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  1. Old Comment
    xan's Avatar

    Sanity Zone 1-19-2013 Positive Rights

    This blog is explicitly not about the morality of guns. It is strictly about the costs to society and the individual of gun ownership in a well ordered society.

    The general postulation is that weapons have no productive value (the use of weapons does not create products or services that improve the human condition) in a well ordered society. The use of weapons either produces no value because they are not being used, or negative value, because they destroy or kill. One could argue that the inputs used to create guns do not add to the productive capacity of a nation, as they do not produce a product that increases wealth.

    The costs associated with their use are the issue. Who should bear the burden?

    Sample Statistics from the CDC:
    Murders 11,078
    Suicides 19,392
    Injuries/property damage **unknown because NRA successfully lobbied Congress to prohibit the CDC from studying or collecting data on injuries from firearms**

    What are the arguments again for not requiring insurance to own a gun?
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    Posted 01-20-2013 at 01:59 PM by xan xan is offline
  2. Old Comment

    Sanity Zone 1-19-2013 Positive Rights

    Xan, allow me to put this in plain english.

    You may use the word externalities as many times as you please, but the fact of the matter is that guns are not meant for murder. They are meant for hunting, target practice and most of all, defense. The fact that some use guns for violence is strictly a matter of it being the primary available weapon, and the fault lies with the perpetrator, not the gun.

    Genghis Khan, one of, if not the MOST brutal leader in history, ruthlessly conquered northeast Asia and built the largest empire known to man at the time, and it sustained well after his death. How did he do all this? He and his army had not guns, not bombs, not tanks, but simple things like swords and clubs. Those were the weapons of the time and Khan was able to slaughter all those people because he was smart, for one, but mostly because he had an insatiable thirst for power through bloodshed.

    That, my friend, is pure evil. And it is that sort of evil that makes any weapon dangerous.

    Why do I say this? Because it illustrates how mankind adapts. Today, guns are the primary weapons. Every day, guns are used to COMBAT violence, just as much if not more than they are used to commit violence.

    Still think guns are bad? Okay. Let's ban them. Then what? Criminals start breaking into homes, knowing the people are unarmed. But let me just play along and assume that the government could actually get rid of EVERY single gun in America... Then criminals would just find another way. They always have, and we've always had to adapt.

    So in the case of a car, it doesn't matter how many more or less possibilities (or externalities, as you would say) there are for something bad to happen. If a person wants to run you over, he can. Or it could be a drunk driver. Again, blame the person.

    As for your opinion on the costs of owning a car vs. owning a gun: It takes an absolutely evil person to commit murder. It only takes a moment of distraction to cause a massive accident and kill several people, in a car. On average, there are 6 million accidents per year, with 3 million resulting in injuries, and in excess of 40,000 deaths annually.

    Here is the link to those statistics: Car Accident Statistics -- Lawcore.com

    It is an enormous responsibility, as you are surrounded by cars at almost all times. It's not a joyride, and should not be treated that way. Insurance is necessary because if you get into a significant wreck, you MUST have help paying for the damages. So you have to pay a fee for that... I'd rather a monthly fee of a couple hundred, give or take, per month than to have to pay out of pocket for thousands of dollars in damage. Not that paying bills is ever fun, but in the case of insurance I understand the necessity of it. If you're a safe driver, your rates won't be too high.

    Guns should be taken equally as seriously in terms of how you use them, without a doubt. But guns don't carry all that risk. They can be deadly, but they are not that hard to use. You almost HAVE to intentionally shoot someone, as accidents are very rare. Yes murders happen, aswell as accidents, and it is tragic. But you cannot predict how a person will act. You get a background check, you get your fingerprints taken, and you have to demonstrate the ability to properly use the gun. That is the law, and I believe it is perfectly just. Why should anyone pay insurance on a gun? If you shoot someone you go to prison... think about that.
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    Posted 01-19-2013 at 01:56 PM by burningmetal burningmetal is offline
  3. Old Comment
    xan's Avatar

    Sanity Zone 1-19-2013 Positive Rights

    I don't want to distract from the intent of the thread, so I'll point out a bit of the obvious. Modern man uses tools to improve his economic condition. Some tools have no externalities, like levers, while others, like nuclear bombs have many.

    Externalities arise as a consequence of the intended use. In the case of cars, the intended use is transportation; the externalities of operating a car include pollution, collision and death. A gun's intended purpose is killing, or practicing hitting a target. Externalities of a gun would be killing an innocent person; to be extremely clear, modern law and morality do not allow many instances for an individual to make a unilateral determination of guilt.

    Guns represent a huge challenge to a well ordered society as is intended use is generally illegal except for designated hunting and target practice. For many instances of gun ownership, use entirely produces negative externalities.

