PDA

View Full Version : Scientists produce Chimeras


Koshko
27-01-2005, 03:18:37
Man the possibilities are endless if you are really rich and have a healthy God complex.

Animal-Human Hybrids Spark Controversy

Maryann Mott
National Geographic News

January 25, 2005
Scientists have begun blurring the line between human and animal by producing chimeras—a hybrid creature that's part human, part animal.

Chinese scientists at the Shanghai Second Medical University in 2003 successfully fused human cells with rabbit eggs. The embryos were reportedly the first human-animal chimeras successfully created. They were allowed to develop for several days in a laboratory dish before the scientists destroyed the embryos to harvest their stem cells.


In Minnesota last year researchers at the Mayo Clinic created pigs with human blood flowing through their bodies.

And at Stanford University in California an experiment might be done later this year to create mice with human brains.

Scientists feel that, the more humanlike the animal, the better research model it makes for testing drugs or possibly growing "spare parts," such as livers, to transplant into humans.

Watching how human cells mature and interact in a living creature may also lead to the discoveries of new medical treatments.

But creating human-animal chimeras—named after a monster in Greek mythology that had a lion's head, goat's body, and serpent's tail—has raised troubling questions: What new subhuman combination should be produced and for what purpose? At what point would it be considered human? And what rights, if any, should it have?

There are currently no U.S. federal laws that address these issues.

Ethical Guidelines

The National Academy of Sciences, which advises the U.S. government, has been studying the issue. In March it plans to present voluntary ethical guidelines for researchers.

A chimera is a mixture of two or more species in one body. Not all are considered troubling, though.

For example, faulty human heart valves are routinely replaced with ones taken from cows and pigs. The surgery—which makes the recipient a human-animal chimera—is widely accepted. And for years scientists have added human genes to bacteria and farm animals.

What's caused the uproar is the mixing of human stem cells with embryonic animals to create new species.

Biotechnology activist Jeremy Rifkin is opposed to crossing species boundaries, because he believes animals have the right to exist without being tampered with or crossed with another species.

He concedes that these studies would lead to some medical breakthroughs. Still, they should not be done.

"There are other ways to advance medicine and human health besides going out into the strange, brave new world of chimeric animals," Rifkin said, adding that sophisticated computer models can substitute for experimentation on live animals.

"One doesn't have to be religious or into animal rights to think this doesn't make sense," he continued. "It's the scientists who want to do this. They've now gone over the edge into the pathological domain."

David Magnus, director of the Stanford Center for Biomedical Ethics at Stanford University, believes the real worry is whether or not chimeras will be put to uses that are problematic, risky, or dangerous.

Human Born to Mice Parents?

For example, an experiment that would raise concerns, he said, is genetically engineering mice to produce human sperm and eggs, then doing in vitro fertilization to produce a child whose parents are a pair of mice.

"Most people would find that problematic," Magnus said, "but those uses are bizarre and not, to the best of my knowledge, anything that anybody is remotely contemplating. Most uses of chimeras are actually much more relevant to practical concerns."

Last year Canada passed the Assisted Human Reproduction Act, which bans chimeras. Specifically, it prohibits transferring a nonhuman cell into a human embryo and putting human cells into a nonhuman embryo.

Cynthia Cohen is a member of Canada's Stem Cell Oversight Committee, which oversees research protocols to ensure they are in accordance with the new guidelines.

She believes a ban should also be put into place in the U.S.

Creating chimeras, she said, by mixing human and animal gametes (sperms and eggs) or transferring reproductive cells, diminishes human dignity.

"It would deny that there is something distinctive and valuable about human beings that ought to be honored and protected," said Cohen, who is also the senior research fellow at Georgetown University's Kennedy Institute of Ethics in Washington, D.C.

But, she noted, the wording on such a ban needs to be developed carefully. It shouldn't outlaw ethical and legitimate experiments—such as transferring a limited number of adult human stem cells into animal embryos in order to learn how they proliferate and grow during the prenatal period.

Irv Weissman, director of Stanford University's Institute of Cancer/Stem Cell Biology and Medicine in California, is against a ban in the United States.

"Anybody who puts their own moral guidance in the way of this biomedical science, where they want to impose their will—not just be part of an argument—if that leads to a ban or moratorium. … they are stopping research that would save human lives," he said.

Mice With Human Brains

Weissman has already created mice with brains that are about one percent human.

Later this year he may conduct another experiment where the mice have 100 percent human brains. This would be done, he said, by injecting human neurons into the brains of embryonic mice.

Before being born, the mice would be killed and dissected to see if the architecture of a human brain had formed. If it did, he'd look for traces of human cognitive behavior.

Weissman said he's not a mad scientist trying to create a human in an animal body. He hopes the experiment leads to a better understanding of how the brain works, which would be useful in treating diseases like Alzheimer's or Parkinson's disease.

The test has not yet begun. Weissman is waiting to read the National Academy's report, due out in March.

William Cheshire, associate professor of neurology at the Mayo Clinic's Jacksonville, Florida, branch, feels that combining human and animal neurons is problematic.

"This is unexplored biologic territory," he said. "Whatever moral threshold of human neural development we might choose to set as the limit for such an experiment, there would be a considerable risk of exceeding that limit before it could be recognized."

Cheshire supports research that combines human and animal cells to study cellular function. As an undergraduate he participated in research that fused human and mouse cells.

But where he draws the ethical line is on research that would destroy a human embryo to obtain cells, or research that would create an organism that is partly human and partly animal.

"We must be cautious not to violate the integrity of humanity or of animal life over which we have a stewardship responsibility," said Cheshire, a member of Christian Medical and Dental Associations. "Research projects that create human-animal chimeras risk disturbing fragile ecosystems, endanger health, and affront species integrity."

Don't Miss a Discovery

notyoueither
27-01-2005, 06:27:02
What if a hybrid enabled a new (to humans) disease to jump the species barrier?

I don't think these guys are making decisions for just themselves and the odd lab rat.

Gary
27-01-2005, 08:35:09
Another gung ho group ? Well at least tthey didn't let them mature, although I'm unsure what you do with chimera stem cells. Not just for the odd lab rat eh ? Echos of the GM argument.

Hmmm too long to read in full now, but ...

For example, faulty human heart valves are routinely replaced with ones taken from cows and pigs.

That's something I wasn't aware of. Widely accepted ? More like widely unaware. It too could cause diseases to jump species surely ?

notyoueither
27-01-2005, 08:58:20
Hard to tell, but are you for or against Mr. Frankenstein being free to create whatever suits his fancy?

Funkodrom
27-01-2005, 09:12:43
Originally posted by Gary

[FONT=times new roman][SIZE=3]That's something I wasn't aware of. Widely accepted ? More like widely unaware. It too could cause diseases to jump species surely ?
Yeah, widely accepted and widely used.

They were looking into using pigs with modified DNA so that people could grow replacement organs in them - either as spares or as transplants. Great idea I think but do you eat the pig afterwards?

notyoueither
27-01-2005, 09:22:09
Prolly not if you live in Damascus.

notyoueither
27-01-2005, 09:33:50
Who would have predicted that eating the brains of a human, or a cow, could result in a maybe not so speedy, but very unpleasant death for the connoisseur?

But, we're supposed to just relax and trust that all the human-rabbit hybrids are scraped off the petrie dish, and nothing ever goes wrong. Is that it?

We're screwing with bad mojo, and we need strict controls on who does the screwing and what they screw with. That is my opinion.

Funkodrom
27-01-2005, 09:36:44
I agree that we should be very careful.

That doesn't necessarily mean we shouldn't do it. As well as the dangers there are potentially some amazing rewards.

notyoueither
27-01-2005, 09:40:55
I'm not saying don't do any of it, but when some freekenstein proposes growing human brain cells in animals, my sci-fi scense goes off the richter scale.

It needs to be controlled, and not just any Johnny come Frankenstein should be enabled to do it.

It might be British regulations, or American, or Brazilian but the entire world may pay the price for a fuck up.

Funkodrom
27-01-2005, 09:45:30
Yes, I think there are several people trying to set world standards for this kind of research... as yet unsuccessful, but we do need to do that.

notyoueither
27-01-2005, 09:58:30
Well, here we are. 100 years ago chemistry was barely a science. Today we have 1000's of throw offs from GenSci programes cooking up chemicals in bath tubs to make drugs for profit.

A hundred years from now? The GenSci drop-out creates an organism. Only, with chemicals it's a choice if you take it. Organisms have a way of spreading themselves in a somewhat more determined way.

Oh hell, I should open a book on the end of the world. $5 says modern civilization doesn't make it 200 years. The wickets are open, but you have to pay in advance.

protein
27-01-2005, 11:26:28
an experiment might be done later this year to create mice with human brains.
What the fuck? Is it me or is that a twilight zone storyline?

Sir Penguin
27-01-2005, 11:28:19
In the end... it's just you! *doodeedoodeedoodeedoodeedoo...*

SP

King_Ghidra
27-01-2005, 11:28:35
based on my experiences, there are already many humans in the world who have been bred with mice brains

chagarra
27-01-2005, 11:39:02
"For example, faulty human heart valves are routinely replaced with ones taken from cows and pigs. "

Mine has been working quite well for the last 4 to 5 years..

MoSe
27-01-2005, 11:40:26
cow or pig?

MoSe
27-01-2005, 11:56:37
Before being born, the mice would be killed and dissected to see if the architecture of a human brain had formed. If it did, he'd look for traces of human cognitive behavior.

Look for behavior..... in the dissected mice????

anyway, that's nothing new
Weissman said he's not a mad scientist trying to create a human in an animal body.
yeah, "Weissman", or....
http://www.respectstartstomorrow.com/oceanwiki/MoreauIsland
http://www.imagesjournal.com/issue01/reviews/moreau.htm
http://actionvault.ign.com/features/media/vivisectorisle.shtml

Cheshire Cat
27-01-2005, 11:58:36
William Cheshire, [...] branch, feels that combining human and animal neurons is problematic.

he must be mad! :D

Provost Harrison
27-01-2005, 12:06:01
Originally posted by protein
What the fuck? Is it me or is that a twilight zone storyline?

According to Douglas Adams, that is a serious step down for them.

And nye, stop being sensationalist and put some proper science in there...

MDA
27-01-2005, 12:49:42
Re: Pig organ transplants - one of the concerns is transfer of pig viruses to humans - my favorite are the Pig/porcine endogenous retroviruses, or PERVs, which are harmless in pigs but could have unforseen consequences in humans.

We've had mice with human immune systems for years. They just aren't created at the embryo stage.

Gary
27-01-2005, 13:09:21
Originally posted by notyoueither
Hard to tell, but are you for or against Mr. Frankenstein being free to create whatever suits his fancy? I'm for keeping this sort of stuff in the lab, and letting the public know exactly what is going on so it can be debated. And I can not believe that I am the only one who is unaware that animal organs are routinely transplanted into humans. Sure I've read pop sci stories about experiments, but I recall nothing further. I suspect many may be in the same situation.

