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Protist (7/13)



  1. Dr Dalek, It probably comes from the strawman characterization of AR activists as caring more about animals than people. But as a philosophy, I really doubt it exists outside of in satire and literature, not in the real world. I can only think of 3 examples where "animal supremacy" has ever been articulated: 1) The closest example that comes to mind is ne of the first feminist authors, Mary Wollstonecraft, published a book in 1792 called "A Vindication of the Rights of Woman" as a response of the aristocracy who denied women education, property, a right to vote, and a right to work. The book called for an equality between men and women. Shortly afterward, an anonymous author later identified as Thomas Taylor published a parody of Wollstonecraft's work called "A Vindication of the Right of Brutes". Tayloar attempted to refute Wollstonecraft by reductio ad absurdium, stating "to evince by demonstrative arguments the perfect equality of what is called the irrational species to the human", essentially stating that if we should seriously consider the rights of women no more than we should consider the rights of animals. 2) Another example is George Orwell's novel Animal Farm which satirized the soviet republic, its famous for the phrase "all animals are equal, but some are more equal than others". That would be Animal Supremacy, but not in the sense that you were probably thinking. 3) I used to spend long hours on USENET reading some very bizarre newsgroups. I came across some groups with stage philosophies in alt.lifestyle.furry and alt.religion.otherkin, which are the furry and otherkin movements. Some of them believe that they are animal souls trapped inside of human bodies, some of them self-identify with an animal persona (fursona), some of them have really disgusting sexual fantasies. A lot of people in these movements absolutely dread the idea that they are trapped in human bodies, and look at the human form as crippled and just "wrong" in some indescribable way. Its comparable to transgendered people who dread waking up each and everyday as a male or a female when they are mentally the opposite sex. Furries / otherkin feel the same way, they are sincerely disillusioned by their own species, and occasionally enjoy dressing up in costumes to express their inner animal identity. I've havent ever met or seen misanthropic furries though. To date, I dont know of any established furry/otherkin philosophies, but if an animal supremacy theory exists, then option #3 is probably the best place to find it. Someone actually accused me of favoring animals above humans, which is certainly not true at all. I'm misanthropic, but no animal supremacist. I just want to kill all humans. HURRAH!
  2. (I'm substituting an x because 1 and l are hard to distinguish from one another) n-1 __ \ (2x + 1) /_ x = 0 The first term = 1, so we'll just rewrite that equation like this: n-1 __ 1 + \ (2x + 1) /_ x=1 Now lets just split our summation into two parts, basically so we have this: n-1 n-1 __ __ 1 + \ (2x) + \ 1 /_ /_ x=1 x=1 Solving this is really easy now, the last summation is just a constant, so we get: n-1 __ 1 + (n-1) + 2* \ x /_ x=1 Rewrite that summation in two parts: a simple summation identity minus the last term of that identity: [ n [ __ 1 + (n-1) + 2* [ \ (x) - (n) [ /_ [ x=1 w00t! Solvable now: n + 2* [n(n+1)/2 - (n)] = n + (n(n+1) - 2n) = n + n^2 + n - 2n = n^2 Therefore: n-1 __ \ (2x + 1) = n^2 /_ x = 0
  3. Happy Klingon New Year! May death come swiftly to your enemies
  4. My first post was a "lolz I'm new" post from January 2005: Hmmm... In America, our president has pushed forward a bill called the "Unborn Victims of Violence Act" (bills like this have been around for a while). There is a great deal of concern about prosecuting women for what would otherwise be non-crimes. I came across this quote from House Rep Conyers who debated the 1999 version of this bill: w00t, I was so modest then
  5. This year I will: - Continue habitually lying about my age, vowing never to age past 25 - Learn a programming language so I can be a l33t ha><0rz - Wear miniskirts everyday during the spring and summer - Try to celebrate more holidays with friends and family - Donate US$1000 to PETA and the Humane Society every month - Snuggle with hubby everyday, enjoying our intimate times together, holding together our deep and passionate love for one another for the rest of eternity
