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Everything posted by bioengine

  1. I’m not sure I agree that you have to have a PhD in order to have a scientific disagreement with someone else. I think any average person is capable of understanding scientific literature and I’m sure there are many “non-scientists” who understand science a lot better than many of the scientists out there. Obtaining a degree in a science related field is no longer that difficult. I know many people with advanced degrees who aren’t familiar with the history of their own fields… Yes, it started out as a disagreement between parents and a doctor. It ended with the state becoming involved… the state is enforcing a doctor’s prescription, hence they are endorsing one doctor over another who might disagree… hence the state is prescribing the drugs. I don’t think there is necessity to call this unfortunate woman an idiot even if you disagree with her course of action. No, they don’t believe she was miraculously cured; she still has HIV obviously since her baby has it. Did you know there are people who have lived with HIV for decades with no symptoms and not gotten AIDS? Did you know the latent period itself has been extended to something like ten years or more when it started out as only a few months to a year? The reasons that people do or don’t get immune deficiency are not entirely clear. These are still active questions. Furthermore, it seems as though you believed being pregnant subordinates the right of the mother to do what she wants with her body. You seem to be implying she did wrong by not taking a dangerous drug, which she had taken in the past and experienced the side effects of for herself. There are even those who believe that a developing embryo should not be exposed to carcinogens of any kind (see thalidomide incident) and that this is a clear trade off against the possibility of the child being HIV infected. If you don’t think DNA chain terminators are dangerous drugs that is one point you can argue but I think you will be easily refuted. I don’t know what my having “googled” this has to do with anything. All i can tell you is I have read a decent amount, though I'm no "expert" in the field of HIV my training is biology related. HIV is an extremely vast field which is still controversial in nature and controversy isn't a bad thing but helps get to the truth. You speak as if whatever a group of scientists in a court room say must be true, yet, you could select another group who would say the opposite, this is why each individual should think for themselves and why I am skeptical of the state making these decisions for us. If it were me I would want to comb through the evidence consult different people and ultimately make the decision myself, just as I would decide what the nutrition of the child should be. Or should the state make the decision of what the child eats too?--obviously many people have the result of supremely unhealthy children, should they be taken from the parents? With all the conflicting information out there on diet are the parents idiots? Here is a famous study on AZT, the drug taken by the mother in question as a child, still to my knowledge included in the “cocktails”. The study showed literally no benefit in terms of survival, yet, the side effects of this drug (a failed chemotherapy drug due to toxicity) are something to ponder before calling the mother an idiot. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/7908356
  2. I get where you are coming from. I think most people think about the example of a religious father who refuses to allow a doctor to treat his child’s illness due to the teachings of scripture. It is natural that this should upset people and they would want the state to step in for the child’s sake. However, what kind of precedent would this set? You would never advise someone to take a medication simply because the FDA told them it was ok. In this case someone who has a fundamental scientific disagreement with the state has had their child taken so that the state can apply its version of medical science to the child. The state has not proven its case in her eyes. After all, this woman was put on the same drugs her child is being put on when she was very young and her health deteriorated rapidly. Fearing death, she was taken off of it and never had serious subsequent health problems. The drugs are DNA chain terminators. Incidentally, this quote was just at the bottom of the web page: “No statement should be believed because it is made by an authority. --Robert A. Heinlein” These are my thoughts too.
  3. The state confiscated the HIV positive baby of Lindsey Nagel in order to treat him medically how they saw fit. The appropriateness of a medical treatment is a question of science and many times individual preference. Is it proper for the state to decide this for someone's infant and then confiscate the infant? http://saverico.com/latest/county-will-continue-to-monitor-brownsdale-infant-in-chips-case/ http://saverico.com/latest/baby-rico-rushed-to-er-taken-off-medication/
  4. Interesting. Most likely THC could prevent cancer likelihood because it supresses the immune system reducing inflammation which is why it is targeted as a drug for chronic inflammatory diseases and probably why there are some studies showing it reduces chances of alzheimer's disease. It may reduce the proliferation of cancer cells in vitro but it is quite another thing what will happen in vivo in which cancers behave physiologically with the other organ systems. Even then if it works in animals, it will be quite another thing whether it works in humans, all animals having metabolic features which differ across the board. One reason it should be avoided is that suppression of the immune system means you are increasing your likelihood of infections which could result in serious illness. It has long been known that psychotropic drugs suppress the immune system leaving pot heads susceptible to more infections than non-smokers. It's just another example of how you cannot beat nature. I'm starting to think that any unnatural molecule you put in the body will come with a trade off, and the weight of that trade off will increase the longer time period you are consuming any drug. The effects of most illegal psychotropic drugs are not well studied and to the extent that they are, it is mostly not common knowledge in mainstream science and therefore doesn't trickle down to the public. The best thing is to live a lifestyle that reduces the chances of any serious illness rather than rely on drugs to cure you when the time comes--after you have accumulated significant damage--that would be working with nature rather than against it.
