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Everything posted by SH3RL0CK

  1. What is the "complete message" of the Bible? How do I know that his thoughts on this are correct or if someone elses is? Theologians have disagreed on the finer points (such as is this) for centuries without resolution. Its much better to respect differing viewpoints in light of the fact that on these fine points we cannot really know which view is most correct. I understand he takes Gen 1 very literally, but I take it more allegorically (not saying there couldn't be a blend of both in the Gen. 1 account). I guess I feel (perhaps incorrectly...which is one reason I would love a followup by him) that he believes he doesn't consider the possibility that my view (or that of Theodosius Dobzhansky) is actually correct instead of his own.
  2. First of all thanks to everyone who set this up and for Mr. Comfort for answering the questions. I do have an issue with the following part: (emphasis mine) I consider myself a christian and I have no issue with the concept of evolution. I do take issue with the part where he states that to believe in the evolution means we must throw out the scriptures. It is my opinion that he is reading more into Genisis 1 than is really there both in regards to its intent and content and he is disregarding the possibility of any allegorical intent for this part of the bible (which is very clearly used elsewhere in the scriptures). Why is it inconceivable to him that God could use evolution to create the different animals that exist? God must have used some mechanism to do this, why not evolution? Does he also dispute gravity as the mechanism as to how God keeps the planets and stars in their proper places? I also think he is appealing to ridicule a bit. And why is this belief necessarily idolatry? I also believe by applying sufficient heat and oxygen to a fuel source I can create a beneficial chemical reaction (a fire) which I can then use to warm myself, cook food and do other useful things. That doesn't mean I worship the fire I just made. That said, I enjoyed his answers and greatly appreciate his time to respond. I would love it if he would reply to some of the further questions on this thread, but I understand he is probably quite busy and his time is limited.
  3. Well, unintentional is less likely, IMO than intentional. Consider the following scenario: As per my previous postings, smallpox killed 95% of the population on three continents, it arose spontaneously (i.e. not "manufacturered")and was for the most part, unintentionally spread. So what do you think happens if a "manufacturered" agent (perhaps genetically modified smallpox plus virus) were deliberately spread to infect virtually the entire world at the same time (excepting the nation/terrorist cell that developed the agent which also immediately goes into self-quarantine)? Couldn't it do the same on all six continents? Do you really think the CDC and WHO would be capable of developing and distributing a vaccine in time? Or set up an adequate quarantine for the areas which happened to not (yet) be infected? A vaccine isn't possible in this short timeframe. Keep in mind, by the time this agent is identified (i.e. people dropping dead) it is already too late to set up a quarantine because most people (including the staff at the CDC, WHO, etc.) would already be infected/dying. N. Korea is already in a sort of self-quarantine and has been for over 50 years. Any other nation could possibly point to the very first cases and claim "we saw this coming, and we are glad we took the prudent response". And if the president, the cabinet, and all but 5 senators are deathly ill/dying, would the USA have sufficient poise to even investigate the source of the infection or mount a proper response? I still think you overestimate the "strong defenses against disease" that humanity has. The part you are missing is that the immunity Europeans had to smallpox evolved/was naturally selected over many generations of exposure to the agent. This was probably aided by exposure to cowpox (a similar virus which was used to develop the vaccine) which was not deadly but imparted a resistance to the disease. Given todays travel patterns and/or a deliberate intentional delivery system, humanity would not have many generations to respond. We might not have even a month. I admire your optimism, but where am I mistaken in my logic here?
  4. Well, we know nuclear weapons work, and that they do have the capability to essentially destroy humanity (thanks Cap'n Refsmmat!). I'll grant these are more developed and "proven" as a weapon. And that this potential DOES currently exist in the form of a nuclear winter. We also know infectious disease can essentially destroy humanity (as smallpox, the black palgue, etc. showed is possible). However, you are very correct that weaponizing such is hypothetical and less "proven" as a weapon. As such, I'll conceed it is entirely valid to consider nukes as more of a threat than bio-weapons. My point is to not understimate the potential dangers of biological and chemical weaponry.
  5. Oh, I'm not particularly criticising Obama's decision, you have pointed out the upside. Others have already pointed out the downside. I am actually neutral on this change as I don't think it will have either the desired positive affect or the feared negative ramifications. However, I think it is important to understand that massive destruction on the level of, or even exceeding atomic weapons, can be obtained without the use of nuclear weapons. And that our only response in kind (if that would be an appropriate response) would be nukes as say we do not have a chemical or biological arsenal. I don't think everyone here understand this (or believes this, hey I could be wrong here but I think I am correct) which colors their judgement regarding this action. As such, the upside of this action is less than it is being claimed while the downside is greater.