MDA
27-01-2005, 13:21:06
Originally posted by chagarra
"For example, faulty human heart valves are routinely replaced with ones taken from cows and pigs. "

Mine has been working quite well for the last 4 to 5 years..

my geometry teacher in high school had a mechanical one - you could hear it *click* sometimes.

zmama
27-01-2005, 13:47:10
Originally posted by Gary
I'm for keeping this sort of stuff in the lab, and letting the public know exactly what is going on so it can be debated. And I can not believe that I am the only one who is unaware that animal organs are routinely transplanted into humans. Sure I've read pop sci stories about experiments, but I recall nothing further. I suspect many may be in the same situation.

They've been around at least 20 years. I knew about them. And its not a organ it's tissue.
I've been looking for exact dates but so far all I've found is that people have lived over 20 years without failure of said valve.

Gary
27-01-2005, 13:50:50
Scarey.

Funkodrom
27-01-2005, 13:57:32
Useful medical breakthrough.

MDA
27-01-2005, 14:02:48
Also scary, but somewhat related. Not as much of a concern with organ/tissue transplants as with food and drug industry.

"Prions discovered in unexpected organs"

http://www.nature.com/news/2005/050117/full/050117-11.html

sleeping_satsuma
27-01-2005, 20:07:28
i think its wrong to treat animals, who are sentient beings, as though they are merely convenient vessels for our spare parts. Its also wrong to mix animal and human- we are distinct species and should be kept distinct unless we want to live in a Victorian freak show.

protein
27-01-2005, 20:26:04
Is that comment aimed at chagarra?

fp
27-01-2005, 20:33:24
Hopefully it was simply due to poor skim-reading of the thread.

MDA
27-01-2005, 21:56:37
Originally posted by sleeping_satsuma
i think its wrong to treat animals, who are sentient beings, as though they are merely convenient vessels for our spare parts. Its also wrong to mix animal and human- we are distinct species and should be kept distinct unless we want to live in a Victorian freak show.

I understand the sentiment, but I don't agree. We also harvest human cadavers for spare parts, if its good enough for us, I think its good enough for the animals.

Millions of animals are killed every year for food, it wouldn't make sense to avoid using other parts of them.

Provost Harrison
27-01-2005, 22:00:30
Originally posted by sleeping_satsuma
i think its wrong to treat animals, who are sentient beings, as though they are merely convenient vessels for our spare parts. Its also wrong to mix animal and human- we are distinct species and should be kept distinct unless we want to live in a Victorian freak show.

Definitely an arts student...lots of comments about the apparent 'ickiness' but why? Animals are convenient vessels for our spare parts. You can grow a pig in a couple of years to be fully grown - you can't do that with a 'spare human'. They are very convenient vessels for meat too. Mmmmm...

Darkstar
28-01-2005, 00:10:56
And at Stanford University in California an experiment might be done later this year to create mice with human brains.

Homage to Douglas Adams and Hitch-Hikers Guide to the Galaxy?

protein
28-01-2005, 00:14:25
No way. They were hyper-intellegent pan-dimensional beings that manifested in our dimension as mice, not mice with human brains.

Darkstar
28-01-2005, 00:24:16
So... are the Furries already queueing up, ordering their female half human-half feline pets already?

I can see where being a company who owns the mice that were used to create the sperm and ova of humans would be highly convinent. Be easy to get the results classified as non-human. And if its non-human, then it's property. Or, go the other routes to the same results. If you can get a reasonably close "human" brain in animals, that lets you have all sorts of ownable, trainable smart beings.

The dangers are significant. I doubt the rewards will be as high. They usually aren't, in comparison. However, if you don't end up with Alzhiemers when you are 70, I suppose you'd think it was worthwhile to having wild dog packs that are smart as humans hunting throughout the world's urban areas. Easy pickens...

Note, I am tweaking the SF Horror aspects a touch. ;)

And there is already "chimera" aren't they? Its a common term used to refer to those odd things that are somewhere between plant and animal in biology?

protein
28-01-2005, 00:29:13
So you forsee an army of clever pigs?

Do you really think there are evil scientists cackling away to themselves working towards a mouse that can play chess and prefers stilton to cheddar? Aren't they doing research for the greater good?

Darkstar
28-01-2005, 00:50:36
:lol: Research for the greater good? Oh please! Research for the greater profit, I'll believe. It's a greedy, self-centered, capitalistic world.

Actually, I didn't foresee anything on this. However, there are plenty who have. The SF crowd tends to eat up such things. We can probably dredge up a good short lists of tales that aren't to whacked out to demonstrate certain points.

Think about it... where do you define something is human? It's going to be whatever is convinent for the market, not what is in the beings personal interest. We don't even recognise that humans are always "human" with the same rights as we are. Make it something that is 100 percent body human, but a mind of smart dog, and who is going to defend their human rights? They just "look" it, but they don't have the brain power, after all.

Again, there's literally thousands of potential markets. If they can make it work. I think that's a big if, actually.

protein
28-01-2005, 01:21:32
I still don't understand your problem with it. You can theorise all you like about whether a dog with a man's brain or a giant octopus with a man's cock is going to have equal rights but it ain't going to happen. That's for sci fi geeks and christians to worry about. Maybe before they manage to put a halt to all progress someone will use this technology to find a way of reversing heart or brain damage or further understanding and curing cancer.

People just get all freaked out by progress and they think it's against god's will.

Provost Harrison
28-01-2005, 02:13:19
I consider the 'God's will' argument to be the most bullshit one available. If someone objected to me doing something because it was not 'God's will', it is more than likely going to encourage me to do it even more :lol:

protein
28-01-2005, 02:17:04
Exactly. The other one is "it's against nature". People have been saying that about homosexuality, flight, condoms, cosmetic surgery and space travel for years.

Koshko
28-01-2005, 02:29:55
Tell them to make me a centaur.

Sir Penguin
28-01-2005, 02:34:15
Originally posted by Darkstar
:lol: Research for the greater good? Oh please! Research for the greater profit, I'll believe. It's a greedy, self-centered, capitalistic world.
Yes, because everything is evil if you make money off of it. Kind of like how it's selfish to give things to other people if it makes you feel good about youself.

SP

Immortal Wombat
28-01-2005, 02:34:29
Probably the easiest way to make you a centaur would involve some rather extreme surgery rather than any cellular genetic manipluation.

Darkstar
28-01-2005, 03:18:07
Sir Penguin, what about the orphan drugs we have now? The drugs that do cure diseases, but the drug manufacturers won't distribute them because there isn't enough money on it. Obviously, money is a big deal in this world.

Hell, its because of money that we don't just make all the food for the world and distribute it for free. We could. We can feed the entire world. But it isn't going to happen. We only feed those that can pay for it, and let the rest of the food rot in the fields or in storage.

I'm not against making a buck. But I recognize that the desire to have enough money to "get stuff" drives selfish behavior. We aren't living on the moon today. Why not? Cause they haven't been able to figure out how to make enough money off the deal. That's why we are stuck going at a snails pace in that field. Same as in most things.

Sir Penguin
28-01-2005, 03:24:06
Those drugs are not relevant to the discussion. If something will have a net positive benefit on the world, that is what should be focused on, not the fact that it turns a profit for the people who develop it.

SP

Darkstar
28-01-2005, 03:29:19
Protein, as I said... I don't think it will happen. But... people once thought that no one would ever fly. Or be able to breath water and live. Both have happened. So, is it a waste of time to consider just two "ifs" from now?

I don't think we are going to learn very much from this. These things never meet their potentional. But its nice to let our imaginations wander over the nice things. It doesn't hurt to look ahead, just a turn or two. If things work out... That's one of the advantages to being a big brained primate. We can try to plan ahead.

chagarra
28-01-2005, 06:18:51
MoSe..

An Edwards Bovine Pericardial..

Now you can prove I talk bull.... :D

Funkodrom
28-01-2005, 09:34:17
If God had meant us to fly, or create human animal hybrids, he'd have given us advanced brains capable of developing the scientific theories and techniques required and extremely nimble hands so that we could build the complex tools and machines we'd require to do so.

And if a cow can save someones life with a heart valve (and also make some nice steak, a few burgers and a few pairs of shoes) then that's fantastic.

Sir Penguin
28-01-2005, 09:35:40
Damn right. As long as we don't all die from it.

SP

notyoueither
28-01-2005, 09:51:52
Originally posted by Sir Penguin
As long as we don't all die from it.

SP

... and there's the operative phrase.

This isn't rocketry, where in 1910 people would have thought you a loon for saying that men would one day stand on the moon, but not much harm could come from the attempt.

This is biology, where a helluva lot of human destruction could be wrought by a fuck up.

Oh, and PH, you have too much faith in science and are too blind to the humans involved and their ability to make huge mistakes.

notyoueither
28-01-2005, 09:56:47
I can't seriously believe that educated, informed people would not be scared shitless by this stuff. The power of the atom was supposed to be a boon to mankind. What did men do? Turned it into the ultimate destructive weapon, that's what.

Tell me, are biolabs as easy to detect and regulate as nuclear reactors?

You think there isn't going to be some private or government nutter come along in the next few centuries? What planet's history are you familiar with, and is the sky there blue?

BigGameHunter
28-01-2005, 09:58:05
I'm imagining the space/military gains by having human-smart mice with opposable thumbs pilot vehicles we'll be able to build en masse and much cheaper.

Imagine an invading alien force's surprise when they are swarmed by a bunch of super-nimble mice ships.

notyoueither
28-01-2005, 09:59:36
Well, there's always a bright side.

Funkodrom
28-01-2005, 10:01:50
Bacteria and virus engineering is much scarier than this stuff.

notyoueither
28-01-2005, 10:02:25
It's not related?

Funkodrom
28-01-2005, 10:05:24
I thought we were talking about grafting valves from pigs into humans?

notyoueither
28-01-2005, 10:06:26
I 'm talking about the OP where scientists are playing genetic musical chairs.

Sir Penguin
28-01-2005, 10:06:40
Originally posted by BigGameHunter
I'm imagining the space/military gains by having human-smart mice with opposable thumbs pilot vehicles we'll be able to build en masse and much cheaper.

Imagine an invading alien force's surprise when they are swarmed by a bunch of super-nimble mice ships.
But what happens when the mice revolt?

SP

King_Ghidra
28-01-2005, 10:08:03
we send the bio-engineered cat ships out

Funkodrom
28-01-2005, 10:08:10
So are you saying we should ban all genetic research despite all the potential benefits?

I've already agreed that we should have strongly enforced international standards for safety and policies etc. What else can we do?

notyoueither
28-01-2005, 10:08:18
That's why we have cat over-seers, SP.

King_Ghidra
28-01-2005, 10:09:58
way too late nye :shoot:

notyoueither
28-01-2005, 10:13:38
Originally posted by Funkodrom
So are you saying we should ban all genetic research despite all the potential benefits?

I've already agreed that we should have strongly enforced international standards for safety and policies etc. What else can we do?

