Re: Mars: "Rogue" memes and the laughter curtain
Thu, 22 Jul 1999 07:39:01 EDT

In a message dated 99-07-21 20:06:58 EDT, you write:

> Why am I the only person on this list who doesn't know if there are
> artifacts on Mars or not...?

For what it's worth, I think it's probably more likely that I'll run into Elvis today at lunch than that there is a human face sculpted into a mountain on Mars. But if you want to approach the subject with a fresh and open mind and a very healthy dose of skepticism, hey, it's your time and effort that's involved, so it really doesn't bother me. I can understand why people will react negatively, because if a subject has attracted known kooks and been treated positively on the cover of the National Enquirer, smart and well-informed people will recoil from it -- it's just human nature to not want to be associated with something they find repulsive; namely, dangerous credulity. That natural reaction MIGHT cut off valuable inquiry into worthwhile subjects from time to time, but probably more often saves one wasted time and effort and protects one's reputation for rationality. If that devolves into true close-mindedness and bullying, it's a bad thing, I'll agree. Whenever such value-based balancing acts are called for, you can't satisfy everybody.

And, in the words of the King, "Thank you very much . . ."

     Greg Burch     <>----<>
     Attorney  :::  Vice President, Extropy Institute  :::  Wilderness Guide   -or-
                         "Civilization is protest against nature; 
                  progress requires us to take control of evolution."
                                      -- Thomas Huxley