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

Journal Archives

Is there no end to the insanity?

Spread fracking brine on our public roads?!?!? Who would think this a good idea?

Years ago, I lived near Times Beach, MO. The dioxin contamination that caused the whole town to be evacuated arrived via trucks spreading waste oil on dirt roads to control dust. Their legislators were told THAT was safe back in the day, too.

Industrial wastes of any sorts do not belong on roadways where all of us travel. Glad that Goshen got it right, but very scared to imagine all the municipalities who are not thinking this issue through as thoroughly.


I just let the clover be in my "lawn."

I respect your commitment to hand-pulling, Xipe Totec, but why not let the clover (and, if you're in a biome similar to me, also the henbit & creeping charlie & plantain & chichweed & yarrow & queen anne's lace & lambsquarters & pigweed, etc. ) be in your lawn as part of a more diversified pastoral landscape. Many of these plants were accepted as natural components of lawns prior to the invention of broad-leaf herbicides. Once a chemical tool existed to rid us of them, the lawn companies tried to convince us that real lawns were only grass. I remain unconvinced, and believe that natural diversity in a lawn, mowed at 3"-4" depending upon site & species composition, will result in a pleasant & healthy open landscape.


I'm with Eleanors38 on this.

I'm with Eleanors38 on this, along with Nuclear Unicorn and the other pro-RKBA posters in this thread. As far as I am concerned, the debate should have been settled once and for all when our Founding Fathers reserved to citizens the right to keep & bear mlitary-grade arms via the explicit text of the Second Amendment. We have fallen away from this ideal considerably already, what with NFA regs for ordnance and fully-automatic firearms, but it's here I draw the line. My semi-automatic pistols and rifles will not harm you, Uzair. Indeed, they are not intended for offensive use against anyone. During these peaceful times, they shall remain historical and sport-shooting pieces. Should more troubled times arrive in the future, some of my firearms might be useful for self-defense, but heck, I am most definitely NOT a tough guy, or former SEAL high speed low drag operator or anybody remotely like that, so who knows what the future will hold or what might be of use?

Regardless, Uzair, you do not get to dismiss me or my rights. I am not now, nor have I ever been, an NRA member. But if anything were to convince me to join them, it would be arrogant and clueless statements such as yours, Uzair. Sticking your head into the sand about guns will not make them disappear. Indeed the "panic buying" of guns & ammo over the last four months or so has been driven by the gun grabbers' statements & efforts more than anything the NRA or the manufacturers could have tried.


I respect your openess & honesty

I respect your openess & honesty, but will oppose your goal wholeheartedly. While I fully believe that individuals can live a free life whether each one chooses to be armed or not, society itself must recognize the individual RKBA in order to be a free society. I believe that citizens have the rights to think dangerous ideas, speak dangerous words, protect dangerous privacies, and, yes, possess dangerous weapons. Your choice to forego weapons is fine by me. My weapons will not harm you. Nonetheless, I will remain that peaceable, but armed, citizen.


I respectfully disagree about magazine size limits.

I respectfully disagree about the utility of magazine size limits. They would infringe too much on peaceable firearms enthusiasts, while providing little check against the possibility of gun crimes. Unless you are willing to go to an extreme: a limit of say 3 or 5 rounds with a fixed magazine, where is the benefit of reducing AK, AR, or Glock mags from their (once) easily-available sizes to ten-rounds? These firearms were designed around a standard magazine as part of each of their designs for a reason, and their designs permit rapid mag changes. The problems of violence, crime, and mental illness can be better solved by addressing the root causes, rather than passing feel-good but ultimately futile and arbitrary limits on hardware.

Glad to hear that Mark Kelly is comfortable with the standard capacity of a Glock. He and Gabby both are courageous people who have endured & survived unspeakable tragedy.


wah-wah, boo fucking hoo. (jury results here)

I sent the alert, and I'm perfectly comfortable having done so. The jury called it right:

At Thu Apr 4, 2013, 01:25 PM you sent an alert on the following post:

A modest proposal for people who think no massacre control is needed


This post is disruptive, hurtful, rude, insensitive, over-the-top, or otherwise inappropriate. (See <a href="http://www.democraticunderground.com/?com=aboutus#communitystandards" target="_blank">Community Standards</a>.)


