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Milosevic dies in jail
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Fjordor
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Old Mar 11, 2006, 05:02 PM Local time: Mar 11, 2006, 06:02 PM #51 of 86
Originally Posted by Devo
I'd assume that suffering is to be avoided as much as possible, and the suffering of one doesn't not justify happiness for all because true happiness should not come from the pain of others.
That however is not utilitarianism.

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gyges
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Old Mar 11, 2006, 05:07 PM #52 of 86
Quote:
I'd assume that suffering is to be avoided as much as possible, and the suffering of one doesn't not justify happiness for all because true happiness should not come from the pain of others.
Sadly, I don't think that will ever be possible...
How does one distinguish between "true happiness" and "not true happiness"?

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Last edited by gyges; Mar 11, 2006 at 05:12 PM.
gyges
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Old Mar 11, 2006, 05:18 PM #53 of 86
Quote:
True happiness shouldn't come at the cost of others but of course that's my opinion. You can't conduct any sort of debate on non-concrete subjects without agreement on what certain terms mean. So this is probably just going nowhere.
Yes, probably you're right...I think that we have fundamentally different views on what accounts as "true happiness". I count all happiness as "true happiness, but that's just my definition of it...

But it's good that there are different views on things, else the world would be very boring ^^

I think the discussion has become somewhat off-topic also, considering the topic being "Milosevic dies in jail"...

Anyway, I'm going to sleep now, so good night to you ^^

How ya doing, buddy?
Bradylama
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Old Mar 11, 2006, 05:19 PM Local time: Mar 11, 2006, 05:19 PM #54 of 86
Quote:
The point I have been trying to make, is that I don't think that "justice" is the right way to go. I believe that whatever causes the most happiness is the right way to go, and if "letting Milosevic experience a few million deaths" would cause greater happiness overall in the world than him only getting to spend a few years in prison, or even be freed, than I would think it's the right thing to do.
Again, have you ever seen the movie A Clockwork Orange? I'm assuming that you haven't, because otherwise this dilemma would have become apparent to you, so I'll give you a basic synopsis of what happens in the movie.

Spoiler:
Basically, a British youth enjoys spending time going out with his thug friends, stealing, beating, and raping anybody who they can get away with for jollies. This kid is legitimately evil, and revels in the misery he causes for others. Eventually, he commits manslaughter, and is sent to a legitimate penitentiary, where he weasels out of being gang raped by working in the prison chapel, yet despite giving the impression that he has become Godly, the stories he reads of the debauchery and villainy that occur in the Bible only fuel his want for self-serving destruction. Eventually he is selected as a test case for a new rehabilitation program where his mind and body are conditioned to react violently to violent impulses. He is considered a success, and released into the world, where his inability to behave violently eventually lands him in the care of the man whose wife he had previously raped. In an anti-government conspiracy, the man and his associates cause stimuli in the boy with the intention of causing his death, and revealing the nature of the rehabilitation program to the press, in order to force out the current government in the elections. However, the boy doesn't die, and is taken to a hospital, where he is de-programmed, and used by government officials to act as a witness against the conspirators, who currently reside in jail. For his compliance, he is rewarded with a lifted prison sentence, and a government salary. It is at this point that the movie ends.


In the case presented by A Clockwork Orange, you have an individual who increases his own happiness by causing pain and misery to others. Eventually, this misery is visited back to him by an amoral government, yet he is also eventually rewarded for being a terrible person by said government, which seeks to service it's own ends.

So, the boy derives pleasure from harming others, increasing his own happiness, and reducing those of others. Eventually, he is sent to prison, which serves to increase the happiness of the relatives of his victim, while simultaneously increasing his own. Eventually, an amoral government which seeks to cause the most happiness in society (i.e. a low-cost rehabilitation program to replace expensive penitentiaries) causes an extraordinary amount of pain and suffering to the boy to further it's own ends. Causing more pain and suffering to the boy increases the happiness of the man whose wife he raped, yet this man, who acted in a justifiable manner, is eventually punished, while the boy is rewarded by the government, which seeks to maintain this idealized level of "happiness" by punishing a select amount of Just individuals.

By all acounts, the boy should be executed, yet he is both punished, and rewarded, and put into a position where he could potentially harm more people, all for the sake of self-serving agendas in the assumtion that a greater good is being accomplished.

