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This Isn't the Petition Response You're Looking For

Soulskill posted about 2 years ago | from the i-find-your-lack-of-faith-disturbing dept.

Government 191

New submitter fractalVisionz writes "The White House has officially responded to the petition to secure resources and funding to begin Death Star construction by 2016, as previously discussed on Slashdot. With costs estimated over $850,000,000,000,000,000 (that's $850 quadrillion), and a firm policy stating 'The Administration does not support blowing up planets,' the U.S. government will obviously decline. However, that is not to say we don't already have a Death Star of our own, floating approximately 120 miles above the earth's surface. The response ends with a call to those interested in STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics) fields of study: 'If you do pursue a career in a science, technology, engineering or math-related field, the Force will be with us! Remember, the Death Star's power to destroy a planet, or even a whole star system, is insignificant next to the power of the Force.'"

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Nice (5, Insightful)

Carewolf (581105) | about 2 years ago | (#42567551)

A surprisingly good response. Perhaps they decided to answer this question to at least give one good answer on a petition no one took serious.

So: Thanks for the nice answer: Now please answer the serious petitions!

Enterprise (3, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#42567737)

Another one coming up the pipeline:

http://www.gmanetwork.com/news/story/289919/news/world/white-house-petitioned-to-build-trek-starship-enterprise

Pundits, get your pens ready...

Re:Nice (4, Insightful)

davydagger (2566757) | about 2 years ago | (#42567761)

"Perhaps they decided to answer this question to at least give one good answer on a petition no one took serious."

are you kidding me. the Administration got the best chance for some free PR to associate itself with one of the most popular movie franchises in history.

at a time where fanboism is becoming socially acceptable.

this was a change-up down the center, PR wise, and they rocked it out of the park.

Re:Nice (3, Funny)

PolygamousRanchKid (1290638) | about 2 years ago | (#42567899)

The Administration got the best chance for some free PR to associate itself with one of the most popular movie franchises in history.

The franchise is now owned by the Disney Corporation. Let them pay for it and build it. $850 quadrillion is chump change to Disney. This is just keeping in line with the new policy of letting private industry finance space endeavors.

The US government would have been Forced to mint Triskelion Quatloo coins to finance this.

Re:Nice (4, Insightful)

JWW (79176) | about 2 years ago | (#42568243)

To be quite honest, if Disney opened up a Death Star theme park, I would HAVE to go there....

Re:Nice (4, Funny)

Dekker3D (989692) | about 2 years ago | (#42568275)

Wasn't it like $9001 quadrillion they lose every month to piracy? Fight the pirates, get a death star!

Re:Nice (1)

davester666 (731373) | about 2 years ago | (#42568915)

I would pirate every single Disney movie if it meant that Disney wouldn't be able to afford to build a death star.

Re:Nice (2)

Dekker3D (989692) | about 2 years ago | (#42568961)

Pirates are heroes.

Re:Nice (4, Insightful)

Latentius (2557506) | about 2 years ago | (#42567843)

Hey, don't blame the White House for the fact that only the joke petitions are getting enough signatures to require an answer.

Want answers to serious questions? Get all your friends to sign those serious petitions.

Re:Nice (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#42567937)

Hey, don't blame the White House for the fact that only the joke petitions are getting enough signatures to require an answer.

Want answers to serious questions? Get all your friends to sign those serious petitions.

There are serious petitions being signed. They are just not being taken seriously. Hey, they let the chief of the TSA answer the petition to dismantle the TSA [aero-news.net] . How much less seriously can you take the serious petitions?

Sorry, I'm with GP on this one.

Shachar

Re:Nice (5, Insightful)

findoutmoretoday (1475299) | about 2 years ago | (#42567863)

Now please answer the serious petitions!

This is a new petition, right?

Re:Nice (4, Insightful)

rolfwind (528248) | about 2 years ago | (#42568059)

I liked it at first but now I don't. I feel jaded.

The White House has a history of ignoring or shooting down real petitions or going all statist/authoritarian in response on drug petitions (at least the last 3 presidents took drugs, where would any of them be if they got caught and penalized under our system?)

So I'm going to take this for what is is, a cheap, easy and populist response. Obama's PR always had their finger on pop culture. Yeah, it gives me a smile. But where's the real leadership when it counts, not just on cheap and easy things?

