The Rise and Fall of the New York City Tattoo Ban

How government regulators tried to kill the skin & ink trade.

Tattooed ladyPublic DomainThis weekend the Roseland Ballroom in midtown Manhattan will play host to the 17th Annual New York City Tattoo Convention, a three-day event featuring hundreds of artists from around the world. Attendees will have the opportunity to get inked, get pierced, or simply gawk at a wide assortment of colorfully adorned bodies. It’s a weird and wonderful display of what the philosopher Robert Nozick once called “capitalist acts between consenting adults.”

Yet if the same convention had been staged in the same location just two decades earlier, every tattooist at work could have been arrested on the spot. That’s because, in 1961, New York City declared it “unlawful for any person to tattoo a human being,” a prohibition that remained on the books for nearly four decades, until the city finally re-legalized the tattoo trade in 1997.

The story of New York City’s tattoo ban presents the classic case of government regulators using a bogus public health pretext to hound an unpopular activity out of existence. Pointing to a non-existent link between tattooing and a minor outbreak of Hepatitis B, city health officials went on the attack, declaring, “the tattoo industry, from a public health point of view...[is] not regulatable.” According to the government, only a total ban would save the citizenry.

Fred Grossman, a tattooist who worked out of a shop in Coney Island, brought suit, charging the city with an illegitimate exercise of power. But when his case finally reached the courtroom, Grossman hit the brick wall of judicial deference to government regulation.

According to state appellate Judge Aron Steuer, “what is harmful or injurious is a matter for the Legislature rather than the courts.” Besides, the judge added, “the decoration, so-called, of the human body by tattoo designs is, in our culture, a barbaric survival, often associated with a morbid or abnormal personality.” Tattooists would find no refuge in Steuer’s courtroom.

Grossman next appealed to the state’s highest court, but he met with an equally dismissive judiciary. “In its wisdom, the board in the case before us decided that the prohibition of lay tattooing was essential for the protection of the public health,” the court ruled in Grossman v. Baumgartner (1966). Because “the police power is exceedingly broad...the courts will not substitute their judgment of a public health problem for that of eminently qualified physicians in the field of public health.”

As an authority for that position, New York’s highest court cited the U.S. Supreme Court’s 1938 opinion in the landmark New Deal case of United States v. Carolene Products Co. At issue there was a federal law prohibiting the interstate shipment of so-called filled milk, which is basically a skim milk product made with oil rather than milk fat. In the eyes of dairy farmers, filled milk was an unwelcome competitor, prompting the dairy industry to lobby aggressively for the federal restriction. Congress soon obliged, denouncing filled milk as “an adulterated article of food, injurious to the public health.”

Writing for the Carolene Products majority, Justice Harlan Fiske Stone sided with the lawmakers. When it came to “regulatory legislation affecting ordinary commercial transactions,” Stone held, “the existence of facts supporting the legislative judgment is to be presumed.” In other words, the courts must defer to lawmakers in all disputes between the government and an entrepreneur or business owner challenging an economic regulation on constitutional grounds.

Unsurprisingly, that deferential approach spelled doom for New York City’s tattoo artists, who remained outlaws until the ban was finally lifted in 1997. What prompted the change? As Mayor Rudolph Giuliani observed in March of that year, “operation of a tattoo establishment in New York City is illegal, however such establishments do currently operate in the City without regulations.” And even though such tattooing had been going on in the shadows, “there has not been a single documented case of Hepatitis B in New York City transmitted by tattooing in almost 40 years since the ban was enacted.” Legalization was long overdue.

To be sure, tattooing never should have been made illegal in the first place, and the state courts should have done their jobs by overruling the capricious legislation. But at least the city finally came to its senses. That’s more than can be said for many other government actions.

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  • GILMORE||

    Suggested Alt-Text =

    "GILMORE plays pool with this guy on Sundays"

  • Sevo||

    But Gilmore, there aren't enough clothes there for a decent critique!

  • GILMORE||

    Style isn't just about *clothes*, you peasant.

    Besides, I'm only a fashion critic for The Independents, and only because it makes the show more fun.

    But seriously, a guy I play pool with totally rocks that look.

  • sloopyinca||

    Better alt-text: photoshopped picture is photoshopped.

  • GILMORE||

    Roger. Moore.

    You are hereby held in contempt for a minimum 30 days. Talk to the hand, bitch.

  • sloopyinca||

    Oh, you're just mad because that troll attempt was brilliantly successful.

  • Swiss Servator, alles klar?||

    Looks like it worked, to me.

  • Rhywun||

    often associated with a morbid or abnormal personality

    I more-or-less agree with this sentiment but I'm struggling to understand WTF his personal opinion had to do with the case at hand. I guess that's why I'm not a law person.

  • Heroic Mulatto||

    Oh, the judge provided a helpful footnote to explain his reasoning:The evidence showed that one third of the admissions to the United States Public Health Hospital at Lexington, Kentucky, for drug addiction were tattooed. If the addict was also a sexual deviant, the incidence of tattooing was markedly higher.

  • Rhywun||

    So tattoos cause drug use and deviant sex. I knew it.

  • gaoxiaen||

    That's my excuse.

  • Pi Guy||

    No ink. But I'm down with the drugs and deviant sex.

  • AlmightyJB||

    Gateway ink

  • The Late P Brooks||

    The evidence showed that one third of the admissions to the United States Public Health Hospital at Lexington, Kentucky, for drug addiction were tattooed. If the addict was also a sexual deviant, the incidence of tattooing was markedly higher.

    I think we all recognize the strong correlation between music and heroin use. We should ban guitars. For the children.

  • Heroic Mulatto||

    We also need to abduct Aerosmith, for this plan to work.

  • Notorious G.K.C.||

    "the prohibition of lay tattooing"

    Leave that stuff to the clergy.

  • Heroic Mulatto||

  • Steve G||

    My god, what a bankrupt culture/religion. As long as you're wearing the right clothes and misquoting some plagiarized scripture, you can actually argue for murder while not losing a shred of credibility.

  • Heroic Mulatto||

    To be fair, I believe the producers of the show intended him to be a lunatic for the four clucking hens that host the show to tear apart.

  • sloopyinca||

    I haven't watched the video, but are you telling me he went on The View?

  • sloopyinca||

    Nevermind. I'm still learning how to read.