Ultimately, had he been left to rot in prison, society in general would have been for the better, as he was in a place where he could not harm others.

How do you respond to this?

What kind of toxic man-thing is happening now?
Watts
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Old Mar 11, 2006, 05:20 PM Local time: Mar 11, 2006, 03:20 PM #55 of 86
Originally Posted by Musharraf
Sorry what are you saying there; it's late and I haven't had my nightbooze yet
Uhh basically that people who aren't open to different ideas, aren't open to different ideas because it threatens their close-minded view on life. Also, that it's not right to single Americans out just because some (or the majority) of Americans are small-minded.

The last bit was just crap I thought was funny at the time. You totally killed it for me though.

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gyges
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Old Mar 11, 2006, 05:33 PM #56 of 86
One last post for today...

Sorry for not answering you last time you asked, I forgot when I read on in the thread...Yes, I have seen the movie, though it was some time ago, so thanks for the good summary for reminding me...

Quote:
Ultimately, had he been left to rot in prison, society in general would have been for the better, as he was in a place where he could not harm others.
you quoted me saying:
Quote:
I believe that whatever causes the most happiness is the right way to go, and if "letting Milosevic experience a few million deaths" would cause greater happiness overall in the world than [...] than I would think it's the right thing to do.
What I think is that, if putting him into prison would cause the greatest happiness overall, then it would have been the right thing to do, so I think it would have been better to put him into prison.

Once again, I do not think that "not causing suffering" is the right thing to do, but "causing most happiness" and I believe that might include causing some suffering, sadly. But I'm against causing unnecessary suffering in the world, only because some people think that it's "just" if someone suffers because of causing suffering.

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Bradylama
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Old Mar 11, 2006, 05:42 PM Local time: Mar 11, 2006, 05:42 PM #57 of 86
Yet you're forgetting what happens in the movie, which is that because certain agents acted in the pursuit of "happiness" that more suffering is caused than happiness. Without the morals applied by a just society, the amount of suffering and potential suffering caused in the movie would have been avoided. All of which was caused in the pursuit of ultimately Utilitarian ideals.

Jam it back in, in the dark.
RacinReaver
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Old Mar 11, 2006, 11:01 PM Local time: Mar 11, 2006, 09:01 PM #58 of 86
That's actually a pretty different ending of the story from what was in the book, if I'm remembering it right (heck, I hadn't even known they made a movie of it).

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Lord Styphon
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Old Mar 11, 2006, 11:05 PM Local time: Mar 11, 2006, 11:05 PM #59 of 86
Originally Posted by RacinReaver
That's actually a pretty different ending of the story from what was in the book, if I'm remembering it right (heck, I hadn't even known they made a movie of it).
The book continues on for a while after the point where the movie ends. There is some debate about which ending is better.

Also, how could you not know they made a movie of it?

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AlogiA
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Old Mar 12, 2006, 08:22 AM Local time: Mar 12, 2006, 03:22 PM #60 of 86
Originally Posted by Killy
Or the assault on those young boys carried out by British soldiers. Or the use of cluster bombs (which are illegal, mind you) during the NATO bombings of Yugoslavia.
Illegal or not, this is the NATO. They can do what the hell they want.

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gyges
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Old Mar 13, 2006, 11:04 AM #61 of 86
Quote:
Yet you're forgetting what happens in the movie, which is that because certain agents acted in the pursuit of "happiness" that more suffering is caused than happiness. Without the morals applied by a just society, the amount of suffering and potential suffering caused in the movie would have been avoided. All of which was caused in the pursuit of ultimately Utilitarian ideals.
Yes, but whatever reason they acted for is not interesting from an utilitarian perspective. It's only the consequences that matter.

So, in this case, clearly the morally more right thing to do would have to be "just", if that's what causing more happiness. Just because someone acts in pursuit of happiness doesn't mean that he's acting morally right from an utilitarian perspective.

Utilitarianism is purely theoretical, and it does not tell people for which reasons they should act, just that the morally right thing to do is the one that causes most happiness. Someone trying to achieve most happiness doesn't neccessarily cause it.

In this case, being just would have caused more happiness, and therefore it would have been more morally right to do than what they did in the movie.