Re:Nice (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#42568817)

(at least the last 3 presidents took drugs, where would any of them be if they got caught and penalized under our system?)

Two would've been president. The black man would be in prison.

Re:Nice (2)

maxwell demon (590494) | about 2 years ago | (#42568091)

Of course they could just have replied "we are not going to build a death star because we are not on the dark side of the force."

Re:Nice (3, Funny)

JWW (79176) | about 2 years ago | (#42568251)

No they couldn't have.....

Re:Nice (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#42568391)

That's Racist!

Re:Nice (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#42568601)

No it's not. The fact is that Obama is at least as dark side as GWB was and probably more. He takes every opportunity presented to fuck the American people and if it requires a complicated, convoluted, nearly incomprehensible solution, then so much the better!

Re:Nice (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#42568877)

THIS IS SERIOUS! Think of all the jobs it will create! Plus with all the math and engineering skills this project would cultivate in training people, it will more than pay for itself. Anything so obviously net positive should always be mandated by the state, for our own good. We are only paying ourselves anyway, so there is no real cost!

Why blow up planets.. (4, Insightful)

Rockoon (1252108) | about 2 years ago | (#42567553)

Why go through the expense of blowing up planets when you can kill civilians, citizens even, without any due process.

Re:Why blow up planets.. (5, Funny)

Sponge Bath (413667) | about 2 years ago | (#42567609)

Because blowing up planets is cool. Did you see Alderaan? Robot Chicken had a simulation involving muffins.

Only $850 Quadrillion (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#42567763)

But think of it as stimulus!

You can always inflate your way out of debt - or else blow your creditors to smithereens!

Re:Only $850 Quadrillion (1)

thej1nx (763573) | about 2 years ago | (#42567883)

I hear the Chinese are pretty well-armed too... and they have more cannon fodder.

Re:Only $850 Quadrillion (2, Funny)

sco08y (615665) | about 2 years ago | (#42567975)

But think of it as stimulus!

You can always inflate your way out of debt - or else blow your creditors to smithereens!

The current serious proposal being debated in Washington is to mint a trillion dollar platinum coin. You'd need a whole Senate of Christine O'Donnel's to come up with something crazier and dumber than that.

"Cut spending." "You're fucking insane! We'll descend into anarchy! Racist!"

vs.

"Mint a trillion dollar platinum coin." "That may sound crazy, but let's seriously consider this proposal."

Re:Only $850 Quadrillion (4, Insightful)

Jeremi (14640) | about 2 years ago | (#42568375)

"Mint a trillion dollar platinum coin." "That may sound crazy, but let's seriously consider this proposal."

I agree with the parent poster, minting a trillion dollar coin is a crazy/stupid idea; even if it is technically legal (which is debatable), actually doing it as a "solution" would make the USA look like they are playing silly lawyer-ball games rather than seriously dealing with their debt problem. First-world superpowers should be above such shenanigans.

That said, the only reason such a stupid idea is being debated is as a last-ditch alternative to what would (arguably) be even worse -- having the US government default on its debts. It's one thing to cut spending, but it's quite another for the US Congress to decide it's simply going to refuse pay the bills for money it has already spent. If the Republicans succeed in making that happen, the consequences for the nation will be similar to the consequences for anyone else who decides to simply stop paying their bills: disruption of vital services, a precipitous drop in their credit rating, endless legal red tape, and higher interest rates for the foreseeable future. Even the threat of that happening last year was enough to drop the nation's credit rating. Holding the nation's full faith and credit hostage to promote a political agenda is unacceptable behavior, and any legislators who stoop to such tactics should be summarily tossed out by the voters ASAP.

Re:Only $850 Quadrillion (2)

1u3hr (530656) | about 2 years ago | (#42568445)

The current serious proposal being debated in Washington is to mint a trillion dollar platinum coin.

"Being debated"? By some twats on websites. Not by the actual administration. Name anyone in the White House who advocates it.

Re:Why blow up planets.. (1)

Runaway1956 (1322357) | about 2 years ago | (#42567833)

It took years for any of the worst leaders in the last century to kill millions of people. Blowing up planets would give body counts in the billions with just a few hour's work - if there were any bodies to be found afterward.

