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Comment Re: title (Score 1) 329

Chinese law doesn't apply in HK. HK has its own border, passport, security, police, pplitics, driving, language, educatiin system. HK has uncensored internetz freedom of speech, free elections, freedom of religion, freedom of travel (no Hukou bullshit, and the passport isn't worthless), freedom of the press, right to protest, right to criticize the government, fsir trials when charged with a crime, no black jails or anything of that matter, must I go on?

It may "officially" be China's in name, but calling it China and treating it like every other part of the corrupt communist shithole is wrong. And that's what China tells its peoole, censoring heavily tbings like the Umbrella Revolution because shit will go down if people know that kind of protest could happen in "China".

My brother has lived in Hong Kong since before it was returned to China. Mainland China is slow to make changes in HK because they don't want a revolt. If you look up a few posts, Hong Kong was placed in the same list as Taiwan, Tibet, and the islands in the South Sea. Of these, Hong Kong officially belongs to China; the others are disputed. If you go to the Wikipedia article I referenced, there is a nice table of what's changed and what remained the same since 1 July 1997.

Comment Re:title (Score 1) 329

In Maryland, our gas is down to $1.65, this is lower than when I started driving, if your prices haven't dropped below $2 a gallon, then I would look at why if I were you. At the height of the gas prices in the last 5 years, MD gas was $5, so it isn't like ours is somehow artificially low in some way.

Utah's average for 85 octane gasoline is $1.80 / gallon right now. There is no reason for it to be so expensive, especially considering we have 5 refineries in state, and gasoline refined in Utah costs LESS in Idaho. Admittedly, a 5 cent tax increase went into effect January 1.

Comment Re: title (Score 1) 329

Keep in mind this is China's news, the same ones who tell us Taiwan/Hong Kong/Tibet/South sea islands is belonged to China.

I hate to burst your bubble, but Hong Kong does belong to China since 1 July 1997. One could argue that at least the New Territories always belonged to China and were just leased to the UK.

Comment Re:Tax Returns??? (Score 1) 176

Why do people feel the need to whine about other people giving the government a free loan? Most of us don't really give two sh*ts about it and I have more things to do with my time over the year than worry about whether or not the Feds get a 0% from me.

So they get a 0% from me.. WGAS. You know what is nice? That nice little bonus to me, from me, in March each year.

Most people don't whine about other people giving the government an interest-free loan. Most people who whine do so because the government gets any interest on any tax they overpaid. We also make fun of people who think that a tax refund is a bonus or free money. Shoot, my state taxes tax refunds as income!

Comment Re:I guess it's easier... (Score 2) 425

The calorie works great. Weight is calories in vs calories out. It's simple, effective, and efficient.

Weight is calories absorbed vs calories spent. It is deceptively simple if worded like this, but in practice it's anything but simple. Based on genetics and gut fauna (and other factors), you may absorb a different number of calories than someone else despite eating an identical diet. WOW chips and the like can claim to be zero calorie because 99% of the population isn't able to absorb their calories. Likewise, your metabolism, weight, body composition, etc, affect how many calories you use to do different activities.

Health, otoh, is complicated. Eating balanced meals, exercise, etc. People keep confusing the two.

Comment Re:I guess it's easier... (Score 1) 425

Have a look at the sizes of servings in restaurants in different countries and you might see correlation with obesity in the population. I'm not having a go at Americans, but *everyone* I know who visits the USA notices that all restaurant servings are huge. Imagine if those sizes are seen as normal from an early age, how can people not adjust their expectations (and feelings of satiety) to regularly eating enough food to obtain 3000 or 4000kcals per day?

I don't eat out often, but when I do I take home roughly half my meal in a doggy bag for the next day. I know my body type and where my ancestors came from, so I eat accordingly. I am engineered to crave sweets to keep me alive during those dark, harsh winters. To undo thousands of years of evolution, I don't keep sugary snacks at home or near my desk. Every time I get a craving, I have to decide if it's worth running to the store.

Comment Re:You want to cheat on your wife? (Score 1) 228

And yet that definition is inherently unfair to those couples who WANT to be married AND have an open relationship. Most of the "successful" open relationships I know of (success being defined as everyone is aware, it doesn't cause drama / jealousy, etc) is within the boundaries of a legal marriage. The marriage actually adds quite a bit of stability to their lives, keeps the partners from totally going off the rails, and gives them a foundation to return to. This isn't cheating; they don't hide anything from each other. They have various reasons for it...but for it to be a felony is ridiculous. As for breaking a contract, if the two married people choose to make their own vows and PURPOSELY leave out "forsaking all others" etc, should they still face the legal ramifications of a court system that legislates what morality behind closed doors is supposed to be like?

As marriage is a contract, the partners should be free to apply any clauses which are Constitutional and don't violate any local, state, or federal laws. This viewpoint does not preclude individuals or organizations from calling such unions "sinful" or "bad for society". My sect will excommunicate members who engage in extramarital (or premarital) sex. My sect has no other legal recurse (nor should it).

