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Old 03-16-2020, 02:39 AM
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America Is A Sham


That's the title of this Slate article: America Is A Sham. Not we innocent residents, of course; but arbitrary regulations display great bogosity, as shown by the ease with which they're swept aside for an emergency.

TSA banned liquids over 4oz because planes would blow up - but now you can carry 12oz but only hand sanitizer, because shampoo is still explosive, right? Many cities don't want jails filled with sickies so they're not jailing now for minor offenses - why why waste resources on them before? Trimp wants to forgive interest on government-issued student loans. Why did the feds charge citizens vigorish before?

Those are just the first few examples. Data caps and throttled internet. Police evictions of tenants. Urban water cutoffs. No sick leave. If these are discarded in a potential crisis, why are they needed the rest of the time? See the article and decide.

[Sorry if this was brought up already; we lost power and net for a few hours]
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Old 03-16-2020, 08:41 AM
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I won't answer for everything and am sure the answer for some is "profit" but just because someone cuts you a break on something in a time of need doesn't mean they can sustain a business that way. If I was to have a month-long break in my income, perhaps my daycare provider would cut me a discounted price to reflect the years that I've used her (and because she doesn't want me to find a permanent solution elsewhere) but that doesn't mean she can run on 50% rates forever. Likewise, your cable or water company might decide to waive a month of late fees and not cancel service but that doesn't mean its a sustainable model in the long term.

The idea of triage is that you take care of the most important things first in a time of crisis. So you still arrest and imprison violent offenders but you let lesser criminals go even though you still believe it's bad for society because the short term requires those measures.

Again, I'm absolutely sure that a good number of things is just "Because we can and it makes us money" but that isn't proven by "Well, you let it go for a month so you're obviously able to let it go forever."
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Old 03-16-2020, 11:00 AM
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The risk from a bomb is real but very small, the risk from a lack of hand sanitizer is probably greater than any time since the regulations were passed. Updating the risk reward calculations means that it makes sense to update the rule.

Things that can not be anticipated can work well but be disastrous if applied in perpetuity. How many people decided not to pay their water bills or rent just in case there is a pandemic this month? Probably around zero. Thus there is no moral hazard. However if they decided that from now on there will be no water cut offs or evictions only suckers would pay water bills or their rent. With no people paying bills the water infrastructure would fall apart. With no one paying rent all rental properties would cease being maintained and there would be no new ones built. Finding places to live for those who can't afford a mortgage would be impossible.

This makes as much sense as saying if a kid can have cake on his birthday and be healthy then he could eat it every meal and be healthy. This experience may prove that we were wrong about some of the risks but it does not mean that there are never any risks.
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Old 03-16-2020, 11:24 AM
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Quote:
However if they decided that from now on there will be no water cut offs or evictions only suckers would pay water bills or their rent.
I like to think of myself as socially responsible and contributing where I can rather than a sucker.

Last edited by susan; 03-16-2020 at 11:25 AM.
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Old 03-16-2020, 11:51 AM
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I love that they don't treat your 5 oz of shampoo as if it were a bomb, they literally just toss it in the trash can next to them where it sits all day until the janitorial staff empties the trash, which then just goes in the dumpster with the rest of the garbage. If it was really a bomb, they just killed themselves and everyone standing there. The whole security theater is completely bullshit and every single one of them knows it.
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Old 03-16-2020, 11:58 AM
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Originally Posted by DCnDC View Post
I love that they don't treat your 5 oz of shampoo as if it were a bomb, they literally just toss it in the trash can next to them where it sits all day until the janitorial staff empties the trash, which then just goes in the dumpster with the rest of the garbage
The idea isn't that your shampoo is a 5oz bomb, it's that you could blend chemicals from various 5oz bottles into something explosive (or producing deadly fumes, etc)

And it's not even that YOUR little bottle of shampoo is a bomb, it's that liquids over 4oz aren't allowed to prevent the above from happening. So your bottle of Pert is treated like a bottle of Pert because it's not "You're carrying a bomb", it's "You're breaking the rules designed to prevent a bomb from being made on board". If they actually thought it WAS a bomb, you'd be getting tackled and thrown in Gitmo rather than losing your shampoo.
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Old 03-16-2020, 12:01 PM
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That's it, from now on I'm only traveling with real poo.
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Old 03-17-2020, 10:11 AM
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The Founding Fathers figured out the best system is one where we don't work well together, one where political autonomy is broken up among various-sized districts arranged with no planning or thought, and to be as disorganized as a nation can be, because 'freedom'.

