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Old 07-01-2016, 06:03 PM   #81
tshiggins
 
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Default Re: Capebusters -- brainstorming a single-setting game

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In comic books and TV, rules and regulations are obstacles preventing the heroes from doing the Right Thing. In reality, they generally exist to prevent people from doing the Wrong Thing, and often are based on incidents where people did the Wrong Thing.
QFT. During my seven years as a legislative reporter, I pretty much determined that at least 80 percent of all the laws passed addressed stupid, thoughtless things done by "regular people" that caused demonstrable harm to others.

About 15 percent of the total were designed to give a small group some sort of regulatory advantage over others -- this was what Bill refers to as "regulatory capture," and it was a real thing.

Maybe five percent of the laws were actually forward-thinking and progressive enough to qualify as "good for everyone." These were the ones that qualified as good investments of public funds, protections for civil liberties, and such.
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Old 07-01-2016, 06:27 PM   #82
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Default Re: Capebusters -- brainstorming a single-setting game

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QFT. During my seven years as a legislative reporter, I pretty much determined that at least 80 percent of all the laws passed addressed stupid, thoughtless things done by "regular people" that caused demonstrable harm to others.

About 15 percent of the total were designed to give a small group some sort of regulatory advantage over others -- this was what Bill refers to as "regulatory capture," and it was a real thing.

Maybe five percent of the laws were actually forward-thinking and progressive enough to qualify as "good for everyone." These were the ones that qualified as good investments of public funds, protections for civil liberties, and such.
At least when I look at California referenda, there seems to be a fourth category: Laws reflective of moral biases against other people's behavior. I'm thinking, for example, of a law that passed in California a few years ago against selling horses to be slaughtered for human consumption. Now, on one hand, this doesn't make it illegal to sell horses for consumption by animals of other species, as pet food for example; on another, it doesn't do anything to ensure that people who own aging horses can afford to maintain them. So it's purely intended to stop people from buying horsemeat because other people think eating horses is icky. I don't know what percentage of laws can be attributed to puritanism, but it's surely not zero.
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Old 07-01-2016, 07:00 PM   #83
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Default Re: Capebusters -- brainstorming a single-setting game

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At least when I look at California referenda, there seems to be a fourth category: Laws reflective of moral biases against other people's behavior. I'm thinking, for example, of a law that passed in California a few years ago against selling horses to be slaughtered for human consumption. Now, on one hand, this doesn't make it illegal to sell horses for consumption by animals of other species, as pet food for example; on another, it doesn't do anything to ensure that people who own aging horses can afford to maintain them. So it's purely intended to stop people from buying horsemeat because other people think eating horses is icky. I don't know what percentage of laws can be attributed to puritanism, but it's surely not zero.
Hrm. I didn't see too much of that in the Colorado legislature, but this was 20 years ago, now. Things may have changed.

The weird quirk peculiar to Colorado legislation was probably water law. Water, in Colorado, can never be privately owned. If a stream flows through your property, you don't own the water in that stream, and may only use some of it if you have purchased the water rights.

Because water is over-allocated, the most senior rights get to draw their allocations, first, and so on down the line of seniority until all the water is used up.

Colorado water law is complex and convoluted, and it got that way because people used to kill each other for it. It almost always got tinkered with, at least a little bit, every legislative session, and I always had to write at least one story, every year.
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Old 07-01-2016, 07:33 PM   #84
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Default Re: Capebusters -- brainstorming a single-setting game

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At least when I look at California referenda.
While legislatures also pass dumb laws reflecting moral disapproval, the distribution is likely different.
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Old 07-07-2016, 11:35 PM   #85
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Default Re: Capebusters -- brainstorming a single-setting game

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So? As long as the masked guy is proven retroactively correct, I can't see society feeling too badly about the result.
If Batman Says you're the perp, then you're the perp.

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Old 07-08-2016, 02:22 AM   #86
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Default Re: Capebusters -- brainstorming a single-setting game

Contents of the bat belt; baterangs, explosives, blank confession forms (blood proof), tracking devices, incriminating evidence, smoke bombs . . .
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Old 01-24-2017, 12:50 AM   #87
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Default Re: Capebusters -- brainstorming a single-setting game

Ok, I have a solution.

Spoilers if you have any reason to suppose that I'm going to run this game with you, personally. You know who you are. And, like, in that case, it's still your own choice.

So, the problem is that the kind of international cooperation needed to bring about a global-reach paramilitary power would require, we might say, superhuman diplomatic capabilities?

Because we have a character with superhuman diplomatic capabilities a few pages back.

A similar character, perhaps one with a suite of appropriate abilities but at very least the ability to impose lingering, elaborate mental commands psionically, could simply inform important members of all sides that cooperation here is needed. It's conceivable that this character could be responsible for the initial attacks, in fact.

Tempting as it is, this manipulator need not be in charge of the Ulysses Initiative-- not when the role of secretary has just as much power and less chance of being targeted by vigilantes. Plus, if the power only works with direct eye contact or close proximity, a secretary meets many more people.

The manipulator's goals could be an amount of world domination, but I also see a "self-defense" angle here. He or she would be immune to organized response provided even the slightest response time; anything where the power can come into play. A team of tough mercs -- such as the bodyguards that surround the Director of the Initiative -- would likely handle a great deal of mundane vigilante threats. What neither of these can stop, however, are other supers. Particularly other psis.

This is why the UI is so important. Because there's only room for one. At least until the PC team has captured a few good tough supers for the manipulator to turn.
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