View Poll Results: Should criminals be released(no prison)if rehabilitation came in the form of a pill?

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  • They should still serve out what ever punishment they were handed.

    27 51.92%
  • They should be released after taking the pill.

    21 40.38%
  • I do not know.

    4 7.69%
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Thread: If it was possible to rehabilitate criminals with one pill...........................

  1. #61
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    Re: If it was possible to rehabilitate criminals with one pill.......................

    Quote Originally Posted by Scucca View Post
    Basic libertarian error. First, you're not appreciating the pill's attack on the notion of free will and therefore the whole notion of rationality. Second, in terms of deterrence effects, you're ignoring the interependence of the public (and therefore the need to maintain prison populations)

    See you had a different interpretation of the pill than I did. I took it as a one-time cure all.

    If it removes free-will, it is a punishment in and of itself.

    If it is a removal of free will, then it REPLACES prison populations as the primary form of punishment (I'm FAR more terrified of loss of intelectual freedom than I am of the loss of physical freedom.) and therefore can be considered a true deterrent.

    If it "cures" an illness, then there really is no such thingas a deterrent since it is a disease that causes crinminality, not free-will.

    Either way, the Pill itself can be considered a deterrent in the hypothetical reality.

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    Re: If it was possible to rehabilitate criminals with one pill.......................

    Quote Originally Posted by ronpaulvoter View Post
    If the pill would cure him from committing any additional criminal activities, there would be no rational reason to keep him in prison.
    Again, are we merely using the justice system as purely a detterence or does punishment and accountability for the initial act have value and moral importance? I bring back up the example I mentioned earlier: the 90 year old Nazi war criminal hiding in South America. Odds are, he is a danger to no one. Let's say that he isn't, that he is a good citizen of argentina, a good great grandfather and a friend to his neighbors. Doesn't our intuition tell us that he still should answer for his crimes?
    It is an extreme example, but I think it does suggest that punishment is not without moral importance in response to acts of evil.
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  3. #63
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    Re: If it was possible to rehabilitate criminals with one pill.......................

    Quote Originally Posted by Tucker Case View Post
    See you had a different interpretation of the pill than I did. I took it as a one-time cure all.

    If it removes free-will, it is a punishment in and of itself.
    Free will refers to consistent preferences. We don't have that with the pill (and we don't have it once we refer to both mental and general scientific analysis into the determinants of behaviour). The pill merely offers an opportunity for the "oops, been found out" criminal to avoid a punishment. Its similar to the cheering sinner that finds god just before he dies.

    Either way, the Pill itself can be considered a deterrent in the hypothetical reality.
    It has no deterrence value. It is not a punishment

  4. #64
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    Re: If it was possible to rehabilitate criminals with one pill.......................

    Quote Originally Posted by Scucca View Post
    Free will refers to consistent preferences. We don't have that with the pill (and we don't have it once we refer to both mental and general scientific analysis into the determinants of behaviour). The pill merely offers an opportunity for the "oops, been found out" criminal to avoid a punishment. Its similar to the cheering sinner that finds god just before he dies.
    No, actually the pill as described cause the criminal to be "rehabilitated" as in either unable or unwilling to commit crimes again.

    That's the hypothetical reality. Obviously it does not relate to the real world since there is no such pill that can actually rehabilitate the offender.

    If such a pill existed it could ONLY work one of two ways.

    1. It actually cures some sort of defect that causes the criminality

    2. It removes the ability MENTALLY (as described remorse is included) to commit crime. this is a removal of free-will to commit or not commit crimes

    Otherwise it is simple a placebo that acts on nothing thus negating the entire hypothetical construct.


    It has no deterrence value. It is not a punishment
    Actually, you would DEFINITELY need a hypothetical study in this hypothetical reality where such a drug exists to determine the hypothetical deterrence value of this hypothetical drug on their hypothetical crime.

    Simply saying "It has no detterence value" is totally false. You cannot possibly know whether or not it would have a detterence value.

    Quoting studies from OUR reality is nearly as useless as the male nipple since our reality is OBVIOUSLY completely different from the hypothetical reality.

    And if it REMOVES the free-will of the offender, then it IS a punishment of sorts. It is a NEGATIVE PUNISHMENT in the sense of operant conditioning.
    Last edited by Tucker Case; 08-27-08 at 07:31 PM.

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    Re: If it was possible to rehabilitate criminals with one pill.......................

    Quote Originally Posted by Tucker Case View Post
    No, actually the pill as described cause the criminal to be "rehabilitated" as in either unable or unwilling to commit crimes again.
    The problem is that it would impact on behaviour prior to potential criminal act. It becomes more attractive to commit crime and utilise the pill afterwards. That summary assumes rationality. If we also have a pill describing temporary insanity (and therefore the worthlessness of free will), we have the whole libertarian approach under a cloud.


