Oh, I'm quite sure they exist. Just as people who believe that throwing acid in a young girl's face is preferable to educating that girl. There's really no difference between the two.
Hyperbole is a terrible argumentative tool
Seriously, though, here are the arguments against what you said first, according to a highly educated young officer that I'm friends with:
They enforce laws against opiates. This jacks up the price, and driving addicts to commit crimes to get a fix. This also decreases the quality and consistancy of the supply, killing people.
"They don't have to do the drugs. An increased cost, and more danger would tell me that I should probably stop doing opiates. Addiction is no excuse for breaking the law. Also, saying that addicts HAVE to break the law to provide for their addiction is really only half of the argument. They have another option: getting clean."
They enforce laws against cocaine, turning people towards more easily obtained, yet far more harmful stimulants like meth.
"Those two things are VERY dissimilar in how they act in your body. That's a bad argument. Coke heads don't go to meth. They go to crack. Meth use and cocaine use are in entirely separate areas of the country at the micro-scale, and in entirely separate communities at the macro-scale."
The enforce laws against psychedelics, depriving most of the country from one of the most awe inspiring, and still incredibly safe experiences life has to offer.
"You could, you know, do something else awe inspiring. Ever seen the grand canyon? If your life is so boring that you MUST have psychedelics to enjoy it, you need to evaluate the choices you make."
Again, I'm the messenger for him, I just felt the need to rebut your argument from one of those "pants on head retarded" people you're talking about.
There are, and this may be hard to understand, people who genuinely believe that the only way to remove drugs from the streets - regardless of proof to the contrary - is to make them illegal and put people in jail for them. These people believe that personal responsibility should be enough to keep people from doing drugs, and that if we make them legal, the problem will only get worse.
For proof of the fact that these people exist, and that they do not agree with your undergraduate statistics and crime course arguments, please consult anyone labeled 'officer'.
What that means is that a cop can go into a hospital, flash his badge, and copy all your medical records if he feels like it, without violating HIPAA. Individual hospitals may have different policies, but nothing in HIPAA prevents that.
A badge does not equal a court order, court-ordered warrant or subvpoena. Hyperbole is not an effective argument tool, stop it.
No, austerity means that we don't know how to fix the economy, but we believe that cutting governmental spending is the best way to do it. I've said it here before, I'll say it again. Big players got a taste of bigger money in the 70's, 80's and 90's in places like South Africa, South America, Poland, and Greece. They use a specific form of economic theory based on what is termed as "Shock Economics" spearheaded by many faculty and graduates of the University of Chicago School of Business.
These people got a taste of this big money in poor countries, and really, genuinely want to take a big-ass bite out of where the money is in the US and other 1st world countries: military, employee benefits and to a much, much smaller degree, education.
We've already seen the mass privatization of the military, through contracts and hired security forces. We're getting tastes of what's to come with all the talk of cutting government pensions (I pay into one, they're not as great as what mainstream media would have you believe - 50% of my salary average for the last 6 years I'm working, and the earliest I can retire without a penalty is 67). Private companies gamble with public pensions, lose the money, then lobby and purchase the media to make it seem as if it is the government's own fault.
Look for a wider and deeper call for privatization of education in the next 5 years. Look for harder pushes for vouchers and the complete dissolving of teacher's unions power.
Look for you to pay a private company directly to teach your kids using minimum-wage, unskilled workers as teachers reading from a prescribed electronic curriculum.
I say 20 years we have a completely private school system with an absolutely ridiculous gap between the have's and have-not's (more than we currently do).
Since when do we need a specific reason to do science? You never know what you'll find out once you've done the research.
Since we started implementing austerity measures.
I think you're confusing big-box stores with retail in general. Big box stores carry more of high profit margin items, and rarely, if ever, of low-profit/low-demand items. That is correct.
Where you go wrong, though, is that all stores are like this. For example, a local hardware store had everything (and I mean everything) I needed to remodel my basement. From the hammer and nails to the specialty trim. They didn't have a lot of each thing, and I paid a little more for convenience, but they had it. The local computer parts store carries everything from 50'+ HDMI cables to 2-pin adapters, from power supplies to charging pads for remote controlled helicopters. They might only have one or two of each thing, but their prices are competitive with on-line, and they do good business.
In other words, retail is more than just big box stores. There are countless small shops just like the two I mention.
The illusion that "it's all so easy" has really gotten buried too deep in someone's head somewhere.
I think it's because PC's are the new 'old car'. In my youth, when men were bored, they would go tinker around with their cars. This tinkering began and ended at home, simply because there was no translation to the workplace. Today, though, with all the gee-gaws and doohickeys that are on modern cars, men have less to tinker with. What we do have, though, is a home PC. We can tinker, we can figure, we can play with the home PC and not really screw stuff up. SO, to people like that, it really is a simple transition between home PC tinkering, and systems design.
Or, it could be because most people HAVE to have say in what goes on around them, regardless of skills or knowledge.
One of those two things.
Like most things, it boils down to who you work for, not where you work.
(And private sector employees don't have their friends and family scrutinizing everything they do because "my taxes pay you". . . . . . So there's that)
Holy crap who modded this up? It's called research and development, and it's actually quite costly.
And just what in God's name does the NSA have to do with this discussion?