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Monday, July 02, 2012

OT-P: July: Obamacare Decision as Baseball: the Runner is Safe, so Now What?

My favorite play in baseball is the second base steal. In the play, the base runner watches the pitch, and at just the right moment, he sprints toward second. The catcher snatches the pitch, springs up and rockets the ball to the second baseman who snags it and tries to tag the runner as he slides into the base. As the dust clears, all eyes are on the second base umpire who, in a split second, calls the runner safe or out. When the play is over, the players dust themselves off, and the game goes on.

Some on the field may disagree with the umpire’s call.  However, the umpire’s decision is final, and arguing can get you ejected. To stay in the game, great teams simply adjust their strategy based on the umpire’s call.

 

Morty Causa Posted: July 02, 2012 at 02:26 PM | 4025 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
  Tags: politics, special topics

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   301. Rickey! On a blog from 1998. With the candlestick. Posted: July 03, 2012 at 03:20 PM (#4172423)
An innate Kantian moral sense?


As he handily demonstrates @261 and @291, David has no moral sense whatsoever. He's a 14 year old boy who never managed to develop into an adult.
   302. asdf1234 Posted: July 03, 2012 at 03:21 PM (#4172425)
Libertarian arguments are very rarely called to task for the "what now?" aspect that they completely ignore.


We've been asking "what now?" for the better part of forty years as debt, inflation, and the welfare/warfare state have expanded with no end in sight. Leftists don't get to play the responsible adult card on the only people who reason from first principles rather than stringing up an ad hoc spiderweb of authoritarian, unsustainable, and utopian policies.

Assume for a moment that we can somehow configure a society where opting out of, say, fire control, only puts your specific property at risk. (Put aside the inanity of that assumption.) A family makes the choice to opt out and pocket the savings. Their house, with all their worldly possessions, burns to the ground. *What Now?* The libertarian response might be "tough." But is that the society we want to create and inhabit? And, what about the collateral damage -- the children of that family didn't have the agency necessary to participate in the decision to opt out, and yet, they will be harshly penalized. *What Now?* A very similar argument can be made for healthcare. The Hobbesian fantasyland where there are these isolated choices that don't affect others simply doesn't exist.


Spiel like this demonstrates why it's impossible to engage a dedicated leftist, as every leftist seems to hold the tribalistic belief that anyone who doesn't belong to their particular political clique is an ogre. To spell it out, virtually no libertarian, classical liberal, or anarchist believes that "tough" is the proper response to a luckless family who has lost everything. But, because leftists generally can't understand why anyone would prefer voluntary cooperation, charity, and mutualism to unbounded and unaccountable state coercion, we're left with sophomoric scenarios like this, where the heroic white knights of government ride in to save that poor family while their heartless neighbors stand by and pick their noses.

We live in a society, where your choices affect me. Deal with it.


The lack of self-awareness in this single line is heartbreaking. Once you stop electing autocrats who destroy people's lives for their private, voluntary choices, then you can crow about the responsibility we all have to our fellow men. Until then, no, just no.
   303. Rickey! On a blog from 1998. With the candlestick. Posted: July 03, 2012 at 03:22 PM (#4172426)
Most of the laws we're talking about don't involve right vs. non-right, but watered-down right vs. slightly different version of watered-down right.


This is correct. Technically speaking, we're discussing various privileges of the state, not natural rights. (Probably because there is no such thing as a "natural right" per se, merely a government that defends certain states of existing as natural rights, above other privileges that they defend less fulsomely.
   304. David Nieporent (now, with children) Posted: July 03, 2012 at 03:23 PM (#4172428)
As he handily demonstrates @261 and @291, David has no moral sense whatsoever. He's a 14 year old boy who never managed to develop into an adult.
Don't you have someone to stab in the neck?
   305. Rickey! On a blog from 1998. With the candlestick. Posted: July 03, 2012 at 03:24 PM (#4172430)
Freedom in its purest form does in fact mean the freedom to make horrible tragic mistakes and live with them.


Freedom in its purest form also does in fact mean the freedom to beat the crap out of pencil necked "libertarians" and take their crap. Just because they want to pass a "law" against it doesn't mean I'm not free to curb stomp them.
   306. Rickey! On a blog from 1998. With the candlestick. Posted: July 03, 2012 at 03:25 PM (#4172431)
Don't you have someone to stab in the neck?


I have a whole damned list, Chucky. And the fact that I accept that responsibility and the will to carry it through where required makes me 1000 times more morally engaged than you.
   307. Lassus Posted: July 03, 2012 at 03:27 PM (#4172435)
Don't you have someone to stab in the neck?

He can't reach any Mets or Mets fans in the standings, so no, you're stuck with him.
   308. Brian C Posted: July 03, 2012 at 03:29 PM (#4172437)
But, because leftists generally can't understand why anyone would prefer voluntary cooperation, charity, and mutualism to unbounded and unaccountable state coercion, we're left with sophomoric scenarios like this, where the heroic white knights of government ride in to save that poor family while their heartless neighbors stand by and pick their noses.

What's so sophomoric about a scenario where a family's house burns down? Stuff like that happens all the time, and it demands a policy response of some sort or another, even if that response is "do nothing because their friends will probably help out".

Besides which, the post you quoted says nothing about "the heroic white knights of government", and is simply asking what the preferred policy towards government intervention is to people who oppose government intervention.
   309. David Nieporent (now, with children) Posted: July 03, 2012 at 03:29 PM (#4172439)
Spiel like this demonstrates why it's impossible to engage a dedicated leftist, as every leftist seems to hold the tribalistic belief that anyone who doesn't belong to their particular political clique is an ogre. To spell it out, virtually no libertarian, classical liberal, or anarchist believes that "tough" is the proper response to a luckless family who has lost everything. But, because leftists generally can't understand why anyone would prefer voluntary cooperation, charity, and mutualism to unbounded and unaccountable state coercion, we're left with sophomoric scenarios like this, where the heroic white knights of government ride in to save that poor family while their heartless neighbors stand by and pick their noses.
Correct. (Even Rand didn't have a problem with charity. She just had a problem with the idea that one was morally obligated to provide charity, or that it was a higher moral good than caring for oneself.) (That having been said, I wouldn't characterize someone who chose not to spend $75 a year on fire coverage to be "luckless.") Libertarians can and do give plenty to charity.

