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Comment Re:Not if we create chicken killing meat-bots (Score 5, Informative) 820

It's the second law of thermodynamics.

Any type of living tissue is ALWAYS using more free energy than it will produce.

It requires energy input to do any of its processes (pushing against chemical gradients, synthesizing complex organic molecules, etc). The net value of energy that you could collect through any type of muscle contraction is always less than the amount of energy you had to put in to cause that muscle to flex. Actin and myosin fibers sliding over each other require ATP to change their conformations properly, and ATP is created through biochemical metabolic pathways that are not 100% efficient. You always lose energy to heat. That's why you need to eat everyday.

It's the very essence of entropy.

Comment Re:So let me get this straight.. (Score 1) 493

>>>So to whom would *you* give this authority?

According to Jefferson, the 50 States assembled in constitutional convention. I would take this one step further, and rather than have the U.S. policing itself (like we have now), I'd create a separate Constitutional Council whose delegates are selected by the 50 Legislatures (and which selection can be recalled at any time). The sole purpose would be to take signed laws from the president, review them, and declare them "constitutional" or "unconstitutional".

In other the U.S. would be policed by the States which had initially created it.

You seem to be proposing a new type of check on the federal government by allowing EACH invididual state a representative, and then having this council being the ultimate arbiter of constitutionality. What a novel idea: a genuine federal republic of independent States whereby the States have the ultimate power check on the feds! The irony is that that is how the government is supposed to be set up. Except it hasn't really existed like that since the Reconstruction era.

Well, no, that's kind of a lie, it existed until FDR and the New Deal. It existed until the federal government and SCOTUS decided that the Commerce Clause means that the federal government can make any law they want. And that's where it is now. I know this sounds like hyperbole, but if you examine the legal history of the supreme court over the last 75 years you'll see the general trend is just that the federal government grabs more and more power from individual states. This varies up and down every couple of years or generationally. Then every now and then we get a decision like US v. Lopez when everyone steps back for a second, and then the trend continues onwards towards more centralized government power. The 75-year trend towards centralizing power and robbing states from any independence is overwhelming. It's fueled by propaganda, special interest groups, The War on Drugs, corporate sponsorship promoting anti-competitive legislation, hate-mongering, fear-mongering, "THINK OF THE CHILDREN", and on and on and on. On top of everything, it's clearly been accelerating in the past 10 years to levels it's never reached before.

I rarely comment on /. but this post just struck me. I feel like a drastic change like the one you suggested would be the only way to restore the republic. Unfortunately, There is no way to do this. It would be a restriction on the federal government. The power to restrict the Federal government comes from the constitution. The power to interpret the constitution is granted to the Supreme Court, BY the Supreme Court, which is fundamentally (contrary to whatever image they try to portray) part of the Federal Government. This is how the system works now.

Comment Re:Let me say.... (Score 1) 343

IANAL, but I am a 3rd year law student and I know alot about this topic. This is the way the US government gets around the US constitution: Congress gets power to regulate ALMOST ANYTHING THEY WANT by the Interstate Commerce Clause. The supreme court has essentially explicitly allowed this since the New Deal era. In fact, since the 1940s there are only probably a handful of cases where the Supreme Court deemed something to be unconstitutional via the interstate commerce clause- almost every other time they say that it falls within interstate commerce and they can regulate it. This is the basis of regulation of Drugs, guns, etc. of which the authority was not granted to them by the US constitution. In addition, the current body of administrative law basically allows organizations like the EPA, the FCC, the FDA, the FTC, the SEC etc. to make their enforceable laws because they are organizations created by a congressional statute, and therefore are supposed to an "extension" of congress itself. Now, do not quote me on that. They are NOT a direct extension of congress and there are THOUSANDS UPON THOUSANDS of pages with legal discussion of the non-delegation doctrine. [the idea that congress can't shuffle it's responsibilities to another branch of government or another organization]. However, for all intents and purposes, the non-delegation doctrine is dead and these organizations are allowed to make law. This is the country we live in today. Cynical moment: The only thing that law school has taught me: the US constitution is fucking dead.

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