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VestriDeus
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[*] posted on 5-2-2010 at 16:30
Chemophobia


When/Where do you think it will stop?
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entropy51
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[*] posted on 5-2-2010 at 16:35


Quote: Originally posted by VestriDeus  
When/Where do you think it will stop?
When adolescents stop blowing things up and trying to make shit they can get high on.:D

Quote:
Last year, McKenzie-Gude pleaded guilty to charges of storing bomb-making materials in his bedroom closets. On Thursday, the prosecution's first witness in the sentencing phase, FBI bomb-making expert Richard Stryker was on the stand. He said McKenzie-Gude had a "rather stunning" variety of chemicals in his bedroom that could be turned into bombs. Prosecutors also showed a video of the explosion that could have been created by the chemicals.



[Edited on 6-2-2010 by entropy51]
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[*] posted on 5-2-2010 at 21:36


OMFG:mad: They were "ALLOWED" to show what "COULD" have been made, but wasn't? WTF? Was this clown legally represented, if so, was such representative qualified? Holy fuck, I "could" make a bomb with petrol, does that mean I'm at risk of prosecution, during which the prosecution will surely show what can be done with fuel-air explosives?

I also have flour, eggs & milk - and the knowledge on how to combine them, does that mean I have ANY intention of baking a cake?
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[*] posted on 5-2-2010 at 21:48


Just shows the failing of the justice system in many countries. Despite the grand claims being made by the prosecution, the burden of proof now seems to lie solely in the lap of the defendant. Lady justice is taking a nap.
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[*] posted on 5-2-2010 at 22:55


Whatever happened to the 4th, 5th, and 6th Amendments, in that case?
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[*] posted on 6-2-2010 at 01:36


This is starting to remind me of a joke I once heard.

One morning the husband returns after several hours of fishing and decides to take a nap.. Although not familiar with the lake, the wife decides to take the boat out. She motors out a short distance, anchors, and reads her book.

Along comes a Game Warden in his boat. He pulls up alongside the woman and says, 'Good morning, Ma'am. What are you doing?'

'Reading a book,' she replies.

'You're in a Restricted Fishing Area,' he informs her..

'I'm sorry, officer, but I'm not fishing. I'm reading.'

'Yes, but you have all the equipment. For all I know you could start at any moment. I'll have to take you in and write you up.'

'For reading a book?' she replies.

'You're in a Restricted Fishing Area,' he informs her again.

'If you do that, I'll have to charge you with Sexual assault,' says the woman.

'But I haven't even touched you,' says the game warden.

'That's true, but you have all the equipment. For all I know you could start at any moment.'

'Have a nice day ma'am,' and he left.




"Science is the belief in the ignorance of the experts" Richard Feynman
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[*] posted on 6-2-2010 at 03:03


I love that one :).

Hate to say it but I don't think it will stop.
Honestly it could well be that you'll consider yourself blessed when you think back in 10 years from now.
The restriction of chemicals will be an on going battle until there is very little left I am afraid.
Man i hate these thoughts.

Someone i know called me "scary" a couple of weeks ago.
I was talking to a friend about some reaction i did and she picked up a couple of words.
Seems an easy assumption to just be scared of it.
As soon as i start to explain some stuff it got better.
Back in the days people where afraid of lightning right?

My ex-girlfriend was very afraid that i was going to hurt myself.
I thought it might help if I just showed her what I was doing and to get her "involved"
Somehow she always kept the same statement, "please stop".
Never really understood that.
Ah well we broke up for other and better reasons , still glad actually :)

[Edited on 6-2-2010 by User]




What a fine day for chemistry this is.
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[*] posted on 6-2-2010 at 03:29


Quote:
Hate to say it but I don't think it will stop.
Honestly it could well be that you'll consider yourself blessed when you think back in 10 years from now.

Yeah, chemophobia is ongoing and deepening - depressing in a way but circumventing troublesome regulations is its own reward, and it makes our 'thinking outside the box' routine.


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[*] posted on 6-2-2010 at 05:58


Quote: Originally posted by unome  

I also have flour, eggs & milk - and the knowledge on how to combine them, does that mean I have ANY intention of baking a cake?
Then you had better be able to convince a jury that the cake recipe on your computer didn't belong to you. Otherwise you had both the materials and the knowledge to bake the cake, and that convicts people every day. The jury will believe that combination equals intent.

This is how they do it.
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[*] posted on 6-2-2010 at 07:24


@JohnWW
Note: IANAL, and I'm Canadian, so I might have a slightly flawed pragmatic understanding of the criminal justice system. My comment was in general regards all over the world. In Canada, the justice system has been so far reasonable, looking more at intent, and less at 'you have a combination of X, Y, and Z, you must be ready to bake a cake/fish/rape/read a book'.