Efficiency is a good thing, is it not?

Parent is Flamebait, (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#42567971)

Parent is Flamebait,

Re:Why blow up planets.. (1)

dkleinsc (563838) | about 2 years ago | (#42568167)

Because killing civilians a few at a time is so much work. As Eddie Izzard put it:

Someone's killed 100,000 people. We're almost going, "Well done! You killed 100,000 people? You must get up very early in the morning! I can't even get down the gym. Your diary must look odd: 'Get up in the morning, death, death, death, death, death, death, death – lunch – death, death, death – afternoon tea – death, death, death – quick shower ' "

snip (5, Funny)

JustOK (667959) | about 2 years ago | (#42567559)

'The Administration does not support blowing up planets' that we are on.

Well, now (5, Funny)

arth1 (260657) | about 2 years ago | (#42567575)

"The Administration does not support blowing up planets"

Unless, of course, said planet was populated with opponents of Israel and/or in a position to disrupt status quo in hydrocarbon trade and acquisition.
Or tried to kill my daddy.

Re:Well, now (0, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#42567655)

"The Administration does not support blowing up planets"

Unless, of course, said planet was populated with opponents of Israel and/or in a position to disrupt status quo in hydrocarbon trade and acquisition.
Or tried to kill my daddy.

Who tried to kill Obama's father? Oh wait, you are so desperate to deflect for Obama that you need to keep going back to the previous president

Re:Well, now (1)

sco08y (615665) | about 2 years ago | (#42568223)

"The Administration does not support blowing up planets"

Unless, of course, said planet was populated with opponents of Israel and/or in a position to disrupt status quo in hydrocarbon trade and acquisition.
Or tried to kill my daddy.

Who tried to kill Obama's father? Oh wait, you are so desperate to deflect for Obama that you need to keep going back to the previous president

In fairness, the GP was also ready to blame it on Jews.

Re:Well, now (1)

rossdee (243626) | about 2 years ago | (#42567923)

Vaporizing the planet would also destroy Israel, not to mention the oilfields (both in the middle east, and in the USA and Canada)

Having a Death Star really only makes sense if your enemies are on other planets, and so far we don't have knowledge of other planets that are inhabited

The Administration does not support... (5, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#42567605)

...blowing up planets, unless the MPAA, RIAA, or BSA tell us to.

Re:The Administration does not support... (1)

maxwell demon (590494) | about 2 years ago | (#42568031)

If those want something blown up, they'll not be content with a planet. They'll not do it below a suprnova.

Little worried about their science credentials... (3, Informative)

znanue (2782675) | about 2 years ago | (#42567613)

FTA "Even though the United States doesn't have anything that can do the Kessel Run in less than 12 parsecs..."

Parsec [wikipedia.org] is a unit of length!

Z

Re:Little worried about their science credentials. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#42567625)

You're on Slashdot and you don't recognize this line?

Re:Little worried about their science credentials. (5, Informative)

hawguy (1600213) | about 2 years ago | (#42567687)

You're on Slashdot and you don't recognize this line?

Besides, the use of distance instead of time has been widely explained:

http://starwars.wikia.com/wiki/Parsec [wikia.com]

Or, the put it in terrestrial terms, imagine that the Kessel Run has to cross a sea with a giant whirlpool vortex - a more capable ship (or a risk taking captain) can skirt closer to the whilrpool, so a captain could boast that he did the Kessel Run in only 12 leagues while others take the longer way around.

Re:Little worried about their science credentials. (2)

znanue (2782675) | about 2 years ago | (#42567781)

Well, this seems quite the hokey explanation. Am I wrong to intuitively think that skirting closer to a blackhole and trying to maintain speed would take exponentially more power/fuel? Or would it be truly a linear increase?

Z

Re:Little worried about their science credentials. (1)

cervesaebraciator (2352888) | about 2 years ago | (#42567813)

It would take exponentially more time.

Re:Little worried about their science credentials. (1)

tmosley (996283) | about 2 years ago | (#42567915)

It would *APPEAR* to take exponentially more time to an *OUTSIDE OBSERVER*.

When dealing with ships capable of going the speed of light, things would almost never be as they appear. At least not until some time after they slow down.