    Actually, you would DEFINITELY need a hypothetical study in this hypothetical reality where such a drug exists to determine the hypothetical deterrence value of this hypothetical drug on their hypothetical crime.
    Nope! Given there is no instantaneous pill provision, the rational criminal will know that there are net expected gains to be had.

    Simply saying "It has no detterence value" is totally false. You cannot possibly know whether or not it would have a detterence value.
    The potential criminal compares the expected gain from legitimate activity and criminal activity. The pill does nothing to increase the former or reduce the latter (it only introduces the chances of inconsistent preferences). It therefore has no deterrence value

  6. #66
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    Re: If it was possible to rehabilitate criminals with one pill.......................

    Quote Originally Posted by Scucca View Post
    The problem is that it would impact on behaviour prior to potential criminal act. It becomes more attractive to commit crime and utilise the pill afterwards. That summary assumes rationality. If we also have a pill describing temporary insanity (and therefore the worthlessness of free will), we have the whole libertarian approach under a cloud.

    Crime is not caused by active choice. It's a disease (as evidenced by the pill-cure) the pill could not work under the conditions you describe... EVER. (granted, the pill only exists in a hypothetical la-la land, but if we want to play in that la la land, we CANNOT keep changing it's natural order to suit our agendas.

    The Hypothetical "Fact" that the pill is actually effective, means it HAS to act upon something in order for it to actually be effective. this means that in the hypothetical reality (NOT OUR REALITY) The pill can only work one of two ways.

    In the "curing a disorder" method, the pill CURES A DISORDER THAT CAUSES CRIMINALITY.

    If ALL criminality is CAUSED by a disorder, knowledge of the pills existence has no bearing whatsoever on willingness to commit a crime since the DISEASE is the causal factor, not free-will.


    If the pill removes free-will, it is a possible deterrent and a study in that hypothetical reality MUST be necessary in order to determine whether continued incarceration were required or not. If the potential loss of free-will to self-determine whether or not you will commit a crime (you lose the option of committing the crime, and thus your ability to decide) is a greater deterrent that the potential loss of physical freedom, continued incarceration may not be necessary.

    It may still be necessary in this instance through if studies determine both to be effective (in this crazy world of magic pills)



    Nope! Given there is no instantaneous pill provision, the rational criminal will know that there are net expected gains to be had.
    In the reality, Criminals are NEVER rational. Are you missing the fact that a pill can effective rehabilitate? Rationality was tossed out the window in this reality from the start.

    The potential criminal compares the expected gain from legitimate activity and criminal activity. The pill does nothing to increase the former or reduce the latter (it only introduces the chances of inconsistent preferences). It therefore has no deterrence value


    Actually, there is your are logical flaw.

    For the pill to actually work, for the hypothetical reality to even "exist", criminals cannot be weighing options when deciding to commit crimes. Otherwise, the pill is totally ineffective.

    It HAS to act on something in order to ELIMINATE criminality ENTIRELY. that means that Criminality has some root biological cause (not-rationally based)

    That means in the hypothetical reality, criminals are NOT rational actors. that is why the pill is effective in this reality.




    Unless you can come up with another way that the pill can possibly be effective, the argument of rationalizing criminality is pointless in this context.

    teh two ways I've figured it could work are

    A. curing a criminality disorder (removes the desire to commit crime)

    B. Removing free will (removes the ABILITY to commit crime.)

    In A, there is no rational behavior involved in criminality. In B, the DESIRE to commit crime would still exist, but become impossible to fulfill.

  7. #67
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    Re: If it was possible to rehabilitate criminals with one pill.......................

    Quote Originally Posted by Tucker Case View Post
    In the "curing a disorder" method, the pill CURES A DISORDER THAT CAUSES CRIMINALITY.

    If ALL criminality is CAUSED by a disorder, knowledge of the pills existence has no bearing whatsoever on willingness to commit a crime since the DISEASE is the causal factor, not free-will.
    The constant scientific attack on free will is not an attack on 'rational crime'. It is an attack on how preferences are formed (e.g. the non-pecuniary benefits from paedophilia could be dependent on a brain tumour). The potential criminal remains a maximiser (i.e. makes decisions dependent on the net expected benefit being positive). We have something similar here. The pill changes preferences and therefore enforces inconsistent preferences over time.

    The potential criminal will take this into account. She'd appreciate, for example, that there is a probability that the non-pecuniary benefits from crime (e.g. thrill effects and memories of those effects) may be wiped out. However, she plays the probability game nonetheless as we still have positive net expected benefits from crime available (particularly if the pill leads to the elimination of the prison threat)

    In the reality, Criminals are NEVER rational. Are you missing the fact that a pill can effective rehabilitate? Rationality was tossed out the window in this reality from the start.
    It only means that the criminal is denied the consistent preferences that are utilised in the most simple rationality models. A rational criminal will take that into account.

    For the pill to actually work, for the hypothetical reality to even "exist", criminals cannot be weighing options when deciding to commit crimes. Otherwise, the pill is totally ineffective.
    Nope! The paedophile cancer sufferer can still commit his crimes by weighing up costs and benefits. He still can minimise those costs and maximise the benefits. Brain surgery in the future simply changes those costs and benefits.

