Re: Will SETI show us we can survive?

Brent Allsop (
Mon, 2 Aug 1999 15:30:09 -0600 (MDT)

Robert J. Bradbury <>

> The aliens are effectively "gods", and they simply don't care.

In my opinion I completely disagree. I think logic dictates that Gods must care. You can't be all knowing and all feeling without having some kind of sympathy for things that are less than you. Look at how much interest we have in trying to study (and bring back if we could) the dinosaurs or any extinct species no matter how old. If you really are God, you have near infinite powers and can eventually do any finite task no matter how big. If, for a relative few cents, you could by the research and work required to recreate many of the dinosaurs (along with a great expansive place to keep them) Wouldn't you donate the few cents in relative effort to your overall ability no matter how much you were interested in and putting the rest of your abilities in other things? Eventually we'll have so much power, that it will be like spending mere pennies, in comparison to what we'll be able to afford, to do the work required to do any such finite task.

> Every day you sit on the toilet you are flushing trillions of
> harmless little bacteria (they are even beneficial to you!) down
> the pipes, to go to the local processing plant where most of them
> end up dead! Does that make you *evil*?

I think being ignorant of such facts does make me evil. I feel horribly guilty because of this. God, please make me not be so ignorant (and helpless to do otherwise) so I will no longer feel so guilty about all such injustices where I so blatantly (and often blindly) and unjustly destroy and fail to adequately care for things that are less than I.

> Brent, while I am extremely sympathetic to your position, I think
> you should reconsider it. Natural selection works. Stick your
> fingers in it and you end up with suboptimal entities.

Once we move on from random unintentional very slow evolutionary survival of the fittest progress to rational intelligent directed progress the evils of death and suffering are no longer required. Only a very few random mutations fail to make the inheritor of such not suffer and live a lessor life. Certainly intelligent directed, non random progress can improve on these odds much more significantly.

> If you don't have a "prime directive", how do you decide exactly who
> to help? Dogs but not cats? Cats but not dogs?

You help all you can, certainly those people and animals still here on earth before you go out to space looking for more. (that's why I favor putting research into finding a cure for aging... first, before going to mars...) If one really is "God" (as in powerful enough to do any finite task) you logically must be compelled to help them all or else suffer unimaginable guilt for being so evil and crass to those that are less than you. Would our children prefer that we give them a city on mars which they can travel to and live or... immortal life?

> With regard to your parents, you should discuss cryonics with them.
> The interesting thing is that I've discussed it to some degree with
> my parents and they don't want any part of it.

Exactly! Don't you think something like a message from space saying we should freeze the dieing until they can teach us how to become immortal would help to convince our parents? Dammit God, screw your simulation. Find some better way to get your trivial knowledge without making us suffer and please give me enough of something to be able to show my parents how blind they are being or whatever is required so more of them might be saved.

Brent Allsop