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Are we saying that the government buying goods and services is somehow better for us than private citizens getting to spend that money directly? Unless we received appropriate value for the money spent (and that is a separate discussion) then it was wasted and would have been better spent by the taxpayers themselves.

If you assume that spending billions of dollars privately would not have generated similar secondary benefits (note the word similar not the same meaning it might not have gone into miniaturization or computerization but might have resulted in other similarly valuable new fields), then you have a valid point. Spending all of that money on education or on advanced medical reasearch or on ocean research during the 60's and 70's might have generated even more beneficial scientific breakthroughs and more direct sociatal benefits than spending it all to shoot stuff up into (and out of) the air. Might not have, too.
Dave Hall

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No, I'm just saying it's not all _totally_ wasted money.
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BillyBob wrote:

Well, considering that any moron can figure out several ways to smuggle weapons as or more effective than those used to implement the 9/11 attack through airport security, yes, it's pretty much wasted if the intent is to deter Al Qaeda or their equivalents.

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Pretty bad. I would have thought they would have paid special attention to a 9 foot pencil. Wasn't it a bit hard on your pocket?

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Showing off yur soft brain again?

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If the knife is properly sharpened, which it should be so as to negate the need for a point to beging a cut, it would be a savage weapon in a crime of passion. African nations with strong gun laws and few guns have seen machetes used to hack people to death. Where there is a will there is a way. Blugeoning by toaster or electric can opener would be better? We are an ingenious species and will use whatever is at hand.

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    Greetings and salutations...

of the players saw two guys beating the living daylights out of each other. Being a peacemaker, she ran up to the fighters and yelled "Stop it! This Violence is Pointless!". From the middle of the whirlwind of fists, maces, etc, a chorus came: "It had BETTER be... we're both Clerics!".     Now after this moment of geekiness...back to the topic at hand...     Regards     dave mundt
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ROFL! I got that first time through!
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The English bill of rights [after which the US one was modeled] was signed into law around 1680.
In it the individual had the right to bear arms for "self protection"......This right was overruled by the UK government based on a case in Dumblain Scotland 10 or so years ago
Now only the crooks have guns which they use liberally . Since the individual no longer is allow to have a gun, gun crimes have skyrocketed....mjh
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I very much wish that the "keep and bear arms" language in the U.S. Constitution were more like that in the Constitution of my State (Indiana):
"The people shall have the right to keep and bear arms for the defense of themselves and of the State."
--
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wrote:

That was it's intent but they didn't feel the need to spell it out. They assumed, incorrectly, apparently, that people's reading comprehension would do nothing but improve over the years and a concept that was that easily understood at the time would be crystal clear in the future.

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England and Scotland have different legal systems. And I take it you meant Dunblane.
But guns had to be licensed before anyway, and only the tiniest fraction of the population in the UK have the slightest interest in owning a gun of any sort and those who would want a handgun are a mere "handful".
Now, the ban on kids owning pocket knives is something that does make life difficult for guys -- can't even buy a Stanley knife or chisel!
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Appin wrote:

I was one of that 0.1% who had legal handguns, the ~8,000 pounds (about $14,500 US) compensation paid for a new kitchen and half the wifes secondhand 4x4, most of the money was for reloading gear, brass and the like. The 6 guns were a .22 single shot precision target pistol, .32 berreta (uncles leaving present from H.M. gov'ts VIP protection service), S&W 66, Pre WW1 colt 1911, S&W .455 WW1 officers name engraved revolver and a S&W .44 mag with the 8" barrel and optics barely made 1200 pounds of the total, they returned my speedloader blocks and my 1911 compensator, even though they have no other use. Of course lots more people would have liked to have had handguns, but the law put too many barriers in the way of them doing so legally.
Handguns however are not completely banned, certain historic metallic cartridge guns, hunters/vets and others requiring the means to kill animals can still have them. Muzzle loading guns are also still legal, though my 3 legal and registered flintlock pistols seem to be causing some angst to the police at the moment.
Illegal handguns however are plentiful according to some police officers I meet.