  6. Paranoia, Plants dont have brains, neocortexes, sense organs, nervous systems, or processing facilities. So they dont have any cognitive capacities whatsoever. But why would they even evolve pain experiences in the first place? Pain experiences are a selective advantage for creatures because it helps them move away from the source of pain, but plants are anchored in the ground. Theres not much evolutionary incentive for them to evolve a capacity to feel pain in the first place. We have every good reason to doubt that plants have any mental experiences whatsoever, and zero reasons to think that they do. If they do, then certainly their experience is so miniscule that (for all intents and purposes) its negligible. What makes you think plants feel pain? Are the pain experiences on the same level as animal pain experiences? I'm pretty sure you kick rocks and tin cans without remorse, probably because they dont have feelings. Basically, if a being doesnt have a capacity to feel suffering or satisfaction, its indifferent to whatever you do to it, it doesnt recognize any moral difference between its continued existence or its death. Its very difficult to pin down just how you harm a being by killing it, if it doesnt care (or even know that) whether its alive, and nothing we can possibly do to it will affect its welfare. But we can affect the welfare of feeling beings, thats an important important moral difference. Thats one I havent seen before Dont worry, it'll be alright, humanity hasnt totally destroyed the earth, and there will be plenty of air for everyone to breathe. Also, remember, many vegans are strong environmentalists. How nice would it be if everyone became a vegan and an environmentalist, driving electric cars, minimizing use of pesticides and herbicides, and keeping the natural environment clean. I think it would be nice being able to breathe fresh air in L.A. again
  7. Teri, Life has no intrinsic value, only extrinsic value. We respect life only because its a prerequisite for respecting all the other morally relevant characteristics a being has, such as its continued happiness and pursuit of longterm goals. When you destroy a life, you harm all of its morally relevant characteristics which depended on its continued existence, and you harm those characteristics in the most absolute way, by reducing them down to nothingness. A beings moral characteristics depend on its mental and feeling characteristics. Plants have no mental or feeling characterisics whatsoever, they have no wants of any kind, so they have no moral characteristics to take into consideration. Animals, on the other hand, are feeling beings with an experiential welfare, they have all the same moral characteristics as their mentally similar human counterparts, making animals and mentally similar humans are moral equals. Thats the difference between taking animal and plant life. No you dont. Eating animals is absolutely gratuitous, not necessary for anyones survival. If you stopped eating animals, you wouldnt starve to death, you'd just live out the rest of your natural life as a vegan. Can you say "naturalistic fallacy"? Evolution is not a moral theory. Edit to add: *sigh* I didnt realize this was a long dead thread resurrected, please ignore this post...
  8. As if I could make title of this thread more daunting enough, the length of this post should scare off 90% of you I've buried two questions in this post, which I've highlighted bold to make easier to see. I dont know why I've been thinking about it recently, but I was wondering about (Newtonian) gravity and the equations to calculate the movement of objects. I have a naive idea of how to do it: - For every object in space, sum up all of the gravitational vector forces acting on it, "press" the force against your object to plot its new coordinates. Basically, that does work, but its not very efficient. If you were trying to create a computer model of gravitation using that approach, it would bring your computer to its knees, because the amount of processing overhead increases at a rate of O( (x^x) * n) for each successive movement, where x is the number of planets you're trying to model and n number of actual moves you want to make. (At just 10 objects, you're computer has to go through 10 000 000 000 loop iterations for each step). I've thought of a better way to model gravitation: - Calculate the gravitational vector field as a series of time-based parametric equations, plot the coordinates with respect to time. That works a lot more efficiently, you only have to calculate the vector field once, and then loop through all of your planets and plot their new coordinates. So the processing overhead is closer to O(xn), because you need to loop through your planets twice (once to get the values necessary to make your vector field, and once more to move your planets). I understand the process of calculating a gravitational vector field, its just a very simple gradient of your force vector, where the force of gravity is given as: F = Force of Gravity = G * mass1 * mass2 --------------------- (mass1.x+mass2.x)^ + (mass1.y+mass2.y)^2 + (mass1.z+mass2.z)^2 Assuming mass1 is located at the origin, Gradient of F = Vector r = x2[i]i[/i] + y2[i]j[/i] + z2[i]k[/i] Unit vector u = r / ||r|| G * mass1 * mass2 ----------------- * u ||r||^2 Thats works nice, but I guess physics isnt my strong area, because that equation only works for 2 objects. What if I wanted to model 12 objects? I cant, because theres no such thing as a distance between 3 or more non-coplanar points. At this point, my calculus knowledge comes to a hault, because the simple vector field above is a little too simple, it doesnt work for more than 2 planets. How exactly do we generalize the gravitational vector field for more than 2 planets at any specific time t? Ok, this is just a followup to the previous question, but I just noticed that its still not a very good model. It tells you the instantaneous vector