4th amendment - unlawful search and seizure without probable cause
- Well, there have always been stories of repairmen seeing things in a basement that aren't harmful or such, but assume the worst and report it, that gives the police probable cause to get a warrant for a search [and siezure]
- Also, the police can turn a blind eye to criminals if they report information leading to an arrest... Read the case of Ryan Frederick ( http://www.codemonkeyramblings.com/mt/mt-ftsearch.cgi?blog_i... ). His house was robbed, and 3 days later the police raided in plainclothes, leading to the death of one officer in perceived self defense. The informant also appeared to have a grudge against the defendant. He has been convicted of voluntary manslaughter and faces up to 10 years...

5th amendment - non-self incrimination right, interrogation rights
- IIRC, some criminal proceedings which transitioned over to military tribunal in 'terrorism' cases can end up using admissible evidence gathered via torture.

6th amendment - due process
- Probably in more cases than we'd care to know, law enforcement end up arresting someone for the wrong reason and cannot/will not let you know what the accusation or charges are, and detain you until they run out of time or think of something creative.
- In a few select cases, people the government just really hate, end up going to military tribunals, etc.
- Other cases in big business vs little guy for cases like libel (see: McLibel case) get dragged on and on by the company who has lots of money, so the little guy has to concede, setting the precedent that the big guys always win.



[Edited on 6-2-2010 by aonomus]
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entropy51
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[*] posted on 6-2-2010 at 09:12


Quote:
5th amendment - non-self incrimination right
The young man in that case pleaded guilty, so I don't think that was an issue. They could have also charged him with gun charges, murder plots and lots of other stuff that they had evidence of. He probably considers himself lucky that he got off as easy as he did.

Many of these rights become somewhat academic once they've got the goods on you. They can convict without torture, interrogation or other violations of one's rights.

The young man was from a wealthy family and had excellent lawyers. That's how he got off on the other more serious charges.
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[*] posted on 6-2-2010 at 14:05


Still, despite having plead guilty to "possession of the articles in question" I don't believe that opens the door, even in sentencing, to allow for open-ended speculation as to what, where, when, how or why the said "articles" were to be used.

Open-ended speculation, detrimental to the convicted party, based upon supposition, not fact, should NEVER have been allowed.
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[*] posted on 6-2-2010 at 16:31


Not only have I noticed the omnipresent fear of chemicals being used for weapons/bombs, and in the manufacture of drugs (hence their outlawing), but there is also the fear of chemicals amongst consumers in the line that chemicals are bad for them.

For instance, one of my friends is always scared when i carry a butane lighter around with me (i don't smoke; i use it for lighting birthday candles ;) ) because "butane is a neurotoxin".

Another example is class a while ago, we were doing a lab on solubility curves, and we used KNO3 (saltpetre) because it has drastic solubility changes for differences in temperatures. Well, the teacher (who isnt too bright - well, at least she never practically applies her knowledge to safety or efficiency) tells us all that that stuff is a corrosive irritant, and "quite toxic". First thing that goes off in my mind is: "wait... wth? this stuff is used as a food preservative. To make like corned beef and stuff!" (which i knew from background knowledge). I wasnt too sure about the exact toxicity, but i knew it was definitely edible, and not "toxic"; at least not in that regard. Like table salt can be "toxic" if you consider it. I knew a bit about it, and i knew it was a mild irritant, but definitely not corrosive. A mild irritant, just like table salt (if you've ever gotten a salt burn, you'll know what i mean). So everyone never did once try to touch that stuff; one person even mildly freaked out when they spilled a solution of it over a counter (because they thought it was toxic, and not because it was an oxidizer; she never told us that). In the end, I ended up stealing some of that stuff (because it's pretty hard to get, and it's a really nice oxidizer:D), and I ate about a pinch of it in front of some of my friends to show that it was safe (but it doesn't taste too good by itself; like a mix of MSG and baking soda and hydrogen peroxide with a hint of vinegar)

But really, back on track. Thinking back to the bisphenol-A thing a couple of years back, and other stuff like that, chemophobia amongst the masses is more prevalent than ever. Especially with the organic trend going on, with people too afraid to buy stuff that has been grown using "non-natural fertilizer".

Here's an article that goes further on the subject:
http://www.ecoworld.com/animals/chemophobia.html


[Edited on 7-2-2010 by VestriDeus]
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[*] posted on 6-2-2010 at 16:47


\

[Edited on 7-2-2010 by thereelstory]
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[*] posted on 6-2-2010 at 19:39


Quote: Originally posted by entropy51  
Quote:
5th amendment - non-self incrimination right
The young man in that case pleaded guilty, so I don't think that was an issue. They could have also charged him with gun charges, murder plots and lots of other stuff that they had evidence of. He probably considers himself lucky that he got off as easy as he did.

