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[BEST REPEAL DRAFT] Affordable Transgender Hormone Therapy

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Meddlesome Goblins
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[BEST REPEAL DRAFT] Affordable Transgender Hormone Therapy

Postby Meddlesome Goblins » Wed Jul 24, 2019 1:21 pm

A stunty green form darts about the chamber shadows; beady yellow eyes peering out.
As the room lights darken a goblin wearing fine clothes (for a goblin) emerges into full view; a repeal draft, in his hand:


Repeal "Affordable Transgender Hormone Therapy"

*~*~*~*~*

Noting that Affordable Transgender Hormone Therapy (GAR #467) was duly passed into law by the "Yes" vote of a majority of World Assembly nations;

Further noting that GAR #467 has been in effect for some time, allowing Member Nations to fully experience the fruits of the law;

Recognizing that, having been duly passed and enacted by Member States, at least some of the positive effects of GAR #467 would likely remain even if the law is repealed;

Reaffirming the many facts about the experience of transgender and gender non-binary people eloquently set forth in GAR #467;

Agreeing that it is appropriate for "all member-states to legalize hormone therapy for all consenting individuals;"

HOWEVER

1. Recalling that GAR #467 requires "all member-states to have an affordable, easy-to-access way for its transgender population to access hormone therapy;"

(a) Convinced that such a mandate goes beyond GAR #467's purpose in recognizing a civil right by unduly imposing substantial socialized care obligations on member states and their populations;

(b) Confused by the repetitive obligation to provide an "easy-to-access way" to "access" hormone therapy; and

(c) Concerned that the ambiguous wording of this requirement has caused some nations to believe that they must actually provide hormone therapy, while other nations believe that providing a "way... to access" the therapy (such as through mandatory deportation to a more sympathetic country) is acceptable;

2. Recalling that GAR #467 forbids "any member-state from denying a transgender person access to hormone therapy as a punishment or as part of a punishment for a crime;" (emphasis added)

(a) Noting at once that while there is nothing inherently criminal about being transgendered or gender non-binary, people in those groups commit crimes just like people in any other group;

(b) Recognizing that many member nations have criminal justice systems that impose financial fines and incarceration as a consequence of criminal misdeeds;

(c) Further recognizing that the imposition of a fine or imprisonment may result in a person effectively being denied access to hormone therapy, either because they are physically unable to receive that treatment, or unable to afford it after being fined, or both;

(d) Aware that some individuals being punished for a crime may be too dangerous and unstable for a physician to safely administer hormone therapy;

(e) Believing that forbidding the denial of hormone therapy treatment "as a punishment" would have been appropriate, but by adding needless additional language GAR #467 overreaches and effectively prohibits many lawful and acceptable criminal justice practices simply because "as a part of" those punishments, a person would be denied "access" to hormone therapy;

3. Seeing these flaws in GAR #467, and recognizing that less-ambiguous and more-reasonable regulations are possible, the General Assembly hereby:

REPEALS GAR #467, "Affordable Transgender Hormone Therapy."

Repeal "Affordable Transgender Hormone Therapy"

*~*~*~*~*

Noting that Affordable Transgender Hormone Therapy (GAR #467) was duly passed into law by the "Yes" vote of a majority of World Assembly nations;

Further noting that GAR #467 has been in effect for some time, allowing Member Nations to fully experience the fruits of the law;

Recognizing that, having been duly passed and enacted by Member States, at least some of the positive effects of GAR #467 will remain even if the law is repealed;

Reaffirming the many facts about the experience of transgender and gender non-binary people eloquently set forth in GAR #467;

Agreeing that it is appropriate for "all member-states to legalize hormone therapy for all consenting individuals;"

HOWEVER

1. Recalling that GAR #467 requires "all member-states to have an affordable, easy-to-access way for its transgender population to access hormone therapy;"

(a) Convinced that such a mandate goes beyond GAR #467's purpose in recognizing a civil right by unduly imposing substantial socialized care obligations on member states and their populations;

(b) Concerned that the ambiguous wording of this requirement has caused some nations to believe that they must actually provide hormone therapy within their nation, while other nations believe that providing a "way... to access" the therapy (such as through 'government-assisted relocation' to a more sympathetic country where therapy is actually provided) would be acceptable;

2. Recalling that GAR #467 forbids "any member-state from denying a transgender person access to hormone therapy as a punishment or as part of a punishment for a crime;" (emphasis added)

(a) Noting at once that while there is nothing inherently criminal about being transgendered or gender non-binary, people in those groups commit crimes just like people in any other group;

(b) Aware that many member nations have criminal justice systems that impose financial fines and incarceration as a consequence of criminal misdeeds;

(c) Recognizing that the imposition of a fine or imprisonment could result in a person effectively being denied access to hormone therapy, if the terms of incarceration renders them physically unable to receive the treatment, or if the amount of the fine renders them unable to afford it, or both;

(d) Noting that, at present, many individuals require the supervision of a physician or other qualified health care professional to safely receive hormone therapy;

(e) Recognizing that some individuals being punished for a crime may be too dangerous and unstable for a physician to safely supervise their hormone therapy regimen;

(f) Believing that while forbidding member nations from intentionally denying hormone therapy treatment as a punishment could have been appropriate, GAR #467 overreaches by restricting the degree of many lawful and acceptable criminal justice practices simply because "as a part of" those punishments a person would be physically or financially unable to access hormone therapy;

3. Seeing these flaws in GAR #467, and recognizing that less-ambiguous and more-reasonable regulations are possible, the General Assembly hereby:

REPEALS GAR #467, "Affordable Transgender Hormone Therapy."
Last edited by Meddlesome Goblins on Wed Jul 31, 2019 12:53 pm, edited 21 times in total.
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Postby Morover » Wed Jul 24, 2019 2:09 pm

Looking a bit like the goblin, Jonathan Jer looks suspicious. "I always knew the saying of 'goblins' was more than a metaphor..." Some incoherent babbling follows, and a group of incredibly large men enter the room, hoisting a whiteboard with the proposal on it. With a slight look of mania in his eyes, Jonathan Jer violently uncaps an Expu™ dry-erase marker, in a quite noticeable red color.

Meddlesome Goblins wrote:Noting that Affordable Transgender Hormone Therapy (GAR #467) was duly passed into law by the "Yes" vote of a majority of World Assembly nations;

Pursing his lips, Jer taps this clause with the butt-end of the marker. "Yes, I am very proud of this."

Meddlesome Goblins wrote:Further noting that GAR #467 has been in effect for some time, allowing Member Nations to fully experience the effects of the law;

Once again, Jer looks rather proud of himself. This proudness, however, does not get rid of the eye twitch that he has suffered. "Theoretically, at least. Yes."

Meddlesome Goblins wrote:Recognizing that, having been duly passed and enacted by Member States, at least some of the positive effects of GAR #467 will remain even if the law is repealed;

Actually writing on the board, now, Jer writes in big red letters: No. "That's not how this works! If the law is repealed, then only the nations who have been following the law prior to the passing will continue to enact the law. This is ridiculous."

Meddlesome Goblins wrote:Reaffirming the many facts about the experience of transgender and gender non-binary people eloquently set forth in GAR #467;

Nodding, Jer compliments the goblin, though avoiding its beady eyes. "Congratulations for not using the same bullshit argument as all the other repeal authors."

Meddlesome Goblins wrote:Agreeing that it is appropriate for "all member-states to legalize hormone therapy for all consenting individuals"

Jer writes a big red check mark next to this. Then, upon thinking about it, he erases the checkmark, and simply says "Yes, that's why I wrote it."

Meddlesome Goblins wrote:1. Recalling that GAR #467 requires "all member-states to have an affordable, easy-to-access way for its transgender population to access hormone therapy"

(a) Convinced that such a mandate goes beyond GAR #467's purpose in recognizing a civil right by unduly imposing substantial socialized care obligations on member states and their populations;

Jer jots down on the whiteboard: Resolution #97: "The health system shall be financed by national budgets or the budgets of assigned political divisions, as well as other existing private voluntary sources. The WHA may also fund at the request of any nation, but never before a thorough audit of the health system, ensuring transparency & honesty." "If your opposition is on these grounds, it's misguided, ambassador."

Meddlesome Goblins wrote:(b) Confused by the repetitive obligation to provide an "easy-to-access way" to "access" hormone therapy; and

"What? Just because something is possible to be accessed doesn't mean that it's easy to access that thing. It's not repetitive - it's clear. I don't know how information is processed in that goblin brain of yours, but it's not confusing in the slightest to myself."

