Are religious descriptions of science deliberately deceiving?

Discussion in 'Religion' started by Seattle, May 11, 2019.

  1. billvon Valued Senior Member

    Messages:
    16,275
    Nope.
    No. The pilot and bombardier have some responsibility, though. The scientists and engineers who designed Fat Man and Little Boy have even more.
     
  2. Google AdSense Guest Advertisement



    to hide all adverts.
  3. Jeeves Valued Senior Member

    Messages:
    3,442
    The first guy who tied a rock to a stick to hit someone over the head with is directly and 100% responsible for his own act, and partially - to a diminishing degree over time as it spreads over number of users - for all subsequent uses of his invention for the same purpose.
    The inventor of the rack is 100% responsible for his invention and every single instance in which he put it to its intended use, and partially - to a diminishing degree over time as it spreads over number of users - for all subsequent uses of his invention for the same purpose.

    Each of their shares is directly proportional to their contribution, degree of awareness and freedom to act differently.
    Thus: the Wright brothers have no share in the bomb, and only a small share in the weaponization of airplanes, but a larger share in the air and noise pollution caused by airplanes. Lilienthal shares that blame, as gliders were an integral stage in the design of bombing craft - as were Zeppelins - but a far greater percent of the blame goes to Liutenant Giulio Gavotti, who threw the first bombs at Lybia, and everyone who subsequently participated in the development of bombs.
    There is, of course, a special gallery in hell reserved for the generals who give the orders and the political leaders who declare the wars and the industrialists who produce the ordnance.
    Given the number of people and other animals killed by bombs over the last century+, there is plenty of guilt for all the perpetrators.
     
  4. Google AdSense Guest Advertisement



    to hide all adverts.
  5. Baldeee Valued Senior Member

    Messages:
    1,734
    Sure, just as another engineer creates a wrench for someone to be used.
    That's nothing to do with science per se but the person.
    And rightly so.
    Science is the tool, not the object or research being worked on.
    It is the methodology used within the endeavour, not the endeavour itself.
    A pen is a neutral object, but can be used to create beautiful works of literature, or the most damning of hate speeches.
    No, i would say that it is solely up to the person.
    It is up to the car mechanic, not the wrench, which car the mechanic works on.
     
  6. Google AdSense Guest Advertisement



    to hide all adverts.
  7. billvon Valued Senior Member

    Messages:
    16,275
    That's fine. A scientist can choose to use science to create Sarin, or he can choose to use science to create better solar-PV. The ethical scientist would choose to use science to create better solar-PV, given that choice.
    Right. Sarin is not a neutral object. It really only has one use.
    Of course. But Sarin is not a wrench.
     
  8. Jeeves Valued Senior Member

    Messages:
    3,442
    How many times do we have to dance around this mulberry bush?
    Science is the method of discovering cause and effect relationships in nature.
    This method can be put to use in the invention and development of technology.
    Technology is the making of tools. Tools are made by men and women, to perform specific functions.
    Some tools are intended for beneficial purposes, some tools are intended for destructive purposes, some tools can be put to either use.
    The humans who invent the tools are responsible for how those tools are used -
    - to the extent that -
    1. they know the intended use
    2. participate in its development
    3. have a choice
     
    Baldeee likes this.
  9. Baldeee Valued Senior Member

    Messages:
    1,734
    Or perhaps an insecticide?
    But it is still the scientist doing the choosing, being responsible for that choice.
    Not science itself.
    It was developed as a pesticide.
    But sarin, in this analogy, is the car.
    Science is the tool.

    Sarin becomes a tool when used to achieve an aim (such as killing).
    The choice of tool is up to the user.
    If you want to blame science for things you may as well blame a pen for everything that is written with it.
    No, in this analogy it is the car.
    Not the mechanic.
    The mechanic chooses and is responsible for what they work on and the tools they use.
    Science is just the tool.
     
  10. billvon Valued Senior Member

    Messages:
    16,275
    Agreed there. It is the scientist who works on it who carries some responsibility for its use.
    Not quite. This is where I disagree. You can't claim "well, Sarin is just like a car. I'll weaponize it and then it won't be my fault if someone else misuses it to kill people." Sarin is used to kill people. That's not a misuse. That what it's _for_.
     
