Hi Stuart and company....
On the one hand, I do agree with you Stuart that what this guy is
putting forward is kinda kooky. On the other hand, I'll tell you
what I like. I like the optimism, the motivation of putting our
knowledge to "good" use, the problem solving, the positive change
through science and technology. I like the way he lets his
imagination run wild to imagine what's possible. OK, maybe its
goofy, but the audaciousness inspires me some, just for the
OK, ok, we know we can't solve social problems with technology (at
least most of the time). However, can we solve no problem with our
scitech? How come none of us is optimistic? How come none of us is
trying to put forward new ideas of how to put our knowledge to good
use? Is there no positive change through science and technology?
To put it another way, must we only criticize, must we only condemn,
must we only say what's oppressive?
I mean, really, if we know what we don't like, why can't we imagine
what we like? It goes back to.... what is a science for the people?
>Freeman Dyson's piece seems like pure madness to me. It is obviously written
>by someone who has no concept of biology. Plants based on silicon rather
>than chlorophyll? Come on.
>Since Dyson is a physicist, he might more productively turn his efforts to
>weakening the charge of the proton so that we can produce electricity at
>lower cost, or re-engineering the gravitational constant so that we don't
>expend so much energy transporting cargo. These proposals make about as
>much sense as his.
>And wouldn't be just a little cruel to have children and other free agents
>tinkering with the genomes of animals so as to produce dysmorphic and
>deranged living toys?
>Dyson has been at this for almost 20 years. The British philosopher
>Mary Midgley raked him over the coals (along with some Left icons such as JBS
>Haldane and JD Bernal) in the excellent "Science as Salvation" (Routledge,
>1992) for what she calls "quasi-scientific dreams and prophesies" involving
>visions of escape from the constraints of biology, coupled with
Jose Morales Ph.D.