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PostPosted: Tue Jun 13, 2006 3:19 pm 
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Do you not prioritize your family in your responsibilies or priorities or were you found under a rock?


Yes, I do, but there's a significant difference between individuals with whom you have a personal connection and those who simply share a conceptual category. People I know personally are of personal value to me because of my emotional connection to them. But what reason is there to place higher value on people with whom I have no personal connection, but simple share one known trait (being an American). And if mutual traits is enough basis, why not favor those who share a bloodtype, favorite food or any other equally random criteria?

Consider this: if you happened to discover that someone was your 32nd cousin 12 times removed (whatever that means) would this knowledge place the person in a place of greater priority for you? What if that person wasn't an American? At what point does relation distance outweigh the bonus for being an American? Is there a logical line to draw besides family members you know vs. those you don't know?

Since everybody is related in the broadest sense, why not just value everybody as family? I suppose that's the closest to how I feel about it. I don't consider an individual American to be a higher priority than an individual Canadian any more than I'd prioritize a brother who lives in America over a brother who lives in Canada.

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OK, whose opinion is it? Care to elaborate?


(this is about my statement that there are a few people in the military in it out of a desire to kill)

Nobody authoritative, just the few friends and family I've mentioned it to in the past few days. As I said previously, it just comes down to numbers. As it's hard to get stats on "wants to kill people" I'll go with Psychopathy/Antosocial Personality Disorder. Rates are estimated to be about 1%. There are about 133,000 troops in Iraq right now, last I chcked. That means potentially 1330 have this disorder. If the military screening procedures are 99% effective this still leaves 13. That's "a few" which is all I said, and that's just counting troops in Iraq.

And that calculation ignores the fact that the military will appear attractive to someone who is already interested in finding violence. Furthermore, psychopathy is characterized by charm and a strong ability to appear normal, meaning that it will be difficult to screen out such persons.

Add all this together and it just seems a bit preposterous to say that there aren't even a few soldiers who enlisted out of a desire to kill people.

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PostPosted: Wed Jun 14, 2006 9:32 pm 
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Val

But what the point of the statement?

If, as you, yourself state there are a certain % of the general population AS A WHOLE that wants "to kill people" then your bro, your father, your mother (smaller sample to be sure :) ) etc would also have the SAME desire.

Goes double for any co-workers.

Or to be really fair, you, yourself.

Hey, you have just as much of a chance to working next to such a killer as you would finding one in the army.

So that there is a statistical possiblity that "some" people in the army just want to kill people.

What I am getting at is that its "possible" that you may find people that want to kill other people in armed services---just don't see what point your getting at.

I would also posit that since the armed services are all "at will" these days that pretty much EVERYONE that chooses to join does so with understanding that they may personally be called upon to kill people---or at the very least help and support "other" people killing people.

So again, I don't see the point.

After all this a martial arts website--so I would guess that most people here are martial artists.

Therefore I would also posit that most people here-at least in theory--choose to study arts that have the practical application of causeing serious or fatal bodily harm to other people.

I'm sure that at least "some" people get into the martial arts BECAUSE they wish to hurt other people.

I mean how many of us started training so the next time that bully picked on us we could beat the snot out of him?

Just don't see the point.


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PostPosted: Wed Jun 14, 2006 9:59 pm 
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cxt wrote:
But what the point of the statement?


It was in the response to the statement that everyone who serves is a "Great American." My point was that some of the people who serve in the military are essentially there to kill people for kicks, and that therefore it's not reasonable to make the blanket statement that everyone in the military is a great american. Implicit here is the idea is that one cannot be both a great american and enjoy killing people. But what a "great american" is was never really defined.

As for the rest of your post, I basically agree. I think it's likely there's a higher proportion of sadists, psychopaths and so forth what have you in the military, in the martial arts and probably in any area of which violence is an inherent part, just because that kind of person will be attracted to a violent setting. And, of course, I'd never say that every martial artist is a great person, there definitely are scumbags out there.

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PostPosted: Wed Jun 14, 2006 10:29 pm 
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Val

Ok, (thumps forehead with rock :) ) NOW I get it.

But is not that cutting things a bit thin?

That "some" folks MIGHT be wack jobs certainly does not invalidate the group.

If "1%" of the folks really did join up to "kill people for kicks" that hardly means that each and every time you speak of those that serve you need to prefrace the statement by makign a special point to point out the wackos.

I mean when people are donating money to good causes--they don't really sperate the folks that only gave for the tax break or so they could brag about how much they gave?

Plus, is it even a possibilty that in joining the military they are able to put their destrustive urges to good use?

I mean sending a guy that wants to kill people over to Bosina to stop a genocide by killing OTHER even worse guys seems like a pretty constructive use of his/her violent urges.

From a social standpoint I mean.