  • Plàya Manhattan.||

    That playlist could quite possibly take up the rest of your day.

  • GILMORE||

    Has the memory of Farfour already faded?

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MSL0sMKGlY8

    MEMRI is basically the 'greatest hits' of the radical muslim media world. If you spend enough time just watching that stuff you will pretty much end up starting a settlement in the West Bank yourself. It has that effect.

  • sloopyinca||

    Is Johnny Chimpo doing the voiceover work for that guy? Holy shit.

  • GILMORE||

    If you are unfamiliar with Farfour (I am shocked! he was once so internet-famous...)... he is eventually murdered by Mossad in a complicated land-repurchase scheme gone wrong =

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kTK5PRtHjlk

  • lap83||

    Are you talking about the religion of Islam or Climate Change? It's hard to tell.

  • ||

    I don't think bankrupt really covers it Steve. Barbarism. Savagery. Those words come closer.

    If you are a completely unfeeling entity and you have a morbid curiosity you can google 'man beheads wife for cheating'.

    There are a number of them. Some I suspect are fake, most not.

    Take my advice and don't do it.

  • Plàya Manhattan.||

    That was quite a playlist. I had to turn it off after the second one with the 3 1/2 year old girl.

    On the good side, it reminded me to do something fun with the kids today.

  • Heroic Mulatto||

  • Plàya Manhattan.||

    Thats just .... wow.

    I'm going to the beach now. It's absolutely beautiful today.

    And then, to the hospital to meet my newborn nephew. I hope I can get there in time to stop the devil from turning him into a passive homosexual.

  • Heroic Mulatto||

    Enjoy the day!

  • sloopyinca||

    Well, since he's not viable on his own, you can always abort him if he's been homoinfected.

    Right, Bo?

  • Plàya Manhattan.||

    He wasted an enormous amount of your time last night. He's good at that.

  • Heroic Mulatto||

    Bo stood on his "Destroy All Fetuses" soapbox again, I take it?

  • sloopyinca||

    You guessed it. And there were a couple of people, like me, dumb enough to engage him.

    In my defense, I got really drunk Thursday night and Banjos took the babies to Phoenix for a visit with her family so I was alone and bored.

  • Irish||

    In my defense, I got really drunk Thursday night and Banjos took the babies to Phoenix for a visit with her family so I was alone and bored.

    Does your wife always take the kids to her parents' house when you get drunk? If so, that might be a problem.

  • sloopyinca||

    Actually, she took them on Thursday. I got drunk out of boredom while watching the Red Wings-Avs game where they retired Nicky Lidstrom's number. I didn't get drunk last night because I make an effort to not get drunk by myself on consecutive nights because, well because that's just sad.

  • Irish||

    I didn't get drunk last night because I make an effort to not get drunk by myself on consecutive nights because, well because that's just sad.

    Usually I just put my teddy bears and Real Dolls around the room when I'm drinking alone.

    That way, I can talk to them and pretend they're my friends. There's nothing sad about that.

  • Francisco d'Anconia||

    Usually I just put my teddy bears and Real Dolls around the room when I'm drinking alone.

    Oh, hell, I'll just come right out and proudly admit it.

  • gaoxiaen||

    Just invite J.R. Sebastian and his friends.

  • ||

    Hell, I drink every day, but not alone. I have dogs.

  • ||

    I refuse to engage with him anymore.

  • Bo Cara Esq.||

    Yes, yes, 'baby murder and tiny American flas for all,' sloopy.

  • ||

    "He can't calm down and needs to be penetrated again and again!

    I should know because I was an addict!"

  • Anonymous Coward||

    It sounds like he's arguing the "heat of passion" defense, which is a legit common law defense to murder (reduces from murder to manslaughter).

    But only for men, which makes him an asshole.

  • sloopyinca||

    You you know what New York City needs? A tattoo parlor/mosque at Ground Zero.

  • db||

    Stolen Austrian, Italian passports probed in Malaysia Airlines Flight 370 apparent crash.

    Reports are that an Italian and an Austrian, listed on the passenger manifest of the presumed lost flight, reported their passports stolen in 2012 and 2013, and are both safe.

    There is some question as to whether the passports used for boarding were these passports, or whether the names are simply coincidental. However, the fact that both the Austrian and Italian are currently traveling in Asia, and that both passports were reported stolen in Asia, is potentially pointing to foul play of some sort.

  • Steve G||

    Wonderful. More potential job security for the TSA...

  • db||

    A good question is, how do you even get on a plane to China without a valid visa? In my experience, airlines won't even let you board unless you can show you have a valid Chinese visa.

    However, I have read that citizens of EU countries can fly *through* China without a visa as long as they are only transiting. I don't have any good reference to back this up, though.

    One would think it would be really hard to get a visa for an expired or reported stolen passport. At least in the U.S., you have to physically send your passport to the Chinese Embassy/Consulate to get them to put the visa sticker in it.

  • Rhywun||

    I had to go in person and leave my passport with them for a week.

  • db||

    I went through CIBT so only had to send mine in to them. I didn't much care for the.idea of handing it over to them. Especially through mail/Fedex/UPS.

  • Heroic Mulatto||

    Very interesting. Malaysia is a well-known haven for radical mujihadeen and many an operation was planned within its borders. Perhaps some Uighurs wanted to get some 9/11-style payback on Beijing?

  • Plàya Manhattan.||

    I don't know much about Malaysia. I had no idea they had that sort of thing going on. I'm going to add this topic to my afternoon reading list.

  • Heroic Mulatto||

    Thanks, in part, to Mahathir Mohamad, Malaysia has been on a 30 year quest to out-Saudi Arabia Saudi Arabia. For extra fun, look up Mahathir's address to the OIC.

  • sloopyinca||

    Then wouldn't they do it to an Air China plane?

    I'm thinking security in Malaysian airports is pretty lax and could easily be bypassed altogether with a little payola. Remember, these people are pretty poor and many of them are already sympathetic to islamofascism.

  • kinnath||

    I'm thinking security in Malaysian airports is pretty lax

    Nope. Kuala Lumpur and Singapore both have rigourous security that puts the TSA to shame.

  • db||

    Who knows. I have a co-worker from Malaysia who lives in Singapore. I haven't heard from him yet. I hope he and his family are unaffected.