Many of these rights become somewhat academic once they've got the goods on you. They can convict without torture, interrogation or other violations of one's rights.

The young man was from a wealthy family and had excellent lawyers. That's how he got off on the other more serious charges.


There is no 5th before a grand jury. If you do not talk they lock you up, it is the current law. Something which has bothered me for years. However in a case like this I am sure a grand jury was involved and possibly justifiable.

I read some of the story and clearly the wrong guy is being used to advance freedom of chemical science-madness. He had vests, weapons, maps of presidential routes, and so on. Hell I would fry him on that one. If anything he and others like him are killing our freedoms bit by bit, just like the cookers I would also gleefully fry. It is the true seekers like most of us I will defend the right to create and experiment. Yet we always end up paying one way or another every time we lose another important item ( such as P, etc.) in our quests of scientific truth. The stories we should use to defend our rights should be similar to the old thread here about the guy who was raided and reamed for having hundreds of rubber samples in his home. Especially with the evidence the man was a competent professional engaged in legitimate science in a private setting. So lets see: one guy a pro with no history of crime working to invent in his home, another in a cave filling tons of NH4OH into a truck. Who do they go after: you got it, that bad home experimenter who never committed a crime; lets pass more laws says nanny.gov. To me this is strikingly similar to taking down grandma in the airport while letting the bearded guy with the C4 up his ass go on by.

Clear evidence they are out to get us. No doubt there is a nanny.gov mindset out there where they must protect us from ourselves. If the Swiss have to make laws banning foods because their people cannot be trusted to worry about their own health what the hell chance does any of us have who like to play with dangerous items in our quest for science? We are supposed to shut up and pay taxes so nanny.gov can live large while we quietly work. Added to their agenda of shut us down motivated by their out of control hysterical fear of us. My God the man has butane and baking soda open fire!

Also, off topic but it bugs the crap out of me it is always someone like this guy (with the maps and arsenal) from a wealthy upbringing. Bin Laden was from a billionaire family. We always know the middle name of the lone gunman. Seriously, if I had access to wealth when young I would have built a super lab and spent a lifetime inventing instead of doing with little and doing little due to lack of one form or another. Sure as hell I would not have had a vendetta against whatever it is they are against when they take their silver spoon in their mouth lives and use it for death and destruction.

For what it's worth anyway.

Forgot to add but the real story is a / slash? What does that post mean.


[Edited on 2-7-2010 by IrC]




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[*] posted on 6-2-2010 at 21:58


"He had vests, weapons, maps of presidential routes,"

So what? This does not mean he was a terrorist. Someone I know has weapons and performs chemical experiments, does that make him a terrorist?

I think you are making a mistake in equating ownership of weapons and/or tactical gear with malicious intent. The presidential map? Come on man! That could have been some BS file he downloaded on his computer 2 years ago that he forgot about.

If you are REALLY looking for connections, you will find them. Let's see, a friend of mine has some firearms, chemicals, a "vest", some survival gear and ... duh duh duh... a map of a local Air Force base or nuclear power facility on his computer! Arrrgggghhhhh! Terrorist!

Look, I'm not saying this guy isn't a loon, but we shouldn't do that thing where we flip out when someone owns a weapon. That's no different from chemophobia.

Am I verging on politics?




"There must be no barriers to freedom of inquiry ... There is no place for dogma in science. The scientist is free, and must be free to ask any question, to doubt any assertion, to seek for any evidence, to correct any errors. ... We know that the only way to avoid error is to detect it and that the only way to detect it is to be free to inquire. And we know that as long as men are free to ask what they must, free to say what they think, free to think what they will, freedom can never be lost, and science can never regress." -J. Robert Oppenheimer
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[*] posted on 6-2-2010 at 22:03


Quote: Originally posted by MagicJigPipe  

Am I verging on politics?


It's almost impossible not to :(




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I was a sorry witness of such doings, knowing that a little theory and calculation would have saved him ninety per cent of his labor.”
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[*] posted on 6-2-2010 at 23:44


"He had vests, weapons, maps of presidential routes, So what? This does not mean he was a terrorist. Someone I know has weapons and performs chemical experiments, does that make him a terrorist?"