Remember: giving your own money is generous. Giving someone else's money is greedy.
   310. Rickey! On a blog from 1998. With the candlestick. Posted: July 03, 2012 at 03:32 PM (#4172441)
Spiel like this demonstrates why it's impossible to engage a dedicated leftist, as every leftist seems to hold the tribalistic belief that anyone who doesn't belong to their particular political clique is an ogre.


An ogre? Ogres are big. David's a goblin at best, and Ray's a troll. Duh.
   311. Rickey! On a blog from 1998. With the candlestick. Posted: July 03, 2012 at 03:36 PM (#4172442)
Libertarians can and do give plenty to charity


In my experience, libertarians love to talk about giving to charity. Regardless, 10K years of human history indicates quite strongly that societies built on "charity" of the haves towards the have-nots isn't going to work out well.
   312. booond Posted: July 03, 2012 at 03:44 PM (#4172448)
We've been asking "what now?" for the better part of forty years as debt, inflation, and the welfare/warfare state have expanded with no end in sight. Leftists don't get to play the responsible adult card on the only people who reason from first principles rather than stringing up an ad hoc spiderweb of authoritarian, unsustainable, and utopian policies.


This is satire, right?
   313. Bitter Mouse Posted: July 03, 2012 at 03:48 PM (#4172451)
Charity is like clutch hitting. It makes for a great narative and is wonderful and all that, but it is not reliable enough. I want my safety net to be there (for everyone) no matter what, not if they happen to have a heartwarming/wrenching story that goes viral on the internet and causes buckets of money to appear (looking at you bus monitor lady).

See I even brought some baseball (or at least sports) into the talk.
   314. zonk Posted: July 03, 2012 at 03:49 PM (#4172454)
In my experience, libertarians love to talk about giving to charity. Regardless, 10K years of human history indicates quite strongly that societies built on "charity" of the haves towards the have-nots isn't going to work out well.


Amen.

There's a very good reason the world is no longer ruled from Rome... Society happens.
   315. Johnny Sycophant-Laden Fora Posted: July 03, 2012 at 03:51 PM (#4172455)
To spell it out, virtually no libertarian, classical liberal, or anarchist believes that "tough" is the proper response to a luckless family who has lost everything.


I'm not a libertarian, but either I know a hell of a lot more of them than you do, or I've met a VERY unrepresentative sample...
   316. You Know Nothing JT Snow (YR) Posted: July 03, 2012 at 03:52 PM (#4172457)
We've been asking "what now?" for the better part of forty years as debt, inflation, and the welfare/warfare state have expanded with no end in sight.


Well of course we're always going to have debt; as our first CEO president pointed out in the 2000 debates, if the government is running a revenue surplus, that means it's taking too much money from honest hard-working people, necessitating tax cuts.

Also Al Gore wears earth tones. Ha!
   317. The Good Face Posted: July 03, 2012 at 03:53 PM (#4172459)
All of your examples center around government action/expediture. Do you believe that humans have any rights that do not stem from the government?


History would say unequivocally no... The Vatican can claim otherwise with various myths and I'm sure other religions have theirs, too -- but since the dawn of time, only governments have been able to guarantee them.


So you're saying that if a right is violated, it's no longer a right?

Because we are talking about government and health care, and you brought up expenditures. I am interested in what human rights you were refering to. What differentiates them from health care as a right? How is it a category error?


The category error stems from making the assumption that stuff provided by the government is a human right.
   318. Johnny Sycophant-Laden Fora Posted: July 03, 2012 at 03:53 PM (#4172460)
Don't you have someone to stab in the neck?


apparently he's moved onto other forms of anti-person violence
   319. Bitter Mouse Posted: July 03, 2012 at 03:53 PM (#4172461)
To spell it out, virtually no libertarian, classical liberal, or anarchist believes that "tough" is the proper response to a luckless family who has lost everything.


Tough is (I think) the correct governmental response. Sympathy and charity is the correct personal response. That is what I am guessing from what is said, but I am not libertarian.
   320. David Nieporent (now, with children) Posted: July 03, 2012 at 03:53 PM (#4172463)
In my experience, libertarians love to talk about giving to charity. Regardless, 10K years of human history indicates quite strongly that societies built on "charity" of the haves towards the have-nots isn't going to work out well.
...for government parasites.
   321. Bitter Mouse Posted: July 03, 2012 at 03:57 PM (#4172468)
The category error stems from making the assumption that stuff provided by the government is a human right.

But I didn't say that. I think haelth care is a human right. Because it is such Government should (ideally) help protect/provide for/enable that right. Everything the Government does is not a right, but the Government should protect/provide for/enable human rights - else what the heck is it doing?

But you still have not spoken to what rights you think there are and how they are different from health care.
   322. You Know Nothing JT Snow (YR) Posted: July 03, 2012 at 03:59 PM (#4172471)
OK. Take your ball and go home.

Is this a new drinking game? You keep repeating it.


It's just amusing, that's all. The idea that purportedly principled libertarians would strike off on their own to form a new society and suffer the inevitable misfortunes that would surely ensue is just RDF.

Frankly I'm a big supporter of the Christian Exodus movement for similar reasons. Once you get all the snake-handling wackos in one place and leave them to their own devices endless hilarity would be sure to follow. Well, I mean it would be funny to the people on the outside, the folks on the inside might find the weight of their spiritual burden a bit more cumbersome once the normal folks and their secular laws aren't around to keep them safe anymore.
   323. Johnny Sycophant-Laden Fora Posted: July 03, 2012 at 04:02 PM (#4172474)
The category error stems from making the assumption that stuff provided by the government is a human right.


what are Human Rights?

From the UN's "Universal" Declaration of Human Rights:


Article 18
Everyone has the right to freedom of thought, conscience and religion; this right includes freedom to change his religion or belief, and freedom, either alone or in community with others and in public or private, to manifest his religion or belief in teaching, practice, worship and observance.


I assume that you agree with that, I also assume that Islamic Fundamentalists do not.

Article 22
Everyone, as a member of society, has the right to social security and is entitled to realization, through national effort and international co-operation and in accordance with the organization and resources of each State, of the economic, social and cultural rights indispensable for his dignity and the free development of his personality.

