Whitehouse opens petition site

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Re: Whitehouse opens petition site

Postby Belial » Wed Sep 28, 2011 2:05 pm UTC

Yeah, bear in mind it's present you doing the trusting.

I was an utter fuckwit at 16, and I'd still trust that version of me (intolerable though he was) to make a better decision than some of the people I run into in my daily life.
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Re: Whitehouse opens petition site

Postby Jahoclave » Wed Sep 28, 2011 2:13 pm UTC

Decker wrote:
Belial wrote:
"Changes to capital gains tax policy and how they will affect employment prospects in a socially and geographically remote population" requires a great deal more experience and understanding of the world and the people in it than teenagers possess.


And yet I'm pretty sure that given 20 minutes I could find you at least five adults (people well on this side of the voting age) who you would trust to make those decisions less than you would trust say, yourself at 16.

To be fair, at sixteen, I knew everything better than everyone else.

My future self traveled back and time and gave me a verbal lashing about how much better he was than me. I believe the phrase "arrogant little shit" came up a lot.

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Re: Whitehouse opens petition site

Postby sourmìlk » Wed Sep 28, 2011 2:15 pm UTC

Jahoclave wrote:My future self traveled back and time and gave me a verbal lashing about how much better he was than me. I believe the phrase "arrogant little shit" came up a lot.

I think my future self would do that, except he's too embarrassed to look at me.
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Re: Whitehouse opens petition site

Postby The Reaper » Wed Sep 28, 2011 2:20 pm UTC

My future self would take a stack of mathematics and engineering books and give them to the ancient greeks.

Yea, I'm a dick. It happens.

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Re: Whitehouse opens petition site

Postby Jahoclave » Wed Sep 28, 2011 2:25 pm UTC

The Reaper wrote:My future self would take a stack of mathematics and engineering books and give them to the ancient greeks.

Yea, I'm a dick. It happens.

I have some bad news. Your future self was burned for being an abomination.

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Re: Whitehouse opens petition site

Postby sourmìlk » Wed Sep 28, 2011 2:29 pm UTC

Wait, the rules have changed so that our future selves can go back to any place and time? Then you all are bad people for not will have been having stopped 9/11 or Pearl Harbor or the assassination of Ferdinand or something.
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Re: Whitehouse opens petition site

Postby Radical_Initiator » Wed Sep 28, 2011 2:45 pm UTC

sourmìlk wrote:Wait, the rules have changed so that our future selves can go back to any place and time? Then you all are bad people for not will have been having stopped 9/11 or Pearl Harbor or the assassination of Ferdinand or something.


I'd have much more fun going back to some battle where one of the Mongol empires steamrolled a small town, and hand everyone in town an M16 and put several crates of ammo in the middle of the town square. Or send a carrier group to Trafalgar. As long as we're dicking around in history, make it entertaining.
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Re: Whitehouse opens petition site

Postby Jahoclave » Wed Sep 28, 2011 4:25 pm UTC

Radical_Initiator wrote:
sourmìlk wrote:Wait, the rules have changed so that our future selves can go back to any place and time? Then you all are bad people for not will have been having stopped 9/11 or Pearl Harbor or the assassination of Ferdinand or something.


I'd have much more fun going back to some battle where one of the Mongol empires steamrolled a small town, and hand everyone in town an M16 and put several crates of ammo in the middle of the town square. Or send a carrier group to Trafalgar. As long as we're dicking around in history, make it entertaining.

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Re: Whitehouse opens petition site

Postby emceng » Wed Sep 28, 2011 5:38 pm UTC

Radical_Initiator wrote:
sourmìlk wrote:Wait, the rules have changed so that our future selves can go back to any place and time? Then you all are bad people for not will have been having stopped 9/11 or Pearl Harbor or the assassination of Ferdinand or something.


I'd have much more fun going back to some battle where one of the Mongol empires steamrolled a small town, and hand everyone in town an M16 and put several crates of ammo in the middle of the town square. Or send a carrier group to Trafalgar. As long as we're dicking around in history, make it entertaining.


