[ExI] How not to make a thought experiment

John Clark jonkc at bellsouth.net
Sun Feb 7 16:54:32 UTC 2010

Since my last post Gordon Swobe has posted 5 times.

> I consider myself a materialist

Gordon considers himself a rationalist too, but we all know that is not the case.

> but in the reaction against mind/matter dualism some of my fellow materialists (e.g., Dennett) go overboard and irrationally deny the plain facts of subjective experience

BULLSHIT. Dennett is not a fool and only a fool would deny subjective experiance

> As I use the word "consciousness", I believe the amoeba has none whatsoever. This unconscious creature exhibits intelligent behavior but [...]

But what? If Gordon believes an amoeba acts intelligently (something I will not defend) then he has absolutely no reason to believe it is not conscious, except perhaps for a mysterious little voice in his head whispering otherwise.

And let me repeat for the 422 time that Gordon's ideas and Darwin's are 100% incompatible. If consciousness and intelligence are not linked them science has no explanation how consciousness came to be on planet Earth, and yet we know with absolute certainty that it did at least once and probably many billions of times. People, this is not a minor point, this is a show stopper as far as Gordon's ideas are concerned. Charles Darwin had the single best idea that any human being ever had and it is at the center of all the biological sciences. Either Gordon Swobe is the greatest genius the human race has ever produced or the man is dead wrong.

I must confess to being a little disappointed in Extropians because I seem to be the only one who sees how important Evolution is; instead they dispute Gordon on some obscure point in his latest ridiculous thought experiment. Real experiments take precedence over thought experiments and planet Earth has been conducting one for the last 3 billion years. The results of that experiment are unambiguous, consciousness and intelligence MUST be linked and if you or me or Gordon doesn't understand exactly how that could be it doesn't change the fact that it is. 

 John K Clark  

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