Re:Little worried about their science credentials. (2)

cervesaebraciator (2352888) | about 2 years ago | (#42568039)

So, what you're saying is, "you're going to find that many of the truths we cling to depend greatly on our own point of view." Einstein was a jedi!

Re:Little worried about their science credentials. (1)

Deadstick (535032) | about 2 years ago | (#42568323)

You're on /. and you think "exponentially" means a whole lot?

Re:Little worried about their science credentials. (1)

hawguy (1600213) | about 2 years ago | (#42567949)

Well, this seems quite the hokey explanation. Am I wrong to intuitively think that skirting closer to a blackhole and trying to maintain speed would take exponentially more power/fuel? Or would it be truly a linear increase?

Z

Well yeah, that's kind of the point of the bragging - he never said that it saves fuel, or even time. But if an Imperial Star Cruiser is chasing you, a stunt like that might help you get away.

Of course, in a universe where faster than light travel is possible, who knows what their fuel/propulsion constraints are.

Re:Little worried about their science credentials. (1)

Jeremi (14640) | about 2 years ago | (#42568481)

Well, this seems quite the hokey explanation.

Agreed, it's a bit hokey. I think a better explanation/rationalization would be: given that a hyperspace drive works not by traversing through space more quickly, but rather by warping spacetime so that the space between start-point and end-point doesn't have to be traversed at all (cue analogy of an ant on a folded piece of paper here), then Han's customized, more powerful/efficient hyperspace drive would be able to "fold more space" than a regular one. Therefore Han can complete the Kessel Run while traversing only 12 parsecs of actual space, while other, inferior ships have to travel farther.

But then again, it's George Lucas, so this particular crime against common sense is only the tip of the iceberg compared to his subsequent atrocities. :^P

Re:Little worried about their science credentials. (3, Funny)

sco08y (615665) | about 2 years ago | (#42568233)

You're on Slashdot and you don't recognize this line?

That was from Star Trek, right?

Re:Little worried about their science credentials. (3, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#42567635)

/wooooooooooooooooosh

I'm a little worried about your geek credentials. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#42567751)

We can affirmatively state you have never seen Star Wars or Family Guy: Blue Harvest.

The normal Kessel Run is 18 parsecs (2)

grimJester (890090) | about 2 years ago | (#42567811)

Although I find it unlikely that the US really has anything that could navigate the black holes of the Maw and cut the distance that much, their denial has to make you wonder. Why would they need to point that out?

Re:Little worried about their science credentials. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#42567825)

Hey, they're just addressing the boast in the same language as the original. And although it does seem strange to refer to the Kessel Run in units of distance rather than time when talking about how fast the Millenium Falcon is, maybe for that particular run it's supposedly more a question of distance than speed (sweeping closer to stars without getting torn apart by tidal forces or something). According to Wookipedia [wikia.com] , that's pretty much how it has been retconned.

Memetrolling is cheaper than fixing stuff (4, Funny)

Marcion (876801) | about 2 years ago | (#42567641)

Funny how they want to engage with the public when it is free and does not upset the interests of any multinationals.

Re:Memetrolling is cheaper than fixing stuff (4, Interesting)

ThorGod (456163) | about 2 years ago | (#42567709)

Funny how they want to engage with the public when it is free and does not upset the interests of any multinationals.

How is that funny? I could have predicted it from day one.

By far, this is much more than could be expected from a White House. An online forum that actually produces responses from the Admin. That's infinitely more than we got "online" from the last Admin or any other. I would submit it's a fine precedent.

Re:Memetrolling is cheaper than fixing stuff (2)

dkleinsc (563838) | about 2 years ago | (#42568191)

In other words, fine precedent, lousy president!

(And in case anyone is curious, in my opinion Mitt Romney would have been even worse)

Re:Memetrolling is cheaper than fixing stuff (2)

maxwell demon (590494) | about 2 years ago | (#42568279)

In other words, fine precedent, lousy president!

(And in case anyone is curious, in my opinion Mitt Romney would have been even worse)

You mean, he would have had worse parasites than louses? :-)

Re:Memetrolling is cheaper than fixing stuff (1)

ThorGod (456163) | about 2 years ago | (#42568303)

In other words, fine precedent, lousy president!

