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California Mountain Snake

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Everything posted by California Mountain Snake

  1. Hardly true that things are argued this way. As long as we're arguing by anecdote, the point of every anti-pot commercial I've ever seen is that your actions are bad for you and your family. If anything, the illegal activities that sprout up in association with drug use are an argument against making it illegal. Anti-pot commercials are far far away from legal enforcement. They're a form of education and persuasion that only hope to encourage, not force, you to take certain actions, and thus are justified in using appeals for self-interest. Education is vital, even in a society with no laws restricting consensual action, because it tells us why even though we may be allowed to do things like not wear our seat belts or abuse drugs, it doesn't mean that it's a good idea, and hopes to do its best convince us not to make that choice. The difference is it doesn't force us to make that choice. This conception of education jives with even the most ardent libertarians. The problem is that people nowadays who end up getting the raw deal on a risk they took are too quick to shout "I got hurt taking this risk, so it should be illegal for everyone." I don't think anyone's doubting whether a law would be effective or not, obviously if the government made a law that people will not wear baseball hats on Monday and enforced it, the number of people wearing baseball hats on Monday would show a decrease. The question is whether the government has the right to make that law, not whether such a law would work.
  2. I demand links for this. It's called a victimless crime (see link for justifications, as well as an example relating to drug use) or between two people (such as a drug dealer and user) it's called a consensual crime. Many try to justify such a law by because it's for "the good of society" or even sometimes "because you would have to be crazy to want to do this in the first place," but such reasons step all over the constitution (reserved rights) and the Declaration of Independence (which acknowledges the natural rights of people). Even today, trying to defend a law in court for the simple "good of society" would most likely fail if you didn't defend it with statistics, in the case of drug use you must prove that other kinds of other illegal activity will pop up because of it, or possibly in the case of seat belts, how you flying about in the car is dangerous to others, or if you let yourself die it will drain the taxpayers of money for you family's social security checks. Everything has to be justified this was for a law to make sense, otherwise it would simply be the government enforcing their moral views upon you. Which isn't to say that the government doesn't try to do exactly this. The fact that sodomy was only made legal on the federal level 10 years ago, and the government still sticks its nose into who can get married or not, are obvious violations of these founding principles of liberty. For more on victimless crimes and consensual crimes and how they don't jive with the American conception of freedom, see the book Ain't Nobody's Business if You Do (the link goes to the full text, but reading the first page will give you the gist). Name one job that isn't based on self-interest. Actually, answer this for me: How is basing things on self-interest not logical? Congressmen largely do not act out of self interest in policy. They act out of constituent interest, which in time serve their self interest. Political theorists generally agree the number-one goal of a congressman is to be reelected, and this has proved largely true. Veteran congressmen are very smart people, and they know that if they want to continue riding the train, which they want to do either because it's a source of gravy or because they have long sighted policy goals, then they realize that they have to pass a lot of popular bills that will get them support for another term. In the case of special interests, money can also play a role when that money is used for future campaign funds and hiring more staff to deal with more issues. Thinking of the "government" as a single system in the United States is an incorrect conception. Each Senator and Representative have their own private staff, intentions, voting districts, and constituents. Each of them sets up shop within the congressional market, they are not all CEOs of the same company. So yes, congressmen act in their own self interest, but this is accomplished only by working in the majority's self interest in terms of public policy.
  3. The difference is that most safety regulations are in place to prevent one person's negligence from harming other people. Regulations concerning proper waste disposal, maintaining a safe workplace, traffic regulations like stop signs and speed limits, limiting smoking in public areas, et cetera all have to do with negligent actions you can make which can physically harm other people. Only in rare instances, however, does not wearing a seat belt physically harm anyone but yourself. I'm having trouble thinking of many other safety regulations which impinge on your ability to hurt yourself. Even the regulation and illegalization of hard drugs, for example, is justified in the United States not by the fact that it's bad for you, but because of the other illegal activity that sprout up in association with drug use. Unless you can definitively link not wearing a seat belt from a young age leading to a life of crime and disregard for the law later in life, I think that there is no more justification for the government to step in here than there is in the government making it illegal to punch yourself in the face.
