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Old 02-11-2009
 
#31
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Default Re: Are These People Insane? Oh Yes.

There was a great oped published in the FT today by PJ O'Rourke, referencing Adam Smith. I suggest you all read it, it's not long.

http://www.ft.com/cms/s/2802e3a8-f77...ml&_i_referer=
 
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Old 02-11-2009
 
#32
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Default Re: Are These People Insane? Oh Yes.

Quote:
Originally Posted by WindowlessHouse
Some politicians are more prone to accelerate that growth process and it is the responsibility of informed citizens to not vote for them. Spare us these useless platitudes next time.
All politicians accelerate growth. Any time a law is passed the power of the state grows. To claim you can measure this change is pure delusion.

Quote:
Originally Posted by WindowlessHouse
The Constitution is based around limited government, so quit dodging the alternative that a limited government can work and has worked. Just because a bunch of corrupt ideologues (Reid, Pelosi, Obama) are ruining the system we have now is not evidence that the system is corrupt, it's the people running it that are. This can be changed and it will once they are voted out.
Has worked? Limited government is uniquely rooted in its time sustainability. All governments start out limited and grow ceaseless from there forward.

This is typically the reason why, from Hans Hermann-Hoppe:

"Unlike kings then, congressmen, presidents, and Supreme Court judges do not and cannot acquire their positions accidentally. Rather, they reach their position because of their proficiency as morally uninhibited demagogues. Moreover, even outside the orbit of government, within civil society, individuals will increasingly rise to the top of economic and financial success, not on account of their productive or entrepreneurial talents or even their superior defensive political talents, but rather because of their superior skills as unscrupulous political entrepreneurs and lobbyists. Thus, the Constitution virtually assures that exclusively dangerous men will rise to the pinnacle of government power and that moral behavior and ethical standards will tend to decline and deteriorate over all."

http://mises.org/story/2874

This is a fantastic essay on the impossibility of limited government, if you care to indulge your mind.
 
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"Liberty, or Freedome, signifieth (properly) the absence of opposition; (by Opposition, I mean externall Impediments of motion) and may be applied no lesse to Irrationall, and Inanimate creatures, that to Rationall.

And according to this proper, and generally received meaning of the word, a free man, is he, that in those things, which by his strength and wit he is able to do, is not hindered to doe what he has a will to."

- Thomas Hobbes, Leviathan.

So close... Yet so far.
 

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Old 02-11-2009
 
#33
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Default Re: Are These People Insane? Oh Yes.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Kaizen View Post
"Unlike kings then, congressmen, presidents, and Supreme Court judges do not and cannot acquire their positions accidentally. Rather, they reach their position because of their proficiency as morally uninhibited demagogues. Moreover, even outside the orbit of government, within civil society, individuals will increasingly rise to the top of economic and financial success, not on account of their productive or entrepreneurial talents or even their superior defensive political talents, but rather because of their superior skills as unscrupulous political entrepreneurs and lobbyists.
Doesn't this assume that being ambitious and being skilled, talented, or possessing expertise are mutually exclusive?
 
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Old 02-11-2009
 
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Default Re: Are These People Insane? Oh Yes.

Quote:
I don't feel that I, at any point, came to a conclusion. I simply stated facts: governments are an inherent part of society, and cancer is not a design.
Your own post:

Quote:
Given that governments have formed out of every major society since the beginning of time, I cannot fathom what you see as a viable alternative to managing 8M people at a time.
Premise: Governments are how society has been maintained for the history of man
Conclusion: There are no viable alternative solutions to maintain society

Quote:
And if you or Golgo thinks that the thousands of years of the formation of government is wrong, I have no problems whatsoever with that. My problem is that it traditionally is what society does and simply complaining about it with no alternative is getting tiresome and rather one-dimensional. If there is an alternative to what society has done since the beginning of history, what is it? Barbarism gives way to government time after time.
I already said I agree with the conclusion, enough with the straw. All I am attempting to show is that your logic in that specific instance did not follow.

While I disagree with Kaizen on this, he has a well thought-out philosophy of anarcho-capitalism. They aren't all brainlessly complaining about government.

Quote:
You can claim the status quo isn't right all you'd like. But if you have nothing with which to prove your claim then excuse me if I dismiss you as a pedantic malcontent.
I think this is a perfect example of your typical posting style. First, you create a strawman. I did not assert that the status quo isn't right, just that it is not always right, as your argument depends on. Then you conclude with silly ivory tower speak insults. They aren't impressive.
 