Umm, no. Those are not my words or thoughts; you ought to reread what I said.

Re:Memetrolling is cheaper than fixing stuff (2, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#42567725)

They're responding in kind. The petition was a joke, so they're responding with a joke. Funny how you want to be upset at the administration when it takes no effort to just troll on Slashdot.

Re:Memetrolling is cheaper than fixing stuff (4, Interesting)

Sarten-X (1102295) | about 2 years ago | (#42568129)

My thoughts exactly. The petition was obviously a joke, but they're required to respond, so they respond. There's no requirement that they acquiesce to the demands of a tiny percentage of the population, regardless of what silent majority is perceived.

A good rule of thumb is that every issue is more complicated that everybody thinks:

  • Drone surveillance is obviously an invasion of privacy (unless its use is regulated, and it does provide an opportunity to improve police efficiency).
  • Syria obviously needs help (though it's not really clear which side should get the help, or how aid could be administered, or which side (if any) is less inclined to cause more bloodshed later).
  • America obviously should pull out of its Middle Eastern conflicts (miraculously without leaving any weapons, ammunition, vulnerable informants (or their families), or hard feelings, yet still leaving a peace-loving effective local government in place).
  • A major government labor project, such as building a Death Star, would create STEM-sector jobs for millions of unemployed (and disrupt international relations, start a new Cold War, and drive government debt even higher, with no source of funding).

The multinationals that get so easily upset are the paychecks and resources for most Americans, directly or indirectly. If they're in trouble, that's a large swath of America that's facing a rough road ahead. Similarly, most Americans (including an overlapping group) want to support the higher profit margins of local enterprise. Still another group of most Americans (including overlap) want to end up with more money in their own pocket without doing any more work.

It's wonderfully easy to blame the problems of the world on our political opponents, but the truth is that everything is everyone's fault. Everyone is subject to their biases, and everyone wants what's best for whatever cause they support, according to whatever theories they follow. Without perfect knowledge, there will continue to be disagreements, and the solutions are certainly not simple enough to fit in any petition response.

A petition will not solve the nation's problems. Neither will Congress, or a different President, or even a million activists protesting unhappiness. Only time will fix today's problems, but it will also bring tomorrow's.

Re:Memetrolling is cheaper than fixing stuff (1)

Jeremi (14640) | about 2 years ago | (#42568435)

A good rule of thumb is that every issue is more complicated that everybody thinks [...]

Excellent post. This (or something like it) should be required reading for anyone who is about to post a thoughtless "shoot from the hip" political reply.

....than fixing stuff - IE building a deathstar?? (2)

cancerouspete (2746963) | about 2 years ago | (#42567757)

Wow, look at all 96 of those memes....

https://petitions.whitehouse.gov/responses [whitehouse.gov]

how exactly did you want them to respond to a petition that by their own rules forces them to respond if given enough votes?

Re:....than fixing stuff - IE building a deathstar (2)

YrWrstNtmr (564987) | about 2 years ago | (#42568137)

how exactly did you want them to respond to a petition that by their own rules forces them to respond if given enough votes?

When their own 'rules' gives them an absolute out, forcing them to respond means little. See the Chris Dodd bribery petition.

Terms of Participation from https://petitions.whitehouse.gov/how-why/terms-participation [whitehouse.gov]
"To avoid the appearance of improper influence, the White House may decline to address certain procurement, law enforcement, adjudicatory, or similar matters properly within the jurisdiction of federal departments or agencies, federal courts, or state and local government in its response to a petition."

Re:Memetrolling is cheaper than fixing stuff (1)

davydagger (2566757) | about 2 years ago | (#42567807)

+1 where are mod points when I need them

How about a petition to stop all the child rape? (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#42567667)

Apparently some dumb fucking fantasy is way more important than stopping the rape of children.

Re:How about a petition to stop all the child rape (5, Insightful)

sribe (304414) | about 2 years ago | (#42567703)

Apparently some dumb fucking fantasy is way more important than stopping the rape of children.

Is that what your petition is going to say "stop all the child rape"??? Perhaps you'd do more good in this world with less attitude and more plan...

