106 votes
Accepted

How could the free market limit the effects of net neutrality's repeal?

Almost all high-speed broadband Internet service providers, except in high-density urban populations, have limited competition, if not full monopolies. A small start-up would have to build out their ...
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97 votes

What did Reagan mean when he said: "The nine most terrifying words in the English language are 'I'm from the government, and I'm here to help.' "?

Reagan made the statement during The President's News Conference, and understanding the context of the event can help establish his meaning. It's worth mentioning that I've seen some indications that ...
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96 votes

Seen from Europe, why is there a hard separation between Republicans and Democrats in the US?

The answer is First Past The Post. The nature of the voting system is such that many people who would rather support a 3rd Party feel compelled to vote against the party that they like the least, ...
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  • 5,753
75 votes

Why do people at the top of a bureaucracy/government have to get paid the most?

This is not true, in a universal sense. In general it's true that, in government as in other fields, the higher up you rise, the higher your salary is, but what's much more important is the field you'...
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  • 25.7k
74 votes

Seen from Europe, why is there a hard separation between Republicans and Democrats in the US?

American political parties are essentially standing coalitions that do their coalition building before elections instead of after What is typical in Europe and other parts of the world is for a ...
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  • 14.6k
73 votes
Accepted

What is the biggest monarchy where the monarch has real power in modern day?

By almost any measure, Saudi Arabia takes the prize. Most of the absolute monarchies or even monarchies where the monarchy has more than symbolic power outside a rare constitutional crisis are in the ...
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  • 52.8k
66 votes

Why would the government force its population to save for retirement?

If your country also has a welfare system, and someone doesn't save for their retirement, they'll end up on welfare when they stop working. So the government is going to have to pay their expenses ...
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  • 8,096
64 votes

Do politicians use bug trackers or version control etc.?

Politicians, that is to say, the people that we elect, do not actually do the work of the government. Their primary job is raising funds and encouraging people to vote for them. Legislation is ...
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  • 88k
62 votes
Accepted

Why are stenographers still employed and present within many governmental chambers?

I wasn't able to find an answer online, so I called the Office of the Clerk of the House to ask why they use stenographers instead of electronic recording devices. They gave me a list of reasons: To ...
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  • 23.3k
62 votes
Accepted

Why has the UK Government moved away from "Ministry of..." names?

Firstly, it's not quite correct to say that UK Government departments were traditionally named Ministries. The common use of the term Ministry to describe government departments was mostly introduced ...
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  • 81.4k
59 votes
Accepted

Why did political parties form in the United States?

A safeguard WAS put into place. We call it the Electoral College (although it is not named as such in the Constitution). It failed miserably at that goal. The original vision when the Electoral ...
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  • 11.4k
51 votes
Accepted

In the Weimar Republic what was the role of the people sitting on the left side of the speaker?

Very good question and I am surprised that I as German needed to dig deeper into the stuff than anticipated. I tried to consult the German Wikipedia and the normal Google results, but got essentially ...
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  • 4,652
49 votes

Why do Americans vote on coroners, magistrates, school directors, and tax collectors?

What's going on? This is a leftover from earlier historical tradition, which had lots of lower-level democracy. For example, coroners being elected was a tradition not just from early days of USA, ...
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  • 89.1k
48 votes

How could the free market limit the effects of net neutrality's repeal?

The capitalist answer to this problem is that when there is a real desire for net-neutral internet providers, then the market will create them. An internet provider could publicly commit to ...
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  • 67.4k
48 votes

Why are Kinder Surprise Eggs illegal in the USA?

Note that the manufacturer has worked around this ban by introducing the Kinder Joy It has plastic egg-shaped packaging that splits into two, one half contains layers of cocoa and milk cream and the ...
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  • 105k
47 votes

What did Reagan mean when he said: "The nine most terrifying words in the English language are 'I'm from the government, and I'm here to help.' "?

A great many of the current problems on the farm were caused by government-imposed embargoes and inflation, not to mention government's long history of conflicting and haphazard policies (Reagan's ...
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  • 89.1k
47 votes
Accepted

Why are Kinder Surprise Eggs illegal in the USA?

They have tiny pieces that are considered to be a choking hazard. There have been some high profile and tragic deaths among children due to choking on toys with small pieces. So the United States is ...
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  • 88k
47 votes

"Government transplant" been tried? At what scale, and what were the results?

The pattern you describe is called colonization. Think of it. A place that is viewed as being "without proper government." Europeans come in, bring their laws and administration, in the hope that the ...
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  • 82.1k
47 votes
Accepted

Why don't some governments trust people when they tell them they live at a particular address?

Having the wrong address in a government database could allow many types of fraud, from taxes to welfare. Imagine you tell the Austrians that you live in Slovakia, and the Slovaks that you live in ...
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  • 82.1k
45 votes
Accepted

Why do identification documents have expiration dates?

Many identity documents contain pictures. These pictures will not be very useful after several decades. German identity cards are valid for 10 years if issued after the 24th birthday, but only for 6 ...
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  • 82.1k
44 votes
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Would anything stop a technology company from shutting down in protest of government regulations?

Note that those free services have some way for the company to make money. This can be by way of advertising or gathering data which they can sell or otherwise use to make money (for example provide ...
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  • 36.8k
43 votes

Do politicians use bug trackers or version control etc.?

Do politicians use bug trackers or version control etc.? This is hilarious. Many of them barely use email. Version control software is pretty much specific to software engineering. Even disciplines ...
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  • 21.2k
41 votes

What policy arguments do people make in favor of legalizing marijuana?

A government could potentially benefit from increased revenue if they tax the production and sale of cannabis, the legal cannabis industry is already worth billions of dollars. Making it legal would ...
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41 votes

What is a successful policy against lobbying in a democratic country?

Define good lobbying and bad lobbying. That's a major challenge. You don't want a paid lobbyist for big oil or the arms industry to visit representatives and grease their palms, but you you do want ...
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  • 82.1k
39 votes
Accepted

Why did the U.S. government lower the funding of the IRS?

There has been a steady decline in enforcement of tax laws against the wealthiest individuals since the Reagan administration. The people who stand to lose if the tax laws are adequately enforced have ...
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  • 3,239
38 votes
Accepted

What is meant by "the Russian Government Resigned"?

The processes regarding the Russian government are described in Chapter 6 of the Constitution of the Russian Federation. The articles which are most relevant to this question are 111 (appointment of ...
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  • 67.4k
38 votes

Why do identification documents have expiration dates?

This is a simple countermeasure against identity theft, falsified documents, and fraud more generally put. Someone who successfully falsifies a document is whatever the document says they are until ...
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  • 53.8k
38 votes

Why did the U.S. government lower the funding of the IRS?

This is not caused by the US government in general, this is caused by the Republicans who have been in control of the House for most of the past three decade. Republicans are ideologically opposed to ...
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