  • db||

    With the known issues in Malaysia, one would think China would look carefully at issuing visas from there. Since the reportedly stolen passports are from EU countries, I wonder if the Chinese visa issuance process is any more lax for them.

  • RishJoMo||

    Sounds liek some serious business to me dude
    www.Anon-VPN.com

  • sloopyinca||

    They only legalized it so they could get their regulatory hooks into it and generate tax revenue from it. So yes, they "evolved" on the matter. Unfortunately it was a further evolution toward statism.

    Fuck New York City. That cess pit is the worst place in America for govermnent interference in the daily lives of its citizens. And it needs to fall into the ocean even sooner than L.A.

  • Plàya Manhattan.||

    I know this guy, and generally find him to be a loathsome individual, but I still bought him a drink after his victory.

  • sloopyinca||

    Jesus, I wonder what you say about us when you're on other sites.

  • Plàya Manhattan.||

    I'm in a monogamous relationship with this site. You are the one who has been cheating on us with the cheap tramps ant HuffPo and ESPN.

  • sloopyinca||

    [hangs head in shame]

  • Rhywun||

    it needs to fall into the ocean even sooner than L.A

    Or, it needs to go bankrupt so the non-productive class can stop picking my pockets. Some of us willingly live here you know, and aren't very good swimmers.

  • sloopyinca||

    Some of us willingly live here you know, and aren't very good swimmers.

    Yes, I'm aware that there are black and hispanic people living in New York.

  • GILMORE||

    Ay Caramba!

  • sloopyinca||

    Nothing like a good old-fashioned racial stereotype joke to lighten the mood.

  • Rhywun||

    I chuckled.

  • Swiss Servator, alles klar?||

    I though wetbacks could swim?!

    /'Murican

  • Plàya Manhattan.||

    That's a common misconception. Inflatable rafts.

    The beach lifeguards around here choose where to park their trucks based on this.

  • Mickey Rat||

    Why should you get sympathy for living there willingly?

  • GILMORE||

    "Fuck New York City. That cess pit is the worst place in America for govermnent interference in the daily lives of its citizens"

    No, San Fran.

    Where do you live?

  • sloopyinca||

    Just outside of L.A. And I have spent loads of time in San Fran. They're trying to get to NYC-levels of derp, but I don't think they're quite there yet.

  • ||

    I think you fail to realize the degree to which you can live under the radar in NYC. Do it right, and you don't need to experience or deal with any of the fuckers in government at all. It's a big place, and you can get easily lost in it. Lost in a good way.

  • Plàya Manhattan.||

    My brother in law said something like that to me when I was visiting, and then he got a ticket from the garbage police the next day.

  • ||

    Then he's doing it wrong. Of course, my car got hit by a garbage truck and I had no recourse, but that's part of living under the radar. I then got rid of the car and only rented when necessary...and I was doing it right.

  • GILMORE||

    NYC is too big to pull the San Fran level banhammer bullshit.

    Plus, never once in NYC have I stepped outside a bar and had a cigarette and had some fucking citizen walking buy stop to lecture me about zoning regulations requiring me to cross the fucking street.

    Not even close. NYC may have some fucking stupid top-down rules on the books but the culture is completely different than the California Nanny People who LIVE that shit to the bone.

    Seriously man, you live in California. Who the fuck do you think you're kidding. Heal thyself, homie.

  • sloopyinca||

    Oh, I fucking hate it out here for all of the regulation. But I'm telling you that from a top-down standpoint, NYC is worse on a regulatory basis than even San Fran is.

  • sloopyinca||

    Besides, San Fran is so much smaller than NYC that their bullshit regulatory scheme isn't nearly as impactful. You don't like it? Move to one of the dozen cities on either end of the BART like. NYC is a lot more captive of the people that work there, forcing more people to live within the regulatory bubble.

    Of course, these are just one man's opinions, so take them for what they are.

  • Rhywun||

    some fucking citizen walking buy stop to lecture me

    This is exactly what I hated most about SF. Yeah we have that in some parts of NY but not my corner of Brooklyn.

  • sloopyinca||

    I'm sorry, but that shit doesn't happen much in San Fran either. I've been in every neighborhood in that town, and the only place you'll see it is in the Financial District or the Fisherman's Wharf area.

    In most parts of the city, you'll see people smoking week on the street, or smoking meth, or shooting up, or laying on a grate covered in piss and the cops won't even think of saying something to them. Try walking around in midtown Manhattan with so much as an open container and it's stop-n-frisk time.

  • GILMORE||

    East Side, motherfucker. Biggie forever, y'all just be hatin'.

  • ||

    84th and York, represent. Carl Schurz Park is the shiznit.

  • Ska||

    You living on the upper east side makes a lot of sense.

  • GILMORE||

    'Episiarch|3.8.14 @ 2:43PM|#
    84th and York, represent."

    York, aye? we've talked about this. Hills, you walked them. So far east its like the wilderness. Its the wasteland just far enough from the subway that makes you go, "let's go to your place" instead.

    You ever go to the Viand Diner? Or Heidelberg on German Parade Day? The drunken street scene around 86th at the parade terminus was always pretty legendary. I saw cops fight fireman while dressed in Lederhosen.

  • ||

    I mostly stuck to Dorrian's (Preppy Killer FTW!) and Cafe 79 (where I would frequently see Steve Landesberg; Abe Vigoda was often walking his dog too). I love Heidelberg. One boot of Spaten Octoberfest, please.

    The worst was St. Patrick's Day. I'd come out of the subway and go "why are there a ton of assholes out?" Then I would see the green puke and realize that it was that most hellish of days.

    "Today is St. Patrick's Day, where everyone is a little bit Irish. Except, of course, for the gays and the Italians!"

  • GILMORE||

    "
    Episiarch|3.8.14 @ 3:04PM|#

    I mostly stuck to Dorrian's (Preppy Killer FTW!) and Cafe 79"

    yes, I would go to either every now and then. I had a GF @ 79th and 2nd, so often we were closer to those than where I lived at the time (88th & 3rd, between 1996~2000)

    Heidelberg is the shit. In winter I'd pop in for the Glauwine(sp) at odd hours. They had that 'courteous but mean' attitude that I used to enjoy @ Peter Lugars in the older days.

  • ||

    You didn't work at TechHackers, by any chance, did you?