Meddlesome Goblins wrote:(c) Concerned that the ambiguous wording of this requirement has caused some nations to believe that they must actually provide hormone therapy, while other nations believe that providing a "way... to access" the therapy (such as through mandatory deportation to a more sympathetic country) is acceptable;

"Holy shit - an actual legitimate concern. I'm in shock, to say the least. Well, to respond your concerns - if a nation wishes to send its transgender population to a nearby country, then I certainly believe that it would be within the boundaries of the legislation - so long as the nation ensures travel costs are affordable, the nearby country is close enough as to not create an unnecessary burden on the transgender individuals. I think mandatory deportation, however, would go against the Charter of Civil Rights. I could see an argument that my resolution would constitute a compelling practical purpose - but I will always argue the contrary."

Meddlesome Goblins wrote:2. Recalling that GAR #467 forbids "any member-state from denying a transgender person access to hormone therapy as a punishment or as part of a punishment for a crime;" (emphasis added)

(a) Noting at once that while there is nothing inherently criminal about being transgendered or gender non-binary, people in those groups commit crimes just like people in any other group;

(b) Recognizing that many member nations have criminal justice systems that impose financial fines and incarceration as a consequence of criminal misdeeds;

(c) Further recognizing that the imposition of a fine or imprisonment may result in a person effectively being denied access to hormone therapy, either because they are physically unable to receive that treatment, or unable to afford it after being fined, or both;

(d) Aware that some individuals being punished for a crime may be too dangerous and unstable for a physician to safely administer hormone therapy;

(e) Believing that prohibiting the denial of hormone therapy treatment "as a punishment" for a crime would have been appropriate, but by adding needless additional language GAR #467 overreaches and effectively prohibits many lawful and acceptable criminal justice practices simply because "as a part of" those punishments, a person would be denied "access" to hormone therapy;

"Au contraire, ambassador. It is exactly for these reasons that it is not needless. If your physicians are too dangerous and unstable for a physician to safely administer hormone therapy, get a tougher physician."

"All in all, my green little, erm, colleague, this is by leaps and bounds the best repeal thus far. It is less surprising to me than it probably should be that this attempt came from a literal goblin, too."

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Sierra Lyricalia
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Founded: Nov 29, 2008
Civil Rights Lovefest

Postby Sierra Lyricalia » Wed Jul 24, 2019 6:56 pm

Fully OOC legality analysis:

Meddlesome Goblins wrote:...1. Recalling that GAR #467 requires "all member-states to have an affordable, easy-to-access way for its transgender population to access hormone therapy;"

(a) Convinced that such a mandate goes beyond GAR #467's purpose in recognizing a civil right by unduly imposing substantial socialized care obligations on member states and their populations;
The resolution does not say anything about socialized care. It does not require hormones to be free to the patient by means of taxpayer assumption of the entire cost of production/acquisition and distribution, only that the cost be reasonable to patients. Honest Mistake.


(b) Confused by the repetitive obligation to provide an "easy-to-access way" to "access" hormone therapy; and

(c) Concerned that the ambiguous wording of this requirement has caused some nations to believe that they must actually provide hormone therapy, while other nations believe that providing a "way... to access" the therapy (such as through mandatory deportation to a more sympathetic country) is acceptable;
It's not a reasonable or good faith interpretation for a country to "comply" via deportation. "Some countries will flout this resolution entirely and do the opposite of what it clearly requires" is not a valid repeal argument. Honest Mistake.


2. Recalling that GAR #467 forbids "any member-state from denying a transgender person access to hormone therapy as a punishment or as part of a punishment for a crime;" (emphasis added)

(a) Noting at once that while there is nothing inherently criminal about being transgendered or gender non-binary, people in those groups commit crimes just like people in any other group;

(b) Recognizing that many member nations have criminal justice systems that impose financial fines and incarceration as a consequence of criminal misdeeds;

(c) Further recognizing that the imposition of a fine or imprisonment may result in a person effectively being denied access to hormone therapy, either because they are physically unable to receive that treatment, or unable to afford it after being fined, or both;
Obviously, as medical patients, the prison system has an obligation to provide these people their necessary medications. You wouldn't make the claim that a diabetic serial killer is "unable" to receive insulin while imprisoned. Same principle. Honest Mistake.


(d) Aware that some individuals being punished for a crime may be too dangerous and unstable for a physician to safely administer hormone therapy;

(e) Believing that forbidding the denial of hormone therapy treatment "as a punishment" would have been appropriate, but by adding needless additional language GAR #467 overreaches and effectively prohibits many lawful and acceptable criminal justice practices simply because "as a part of" those punishments, a person would be denied "access" to hormone therapy;
See above.


3. Seeing these flaws in GAR #467, and recognizing that less-ambiguous and more-reasonable regulations are possible, the General Assembly hereby:

REPEALS GAR #467, "Affordable Transgender Hormone Therapy."
Sure.

This will need substantial cleaning up in order to be legal.
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Civil Rights Lovefest

Postby Cowardly Pacifists » Wed Jul 24, 2019 9:26 pm

Morover wrote:Looking a bit like the goblin, Jonathan Jer looks suspicious. "I always knew the saying of 'goblins' was more than a metaphor..." Some incoherent babbling follows, and a group of incredibly large men enter the room, hoisting a whiteboard with the proposal on it. With a slight look of mania in his eyes, Jonathan Jer violently uncaps an Expu™ dry-erase marker, in a quite noticeable red color.

Meddlesome Goblins wrote:Noting that Affordable Transgender Hormone Therapy (GAR #467) was duly passed into law by the "Yes" vote of a majority of World Assembly nations;

Pursing his lips, Jer taps this clause with the butt-end of the marker. "Yes, I am very proud of this."

Meddlesome Goblins wrote:Further noting that GAR #467 has been in effect for some time, allowing Member Nations to fully experience the effects of the law;

Once again, Jer looks rather proud of himself. This proudness, however, does not get rid of the eye twitch that he has suffered. "Theoretically, at least. Yes."

Meddlesome Goblins wrote:Recognizing that, having been duly passed and enacted by Member States, at least some of the positive effects of GAR #467 will remain even if the law is repealed;

Actually writing on the board, now, Jer writes in big red letters: No. "That's not how this works! If the law is repealed, then only the nations who have been following the law prior to the passing will continue to enact the law. This is ridiculous."

Meddlesome Goblins wrote:Reaffirming the many facts about the experience of transgender and gender non-binary people eloquently set forth in GAR #467;

Nodding, Jer compliments the goblin, though avoiding its beady eyes. "Congratulations for not using the same bullshit argument as all the other repeal authors."

Meddlesome Goblins wrote:Agreeing that it is appropriate for "all member-states to legalize hormone therapy for all consenting individuals"

Jer writes a big red check mark next to this. Then, upon thinking about it, he erases the checkmark, and simply says "Yes, that's why I wrote it."

Meddlesome Goblins wrote:1. Recalling that GAR #467 requires "all member-states to have an affordable, easy-to-access way for its transgender population to access hormone therapy"

(a) Convinced that such a mandate goes beyond GAR #467's purpose in recognizing a civil right by unduly imposing substantial socialized care obligations on member states and their populations;

Jer jots down on the whiteboard: Resolution #97: "The health system shall be financed by national budgets or the budgets of assigned political divisions, as well as other existing private voluntary sources. The WHA may also fund at the request of any nation, but never before a thorough audit of the health system, ensuring transparency & honesty." "If your opposition is on these grounds, it's misguided, ambassador."

Meddlesome Goblins wrote:(b) Confused by the repetitive obligation to provide an "easy-to-access way" to "access" hormone therapy; and

"What? Just because something is possible to be accessed doesn't mean that it's easy to access that thing. It's not repetitive - it's clear. I don't know how information is processed in that goblin brain of yours, but it's not confusing in the slightest to myself."

Meddlesome Goblins wrote:(c) Concerned that the ambiguous wording of this requirement has caused some nations to believe that they must actually provide hormone therapy, while other nations believe that providing a "way... to access" the therapy (such as through mandatory deportation to a more sympathetic country) is acceptable;

"Holy shit - an actual legitimate concern. I'm in shock, to say the least. Well, to respond your concerns - if a nation wishes to send its transgender population to a nearby country, then I certainly believe that it would be within the boundaries of the legislation - so long as the nation ensures travel costs are affordable, the nearby country is close enough as to not create an unnecessary burden on the transgender individuals. I think mandatory deportation, however, would go against the Charter of Civil Rights. I could see an argument that my resolution would constitute a compelling practical purpose - but I will always argue the contrary."

