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    (Original post by Life_peer)
    Do you realise that human life is widely regarded as the greatest value that is available to us? I don't mean to be rude but I must say I find the emphasised statement utterly ridiculous and although I generally want people to spare me their life story, I'd honestly like to know yours because it must have been very bizarre.

    This twisted idea of justice that is being performed by you and some of your lefty colleagues on this site is completely incompatible with the values of any sensible average person on this planet and I do not understand how this is possible considering your reported education. If you want to rebel against the society, get a fedora and a tattoo or something… :dontknow:

    Anyway, while I can find no reliable statistic on murder, this document reports that the proven recidivism rate for offences agains the person is between 22 and 29 per cent, which is arguably a lot. There is also a huge difference between 10 and 25 years if one's already 25 and looking at a life expectancy of 70 years.

    What's the name of the book?
    The book is Duff's Punishment, Communication and Community.

    My point is that when deciding what sentence is best, the appropriate metric to consider is what is best for society as a whole.
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    (Original post by DMcGovern)
    It is still abhorrent. There should be a focus - rather than punishment - on rehabilitation and preventative detention.
    Which is what life on licence (with a minimum term of imprisonment) achieves. A person who commits murder needs to be made an example of for deterrence, and this is achieved in a humane way by ensuring they are on licence for life after undergoing a period of imprisonment. The public also need to be protected given that this person committed such a heinous act, which is achieved by life on licence in that they can be recalled to prison if they pose a risk.

    The current law strikes the right balance. What possible purpose could removing life on licence achieve other than satisfying some woolly notion that rehabilitation = complete freedom with the odd training course in how to manage anger with yoga and meditation?
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    (Original post by TheDefiniteArticle)
    What you've just said translates to 'it acts as a deterrent'.

    Let's assume that a person believes they will be punished, and accordingly they are affected in their decisions in exactly the same way as if they were to be actually punished (isolating the relevant factor) - do you believe they ought to suffer, even though their suffering achieves precisely nothing but their suffering?
    Given that you appear to agree that sentencing should involve deterrence and protecting the public, how does removing mandatory life sentencing, which essentially means that a person spends their life on a 'life licence' after undergoing a period of imprisonment, benefit society at large?
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    (Original post by Grand High Witch)
    Given that you appear to agree that sentencing should involve deterrence and protecting the public, how does removing mandatory life sentencing, which essentially means that a person spends their life on a 'life licence' after undergoing a period of imprisonment, benefit society at large?
    It means nothing of the kind. Removing a mandatory life sentence only means that a judge will have more discretion over what sentence to give. This can still be life without parole.
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    (Original post by TheDefiniteArticle)
    The book is Duff's Punishment, Communication and Community.

    My point is that when deciding what sentence is best, the appropriate metric to consider is what is best for society as a whole.
    I just love when professional philosophers mind-**** about stuff they are so very detached from…

    Can we reliably tell what's best for our society? Homicide rates in Arabic countries where they exercise heavy punishments are lower than in the UK and much lower than in the US, therefore we should apparently increase the length of prison sentences and re-introduce physical punishments.
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    (Original post by Life_peer)
    I just love when professional philosophers mind-**** about stuff they are so very detached from…

    Can we reliably tell what's best for our society? Homicide rates in Arabic countries where they exercise heavy punishments are lower than in the UK and much lower than in the US, therefore we should apparently increase the length of prison sentences and re-introduce physical punishments.
    Correlation does not imply causation.

    What I'm saying is that we should give more discretion to judges rather than parole boards, because the former is more qualified.
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    (Original post by TheDefiniteArticle)
    It means nothing of the kind. Removing a mandatory life sentence only means that a judge will have more discretion over what sentence to give. This can still be life without parole.
    Judges are not infallible. I would rather Parliament ensure proper guidelines are in place rather than giving judges unlimited discretion and when sentences are inevitably wrong in some cases, having taxpayers fork out thousands of pounds in funding appeal cases until the higher court reaches the right decision (which could have been achieved by having mandatory guidelines).
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    (Original post by TheDefiniteArticle)
    Correlation does not imply causation.

    What I'm saying is that we should give more discretion to judges rather than parole boards, because the former is more qualified.
    That's precisely what I've been trying to tell you. Your ‘evidence’ is as weak as making conclusions about the justice system in the UK based on a couple of observations from countries like UAE or indeed Norway which takes the opposite approach.

    It makes no sense! The judge can only consider the defendant during the trial and has no chance of making a reliable prediction about his potential rehabilitation in 25, 10, or even 5 years. The parole board is specialised in risk assessment based on current and retrograde data to determine whether they can be safely released and that's the way it should be done. The possibility of a parole is additionally a strong source of motivation to maintain good behaviour at least during the incarceration.
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    (Original post by Grand High Witch)
    Judges are not infallible. I would rather Parliament ensure proper guidelines are in place rather than giving judges unlimited discretion and when sentences are inevitably wrong in some cases, having taxpayers fork out thousands of pounds in funding appeal cases until the higher court reaches the right decision (which could have been achieved by having mandatory guidelines).
    Judges are nevertheless less fallible in individual cases than either the sentencing council (which is too general to be much use in individual cases), or parole boards (who are, for the most part, essentially unqualified in criminal justice).
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    (Original post by Life_peer)
    That's precisely what I've been trying to tell you. Your ‘evidence’ is as weak as making conclusions about the justice system in the UK based on a couple of observations from countries like UAE or indeed Norway which takes the opposite approach.

