from the drawer, the machete for clearing fields, prescription medication, or the axe for chopping wood? In essence, what can we learn from this scenario that can apply to something that may happen to some of us?

I might get mocked for it, but yes, my judgment may change based on individual circumstances, and my inclination will be to try to learn as much as possible, precisely so I don't have to make the decision that the lord in the story is challenged with. Am I dodging the question? Maybe, but that's because it's one I feel woefully inadequate to answer without more information, both of the event itself and the ramifications afterwards. The concept of looking into a man's face and making the decision on if he lives or dies, unsure if he is a murderer is one that would personally trouble me. It's part of why I've never pursued a career in law. Perhaps I'm a coward for hoping that other people with more training and experience would make a better decision than me. On that note, anyone on this thread actually have a degree or other formal training in law or philosophy?

I will note a few things that struck me that I don't think have been mentioned.

Exile can have issues, because it can send 3 murderers to be someone else's problem. Roshone was an example of this. No, I don't know if it's better or worse, I'm just saying this solution can have complications.

There is such a thing as an overall "punishment" for the innocent that we usually don't think too much on, and that is known as security. It's why there are background checks, screening processes, locks, passwords, escorts, banned items and more. What I can do is restricted because of security, but I usually don't complain because it also keeps me safer. I think there are middle of the road answers that aren't cop-outs, or if they are then most everyone has adopted them already. Did you have to make a password to create your account on 17th Shard so that no one would impersonate you and besmirch the good name of AwesomePossum (pretty sure no one has that name on the forum. If that is your name, I apologize and will try to avoid using your name without permission to prove a point)? Levity aside (not talking about Levity the person on 17th Shard), there are more ways to reduce murders than trial and execution. It might not answer the lord's question, but investigation, analysis, and implementation of safeguards can still make the town safer.

Edited by Duxredux
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On 4/23/2022 at 11:49 PM, CameronUluvara said:

I'll start by saying there's a lot of different ways to judge morality. On the question of morality as a whole, that would be easiest to discuss first with the Jasnah incident. If you study philosophy or theology (as I did), you'll notice that all the major philosophies and religions can be divided into three categories. These categories are based on whether morality is ultimately judged by intent, action, or result. For example, Utilitarianism (morality is doing what's best for the majority, or causing more good than harm) judges based on the result of your action. If you benefited the majority of people, moral. If you hurt the majority, immoral. This philosophy obviously isn't as popular anymore, but it's still pretty storming useful! As a side note, people most often judge by intent, governments by action, and philosophies by result. I say all this to tell you that this is what Jasnah is saying, in a roundabout way. Shallan then reads many philosophers who talk about this and comes to the conclusion that morality should be judged by intent, as most people do, and she finds Jasnah's intent to be evil.

Jasnah sought out men to kill. She knew the men were 'evil' and sought to stop them.. She intentionally created opportunity for the men to commit 'evil'. The men took that opportunity. She killed them for it.

Her intent was to cause men to do evil things and to kill them. Her action was killing and breaking the law. Her result was defending herself and her ward, stopping evil men from preying on the travelers on that road, and discouraging other men from taking their place. Under utilitarianism then, by her result, she was moral. She caused more good than harm. But many say that killing is inherently wrong, or that causing men to commit evil is evil...…judge her as you will.

So at the end of the day, you are perfectly entitled to believe the scene was how you do and I respect that. I just tend to see this perspective pop up and it just never makes sense to me. So I will comment on it and then move on to the point of the thread. 

I honestly and genuinely do not understand how Jasnah, walking down the alley, whether with riches or poor, elaborate clothing or full on naked, could be viewed as causing the men attack her. Her intent is immaterial. Her reason for being there is immaterial. 

The killers have killed before at that location multiple times. They trapped the women. They struck with lethal intent first. 

Not a single thing she did made those men attack her with the intent to kill. 

 

 

Now that I have stated that. In regards to the hogman issue. So to reiterate the example.

There are a total of five hogmen. One is grievously injured and on his death bed states three other hogmen did the deed. As there is a total of five, and one is the victim, that leaves four hogmen. Of the four remaining, three are the perpetrators, and one is innocent.

 

I believe banishing them is a cop out, leaving the problem for someone else.

I believe locking them all up is deferring the issue to a later date

I believe executing them all is taking a salt the earth doctrine to avoid having to make a choice.

 

I stated what choices I disagree with, so the next step is what would i do then?

The answer is the best I can. I would try each individual individually. I would have each individual have a representative to defend themselves, and an individual to prosecute them. I would have a jury of their peers review the evidence and the evidence of character on each individual and come to ruling on each one.

 

The result of this could be:

1. They are each found innocent so all go free

2. They are each found guilty so all are jailed

3. 1 innocent and 2 criminals are found guilty and 1 criminal goes free (and all the other permutations of this combination)

4. 3 criminals are found guilty, and 1 innocent goes free.

 

Now to be clear, just because of how I presented it, I am not discussing it as a numbers game. What I am saying is although it is not perfect and in all likelihood can still result in an innocent being locked up, it is still the best chance at attempting to resolve the issue. In my opinion. Every hogman gets their day in court and a chance to prove themselves not a killer. Every hogman gets a chance to be considered as a killer. And every hogman has a chance of being ruled as a killer.