Re:How about a petition to stop all the child rape (1)

ozydingo (922211) | about 2 years ago | (#42567753)

Or maybe Paul Shawcross did this in his spare time or break time? While I don't overwhelmingly approve of the speed, thoroughness, or appropriateness of many white house responses, you can't simply assume this response means that other duties were being shirked.

Re:How about a petition to stop all the child rape (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#42567767)

Because these petitions are only going to give an answer to a question. These aren't calls to action. The answer to your question is: They already are trying. That's why there are laws and task forces around made specifically to combat these rapes. But they aren't omniscient, and these rapes aren't happening out in public where everyone can see it and report it. So if you know about any child rape going on, you need to tell them about it. And make sure you have some kind of evidence. Just saying "I'm pretty sure it's happening because he's a Catholic priest" isn't going to cut it.

Re:How about a petition to stop all the child rape (1)

sulimma (796805) | about 2 years ago | (#42567965)

I am sure that your government will agree to not support rape of children.

Re:How about a petition to stop all the child rape (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#42568201)

Apparently some dumb fucking fantasy is way more important than stopping the rape of children.

You insensitive clod! Politicians rape children on a daily basis and their parents smile merrily.

lighthearted, appropriate for the petition (5, Insightful)

tomtermite (246492) | about 2 years ago | (#42567699)

I, for one, applaud a little light-heared humor from the Machine that is the Government.

Re:lighthearted, appropriate for the petition (2)

Virtucon (127420) | about 2 years ago | (#42568189)

That's not the machine, it's a staffer who replied after it was vetted by three layers of management. It's more accurate to call it what it is a bureaucracy.

Honestly, do people think that these petitions will do anything? It may be more prudent to expect an answer on that letter to Santa for that new Red Rider BB gun.
The whole petition thing that's been set up at whitehouse.gov is a lame attempt to direct social attention to items that the administration wants people to focus on. Those things that are on the list will be used to prop up positions already held while others will get whimsical, standard or non-responses. Don't believe me? Piers Morgan is still in the US isn't he?

Re:lighthearted, appropriate for the petition (1)

maxwell demon (590494) | about 2 years ago | (#42568413)

Ah, now I get why you call them an administration. [wikipedia.org]

Re:lighthearted, appropriate for the petition (2)

Vairon (17314) | about 2 years ago | (#42568509)

What law has Piers Morgan allegedly broken that stipulates deportation as a possible sentence?

Re:lighthearted, appropriate for the petition (2)

Jeremi (14640) | about 2 years ago | (#42568525)

Don't believe me? Piers Morgan is still in the US isn't he?

Are you seriously suggesting that the US government should extralegally deport people simply because their views are unpopular with certain self-righteous segments of society?

Re:lighthearted, appropriate for the petition (2)

Rogerborg (306625) | about 2 years ago | (#42569039)

Are you seriously suggesting that Piers Morgan is a person? The burden of proof lies with you.

Please, please, don't send him back. I'm still hung-over from the bacchanal we threw when he left.

But what if...? (1)

Impy the Impiuos Imp (442658) | about 2 years ago | (#42567701)

"Awwwwwwwwwwwwwww"

This is highly offensive. (4, Funny)

bistromath007 (1253428) | about 2 years ago | (#42567775)

Given the existence of the Jedi religion, the White House's statement that the Force is powerful is a blatant violation of the First Amendment. *folds arms*

Re:This is highly offensive. (4, Funny)

Stephen Williams (23750) | about 2 years ago | (#42567849)

I find your lack of faith distrubing. (4, Insightful)

FatLittleMonkey (1341387) | about 2 years ago | (#42567927)

It's no worse than the President ending speeches with "God bless America", or opening sessions of Congress with group prayer, so it's unlikely to get spanked by the SC even if the author was serious.

[Although I'd love to see a bunch of right-wing cable TV anger monkeys getting their back up over the establishment clause if a non-Christian fringe-religion President started dropping references to his own wacky New Age religion everywhere. May the Earth-mother praise him.]

I find your blatant hypocrisy disturbing (2, Insightful)

sco08y (615665) | about 2 years ago | (#42568287)

It's no worse than the President ending speeches with "God bless America", or opening sessions of Congress with group prayer, ...

