Socialism and the concept of capital punishment

 :: General :: Theory

View previous topic View next topic Go down

Socialism and the concept of capital punishment

Post by Sozi on Thu May 01, 2014 3:54 am

Is the concept of capital punishment mutally incompatible with a non-state socialist society? That is, a society characterized by mutual ownership of the means of production and cooperavative management of the economy?

I ask because it seems like every socialist movement I look into is opposed to capital punishment not only in practice (which I can understand, as in our current society it is a tool of capitalist oppression), but also in theory. Every socialist society I've seen proposed by a theorist operates around rehabilitatiion for every crime, even murder, a stance I personally do not agree with.

I wonder why opposition to capital punishment (not only in practice, but in theory) is so common among the big-name organizations that identify as socialist here in the United States, and if the idea of capital punishment is incompatible with economic socialism.

I do not intend to start a debate about the morality or feasibility of capital punishment, but I would like to hear your answers to the question of whether capital punishment is incompatible with an economically socialist society.

To be clear, I realize that many state socialist societies have used and still do use capital punishment for a variety of offenses; my question is specifically regarding non-state socialist societies.

Sozi
___________________________
___________________________

Posts : 3
Reputation : 4
Join date : 2014-05-01

Back to top Go down

Re: Socialism and the concept of capital punishment

Post by Celtiberian on Thu May 01, 2014 4:53 am

I can conceive of no compelling reason why laws derived from theories of retributive justice are incompatible with socialism. I personally endorse capital punishment for crimes of an especially heinous nature (serial killing and rape, child molestation, etc.) and would advocate on behalf of such a criminal justice system even within the context of a communist society.

With that said, there are basically two reasons why a socialist organization would oppose capital punishment. The first is that they are of the quixotic view that transforming humanity's organization of production is sufficient to produce entirely new human beings—incapable of committing violent crimes, devoid of a sense of national identity, and various other absurdities. The second is that they are utilitarian in orientation and are therefore concerned more with the social utility (as opposed to justice for victims) that obtains from criminal law.

_________________
RSF Executive Committee (Chairman)
"The dogma of human equality is no part of Communism . . . the formula of Communism: 'from each according to his ability, to each according to his needs', would be nonsense, if abilities were equal."
—J. B. S. Haldane Hammer Sickle

"Nationality. . . is a historic, local fact which, like all real and harmless facts, has the right to claim general acceptance. . . Every people, like every person, is involuntarily that which it is and therefore has a right to be itself. . . Nationality is not a principle; it is a legitimate fact, just as individuality is. Every nationality, great or small, has the incontestable right to be itself, to live according to its own nature. This right is simply the corollary of the general principle of freedom."
—Mikhail Bakunin Red Star
avatar
Celtiberian
________________________
________________________

Tendency : Revolutionary Syndicalist
Posts : 1523
Reputation : 1615
Join date : 2011-04-04
Age : 30
Location : Florida

http://www.wix.com/executivecommittee/home

Back to top Go down

Re: Socialism and the concept of capital punishment

Post by Sozi on Thu May 01, 2014 5:31 am

I can understand that. While I'm not entirely unsympathetic to a utilitarian viewpoint, I consider reintegrating convicted murderers with society to be a necessary evil at best and thus can't empathize with the idea that such a society would be ideal.

I would also be willing to accept life imprisonment as a "compromise", but there's an argument to be made that, depending on how far we're willing to go to extend the prisoner's lifespan, such a penalty just constitutes a different form of capital punishment, albeit one that allows for a longer period of time for any evidence that might lead to exoneration to be presented.

Sozi
___________________________
___________________________

Posts : 3
Reputation : 4
Join date : 2014-05-01

Back to top Go down

Re: Socialism and the concept of capital punishment

Post by Sponsored content


Sponsored content


Back to top Go down

View previous topic View next topic Back to top

- Similar topics

 :: General :: Theory

 
Permissions in this forum:
You cannot reply to topics in this forum