 

Now I'm sure the response that will be cried out at me is

"but you don't have any evidence! What you are doing is a popularity contest! Whatever hogman is liked most will be ruled innocent and those disliked most will be ruled guilty!"

And that is certainly a possibility. But there is still just as much chance that the decisions could be based on reasoned experiences and not purely superficial judgements. Which is why again, I say, doing the best we can with what we have.

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31 minutes ago, Pathfinder said:

So at the end of the day, you are perfectly entitled to believe the scene was how you do and I respect that. I just tend to see this perspective pop up and it just never makes sense to me. So I will comment on it and then move on to the point of the thread. 

I honestly and genuinely do not understand how Jasnah, walking down the alley, whether with riches or poor, elaborate clothing or full on naked, could be viewed as causing the men attack her. Her intent is immaterial. Her reason for being there is immaterial. 

The killers have killed before at that location multiple times. They trapped the women. They struck with lethal intent first. 

Not a single thing she did made those men attack her with the intent to kill. 

 

I agree that to the men lies blame, but it's also true that Jasnah sought out men with the intent of killing them. I think this pertains to the Way of Kings quote, "As I fear not a child with a weapon he cannot lift, so I do not fear the mind of a man who does not think."  Perhaps it's reading Eragon that's got me thinking this way, but what authority did she have to name herself judge, jury, and executioner? Can it really be called self-defense when 1: those men were never a threat to her 2: she purposefully denied all protection and placed herself in harm's way specifically for the purpose of killing?

37 minutes ago, Pathfinder said:

The answer is the best I can. I would try each individual individually. I would have each individual have a representative to defend themselves, and an individual to prosecute them. I would have a jury of their peers review the evidence and the evidence of character on each individual and come to ruling on each one.

I find this as distasteful as most Western systems. Why should anyone's guilt be judged by the skill of their lawyer? But all systems are flawed. Really, this whole debate is unnecessary, as the differences between systems hardly matter (in terms of human behavior) as long as it's consistent.  

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28 minutes ago, CameronUluvara said:

I agree that to the men lies blame, but it's also true that Jasnah sought out men with the intent of killing them. I think this pertains to the Way of Kings quote, "As I fear not a child with a weapon he cannot lift, so I do not fear the mind of a man who does not think."  Perhaps it's reading Eragon that's got me thinking this way, but what authority did she have to name herself judge, jury, and executioner? Can it really be called self-defense when 1: those men were never a threat to her 2: she purposefully denied all protection and placed herself in harm's way specifically for the purpose of killing?

Whether she sought them out or not is immaterial in regards to whether or not she caused them to attack her. They set up shop there. They have done the action before and they did the action again. She did not make them do anything.

28 minutes ago, CameronUluvara said:

I find this as distasteful as most Western systems. Why should anyone's guilt be judged by the skill of their lawyer? But all systems are flawed. Really, this whole debate is unnecessary, as the differences between systems hardly matter (in terms of human behavior) as long as it's consistent.  

Because the individuals whose guilt is being discussed typically lacks the skill to defend themselves. You would not ask a home owner to repair their own roof. Could they attempt it? Surely. But it would make far more sense to provide them with an individual skilled in the practice to adequately accomplish the task. Thereby an individual should be represented by a skilled attorney and also prosecuted by a skilled attorney.

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34 minutes ago, CameronUluvara said:

 2: she purposefully denied all protection and placed herself in harm's way specifically for the purpose of killing?

Does that mean if you leave something outside and someone steals it then you aren't a victim of theft?

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2 minutes ago, Frustration said:

Does that mean if you leave something outside and someone steals it then you aren't a victim of theft?

Did you leave it outside knowing that it would be stolen, with the intent for it to be stolen? I would find it hypocritical for you to complain about that thing being stolen, but the person who stole it still did something wrong.

Let me ask another question:

Would it be right to leave something outside and then hide near it, waiting for someone to come along and steal it so you can beat them up?

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5 minutes ago, Nameless said:

Did you leave it outside knowing that it would be stolen, with the intent for it to be stolen? I would find it hypocritical for you to complain about that thing being stolen, but the person who stole it still did something wrong.

Let me ask another question:

Would it be right to leave something outside and then hide near it, waiting for someone to come along and steal it so you can beat them up?

That's litterally what a stakeout is.

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16 minutes ago, Frustration said:

Does that mean if you leave something outside and someone steals it then you aren't a victim of theft?

You can't equate that; we're talking about intent.

4 minutes ago, Nameless said:

Did you leave it outside knowing that it would be stolen, with the intent for it to be stolen? I would find it hypocritical for you to complain about that thing being stolen, but the person who stole it still did something wrong.

Let me ask another question:

Would it be right to leave something outside and then hide near it, waiting for someone to come along and steal it so you can beat them up?

Now that's a great question.

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Just now, CameronUluvara said:

You can't equate that; we're talking about intent.

I can, and I did.

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