    In this way, one cannot make the transitive argument of operating a car, or many other tools whose intended purpose and utility are generally unrelated to the negative externalities produced, to a tool whose intended use is to produce negative externalities.
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    Posted 01-19-2013 at 09:21 AM by xan xan is offline
  4. Old Comment

    Sanity Zone 1-19-2013 Positive Rights

    Actually, Kev, getting a gun license is an extremely rigorous process.

    Food for thought: Why is it that when somebody drinks and drives, and ends up killing people, nobody blames the car? Well obviously that's because the car wasn't operating itself. So why then do people blame guns when someone uses one to kill? There are a number of ways to commit murder. We should be more concerned about people than guns. And that is why you go through background checks before you can own a gun.
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    Posted 01-19-2013 at 02:49 AM by burningmetal burningmetal is offline
  5. Old Comment

    Sanity Zone 1-19-2013 Positive Rights

    Really interesting read...! I particularly wish that pro-guns folk look at the logic of your argument, particularly at the part of the requirements of owning a car in comparison to owning a gun!
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    Posted 01-18-2013 at 04:25 PM by KevSears KevSears is offline
  6. Old Comment
    SloMotion's Avatar

    Fun facts: Since legalizing marijuana in Washington and Colorado, the Broncos & Seahawks ...

    Also, it apparently only works during the regular season & not the playoffs. .
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    Posted 01-16-2013 at 01:34 PM by SloMotion SloMotion is offline
  7. Old Comment
    mutineer10's Avatar

    Fun facts: Since legalizing marijuana in Washington and Colorado, the Broncos & Seahawks ...

    Louisiana needs to get on the ball with this! Ehh ... not that I'D buy it or anything ...
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    Posted 01-12-2013 at 07:49 AM by mutineer10 mutineer10 is offline
  8. Old Comment
    Halo's Avatar

    Fun facts: Since legalizing marijuana in Washington and Colorado, the Broncos & Seahawks ...

    If pot gets legalized, the NCAA will have to ask LSU to leave and join the NFL. Just think, no more losing 1/4 of the team annually to pot smoking!
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    Posted 01-08-2013 at 03:50 PM by Halo Halo is offline
  9. Old Comment
    SloMotion's Avatar

    Fun facts: Since legalizing marijuana in Washington and Colorado, the Broncos & Seahawks ...

    , yeah, I'm not advocating the large scale legalization of marijuana, but as a long suffering Lions' fan, if you had told me the team would have went on an 8-0 tear after voting for it, I'd of been on board.
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    Posted 01-08-2013 at 06:08 AM by SloMotion SloMotion is offline
  10. Old Comment
    neugey's Avatar

    Fun facts: Since legalizing marijuana in Washington and Colorado, the Broncos & Seahawks ...

    Seahawks and Broncos to the NFL: Put that in your pipe and smoke it!
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    Posted 01-07-2013 at 06:45 PM by neugey neugey is offline
  11. Old Comment
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    Posted 01-07-2013 at 01:19 PM by saintsfan403 saintsfan403 is offline
  12. Old Comment
    SloMotion's Avatar

    Could former Saints practice-squad player be the next Jeremy Lin?

    Best #2 back in the NFL for 2012/2013. Way to tough it out, Joquie.
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    Posted 01-07-2013 at 07:58 AM by SloMotion SloMotion is offline
  13. Old Comment
    SloMotion's Avatar

    Lomas Brown: I intentionally missed block to get Scott Mitchell hurt

    ... and after all the hub-bub ... nothing. No 'beer summit' at the White House, no follow-up story on Lomas & Mitchell reconciling. My worst suspicions have been confirmed.
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    Posted 01-07-2013 at 07:56 AM by SloMotion SloMotion is offline
  14. Old Comment
    neugey's Avatar

    Lomas Brown: I intentionally missed block to get Scott Mitchell hurt

    I agree, this is likely a tall tale by Lomas and an attention-grab. I wish there were less and less former players in the broadcast chair, because there all just freakshows now. with the occasional exception like Trent Dilfer. I really don't give a rats' butt what Magic Johnson says about the Lakers now because it's 2013, not 1988.
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    Posted 01-04-2013 at 04:31 PM by neugey neugey is offline
  15. Old Comment
    UK_WhoDat's Avatar

    Gun debates aside, Connecticut tragedy shows a cultural problem

    Quote:
    Posted 12-21-2012 at 12:14 PM by burningmetal
    I think it all starts at home. ....
    But if more parents would teach discipline and real moral values to their children, I believe we would see far less of this crap. Unfortunately, though, ...., kids are doing just about whatever they want. .... That, in my opinion, is how this generation has become so crass, irresponsible, inconsiderate and disrespectful.
    Yep! 100%

    The key words are moral values.

