Disappointment about our own species

Discussion in 'General Science & Technology' started by Mark UX, Aug 4, 2015.

  1. Billy T Use Sugar Cane Alcohol car Fuel Valued Senior Member

    Again I agree with your POV; but to answer your final question: Far too few, as the atmospheric concentration of CO2 (with half life on the order of 1000 years) continues to climb with slight rate of acceleration as China and India, etc. strive to achieve US levels of per capita consumption AND much more damaging CH4 levels in the air are still growing too, in large part because CO2 is driving "global warming" which is accerating the decomposition of the methane ices (more carbon stored there than man has released since he discovered coal will burn).

    CH4 is mainly removed from the air in a reaction with the OH- radical, which destroys both, but the concentration of OH- is now falling faster than its replacement rate (Limited by the amount of harsh UV in the upper atmosphere) Thus the half life of CH4 is now increasing at about 0.3 years each year.

    SUMMARY: Man's technical capacity has advanced much more rapidly than his wisdom - he will die out if this continues.
    Mark UX and Write4U like this.
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  3. Mark UX Registered Member

    Absolutely agree with you. Our technical capacity/problem-solving-trained-society begins in my opinion, with academic education. Each one of us, were precisely trained with all kinds of academic education, to think in an specific way: it is a problem-solving trained society. This is not a coincidence; we are trained in such a way to become part of a society that needs individuals thinking this way.

    Wisdom, on the other side, is not something you can learn on school, it is inspired, comes from your core, flourishes from your own thinking, and the more you know yourself and go deep in your thoughts about everything in life, the more wisdom you will eventually acquire.

    It is not a coincidence that academic education does not mould us to become wise people; there is no money wise people could produce. On the other side, problem-solving-trained people perfectly fits in economic systems, and generates the ultimate goal: Money.

    I would much more prefer us to become wise people, since it would affect every single decision we have to take.
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  5. Fraggle Rocker Staff Member

    Wise people could increase the prosperity of the entire nation. Unfortunately it's difficult for wise people to win elections.
    The goal of a well-run economy is not an increase in the money supply. Its goals include spreading the wealth (which includes the money supply but also equity in homes and businesses, and other intangibles), but they also include building a strong educational system, maintaining the environment, helping people who fall through the cracks in the society, and fixing those cracks. All of these goals require wisdom.
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  7. sideshowbob Sorry, wrong number. Valued Senior Member

    Catch-22. We need wise people in office but we're not wise enough to elect them.
  8. Mark UX Registered Member

    ... the goal of a well-run economy includes equity at homes and business?... really?
  9. billvon Valued Senior Member

    I disagree. The purpose of an economy is to allow and facilitate movement of goods, money and labor within a society. What we do with it is decided by both people and the government.

    Saying that the goal of an economy is "helping people" is like saying the goal of a wrench is to save lives. It might save lives by fixing a problem with an airliner. But the GOAL of a wrench is to loosen and tighten nuts. It is what you decide to do with that wrench that determines whether it use saves lives or not.
  10. Fraggle Rocker Staff Member

    You took that out of context. I clearly said that this is only ONE GOAL. I listed several others, including a strong educational system, environmental stewardship, and helping the poor to become more prosperous.

    In virtually all modern, reasonably well-functioning countries, actual money comprises only a small fraction of the total wealth. A large segment of the American population have considerably more equity in their homes than the actual money in their bank accounts. Many also have stock portfolios. When you get up into the stratosphere with the multimillionaires, actual money is a tiny fraction of their wealth.

    Nonetheless, I call the current U.S. economy "poorly run" because for several decades it has been nearly impossible for anyone except the multimillionaires to increase their wealth significantly. This is happening at the national level, not just the personal: the Social Security system is going to run out of funds within your lifetime (if not mine) because when the system was invented no one foresaw the incredible drop in the birth rate. Originally there were seven workers supporting every retiree; today it's more like two and a half.

    In Japan it's barely one worker supporting every retiree. Considering that the Japanese live several years longer than the rest of us, this will become a crisis when and if their economy slows down.
  11. Write4U Valued Senior Member

    The "exponential function" at work. Every academic curriculum should include this comprehensive lecture.
    Last edited: Sep 5, 2015
  12. river

    I think that science and religion have distracted Humanity as a whole from the reality of the bigger picture of the Universe.
  13. Daecon Kiwi fruit Valued Senior Member

    Really? And what do you think this "reality of the Universe" is that science has "distracted" us from?

    Do you even know what science is?
  14. Mark UX Registered Member

    river is right in my opinion. We have created so many layers of distraction that, in many cases, we are unable to allow ourselves to think outside this 'frame' of science.

    Science begun with our insatiable appetite for categorise everything: territories and their flags, cities, buildings, animals, vegetation and every single aspect of anything surrounding us, as well as the entire universe as much as we can. Everything in human science is about understanding, then categorising and quantify, organising this information, and split it and keep re-organising it.