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PostPosted: Thu Jun 15, 2006 4:46 am 
Cant you be a great American and want to kill people ? :? :lol:

isnt it a case of killing the right people ? :oops: :roll: , maybe even the killing for kicks crowd can be task specific , and maybe theyll be war heroes for it . I`m sure a lot of our past heroes have fallen into some interesting phsychological spectrums .

Imagine If I could use my powers for good instead of evil ......

Isnt it the act that should be judged , it is an evil act or not , not the motive ?

lots of philisophical ramifications on this one .....

2 percent of the population is capable , does joining the military make them less of a great American , maybe wanting to kill isnt enough .

heck theres times Id like to slap a few folks upside the head , thing is I dont do it ....

this is just supposition and extrapolation of sheer nonsense taken to some fluffy ideal , I could argue theres folks that joined the military only to be near big burly soldiers and to convert them to pacifisim , statistically there must be some chance .....

Logics got to cease being logic when it`s so damn illogical to waste time coming up with this nonsense .


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PostPosted: Thu Jun 15, 2006 3:43 pm 
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cxt wrote:
Val
That "some" folks MIGHT be wack jobs certainly does not invalidate the group.


No, certainly not. I wasn't saying that no soldier is a great american, just that they aren't all great americans.

Quote:
I mean when people are donating money to good causes--they don't really sperate the folks that only gave for the tax break or so they could brag about how much they gave?


Right. But I wouldn't call a person motivated only by tax breaks a great philanthropist.

Quote:
I mean sending a guy that wants to kill people over to Bosina to stop a genocide by killing OTHER even worse guys seems like a pretty constructive use of his/her violent urges.


Sure. There's definitely a case to be made that the army is a place where people can excersise certain antisocial tendencies in a way that is hopefully constructive. But would you call that being a great American? To me, a love of slaughter is not an American value.

Also there's the problem that these people get out of hand and say, burn down a village, execute a bunch of civillians or spend a few months merrily torturing prisoners.

As an aside, I see you replied in the other thread... do you want to continue that here? I was trying to keep this discussion out of the thread in case people want to talk about that thread's original topic.

Stryke:
Quote:
Cant you be a great American and want to kill people ?


Well, possibly. But I don't think you can be what I'd call a Great American and take pleasure in slaughter.

Quote:
heck theres times Id like to slap a few folks upside the head , thing is I dont do it ....


Exactly, you don't do it. I wouldn't say that ever having the urge to harm a person disqualifies someone from greatness. That's probably a feature of our DNA, which means the best we can hope to do is be aware of and it and practice self control. There's also a very large difference between that desire, and taking pleasure from killing.

Quote:
Isnt it the act that should be judged , it is an evil act or not , not the motive


Usually people consider both the motive and the act, don't they? Are stealing bread because you're starving and stealing bread out of spite equally evil acts? Legally the distinction isn't usually made, but in general people do seem to see a difference. Not everyone does, however, and some people definitely do believe that the act is all that matters. Personally, I don't.

Thus I say that nobody who takes pleasure in killing is a Great person. That doesn't neccesarily mean they're a bad person (they might not actually kill anyone, for example), but to be Great with a capital G really requires a level of ethical strength that precludes vicious sadism. I don't think that's illogical, I think it's common sense. But again, Great hasn't really been defined, so maybe we're all talking about different things.

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PostPosted: Thu Jun 15, 2006 8:58 pm 
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If "1%" of the folks really did join up to "kill people for kicks" that hardly means that each and every time you speak of those that serve you need to prefrace the statement by makign a special point to point out the wackos.


This is Justin's mindset. He and others 'know' this to be true. How he cannot say. Must be moral superiority.

Justin, you have no standing in this area. What qualifies you to make these statements and judgements? What research supports you? I will repeat what I have said before... What have you contributed to our society to make it better?

Me, I know what I have contributed. My greatest thrill? About two years ago the CO of the USMC Martial Arts school at Quantico said to me personally 'Rich, you are making a difference'. That will not buy me a cup of coffee, but it is priceless.

Now, I agree that there is roughly 10% of our population that can kill another human being and live with with it comfortably as part of the job. Yes, there are 10%-ers in the military. The US Marine Snipers, the Canadian Marine Snipers (the Canadians take particular pride in their ability to blow someones head off with a .50 cal sniper rifle at distances of a mile or greater.) Special Forces, Delta Force, Seals... there are more. But, these are not psychpaths. This is a job they trained for.

The bottom 1% of society that are the psychopathic killers that Justin believes are populating the US military are just not there. These folks are easy to spot and weed out. They do not take direction well. They cannot and will not develop the discipline required to be in the military.

Justin, I get the impression you think that a kid joins up, goes to boot camp for two months and then is sent out to kill. It does not work like that.

Look at the Marines... 13 weeks in boot camp. Then 8 weeks at the school of infantry. Then they must undertake training for thier occupational specialty. Then they are assigned to a unit that will train for months before heading off on a mission or deployment. It will take more than a year to maybe get up front in a shooting deployment. And only about 10 to 15% of the Marines are boots on the ground infantry. The psychos do not last that long.