I assume that you (GF) do not agree, or regard this as meaningless


Article 25
(1) Everyone has the right to a standard of living adequate for the health and well-being of himself and of his family, including food, clothing, housing and medical care and necessary social services, and the right to security in the event of unemployment, sickness, disability, widowhood, old age or other lack of livelihood in circumstances beyond his control. (2) Motherhood and childhood are entitled to special care and assistance. All children, whether born in or out of wedlock, shall enjoy the same social protection.


:-) I assume there are people in this thread who would dissent...

   324. Zipperholes Posted: July 03, 2012 at 04:04 PM (#4172475)
Tough is (I think) the correct governmental response. Sympathy and charity is the correct personal response. That is what I am guessing from what is said, but I am not libertarian.
Right. The conflation of "it's not the government's responsibility" with "it's not our responsibility" is mind-boggling.
   325. Johnny Sycophant-Laden Fora Posted: July 03, 2012 at 04:04 PM (#4172476)
Everything the Government does is not a right, but the Government should protect/provide for/enable human rights - else what the heck is it doing?


Duh, its supposed to employ its police powers, to well, protect individual property rights...
   326. Ray (RDP) Posted: July 03, 2012 at 04:07 PM (#4172479)
The debate surrounding Obamacare suffers from occurring in this environment. Why are liberals/progressives even engaging folks like RDP/DN in debates as silly as what "affordable" means, or whether this is wealth redistribution? Of course it is wealth redistribution...but why aren't we standing up, and proudly proclaiming, for all to hear, that yes, this is wealth redistribution.


Because you'll lose elections?

Just a wild stab in the dark.
   327. Rickey! On a blog from 1998. With the candlestick. Posted: July 03, 2012 at 04:08 PM (#4172480)
So you're saying that if a right is violated, it's no longer a right?


If there is no consensus demand - to the point that the powers that be in the world are concerned for their own well being should they violate it, no right exists. So, more or less, yes. If your government claims the right to throw Jose Padilla in a cell and torture him into insanity, without access to trial or representation, and no one bothers to come to his defense and hold the men who violated his "rights" responsible, then neither you nor he had any rights to begin with.

Your right ends at your willingness and ability to defend it.
   328. Shredder Posted: July 03, 2012 at 04:10 PM (#4172482)
Seriously, wasn't the quote given earlier in the thread $75/year? Any homeowner, or anyone with enough possessions to be worrying about fire protection in the first place, can afford that.
I always have a tough time with these stories. On the one hand, the liberal in me thinks it's particularly cold hearted for the fire department to respond and then sit there and watch the fire burn. I mean, presumably if they aren't being kept from another fire, as long as they're there, they should put it out. On the other hand, the fees in this cases, as mentioned, are often nominal. I would imagine if someone literally can't afford it, there are mechanisms to make sure the person is covered. And if it's a clerical mistake of some sort, the person should be allowed to rectify it.

But I also figure there's a chance that the people who don't pay it are probably tea partying anti-government "screw the big government and their fees!" type people, who actual probably deserve some measure of pain when their ideology comes back to bite them in the ass. I realize that we can't really subject them to a political questionnaire when their house is burning down, but if these people decided to forego the $75 because of political reasons, they deserve to suffer. Unfortunately, there are probably innocent children who took part in the decision who are forced to suffer as well. If only there was some mechanism to require the people to pay the fee, some sort of government mandated "tax" or something...
   329. booond Posted: July 03, 2012 at 04:11 PM (#4172483)
Because you'll lose elections?


And you'll lose your head. Marie Antoinette says hello.
   330. Brian C Posted: July 03, 2012 at 04:11 PM (#4172484)
Right. The conflation of "it's not the government's responsibility" with "it's not our responsibility" is mind-boggling.

The government is "us". That's the whole point of democracy.
   331. Rickey! On a blog from 1998. With the candlestick. Posted: July 03, 2012 at 04:11 PM (#4172485)
...for government parasites.


Little bureaucrats running about their little desks, suckling from the teat of the Castle's sacrosanct law, reducing others to "parasites" is always funny, Davey.
   332. Shredder Posted: July 03, 2012 at 04:12 PM (#4172487)
Because you'll lose elections?

Just a wild stab in the dark.


Funny that most of the states that elect people who believe that wealth distribution is evil are also states that take more government money than they pay in. Wealth distribution is apparently bad when it means that rich people have to help out poor people, but fine and dandy when rich states have to distribute to poor states. I have no idea in which state Ray lives, so this isn't necessarily directed at him, but "wealth redistribution is evil!" argument sounds a lot like the "keep government away from my Medicare!" argument.
   333. Rickey! On a blog from 1998. With the candlestick. Posted: July 03, 2012 at 04:13 PM (#4172488)
Duh, its supposed to employ its police powers, to well, protect individual property rights...


These things I want to call "rights" must be protected by the police state, in all brutality necessary, but those other things that others call "rights," they must be ignored, for they do not benefit me at all. Again, the moral reasoning of a 14 year old.
   334. Morty Causa Posted: July 03, 2012 at 04:15 PM (#4172491)
You don't get anywhere discussing rights unless they are considered in a social context That is what the history of the development of socialization and societies shows. There is no instance in history of the expression of rights except through a social context. Go and see what happens in the natural state. Consider what would happen to you if you were in a natural state. See what your demand for what you think is your natural right will get you. Then consider how from the very first social organizations those individual rights are necessarily compromised. There has been no society ever that has allowed the unfettered expression of rights--getting what you want with impunity. There can't be. At some point, people, you got to come down from the treehouse. Who'd like some S'Mores?
   335. Zipperholes Posted: July 03, 2012 at 04:15 PM (#4172492)
The government is "us". That's the whole point of democracy.
No. The government is "everyone." "Our responsibility" refers to those of us who want to help the underprivileged.

I don't have the arrogance to dictate your morals.
   336. Dan Szymborski Posted: July 03, 2012 at 04:15 PM (#4172493)
If there is no consensus demand - to the point that the powers that be in the world are concerned for their own well being should they violate it, no right exists.

Ah, the "antebellum southern blacks weren't actually deprived of a right" argument. That's always a classic.
   337. Yeaarrgghhhh Posted: July 03, 2012 at 04:16 PM (#4172495)
Right. The conflation of "it's not the government's responsibility" with "it's not our responsibility" is mind-boggling.

But I don't view the government as some exogenous force that operates independently of us. Our democracy is far from perfect, but it does a pretty good job of representing our interests and acting collectively on our behalf. To me, there's a ton of overlap between "the government's responsibility" and "our responsibility."