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Re: Whitehouse opens petition site

Postby Zamfir » Wed Sep 28, 2011 5:45 pm UTC

if I could go back in time, I would have kept this thread on-topic.

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Re: Whitehouse opens petition site

Postby Dream » Wed Sep 28, 2011 6:23 pm UTC

Belial wrote:I was an utter fuckwit at 16, and I'd still trust that version of me (intolerable though he was) to make a better decision than some of the people I run into in my daily life.

It was natural for you to be such at that age. It wasn't for lack of knowledge (at least I assume so in your case) but for lack of life experience to let you understand the bounds of that knowledge. Older people, in the main, have that experience. They've seen some consequences, lived a bit and been through some emotional stuff. While some have not, they are a minority, just as there exists a minority of teenagers who have had to grow up faster than most and do possess it. The difference between the teenagers and the adults-who-are-worse-at-life-than-teenagers is that is is expected of teenagers to be like that, because it is expected that they haven't seen much besides school and family since they've been old enough to think rationally. Thus we can legislate for that, because it is a known attribute of the group. We can't legislate for the grown ups, because nothing about being a grown up makes you incompetent to choose an electoral candidate properly, no matter how often that is the case. It is instead the nature of the grown ups to be capable of the understanding necessary to engage with politics, even if many don't bother to exercise that ability. So we legislate for that, and leave it up to their freedom of choice to determine whether they'll bother informing themselves, and then implementing that information to create a coherent political position.
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Re: Whitehouse opens petition site

Postby Minerva » Thu Oct 06, 2011 6:12 am UTC

It's a little bit sad.

“prohibit all federal agencies from promoting, endorsing, or funding fluoridation of the public drinking water.” currently has 3198 signatures.

“formally acknowledge an extraterrestrial presence engaging the human race – Disclosure.” currently has 7793 signatures.

Meanwhile, the petition about restarting the Integral Fast Reactor program only has a couple of hundred.

Democracy by crackpot is not the way democracy is supposed to be.
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Re: Whitehouse opens petition site

Postby sourmìlk » Thu Oct 06, 2011 6:13 am UTC

Minerva wrote:Democracy by crackpot is not the way democracy is supposed to be.

It is if the people are crackpots :/

But since when do people object to fluoride?
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Re: Whitehouse opens petition site

Postby Magnanimous » Thu Oct 06, 2011 6:33 am UTC

sourmìlk wrote:But since when do people object to fluoride?

It's a chemical and it's in our drinking water. You do the math.

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Re: Whitehouse opens petition site

Postby sourmìlk » Thu Oct 06, 2011 6:41 am UTC

Magnanimous wrote:
sourmìlk wrote:But since when do people object to fluoride?

It's a chemical and it's in our drinking water. You do the math.


So, do people object to water in our drinking water?
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Re: Whitehouse opens petition site

Postby Magnanimous » Thu Oct 06, 2011 6:55 am UTC

sourmìlk wrote:
Magnanimous wrote:
sourmìlk wrote:But since when do people object to fluoride?

It's a chemical and it's in our drinking water. You do the math.


So, do people object to water in our drinking water?

... No, even though water is also technically a chemical. It's kind of embarrassing that there's an entire Wikipedia page about this.

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Re: Whitehouse opens petition site

Postby Minerva » Thu Oct 06, 2011 6:55 am UTC

Magnanimous wrote:
sourmìlk wrote:But since when do people object to fluoride?

It's a chemical and it's in our drinking water. You do the math.


It's the most monstrously conceived and dangerous communist plot we have ever had to face!
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Re: Whitehouse opens petition site

Postby sourmìlk » Thu Oct 06, 2011 7:00 am UTC

I don't like how a 50s anti-fluoridation movement insults my Rabbi. Although given that I think he's about 50, he probably wasn't the same Rabbi Spitz who allegedly (i.e. did not) said that in '46. That said, it's impressive that the pamphlet fit anti-communism paranoia, conspiracy theory, and anti-semitism into a single page.

