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Fun Supreme Court Arguments

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Re: Fun Supreme Court Arguments

Postby Heil » Tue Nov 16, 2010 4:33 pm

I mean I hate to bring a thread back on track but...

I got to thinking about what Knaughty had mentioned a few pages back about Christmas Island and I remember why that place rings a bell. Good ol' GOATSE! (it's a clean link from wikipedia, the amount of sources are enough to make you lol)

But hey we want some fun Supreme Court arguments amirite?
California v. Freeman
TLDR: Dude gets charged with pandering(aka soliciting prostitution) whilst making a pornographic movie in California. After a bunch of appeals dude wins and California becomes a legal state to film sweet sweet porn in :D

What makes it funny is that they attempted to appeal to the US Supreme Court to stay the state's ruling that Freeman was pandering even though the act was later found to be A.O.K. through the appeal process
US Supreme Court Justices wrote:Justice O'CONNOR: Ok, so are we going to hear a case on hiring actors for porn?
Remaining Justices: Lulwut? Isn't there something more important to deal with like Atari porn?
Justice O'CONNOR: Oh yea!

I couldn't resist throwing that in.

Yea I think that's how that went.

But also I am sure this argument has been beaten to death but I prefer to get all of my facts about a country from Encyclopedia Dramatica. Feel free see see their views on the USA and Australia. Very entertaining and VERY NSFW

knaughty wrote:...
The US scores reasonably well - you're roughly 20th for most things (well done!) but the only thing you're actually good at is having a really big economy, and even there, you're no longer ahead of the EU, and per-person you're 6th and falling. With the Australian dollar currently at parity with the US dollar, I believe you're behind us on that one as well. The rest of the world no longer believes you have strong economic growth prospects - go look at USD exchange rates for the last six months. Your currency is in free-fall, despite the fact it's the global reserve currency. How's printing money going for you?

Despite your (historical?) better GDP per person, Australia has a better standard of living. Then again, at current exchange rates, I think Australia has the highest GPD per person in the G20, so yeah, you're not even winning at being rich anymore.
...


However if we are going to split hairs about numbers tho :P
Australia GDP(Purchacing Power Parity)
Australia GDP per capita (PPP) FUCK YOU LIECHTENSTEIN! (J/P, I visit every chance I can)

And yea, I am well aware that these are figures from a US department, but they are generally reliable. Also I am aware of both the little est. tags after all of those numbers and the difference between GDP (stupid USA still being the last hold out on that one) and GNP. I am just way too lazy to look up the exact numbers / convert them, they shouldn't be too far off. I just cringe at wiki links to numerical facts. Have a nice day
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Re: Fun Supreme Court Arguments

Postby Fivelives » Tue Nov 16, 2010 7:16 pm

It's more that the rest of the states use CA as a test bed for things (mostly because CA has a history of being OK with taking stands on controversial issues). If it works there, then states typically follow suit. I expect that CA will be the first state to decriminalize or outright legalize marijuana, for instance, followed shortly by others.
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Re: Fun Supreme Court Arguments

Postby Arnock » Tue Nov 16, 2010 8:26 pm

Fivelives wrote:It's more that the rest of the states use CA as a test bed for things (mostly because CA has a history of being OK with taking stands on controversial issues). If it works there, then states typically follow suit. I expect that CA will be the first state to decriminalize or outright legalize marijuana, for instance, followed shortly by others.




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Re: Fun Supreme Court Arguments

Postby knaughty » Wed Nov 17, 2010 4:22 am

Sabindeus wrote:You're essentially legitimizing censorship with this argument.


A rating system is not a censorship system unless you make it one. The fact that the game publisher may choose to edit their game to achieve a certain rating is no different to a film director editing his film to achieve a desired MPAA rating.