Last edited by Grog; 02-11-2009 at 06:49 PM.
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Old 02-11-2009
 
#35
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Default Re: Are These People Insane? Oh Yes.

I see I need to post the paragraph before it as well.

"Worse still, given that, in every society, more "have-nots" of everything worth having exist than "haves," the politically talented who have little or no inhibition against taking property and lording it over others will have a clear advantage over those with such scruples. That is, open political competition favors aggressive, hence dangerous, rather than defensive, hence harmless, political talents and will thus lead to the cultivation and perfection of the peculiar skills of demagoguery, deception, lying, opportunism, corruption, and bribery. Therefore, entrance into and success within government will become increasingly impossible for anyone hampered by moral scruples against lying and stealing.

Unlike kings then, congressmen, presidents, and Supreme Court judges do not and cannot acquire their positions accidentally. Rather, they reach their position because of their proficiency as morally uninhibited demagogues. Moreover, even outside the orbit of government, within civil society, individuals will increasingly rise to the top of economic and financial success, not on account of their productive or entrepreneurial talents or even their superior defensive political talents, but rather because of their superior skills as unscrupulous political entrepreneurs and lobbyists. Thus, the Constitution virtually assures that exclusively dangerous men will rise to the pinnacle of government power and that moral behavior and ethical standards will tend to decline and deteriorate over all."
 
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"Liberty, or Freedome, signifieth (properly) the absence of opposition; (by Opposition, I mean externall Impediments of motion) and may be applied no lesse to Irrationall, and Inanimate creatures, that to Rationall.

And according to this proper, and generally received meaning of the word, a free man, is he, that in those things, which by his strength and wit he is able to do, is not hindered to doe what he has a will to."

- Thomas Hobbes, Leviathan.

So close... Yet so far.
 

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Old 02-11-2009
 
#36
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Default Re: Are These People Insane? Oh Yes.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Grog
I think this is a perfect example of your typical posting style
Unfortunately I was attempting to be as politic as possible and you took this as an opportunity to press your agenda on what you perceive is "my typical posting style". I did not mean to assign you or Golgo an opinion, I think it's rather clear that I put the qualifier "if" in front of anything I assigned to either of you. That was no coincidence. If I failed to do so in some instance, my mistake.

I did not at any point state or imply that the government was best, I was simply pointing out that it's always as we have done things. The implicit statement never was at any point, no matter what words you bold, that there are no alternatives. I simply cannot see or fathom them. Perhaps you think me dumb for making such a statement? I don't know. I was not asking the question in a sarcastic manner, I was completely genuine. All I know is that no matter how I stop and think for an alternative, it always returns to government. And as we have always done it that way, if you are going to knock it regularly, you should have something with which to supplant it. Or it is simply an exercise in disaffection. Do you disagree?

I am open to a civil response, but if you are simply going to quotemine me and persist with your attacks, I will simply stop responding as I have done before. I am not perpetuating some petty, vicious argument that you insist on having because you smell blood on some minutiae of my post.
 
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Old 02-11-2009
 
#37
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Default Re: Are These People Insane? Oh Yes.

Quote:
Originally Posted by GA
I don't feel that I, at any point, came to a conclusion. I simply stated facts: governments are an inherent part of society, and cancer is not a design.
Quote:
Originally Posted by GA
I did not at any point state or imply that the government was best, I was simply pointing out that it's always as we have done things.
I really must address this, as it is a massive error made in everyone's thinking on the subject of society and government.

What you are doing is using the trend of history as a guide for your conclusion. You are saying that all civilized societies involve governments, therefore governments are an inherent part of (civilized) society. (I'm using civilized society here because history does show examples of non-civilized, non-governmental situations of society, however I'll just address what I think you're getting at so as to move this along quicker.)

This is of course a hasty generalization. At the core, you are assuming that history is a perfect sample. However, there's nothing that says even a further civilized society in the future may not be accompanied by government. To use history as refutation is as valid as saying democracy is impossible in 2000 B.C. Under your logic, this was a valid argument circa 2000 B.C. Or another recent example, the argument no black man could ever be President of the United States.

Our infatuation with interpreting outcomes of human behaviour derived from a historical perspective is a highly dangerous endeavour. We must discuss the nature of things in order to truly understand.