But I mean, how the fuck does it qualify as "mass medication"? I'm pretty sure fluoride isn't a medication. Should the government also revoke water because it's been known to increase health, but can also be overdosed on? I can't believe these people. They'd probably also object if we released a vaccination proven to have no side effects that wipes out the AIDS virus into our water.
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Re: Whitehouse opens petition site

Postby Thesh » Thu Oct 06, 2011 7:06 am UTC

It's not just fluoride though, tap water can contain lead, arsenic, calcium, sodium, magnesium, copper, and zinc. Many of these minerals are specifically added to the water without the consent of the people who consume it. You should only drink pure, safe, bottled spring water.

FACT: 100% of people who drink tap water will die.
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Re: Whitehouse opens petition site

Postby sourmìlk » Thu Oct 06, 2011 7:10 am UTC

Thesh wrote:It's not just fluoride though, tap water can contain lead, arsenic, calcium, sodium, magnesium, copper, and zinc.

According to homeopathy, the fact that there's so little in the water supply just makes it really strong.
Terry Pratchett wrote:The trouble with having an open mind, of course, is that people will insist on coming along and trying to put things in it.

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Re: Whitehouse opens petition site

Postby Zamfir » Thu Oct 06, 2011 9:20 am UTC

Why does the US fluoridize drinking water anyway? It seems ones of those "cranks on all sides of the debate" issues. I think I remember some government department in the US mentioning fluoridation as one of the 10 most important public health advances of the century, like they really believe it.

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Re: Whitehouse opens petition site

Postby sourmìlk » Thu Oct 06, 2011 10:23 am UTC

Zamfir wrote:Why does the US fluoridize drinking water anyway? It seems ones of those "cranks on all sides of the debate" issues. I think I remember some government department in the US mentioning fluoridation as one of the 10 most important public health advances of the century, like they really believe it.


That seems a bit extreme, but it certainly helps with, among other things, dental health.
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Re: Whitehouse opens petition site

Postby Thesh » Thu Oct 06, 2011 10:43 am UTC

Zamfir wrote:Why does the US fluoridize drinking water anyway? It seems ones of those "cranks on all sides of the debate" issues. I think I remember some government department in the US mentioning fluoridation as one of the 10 most important public health advances of the century, like they really believe it.


I've heard in the past, and Wikipedia mentions this as well, that it has had a significant effect on reducing cavities in the US, but tends to have more of an effect in countries without free preventative dental care. So while it doesn't make much of a difference in Europe, it does in the US.
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Re: Whitehouse opens petition site

Postby Zamfir » Thu Oct 06, 2011 11:12 am UTC

Thesh wrote:
I've heard in the past, and Wikipedia mentions this as well, that it has had a significant effect on reducing cavities in the US, but tends to have more of an effect in countries without free preventative dental care. So while it doesn't make much of a difference in Europe, it does in the US.

Not not turn this into yet another health care debate, but free dental care is not the norm in Europe. The range of systems in place is bewildering, but in general people pay at least part of their dental bills, or take out private insurance. But perhaps we should let it rest. Fluoridation appears (for historical reasons perhaps?) to be a charged issue for some Americans in a way that I don't fully understand, and I should stay away from it.

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Re: Whitehouse opens petition site

Postby sourmìlk » Thu Oct 06, 2011 11:37 am UTC

Zamfir wrote: Fluoridation appears (for historical reasons perhaps?) to be a charged issue for some Americans in a way that I don't fully understand, and I should stay away from it.

Yep, that's the XKCD N&A Forum Motto right there: stay away from controversial issues. That said, it's only controversial among the same nutcases and conspiracy theorists that think 9/11 was an inside job
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Re: Whitehouse opens petition site

Postby Angua » Thu Oct 06, 2011 12:35 pm UTC

For a while at my school they used to make us use mouthwash on Wednesdays. The kindergärtners (thank you firefox?) and the preschoolers got some sort of tablet (which was presumably safe to swallow).
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Re: Whitehouse opens petition site

Postby Minerva » Thu Oct 06, 2011 12:37 pm UTC

sourmìlk wrote:
Zamfir wrote: Fluoridation appears (for historical reasons perhaps?) to be a charged issue for some Americans in a way that I don't fully understand, and I should stay away from it.