Meddlesome Goblins wrote:2. Recalling that GAR #467 forbids "any member-state from denying a transgender person access to hormone therapy as a punishment or as part of a punishment for a crime;" (emphasis added)

(a) Noting at once that while there is nothing inherently criminal about being transgendered or gender non-binary, people in those groups commit crimes just like people in any other group;

(b) Recognizing that many member nations have criminal justice systems that impose financial fines and incarceration as a consequence of criminal misdeeds;

(c) Further recognizing that the imposition of a fine or imprisonment may result in a person effectively being denied access to hormone therapy, either because they are physically unable to receive that treatment, or unable to afford it after being fined, or both;

(d) Aware that some individuals being punished for a crime may be too dangerous and unstable for a physician to safely administer hormone therapy;

(e) Believing that prohibiting the denial of hormone therapy treatment "as a punishment" for a crime would have been appropriate, but by adding needless additional language GAR #467 overreaches and effectively prohibits many lawful and acceptable criminal justice practices simply because "as a part of" those punishments, a person would be denied "access" to hormone therapy;

"Au contraire, ambassador. It is exactly for these reasons that it is not needless. If your physicians are too dangerous and unstable for a physician to safely administer hormone therapy, get a tougher physician."

"All in all, my green little, erm, colleague, this is by leaps and bounds the best repeal thus far. It is less surprising to me than it probably should be that this attempt came from a literal goblin, too."

Sierra Lyricalia wrote:Fully OOC legality analysis:

Meddlesome Goblins wrote:...1. Recalling that GAR #467 requires "all member-states to have an affordable, easy-to-access way for its transgender population to access hormone therapy;"

(a) Convinced that such a mandate goes beyond GAR #467's purpose in recognizing a civil right by unduly imposing substantial socialized care obligations on member states and their populations;
The resolution does not say anything about socialized care. It does not require hormones to be free to the patient by means of taxpayer assumption of the entire cost of production/acquisition and distribution, only that the cost be reasonable to patients. Honest Mistake.


(b) Confused by the repetitive obligation to provide an "easy-to-access way" to "access" hormone therapy; and

(c) Concerned that the ambiguous wording of this requirement has caused some nations to believe that they must actually provide hormone therapy, while other nations believe that providing a "way... to access" the therapy (such as through mandatory deportation to a more sympathetic country) is acceptable;
It's not a reasonable or good faith interpretation for a country to "comply" via deportation. "Some countries will flout this resolution entirely and do the opposite of what it clearly requires" is not a valid repeal argument. Honest Mistake.


2. Recalling that GAR #467 forbids "any member-state from denying a transgender person access to hormone therapy as a punishment or as part of a punishment for a crime;" (emphasis added)

(a) Noting at once that while there is nothing inherently criminal about being transgendered or gender non-binary, people in those groups commit crimes just like people in any other group;

(b) Recognizing that many member nations have criminal justice systems that impose financial fines and incarceration as a consequence of criminal misdeeds;

(c) Further recognizing that the imposition of a fine or imprisonment may result in a person effectively being denied access to hormone therapy, either because they are physically unable to receive that treatment, or unable to afford it after being fined, or both;
Obviously, as medical patients, the prison system has an obligation to provide these people their necessary medications. You wouldn't make the claim that a diabetic serial killer is "unable" to receive insulin while imprisoned. Same principle. Honest Mistake.


(d) Aware that some individuals being punished for a crime may be too dangerous and unstable for a physician to safely administer hormone therapy;

(e) Believing that forbidding the denial of hormone therapy treatment "as a punishment" would have been appropriate, but by adding needless additional language GAR #467 overreaches and effectively prohibits many lawful and acceptable criminal justice practices simply because "as a part of" those punishments, a person would be denied "access" to hormone therapy;
See above.


3. Seeing these flaws in GAR #467, and recognizing that less-ambiguous and more-reasonable regulations are possible, the General Assembly hereby:

REPEALS GAR #467, "Affordable Transgender Hormone Therapy."
Sure.

This will need substantial cleaning up in order to be legal.

...
Okay. I have a serious problem with what just happened here.

I am a longtime player of this game. I may be more of a dabbler now, but I was a prolific writer in this forum for a good chunk of time and I drop in now and again as various puppets just to see how things are going.

I know the GA proposal rules so well I can tell you where the damn typos are.

This was a legal repeal proposal. It did not even come close to running afoul of the Honest Mistake rule.

I want to know if someone reported this to the secretariat and, if so, who the majority were who reached this conclusion. If this wasn’t reported I want to know where in the Secretariats rules it permits a sua sponte legality decision at this early stage when the proposal was up for less than a day in the forum and hadn’t been submitted. I’d like to speak with a current active the GA moderator. I can’t imagine Ard is around because she would not believe this...
Last edited by Cowardly Pacifists on Wed Jul 24, 2019 9:27 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Ransium
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Founded: Oct 17, 2006
Civil Rights Lovefest

Postby Ransium » Wed Jul 24, 2019 9:34 pm

Cowardly Pacifists wrote:
Morover wrote:Looking a bit like the goblin, Jonathan Jer looks suspicious. "I always knew the saying of 'goblins' was more than a metaphor..." Some incoherent babbling follows, and a group of incredibly large men enter the room, hoisting a whiteboard with the proposal on it. With a slight look of mania in his eyes, Jonathan Jer violently uncaps an Expu™ dry-erase marker, in a quite noticeable red color.


Pursing his lips, Jer taps this clause with the butt-end of the marker. "Yes, I am very proud of this."


Once again, Jer looks rather proud of himself. This proudness, however, does not get rid of the eye twitch that he has suffered. "Theoretically, at least. Yes."


Actually writing on the board, now, Jer writes in big red letters: No. "That's not how this works! If the law is repealed, then only the nations who have been following the law prior to the passing will continue to enact the law. This is ridiculous."


Nodding, Jer compliments the goblin, though avoiding its beady eyes. "Congratulations for not using the same bullshit argument as all the other repeal authors."


Jer writes a big red check mark next to this. Then, upon thinking about it, he erases the checkmark, and simply says "Yes, that's why I wrote it."


Jer jots down on the whiteboard: Resolution #97: "The health system shall be financed by national budgets or the budgets of assigned political divisions, as well as other existing private voluntary sources. The WHA may also fund at the request of any nation, but never before a thorough audit of the health system, ensuring transparency & honesty." "If your opposition is on these grounds, it's misguided, ambassador."


"What? Just because something is possible to be accessed doesn't mean that it's easy to access that thing. It's not repetitive - it's clear. I don't know how information is processed in that goblin brain of yours, but it's not confusing in the slightest to myself."


"Holy shit - an actual legitimate concern. I'm in shock, to say the least. Well, to respond your concerns - if a nation wishes to send its transgender population to a nearby country, then I certainly believe that it would be within the boundaries of the legislation - so long as the nation ensures travel costs are affordable, the nearby country is close enough as to not create an unnecessary burden on the transgender individuals. I think mandatory deportation, however, would go against the Charter of Civil Rights. I could see an argument that my resolution would constitute a compelling practical purpose - but I will always argue the contrary."


"Au contraire, ambassador. It is exactly for these reasons that it is not needless. If your physicians are too dangerous and unstable for a physician to safely administer hormone therapy, get a tougher physician."

"All in all, my green little, erm, colleague, this is by leaps and bounds the best repeal thus far. It is less surprising to me than it probably should be that this attempt came from a literal goblin, too."

Sierra Lyricalia wrote:Fully OOC legality analysis:

The resolution does not say anything about socialized care. It does not require hormones to be free to the patient by means of taxpayer assumption of the entire cost of production/acquisition and distribution, only that the cost be reasonable to patients. Honest Mistake.


It's not a reasonable or good faith interpretation for a country to "comply" via deportation. "Some countries will flout this resolution entirely and do the opposite of what it clearly requires" is not a valid repeal argument. Honest Mistake.


Obviously, as medical patients, the prison system has an obligation to provide these people their necessary medications. You wouldn't make the claim that a diabetic serial killer is "unable" to receive insulin while imprisoned. Same principle. Honest Mistake.


See above.


Sure.

This will need substantial cleaning up in order to be legal.

...
Okay. I have a serious problem with what just happened here.

I am a longtime player of this game. I may be more of a dabbler now, but I was a prolific writer in this forum for a good chunk of time and I drop in now and again as various puppets just to see how things are going.

I know the GA proposal rules so well I can tell you where the damn typos are.

This was a legal repeal proposal. It did not even come close to running afoul of the Honest Mistake rule.

I want to know if someone reported this to the secretariat and, if so, who the majority were who reached this conclusion. If this wasn’t reported I want to know where in the Secretariats rules it permits a sua sponte legality decision at this early stage when the proposal was up for less than a day in the forum and hadn’t been submitted. I’d like to speak with a current active the GA moderator. I can’t imagine Ard is around because she would not believe this...


Sadly Ard is retired. There aren’t really WA GA mods anymore, but I would so Wrapper and myself are as close as you’re going to get. SL was giving his opinion as a player, as he is allowed to do, this was not an official GenSec ruling.

