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View Diary: Steel Executives Sentenced to Prison for Worker Deaths (92 comments)

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  •  Not at all. People are found guilty of negligent (9+ / 0-)

    manslaughter All The Time for "unintended consequences" of their actions.  Justly.

    Killing someone while driving drunk is not murder.  People don't drive drunk with the intent of killing someone.  But they have a reasonable basis to know it might happen - and so they're held responsible.

    There are times when a jury has to determine just how far the "indirect" consequences go.  If I hit someone and they have to be in the hospital and while there get an infection and die - I can quite definitely be held responsible for their death, although that's quite "indirect" causation.  Juries are quite capable of reaching a determination of whether it's reasonable for someone to have been aware of the possible ramifications of their actions in any extent.

    "If you trust you are not critical; if you are critical you do not trust" by our own Dauphin

    by gustynpip on Sat Apr 16, 2011 at 09:41:55 AM PDT

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    •  Not the same (0+ / 0-)

      Think of the difference between proving cause and effect versus proving motivation.

      In the instance of a drunk driver, the drunk driver may not have intended to kill the person he hit (ie, motivation), but it's pretty straight forward to prove that the drunk driver hitting someone led to their death.  Even in the event that the person doesn't immediately die, but develops a fatak infection as a result of being hopsitalized as a result of the injuries.  Those links can be credibly shown by a prosecutor.

      On the other hand, no such direct cause and effect linkage can be shown from an investor's actions.  Because how often is it going to be the case that the actions of a single investor can be traced to a specific death?  Seriously, thousands and thousands of speculators are constantly bidding on the prices of various commodities...and their bidding isn't the only thing that impacts the cost.  So when a child dies of starvation in Africa, was it because of some bastard in NY who helped bid up the cost of wheat, or is it because a drought in Australia caused wheat prices to escalate?  

      Much as some of these investors deserve to be nailed for their behavior, opening up the criminal justice system to these sorts of cases would have some pretty awful, totalitarian results.  I can't imagine that any progressives are foolish enough to think this could possibly have a good outcome.

      Political Compass: -6.75, -3.08

      by TexasTom on Sat Apr 16, 2011 at 02:15:49 PM PDT

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      •  Ummm. Please show me where anyone (0+ / 0-)

        suggested investors would be held responsible.  This is holding the executives making the decisions that led to the situations responsible.  You're changing the entire conversation in order to try and prove your point.

        "If you trust you are not critical; if you are critical you do not trust" by our own Dauphin

        by gustynpip on Mon Apr 18, 2011 at 11:58:10 AM PDT

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        •  Right here (0+ / 0-)

          From "Givenoquarter":

          how much time do you think Lord Blankfein and his buddies deserve for starving millions of children in poor countries by speculating in the commodities markets and creating massive food and fuel bubbles?

          I'll note that he used the term speculators instead of investors -- which is a modest difference.  And note that when I was referring to investors, I was referring to active investors of the sort who make decisions to buy and sell commodities, and not someone who just has a stock portfolio.  So, no, it's not changing the conversation -- or if it is, I'm not the one who changed it.

          Political Compass: -6.75, -3.08

          by TexasTom on Tue Apr 19, 2011 at 06:06:31 AM PDT

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