  5. Harriman doesn't challenge "hard science". I don't think he challenges the actual results of experiments, just the interpretations of the twentieth century physicists. Because the results of their experiments are confusing they say that a particle exists in every possible state with no particular identity until you try to observe the particle at which time it chooses an identity. Some of the physicists go further and claim that the moon isn't there unless you are actually looking at it. So they obviously don't believe in the primacy of existence or apply it to how they interpret their experiments.
  6. Correct, if the center of mass of your body coincided with the center of mass of the earth there would be no force. The gravitational force is proportional to the inverse square of the distance between your center of mass and that of the earth. The equation would be undefined as you got there. The gravitational "tension" that is pulling any atom of your body "upwards" would be cancelled out by that pulling "downwards" as you say.
  7. To say, "when you are in freefall you are at rest" is meaningless. This is just self contradictory. Only by some highly convoluted logic could this have meaning in the physical world. When you are in free fall you are accelerating, I can't part ways with galileo on this one. Not to mention this still doesn't explain anything physically. So you say gravity is a whirlpool, whirlpool of what? Again, space can only be like the water if space is material, which Einstein did not believe. Secondly even if we do treat space as matter and gravity is some kind of whirlpool, I think you are forgetting that a whirlpool is a sink. There must be a constant flow of some "Stuff" into the center of the Earth, which to me means it either vanishes there or is accumulating. Relativity does not explain what newtonian mechanics cannot. Most of the equations of relativity weren't Einstein's inventions first off. Other people came up with most of them, people who had different interpretations than Einstein did. Secondly, just because a mathematical formalism is considered accurate, it doesn't mean the theory attached to it correctly explains reality. Think about Ptolemy's epicycles. Higg's field is not the ether. I don't know what it is but this is what the link you sent me described, "The Higgs is neither matter nor force". That is not the ether, which is matter. The universe is a solidly packed plenum and at present no one knows the nature of that plenum stuff. I also don't think the first link you sent me satisfies my previous objections to experiments "proving" time dilation or length contraction.
  8. First of all, I don't think you could possibly compare your watch to someone elses as you were going. I don't want to go into this but is "the problem of simultaneity" which Einstein goes on about endlessly. Also remember that if this is your definition of time moving more slowly, all you would have to do is turn the clock perpendicular to the direction of motion rather than parallel to it. I am assuming that molecules only move more slowly with their component of motion in the direction of travel of the macroscopic body (which may be false but also doesn't bear on what I'm about to say next). You may not understand what I'm getting at but it is in keeping with Einstein’s “light clock” in which a beam of light which bounces off of two parallel plates in a moving coordinate system is used to keep time. As the coordinate system increases in velocity it takes the beam of light longer to catch up with each plate so there are fewer bounces per minute, hence "time" is dilated. If the two plates, instead of moving perpendicular to the direction of the bouncing light photon, moved parallel to it, the effect of “dilated time” is not seen. This means that it loses all physical meaning and is merely an artefact produced by the way time is measured. The same can be said of any clock which is used to "prove" time dilation. This is why induction must be used to determine the cause of observations. There have been countless cases in the history of science where numerous observations were gathered up under one theory which could explain them all… and the theory turned out wrong. You can’t jump to the conclusion that a theory is good because it comes up with explanations for each observation. Einstein’s interpretation of relativity doesn’t make physical sense or provide physical explanations for what it claims which is why it is based on subjectivism and the explaining of appearances rather than causes, a statement I’ll explain more below. As far as the dozens of phenomenon, you would have to list them for me to consider each one in turn as proving relativity or not. You are giving me a metaphor about a boat in the water. In order for me to believe this you would have to explain what is the boat and water representing. Giving such a concrete metaphor does not explain your earlier statement in which concepts or relations were flowing into matter. Earlier you said space and time flow into matter. Only matter can actually flow, the flow of time is a metaphor because time is a concept denoting enumerated motion, not an existent (it only exists in our heads as a concept). Space, strictly speaking cannot whirlpool or flow as space is just a relation of entities, as in “there is much space between us when it comes to relativity”. If you are talking about an actual ether, that is, matter which exists continuously throughout the entire plenum of the universe, this could possibly flow, but I have never seen an experiment verifying this. As far as I know no one has ever detected or measured the ether yet in an experiment, we simply can infer on philosophical grounds that it must be there. I am certain you are wrong when you say that Einstein believed space was material because looking back at his books he explicitly rejects the ether as unnecessary, he believes space is empty geometrical points and yes he still believes this can warp (many physicists believe that fields are just mathematical points in space, nothing more substantial).
