Re: Guys, take it easy on Sam. She IS an Extropian.

From: Samantha Atkins (
Date: Sun Oct 28 2001 - 14:41:50 MST


Thanks for the defense. I am not sure I need it. Mainly I am
very bored by the number of relatively predictable and firmly
entrenched attitudes I have encountered on this list of late.
If they were an example of future thinking and vision then I
would be very depressed indeed. I get bored and fed up with the
"all religion is bad and your enemy" or echoes of "we are all
light and 'they' are all dark" memes. I would hope that the
brilliant and future focused people on this list are more immune
to such categorical closed-mindedness.

I recognize that it is very difficult when angry and worried
about the present and future especially to see sides of a
situation that one would prefer not to see. I recognize that it
hurts like bloody hell to take note of where your notions about
how good your people and country are and are not might be a bit
one-sided or slanted from the true situation. I know it was
hell on me to begin to take off some of my own blinders and I
don't expect it to get any easier. But I think we have to
examine our pet assumptions and positions, now more than ever.

"Alex F. Bokov" wrote:

> 1. She is a technologically savvy person, a programmer if I recall
> correctly, and puts forth solid ideas in areas where there is no
> political taint. In contrast, leftilists hate and fear science because
> it is predicated on rationality and dares to propose that some
> phenomena are rooted in nature rather than a vast conspiracy foisted
> upon us by those damn rich white males.

I am a software goddess, computer scientist, geek girl, super
nerd - take your pick. I don't know that that has any bearing
on what I say being reasonable or not though.

> 2. She actually supports individual liberty and technological
> progress! She just believes that the best way to achieve these is
> through measures that those at the other extreme of the creaky old
> left-right spectrum view as socialist. In contrast, the true
> leftilists only want freedom for people to practice the one true
> leftilist faith, and that necessitates an all-controlling collectivist
> state. Since leftilists have a simplistic, us-vs-them view of power
> dynamics, and they know that *they* certainly haven't created anything
> of note, they view innovations with hostility and suspicion-- as
> attempts by the rich white male elite to grab even more power.

To be fair that isn't all a particularly leftist viewpoint but

> So, I differ with Samantha on a number of issues. She is an Extropian
> who disagrees with me, and those are the ones who really help me
> develop my ideas. Where she is right, I hope to become right. Where
> she is wrong I get to develop my persuasive skills. Where she is wrong
> and doesn't budge, I get to study the psychology of stubbornness. I
> hope you feel the same way, Samantha, are don't misconstrue this as a
> slight. Some of the other things I've seen said to you are hard not
> to interpret that way, but I do think they were made in the heat of
> the moment rather than as calculated insults.

I don't take it as a slight at all. Thanks for saying it.

I don't hold grudges for slights and insults. Now and then I do
give up on talking with someone for at least a while.

- samantha

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