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Submission + - Idaho Law Against Recording Abuses on Factory Farms Ruled Unconstitutional

onproton writes: An Idaho law that made it illegal to record and document animal abuse or dangerous hygienic practices in agricultural facilities, often referred to as an ‘ag-gag’ law, was ruled unconstitutional by a federal judge on Monday. The judge concluded that the law restricted constitutionally protected free speech, and contradicted “long-established defamation and whistleblowing statutes by punishing employees for publishing true and accurate recordings on matters of public concern.” Idaho is just one of several states to pass this type of law, which allow food production facilities to censor some unfavorable forms of speech at their convenience. Under the Idaho statute, an employee that witnessed and recorded an incident, even if it depicted true and life-threatening health or safety violations, could be faced with a year in jail and fines of up to “twice the economic loss the owner suffers.” In his ruling, the judge stated that this was “precisely the type of speech the First Amendment was designed to protect.” This decision has raised questions about the constitutionality of these types of laws in other states as well, and it’s likely that there will be more legal battles ahead.

Submission + - US approves anti-epilepsy pill manufactured with 3D printer->

Okian Warrior writes: Aprecia Pharmaceuticals announced that the FDA had approved its Spritam medication for the treatment of epilepsy.

The company said that with its ZipDose 3D printing technology, it is possible to create a detailed, porous structure which allows the pill to dissolve faster while delivering up to 1,000 mg of medication in a single dose.

Link to Original Source

Comment Re:Sounds like justice, until.... (Score 1) 210

Companies (at least successful ones) by definition behave like sociopaths. They have to.

Corporations are intelligence without morals or consciousness. That's what makes them successful. It is a fundamental requirement to be a sociopath to be successful in a corporation. If you ponder the moral and ethical consequences of your actions, you're already being passed by and trampled on by someone who wouldn't even know why he should ponder it altogether.

Comment Re:Don't know the source (Score 1) 210

Since when does it really matter who really did it? As long as we have some kind of lead towards the boogeyman du jour?

I mean, hell, that's enough to bomb a country back to the stone age, you really think we'd employ more scrutiny for mere data?

Comment Re:Let the market decide. (Score 1) 504

Having them working is efficient. Having them sitting in front of a burning house isn't.

Having them sit in front of their cute "fire house" all day is even more inefficient.

And that's what happens, when they are government employees — because each town has its own. The same would be happening, if each town ran its own restaurants — fortunately, the statism has not reached quite that far in this country.

They would do their best to save the burning house, but they would fail every time.

Now you are changing your argument — glad to see, we have the earlier one discarded.

Let's dispense with this new one. Service-providers, that oversell their capacity do not survive for very long either. Customers and insurers track them... Unless, of course, they are government-owned — the "trick" you described can be (and is) used by government-run fire-teams all the time. A mean annual wage of a New York City firefighter, for example, is over $73K, but they will refuse to even try to save your property, under the noble-sounding rule "We only save lives".

So you are saying that insurance is more expensive to cover for the fees in order for them to evaluate and approve private fire departments?

Somebody has to evaluate and approve all fire departments — whether they are monitored by the towns or insurance companies, it needs to be done on occasion. But insurance companies compete with each other and have "skin in the game" — their policies will be too expensive, if they aren't efficient about inspections. If, on the other hand, they are too loose in their standards, they'll lose money paying for houses destroyed by fires.

Town representatives do not have "skin in the game" and are swayed by personal sympathies if not outright bribery, which makes the system less efficient.

My point was just that the city shouldn't be providing a private corporation with free land and free water.

Maybe not. Something can be worked-out — after all, we do have private companies running cables (and even pipes) above and under the streets. Any resource available to government-owned firefighters ought to be — and is — available to privately-operated ones.

Comment Re:Microsoft (Score 3, Insightful) 178

Windows Phone is pretty nice. It's main drawback is the lack of apps (which is hard to fix, as no one wants to develop for a platform with few users and no one wants to buy a phone with no software). It's main problem selling is that people associate it with Windows on the desktop, which is a usability disaster that somehow manages to get worse each version, in spite of having passed the point where people thought it couldn't get any worse some time ago.

Comment Re:Let the market decide. (Score 1) 504

It's inefficient because they are not available in case there is a fire somewhere else

This statement makes no sense. Had they been actively involved in extinguishing the (uninsured) house, they would've been even less available for other engagements.

I'd open one in every town. Of course I wouldn't have any firemen or trucks. I would just collect the money and not answer any calls.

That's called fraud — a criminal act. Do you think, various criminals haven't tried this before? They have and still do, are you going to nationalize all insurance business because of this?

Those who get their house burnt would get a monthly refund

You'd be liable to much more than that — in addition to the above-mentioned criminal prosecution, you'd forfeit all the bonds you have posted and, of course, such a thing can only be tried once.

Most ordinary people might not have the attention span enough to track such fraudsters, but insurance companies do — and they will insist, you pick a fire-company from their "approved" list.

Of course, every private fire departement would need it's own aqueduc and private fire hydrant network, right?

Not necessarily. That's entirely up to them. You have mentioned in your previous post, that you find cooperation between neighboring towns' fireteams possible (and desirable). What makes you think, private players would be unable to cooperate with each other?

Comment Re:Yeah, great (Score 1) 192

Since we're just talking out our asses here, I'll say there's evidence that exposure to porn at young ages increases respect for women. The "evidence" is me. I first found porn mags at age 8 or so, and lots more, including videos, by 14. I have since become an avid porn collector. Yet I am absolutely respectful of women and always have been. I am far more respectful of women than the men in some no-porn areas I've lived in other countries.

Or maybe it's largely unconnected to porn. Maybe it's about culture and upbringing. In fact, there actually _is_ evidence that porn reduces rape (the ultimate form of disrespect for women):

    http://www.slate.com/articles/arts/everyday_economics/2006/10/how_the_web_prevents_rape.html

And even though I'd still argue against allowing younger people's free access porn, the data in that article, tracking total internet usage, certainly includes young people's access to porn.

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