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Wed Mar 23, 2011 at 03:05 AM PDT

$90.

by Dauphin

Slavery is illegal. That's one of the few relatively uncontroversial moral and legal question of the modern world. A person gains legal capacity with birth and loses it with death.

Now, actual points when a person gains legal capacity differ - BGB awards legal capacity with birth, if the child is born alive, even if he is incapable of survival, Code civil demands the child be capable of living, and the Spanish Codigo civil demands the child, regardless of whether he is capable of life, survive for at least 24 hours, which may be important in matters of inheritance, but the main point is uncontroversial: A human being is a subject and not an object in legal transactions.

Which is why it's startling to discover the slave trade is doing well.

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Sun Feb 13, 2011 at 01:10 PM PST

A Daily Kos Oddyssey

by Dauphin

I have to admit, Markos has certainly made Daily Kos an exciting place to visit. In the olden days, recommending a diary meant contributing your vote so that, according to some weird and unholy algorithm, the diary might pop up on the recommended list.

Not anymore, now signing in is an adventure, posting a comment a Herculean task, and actually trying to recommend a diary a task kin to Odysseus' return to Ithaca. It may or may not leave your computer a smoking ruin, a pile of slag.

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Ever had one of those days when Daily Kos shattered reality?

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Thu Jan 27, 2011 at 04:34 AM PST

The United States Is Bankrupt

by Dauphin

Yesterday, former Governor Palin treated us to the revelation that the United States should not have a "Sputnik moment" because the Sputnik project bankrupted the Soviet Union:

Palin: Sputnik Led to Collapse of Soviet Union
CBS News

"Governor," said Van Susteren. "Last night, there was a lot of discussion about the 'Sputnik moment' that the president talked about. Do you agree with him? Do you feel, is this our moment?"

Palin responded, "That was another one of those WTF moments when [Mr. Obama] so often repeated the 'Sputnik Moment' that he would aspire Americans to celebrate. He needs to remember that what happened back then with the former communist USSR and their victory in that race to space, yeah, they won, but they also incurred so much debt at the time that it led to the inevitable collapse of the Soviet Union."

I have news for the former Governor: It's too late. The United States is bankrupt. And there's nothing we can do about it.

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Mon Dec 20, 2010 at 02:13 AM PST

To The Primary Obama Crowd:

by Dauphin

Another day, another (p)outrage on the rec list. But let's not even get into the substance of the post. I'm far more curious about something else: Let's, arguendo, play the game. Let's suppose, whatever our views, that Obama needs primarying.

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Sat Dec 18, 2010 at 05:45 AM PST

 Что делать? (Chto Delat'?)

by Dauphin

This is probably the most difficult diary I've ever felt I should write here. I've spent quite a lot of time here, met some people I admire and some I can't stand. But, the time spent here was generally pleasant and interesting (h/t to BiPM and triciawyse). So I don't take any pleasure in saying that, over the last few months, at least, I find myself coming here less and less. I think this site has lost its way. It's full of emotions, but the brains have sloshed out through the ears.

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Mon Nov 22, 2010 at 03:22 AM PST

Slouching Towards Ecotopia

by Dauphin

After reading Jerome a Paris' optimistic diary (the previous-to-last one) it got me thinking about social and economic processes which may ensure that, when all's said and done, we end up with sustainable economies, hopefully in time to avert the worst of global warming.

This may turn into a diary series, if there is interest. Since it's rattled around my head for a while, I'll address the oil issue in the first diary of the potential series.

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Sun Nov 21, 2010 at 11:25 AM PST

Metageddon

by Dauphin

Ladies and gentlemen, I've noticed a trend in current diaries which suggests we no longer need to strain our intellectual faculties. No, our little gray cells need no longer be tormnented with use. For we can collapse our discussions into a handy form.

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So, I sent some money to help Khloemi. 60€, to be precise. As I was mailing the donation, a sense of profound absurdit enveloped me, and the world briefly resembled Kafka's nightmarish dreamscape.

How did it come to this?

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Wed Nov 10, 2010 at 09:27 AM PST

How Evil Are The Liberals?

by Dauphin

Dear Republicans, dearer teabaggers, dearest Beckites, during the past few months you've gone beyond democratic and indeed civilised discourse when slandering progressives. We've been accused of hating Americans, of plotting a revolution, FEMA concentration camps (a bipartisan initiative if there ever was one; we do the concentrating, you do the camping), of wanting to take away your useless phallic symbols guns, of being barbarians.

I would like to tell you that you shouldn't waste your breath. The reality is far worse.

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Thu Nov 04, 2010 at 08:52 AM PDT

A Theory of Authoritarianism (Draft)

by Dauphin

Copyright asserted, as per Daily Kos policy.

I've been giving some thought to the question of elections and democracy in light of the Republicans' victory. While I didn't find a cause for their victory, I did manage to bodge together a theory of why and when democracies may turn into dictatorships which may be of more general use than usual musings.

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Tue Nov 02, 2010 at 01:05 PM PDT

How Extreme Are The Republicans?

by Dauphin

Diarists have tried hard to show exactly how extreme the Republican Party has become, and how extreme political discourse in general has become. We've discussed racism, intolerance, violence, and the glaring falsity of their claims.

But there is a far better gauge of their extremism: Milton Friedman.

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Sun Oct 31, 2010 at 02:05 PM PDT

Unbelievable

by Dauphin

I thought I'd seen everything, every piece of incompetence, every crackpot theory, every foolishness the early years of the 21st century have to offer. I came of age during the Bush Administration, during the triumph of right-wing parties worldwide, during the evisceration of all social consensus and every ideology except for vulgar economism and kitschy nationalism. I've seen the essentially rational (regardless of what I might have thought of them) economics of Friedman being replaced by supply-siderism and Austrian economics, discredited countless times, but persistent like the undead. I've seen the erosion of civil rights in the name of the War on Terror (rooted out by terror).

I thought I've become pretty jaded, so I take little pleasure in being stunned by something, in this case a column in the Washington Post.

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