View Poll Results: What is the best example of fair punishment for a week?

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  • Timmy has 2 toys, Tommy has 4 toys. Both boys loose all toys.

    21 84.00%
  • Timmy has 2 toys, Tommy has 4 toys. Both boys loose 1 toy.

    2 8.00%
  • Timmy has 2 toys, Tommy has 4 toys. Both boys loose 2 toys.

    1 4.00%
  • Timmy has 2 toys, Tommy has 4 toys. Both boys loose 50% of their toys.

    1 4.00%
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Thread: "Fair" punishment

  1. #101
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    Re: "Fair" punishment

    Quote Originally Posted by Mycroft View Post
    Sorry, but I wouldn't take away any toys. I'd spank both boys until they couldn't sit.

    (I'm just kidding. Don't worry, I don't think spanking is a suitable punishment)

    I would tailor my punishment to the particular boy. For example, one of the boys loves to play his musical instrument. I'd take that away. The other boy loves to play video games. Sorry, kid...the computer stays off.
    Sorry, no changing the kids . see #96 two posts above for help on "imagining" two perfectly equal children.

  2. #102
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    Re: "Fair" punishment

    Quote Originally Posted by pdog View Post
    I never considered this a complex question until recently. I wanted to put it into generic terms and see what kind of responses I got but do it in terms that was a little less loaded. This is largely a social science question regarding concepts like surplus, deprivation, etc.

    This is simply an opinion poll. The boys are the same in each scenario, and you can assume that they misbehaved in the same manner. The number of toys never change. The only thing that changes is the cost of punishment. Choose the one you feel treats both boys with the same degree of punishment and maybe explain why.
    Good question. I saw something once where a woman in Europe someplace got a $140,000 +/- speeding ticket because traffic tickets there are indexed to the violator's means. The theory is if you're rich a $100 fine is no deterrent but if you're not rich it is a deterrent. This lady was wealthy.

    If the question is fairness, both boys losing all toys is probably the most fair. Or punish them with something that one does not live with an advantage like special chores, bland meals (tofu, rice, plain oatmeal, etc. and room temperature water,) time out, spankings.
    Having opinions all over the map is a good sign of a person capable of autonomous thinking. Felix -2011

  3. #103
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    Re: "Fair" punishment

    Quote Originally Posted by johndylan1 View Post
    Deprive both of all toys. This is the only effective negative reinforcement available. In terms of "punishment", the goal is to deprive pleasure in order to shape behavior. In terms of fairness, they receive the same punishment with total deprivation. Keep in mind "loss" and "punishment" are not equivalent terms. A greater loss isn't necessarily a greater punishment and a lesser loss isn't always less punishment. I would also comment that "fairness" is a secondary consideration in the effectiveness of punishment and should not be secondary in other contexts.
    What makes zero toys the "same punishment". My explanation is that by doing all toys, you're effectively changing the units to TIME without toys. With that what is the inherent problem with toys as a unit of punishment?

  4. #104
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    Re: "Fair" punishment

    Quote Originally Posted by pdog View Post
    Sorry, no changing the kids . see #96 two posts above for help on "imagining" two perfectly equal children.
    Shrug...

    Okay. I get it. You aren't talking about realism. You have a sterile equation.

    In that case, I'll refer back to the spanking. That'll teach them not to disobey me.
    TANSTAAFL

    “An armed society is a polite society.”
    ― Robert A. Heinlein, Beyond This Horizon

  5. #105
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    Re: "Fair" punishment

    Quote Originally Posted by pdog View Post
    What makes zero toys the "same punishment". My explanation is that by doing all toys, you're effectively changing the units to TIME without toys. With that what is the inherent problem with toys as a unit of punishment?
    Give'em both a good whipping and be done with it.

  6. #106
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    Re: "Fair" punishment

    Quote Originally Posted by pdog View Post
    I disagree. One of those options effectively changed the unit of punishment (toys) to something more equally held amongst the boys.
    None of the options is "more equal" than the others. The 2 value options are in equal in value but unequal in % just as the 2 % options are equal in % but unequal in value.