EDIT: too slow. Brian C was faster and more concise.
   338. Bitter Mouse Posted: July 03, 2012 at 04:20 PM (#4172498)
No. The government is "everyone." "Our responsibility" refers to those of us who want to help the underprivileged.


By voting for folks who vote for things like ACA I am helping the underprivileged. Not in a way you like, but to each their own.
   339. Ray (RDP) Posted: July 03, 2012 at 04:20 PM (#4172499)
It continues to amuse me to no end that people provide studies when David asks for them, but never demand he supply any data of his own... I'm developing a very strong suspicion that I might be finally getting to the bottom of the Six Sigma fad...


It continues to amuse me to no end that people cite studies as if they prove their conclusions, when the studies do no such thing.

And since I presume that people are arguing in good faith, that means they either couldn't understand what the study showed, or were just copying it from somewhere else and proclaiming victory without actually reading it.
   340. Rickey! On a blog from 1998. With the candlestick. Posted: July 03, 2012 at 04:22 PM (#4172502)
Ah, the "antebellum southern blacks weren't actually deprived of a right" argument. That's always a classic.


You keep going with this, because it makes you feel clever, not because it counters anything I've said.
   341. Ray (RDP) Posted: July 03, 2012 at 04:22 PM (#4172503)
I think that's a pretty universal trait. I think I speak for the pro-ACA side of the argument that Ray and David's insinuation that we hate freedom is more than a little insulting, so hostility ensued because hostility always ensues when differing philosophies clash.


I did not insinuate that. I outright stated it.

You do hate freedom. Period times 10,000.

Except for when it comes to sex.
   342. Morty Causa Posted: July 03, 2012 at 04:22 PM (#4172504)
Remember: giving your own money is generous. Giving someone else's money is greedy.


To paraphrase what Lincoln told Meade: it's all our money.

The "all" being the community. To claim otherwise is a dumb and a dangerous pretense. The rich in all societies, along a spectrum from the most elemental to the most advanced, have had to pay the piper. And they know this. They have the money—who else is going to pay? They know this; that's why they always want government--they just want to own it, not do away with it. The Libertarian approach to government is not a politically stable strategy.



In my experience, libertarians love to talk about giving to charity. Regardless, 10K years of human history indicates quite strongly that societies built on "charity" of the haves towards the have-nots isn't going to work out well.


If anything, it is the charitable who get charity--in multitudinous tax breaks, that come in the form of property tax exemptions, income tax write-offs, tax-free and tax-evading foundations. Sometimes, you have to pay for your special privileges. Most of the times if you are rich, charitable or not, you get the government to act on your behalf.
   343. Rickey! On a blog from 1998. With the candlestick. Posted: July 03, 2012 at 04:24 PM (#4172509)
You do hate freedom. Period times 10,000


So do you, Ray. So do you.
   344. Spahn Insane Posted: July 03, 2012 at 04:24 PM (#4172510)
You do hate freedom. Period times 10,000.

Except for sex.


And weed. And the right to occupy privately owned buildings in protest against the man, man. Don't forget those.

As much practice as you give yourself attacking liberal strawmen and spouting the same familiar cliches, one would expect your stereotyping chops to be a little less rusty.
   345. David Nieporent (now, with children) Posted: July 03, 2012 at 04:26 PM (#4172513)
But I don't view the government as some exogenous force that operates independently of us.
And people talk about libertarians as not engaging with the real world. The government is an exogenous force that operates independently of us. You don't vote for very much of it -- nobody alive has; it's a self-perpetuating bureaucracy that only occasionally even answers to elected officials. Who also are an exogenous force that operates independently of us.
   346. zonk Posted: July 03, 2012 at 04:27 PM (#4172515)
Ah, the "antebellum southern blacks weren't actually deprived of a right" argument. That's always a classic.


The philosophical/theoretical idea of 'antebellum southern blacks having rights' didn't do them an ounce of good -- it was government action, through war, legislation, more legislation, and then government coercion that secured those rights.

I thought you said you were pragmatic?
   347. Ray (RDP) Posted: July 03, 2012 at 04:28 PM (#4172516)
How does one support the ACA and then claim with a straight face that they don't hate freedom?

Whatever the merits of the ACA, it results in more control over people, not less. Are people now pretending that the mandate is not in the ACA?

If only.
   348. David Nieporent (now, with children) Posted: July 03, 2012 at 04:28 PM (#4172517)
If anything, it is the charitable who get charity--in multitudinous tax breaks, that come in the form of property tax exemptions, income tax write-offs, tax-free and tax-evading foundations.
Note how Morty conflates people keeping their own money as "charity."
   349. Dan Szymborski Posted: July 03, 2012 at 04:28 PM (#4172518)
You keep going with this, because it makes you feel clever, not because it counters anything I've said.

You said that rights don't exist without a consensus demand.

There was no consensus demand in the southern United States (and in decades well before that, the whole United States) that there was an inherent right to not be s slave.

Under what you just said, you have exactly three choices:

1) A right is more than what is granted with consensus demand.
2) 1850s Mississippi, Alabama, South Carolina, etc. had a consensus demand for the rights for blacks to not be slaves.
3) You believe that blacks in 1850s Mississippi, Alabama, South Carolina, etc. had no inherent right to not be enslaved.

So, your statement was either wrong, you're stupid, or you're racist, respectively. Go ahead and pick one, prove that you're not "all talk, no walk" for a change. I'm just playing your game by the rules that you laid out.
   350. Zipperholes Posted: July 03, 2012 at 04:28 PM (#4172519)
By voting for folks who vote for things like ACA I am helping the underprivileged. Not in a way you like, but to each their own.
No, it's the exact opposite of "to each their own." You're forcing others to participate in your personal compassion for the underprivileged.
   351. Rickey! On a blog from 1998. With the candlestick. Posted: July 03, 2012 at 04:30 PM (#4172521)
How does one support the ACA and then claim with a straight face that they don't hate freedom?


I can't have this conversation with you until you read Isiah Berlin.
   352. Dan Szymborski Posted: July 03, 2012 at 04:32 PM (#4172522)
I can't have this conversation with you until you read Isiah Berlin.

