Re: Can we make a difference?

Date: Wed Feb 28 2001 - 19:10:36 MST

In a message dated 2/21/01 9:53:52 AM Central Standard Time, writes:

> See:
> "A Science Fair's Teachable Moment"
> and the Slashdot discussion at:
> Now, from my perspective, censorship of "scientific" results
> (by the powers that be) can only be "unextropic" by definition.
> The correct response would seem to be a justified, reasoned
> articulated expression of why such scientific explorations
> should be presented for public observation.
> I believe that it would be highly useful for situations like
> this to come under the focus of a national or international
> "rapid" response team.

A number of people have been thinking along similar lines lately, it seems.
One problem I see is that, although there are many groups that have large
areas of interest similar to those shared by extropians in matters of public
policy and public discussion and debate, those groups are not coordinated in
their actions. This is in sharp distinction to the way that many folks
opposed to the program of the Enlightenment have learned to carry on their
work. Radical greens, luddites and many groups whose policy goals are
inimical to the liberty of the individual and progress in science and
technology have learned through their activist backgrounds that coordinated
action is fundamental to influencing public opinion and public policy. They
relish the political work of organizing and coordinating their various
groups, something that folks on the technological and scientific side seem to
see as a chore, at best.

Consider all the many groups and individuals who do share our interest in
liberty and progress: There are humanist and skeptic organizations,
scientific and technical professional associations whose work is threatened
by anti-progressive ideologies, libertarian political groups,
technology-oriented businesses and business associations and science
journalists. I can imagine a well-crafted appeal to the leadership of such
groups to nominate one or more people to subscribe to an email list, the sole
purpose of which is to share news items and announcements of the type you
mention, Robert, with the idea that such announcements and items would be
forwarded on to the subscribers' respective constituencies for discussion and
response. The list could be run by ExI, but with no explicit "extropian"
content, per se, as a service of our community to those who share our values.
 The big job would be identifying those to whom the appeal should be made and
tracking down their email addresses. I'd be willing to draft the invitation

       Greg Burch <>----<>
      Attorney ::: Vice President, Extropy Institute ::: Wilderness Guide -or-
                                           ICQ # 61112550
        "We never stop investigating. We are never satisfied that we know
        enough to get by. Every question we answer leads on to another
       question. This has become the greatest survival trick of our species."
                                          -- Desmond Morris

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