  9. Yes, I have heard about the atomic clocks flown about. I have also read that the actual dilation of time needs more proof than accelerating a clock. There is a distinction between what happens to the operation of a clock due to accelerations and what actually happens to time itself. For instance, just because a watch accelerated at an immense rate may lose a few seconds does not mean anything has happened to time as such but only that the acceleration affected the moving hands. This has to do with way a watch functions and the same goes with an atomic clock. To accept this as proof of time dilation and not consider the possiblity that it is a mere artefact is not scientific but i'm sure many scientists would. I reject Einstein’s view of time in the first place. Time isn’t an actual entity (it is an enumeration of a constant cyclical motion by man) so it cannot become dilated. Only objects can be dilated. The only way “time dilation” makes physical sense in a given reference frame is if everything started going slower including all of the molecules making up that reference frame and even then “time” hasn’t done anything it is what you are using to gauge time which has slowed down. The force in the example I gave isn’t a centrifugal force. I meant that the creature in the box is being pulled in a perfectly straight line; the force is only a tension force on the outside of the box. The inertia of the creature makes it appear from inside the box as if a gravitational “action at a distance” type force is acting on the creature. This is Einstein’s thought experiment. You could call it a fictitious force if you’d like because it arises due to the reference frame we are looking at. I can’t comprehend how space or time could “fall” into matter. Space—talking about the concept at bottom and why it exists—is just a relation of entities (as given by Aristotle) OR if by “space” we are talking about the substance which permeates the universe, an “ether” of sorts, that IS matter. And like I said I accept the definition of time as enumerated motion which I think was given by Aristotle (not sure). So I think there is a problem of definitions here. I have tried to understand it for a number of years and still am trying to. I can find as many objections to it as I can find explanations for it. The objections have always made more sense to me. In fact, most of what people say about it, in favor of it, makes no sense at all. I have read one of Brian Greene’s books but it didn't help me understand much of anything. If I am remembering correctly he gave lots of very unphysical metaphors about Bart Simpson skate boarding and so forth (could have been a different book I am thinking of).
  10. The worst punishment is not death because after death, as such, the person is gone. The worst punishment is also not imprisonment for life. The worst is condemnation to death in which the person must live for a time, possibly years, counting down when they are scheduled to die. In the 1800's it was discovered that there is no worse punishment than this, not even torture or confinement.
  11. I don't think you can tell whether or not you are moving relative to space. I think Einstein addressed this in one of the books I read. You cannot actually measure length contraction. Any ruler which is brought about to measure the contraction of something else will also be contracted and therefore the effect is cancelled out and cannot be measured. The same sort of thing applies for the movement of a clock, if the hand of a clock has slowed down, your bodily movements and ability to read the clock have likewise slowed down to a similar degree making you oblivious to any such effect. This is all when you are moving at a constant speed without accelerations, like in your scenario of the ship and police officer. Also Einstein didn't believe in a physical explanation such as the altering of the shape of atoms with movement causing contraction or having to do with the nature of movement through an EM field. Yes, I'm familiar with it. General relativity asserts that accelerations are due to "warped" space. He claimed that a creature living in a free floating box in outer space will experience "gravity" if the box is suddenly accelerated by a string attached to the outside. Some "force" compels him to the bottom of the box where the reaction force allows him to stand up. He thought that was analogous to what we experience on the Earth as gravity. I don't believe in this answer. I'll try to address his view on space later as I'll have to look some things up.