  • GILMORE||

    Nein. I worked in the Madison park area.

  • sloopyinca||

    Really?

    "Let's turn up all the treble and start scratching old records. Don't worry about your lyrics, nobody can hear while their ears are bleeding anyway."

    -Def Jam Executive, ca 1989

  • GILMORE||

    Don't worry, you'll always have Sublime. And No Doubt. NO ONE CAN TAKE THAT FROM YOU, CALIFORNIA!

  • sloopyinca||

    I'm not from California originally. I moved out here because my ex-wife took my kids out here after she remarried and I had to follow them. I'm an Ohio boy, home of Neil Armstrong, Devo and Joe Walsh.

  • GILMORE||

    "sloopyinca|3.8.14 @ 3:03PM|#

    I'm an Ohio boy, home of Neil Armstrong, Devo and Joe Walsh."

    Hipster, aye?

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v.....8#t=03m25s

  • EDG reppin' LBC||

    I too am an Ohio boy, home of Dead Boys, Pere Ubu, Guided by Voices, Toxic Reasons, and Afghan Whigs.

  • GILMORE||

    ... and hipsters!

    Go buckeyes.

  • sloopyinca||

    A fucking New Yorker accusing Ohio of being full of hipsters?

    Oh, the motherfucking irony!

  • GILMORE||

    "sloopyinca|3.8.14 @ 4:18PM|#

    A fucking New Yorker accusing Ohio of being full of hipsters?"

    No, its better than that =

    Its a native NY'r who lives in *Williamsburg Brooklyn*, the absolute ground-zero/mecca/magnetic-north of hipster, making fun of Midwesterners because that's where all these Beardo Kidults tend to come from.

    And Minnesota, for some reason.

    Hey, its cool man. I'm just kidding. I'm sure you'd totally be happy in Cleveland, its just that work forces you to live a stylish life in your loft outside LA. :)

  • sloopyinca||

    "Cleveland"

    Fuck you. I would never, ever live in the mistake on the Lake. I'm from Cincinnati man, the Queen City. The City On Seven Hills. Or Porkopolis, even.

    Cleveland. I can't believe you'd banish me to Wartyland.

    And FWIW, people from Cincy don't go to Williamsburg to become beekeepers. They go to Panama City, Florida and sell t-shirts to their old neighbors in the summertime.

  • GILMORE||

    "sloopyinca|3.8.14 @ 5:10PM|#

    I'm from Cincinnati man, the Queen City.
    ~

    Also, procter and gamble products. And Kroger. There are many corporate headquarters to love in Cinci. Also, that iron bridge thing.

    I used to stay in the Garfield Suites Hotel downtown. It was just better than awful, but there was a place that sold beer nearby. After 6pm downtown cinci turned into a Neutron Bomb Drop Zone. I did find a place that had a pool table once. It was very lonely.

  • sloopyinca||

    I've been gone for my entire adulthod, man. When I was there, they referred to them as "Procter and God" because they were so important to the local economy. And Kroger was nowhere near as big as it is now.

    But we'll always have Skyline. The greatest fucking thing ever.

  • GILMORE||

    I guess you're just that type of guy

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=X7rcKpLBY8I

  • GILMORE||

    "sloopyinca|3.8.14 @ 1:59PM|#

    I'm sorry, but that shit doesn't happen much in San Fran either"

    Lies. I'm 3-for-3 the last few years visiting there, having someone literally step up and explain to me the benefits of the various city ordinances they lovingly self-enforced.

    Also, please. Midtown what? Stick with your "awesome burritos" and other California wonders. Of this city, you know naught. Roger. Moore.

  • sloopyinca||

    I used to go to New York at least 3-4 times a year. And unless they've relaxed their nannyism since I was last there (2007ish), then I stand by my assertion.

  • GILMORE||

    Californian Complains About Other People's Nannies
    - World Strangely Unmoved

  • Rhywun||

    Well, I've lived in both cities. I know in which one I found the people more bothersome.

  • sloopyinca||

    Midtown Manhattan. Isn't that what I said? I've stayed there no less that 20 times in my life and it is a stuffy, uptight police state there. You drop a cigarette butt...get a ticket. You have a paper bag with an open can in it...get searched and get a lecture. You put your foot on the street if a crossing light is flashing...get a ticket.

    I used to love getting the fuck out of there and to Sunnyside Queens where at least the cops left you alone.

    Of course, good luck getting a licensed cab to take you there, as they're all regulated as to what zones they can drive in/to.

  • Rhywun||

    drop a cigarette butt...get a ticket .... You put your foot on the street if a crossing light is flashing

    ? I have experienced no such thing in Midtown after living here almost 20 years.

  • Freedom Frog||

    Same here. I'm in BK, but no one breaks balls about cigarette butts, and jaywalking is a normal thing, no tickets. Open container will get you fucked with though.

    And agreed that Midtown is NOT the city.

  • GILMORE||

    Midtown is the equivalent of "Downtown LA"

    I.e. - no one really lives there. Its not "the city". Its not even a vaguely representative slice of *manhattan*, which is not vaguely representative of the overall city.

    Open can is because of the bums in midtown, rocket-scientist.

    its like you went to the mall and complained about all the chain stores.

  • gaoxiaen||

    Last time I was in mainland China they had just banned smoking in department stores a few months before. Apparently 75% of the people in the stores that I went to hadn't heard the news yet.

  • GILMORE||

    I suspect Cold Fusion will be perfected before you can get Chinese people to cut back on smoking.

  • Irish||

    David Sirota makes an OK point, ruins it by being a moron.

    David Sirota
    ‏@davidsirota
    One problem fueling news industrys crisis: cable TV hosts who do no real reporting make millions, while real journos make thousands, if that

    ...If that? I'd love for Sirota to tell me where these journalists are who are making less than $1000.

    I also have a feeling that Sirota's idea of a 'real journalist' is someone who pretends to objectivity while dutifully advancing every left-wing talking point.

  • Plàya Manhattan.||

    I think our local Patch.com reporter makes more than that, and she sucks.

  • William of Purple||

  • sloopyinca||

    Jesus, did the Lobsta Truck go to Caracas or something?

    http://la.lobstatruck.com/

  • Heroic Mulatto||

    The pic from the mall was the opening of the Venezuelan branch of Franklin Barbecue.

