Re: SciAm: nano and cryonics

From: Samantha Atkins (
Date: Sat Aug 18 2001 - 03:18:53 MDT

Brian Atkins wrote:

> I agree with you that we should not plunge into this all, but I also
> agree with Robert that anyone holding back our ability to do the
> necessary work and testing at this stage of human history (when it
> is rather clear what the realistic possibilities are) should be made
> to feel guilty. It is not political or really abstractly punitive in
> any way, it is simply the truth, just like how I'm sure the catholics
> still feel over the whole Galileo and other incidents. The stakes are
> so much higher now though...

Guilt does not work. It backfires in very nasty ways. Didn't
several centuries of Judaeo-Christian baggage teach us at least
that much? The Catholic Church in the time of Galileo and for
many centuries before was convinced that the salvation of
humanity, indiviudal and collective, require accepting its
doctrines and living by them at all possible cost. It used
guilt by the ton to persuade as many as possible to act to save
all of these poor and ultimately retched beings. In the process
it produced centuries of misery.

Now here we are saying "We have the truth. If we do not spread
it and act on it then we are massively guilty. Those who stand
in our way are massively guilty!" Bah. Verily, there is
nothing new under the sun.

- samantha

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