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Archive through December 08, 2002

Sepulchritude Forum » The Absinthe Forum Archive thru January 2003 » The Monkey Hole » Sniper suspects arrested » Archive through December 08, 2002 « Previous Next »

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Lordhobgoblin
Posted on Sunday, December 8, 2002 - 9:43 am:   Edit PostPrint Post

"If you break into my house and take my stuff, I can have you arrested. If the police break into my house and take my stuff, I am powerless to stop them, unless there are limits placed on their power and a system in place to enforce these limits."

So what are you going to do if the police do this? Use a firearm, that your constitution allows you to hold for protection, and shoot the police? Constitution or not you're still powerless to stop them if they choose to do this.
Lordhobgoblin
Posted on Sunday, December 8, 2002 - 9:38 am:   Edit PostPrint Post

"Besides, guns are much more egalitarian. In the age of the sword, only the big and strong could protect their own rights."

Bullshit, every poor man could own a spear which if used well was much more effective than a sword. And what about the longbow? Again a weapon of the common man. The French knights at Agincourt with their fine armour and swords where no match for the English longbows. Virtually the entire French nobility bit the dust at Agincourt because they fought against commoners using cheap weapons used for effectiveness and not to denote status and not, as they were used to, against fellow nobles wielding flashy swords.

The sword was primarily a status symbol and few people owned one. It was prized not for the fact that it was a very effective weapon but for the fact that if you wore one you were obviously stinking rich and probably of noble birth.
_Blackjack
Posted on Sunday, December 8, 2002 - 7:38 am:   Edit PostPrint Post


Quote:

Anyhow I much prefer swords, nothing like bashing away at an opponent at close quarters where you can see the rage in his eyes, smell his sweat and feel his pain. Truly glorious!



Oh, bullshit. I like swords too, but they were brutal, nasty weapons from a brutal, nasty time in our history. I'd much rather be shot than have a limb hacked off.

Besides, guns are much more egalitarian. In the age of the sword, only the big and strong could protect their own rights.
_Blackjack
Posted on Sunday, December 8, 2002 - 7:33 am:   Edit PostPrint Post


Quote:

If your government is likely to send in thugs to hold you down while they take your blood then you have to ask yourself do you really live in a society where you are governed "by the people for the people".



You keep missing the point. I'm not saying that the government is going to do such a thing. I'm saying that the government is granted significantly more authority to enforce its will than an individual citizen that it is necessary to take precautions to KEEP it from using its authority unjustly.

Here's as simple an example as I can come up with. If you punch me in the nose, I am allowed to defend myself. If a policeman punches me in the nose, I am NOT permitted to defend myself, and if I do, he can call more police to drag me off to jail for assaulting an officer. If you break into my house and take my stuff, I can have you arrested. If the police break into my house and take my stuff, I am powerless to stop them, unless there are limits placed on their power and a system in place to enforce these limits.


Quote:

If you don't trust the system that governs you, and you clearly don't,



No, I have a moderate amount of trust in the SYSTEM. It's the various PEOPLE who are empowered by the government that I don't trust, which is why we need the SYSTEM to keep their human failings from being inflicted upon the public.
_Blackjack
Posted on Sunday, December 8, 2002 - 7:23 am:   Edit PostPrint Post


Quote:

How do you feel about Total Information Awareness Blackjack?



Mostly that the press wend bugshit without reading what the project actually is. It is not a program to collect everybody's personal data inot a central computer. It is a program to see if it is TECHNOLOGICALLY POSSIBLE collect everybody's personal data inot a central computer. It is not being done by the FBI or the NSA. It is being done by DARPA, the people who created the foundations of the internet. They have no legal authority to actually CREATE such a system, and, indeed, it would probably take a constitutional ammendment to put such a thing in place.

More to the point, it is NOT technologically possible, unless the federal government is going to foot the bill for re-writing every piece of transactional software being used in the country. As it stands right now, the billing computers and the accounts computers at my cable company can't even share data.

It is a fucking hillarious logo. Considering the sort of geeks who are probably involved in the project, I suspect it was intentional.
Lordhobgoblin
Posted on Saturday, December 7, 2002 - 7:22 am:   Edit PostPrint Post

Forget all about Ronnie and Reggie skewering hands on snooker tables or cutting smiles into faces. Use the sword for the purpose it was designed, cut the whole fucking arm off or go for a decapitation.
Thegreenimp
Posted on Friday, December 6, 2002 - 8:10 pm:   Edit PostPrint Post

The Krays?, you mean Doug & Dinsdale.......here's enough blades for the Krays
stillettos
Head_Prosthesis
Posted on Friday, December 6, 2002 - 3:58 pm:   Edit PostPrint Post

I dig the blade as well...

but really now,
how many times has that happened?