Oh, I thought were were playing the "Let's Examine Sam's Argument On What He Said" game, not your usual "Make a Crack And Hide Behind the Smarter Liberals That Can Make a Coherent Argument" game. Which one is it now?
   353. Rickey! On a blog from 1998. With the candlestick. Posted: July 03, 2012 at 04:34 PM (#4172525)
So, you're either wrong, stupid, or racist, respectively. Go ahead and pick one, prove that you're not "all talk, no walk" for a change. I'm just playing your game by the rules that you laid out.


I'm neither wrong, stupid nor racist, as you know. With that said, the answer to your hoped-for gotcha is as simple as it is direct.

No such thing as "rights" exist, any more so that some form of Platonic "constitutionality" exists. Prior to the Civil War, wherein a plurality of northern powers decided to extend the Constitution's legal protection of rights to West African slaves, those slaves had no rights.

You can tell this is the case because, up until that point, West African slaves were *slaves.*
   354. Brian C Posted: July 03, 2012 at 04:34 PM (#4172526)
The government is an exogenous force that operates independently of us. You don't vote for very much of it -- nobody alive has; it's a self-perpetuating bureaucracy that only occasionally even answers to elected officials.

Weren't you telling me just a few weeks ago that prisons are closing because people don't have the tolerance for prison-related spending to keep prison systems at its current levels? And that if they did, more prisons would get built in a hurry? You seemed to think then that government was pretty responsive to the public's concerns.
   355. Bitter Mouse Posted: July 03, 2012 at 04:35 PM (#4172527)
How does one support the ACA and then claim with a straight face that they don't hate freedom?

Whatever the merits of the ACA, it results in more control over people, not less. Are people now pretending that the mandate is not in the ACA?


I support ACA. I love freedom. The freedom to spend money I earn (only a small part of freedom by the way) sometimes conflicts with other things I also treasure, like a safety net which serves what I believe are basic human rights including health care for all.

I also believe in watching my weight and watching what I eat AND I believe in eating and enjoying ice cream. Wanting to eat healthy does not mean I hate ice cream. Loving ice cream does not mean I hate watching what I eat. I am a complex person able to evaluate trade offs and not view everything in black versus white.
   356. Rickey! On a blog from 1998. With the candlestick. Posted: July 03, 2012 at 04:36 PM (#4172528)
Oh, I thought were were playing the "Let's Examine Sam's Argument On What He Said" game, not your usual "Make a Crack And Hide Behind the Smarter Liberals That Can Make a Coherent Argument" game. Which one is it now?


Just for the record, when you get pissed off and storm out later, remember that it was you that started making snide, pointless attacks between the two of us, Dan.
   357. zonk Posted: July 03, 2012 at 04:36 PM (#4172529)
And people talk about libertarians as not engaging with the real world. The government is an exogenous force that operates independently of us. You don't vote for very much of it -- nobody alive has; it's a self-perpetuating bureaucracy that only occasionally even answers to elected officials. Who also are an exogenous force that operates independently of us.


I suppose if this keeps you from voting due to the pointlessness of the act, then far be it for me to disabuse you of that notion.
   358. Morty Causa Posted: July 03, 2012 at 04:36 PM (#4172530)
Note how Morty conflates people keeping their own money as "charity."


It's not all their money and they get to keep it in ways and circumstances that others don't.
   359. David Nieporent (now, with children) Posted: July 03, 2012 at 04:37 PM (#4172531)
You can tell this is the case because, up until that point, West African slaves were *slaves.*
Right, and that was wrong. Because slavery violated their rights.
   360. Dan Szymborski Posted: July 03, 2012 at 04:38 PM (#4172532)
No such thing as "rights" exist, any more so that some form of Platonic "constitutionality" exists. Prior to the Civil War, wherein a plurality of northern powers decided to extend the Constitution's legal protection of rights to West African slaves, those slaves had no rights.

Well, I gotta give you credit, I was absolutely wrong here. I didn't think you had the balls to admit that under your view, blacks didn't become people until December 6, 1865. But you did, so I apologize for any implication of your cowardice on my part as you've proved that unjustified.
   361. Gonfalon B. Posted: July 03, 2012 at 04:38 PM (#4172533)
Poor dumb liberals could accomplish their life's dream of wealth redistribution with no immediate political punishment, but only if they'd shovel the money in the opposite direction while handing out $300 checks.
   362. Rickey! On a blog from 1998. With the candlestick. Posted: July 03, 2012 at 04:38 PM (#4172534)
Right, and that was wrong. Because slavery violated their rights.


So said the guys with the numbers and the guns, yes.
   363. Morty Causa Posted: July 03, 2012 at 04:40 PM (#4172535)
How does one support the ACA and then claim with a straight face that they don't hate freedom?


Sort of the same way that supporting the raising an army to fight the Axis, that's how. You might want to consider, too, that freedom isn’t the only good there is.
   364. Johnny Sycophant-Laden Fora Posted: July 03, 2012 at 04:40 PM (#4172536)
How does one support the ACA and then claim with a straight face that they don't hate freedom?


How do you write such odious drivel with a straight face?
Seriously...
   365. The Good Face Posted: July 03, 2012 at 04:40 PM (#4172537)
So, your statement was either wrong, you're stupid, or you're racist, respectively.


Aw man, don't make him pick!
   366. Bitter Mouse Posted: July 03, 2012 at 04:40 PM (#4172538)
No, it's the exact opposite of "to each their own." You're forcing others to participate in your personal compassion for the underprivileged.


I am forcing you to do nothing. We (and here I mean supporters of ACA collectively) voted and otherwise acted according to the rules of how we run our great nation. We won, again according to the rules. Now everyone has to function according to the outcomes of the process.

I invite you (and by you I mean all against ACA) to play by the rules and get what you want enacted. I woudl suggest you are acting against the movement of history, as shown in the fact that the entire industrial world is steadily moving in this direction (and is ahead of us).

You clearly don't like this fact, but that is OK. But no, I am not forcing you, we all are as instantiated by the government (which according to some upthread is some sort of exogenous force and not us at all, which confuses me because much of democracy is then really pointless).
   367. Rickey! On a blog from 1998. With the candlestick. Posted: July 03, 2012 at 04:41 PM (#4172539)
Well, I gotta give you credit, I was absolutely wrong here. I didn't think you had the balls to admit that under your view, blacks didn't become people until December 6, 1865. But you did, so I apologize for any implication of your cowardice on my part as you've proved that unjustified.


Now you're misstating my very clear claim because you're in a petty blush of anger or something.

I said there's no such thing as "rights" outside of the will of a state or people to enforce them. I said nothing - absolutely nothing - about the humanity of "blacks."

