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New Ethics Question!

Posted: Thu May 22, 2008 4:04 pm
by Kitsune
According to professional hypnotists, you cannot do anything under hypnosis, that you do not already have a pre-disposition, however small, to do.

Now, if the above statement is true (which could be opening another can of worms altogether :lol: ), then my question is this...

Would it be unethical to test the general population for "Criminal intent"?

You go into the office, they hypnotise you and tell you that you are actually not in the hypnotists office, but someone else. You tell them that you saw the person who's room it is, leave a hundred bucks on the desk. You tell them that if they take it, no one will ever know. Then tell them that they are alone in the room and see what they do.

What do you guys think? Perhaps not ethical, but would this be an accurate judge of character?

Posted: Thu May 22, 2008 5:18 pm
by Kystar
I wouldn't say that the money left behind thing would be a valid judge. We're basically trained from small children that money "lost" is our that's not a valid test, as that is social conditioning.

I'd pose the question to them that they see an old lady put a large wad of money in her purse at an ATM, would you take it from her if it was dark and no one was around to hear her yell?

Posted: Thu May 22, 2008 7:21 pm
by Crazy Healer Lady
We all have criminal intents, however small. I consider myself one of the most ethical people I know, not because I do what I'm told is right, but because I judge with my heart and "Does it vibe with me when I'm vibing at the vibration of the Divine?"

Still, there are very fleeting moments when the thought crosses your mind to do "bad" things. If I see a group of kids walking at the crosswalk right before my light is about to turn green (and they have started walking long after the orange hand has been steady), I briefly consider running them over, and, thanks to Grand Theft Auto which I have only played a few times and about six years ago, wonder how many points I'd get :lol:

So, if the intention is to see how criminal we all are, great. Otherwise, I think it's not so much as a question of ethics, as a question of "are we stupid enough to believe that there are people without criminal intent?"

And then the whole debate about what is criminal and what is not.

is the above statement really 100% accurate?

Posted: Thu May 22, 2008 8:12 pm
by Green
I had the privilege of watching someone be hypnotized and he was told that when he saw a certain thing that consequently he saw everyday, that it would disgust him and make him very angry.
It worked.
They say that to be hypnotized a person must be open to suggestion. I personally feel that in the relaxed state of hypnosis people lose some of their usual inhibitions, and if so do some of their usual ethics weaken? or is this person being altered by suggestion?

That said though I do believe that one could like you say hypnotize someone and would be able to tell what they Might do in certain circumstances.

Once again I apologize for the bad grammar, punctuation and structure. We all have weaknesses and this is mine.

Posted: Fri May 23, 2008 7:56 am
by FyreGarnet
It might give you an idea of someone's character while under the influence, but with all the inhibitions we have in every day life, it would be condemning people who just had nasty thoughts.

Like CHL said, she has thought about running people over. If her inhibitions were reduced enough, she might actually do it, because her brain was not working the way it normally should. Drugs in the brain can affect people more, of course, and I really don't understand how hypnotizing someone works.

But to me, it seems like we would be judging people unfairly. I myself took damaged things home from work occasionally, when we were supposed to throw it out. It was damaged, or a half empty package, so it wasn't really stealing to me. However, under hypnosis, this might be seen by some as stealing no matter what, and that might condemn me. I might never be able to get a job, just because of what someone discovered when they hypnotized me.

I hope this makes sense.


Posted: Fri May 23, 2008 8:28 am
by Kystar
Though, I remember an episode of Mythbusters where they tried to have a crew member hypnotized to do something when either Adam or Jamie said something in particular, but the person didn't do it because they didn't think it was right.

I think the conclusion reached was that hypnotism cannot make you do something you inherently would not do.

I'd have to look the episode up, and when I find it, I'll post a link to the info here.

Posted: Fri May 23, 2008 10:10 am
by Crazy Healer Lady
FyreGarnet: Like CHL said, she has thought about running people over.
:lol: :lol: :lol: I love the way this is worded. Crazy indeed! Like a bat out of hell, Crazy runs kids over! :lol: :lol:

Is this going to turn into a self-stroking thread where we all confess our dark deeds and thoughts? :lol:

Posted: Fri May 23, 2008 4:56 pm
by Kystar
Okay, this isn't the "official" Mythbusters Site...but it's a wicki that covers the results. (If you do a you tube search, you can find the video.) ... )#Hypnosis

For some reason, the URL tag isn't working, so you're going to have to copy+paste, people. (I've tried six times, and can't get the silly thing to link...all it's doing is taking part of the link.)
Myth: Using hypnosis can make one go against their will.
While hypnotized, Grant was told to do certain uncharacteristic actions through hypnotic suggestion, and he would perform these actions after a specific trigger. However, the triggers did not work (possibly due to the fact that Grant knew he was being given a trigger, even if he didn't know what it was), so the test was performed again on a producer who believed in hypnosis (this time trying to slip the triggers in during an otherwise clandestine hypnosis session). However, this test also failed. In addition, many experts and hypnotists agree that hypnotic suggestion will never work if the suggestion conflicts with the subject's moral fiber. Note that this verdict is in contrast to an earlier myth on hypnosis as a form of remote mind control.