  • Plàya Manhattan.||

    You knew that they were going to be a 1/2 mile from my house yesterday, and you didn't tell me? I could be eating leftover lobster right now, asshole.

  • sloopyinca||

    You know, when I lived in Puerto Rico, we had lobster all of the time. It was Caribbean lobster, which is a slightly different flavor because it's from warm water, but anyway we ate a lot of it. It was dirt cheap in the grocery stores but really expensive in restaurants that catered to tourists.

    There is no moral to the story. That's it.

  • Plàya Manhattan.||

    I love the tail of warm water lobster.

  • sloopyinca||

    Well I hope that's the only part you like.

  • ||

    Joke from Soviet times:

    There's this long line of people on the street. Cop asks the first guy in line:

    - What goes on?
    - Well, I felt lightheaded for a moment, leaned against the wall and by the time my head cleared, there was this lineup behind me.
    - So why don't you move on?
    - Are you crazy?! I'm the first in line!

  • sloopyinca||

    Weren't you at a Chuck E Cheese yesterday afternoon, watching your son defile a ball pit?

  • Plàya Manhattan.||

    I was in a government owned facility. That's why I let him do it. I had a meeting ON GRAND AVENUE at 10:00 AM, thought.

  • Irish||

    I like that Texans are vile barbarians for still having anti-sodomy laws on the books in 1998, but New Yorkers are noble progressives even though they had anti-tattoo laws on the books at the exact same time.

  • Grand Moff Serious Man||

    No link handy, but Twitter tells me Danny Glover is in Caracas this weekend singing the praises of Maduro and the glorious social justice the regime is pursuing.

    I guess he's not too old for that shit.

  • Rich||

    Then: “the decoration, so-called, of the human body by tattoo designs is, in our culture, a barbaric survival, often associated with a morbid or abnormal personality.”

    Now: “the regulation, so-called, of tattoo designs of the human body is, in our culture, a barbaric survival, often associated with a morbid or abnormal personality.”

  • politicsbyothermeans||

    Baseless generalizations are fun, aren't they?

  • Ornithorhynchus||

    What's really sad is that New York legalized tattooing nine years before Oklahoma did.

  • William of Purple||

    Lord Obama will introduce the premiere of Fox's COSMOS reboot. Here's why

  • sloopyinca||

    FTA: “We aspire to have a democratic society, well a good place to start would be for us – as many of us as possible – to begin to understand the decision-making and the basis for those decisions, and to act independently and not be manipulated,” Druyan said. “That’s what science does. One of its greatest powers is that it teaches you how to know when you are being lied to.”

    So we're doing science by majority now? I swear, mankind is fucking doomed.

  • Bo Cara Esq.||

    How did you get that from that excerpt? I read it as saying 'the kind of thinking important in scientific endeavors would be good for the people in a democracy to possess.'

  • sloopyinca||

    Then why mention a democratic society in the first place and then go on to say some bullshit about the so-called "consensus" on climate change being important? Does she want us to think independently, or does she want to let the majority (consensus!) rule when it comes to climate science?*

    *Even though 2/3 of the studies made no claim that AGW was real, only that the climate was, in fact, changing..as it is prone to do.

  • Bo Cara Esq.||

    I do not think the claim is that AGW is true because there is a consensus, but that the consensus is what we would expect if AGW was true. But I can not say for sure what she was getting at. However, the excerpted part you put up seems pretty sensible to me, and I do not think reads as you put it.

  • sloopyinca||

    Remind me to never hire you as my attorney. I can't put any faith in your powers of cause-effect or deduction.

  • Bo Cara Esq.||

    I do not need any understanding of cause-effect or deduction to read what that excerpt said, and it was not as you described it. Perhaps you are confused by the distinction I offered between "the claim is that AGW is true because there is a consensus, but that the consensus is what we would expect if AGW was true?" What I mean by that is this: most scientists thinking that the earth goes around the sun does make that fact true, but the fact that most scientists think that is what we would expect if the fact was so.

    I think the fact that very few scientists think AGW is not true is a pretty damning fact for those who deny the theory. Having said that, the fact that a significant number of scientists have taken no real position, or that of the ones that have there is a real variation of what they think that means, should give anyone pause. Furthermore, even if AGW were true I do not see that as a reason to violate the NAP and retard economic development especially to engage in schemes like 'carbon taxing' and trading which can not (and should not) be implemented in any meaningful way.

  • Pi Guy||

    I think the fact that very few scientists think AGW is not true is a pretty damning fact for those who deny the theory.


    Galileo, Charles Darwin, and Alfred Wegener agree with you.

  • Bo Cara Esq.||

    I guess all of them could be wrong and the .7% could be right, as you note it has happened before, but I imagine that is why those people made history, because it is remarkable.

  • sloopyinca||

    "All of them", meaning 97% or 97% of the 33% that actually reached a conclusion on their own?

    See, this is why I question your powers of deduction. You simply can't comprehend that when 66% of a list does not reach a conclusion that that has to be included in the %age that does reach a conclusion. Or at the least that 97% claim should include a VERY NOTICEABLE disclaimer that it only applies to 33% of the studies that were done on the climate.

    You're fucking stupid, man. I'm convinced of it. No intelligent person would maintain the 97% or even 99.3% you're now claiming.

  • Bo Cara Esq.||

    A noticeable disclaimer like all the sentences from the study I quoted infra?
    You might want to take that into account before insulting a stranger as stupid.

  • sloopyinca||

    I've already taken everything you've said over the past couple of days into account and I stand behind my assertion that you're stupid. No, fucking stupid.

  • OneOut||

    There was once a scientific consensus that the Earth was flat.

  • The Knarf Yenrab||

    That’s what science does. One of its greatest powers is that it teaches you how to know when you are being lied to.

    That's a extraordinary thing to say given that climate science has no capacity to use the experimental method.

    Climate scientists/statisticians can attempt to account for variables in the same way that positivist economists do, but that's not "science" in the sense that physics, chemistry, biology, and even psychology are sciences, and the underwhelming success of positivist economics and climate science to offer accurate predictions--or to have the graciousness to go away humbly when their models fail in spectacular fashion--is a demonstration of how flawed their methodology is, not to mention how committed they are to denying that the field has arrived at a Kuhnian crisis.