I'm not saying ban it, but it scares the shit out of me when I consider what will be possible in 50 or 100 years, given our past record. It's a dark picture, and I don't like looking at it.

I don't think 'hell yeah, more, more!' is the right response from the public. I'm not sure what the solution is, but blind cheering certainly isn't it.

notyoueither
28-01-2005, 10:14:22
Originally posted by King_Ghidra
way too late nye :shoot:

:curses:

Damn you and your quick response!

BigGameHunter
28-01-2005, 10:16:15
The Cat & Mouse War is the sequel to The Mice That Roared.

Funkodrom
28-01-2005, 10:23:19
Originally posted by notyoueither
I'm not saying ban it, but it scares the shit out of me when I consider what will be possible in 50 or 100 years, given our past record. It's a dark picture, and I don't like looking at it.

I don't think 'hell yeah, more, more!' is the right response from the public. I'm not sure what the solution is, but blind cheering certainly isn't it.

I feel like I'm just balancing out the "NO NO!" anti-science side.

BigGameHunter
28-01-2005, 10:28:47
I think the delicate dance of Progress and Ruination is most intriguing...and fervently hope Progress wins out, as I imagine the horrific consequences of genetic manipulation without charity to be unimagineable.
What's that Vonnegut story about the people who are "handicapped" because they are genetically superior?

sleeping_satsuma
28-01-2005, 10:33:38
why is it great for a cow to save a human with a heart valve?

a) its not great for a cow, who is an intelligent animal and will suffer
B) they won't also conveniently use it for steak because it will have to be (presumably) removed in a lab as opposed to an abbatoir
c) its a tremendous fucking waste of resources to rear cows bred for meat/parts, and humans are out guzzling the planet already, so to rear one cow to keep one human alive is a double whammy of irresponsible eco-nomics.
d) they can be produced synthetically

I think we should have more respect for animals, many of our food animals are as intelligent as young humans, and you wouldnt rear babies to supply heart valves (although it would make more sense). I don't disagree with eating meat or using our intelligence to improve our existence, but rather than treating animals as our personal restaurant I think we should act more gratefully and responsibly, and start weighing up what the consequences of our actions are- intensive meat farming is a massive use of precious resources. Just because we can have something, doesnt mean we should. And I dont mean that from a moral viewpoint, its a survival tactic.

As for creating chimeras, well to say its against nature is true- it doesnt happen in nature therefore its unnatural. Is it wrong? Well that depends on your morals. Is it wise? I don't think anyone would answer yes- think of the possibilities for diseases jumping species, and the arguments about rights.

personally i think earth is fairly self regulating, and we should work with it rather than against it, but most science people seem to like pushing the boundaries usually not for reasons that will benefit anyone, just because they can. Is it really necessary to tinker around with the ecosystem via genetics when it already works? Think of it like an elastic band- we stretch it with our excesses and 'nature' (which is a horribly romantic term) pings it back via weather, disease, extinction etc, but when will it snap altogether? at what point will we go too far and tip the balance so that the whole mechanism of earth snaps and we're fucked? Emissions, energy consumption, waste production, meat farming, nuclear power/weapons, these are all things that ae fucking earth up royally. It just seems to me that genetics is shaping up to be one more to add to the list. Humans need to learn that society extends beyond the boundaries of their own species, and we all live in the same village. Of course the statistics and evidence are still quite speculative, but I'd rather proceed with caution and have respect for what are the immense powers of earth, than just go gung ho into every fun looking experiment.

BigGameHunter
28-01-2005, 10:36:36
You're wrong! A donkey and a horse can mate! So can a tiger and a lion!

Nature loves a freak!

King_Ghidra
28-01-2005, 10:39:12
Originally posted by sleeping_satsuma
a) its not great for a cow, who is an intelligent animal

a lot of your arguments rest on this point, and that is a subject for debate in itself

intelligence in the raw sense and intelligence in the sense of self-awareness as humans understand it are very different things

my computer is better at arithmetic than i am, does that make it a subject for rights?

sleeping_satsuma
28-01-2005, 10:40:11
Originally posted by notyoueither
I'm not saying ban it, but it scares the shit out of me when I consider what will be possible in 50 or 100 years, given our past record. It's a dark picture, and I don't like looking at it.

I don't think 'hell yeah, more, more!' is the right response from the public. I'm not sure what the solution is, but blind cheering certainly isn't it.

I agree. It only takes one more Hitler to get their hands on the technology, and just imagine the consequences. We already know certain people have a prediliction for spreading disease as a method of warfare

sleeping_satsuma
28-01-2005, 10:43:43
Originally posted by BigGameHunter
You're wrong! A donkey and a horse can mate! So can a tiger and a lion!

Nature loves a freak!

you usually find in these cases the progeny is sterile or stoopid, and these are very similar species- not like mating a rabbit with a tiger or something. I dont think the boundaries between each species is necessarily concrete, but its certainly pretty defined each species fulfils its own role, so why not leave it be.

And when would a tiger and a lion ever meet in the wild?

BigGameHunter
28-01-2005, 10:43:56
I do it in the name of love, personally.

sleeping_satsuma
28-01-2005, 10:52:39
Originally posted by King_Ghidra
a lot of your arguments rest on this point, and that is a subject for debate in itself

intelligence in the raw sense and intelligence in the sense of self-awareness as humans understand it are very different things

my computer is better at arithmetic than i am, does that make it a subject for rights?

I think we know that (some at least) animals are sentient don't we? They communicate, express feelings, learn, etc. I think research into primates recently has proved very interesting and backs that up- I saw an article on the BBC only yesterday about reserach that had shown monkeys have a sense of fair play and respond like humans do to unfairness. They have also been proven to have the capability for abstract thought. If we measure our own intelligence by these things and therefore have human rights, shouldnt we consider animals rights more carefully?

Computers don't learn or feel- certainly not in any true sense, although I agree its a tricky area. But if its tricky, rather than going 'oh fuck it, lets make a great big centaur!' why arent we saying 'well hang on, lets make sure we know what we're tampering with first'? I guess theres a pull between progress and the grey area we can only know through fuck-up.

I dunno, I'm as much of a consumer as anyone, and I have benefited from modern medicine and farming, but I do feel there should be limits, policies, balance in what we do. I know its a big fat cliche, but we do only have one planet.

BigGameHunter
28-01-2005, 10:58:27
I hope you are stitching all of your leather goods into a giant sad faced puppy and researching ways to animate it out of a profound sense of loss and personal responsibility.

Funkodrom
28-01-2005, 10:59:56
If a cow's so intelligent it can invent a method of using human hearts to save cows and do the operations! Why is that any different from getting insulin from pigs or cows to help diabetics?

If you're prepared to eat meat then any argument about using animals for medical purposes to save humans seems extremely hypocritical.

If monkeys understand fairness they'll know that life's not fair.

BigGameHunter
28-01-2005, 11:02:34
And they'll graft themselves onto Blackhawks and hunt us down like the dogs we are....or something like that.

sleeping_satsuma
28-01-2005, 11:23:25
Ah, so if a baby is intelligent we shouldnt have to feed it. Obviously Funko, and you know this, there are differing levels of intelligence and development.

it isnt hypocritical to eat meat- I said there has to be balance, not that we should all stop doing it forthwith. I think our methods of production are wasteful and that we eat too much meat unecessarily. And speaking of hypocritical, I suspect the real hypocrites are the people who dont give a shit about cows being killed, but would have a fit if someone touched their pet dog. If all animals are just mindless robots that we can treat how we want, why dont we start using people's pets to breed parts- far more efficient than running a farm.

as for the insulin thing- again, balance. I don't know how insulin is produced so I cant really comment, but if thats the only way to do it, there's a strong case I guess. I think a lot of medicines are used as a first resort when they should be used as a last resort, just because they're there- look at HRT, which is produced from horse urine at massive detriment to the animal.

For the record, as for my personal integrity, I eat mainly organic/free range where I can, and I dont eat cruelty products like foie gras and veal and I limit my meat consumption. I also use organic gardening methods on my patch of earth, and use eco friendly cosmetics/household products as far as I can. This year I am hoping to switch to green electricity, which by the way everyone can do through their provider free of charge, and start using my local recycling scheme. I might also start composting, but I need more info on that. Oh, and I don't drive. I don't use prescribed medicines unless absolutely critical, because I believe natural products are often a better alternative, I shower rather than bath, try to use as little heating/lighting as poss, so I'm trying to do my bit, and hey! I still lead a totally normal life! Its not difficult to make a few small changes for the better. We humans can use our brains in many ways, using them to help conserve resources and the ecosystem seems tome to be fairly obvious, since we live in it, and if we damage it, we damage ourselves.

BigGameHunter
28-01-2005, 11:25:27
Holy shit, she's gone superdarkstar on us.
Escape pattern Alpha!

sleeping_satsuma
28-01-2005, 11:28:56
Originally posted by BigGameHunter
I hope you are stitching all of your leather goods into a giant sad faced puppy and researching ways to animate it out of a profound sense of loss and personal responsibility.

It has nothing to do with guilt and sadness, its about using our intelligence to survive.

sleeping_satsuma
28-01-2005, 11:30:21
Originally posted by BigGameHunter
Holy shit, she's gone superdarkstar on us.
Escape pattern Alpha!

:rolleyes:

dickwad

BigGameHunter
28-01-2005, 11:33:27
Sorry...I get a bit sophomoric at 3:30 in the morning.

I think animals are here to be used, unfortunately. What do you propose, roving herds in cities and towns? Should we free the domesticated animals into the wild?
Sure, being as humane as possible is a no brainer, but telling some poor guy with a bad ticker he's going to croak 'cause it's not fair to Babe is ridiculous.

Funkodrom
28-01-2005, 11:33:37
If growing a pig with a human heart - a pig which would otherwise not exist - can save a human life then it's worth it. Our methods of production are extremely efficient, farming and selling food are massive businesses designed for making the maximum profit and getting the cheapest goods out there. This is bad news for animals which are often reared in extremely unpleasant ways.

Using pets isn't efficient. you need suitable sized animals. Pigs are genetically very close and grow quickly. which makes them a great match.

Pets are alive because people want nice cuddly furry animals to make them feel happy. Most livestock is only alive to make food (and/or clothing) for us otherwise it wouldn't exist.

Be great if we could do it some other way, and I'm not saying we should just do this as much as possible, but where it's the best way to do something let's use it.

This precise issue (pig hearts) has nothing to do with the ecosystem because the animals involved would never exist in the wild.

You have to be very careful with "natural products" there's a general myth that they are safer because they are natural. That isn't always the case, some can have unexpected negative side-effects just like any medicine, difference being the natural one often doesn't have to go through extensive medical and human trials before they release it, and they don't have to tell you the side-effects when you buy/use it. Not saying they are all bad, but you shouldn't just assume anything natural is better than anything man-made.

sleeping_satsuma
28-01-2005, 11:38:20
Originally posted by BigGameHunter
Sorry...I get a bit sophomoric at 3:30 in the morning.

