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Comment: Re:Another great Scalia line (Score 1) 1082 1082

The New York Times article summarizing the consortium's efforts to recount Florida's votes states that under the rules in place in Florida at the time Bush would have won, with or without a recount.

Only in recounts using special criteria (conditions not used by the various counties to decide votes) were they able to get Gore declared the winner.

They basically recounted the ballots in dozens of ways and in some counts had Gore ahead and others, Bush but in the way that mattered (using official county practices) Bush won.

Comment: Re:Another great Scalia line (Score 1) 1082 1082

Someone should tell the New York Times that their own article on the subject doesn't agree with an AC on Slashdot.

While they found that under some counting systems Gore would have won, in others Bush would still win. The Gore victories often happened in unrealistic counting scenarios set up by the consortium doing the recount but when using the most realistic possible standard (they asked each county to provide their criteria for counting a valid vote) Bush still won.

In most cases, regardless of the scenario they applied, the vote totals gave a victory to one side or the other by only a couple hundred votes.

In either case they found the Supreme Court decision had no impact on the election since the methodology and rules in place at the time led to a Bush victory with or without the recount.

Comment: Re:what is interesting is not that it won (Score 1) 591 591

The original concept was to only have State exchanges. One defense some of the writers of the bill gave for the poor wording concerning State vs Federal exchanges was that the Federal exchange was an afterthought and not the State exchanges. They claimed that they tagged on the Federal exchange idea at the end and just forgot to go back and update the State sections.

At the time of the bill passing though both Gruber and Sen. Baucus talked about the credits as a carrot to use to force States to set up their own exchanges.

Comment: Re: what is interesting is not that it won (Score 2) 591 591

Jonathan Gruber, often referred to as the key architect of the ACA (paid over $400,000 by the WH to help craft the bill and many times that by individual states to help them deal with it) said when asked about State vs Federal exchanges:

“What’s important to remember politically about [Obamacare] is if you’re a state and you don’t set up an exchange, that means your citizens don’t get their tax credits—but your citizens still pay the taxes that support this bill. So you’re essentially saying [to] your citizens you’re going to pay all the taxes to help all the other states in the country. I hope that that’s a blatant enough political reality that states will get their act together and realize there are billions of dollars at stake here in setting up these exchanges."

He also has some other memorable quotes about the playing on the stupidity of Americans, how the ACA would has no real measures to decrease health care costs and would in fact necessitate increasing them to deal with certain 'taxes' and the need to make a bill so fundamentally unreadable that no one would have a clear understanding of it as a whole in order to get it to pass.

Of course all this was said publicly between 2010 and 2013 but suddenly all changed to 'mis-speaks' in 2014 when these same aspects of the bill all became center points of lawsuits.

Comment: Re:Roberts admits to being wrong (Score 1) 591 591

The State can mean any level of government but for the purposes of this bill it means the 50 states and other US territories. How do we know this? The bill has a glossary and defines it as such.

We also know because one of the primary writers of the bill said so in several speeches.

We also know that because Scotus left it to mean that in the other 6 or so locations in the bill it uses the term State.

SCOTUS went above and beyond both the literal meaning of the words and the intent of the writers (which in this case has been documented to be one in the same) to create an interpretation that fails at both but allows them to keep the bill intact.

This is pretty much the textbook example of legislating from the bench. They took an outcome they wanted and twisted logic beyond all reason to come up with that result.

Comment: Re:what is interesting is not that it won (Score 1) 591 591

The problem is the intent and literal meaning are one in the same.

The actual writers of the law bragged about limiting credits to State created exchanges as a method to force uncooperative States to fall in line. When that failed to happen they simply re-write history (although failed to destroy all the videos of speeches clearly spelling out their original intent) and claimed they meant it to apply to all exchanges.

Comment: Re: what is interesting is not that it won (Score 3, Informative) 591 591

The actual architect of the law, as well as some other people involved with the writing, specifically stated at the time the law was being written that the purpose of the tax credit only applying to State exchanges was to force uncooperative states to comply with the law.

There are several videos of full speeches by Gruber where he clearly spells out that that was the intent of the law and why there is no mention of the Federal exchange and credits. It's also why this law specifically defines State exchange as an exchange established by one of the 50 states or a US territories (although Obamacare had issues with territories too).

This was not about fixing a mistake in a law but re-writing it and ignoring it's clear intent to prevent it from falling apart.

Comment: Re:Yeah, fuck Harper (Score 1) 79 79

The Canadian system is generally designed to be a dictatorship with rotating dictators every few years with the party in charge, especially if it's a majority, having almost completely unfettered control over legislation. No matter whose in charge it always looks bad. It's one of the reason we need real Senate reform to create a better check and balance system.

I do know Chretien used the ability to declare a vote a matter of confidence several times to force his own party to vote his way. The tainted blood scandal being one that sticks out most in my mind. Liberal MPs were literally crying in the House of Commons while voting to approve legislation Chretien wanted passed but they disagreed with because he classified it as a confidence vote and if they voted their conscience it would have meant a general election would have to be called.

I'm also unaware of any instances of Harper physically assaulting citizens because he didn't feel like listening to his security detail and tried pushing his way through a crowd.

Overall, without any real oversight or secondary validation it's much too easy for the current PM to dismiss all opposing viewpoints and tailor make legislation only addressing their or their parties concerns. This tends to lead to some rather bad legislation (as can be see in some of the recently passed bills). Oddly enough it is the Harper government that has made motions of moving towards an elected Senate option which would help reign in the PMs power. He has already stated that if a Province elects a Senator when a seat becomes open he will adhere to their wishes (and already has in Alberta's case) and has at times made motions towards enshrining that into federal law. Of course, reforming the Senate in any meaningful way is one of the few limits on the PM authority since it would require agreement by the various Premieres.

Comment: Re:Full reboot (Score 1) 137 137

I would have been happy if anyone thought of putting double doors on the paddocks or at least a 2 stage verification system to open them up. Having a single door with a single verification panel on the containment cells was just asking for trouble.

Forget about ultra-smart dinos tricking the handlers or stupid zoo employees opening the doors, with such a simple locking mechanism in place at some point some animal rights activist was sure to let them out of their pens.

Comment: Re: Very misleading headline (Score 1) 259 259

The Nazi/Soros things comes from an interview he did with 60 minutes where he talks about pretending to be the godson of a Christian neighbor whose job it was to confiscate Jewish citizens property. He called it the point of his life where his character was set and talks about how he feels no guilt because someone had to confiscate the property and why not him. Honestly, it sounds like the testimony of a sociopath.

His crashing the British pound in the early 90's seems very much in that same character.

Comment: Re:Go Solar, it can make good financial sense. (Score 1) 259 259

In fact according to the CBO, renewable energy receives quite a lot more in federal subsidies than oil and gas: $3.2 billion for oil and gas (+ $500 million in non-subsidy expenditures) compared to $7.3 billion for renewables (+ $1.7 billion in non-subsidy expenditures).

There are other general subsidies they both take part in but those are not specific to their industries and are just the normal accounting tricks most manufacturing industries use to spread out their costs over time.

Comment: Re:Lies, Damn lies and Statistics (Score 1) 216 216

Reading doesn't appear to be your strong suit.

From the CBO, as I stated, the US subsidizes Oil and Gas approximately $3.2 billion/year (of course that will be higher or lower any given year) and an additional $500 million in more direct funding. Most other subsidies are generic and available to all industries. Nothing in the Guardian link goes against that.

Top Ten Things Overheard At The ANSI C Draft Committee Meetings: (5) All right, who's the wiseguy who stuck this trigraph stuff in here?