Justin, you are intelligent but naive. Do some research and come back with verifiable info before you make your ongoing derogatory remarks about America and our military.

Rich

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PostPosted: Fri Jun 16, 2006 4:45 pm 
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Val

Your right, I would not call a guy that gave to charity for a tax break a "great philantopist" either.

But the point is, when thanking your donors for their charity.
You DON'T seperate out each and every person that "might" have "other" motives for giving than an pure heart.

You say "thanks" for the effort/money/time etc.

If you want to break it down---if there was enough $$$$ involved I WOULD call a person that was a big donor a "great philontopist."
The good that could be done with his gift, the people that could be fed, the medicine that could be bought, the lives saved etc far and away outweighs any harms that his "tax break" motive could cause.

He gets a tax break and some good press/pr.

I get to feed starving people.

Seems like a fair trade to me.

If a guy runs into a burning bldg to save a couple of kids.

Are they any LESS alive if he did it because he saw a network TV van and wanted to be "seen" as a hero.
Are they less alive than they would have been if a truly selfless person saved them?

Motive is a tricky subject.

Hard to get a handle sometimes on exactly why a person does what they do.


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PostPosted: Fri Jun 16, 2006 5:33 pm 
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RACastanet wrote:
Justin, you have no standing in this area. What qualifies you to make these statements and judgements? What research supports you?


Which statements and judgements? What qualifies me to look up statistics and post about it on an internet forum? That's not something that requires qualifications.

What research do you need citations for? I used two numbers as facts.

1: that Pyschopathy rates are about 1%
Hare, R.D. (1993). Without conscience: The disturbing world of the psychopaths among us. New York, NY: Simon and Schuster.

2: There are about 133000 soldiers in Iraq
http://www.washingtontimes.com/national ... -6597r.htm

What facts have you cited in your favor? That the military tries to screen out psychopaths? That psychopaths don't fit in well? So are you claiming a 100% success rate in filtering out such persons?

Anyhow, you argued that all who serve are great Americans. I argued that serial rapists (proven incidents) and psychopaths (only statistical evidence) aren't Great Americans, and that therefore not everyone in the military is a Great American because the two groups overlap. So which is it, Rich? Was James Allen Selby, serial rapist and gulf-war veteran a Great American or is he an example of someone who has served in the military and yet is not a Great American? Can't have it both ways.

Quote:
Now, I agree that there is roughly 10% of our population that can kill another human being and live with with it comfortably as part of the job.


True. And these people are not psychopaths. I was specifically talking about people who take joy from killing, not people who can live with it comfortably as part of their job.

Quote:
These folks are easy to spot and weed out. They do not take direction well. They cannot and will not develop the discipline required to be in the military.


So you're saying that psychopaths are not good at blending in? Just want to be clear here before I bother finding citations of exactly the opposite.

Quote:
Justin, I get the impression you think that a kid joins up, goes to boot camp for two months and then is sent out to kill. It does not work like that.


Maybe it doesn't anymore...

Quote:
Justin, you are intelligent but naive.


Well thank you, at least for the complimentary part of that statement.

Quote:
Do some research and come back with verifiable info before you make your ongoing derogatory remarks about America and our military.


What exactly do you want verified? That there are psychopaths in the military? Well that's pretty much impossible, whether or not there are any. I already said that I don't have definite proof of this. What I do have is a couple very simple statistics that point strongly to the possibility that there are.

cxt:
Quote:
Your right, I would not call a guy that gave to charity for a tax break a "great philantopist" either.

...

If you want to break it down---if there was enough $$$$ involved I


Well I agree. When I say "call" I suppose what I really mean is "think of as" I would not think of that person as a Great Philanthropist, though I would call them such publicly of I was in charge of the charity they're giving to.

Quote:
Motive is a tricky subject.


It is. And you're right that good outcomes can come from bad motives. The opposite is true as well, but that doesn't mean that motive must be disregarded as a criteria. Besides, talking about who is or isn't a Great American or a Great Philanthropist is all mental masturbation anyway, it doesn't really accomplish anything, but it can be entertaining.

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Last edited by Valkenar on Fri Jun 16, 2006 6:30 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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PostPosted: Fri Jun 16, 2006 6:26 pm 
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So you're saying that psychopaths are not good at blending in? Just want to be clear here before I bother finding citations of exactly the opposite.


They are very good at this for short time periods and this makes them excellent predators of the unwary. But please, do the research. You will find that they do not respond well to authority for long periods and have short attention spans when their immediate needs and desires are not being met. These traits are what make them easy to spot and weed out. Most will just quit.

The military will use the term 'general discharge' or discharge for the convenience of the service to send these types away. This is not a dishonorable discharge as they may have not done anything heinous but are none the less identified as a potential problem.

Rich

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