Try breathing deeply, stopping the reactionary kneejerk bit, and reading for comprehension.
   368. Morty Causa Posted: July 03, 2012 at 04:41 PM (#4172540)
3) You believe that blacks in 1850s Mississippi, Alabama, South Carolina, etc. had no inherent right to not be enslaved.


"Inherent"? What means that? Sounds like cloud talk.
   369. formerly dp Posted: July 03, 2012 at 04:42 PM (#4172541)
How does one support the ACA and then claim with a straight face that they don't hate freedom?

Whatever the merits of the ACA,


Wait, now you concede that it has merits? Can you tell us which provisions you find to your liking?

it results in more control over people, not less. Are people now pretending that the mandate is not in the ACA?

This is power illiterate-- it makes the common libertarian mistake of assuming that the absence of government power equals the presence of freedom. The ACA circumscribes the power your insurance provider has over your health care. It's only the death of freedom if you own an insurance company. When you get sick in this country, the experience of dealing with your insurance and medical bills is almost worse than the illness itself. They will do everything in their power to deny coverage and shift as much of the cost of your care onto your shoulders. And you have no real recourse when this happens-- it's in their best interests to make their system as difficult to navigate and understand as possible. This is the basic thing you just can't wrap your mind around-- people want the government to intervene on their behalf, precisely because in the absence of such intervention they feel powerless.
   370. Bitter Mouse Posted: July 03, 2012 at 04:43 PM (#4172542)
So Good Face, where you ever going to list some human rights for me? I really am curious as to what you think the correct human rights are and the difference between them and Health Care.
   371. Rickey! On a blog from 1998. With the candlestick. Posted: July 03, 2012 at 04:43 PM (#4172544)
"Inherent"? What means that? Sounds like cloud talk.


It's what urbane, modern liberals and libertarians say when they want to argue to "God given rights" as some sort of natural state thing-in-the-world, but don't want to look like those uncool religious types and actually arguing to God. It's not divinely endowed "by the Creator," it's "inherent."
   372. Dan Szymborski Posted: July 03, 2012 at 04:44 PM (#4172545)
Just for the record, when you get pissed off and storm out later, remember that it was you that started making snide, pointless attacks between the two of us, Dan.


As I said, I was wrong, and I apologize. I didn't think in a hundred years, you would actually come out and state your belief that blacks only became people fairly recently.

When you're out GOTV'ing in November, you should probably leave the "Blacks Are People Now Because Whites Said So" pamphlet at home when you're in Atlanta proper.
   373. zonk Posted: July 03, 2012 at 04:45 PM (#4172547)
Right, and that was wrong. Because slavery violated their rights.


...and a fat hell of a lot of good that such a fact did for them.

I'm curious exactly what Dan, David, et al would have done had they lived in pre-Civil War America... Would you have seized Harper's Ferry with John Brown? Joined an emancipation/anti-slavery cause? Voted for abolitionist candidates? Refused to purchase any goods or services that could be traced to slaveholders? Risked imprisonment or penalty to be a stop on the Underground Railroad?

That's most certainly not a frame meant to be another strawman about competing ideologies - I honestly have no idea how I would react under such circumstances. I just think we could all agree that pontificating in a parlor about the 'rights' of slaves would have had virtually, if not utterly, no material impact on the existence of slavery.
   374. Ray (RDP) Posted: July 03, 2012 at 04:45 PM (#4172549)
Just for the record, when you get pissed off and storm out later,


Don't you mean when he takes his ball and goes home?
   375. Zipperholes Posted: July 03, 2012 at 04:46 PM (#4172550)

I am forcing you to do nothing. We (and here I mean supporters of ACA collectively) voted and otherwise acted according to the rules of how we run our great nation. We won, again according to the rules. Now everyone has to function according to the outcomes of the process.

I invite you (and by you I mean all against ACA) to play by the rules and get what you want enacted. I woudl suggest you are acting against the movement of history, as shown in the fact that the entire industrial world is steadily moving in this direction (and is ahead of us).

You clearly don't like this fact, but that is OK. But no, I am not forcing you, we all are as instantiated by the government (which according to some upthread is some sort of exogenous force and not us at all, which confuses me because much of democracy is then really pointless).
So your argument is "those are the rules." Well, no ####. Do you have an argument on the merits?
   376. BDC Posted: July 03, 2012 at 04:46 PM (#4172551)
people want the government to intervene on their behalf, precisely because in the absence of such intervention they feel powerless

I think of this principle every time I see one of those state-inspection stickers on a gas pump. The free market is wonderful, except that in an unregulated market the seller tends to put his thumb on the scale, which results in somewhat less freedom. By intervening, the state makes the market fairer, and thus in a sense freer. Of course such regulation can be abused. Of course there's some ensuing corruption. But if you want corruption on a really large scale, try large-scale deregulation.
   377. David Nieporent (now, with children) Posted: July 03, 2012 at 04:46 PM (#4172552)
This is power illiterate-- it makes the common libertarian mistake of assuming that the absence of government power equals the presence of freedom. The ACA circumscribes the power your insurance provider has over your health care.
So, in other words, in addition to limiting one's own liberty, it also infringes on the liberty of the insurance company. Thanks for making the point.

When you get sick in this country, the experience of dealing with your insurance and medical bills is almost worse than the illness itself. They will do everything in their power to deny coverage and shift as much of the cost of your care onto your shoulders.
First of all, this doesn't happen, except on an occasional anecdotal basis. Second, it sounds a lot like "The food is terrible... and such small portions, too."
   378. David Nieporent (now, with children) Posted: July 03, 2012 at 04:48 PM (#4172554)
"Inherent"? What means that? Sounds like cloud talk.
I imagine that to a chimpanzee, the laws of thermodynamics sound like something similar.
   379. Vailsoxfan Posted: July 03, 2012 at 04:49 PM (#4172555)
Late to this thread, but Ray from your posts on the 1st page ,what about my kid who is born with "pre-existing" condition? Should the ability or non ability to get insurance affect his life forever? And my economics for the next 20 years. Already one $25000 bill for a simple broken arm with a surgical repair. Because of Obamacare he can get insurance now when he couldnt before. To bad he couldnt get it a year eaarlier when he broke his arm.