I know that the intention of all threads with "modest proposal" in the title is to post something controversial, but this OP is advocating the random massacre of children. Not cool by DU standards, no matter how you stretch them. Also, does not further any rational discussion in any way, shape, or form.

A randomly-selected Jury of DU members completed their review of this alert at Thu Apr 4, 2013, 02:06 PM, and voted 5-1 to HIDE IT.

Juror #1 voted to HIDE IT and said: Sickening and not helping the cause.
Juror #2 voted to HIDE IT and said: No explanation given
Juror #3 voted to HIDE IT and said: not amusing or clever
Juror #4 voted to HIDE IT and said: This post is over the top and hardly a modest proposal. I appreciate that gun control and gun rights are topics with a great deal of passion, but this is simply beyond acceptable.
Juror #5 voted to LEAVE IT ALONE and said: This is clearly an expression of righteous anger and I am not offended by the words on the page or the horrific absurdity of the proposal. Proper decorum vs. satire? No matter how dark or scathing, I vote for the satire.
Juror #6 voted to HIDE IT and said: No explanation given

Thank you.

If the issue of gun control is as cut & dry as you pretend it is, dsc, just advocate repealing the Second Amendment. Or save yourself some time and admit that you have no chance of doing so. Our Constitution protects the expression of dangerous ideas (via the 1st Amendment), because dangerous ideas are necessary and potentially helpful to an open society. The Constitution also protects the possession of potentially dangerous (but also potentially helpful) tools via the 2nd Amendment. Privacy and waiting for due process can be dangerous (or helpful) to society; we (should) protect them too, as enshrined in the 4th and 5th Amendments.

Your post was offensive the way that Jersey Shore is offensive: it was stupid and had no redeeming value whatsoever. DU deserves better. NO ONE is against 'massacre control.' Killing people in anything besides a desperate defensive situation is already illegal, and should of course remain so. Heck, few if any here are against gun control entirely. We have a lot of gun control in this country. Whether we need more, and what type is worth debating, but only rationally. The less hyperbole, the better.


Ginsburg, Kennedy & Scalia mega-fail.

The tortured logic they use toward prostrating our whole nation and planet before the gaping maw of corporate power is astounding. One would think that these three justices themselves might be pretzel-shaped after issuing this tortuous dissent. Glad that six others saw fit to preserve academic freedom & the flow of information.


Supreme Court Gets It Right In Kirtsaeng: You Can Resell Things You Bought Abroad Without Infringing

Source: Techdirt, also EFF.

For a few years now, we've been following the Kirtsaeng case, in which a student was sued by publisher John Wiley & Sons for buying cheap (legal) textbooks abroad, and then reselling them in the US for profit. Wiley claimed this was copyright infringement, while the student, Sudap Kirtsaeng, argued that the first sale doctrine applied. First sale gives you the right to resell, say, a book that you legally bought without having to get permission from the copyright holder. Under copyright law, it says that the first sale doctrine applies to any product "legally made under this title." Wiley argued that goods made abroad were not legally made under US law since they were made abroad (even though, obviously, it wanted the rest of copyright law to apply to it once those works came to the US). We were guardedly optimistic after the oral hearings at the Supreme Court, in which the Justices explored the "parade of horribles" that might happen if Wiley won. And while what happens at oral arguments frequently doesn't seem to have any bearing on the eventual situation, in this case, the Supreme Court has ruled in favor of Kirtsaeng, saying that it is silly to interpret the first sale doctrine the way Wiley does, and that there is no evidence that such "geographical restrictions" make sense, or that Congress intended such a result.
In our view, §109(a)’s language, its context, and the common-law history of the “first sale” doctrine, taken together, favor a non-geographical interpretation. We also doubt that Congress would have intended to create the practical copyright-related harms with which a geographical interpretation would threaten ordinary scholarly, artistic, commercial, and consumer activities.... We consequently conclude that Kirtsaeng’s nongeographical reading is the better reading of the Act.
To get technical, the key issue in the dispute was that two different sections of copyright law could be read to conflict. Section 109 defines the First Sale doctrine while Section 602 defines importation of works. Kirtsaeng focused on 109, while Wiley insisted that 602 is more important. The Supreme Court -- by a six to three margin -- side strongly with Kirtsaeng. The majority was written by Justice Breyer, who is consistently good on intellectual property issues, while the dissent was led by Ginsburg, who is consistently bad on copyright issues (Scalia and Kennedy sided with Ginsburg). Thankfully the "good" side won out today.
The language of §109(a) read literally favors Kirtsaeng’s nongeographical interpretation, namely, that “lawfully made under this title” means made “in accordance with” or “in compliance with” the Copyright Act. The language of §109(a) says nothing about geography. The word “under” can mean “n accordance with.” 18 Oxford English Dictionary 950 (2d ed. 1989). See also Black’s Law Dictionary 1525 (6th ed. 1990) (“according to”). And a nongeographical interpretation provides each word of the five-word phrase with a distinct purpose. The first two words of the phrase, “lawfully made,” suggest an effort to distinguish those copies that were made lawfully from those that were not, and the last three words, “under this title,” set forth the standard of “lawful[ness].” Thus, the nongeographical reading is simple, it promotes a traditional copyright objective (combatting piracy), and it makes word-by-word linguistic sense.