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Cowardly Pacifists
Ambassador
 
Posts: 1457
Founded: Dec 12, 2011
Civil Rights Lovefest

Postby Cowardly Pacifists » Wed Jul 24, 2019 10:12 pm

Ransium wrote:
Cowardly Pacifists wrote:

...
Okay. I have a serious problem with what just happened here.

I am a longtime player of this game. I may be more of a dabbler now, but I was a prolific writer in this forum for a good chunk of time and I drop in now and again as various puppets just to see how things are going.

I know the GA proposal rules so well I can tell you where the damn typos are.

This was a legal repeal proposal. It did not even come close to running afoul of the Honest Mistake rule.

I want to know if someone reported this to the secretariat and, if so, who the majority were who reached this conclusion. If this wasn’t reported I want to know where in the Secretariats rules it permits a sua sponte legality decision at this early stage when the proposal was up for less than a day in the forum and hadn’t been submitted. I’d like to speak with a current active the GA moderator. I can’t imagine Ard is around because she would not believe this...


Sadly Ard is retired. There aren’t really WA GA mods anymore, but I would so Wrapper and myself are as close as you’re going to get. SL was giving his opinion as a player, as he is allowed to do, this was not an official GenSec ruling.

He gets a color and title associated with the secretariat and he begins his post by saying: “Fully OOC legality analysis.” He wasn’t talking to me as a player, he wanted me to understand that he wasn’t playing and was making an out of character legality analysis. He tells me multiple times in his analysis that my proposal violates a rule it doesn’t violate and concludes by telling me it will need substantial work before it will be legal. He has access to game tools which allow him to delete proposals determined to be illegal. Please tell me you are seeing the problem with that.

What if I really had been a new player, a kid trying out GA for the first time. Consider the impression that would likely give me. This is a serious problem to have people with these tools behaving like this. Even if you think SL’s comments would be fine had they been delivered as in-game player talk, that is not how he delivered them. Consider the context he intentionally created and it’s implications.
Last edited by Cowardly Pacifists on Wed Jul 24, 2019 11:03 pm, edited 2 times in total.
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Postby Imperium Anglorum » Wed Jul 24, 2019 10:16 pm

Cowardly Pacifists wrote:...
Okay. I have a serious problem with what just happened here.

I am a longtime player of this game. I may be more of a dabbler now, but I was a prolific writer in this forum for a good chunk of time and I drop in now and again as various puppets just to see how things are going.

I know the GA proposal rules so well I can tell you where the damn typos are.

This was a legal repeal proposal. It did not even come close to running afoul of the Honest Mistake rule.

I want to know if someone reported this to the secretariat and, if so, who the majority were who reached this conclusion. If this wasn’t reported I want to know where in the Secretariats rules it permits a sua sponte legality decision at this early stage when the proposal was up for less than a day in the forum and hadn’t been submitted. I’d like to speak with a current active the GA moderator. I can’t imagine Ard is around because she would not believe this...

On first glance, I concur with CP's assessment. But a few points to address his remarks, starting from first principles (if you already know this, my apologies, I didn't know that you did):

1. GA moderators don't exist anymore. The moderators washed their hands of the GA after the last few GA moderators basically retired and they continually came under criticism by various players for certain rulings (e.g. "gutting" the Honest Mistake rule, the "horror" of recognising the existence of the Security Council, etc). They've been replaced with the GA Secretariat, currently abbreviated as GenSec.

2. Members of GenSec were selected by the moderators. They initially consisted of Separatist Peoples, Sierra Lyricalia, Sciongrad – S is the first letter in the alphabet, after all – Bears Armed, Glen-Rhodes, and Christian Democrats. Glen-Rhodes retired, he was replaced with Bananaistan. CD was removed for inactivity, he was replaced with Grey's Harbour. In both cases, replacement was selected by internal GenSec votes.

3. How I conceive of it, there are three levels of GenSec-member actions. The first is a personal opinion, like the above. It is an indication solely of how someone would vote. The second is an administrative ruling, which is now built into the site under each proposal. Proposals which have more illegal votes than legal votes are "Held". They do not go to vote. They can also be discarded from the queue for more egregious violations. Discard power of a resolution at vote is held by the mods, but exercised on behalf of the Secretariat. The third is a GenSec ruling which creates "binding" precedent in a somewhat loose sense. I maintain a catalogue of those rulings, which you can find here: https://bit.ly/gensec-catalogue

4. You can find the Secretariat procedures sticked to the top of this forum.

5. There has been significant tightening on the Honest Mistake rule. Namely, now, the exaggeration portion basically doesn't exist anymore and some of the harder-line GA Secretariat members want to apply it to "untrue" statements made writ large. See [2018] GAS 9 and [2017] GAS 7 (links can be found in the linked catalogue). The former ruled claims that an international court could not be established to be an Honest mistake because pointless and "stupid", to quote SL, international courts can be established.

The next ruling, naturally, then sidestepped the clear question of whether a repeal of one of my resolutions was illegal on those same grounds because when Auralia says that criminals cannot be extradited to jurisdictions with capital punishment... when only criminals who are unlikely to be subject to the death penalty are so restricted... meaning that actual criminals like burglars are not subject to the provisions and can be extradited... it is fine.

Regarding the latter ruling cited, there is now a precedent that claims in repeals which break reasonable nation theory are illegal. This is the case irrespective of interpretations tightly linked to some resolution's text, since the text of the submitted repeal in that case made no interpretation of the target resolution's text. It only made broad claims about the world writ large. (One may note that I initially liked the ruling, I no longer think it was the right choice.)

EDIT: Oh look, I got ninja'ed.
Last edited by Imperium Anglorum on Wed Jul 24, 2019 10:33 pm, edited 9 times in total.

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Postby Cowardly Pacifists » Wed Jul 24, 2019 10:49 pm

Imperium Anglorum wrote:
Cowardly Pacifists wrote:...
Okay. I have a serious problem with what just happened here.

I am a longtime player of this game. I may be more of a dabbler now, but I was a prolific writer in this forum for a good chunk of time and I drop in now and again as various puppets just to see how things are going.

I know the GA proposal rules so well I can tell you where the damn typos are.

This was a legal repeal proposal. It did not even come close to running afoul of the Honest Mistake rule.

I want to know if someone reported this to the secretariat and, if so, who the majority were who reached this conclusion. If this wasn’t reported I want to know where in the Secretariats rules it permits a sua sponte legality decision at this early stage when the proposal was up for less than a day in the forum and hadn’t been submitted. I’d like to speak with a current active the GA moderator. I can’t imagine Ard is around because she would not believe this...

On first glance, I concur with CP's assessment. But a few points to address his remarks, starting from first principles (if you already know this, my apologies, I didn't know that you did):

1. GA moderators don't exist anymore. The moderators washed their hands of the GA after the last few GA moderators basically retired and they continually came under criticism by various players for certain rulings (e.g. "gutting" the Honest Mistake rule, the "horror" of recognising the existence of the Security Council, etc). They've been replaced with the GA Secretariat, currently abbreviated as GenSec.

2. Members of GenSec were selected by the moderators. They initially consisted of Separatist Peoples, Sierra Lyricalia, Sciongrad – S is the first letter in the alphabet, after all – Bears Armed, Glen-Rhodes, and Christian Democrats. Glen-Rhodes retired, he was replaced with Bananaistan. CD was removed for inactivity, he was replaced with Grey's Harbour. In both cases, replacement was selected by internal GenSec votes.

3. There are three levels of GenSec member actions. The first is a personal opinion, like the above. The second is an administrative ruling, which is now built into the site under each proposal. Proposals which have more illegal votes than legal votes are "Held". They can also be discarded for more egregious violations. The third is a GenSec ruling which creates "binding" precedent in a somewhat loose sense. I maintain a catalogue of those rulings, which you can find here: https://bit.ly/gensec-catalogue

4. There has been significant tightening on the Honest Mistake rule. Namely, now, the exaggeration portion basically doesn't exist anymore and some of the harder-line GA Secretariat members want to apply it to "untrue" statements made writ large. See [2018] GAS 9 and [2017] GAS 7 (links can be found in the linked catalogue). The former ruled claims that an international court could not be established to be an Honest mistake because pointless and "stupid", to quote SL, international courts can be established.

The next ruling, naturally, then sidestepped the clear question of whether a repeal of one of my resolutions was illegal on those same grounds because when Auralia says that criminals cannot be extradited to jurisdictions with capital punishment... when only criminals who are unlikely to be subject to the death penalty are so restricted... meaning that actual criminals like burglars are not subject to the provisions and can be extradited... it is fine.

Regarding the latter ruling cited, there is now a precedent that claims in repeals which break reasonable nation theory are illegal. This is the case irrespective of interpretations tightly linked to some resolution's text, since the text of the submitted repeal in that case made no interpretation of the target resolution's text. It only made broad claims about the world writ large. (One may note that I initially liked the ruling, I no longer think it was the right choice.)

