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About Butters

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  1. Sure, I´m happy to argue against the use of the death penalty as well if you like! I´ve served on juries before, and they are an absolutely ridiculous way to decide somebody´s fate in my opinion. In every case I´ve been on one there have been racists who vote guilty regardless of evidence, people too stupid to graps some of the concepts, people determined to solve the crime like they saw on CSI, etc etc. The death penalty should never be an option for a judge to hand out based on the judgement of members of the public. It is irreversible in the case of a mistake or bigotry, and I am certain th
  2. Because if you have a human signing off that in any particular and unique circumstance it is justified, for example in the interests of national security or some other blanket term, then it is open to interpretation and a gradual stretching of the definition. People think of systems as having a defined set of rules and definitions, but in reality this is not the case. These rules are enforced and interpreted by humans with vested interests and biases. The reason it is different is that the consequences are worse if we allow torture. In law, supposedly somebody is guilty until proven innoce
  3. My problem with torture is the previously stated unreliable nature of the information, but also another larger issue. People have said that in certain situations it could be justified, like a 9/11 type event, etc. THe problem with that is, when you give the torturers teh go ahead to use torture when they think it is justifiable, how is that policed? Considering the sensitive nature of a lot of the information surrounding the likely situations where torture would be justified, isn´t allowing it in any circumstances just giving a green light for all torture?
  4. What exactly do you mean by existing in a different time space?
  5. Yeah I thought of this one. It seems to be maybe the only thing that could be measured independently over vast distances, but as you say, it is not exactly precise. I was hoping for something a little bit more accurate, but I guess there is nothing. What about something on a galactic level, say the rotation of a galaxy compared to surround galaxies in its cluster. One full revolution is a galactic year. I believe this already exists as an idea, but how would you go about dividing it up. It{s something like 225 million years a rotation, so you would need to have 182.5634232 degrees and so on. C
  6. I´m trying to work out a way to have a system of measuring the date that is not limited by the rotations of planets etc. Something that is not necessarily local and could be used to give a universal ´date´across, well everything. The problem I keep coming up against is the huge distances involved which seem to make it fairly meaningless to say it is X at this point everywhere. Because I suppose, any measurements somebody was making would be based on old light reaching them... Basically, does anyone know of this being done already. Even if not universal, at least galactic? As in somethi
  7. Interesting. I have been trying to come up with ways to trick it, but so far I cannot. It does of course mean that information can appear to travel faster than light, for example. If I was to enter the wormhole, see a star go supernova, and then return and tell astronomers to watch out in five years then they know something they should not. But of course, it's an illusion as I have not actually travelled faster than light, I have simply taken a shortcut through space at less than the speed of light. Still, even then, causality is preserved.
  8. I have a speculative idea about wormholes. Let's say that a person (or anything for that matter) was able to pass through one, traveling through space, but also through time. If the wormhole mouths were close together, this would obviously cause some problems in terms of causality. If they were on either side of a regular sized room, then it would be possible for the person to emerge in the very recent past and stop themselves from entering the wormhole in the first place, creating a paradox. I believe this is one reason that some theorists believe time travel is not possible. But if the o
  9. It does seem like a lot of people emphasise human decisions about what to do and when as causing the universe to ¨split¨. Surely it´s a lot more fundamental than that, at a quantum level. Besides, it seems likely that your genetic makeup and past experiences will always lead you to do the same thing. You don´t have a ¨choice¨to be a completely different type of person. You are what you are. The only variations in your behaviour would be based on differing circumstances based on quantum effects, not you suddenly deciding to strip naked and dance the Charleston on the desk at work simply because
  10. Sorry to disappoint but it is not a cry for help. Well sort of. It's another tedious science fiction novel research question. The strong AI in the book are a collective, but they have shared experience independent from separate personality. Just wanting to get some of the philosophical problems to do with a total physical separation of personality and experience. I'm reasonably happy.
  11. Maybe so, but it seems that anything so sufficiently advanced would have less need for bodies than we would. They could exist by the trillions in very small spaces. In my opinion they would simply not be competing with us for the space on this planet. They would almost certainly want to explore the universe, and with probably indefinite life spans they could do this. There´s no particular reason they should be malicious, but they might be indifferent. That indifference might cause some problems as they just take what they want, but I doubt they would simply kill everybody for no particular rea
  12. I actually engaged with some Jehovah's Witnesses who turned up on my door, on the condition that they could not use anything from the bible as evidence. They did okay for about half an hour before the quotes started. I apologised, and told them it was time to go.
  13. None of the couples I know quite closely have any problem with the fact that they both find other people attractive and will look (not overtly or threateningly). It would seem fairly naive to think that your partner has no interest in anybody else sexually. We have even all sat around together and done the old 'would you or wouldn't you' game with passers by. It seems the males have much lower standards, but there is certainly no jealousy involved in admitting the attraction!
  14. Surely from a narrative point of view it is meaningless to debate whether or not the totem will fall. When a writer makes something deliberately ambiguous like this he is making a specific point. It doesn't matter if he's still dreaming. The point, as mentioned above, is that he no longer cares if it's real or not. There is no correct answer to the question. If Nolan were to state one way or the other, it would just be an arbirtary decision.
  15. Yeah. I was sure it was so I spent, oh let's say about two minutes doing google searches to find that out. http://www.cropcircleconnector.com/CPRI/wabe99.html
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