field at any given time t, but the vector field itself is constantly shifting (because the masses are moving). To make the model above work in a visual demonstration, you need to create a loop that recalculates the vector field after each time you move your planets around, and that could be very resource intensive. So, in order to have a better model, we need to account for all of the masses in the vector field moving, so the vector field itself is actually in fluid motion. If we do this, then we only need to calculate our vector field once, then we can run our model indefinitely with O(x+n) (linear) processing overhead. To model a fluid vector field, my guess is that we actually need a gradient of a gradient, which is actually very easy to do mathematically, but I'm clueless as to how you'd even set up this kind of equation. How do we generalize a gravitational vector field at all points in time? All nerdy answers appreciated in advance (Nerdy answers with LaTeX appreciated 2x as much! )
  9. Snail, I dont think its relevant that I'm completely ignoring it, because its not really a big deal that something can belong to more than one group at once, especially since species group and stage of development group arent mutually exclusively. Its a human being (species group) who just happens to be a blastocyst at development (development group), theres no conflict. Well, now you're talking about a more abstract definition of "human", one thats distinct from the concrete biological definition, and you also introduce some fuzziness to the way human is defined. For instance, if you define a human as "having human qualities", then the definition of human is a little circular because "human" needs to be defined before you can state that something is a "human quality"... but thats just a word game and probably not really that important for discussion in the thread. What qualities did you have in mind that are "human qualities"?
  10. Well, taking the blastocyst as a whole, its rightfully called alive because it metabolizes food for growth, energy, and continued homoestasis, and it fits all conventional definitions of life: In addition to being alive, its rightfully called an organism: As opposed to Glider, I think the tissues of a blastocyst arent just an undifferenciated mass, they actually work together as a unified whole to give rise to other components and processes, and its classification as an organism isnt wholly different from the classification of single-celled protozoa as organisms. And with being a living organism, they contain all of the necessary genetic information to fit neatly into the human family, genus, and species. By all biological and academic definitions, blastocysts are human in the most concrete sense. I dont think there is a difference between calling something a human or calling something a human being, the words are (for all intents and purposes) nearly sematically equivalent. Any quibbling over whether something can be a human, but not a human being is a trivial dispute. Now, as far as a moral discussion goes, something being a human or not is irrelevant. What matters is personhood (and it should be understood that some humans can be non-persons, and some non-humans can be persons)... but I dont know if defining personhood is really the intent bascule had when he started this thread.
  11. the tree, Some practical advise and wisdom I learned over the years: - Cigarettes = bad Alcohol = ok, in moderation Marijuana = good, but dont let anyone find out - If you've got the legs for it, wear a cute skirt. They are not only very feminine, adorable, and comfortable to wear, but you can quietly revel in the fact that you're better than everyone else. - Skirts should between 2 and 4 inches above the knee. Any lower and they arent feminine, any higher and they arent modest. - High heels with short skirts, low heels with long skirts. Corollary: with rare exceptions, like funerals and weddings, there arent any reasons to wear long skirts and dresses, so you should never have less than 5:1 ratio of high heels to low heels. You should also try to wear skirts and heels everyday, because they are incredibly cute and feminine - Dont wear light-weight, loosefitting skirts in the wind, wear jean skirts instead. Or you can wear black panty hose, but its a bit gauche to wear anything other than a short black form-fitting skirt with panty hose. But dont wear "spanky pants" (a tiny pair of shorts that goes under skirts to provide coverage similar to what you might see on a cheerleading uniform), those are tacky. I've actually been known to wear two pairs of skirts, a light-weight skirt on top and a shorter denim mini or microskirt underneath just in case the light-weight skirt wants to blow away. The denim provides enough friction and surface area to hold the light skirt in place, but its also a safety net in case the skirt blows up. Its better to have people look at you funny for wearing two skirts than to look at you funny for flashing them. - Dont wear socks with heals, especially open-toed heals. - DO NOT get drunk / high and cook at the same time. - Almost ALL of the people in the highest income quintile invest their money in the stock market or currency