So long as an "Adults Only" rating exists (absence of which is a glaring problem with the Australian video game rating system) there is no censorship. In theory films can be banned in Australia (which is censorship) - in practice, it's less than one film a year (excluding hardest-core-porn). It is also completely legal to own banned films in Australia - you're just not allowed to sell them here. You can, of course, buy them on Amazon and import them completely legally. So yes, we're kinda-sorta censored, but not really. From a libertarian perspective, I'd prefer that the "Refused classification" option was not available to the ratings board, in practice, it is a very minor issue even for libertarians (we're still working on sensible rights for refugees, gay marriage and reforming political donations).

If development houses decide not to develop AO games because they think they'll sell less, that's not censorship.

A government mandated rating system isn't censorship unless there's a "banned" rating. It may fall foul of the First Amendment - the Supreme Court certainly thinks it might, thus the appeal.

You don't sell porn to five year olds - it's illegal, and not a breach of the 1st. It seems reasonable to believe that there are games that are unsuitable for kids that age. Your film rating system has no legal force in the US - if a film lets a small kid watch a AO film, they can't be fined (by the government). In Australia, MA15+ means you have to be escorted by an adult or you can be fined, and R means 18+ or a fine.

Personally, the hoops the CA gov's lawyers seem to be going through to get a constitutional law seem stupid to an outsider. A simple "You're not allowed to sell AO games to minors, here's an independent rating agency" solution would seem to be better for everyone. And we get back to my original point, which is the fact that your constitution has this stuff in it as Holy Writ and people argue about punctuation is a pretty basic problem of jurisprudence.

Australia didn't write down the exact wording of "Freedom of speech", which in practice, has worked fairly well.
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Re: Fun Supreme Court Arguments

Postby Fivelives » Wed Nov 17, 2010 4:54 am

That's probably why it's made it to the supreme court. While it "technically" wouldn't be a breach of the first amendment, it actually would be, because retailers WILL refuse to sell anything with an AO rating - they already do. You can't walk into anywhere (other than porn shops) that sells adult only DVDs or porn mags. Shit, you can't even find porn mags in gas station/convenience stores anymore.

"Just let the devs tweak the games," you say. Do you really know what you're saying by that? Fallout would be censored because of the VATS system and promoting drug use and interactive violence against humans. Mass Effect and other Bioware games would have the romance subplots completely removed, as well as the ability to kill other humans "in an interactive fashion". FPS games would cease to exist as a genre. Fable would have the ability to have sex/children completely removed (really? an option to have protected vs unprotected sex? ADULT GAME WTF), and again would . Every game today that rates an "M for Mature" rating would be reclassified as "Adults Only".

I hate playing the citizenship card, but until you understand corporate america and the capitalist mindset, you'll continue to remain absolutely fucking clueless as to just why this is such a Bad Idea™. It's one of those cultural differences that you just had to have been born and raised here to understand. The people who are fighting for this to take effect are people who weren't members of the Nintendo generation - our parents, and our peers that still thought it was "geeky" and "socially unacceptable" to be a gamer. I'm not one to gamble, but I'll bet you just about anything that you'll never find a single adult american who considers themselves a gamer that thinks this would be anything but a Very Bad Idea™.

Even though it wouldn't be literal censorship, it would be de facto censorship. And nobody can refute the point that devs would stop making the fucking games when they stopped being profitable to make. THAT is what the issue is at stake here. Not the implementation and enforcement of an AO rating. Not how well the system works wherever the fuck people are in the world. Not whether or not the games deserve it. But the simple fact that capitalism would enforce the self-censorship of violent video game content. If the recent MoH debacle hasn't driven THAT point home to you already, then you're either blind or purposefully being obtuse.

I'll put it simply:

If Games Are Forced To Abide By An AO Rating Then They Will Not Be Made. Period.
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Re: Fun Supreme Court Arguments

Postby Fridmarr » Wed Nov 17, 2010 9:01 am

knaughty wrote: And we get back to my original point, which is the fact that your constitution has this stuff in it as Holy Writ and people argue about punctuation is a pretty basic problem of jurisprudence.