I think animals are here to be used, unfortunately. What do you propose, roving herds in cities and towns? Should we free the domesticated animals into the wild?
Sure, being as humane as possible is a no brainer, but telling some poor guy with a bad ticker he's going to croak 'cause it's not fair to Babe is ridiculous.

I'll say it again: balance. Responsible farming I agree with.

I'll also say this again- heart valves can be produced synthetically. Worked for my Grandad when he had a triple heart bypass at 80, and he lived to be 92, so they cant be that bad.

Provost Harrison
28-01-2005, 11:39:52
Originally posted by notyoueither
... and there's the operative phrase.

This isn't rocketry, where in 1910 people would have thought you a loon for saying that men would one day stand on the moon, but not much harm could come from the attempt.

This is biology, where a helluva lot of human destruction could be wrought by a fuck up.

Oh, and PH, you have too much faith in science and are too blind to the humans involved and their ability to make huge mistakes.

No, just a realist. It's always been the case with technology - there is always some way to abuse it, like it or not. It's all about application. And Darkstar has the most salient point here, it is all about greed. You can stick your head in the sand over it and never do anything or acknowledge it. The atom bomb and nuclear power are always decried but in reality, perhaps nuclear power with global warming may be one of our big saviours potentially...?

BigGameHunter
28-01-2005, 11:48:32
How do you combine nukes and el nino to get something good, Mr. Wizard?

Provost Harrison
28-01-2005, 11:49:04
So s_s, it is quite acceptable to let a human die unnecessarily because a poor piggy would have to die? As long as the animal is treated humanely no problem. Have you ever pondered what would happen if we released all our livestock into the wild? They are not natural, they are the result of thousands of years of breeding projects to get them to the yield they currently have but from a survival perspective in the wild are completely impractical?

Funkodrom
28-01-2005, 11:49:14
Nuclear power - instead of fossil fuels in power stations.

Provost Harrison
28-01-2005, 11:50:40
Originally posted by BigGameHunter
How do you combine nukes and el nino to get something good, Mr. Wizard?

Nuclear power for the generation of electricity is what I am on about. There is so much going on about electric vehicles, etc, etc, but as long as fossil fuels have to be burnt at power plants to generate this electricity there is no advantage.

Also the integration of our use of carbon products back into the carbon cycle. Have you ever thought that the genetic modification of plants may allow us to 'grow' fuelstuffs to power our vehicles? Just a thought for you ;)

sleeping_satsuma
28-01-2005, 11:51:16
Originally posted by Funkodrom
If growing a pig with a human heart - a pig which would otherwise not exist - can save a human life then it's worth it. Our methods of production are extremely efficient, farming and selling food are massive businesses designed for making the maximum profit and getting the cheapest goods out there. This is bad news for animals which are often reared in extremely unpleasant ways.

Using pets isn't efficient. you need suitable sized animals. Pigs are genetically very close and grow quickly. which makes them a great match.

Pets are alive because people want nice cuddly furry animals to make them feel happy. Most livestock is only alive to make food (and/or clothing) for us otherwise it wouldn't exist.

Be great if we could do it some other way, and I'm not saying we should just do this as much as possible, but where it's the best way to do something let's use it.

This precise issue (pig hearts) has nothing to do with the ecosystem because the animals involved would never exist in the wild.

You have to be very careful with "natural products" there's a general myth that they are safer because they are natural. That isn't always the case, some can have unexpected negative side-effects just like any medicine, difference being the natural one often doesn't have to go through extensive medical and human trials before they release it, and they don't have to tell you the side-effects when you buy/use it. Not saying they are all bad, but you shouldn't just assume anything natural is better than anything man-made.

pigs did in fact exist in forests in Britain for centuries, which helped to maintain those forests by turning over the soil, burying acorns and such, fertilising the ground with manure. We took them out and put them in intensive farms. Farming is not efficient- think of the costs and fuel used in importing, the packaging and storage, the massive subsidies, the grain mountains, the rainforests being decimated to rear beef. It may be efficient in certain economic terms, ie get a cheap packaged chicken on a supermarket shelf, but even then, the cheapest product is usually the most unhealthy and has health repercussions we pay for through the NHS. If you look at farming holistically, its a mess.

I agree that natural medicines have side effects and limitations. I find it irritating when people assume that because its natural its side effect free, however we have been using plant medicines for centuries, to great benefit, and still do (aspirin, quinine, clove oil etc) so ok they haven't been trialled but we know what they do, and they do it well and you can grow them in your garden! As with any other medicine you have to use them responsibly. Up until the beginning of the 20th C, herbal medicine was still the primary method, then of course there was an explosion of modern medicine which had its own uses. I think both have value, just in different areas.

BigGameHunter
28-01-2005, 11:51:17
Oh...I guess his preposition abuse confused me.

Funkodrom
28-01-2005, 11:53:30
Originally posted by sleeping_satsuma
pigs did in fact exist in forests in Britain for centuries,

Yes. But not these specific pigs!

And I think our current farming practices are just as scary/dangerous/irresponsible as our genetics experimentation.

Provost Harrison
28-01-2005, 11:56:20
Originally posted by sleeping_satsuma
I agree that natural medicines have side effects and limitations. I find it irritating when people assume that because its natural its side effect free, however we have been using plant medicines for centuries, to great benefit, and still do (aspirin, quinine, clove oil etc) so ok they haven't been trialled but we know what they do, and they do it well and you can grow them in your garden! As with any other medicine you have to use them responsibly. Up until the beginning of the 20th C, herbal medicine was still the primary method, then of course there was an explosion of modern medicine which had its own uses. I think both have value, just in different areas.

Here we go, this new age crap. We have acquired knowledge of the modes of actions of the drugs we used. We can extract the active substance of such and analyse it's mode of action and improve upon it by slightly modifying the structure, and create something considerably more potent. You have to remember that plants have no evolved to cure a human headache - there is absolutely no biological impetus there, it is a coincidence that a particular molecule such a plant possesses is physiologically active. They aren't perfect, and we can improve them. There is little or no effective value in 'alternative medicines' apart from giving us a very basic starting block to research more sophisticated pharmaceuticals...

sleeping_satsuma
28-01-2005, 11:59:05
Originally posted by Provost Harrison
So s_s, it is quite acceptable to let a human die unnecessarily because a poor piggy would have to die? As long as the animal is treated humanely no problem. Have you ever pondered what would happen if we released all our livestock into the wild? They are not natural, they are the result of thousands of years of breeding projects to get them to the yield they currently have but from a survival perspective in the wild are completely impractical?

who is saying all animals should be released or that we should let humans die?

animals do a very good job of surviving in the wild (not that I am in any way suggesting thats what we should do??) and it is actually possible to farm them in the wild, which a method used by a lot of sheep farmers and some pig farmers in fact- controlled and boundaried herds have existed since the year dot.

i dont believe we should let humans die unecessarily, but why rear and kill a sentient animal, when you can use a synthetic valve? why do you assume humans are more important than animals?

what do you define as treating an animal humanely? Is it humane to kill an animal at all? Using what method? for what reason? If you believe animals are just here for us to use and dont in fact have their own role in the ecosystem, why are you bothered about acting humanely at all?

Funkodrom
28-01-2005, 12:01:24
It's not possible to farm for the number of people we have in this country "in the wild".

Humans treat animals just as cruely as they treat other humans. So it's humane.

Provost Harrison
28-01-2005, 12:01:41
We rear them and yes, they are there for us to use. The wild is far harsher you know, it would be to us if we didn't set up a society as it is to protect us.

Funkodrom
28-01-2005, 12:03:16
None of us are saying we should torture animals as much as possible. I think that they shouldn't be treated as well as possible before we eat them or use them as heart bypasses or for other essential medical purposes where there's no other/better option.

That's not even slightly controversial I don't think.

sleeping_satsuma
28-01-2005, 12:08:39
Originally posted by Provost Harrison
Here we go, this new age crap. We have acquired knowledge of the modes of actions of the drugs we used. We can extract the active substance of such and analyse it's mode of action and improve upon it by slightly modifying the structure, and create something considerably more potent. You have to remember that plants have no evolved to cure a human headache - there is absolutely no biological impetus there, it is a coincidence that a particular molecule such a plant possesses is physiologically active. They aren't perfect, and we can improve them. There is little or no effective value in 'alternative medicines' apart from giving us a very basic starting block to research more sophisticated pharmaceuticals...

its hardly new age.

i don't believe scientists and doctors know half as much about how drugs work on the whole organism as they like to make out- thalidomide is a prime example. Look at the effects of Prozac that have recently been questioned, the exponential increase in hormones in the water presumably from the pill (and Prozac is now traceable in water too). The problem with conventional medicine is that it looks to cure rather than prevent firstly, and then it tends to use very blunt instruments.

Just because plant medicine hasnt been bio engineered by humans doesnt make it useless, thats just dumb. of course its not a cure all or a perfect system, but it does have value, and it works more harmoniously with the environment because it breaks down naturally. If it was ineffectual, people would never have used it at all. You're falling prey to the doctor argument that 'only what I prescribe you is good for you' when in fact, self-medication is an ancient and effective practise for many ailments. In fact many doctors will now recommend 'alternative' medicines and also practises like acupuncture. In Germany St John's Wort is prescribed in place of Prozac. You're also ignoring the many plant medicines we use and dont label 'alternative', ie aspirin.

Funkodrom
28-01-2005, 12:11:21
:lol:

He was specifically using asprin as an example! That's what he's talking about here.

You have to remember that plants have no evolved to cure a human headache - there is absolutely no biological impetus there, it is a coincidence that a particular molecule such a plant possesses is physiologically active. They aren't perfect, and we can improve them.

Loads of prescription medicine is derived from plants.

Provost Harrison
28-01-2005, 12:12:57
You've missed my point, we design drugs for their actions - herbal remedies have that property by sheer coincidence. And you are incorrect to think they are not capable of having side effects either. I'm falling prey to no doctor argument...I work in the pharmaceutical industry, I have a degree in biochemistry and have a considerable amount of research experience. I have done my learning and know my sh*t, enough to know that this herbal stuff is all hype...

sleeping_satsuma
28-01-2005, 12:14:53
Originally posted by Funkodrom
It's not possible to farm for the number of people we have in this country "in the wild".

Humans treat animals just as cruely as they treat other humans. So it's humane.

thats absolute balls Mike.
We dont farm humans in tiny cages and then gut them while they are still semi-conscious. And just because we do something, doesnt make it right. We used to hang people- is that right? We banned it so presumably not. Being human gives us a mind that we can use for improvement and to seek solutions to complex problems.

If its not possible to farm in the wild for this country then how did we ever get here? We cant do it with the massive amount of meat we currently eat, for sure, but we should we be eating that amount? It doesnt happen in more tribal societies, its merely an excess of our society which can produce far beyond its needs.

Just because something is there now, doesnt mean it has always been, should be, or cant be changed

protein
28-01-2005, 12:15:47
Hey, take a st john's wort man.

