[ExI] Update on the Hawaiian observatory shutdown

John Clark johnkclark at gmail.com
Sun Aug 25 19:27:34 UTC 2019

On Sun, Aug 25, 2019 at 11:50 AM William Flynn Wallace via extropy-chat <
extropy-chat at lists.extropy.org>:

>>  the next time a mob of ignorant lawless thugs who are immune to
>> reasoned argument try to put a lid on new scientific discoveries don't you
>> think it would be wiser to fight them rather than run away and hide? With
>> such an opponent there can only be 2 responses, fear or anger. I've made my
>> choice.
> > Fear or anger?  That's all you can think of?

Not necessarily. If my opponent was a scientist with a theory in opposition
to mine neither fear or anger would be appropriate, fear wouldn't help me
in a debate and if he's right he would have done me a favor but pointing
out the error in my theory so I'd be grateful. However if my opponent is
like the Hawaiian protestors who are illegally blocking the road to prevent
one of the most important scientific instruments in the world and are doing
it for a idiotic reason then yes, fight or flight are the only things I can
think of.

> *> Emotional responses? [...]  Meet irrationality with irrationality?*

Ultimately the responses of any intelligent animal or AI are emotional,
there is no purely logical reason to pick knowledge over ignorance or
wisdom over stupidity or even existence over nonexistence. Without emotions
there would be no reason to do X and not Y, there would be no reason to do
anything. That's why it's so silly to expect that a computer might be
intelligent but it could never be emotional. Emotion is easy but
intelligence is hard, at least that's what Evolution found, it came up with
emotion during the Cambrian explosion but it took Evolution another 540
million years to come up with our ridiculously enlarged cerebral cortex and
the sort of intelligence of which we are proud. And that's also why Star
Trek's Mr. Spock and Mr. Data are so silly.

 John K Clark
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