By definition, everyone agrees that the punishment for a crime should be fair and should fit the crime. But what exactly is "fair"? How do we really determine the punishment? Clearly, people from different cultures and time periods have had different ideas about this, because as far as I know there's no way of determining this which isn't somewhat arbitrary and subjective.
Therefore, I thought of a way to objectivize punishment a bit more. My idea is that people should be punished not for what they did, but either on what they intended to do or what the worst likely outcome of their actions would have been. So, instead of having the categories of "attempted murder" and "murder", someone who attempted to kill someone else but failed would be punished just as severely as someone who had actually succeeded. Same goes for the worst likely outome- If, some adrenaline junkie decides to speed through a "crowded" highway in the opposite direction at 200mph but through a miracle does no harm and is caught safely, you should still punish him (or her) as if s/he had caused a huge accident which killed people.
Really, I don't think there's such a fundamental difference between someone who did something wreckless and happened to do no harm, and someone who did the exact same thing and did do harm. My proposed method of justice would also serve to prevent crime. Right now, many people do wreckless/negligent things because they just think "oh, it won't happen to me!" and figure nothing bad will happen. However, if they knew they would be punished as if it HAD happened, I would think that many people would think twice about doing wreckless things.
Of course, the huge problem here is how to judge "the worst LIKELY outcome", but I think this is still an improvement.
What do you all think?