  • sloopyinca||

    Also, they claim (with a link) that a "vast majority of scientists agree that climate change is caused by man-made activities". Except for the fact that the story they link to contradicts that claim.

    From that article (emphasis mine): (UPDATE, Monday, 12:45 p.m.: I’ve added a parenthetical clarification in the first paragraph below noting that the 97 percent figure refers to studies that took a position on whether global warming was manmade or not (66 percent of the studies surveyed did not express a position).)

    It also says the authors of the study to determine whether or not there is a consensus "say they hope their results bridge the divide between publishing scientists who are convinced human activities are causing global warming and the segment of the public, who are not. This, they say, will motivate action on climate change."

    They had the answer they wanted and they worked back from there. And even though the results didn't fit their narrative, they manipulated the data until they got what they wanted. Fucking mendacious cocksuckers, every one of them.

  • Bo Cara Esq.||

    Here is the abstract and link to the study mentioned:

    "We analyze the evolution of the scientific consensus on anthropogenic global warming (AGW) in the peer-reviewed scientific literature, examining 11 944 climate abstracts from 1991–2011 matching the topics 'global climate change' or 'global warming'. We find that 66.4% of abstracts expressed no position on AGW, 32.6% endorsed AGW, 0.7% rejected AGW and 0.3% were uncertain about the cause of global warming. Among abstracts expressing a position on AGW, 97.1% endorsed the consensus position that humans are causing global warming. In a second phase of this study, we invited authors to rate their own papers. Compared to abstract ratings, a smaller percentage of self-rated papers expressed no position on AGW (35.5%). Among self-rated papers expressing a position on AGW, 97.2% endorsed the consensus. For both abstract ratings and authors' self-ratings, the percentage of endorsements among papers expressing a position on AGW marginally increased over time. Our analysis indicates that the number of papers rejecting the consensus on AGW is a vanishingly small proportion of the published research."

    http://iopscience.iop.org/1748.....24/article

  • sloopyinca||

    Did you read what their intentions were when they began the study? And what was the methodology and how did they "ask" the non-committals what their thoughts on AGW were?

    When you get activists studying each other, you end up with a whole lot of confirmation bias. And I'm sorry, but that's what any rational person would think when looking at this so-called "study".

  • Bo Cara Esq.||

    I guess they could be just flat out lying and misrepresenting what they found, but it seems pretty open to replication, and when they asked the authors of the papers themselves they seemed to agree with the initial ratings. I guess your point is that they may have intimidated some of the non-committals into saying they did support AGW. If that kind of thing is the case then of course no study could be trusted.

    I am curious, how do you think the study should have been done?

  • Sidd Finch||

    but it seems pretty open to replication,

    A commenter at Econlog did exactly that ... 1.6%!!!

  • Bo Cara Esq.||

    Sidd, again that is just the 'main' vs. 'a' cause thing.

  • sloopyinca||

    I am curious, how do you think the study should have been done?

    Probably by an independent group as opposed to a climate change advocacy group for starters.

  • sloopyinca||

    They flat out say that 2/3 of the studies made no claim and they come back and report that 97% of the climate scientists agree. Then, in veeeery small print, or in a footnote, they tel you that it was really 97% of those that drew a conclusion. And of those 97% that drew a conclusion, they fail to tell you that almost all of the pier review was done either in-house, was fabricated or was carried out by hand-selected organizations. Sort of a "you grade my test and I'll grade yours. I sure hope we both get an A+, wink."

  • Bo Cara Esq.||

    "report that 97% of the climate scientists agree. Then, in veeeery small print, or in a footnote, they tel you that it was really 97% of those that drew a conclusion."

    That does not seem correct, they say right in their abstract:

    "We find that 66.4% of abstracts expressed no position on AGW, 32.6% endorsed AGW, 0.7% rejected AGW and 0.3% were uncertain about the cause of global warming. Among abstracts expressing a position on AGW, 97.1% endorsed the consensus position that humans are causing global warming."

    "of those 97% that drew a conclusion, they fail to tell you that almost all of the pier review was done either in-house, was fabricated or was carried out by hand-selected organizations"

    What is the basis for that claim?

  • sloopyinca||

    Maybe because this is the headline in the WaPo story about their study: 97 percent of scientific studies agree on manmade global warming, so what now?

    It further goes on to say (emphasis obviously mine): Original post, with clarification: A new study confirms there is strong scientific consensus that human activities are causing the planet to warm. 97 percent of scientific papers (that take a stance on the issue) agree, the study finds.

    They neglect to tell the reader than an overwhelming majority of the studies, a full 2/3 in fact, make no such claim at all. Of course, they are all too happy to tell you that they are not going to correct the record because they're advocates for AGW action.

    That's he worst kind of liar in my book. They'l allow their findings to be distorted because the lie is better than the truth. Well fuck that, and fuck you for either being such a moron that you can't see it or such a hair-splitter that you think it's an acceptable way to act.

  • Bo Cara Esq.||

    Sure, the Washington Post's headline was (originally) deceptive about that, I thought we were talking about the study itself, which was pretty upfront right in the abstract.

  • sloopyinca||

    The authors of the study perpetuate the deception by not clarifying what the study actually found. That's not being deceptive in your book?

    That's the same bullshit the climate worshippers bemoan the Kocktopus for doing when they commission studies on fossil fuel usage and the results being what they hoped they would be. And I don't know of the industry-funded studies actually even confirm their own biases or not, as they don't get plastered (inaccurately) in the Washington fucking Post as if they were the word of God himself.

  • Bo Cara Esq.||

    "The authors of the study perpetuate the deception by not clarifying what the study actually found."

    Again, they were pretty explicit right in their abstract.

  • sloopyinca||

    But they sure as hell weren't in their synopsis. And they never asked WaPo to clarify their story to what the actual study found.

    Seriously, you're grasping at straws here to defend what is either a deliberate perversion of the truth or collective retardation.

  • Bo Cara Esq.||

    What do you mean, their 'synopsis?'

    Also, how do you know they 'never asked WaPo to clarify their story as to what the study actual[ly] found?' Journalists misrepresent people all the time.