Australia didn't write down the exact wording of "Freedom of speech", which in practice, has worked fairly well.
Yeah, but that original point is still irrelevant. This case isn't merely about the first amendment and we didn't write down exactly what kind of speech was protected either. In fact you're not being consistent, with that complaint in general, sometimes we wrote down too much sometimes we wrote down not enough?

And the first amendment has worked quite well for us too.
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Re: Fun Supreme Court Arguments

Postby knaughty » Wed Nov 17, 2010 1:44 pm

Fivelives wrote:That's probably why it's made it to the supreme court. While it "technically" wouldn't be a breach of the first amendment, it actually would be, because retailers WILL refuse to sell anything with an AO rating - they already do. You can't walk into anywhere (other than porn shops) that sells adult only DVDs or porn mags. Shit, you can't even find porn mags in gas station/convenience stores anymore.

<snip>

If Games Are Forced To Abide By An AO Rating Then They Will Not Be Made. Period.


Even if it's true (and you present no evidence, other than your opinion), that's not censorship.

Censorship is suppression of speech or other communication which may be considered objectionable, harmful, sensitive, or inconvenient to the general body of people as determined by a government, media outlet, or other controlling body.

The ESRB and MPAA already exist and already rate some things AO.

If you wants some evidence that AO games won't be made, I'll give you some: list of games rated AO. There is one non-porn game on that list: GTA: San Andreas (first edition) with the Hot Coffee mini-game still on the disc. Every other game on the list looks like a porn game to me.

AO games are already not made, have never been made, and will continue to not be made, regardless of whether ESRB ratings gained the force of law. GTA:SA was altered before release to make "Hot Coffee" not an accessible part of the game so avoid an AO rating. After the hack that put it back in the game, the rating was changed to AO, and then the game was patched again to remove the mini-game entirely and get back under AO and released as GTA:SA 2nd ed.

The fact that game developers already avoid making AO games is a commercial decision, not censorship.

Giving the ESRB the force of law, rather than industry practice, won't really change anything.

The proposed CA law is stupid - the correct solution is to create a rating system with legal force rather than relying on industry practice and custom. Of course, to justify that, you'd probably want to demonstrate that industry practice was faulty.

The fact the CA law is stupid doesn't make it censorship.
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Re: Fun Supreme Court Arguments

Postby knaughty » Wed Nov 17, 2010 2:07 pm

Fridmarr wrote:
knaughty wrote: And we get back to my original point, which is the fact that your constitution has this stuff in it as Holy Writ and people argue about punctuation is a pretty basic problem of jurisprudence.


Australia didn't write down the exact wording of "Freedom of speech", which in practice, has worked fairly well.
Yeah, but that original point is still irrelevant. This case isn't merely about the first amendment and we didn't write down exactly what kind of speech was protected either. In fact you're not being consistent, with that complaint in general, sometimes we wrote down too much sometimes we wrote down not enough?

And the first amendment has worked quite well for us too.

I don't think I've ever argued that the Bill of Rights is a good idea. We only have two in Australia, and neither are written down:

The basic premise of English Common Law, which is that "Everything not explicitly banned is permitted"

Ninth Amendment – Protection of rights not specifically enumerated in the Constitution.
The enumeration in the Constitution, of certain rights, shall not be construed to deny or disparage others retained by the people.


So we share those.

Of the other nine amendments in the Bill of Rights, we have all bar the second, without any of them being written into a bill of rights.

My position is that I agree with Alexander Hamilton "Here, in strictness, the people surrender nothing, and as they retain everything, they have no need of particular reservations."

Even with the 9th, enumerating rights implies that those rights not specified are not granted.

I'm also of the opinion that fundamental rights can change over time - usually by them being increased, occasionally by them being removed. EG: My personal opinion is that the second amendment should be repealed, or better yet, never written down.
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Re: Fun Supreme Court Arguments

Postby Fivelives » Wed Nov 17, 2010 2:44 pm

What kind of a rock do you live under that you haven't heard anything about the Medal of Honor controversy?

