Will someone tell me why he was there in the first place?
Because, like they say in the mafia, you keep your friends close and your enemies closer.
You don't need to spend thousands on a lawyer... I wish I lived in your world.
You do. But just not in my part of it. In Sweden if the state prosecutes you, they pay for your defence. No, the money's not unlimited, but substantial enough (as decided by the courts, not the state) i.e. on par with the resources the prosecution has, that there's no market for criminal trial attorneys that charge directly and work outside the system. I can't see how you could run a fair legal system any other way, given the disparate power between on the one hand the whole state, and on the other you.
Also, no juries, instead panels of lay people chosen by the parties of parliament that sit for a fixed term. (And actually thus get some experience and have a support system outside of the courts.)
No, plea bargains, if the state seeks "25-life" it is of course completely disingenuous to come back and say "But just because I'm a bit over worked, I'll settle for 1 year in prison if you confess now and we skip the trial". If the crime merits 25-life that's what's get decided, as it should be. The state should not be in the business of blackmail. (That said, given that you can mount an effective defence without going bankrupt, I doubt that it would have the same devastating effect that it has had in the US.)
And prosecutors are not politicians. I don't know why you would want a politician in that position. Instead they're civil servants. Appointed by politicians that you can hold to answer if the system is not working the way it should.
They outlawed talking about neo-nazism, for example
No, it was good old fashioned Nazism that was outlawed, not the neo kind. And that was outlawed because the USA being among the victors or WWII had it written into (west) German law ("constitution") when that was written.
So it's a bit disingenuous to hear complaints about Germany's lack of free speech from the US, when it was the US that put those restrictions there in the first place. (And that's not to say that the reason for putting those laws on the books was necessarily a bad thing.)
It's pretty, but I can't even drag down the menu bar to reveal the second workbench behind it. And after playing around with the site for a few minutes I never saw a Guru Meditation Error.
Sure, but then you have to bring the whole bundle into the premises. Or leave it outside in a convenient spot, and then dig and drill into the house for another conduit. All that hassle for nothing extra in return. There is no discernible difference between fibre blown by different companies, it's a commodity. The only sensible number of fibre pairs/conduits to your premises is one. No other number makes economic sense. It would be exactly like if in the days of yore you changed your long distance carrier, they would have to string an extra pair of wires from the nearest telephone pole because you couldn't use the wires that were already there. Also, it would either put an upper limit on the number of possible ISPs competing, or a number on how many times you could change ISP without incurring extra overhead. In a city with shared fibre both these are a no brainer, you can change as quickly as the administrative procedures can keep up, and as many times as you like. There are no technical limits.
So it's probably not by accident or other economic externalities that while there are several "open city networks" run in many parts of the world (many of course not in cities proper), I haven't heard of a single one that just lays multiple conduits and let ISPs do the rest. If you dig for the conduit, you might as well blow the fibre while you're at it. Much as you do with electricity. No need to have multiple wires etc. that's just added expense for no gain.
Run the physical network like the utility it is. (Rather, ought to be).
Wait a second. What operating system stole PCs away from Microsoft Windows? In order for what you say to make sense, Microsoft would have had to have lost control over PCs (which still hasn't happened) to Linux, and so in turn Microsoft decided to dominate Smartphones instead, which also has not happened.
You don't have to be successful to be a viable threat. It turns out that not only competition, but the valid threat of competition can do wonders to keep companies in line. Just imagine what Microsoft could have been if it had had access to a restricted/restrictable platform. It makes their list of sins to date seem like ridiculous kindergarten stuff in comparison. They could easily have made Richard Stallmans "The right to read" to seem like an utopia to strive for, rather than the dystopic warning that it is.
Oh and I should add. The big cost is digging. If you're digging and laying conduit, you might as well blow fibre while you're at it.
Oh you can blow another one, but you have to pull the first one first. Conduit to single premises are a couple of millimetres inside diameter just so that you can blow a single narrow fibre. When you pull thicker trunk lines you attach the bundle to a "cushion" with the same inner diameter as the tube and hook what you're pulling to that, so then of course you can pull more due to the better fit and more force available.
Also, there are no contacts on residential fibre, it's not a patch cable, instead the terminations are typically welded. (At least at the head end, but not always in the CPE). So that's an extra cost and complication.
But you raise a good question. Where to read about it... I haven't seen any books on the subject, actually not much open literature at all. I learned this stuff "on the job" when I was building telecoms equipment at Ericsson, but most of that wasn't open documentation. (Not that it couldn't have been, but you know corporations.) The only more open literature I've seen is about LANs, and it typically doesn't cover the MAN side. Manufacturer literature would probably be your best bet. Ericsson is one company manufacturing fiber and conduits, but there are of course a ton of others.
So out of curiosity, how many women have you dated who wanted to go dutch on dates? Didn't expect you to buy them flowers or jewelry? Didn't want you to open doors for them? Didn't expect you to protect them in a fight?
Not the person you're replying to, but I felt I should step in here...
My wife always paid her fair share when we dated. I honestly felt a little uncomfortable about it at first, but she insisted.
She loves it when I buy her flowers and jewellery, but she'll buy me stuff I like too; so that seems even to me.
I'll hold doors open for her, and she is happy that I do. But she'll hold doors open for me too, and I'm happy that she does.
She most certainly would expect me to defend her in a fight; but equally, I'd expect her to defend me in one. (neither of us is particularly physically inclined, but we're also not really the types to get in to fights; so thus far it hasn't been a situation that has arisen)
Basically my point is that just because a woman expects some things from the guy, it doesn't mean she's asking for unequal treatment... she may be willing to do all those same things too.
Actually, we're generally much more prone to censorship here in Europe. Many of the countries in the EU have hang-ups on particular issues for historical reasons (eg. Germany on Nazi imagery...
Of course the reason they're sensoring Nazi imagery is that the US had it written into (west) German law as the new German law was being written past WWII.
So having USians argue that there's never any reason for government censorship is ripe with irony (and of course good old double standards).
Overall, I'm not sure I agree with your point. I find Europe much much freer, in that while some types of speech are regulated (not really "censored"), the rest of society is pretty free from censorship. While in the US the government doesn't abridge free speech much (well there are the seven words you allude to), the rest of society; corporations, special interest groups, media etc. are all too willing to self sensor.
Case in point, it only takes a week for a previously European company that get American owners before email starts to randomly disappear due to random filters falsely flagging non US English words as "profanity/sexually charged" or some such nonsense. I've never worked for a European company that even considers that kind of shit. Though it was funny at Volvo here in Sweden where they all of a sudden weren't making any cars since email with the word "slut", i.e. "has run out" weren't reaching the people responsible for material flow. You'd think a few such incidents would get the email filter turned off. No, of course not, we can't run a company that doesn't silently drop email with the word "slut" in them, the filter stayed, and we had to learn to avoid certain words. (Which would have been easier had the list of forbidden words been public, but that would have actually made sense... I swear, the Chinese are easier to deal with that US owners when it comes to random corporate censorship.)
Such a user could change to the other ISP that has pulled fiber through the same conduit.
I doubt that companies would fall over themselves to pull multiple strands of fibre to the same residence. (Of course talking last mile here). Here, the telco won't even go onto a street that's been "visited" by the energy company, even to hook up houses that aren't connected.
So, we're back to the natural monopoly argument. Requiring an operator to pull a new fiber (which means also pulling a new conduit, you can't blow eight strands of fibre in one conduit if you don't do it all at once), is just too large a barrier to entry. Not much better than what you have today. No, lowering barriers to competition is the way to go.