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Comment Re:Sanity? (Score 4, Informative) 451

Your answer is so off-base that it's not even wrong, it's simply irrelevant, but here goes my attempt to address some of your inaccuracies.

It really is. There is no "separation of church and state". There is "not making laws banning or establishing the practice of religion."

For individuals versed in the First Amendment, and religious rights jurisprudence, both the Establishment Clause and the Free Exercise Clause are understood to provide the substantive basis for the concept of "separation of church and state" (SoCaS). The two are the same thing. What you mean to say is that SoCaS does not mandate a complete division between state action and any religious entity.

Lately, there has been the legal position that a more recent Constitutional amendment forbids states from engaging in practices forbidden to the Federal government (the Incorporation argument). This has a strange impact of invalidating state laws entirely, and of twisting the Tenth Amendment.

Unless you live in the 19th Century, this concept is not a legal position that has come about 'lately'. It has, in fact, been repeatedly upheld by generations of the SCOTUS, and doctrinally the concept of incorporation has existed for over a century. In the past decade, every sitting justice has penned, or joined in an opinion that explicitly relies on incorporation in some way, and it cannot be maintained that the notion is either a recent development, or not broadly accepted.

It certainly interacts with the 10th Amendment, but the Constitution is abound with interactions between and among its several clauses. Understanding these interactions, as opposed to suggesting that they cannot occur, is required for any sort of meaningful understanding of the law.

In the Incorporation interpretation, it would be patently illegal for the state to *refuse* to fund such a thing based on it being a religious artifact; the baseless assertion of an imaginary separation of church and state, interestingly enough, would also demand that the state not take a stance *against* religion in this way.

No, as this is equating any religious activity that seeks public funding as necessary to the free exercise of that religion, which has never been held to be the case. Your faith may require you to build a rocket ship out of elephant tusks and diamonds, but that doesn't mean the state is obligated to fund such an endeavor. This example just fails to parse either of the 1st Amendment religious rights in any meaningful manner.

Apparently, it is a hard concept to grasp.

On this point we are in complete agreement. You have vividly demonstrated what it looks like for an individual to lack any substantive understanding of incorporation, or religious rights, state action, or separation of church and state, whatsoever. I agree it's complicated, non-intuitive, and easy to get wrong, just as you have done here.

(the quick and dirty as to why this isn't unconstitutional is because the issuance of a municipal bond basically allows an electorate to vote with their dollars as to whether they wish to fund a project of some kind. The issuance of the bond is not considered an entanglement running afoul of the Establishment Clause because the funding is ultimately sourced from private investors. Religious rights jurisprudence is already a doctrinal mess, and we don't need you getting it so wrong.)

Comment Mjolnir sounds like Hal Jordan's ring (Score 1) 590

This is very "green lantern-ish" sounding to me. The way it's explained here: makes it sound like whoever wields Mjolnir is Thor. Current Thor becomes unable to wield the hammer, so the hammer choses someone else, who happens to be a woman. She becomes Thor, and previous Thor becomes "big muscular guy but not superhero" or something.

Comment Re:Lerner gave up that argument, you can too. IRS (Score -1, Offtopic) 465

You're referring to Darrell Issa's debunked congressional report on the IRS group flagging. It was demonstrated to be false a few weeks later when IRS filtering procedure documents provided via FOIA request demonstrated that the IRS flagging terms included more progressive search terms than conservative, and flagged more progressive groups for review. Your facts are simply wrong. This does, however, demonstrate the power of misinformation in the manufacture of controversy.

Comment Re:Massive conspiracy (Score 1) 465

Unless it was a systemic problem, or there was otherwise a generally high level of failures that occurred during that time. I'm not saying there is nothing to see here, but merely that it doesn't actually have to be a coincidence. At least when republicans were covering up their alleged misdeeds, they just told congress, "NO," instead of producing these elaborate excuses.

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

In what drug-induced hallucination did you convince yourself that such a fiction as a civil union equal to marriage could ever have existed? Let me clear that up for you right now. There is no such thing as a civil partnership that gives equal rights to marriage. There was never such a thing, there was never going to be such a thing. There was no way for our nation to pass laws that would bring it about. Federal law ensured, in no less than 1,400 separate legal provisions, that civil unions were not equal to marriage in the eyes of the law. States refused to recognize the unions of other states. Same-sex couples in civil unions were denied familial visitation rights, inheritance rights, tax treatment, etc. etc. of married couples. Conservative state legislatures were actively crafting an untenable framework to prevent equal treatment of CU couples for the past several years. It strains incredulity, and rings profoundly insincere to suggest that marriage equality came about after the LGBT community rejected an equivalent, attainable legal status in civil unions, not to mention the callous disregard for reality that maintaining such a fiction requires.

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

It offends me.