  • sloopyinca||

    I suppose WaPo never sent anybody to verify the facts? I suppose they didn't get an advanced copy to make sure their quotes were in context? And I suppose they expect people to decipher their comment I quoted below to mean the scientists overwhelmingly agree, of the 33% of scientists that actually drew that conclusion in their study even though they didn't say whether man was a contributing or main cause of global climate change.

  • Bo Cara Esq.||

    It seems to me that the WaPo simply quoted the text of the study itself, the fact they seem to have no other comment from the authors suggests they never talked to them at all.

    And you can point to that comment by the study's author, but they also in the same article say:

    "We find that 66.4% of abstracts expressed no position on AGW, 32.6% endorsed AGW, 0.7% rejected AGW and 0.3% were uncertain about the cause of global warming. Among abstracts expressing a position on AGW, 97.1% endorsed the consensus position that humans are causing global warming."

    "Among abstracts that expressed a position on AGW, 97.1% endorsed the scientific consensus."

    And in several tables they plainly list that 62% had no opinion.

    If that is being deceptive they were doing a pretty poor job of it.

  • sloopyinca||

    "We find that 66.4% of abstracts expressed no position on AGW, 32.6% endorsed AGW, 0.7% rejected AGW and 0.3% were uncertain about the cause of global warming. Among abstracts expressing a position on AGW, 97.1% endorsed the consensus position that humans are causing global warming."

    There's the deception. It's not the consensus when 66.4% of the studies did not express that opinion. Can't you fucking get that? There is no sample set. They have the data from all of the studies and still claim "consensus" when none is even close to existing. Jesus Christ, are you fucking retarded?

    Can someone come on here and tell me if I'm wrong here? Are they not playing word games to attribute the term "consensus" where it doesn't come close to applying?

  • Bo Cara Esq.||

    It is the consensus of those expressing an opinion. It is not crazy to talk just of the ones having an opinion, just like it is normal to refer to the 'choice of the voters' when a person wins an election though a majority of people might have not voted at all.

  • sloopyinca||

    It is the consensus of those expressing an opinion.

    Then why do they pass it off every chance they get as "a consensus of all scientists" or "a consensus of climate scientists"? Like, you know, they did in the lede and the first sentence (prior to corrections) of the WaPo story.

    Words have meanings. Didn't you learn that from the reproduction beatdown you took last night? And the word consensus doesn't mean a majority of the small minority or people that actually weighed in. It means a general agreement. And 97% of 33% doesn't meet that threshold. Not even close.

  • Bo Cara Esq.||

    "Didn't you learn that from the reproduction beatdown you took last night?"

    Don't flatter yourself.

    "Words have meanings."

    And here is one for 'consensus' from Merriam Webster:

    "the judgment arrived at by most of those concerned "

    http://www.merriam-webster.com...../consensus

    Not most of all, most of those CONCERNED.

    I also think you are not getting at what the 'no opinion' thing entails. It is not that those articles talked about AGW and expressed no opinion, they were articles that were about climate science but made no mention of AGW.

  • sloopyinca||

    They said "most of those concerned", not "most of those that showed concern". And I'd consider those people that did the 66% of the studies that stated no opinion as somehow concerned in climate studies.

    Concerned: have a specific connection with or responsibility for.
    Example in a sentence: There were approximately 12,000 studies concerned with climate, and 33% of those studies made a determination on man's impact on climate change.

  • Bo Cara Esq.||

    That is a nice try, but it does not work, because while all the studies were concerned with climate only some were concerned with the cause of it, and of those there was a consensus of 97% of those concerned with that question that humans contribute to its cause.

  • sloopyinca||

    Horseshit. If that was the case, the study wouldn't have even identified them.

    And that stil doesn't excuse the misleading headline, misleading first sentence (pre-correction) or the misleading statement by the study's authors that state " scientists overwhelmingly agree that the earth is warming due to human activity.”

    Their admission that it is a minority of climate scientists is conspicuously noted.

  • Bo Cara Esq.||

    Again, for someone who throws the word stupid around you do not read things very carefully. From the studies description of what they meant by 'no opinion:'

    "4a) No position Does not address or mention the cause of global warming
    (4b) Uncertain Expresses position that human's role on recent global warming is uncertain/undefined 'While the extent of human-induced global warming is inconclusive...'"

    "And that stil doesn't excuse the misleading headline, misleading first sentence (pre-correction)"

    You are conflating the study and the WaPo article again.

    "or the misleading statement by the study's authors that state " scientists overwhelmingly agree that the earth is warming due to human activity.”"

    Talk about deceptive! You ignore that that sentence is clearly in reference to a Pew survey of scientists (they cite it immediately after the sentence, you left it out).

  • Sidd Finch||

  • Bo Cara Esq.||

    Hmm, that all seems to amount to that the authors have said their results show that 97% of scientists think humans are the main cause of global warming when it would be closer to say 'main or a' cause. Since I assumed that was the case anyway I am not sure I find that to be very much.

  • Sidd Finch||

    There's a pretty fucking big difference between "main cause" and "a cause."

  • Bo Cara Esq.||

    I guess it depends on what you are trying to talk about. I have always assumed that when people talk about 'AGW' they are talking about humans as 'contributing' to warming to a varying extent.

  • Sidd Finch||

    All this freakout is over people thinking "humans are just one of many causes of global warming"? Are you nuts?

  • Bo Cara Esq.||

    Well, I never thought the 'freakout' was rationally based to begin with. I can see how humans contributing to global warming could be cause for alarm in itself though (while still, myself, thinking it no basis to override the NAP and developing nations right to develop economically, but heck I would think that if human behavior was the sole and immediate cause of it).

  • gaoxiaen||

    Well, I'm happier with global warming than the "New Ice Age" scare of the early eighties.

  • Bo Cara Esq.||

    But I grant you that saying 'main' when only 'a' was found is wrong, likewise when in the abstract they say 'the' cause, and if it is an advocacy group then they may very well have intentionally, and deceptively, used the incorrect terminology. Again, for myself, I never thought of anything, much less human activity as 'the' cause so it is not such a big deal to me.

  • sloopyinca||

    Here's the WaPo link again. You may want to re read it before you accuse anybody of misunderstanding them. These people are advocates manipulating a study to send out a (false) message of fear in an area where there is really nothing remotely close to a "consensus" on AGW, what it's net effect will be or even if it is a bad thing.