Yep, that's the XKCD N&A Forum Motto right there: stay away from controversial issues. That said, it's only controversial among the same nutcases and conspiracy theorists that think 9/11 was an inside job


Anti-fluoridation activists are exactly the same as anti-vaccination crackpots, for example.

Scientifically, in terms of evidence and science and critical thinking, there is absolutely no "debate" or controversy.
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Re: Whitehouse opens petition site

Postby ConMan » Thu Oct 06, 2011 1:25 pm UTC

Minerva wrote:
Magnanimous wrote:
sourmìlk wrote:But since when do people object to fluoride?

It's a chemical and it's in our drinking water. You do the math.


It's the most monstrously conceived and dangerous communist plot we have ever had to face!

We must protect our purity of essence!
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Re: Whitehouse opens petition site

Postby Роберт » Thu Oct 06, 2011 1:29 pm UTC

ConMan wrote:
Minerva wrote:
Magnanimous wrote:
sourmìlk wrote:But since when do people object to fluoride?

It's a chemical and it's in our drinking water. You do the math.


It's the most monstrously conceived and dangerous communist plot we have ever had to face!

We must protect our purity of essence!

Is this from Dr. Strangelove?

Our precious bodily fluids?
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Re: Whitehouse opens petition site

Postby scarecrovv » Thu Oct 06, 2011 1:50 pm UTC

Роберт wrote:Is this from Dr. Strangelove?

Our precious bodily fluids?


Indeed!

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Re: Whitehouse opens petition site

Postby Tirian » Thu Oct 06, 2011 2:44 pm UTC

Minerva wrote:Scientifically, in terms of evidence and science and critical thinking, there is absolutely no "debate" or controversy.


Well sure as hell there's *something* that made them dumb as posts.

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Re: Whitehouse opens petition site

Postby Dark567 » Thu Oct 06, 2011 3:33 pm UTC

Zamfir wrote:Why does the US fluoridize drinking water anyway? It seems ones of those "cranks on all sides of the debate" issues. I think I remember some government department in the US mentioning fluoridation as one of the 10 most important public health advances of the century, like they really believe it.
I'm not sure its not.... In the developed world its not a big deal, but in undeveloped countries water fluoridation is the main form of dental care. Not only because it cuts down on cavities, but because having a cavity is a lot more serious in undeveloped countries. Even if you forgo dental treatment in the US, if you have a cavity a nurse will be willing to pull the tooth and put you on antibiotics. In the undeveloped world it can be life threatening.
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Re: Whitehouse opens petition site

Postby Diemo » Thu Oct 06, 2011 3:53 pm UTC

sourmìlk wrote:
Qaanol wrote:Since it’s my petition, I’ll answer this as best I can....

You really don't grasp the the extent of down's syndrome. My uncle has no concept of elections, politicians, or government. He cannot learn these things either. He has about the knowledge and problem-solving ability of a four-year-old. It's not just that he can't make a good decision, he doesn't even know what the decision is. I recognize that you want to try and remove any possible discrimination, but you're going to the opposite extreme here. And particularly with down's syndrome, because it's not even slightly subjective. With a lot of mental illnesses, there is sort of a scale (for example, I have high functioning autism, whereas other people have extremely severe autism). But with Down's syndrome, you either have it or you don't: take a look at my uncle's karyotype, you'll find three 21 chromosomes. I don't think it's unreasonable to deny people who have no grasp on reality due to mental illness (paranoid schizophrenics, republicans) or who are incapable of understanding what an election even is or what politics is (mentally disabled, republicans) the right to vote.


I don't know about the specifics of your uncle, but I should point out that just like there is grades of intelligence in people, there is the same grades of intelligence in people with Down's Syndrome. For example, my sister has Down Syndrome, is able to vote, and is probably much more capable of voting than I am (due to the fact that she has an interest in politics, whereas I have not).