EDIT: Oh look, I got ninja'ed.

This is quite interesting but I should mention that I don’t care about his legality opinion; I know he’s wrong about that. Interpreting the rules doesn’t mean rewriting them. There is no way the repeal argument I made above falls under the plain text of the written rule, which is still a stickie thread in this forum and still the Rules of this game. The wonkiness of the secretariats caselaw indeed appears quite interesting and perhaps even fun, but that is a minor issue and not why I’m raising the hue and cry.

What I care about is the appearance of unfairness to have the person who can pull your proposal tell you, OOC, in the form of a “legality analysis,” that it’s illegal before you’ve even submitted it. The players playing judges seem to have forgotten some of the basic principles of jurisprudence; it is improper for a judge to render an advisory opinion outside a contested case, and it is actually unethical to render a public opinion deciding a matter that might still come before you officially.

Who do I talk to about that. Also, for as long as I am active this go round, who do I notify that I want SL recused in any case involving one of my proposals based on prejudice. For those who don’t know, that word literally refers to premature judgement, and it has its roots in describing the unfairness of having someone predisposed against you be given power to decide your case.
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Postby Imperium Anglorum » Wed Jul 24, 2019 11:06 pm

I believe that's exempted in the recusal guidelines. If I recall correctly, the discussion on the matter ended up on, basically, that it would be better to get some feedback from GAS members rather than no feedback.

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Postby Separatist Peoples » Thu Jul 25, 2019 4:20 am

OOC: I don't believe we have a formal method of reporting violations of GenSec rules. If we did, I imagine we'd be swamped in frivolous claims, so its easier to look out in threads where they form for nascent complaints.

I will not comment on the proposal's legality, because I don't want people to think that I am defending or attacking SL based on agreement or disagreement.

What SL did was not, in the strictest sense, a ruling, but a notification to a player that, should he or she submit, it would probably violate the rules. GenSec has been and will continue to do so, because it often saves an individual from getting all the way to submission before discovering an issue. It also prevents them from submitting proposals that are illegal that we then have to clean up.

Unlike real judges, we can and do give advisory, individual opinions. For one, it makes it a whole lot easier to diagnose errors, especially among new players. For another, we aren't judges. We have serious limitations, not the least of which is that we have no appellate opportunities. We weigh in and that's that. And we still play as players. One of the big worries we had about harsh recusals was that it would siphon experienced players out of the community. Thus why our recusal guidelines only require it where an individual has an interest in the proposal or resolution, such as author or coauthor. This is a small community. We can't stay above it without leaving it.

I don't think SL acted unreasonably by sharing his view. In his view the draft had significant legality problems and he shared it with a player to avoid the player investing substantial resources into submission. That was something GenSec was built to accomplish. SL hasn't shown any indication of malice here, so there's little reason to recuse him. He's capable of an unbiased review of the rules.

Also, I resent you claiming that our case law is wonky. If you look at the parts where I was in the majority, the case law is perfectly sane.
Last edited by Separatist Peoples on Thu Jul 25, 2019 4:20 am, edited 1 time in total.

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Postby Araraukar » Thu Jul 25, 2019 6:19 am

OOC: For the record, as a non-GenSec player, SL basically ninja'ed what I would have posted. So if someone doesn't like him doing so with the pretty-in-pink title, you can mentally replace me for his post and carry on as usual. :P
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Postby Sierra Lyricalia » Thu Jul 25, 2019 6:56 am

All OOC:

Um, wow. OK, well, I apologize if I came off too blunt, and that I didn't explicitly clarify "1/6 GenSec" only, as we sometimes do. As others have noted, I wasn't rendering an *** Official Ruling of the Secretariat ***, but my personal (though relevant) opinion as to the likely comportment of your proposal with the rules.

In my opinion, the "exaggerations" you stated went a bit beyond mere hyperbole and into the realm of implausible/false outright. I don't think bringing up Reasonable Nation Theory helps here, as my critique is based on the "good faith" clause of GAR #2 (Article 9). A nation complying in good faith would not be doing the things the repeal claims, again in my opinion.

I do sincerely apologize if your experience with the current system hasn't been a good one. Our intent is to keep the game fun for old timers as well as noobs. I will try to take these criticisms to heart in future.

Thanks!
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Postby Kranostav » Thu Jul 25, 2019 6:56 am

It appears that SL gave their opinion on legality so as to prevent illegality should you submit it. No official GenSec action was made so I am confused why you are so up in arms. GenSec are players too and are capable of being wrong or otherwise being convinced of something. But to suggest they are prejudicing themselves against you and will be incapable of a fair ruling because they gave their opinion and offered help is a tad odd.

Any who, as a non GenSec member I can say that this won't pass, and repeal is not worth spending your time on as the target resolution was very popular especially in TNP.
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Postby Sciongrad » Thu Jul 25, 2019 6:58 am

Cowardly Pacifists wrote:
I know the GA proposal rules so well I can tell you where the damn typos are.

This was a legal repeal proposal. It did not even come close to running afoul of the Honest Mistake rule.

I want to know if someone reported this to the secretariat and, if so, who the majority were who reached this conclusion. If this wasn’t reported I want to know where in the Secretariats rules it permits a sua sponte legality decision at this early stage when the proposal was up for less than a day in the forum and hadn’t been submitted. I’d like to speak with a current active the GA moderator. I can’t imagine Ard is around because she would not believe this...

I don't doubt your familiarity with the rules, but that is not a defense of your proposal against SL's, in my opinion, very convincing analysis. If you believe either the Honest Mistake rule does not prohibit false claims or claims whose truthfulness depends on some significant amount of nations behaving unreasonably or in bad faith, or that none of the claims in your proposal is false or misleading in this way, then you must explain why. You keep on saying "this is definitely not illegal," but you understand that doesn't count as a defense, right?

What's more, SL did not initiate a sua sponte review of this proposal, he provided an informal analysis as a warning before you proceed. As IA helpfully explained, a sua sponte review is a formal review of the proposal with a binding result. SL's post was just OOC advice.

What I care about is the appearance of unfairness to have the person who can pull your proposal tell you, OOC, in the form of a “legality analysis,” that it’s illegal before you’ve even submitted it. The players playing judges seem to have forgotten some of the basic principles of jurisprudence; it is improper for a judge to render an advisory opinion outside a contested case, and it is actually unethical to render a public opinion deciding a matter that might still come before you officially.

This is a ridiculous standard that if pressed you would not maintain. You're saying that the players that interpret the rules should never give legal advice until a proposal has been challenged? Even though we are the ones that are best suited to provide advice because we are the ones that ultimately determine what does and does not violate the rules? You would rather players waste time and effort by submitting a proposal only to find out later that it was illegal? Did you ever make this complaint when Ard frequently gave informal legal advice? We are not judges, we are members of the community that try to ensure that the game remains fun by making the rules as clear and as standardized as possible. That means we guide players through the proposal-writing process to make sure from the first instance that the rules are clear and obvious, not some "brooding omnipotence in the sky."
Last edited by Sciongrad on Thu Jul 25, 2019 7:10 am, edited 6 times in total.
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Araraukar
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Postby Araraukar » Thu Jul 25, 2019 7:10 am

Kranostav wrote:so I am confused why you are so up in arms

OOC: Because like all the others trying to repeal the target, they can't actually defend their points.
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Postby Bears Armed » Thu Jul 25, 2019 7:53 am

Cowardly Pacifists wrote:
Morover wrote:Looking a bit like the goblin, Jonathan Jer looks suspicious. "I always knew the saying of 'goblins' was more than a metaphor..." Some incoherent babbling follows, and a group of incredibly large men enter the room, hoisting a whiteboard with the proposal on it. With a slight look of mania in his eyes, Jonathan Jer violently uncaps an Expu™ dry-erase marker, in a quite noticeable red color.


Pursing his lips, Jer taps this clause with the butt-end of the marker. "Yes, I am very proud of this."


Once again, Jer looks rather proud of himself. This proudness, however, does not get rid of the eye twitch that he has suffered. "Theoretically, at least. Yes."


Actually writing on the board, now, Jer writes in big red letters: No. "That's not how this works! If the law is repealed, then only the nations who have been following the law prior to the passing will continue to enact the law. This is ridiculous."


Nodding, Jer compliments the goblin, though avoiding its beady eyes. "Congratulations for not using the same bullshit argument as all the other repeal authors."


Jer writes a big red check mark next to this. Then, upon thinking about it, he erases the checkmark, and simply says "Yes, that's why I wrote it."


Jer jots down on the whiteboard: Resolution #97: "The health system shall be financed by national budgets or the budgets of assigned political divisions, as well as other existing private voluntary sources. The WHA may also fund at the request of any nation, but never before a thorough audit of the health system, ensuring transparency & honesty." "If your opposition is on these grounds, it's misguided, ambassador."


