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  • posted a message on Un-American?
    If I was raising the colors over the statehouse, I'd probably restrict myself to the US flag on top and the state flag right below it as a matter of principle. While politicians are free to wave whatever flag they want, I think that state buildings should as a matter of principle try to transcend daily politics. As such I'm OK with a military base having POW flags, or a historical park with the Gadsden flag, but I think that statehouses should just stick to the basics.

    People calling something "un-American" is really just them being afraid of it, unsure what to do about it, and not articulating why it upsets them. Calling something un-American is roughly the same thing as me going to work in the morning with the pharmacy looking like a bomb site and saying "what kind of monster did this?"

    Given that politicians are the ones responsible for ordering around the people who raise and lower the flag over the statehouse, I don't really think we'll get to see flagpoles free of local politics anytime soon, but that's my 2 cents.
    Posted in: Debate
  • posted a message on Too big to fail? We should be so "lucky"...
    Quote from Ed.
    Quote from Ulfsaar
    Some people are making money while others aren't. The horror.


    Its slavery lol


    It's not slavery, it's banks playing both the investment and the banking game. It's not good for reasons you haven't pointed out - it exposes the banks themselves to liabilities that can destroy them if there's a market fluctuation, and the place where people store all their money throws around ungodly amounts of liquidity, oversaturating financial markets with cash and creating market distortions.
    Posted in: Debate
  • posted a message on Detroit files for bankruptcy - largest municipal bankruptcy in US history
    Low skill manufacturing jobs were largely replaced by machines. It's not even 'outsourcing', it's 'robots do 90% of the work and we replaced the other 10% with engineers'. There's still plenty of manufacturing in the US, but blue collar manufacturing is no longer viable economically, and is even starting to get squeezed out in China by automation. Even if all those plants were still located in Detroit, there'd be less than 10,000 jobs operating them.

    Manufacturing hasn't been obsoleted any more than finance is the future face of business. For all the flak that sector has received, its most damning condemnation is that they haven't yet managed to exceed the profitability of index funds for investors. The only people really profiting from these instruments are the financiers themselves.
    Posted in: Talk and Entertainment
  • posted a message on [[MCD]] Slowing down green- Ankh of Mishra, Winter Orb, ect.
    Green ramp decks rely solely on lands - using Winter Orb and preventing library searching are the best ways to shut them down, the latter hitting not only ramp but also the search cards that are so dear to those strategies, while simultaneously shutting off many of the cards that are threatening across the board.

    After that, running Armageddon is the best way to deal with it. Either way, there's an emphasis on using mana rocks as an alternative to land ramp. Keep in mind you're not stalling for time, you're using the several turns you buy with these actions to move towards a win. You can't simply durdle about while the other guy has a plan to kill you. That's what a lot of these problems with ramp are - sure, you can answer the ramp, but you still need to be able to win by combo, general damage, or beatdown in a reasonable time frame afterwards.
    Posted in: Commander (EDH)
  • posted a message on Sarah Palin considering Alaska Senate run
    It's unlikely that Palin will get the nomination unless they're truly desperate for someone. Her gubernatorial stint didn't impress the people of Alaska, and afterwards she's been the focus of a perpetual media circus.

    What's more likely is she's using her announcement to focus media coverage on herself and boost ratings, not unlike Donald Trump's presidential bid.
    Posted in: Talk and Entertainment
  • posted a message on State of Florida v Zimmerman
    Quote from Tuss
    Well, there was that minor detail of the police not bothering to investigate from the start. It's entirely incorrect to think that US law is applied equally to white and to black people.


    I think what happened was an absolute travesty - Mr. Zimmerman shot and killed an unarmed man after chasing and provoking him. However, the problem remains insufficient evidence to ascertain what was going on, and the extremely broad self defense laws passed by the state of Florida protect him even under this dubious circumstance.

    Also, don't be naive, Tuss. The system here in the US isn't fair, but racism isn't a huge problem. The US is a good place to be rich and a bad one to be poor. The law is applied consistently on this basis. Even still, that's not what happened here - a weak case ran into a broad law.
    Posted in: Talk and Entertainment
  • posted a message on State of Florida v Zimmerman
    Called it. The case didn't have anything to do with racism. It's about where insufficient evidence meets extremely broad self defense laws. I don't really get where Trayvon Martin being black falls into this. There would have been a total ****storm over this case no matter what ethnicity of person got shot given the aggressive behavior of Zimmerman beforehand. Whether or not what was done was justice, it was all done according to the law of the state of Florida.

    Whether or not Stand Your Ground laws are good laws is a matter for another thread. The prosecution decided, originally and correctly, not to pursue charges because of the exact reasons this trial put on display.
    Posted in: Talk and Entertainment
  • posted a message on State of Florida v Zimmerman
    The defense doesn't need to prove anything, they merely need to assert that there is reasonable doubt to the prosecutions case. Which there is, which is why the prosecutors didn't bring this case forward in the first place - there's insufficient evidence to ascertain what really happened.