To be honest, I think that a lot of it is due to expectations. My sister stayed in main-stream education throughout her entire life, and she was at least as good as some people without down syndrome who were not academically orientated. Though if you want to debate this, start a thread (I don't care enough)...
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Re: Whitehouse opens petition site

Postby Zamfir » Thu Oct 06, 2011 5:30 pm UTC

Dark567 wrote:
Zamfir wrote:Why does the US fluoridize drinking water anyway? It seems ones of those "cranks on all sides of the debate" issues. I think I remember some government department in the US mentioning fluoridation as one of the 10 most important public health advances of the century, like they really believe it.
I'm not sure its not.... In the developed world its not a big deal, but in undeveloped countries water fluoridation is the main form of dental care. Not only because it cuts down on cavities, but because having a cavity is a lot more serious in undeveloped countries. Even if you forgo dental treatment in the US, if you have a cavity a nurse will be willing to pull the tooth and put you on antibiotics. In the undeveloped world it can be life threatening.

But there don't seem to be many countries that fluorize their drinking water, probably because most people with tap water also use tooth paste, making the fluoridation superfluous. Brazil seems the poorest country that fluorizes on a large scale, and a bit of googling around suggest that around 95% of Brazilian kids use fluoridated toothpaste. The same presumably applies to most countries with the infrastructure to reliably fluorize drinking water.

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Re: Whitehouse opens petition site

Postby Crius » Thu Oct 06, 2011 6:40 pm UTC

sourmìlk wrote:
Magnanimous wrote:
sourmìlk wrote:But since when do people object to fluoride?

It's a chemical and it's in our drinking water. You do the math.


So, do people object to water in our drinking water?


I take it you haven't seen the polls on whether we should remove dihydrogen monoxide from our drinking water?

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Re: Whitehouse opens petition site

Postby Ashlah » Thu Oct 06, 2011 8:14 pm UTC

The water isn't fluoridated in most of Oregon, and we have bad teeth for it. I can't help but wonder how my dental health would have been different had I grown up with fluoridated water (though for a short time, I was taking it in chewable pill form).
http://www.oregonlive.com/opinion/index ... _toot.html

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Re: Whitehouse opens petition site

Postby Роберт » Thu Oct 06, 2011 8:24 pm UTC

Crius wrote:
sourmìlk wrote:
Magnanimous wrote:
sourmìlk wrote:But since when do people object to fluoride?

It's a chemical and it's in our drinking water. You do the math.


So, do people object to water in our drinking water?


I take it you haven't seen the polls on whether we should remove dihydrogen monoxide from our drinking water?

I don't know why this misinformation is so widespread, probably from the NO-DHMO propagandists, but the correct term for "dihydrogen monoxide" is actually hydrogen hydroxide. I know, the real name doesn't sound as scary, does it? Also, the chemical isn't as scary as the propagandists would have you believe. Used responsibly, it has an incredible number of benefits. Drinks with reasonable amounts of hydrogen hydroxide in them are not necessarily harmful. In fact, the "hangover" effect of drinking too much ethanol can be reduced by drinking enough hydrogen hydroxide.

If there was a petition on restricting use of hydrogen hydroxide, it would make me really wish the petition site had a "downthump" type button.
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Re: Whitehouse opens petition site

Postby Aikanaro » Thu Oct 06, 2011 8:48 pm UTC

........So, have we heard any response from Obama about the petition regarding legalization of marijuana yet? Or heard any sort of date about when he MIGHT respond? Or ANYTHING from the White House on the subject?
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Re: Whitehouse opens petition site

Postby Ashlah » Thu Oct 06, 2011 11:20 pm UTC


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Re: Whitehouse opens petition site

Postby sourmìlk » Thu Oct 06, 2011 11:37 pm UTC



I don't understand why any politician would do this. Obviously it doesn't help public safety or help the economy in any way, so the only reason left would be to gather votes. Somehow though, I doubt this kind of thing is popular among liberal voters.
Terry Pratchett wrote:The trouble with having an open mind, of course, is that people will insist on coming along and trying to put things in it.


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