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Messages - AHPMB

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General Discussion / Re: Fav quotes
« on: December 25, 2010, 10:35:13 AM »
It was the fact that he WENT there. Lots of pansy-ass, bedwetting, pinko liberals wanted us to open relations with China. But when the all-American, ├╝ber-Patriotic, drug-and-Vietnam-war-waging commie-hater Nixon did it, people started coming around and realizing that it might be time to actually listen to some other human beings besides themselves.

Nixon was, in many ways the last liberal President.  He talked like a hard-line war hawk, but this is the guy that ended Vietnam, created the EPA, reaffirmed Affirmative Action, got the ERA through Congress, and reaffirmed many of the Great Society programs.

I always say, Nixon was our last liberal president, Clinton is the last conservative one.

General Discussion / Re: Cracked's video game complaints
« on: December 23, 2010, 10:11:58 PM »
I think one of them should be, Your fucking graphics engine is not a game.  So many games have been essentially nothing more than tech demos.  Unreal comes to mind, and so does Crysis.  Sure better games were made from Unreal's engine, and the Crytek engine has been put to decent use as well, but don't release a game at all if all you want to do is show off how glitzy light looks shining through your special windows.  Just make a 3d benchmark and let someone with a competent writing staff take over from there.

General Discussion / Re: So were the founders really this bad?
« on: December 23, 2010, 03:03:22 PM »
It is extreme.  It's the reason the United States Constitution has such stringent amendments about Double Jeopardy, extradition, and trial by a jury of peers.  These were a direct response to the British government's flaunting of its own legal tradition by trying smugglers before naval courts.  

General Discussion / Jury pool "mutinies" in Marijuana Case
« on: December 23, 2010, 10:27:43 AM »
How screwed up has our justice system become when jurors expressing their entirely legal ability to refuse to convict on bad laws is referred to as a mutiny?

General Discussion / Re: So were the founders really this bad?
« on: December 23, 2010, 09:49:20 AM »
Not only that, but it led to the destruction of trial by jury. When juries started refusing to convict smugglers (using their duty-bound concept of nullification), the crown arbitrarily began considering smuggling an offense under admiralty law instead of common law, and admiralty law doesn't have trial by jury. This is the very reason for that clause in the Declaration of Independence, and the sixth and seventh amendments of the Constitution.

Damn straight, and when the British Juries wouldn't convict them, they retried them in front of Naval tribunals.  They repeatedly violated the very rights that the crown claimed they had.  There's a reason Jefferson insisted that the Bill of Rights be in the Constitution.  The 10 amendments read as a laundry list of every right the British stepped on.

Future Episodes / Re: 1928 Chaplin Film "Time Traveler"
« on: December 23, 2010, 09:19:56 AM »
I love it.  So he sees this and the first thing he thinks is that a someone amassed untold energy, technology and science to rip open a hole in the space time continuum and pass through.  They performed this godlike feat in order to star in a bit role in a little known silent film from the 1930s, and they were so terrible at it that they were talking on a communication device while being filmed.  This despite the fact that in the 1930s, there would have been no infrastructure to properly carry the message anywhere.  Or was putting up cell phone towers part of the New Deal?  That's the most reasonable explanation?  And he's never had a better one?

This is the kind of shit I point out when I get smug little Europeans making fun of America for its religious wackos.  To be honest Kent Hovind is no less an idiot than guys like this.

General Discussion / Re: So were the founders really this bad?
« on: December 23, 2010, 09:10:14 AM »
The colonists blundered us into the French and Indian War?  What a bunch of horseshit.  The French and Indian War was part of a larger global conflict between France and Great Britain.  That's why the British don't call it the "French and Indian" War, they call it the Seven Years War.  The colonists were merely the Western Front of a Conflict that was fought in every major colonial territory in the world.  A conflict that unwittingly and unwillingly involved thousands of natives and colonists in a battle they often didn't want and had no direct stake in.  Saying the "founding fathers" are responsible is like saying the St. Lucians were responsible.