I cant imagine how his life choices might be affected by never being insurable. Take a crappy job because it pays benefits rather than be an entrepeneur or self employed in some way. Through no choice of his own, but because of the roll of the device on a minor medical condition. Not to mention the affect on the economy of restricting potential talent because of job restrictions and my not having 25 grand to buy a car or something.
   380. zonk Posted: July 03, 2012 at 04:49 PM (#4172556)
Heh...

Over/under on the July OTP thread surviving the 4th?
   381. Rickey! On a blog from 1998. With the candlestick. Posted: July 03, 2012 at 04:51 PM (#4172557)
As I said, I was wrong, and I apologize. I didn't think in a hundred years, you would actually come out and state your belief that blacks only became people fairly recently.


Try again, Dan. You're not this stupid.
   382. Bitter Mouse Posted: July 03, 2012 at 04:51 PM (#4172560)
So your argument is "those are the rules." Well, no ####. Do you have an argument on the merits?


I have been arguing on the merits. You wandered off onto me "forcing you" and that branch or the argument is not about the merits, it is aboutthe rules.

What part of the merits would you like to discuss? There are plenty of bits in ACA I don't like and many I love.

One that I like is making restraunts post calories on menu items (I am pretty sure that was in the final version). It makes watching what I eat much easier and adds to my freedom to eat ice cream (because I can choose lower calorie foods and splurge with ice cream). Sure it removes some freedom from the restraunts, but that is a trade off I think worthwhile.
   383. Rickey! On a blog from 1998. With the candlestick. Posted: July 03, 2012 at 04:53 PM (#4172561)
Don't you mean when he takes his ball and goes home?


No, I mean when he storms out, as he does routinely in these threads. (In this example we can assume he won't shut the thread down in his petulance this time around.)
   384. BDC Posted: July 03, 2012 at 04:54 PM (#4172562)
this doesn't happen, except on an occasional anecdotal basis

Anecdotally: it's happened to me and everyone else I know who's had one of those age-50 colonoscopies. It's all paid for 100%, but then you get balance-billed by the anaesthesiologist. If you protest, the bill is magically withdrawn. If you pay the anaesthesiologist anything, just try to get a refund, even though contractually you owe them nothing.

The market corrects such abuses by inviting you to shop around for a more principled anaesthesiologist five years from now, but that's little consolation. I knew this would happen to me going in, and tried to argue, but I got the runaround and didn't really feel like haggling with the person who was about to put me to sleep so that I could be impaled on a surgeon's scope. And then I got balance-billed. In the end, my final recourse (if they'd kept dunning me for what I didn't owe) would have been to invoke the state insurance commission.

But if such things can't happen in this best of all market economies, then you are free to disbelieve me :)

Edited for clarity
   385. Morty Causa Posted: July 03, 2012 at 04:54 PM (#4172563)
I'm curious exactly what Dan, David, et al would have done had they lived in pre-Civil War America... Would you have seized Harper's Ferry with John Brown? Joined an emancipation/anti-slavery cause? Voted for abolitionist candidates? Refused to purchase any goods or services that could be traced to slaveholders? Risked imprisonment or penalty to be a stop on the Underground Railroad?


Yes, if they can use the why don't you give your money to the poor dodge, this is pertinent.
   386. zonk Posted: July 03, 2012 at 04:55 PM (#4172565)
I imagine that to a chimpanzee, the laws of thermodynamics sound like something similar.


Except, of course, natural laws like thermodynamics will apply to the chimp whether it understands them or not. These 'inherent' rights - quite clearly - do not apply unless something like... oh... let's a say an exogenous force -- we'll call it, 'government' -- stamps those rights into law and then enforces/protects them.

If god, FSM, Newton, the Physics Monster or whomever wants to make himself/herself/itself known and correct me that thermodynamics only apply so long as he/she/it says they apply -- I'll retract and accept the comparison as anything more than clever trolling.
   387. Rickey! On a blog from 1998. With the candlestick. Posted: July 03, 2012 at 04:56 PM (#4172566)
I'm curious exactly what Dan, David, et al would have done had they lived in pre-Civil War America... Would you have seized Harper's Ferry with John Brown? Joined an emancipation/anti-slavery cause? Voted for abolitionist candidates? Refused to purchase any goods or services that could be traced to slaveholders? Risked imprisonment or penalty to be a stop on the Underground Railroad?


I don't know what they'll *say* they'd have done, but I'm virtually certain they'd have done what they do today; ignored any infringement of "rights" that doesn't harm them directly, and make up some sort of nebulous, pie-in-the-sky theory to support it post hoc.
   388. formerly dp Posted: July 03, 2012 at 04:57 PM (#4172568)
So, in other words, in addition to limiting one's own liberty, it also infringes on the liberty of the insurance company. Thanks for making the point.

The absence of government does not equal the presence of freedom. Do you think government entities are the only ones capable of exercising power over people?

First of all, this doesn't happen, except on an occasional anecdotal basis.

I take it you haven't been sick lately? This is precisely how medical insurance companies work-- any costs they can shift to the patient mean more profit for the company. They have an incentive to make it as difficult as possible for you to get what you're entitled to. The bill contains patient protections precisely because, left to their own devices, the insurance companies weren't providing these protections. You really don't get how this stuff works.

Second, it sounds a lot like "The food is terrible... and such small portions, too."

If I pay for health insurance, I expect it to actually provide coverage for my medical expenses when I incur them. I don't think that's a lot to ask. And if they're failing to do that, I will ask the government to intervene on my behalf and circumscribe the company's ability to deny me the coverage that I've paid for.
   389. Yeaarrgghhhh Posted: July 03, 2012 at 04:59 PM (#4172569)
As I said, I was wrong, and I apologize. I didn't think in a hundred years, you would actually come out and state your belief that blacks only became people fairly recently.

Wow.
   390. Morty Causa Posted: July 03, 2012 at 04:59 PM (#4172570)
"Inherent"? What means that? Sounds like cloud talk.

I imagine that to a chimpanzee, the laws of thermodynamics sound like something similar.

Like with the question of constitutionality, this is another song and dance evasion. My question is not a rhetorical question (that's too easy for you Energizer Bunnies). What is "inherent"? What makes it inherent? Who decides it is inherent? Is this an extra-societal concept?
   391. formerly dp Posted: July 03, 2012 at 05:01 PM (#4172572)
---
   392. Rickey! On a blog from 1998. With the candlestick. Posted: July 03, 2012 at 05:03 PM (#4172575)
Or start randomly deleting posts he finds disagreeable. A true champion of free expression!


