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Comment: Re:In otherwards (Score 1) 664

by lessthan (#46150885) Attached to: Virtual Boss Keeps Workers On a Short Leash

All industry tends to monopoly. It is the lowest energy state of business. If you do not have to compete with another provider/producer, you are free to crank the profit/decency ratio all the way over to profit. So, left alone, all industry would gravitate from freedom to monopoly, ending in pseudo-feudalism and slavery.

Dismissing examples because they lack "freedom" is essentially a no true Scotsman argument. Everyone, everywhere is perfectly "free." It is just some are free to choose pain, death, or pain followed by death.

Comment: Re:In the solar system? (Score 1) 105

by lessthan (#44781171) Attached to: New Giant Volcano Below Sea Is Largest In the World

It's a flaw in our thinking. We prefer binary values, even though they are uncommon in nature. When does the day become night? Is it the start of sunset, the end of sunset, the end of civil twilight, or the end of nautical twilight? With the gravity on the gas giants bordering on ridiculous, a lot of effects we are familiar with here vanish there.

Comment: Re:Really?!? (Score 1) 1448

by lessthan (#44247051) Attached to: Orson Scott Card Pleads 'Tolerance' For <em>Ender's Game</em> Movie

It is called CONSENT!!!! Every argument about marriage equality always devolves into some idiot saying that if we allow the gays to marry, we'd have to let the necrophiliacs, the zoophiles, and the pedophiles get their freak on. The dead and animals cannot consent. The age of consent for humans is an artificial line where, when crossed, our society considers that person capable of giving consent without a guardian's input. It has to be artificial, because all of nature is about gradients. Somewhere between black and white, in all the grays there has to be a point which is definitely black and a point that is definitely white. You may disagree with where I say the black starts, but we are still worried about it being black. Do you think that the age of consent is wrong? Fine. Campaign about it. Post fliers, produce commercials. Maybe with a good enough argument, may the rest of us will agree with you and we'll change it. It is still all about the ability to consent!

Comment: Re:Really?!? (Score 1) 1448

by lessthan (#44246969) Attached to: Orson Scott Card Pleads 'Tolerance' For <em>Ender's Game</em> Movie

Surely you've seen this answer before, but here we go again... A truly intelligent person can see that living in harmony with his(her) fellows creates a greater benefit than every man(women) for themselves. How many hands did your computer go through to end up in front of you? How many people are here contributing to this discussion? One man couldn't have built the Hoover damn or threaded the sky with the steeples of the great cathedrals. You need me and I need you. Why do you think that your God promoted peace in the first place? It was just a whim of His?

Comment: Re:Really?!? (Score 1) 1448

by lessthan (#44246875) Attached to: Orson Scott Card Pleads 'Tolerance' For <em>Ender's Game</em> Movie

Actually, I'd like to know where you got your information. Civil unions are nothing like marriages, except that they are supposed to bind two people together.

Civil unions are a creation of the states, they do nothing on a federal level. There are no laws requiring other states to recognize a civil union or confer whatever benefits the original state granted the couple.

The civil marriage contract, on the other hand, conveys a bevy of legal protections and abilities and, until DOMA was enacted, required to be honored in all the states of the Union. (Which is why any Constitution lover should be pissed about DOMA, it violates the constitution, specifically the Contract Clause which states that any legal contract made in any state should be honored in ALL the states. Even after that court case, that bit is still intact.) The most prominent of those protection and abilities (the ones everybody brings up) are the right to sponsor a spouse to become American citizen, the right to make medical decisions on behalf of an incapacitated spouse and the tax benefits.

Frankly, the medical one scares me the most. Imagine going to Disney World with your spouse. (I was going to go with spouse throughout this hypothetical, but that made it even longer, so I'm going to use the male pronouns. Please feel free to substitute the female pronouns according to your orientation.) Something goes wrong. Did he eat bad shellfish? Is it heat stroke? An aneurism? You're not a doctor you don't know! You get to the hospital and he is breathing (you think) but he is so still...

The nurses wheel the gurney away and tell you to wait in the waiting room. Hours go by with no word. The door suddenly jumps open. Is it a doctor? No, not even close. The hospital has contacted the next of kin, which isn't you (you aren't married and Florida doesn't recognize civil unions), it is his mother. This is bad news. She hates you. You're "that faggot that seduced my son away from Christ!" to her. Maybe the fact that someone you love and she claims to love is hurt will cause her to unbend a little and you can concentrate on what is wrong with him instead of fighting. Of course not. She gets a doctor who is willing to talk to "a family member" but when you ask her what is going on, she refuses to tell you. You aren't a family member, so the doctor won't talk to you. You get more insistent with her. She can't be that cruel! She gets security to throw you out of the hospital. The End. Maybe he had a really bad case of sunstroke, maybe he had a congenital heart defect that killed him. You won't ever know, unless he calls you when he is conscious.

You made it through that long hypothetical, good job. I really want you to imagine sitting in a hotel room, staring at a cellphone, knowing that your loved one may already be dead, knowing that it may be days before you find out. You have no legal options, you have no way of finding anything out. No one is under any obligation to tell you what happened and she won't tell you. She can bar you from the funeral, she can bar you from the burial. You can end up never seeing him again. Is this something you'd wish on another human being? Don't make excuses. Don't focus on the icky sex stuff, you think our sexy times are gross and we think your sexy times are gross, get over it. This HAS happened to people before. This has RECENTLY happened to people. Marriage equality would protect us from a horrific scenario that straight married people have never faced. Why do we have to beg for something that a decent person would just give? (And that is why so many of us hate the religious. "Love one another" is well and good, if you don't actively try to punish people who do things you dislike because you find it icky. It is kind of a contradiction and everybody hates a hypocrite.)

Comment: Re:Bringng the military into this... (Score 1) 1448

by lessthan (#44246449) Attached to: Orson Scott Card Pleads 'Tolerance' For <em>Ender's Game</em> Movie

Or he is saying that the military is one of the only options a orphan has to do something. It is a steady job with decent promotion opportunities and a chance to go to college. Provided, of course, you aren't blown up in a desert/jungle somewhere. And if you want to go to college, you better be married to someone with a decent job, because the "living stipend" is anything but livable. But still a decent opportunity, especially for someone with nothing.

The trouble with opportunity is that it always comes disguised as hard work. -- Herbert V. Prochnow