  12. Hmm.. Well first of all according to relativity the officer can only ever see the laser beam moving at the speed of light, never twice the speed of light. So as he went flying by he would see each laser beam going the speed of light despite relative motion between everybody which is why length contraction and time dilation are necessary to explain the scenario. Length contraction and time dilation make it so that the speed of light is a constant in each reference frame from which it is measured (according to special relativity). That is my understanding. I think the subjectivity comes in because the police officer can actually assume that he is standing still and that the ship is moving towards him at the speed of light. There is no force telling him otherwise. That is why this scenario isn't physically sound because the police officer can never actually tell whether or not he is moving relative to "fabric of space". So the people on the ship can also assume they are standing still while the police officer comes towards them at the speed of light. No one can measure who is moving or not only the relative speed of approach between them. So who is contracting and dilating their time--depends on who you ask I guess. In the end for a scenario like this, you have to specify which person accelerated and felt the force of acceleration to decide who is moving (IF that information is available--BECAUSE both started out stationary relative to each other). If the two groups started out moving relative to each other (for instance because they were on different planets who's tangent lines coincided when they took off toward one another) you will never tell which person is really moving or standing still yet both of them still must contract if they are to measure the speed of light the same in their respective reference frames. I hope this makes sense, I find it easy to confuse myself when thinking about modern physics. Another illustration is Einstein's scientist who was born in a spinning room. Einstein believes that the truth consists of describing what is happening in the spinning room such as objects flying to the wall, ergo gravity is in the direction of the wall. This is why it's subjectivism because truth depends on reference frame rather than the law of identity holding. Anyone else would say bust through the wall and see what's really going on. These are just a few thoughts but I also am not sure that Einstein believed in a material "fabric" of space, I think he thought space was more like an empty container or "pure geometrical points". I have heard his view of space compared to Plato's but, again, I haven't read up on this in a while, I might be mistaking him for someone else.
  13. Well, speaking just in reference to the Michelson-Morley experiment, it was not proven that the speed of light is the same in all reference frames as I think was predicted by Maxwell. I believe, at the time of all this, there were those physicists who wanted to revise electromagnetism and those physicists who wanted to revise mechanics because of the contradictory nature of what was showing up in the equations. The ones who wanted to revise mechanics obviously won and now we have length contraction and time dilation. As I was hinting at, the emission theory is consistent with Michelson-Morley, light behaves mechanically like a bullet, so the one way speed of light (light traveling from me to the wall) is not constant in every reference frame, however, by definition the two way speed of light (as in light going to the wall and coming back to me) is always constant (because any effect of added motion in one direction is subtracted on the way back). As far as what i read on Wikipedia, the one-way speed of light hasn't ever been measured and maybe cannot be. I have also read on wikipedia that emission theory has been disproved but I really have not read up on this stuff in a while so currently I really have no opinion on the resolution of the problem (or the value of what I read on Wikipedia). I just stand by the philosophical objections to Einstein's subjective view of reality.
  14. My intention in the phrasing of the question was to draw someone in to general conversation on the phenomenon. Given that this is a philosophy forum I expected the response to be geared in that sense. I’d rather hear people share their own experience than analyze me or someone else with little information. I agree with you on pragmatism, especially in the sense that for the past century the education system has been based on this philosophy. As many have pointed out it is geared toward socialization rather than factual information so it is not surprising that so few have a high regard for the fidelity of what comes from their mouth. The reason I posed the question is I don’t believe there was always so many liars or people incapable of emotions such as guilt. It is like those stories about once upon a time before WWI everyone had good will towards their fellow man and those born in modern times cannot even imagine what it was like because it is so different today. I have recently listened to Peikoff’s lecture on schizophrenia and modern philosophy. He points out the similarity between how schizophrenics proclaim and how modern philosophers proclaim. Basically what the two groups have to say is similar enough that it would be one wild coincidence if the two weren’t somehow related even if very indirectly. I have my own fledgling opinions on the root cause of mental illness but it cannot be ruled out that culture can shape the form in which mental illness manifests itself (as a co-factor), despite the root cause of mental illness. P.S. seems like soud advice
  15. Hmm.. probably we don't need to analyze one another. It is the liars who are interesting to analyze. If you can't think of a cultural/philosophical reason that so many people are blatant liars usefulness has come up short on this thread. Or perhaps you disagree?
