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Comment: Re:Do It, it worked in AZ (Score 1) 886

by cas2000 (#49367247) Attached to: Gen Con Threatens To Leave Indianapolis Over Religious Freedom Bill

if they're running a cotton-picking business and they refuse to serve you *because* you're white or gay or female or some other class, then YES they are violating your rights.

if you run a business open to the public then you don't have the right to discriminate against classes of people - you can ban specific individuals because of their behaviour (e.g. shoplifiting) but you can't ban all black people or all gay people.

if you try to get around that with a dumb loophole like saying you're a private club or something then you'll deserve it when your IRS takes a long hard look at you.

Comment: Re:Then ID would be required (Score 1) 1089

by cas2000 (#49299807) Attached to: Obama: Maybe It's Time For Mandatory Voting In US

that sounds like election rigging or ballot box stuffing, not voter fraud.

voter fraud is where someone votes multiple times or pretends to be someone they're not in order to vote. it's so rare and so small that it's insignificant.

election rigging is conducted by corrupt election officials or politicians or their agents or corporate vermin. it can be a huge problem, especially with electronic voting machines owned by a company with strong ties to one party (such as diebold and your republican party). your country has had numerous instances of this with huge effects on election outcomes for the last several elections.

Comment: Re:Then ID would be required (Score 1) 1089

by cas2000 (#49298793) Attached to: Obama: Maybe It's Time For Mandatory Voting In US

The loony extreme fringes tend to balance each other out without the mandatory voting because they are motivated to vote.

no, the result is that you get one or the other of the loony fringes winning. as evidenced by YOUR country.

What the compulsory voting does is make the people that are too lazy/unmotivated/disenfranchised/etc to educate themselves about the issues and parties go out and vote for whoever looks the best or has the best sounding name. It's those people I really don't want voting.

so, you admit that the reason you're against compulsory voting is because it, by default, disenfranchises those you consider to be unworthy of voting? that's fucked up.

these people have a right to vote. more to the point, they have a civic duty to vote (or at least, to bother to get their name crossed off - in which case, most of them will bother to actually think about it and make a choice)....and, just as importantly, if they did have to vote then some candidates or parties will start trying to be appealing to them by having policies that benefit them.

your system is corrupt and taken over by corporate interests partly BECAUSE you don't have compulsory voting - they can rely on most people thinking that there's no point in voting because the system is rigged. a self-fulfilling prophecy.

Comment: Re:Then ID would be required (Score 1) 1089

by cas2000 (#49298763) Attached to: Obama: Maybe It's Time For Mandatory Voting In US

well, they wouldn't. But, just like in your country, the amount of voter fraud that actually happens (as opposed to the amount of voter fraud claimed to happen by conservative parties who want to disenfranchise minorities) is as close to zero as makes no difference. it's certainly statistically insignificant and really does make no difference to the election outcome.

still, i expect that if someone turned up to vote and looked nervous or otherwise suspicious then the polling officials might ask for some form of ID, and require a provisonal ballot just in case.

Comment: Re:37% Participation? (Score 1) 1089

by cas2000 (#49296435) Attached to: Obama: Maybe It's Time For Mandatory Voting In US

umm, yeah. elections in countries with compulsory voting routinely gets a voter turnout of 99+%

that's a much higher "sample rate" than 37%.

It also means that to win, a candidate needs to get the votes of >50% of the actual population. ALL of the citizens, not just 50% of the 37% who bother to turn up.

Comment: Re:Then ID would be required (Score 5, Informative) 1089

by cas2000 (#49296219) Attached to: Obama: Maybe It's Time For Mandatory Voting In US

ID is not necessarily required.

e.g. in Australia, you turn up to the polling station (usually a local school or whatever), go to the desk and tell them your name. they look it up in their lists of voters, and cross your name off. Then they initial and hand you your ballot papers which you take to a private voting booth and fill out. Then you fold them and drop them into the ballot boxes (one for the house of reps, one for the senate). done.

In the last few elections, the Australian Electoral Commission (an independant govt body who have the responsibility for running elections) have been mailing out helpful voter cards with your name and IIRC your address on it which you can show at the desk. These cards are completely optional, you can still vote if you forget to bring it or have lost it or never got it, and you still don't have to show any ID.

And, yes, voting is compulsory in australia. In practice, this means you just have to turn up to a polling station and get your name crossed off the list. You can then vote informally if you choose, nobody will know. If you don't turn up, you'll get a letter in the mail a few weeks later asking if you have a good excuse (like, "I was too sick to leave the house"). If not, you'll get fined.

btw, compulsory voting is a good thing. it tends to limit the excesses of the loony extreme fringes of all sides, by encouraging politicians and major parties to pander to the middle ground.

and preferential voting (i.e. ordering your preferences as 1, 2, 3, etc) is also a good thing. it allows voters to vote for third parties and independant candidates without wasting their vote - if their first choice fails to win, their 2nd choice gets their vote...and then their third, fourth, etc choices. It also allows voters to send a message or lodge a protest, e.g. vote for the socialist party 1st and Labour 2nd - Labour will still (almost certainly) end up with that person's vote but they're also telling the Labour party that their policies are too right-wing and too cozy with business.....and, hey, if the impossible happens and the pimple-faced university student from Socialist Alliance wins a seat, that'll shake things up a bit in parliament!