On a side note, anyone who calls themselves a Libertarian and yet is still pushing for governmental intrusion into bedroom activities is a hypocrite on the highest level.

On a side note, I have never called myself a Libertarian. I am wary of applying any of the existing political parties to myself because they all have tenets with which I disagree. I consider myself a Conservative on many issues, including financial responsibility and personal accountability.

Comment Re:You want to cheat on your wife? (Score 1) 228

Putting aside the underlying puritanical bullshit, who broke the law here? Yes, that's right, the hackers and the extortionists. Wah wah wah, people have affairs and they'e evil people .. such moralizing bullshit. Neither Ashley Madison nor the people using the site broke any laws.

That isn't true, depending on what state you live in! Adultery is absolutely a crime in Virgina and probably other states.

Utah is another such state. Because of its polygamous past, the US Congress forced the state constitution to legally define marriage as being between one man and one woman (though part of that got thrown out with same-sex marriage now legal nation-wide). The state constitution also makes any extra-marital affairs illegal (though this is rarely enforced).

It should be a crime everywhere. If you are committing adultery and you are violating your marriage contract. At least if you spouse is ignorant of this its likely they are investing in the partnership in ways that would be against their interest if the marriage isn't sustainable. If they were aware of your misbehavior and would stop doing that in light of it you have induced them to act against their own interest by misrepresentation. That is basically the text book definition of FRAUD.

We don't tolerate legally or societal fraud elsewhere there is no justifiable reason it should be tolerated with regard to marriage. The reason it is tolerated is because progressives hate the idea of the family unit. Its a little to autonomous and independent for them so they do what they can break it down including stacking the legal framework against it.

That's a good view; marriage is a contract. If you violate the contract, your partner can void the contract without prejudice (meaning, in part, that prenuptial agrees are no longer in effect).

Comment Re: FUD (Score 1) 357

People prefer locally grown food to limit the carbon footprint of transporting the food half way around the world. Lower cost of transportation should also lower the price consumers pay.

"Organic" crops cost more because they are more expensive to produce. A significant portion of the crops is lost to insects, etc, because we can't use efficient chemicals and still apply the "organic" label. It also means raising (chickens, cattle, etc) for longer times because we can't inject them with hormones. Unfortunately, stores inflate the price of "organic" food beyond actual cost increases over non-"organic" food.

Comment Re:Bible translations are copyrighted (Score 2) 150

Bible translators routinely enforce copyright in their translations. This is why the World English Bible (WEB) project exists, to produce a revision of the pre-1923 ASV into contemporary English and license it under CC0.

I am not a lawyer, but have done some research into the matter. Each translation of the Bible (or other ancient manuscripts) can be copyrighted by the translator. Additionally, each new edition can copyright certain non-textual changes (such as headers, footers, page layout, etc) as well as textual changes (correcting spelling, grammar, punctuation). The 1830 edition of the Book of Mormon is in the public domain, but the LdS Church (under the name Intellectual Reserves, if I remember correctly) has a copyright of the current (2013) edition.

Comment Re: FUD (Score 1) 357

Probably the later.

Being anti GMO is every bit as nonsensical as being an anti-vaxer. There's all of about zero credible scientific data against it.

I am not against GMOs in general, but any time you do manipulate the genes in a way that can't happen in nature you have to do due diligence. It takes a while to discover all the side effects of activation a gene.

Furthermore, the efforts to label it are purely for the purpose of stigmatizing it and shouldn't be taken seriously. The reason ingredients are labeled is to help people with dietary concerns (such as allergies) however there's no dietary or other concerns with GMO food, hence labeling serves no useful (other than perhaps religious) purpose.

One such "religious" objection involves crops genetically modified to be immune to herbicides, then the company which created this GMO goes after any neighboring farm where these GMO seeds might have been carried by the wind (or where non-GMO crops pick up this same trait through cross pollination).

Comment Re:You know? Something here is disturbing... (Score 1) 508

The media only exists to rile people up these days.

In the Harry Potter books, Ms. Skeeter (a reporter) says that "The Daily Prophet exists to sell The Daily Prophet." The media exists to make money. This is accomplished by selling its content (or getting enough clicks). Sensational content gets more attention.

Comment Re:Good vaccine, Should not be mandatory (Score 1) 508

Given that HPV is primarily a sexually transmitted disease Gardasil really doesn't fit under this public health justification of the likely form of disease transmission in a school setting. HPV isn't transmitted in the air or on surfaces even, so this vaccine doesn't fit the justification for other vaccines. Making Gardasil mandatory really does get into the territory of forcing medical treatment on people because we think it is good for them. Whatever you think of vaccines, as a society we are better off with public health policies that only intrude on medical decisions when absolutely necessary.

BINGO! Vaccines for serious diseases which would spread easily in a school setting should be mandatory for attending public school (barring valid medical reasons, such as allergy to the vaccine). This group of vaccines includes MMR. Vaccines against diseases which require more intimate contact than one would expect at school should be optional. There could even be different standards for students, teachers, and cafeteria workers. Any school which does not require vaccines should make it known so parents can make an informed decision before enlisted their children.

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