I was speaking idiomatically.
JazzFlight
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Old Mar 13, 2006, 12:08 PM #62 of 86
Sorry to butt in here:

It's a bit off-topic, but has anyone read Death Note (manga)?

When I heard Milosevic died in jail of a heart attack, it's pretty much the same premise as the beginning of Death Note (the main character has a book that, if a person's name is written in it, that person will instantly die of a heart attack). Basically, the main character wrote down dozens of names of famous criminals in prison and they all died of heart attacks.

Just a funny coincidence.

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Bradylama
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Old Mar 13, 2006, 03:20 PM Local time: Mar 13, 2006, 03:20 PM #63 of 86
Quote:
Utilitarianism is purely theoretical, and it does not tell people for which reasons they should act, just that the morally right thing to do is the one that causes most happiness. Someone trying to achieve most happiness doesn't neccessarily cause it.
Then Utilitarianism is a meaningless philosophy, because if it is impossible to determine whether or not one's actions cause happiness, then there is no objective way to implement moral decision making. It is decisively amoral.

Besides, the pursuit of "Justice" in the case of Alex doesn't necessarily cause more happiness, as it does present a tremendous amount of suffering. That is the problem with Utilitarian thinking, that happiness is created by any number of criteria, and that destructive elements of it are considered good.

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gyges
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Old Mar 14, 2006, 08:18 AM #64 of 86
Quote:
Then Utilitarianism is a meaningless philosophy, because if it is impossible to determine whether or not one's actions cause happiness, then there is no objective way to implement moral decision making. It is decisively amoral.
Yes, essentially utilitarianism doesn't really help you making everyday-decisions... For me it's simply a definition what is right. Of course I would have to be all-knowing and god-like being in order to act morally right, but having defined "causing as great happiness as possible" as ones goal has other implications, one of them being that justice is nothing one should try to achieve (if it in itself doesn't create more happiness, which I doubt it does in many cases).

Basically, with utilitarianism you can never formulate any principles on how you should act in some given situation, e.g. driving while being drunk might actually, although it's not probable, save someones life, etc...

EDIT: Actually, I think that if everyone would try and cause as great happiness as possible, without any principles on how one should act in some given situation, it would also create more happiness, because humans are highly sociable animals, and we do know quite alot about other people's feelings, etc... although of course there are some extreme cases where this is not true.

I think every philosophy that states some rules on how one can decide whether it's morally right to act in some way or not (like Kant's philosophy, etc..) can never lead to as great happiness as people trying to achieve it by actually *thinking*.

The thing is, I could probably program my computer to apply the "Categoric Imperative" of Kant to actions, but I think that's one thing that distinguishes humans from computers, that we can think about *the consequences* of our actions. And if we try to achieve "great happiness" as the consequence of our actions, I think we will be quite successful.

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Last edited by gyges; Mar 14, 2006 at 08:30 AM.
Minion
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Old Mar 14, 2006, 09:23 AM #65 of 86
Like, 2/3 of this thread is not about Milosevic.

How 'bout that guys name, huh? Slobodan? What do you think they called him in grammar school? Slo? Slobo? Lobo? Dan? Bodan?

Guy's got a thousand nicknames.

Jam it back in, in the dark.
DBCE Slayer
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Old Mar 14, 2006, 09:52 AM Local time: Mar 14, 2006, 04:52 AM #66 of 86
Originally Posted by Myst'
Criminals like Saddam or Milosevic should feel the same pain they made their victims feel. But im afraid you cant make someone feel a million deaths -.-
Yeah, unfortunately you can't do that or else it would have to be major overkill.

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Old Mar 14, 2006, 12:36 PM Local time: Mar 14, 2006, 07:36 PM #67 of 86
I fear that this will have some severe consequences for the so-called hunt for Mladic and Karadzic. Serbia hasn't been cooperating very well, and now that their former president died in a foreign cell, they'll use that as an excuse to stop searching for the last two suspects, since they don't want them to die in a cell. Although nothing's sure yet, since the EU is putting more and more pressure on Serbia, threatening to halt the EU-membership.

As for Milosevic, it seems that he was taking some other medicines, that cancelled the medicines he was taking for his heart and blood pressure. who gave them to him? Did he knew what they were doing, and did he want to commit suicide in the longer run, or was it just to have an excuse to go to Russia for medical treatment?