To say government is "inherent" must be address from the level of individual human interaction and why the conclusion must follow. The way I see it, society is something entirely different than government. Society, by its very nature, must preceed government. Government itself exists through unequal distributions of power. Society does not refer to slavery, but free interaction. We would not call a gulag "society" would we? We would not call a serf and master "society" would we? Slavery is something different, through which government finds its power. Technically speaking, government is the antithesis of society.

Is government a producer of order or a creator of disorder? You know where I stand. The ultimate argument made to the contrary is that the disorder caused by government through coercive measures (taxation, laws) is outweighed by the benefits of reduced coercion to individuals. As I frequently state, this is an impossible proposal to prove.
 

Last edited by Kaizen; 02-12-2009 at 12:34 PM.
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"Liberty, or Freedome, signifieth (properly) the absence of opposition; (by Opposition, I mean externall Impediments of motion) and may be applied no lesse to Irrationall, and Inanimate creatures, that to Rationall.

And according to this proper, and generally received meaning of the word, a free man, is he, that in those things, which by his strength and wit he is able to do, is not hindered to doe what he has a will to."

- Thomas Hobbes, Leviathan.

So close... Yet so far.
 

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Old 02-11-2009
 
#38
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Default Re: Are These People Insane? Oh Yes.

Quote:
Originally Posted by WindowlessHouse View Post
The Constitution is based around limited government, so quit dodging the alternative that a limited government can work and has worked. Just because a bunch of corrupt ideologues (Reid, Pelosi, Obama) are ruining the system we have now is not evidence that the system is corrupt, it's the people running it that are. This can be changed and it will once they are voted out.
The problem is that limited government doesn't stay limited. We started off with a limited government and our founding fathers stressed to great ends the essential importance of keeping the government limited and accountable to the people. Look where that got us.

There was only 1 candidate that was talking about limited government and financial reform - the solutions to the problems we're experiencing now and will be experiencing later, and he didn't get anywhere. The media largely ignored him and he was hardly given any time during debates.

Also, let's not give the Bush administration a pass here. They positively exploded the size of government. While I'm confident that Obama will deal his fair share of damage before he's out, he hasn't done much at this time. Most of the bailout bonanza came before his term.
 

Last edited by Golgo 13; 02-11-2009 at 07:15 PM.
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Old 02-11-2009
 
#39
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Default Re: Are These People Insane? Oh Yes.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Kaizen View Post
All politicians accelerate growth. Any time a law is passed the power of the state grows. To claim you can measure this change is pure delusion.
I don't claim to measure anything beyond, "Hey, that guy is going to delegate 4 trillion dollars worth of federal spending in the first three weeks of his presidency. Another politician might have spent only 500 billion." "Accelerating growth" has it's own degrees. Some politicians will spend more and more some less. The government is inherently going to accelerate based on the growth of the economy anyway. So again, cut the platitudes.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Kaizen View Post
Has worked? Limited government is uniquely rooted in its time sustainability. All governments start out limited and grow ceaseless from there forward.

This is typically the reason why, from Hans Hermann-Hoppe:

"Unlike kings then, congressmen, presidents, and Supreme Court judges do not and cannot acquire their positions accidentally. Rather, they reach their position because of their proficiency as morally uninhibited demagogues. Moreover, even outside the orbit of government, within civil society, individuals will increasingly rise to the top of economic and financial success, not on account of their productive or entrepreneurial talents or even their superior defensive political talents, but rather because of their superior skills as unscrupulous political entrepreneurs and lobbyists. Thus, the Constitution virtually assures that exclusively dangerous men will rise to the pinnacle of government power and that moral behavior and ethical standards will tend to decline and deteriorate over all."

http://mises.org/story/2874

This is a fantastic essay on the impossibility of limited government, if you care to indulge your mind.
Are you really going to respond to my post which was exclusively about the elected branches of government with a quote that addresses the unelected branch, the Supreme Court? There is a difference between the two. I am quite familiar with the issues surrounding the Supreme Court and have posted about the subject many times on these forums. Shameless plug: http://www.amazon.com/Men-Black-Supr...4393906&sr=8-5

Anyway, I'll peruse that article later to see if it has anything relevant to say about the elected branches of government.

EDIT:

Quote:
Originally Posted by Golgo 13
The problem is that limited government doesn't stay limited.
No kidding. But that problem, because it can be mitigated, stretched out over time, and outright pushed back if we get the right people into office, is a far cry better than anarcho-capitalism or socialism, both of which are unfeasible.