exchange. You cannot be up their with them without having your money invested in something. If nothing else, start small and get a money market account or a CD, then work your way up to more profitable investments. - Learn how the economy works before criticizing it. - Vote in every state and national election; and if you dont vote, then dont gripe about the government. - Dont vote Republican. - A problem for men is that their arousal is very visible, but its also very embarrassing, so they condition themselves from very early on to suppress their arousal in public. But women dont have that problem, their arousal isnt visible and they dont have to suppress themselves, so we can let go and stay aroused whenever and wherever we want for long periods of time. Now you know why women smile so much! - Couples should find mutual hobbies, something they both like doing together. Dancing is a good hobby, even if you're not very good at it, its very healthy for you on a physical and relationship level. Recently, after being seperated for almost 2 years, my husband moved back into my house with me, and since then we've been extra cuddly and snuggly together, but we dont exactly have a lot of mutual hobbies. So I'm teaching him how to do yoga, something we can both do together every morning (it'll also make us even more cuddly and snuggly in ways we've never tried before ). - Women: DO NOT be a submissive baby-making factory. Be an equal to your husband (or wife if thats the case ), and dont let yourself be treated as an "inferior vessel". There are still a lot of misogynists out there and still a lot of people like religious conservatives who want to roll back everything that feminism has accomplished. - Men: Gender roles mean nothing, they are a social fiction (after all, wearing high heels today is a feminine characteristic, but 100s of years ago only upperclass men ever wore them). There is no reason why men and women ought to conform to their gender role, and theres no threat to your masculinity for taking the place of a housewife. Being a stay-at-home dad, cleaning up after your kids, vacuuming and washing dishes while your wife goes to work is no threat to your masculinity. In fact, its a very serious health risk for men to say "I dont want to do dishes, its a womans job", saying that thing can take years off your life. Why? Because I'll hunt you down and KILL you - Egocentricism is the devil. Always, as much as you can, try to understand your actions from the point of others and how they are affected. - Be involved actively with your kids, not just passively. Kids can and will grow up just fine being raised by TV, but TV doesnt build character like parents. - Teach your kids how to cook before booting them out of the house. - Always support animal rights. Dont buy or use animal products. Evo, I so want to pick up smoking, just so I can say, "winners never quit, winners never quit" before I eventually get cancer and die
  12. Dak, Come on, be serious. I hear the line that "PETA does too many crazy things to be trusted" too often, and so far 100% of the time I've heard it from people who cant even answer the question "what crazy/stupid/dishonest things have they done" with even a single example. It wouldnt surprise me if you had to google and search for a website listing off a few dozen mundane examples like "PETAs 'Holocaust on your plate' campaign was dumb!; feminists object to their Lettuce Ladies, take that PETA!" I wonder how much your dislike for PETA is influenced by what you actually know about them, rather than your intuitional preconceptions. IAMSCruelty.com is a very wellknown website and has been actively updated for years, and theres no doubt at all that the president and legal department of IAMS / Proctor & Gamble have seen it. Can you imagine just how quickly P&G would sue PETA for monumental misrepresentation and slander (and potential loss of profit) if they hadnt actually been filming an IAMS lab? Believe me, IAMS acknowledges the video and that animals were being treated very cruelly, according to Envirolink.org, after the video appeared, an IAMS representative went out to the Sinclair research facility for a surprise inspection and found "problems with the air temperature and ventilation in the cage rooms, a lack of resting boards for the dogs and inadequate socialization for the animals" among other things; the violations were apparently severe enough that IAMS severed its ties with the Sinclair research facility. So, the video shows cruelty at an IAMS lab, that much about the video is true. Unfortunately though, while IAMS severed ties with the Sinclair facility for its own its sake, its still not that easy to submit the videos to a judge and have the facilities shut down immediately. People have this idea that that any lab animal has the same legal protection as your everyday house pet... but if that were true, all animal experimentation would be illegal. ... but we both know that isnt even close to being true (a lot of extremely cruel animal experiments are performed everyday with no intervention from the government on animals behalf). However, PETA did initiate a lawsuit against IAMS for numerous breaches in its own animal testing policy, namely