Funkodrom
28-01-2005, 12:20:43
Originally posted by sleeping_satsuma
thats absolute balls Mike.
We dont farm humans in tiny cages and then gut them while they are still semi-conscious. And just because we do something, doesnt make it right. We used to hang people- is that right? We banned it so presumably not. Being human gives us a mind that we can use for improvement and to seek solutions to complex problems.

If its not possible to farm in the wild for this country then how did we ever get here? We cant do it with the massive amount of meat we currently eat, for sure, but we should we be eating that amount? It doesnt happen in more tribal societies, its merely an excess of our society which can produce far beyond its needs.

Just because something is there now, doesnt mean it has always been, should be, or cant be changed

We didn't have a population of 60 million people when we hunted pigs in the forest. We barely have any forest, and haven't for a couple of thousand years. Pigs would have nowhere to live anyway, plus they're totally domesticated now. We'd need to use different wild breeds.

I like my life in a nice house with computes, mobile phones, heating etc. I don't want to go back to living in a country of 300,000 people where we all live in hill forts near forests and hunt wild pigs and do our own farming.

You seem to be insultingly suggesting that I think we should all slaughter as many animals as we can for the fun of it just because I don't object to using animals for medical benefits. I agree we should all eat less meat and make conditions better for the meat we eat. Stop making your mind up what I think and putting words in my mouth and read what I actually say.

Provost Harrison
28-01-2005, 12:21:18
As technology has progressed, so have our agricultural techniques, including scale and yield...hence we can provide the food we have now (well, in the more advanced societies). Your point being?

protein
28-01-2005, 12:22:28
I suggest you rub some peppermint essence on your wrist to get rid of that tension Funko.

Provost Harrison
28-01-2005, 12:23:05
Speak for yourself Mike, I intend to live off nothing but mixed grills ;)

sleeping_satsuma
28-01-2005, 12:23:20
Originally posted by Provost Harrison
You've missed my point, we design drugs for their actions - herbal remedies have that property by sheer coincidence. And you are incorrect to think they are not capable of having side effects either. I'm falling prey to no doctor argument...I work in the pharmaceutical industry, I have a degree in biochemistry and have a considerable amount of research experience. I have done my learning and know my sh*t, enough to know that this herbal stuff is all hype...

Jesus- I just said they of course have side effects, I have always acknowledged that. Are you actually reading any of this?

I know drugs are designed for their actions, sadly they tend to have many adverse actions as well.

Herbal 'stuff' is not hype at all- if it is, we'd better start withdrawing aspirin and malaria drugs because obviously they are completely ineffectual. It doesnt take a fucking genius to see that plants can heal- you sting yourself on a nettle, you rub dock on it- thats the simplest example. There are so many applications for plant medicine, ie using ginger (a well known anti sickness compound) for morning sickness instead of thalidomide. Thats hardly controversial. Or lavender/camomile to help you sleep. Most GP's would tell you about these things.

I think it is the height of ignorance to sit there and wholesale dismiss everything that has been used for centuries before you were ever born, effectively and well, just because you dont understand or like it. Drugs are not the answer to everything, and they are an extremely blunt instrument in many cases.

Funkodrom
28-01-2005, 12:24:34
Those are drugs - based on herbs then refined, tested, put through proper drug trials and made into medicines. Not herbs.

MoSe
28-01-2005, 12:24:39
Originally posted by sleeping_satsuma
its merely an excess of our society which can produce far beyond its needs

I'm trying to steer clear of such heated and fervent debates, but for the sake of discussion, define "excess" and "needs".
I think that you take for granted the others share with you the same meaning you give to those words, but it might be not so

sleeping_satsuma
28-01-2005, 12:29:21
Originally posted by Funkodrom
We didn't have a population of 60 million people when we hunted pigs in the forest. We barely have any forest, and haven't for a couple of thousand years. Pigs would have nowhere to live anyway, plus they're totally domesticated now. We'd need to use different wild breeds.

I like my life in a nice house with computes, mobile phones, heating etc. I don't want to go back to living in a country of 300,000 people where we all live in hill forts near forests and hunt wild pigs and do our own farming.

You seem to be insultingly suggesting that I think we should all slaughter as many animals as we can for the fun of it just because I don't object to using animals for medical benefits. I agree we should all eat less meat and make conditions better for the meat we eat. Stop making your mind up what I think and putting words in my mouth and read what I actually say.

I'm not putting any words in your mouth or deciding what you think- you said that we treat humans the same as animals, which is clearly not true. You seem equally to be suggesting that I am advocating living in hill forts and hunting pigs, although I dont believe I said that.

Yeah everyone likes those luxuries, but we should work towards making that lifestyle sustainable and efficient. Just because we like it how we have it, doesnt mean it won't topple over at some point.

MoSe
28-01-2005, 12:29:57
Originally posted by sleeping_satsuma
Are you actually reading any of this?
How was in english that parable about the straw and the beam? ;)

from a (wishfully) neutral standpoint, I would honestly say that you are in the first place reading what others say the way YOU want to read it and not for what they actually wrote.
But I might be biased of course :coolgrin:

sleeping_satsuma
28-01-2005, 12:31:35
Originally posted by MoSe
I'm trying to steer clear of such heated and fervent debates, but for the sake of discussion, define "excess" and "needs".
I think that you take for granted the others share with you the same meaning you give to those words, but it might be not so

true, but I think its a given that we produce far more food than we need. Think how much we throw away from restaurants and supermarkets for a start, and look at obesity rates

Provost Harrison
28-01-2005, 12:31:45
Erm, if you actually recall correctly satsuma, we extracted salicylic acid from plant sources, a precursor to aspirin. As the stuff is completely inedible we added an acetyl group on and voila, same physiological activity without the taste and the undesirable effects on the stomach. A simple example but an easy to understand one...

sleeping_satsuma
28-01-2005, 12:34:12
Originally posted by MoSe
How was in english that parable about the straw and the beam? ;)

from a (wishfully) neutral standpoint, I would honestly say that you are in the first place reading what others say the way YOU want to read it and not for what they actually wrote.
But I might be biased of course :coolgrin:

I've asked them to explain their views

protein
28-01-2005, 12:35:25
Originally posted by Provost Harrison
Erm, if you actually recall correctly satsuma, we extracted salicylic acid from plant sources, a precursor to aspirin. As the stuff is completely inedible we added an acetyl group on and voila, same physiological activity without the taste and the undesirable effects on the stomach. A simple example but an easy to understand one...
They don't tell you that when they are trying to get you to buy stuff from herbalists.

Funkodrom
28-01-2005, 12:36:03
Originally posted by sleeping_satsuma
[B]I'm not putting any words in your mouth or deciding what you think- you said that we treat humans the same as animals, which is clearly not true.


Of course it's true. Yesterday was the 60th anniversary of Auschwitz and we were just talking about the genocide in Darfur. We lock people up in tiny cells, torture them, execute them, do all kinds of shit to them.

Originally posted by sleeping_satsuma
[B]You seem equally to be suggesting that I am advocating living in hill forts and hunting pigs, although I dont believe I said that.

No, you have some bizarre idea that we could keep animals 'in the wild' and produce enough food for all the people in the world now. It's totally unrealistic. The world population's expanding not contracting. We should eat less meat each though - I agreed with that. Which will help a bit as plant based food takes less space and resources to make for the equivalent food value - although we'd struggle to make enough high protein non-meat food for everyone.

Provost Harrison
28-01-2005, 12:36:20
Exactly, they don't protein, it's very conveniently overlooked. Pharmacology is a developed science, beats it's alternative that involves chewing bark and if they don't drop dead, it's OK...

sleeping_satsuma
28-01-2005, 12:38:54
Originally posted by Provost Harrison
Erm, if you actually recall correctly satsuma, we extracted salicylic acid from plant sources, a precursor to aspirin. As the stuff is completely inedible we added an acetyl group on and voila, same physiological activity without the taste and the undesirable effects on the stomach. A simple example but an easy to understand one...

so its using plant medicine then, whats the point? lots of medicines have to be buffered with something else.

Provost Harrison
28-01-2005, 12:40:55
As I've said, the 'plant medicine' is an interesting precursor, we are just refining on empirical observations made previously. We have looked at what it is, found it and improved. The point you are missing is that these chemicals just so happen to have this physiological effect, it is coincidence, it is not 'nature's gift' or anything. And as such, their effects are unrefined. It is why pharmacologically developed drugs are always going to be infinitely superior...

Funkodrom
28-01-2005, 12:42:13
The difference is - that's researched and tested etc. by huge teams of experts in massive multi-million pound human trials.

Some herbal solution isn't necessarily and if it's a well known herbal remedy from the west it's very likely to have been explored by drug companies trying to make something good out of it.

That's not to say some herbs can't be beneficial, but they aren't 'better' than real medicine in any way.

protein
28-01-2005, 12:42:26
Everything man made is made out of something that was "natural" at some point. I just wonder where the line is that it becomes wrong in the eyes of a crystal healer/herbalist.

Is ibuprofen wrong? What about coffee? That goes through quite a process.

sleeping_satsuma
28-01-2005, 12:46:14
Originally posted by Funkodrom
Of course it's true. Yesterday was the 60th anniversary of Auschwitz and we were just talking about the genocide in Darfur. We lock people up in tiny cells, torture them, execute them, do all kinds of shit to them.

No- you get the odd nutter who does, its not a general mechanism of society, and it still isnt justified which is what you were suggesting by saying its ok to do it to animals as we do it to humans.



No, you have some bizarre idea that we could keep animals 'in the wild' and produce enough food for all the people in the world now. It's totally unrealistic. The world population's expanding not contracting. We should eat less meat each though - I agreed with that. Which will help a bit as plant based food takes less space and resources to make for the equivalent food value - although we'd struggle to make enough high protein non-meat food for everyone.

No, thats what you think I think. In fact if you look back, I said we couldnt possibly sustain the current population using the old methods because we eat too much (and obviously our population is much larger). I do think we can use more humane farming methods though and that would be made easier through eating less meat. Soy is a very effective plant protein btw.

Should we not be trying to stop the population expanding? Its obvious that there is a sustainability issue there.

Funkodrom
28-01-2005, 12:48:26
Well stop arguing then, you agree with me. :rolleyes: :lol:

We are trying to stop the population expanding. China is doing so very effectively - although extremely harsh by western eyes.

sleeping_satsuma
28-01-2005, 12:50:54
Originally posted by protein
Everything man made is made out of something that was "natural" at some point. I just wonder where the line is that it becomes wrong in the eyes of a crystal healer/herbalist.

Is ibuprofen wrong? What about coffee? That goes through quite a process.

Yes and so does beer. I have said all along that we should use things appropriately, but that plant medicines ie still in reasonably raw or dried form, are going to break down more in line with the ecosystem. Chemical based drugs tend to turn up in the water, hence all the hormones and prozac in the water we drink. I dont think its wrong to use these things becessarly but I do think its wrong to hand them out like sweets and pretend nothing is going to happen as a result.

sleeping_satsuma
28-01-2005, 12:52:35
Originally posted by Funkodrom
Well stop arguing then, you agree with me. :rolleyes: :lol:

We are trying to stop the population expanding. China is doing so very effectively - although extremely harsh by western eyes.