.. which the Democrats do because they can't win elections without paying lip service to Christianity. That's why, for example, Nancy Pelosi calls herself a "good Catholic girl" even though she supports legalizing late term abortion, and it's why liberals like Bill Maher know that Obama is probably a "secular humanist" despite his various protestations that he's Christian. (Of a church that he attended for 20 years without, apparently, hearing any sermons or discussing them, etc.)

There is, for liberals, no higher principle than holding elected office. And their constituents are quite happy to be lied to and go along with the charade.

Re:I find your blatant hypocrisy disturbing (2)

10101001 10101001 (732688) | about 2 years ago | (#42568773)

.. which all politicians do because they can't win elections without paying lip service to Christianity. There's nothing particularly Christian about waging war, refusing to support a policy the poor or needy, or using any amount of force to collect taxes from anyone, really. Really, governance in general is all about world wants and needs, often through the use of force others to go along with it. Christianity is about spiritual enlightenment that compels one to do good works, but without forcing others to go along with it. They're really very orthogonal things.

And yes, constituents are quite happy to be lied to and go along with the charade because they want politicians who are "Christian enough" to do what they want to force others to go along with their beliefs. Ie, it's the fact that so few people are Christian but go along with the charade and hence are quite happy to push their political views on others under a comfy label instead of admitting their own little tyranny of opinion they wish to force on others. Give unto Caesar what is Caesar and leave Earthly matters to man while seeking God. The idea of usurping government to avoid oppression seems born from the Christian conquest of Rome, and there seems no end in sight. But, it's certainly not what Jesus commanded nor wanted any more than Marx's communism is equivalent to Soviet Russia.

Re:This is highly offensive. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#42568739)

Okay okay. The Force is powerful, but pales in comparison to the constitution and Supreme Court. Happy now?

So, let's summarize. (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#42567777)

You're saying it could be done, right?

Where do I sign up?

Thermal Exhause Port (2)

relikx (1266746) | about 2 years ago | (#42567887)

That the US will not consider building a Death Star is great. Imagine the cost overruns and time delays involved in a project that large when Lockheed-Martin, Boeing, Northrop Grumman, etc. bid on this project.

With all the red tape it's no surprise that such a large flaw as the thermal exhaust port was overlooked. No P-trap instead of a straight shot to the reactor core?

Classic arrogance on the part of underestimating a small counter-force (insurgency) due to planning against a more conventional war. Thus, why the Death Star didn't launch it's full complement of 7,000 TIE Fighters and instead only Vader and those under his command knew the deal.

Whether you think it's a good thing or a bad thing, the U.S. is an Empire of sorts but we'd be better off using those quadrillions to invest in our people. There are people in powerful positions who think otherwise though as the profits and promise of destruction are too much to resist.

Re:Thermal Exhause Port (1)

sulimma (796805) | about 2 years ago | (#42567987)

No P-trap instead of a straight shot to the reactor core? .

You are talking about nuclear reactor design.
They have a tradition of implementing 5m walls to protect against 20m Tsunamis.

This is the right response (1)

junior (6550) | about 2 years ago | (#42568041)

LOL! Simply, I like this. It's good to see some good humour from a Government in answering in the spirit of the petition. What I want to know is when will they make a start on warp, gravitic or inertialess drives ...

Krugman (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#42568043)

Paul Krugman saw the price tag and immediately thought it was a good idea. A Keynesian dream come true. A complete waste of resources.

Re:Krugman (2)

Virtucon (127420) | about 2 years ago | (#42568199)

So is a website set up by the white house to vet petitions from the public.

About the defense budget. (2)

MasterOfGoingFaster (922862) | about 2 years ago | (#42568163)

The USA can't afford $471?

Forget Lockheed-Martin, Boeing, Northrop Grumman, etc. I found it on Amazon!

http://www.amazon.com/LEGO-Star-Wars-Death-10188/dp/B002EEP3NO/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1358010617&sr=8-1&keywords=death+star [amazon.com]

Re:About the defense budget. (3, Funny)

sco08y (615665) | about 2 years ago | (#42568327)

The USA can't afford $471?