"What? Just because something is possible to be accessed doesn't mean that it's easy to access that thing. It's not repetitive - it's clear. I don't know how information is processed in that goblin brain of yours, but it's not confusing in the slightest to myself."


"Holy shit - an actual legitimate concern. I'm in shock, to say the least. Well, to respond your concerns - if a nation wishes to send its transgender population to a nearby country, then I certainly believe that it would be within the boundaries of the legislation - so long as the nation ensures travel costs are affordable, the nearby country is close enough as to not create an unnecessary burden on the transgender individuals. I think mandatory deportation, however, would go against the Charter of Civil Rights. I could see an argument that my resolution would constitute a compelling practical purpose - but I will always argue the contrary."


"Au contraire, ambassador. It is exactly for these reasons that it is not needless. If your physicians are too dangerous and unstable for a physician to safely administer hormone therapy, get a tougher physician."

"All in all, my green little, erm, colleague, this is by leaps and bounds the best repeal thus far. It is less surprising to me than it probably should be that this attempt came from a literal goblin, too."

Sierra Lyricalia wrote:Fully OOC legality analysis:

The resolution does not say anything about socialized care. It does not require hormones to be free to the patient by means of taxpayer assumption of the entire cost of production/acquisition and distribution, only that the cost be reasonable to patients. Honest Mistake.


It's not a reasonable or good faith interpretation for a country to "comply" via deportation. "Some countries will flout this resolution entirely and do the opposite of what it clearly requires" is not a valid repeal argument. Honest Mistake.


Obviously, as medical patients, the prison system has an obligation to provide these people their necessary medications. You wouldn't make the claim that a diabetic serial killer is "unable" to receive insulin while imprisoned. Same principle. Honest Mistake.


See above.


Sure.

This will need substantial cleaning up in order to be legal.

...
Okay. I have a serious problem with what just happened here.

I am a longtime player of this game. I may be more of a dabbler now, but I was a prolific writer in this forum for a good chunk of time and I drop in now and again as various puppets just to see how things are going.

I know the GA proposal rules so well I can tell you where the damn typos are.

This was a legal repeal proposal. It did not even come close to running afoul of the Honest Mistake rule.

I want to know if someone reported this to the secretariat and, if so, who the majority were who reached this conclusion. If this wasn’t reported I want to know where in the Secretariats rules it permits a sua sponte legality decision at this early stage when the proposal was up for less than a day in the forum and hadn’t been submitted. I’d like to speak with a current active the GA moderator. I can’t imagine Ard is around because she would not believe this...

OOC
Welcome back! Long time no see...

___________________________________________________

Sorry, but I agree with my colleagues about the illegality here.

Complaints about perceived Gensec unfairness can be sent to the Mods [all of them collectively, rather than to any specific 'GA Mod'], by using the GHR system, but they've said that they don't appreciate "frivolous" claims and I suspect strongly that that's how they'd classify one about this situation.
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Civil Rights Lovefest

Postby Cowardly Pacifists » Thu Jul 25, 2019 10:14 am

Separatist Peoples wrote:*snip*

I understand your point that "what SL did was not, in the strictest sense, a ruling, but a notification to a player that, should he or she submit, it would probably violate the rules." While in a strictly legal sense I'm convinced you're right, it sounds like a distinction without a difference. Consider how it comes across to a new player. The person with power to remove your proposal has told you, OOC, that it's illegal.

There is a sticky describing GenSec and its role in discarding illegal proposals. You have nothing in the GenSec rules suggesting that GenSec members will occasionally make non-binding OOC comments about proposal legality to be friendly. A GenSec member then posts OOC with a "legality analysis" informing the player that nearly the entire proposal is illegal and will need substantial cleaning up in order to be legal. Surely, you can understand the appearance problems this creates.

I think it's wonderful that GenSec members post helpful comments to new (or old) players to help them with their proposals. But you can't write this off as "We still play as players." The response I got started with an indication that I was about to read an OOC legality analysis. You're not communicating that you're "playing" with that sort of introduction. To be perfectly clear: I'm not saying players - even those with some say in the discard process - shouldn't share their views about proposal legality. But doing it with a GenSec nation and rendering it OOC with an conclusory warning that the proposal "will need" work "to be legal" comes off as a legality ruling (even if not accompanied by the special font) and THAT is why I'm upset.

Also, it's a bit of a side point but your rules don't say recusal is for "malice," but for bias which is "strongly perceived:"

GenSec rules wrote: Members of GenSec will recuse themselves if they have a real or strongly perceived bias against the proposal that prevents them from ruling objectively. To be abundantly clear, past expressed opinions on interpretations of the rules do not create a bias that makes recusal necessary. Bias is against the proposal itself, not the rules implicated in the challenge.

Also I didn't mean any offense with the wonkiness comment. I was merely responding colloquially to IA's post. I certainly didn't mean any personal offense.

Sciongrad wrote:I don't doubt your familiarity with the rules, but that is not a defense of your proposal against SL's, in my opinion, very convincing analysis. If you believe either the Honest Mistake rule does not prohibit false claims or claims whose truthfulness depends on some significant amount of nations behaving unreasonably or in bad faith, or that none of the claims in your proposal is false or misleading in this way, then you must explain why. You keep on saying "this is definitely not illegal," but you understand that doesn't count as a defense, right?

I don't want to get too side-tracked from the real point here, which is about how GenSec members are communicating their "player opinions" to drafters as opposed to their "official your-proposal-is-dead-and-if-you-keep-it-up-you-might-get-banned opinions." But I'll make two responses to this.

First, it's a bit crap to allow a GenSec member, with a few sentences of commentary (at most), to state a rule has been violated and then put the burden on the drafter to affirmatively prove that the rule wasn't violated. I would expect the GenSec member to set forth, in the language of the rule supposedly violated, what the person has done wrong. SL really didn't do that. In fact, in one instance, he actually agreed with my interpretation of what the law requires (so, not an Honest Mistake violation), but then argued that it's good that the law requires what it does and concluded: "Honest Mistake." You should not be so quick to simply accept another GenSec member's analysis as "very convincing;" with all due respect to SL, at least once in his analysis he conflated an Honest Mistake violation with a disagreement over the merits of what the law does.

Also, the author of the resolution acknowledged (while respectfully responding to the repeal arguments and disagreeing with the conclusion) that my analysis was (mostly) a plausible interpretation of the act (he did dispute the import of my grammatical quibble), saying of one argument: "Holy shit - an actual legitimate concern. I'm in shock, to say the least. Well, to respond your concerns..." SL dismissed that argument as an "Honest Mistake" about what the resolution does. I realize no one is bound by the author's interpretation, and SL is entitled to his opinion, but when the person with arguably the greatest dog in the fight when it comes to interpreting their own work acknowledged a legitimate issue has been spotted, shouldn't that be considered in how quickly a GenSec member renders an OOC advisory opinions telling the repeal writer that their proposal violates the Honest Mistake rule?

If you want me to explain in greater detail why this proposal doesn't violate the Honest Mistake Rule I will do so more fully in a following post. I want it clear that I could have handled this playfully as just a "your proposal is illegal" argument but I'm escalating because of the way in which a GenSec member approached making what is being characterized as a "player" legality comment.

Sciongrad wrote:This is a ridiculous standard that if pressed you would not maintain. You're saying that the players that interpret the rules should never give legal advice until a proposal has been challenged? Even though we are the ones that are best suited to provide advice because we are the ones that ultimately determine what does and does not violate the rules? You would rather players waste time and effort by submitting a proposal only to find out later that it was illegal? Did you ever make this complaint when Ard frequently gave informal legal advice? We are not judges, we are members of the community that try to ensure that the game remains fun by making the rules as clear and as standardized as possible. That means we guide players through the proposal-writing process to make sure from the first instance that the rules are clear and obvious, not some "brooding omnipotence in the sky."

I can see why you would believe that to be my position. Perhaps I did go a bit into hyperbole to stress the extremely poor reflection on the fairness of the process created when GenSec members deliver legal advice in the manner done here.

To be clear: I'm not upset that SL gave legality advise to a nation with a proposal. I think it's well and good that GenSec members acting as "players" should help writers by challenging them to consider possible legality issues. But I'm upset with the way it was delivered, and I've pointed to several aspects of the communication already that I won't belabor again - including the absence of any notice in the GenSec rules that members will occasionally make non-binding informal OOC legality "warnings" and the specific wording of SL's post - which I thought failed to convey that this was just a helpful piece of "lets try to get it right" advice.

