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Guy shoots at guys playing loud music in a car. Everybody butts heads in the court, now nobody’s happy. The parents of a dead teen are said to want justice: as though justice could be defined without head butting, and without changing the guidelines every other butt.
I gotta repeat a favorite story: memory from around the 1960s. South American city, ghetto blasters were new. There were a series of street shootings. Common thread turned out to be the dead pedestrians were all carrying ghetto blasters! Overnight, ghetto blasters disappeared from the streets!
I’m reminded of hearing the guy who invented transistors [William Shockley] saying that he was sorry he ever did: he envisioned better, smaller, cheaper hearing aids; what the world got was ghetto blasters.
(You never know what all you’re going to get.)
Obey Its Laws?!
I’m also reminded of another favorite story, also from around the ’60s. There was an island off China, another one of those with its own government. They made littering convictions punishable by life imprisonment. Oh, how inhumane: and how foolish economically: where will your tax base go if everyone is in prison for life? Well, the result was: no one was in prison! No one littered!
Could it really be that there was — ever — a society that actually believed, and obeyed, its own laws? That the powers not only threatened but carried through: or at least it was belied that there would be a carry through? Even-handed? Wow.
I once wrote a letter to the New York City police suggesting that taxis would be less rude if pedestrians could carry .45s and would not be prosecuted if they shot taxi drivers who were threatening pedestrians with their recklessness. The cops thought it was very funny: send a delegation to visit me! (and explain, of course, that nothing could be done!)
The guy in jail for shooting the loud teens should be happy if all of a sudden lots of other dead teens turn up associated with loud music in cars. Evolution doesn’t work by human deliberation, by politics, by law: not primarily at least. Evolution works by numbers.
One society (two conflicting societies actually: Rome and Jerusalem) is famous in our mythology for crucifying the god come to offer salvation. That’s one: a kleptocracy monopolizing power and freely torturing and killing dissidents, radicals, resisters, teachers … saints, gods … Fine: we’re still alive, still behaving exactly the same way. But what if every society murders its dissidents, radicals, resisters, teachers … saints, gods? Or what if half the societies, all monopolizing power, freely torture and kill dissidents, radicals, resisters, teachers … saints, gods (while saying that they’re representing intelligence, truth, god & gods) … will any human societies remain for long?
In other words, does honesty play a role in survival?
A man with a good knife feels king of the world.