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What if?
Posted: 27 May 2005 03:52 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 31 ]  
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CA,

Enough already.  You may not like my “solutions” (though I am just exploring options, not proposing anything more specific than a bunch of secularist scientists beating feet).  Your suggestions that I was (and you did call me) like Dr. Megele, was an attack on me, not so much on my thought process.  You may argue all you want re: the definition of ad hominem, but please don’t try to deny that that was a pretty direct attack on me.  Remember, you did this in a public forum, so there are witnesses!

If you don’t like the ideas I have discussed, then give alternatives that are more to your liking and/or refute mine on scientific grounds, not emotional vindictiveness.  The suggestion that I made re: sterilization was to point out to psiconoclast that it might be necessary in order to achieve his stated goal, which I characterized as a “soft landing” outcome. I am not the first person in recent years to point this out as a possibly necessary evil, if indeed it is “evil” in the religious sense.

If this is a rational group of people, discussing serious problems (which my position has been that they will be made more complicated and severe by religion) and not prone to blind moralization, then it seems to me we don’t need to resort to the sort of arguments that you present. 

I don’t suppose that it has occured to you that you have offered many opinions throughout this discussion board and supported some of them with very weak arguments - never any real science, just your take on history - but most have gone without any backup.  You have a history of trying to argue down your “opponent” who happens to be anyone you take a shot at, or happens to question something you’ve stated.  Then in the few cases where someone has put forth solid, or at least the best scientific arguments of the time, you try to sidetrack the argument with non-sequiters.  But you never take up the challenge to do some deep investigation and refute on scientific grounds the claims that others have made.

When you stick to politics you fare better.  I suspect that is just because politics is such an intellectually corrupt environment today.  It is owned by pundits (on both the left and the right) who don’t get paid for presenting the world as it is, but only as their employers would like it to be.

I suggest you stick to the political arguments where you can liken your opponent to Megele, Hitler, Pol Pot, or whoever you think captures your “feelings” about the opponent.  And they can do the same.  If you want to talk science, please adopt a less vindictive approach.

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Posted: 27 May 2005 04:04 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 32 ]  
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[quote author=“Iisbliss”]It seems to me that throughout history the torch is passed from one civilization to another, but the torch has always advanced.

Iisbliss,

Good list, no doubt.  Think globally, act locally has always been good advice.

Your observation about history may be correct in some sense.  But what is different today than in past times is that we are not talking about a transistion from one region of the globe to another.  Now we are talking about the globe as a whole.  Once we screw up the whole planet where is the next region we will establish a civilization?

If there were someplace else we could go to set up a new civilization (and a new order!) that would be one thing.  But there isn’t.  Mars is not an option.  It would take more energy to exist on the surface of Mars than it would take to exist on a nearly denuded Earth.  And the cost of getting even a small population (maybe of my secularist scientists) there would be astronomical (think Bush’s proposal just to visit Mars).

My sincere hope is that psiconoclast’s optimism for human ingenuity is not misplaced and that my pessimism over human nature is.  I don’t claim to KNOW what is going to happen.  But I would like to make some possibilities plain so that we can be vigilant as changes occur and some pattern emerges.  Some action will be needed.  What that action will be is still uncertain.  But what is certain is that it can have one of two forms - rational, to preserve the genus, or take the historical form of competition, aggression and destruction from within.

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Posted: 27 May 2005 05:19 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 33 ]  
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My sincere hope is that psiconoclast’s optimism for human ingenuity is not misplaced and that my pessimism over human nature is.  I don’t claim to KNOW what is going to happen.  But I would like to make some possibilities plain so that we can be vigilant as changes occur and some pattern emerges.  Some action will be needed.  What that action will be is still uncertain.  But what is certain is that it can have one of two forms - rational, to preserve the genus, or take the historical form of competition, aggression and destruction from within.

Hate to sound like a defeatist again but these “patterns” you’ve mentioned have me thinking in circles. The problem is recognizing and agreeing on these changes/patterns, determining and agreeing on the underlying cause of the changes, and deciding and agreeing on what to do.

Aside from agreeing on anything, another concern is our ability to fully recognize and discern these patterns. The concern quickly turns into hopelessness when I think think of the necessity for society as a whole to agree that there even is a pattern, what that pattern(s) is, the cause of the pattern, what do do about it and what affect doing something about it will have. Throw all that into a democratic/capitalistic system and it seems you have what we have now, chaos.

And then it all comes back to: are there not already “patterns” in front of us? What are we doing about them? Is it the right thing to do? I guess it’s anyones’ educated guess.

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Posted: 27 May 2005 06:14 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 34 ]  
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I had my own strange idea.

I thought maybe the areas of the world that most often historically carried the torch were the ones with the most cultural diversity.

The crossroads of trade first, Babylon, Rome, England, the US.

In other words, when cultures mix, mankind advances.

To me this would mean the next place civilization would move forward wouldnt be a country, it would be right here, in virtual reality.

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