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The Oxford comma

Posted on March 15th, 2017 at 23:35 by John Sinteur in category: News


The serial comma, also known as the Oxford comma for its endorsement by the Oxford University Press style rulebook, is a comma used just before the coordinating conjunction (“and,” or “or,” for example) when three or more terms are listed. You’ll see it in the first sentence of this story—it’s the comma after “milk”—but you won’t find it in the Maine overtime rule at issue in the Oakhurst Dairy case. According to state law, the following types of activities are among those that don’t qualify for overtime pay:

The canning, processing, preserving,
freezing, drying, marketing, storing,
packing for shipment or distribution of:
(1) Agricultural produce;
(2) Meat and fish products; and
(3) Perishable foods.

There, in the comma-less space between the words “shipment” and “or,” the fate of Kevin O’Connor v. Oakhurst Dairy was argued. Is packing (for shipment or distribution) a single activity that is exempt from overtime pay? Or are packing and distributing two different activities, and both exempt?

If lawmakers had used a serial comma, it would have been clear that distribution was an overtime-exempt activity on its own. But without the comma, wrote US appeals judge David J. Barron, the law is ambiguous as to whether distribution is a separate activity, or whether the whole last clause—”packing for shipment or distribution”—is one activity, meaning only the people who pack the dairy products are exempt. The drivers do distribute, but do not pack, the perishable food.

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Officer Darren Wilson’s List of Admissions

Posted on March 15th, 2017 at 22:47 by John Sinteur in category: News


>41. Before drawing your weapon, Michael Brown had not displayed any weapon.

>Response: Objection on the grounds the term “weapon” is vague. To the extent Michael Brown’s body (including his fists) constitute “weapons”, this is denied.

>42. Before drawing your weapon, Michael Brown had not displayed any threatening object.

>Response: Objection on the grounds the term “weapon” is vague. To the extent Michael Brown’s body (including his fists) constitute “threatening objects”, this is denied.”

To sum up: black people walking around in possession of their own bodies is grounds for shooting them.

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  1. Among others who have taught me the importance of the Oxford comma, I’d like to thank my parents, Ayn Rand and God.

  2. Michael Brown was obviously guilty of walking while black. That warrants a bullet right there!

New Texas bill takes aim at men’s masturbation habits

Posted on March 15th, 2017 at 14:39 by John Sinteur in category: News


A man would face a $100 penalty for each emission made outside of a vagina or medical facility. Such an emission would be considered “an act against an unborn child, and failing to preserve the sanctity of life,” according to the legislation.

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  1. What a brilliant idea. It beautifully illuminates the absurdity of pig-ignorant reactionary males making laws about women’s bodies and what they are allowed to do with them.

    And think of how much money they would make from all those repeat offenders in the Legislature…

  2. The funny thing is that Onan’s original offence was a protest against the laws of inheritance…

  3. It would lead to a growth industry in “special” medical facilities. Then Rep. Jessica could introduce a bill that all such medical facilities have a hospital admitting privileges in case the situation gets out of hand. At the same stroke, she could demand all men are wired with GPS enabled Alexa to ensure compliance. 🙂

  4. @Mykolas: That’s quite a mouthful! Hard to swallow, indeed.

Dutch Elections

Posted on March 15th, 2017 at 8:24 by John Sinteur in category: News

So I went a bit early to cast my vote at the local polling station. Saw a bunch of camera teams again, and a swedish radio journalist doing interviews with the people in line.

Now a couple of elections ago I walked into Geert Wilders casting his vote, and it was the same kind of media mess that time around.  I’ll watch the TV news later this morning to confirm, I didn’t bother to wait.

But after casting my vote I did walk up to a guy leaning against he back wall, so obviously part of a security force that it’s almost funny.

“So, Geert Wilders again, right? Walked into him before when voting here you know…”

Guy looks at me as if I just pissed in his breakfast..

“Look, if you’re not allowed to tell me, no worry, I understand”.

Guy raises an eyebrow but still says nothing.

“Good luck today mate, not an easy job you got” and I start walking off, but I did get a small smile out of him.

I guess next election they’ll pick a different polling station…

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