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Comment Re:Tattoo Authentication Methods (Score 1) 194

"You mean those fuckers are going to require that they have my picture just so I can get a drivers license?

In case you cared, most states started to add photos to licenses in the late 60s and early 70s, finishing up in the early to mid 80s. It appears that heavy lobbying from Polaroid, which had introduced color instant photography in the mid 60s is what lead states to adopt photo licenses.

Having said that, some people were pretty pissed about the photo requirement, but I think we were less sophisticated in terms of privacy and security than we are today. Had they tried to introduce photo licenses in the 90s I think they would have had a much more difficult battle.

Comment slight amendment to the powers of the president (Score 1) 1145

Your post is true and I agree with it, with the amendment that there are times in which the president does have power, but it's unpredictable and contextual. Sometimes he has administrative power given to him by a previous Congress, and a current Congress would be too deadlocked to change his decision, or that it isn't worth the political capital used. In other situations, he may make compromises with Congress tit for tat which allows him discretion and power.

Some powers are available at some times in some situations.

Comment Re:Fiat Currency (Score 1) 692

>Consider when inflation is high (that is: when the growth in the gold supply exceeds growth of the population)

That is however the least likely scenario. Most of the time the problem with a gold standard is that the supply of gold struggles to keep up with population growth+productivity improvements and acts as an artificial tamper on the economy.

Comment Re:Did I miss something? (Score 1) 317

The FAA required a few tests specific to the 787 and its structure. I seem to recall a test where they took a fuselage and dropped it from a particular height to see how well it would deal with such a drop.

My recollection is that the FAA said that the test was passed. Not much information is available on it since they wanted to keep the information a trade secret.

Comment Re:Why are SSNs secret? (Score 1) 112

I think the Swedish experience is that its national ID number doesn't do anything all that significant (none of the purposes you noted here would be severely inconvenienced or affected if you just used another number.)

In short, stealing someone's Swedish number doesn't achieve much.

The US uses the SSN as a gateway to the person's financial history.

Comment Re:Freedom (Score 1) 584

Ballots that can be traced to a voter, or where the voter can be watched filling in the ballot paper, can be bought.

True, but nothing says that I can't videotape myself on my camera phone selecting candidates (either on machine or paper) and then submitting that ballot. (I have uploaded my own absentee ballots online to show people how I voted.)

My point is, there are plenty of ways of showing people how you voted, not having identifying marks on the ballot does not prevent that from occurring.

Comment Re:Barcoding the Ballots. (Score 2) 584

Limiting voting to citizens is assumed to be a universal thing, but it's not. As another poster mentioned, the Commonwealth countries still have a system of voting rights in place between each other. It is a bit peculiar. For instance, a citizen of Jamaica doesn't necessarily have the right to live and work in Britain. However, if they should get the right to live in Britain, they automatically get the right to vote for Parliament. (I believe a Jamaican could not stand for office, but an Irishman can.)

If you did go to Spain or Germany, and you are an EU citizen, you can vote in local elections. Any EU citizen can vote in EU local elections regardless if they are a citizen of that country or not.

In the US, you do not need to be a citizen in order to vote in Takoma Park, Maryland. You need only be a resident of that city. If you remember the move Gangs of New York, a lot of work went into getting freshly immigrated Irish to vote in local elections.

Comment Re:No smiles in Ohio (Score 1) 265

Interesting, I had not heard of that, and I have an Ohio license (and research these issues quite closely.)

The thing that bugs me is that this is an unnecessary public relations problem for motor vehicle agencies. Ok, so your software sucks and can't do facial recognition on facial expressions.

Take one photographs of a neutral expression for the database.

Take another photograph, if the person wants, where they can have whatever smile they want to print on the license card.

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