  6. Can you provide a link to verify this? I'm somewhat skeptical as this sounds like a political talking point or a catch phrase. And, what is meant by "destroy"? Does that mean return of society back to the 1800's due to no more electricity? Or does it mean a return to the stone age due to no more metals? Or does it mean the death of 95% of the population (which might be the same thing as a return to the stone age)?
  7. You are correct there is no comparison, with modern travel patterns (indeed, with a deliberate widespread delivery) the infectious disease would spread so rapidly, the CDC could not possibly develop a vaccine or quarantine in time. I doubt they would even have time to identify the infectious agent before the individuals who worked there perished. At least the native populations in the far corners of the continents of the 18th and 19th centuries had a couple hundred years to prepare (though they were likely unaware of the threat until too late). Apples to Oranges. How many thermonuclear ICBMs would be required to kill 95% of the population, evenly dispersed BTW, of three continents? Is there even enough uranium on the earth to do this?
  8. I'm not trying to minimize the potential of nukes. But to demonstrate the potential of biological weapons. With the same delivery system utilized as nuclear missiles (see the link in my earlier post) it is possible to contaminate the entire world just as easily (actually easier, see DH's previous post) in the same amount of time. would you have time to do so? We've been trying to find a cure for AIDS for decades now without any real sucess. People have survived a surprisingly close distance to the epicenters of nuclear blasts (Hiroshima, Nagasaki), and the corresponding fallout. Both cities are today still in existence, and their electrical grids work quite well (or so I've been told). Their water is not contaminated today either. I get your point, but don't overstate your case, it would take a very large number of nuclear weapons to essentially destroy everyone (up to 95% of the population) across a large geographical area. Biological weapons are potentially more destructive than nuclear weapons as they HAVE already delivered an equivalent (though different) amount of damage and could (in principle) be utilized in an equivalent timeframe. I've looked at your points and am not pursuaded. I've presented my case, but you apparently are not pursuaded. So I'd guess we are going to have to agree to disagree on this matter.
  9. My earlier reference indicated that the Native population of North America was decimated by smallpox and similar diseases. I've seen estimates exceeding a 90% reduction in population due to these diseases. http://www.pbs.org/gunsgermssteel/variables/smallpox.html This corresponds to the eyewitness accounts of various early European explorers to the continent. This was, at least primarily, unintentional on the part of the Europeans. Do you doubt that an intentional effort, perhaps augmented by genetic manipulation, cannot do something similar? Do you thinkthat with the global travel that happens today that an infection can be regionally contained, especially as there could be animal carriers? We haven't contained bird flu or SARS from a global spread. If the potential destruction of humanity is equivalent (i.e. everyone) why should they not be considered equivalent? but the potenial from nuclear is not greater, it is less than that of biological weapons... and cannot biological agents linger in the environment for years? Certainly these can exist within the populations of host animals for essentially forever. I think you'd be hard pressed to find enough plutonium to kill 95% of the inhabitants of an entire continent whereas the Europeans were able to do so without even trying (at least not very hard) in the 18th century. EDIT: Actually the human death toll from smallpox was over 90% of two continents both N. America and S. America as well as an unknown percentage of the inhabitants of a third continent (Australia, New Zealand)... One biological agent already HAS decimated half (3 of 6 populated continents) of the globe.
  10. I think you overestimate the potential of nuclear weapons and underestimate that of biological. IIRC, it has been determined the theoreticalpotential of biological weapons greatly exceeds that of nuclear weapons. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Biological_warfare This area of contamination: is certainly at least comparable to a nuclear blast. Certainly it is possible to develop as many of these missiles as it is for nuclear warheads. I can imagine worse, for example: Again, a nuclear response might be inadequate to a similar attempt, perhaps from a genetically modified smallpox.
  11. yes, these are different types of weapons. However, in terms of destruction, chemical and biological agents have the potential to inflict as much, if not more, harm as nuclear weapons. As such, a nuclear response might be considered insufficient... I am hopeful that these types of weapons would not be ever developed (though this policy encourages their development, IMO); or if developed would be practically useless. It is encouraging that during WWI, it was found that chemical weapons were insufficient to create a meaningful tactical advantage. Though this doesn't really apply to the assymetrical warfare that is common today. If we are lucky, perhaps biological and chemical weaponry will always be simply too unpredictable and impractical to use by anyone capable of developing them.
  12. that, or the RPG isn't shown on camera. which indicates there was, at the least, a perceived threat (to state the obvious).
  13. Of course, we do not know the full circumstances: what happened off camera, before the filming started, what was edited out, etc... Because I don't think any mainstream media (esp. Fox) does a very good job, I'd really like it if other mainstream media outlets picked it up. This would, in my opinion, lend credence to these claims. That it hasn't received much other attention makes me think there really is nothing to see. The whole exchange probably looks a lot different when presented in context.