  11. Jeeves Valued Senior Member

    Messages:
    3,442
    Science is the method. A car is a tool.
    A scientist discovered the principle on which it operates. An inventor developed the engine. A mechanic puts it together and repairs it.
    Scientists discover the action of toxic chemicals - the principle.
    Chemists invent medicines and poisons, the tools.
    Pesticide is a tool for killing. Anyone who develops a pesticide knows that it can only be used for killing. Designating somebody a "pest" doesn't make them any less dead - and eventually extinct, along with whatever depends on them in the ecological web. You can tell yourself fairy-tales about the benefits of producing and dispersing poisons, but you can't not know that its only function is killing.
     
  12. sideshowbob Sorry, wrong number. Valued Senior Member

    Messages:
    5,720
    Killing is not necessarily a bad thing. We kill to eat. Killing to protect our food isn't that different.
     
  13. Jeeves Valued Senior Member

    Messages:
    3,442
    Yes, it is. It's the opposite, in fact. Because what you've achieved with pesticides is the eradication (it's not complete yet, but getting there fast) of all the insects that pollinate your crops. At the same time, you're killing the soil, so you need more and more artificial fertilizer to make anything grow .
    Plus, you're ingesting the poisons in your food and water.
    Lose-lose-lose.
     
  14. sideshowbob Sorry, wrong number. Valued Senior Member

    Messages:
    5,720
    But without the work we've done to protect our crops, we wouldn't be here to screw it up (not so many of us, anyway).
     
  15. Jeeves Valued Senior Member

    Messages:
    3,442
    Poisoning is not "work"; cultivating and improving the soil, composting, companion planting, propagating hardy strains, maintaining strong hedgerows, rotating crops and cover planting - that's useful work.
    And that made the lives of surplus people hell in every culture, in every age.
    Fewer people would have made the present and future --- better or worse?
     
    Last edited: May 31, 2019
  16. sideshowbob Sorry, wrong number. Valued Senior Member

    Messages:
    5,720
    Much of that doesn't apply to large-scale farming.
    Are you going to volunteer to reduce the surplus population by becoming Soylent Green? Or do you have another Final Solution to the population problem?
     
  17. sculptor Valued Senior Member

    Messages:
    6,242
    ground up in an obfuscatory attempt?
    or
    a well marbled and seasoned rump roast from a young fat girl, grilled over a hardwood fire?
     
  18. sideshowbob Sorry, wrong number. Valued Senior Member

    Messages:
    5,720
    It's green, so I'm guessing it would be served cold with some kind of vinaigrette.
     
  19. Jeeves Valued Senior Member

    Messages:
    3,442
    You mean the industrial farming that's done so much damage? No, 'work' certainly doesn't apply there. Nor does sustainability, responsibility, accountability, providence or stewardship (a small nod to the religious component of this thread)
    See what you did with the goalposts there? So do I.
    I asked whether this ^^^ was a good or bad thing in the long term.
    I did not ask who is going to rectify the error.
    We already know that: major X-event on the horizon - maybe two or three of them concurrently. Nothing to do with me.
     
  20. sideshowbob Sorry, wrong number. Valued Senior Member

    Messages:
    5,720
    No, I mean the industrial farming that has kept so much of humamity alive.
    If it wasn't for the "problem" of industrial farming, most of us wouldn't be here to discuss the good or bad. And those who did exist would be too busy subsisting to develop the media for the discussion.
     
  21. Jeeves Valued Senior Member

    Messages:
    3,442
    That's an opinion which, I'm guessing, isn't based on extensive acquaintance with the history of agriculture.
    In any case, even if you won't answer the question, I will: overpopulation was not the best way to insure a good outcome for humanity.
     
  22. sideshowbob Sorry, wrong number. Valued Senior Member

    Messages:
    5,720
    I didn't suggest anything of the kind. I'm just saying that overpopulation is the situation that we have and that continued industrial farming is the only way to sustain that population.
     
  23. Jeeves Valued Senior Member

    Messages:
    3,442
    That's true.
    I asked - twice - whether the human overpopulation, which, according to you, was facilitated by by thre use of pesticides and industrial farming generally, had a good or bad outcome. While deflecting that question, now you treat that same condition as a 'given' that should? must? be sustained?
    Both the chicken and the egg are mortal. Much of the world already suffers from famine, malnutrition and food shortages and even more from food insecurity; water continues to behave unreliably; crops continue to fail and before very long, the whole complex will collapse.
    While industrial farming practice was not the main propellant of this runaway train, it played a significant part.
     

Share This Page