  8. #68
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    fyi Re: If it was possible to rehabilitate criminals with one pill.......................

    Quote Originally Posted by Scucca View Post
    Basic libertarian error. First, you're not appreciating the pill's attack on the notion of free will and therefore the whole notion of rationality. Second, in terms of deterrence effects, you're ignoring the interdependence of the public (and therefore the need to maintain prison populations)
    You are partially correct. If the pill actually affected mental functions, then the free will argument would be valid. However, such a pill, as mentioned earlier, is fantasy.

    Castration, on the other hand, does not affect mental functions and would not violate the free will concept. Castration diminishes the raw animal instinct of sex drive, which if excessive, can overcome common sense and self-control. Thus a castrated violent criminal has a far better opportunity to be rehabilitated.


    Quote Originally Posted by faminedynasty View Post
    Again, are we merely using the justice system as purely a detterence or does punishment and accountability for the initial act have value and moral importance? I bring back up the example I mentioned earlier: the 90 year old Nazi war criminal hiding in South America. Odds are, he is a danger to no one. Let's say that he isn't, that he is a good citizen of argentina, a good great grandfather and a friend to his neighbors. Doesn't our intuition tell us that he still should answer for his crimes?
    It is an extreme example, but I think it does suggest that punishment is not without moral importance in response to acts of evil.
    The purpose of incarceration is to protect people from criminals who are likely to commit additional criminal acts. There is nothing to be gained by incarcerating a 90 year old who is very unlikely to do anything harmful. That would be revenge rather than justice. If he is a good citizen and friend, forgive him. Let him answer to the Lord. However, if he commits a crime and is a threat to others, then throw him into jail.

  9. #69
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    Re: If it was possible to rehabilitate criminals with one pill.......................

    Quote Originally Posted by ronpaulvoter View Post
    The purpose of incarceration is to protect people from criminals who are likely to commit additional criminal acts. There is nothing to be gained by incarcerating a 90 year old who is very unlikely to do anything harmful. That would be revenge rather than justice. If he is a good citizen and friend, forgive him. Let him answer to the Lord. However, if he commits a crime and is a threat to others, then throw him into jail.
    On the run and driven into hiding, the former SS officers who fled justice were probably not much of a threat to the south American societies they fled to. Their ability to engage in crimes against humanity and to destroy millions of lives were dependent upon the support of a state by then destroyed (at the cost of millions more lives). But I do not think it was merely a lust for revenge but a desire for justice that led dedicated individuals to hunt them. Nor do I think that it would appeal to the intuition of the common man to think it JUST that the orchestrators of the death camps be allowed to live the remainder of their lives in prosperity and happiness on the finest beaches South America has to offer.


    Milosovic was no threat after his fall from power. Nor was Saddam. Nor the perpatrators of the Genocide in Rwanda. But the desire to prosecute them nonetheless emerges not merely from the desire for revenge but from the desire for justice. The notion that those who engage in acts of inhuman evil must be called to account for their cimes. And I don't think that how long ago it was, so long as they have gone unpunished has much to do with it. What if it were only a year after Dauchau? 5 years? 10? 30? At what point does justice no longer demand accountability for such an act?


    How about a hypothetical rather than a historical as a thought experiment? Say a man is a serial murderer of children. For his kicks he abducts children, takes them to a warehouse and burns them alive, purely for his own amusement. Our man is not insane, merely evil. Further let's say he's not desperate or poor, but rich and well off and has enjoyed every privalege of aristocracy. It is purely for fun that he ruins the lives of innocent people. But on one day when he's incinerating an innocent child, let's call him Billy, our killer goes overboard with the gasoline and sets himself ablaze. He's burned badly (which, as a sado-masochist he enjoys). Let's say he's blinded, or paralyzed--somehow rendered incapable of getting his kicks as he used to. At the interogation he gleefully admits his guilt to 47 such killings and tells the detectives how much fun he had, shows no remorse, but promises that now he will retire to his private Caribbean island where he will lie on the beach sipping all manner of drinks with umbrellas in them and eating ice cream, thinking back on all the good times he's had. And the prosecutor says, since he's no threat to society, that sounds fine. Does this strike anyone as an adequate notion of justice?
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    Re: If it was possible to rehabilitate criminals with one pill.......................

    Quote Originally Posted by jamesrage View Post
    Lets say if it was possible to rehabilitate every criminal and make them feel remorse with a single pill and there were no chances of relapses,should criminals be given the pill and released immediately back into society/not have to serve out a punishment or should they still serve out what ever punishment the courts gave them

    I believe rehabilitation is one of the goals of the prison system,but not a priority.Punishment is the main priority of the justice system,deterrence of criminal activity is the second priority.
    Has someone found an anti-psychopathic pill? If they have, give George, Newt, Rove and Dick in Washington DC. some to take daily.

    No forget it, they will never be human.

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