    A continuing problem and an increasing problem, worldwide, is the "I want, can have without effort" and "I am entitled so gimme" attitudes. Soon we are going to have a generation that doesn't want to work for anything and then get militant when their "entitlement" does not fall in their lap.
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    Posted 01-04-2013 at 01:58 PM by UK_WhoDat UK_WhoDat is online now
  16. Old Comment
    jeanpierre's Avatar

    Lomas Brown: I intentionally missed block to get Scott Mitchell hurt

    I appreciate his honest...but my opinion of him, his career recognitions, all of it now has to be brought into question...including his Madden Awards...
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    Posted 01-02-2013 at 05:51 PM by jeanpierre jeanpierre is offline
  17. Old Comment
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    Posted 12-23-2012 at 08:05 PM by Nemesis Nemesis is offline
  18. Old Comment
    xan's Avatar

    Sanity Zone 12-16-2012 Moral Hazard

    Ah... sarcasm is the one tool that never blunts.

    I am so pleased to find so many reasonable and socially conscious people. I was starting to dispair that people would agree with this rediculous proposition, like people did with the NRA statement. I am not so secretly hoping theirs was a huge punk, too.
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    Posted 12-22-2012 at 06:34 AM by xan xan is offline
  19. Old Comment

    Sanity Zone 12-16-2012 Moral Hazard

    Your idea of a successful economic system is to have mass mediocrity. That's what socialism is. I believe if you want more money, go earn it. I've never been above the poverty line, yet I don't ask the government to steal from the rich as if they've done something immoral by earning their wealth. Raising taxes on the wealthy just ensures that more workers will be laid off to compensate. The rich already pay about 70 percent of the taxes. What more do you want?

    At some point the wealthy will inevitably fall back into the middle class, and that's where people lose jobs. If the wealthy are paying 70 percent, then what does that tell you? It means a lot of people have no jobs. Even if the rich paid the same total amount of tax dollars as they do now, their percentage of total taxes paid wouldn't be nearly so high if there were more tax payers.

    I don't have a problem with financial aid, in and of itself. I have needed it myself, but what I have received is only to help cover my family's basic needs when money is tight. However, when I, or any of us are working we may still need foodstamps if we're not making enough, but at least we're doing our part to pump whatever money we can afford back into the economy. In other words, we don't need MORE stuff being given to us, we need jobs, we need opportunity for advancement so that we don't have to rely on the government. It's simple. If people are not MAKING money then they are not able to pay taxes and give back.

    But instead, you have big brother promising to "take care" of the poor, not by creating jobs, but by giving them more and more money to do nothing. It has created an attitude of entitlement and too many people are just sitting back, taking advantage.

    This creates two major problems: The demands continue to rise on the wealthy to subsidize the irresponsible, and secondly, those of us who are below the poverty line but want to work, or maybe get a raise, have a hard time getting either of the two because employers who would otherwise help us are cutting back instead.

    And before you say that these businesses can afford these taxes, but they just don't want to fork over the money, you might want to read this. Caldeira: How Do You Hurt Franchises? Raise Tax Rates : Roll Call Opinion

    Many of those who are referred to as "rich" are in fact not even close to being rich. Franchise businesses may have a big name, but each branch of them is run by small business owners. A fact that is pointed out in the article, is that the top 2-3 percent include 941,000 small businesses. This effects all of us. As I've stated, I'm not rich, and I know from experience that sometimes financial aid is needed. But I don't want to rely on it, and I don't want anyone else thinking they are owed it. If we have more job opportunities and more people motivated to work we will have a much more efficient economy.

    Simply raising taxes on the top 2 or 3 percent, and giving handouts is not stimulating anything, nor is it motivating those who are taking advantage of the system to at least try to work. As for Social Security, that is not a handout. It is a reward. If you don't earn enough credits over the span of your working years, you don't get anything. So nothing is being wasted there. If money is taken out of social security to pay for Obamacare, then it won't matter what age you are, or how much you worked. Your reward will be nothing, because SC will be bankrupt.

    Xan believes we should simply do a better job of saving toward our retirement. But there's one problem with that. Those who need SC aren't making enough money to afford saving much of it. Seniors deserve to be taken care of when they've paid their dues but can no longer work. Xan's plan is to just say to hell with the seniors because they are sucking money out of our pockets. First off, that is essentially euthanasia. But they are not sucking money from anyone. They have earned those credits.
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    Posted 12-22-2012 at 04:51 AM by burningmetal burningmetal is offline
  20. Old Comment
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    Posted 12-22-2012 at 02:49 AM by mike27 mike27 is offline

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