  4. Realize that as a 14 year old posting on a forum of mostly high school and college age posters, you will invariably end up sounding and looking immature by comparison, and that's just the way it is. I know as a 14 year old on forums I was annoying as fuck too (still am), but you grow out of that eventually. Making threads like this won't fix it, promising to change won't fix it. Just accept that you just suck now, and nothing but time is going to fix that.
  5. My Grandmother was a diabetic, and while driving home one day on a twisty Vermont mountain road some years ago, she passed out. Her car flew off the road at 60 miles an hour and hit a tree head-on in mid-air. When she left the road her body was thrown into the passenger side seat because she wasn't wearing a seat belt, and when she hit the tree the steering wheel on the drivers side, back in the day before steering wheels collapsed on impact, was shoved backwards with such force that it cut the drivers side seat in half. Had she been wearing her seat belt, she would have been dead. Does this mean not wearing your seat belt is a good idea? No. It's just an anecdote, and anecdotes don't prove much in terms of statistical analysis. The government deserves to collect revenue from fines on stupidity? That makes a lot of sense, especially since one could argue the government only needs money because of past stupidity right now.
  6. Yeah, it's awful. People who don't wear seatbelts are making a stupid choice for themselves and a selfish choice for their family and loved ones. But that doesn't mean it should be a law.
  7. If your going to actively complain about the big bad government making you wear a seat belt then I think you need a slap, but as far as I'm concerned it's a person's choice not to wear a seat belt, and considering the number of deaths from flying unbuckled bodies is minuscule compared to say, the amount of cellphone related collisions and fatalities, I'd say holding up the safety argument for why this law should happen before many other safe driving laws is a thin argument. Basically, what 'Bus said. I'm just glad that Vermont still lets people ride in the bed of a pickup if all the seats in the cab are filled with buckled passengers.
  8. How wonderful that you've brought this topic was brought back to life with your insightful post. To play devil's advocate though, does the article explicitly state that this was a public pool club? I only ask because if the club were private, would it not be the right of the club owner to deny entry to customers he does not wish to serve, even for racist reasons? Of course if this club was on land zoned for public use, or received public funding or tax breaks for opening its doors to the community then it would be obliged to follow federal anti-discriminatory regulation. But assuming it was privately owned, would they not as private club have the right to make the choice of denying these kids entry for whatever reason they choose, and accept the possible consequences of racist actions in the 21st century? The reason I mention this is because a while back a Church in New Jersey lost funding because they refused to allow a gay wedding ceremony to take place on its premises, which of course got conservatives in a tizzy because they claimed it "violated the private rights of the church make its own choices," and this was held up as an example of how the gay agenda is destroying American values. Of course it later came to light that the church was only receiving this funding because they zoned the church as a "community center" to take advantage of extra tax breaks, which meant they had to follow New Jersey anti-discrimination statues. This led me to wonder if this pool was taking advantage of similar public funding, and if it was not, whether there's really anything anyone can do about it beside make a shit storm and generate bad press to keep people away from the place.
  9. The barber is an octopus.
  10. Yes, they can tell by looking at you. Just like doctors can tell if you masturbate a lot. ... If you want to lie, of course you can get away with it. Same goes for Don't Ask, Don't Tell. If you want to do it, then just don't tell. But that's not the point. These policies still target homosexuals unfairly and perpetuate discrimitory social mores.
  11. The debate over gay marriage comes up so frequently that often people forget that there are other issues on the counter, or that there are other things homosexuals care about than getting married. Looking beyond the issue of same-sex marriage reveals the kind of out-and-out discrimination that goes on without the guise religion to "justify" it. People were pissed about prop 8? That's nothing compared to the fact that during that same election cycle Florida became the fifth state to make it illegal for homosexuals to adopt children. Not only does this heralds back to the discriminatory link many draw between homosexuals and pedophilia (which is needless to say baseless), but it stands as a slap in the face saying: we would rather have these kids go to an under qualified couple or live a shit life in an orphanage than grow up with a couple of queers. In countless other ways roadblocks still exist. The Don't Ask, Don Tell policy of the American military. The fact that the Red Cross still will not accept blood from men who have ever had sex with another man.
  12. Above poster fails. Also, note for the mods: restore the ability for members to edit titles to fix typos. I'll be monitoring your frequency.
  13. Oui pronounced "wee" is actually quite dated. Most French people say oui like "way" now, and Quebecois almost always pronounced it as a nasal "wah".
  14. I am dissapointed by the lack of signature or avatar images.
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