Surprise! It's Government's Good Side

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Jake
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Surprise! It's Government's Good Side

Post by Jake » 30 Oct 2010, 12:45

Here's a thread where you can post the good things that the government does.

(Yes, I'm aware this won't be a very active thread.)

I'll start: the Department of Justice has announced that human genes should not be patentable. It's been a long time since I've felt good about something the DOJ did... but yay for them on this one!
"Quis pimpodiet ipsos pimpodes?" -- Ellie

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thoreau
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Re: Surprise! It's Government's Good Side

Post by thoreau » 30 Oct 2010, 12:55

As an employee of a public university, can I use this thread to talk about actual good stuff that happens at work?
"Camacho would be better than Trump. He actually has goodwill towards the world, and he actually did seek out the assistance of the smartest man in the world."
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J sub D
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Re: Surprise! It's Government's Good Side

Post by J sub D » 30 Oct 2010, 13:07

Yay for the rare piece of DOJ sanity. I never bought for a second that an existing gene could be patented any more than you could patent obsidian.
thoreau wrote:As an employee of a public university, can I use this thread to talk about actual good stuff that happens at work?
Go ahead. I don't believe it will clog up the thread too much at all.
EDIT: Oh, and the civil rights and basic human dignity thing too. - JasonL

My guess is this is the love child of some Objectivists what got excommunicated. - Warren

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Jake
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Re: Surprise! It's Government's Good Side

Post by Jake » 30 Oct 2010, 13:08

thoreau wrote:As an employee of a public university, can I use this thread to talk about actual good stuff that happens at work?
Have you forgotten where you are? I fully expect this thread to be about "commercial jingles from the late '70s" or "comparative sleeve lengths in Renaissance Vienna" by the time we hit page 2.
"Quis pimpodiet ipsos pimpodes?" -- Ellie

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Eric the .5b
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Re: Surprise! It's Government's Good Side

Post by Eric the .5b » 30 Oct 2010, 15:38

http://www.wired.com/geek
dad/2010/10/star-trek-cited-by-texas-supreme-court/

The actual opinion linked (I'd recommend using the Readability bookmark at http://lab.arc90.com/experiments/readability/ to read the format for those whose eyes have not been warped by the legal profession) gives quite pleasing arguments.

More details on the case here:

http://www.setex
asrecord.com/news/230714-texas-supreme-court-crown-cork-asbestos-suit-protection-unconstitutional

They ruled that a law apparently patently designed to retroactively protect one company from asbestos lawsuits - and apparently from one specific lawsuit was unconstitutional.

My state's courts can get something right? Daaaaaamn.
"Better that ten guilty persons escape than that one innocent suffer."
"Cyberpunk never really gave the government enough credit for their ability to secure a favorable prenup during the Corporate-State wedding." - Shem

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Timothy
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Re: Surprise! It's Government's Good Side

Post by Timothy » 30 Oct 2010, 15:52

Eric the .5b wrote:http://www.wired.com/geek
dad/2010/10/star-trek-cited-by-texas-supreme-court/

The actual opinion linked (I'd recommend using the Readability bookmark at http://lab.arc90.com/experiments/readability/ to read the format for those whose eyes have not been warped by the legal profession) gives quite pleasing arguments.

More details on the case here:

http://www.setex
asrecord.com/news/230714-texas-supreme-court-crown-cork-asbestos-suit-protection-unconstitutional

They ruled that a law apparently patently designed to retroactively protect one company from asbestos lawsuits - and apparently from one specific lawsuit was unconstitutional.

My state's courts can get something right? Daaaaaamn.
That's pretty good. Still hitting WAY below the Mendoza Line, though.
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Eric the .5b
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Re: Surprise! It's Government's Good Side

Post by Eric the .5b » 30 Oct 2010, 15:59

At a certain level, all the courts are anti-Wobegon, Timothy.
"Better that ten guilty persons escape than that one innocent suffer."
"Cyberpunk never really gave the government enough credit for their ability to secure a favorable prenup during the Corporate-State wedding." - Shem

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Eric the .5b
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Re: Surprise! It's Government's Good Side

Post by Eric the .5b » 22 Nov 2010, 15:26

Behold, a Blue senator unleashes his deadly hold power on a bill - killing COICA.

http://www.rawstory.com/rs/2010/11/or
egon-senator-vows-block-internet-censorship-bill/
"Better that ten guilty persons escape than that one innocent suffer."
"Cyberpunk never really gave the government enough credit for their ability to secure a favorable prenup during the Corporate-State wedding." - Shem

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Timothy
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Re: Surprise! It's Government's Good Side

Post by Timothy » 23 Nov 2010, 00:01

Eric the .5b wrote:Behold, a Blue senator unleashes his deadly hold power on a bill - killing COICA.

http://www.rawstory.com/rs/2010/11/or
egon-senator-vows-block-internet-censorship-bill/
And where's he from? That's right, OREGON, BITCHES!
"i say make some popcorn and give me a blanket to hide this six foot boner i have." --dhex

"The difference between Hodor! and Jeb! is that at the end of the day, one of them gets to stop pretending he's retarded." -- Jasper

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Hugh Akston
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Re: Surprise! It's Government's Good Side

Post by Hugh Akston » 29 Nov 2010, 16:30

The decision to freeze federal worker pay increases was the right one. There's a long way to go, but this is a good step.
"Is a Lulztopia the best we can hope for?!?" ~Taktix®
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Eric the .5b
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Re: Surprise! It's Government's Good Side

Post by Eric the .5b » 29 Nov 2010, 16:31

I forgot what this thread was called!