Comment: no state should have the right to murder people (Score 1) 1081

by cas2000 (#49272955) Attached to: How To Execute People In the 21st Century

it's just too dangerous a power for them to have.

but since the death penalty does exist in some places, IMO the only reasonable way to do it is:

1. the victim or a close member of the victim's family MUST be the ones to do the killing. no exceptions, except for one and only one circumstance (if the victim has no living family, then the prosecutor MUST be the state's killer) - if they can't stomach doing it, then it shouldn't be done.

The method should be as gruesome yet painless as possible - knockout drugs followed by manual beheading, perhaps...but there should be no euphemistic way of disguising the fact that a state-sanctioned *murder* is being committed.

2. if it is later discovered that they executed an innocent person, then they and everyone else directly involved in the execution (prosecutor, prison guards, etc) MUST be charged with murder and also subject to the death penalty.

3. prosecutors MUST be charged with attempted murder if (while the death row prisoner is still living) it is found that they ignored or suppressed evidence that proves innocence or provides enough reasonable doubt for a jury to acquit.

Comment: Diamond Age (Score 1) 163

by cas2000 (#49272071) Attached to: "Hello Barbie" Listens To Children Via Cloud

This kind of thing sounded cool and amazing in Neal Stephenson's Diamond Age, but in real life it's just fucking creepy and perverted.

The key difference is that Stephenson's version was a primer that educated the owner about maths and science and all sorts of things, while this abomination is from a company that has a history of marketing to and exploiting children, and is a doll whose purpose is to teach rigidly oppressive gender roles, teaching girls things like "math is hard".

sadly, Stephenson's version is probably only possible in fiction. In real life, the corporate profit motive makes it just marketing spyware.

Comment: Re:Piracy is... (Score 1) 284

by cas2000 (#49211625) Attached to: UK Gov't Asks: Is 10 Years In Jail the Answer To Online Pirates?

So propaganda is OK merely because it's old? In that case, how old does a propaganda term have to be before it becomes legit?

copyright infringement was called "piracy" back then in an attempt to make it seem like an actual crime, and one of the worst crimes rather than a relatively harmless evasion of rent-seeking monopoly.

BTW, corporate tax evasion sounds like a harmless white-collar crime, so i propose calling it paedophilia just so that the public understands how dangerous and destructive the crime really is. In a century or two (perhaps less), that should be OK, because propaganda is OK as long as it's traditional.

Comment: key differences (Score 1) 284

by cas2000 (#49211465) Attached to: UK Gov't Asks: Is 10 Years In Jail the Answer To Online Pirates?

Key differences between offline counterfeiting and online piracy that the copyright maximalist fascists are glossing over include:

1. counterfeitiing of physical goods is a for-profit activity, online piracy is, mostly, not. copyright laws already have higher penalties for commercial piracy (e.g. selling copied CDs or DVDs) than non-commercial piracy.

2. counterfeiting is trademark infringement, not copyright infringement. it's comparing chalk and cheese. copyright and trademarks are two completely different, unrelated things with completely different laws and rationales.

3. counterfeiting also affects the consumers and is often an act of deception against them. In some cases, that doesn't matter much (where the buyer knows they're buying a "fake" because, e.g., one t-shirt or handbag or gaudy watch is pretty much the same as any other), in other cases it matters a lot because the consumer can get an inferior, or at least wildly different, product to what they thought they were buying.

Comment: Re:I'm dying of curiousity (Score 1) 188

by cas2000 (#49200609) Attached to: Software Freedom Conservancy Funds GPL Suit Against VMWare

Pragmatism is only a secondary concern for free software (as opposed to open source).

People who license their software under copyleft terms don't want people who wont license their software as copyleft to benefit from their work. In that sense, them wasting their time is also the GPL working as intended. If they're not willing to pay the license "fee", then why the hell should they benefit? In other words, if you won't share, then write your own code or pay a commercial licence for proprietary code.

The GPL is more than just a software license, it's a political statement and political action about sharing and freedom for ALL users, not just for a handful of developers who want to use other people's work for free. If you want to benefit from sharing, then you also have to share.

if you don't like it or don't want to accept the terms, that's fine - but write your own code.

Time-sharing is the junk-mail part of the computer business. -- H.R.J. Grosch (attributed)