  16. As a more humorous example I once agreed to drive a co-worker home from the summer job I was working. They told me their house was nearby. Every mile we went down the road they said that their house was just another mile down or just around the next corner. Every time I got there and said, "Well?", they apologized and explained that it was really just beyond the next stop sign. Finally when I started getting angry they began pleading and giving more realistic estimates of where the house was, which were also nevertheless false. In the end I told them I would never give them a lift again, not because of the distance, but because of the lies. They said simply, "I know". In this situation the person could still lie without shame even though my finding out wasn't a gamble but an inevitability.
  17. Sure. When I was first going to a certain University, I fell in with a group of friends. One guy in particular seemed like a good guy, a strong contrast to most of the loud-mouthed, with something to prove people I met. He liked to talk about everything including ideas and we shared some lifestyle factors that bring people together at university. Especially when you are practically living with someone it is easy to begin to consider them a friend just through shared experiences and hobbies and so forth. Anyway, over the course of about a year and a half we became closer and closer through conversation in which he would mostly agree with what I had to say or if he disagreed would qualify it. He led me to believe that we shared values and that the ideals i was pursuing were just as important to him as they were to me. Obviously such a person adopts an important place in your life. Eventually, after about a year and a half he revealed that he doesn't believe in anything and there is no such thing as facts and that I had never convinced him of anything. In fact it was a philosophy professor in a freshman course that had led him down the path to this way of thinking or so he told me. I won't go into details of my reaction to this but, safe to say, these experiences are many and unpleasant always; for this is clearly not a worst case scenario.
  18. Hmm.. that seems like a pretty sound list. I honestly can only think of a handful of people I've known who would pass the test. I used to keep a similar standard but then talked to no one for about three years, so tried to excuse certain things and find other things in people that were positive. That is how you get lulled into it. So I already sort of know the causal sequence of how or why it happens, I just find it curious that as I get older I find more and more people are like this. It's because people don't take ideas seriously.
  19. I don't base friendships on one occasion either so I disagree that it is very easy, although, that could just be a personal difference. There are people who are intelligent enough to understand the basic principles you are talking about and to pretend to agree. Any inconsistency would be shrugged off as they are still learning or had an objection or whatever. There is always excuses and enough consistency to keep things afloat. Then you might find in actuality they don't care about anything.
  20. Hmm.. not sure what you mean by that, especially about waxing. If you are asking whether I think others can alleviate consternation, that is not what I was proposing. I am just curious why so many I meet these days are liars who are capable of weaving and attempting to live out an entire fantasy world and they feel no compunction about the destruction they cause thereby.
  21. I would like some people's perspectives/stories of dealing with sociopaths or pathological liars. The realm of human interaction seems to be the one great uncertainty in life which there is no science to predict. Since people have free will, how do you know who you are really dealing with? If there are people out there smart enough to say what they know you want to hear and you can only go by what people say or do in your presence, how do you ever know? Obviously dealing with factual information, it is easy to decide whether or not you believe what a person is saying or whether they are mistaken. But when there are people who will mimic you, your beliefs, and behaviors, in order to trick you into befriending them or getting into a relationship and putting emotional energy into them for their own idiotic purposes, this is just perilous. I feel that I have known an overwhelming majority of pathological liars in my relatively short life, what is the deal? Was it always like this? People will pretend they understand you and get in close with you, but they are just humoring you or pandering to you, until one day the entire thing blows up like a nitroglycerin factory. On the one hand there are story tellers who are more harmless, on the other we have the people who pretend to be whatever they infer you want them to be. The latter are the more dangerous. They are human chameleons, so to speak.