Let's try to keep the conversation on a topic of interest other than the behavioral tics of participants?
   393. David Nieporent (now, with children) Posted: July 03, 2012 at 05:04 PM (#4172576)
I'm curious exactly what Dan, David, et al would have done had they lived in pre-Civil War America... Would you have seized Harper's Ferry with John Brown? Joined an emancipation/anti-slavery cause? Voted for abolitionist candidates? Refused to purchase any goods or services that could be traced to slaveholders? Risked imprisonment or penalty to be a stop on the Underground Railroad?

That's most certainly not a frame meant to be another strawman about competing ideologies - I honestly have no idea how I would react under such circumstances. I just think we could all agree that pontificating in a parlor about the 'rights' of slaves would have had virtually, if not utterly, no material impact on the existence of slavery.
Well, first, I have absolutely no idea what I 'would have done' had I lived then, just like I have no idea what I would have done if I were born a goy in Germany in the 1930s. Maybe I'd have been a Nazi, like Sam. All I can say is what I think I should have done. Which is pretty much all of the things you describe, except perhaps Harper's Ferry, just because that was so unlikely to be productive. Also, posting on BBTF about the evils of slavery.

Second, I don't agree with your premise that ideas don't matter, though. I mean, yes, a single individual 'pontificating in a parlor' is unlikely to solve a big problem all by himself, just as a single individual voting or taking up arms or engaging in an economic boycott is unlikely to solve such a problem. But spreading ideas is important. (What's that line Lincoln used regarding Harriet Beecher Stowe? "Is this the little woman who made this big war?" Which I'm sure he didn't say, and it would be an oversimplification anyway.)
   394. Dan Szymborski Posted: July 03, 2012 at 05:04 PM (#4172577)
No, I mean when he storms out, as he does routinely in these threads.

Why would I storm out? You on this page is like a late birthday present. Guy who makes snarky content-less comments on libertarians for 4 pages forced to admit he thinks blacks are people only when enough whites think so? If this thread was food, I'd be heating up some hot fudge and slowly savoring every delicious bite.

I don't know what they'll *say* they'd have done, but I'm virtually certain they'd have done what they do today; ignored any infringement of "rights" that doesn't harm them directly, and make up some sort of nebulous, pie-in-the-sky theory to support it post hoc.


Yet, you're the one who just said a black laborer, sold as cattle to spend a life of toil with no more legal recourse than a plow, did not have any of his rights violated. Why would I want to close a thread in which you so gleefully step in the mess you made?
   395. The Good Face Posted: July 03, 2012 at 05:04 PM (#4172578)
So Good Face, where you ever going to list some human rights for me? I really am curious as to what you think the correct human rights are and the difference between them and Health Care.


I think there is only one real human right; that people have a right of self-ownership, that is to say they own their thoughts, their bodies, and the products of their thoughts and bodies. The right of self-defense would be a corollary right.

I reject the notion of any "rights" that force any person to act on the behalf of others.

I am forcing you to do nothing. We (and here I mean supporters of ACA collectively) voted and otherwise acted according to the rules of how we run our great nation. We won, again according to the rules. Now everyone has to function according to the outcomes of the process.

I invite you (and by you I mean all against ACA) to play by the rules and get what you want enacted. I woudl suggest you are acting against the movement of history, as shown in the fact that the entire industrial world is steadily moving in this direction (and is ahead of us).

You clearly don't like this fact, but that is OK. But no, I am not forcing you, we all are as instantiated by the government (which according to some upthread is some sort of exogenous force and not us at all, which confuses me because much of democracy is then really pointless).


This is just a celebration of process. I trust you'll be as sanguine when the shoe is on the other foot?
   396. Johnny Sycophant-Laden Fora Posted: July 03, 2012 at 05:05 PM (#4172579)
Over/under on the July OTP thread surviving the 4th?


It's really gone off the rails today
pity

   397. formerly dp Posted: July 03, 2012 at 05:06 PM (#4172580)
Let's try to keep the conversation on a topic of interest other than the behavioral tics of participants?

Edited. I would appreciate it if you did the same.
   398. Rickey! On a blog from 1998. With the candlestick. Posted: July 03, 2012 at 05:07 PM (#4172582)
Why would I storm out? You on this page is like a late birthday present. Guy who makes snarky content-less comments on libertarians for 4 pages forced to admit he thinks blacks are people only when enough whites think so? If this thread was food, I'd be heating up some hot fudge and slowly savoring every delicious bite.


Try again, Dan. You're not this stupid.

Yet, you're the one who just said a black laborer, sold as cattle to spend a life of toil with no more legal recourse than a plow, did not have any of his rights violated. Why would I want to close a thread in which you so gleefully step in the mess you made?


Shall we start with the fact that I have not made any statement even closely resembling these misrepresentation you state above?
   399. zonk Posted: July 03, 2012 at 05:08 PM (#4172583)
Well, first, I have absolutely no idea what I 'would have done' had I lived then, just like I have no idea what I would have done if I were born a goy in Germany in the 1930s. Maybe I'd have been a Nazi, like Sam. All I can say is what I think I should have done. Which is pretty much all of the things you describe, except perhaps Harper's Ferry, just because that was so unlikely to be productive. Also, posting on BBTF about the evils of slavery.

Second, I don't agree with your premise that ideas don't matter, though. I mean, yes, a single individual 'pontificating in a parlor' is unlikely to solve a big problem all by himself, just as a single individual voting or taking up arms or engaging in an economic boycott is unlikely to solve such a problem. But spreading ideas is important. (What's that line Lincoln used regarding Harriet Beecher Stowe? "Is this the little woman who made this big war?" Which I'm sure he didn't say, and it would be an oversimplification anyway.)


OK, fair enough... Like I said, I don't know what I'd have done either...

Let's expand it a bit into some more nebulous turf:

Supported or opposed Lincoln's suspension of habeas corpus to deal with the copperheads?

Supported or opposed conscription?

Supported or opposed levying of taxes and certain seizure of property?
   400. Dan Szymborski Posted: July 03, 2012 at 05:09 PM (#4172584)
It's really gone off the rails today

Circle-jerk crowd ganging up on Ray 12:1 while they high-five each other for multiple pages - Thread just fine
Nasty leftist bag of hot air called out based on the words he said - Off the rails
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