Quote:
Originally Posted by Golgo 13
There was only 1 candidate that was talking about limited government and financial reform - the solutions to the problems we're experiencing now and will be experiencing later, and he didn't get anywhere. The media largely ignored him and he was hardly given any time during debates.
If Ron Paul wasn't such a nut about foreign policy, I might have given him a chance.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Golgo 13
Also, let's not give the Bush administration a pass here. They positively exploded the size of government. While I'm confident that Obama will deal his fair share of damage before he's out, he hasn't done much at this time. Most of the bailout bonanza came before his term.
Nobody is giving Bush a pass. He spent way too much. However, If Obama is going to spend more, doesn't that make him worse than Bush on that particular issue? And if that's true, why should one support Obama?
 

Last edited by WindowlessHouse; 02-11-2009 at 07:37 PM.
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Old 02-11-2009
 
#40
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Default Re: Are These People Insane? Oh Yes.

Quote:
Originally Posted by WindowlessHouse View Post
This number is staggering and it shows exactly why we didn't need a young, ambitious democrat president that is going to rubber stamp anything Reid & Pelosi's majority congress wants in the name of "change". Add on top of Golgo's figure the nationalization of this country's health care system, which will subsume another 15%+ of the economy, one can see that we're doomed.
Wait a minute, this number is staggering he says, and all of this occured under Bush's presidency. So therefore we should not have a democrat in office? WTF?

Republican president >>>>>Spent more than the Marshall Plan, Vietnam, WW1, WW2, and Lousiana purchase........therefore we need another Republican?

Seriously...wtf?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Windowlesshouse
Oh and Obama's going to cut the military. What a surprise.
Well being that it's the least necessary program and accounts for a large percentage of the pork, yes thats a great idea.
 
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Old 02-12-2009
 
#41
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Default Re: Are These People Insane? Oh Yes.

Quote:
Originally Posted by The Hawaiian
Wait a minute, this number is staggering he says, and all of this occured under Bush's presidency. So therefore we should not have a democrat in office? WTF?

Republican president >>>>>Spent more than the Marshall Plan, Vietnam, WW1, WW2, and Lousiana purchase........therefore we need another Republican?

Seriously...wtf?
You are one fucking insane troll. The 4 trillion dollars is all NEW SPENDING proposed since Obama took office on top of what Bush has done already.

Quote:
Originally Posted by The Hawaiian
Well being that it's the least necessary program and accounts for a large percentage of the pork, yes thats a great idea.
Congratulations troll. Hope you get fired from the "cut the chaff" section of the military's personnel review.
 

Last edited by WindowlessHouse; 02-12-2009 at 01:01 AM.
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Old 02-12-2009
 
#42
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Default Re: Are These People Insane? Oh Yes.

I don't know that I'm assuming history is a perfect sample, I think that I'm simply paying intellectual homage to what got me here. At any point and time that you are building upon something, regardless of how you plan on arriving at the peak, you must at some point acknowledge you'd never be able to build if the foundation for the structure had not been laid. If something were to go wrong with a particular exercise and your addition were a gross failure, you know for certain that you could rebuild to that point with no trouble.

That came out a little metaphoric than I had intended, but essentially what I mean is this: it's difficult for me to say that the means with which society has arrived to this point is flawed. Because, in fact, it produced you, me, and the educational institutions that have given us the ability to question this society. Imperialism may be wrong in advanced world perspective, but unquestionably its employment gave the world the ability to form societies that could form such a perspective.

If we tried a new idea, and that idea failed and resulted in complete chaos, we as a people know we can restore order, thought, and society by resorting to a government. You claim that a government was borne out of unequal relationships, which may be true, but given that unequal relationships are the very essence of nature, it seems a difficult concept from which to separate ourselves.
 
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Old 02-12-2009
 
#43
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Default Re: Are These People Insane? Oh Yes.

Quote:
Originally Posted by WindowlessHouse View Post
You are one fucking insane troll. The 4 trillion dollars is all NEW SPENDING proposed since Obama took office on top of what Bush has done already.
Really?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Golgo
This chart shows the money borrowed by US banks from the Fed from 1919 to the end of 2007. The spike marks the Savings & Loan Crisis at the end of the 1980s with borrowing maxing out at around 8 billion....

...The other graph I posted is the same timeline up to November 2008.
This is what you were replying to.

It seems WindowlessHouse has this image of what the world looks like which doesn't seem to conform to reality. His perceptions of Republicans being fiscally conservative and Democrats being the big spenders is way off.