Only if you stop arguing too

Science and 'green' issues can be combined very effectively I think. What we know about science is marvellous, I just dont think we necessarily throw that energy in the right place.

I think most countries will have to adopt the China approach eventually.

Funkodrom
28-01-2005, 12:56:54
I don't, most western countries are seeing birth rates dropping. Seems to happen fairly naturally with female equality in work etc.

sleeping_satsuma
28-01-2005, 12:58:20
Originally posted by Provost Harrison
As I've said, the 'plant medicine' is an interesting precursor, we are just refining on empirical observations made previously. We have looked at what it is, found it and improved. The point you are missing is that these chemicals just so happen to have this physiological effect, it is coincidence, it is not 'nature's gift' or anything. And as such, their effects are unrefined. It is why pharmacologically developed drugs are always going to be infinitely superior...

I dont think they are superior, they CAN be, but then so can plant medcines in the right application. It depends on your needs and the situation. Man made medicines often have very harmful side effects such as antibiotics which kill off all the good bacteria as well as the bad, which then leads to other problems. In my experience that doesnt happen so much with plant medicine.

what I object to is the science attitude that 'its all bollocks'. Clearly a lot of it is very effective and just because it hasnt been studied scientifically doesnt mean we dont know a lot about it- people have used this stuff for centuries, anecdotal evidence is there. rather than dismissing eveyrthing perhaps scientists should work on harnessing it.

sleeping_satsuma
28-01-2005, 12:59:06
Originally posted by Funkodrom
I don't, most western countries are seeing birth rates dropping. Seems to happen fairly naturally with female equality in work etc.

well yes but the ageing population is increasing.

Funkodrom
28-01-2005, 13:00:31
That's the fault of all that evil medicine. ;)

Anti-biotics came initially from bread mould - it's basically natural medicine.

sleeping_satsuma
28-01-2005, 13:06:49
I guess thats true, the problem is more the way its prescribed like candy really, although that seems to be improving.

I'm not against anything non natural per se, I just think we need to apply sense to progress

Provost Harrison
28-01-2005, 13:06:55
Are you actually listening to me s_s? I told you why natural medicines are inferior in the fact that their actions are coincidental rather than one of design or evolution. It doesn't matter their source, whether from plants for synthetic, they are the same kind of structures. Just because of the source of the drugs it doesn't mean they have some magical sway over the chemistry of their metabolism or degradation.

You go on about harnessing but miss the point...researchers look at the structures, the active site of the enzymes they work on and then they go 'How can we make this a better fit? (increasing potency), 'How can we make it so it isn't metabolised and cleared as quickly? Is the degradation product physiologically active also? Is the metabolic product harmful? Can we reduce it's ability to interact with other enzymes? (specificity and thus side effects). With unrefined and undeveloped herbal remedies you could be sticking anything in your body, as well as the aforementioned drugs having a very low rate of potency and efficacy as just mentioned.

sleeping_satsuma
28-01-2005, 13:12:35
but scientists dont do that, they just dismiss it. Otherwise we'd have massively popular and effective plant based tweaked medicines. Also, Sometimes things are fine as they are, they dont need tweaking

I see what you're saying and its an interesting point, but it doesnt get around the fact that its easier and cheaper to grow stuff in your garden

I'm not sure that they dont evolve that way either- look at the nettle and dock thing- they always grow together, and I imagine they may have opposite properties as a survival or specialism thing. Of course that doesnt mean they evolved so we could use them for specific symptoms but its very convenient.

Immortal Wombat
28-01-2005, 13:15:42
Originally posted by sleeping_satsuma
And when would a tiger and a lion ever meet in the wild?
Until human activity drove most of the lions out, there was a substantial range overlap in northern and western India.

Provost Harrison
28-01-2005, 13:17:40
Originally posted by sleeping_satsuma
but scientists dont do that, they just dismiss it. Otherwise we'd have massively popular and effective plant based tweaked medicines. Also, Sometimes things are fine as they are, they dont need tweaking

Yes they do, they can be potentially dangerous. Again coming back to this notion that herbal remedies are somehow magically safe. And scientists do, what do you think governments and drug companies spend billions of pounds doing? If something like St. Johns Wort is found to be physiologically active, believe me, they are stripping it down, analysing it and refining it as we speak.

I see what you're saying and its an interesting point, but it doesnt get around the fact that its easier and cheaper to grow stuff in your garden

This comes down to an issue of profit and cost. But drugs are expensive to develop. Manufacturing has a lot of associated expense too, each batch has to be extensively tested (my job :D).

I'm not sure that they dont evolve that way either- look at the nettle and dock thing- they always grow together, and I imagine they may have opposite properties as a survival or specialism thing. Of course that doesnt mean they evolved so we could use them for specific symptoms but its very convenient.

I've never seen any evidence to show that the dockleaf thing is anything but the distraction of rubbing and perhaps some liquid out of it soothing a bit. I am sure rubbing a carrot or cabbage would have a similar effect. Again, we use dockleaves generally because they are located close to nettles, probably something to do with the nature of the soil both proliferate in.

sleeping_satsuma
28-01-2005, 13:24:45
I dunno about that- I havent used anything else thats worked.

For the millionth time I dont think plant remedies are magically safe. A lot of plants are poisonous (I grow Digitalis) so thats no mystery.

Funkodrom
28-01-2005, 13:26:06
Originally posted by sleeping_satsuma
but scientists dont do that, they just dismiss it. Otherwise we'd have massively popular and effective plant based tweaked medicines.

Like Asprin you mean?

I wish we had something like that.

sleeping_satsuma
28-01-2005, 13:26:49
yeah thats one item out of the thousands that are used in raw form

Provost Harrison
28-01-2005, 13:27:53
No, I've already told you it isn't used in raw form. Salicylic acid is the raw form extracted from bark, harmful to the digestive system and incredibly bitter. Acetylsalicylic acid, a derivative, is what we use...I've been into this in detail.

And then there is the placebo effect...don't get me started on that :p

Funkodrom
28-01-2005, 13:33:59
We do have an insane amount of very popular and effective plant based tweaked medicines. So I have no idea what your point is.

sleeping_satsuma
28-01-2005, 13:40:22
Originally posted by Provost Harrison
No, I've already told you it isn't used in raw form. Salicylic acid is the raw form extracted from bark, harmful to the digestive system and incredibly bitter. Acetylsalicylic acid, a derivative, is what we use...I've been into this in detail.

And then there is the placebo effect...don't get me started on that :p

I think you misunderstood what I was saying- I meant it was one that had been tweaked out of thousands of raw plant medicines

sleeping_satsuma
28-01-2005, 13:41:10
Originally posted by Funkodrom
We do have an insane amount of very popular and effective plant based tweaked medicines. So I have no idea what your point is.

well I dont notice hordes of scientists queuing up outside holland and barratt

MDA
28-01-2005, 13:44:51
Some general comments on herbal medicine and self-medication...

When adequate clinical data exists showing an herbal remedy is both safe AND effective then I'm all for it. The problem with the vast majority of these supplements is there is no body of data to support this. Just individual claims, testimonials. The people selling the herbals don't want to pay for studies on safety and effectiveness. They don't want conform to good manufacturing practices or submit to government inspections of their facilities and records. Its either a case of them fearing their product doesn't do what they claim, or not being able to afford to do the things necessary to ensure they produce a consistently safe and effective product - which they are required to do in the US if they make any claims it can be used to cure, mitigate, treat, or prevent disease. Their advertisements carefully dance around the letter of the laws regulating these claims while violating the spirit of it.

There is also little understanding of how herbal remedies interact with prescription and over-the-counter drugs. As an example, St. John's Wort was found to interact with numerous manufactured drugs - it can reduce the effectiveness of oral contraceptives - in general, it increases your body's ability to metabolize many drugs, reducing or eliminating their effectiveness. So the argument many people make "Even if it doesn't help, it can't hurt" doesn't hold up. "Its been used for hundreds of years without harming anyone" is a bad argument as well. There's no data. It may have been used for hundreds of years by a small population in a remote area of China. Maybe there are side effects that appear when its used by other races, maybe they originally prepared the remedy in a slightly different way which was vital for its effectiveness. If you don't know how it works, you may not be able to get it to work consistently, if at all.

I predict that in the time it took me to type this the thread will have totally wandered off to yet another topic.

One disclaimer, so I don't get into trouble: The opinions and information in this message are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views and policies of the U.S. Food and Drug Administration.

Funkodrom
28-01-2005, 13:46:19
I think you don't realise how many plants have been made into real effective medicines. If there is some popular herb with supposed beneficial properties and no-one's bothered with turning it into a real drug there's probably a very good reason, but it's highly unlikely it hasn't been researched.

Even just looking for new plants to test potential properties on is huge business, it's just foolish to assume they haven't looked at widely known local plants already.

zmama
28-01-2005, 14:11:47
And to back up to the point Sleeping horns made about making synthetic heart valves, they do make them and they are used often, but...

Using them in women of childbearing years is a bad idea. The artifical valves tend to cause clotting which is offset by anticlotting drugs, which unfortunately would cause menstruation to be a life threatening event.
The drugs also aren't a good thing if you are old...so the over 65 population also is treated with pig/cow valves

MDA
28-01-2005, 14:17:01
We have recombinant human insulin produced in bacteria, now, too. I don't think the pig insulin is used much, if at all. Some risk of allergic response with pig insulin, IIRC.

MoSe
28-01-2005, 14:24:31
Originally posted by sleeping_satsuma
but it doesnt get around the fact that its easier and cheaper to grow stuff in your garden

god no!
I respect your PoV but I don't authorise you to speak for myself! ;)
Speaking strictly for myself, I say that it would be harder and costlier, both in direct costs and collateral efforts, for me to grow some herbs and weeds for even the most general-purpose mild-effective infusions. I have the black thumb of death regardin plants!
Leave alone growing a WEEPING WILLOW on my 1m wide balcony and equip myself with tools appropriate to a distillery to get some stomach-piercing precursor of aspirin!

And I cant even think what could be found in nature and what would be required to provide myself with my daily dose of Beta-blockers and ACE-inhibitors to keep my BP in check and of an uric acid competitor to keep my uricemy in check.
I know you could object that I should change my lifestyle first to address those problems, instead of using medicaments. Well, I did. I radically changed the way I feed, and I've worked my way thru other habits too. I only eat 120g chicken breast per week, as meat (other weekly protein sources are 1 egg, 120g mozzarella or fresh sheep cheese, thrice a150g fish serving, twice an 80g legumes serving, peas or chickpeas). I lost weight, I exercise more, I quit smoking.
Then I tested suspending the medicaments as test, and the values soared again.
So, it's much easier and cheaper (no more than 50€ per year thanks to our NHS) FOR ME, to buy the medicines I need at the chemist when I need them, ready and pronto.