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Old Mar 14, 2006, 03:01 PM Local time: Mar 14, 2006, 02:01 PM #68 of 86
I'm still puzzling over people's outrage that he dared to die in prison. He was removed from power, was constantly reminded of his crimes, and died alone in a little jail cell. A fitting end to his life, I think.

They were just going to put him to death anyway. Who cares if he kicked off early? Justice was served the moment they took him into custody and threw him in his cell. The people who are incensed that they didn't get a chance to finish his trial and face punishment don't really want justice, they want revenge. People seem to have the two concepts mixed up in their heads.

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Old Mar 14, 2006, 03:13 PM Local time: Mar 14, 2006, 10:13 PM #69 of 86
He couldn't have been put to death, the max punishment for the Yugoslavia court is a life long sentence. People are disappointed because, even though they knew that he would be found guilty, the court didn't get a chance to actually say that he was one of the biggest criminals of the Balkan Wars. Some would rather see him rot away in prison for at least 20 years, than see him death, because it would be the easy way out.

I was speaking idiomatically.
AlogiA
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Old Mar 14, 2006, 04:40 PM Local time: Mar 14, 2006, 11:40 PM #70 of 86
Originally Posted by Enkidu
I fear that this will have some severe consequences for the so-called hunt for Mladic and Karadzic. Serbia hasn't been cooperating very well, and now that their former president died in a foreign cell, they'll use that as an excuse to stop searching for the last two suspects, since they don't want them to die in a cell. Although nothing's sure yet, since the EU is putting more and more pressure on Serbia, threatening to halt the EU-membership.
I 'd say that this will have no consequences at all. The "search" for Karadzic and Mladic is nothing more than a joke. And there has been no evidence that tose guys are in Serbia at all since it is presumed that they are still in the Serbian part of Bosnia where they can roam almost freely. Both have many supporters.
Since Karadzic and Mladic are moving through Bosian territory, Serbia can do nothing. Del Ponte is just discracing herself, since she is too incompetent. Mlaic and Karadzic are hiding in an area which isn't even bigger than Maryland and she wasn't able to find them for almost 11 years! It is almost as embarrassing as the "search" for Bin Laden.

What kind of toxic man-thing is happening now?

Last edited by AlogiA; Mar 14, 2006 at 04:42 PM.
Peter
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Old Mar 14, 2006, 04:54 PM Local time: Mar 14, 2006, 11:54 PM #71 of 86
It it not HER job to be looking for them, but it's the job of the new serbian government. And even if Mladic and Karadzic are on Bosnian territory, Serbia had plenty of chances of catching them on Serbian territory, it just wasn't possible for them with an unstable government and a higly independant army which still looks up to those two.

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AlogiA
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Old Mar 15, 2006, 02:34 PM Local time: Mar 15, 2006, 09:34 PM #72 of 86
Originally Posted by Enkidu
It it not HER job to be looking for them
What then is her job? Sitting around in the Hague and crying about what nasty boys those Serbs and Croats are?
It seems as it is her job to find those two, since the Serbs have no interest in handing them over. For now Serbia is rather hunting for Karic.
Lets imagine following situation:
The EU tells Serbia to arrest them and hand over to the Hague and then they would have an EU membership. But what guarante would Serbia have that the EU keeps her promise? And so instead of letting Serbia joning in, they let her rather to rot. And so this is one of the reasons why Serbia thinks that it would be better not to trust them and keep the "heroes" in the homeland and since many Serbs see Karadzic and Mladic as their heroes.

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Old Mar 16, 2006, 03:14 AM Local time: Mar 16, 2006, 10:14 AM #73 of 86
It's her job to prepare a case against them, not to organize the search herself, she's only a prosecutor. The reason she's so prominent in the entire search, is ony to put more and more pressure on Serbia and Croatia. She doesn't have the authority to do more.

It's understandable that Serbia is suspicious, and fearing that the EU will break it's promise, but I don't think that it'll happen now. The EU desperately needs to get a positive image, after the mess with the constitution, and if they even try to break one of their promises with Serbia, the public opinion in other countries will only realize that the EU wants to stay an elite club. It's in the EU's best interest to be able to keep that promise.

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