Are you a Kray?
Lordhobgoblin
Posted on Friday, December 6, 2002 - 2:28 pm:   Edit PostPrint Post

Barsnake,

I must admit that on the few ocassions I have fired a gun (clay pigeon shooting, shooting cans off fenceposts at my uncles farm etc) I have enjoyed it (a bit like a good computer game really) but I still wouldn't rush out to buy one if I could. Anyhow I much prefer swords, nothing like bashing away at an opponent at close quarters where you can see the rage in his eyes, smell his sweat and feel his pain. Truly glorious!
Lordhobgoblin
Posted on Friday, December 6, 2002 - 2:21 pm:   Edit PostPrint Post

"I suspect if I was faced with a job which wanted me to piss in a cup, I would not take that job, for much the same reason I would not take a job which required that I get security clearance."

Unfortunately the nature of my occupation means that I have to get clearance before starting any job. Rehabilitation of offedners act does not apply and official cautions would probably fuck me up also. Thankfully in the UK I cannot be barred due to any past or current political involvement so long as I have not been convicted of (or cautioned for) crimes.

"The primary threat to individual rights is the GOVERNMENT, because the government has the power of compulsion and enforcement. A company cannot compell me to take a drug test. They can just make it a condition of my employment. The government can send in thugs to hold me down while they take my blood."

If your government is likely to send in thugs to hold you down while they take your blood then you have to ask yourself do you really live in a society where you are governed "by the people for the people". If not then what is the point of pretending that somehow your society is in safe hands with your governments that stay safely in the 'centre' as you put it. Perhaps you would do better with a government that could more easily instigate radical social reforms? Perhaps you could do without your precious constitution which acts as a conservative force maintaining the status quo? If your government is not governing for the people, but for other vested interests, then why go on defending the system that governs you? If you don't trust the system that governs you, and you clearly don't, then why not advocate burning the fucking system down and building something that represents the people? If you don't trust your spouse then the sensible thing to do is to end the marriage and start something new.
Mr_Rabid
Posted on Thursday, December 5, 2002 - 7:00 pm:   Edit PostPrint Post

www.dar pa.mil

The site that looks back at you.

How do you feel about Total Information Awareness Blackjack?

Personally, I'm just caught awake at night wondering if their choice of an Illumaniti Eyeball Pyramid as their logo was *supposed* to be a joke.
Head_Prosthesis
Posted on Thursday, December 5, 2002 - 4:07 pm:   Edit PostPrint Post

That's right there's
always Meijer. Not only
don't they make you pee,
they sell it right there
in the liquor aisle.
_Blackjack
Posted on Thursday, December 5, 2002 - 3:50 pm:   Edit PostPrint Post


Quote:

Can employers insist that women sign away their rights to maternity leave?



Nope. That's protected under federal law.


Quote:

Can employers make employees sign away their right to belong to a Trade Union?



I'm not sure of the details. I know that it varies among the states. Virginia, for instance, is a "right to work" state, which actually means that companies have a lot more power to keep unions out, and to fire people arbitrarly without cause.


Quote:

A government that doesn't protect the rights of individual employees against employers (who are much more powerful than the individual employee) cares little for the rights and freedoms of the individual citizen.



Again, we're coming to the same difference of perspective. The primary threat to individual rights is the GOVERNMENT, because the government has the power of compulsion and enforcement. A company cannot compell me to take a drug test. They can just make it a condition of my employment. The government can send in thugs to hold me down while they take my blood. It's a totally different level of violation.

The conflict between individual rights and the rights of employers is one that is being fought out in our court system every day. Obviously, employers must have the right to place conditions on employment. You have to show up on time, do what is expected of you, etc. We are still working out the finer points of where these conditions begin and end.

As far as the drug testing goes, the legal justification is that use of drugs presents a safety risk in the workplace (tho the statistics aren't too supportive of that). I, personally, object to drug testing on the grounds that, in order to conduct the test accurately, they must gather health information about you (like what prescription drugs you take) which they could not legally gather otherwise. So far, nobody has raised this objection in court.