    I disagree. I understand people's need to have more realistic details, but that should be entirely unnecessary with abstract thinking. I'm an engineer and these are variables to me. The punishment is X. I don't need to know what X - because if X is the same on both sides of the equation, it simply cancels. For those that need a little more realism, I tell them both boys decided to play with their toys instead of doing homework. But that's all you get. You need to be able to imagine two completely equal boys in all ways accept for the number of toys. Is it realistic to imagine that you personally know two perfectly equal boys. Of course not, but that is not the focus - and the reality is that this abstract thinking parallels the aggregate very well. You might not be able to find two perfectly equal boys. But you could take two large groups of boys and do the exact same thing.
    There is no real world application to a vague hypothetical. You might as well ask if killing 1 space alien if more ethical that killing 1 million space aliens, the answer doesnt matter because the scenario has no value. It doesnt matter what the answer I choose it because I can use the vagueness to fix the variables so that any answer I choose seems like the only fair answer.

  7. #107
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    Re: "Fair" punishment

    Quote Originally Posted by ttwtt78640 View Post
    Why is the one week not equally arbitrary - why not 3 days or a month? Would you advocate eliminating fines as an option, leaving only freedom deprivation (jail or house arrest) as a possible sentence? Fines act as a restitution to society, acting simply as a crime tax, while freedom deprivation has a cost to society as well as to the perp.
    Time is just as arbitrary. The difference is that both kids have roughly the same amount of time. They do not have the same amount of toys.

    This is simple mathematics to me. If we were to make a formula that measures deprivation, it would be deprived amount over the total available amount. With that you get two sets of equations:

    Td / T1 = Td/ T2

    this is toys deprived over toys available for both boys 1 and 2. These will never be equal since T1 does not equal T2

    on the other hand you have

    Hd / Ht = Hd / Ht

    These equations are equal - it's the hours deprived over the total hours - both of these are the same. The key isn't that the punishment is arbitrary or not. Pointing out that it's arbitrary just points out the other side of the argument (establishing the punishment). The key is the units for the total amount must be equal between people in order for the punishment to me equal. You could pick an arbitrary punishment that you want - as long as it is based on something that both people have equally, the punishment will be (more) equal.

  8. #108
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    Re: "Fair" punishment

    Quote Originally Posted by Smeagol View Post
    Good question. I saw something once where a woman in Europe someplace got a $140,000 +/- speeding ticket because traffic tickets there are indexed to the violator's means. The theory is if you're rich a $100 fine is no deterrent but if you're not rich it is a deterrent. This lady was wealthy.

    If the question is fairness, both boys losing all toys is probably the most fair. Or punish them with something that one does not live with an advantage like special chores, bland meals (tofu, rice, plain oatmeal, etc. and room temperature water,) time out, spankings.
    Lol - it's very ironic that you mention that. But because of the "class warfare" connotations I've been trying quite hard to keep this in terms of kids and toys.

  9. #109
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    Re: "Fair" punishment

    Quote Originally Posted by Crovax View Post
    None of the options is "more equal" than the others. The 2 value options are in equal in value but unequal in % just as the 2 % options are equal in % but unequal in value.





    There is no real world application to a vague hypothetical. You might as well ask if killing 1 space alien if more ethical that killing 1 million space aliens, the answer doesnt matter because the scenario has no value. It doesnt matter what the answer I choose it because I can use the vagueness to fix the variables so that any answer I choose seems like the only fair answer.
    Work backwards from my conversation with ttwt in #107 and I explain the arbitrary establishment of the punishment vs the relative punishment to the punished.

  10. #110
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    Re: "Fair" punishment

    Quote Originally Posted by pdog View Post
    Time is just as arbitrary. The difference is that both kids have roughly the same amount of time. They do not have the same amount of toys.

    This is simple mathematics to me. If we were to make a formula that measures deprivation, it would be deprived amount over the total available amount. With that you get two sets of equations:

    Td / T1 = Td/ T2

    this is toys deprived over toys available for both boys 1 and 2. These will never be equal since T1 does not equal T2

    on the other hand you have

    Hd / Ht = Hd / Ht

    These equations are equal - it's the hours deprived over the total hours - both of these are the same. The key isn't that the punishment is arbitrary or not. Pointing out that it's arbitrary just points out the other side of the argument (establishing the punishment). The key is the units for the total amount must be equal between people in order for the punishment to me equal. You could pick an arbitrary punishment that you want - as long as it is based on something that both people have equally, the punishment will be (more) equal.
    Except that mere vengeance is not the goal - the goal is changing behavior (getting the child to do their homework). Taking away time with toys may or may not act as an equal incentive to change behavior, regardless of the number of toys taken away.
    “The reasonable man adapts himself to the world: the unreasonable one persists to adapt the world to himself.
    Therefore all progress depends on the unreasonable man.” ― George Bernard Shaw, Man and Superman

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