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Gender: Male
Hometown: North Carolina
Member since: Wed Aug 11, 2004, 06:57 PM
Number of posts: 3,813

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Absolutely. The gov't never extends rights to new technologies voluntarily.

Absolutely. The government (especially the executive branch, generally regardless of party) hardly ever recognizes rights extending to new technologies voluntarily. Sotomayor is right in her attempt to hold the executive branch in check here.

I just watched the second episode of Ken Burns' excellent Prohibition series last night, and the story was the same early in the 20th Century - the government tried to claim that there was no reasonable expectation of privacy when speaking over wires (i.e.- telephones). They were wrong then, and they are wrong now. Rights should endure across all technological advancements.


Agencies fall under the Executive Branch.

Agencies fall under the Executive Branch. Obama has the power to end at least the worst excesses of spying on Americans right now. Between 2001 and 2008, unconstitutional actions by the NSA were the fault of B*sh. But Obama has had five years to clean house, and has shown no signs of doing so either before or after the Snowden revelations. The buck stops at 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue.

The deficit (and the federal budget as a whole) requires Congressional action. To his credit, Obama has worked well with Congress to reduce the deficit throughout his time in office. The RW might like to hang the entire responsibility for the 'deficet' around Obama's neck, but in order to do so, they display a woeful ignorance of both history & basic civics.


If he was honest, he'd say that the Stasi had nothing on the NSA.

If he was honest, he'd say that the Stasi had nothing on the NSA. Compared to their microphone/bug/land-line tapping, the NSA's powers and reach are vast.

I highly recommend watching "The Lives of Others," for a glimpse of how corrosive all-pervasive surveillance can be. And afterwards, imagine what a surveillance state could do when almost everyone's location is known (cell phones), personally-carried microphones and cameras (also in cell phones & laptops & home computers) can be monitored at will, and virtually all communications can be retrieved and electronically searched & cataloged. Compared to that, the Stasi were friggin' amateurs.

I reserve my 4th Amendment-guaranteed right to be secure in my person and property, and my 5th Amendment guaranteed right against self-incrimination.



corn seeds are for baby corn!

corn seeds are for baby corn! Corn doesn't produce seeds for humans, it produces it to make their own young. No animal, including humans, needs corn into adulthood. If you're not a C4 grass, it's not your seed. boycott cruelty, go air-itarian!

broccoli is the unpollinated flower of the brassica plant! Broccoli doesn't produce flowers for humans, it deserves to have a healthy sex life and to make its own young. No animal, including humans, needs broccoli into adulthood. If it's not your mama, it's not your flower. boycott cruelty, go air-itarian!

Or, I dunno, maybe eat spirulina & chlorella, and some other green prokaryotic slime, if one can be so bold as to actually exploit cyanobacteria. Or does that make me an oppressor too?

Look veganlush, you can eat anything you want, actually. Just don't go lecturing me about what's 'natural.' Things can be right and beautiful and deeply embedded in our cultures and even ecologically regenerative (i.e.- mob grazing, holistic resource management, etc.), and yet still not be entirely 'natural.' Humans have been modifying their environment and the organisms around them for millennia. And you know what? My ancestors have probably been herding animals and milking them for longer than your ancestors have been planting seeds toward some annual botanical holocaust of epic proportions...


PS - I'm just kidding about the 'botanical holocaust.' I'm an avid organic gardener. But I know that the fruits and veggies I enjoy (and meats, eggs, and cheeses too) are all the products of intense human selection, breeding, and agriculture. And, I try not to lecture others about what they eat. It's obnoxious, all the more so when based upon spurious information.

A thousand rec's (if I only could).

I work in the agricultural field, and the pressure on all farmers to treat all dirt like it was toxic waste is insidious yet widespread. This is a particular pernicious pressure on small-scale organic farmers, many of whom have spent decades composting, cover-cropping, rotating their crops, and otherwise nourishing their land toward a diverse, healthy microbial ecology. Yet present "Good Agricultural Practices" (aka GAP standards) force these farmers to dump their produce into vats of chlorinated water before it can be sold.

About five years ago, I noticed that even organic carrots began tasting like chlorine to me. I never used to peel them before that - just a quick rinse and I'd happily crunch away (and of course I never got sick from doing so). Now I have to peel them just to be able to taste carrot instead of swimming pool.


There's nothing wrong with maximizing our rights.

My thoughts about all of the Bill of Rights are that these rights have been grievously eroded. Speech, privacy, separation of church & state, you name it: I think that Americans have been asleep at the wheel for way too long. But that does not excuse a further erosion of these rights, no matter how 'good' the cause.

You want to protect lives? I'm with you. Let's work together to improve education and the social safety net, redirect police power toward targeting only violent and otherwise truly nefarious criminals, and make sure that everyone has access to good, clean food, water, air, and space. You want to waste political capital on trying to further restrict pieces of steel that only kill innocents if mis-used? Nope, sorry pal.


Why would a gov't bent on violating the 2nd Amendment bother to comply with the 5th?

I think that this is a case of 'preemptive fail.'

Why would a gov't bent on violating the 2nd Amendment bother to comply with the 5th?

Personally-owned firearms have been part of the American landscape since our country's founding in the 18th Century. Although technology has evolved, up until 1934, American citizens could easily purchase and own the exact same firearms as were employed by the military. That means that in 1925, I would have been able to purchase a surplus BAR: a sixteen pound marvel of fully-automatic, 30.06-slinging John M. Browning engineering without filing any paperwork whatsoever. What I wouldn't do for a time machine...

But back on topic. High capacity magazines have now existed for about a century. Fully-automatic weapons were heavily restricted in 1934. Why again should we further infringe upon the Second Amendment right now? And what's to prevent all the other Constitutional rights of citizens from being further shredded?

(Yes, I know that Google and Microsoft and the NSA are presently shredding the 4th Amendment, and Police Tactics like 'Free Speech Zones' and 'Kettling' are shredding the 1st Amendment, etc. I oppose these too. You can just call me a wild & crazy Constitutional-rights guy...)


This quote would be great, if it were entirely (or even mostly) true.

This quote would be great, if it were entirely (or even mostly) true. However, Bill Maher himself resides in a state where gun confiscations have occurred (CA's particularly heinous assault weapons ban). And then there is this recent news from NYC:


Here at DU, we have certain Democrats regularly calling for confiscations, and indeed, we have a protected group (GCRA) where calling for increased confiscations is the only allowed party line.

Color me unimpressed.

I'm a pro-2A, pro-RKBA Democrat. But willful denial that our party also includes some Constitution-ignoring gun grabbers does no one any favors. I look forward to the day when the clearly-enumerated right to keep and bear arms no longer divides us, and is accepted by all Americans as settled Constitutional law and principle.


Absolutely spot-on.

Absolutely spot-on. I'm the type of person who enjoys cultivating various life-skills: gardening, basic repair and maintenance of machines, cutting firewood, etc. But I don't for a moment operate under the illusion that these practices make me some sort of self-sufficient island unto myself. Every day I benefit from humanity's past & present collective contributions to civilization. I am grateful for it, and will try in my own small ways to also contribute to the common good as we go forward together on this small planet.


k&r for the empathy that this might engender

I am lucky to be employed right now, and my family is doing ok. But there were times in the past when I was sick and my previous employer had to lay off most of its staff. Back then, I needed the unemployment and Medi-Cal benefits I received.

I never will begrudge another human being accepting public assistance during a time of need. Best of luck to you, ColesCountyDem.

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