I suspect if I was faced with a job which wanted me to piss in a cup, I would not take that job, for much the same reason I would not take a job which required that I get security clearance. It is not that I have anything to hide, but I, as a free citizen, do not want people nosing around in my stuff, so I, as a free citizen, can seek work elsewhere.
Head_Prosthesis
Posted on Thursday, December 5, 2002 - 3:32 pm:   Edit PostPrint Post

Hear Hear! I like the way they POP!
Barsnake
Posted on Thursday, December 5, 2002 - 2:39 pm:   Edit PostPrint Post

Finally, LordHG, a lick of sense in the argument...(no offense to fine logical discourse being conducted here. Both pro gun and anti gun make well stated salient points.)
Yes, guns are dangerous, they can be used to kill people, whether in self-defense, or in an offensive action.
But - they are DAMN FUN TO SHOOT.
Lordhobgoblin
Posted on Thursday, December 5, 2002 - 2:02 pm:   Edit PostPrint Post

"I've seen many many anti-gun folks converted by actually getting to SHOOT a gun."

I've been clay pigeon shooting before (and did quite well for a novice). Great fun indeed but I'm happy to give the gun back at the end of the day. It didn't make me want to run out and buy a gun. If I want to do it again I'll go back to the clay pigeon shooting place and use their guns.
Lordhobgoblin
Posted on Thursday, December 5, 2002 - 1:57 pm:   Edit PostPrint Post

"Yes, but it isn't a GOVERNMENT infringement on liberty. Companies have no power to compell you to be tested; if you don't want to be tested, you don't have to work there. I'm not saying it's right, and it's certainly a very disrespectful thing to do to ones employees, but it is a very different matter from if the government was doing it."

The government is failing in its duty to protect the people it represents, the government is guilty by allowing the rights of its people to be trampled on by employers. Then again I suppose it is the employers and not the public who bankroll the government so its probably not that surprising whose interests the government backs.

So in the USA a company is legally allowed to require an employee to give up such liberties as a condition of employment? Are they legally entitled to get their employees to sign away any rights before taking up employment? Can employers insist that women sign away their rights to maternity leave? Can employers make employees sign away their right to belong to a Trade Union? Their right to take Trade Union backed industrial action? Where is the legal protection of employees rights here? Such a system leads to employers setting increasingly unreasonable demands on employees and getting away with it because increasing number of other companies do the same because they can. In the end an employee has little choice but to accept these conditions or be unemployed. You end up with work-slavery. In Europe, companies do not have carte blanche to insist that employees sign away their rights as a condition of employment. Laws exist to protect the rights of employees.

A government that doesn't protect the rights of individual employees against employers (who are much more powerful than the individual employee) cares little for the rights and freedoms of the individual citizen.
_Blackjack
Posted on Wednesday, December 4, 2002 - 4:29 pm:   Edit PostPrint Post


Quote:

I'd rather keep the freedoms to have a good time and give up the freedom to own a gun



There is a lot more overlap there than you imagine. I've seen many many anti-gun folks converted by actually getting to SHOOT a gun.


Quote:

Testing for illegal drugs by private companies on employees, if that isn't an infringement of liberty then I don't know what is.



Yes, but it isn't a GOVERNMENT infringement on liberty. Companies have no power to compell you to be tested; if you don't want to be tested, you don't have to work there. I'm not saying it's right, and it's certainly a very disrespectful thing to do to ones employees, but it is a very different matter from if the government was doing it.


Quote:

I also believe that certain private companies over there actually monitor what staff eat at lunchtime in the staff canteen and if you are not eating a healthy diet you can get a request to visit the company doctor for a discussion on the matter.



I have never heard of such a thing, and we actually have laws which specifically limit the extent to which a company can inquire about your health. If it isn't a matter specifically relevant to you ability to do your job safely, they are not allowed to even ask.
Lordhobgoblin
Posted on Wednesday, December 4, 2002 - 12:47 pm:   Edit PostPrint Post

"YOU GUYS are the ones who seem willing to give up freedoms for safety."

That all depends on the freedoms one is prepared to give up. I'd rather keep the freedoms to have a good time and give up the freedom to own a gun, which is a freedom I wouldn't even bother to avail myself of if I could. I'd rather spend a few hundred quid on something more enjoyable than a gun.