    I am not sure why, but it seems it is in our nature this appetite for categorising everything we see, even with stuff that is out of our comprehension.

    This is why our human wisdom has disappeared and has been superimposed by our logical problem-solving thinking; and of course, at the end, it also effected the way we take decisions.

    You have a role in your planet, which has a role in the Universe; you are not by any means a ‘cosmic coincidence’, and this is the distraction river talks about: whatever our role is in the universe and in our planet, is not really important right now to mankind (according to how science makes us think), where it should be our first priority in life.
  15. Write4U Valued Senior Member

    I was going to respond to every misrepresentation and logical fallacies contained in your post, but I decided that the only correct response to that tortured logic is that old saying; That is "not even wrong".
    You do not understand the definition of science.
    How we use applied science (technology) is the problem! Our decisions (wisdom) are based on the false notion of "entitlement" (greed), in spite of what science warns against.
    Last edited: Sep 7, 2015
  16. Fraggle Rocker Staff Member

    There are several definitions of the word, but the one you chose is surely not the most appropriate (or even useful!) for a website that is actually devoted (primarily) to science.

    Try these:
  17. Write4U Valued Senior Member

    Yes, Science does have several branches and definitions..

    In context of this topic, I used the word in its broadest definition.
  18. Fraggle Rocker Staff Member

    As I said above, this is a decent definition for laymen or generalists, but hardly for use in a place of science.
  19. Futilitist This so called forum is a fraud... Registered Senior Member

    Is this a place of science?


    Please Register or Log in to view the hidden image!

  20. Write4U Valued Senior Member

    Are you telling me that the use of the generic (all inclusive) term Science, excludes the scientific methods in any of the sciences?

    I explain my understanding of a particular scientific subject in narrative form, usually backed by a reliable source, which does go into the maths.

    In context of Mark UK post, my use of the generic term Science was wholly appropriate.
    Last edited: Sep 9, 2015
  21. Fraggle Rocker Staff Member

    "The state of knowing"? "A department of systematized knowledge"?

    No, it doesn't deliberately exclude or contradict anything important. But at the same time it doesn't really say much of anything important either.

    Would you use either of those definitions as a starting point in explaining science to a child? To a member of an Brazilian tribe with no written language? To a caveman who's been in suspended animation under the permafrost for 15,000 years?
  22. Write4U Valued Senior Member

    Precisely, when teaching a specific subject is like selling goods. You begin by telling them what you are going to tell them (premise), then you tell them what and how it works (function), then you tell them what you have just told them (summation).

    The language you use is the language of known scientific facts, even if you need to scribble it in the sand with a stick.

    True, but in context of that particular exchange it was sufficient. I assume that every one here is familiar with the term Science and what it entails, unlike a Brazilian bushman.
    Where would you begin? GR? QM?

    I would begin exactly with the generic definition of Science as a practice of systematically collecting data.
    Don't underestimate the ability of any human to be able to think logically, based on fundamental local knowledge.

    But they have mastered the skill in use of arrows and Newton used the flight of arrows to demonstrate gravity.
    I am confident that any native warrior is familiar with trajectories, even as they don't understand the dynamics. It should not be hard to teach gravity, as a start.

    Comes to mind the movie "the gods must be crazy", where some one had dropped an empty coca cola bottle, which was found by a person who had never seen glass. The finder considered it a gift from the gods. But for lack of explanation of its use, the bottle passed around and no one had a clue, what this object was supposed to be good for. A woman tried to use it as a dough roller, which of course failed miserably. In the end the chief threw the bottle back to the gods up in the sky, and of course it fell back to earth, injuring a small child who happened to be watching. Anger and consternation ensued.

    If only one person had explained that a bottle is a vessel to store liquids, and showed how to fashion a stopper, this entire tragic episode could have been averted.

    As a substitute teacher, I taught photography a for a while. I started with the question "what is photography" and then explained the various parts of a camera and their function in the system, all the while demonstrating each function, such as focal point, shutter speed, aperture control, composition.

    I must have done something right, after the second session I tasked the students with taking a picture of their favorite subject and "show and tell" how this picture was taken and what the main subject was. The improvement in all respects was noticeable and I had several compliments from the students, because they were proud of their work.

    It seems that this gradual introduction of fundamentals of photography had an immediate positive effect. Understanding the fundamental principles of anything seems to help in "analyzing" the subject and make "knowledgeable decisions" of how to approach the problem.
  23. IIIIIIIIII Registered Senior Member

    It seems that onanism is the main leitmotiv of this forum... not many stimulating subjects.

    Almost no way to share anything... at least I got some good SciFi books references despite all the over-educated miss-the-point people here... anyway.

    It totally convinced myself to go back to my study and focus more on LDA for my next publication and project =].

    At least Mathematics Stack Exchange is useful and fun =]

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