This guy's an apologist for Britain.  Plain and simple.  What he calls smuggling is free trade.  The British, being misguided fools, believed in a mercantile system, and enforced a system of laws called the Navigation Acts which meant that all colonists were subject to a monopoly trade agreement with the crown and had to first sell their goods at a cut rate to the British and then the British would sell at a huge profit to the French and Spanish.  The colonist "smugglers" were end running a gamed and completely unfair system by trading with the French directly.  This is why a large majority of Northerners (many of whom later became radicals) opposed the French and Indian War.  It led to the quartering of troops in their houses, a clamping down on the Navigation Acts and afterwords, imposed taxes to pay for an army that was neither needed, nor wanted.

The colonists grief wasn't about paying taxes at all.  Has this stupid asshole READ the Declaration of independence?  It was about the fact that they had no say in taxes that were imposed on them, despite the fact that they were full British citizens.  The reason Franklin attempted to restore Royal Charter was because he, like many other colonists, felt that the King was the court of last resort for them.  They felt that the Parliament was working to keep them voiceless and powerless, and that, with the King's direct intervention, their rights as citizens would be restored.  Once the King passed the Intolerable Acts though, Franklin was a radical and revolutionary par excellence, and went to France immediately to drum up sizable military support.  It's certain that without Franklin and French aid, the Americans would have lost the war.

As for religious bigotry, that was a problem both before and long, long after the Revolution.  Hell anti-Catholic bigotry was an issue during the election of John F. Kennedy.  This is why people like Thomas Jefferson, and Washington wrote extensively about the need to keep the state out of church business.  After all, who was stirring up the bigotry?  Why, it was the Anglican congregationalists.  And who are they?  THE CHURCH OF FUCKING ENGLAND!  A state institution that enjoyed official mandate, especially during the restoration.

And what the hell does he mean by Founding Fathers anyway?  He seems to be talking about everyone alive and living in the colonies during the late 1770s.  That's the only possible way I can think that he could give deists and atheists like Paine, Jefferson, and Madison credit for stirring up religious hatred.  He's so ham handed with the term that it's essentially lost all meaning.  He might as well have just said Americans.

I can't tell if this person is intentionally being dishonest, or if they're really this stupid.  Unfortunately, I have to go with both.

General Discussion / Re: Why not Nuclear Energy?
« on: December 15, 2010, 10:56:02 AM »
Cheaper to run is not the same as cheaper to build.  We have an infrastructure built to support coal, coal is easier and cheaper to mine than uranium, and certainly easier to transport.  The enrichment process isn't just expensive due to government regulation, but because it requires engineering expertise and high tech equipment.  Even the Iranians, who are furiously working to develop a bomb before the Israelis attack them, have only enriched to about 20% which is just above what you need for medical use.  You have to take in the subsidiary costs as well as the cost of maintaining the plant.  There is no foreseeable coal shortage in the near future, and the United States is still sitting on the largest coal bed in the world.  I'm not saying that I'm anti-nuclear, I'm saying that the decline in nuclear power within the United States is the result of perfectly reasonable market forces, rather than some government conspiracy.  Look at any country that heavily relies on nuclear power and you'll see the same thing, a shortage of other resources that makes nuclear not only viable but necessary.  This is especially true in heavily industrialized nations like Japan.

The real injustice here is not the complications on nuclear enrichment, but the ban on the development of new coal sources of energy and coal based fuels by the EPA.  We're talking a cheap easy to produce source of fuel that burns cleaner than petroleum.  But oooooh it just looks so ugly, so we'd better regulate the hell out of it, and trust in statist boondoggles like solar instead.

General Discussion / Re: Why not Nuclear Energy?
« on: December 14, 2010, 09:04:03 AM »
Nuclear Energy was on the decline BEFORE Three Mile Island, and certainly well before Chernobyl.  This is due to the fact that coal production has become so incredibly inexpensive that nuclear power just hasn't been economically feasible.  Nuclear requires a great deal more infrastructure than coal.  You have to enrich the material, you have to build a much more complex reactor, and you need storage for the waste.  This is why several nuclear plants under construction in the 80s were converted to coal plants.  Coal is cheap, easy to mine, and has been getting progressively cleaner over the last two decades.  It had nothing to do with anti-nuclear demonstrators.  Nuclear power has already made a comeback in countries which aren't sitting on gigantic coal beds, especially in places like Japan, where natural resources are scarce.  It will make a comeback in the United States when prices demand it.