Anyway it seems that the USA is far more obsessed with interfering with private freedoms to control safety than the UK is. Laws to ban smoking in public places, is an infringement on liberties and probably goes against your constitution. Testing for illegal drugs by private companies on employees, if that isn't an infringement of liberty then I don't know what is. What you do out of work hours is none of your employer's fucking business. If you're turning up for work stoned then OK your employer is entitled to discipline you, not for breaking the law but for being unfit for work. I also believe that certain private companies over there actually monitor what staff eat at lunchtime in the staff canteen and if you are not eating a healthy diet you can get a request to visit the company doctor for a discussion on the matter. Your body is your own and you should be allowed to abuse it in any way you choose and furthermore your employer has absolutely no right to act as a policeman with regard to your potential breaking of drug laws.
_Blackjack
Posted on Tuesday, December 3, 2002 - 7:37 pm:   Edit PostPrint Post


Quote:

I'm shocked to hear such superstitious mumbo-jumbo from you Blackjack!



I wasn't advocating the position as true, so much as clarifying the traditional context.
_Blackjack
Posted on Tuesday, December 3, 2002 - 7:35 pm:   Edit PostPrint Post


Quote:

What sort of society makes it illegal for an 18 year old man or woman to buy a drink?



That is certainly rather absurd, but the justification is that it will reduce drunk driving deaths. I have no idea if that is true, and I'm not sure it's a valid tradeoff, but it's not really a morality thing so much as a safety one, and YOU GUYS are the ones who seem willing to give up freedoms for safety.

I think your concept of "most of the USA" is a little skewed. About half of our population lives in the coastal magalopoles, where laws regarding social behavior are not very strict at all. Remember, Utah may be big, but there aren't many people in there...

And if you want to criticize our absurd drug policy, go right ahead. I'm with you.
Lordhobgoblin
Posted on Tuesday, December 3, 2002 - 11:03 am:   Edit PostPrint Post

Blackjack,

London may not be as liberal as Las Vegas but the laws on social behaviour are a lot more liberal than in most of the USA. What sort of society makes it illegal for an 18 year old man or woman to buy a drink?

Saying that laws are not enforced is not good enough. If a law is on the statute book then people breaking such laws are automatically criminals whether they are prosecuted or not.

It just seems that the US authorities are always on the look out to ban something. Some new stimulant comes along and what happens? You seem to ban it as a matter of course. Banning things seems to be the status quo in the USA. This attitude just doesn't prevail in Europe where there seems to be a much more liberal approach to social freedoms.

Your constitution does not appear to have resulted in a society where you are free to enjoy yourself as you see fit (without harming others) without the State trying to impose its code of 'proper moral' conduct on you.
Lordhobgoblin
Posted on Tuesday, December 3, 2002 - 10:46 am:   Edit PostPrint Post

Green,

I've gone and checked my British passport. It says BRITISH CITIZEN. Now that I know this I shall no doubt feel a much freer man.

As far as permissiveness is concerned I believe that no government is entitled to legislate on what consenting adults do in the privacy of their own home. So long as it doesn't involve minors and all parties are willing then anything is OK. It is none of the government's business.

As for God or Creator bestowing such rights on Man. What if, as I do, a person does not believe in any God or Creator? What if a person believes that the Universe just is, always was, and always will be? If there is no God or Creator where do my rights originate from?

Claiming that rights are bestowed on Man by God is just a small step away from the view of Royal Families who believe that their right to rule is bestowed by God, hence the hereditary monarchy passing on this divine right through generations. Claiming that rights are bestowed by some higher power is a dangerous position because you don't have to question or justify these rights. You just believe these rights to be divinely granted and unassialable. Believing you have divine rights means you can do whatever the fuck you like within the parameters of those rights without having to justify yourself. The crusaders rode into Jerusalem in the 12th century slaughtering, pillaging and raping because they had the 'divine right' to do so.
Alphasoixante
Posted on Tuesday, December 3, 2002 - 5:00 am:   Edit PostPrint Post

"The language I've quoted implies that the rights are a quality innate in the act of creation, that when man came into being, he came into being with rights just as much as he came into being with a nose."

How convenient! I'm shocked to hear such superstitious mumbo-jumbo from you Blackjack! Humans are endowed by humans with rights. That's why we're constantly losing them and taking them back. A right us not an attribute but a command. Rights are demanded, not granted. Creation shmeation. Humans ain't ex nihilo. Rights ain't ex nihilo either.
Greenmeanie
Posted on Monday, December 2, 2002 - 6:40 pm:   Edit PostPrint Post

Blackjack!

No trump at all! Thanks for pointing out the error of my ways. You said exactly what I wanted to say. Creator not God.

Long day at work after a 4 day weekend and the brain pan was dripping a wee bit more than usual!

-Green

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