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Comment: Re:Christian Theocracy (Score 0) 1125

by roman_mir (#49388263) Attached to: Apple's Tim Cook Calls Out "Religious Freedom" Laws As Discriminatory

So a person has no rights. A "right" is only a restriction on the government, and not tied to a person.

- that's not what I said. A right is everything that you can do without government abusing you. USA founders said exactly that, some where more insistent than others that the Constitution is the exact literal enumeration of powers allocated to the government, the powers that allow government to step over the rights of an individual under specific conditions. Government is violence by definition, that is all it is and for the governed to accept the government they have to see good reason for it and the way the USA Founders saw it, government had to have very specific powers given to it to deal with cases where people would be denied their rights.

A person in jail is a person, whose right to freedom is denied by government oppression, that oppression has to be enumerated as one of the powers allocated to the government. Government has to prove that it can oppress the right of that individual to freedom.

A person murdered by another person or a person hurt somehow by a company (which is really just another person or a group of people) is an individual situation, where criminal code may apply in order to establish guilt or innocence and to hand out oppression of rights again to those, who basically broke the criminal code rules.

So you can see that rights are related to individual or business and government, while criminal code is related to dealing between individuals or companies.

Government officials can break the law as well of-course, then it also has to be punished according to the criminal code, but government as a system cannot be punished by any criminal code, there is nobody personally to punish, so because government is a system it has to adhere to rules defined in the Constitution, rules as to how the government can oppress/abuse individuals, who have all the rights until the government can use its authority to deny that right.

Comment: Re:Christian Theocracy (Score 0) 1125

by roman_mir (#49386377) Attached to: Apple's Tim Cook Calls Out "Religious Freedom" Laws As Discriminatory

The right means exactly that: government cannot oppress you and abuse you (and murdering you is a form of oppression and abuse), there is no concept of a 'right' between 2 individuals or businesses and there cannot be, because out of 2 individuals or businesses none of them have any legal authority to dictate to another and/or to use any form of violence. We have to have rights when we are dealing with a government, because government has legal authority to use violence (unfortunately), so to counterbalance that legal authority to violence we have to have rules that prevent governments from just using that violence however they like.

As to violence between 2 individuals or companies, that has nothing to do with rights, that has to do with criminal law as it is understood within that locality. You could have a completely private criminal justice system and still deal with violence that way. People did give up their right to deal with criminal code to governments in most cases, but because the governments are (supposed to be) bound by the rules that are established as individual rights, governments also cannot just pretend to deal with criminal cases without abiding by those rules.

These are completely different issues, a right is about an individual or a company (which I also see as an individual) dealing with the violent government authority and criminal code is about individual and private matters, where individuals are interested in preventing crime committed by other individuals.

Comment: No such thing as clean coal (Score 1) 212

First of all, Germany is not replacing nuclear power with coal but with wind and solar.

Germany has targeted closing all their nuclear plants by 2022, a mere 7 years from now. Nuclear accounts for something like 17-19% of power in Germany. Do you honestly think they are going to install that much renewable capacity AND solve the baseload problem in 7 years without fossil fuels playing a role to get them there? They aren't going to use coal but they are going to use more natural gas" which isn't exactly something to be thrilled about. It's cleaner but not by much.

Secondly, german coal plants filter exhaust.

So do plants in most developed countries.

They basically exhaust cleaner air than they 'breath in', besides CO2.

Complete bullshit. There isn't an operational coal plant in the world that is that clean even if you stupidly ignore the CO2 problem.

Thirdly, the 'idea' that coal emits noticeable radioactivity is a myth from the 1960s/1970s.

A myth you say? Yeah, the facts are not backing you up on that one.

Comment: No room in the curriculum (Score 3, Interesting) 363

by sjbe (#49380137) Attached to: Why America's Obsession With STEM Education Is Dangerous

This is why I think it's important for STEM majors to go to a liberal arts school. A school that forces you to do a number of credits from different faculties and will force you to take courses in the social 'sciences,' arts, literature, history philosophy, religion, anthropology, etc.