And while I can accept your premise that it can be helpful and appropriate for GenSec members to give stern-but-not-official-or-binding legality advice, surely you can agree that it is also possible for that advice to be debate stifling and defeat the purpose of this forum to foster a fun discussion about proposals. The difference can be found in delivery. Here we had the passed resolution's author join the debate to defend their proposal, acknowledge some merit to the repeal attempt, and then make good arguments against the repeal. A fun debate could have followed. Instead, a GenSec member said in an official sounding voice that the proposal would need substantial work to even be legal. Who is going to spend their time debating the merits after that? It would be a "waste of time and effort" to bother commenting on something already deemed illegal by someone with authority.

Sierra Lyricalia wrote:*snip*

I appreciate your reply. I will respond to your legality concerns elsewhere.

I don't mean to attack you personally SL, I know you're a great guy and good player of this ridiculous game. I do think there's a difference between a proposal's legality and it's merits which you've blurred a bit here and since you now have superpowers that enable you to control gameplay (with or without the agreement of others), the way you deliver your opinion and when you choose to do so matters.

Bears Armed wrote:Welcome back! Long time no see...

___________________________________________________

Sorry, but I agree with my colleagues about the illegality here.

Complaints about perceived Gensec unfairness can be sent to the Mods [all of them collectively, rather than to any specific 'GA Mod'], by using the GHR system, but they've said that they don't appreciate "frivolous" claims and I suspect strongly that that's how they'd classify one about this situation.

I'll respond to legality concerns elsewhere. I know how to file a GHR if appropriate and agree this is not the time or the reason. I wanted a dialogue with whichever mod is generally responsible for overseeing the quality of player experience and the activities of official game actors in this forum. I received my response about that; there really isn't one.

It's good to see you.
Last edited by Cowardly Pacifists on Thu Jul 25, 2019 2:19 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Postby Imperium Anglorum » Thu Jul 25, 2019 10:16 am

Oh yea, a note. Submission of illegal proposals no longer warrants WA ejection.

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Postby Bears Armed » Thu Jul 25, 2019 10:45 am

Imperium Anglorum wrote:Oh yea, a note. Submission of illegal proposals no longer warrants WA ejection.
OOC
Submitting too many of them in a fairly short time -- "spamming the queue" -- still does.
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Postby Cowardly Pacifists » Thu Jul 25, 2019 1:55 pm

A Critique of the Application of the Honest Mistake Rule in this Case,
or: This Repeal Proposal is Legal and, if Submitted, is Entitled to a Common Vote.

A member of the GenSec board, acting OOC but in their personal and unofficial capacity, identified multiple alleged violations of one particular rule for repeals, the Honest Mistake Rule, and concluded that this proposal would be illegal for violating that rule. Since that time, two others GenSec members have joined that opinion, two members have expressed no comment, and one member has commented but refrained from expressing an opinion pending further consideration.

Before turning to the alleged violations, it is important to recall the rules of the game. The rules for repeals are set forth on page 1 of the GA Proposal Compendium: Rules & General Advice. As of this writing, the rules have existed in their present form since at least May 15, 2018, when the Mod Wrapper last made some unknown change to the document. It is possible, likely even, that the Honest Mistake Rule discussed here has remained unchanged for much longer than that.

Although empowered to enforce the rules, the GenSec does not have the authority to unilaterally amend them or distort their plain language. GenSec members also may not stretch the meaning of the rules to reach a desired result if doing so requires disregarding the plain text of the rule. Put differently, the interpretations of a GenSec member are not entitled to any greater weight, simply because they are a GenSec member, when those interpretations require ignoring or modifying parts of the written rule. This maxim is an essential feature of ensuring that gameplay within the GA is fair: the rules as written apply to us all.

The Honest Mistake Rule states, in full:
The Honest Mistake Rule wrote:Honest Mistake: Repeals should address the contents of the resolution it's targeting, and not just state the reverse of the arguments given in the resolution. Embellishment, exaggeration, deceptive/weaselly-words do not constitute an 'honest mistake'. An 'honest mistake' is factual inaccuracies, misrepresentation, or content that doesn't address the resolution

Some features here are worth pointing out. First, the core principle of the rule is that "repeals should address the contents of the resolution it's targeting." This suggests that Honest Mistake violations will generally be found where, rather than addressing a resolution's content, a repeal author instead "just state[s] the reverse of the arguments given in the resolution." A good example of this can be found in other proposals to repeal the target resolution in this case which, rather than address the contents of what the resolution does, instead quibble over whether the "facts" laid out regarding the transgendered experience are true. Another example based on this part of the rule, in this context, would be a repeal that does not address what the resolution does about the right to transgender hormone therapy but, instead, argues that transgender people are bad and undeserving of protection. While such an argument might provide a "reason" for repeal, it would fail to "address the contents of the resolution" and therefore violate the rule.

Second, the rule expressly permits several repeal tactics and explicitly states they "do not constitute an honest mistake." Those tactics expressly approved include: embellishment (dictionary def: a decorative detail or feature added to something to make it more attractive), exaggeration (dictionary def: a statement that represents something as better or worse than it really is); deceptive/weaselly words (no dictionary def available here but the common understanding would be intentionally ambiguous or even misleading words; for instance, saying "many people believe" to hide the fact that the actual number is few, or "wasted tons of money" when in fact the money involved is small in value but extremely heavy for some reason).

Finally, the rule provides some examples of what does constitute an Honest Mistake: "An 'honest mistake' is factual inaccuracies, misrepresentation, or content that doesn't address the resolution." Reading this part of the rule in context of the former part expressly allowing exaggeration and deceptive behavior, the rule effectively permits a repeal proposal to exaggerate or embellish the perceived negative effects of a law so long as it does so in a manner that addresses the actual content of the target resolution.

With that in mind:
Sierra Lyricalia wrote:
Meddlesome Goblins wrote:...1. Recalling that GAR #467 requires "all member-states to have an affordable, easy-to-access way for its transgender population to access hormone therapy;"

(a) Convinced that such a mandate goes beyond GAR #467's purpose in recognizing a civil right by unduly imposing substantial socialized care obligations on member states and their populations;
The resolution does not say anything about socialized care. It does not require hormones to be free to the patient by means of taxpayer assumption of the entire cost of production/acquisition and distribution, only that the cost be reasonable to patients. Honest Mistake.

The GenSec member argues that this first point in the repeal proposal is an Honest Mistake violation. The repeal identifies with particularly a direct quote from the target resolution, which includes a mandate that member states have an "affordable, easy-to-access way" to access a form of medical therapy. The repeal argues that from the language about "affordable" and "easy" access to care, as well as placing those obligations on governments rather than private actors, there is a reasonable inference that some amount of care would be socialized. The repeal (possibly) exaggerates or embellishes that inference by characterizing any socialization of those costs as "undue" or "substantial" obligations. That sort of exaggerating the potential negative effects is totally permissible under the plain language of the Honest Mistake rule.

In his response, the resolution's author did not disagree that the resolution imposes care obligations but pointed out that criticism of this limited obligation is misguided given that other resolutions on the books already mandate socialized care on a broader level. That is a fine and reasoned position to take against the merits of the repeal argument, if the premise is accepted that the additional costs imposed by the target would not be "undue" or "substantial" because member states already have an obligation to provide socialized care. But it properly recognizes that some sort of socialized care obligation is a reasonable consequence to infer from the plain text of the resolution.

The GenSec member responds that this is nonetheless a violation because "The resolution does not say anything about socialized care." But, as discussed above, it does say something about socialized care, at least implicitly, by imposing on governments a duty to provide "affordable" means of treatment. It is not unreasonable for a repeal to grab on to that sort of language and argue that the law should be repealed because, at its heart, "affordable transgender hormone therapy" reasonably implies socializing health care costs. Indeed, the GenSec member seemingly acknowledges the reasonableness of that interpretation by granting that the resolution does require member states to act so that "the cost be reasonable to patients."

It is worth mentioning that the GenSec member also embellishes the repeal language to make it easier to dismiss. The GenSec member points out that the target resolution does not require treatment "be free to the patient by means of taxpayer assumption of the entire cost of production/acquisition and distribution." Perhaps had the repeal accused the target resolution of that, it would indeed be an unfair mischaracterization of the target. Surely, the target resolution does not require free care or taxpayer assumption of "the entire cost" of the care. But, of course, that's not what the repeal accuses the target resolution of; not even close. The repeal quotes the target language and points out that a reasonable inference from that language is that the law imposes some socialized care obligations, which the repeal characterizes simply as "undue" and "substantial." Those are qualifiers that, at worst, are weasel words - they don't have any precise meaning but express generally an undesirable result. The fact that the GenSec member would not personally agree with that inference - perhaps because the GenSec member believes only a requirement of free, fully-taxpayer funded care would be "undue" and "substantial" - is a matter for the proposal's merits, not its legality.