And I believe I already said that "it's not actual censorship, but it is de facto censorship". Call a spade a spade - it doesn't matter if the industry censors itself, or the government censors it, it's still censorship. The California law is about violence in video games which has already been debunked on NUMEROUS occasions. If it goes into effect, though, then violent video games will join the pile of hentai games as "shit that simply never gets made".

Actually, let me amend something here. Codifying violence as a means of justifying an AO rating as a matter of law would, in fact, have the end result be censorship by legislation. It's a reasonable chain of logic:

Government decides that violent video games require an AO rating.
Retailers won't sell games with AO ratings.
Developers stop making games with AO ratings.
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Re: Fun Supreme Court Arguments

Postby Fridmarr » Wed Nov 17, 2010 10:49 pm

knaughty wrote:
Fridmarr wrote:
knaughty wrote: And we get back to my original point, which is the fact that your constitution has this stuff in it as Holy Writ and people argue about punctuation is a pretty basic problem of jurisprudence.


Australia didn't write down the exact wording of "Freedom of speech", which in practice, has worked fairly well.
Yeah, but that original point is still irrelevant. This case isn't merely about the first amendment and we didn't write down exactly what kind of speech was protected either. In fact you're not being consistent, with that complaint in general, sometimes we wrote down too much sometimes we wrote down not enough?

And the first amendment has worked quite well for us too.

I don't think I've ever argued that the Bill of Rights is a good idea. We only have two in Australia, and neither are written down:

The basic premise of English Common Law, which is that "Everything not explicitly banned is permitted"

Ninth Amendment – Protection of rights not specifically enumerated in the Constitution.
The enumeration in the Constitution, of certain rights, shall not be construed to deny or disparage others retained by the people.


So we share those.

Of the other nine amendments in the Bill of Rights, we have all bar the second, without any of them being written into a bill of rights.

My position is that I agree with Alexander Hamilton "Here, in strictness, the people surrender nothing, and as they retain everything, they have no need of particular reservations."

Even with the 9th, enumerating rights implies that those rights not specified are not granted.

I'm also of the opinion that fundamental rights can change over time - usually by them being increased, occasionally by them being removed. EG: My personal opinion is that the second amendment should be repealed, or better yet, never written down.

There was plenty of debate over listing out specific rights, or governmental restrictions. That's why the 9th (and 10th) amendment was added, to cover this particular concern you have. Your inconsistency was the complaint that we are hamstrung by the first amendment, despite it's brevity in dealing with free speech, and that contrasted with your complaints about the second amendment. (Not to mention the whole thing about the games having to be modified for the Australian market, but everyone's allowed to be a homer I guess.) Honestly, I can't say I've felt (or even heard of) the stance that the bill of rights is an encumbrance.

Again though, all this bill of rights stuff is fairly irrelevant.
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Re: Fun Supreme Court Arguments

Postby Gracerath » Fri Nov 19, 2010 2:21 am

Fivelives wrote:What kind of a rock do you live under that you haven't heard anything about the Medal of Honor controversy?


I had to go look it up :( I felt I lost some cred as a fan of the genre cause I had no idea that there was some sort of controversy. Of course any of the modern FPS war games have something edgy in them nowadays. "No Russian" mission in MW2, anyone?

Of course I'm an adult and know the difference between fact and fiction and can enjoy the entertainment as it's supposed to be.

And now back to our regularly scheduled program.
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Re: Fun Supreme Court Arguments

Postby Passionario » Wed Dec 01, 2010 3:51 am

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Re: Fun Supreme Court Arguments

Postby Hayz » Fri Dec 03, 2010 1:35 am

If you want a good thing to watch, and its actually (sorta) on topic, check out the documentary "This Film Is Not Yet Rated." It goes into a good bit of depth on how movies are rated and all the flaws and things you may not have known about the system, definitely worth the time imo
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