Category Archives: Philosophy

It Strikes Me…

…in reading some moronic commentary on Usenet about Dan’s Unexcellent Adventure, that this little incident provides a pretty fool-proof intelligence test. Anyone who still believes, at this point, that the documents are genuine, or even could conceivably be genuine, has to be an imbecile.

Of course, someone who believes that they may be false, but now considers them irrelevant because the underlying story must still be true (and conveniently, because they’re obviously forged), is simply bereft of logic or ethics.

More Thoughts On “John”

The comment from “John,” in this post, urging me to read Andrew Sullivan, wasn’t just rude–it was clueless.

Even accepting the (dubious) premise that Andrew is a “conservative,” why would John think that I would care, or that labeling him such would make me take what he says more seriously? I can only presume that it is because “John” deludes himself that I’m a “conservative,” and that therefore I’m intrinsically impressed by what other “conservatives” have to say. I’m not a conservative, but even if I were, I judge peoples words by the words themselves, not by the arbitrary political labels that are (mis?)applied to their authors, whether by themselves or others.

More Thoughts On “John”

The comment from “John,” in this post, urging me to read Andrew Sullivan, wasn’t just rude–it was clueless.

Even accepting the (dubious) premise that Andrew is a “conservative,” why would John think that I would care, or that labeling him such would make me take what he says more seriously? I can only presume that it is because “John” deludes himself that I’m a “conservative,” and that therefore I’m intrinsically impressed by what other “conservatives” have to say. I’m not a conservative, but even if I were, I judge peoples words by the words themselves, not by the arbitrary political labels that are (mis?)applied to their authors, whether by themselves or others.

More Thoughts On “John”

The comment from “John,” in this post, urging me to read Andrew Sullivan, wasn’t just rude–it was clueless.

Even accepting the (dubious) premise that Andrew is a “conservative,” why would John think that I would care, or that labeling him such would make me take what he says more seriously? I can only presume that it is because “John” deludes himself that I’m a “conservative,” and that therefore I’m intrinsically impressed by what other “conservatives” have to say. I’m not a conservative, but even if I were, I judge peoples words by the words themselves, not by the arbitrary political labels that are (mis?)applied to their authors, whether by themselves or others.

Yes, Even When Lives Are At Stake

In Enterprise last night, I was struck at how sometimes the writers Just Don’t Get It, and make the ship’s crew look like fools. If you didn’t see it, Archer and T’Pal are kidnapped and being held for a ransom of weapons to aid the local rebel cause. The Vulcans show up to the rescue, and inform the crew that “Vulcans do not negotiate for hostages.” Commander (?…what is his rank anyway, I’ve never been able to sort out ranks on ship, other than the Captain, but I haven’t been paying that close attention…) Tucker gets upset and whiny, and asks “Even if lives are at stake?” thus presumably demonstrating the moral superiority of the warm and emotional humans over the coldblooded and logical Vulcans.

Yes, Trip. Especially when lives are at stake. Of course,the writers don’t grant the Vulcans any kind of logical rejoinder–that negotiating for hostages simply ensures future hostage taking, and that sometimes lives have to be risked both on principle and to save the lives of many future hostages (the stance which, by the way, the U.S. government has appropriately taken in the Daniel Pearl case). No, they simply look Vulcan and disgusted. I wonder if the script was written pre- or post-911?

Oh, and whooooeeee, how about that little game of twister/simulated-sex scene that they had Archer and T’Pal do in their escape attempt? In prime time, too. Are they reviving the sexual tension from the first episode, or just trying to keep up with the competition?

“Respect For Nature”

Professor Reynolds points out this interesting article about the odd bedfellows of the left and the right when it comes to technology issues–in this case, Friends of the Earth.

I found this particular testimony most interesting:

the “push to redesign human beings, animals and plants to meet the commercial goals of a limited number of individuals is fundamentally at odds with the principle of respect for nature.”

“Respect for nature”? What principle is that? Is it universally shared? He speaks as though there’s some sort of well-defined societal consensus for such a principle.

I’ve already disquisited on this subject; there is nothing holy or sacrosanct about nature. Nature in itself has no intrinsic value.

If this FOE member believes that nature should not be trifled with, then no anaesthetics for him next time he needs dental work. In fact, no dental work allowed, other than knocking aching teeth out with rocks. And no plastic toothbrushes or floss, or anti-cavity toothpaste–they’re unnatural.

This falls into the same category of nonsense as Jeremy Rifkin’s “integrity of the genome.”

“Respect For Nature”

Professor Reynolds points out this interesting article about the odd bedfellows of the left and the right when it comes to technology issues–in this case, Friends of the Earth.

I found this particular testimony most interesting:

the “push to redesign human beings, animals and plants to meet the commercial goals of a limited number of individuals is fundamentally at odds with the principle of respect for nature.”

“Respect for nature”? What principle is that? Is it universally shared? He speaks as though there’s some sort of well-defined societal consensus for such a principle.

I’ve already disquisited on this subject; there is nothing holy or sacrosanct about nature. Nature in itself has no intrinsic value.

If this FOE member believes that nature should not be trifled with, then no anaesthetics for him next time he needs dental work. In fact, no dental work allowed, other than knocking aching teeth out with rocks. And no plastic toothbrushes or floss, or anti-cavity toothpaste–they’re unnatural.

This falls into the same category of nonsense as Jeremy Rifkin’s “integrity of the genome.”

“Respect For Nature”

Professor Reynolds points out this interesting article about the odd bedfellows of the left and the right when it comes to technology issues–in this case, Friends of the Earth.

I found this particular testimony most interesting:

the “push to redesign human beings, animals and plants to meet the commercial goals of a limited number of individuals is fundamentally at odds with the principle of respect for nature.”

“Respect for nature”? What principle is that? Is it universally shared? He speaks as though there’s some sort of well-defined societal consensus for such a principle.

I’ve already disquisited on this subject; there is nothing holy or sacrosanct about nature. Nature in itself has no intrinsic value.

If this FOE member believes that nature should not be trifled with, then no anaesthetics for him next time he needs dental work. In fact, no dental work allowed, other than knocking aching teeth out with rocks. And no plastic toothbrushes or floss, or anti-cavity toothpaste–they’re unnatural.

This falls into the same category of nonsense as Jeremy Rifkin’s “integrity of the genome.”