    It makes no sense! The judge can only consider the defendant during the trial and has no chance of making a reliable prediction about his potential rehabilitation in 25, 10, or even 5 years. The parole board is specialised in risk assessment based on current and retrograde data to determine whether they can be safely released and that's the way it should be done. The possibility of a parole is additionally a strong source of motivation to maintain good behaviour at least during the incarceration.
    And yet, even if parole is granted, the defendant has a shadow over him for the rest of his life with a life sentence.
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    (Original post by TheDefiniteArticle)
    And yet, even if parole is granted, the defendant has a shadow over him for the rest of his life with a life sentence.
    Boo-hoo, poor murderer! Perhaps he should have thought of that when he decided to commit murder and put a shadow of misery and sorrow over a family of five including little Timmy who is now wetting his bed at night because he can't get over his daddy's death…
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    (Original post by Life_peer)
    Boo-hoo, poor murderer! Perhaps he should have thought of that when he decided to commit murder and put a shadow of misery and sorrow over a family of five including little Timmy who is now wetting his bed at night because he can't get over his daddy's death…
    People always assume the worst when they hear the word 'murderer'. I agree that people who deliberately kill the innocent with no provocation should probably spend a long time in prison. This Bill doesn't affect that. However, there is such a thing as a wrong place/wrong time murder.
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    (Original post by TheDefiniteArticle)
    People always assume the worst when they hear the word 'murderer'. I agree that people who deliberately kill the innocent with no provocation should probably spend a long time in prison. This Bill doesn't affect that. However, there is such a thing as a wrong place/wrong time murder.
    No, there isn't. There may a ‘wrong place/wrong time’ homicide.
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    (Original post by Life_peer)
    No, there isn't. There may a ‘wrong place/wrong time’ homicide.
    Let's take an example which may appeal to you tory types.

    A person has broken into your house, and is about to set light to an heirloom with priceless sentimental value. You hit him with a pipe and he dies.

    According to the law, that remains murder. Should that lead to a life sentence?
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    (Original post by TheDefiniteArticle)
    Let's take an example which may appeal to you tory types.

    A person has broken into your house, and is about to set light to an heirloom with priceless sentimental value. You hit him with a pipe and he dies.

    According to the law, that remains murder. Should that lead to a life sentence?
    Please don't tell me the British aren't allowed to use force against intruders in their own homes… This country isn't that helpless and self-punitive yet.

    I'm fairly sure it would be considered the use of reasonable force.
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    (Original post by Life_peer)
    Please don't tell me the British aren't allowed to use force against intruders in their own homes… This country isn't that helpless and self-punitive yet.

    I'm fairly sure it would be considered the use of reasonable force.
    Defence of property may only see 'reasonable force' used. This does not in itself extend to force which may cause the infliction of GBH.

    This law seems pretty reasonable to me, property is obviously less important than anyone's life. However, I don't see it as reasonable that this should give rise to an MLS.
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    (Original post by TheDefiniteArticle)
    Defence of property may only see 'reasonable force' used. This does not in itself extend to force which may cause the infliction of GBH.

    This law seems pretty reasonable to me, property is obviously less important than anyone's life. However, I don't see it as reasonable that this should give rise to an MLS.
    First, it wouldn't be murder if you couldn't prove the intention to cause death or serious injury.

    Second, Crown Prosecution Service: “You are not expected to make fine judgements over the level of force you use in the heat of the moment. So long as you only do what you honestly and instinctively believe is necessary in the heat of the moment, that would be the strongest evidence of you acting lawfully and in self-defence. This is still the case if you use something to hand as a weapon.”

    It all depends upon a considerable number of variables including the environment, the householder, the intruder, other persons on the premises, etc.

    Obviously, if I saw a couple of kids stealing from me, I wouldn't shoot them, and if someone did, the punishment would be deserved.

    On the other hand, if I were faced with a big masked man with a crowbar in the middle of the night, stealing paintings from my living room while my children were sleeping nearby, I hit his head as he was walking towards me and accidentally caused his death, it would sure as heck be reasonable force.

    With a good defence lawyer, I could even be alone and the man thin, black, and maybe even a Muslim if the media didn't get involved, and I still wouldn't be imprisoned.

    If you insist, you're welcome to refer me to an appropriate precedent.
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    (Original post by Life_peer)
    First, it wouldn't be murder if you couldn't prove the intention to cause death or serious injury.

    Second, Crown Prosecution Service: “You are not expected to make fine judgements over the level of force you use in the heat of the moment. So long as you only do what you honestly and instinctively believe is necessary in the heat of the moment, that would be the strongest evidence of you acting lawfully and in self-defence. This is still the case if you use something to hand as a weapon.”

    It all depends upon a considerable number of variables including the environment, the householder, the intruder, other persons on the premises, etc.

    Obviously, if I saw a couple of kids stealing from me, I wouldn't shoot them, and if someone did, the punishment would be deserved.

    On the other hand, if I were faced with a big masked man with a crowbar in the middle of the night, stealing paintings from my living room while my children were sleeping nearby, I hit his head as he was walking towards me and accidentally caused his death, it would sure as heck be reasonable force.

    With a good defence lawyer, I could even be alone and the man thin, black, and maybe even a Muslim if the media didn't get involved, and I still wouldn't be imprisoned.

    If you insist, you're welcome to refer me to an appropriate precedent.
    The perception which is relevant is not that of the defendant, but rather the reasonable man. You also misunderstand intent. Hitting someone with a metal object, knowing that doing so may cause serious bodily harm is, in the eyes of the law, intent to cause serious bodily harm.
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    Nay!
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    It would take out the involvement of the Justice or Home Secretary in determining when a person is released, and bring some certainty to the relatives of the victims as to how long the convicted murderer would be likely to be imprisoned. There would not be the campaigning for release of those convicted, such as has happened in a few cases, which rakes up the crime, gets a criminal publicity, and may bring distress to those who knew the person murdered.

    Always assuming that the sentence of life was replaced in most cases. If it was accompanied by a minimum sentence then I might support the Bill.
 
 
 
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