The Treasury Department's requirement that US paper currency be durable enough to easily withstand going through the wash is an excellent standard because...*cough*, yeah.
"Better that ten guilty persons escape than that one innocent suffer."
"Cyberpunk never really gave the government enough credit for their ability to secure a favorable prenup during the Corporate-State wedding." - Shem

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Re: Surprise! It's Government's Good Side

Post by J sub D » 30 Nov 2010, 09:57

Hugh Akston wrote:The decision to freeze federal worker pay increases was the right one. There's a long way to go, but this is a good step.
Congresscritters, their staff and the military are exempt. I can't even make a convincing case for the military exemption as their annual pay raises (COLAs) have been above inflation for a while. You can guess what I think about the leeches on Capitol Hill.
EDIT: Oh, and the civil rights and basic human dignity thing too. - JasonL

My guess is this is the love child of some Objectivists what got excommunicated. - Warren

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Mo
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Re: Surprise! It's Government's Good Side

Post by Mo » 30 Nov 2010, 10:24

J sub D wrote:
Hugh Akston wrote:The decision to freeze federal worker pay increases was the right one. There's a long way to go, but this is a good step.
Congresscritters, their staff and the military are exempt. I can't even make a convincing case for the military exemption as their annual pay raises (COLAs) have been above inflation for a while. You can guess what I think about the leeches on Capitol Hill.
I think the Congresscritter exception is because it's an executive order. IIRC, executive orders can't affect the pay of Congresscritters because of the whole separation of powers thing. As for the military, that's naked politics to prevent the right from screaming about how the commie Kenyan hates America, freedom, apple pie and moms. Because soldiers aren't government workers, or something.
his voice is so soothing, but why do conspiracy nuts always sound like Batman and Robin solving one of Riddler's puzzles out loud? - fod

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Re: Surprise! It's Government's Good Side

Post by J sub D » 30 Nov 2010, 10:33

Mo wrote:
J sub D wrote:
Hugh Akston wrote:The decision to freeze federal worker pay increases was the right one. There's a long way to go, but this is a good step.
Congresscritters, their staff and the military are exempt. I can't even make a convincing case for the military exemption as their annual pay raises (COLAs) have been above inflation for a while. You can guess what I think about the leeches on Capitol Hill.
I think the Congresscritter exception is because it's an executive order. IIRC, executive orders can't affect the pay of Congresscritters because of the whole separation of powers thing. As for the military, that's naked politics to prevent the right from screaming about how the commie Kenyan hates America, freedom, apple pie and moms. Because soldiers aren't government workers, or something.
I recognize all of that. I also suspect that congresscritters and their staffs are going to have bite the bullet for political reasons. Freezing my retirement check (It's tied to active duty pay scales) over two years just ain't gonna happen
EDIT: Oh, and the civil rights and basic human dignity thing too. - JasonL

My guess is this is the love child of some Objectivists what got excommunicated. - Warren

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Mo
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Re: Surprise! It's Government's Good Side

Post by Mo » 30 Nov 2010, 10:35

J sub D wrote:I recognize all of that. I also suspect that congresscritters and their staffs are going to have bite the bullet for political reasons. Freezing my retirement check (It's tied to active duty pay scales) over two years just ain't gonna happen
So next round is on you?
his voice is so soothing, but why do conspiracy nuts always sound like Batman and Robin solving one of Riddler's puzzles out loud? - fod

no one ever yells worldstar when a pet gets fucked up - dhex

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dbcooper
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Re: Surprise! It's Government's Good Side

Post by dbcooper » 30 Nov 2010, 11:01

Might the military exclusion also be for labour supply/demand reasons, or has unemployment resolved that?
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thoreau
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Re: Surprise! It's Government's Good Side

Post by thoreau » 30 Nov 2010, 11:16

Mo wrote:Because soldiers aren't government workers, or something.
Silly Mo, military spending isn't actual government spending. It's freedom.
"Camacho would be better than Trump. He actually has goodwill towards the world, and he actually did seek out the assistance of the smartest man in the world."
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Re: Surprise! It's Government's Good Side

Post by Kolohe » 30 Nov 2010, 11:22

dbcooper wrote:Might the military exclusion also be for labour supply/demand reasons, or has unemployment resolved that?
It has. Retention is way up among all the services despite still the same absolute quantity of war as there was 5 years ago (when retention was abyssmal, and recruitment standards were the lowest they've ever been for the all volunteer force).