I agree that I might be spoiled by modern age luxuries and commodities, and that I should be ready to give up something for the global benefit, but you yourself who are invoking balance seem to swing to the opposite extreme and have a rather romantic idea of what's efficient and feasible... :)

sleeping_satsuma
28-01-2005, 16:55:35
Originally posted by zmama
And to back up to the point Sleeping horns made about making synthetic heart valves, they do make them and they are used often, but...

Using them in women of childbearing years is a bad idea. The artifical valves tend to cause clotting which is offset by anticlotting drugs, which unfortunately would cause menstruation to be a life threatening event.
The drugs also aren't a good thing if you are old...so the over 65 population also is treated with pig/cow valves

well my grandfather wasnt, and he was 80. I'm sure there is some substance somewhere that can be used instead of a pig

sleeping_satsuma
28-01-2005, 16:57:28
Originally posted by Funkodrom
I think you don't realise how many plants have been made into real effective medicines. If there is some popular herb with supposed beneficial properties and no-one's bothered with turning it into a real drug there's probably a very good reason, but it's highly unlikely it hasn't been researched.

Even just looking for new plants to test potential properties on is huge business, it's just foolish to assume they haven't looked at widely known local plants already.

or its more profitable to leave it and manufacture drugs- most of this is down to profit.

there are tons of HRT substitutes that work, but I don't see those being prescribed.

Funkodrom
28-01-2005, 16:58:59
If there was a better synthetic we'd be using it.

I bow to your superior medical knowledge though.

Qaj the Fuzzy Love Worm
28-01-2005, 17:07:21
Originally posted by MDA
Also scary, but somewhat related. Not as much of a concern with organ/tissue transplants as with food and drug industry.

"Prions discovered in unexpected organs"

http://www.nature.com/news/2005/050117/full/050117-11.html

What the hell is an unexpected organ? Is it like the Spanish Inquisition?

sleeping_satsuma
28-01-2005, 17:08:43
Originally posted by MoSe
god no!
I respect your PoV but I don't authorise you to speak for myself! ;)
Speaking strictly for myself, I say that it would be harder and costlier, both in direct costs and collateral efforts, for me to grow some herbs and weeds for even the most general-purpose mild-effective infusions. I have the black thumb of death regardin plants!
Leave alone growing a WEEPING WILLOW on my 1m wide balcony and equip myself with tools appropriate to a distillery to get some stomach-piercing precursor of aspirin!

And I cant even think what could be found in nature and what would be required to provide myself with my daily dose of Beta-blockers and ACE-inhibitors to keep my BP in check and of an uric acid competitor to keep my uricemy in check.
I know you could object that I should change my lifestyle first to address those problems, instead of using medicaments. Well, I did. I radically changed the way I feed, and I've worked my way thru other habits too. I only eat 120g chicken breast per week, as meat (other weekly protein sources are 1 egg, 120g mozzarella or fresh sheep cheese, thrice a150g fish serving, twice an 80g legumes serving, peas or chickpeas). I lost weight, I exercise more, I quit smoking.
Then I tested suspending the medicaments as test, and the values soared again.
So, it's much easier and cheaper (no more than 50€ per year thanks to our NHS) FOR ME, to buy the medicines I need at the chemist when I need them, ready and pronto.

I agree that I might be spoiled by modern age luxuries and commodities, and that I should be ready to give up something for the global benefit, but you yourself who are invoking balance seem to swing to the opposite extreme and have a rather romantic idea of what's efficient and feasible... :)

Obviously if you have a condition that requires drugs, take them. If you have no garden fine, but I am saying that things should be used appropriately and if people have gardens to grow stuff, thats cheaper than a drugs co churning out an artificial alternative. Lots of people grow herbs in their gardens that can be used for basic remedies , and if not, then yes there are shops. I was just making a very general point that where people always go for the path of least resistance it is actually very easy to do things yourself, and that going to the doctor/chemist doesnt have to be the first resort.

Funkodrom
28-01-2005, 17:14:13
The point that your missing is -

The 'artificial alternative' is often a properly extracted, mass produced and tested derivative of the same plant. Generally it's a lot cheaper.

People should much more usefully use their gardens for food / edible herbs etc.

King_Ghidra
28-01-2005, 17:15:08
i fucking hate carrots

sleeping_satsuma
28-01-2005, 17:16:04
Originally posted by Funkodrom
If there was a better synthetic we'd be using it.

I bow to your superior medical knowledge though.

lots of women do use them effectively and have done for years, but according to you and your science friends, it doesnt count. My mother and many of her friends used entirely plant based remedies during menopause which worked very well. Things like agnus castus, black cohosh and so on have been used for generations, but obviously because glaxo didnt invent them, all those women were wrong! they didnt work after all!

sleeping_satsuma
28-01-2005, 17:20:49
Originally posted by Funkodrom
The point that your missing is -

The 'artificial alternative' is often a properly extracted, mass produced and tested derivative of the same plant. Generally it's a lot cheaper.

People should much more usefully use their gardens for food / edible herbs etc.

and you're missing my point which is that often a tested derivative isnt needed because the plant works just fine. it really depends what you're talking about. most shops that sell plant remedies have standardised dosage.

Funkodrom
28-01-2005, 17:21:33
Your mum and her friends replaced their own heart valves with synthetics that were better than animal valves and didn't cause excessive clotting in over 65s?

Did you read my post where I said that some herbs can be useful but you just need to be careful about using them because you don't know about the side effects? I never said they can't be beneficial.

All I'm saying is that your point that herbal is good and man made is bad is bullshit.

MDA's points about 'harmless' St John's Wort for instance. And it's recently been linked to depression as well. That's a "harmless" herb that's been helping women for thousands of years as well. But they weren't on the contraceptive pill then either were they?

My only point is - don't assume they are good and have no side effects and you agree with that so you are arguing against some random point again.

Funkodrom
28-01-2005, 17:23:59
Originally posted by sleeping_satsuma
and you're missing my point which is that often a tested derivative isnt needed because the plant works just fine. it really depends what you're talking about. most shops that sell plant remedies have standardised dosage.

Personal preference then. Personally I don't trust word of mouth recommendations on that kind of thing and you don't seem to trust scientists. *shrug*

sleeping_satsuma
28-01-2005, 17:26:17
I think i misread what you were saying as referring to HRT not the valves, as you didnt make it clear

I know that herbal drugs have side effects- I have said that about five times now

I have also said all along that man made drugs sould be used appropriately, I have not said anything like herbal is good and man made is bad- I said that man made drugs shouldnt necessarily be a first resort

Everyone knows that St John's Wort has side effects- but so does Prozac.

Funkodrom
28-01-2005, 17:27:49
So what exactly are you arguing with me about? :confused:

sleeping_satsuma
28-01-2005, 17:34:36
Originally posted by Funkodrom
Personal preference then. Personally I don't trust word of mouth recommendations on that kind of thing and you don't seem to trust scientists. *shrug*

I trust both actually- I think you have to look at both to make a decision. I think a lot of GP's are full of shit and shouldnt be allowed to prescribe specialist drugs however.

Look- I totally value what modern medicine can do, I would have lost my mother, brother, grandmother and my grandad a lot earlier without it (and myself in fact). I just dont agree with the way its run and the way it tries to exert superiority over things it would rather not bother with.

I think there are good reasons for listening to anecdotal evidence although it cant be taken at face value or as all you need to know. Its anecdotal evidence that has led to drugs co's having to admit to the rather embarassing fact that anti depressants can cause you to commit suicide! Its also led to investigations into and acknowledgement of Gulf War Syndrome, and of the effectiveness of types of plant remedy.

All things in moderation :)

sleeping_satsuma
28-01-2005, 17:35:57
Originally posted by Funkodrom
So what exactly are you arguing with me about? :confused:

I think we have the same view, approached from a different angle, but we established that about ten thousand posts ago :) then you started up about something again

MDA
28-01-2005, 19:06:12
The only responsible thing you can do with anecdotal evidence is use it to justify further scientific investigation.

Using it to decide on a treatment is taking a big risk.

sleeping_satsuma
28-01-2005, 19:15:23
well yes and no, it depends on the complexity of the problem. For instance if you have an upset stomach and someone offers you some peppermint, it probably doesnt warrant further investigation. Depression + St John's Wort, I would agree further study is needed.

MDA
28-01-2005, 19:23:52
I think I can agree with the peppermint-bellyache example. :)

sleeping_satsuma
28-01-2005, 19:43:16
I like you more than the other scientists. You're a nice scientist. Funko and Provost are horrid bad scientists.

MDA
28-01-2005, 20:29:22
I'm not nice, I'm patient. Funko and PH are trying to help you. I agree with everything they've said.

Koshko
28-01-2005, 20:45:19
I need to lighten this up a bit ...

Someday I hope to create my own Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtle.
Turtle Power!

Qaj the Fuzzy Love Worm
28-01-2005, 22:04:14
Herbal ninja turtles can have serious side effects. Better to go with the synthetic ones.

Lazarus and the Gimp
28-01-2005, 22:08:29
Thread summary?

Provost Harrison
28-01-2005, 22:13:52
Originally posted by sleeping_satsuma
and you're missing my point which is that often a tested derivative isnt needed because the plant works just fine. it really depends what you're talking about. most shops that sell plant remedies have standardised dosage.

Ever heard of placebo effect?

Darkstar
28-01-2005, 22:15:50
Originally posted by Sir Penguin
Those drugs are not relevant to the discussion. If something will have a net positive benefit on the world, that is what should be focused on, not the fact that it turns a profit for the people who develop it.

That's your whole point, Pengy! :mad:
For the greater good... if we did that, then those drugs would get made and distributed! But they aren't. Not even as an industry PR or "Feel good" measure. There's lots of ways this could be done economical. But we don't. We don't even care.

It takes a sudden massive disaster to get most people to give a fuck about their fellow humans. And just like goldfish, "we" forgot as soon as its out of our sight.

We don't do things for the greater good. We actively oppose doing things for the greater good most of the time. You have to engage our own desires (to feel better, to profit, whatever) before we stop opposing the greater good and allow the few who want to help or do something, actually have their chance.

Look at the modern society. If you are driving home, and see an accident, the only safe thing you can do is to drive on! If you do pull over, your safest course to render assistance is to call for help. Even if the cars are on fire, doing anything else will get you sued. Sometimes, pulling over gets you sued! That's straight up. We have set up our legal system to punish you for helping!

Greater good indeed. Maybe penguins do things for the greater good, but not humans. Most will stop you from doing something from the greater good, if only to make sure you don't make them look bad for being willing to do it.

Sir Penguin
28-01-2005, 22:19:34
You're totally misfocusing again. I'm not talking about the drugs that don't get made or distributed. I'm talking about what people do. When people do something that is good, their motives shouldn't matter.

Of course, your still completely full of shit about the whole "all people are selfish" bit, but everybody knows that and again, it's not what I'm talking about.