    The case will end up with Zimmerman walking unless the prosecution has something left up their sleeve. They don't, or they would have used it by now. The only way Zimmerman could be found guilty beyond a reasonable doubt is if by forcing a confrontation he is no longer covered under stand your ground.
    Posted in: Talk and Entertainment
  • posted a message on [[M14]] DailyMTG Previews 7/1: Chandra, Pyromaster; Pyromancer's Gauntlet; Manaweft Sliver
    She's a fine planeswalker. Anything that puts cards more cards at your disposal is fine. Pings away derps and prevents nasties from blocking, seems quite solid at 2RR.
    Posted in: The Rumor Mill
  • posted a message on Morph edh?
    The problem with morph is that the best morph dudes are Vesuvan Shapeshifter and Ixidron. That thing is hilarious - it's not a Wrath, but it's good enough if you're not in the colors for it. It isn't competitive (directly) - morph creatures by and large aren't powerful or combo-ey enough to seal the game on their own, but you can win via pickles lock (Vesuvan Shapeshifter + Brine Elemental every turn). Otherwise you'll have a tricky time competing with better modern creatures - most dudes printed pre Time Spiral block just aren't competitive with modern creatures unless they possess unique abilities or attributes, and the lion's share of morph came from Onslaught.
    Posted in: Commander (EDH)
  • posted a message on State of Florida v Zimmerman
    Quote from mondu_the_fat
    I have a gun. I chase a unarmed man down. He turns on me and manages to hit me (several times if you prefer). I shoot him. Can I claim self-defense?


    The case itself lacks enough evidence for either side of the story to be convincing beyond a reasonable doubt. I think that Zimmerman aggressively pursued a young man, forced a confrontation, and then shot him in a fit of paranoia, but I can't claim evidence to that course of events beyond a cynical skepticism of Zimmerman's story and my own interpretation of what happened.

    This case is an illustration of a problem that can arise from extending the castle doctrine into stand your ground laws. Zimmerman has a good chance of being acquitted on the matter at hand - it's not whether George Zimmerman acted aggressively and irresponsibly beforehand (that's not really debatable) - it's whether George Zimmerman felt he was in real, imminent danger when the confrontation between him and Trayvon Martin occurred. Since in the United States the burden of proof is on the prosecution to determine whether or not a crime has taken place (that's what 'innocent until proven guilty' means), a case built on circumstantial evidence with no eyewitnesses is not going to proceed well - even though it would be an open and shut case of second degree murder without stand your ground laws in place.
    Posted in: Talk and Entertainment
  • posted a message on [[MCD]] The Ten Guild Champions: Success or Failure? You Decide
    Varolz is pretty clearly the best of the 10 as a 3CMC sac outlet with no mana cost. None of the other G/B generals (not exactly a long or impressive list) can really touch that.
    Posted in: Commander (EDH)
  • posted a message on Gun Control(a fresh start)
    Gun control realistically isn't going to happen in the US. The best you can do is try to spur economic growth, expand the capacity of people to get mental health care, and try to teach people responsible gun ownership. Piecemeal state applications of gun control fall afoul of federal law or the laxer laws in other states.

    They're not going to regulate guns until something major comes along to make us long for the good old days of only 20 people dying in some psychos rampage. Similarly, mental health care is also a no go, as are efforts to stimulate any kind of economic growth.

    Let's be honest with ourselves for a moment here: the only people who care about a bunch of toddlers getting fragged are their families. Congress doesn't care. The House doesn't care. You, sitting in your chair, don't care. It's the same spiel after 9/11 and Columbine and whatever. People pay lip service to it, but the truth of the matter is that violence is perennially the problem of someone else who lives very far away whom you will never meet. And if you have the misfortune of being one of those people, congratulations, no one except you and your immediate family cares. This is America, and this country is all about you, and only you. You are on your own here, and no one cares. Because they're all on their own too. The entire debate is tiresome. A couple dozen kids get fragged every few months. So what? It's been all about scoring political points from blood since Columbine, 9/11, etc. Newtown is no different, and why should it be? Year after year you get piles of cold children and nobody looks at 'em twice. Why on earth should Newtown be any different?
    Posted in: Debate
  • posted a message on So should all cards on the reserved list be banned from EDH?
    You'd be better off banning cards that have never been reprinted period than just reserved cards. 99% of all magic cards will never be reprinted, even if they're crappy like Akrasan Squires. Plenty of good ones will never be reprinted despite not being reserved - Umezawa's Jitte, tarmogoyf, Dark confidant, mana drain, etc., all have never been reprinted or will only get reprinted in niche products with negligible print runs that do not impact the available quantity in a meaningful fashion.

    In short, no, it's pointless to ban cards because WotC isn't going to print them again.
    Posted in: Commander (EDH)
  • posted a message on Bitcoins
    All currencies possess volatility, and many of these arguments are the same that kind be levied at real currencies or stocks. Stocks which possess no dividends are used as printable money for companies that is later redeemed by other people. Since the voting option of stocks is basically pointless unless you're a huge investor, indeed, many companies restrict voting to owners of privileged shares, the analog between bitcoin and other collectibles is pretty close. Though perhaps not in the direction that the self described very serious people would like.

    Which is precisely the problem and the benefit of them. There aren't enough of them, and they're frequently valued very highly and thus unsuitable for basic transactions. Merchants don't want to take a currency that's $80 one day and $15 another. If treated like any other collectible item - a magic card or a stock - they're useful as a medium of trade, but volatility is not an acceptable trait for a currency.
    Posted in: Talk and Entertainment
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