The geographical interpretation, however, bristles with linguistic difficulties. It gives the word “lawfully” little, if any, linguistic work to do. (How could a book be unlawfully “made under this title”?) It imports geography into a statutory provision that says nothing explicitly about it. And it is far more complex than may at first appear.

To read the clause geographically, Wiley, like the Second Circuit and the Solicitor General, must first emphasize the word “under.” Indeed, Wiley reads “under this title” to mean “in conformance with the Copyright Act where the Copyright Act is applicable.” Brief for Respondent 15. Wiley must then take a second step, arguing that the Act “is applicable” only in the United States. Ibid. And the Solicitor General must do the same. See Brief for United States 6 (“A copy is ‘lawfully made under this title’ if Title 17 governs the copy’s creation and the copy is made in compliance with Title 17’s requirements”). See also post, at 7 (GINSBURG, J., dissenting) (“under” describes something “governed or regulated by another”).

One difficulty is that neither “under” nor any other word in the phrase means “where.” See, e.g., 18 Oxford English Dictionary, supra, at 947–952 (definition of “under”). It might mean “subject to,” see post, at 6, but as this Court has repeatedly acknowledged, the word evades a uniform, consistent meaning. See Kucana v. Holder, 558 U. S. 233, 245 (2010) (“‘under’ is chameleon”); Ardestani v. INS, 502 U. S. 129, 135 (1991) (“under” has “many dictionary definitions” and “must draw its meaning from its context”).

A far more serious difficulty arises out of the uncertainty and complexity surrounding the second step’s effort to read the necessary geographical limitation into the word “applicable” (or the equivalent). Where, precisely, is the Copyright Act “applicable”? The Act does not instantly protect an American copyright holder from unauthorized piracy taking place abroad. But that fact does not mean the Act is inapplicable to copies made abroad. As a matter of ordinary English, one can say that a statute imposing, say, a tariff upon “any rhododendron grown in Nepal” applies to all Nepalese rhododendrons. And, similarly, one can say that the American Copyright Act is applicable to all pirated copies, including those printed overseas. Indeed, the Act itself makes clear that (in the Solicitor General’s language) foreign-printed pirated copies are “subject to” the Act.
The ruling goes on to lay out historical and logical reasons why first sale should apply. It's a good read. It looks like Breyer relied, in part, on the American Library Association's concern for how a ruling against First Sale would cause serious harm to libraries, which would have to somehow figure out ways to get permission on any book they had that was printed outside the US. He similarly cites concerns of used book dealers and the tech industry that this would get in the way of all sorts of reasonable transactions.
Technology companies tell us that “automobiles, microwaves, calculators, mobile phones, tablets, and personal computers” contain copyrightable software programs or packaging. Many of these items are made abroad with the American copyright holder’s permission and then sold and imported (with that permission) to the United States. A geographical interpretation would prevent the resale of, say, a car, without the permission of the holder of each copyright on each piece of copyrighted automobile software. Yet there is no reason to believe that foreign auto manufacturers regularly obtain this kind of permission from their software component suppliers, and Wiley did not indicate to the contrary when asked. Without that permission a foreign car owner could not sell his or her used car.
Breyer dismisses the idea, presented by Wiley, that because this "parade of horribles" hasn't happened yet, it won't happen in the future if the ruling had gone the other way. The ruling notes that this is still somewhat unsettled law, but that large parts of the economy clearly rely on the first sale doctrine, and upsetting that apple cart could have dramatic impact. It also rejects other spurious arguments, including a favorite of copyright maximalists, that the first sale doctrine on such works prevents copyright holders from doing differential pricing. The court rightfully questions what this has to do with copyright:

Read more: https://www.techdirt.com/articles/20130319/08094922377/supreme-court-gets-it-right-kirtsaeng-you-can-resell-things-you-bought-abroad-without-infringing.shtml

Note, exercpt consists of four paragraphs of Techdirt's article, plus several paragraphs of the SC decision itself, which of course is in the public domain. Also see:


Where the Electronic Freedom Frontier says:

In a long-anticipated decision, the Supreme Court held today that the first sale doctrine applies to works made outside of the United States. In other words, if you bought it, you own it—no matter where it was manufactured. That's a major victory for consumers, and also libraries, used bookstores, and all kinds of groups that depend on the right to lend or resell the goods they've legally purchased.

This case, Kirtsaeng v. Wiley, specifically concerned the re-sale of textbooks in the U.S. The first sale doctrine, described in section 109 of the U.S. Copyright Act, gives people the right to resell, lend, or give away the works that they’ve bought, even if those works contain copyrighted elements. Textbook publisher Wiley claimed that this doctrine only applies to goods that are manufactured in the U.S., and that the defendant, Supap Kirtsaeng, was infringing its copyright by purchasing books at a reduced rate in his native Thailand and selling them below list price in the States.

In other words, under Wiley's interpretation, copyright owners that are crafty enough to outsource the actual manufacture of their works abroad could control the secondary market for copies of works that were manufactured abroad for the entire copyright term.

The Supreme Court firmly rejected that notion, which it called the “geographical interpretation.” Your right to resell, lend, or give away the works that you buy does not depend on whether you happen to buy them in the US, or in Amsterdam or anywhere else. Rather, it simply depends on whether the copyright owner authorized the manufacture of the copy.

The Obama admin was on the wrong side of this issue. Glad the SC got it right, with Obama appointees Kagan and Sotomayor on the right side of the issue, thankfully.


Dem Pols need to quit the bait & switch.

I'm a registered Democrat and consistent Democratic voter because I believe in equal rights for women & men, for people of all colors & classes, for the GLBT & straight communities alike. I support unions, believe that jobs & economic progress can be entirely compatible with a protected environment, and want to see the social safety net, from earned benefits such as Medicare & Social Security all the way to unemployment and WIC benefits expanded, not shredded. I want civil rights & liberties expanded for people, while reigning-in the power & privilege of corporations.

I do not think that my beliefs are out of the mainstream.

It's a shame to see too many Democratic politicians squander this mandate provided by voters such as myself in a pointless battle over magazine capacities and other hot-button Second Amendment issues. Were I a Coloradan, I would be outraged. At the Federal level, I am outraged at the pointless expenditure of political capital led by Biden, Feinstein, Lautenberg, etc.

I agree with the vast majority of Democrats that violence needs to be addressed at the societal level. Our politicians could show real leadership toward this end by addressing poverty, ending the war on drugs, and reforming the criminal justice system to lock up the truly dangerous and leave everyone else alone. Pissing-on the Second Amendment instead is a second-rate, short-sighted, lazy alternative, taken by 'Democratic' politicians of the lowest caliber.


So he knows when the monarch census happens. So what?

So the entomologist you quote knows when the monarch census happens. So what? I'm not an entomologist by profession, and yet I recall that the population numbers from the winter refuges are released every year about this time. That environmental groups choose to highlight these numbers, especially when they show a long-term and consistent decline, is not evidence of any ill intent.

Methinks your entomologist has an axe to grind.

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