Sierra Lyricalia wrote:
(b) Confused by the repetitive obligation to provide an "easy-to-access way" to "access" hormone therapy; and

(c) Concerned that the ambiguous wording of this requirement has caused some nations to believe that they must actually provide hormone therapy, while other nations believe that providing a "way... to access" the therapy (such as through mandatory deportation to a more sympathetic country) is acceptable;
It's not a reasonable or good faith interpretation for a country to "comply" via deportation. "Some countries will flout this resolution entirely and do the opposite of what it clearly requires" is not a valid repeal argument. Honest Mistake.

This concern was recognized as a legitimate interpretation of what the law requires by the resolution's author. So it's unclear where the GenSec member came up with their conclusion that it would not be a reasonable or good faith interpretation of the law or would mean doing "the opposite of what it clearly requires."

The target resolution, by its plain language as quoted in the repeal, requires only "affordable" and "easy-to-access" access to the therapy and nothing more. The text of the target is quoted in full in the repeal; there is no effort to mislead about what the law actually says. The repeal then embellishes the possible consequences of reading the law literally as its written, and exaggerates how nations might comply if applying the law strictly to its letter. That sort of argument is expressly allowed for repeals by the Honest Mistake rule. The fact that a GenSec member would not accept such an interpretation themselves is a merits issue to be argued at vote, not a legality issue.

Notably, the repeal does not suggest that the law requires member nations to deport their people and acknowledges that a reasonable interpretation would be to provide hormone therapy in the home state. But where the resolution is drafted to compel "access" rather than actual provision, it is a legitimate repeal argument to embellish what it means to merely require "access" out to its extremes in the hopes of convincing some nations that the law could have been better drafted. Whether member nations would be wise to accept that argument is, again, a matter for the voters to decide and not for the GenSec to decide.

Sierra Lyricalia wrote:
2. Recalling that GAR #467 forbids "any member-state from denying a transgender person access to hormone therapy as a punishment or as part of a punishment for a crime;" (emphasis added)

(a) Noting at once that while there is nothing inherently criminal about being transgendered or gender non-binary, people in those groups commit crimes just like people in any other group;

(b) Recognizing that many member nations have criminal justice systems that impose financial fines and incarceration as a consequence of criminal misdeeds;

(c) Further recognizing that the imposition of a fine or imprisonment may result in a person effectively being denied access to hormone therapy, either because they are physically unable to receive that treatment, or unable to afford it after being fined, or both;
Obviously, as medical patients, the prison system has an obligation to provide these people their necessary medications. You wouldn't make the claim that a diabetic serial killer is "unable" to receive insulin while imprisoned. Same principle. Honest Mistake.

This is an obvious misapplication of the Honest Mistake rule. The repeal sets forth the exact language of the target, emphasizes particular parts, and provides an argument for why that language may be problematic. The GenSec member acknowledges that the repeal correctly describes what is required by the law, then makes a merits argument disagreeing with the conclusion that the law's effects justify a repeal. The member then inexplicably concludes that this part of the repeal is an Honest Mistake violation, presumably because at this point the member is committed to finding every part of the proposed repeal in violation of that rule.

To reiterate, the repeal points out that the law, by its terms, prohibits denying access to hormone therapy as part of a punishment by quoting the full text of that provision and highlighting relevant parts for the reader. The repeal further points out that many legitimate criminal penalties restrict access to activities otherwise enjoyed and argues the member nations have been made to limit their punishment options unreasonably so that the punishments don't result in a denial of access to hormone therapy. Is that vile? Perhaps, but it's definitely responsive to what the law does. And the GenSec member agrees that the law does this, yet still finds an Honest Mistake violation.

It may be abhorrent to suggest that a law should be repealed because it affects criminal penalties in a way that might impact a person's ability to access certain medical treatments. But lets not forget that the target resolution is what makes this particular therapy a medical treatment by law in the first place. The members of this assembly might think it's a good thing that the resolution outlaws certain fines and punishments when those fines and punishments would effectively deny a person access to hormone therapy. Others may feel that, by prohibiting punishments which unintentionally work to deny access to hormone therapy, the WA has too aggressively limited national criminal justice systems. Again, this is a merits question, not a legality one.

I cannot stress enough that, here, there has been a conflation of a legality problem with a GenSec member's own merits judgement. This is a substantial problem. Nothing in that section of the repeal argument, even if repugnant and vile, mischaracterizes the target resolution or accuses it of doing anything other than what it's plain text says. The repeal argues that the target should go because requires limits on criminal punishment authority. The GenSec member recognized this, but because they accepted the target resolution's position that hormone therapy should be treated like all other medical therapies and disagreed that penological interests could ever outweigh that, the GenSec member contrived a legality problem.

We speak sometimes of bias without reflecting on what it means. This is what it means. The GenSec member, though acting with the purest intentions, contrived a legality violation because he had formed the opinion that the target resolution did something good. I think the GenSec member is a good player and a sound thinker, but this is what bias in favor of a target resolution looks like.

The remainder of the legality opinion from the GenSec member regarding the other substantive parts of the repeal came down to "See above." That argument literally does nothing to establish a valid legality objection but does further evidence the GenSec member's predisposition to find every part of the proposed resolution an Honest Mistake violation, with or without reasoned or particularized argument. It deserves no further response.


IN CONCLUSION

The repeal was properly drafted within the confines of the rule. The repeal does not misquote or mischaracterize the text of the target and even goes above and beyond by directly and fully quoting the text of the target before discussing specific issues with its language. No one is unfairly misled, because they can see for themselves what the target law says. Every argument made in the repeal is made directly in response to quoted text from the target. Far from being a rules violation, this is an exemplar of how to comply with the Honest Mistake rule's requirement that repeals must "address the contents of the resolution it's targeting." The repeal responds to the content of what the target does, and while it provides embellished, exaggerated, and perhaps even offensive concerns over what that language could mean, such conduct is FULLY PROTECTED BY THE PLAIN LANGUAGE OF THE HONEST MISTAKE RULE.

The legality opinion amounts to a disagreement about the merits of the repeal effort, improperly crouched in terms of a legality objection. At times, the objector accuses the repeal of violating the Honest Mistake Rule despite agreeing that the repeal correctly characterizes the effects of the target law. This aspect of the legality opinion lacks any good faith basis: there is no plausible reading of the Honest Mistake Rule that suggests it might apply when a repeal correctly characterizes the effects of the target. The assertion of a rules violation without a good faith basis is evidence that the objector is biased in favor of the target resolution, and against any repeal effort, regardless of its content. It supports recusal of the GenSec member from considering the legality of this proposal under the GenSec rules regarding real or strongly perceived bias.

I seek a declaration that this proposal, as written, would not be removed for being an Honest Mistake violation if submitted in its present form. I further seek a statement acknowledging that at least part of the proposed repeal was called a Honest Mistake violation without a good faith basis. Finally, I seek a commitment from the GenSec members that when delivering friendly, unofficial legality opinions that they will clearly communicate as much, explicitly, to ensure that member nations understand the advice is coming from a "fellow player" and not a source of binding authority.
Last edited by Cowardly Pacifists on Thu Jul 25, 2019 2:27 pm, edited 2 times in total.
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Postby Marxist Germany » Thu Jul 25, 2019 2:40 pm

OOC:This should be in a different thread labelled [legality challenge]
Last edited by Marxist Germany on Thu Jul 25, 2019 2:41 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Postby Meddlesome Goblins » Thu Jul 25, 2019 4:44 pm

Marxist Germany wrote:OOC:This should be in a different thread labelled [legality challenge]

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We don't mind this remaining here. Howsabout you look the other way on this one.
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Postby Marxist Germany » Thu Jul 25, 2019 5:03 pm

Meddlesome Goblins wrote:
Marxist Germany wrote:OOC:This should be in a different thread labelled [legality challenge]

The goblins huddle together for a brief time, chattering. Then the Goblin Ambassador slips a tattered note wrapped around a gold coin to the Ambassador from Marxist Germany

We don't mind this remaining here. Howsabout you look the other way on this one.

Klaus rolls his eyes in dismay then repeats, "The rules that you agree on before entering this chamber state that legality challenges go in different rooms to drafting ones," he pauses, looks at the golden coin and continues, "a different floor if I recall correctly."
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Postby Imperium Anglorum » Thu Jul 25, 2019 5:54 pm

That's just not the case. Only formal legality challenges, which this is not, have to go in such threads. Moreover, there's a long history of no legality-differentiated discussion at all. If you go into the discussion thread for my first resolution, all the legality discussion is in that exact thread, not in some other thread which you have to find separately (which makes bookkeeping easier, definitely). Furthermore, legality challenges are an OOC construct, the rules don't exist IC. Because this has been a matter of debate before, to the possible replier, riddle me this one: How do you frame the metagaming rule in character? How about Real life reference?

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