Posted: Fri May 23, 2008 7:32 pm
by daibanjo
I don't think it would be ethical to test people in that way. personally I have quite a bit of larceny in my soul that doesn't mean I'd steal from an old lady but I might do other things. I was stealing copper pipes when i was 12 years old and raiding a nearby coal mine for coal. We can't be held accountable for things we have a disposition to do. We can only be accountable for the things we actually do.
Another point is, who decides what is criminal. They might decide to throw us in jail for voting Democrat.

Posted: Fri May 23, 2008 8:44 pm
by Lotus
I have many *bad* thoughts in a day. Urges that I cannot act out upon.

Someone once told me (not sure if this is true) that the difference between an insane person and a sane person is that the insane will have no self-control when it comes to these urges.
For example, I would be bored in the classroom as a child and play over and over the senario of jumping out the window. This is a common thought in school aged children. Everyone I know has thought about jumping out of a window in class just to get a reaction.
An insane person would jump out of the window.

The mind is complex. There are different "voices" in our heads that play out things and rationalize them. I may imagine what would happen if I were to jump out of a window....It does not mean that I will do it.

There is a class issue with this as well. A wealthy old lady would be a temptation to rob if one was starving.
Meaning: We all have the capacity to do wrong. Sometimes our choices are conditional.

If I were hyptnotized to smack every person who angers me.....I would. My natural barriers keep me from smacking people.


Posted: Sat May 24, 2008 1:03 pm
by Kitsune
Interesting ideas...

I agree that circumstance does matter... But I was thinking along the ideas that criminals have to tell the community they're moving into that they have a criminal background (if it's a severe enough crime).

And I'm not suggesting that we do this, but it would be an interesting gauge... Perhaps a hypnosis that starts with "You're warm, happy and well-fed... You see a woman carrying a purse over-loaded with wealth... What do you do?"

Perhaps that would take away the "class and situational modifiers" and still leave you with enough of your inhibitions to get a clear answer... What do you think? :smt117 :-D

As for CHL running over kids... I constantly tell Grimwell that they're worth an arbitrary amount of points if he hits them... although I was doing this long before Grand Theft Auto came out, so perhaps it's just a me thing...

Yesterday me and a few friends started discussing whether we thought Rockstar was being prudent or prud-ish by not having any children in their GTA games. We were stuck with admitting that they'd never do it, but couldn't agree on whether the "protection" of children in a game enviroment would actually be a deterent to doing it in real life, since none of them had really noticed the fact that there were no kids till I mentioned it. (Grrrr, run on sentance... #-o )

Your opinions...? :-)

Posted: Sat May 24, 2008 9:51 pm
by Lotus
I do not know how that would work or if it is even possible. :-?

A big part of who we are as a people or individuals depends greatly upon our social and economic factors.
My friend Nick always says that, "People with scruples are the people who can afford to have scruples."
I somewhat feel that taking away these barriers is unethical.

Actually here is a relevant story that actually happened today:

There is a regular customer that comes into my work. I have politely chit-chatted with this woman on several occasions. She is, in my book, a decent person. Many would not give her a try because she is kind of hippy-like and has tats. I have allowed this person to take hand-fulls of our creamers because I knew she could not afford to buy it on her own. She does get government assistance and is a mother of two children.
This woman has always been sympathetic to the clerks and will defend us if another customer is being rude to us.
Today she drove off with $18.00 of gasoline. My coworker, Seth, authorized her pump and did not call out simply because she was a regular. When she came in to pay both clerks were preoccupied with fixing something in the store. She saw that they were distracted and took the chance to drive off.

If she knew that this would actually hurt the clerks, would she still have opted to drive off? If she knew that the other clerks would tell me and that I would remember where she lived, would she still drive off?


Posted: Mon May 26, 2008 5:18 am
by Ragnar
Kystar wrote:I wouldn't say that the money left behind thing would be a valid judge. We're basically trained from small children that money "lost" is our that's not a valid test, as that is social conditioning.
The dishonest appropriation of property belonging to another with the intention of permanently depriving the other of it, is theft. (Theft act 1968 ยง1) Even when the owner is "unknown". Therefore, for me, it WOULD be an accurate judge of character.

Also, what must be looked at here, hypnotism is merely an altered state of conscioussness. as are drink and drugs.

Are we, therefore, going to accuse the whole Native American and Australian populations of being thieving, Wife beating no good bums, because that is how they are when alcohol is added?

Posted: Mon May 26, 2008 7:18 am
by Kystar
Honestly, Ragnar, if you found a dollar (Or equivalent) sitting on the sidewalk, and no one was around to see who dropped it, would you consider it theft to pick it up?

Here's the kicker, dear. Our state has a law that unclaimed property turned into the authorities as found, after so long, becomes the property of the person who found it. A police officer who was lecturing at my school taught us the "Appropriate" response to money laying on the ground...including that "While it would be nice to be able to return smaller amounts to people, most wouldn't think to try and find anything under a twenty."

Posted: Mon May 26, 2008 5:32 pm
by Kitsune
Yes, but the test would have to be in larger amounts... And I don't think I've ever heard of someone who lost a $50 and didn't at least try to retrace their steps.

But Ragnar does have a point... So it would be a valid way to see if you have the tendancies, but not an actual judge of Character seems to be the concensus that we're arriving at...