So? Get over it. Your faith, nor any other faith, is the steward of marriage. Your being offended means absolutely fuck all when it's leveraged as a crutch to deny people equal treatment under the law. Now I know you claim that you have no problem with all persons receiving equal treatment under the law. I don't have to believe you, because even if you did believe that, you are still adamantly chosen to support a viewpoint that precisely guarantees unequal treatment. To the extent that you advocate two entirely conflicted and incompatible notions simultaneously, there is fundamentally no reason to assume any sincerity in your claim.

Lawsuits or chapel weddings? Parade of horribles, and complete bullshit of the first order. How many lawsuits are there when non-christians demand Catholic chapel weddings, and how do those go over? Your intellectual dishonesty is stunning.

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

Unfortunately, this is nonsense and here's why: There were 1400+ pieces of federal legislation that would have to have been piecemeal amended to include the same benefits for civil unions as well as married couple to bring same-sex civil unions into line with marriage on the FEDERAL level alone. On top of that, there needed to be changes in virtually every states' laws to bring CU parity. On top of that, there would still need to be additional legislation for states to recognize each others' CUs. On TOP OF THAT, was the matter of actual discriminatory toward same-sex relations with respect to marriage and legal recognition. Your claim that ANY of this would have been remotely accomplishable several years ago by simply accepting civil unions in place of marriage is laughably, laughably naive. Settling for civil unions crosses one hurdle, but erects literally THOUSANDS more, whereas fighting for and winning marriage crosses 2,000 hurdles at once.

This has nothing to do with the government "calling" or "defining" marriage in any particular way. Those are rhetorical false equivalences that merely distract from the core issue at hand: equal treatment under the law. Your proposed solution does NOTHING to achieve that goal. Way to belittle our truly discriminatory legal framework by continuing to be ignorant of the fundamental issue. Your "physical objects" analogy is profoundly stupid. There is not, nor was there ever, a feasible pathway for bringing any sense of equality between civil unions and marriage as legally recognized institutions.

Comment Bandwidth-capped free wifi (Score 1) 505

I'd do this, going as far as to purchase a separate router, if there was an easy way to create a secondary network discrete from my home connection, and that had bandwidth shaping to it so that it could never use more than, say, 5-10% of my available bandwidth. I have no qualms with a passerby checking their email or getting google maps directions, but I don't want security issues, and I don't want my own downloading/netflix compromised by their activity. Is there a cheap/easy way of doing this that doesn't require too much hacking?

Comment Re:Breyer's Frozen Dessert Product is that way too (Score 1) 709

You're right that they make a lot of "frozen dairy dessert," but it seems that the dividing principle is non-icecream toppings. Look at the flavors that are still icecream, and those that are FDD, and you'll see that the FDD flavors are full of flavor ribbons, cookie bits, and other snacky bits. I'll bet a huge deciding factor in their reformulation is that their FDD is easier to work with while adding these types of flavorings, since traditional ice cream must be assembled in a two-step process to add in solid ingredients.

Comment Re:Well no (Score 1) 709

The term Milkshake is regulated, such that you can only put in a limited number of ingredients. It has to consist almost entirely of milk and icecream. Many prepared frozen shake drinks contain non-dairy fats, stabilizers, thickeners, etc so that it can have the desired flavor and texture when put through a shake machine. Actual milkshakes won't have the thick/smooth texture we expect unless they are made recently from icecream which also has retained it's desired texture. This is more difficult than formulating a pre-mix batter which has the flavor and texture of a milkshake when chilled.

Comment Re:Only iDiots iCare (Score 1) 639

While I understand that the world *does* revolve around you and your device, once you are shipping more than one or two of them, you have to start considering packaging more carefully. Better packaging allows you to ship more units in less space, reducing cost and carbon footprint. Apple's high-end packaging is not only about protecting the product, but is engineered to work into their supply chain management as well - an area in which Apple is silently a world leader. This efficiency is good for the business and good for the customer. Apple's dedication to over-engineering drives innovation in this space, and motivates improvement among competitors. It's a good thing that Apple isn't as thoughtless as you are about product design, and specifically package design, because it ultimately leads to cost savings, reliable and green shipping, whether or not you buy Apple products.

Comment Re:everything is over packaged (Score 1) 639

Apple engineers their packaging to be recyclable, sturdy, and compact, and are pioneers in minimal packaging. They use more expensive packaging because it lets them use less materials, pack more units per shipping crate, and reduce their carbon footprint. When I see other consumer electronics' companies packaging, I'm astonished by how flimsy, oversized, and non-functional it is compared to Apples, how much space and material is wasted. Apple has done more to move toward your platonic ideal than pretty much any other electronics company to date. It's profoundly telling that you cannot properly recognize the thing that you purportedly want. This isn't a flame, just pointing out how wrong you are.

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