General Discussion / Re: Best and Worst US Presidents
« on: December 12, 2010, 03:35:57 PM »
Picking bad ones is hard just because there's such a massive list of bad presidents.  I would probably choose Grant, although to be fair to him, he has bar-none the best Presidential memoir (his is the only one with a shred of honesty).  Followed behind him may well be Truman.  Truman, despite being lauded by so many politicians was a small man, with a small mind.  Destroyed Hiroshima and Nagasaki explicitly to blackmail the Russians, unleashing apocalyptic weaponry for the worst possible reasons.  He was a consummate red baiter that bears much of the responsibility for McCarthyism, and he propped up many of the most unnecessary New Deal programs.  I honestly don't know why people think he was any good.  Eisenhower actually made our nuclear policy worse by instituting an automatic first-strike policy against ANY foreign aggression.  Personally I think Presidents that think they have veto power over the existence of the human race don't deserve to be counted among the best.

As for best it's really hard to choose because there have been so few good ones, they all have glaring misdeeds that outweigh the good.  T.R. was great on domestic policy but he also vastly expanded the military out of an imperialism born from a small-man complex.  Kennedy had the incredible guts to stand against his generals, especially that fuck LeMay, who would have surely sent us lurching headlong into World War III during the Cuban Missile Crisis, but in many other respects was a terrible President.  Andrew Jackson was a great President in many ways.  He handled the nullification crisis like a pro, yet he was an Indian killer.  Jefferson made the Louisiana Purchase, and successfully prosecuted the Barbary War but he also signed the Embargo Act.  Wilson for all his idealism was an inveterate racist, vastly restricted the 1st Amendment, and got us into a War that we had no business being in.  Polk is sort of my ideal President because he ran on a set platform, accomplished those in one term and then promptly left office.  I've always sided with Jefferson.  Presidents should be barely trusted, always treated as potential tyrants.  So maybe in the end the best President was William Henry Harrison, because he dropped dead before he could do any damage.

General Discussion / Re: Bullshit: College
« on: November 24, 2010, 09:29:14 PM »
As someone who has both taught and studied history at state, community and private institutions, I can say that the system is well and truly screwed from top to bottom.  From the tenure system which relies on ludicrous publishing requirements, and insures its inertia by handing out golden tickets to a chosen few, to the school's over-reliance on government grants, to the usurious college loans, it's bat-shit insane.  Fortunately, or unfortunately, the system is currently unsustainable.

Florida's Orlando-Sanford airport has opted out of TSA screening in favor of a private security firm in the wake of increasing TSA incompetence.  Note: this does not mean an end to invasive scannings and pat-downs, but perhaps it may mean they'll be done by a group of professionals instead of barely educated morons in uniform.  As for me, I'm driving or taking the train.

General Discussion / Re: A Libertarian Road System
« on: November 14, 2010, 08:17:00 PM »
Let's not forget that the highway system, a much touted government development had absolutely nothing whatsoever to do with promoting business or improving American life.  It was because Eisenhower was pushing the world toward the brink of nuclear Armageddon and wanted to have evacuation routes out of the major cities.  Highways were already being constructed throughout California in response to increased traffic patterns, and would have spread without a giant, bloated government bureaucracy.  It was a government solution to a problem they created.  A solution that was promptly nullified with the development of massive multi-megaton thermonuclear warheads.

General Discussion / Re: A Libertarian Road System
« on: November 13, 2010, 11:09:23 AM »
Most of the country's early roads were not built by the government.  Instead, road corporations were set up on charters between government and private businessmen.  The corporation's charter allowed members to invest capital on the project.  They hired their own workers, generally paying far better than the government could.  When the road was built, the corporation charged tolls on the road until the investors made back their investment plus a profit (usually 12-20%), then the company was dissolved and the road passed into the public domain.

General Discussion / Re: Was Germany Responsible for our entry into WWI?
« on: November 07, 2010, 07:26:24 PM »
Basically yes.  Wilson wanted to show-up the isolationists and pacifists.  He saw the war as a chance to impose his league of nations idea on the victors and defeated.  Of course, what the U.S. actually succeeded in doing was spreading the Spanish Flu into Europe from the troopships coming over the Atlantic, killing far more people than even the war itself accounted for before it finally burned out.  Wilson was ultimately powerless against the vengeful French and the English who wanted to cement their overseas Empire.  This was a colonial war that the U.S. had absolutely no business being in.

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