  22. I think a computer would have a better chance of gaining human-like consciousness if it were constructed from biological materials, cells, natural proteins, and so forth. I don't think the current materials used for computers have a good chance of achieving artifiical intelligence. This isn't a rigorously defended opinion but I would defend the unlikelihood of creating artifiical intelligence, especially out of metal and polymers, when you don't even understand "natural" intelligence and how biologic materials give rise to life is still mysterious. Once we understand biology we will have a better shot at creating synthetic life, if this is even a rational or possible aim. But if it did happen that the computer came to be volitional in the same sense a human is, and it could take care of itself completely so was an independent entity, you would have to treat it just like anything else which falls in that category (currently only humans). I would give some leniency to the first man to encounter such a computer and what he decided to do, probably based on his inability to tell whether it was truly self aware or whether a sophisticated and deterministic program was operating.
  23. There are lots of scientists who disagree with Einstein. He was just the most popular one. David Harriman talks about Einstein's theories of relativity in a few of his lectures and he gives alternatives to Einstein. For my own part, I read one of Einsteins books years ago and was very confused as I could not contradict his "thought experiments". It was only later on I realized that his thought experiments were completely disconnected from the actual experimental evidence. In his book he constantly referred to a situation where a person in a floating glass box is flying past you. They have a lamp in the middle of the box. Since the speed of light is the same in all reference frames, when the person turns on the light they measure the light beams to hit the wall at the same time in the direction of travel and in the opposite direction. However you watching this moving box from the side see that the light beam which is in the direction of travel has to catch up to the wall of the box so it hits it a short time later than the light beam going in the opposite direction. Both of the events happen simultaneously even though they contradict one another. That is why Lorentz length contraction and so forth is invoked. When you look at the Michelson-Morly experiment, they only measure the two-way speed of light, not the one way speed of light that Einstein implies in his "popular book". In other words the measurement of light's speed could only be done if light went to the wall of the box and came back to the center, in which case the effect of one beam hitting before the other is canceled out. So the results for the person inside and outside the box are the same and length contraction is not needed. No one knew if measuring the one way speed of light would show that the speed of light is constant in all reference frames (at least at that time, I don't know if it's happened since then). I think Einstein purposely designed his thought experiment in this misleading way because Michelson-Morley experiment is consistent with another theroy of light called emission theory, which was a competing theory at the time, in which light packets move essentially like bullets. I have read that emission theory has been disproved but i know nothing about the accuracy of that statement as I only read modern physics as a hobby. In any case there are still many physicists out there who disagree with Einstein on relativity and have other theories, yet it is often regarded as unassailable truth.
  24. If you have a receding hair line, you will look more wise, experienced, and intelligent. As your experience in life grows, your hair retreats from all the horrors you've experienced in life, but you are the wiser for having gone through it. The more truths you comprehend the less hairs you will have as your brain no longer needs that sheltering. As your hair commits suicide you stand firmly as a force to be reckoned with. As your forehead becomes a widows peak, you are now a man that can make real decisions in life and understand the extremes of human emotion and the entire spectrum of good and evil throughout mankinds history.
  25. It sounds to me like your problem is a lack of values. Values are what drive one in life. Pursuing your values is an end in itself, it isn't "keeping yourself busy". A human without values is what you describe, an aimless drifter through life aiming for distraction. When you say there is no point to life, you are only talking about your own view of your own life. If you said that to someone who was actively pursuing values they would not even hear what you said, it would be like you were speaking a foreign language, you see? You would never hear a hunting dog complain that he is just keeping himself busy and there is no point to life. Besides the obvious reason that he cannot talk or form concepts, a hunting dog is completely satisfied with life because he is doing what it is in his nature to do. When sentient organsims do what it is in their nature to do they become happy and fulfilled in life. It's only when you lock the dog in the shed that life become pointless. When you find your own life's purpose, it will be the only gasoline for your engine, so to speak. You will not even have time to sit around and think whether life has a point or not, you will know in your bones, down to the marrow, that life is not pointless. It will be self evident. So basically you need to keep searching for that purpose.
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