  14. Yes. Any medical procedure beyond what is reasonable to ensure the health of a prisoner is considered torture. Hmmm...I'm getting images of the pictures from Abu Gharib here.
  15. How can any unnecessary, unwanted (by the prisoner) surgery on a prisoner not be considered torture regardless of the other details you mentioned?
  16. My theory is that what is happening is that the addition of water is affecting the stovetop flame. It cools the flame down, resulting in the color going from blue to orange. And it can cool it down such that parts of the burning area is extenguished, only to be reignited once the methane has migrated (hence the 8 inch flame). No need to invoke strange chemical reactions for an explaination.
  17. Picard is the Best Captain, hands down. But I voted for Captain Kirk, because he cheats and therefore will come out on top, even in situations where he shouldn't.
  18. I don't understand why you are asking these questions here. A forum works great for complex issues without a defined answer. But for simple questions such as these a forum is not the best source of information. Why not simply look up these questions elsewhere (Google, Wikipedia, etc.) for an immediate, and more likely correct, answer rather than asking it here and then waiting for the (hopefully) correct answer?
  19. I explicitly said it would be a difficult task, it would not be simple at all. But the ocean floor is still easier than the moon for the reasons already discussed. But we have logged considerably more research time on the ocean floor than we have on the moon. It just seems different because the lunar probes (and the Apollo program) gets much more publicity. I would also submit that we possibly know more about the ocean floor than we know about the moon...it just seems the other way around because there is additionally much more unknown about the deep ocean than the moon. If it sinks to the bottom, where else will it go? But even still, its a relatively easy task to anchor the structure. How do we anchor the offshore oil rigs, for example? yes. But likewise you aren't limited by how much you can deliver there. This is an engineering problem with obvious solutions, not a fundamental physics problem. For example, I'm sure we could make the structure out of meters thick stainless steel for less than the cost it would take to send a minimal structure to the moon. At a worst case, any scrubber used in space (indeed any of the systems except for solar power*) could also be used in the underwater facility. But any system to extract oxygen from the ocean water is useless on the moon. The ocean bottom has much more resources that could be used, but its not imperative that they must be used. *Edit: Solar power could actually be used with floating solar panels with cables to the bottom...
  20. Both would be difficult tasks. However, the ocean floor would be far easier as to put anything there (even gigantic items) only requires releasing them from a ship. Putting anything on the moon (even very small items) requires an enormous amount of energy. This differential means it is far more affordable to build and maintain living quarters in many ways. You could, for example, simply pipe fresh air down to the ocean floor if necessary. But on the moon you must recycle what little air you bring with you.
  21. What are the odds of this happening? Given the past history of our leaders being unable to curtail spending and the recent history lessons of European nations (Greece for example) I'm not encouraged.
  22. I have no doubt that supernovas create some very high atomic number elements. The higher elements created either in a supernova or in the lab still have very short half lives. As such, we can detect these atoms in the lab because they were just made. However the supernova(s) which created the elements used in the earth was many billions of years ago. Therefore, all the elements with an atomic number higher than uranium (or plutonium)have decayed away during this time. Or at least enough of them have so that they cannot be detected in the earths crust. To the original poster: Please define what exactly you mean by armaggedon. That will help us to state our opinion on whether or not we believe it is real.
  23. I look forward to the day my house will generate all the electricity I need. But it won't be from a Kender engine, I am sure. We are still waiting for Kender to prove this device actually does work. Even if it could work in theory (which has been shown by others here that it cannot), it might still not work in practice. To do this they should send prototypes to some credible skeptics for independent verification of their claims (of course, I am sure they must simply wait until the patent application is completed, or perhaps some other minor details first). I won't be holding my breath. if a scam were easy to understand, wouldn't it then be much more difficult to convince people to part with their hard-earned money? IMO, a good scam always sounds credible enough for people to "invest" in it, but has just enough complexity so that the catch isn't readily observable to these people. Coincidentally, this also seems to me to be the situation regarding the claims of the Kender engine...but then I am probably just overly cynical. Glad to know you have a vested interest in this; you have pre-ordered units and you are a shareholder. Hope you read all the fine print regarding the pre-order very carefully. And just remember, the stock values aren't realized until, and unless, you sell the stocks. But of course, I'm sure you know all this also. I wish you great sucess in your investments.
  24. So, then, we are in agreement that PV=nRT is valid? Then you must also agree that in a closed system, there is no energy gain. Where, then, does the free energy you keep refering to come from? It seems to me this idea does not work and there is no energy gained by any contraption built to work in this manner. Your arguments in favor of the idea are not pursuasive to me. What would political leanings have to do with your idea? Nothing at all.
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