I have an engineering degree and the college I went to had a general philosophy of trying to make "well rounded" engineers by forcing us to take various liberal arts courses. I don't have an issue with the general idea but I can tell you from first hand experience that colleges that try this almost invariably fail miserably at it. Mine certainly did. I got a great engineering education but humanities? Not so much.

I can assure you that the random smattering of non-STEM courses I took as college grad did not meaningfully expand my mind. I'm kind of a naturally curious person and I learned far more about humanities outside of classes than I ever did in a formal classroom. Forcing engineers to take a few randomly-chosen-whatever-fits-my-schedule courses really doesn't accomplish much. The problem isn't with the concept of learning about disparate subjects, the problem is with the execution of that plan. Learning about engineering by necessity takes up a HUGE amount of the credit hour budget for a degree. There simply isn't a lot of left over curriculum space for a meaningful humanities education to fit in. I do not really see how a school could deliver both a quality engineering AND humanities education in the same four years.

Comment: No fuel taxes do not fall apart (Score 1) 321

by sjbe (#49375811) Attached to: Sign Up At irs.gov Before Crooks Do It For You

And that method is starting to fall apart as high efficiency and alternative fuel vehicles become more common.

I didn't choose the word fuel by accident. You will note I did not say gasoline or diesel. Fuel can come in the form of stored electrons. You can tax electricity just as easily as gasoline. You can also adjust the tax rate to adjust for improving fuel economy.

Comment: Tax something that correlates strongly (Score 1) 321

by sjbe (#49373043) Attached to: Sign Up At irs.gov Before Crooks Do It For You

How do you expect people to measure their consumption of goods such as public roadways?

Traditionally that is done via a fuel tax. Usage of the roads correlates strongly with the amount of fuel consumed. Lots of public goods can be tracked with a good that correlates strongly with the use of the public good.

Comment: Not all discrimination is OK (Score 3, Insightful) 1125

by sjbe (#49372551) Attached to: Apple's Tim Cook Calls Out "Religious Freedom" Laws As Discriminatory

Everyone discriminates. You choose physical / personality traits that you require in someone to date / marry / have sex with. You choose your hobbies, bands, etc. You say "I love McDonald's" or "I hate White Castle". EVERYONE DISCRIMINATES.

Not one of those forms of discrimination causes societal harm. Whom you chose to date does NOT cause the same problems as denying someone basic civil rights because they are a woman or a minority. There are some forms of discrimination that are plainly harmful to society so we protect classes of people against discrimination. No it is NOT ok to pass over someone for a job or pay them less because they have a vagina. No it is NOT ok to refuse service to a well behaved patron in a restaurant because of their skin color. Do not confuse basic consumer choices with civil rights.

Then with the Civil Rights movement, they decided that for blacks to have equal rights, business owners had to lose their rights (yeah, I don't get the logic either).

Say what now? You think it is ok for a business owner to refuse service on the basis of skin color? Business owners merely were required to actually follow the constitution (not to mention basic decency) which they could have been doing all along but didn't. "Don't get the logic"? Are you seriously that daft?

The only reason that people currently are opposed to the "religious freedom" law is because they don't like THAT religious view.

100% wrong. These "religious freedom" laws are simply sneaky attempts to enshrine and protect bigotry. Someone's religion should NEVER form a basis to refuse economic transactions because economic transactions are the domain of the state. That is a plain violation of the separation of church and state.

Comment: Tangible harm trumps imagined harm (Score 1) 1125

by sjbe (#49372437) Attached to: Apple's Tim Cook Calls Out "Religious Freedom" Laws As Discriminatory

But they see no harm in forcing a religious person to choose between being faithful to God and making their living.