Not 100 % unless your friend is also doing terrorist things. Back to the guy in the article instead of the bust they should have undergone surveillance to see first assuming they had just cause for it. There was something that brought him to their attention in the first place. If he was a legit survival advocate of his perceived coming civil unrest this also in my mind would not mean they should arrest, spy on, or otherwise notice or care about him in the first place. The context needs to be taken. How much of what. Did he make any threats. If all he had were implements of Armageddon I would have been highly suspicious if explosions were going on in his yard and big death to the infidels signs were all over the place. If he had a well equipped lab which looked like various experiments not all intended to blow up the universe were going on again this would leave room for doubt unless it contained nothing but 1 ounce of bicarb and 1100 pounds of ANFO. Alone, even this should not have brought LE in spying there must be a justifiable trigger which gives cause for the privacy invasion. You cannot have it both ways if you care about your and your loved ones safety. To ignore history and the signs is to invite tragedy as for example the flight instructors saying nothing when a group of middle easterners wanted only to be taught to fly, not take off, not to land. As well as paying thousands in cash. Not just because someone does not trust banks and only carries cash but the combined total of it all which builds a picture of something ominous. Especially if all they carried onto the plane were box-cutters I mean be real. To me this would be a trigger that there was a just reason to invade the privacy. The lack of fair balance and simple common sense in our freedoms VS LE's (and the lawmakers) agendas creates the problems.

I did not spend hours studying the available info on why LE was looking at this guy so all I can do is guess. Yet there must be some room for the protection of society. If all he had was a box cutter and airline ticket in 2000 should he have been arrested? Unlikely. But several buildings and some 3,000 people are now gone meaning in the name of common sense some line should be drawn or we are all doomed. No matter whether you like it or not. It is the way LE and lawmakers are handling things which creates the problems for us all. Some room for our right to privacy, our right to experiment, our right to keep and bear arms, fairness, and common sense must exist. Ignoring a father telling the CIA his son is possibly a terrorist and strip searching babies at airports are both moronically insane. So is going after every legit experimenter and outlawing everything we use to experiment. Where do you draw the line?

Should every home cooker and every bomb maker be ignored just so you can play or is it reasonable to have some line somewhere. I would not want LE going through my stuff just because they can but I think ignoring clear and present dangers stupidly ignores the massive life taking mistakes in the past. As I stated this guys case is the wrong example to use in defense of our scientific fun. There must be proper balance in the actions of LE, the law, and our just right to privacy but if you are trying to convince me it should be anarchy first no matter the cost forget it. You are wrong. Too many innocent people have died from real wrongdoers and too many innocents are being persecuted for their hobby on the other side of the coin. I think we should be allowed to live and experiment in privacy and freedom meaning they should not be going after people making fireworks unless they have caused harm, this harm being the legit reason they are investigated. Not because a neighbor saw sparks in the backyard or smelled something funny or whatever.

The problem is the balance is not fair towards us and this is where changes need to be made. Politics must enter into discussions such as this since politics is at the very heart of our ever eroding freedoms to experiment in chemistry and therefore politics cannot be wrong in this discussion in my mind.







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[*] posted on 10-2-2010 at 15:41


I'm no anarchist but let's discuss for a moment (I can't believe I haven't thought of this specifically before) the heinous acts perpetrated by "legitimate" governments--and those that were, at one time, considered legitimate--and individuals or "illegitimate" groups.

And for argument's sake let's still consider a government legitimate even if the majority of people opposed it (this includes other countries).

If it weren't for nuclear weapons... Would there be as much death and destruction in a world without government? My guess is "probably more" but I don't think it's really THAT obvious.

Is this type of discussion allowable on this forum? Am I derailing the thread? Let me know and I'll take it down.




"There must be no barriers to freedom of inquiry ... There is no place for dogma in science. The scientist is free, and must be free to ask any question, to doubt any assertion, to seek for any evidence, to correct any errors. ... We know that the only way to avoid error is to detect it and that the only way to detect it is to be free to inquire. And we know that as long as men are free to ask what they must, free to say what they think, free to think what they will, freedom can never be lost, and science can never regress." -J. Robert Oppenheimer
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[*] posted on 11-2-2010 at 05:25


Quote: Originally posted by MagicJigPipe  
Is this type of discussion allowable on this forum? Am I derailing the thread? Let me know and I'll take it down.
Is it still about chemistry or science in general any more? It doesn't seem so, or at least you haven't made the connection.
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[*] posted on 11-2-2010 at 09:59


Quote: Originally posted by IrC  
Too many innocent people have died from real wrongdoers and too many innocents are being persecuted for their hobby on the other side of the coin.
I haven't seen the persecution of hobby chemists that you seem to be referring to. A very large number of us here on SM order chemicals and glassware without being persecuted in any way. There are very few examples reported here on SM of members being persecuted for innocent activities. Have you some evidence to the contrary?