J sub D - I always thought retirement pay was tied to the pay scale at time of retirement, with annual COLA's determined independently* from whatever happens the pay scales of active duty ? This question is pertinent to my interests potentially within three years.

*but with a similar if not identical formula to that of civilian retirees and/or SS receipients
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Hugh Akston
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Re: Surprise! It's Government's Good Side

Post by Hugh Akston » 30 Nov 2010, 11:27

I believe our Congressional masters graciously passed up the chance to increase their pay scale and operating budget in the early days of Economacolypse.
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Re: Surprise! It's Government's Good Side

Post by J sub D » 30 Nov 2010, 11:39

Kolohe wrote:
dbcooper wrote:Might the military exclusion also be for labour supply/demand reasons, or has unemployment resolved that?
It has. Retention is way up among all the services despite still the same absolute quantity of war as there was 5 years ago (when retention was abyssmal, and recruitment standards were the lowest they've ever been for the all volunteer force).

J sub D - I always thought retirement pay was tied to the pay scale at time of retirement, with annual COLA's determined independently* from whatever happens the pay scales of active duty ? This question is pertinent to my interests potentially within three years.

*but with a similar if not identical formula to that of civilian retirees and/or SS receipients
I'm an idiot. You're correct. I knew this but don't really pay much attention (No dependents, some savings, I'm content). It is not mandated by law that retirement increases are lock step with miltary basic pay raises. We're locked to base pay scales upon retirement plus whatever COLA is given that year.
EDIT: Oh, and the civil rights and basic human dignity thing too. - JasonL

My guess is this is the love child of some Objectivists what got excommunicated. - Warren

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Eric the .5b
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Re: Surprise! It's Government's Good Side

Post by Eric the .5b » 01 Dec 2010, 21:48

LOS ANGELES — Opening statements in the first-of-its kind Xbox 360 criminal hacking trial were delayed here Wednesday after a federal judge unleashed a 30-minute tirade at prosecutors in open court, saying he had “serious concerns about the government’s case.”

“I really don’t understand what we’re doing here,” US District Judge Philip Gutierrez roared from the bench.

....

As the judge worked through his laundry list of complaints over the prosecution, word of the unusual judicial rebuke spread through the courthouse, drawing a trickle of about a dozen prosecutors and defense attorneys into the courtroom to watch from the gallery.
Very interestingly, the judge seems to have shifted his opinion on the relevance of Fair Use, here.

But a prosecutor getting his ears pinned back because of questionable witnesses, illicit recordings, and dubious logic? Sweet.

http://arstechnica.com/tech-policy/news/201
0/12/judge-in-xbox-modding-trial-berates-prosecution-halts-trial.ars
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Lost_In_Translation
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Re: Surprise! It's Government's Good Side

Post by Lost_In_Translation » 02 Dec 2010, 09:15

My dog remains unkilled by SWAT teams. I guess i should thank them for that...

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Fin Fang Foom
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Re: Surprise! It's Government's Good Side

Post by Fin Fang Foom » 02 Dec 2010, 14:16

Ladies and gentlemen, the only hope for the earth is to use the nuclear option to deal with the threat from Lake Mono:

http://www.wired.com/wiredscience/2010/ ... -new-life/
Saudi Arabia is doing something potentially harmful to America? Oh, hell. Does that mean we're going to invade Iraq again? - Jennifer

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Eric the .5b
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Re: Surprise! It's Government's Good Side

Post by Eric the .5b » 02 Dec 2010, 15:06

Fin Fang Foom wrote:Ladies and gentlemen, the only hope for the earth is to use the nuclear option to deal with the threat from Lake Mono:

http://www.wired.com/wiredscience/2010/ ... -new-life/
If this turns out to be "Yes, this life of an entirely different origin and basis from the rest of life on Earth", very cool. It's a possibility people had been discussing for a while, including the possibility of that such microbes could be running around unnoticed. Life starting twice on one rock makes the chance of it not starting somewhere else rather remote.

However, that just suggests that there're some reasons further along the process of creating intelligent life for why we haven't seen or heard from any other intelligent species. Mind the falling rocks and nukes...
"Better that ten guilty persons escape than that one innocent suffer."
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thoreau
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Re: Surprise! It's Government's Good Side

Post by thoreau » 02 Dec 2010, 15:16

I haven't read it in detail, but it sounds like these bacteria have basically the same cellular machinery as other bacteria, except they have the ability to substitute arsenic for phosphorous when put in environments that have little phosphorous but lots of arsenic. They are genetically related to other bacteria that exist under more normal conditions.

So, not a separate origin event. Rather, an adaptation to an arsenic-rich environment.
"Camacho would be better than Trump. He actually has goodwill towards the world, and he actually did seek out the assistance of the smartest man in the world."
--Fin Fang Foom

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