    You're doing one of three things:
    1. Arguing just to be a contrarian.
    2. Arguing because you're a climateer and refuse to acknowledge anything that breaks down the fear-mongering to its essence.
    3. Watching a chimp bank on your keyboard and press the submit button.

  • Bo Cara Esq.||

    You are conflating or confusing the WaPo story and its author and the author of the study it talks about. I linked to the study itself and they are quite explicit about what they found, they did not bury the fact that 66% of the studies had no opinion and that the '97%' was of the those that had one, they mentioned it in their abstract.

    "you're a climateer and refuse to acknowledge anything that breaks down the fear-mongering to its essence"

    I do not know what you consider a 'climateer.' As I said above, I think the fact that so many more scientists think AGW is in true and so very few reject it makes it more likely that it is true than not, but I also think there is significant variation among those that accept AGW as to how much human activity contributes to warming. Most 'climateers' would call that 'denialism.'

  • sloopyinca||

    FTFA (emphasis mine): “The public perception of a scientific consensus on [manmade warming] is a necessary element in public support for climate policy,” the study says. “However, there is a significant gap between public perception and reality, with 57% of the US public either disagreeing or unaware that scientists overwhelmingly agree that the earth is warming due to human activity.”

    Their fucking study completely contradicts this assertion. 66% of the data they collected did not make a determination of whether man was responsible or not. 66%! That leaves 97% of 33% that claim man is responsible to some degree, not even that they are the primary contributor.

    The study purports to be something it is not. If that's not disingenuous then I don't know what in the hell is.

  • Bo Cara Esq.||

    On a recent thread there was a discussion about NYC mayor Bill De Blasio. He won election with 75% of the vote. Now, only about 25% of registered voters even voted in that election. So, if someone reported that "Bill De Blasio was the consensus of NYC voters" would you think they were being so deceptive?

  • sloopyinca||

    No, I would think they don't understand what the definition of a consensus was. Because 19% of a city's registered voters doesn't constitute a "general agreement".

    Kind of like 97% of 33% doesn't constitute a "general agreement". It constitutes a plurality of those that have done studies on the issue an that's it.

  • Bo Cara Esq.||

    Look, I won't belabor this anymore. While I agree that "97% who voiced an opinion think X" is more accurate than "97% think X" I do not think it is egregious to say the former, because it not irrational to ignore those that registered no opinion one way or the other.

  • sloopyinca||

    So in your opinion, Obama got a consensus of the votes in 2012?

    You're a mathematical midget. God luck in law school. I hope you don't have to take a Stats class.

  • Bo Cara Esq.||

    Let's say there was a nomination hearing for a federal judgeship, and of the twenty congresspersons there ten of them, five from each party, spoke, while ten said nothing. All that spoke praised the nominee. If a reporter reported 'that the consensus of the hearing was the nomination was praiseworthy' would you think that reporter was being deceptive in a major way? I just do not see it.

  • sloopyinca||

    I would think that reporter doesn't understand the definition of consensus.

  • sloopyinca||

    because it not irrational to ignore those that registered no opinion one way or the other.

    Hahaha. Are you serious? You really are touched in the head.

  • GILMORE||

    "If that's not disingenuous then I don't know what in the hell is."'

    Sloopy? meet Bo.

  • Bo Cara Esq.||

    As usual, Gilmore is confused.

    He was talking about the author.

  • GILMORE||

    I wasnt

  • Francisco d'Anconia||

    Hey Bo, you asked me in the previous thread why I think you're an asshole?

    EXHIBIT A

  • Bo Cara Esq.||

    As I thought, you do not like it when someone disagrees with what you think, but that is a pretty low threshold for thinking one an ***hole I think.

  • Francisco d'Anconia||

    Has nothing to do with whether I agree with you or not.

  • Acosmist||

    Maybe you should stop responding to the admitted racist.

  • Bo Cara Esq.||

    Who is an 'admitted racist?'

  • sloopyinca||

    I think he's referring to my joke upthread.

  • Plàya Manhattan.||

    Sloopy, you're on notice. Cut this shit out! (responding to Bo, the racism is OK).

  • GILMORE||

    EXHIBIT A

    Please. That's unfair.

    This is at least the 27th exhibit.

  • Plàya Manhattan.||

    Nice. We ran out of letters, and had to switch to numerals.

  • GILMORE||

    Soon we will need the Dewey Decimal system

  • Cdr Lytton||

    Stopping by after getting my burn pile going to say Fuck climate change, my slash is turning to ash.

  • Bo Cara Esq.||

    After years of being anti-gay, Puerto Rican politician comes out of the closet

    "Former Puerto Rican Senator Roberto Arango has publicly come out as gay nearly four years after a nude Grindr photo scandal drove him from office. Arango had aligned himself with conservative religious coalition and had a long history of anti-gay votes and actively worked against legalizing civil unions for same-sex couples."

    http://www.gaystarnews.com/art.....wWGeO.dpuf

  • Anonymous Coward||

    Mass. man arrested after recording officer in street

    Allegedly violated the Masshole wiretapping statute. Our brave public heroes can't do their heroics with you recording them.

  • Notorious G.K.C.||

    Court orders anonymous online commenter, accused of defamation, to be outed:

    “I think the court is sending a strong message to those who abuse the internet by defaming others and think they can get away with it by acting anonymously,”

    http://philadelphia.cbslocal.c.....ign=buffer

  • Notorious G.K.C.||

    So enough with the sheep jokes already

  • Jerry on the boat||

    Well, in this case it's about very young sheep.

  • Paul.||

    That’s because New York City only legalized tattooing in 1997.

    Libertopia is UPON US!!

  • Brandybuck||

    Lydia, oh Lydia! Have you met Lydia? Lydia, the tattoooooed Lady!

  • Notorious G.K.C.||

    I once met an elephant in my pajamas

  • Johnimo||

    When will the useless judges READ the Ninth and Tenth and see therein every possible liberty reserved to the people? Why not prohibit the wearing of lipstick?

  • Robert||

    #10 definitely won't help you there, because it concerns powers, not liberties. If anything, it helps the other side.

    #9 might conceivably help in view of #14.

  • steve153||

    Start working at home with Google! Just work for few hours and have more time with friends and family. I earn up to $500 per week. It's a great work at home opportunity. I can't believe how easy it was once I tried it out. Linked here www.Pow6.com

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