The Random Comic Strip

The Random Comic Strip

Words to live by...

"How beautiful it is to do nothing, and to rest afterward."

[Spanish Proverb]

Ius luxuriae publice datum est

(The right to looseness has been officially given)

"Everyone carries a part of society on his shoulders," wrote Ludwig von Mises, "no one is relieved of his share of responsibility by others. And no one can find a safe way for himself if society is sweeping towards destruction. Therefore everyone, in his own interest, must thrust himself vigorously into the intellectual battle."

Apparently, the crossword puzzle that disappeared from the blog, came back.

Friday, August 24, 2012

The law is an ass

The title of this is a quote from Oliver Twist, spoken by the character "Mr. Bumble."

I ponder many things. One of the things I ponder is the law. Criminal law. And the nuances therein.

The best example of an incongruity in criminal law is the difference between murder and attempted murder. Let's examine this as I do (it's my blog, after all):

A man walks into a bar, pulls out a gun, and shoots one of the patrons. If the victim dies, it's clearly a case of murder, yes? And if the victim does not die? Yes, we then charge the shooter with attempted murder. Now let's look at it more closely. Why didn't the victim die? Was the shooter a bad shot? Was the victim taken to a hospital quickly and survived because of the medical care available today?

Attempted murder is a lesser charge. It's still a serious crime but the perpetrator is not at risk for the death penalty or life in prison without parole. The odds are he (or she, let's not be sexist) will get less than 20 years. And all because he's a bad shot or the doctors were very good at what they do. So the perpetrator is rewarded for either his ineptness or the competence of the doctors and medical personnel. 

Now let's take the successful shooter. He is competent. He knows how to use his gun, he knows how to aim it. His anger at his target is the same, he planned it as well as the guy in the previous paragraph. He is caught and is now at risk of losing his life or spending the rest of his days in prison. He is punished for his competence or the incompetence of the doctors and medical personnel.

Somehow, that doesn't make a lot of sense to me.

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