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Comment Re:Not Ever Going To Happen (Score 1) 127

Huh? It looks like the story is that Brits might be allowed to create and serve certain warrants. The US Constitution places requirements on warrants, and I don't see that these would be violated by that agreement. If the Brits got warrants that didn't conform with the Fourth, they'd be invalid, just like US warrants that don't conform are invalid. This doesn't violate sovereignity any more than C++'s "friend" violates encapsulation: it voluntarily allows alternatives to the current interface. I'm not an international lawyer, but what such law would it violate? Lastly, the Declaration of Independence is a stirring document showing many of our founding ideals, with absolutely no legal force.

Comment Re:So it begins (Score 1) 127

You'll get a very different picture from studying other sources. For example, were those impressed people US or British citizens? There may have been a bit of confusion over who belonged to whom in that period. I know just enough to know that (a) it's complicated, (b) there are various differing accounts, and (c) I really don't know what was going on.

Comment Re:speculative execution etc. With 1024 cores ... (Score 4, Insightful) 281

1024 cores will make it possible to get ten steps in, assume each step is a binary choice. The software I work with is way more complex than that. Not to mention, cache coherence is going to be a big problem, and multiplying the power draw and heat production by a thousand may be inconvenient.

There are ways to make problems more parallelizable, but they aren't going to work on all problems. Some problems are just really, really difficult to split up efficiently.

Comment Re:Authoritarians will always rule. (Score 1) 423

To give a real-life counterexample, most of the Muslims in this country are religious conservatives. They'd fit in nicely to parts of the Republican party, which as a strong religious conservative component, except that they aren't in general welcome because they're Muslims. Democrats tend to be much more accepting, even with the differences in politics. Personally, of all the major religions, Islam is the one I like least (I'm not going into detail why). but I voted for Keith Ellison for Congress. Heck, I voted for him in his first primary, which is the election that really mattered (Minnesota's Fifth District does not in general elect Republicans, so whoever wins the DFL primary is in).

Comment Re:Authoritarians will always rule. (Score 1) 423

One thing I've noticed about libertarians: that word covers a very broad range of political positions. One common definition is that it involves trying to keep government as small as is consistent with its duties, and that definition covers me very nicely. I just don't happen to agree with most libertarians about the proper duties of government.

I am willing to say that the local Libertarian party platform I read quite a few years ago was almost completely inapplicable to the real world, but that's hardly all of them. There's some libertarian literature I've read that made me think the writer would be a great guy to do business with, since he seemed completely incapable of thinking about cheating or deceit.

Comment Re:Authoritarians will always rule. (Score 1) 423

No rights are absolute. All run up against limits.

It's possible to believe that a fetus has a strong right to live, and the woman has a stronger right to not be pregnant under some circumstances.

Some people reason that the woman accepted the possible consequences when she decided to have sex, and therefore has no right not to be pregnant. I consider that a very wrong-headed view, but it breaks down completely in case of rape. In that case, if an abortion is not available, the woman is basically enslaved into doing a long, arduous, and somewhat dangerous task.

I don't hold that position, but it seems plenty consistent to me.

Comment Re:Authoritarians will always rule. (Score 1) 423

There are no experts on the subject of when a fertilized egg turns into a human with rights. That is not a scientific question. That is a moral and potentially a legal question.

I am not going to call a fetus human unless that fetus has human-type brain waves, and in fact most abortions are performed before that, and the ones after that tend to be for medical reasons, not as a method of birth control.

Comment Re:Weak reasoning. (Score 1) 423

You are not describing the world as it exists, guy.

I know of a woman who was using contraception methodically - and it turned out that that particular method had managed to get on the market despite being almost completely ineffective. She got an abortion.

I used to know a woman who got pregnant by doing something with her boyfriend, and next time I saw the boyfriend he told me he got rid of her. (It's not that easy to get me that angry that fast, actually.)

There are places where date rape is mostly allowed in practice, in that the guy isn't going to get into legal trouble. (I'm not actually aware of places where it's consistently prosecuted. It's hard to get a conviction.)

There are a frighteningly large number of girls in the US who are forced to be sex slaves. I'm not talking about a culture of enslavement here, I'm talking about the real thing.

I don't particularly care if you say these don't happen in civilized countries in the 21st Century, but they do happen in the US. (I'm not sure of my own knowledge about the bad contraceptive in the 21st century, as that happened in the 80s, but I wouldn't be surprised.)

Comment Re:Authoritarians will always rule. (Score 1) 423

Really? I have to explain that? Sheesh, what happened to logic and common sense?

What happened to actually considering ethical questions seriously without assuming that everyone else shares your possibly unconsidered assumptions.

Some people don't believe in an absolute divide between action and inaction. Some of us think that a person who has the option to save a life by calling 9-1-1 has a moral duty to do so, rather than letting the other person die from something that, after all, the first person wasn't involved in. In some places, you have a legal duty to do something, like call 9-1-1, if possible.

Comment Re: Authoritarians will always rule. (Score 1) 423

I'm dubious about that, but except in one case I don't have solid arguments against.

Consider a man who pushes a woman into sex somehow, gets her pregnant, and wanders off. You say he shouldn't be liable unless it's rape, and that's way unfair.

First, to convict the man of rape would involve coming up with solid evidence, beyond a reasonable doubt, that it was a rape. That's not easy, and it means that a lot of rapists will go unconvicted and free of child support even if brought into court.

Second, it can be a horrible experience for the woman. The defense attorney is pretty well duty-bound to try to slut-shame the victim to establish reasonable doubt over lack of consent, and the whole process can wind up being traumatic reliving of a horrible event. The authorities may be uncaring, although that seems to be changing slowly for the better.

Third, it's possible to push a woman into sex without actually raping her. If the man was getting her tipsy, or being physically pushy, or pulling psychological devices, the man was actively getting the woman pregnant while technically getting consent.

Comment Re: Authoritarians will always rule. (Score 1) 423

It's possible that my brother will need a bone marrow transplant some time, and it's possible that I'll be the only viable donor. As I understand it, the process is to get me to agree, kill my brother's marrow, and then get mine and stick it in. I can back out at any point, including after his marrow is dead and so he'll be dead pretty fast without the transplant, and not get into legal trouble. (There's reasons why I'd never back out like that, but that's because I'm me and I have my own personal reasons for deciding what to do.)

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