I don't believe the refusal of many chemical suppliers to deal with anyone except legitimate companies is directed against us. I think it is a purely economic decision because selling small quantities to amateurs is not worthwhile and they fear it may expose them to legal liability. But there are a number of small companies that will deal with amateurs as a niche market. (Just look at the "Last Chemical Order" thread.) So I just don't just see the persecution that you mentioned.

[Edited on 11-2-2010 by entropy51]
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[*] posted on 11-2-2010 at 11:16


Persecution. What does the definition encompass. Do not have time to do a dissertation on the fly right now but should you not read all threads in all 7 pages in "Legal and Societal Issues" before you ask such a question? So many here are strong on the idea of UTFSE anyway or so it seems.

If you do you will find stories written of the experiences of many here and elsewhere, including myself and really I do not feel like writing them all over again here just to answer your short question.

I assume there was a reason the forum "Legal and Societal Issues" was created in the first place and as you deny the existence of our persecution explain why this forum was created. As for the thread you mentioned I for one am glad I am not the stupid truck driver hauling 15 pounds of chlorine gas right past the Olympics but hey "what the hell do I know" I guess should be the reply you seek.

Small addition on searching I should add is over the years I and others may have related some stories in whimsy so the search should be a broad one. So many stories I have read here and elsewhere online over the years of legal actions and raids on hobby chemists. Many of which gained convictions for possession of certain chemicals combined with various information as proof of guilt or justification of fines and confiscation of various chemicals. I for one like to include the laws refusing me to have various chemicals such as I and P for experiments I wish to do not drug related but really for legitimate science as part of what to include in my definition of the word "persecution".

Good God man have you not read of the actions against companies such as United Nuclear, KNO3, various and sundry suppliers of hobby firework and rocket components and so many others which come to mind? Before you start in on KNO3 I imagine there were many wanting red P for legitimate experiments who could not find it anywhere else.


I am sure the ostrich still maintains his theory "trains do not exist" while in the middle of the tracks but IIRC his head is buried in the sand so really does he have all the data?


[Edited on 2-11-2010 by IrC]




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[*] posted on 11-2-2010 at 11:26


Quote: Originally posted by entropy51  

I haven't seen the persecution of hobby chemists that you seem to be referring to. A very large number of us here on SM order chemicals and glassware without being persecuted in any way.


I agree with what you say here. However, the possiblity of unjustified persecution makes many of us fear a possible "knock on the door." Would ordering a touchy chemical like acetic anhydride or malonic acid bring you a knock? Good question.

Why do we fear that knock if we are law abiding citizens who just happen to have a home chemistry hobby? Because we may very well be assumed to be up to no good until we prove otherwise. The process of "proving otherwise" will likely include 1) a great deal of embarrasment, 2) confiscation of our lab equipment and chemicals, 3) overblown costs for "environmental cleanup," 4) a costly and lengthy court battle, and 5) time in jail. See the case of one Victor Deeb.





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[*] posted on 11-2-2010 at 11:52


Quote:
"I haven't seen the persecution of hobby chemists that you seem to be referring to. A very large number of us here on SM order chemicals and glassware without being persecuted in any way."


I haven't been persecuted, but it does suck feeling like a criminal.




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-Tesla
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[*] posted on 11-2-2010 at 12:07


Quote:
Persecution. What does the definition encompass. Do not have time to do a dissertation on the fly right now but should you not read all threads in all 7 pages in "Legal and Societal Issues" before you ask such a question? So many here are strong on the idea of UTFSE anyway or so it seems.
Oh, I have read every single one of those posts. Many I have read more than once. I have not found evidence of persecution, but lots of paranoia, which is not persecution.

As for United Nuclear, they are still going strong, selling radioactive sources, sodium metal and so forth.

Mr Deeb was not exactly persecuted, not charged with a crime, nor thrown in jail. The problem was improper of storage of hazardous chemicals and some of us might indeed be have trouble meeting those requirements.

On the other hand, read about the experiences of Undead_alchemist whose neighbors thought they smelled gas and he was visited by the authorities. He had to upgrade his facilities, but apparently was charged with nothing and suffered none of Magpie's dreaded Five Fates.

My post specifically referred to hobby chemistry, not things that go boom. Fireworks and explosives are regulated for good reason, and those rules apply to all citizens, not just amateur pyro's. So I was just referring to hobby science that is not outright prohibited.

I was also referring to the type of hobby science that does not annoy or scare the neighbors or authorities. If you draw that type of attention to yourself, I don't think you're being persecuted, but rather just asking for trouble.



[Edited on 11-2-2010 by entropy51]
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