WH, you're a tool. I'm sorry but it's true, and everyone can see that. You simply don't have a clue about what you're talking about.
 
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Old 02-13-2009
 
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Default Re: Are These People Insane? Oh Yes.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Kaizen View Post
I see I need to post the paragraph before it as well.

"Worse still, given that, in every society, more "have-nots" of everything worth having exist than "haves," the politically talented who have little or no inhibition against taking property and lording it over others will have a clear advantage over those with such scruples. That is, open political competition favors aggressive, hence dangerous, rather than defensive, hence harmless, political talents and will thus lead to the cultivation and perfection of the peculiar skills of demagoguery, deception, lying, opportunism, corruption, and bribery. Therefore, entrance into and success within government will become increasingly impossible for anyone hampered by moral scruples against lying and stealing.

Unlike kings then, congressmen, presidents, and Supreme Court judges do not and cannot acquire their positions accidentally. Rather, they reach their position because of their proficiency as morally uninhibited demagogues. Moreover, even outside the orbit of government, within civil society, individuals will increasingly rise to the top of economic and financial success, not on account of their productive or entrepreneurial talents or even their superior defensive political talents, but rather because of their superior skills as unscrupulous political entrepreneurs and lobbyists. Thus, the Constitution virtually assures that exclusively dangerous men will rise to the pinnacle of government power and that moral behavior and ethical standards will tend to decline and deteriorate over all."
I admit I misread the prior quote, Kaizen. It's not just about the Supreme Court. Apologies.

The thing is that we want the politically savvy to reach the pinnacles of government because that is the only way the federal government is going to function even at a minimum level. If competition brings out the "dangerous" a.k.a. best people, then that's the way it needs to be.

It's still possible to form a coalition of voters that will hold politicians responsible to a constitutionally limited government. Nothing is in the way except fifth columnists, like DR, and the ignorance of the electorate. It takes time to educate, argue, and convince others (a concrete failure of Obama's policies would work), but it's entirely possible. I'd say that rather than the theory that limited government is impossible, that there is an ebb and flow to political systems as presented by Polybius, among others. Eventually this country will blow back towards constitutionality because it will be forced to by the misery caused by too much government. What in Hoppe's theory proscribes a counter-action?

Hoppe makes a lot of statements in his article that I flat out disagree with. For example, he writes,

Quote:
Originally Posted by From Essay
Last but not least, the commitment to free trade and noninterventionism has given way to a policy of protectionism, militarism, and imperialism. In fact, almost since its beginnings the US government has engaged in relentless aggressive expansionism and, starting with the Spanish-American War and continuing past World War I and World War II to the present, the United States has become entangled in hundreds of foreign conflicts and risen to the rank of the world's foremost warmonger and imperialist power. In addition, while American citizens have become increasingly more defenseless, insecure, and impoverished, and foreigners all over the globe have become ever more threatened and bullied by US military power, American presidents, members of Congress, and Supreme Court judges have become ever more arrogant, morally corrupt, and dangerous."
This is such a broad-brushed, misrepresentation of this nation's history, military or otherwise that it is impossible to for me to accept it as "evidence". This country has produced a lot of good in the world. The sheer power of the American system to create wealth spits at the idea that limited government doesn't work.

I would like to add that I haven't seen arguments that point in favor anarcho-capitalism or socialism over the capacity for good/wealth brought about by limited government. This would make a good debate topic over in Serious Discussion, by the way.

Quote:
Originally Posted by The Hawaiian View Post
It seems WindowlessHouse has this image of what the world looks like which doesn't seem to conform to reality. His perceptions of Republicans being fiscally conservative and Democrats being the big spenders is way off.

WH, you're a tool. I'm sorry but it's true, and everyone can see that. You simply don't have a clue about what you're talking about.
What was that, troll? It doesn't matter to an intellectually vapid person like you how many times that I state that I am a conservative and not a republican, and have never claimed the republicans were fiscal conservatives in the past eight years, but you go ahead and keep repeating your canards, troll.

http://blog.heritage.org/2009/02/12/...-327-trillion/
 

Last edited by WindowlessHouse; 02-13-2009 at 03:19 AM.
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Old 02-13-2009
 
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United States The Hawaiian
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LOL you're such a tool man, a wannabe-Chaos only dumber. You only make an issue about "liberal" / "Democrats" / "Obama" / "the left" spending. Could you please link to some previous posts where you blast the Republicans by name or the former president? Oh right, they don't exist, and you're full of shit.
 
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