Exactly how is a religious person being harmed here? Harmed in a tangible way that we both can agree is real. A religious person claiming it is a "sin" for them to make a wedding cake for a gay couple is a mental block in their own head. This is nothing more than an attempt to justify a bigoted fear response. This sort of bogus argument is why we have separation of church and state in the first place. Economic transactions are the domain of the state and personal religious preferences should have NO bearing on them at all. Ever.

As far as I can tell, that prioritization is itself a religious judgment. It's saying that it's more wrong to refuse to blaspheme, than to blaspheme.

A religious person's imaginary rules for themselves are not and never should become my problem. If they want to live their life putting crazy imaginary restrictions on what they are ok with doing, that's their problem. They have NO right to make it my problem. I don't follow their religious law and I your argument is basically the same argument used to justify abominations like Jim Crow laws.

Comment: These are real laws that can do real harm (Score 5, Insightful) 1125

by sjbe (#49372327) Attached to: Apple's Tim Cook Calls Out "Religious Freedom" Laws As Discriminatory

This is all just a distraction and pandering to a political base.

No it is not. It is an attempt to enshrine bigoted ideology into law against a group of people who have done them no harm. Just because it is pandering does not mean it will not do real harm.

No business that likes money and wants to continue making money will be discriminating against anyone.

BULLSHIT. Plenty of racist homophobes actually support this nonsense. This is legislation that specifically targets minority groups that by definition do not have the population to fight back directly. "Ohh, 1% of our customer base is angry with us, whatever will we do..."

Big corporations surely don't care who or what you sleep with in bed at night if you want to give them money.

Do you seriously think that the owners of Chick-Fil-A or Hobby Lobby wouldn't force their religion on others if given the chance? Companies are guided by people and people have biases. It's not even remotely difficult to find examples of companies discriminating against entire classes of people including women, blacks, hispanics, asians etc even when doing so is explicitly against the law. Ask women how that equal pay thing is going these day.

And if a small business decides to put their own religious beliefs in front of making money, then so be it if they go under.

If it were a fair world I would agree with you but reality frequently doesn't work that way.

Comment: I can mock all I want (Score 1) 1125

by sjbe (#49371843) Attached to: Apple's Tim Cook Calls Out "Religious Freedom" Laws As Discriminatory

Religious people have the right not to have their faith mocked...

Exactly where in US law does it say that one should be immune to mockery based on your religious choices? Rest assured that I fully plan to mock you and your invisible friend. I'll just won't deny your marriage license as well.

...by being forced to admit into their midst people that do not share their beliefs.

That is EXACTLY the excuse used by bigots to justify Jim Crow laws and other forms of discrimination. That's just a fancy way of saying "we don't want your kind here".

Comment: Re:Christian Theocracy (Score 2, Insightful) 1125

Actually the entire idea of these special entitlements that destroy individual rights TO DISCRIMINATE is a power grab by the insane government that is out of control.

Individual people discriminate every day. As a potential employee you can choose to work for a one legged Brazilian tranny and there is nothing any of the other potential employers can do to stop this obvious bigotry and discrimination by you against their businesses, NOR should there be anything they could do to force you to work for them. That's EXACTLY the same thing.

PRECISELY the same thing, since you working for a company is exactly like a company doing work for other people. When you buy a product you are buying work done by a company for you. A company is people standing behind it (corporations are in fact people, not as in 'Google is a living person', it is not. It is as in Google is owned by people, that's the people corporations are). A person that owns/runs a company has his or her right to discriminate and the Constitution of the USA is there to protect that right.

A right is a protection against government oppression and abuse, nothing else.

A government telling somebody that just because they are employing somebody they now lost a right is abuse and oppression and a power grab and unconstitutional and illegal and immoral.

Should people discriminate against each other based on sex, gender, age, race, colour? We know that some will and some do. If a business does so, it will face consequences whatever they are in the market. As to a belief that just because a business exists somewhere you automatically get an entitlement to their service - that is hubris and destruction of the people running that business as individuals and it cannot stand.

