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Comment Re:Lobbying vs Bribery (Score 1) 596

That's a pretty stunning display of cognitive dissonance you've got going there.

The Sierra Club and other environmentalist groups can lobby against it.

doesn't jive with

But what I think we should outlaw is corporate lobbying

The Sierra Club is a corporation. The ACLU is a corporation. The NRA is a corporation.

A corporation is nothing more than one or more people pooling resources to establish a common goal.

Comment Re:I just love the quote: (Score 1) 204

Remember, folks, Iran's apparently nuclear weapon program, while not illegal in any sense

Iran is a signatory to the Nuclear Nonproliferation Treaty. Under that treaty, they are legally restricted from developing nuclear weapons and legally required to allow the IAEA to monitor any nuclear program that they did have.

If they're pursuing nuclear weaponry, it's clearly illegal.

Comment Re:We've had an increase in gas prices... (Score 1) 891

One of the problems that we have to face is that CAFE moved people out of relatively efficient cars and into inefficient trucks. GM and Ford drastically cut back large car production and directed those resources into trucks due to some quirks* of CAFE. The upshot is that if you need a car that holds more than 2 adults and 2 kids, it's easier (and cheaper) to find what you want on the SUV side of the house. I'm totally behind increasing the gas tax. At the same time, we should repeal CAFE and let GM and Ford build what they can build where they can build it. *I can elaborate, but I'll abstain unless asked.

Comment Re:Diebold Jokes Aside (Score 1) 151

Yes. The trite summary is that a blind moron with a Celsius room temperature IQ could have seen that the US federal government was going to helicopter cash out to states to pay for voting "upgrades" following the fiasco in Florida during the 2000 election.

Diebold had a (small) division in South America that did voting machines, but they felt it was better to buy a local company. That company is the fucked up one, with the Microsoft Access, and the antivirus* and the glavens.

*Yes, Randall is a smart guy, but the antivirus in question wasn't running on the voting machines, it was running on the central server. ISTR that in that particular instance, the votes had actually been cast on Scantron style paper ballots.

Comment Re:Owwww (Score 1) 969

This assumes that all new tactics are 100% effective. You can cherrypick examples where new tactics triumphed over old, but there's also a shitload of dead people out there who died because people tried new tactics that didn't work. Bringing the parent back to the real world, this means that Iran has crunched the rules of war and come up with a working strategy. What would have happened if the rules had changed in the middle of the game? In the Eurisko case, that doesn't make sense. But what if, in a USN vs. Iran tangle, the USN decides they've had enough and change the rules to target a refinery or shipping port or two and then withdraw.

Comment Re:Suicide boats is not Iran's primary weapon (Score 1) 969

Nuclear weapons are good for Iran in that they give the regime the power you're suggesting WRT brinksmanship. However, they're bad for Iran in that actually possessing them will touch off a nuclear arms race in the region as other powers will want the same guarantees in dealing with Iran. That would be a massive blow to stability not just in the region, but world-wide.

Comment Re:Suicide boats is not Iran's primary weapon (Score 1) 969

Their primary naval weapon is a missile that can get into ballistic mode before a ship's countermeasure can intercept it. I'm not sure what you're after there. A ballistic missile is one that follows a suborbital path (shitloads of power in the boost phase, and gravity and minor steering after). Even leaving that aside, AFAIK, the only serious countermeasure that the USN has for unguided missiles is Phalanx. I would think that relatively slow, small, unguided missiles* would be meat for the Phalanx. You could probably overwhelm the system, but that assumes the USN has no way to deal with said speedboats *cough* artillery *cough* Hell, you don't even have to hit the boats -- just throw up enough of a barrage that they don't get a stable platform long enough to take a shot. *The kind of MLRS that fits on a single engine fiberglass boat doesn't lend itself to having large munitions.

Comment Re:Looks like drones aren't just for governments. (Score 1) 377

Fishing in the Western Central Pacific is highly governed. The WCPFC, which is a treaty organization that includes Japan*, regulates what can and cannot be done in this part of the Pacific.

AFAIK, the WCPFC does limit whaling (and catch of other mammals).

*Japan is nice enough to send a lot of money to WCPFC

Comment Re:Scandinavians again. (Score 1) 178

Meh, Douglas Adams has 'em beat:

It is a curious fact, and one to which no one knows quite how much importance to attach, that something like 85% of all known worlds in the Galaxy, be they primitive or highly advanced, have invented a drink called jynnan tonnyx, or gee-N'N-T'N-ix, or jinond-o-nicks, or any one of a thousand or more variations on the same phonetic theme. The drinks themselves are not the same, and vary between the Sivolvian 'chinanto/mnigs' which is ordinary water served at slightly above room temperature, and the Gagrakackan 'tzjin-anthony-ks' which kill cows at a hundred paces; and in fact the one common factor between all of them, beyond the fact that the names sound the same, is that they were all invented and named before the worlds concerned made contact with any other worlds.

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