Forget Lockheed-Martin, Boeing, Northrop Grumman, etc. I found it on Amazon!

http://www.amazon.com/LEGO-Star-Wars-Death-10188/dp/B002EEP3NO/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1358010617&sr=8-1&keywords=death+star [amazon.com]

What the hell is this? A death star for ants? How can we be expected to deploy storm troopers to destroy planets... if they can't even fit inside the building?

I don't want to hear your excuses! It will have to be... at least three times as big.

Re:About the defense budget. (2)

JWW (79176) | about 2 years ago | (#42568329)

That would have been a great response!!

A picture of a completed Lego Death Star with the single word caption -- Done!

Re:About the defense budget. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#42568797)

Well, you know the government. They'll pay too much and probably build two of them for twice the price.

Maybe they'd buy this one [amazon.com] , though it looks only half-built, it does appear to be fully operational.

It's easy (1)

Dunbal (464142) | about 2 years ago | (#42568307)

Just fund it by minting a special "Death Star" platinum coin... Also what is so different between blowing up planets and dropping bombs on people with drones?

Re:It's easy (1)

maxwell demon (590494) | about 2 years ago | (#42568543)

Also what is so different between blowing up planets and dropping bombs on people with drones?

When the people you are attacking live on the same planet you live on, the difference is that in the second case you tend to survive.

The petition was insane (5, Interesting)

xyourfacekillerx (939258) | about 2 years ago | (#42568351)

The petition was insane, and so is the Administration's policy that it will respond to all petitions having a certain amount of signatures. It gives the U.S. citizen the illusion that this is a right (see the wording of the Constitution, fx, "to petition the government"); however, the right is easily exercised in other manners. More importantly, it deceives the citizen into believing that the White House is the primary and appropriate channel, and perhaps the very source of fiscal, policy and legislative matters. This deceit can be exploited against the citizen. Observe.

tldr: It is a political tactic used to influence citizens to vote straight ticket and under erroneous beliefs about the function of the President. This is not anti-Obama or anti-DNC.

(1) A President signs a bill into law, and assumes sole credit for its positive outcomes, because the people already assume the President was the source of power.

The rammifications here are (a) Voters for a presidential candidate or party line are obtained by campaign promises from the candidate which really should only be achieved by legislative or judicial action. (b) The candidate can focus his campaign around those false promises (What he will do) and not around the realities: What he will sign into law, if Congress gets the bill to his desk. (c) It allows the candidate to neglect the more important function of the President which is what he will not sign into law.

(2) It directs attention away from our legislative representatives. They are first and foremost responsible to the voters. They are the ones to be petitioned. They are the ones to introduce bills to Congress. All this petitioning the President distracts the citizen from the fact that ultimately a handful of committee members are determining the course of the country. This petition policy of the White House discourages people to spend their time and effort by calling upon their state or district reps. The White House prefers us to think the demands of 100,000 people from 50 different states is how decisions ought to be made, not 500 people from a single district (the way it has been done until now). I.e. it's majority rule, no state lines, no representative in the equation, except the President.

(3) It encourages the President to blame Congress when he cannot mandate a petition the administration perhaps does accept. In other words, "Yes, we like your petition. Now balance Congress to my party line, voter, and it may or may not happen." (It doesn't mean the petition will ever enter consideration by the House, but that message can have a strong effect at the polls) It turns ordinary voters into single issue, straight ticket voters whether they realize it or not.

(4) It is a waste of resources, man hours, and staff time. It's just bad business. But apparently it is amazing marketing, I mean politics. It's not like even 1% the voting population will realize what I've said above.

Re:The petition was insane (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#42568671)

perfectly correct. bravo.

Incoming Lawsuit (2)

CFBMoo1 (157453) | about 2 years ago | (#42568363)

As crazy as it sounds, someone will file a lawsuit against the USA for separation of church and state because of the White House pushing the Jedi religion in their response.

Why not? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#42568471)

Of course they won't officially support it, but you gotta know our assassin in chief is salivating over the ability to call the ultimate drone strike.

cost doesn't matter (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#42568561)

it's only 850,000 of those $1 trillion platinum coins.

We're going to need ... (1)

PPH (736903) | about 2 years ago | (#42568643)

... a bigger [slashdot.org] death star.

$850,000,000,000,000,000 (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#42568669)

So what? All you need to do, is mint some coins...

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