its claim that it wouldnt euthanise animals or use lethal animal tests... ...however, the IAMS research facility didnt stick to that. You are basically correct that "anethetised dogs are allways spredagled, and allways look odd to the point of being disturbing". Here is the context of the opening scene, where all the dogs are laying out on the floor: 60 dogs are incapacitated and have tubes inserted into their throats in order to force them to injest some kind of food or liquid (the undercover PETA investigator identifies the substance as vegetable oil), this could be a metabolic study or a toxicology study. The animals are anesthetized and large chunks of tissue cut out of their thighs which is visible in at least one dog in the video, then they are subjected to a muscle biopsy. The animals are put in cages with bars so that fecal matter can fall through (possibly for nutritional analysis), however the procedure was apparently very tramatic, because according to this insane AR website: So, you're right that the video shows dogs coming out of anesthesia who look odd, but because you actually havent heard the commentary that accompanied each scene when PETA submitted a formal complaint to the FTC, you get the wrong impression that PETA is trying to turn some mundane event into a trajedy. But images of dogs laying on the floor isnt the objectionable part, its the process of forcefeeding the dogs a toxic substance, cutting chunks of their thighs, and caging them in conditions where become sick and die of untreated illnesses. The short 8 minute video is, as I said in my opening post, excerpts from a much longer video. IAMS fully acknowledges the claims made by PETA, as evidenced by the emails passed back and forth between PETA and IAMS spokemen, and excerpts from the letters contain descriptions of other experiments which show that the IAMS abuse in the video isnt just a single isolated event: In addition to the examples above, you can see a press release from PETA where they expose experiments where beagles gums are artificially repeatedly cut and sutured back to induce gingivitus. I can understand if you're skeptical of PETAs claims, but seriously, I think your skepticism isnt based on anything.
  13. Gib65, I'm pretty sure whatever makes a religion good or bad is circumstantial, whether it affects beings in a harmful way or not. If there was a religion that allowed questioning authority, science to come before faith, and democratic feedoms, then I guess religion wouldnt really be "bad" at all. For instance, if someones bible says "homosexuality is an abomination to to God; the penalty for homosexuality is death", yet it allowed for questioning authority, you could actually ask "but God, how is the act of homosexuality morally different from heterosexuality?" without being labeled a heretic and burned at the stake; thats a good thing in general. To me, the thing that makes religion so bad is that it absolutely destroys morality. "Gods will" cannot form the basis for any moral rule, but people invoke the will of God to justify anything and everything no matter how horrible, repugnant, morally inexplicable, or morally inconsistent. As of right now, religious fundamentalists are campaigning all over the world to abolish human cloning, because it fails to respect the dignity of human life; they dont say a word about respecting the dignity of any of the 10s of billions of non-human lives destroyed for profit, because they dont have souls. And that kind of mindset is a problem, because its based on precisely nothing, the claim that humans have souls is spurious at best (and even more spurious as to how anyone can know that people have souls and that animals dont, or what test one can use to determine which being has a soul or not)... its not a form of morality, its ignorance and superstition dressed up as the will of God, and its absolutely offensive to any serious conception of morality.
  14. Oh noooooos! t3h crazy vegan has started a thread on how great it is to be craaaaaazy! I dont usually start theads like this, but I thought it was in the interest of all the pet owners on this forum: Iams breeds dogs and cats for testing their petfood, and their tests consists of forcefeeding dogs to the point of sickness and death, the animals are treated without any respect from the animal handlers, dogs are trapped in cages and neglected to the point that they display stereotypical behavior for hours on end. The cages in particular are small and have nothing to stimulate the animals, the cage bottoms are lined bars spaced too far apart for the animals to stand on them comfortably (its done like that to minimize the cost of clean up, when the dogs go to the bathroom, the waste falls right through -- usually on top of any dogs in the cages below), and many times the dogs legs will slip through the cage and make it impossible for the animals to free themselves. An undercover video of the IAMs animal testing facility was shot and released. A shorter version of the video consisting of a few dozen it consists of a few dozen short excerpts of the facility is available here: Watch Video: Iams Cruelty Please boycott IAMS petfood.
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