And, you know, since they are geniuses and all, why do you hate Ben Franklin?

I mean, the guys planned for a government which was suited for a collection of 18th-century agrarian states, isolated from the rest of the globe by weeks of sea travel in sailed boats. The fact that this system has survived as the country grew to a 21st century post-industrial hyperpower is commendable.... but that doesn't mean it's working anymore.

Last edited by JohnT; 03-17-2020 at 10:12 AM.
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Old 03-17-2020, 11:50 AM
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I think of America as more of a Shamwow. We are colorful and absorb pretty much everything
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Old 03-17-2020, 01:20 PM
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Given the date, March 17th, America is definitely a

(•_•)

( •_•)>⌐■-■

(⌐■_■)

... shamrock.
  #11  
Old 03-17-2020, 03:10 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DCnDC View Post
I love that they don't treat your 5 oz of shampoo as if it were a bomb, they literally just toss it in the trash can next to them where it sits all day until the janitorial staff empties the trash, which then just goes in the dumpster with the rest of the garbage. If it was really a bomb, they just killed themselves and everyone standing there. The whole security theater is completely bullshit and every single one of them knows it.
The immediate concern is mixing acetone with very concentrated hydrogen peroxide to form TATP, a very volatile explosive, but also not a high-order one. TATP isnít really something you want to walk around with, but you could mix it on a plane.

How concerned are you, on a scale of 1-10, of a bottle of acetone ending up in a dumpster and blowing up with everyone just standing there?
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Old 03-17-2020, 05:31 PM
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Originally Posted by Darren Garrison View Post
I think of America as more of a Shamwow. We are colorful and absorb pretty much everything
And we love crazy assholes selling us shit we don't need.

Yep - you're onto something here.
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Old 03-17-2020, 08:21 PM
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Yeah but America has always been a sham since the very beginning right?
__________________
"You can do anything you set your mind to...But money helps"
  #14  
Old 03-17-2020, 08:31 PM
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And we love crazy assholes selling us shit we don't need.

Yep - you're onto something here.
Better yet, we get stripped of a living wage but approved for credit.
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Old 03-17-2020, 10:02 PM
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Originally Posted by Jophiel View Post
The idea isn't that your shampoo is a 5oz bomb, it's that you could blend chemicals from various 5oz bottles into something explosive (or producing deadly fumes, etc)

And it's not even that YOUR little bottle of shampoo is a bomb, it's that liquids over 4oz aren't allowed to prevent the above from happening. So your bottle of Pert is treated like a bottle of Pert because it's not "You're carrying a bomb", it's "You're breaking the rules designed to prevent a bomb from being made on board". If they actually thought it WAS a bomb, you'd be getting tackled and thrown in Gitmo rather than losing your shampoo.
One time I purchased a small plastic container 4oz, IIRC of grapefruit slices packed in light syrup, in the concession stand located near the ticket agents, pre-security.

Then I put in my backpack and tried to take it through. It was flagged by the scanner. The agent seemed unsure what to do - yes, it’s over 3.5 oz, but it’s not really liquid. It’s mostly not liquid. But there is liquid. The agent and her supervisor had quite the pow-wow over this little factory sealed cup of fruit with a Del Monte label and that silly inch long spork taped to the top of the cup.

The upshot was they decided I couldn’t take it through.

I still can’t think of how this item could be of use to a bomb maker and I found the episode completely ridiculous. They did generously offer to let me sit on that grubby bench where people go to put their shoes back on and eat my grapefruit. I declined. I didn’t watch to see if they threw it away or ate it, although I should’ve. I bet she ate it.

Last edited by Ann Hedonia; 03-17-2020 at 10:06 PM.
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Old 03-21-2020, 11:57 AM
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When my brother was going to ASU the drinking age in Arizona was 18. He went to Nogales, Mexico and among other things, tried to bring back a big bottle of tequila. Unfortunately he discovered that, the border being Federal, he had to be 21 to bring it in and it was confiscated. "You just want to drink it yourselves," he told the agents.

They frogmarched him to the bathroom and made him pour the bottle down the sink.
  #17  
Old 03-22-2020, 11:23 AM
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Ironic that America is easily bankrupted because of an illness.

Wait, did I say 'Ironic'? Should've said 'predictable'.
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