explains to the Mississippi Attorney General's Office that a law is only a law if it's published


“a law is a law only if its published” is true in a free society.

“A law that isn’t published is a secret law”. And those exist in a tyranny.


Well, you can have freedom if you pay for it. And you can know the law, if you pay for it.

If you’re trying to suggest that freedoms exist beyond the freedom to buy justice, you’ve grown all at once too radical for me and I’m afraid I must stop up my ears and go LALALALA


I hadn’t realized that the MS state flag was still a symbol of hatred and oppression. I’m not surprised, really - but disappointed.


Part of the problem is the tax/spending/government policy that created the codes. They are expensive to develop, and since no one wants to spend the money to maintain them, they got farmed out. Professional bodies maintain the codes and in exchange they get to charge an access fee. This is obviously not a perfect solution, but it has, by and large, worked. Particularly before the internet made it so cheap to move information around. After all, when everything by necessity had a substantial copying fee attached it was hard to get too worked up if it was not otherwise ‘free’.

Now, I am not saying that these codes should not be made free. I think they should. The old bargain is no longer effective. I’m just not sure that guerrilla style freeing of the codes is going to lead to a particularly good status quo. After all, if the organizations that currently maintain them start losing money on the deal they won’t continue, and there’s going to be significant lag before governments even catch on, let alone start allocating money and developing experience in-house to take over the job. And make no mistake, bringing all the various regulating bodies under the public roof/purse (which is really what we are talking about) would represent a significant additional drain on government budget.

And there would be a cost to that lag. The small things would be stuff like an inability to get new building materials approved. Over the last few years there’s been huge advances in better insulation for houses. It would really suck if those or future discoveries were not considered ‘up to code’ because the body designated to update and maintain the code has washed their hands of it.

Smashing the current system, however imperfect, is not enough. If you are going to proudly swing the hammer to knock it down, I think you have a moral obligation to have a plan on what to build in it’s place.


Well you definitely should be surprised, because that’s not really the Mississippi state flag.


Come on, that’s the part of the flag that is the symbol of hate and oppression. The depiction is not unfair.


You know… perhaps it is a perfect solution. Somebody has to pay the engineers who write the code. Forcing architects and contractors to pay is pretty reasonable, as a cost of doing business. Another option is to have state government pay, but there’s always somebody out to drown it in the bathtub, and stuffy departments like building inspectors are always the first to go.

The only real problem is this system pisses off Libertarians, who seem to think the Invisible Hand will just take care of the public good. Two hundred - no, two thousand years of history disagrees.



If they are smart (ha) they will take it outside and blow it up without even opening the box.

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Actually, before commenting I googled the MS flag, and sound what silkox1 found: this is not the whole MS flag, but it is part of it. Really, it’s the only part that matters. It’s a giant flaming “fnck you” to a huge part of their own population, and as codinghorror points out it was adopted in the post-Reconstruction era for exactly that purpose. That you feel the need to pick the nit you did suggests either that you cannot perceive the offense this symbol of oppression conveys, or that you approve of the offense it gives, or perhaps that you’re so beholden to the accurate portrayal of the entire MS flag that you cannot grapple with the more important issue.


When we sent a package to Idaho, we evoked their flag in crinkle-pak. Same with the much larger packages of documents to the feds. I would have done the whole flag for Mississippi, but the box for this shipment was 12x12x4 and I lack the crinkle-pak dexterity needed.


From my IANAL reading of the law, seems they are liable for $1K per day for publishing the law. That. Is. Assanine.

Further reading suggests that the great state of Mississippi could save them selves a BUTT load of dosh by NOT ordering all those print editions. I’d guestimate there are at least 200 they have on order, and at a modest rate of $100 a pop, that’s not inexpensive. Certainly some paper copies should be ordered, but THAT many?


Not everyone who needs to know the codes is an architect or contractor. It isn’t exactly a new idea that people might want to make changes to their own homes, and the more responsible ones may even want to do so and stay up to code.


Well,if you dislike it, you can fix it. Move to Mississippi. Stay long enough to obtain legal residency in Mississippi. Pay taxes in Mississippi. Make your request to the Mississippi legislature, as any citizen of the State of Mississippi may do. And as long as you’re going to live there anyway, tramp some graveyards. Walk around the foundations of the homes burned down. Go visit Beauvoir. Talk to some people who’ve lived there their whole lives. Get to know the actual people you’re trash-talking.

Otherwise, call me when your knee stops jerking, and you’ve taken the time to read some actual histories of the period. Not public school textbooks (victor’s histories). Not Hollywood movies. Source documents. Credible historic works. And then? If you want to talk some trash, call me and we’ll talk some real trash about real stuff and real people - not symbols you saw on the internet, or rhetoric you heard repeated by the media.

codinghorror - the thing they left out of wikipedia about Georgia is that the matter was never put to a public vote. It was done as a backroom deal. People actually from Georgia weren’t ashamed of their flag, and found the backroom action far more unconscionable than any flag they could possibly have had, by far. BTW - did you know, the first Governor of GA (Stephen Heard) was in that position because of his heroism in the Revolution. The Tories caught him and jailed him, intending to execute him. He escaped - just as heroically, rescued by his mammy and her husband. Because family.

If they lived in MS, they could see through your bullshit even easier.

Just sayin.


Fercristos’sake, have the government pay the developing bodies a set fee to develop the codes, if it’s too expensive or onerous to do it otherwise, then make the codes available on a .gov site. There is no good reason for these things to be so hard to get to if using them is a common good and in fact required by law.


edited to delete: Didn’t read that we’d shifted the conversation from Mississippi to Georgia for some reason.

Aw, heck, I’m going to include the quoted part anyway, because I think it’s germane to the general discussion:

From codinghorror’s link:

In 2000, the Supreme Court of Mississippi ruled[3] that state legislation in 1906 had repealed the adoption of the state flag in 1894, so what was considered to be the official state flag was only so through custom and usage.[4] Governor Ronnie Musgrove appointed an independent commission which developed a new proposed design,[4] and on April 17, 2001, a non-binding state referendum to change the flag was put before Mississippi voters. The proposal would have replaced the Confederate battle flag with a blue canton with 20 stars. The outer ring of 13 stars would represent the original Thirteen Colonies, the ring of six stars would represent the six nations that have had sovereignty over Mississippi territory (various Native American nations as a collective nation, French Empire, Spanish Empire, Great Britain, the United States and the Confederate States), and the inner and slightly larger star would represent Mississippi itself. The 20 stars would also represent Mississippi’s status as the 20th member of the United States.[5] The new flag was soundly defeated in a vote of 64% (488,630 votes) to 36% (267,812) and the old flag was retained.[6]


You’re absolutely right. I just said somebody needs to pay the engineers who develop the codes. I think the users of the code are the most logical ones to foot the bill. I guess that creates some problems too. Do you have any alternative suggestions?