Temporal Discounting; A short sighted view?

James Dean epitomises the ‘temporal discounting’ culture, but was he a rebel without a clue as to the exact origin of that thesis?

To what extent  offenders and would be offenders influenced by their ‘temporal discounting’, the notion of taking the short term rewards rather than the considering the bigger more long term picture?  Is this live fast die young’ borne out of  erroneous decision making or are evolutionary forces at work?  If evolution has had an impact upon this very persistent behavioural pattern is it dominant in one gender?  Is this the reason males commit more crime – 80% of crime committed in many cultures is androcentric?  Does this contribute to the reason why in every country around the male life expectancy is always lower than the female, has this made men more risk takers in their behaviour which ultimately leads them to criminality?  Are risk takers more likely to enhance their chances of mate selection?

Life expectancy may vary from country to country, but there is one constant;  men on average die younger than females.


Capture 1

Daly and Wilson ( also theorists of the ‘Cinderella effect’)  conducted research into this investigating how life expectancy correlated with certain ‘temporal discounting’ behaviour such as truancy. They take an evolutionary stance that males as more likely to be risk takers are thus more likely to be involved in anti social behaviour and crime including homicide.  They also found a strong negative correlations between life expectancy and homicide rates.


Daly and Wilson concluded;


Further reading

Madon.S et al (2012) Temporal Discounting: The Differential Effect of Proximal and Distal Consequences on Confession Decisions Law and Human  Vol. 36, No. 1,


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s