Comment: How is bigotry a good thing? (Score 2) 1125

by sjbe (#49371313) Attached to: Apple's Tim Cook Calls Out "Religious Freedom" Laws As Discriminatory

It's weird how some on the left are so eager to push "diversity" that they'll compromise our own liberal western values in the process of pandering to people who do not share these values.

Fair enough. Explain to us then the rational opposing position then. Explain to us the pro-discrimination position whereby we should be permitted to discrimination on the basis of race, gender, age, or even sexual orientation when none of those things should matter. Explain how these laws trying to push laws purporting to support "religious freedom" are actually anything other than an attempt by bigoted people to discriminate against others.

It sounds to me like you have an ideological issue with "some of the left" and are trying for some reason to justify what is plainly an attempt by right wing religious conservatives to codify bigotry into state law. 50 years ago those laws were called Jim Crow laws. This is just a later day version of separate but equal. Freedom of speech does not equal freedom to discriminate particularly on a religious basis.

Comment: Technology can beat driving skill... sometimes (Score 1) 167

by sjbe (#49370157) Attached to: At the Track With Formula E, the First e-Racing Series

Are you really going to argue that your average driver with electronic assist is quicker than a racing driver without?

Which "average" are you comparing against? If you are comparing me (an average non-racing driver) to an F-1 driver then no, the electronic assist won't matter. If you are comparing and average F1 driver to the best F1 drivers then chances are it will very much make a difference because the differences in their skill levels are quite small. Even an average F1 driver is astonishingly talented and the gap between middle of the pack and the front in driving skill is easily overwhelmed by technology.

It's just another technological advancement banished from racing for nothing more than "reasons".

I suspect they've put a tad more thought into it than that. The reasons may or may not be good ones but they didn't just do it for grins and giggles.

Comment: Noise should have a purpose (Score 1) 167

by sjbe (#49369853) Attached to: At the Track With Formula E, the First e-Racing Series

It has to do with enjoying the sport. The noise servers no purpose other than that it's enjoyable to hear.

Again, WHY? I get that people like it, I just cannot comprehend why. I've been to plenty of auto races and have to bring earplugs when I do. The sound does NOT enhance the experience for me and engine noises are not beautiful, not matter what Jeremy Clarkston claims. For the same reason I fail to understand the appeal of Harley Davidson motorcycles that are pointlessly loud and obnoxious. If there is no actual useful primary purpose to the noise (like music), then it is nothing but pollution.

There is no purpose to racing, or any sporting event, at all. Attacking this single part of inane.

There are numerous purposes to racing and sporting events. Entertainment and money not the least among them. Sports (auto and otherwise) are hugely popular and are big business. They are substantial parts of our economy and of people's lives. The purpose is to be entertained and for some to make a living doing it.

Attacking pointless noise is "inane"? We're going to disagree on that. I'm well aware that many people like it but lots of people like all sorts of things that probably should go away. People like big hits in football but the side effect is concussions and permanent brain damage. People (inexplicably) like noisy cars but it's needlessly obnoxious and polluting.

Comment: Why people care about sports (Score 1) 167

by sjbe (#49369759) Attached to: At the Track With Formula E, the First e-Racing Series

What does the outcome of the race have to do with the enjoyment?

Ask any fan of their local NFL team what the outcome of the game has to do with the enjoyment of said game. The answer will be the same. If the outcome is a foregone conclusion and nobody cares who actually wins then what is the point of a contest?

You're not racing. What do you care who wins?

If no one cares who wins then nobody will bother coming to watch and there will be no race and certainly no business surrounding the race. Racing is a competitive sport and whether you comprehend it or not, people cheering for their favorite team/player(s) matters for the economics of the whole thing to work.

Same for sports. That's not your team. You just bought some of their marketing crap.

So you truly have no comprehension of what makes sports popular do you? It's PRECISELY the fact that people think of these teams as "their team". It's why they say "we" when referring to their team even if they do not actually work for the team. People WANT to be a part of a team, even if they are just fans. Professional sports ignore this at their peril.

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