Can't buy, but not banned from owning, our Scouts still have pocket knives, though some stupid people think non-locking folding blades are suitable....Fixed or locking, you don't want it to close on YOU whilst your using it!
Niel, also a Scout leader.
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On Tue, 31 May 2005 17:06:47 GMT, snipped-for-privacy@esper.com (Dave Mundt) wrote:

I've said this since 9/12 -- it's just another example of the government learning the wrong lesson and applying the wrong solution to the problem.

Had an event like this occurred after the founding of the country (or even less than 100 years ago), your solution would have been that advocated by the country's leaders. However, at that time we had real leaders who understood that their right to govern rested in the hands of the people and not that the rights of the people rested in the hands of the government.

Definitely agree with this sentiment, especially immediately following 9/11 with all the NG troops in the airport.

That started years ago with instilling the idea that random searches were OK in schools, getting the youngsters used to the idea that checking them out for their own safety was a good idea. OTOH, this whole concept was exacerbated and initiated by the actions of those from the drug culture of the 60's who used their freedom to mask activities detrimental to our country's youth.

Yep, it gives the rest of the passengers time to get to the nuts before they can cause problems. As several instances following 9/11 showed, although our government didn't get it, the *citizens* did get it. It wasn't that some nutbars got on the plane with weapons that caused the mayhem, it was the fact that citizens had been conditioned and told by their leaders and others in authority that when in the situation of a hijacking (or other crime for that matter), one should not fight the criminals doing the hijacking, but submit -- that way noone, or only a few would be hurt. The citizens figured out after 9/11 that that was a bald-faced lie (if it ever was true), and you can pretty well rest assured that in the future should such a stunt be attempted again, the passengers of those planes will use whatever means are in their possession, no matter how they have been disarmed by the government, to protect themselves and prevent the hijackers from achieving their objective. That is what I meant by the government learning the wrong lesson.

I used to love flying. Now I absolutely hate it and will do whatever I can to avoid it. Actually, I still like flying, I just hate getting to the airplane. I'm one of those balding middle-aged white guys who seems to get singled out for the "random" search almost whenever I fly (I think I'm at about 75%). My theory is that they "randomly" search x number of people like me, a few 90 year old grandmothers, some toddlers, and some elderly people in wheelchairs so that they can search 1 person who actually looks like a potential threat in order to avoid being accused of profiling (but then I'm probably just being paranoid). If the trip would take 10 hours or less to drive, I pretty much prefer to drive.

Yep.

+--------------------------------------------------------------------------------+ If you're gonna be dumb, you better be tough +--------------------------------------------------------------------------------+
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On Tue, 31 May 2005 21:17:36 -0700, Mark & Juanita

You mean the ones carrying the unloaded M16s? Some of the ones I saw didn't even bother to stuff in an empty magazine.
Lee
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wrote:

Yep, them's the ones.

+--------------------------------------------------------------------------------+ If you're gonna be dumb, you better be tough +--------------------------------------------------------------------------------+
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And just snipping this all to heck - does anyone know what "Airplane Security" has cost us in the USA? I can't imagine. But I do donate a pair of school scissors to the cause every time I travel, maybe all the security is worth that much.
Josie
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On Wed, 1 Jun 2005 09:15:46 -0400, the inscrutable "firstjois"

Would you like that figure rounded to the nearest billion dollars? <sigh>
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I saw a United Captain getting a serious double check since he had (gasp) a pair of baby scissors (with the round tip) for trimming his moustache - of course once he is behind the reinforced door with the fire axe in the cockpit (used to chop his way out in an accident), a taser and or handgun, he could have attacked the co-pilot with it . . . a serious weapon to be sure -
BillyB
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Or war heros with the Medal of Honor.
http://www.homeofheroes.com/news/archives/2002_0100_foss.html
--
Regards,
Doug Miller (alphageek at milmac dot com)
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