SP

Darkstar
28-01-2005, 22:21:20
Originally posted by BigGameHunter
I'm imagining the space/military gains by having human-smart mice with opposable thumbs pilot vehicles we'll be able to build en masse and much cheaper.

Imagine an invading alien force's surprise when they are swarmed by a bunch of super-nimble mice ships.

:lol:
Fan-fucking-tastic! I've got to copy that over to the GC2 forums so the Star Dockians can see it! :D

But I wouldn't want to see what those Star Wars mice do if you don't pay them their cheese rations in a timely manner!

Darkstar
28-01-2005, 22:33:32
Originally posted by sleeping_satsuma
why is it great for a cow to save a human with a heart valve?

a) its not great for a cow, who is an intelligent animal and will suffer


I can tell you have zero experience with cows. Cows are the dumbest mammals to exist. Why? We've made them that way for our convinence. To call them intelligent is an insult to the word intelligence!

We treasure humans more then animals. Most of the time. For the human saved, it is great for the human. That makes it great for all the humans that care about the saved human. That's isn't one person affected. It can be a very significant number.

Additionally, if that person saved is one of those important people, someone that in their living, helps other humans, directly their their work (such as heart surgeons) or indirectly (engineers that design products to save or improve human lives, researchers who discover significant things that will lead to human lives being saved or improved) the number of humans that could be affected is staggering.

What is that cow going to do otherwise? Walk in front of a train and inconvience a few hundred people? Cows wouldn't even exist if it wasn't for humans.

Aren't you being an intelligentist? Don't most animals suffer? Most feel pain and fear. Even little creepy crawly things. What do you propose humanity do to be fair to them as well?

Lazarus and the Gimp
28-01-2005, 22:38:29
Declare war on them.

Darkstar
28-01-2005, 22:42:25
Originally posted by sleeping_satsuma
I agree. It only takes one more Hitler to get their hands on the technology, and just imagine the consequences. We already know certain people have a prediliction for spreading disease as a method of warfare

Yep. Let's see... From the early Egyptians onward. The practice was formalized as a legitimate, studied form of warfare by the Mongols during the Middle Ages.

More recent practioners include the Spanish, the British, Germans, the French, the Russians. And lets not forget Americans, who started their country off by using germ warfare on the Native peoples.

Darkstar
28-01-2005, 22:51:02
Originally posted by Sir Penguin
You're totally misfocusing again. I'm not talking about the drugs that don't get made or distributed. I'm talking about what people do. When people do something that is good, their motives shouldn't matter.

Of course, your still completely full of shit about the whole "all people are selfish" bit, but everybody knows that and again, it's not what I'm talking about.

SP

Someone forgot to give you a reach around as well?

All people are selfish as a rule, SP. There are exceptions. You will occasionally do something that you don't expect any benefits from, not even a "feel good" moment for doing it. However, most people do "good things" because it does things for them... it makes them feel better. Or it pays the bills. Or gets them laid. Or earns them brownie points with an org or Heaven. Or whatever.

Why does/did you Mom feed you and care for you? Do you view that as unselfish or selfish? For any unselfish act you can think of, there are usually selfish reasons for it to be done. Not always. But then, Humans are not always sane. Nor are they fully sane. The most unselfish of people are often considered insane.

I bullshit alot, Katie. But you are the one totally buried in the manure on this.

Darkstar
28-01-2005, 23:06:10
Originally posted by Provost Harrison
Nuclear power for the generation of electricity is what I am on about. There is so much going on about electric vehicles, etc, etc, but as long as fossil fuels have to be burnt at power plants to generate this electricity there is no advantage.

Also the integration of our use of carbon products back into the carbon cycle. Have you ever thought that the genetic modification of plants may allow us to 'grow' fuelstuffs to power our vehicles? Just a thought for you ;)

Couple of points:
Nuclear power didn't take over the world for a reason. What is that reason? It's nastier then petrol, and costs more. Most studies that say it is cheaper, don't take into account the government subsiziding that go into them. Then, there is the left overs... all that toxic, highly radioactive waste products. We could probably improve nuclear power to be much less wasteful and much less dangerous, but we haven't.

We can already grow all the fuelstuff we want. Convert from using petro to various vegetable oils. Like peanuts. Why don't we? Why did gasoline take over? More power yielded from the bang. This made a big difference early on, before we became so proficent with diesel engineering. These days though, you just need to give up a bit of "jump". Oh, and the basic deal with a diesel (keeping the block warm in really cold environments so you can start it later, etc).

Honestly, we could be 100% renewable right now if we really wanted to. But we'd need to change how certain infrastructures and certain industries do business, and that isn't going to happen without breaking out the seriously big government hammer.

Provost Harrison
28-01-2005, 23:16:28
I never said it was perfect...not by a long way...but the alternative? We can all cross our fingers and hope for cold fusion, but that is quite a risk.

And yes, I have suggested integrating our use of fuels into the carbon cycle, that is the basic meaning. And I think it would require more than the government hammer...

Darkstar
28-01-2005, 23:19:06
Originally posted by sleeping_satsuma
animals do a very good job of surviving in the wild (not that I am in any way suggesting thats what we should do??) and it is actually possible to farm them in the wild, which a method used by a lot of sheep farmers and some pig farmers in fact- controlled and boundaried herds have existed since the year dot.

i dont believe we should let humans die unecessarily, but why rear and kill a sentient animal, when you can use a synthetic valve? why do you assume humans are more important than animals?

what do you define as treating an animal humanely? Is it humane to kill an animal at all? Using what method? for what reason? If you believe animals are just here for us to use and dont in fact have their own role in the ecosystem, why are you bothered about acting humanely at all?

Animals don't do a good job of surviving in the wild. That's why they have to make so many for the species to live long enough to continue to reproduce. Have you really paid attention to any of those Nature shows? If animals did a good job of surviving, then they wouldn't need our help or protection!

Why are humans more important then the other animals? Because humans are the ones deciding. We got the thumbs, the fire, the tools, and all the other tech that has, by the hard work and sacrifice of our ancestors, to become the dominant animal power of this planet. You can argue the morality all you want, but it comes down to that fact. We are the "suppah powwer". We do as we wish. Always have, always will. Occasionally an individual human pays for that arrogance at the tusks or hooves or feet or teeth or horns of the other animals. But it isn't that often.

We don't treat humans with the same respect we give our favored animals. Shouldn't we start with treating each other well first? Then extend that to other sentients?

Humanely treating livestock brings of the cost of raising them. That means it will costs the consumer more money. If people don't believe that beef cow should have the same basic rights as them, then they will not see the need to extend other curtesies.

Lazarus and the Gimp
28-01-2005, 23:24:14
Originally posted by Darkstar
Animals don't do a good job of surviving in the wild. That's why they have to make so many for the species to live long enough to continue to reproduce. Have you really paid attention to any of those Nature shows? If animals did a good job of surviving, then they wouldn't need our help or protection!


Yeah! That's why life hasn't existed for four billion years without us!

Darkstar
28-01-2005, 23:25:11
Originally posted by Provost Harrison
I never said it was perfect...not by a long way...but the alternative? We can all cross our fingers and hope for cold fusion, but that is quite a risk.

And yes, I have suggested integrating our use of fuels into the carbon cycle, that is the basic meaning. And I think it would require more than the government hammer...

I think between gasoline and nuclear, I'd go gas. Besides, recent studies of gas have discovered it has several benefits to the environment, such as all the nitrogen/nitrates released is fertilizing the surrounding land. You want to fight global warming, fight the jets. Studies continue to suggest they are responsible for the majority of the warming. All that heat, pollution, and greenhouse clouds up where it impacts much greater then down here at the bottom of the ocean of air.

You can find "green" communities. Where they don't use gasoline, and their local power utilities try to use "planet friendly" power generation techs. Or, as many who live the green cause do, convert your own car over with kits. There's lots of things people can do. but they have to bother themselves to do it. But, get enough doing it, and you'll form a market. Then, more and more companies will target that market, as it grows. That's using capitalism for your purposes. ;)

Darkstar
28-01-2005, 23:30:00
Originally posted by Lazarus and the Gimp
Yeah! That's why life hasn't existed for four billion years without us!

I was making an attempt at being facetious. However, the truth is that most animals barely get by. That's the balance of nature. If they do too well, they tend to wipe themselves out (eating up all their resources), or the environment changes (no longer able to support the animals, pop crash)... or something evolves to better take advantage of the plague of animals.

When animals do *well* around humans, for instance, we get upset. Ask the farmers killing the grey wolves. Ask the sub-urban dwellers getting attacked by bears or cougars or gators or rattlers. "Troublesome" species that were too successful used to get hunted to extinction by us, Laz. These days, we just put them on the endangered species list (if we can find an efficent way to hunt them), and then let them recover to become troublesome again.

Darkstar
28-01-2005, 23:36:24
Originally posted by sleeping_satsuma
I think it is the height of ignorance to sit there and wholesale dismiss everything that has been used for centuries before you were ever born, effectively and well, just because you dont understand or like it.

Does anyone else see the irony of this statement?

zmama
28-01-2005, 23:43:41
What ever are you talking about?




;)

Darkstar
28-01-2005, 23:55:35
Originally posted by sleeping_satsuma
what I object to is the science attitude that 'its all bollocks'. Clearly a lot of it is very effective and just because it hasnt been studied scientifically doesnt mean we dont know a lot about it- people have used this stuff for centuries, anecdotal evidence is there. rather than dismissing eveyrthing perhaps scientists should work on harnessing it.

THAT, is science. Until science STUDIES it, it is totally bollocks. People for hundreds of years were convinced that mice were spontaneously created from grain. And that cats and snakes were spontaneously created from mice!

Science's basis is "It's all bollocks until it is proven that it isn't". Whether it's "In the beginning, there was only God. And God thought, I'm bored. Let's play a little game..." or its "Sharks never get cancer" or its "I can see through objects to what's inside!".

When you say things like "I'm tired of science doubting everything!", you come off as a radical new age crystal warmer. You want everyone to be considerate of you and your viewpoint, but you are not being considerate of them or theirs.

People used lead in their plumbing for centuries, and used to use radioactives to make things glow in the dark. Science was helpful in determining at least one of those practices was a bad thing.

Prove sciencetifically that a cow is as valuable as a human, and science will favor your arguments.

Prove that it is cheaper to make the synthetic valves as it is to harvest them from a cow or pig, and greed/capitalism will favor your argument.

But if you are going to say "Well, it just don't feel right", you will find most turn a deaf ear or move on. If they agreed with you in the first place, they'd be doing as you do.

Darkstar
29-01-2005, 00:10:25
Originally posted by Lazarus and the Gimp
Thread summary?

Start: Wow! Look at this!
Poster A: Science scary.
Poster B: Joke.
Poster C: Caution.
Flamer A: WHY IS SCIENCE ALWAYS BAD? :mad:
Flamer SP: I hate everything. Is there no good anywhere?
Flamer B: Let's all go back to living in trees.

I think that covers that basics.

Darkstar
29-01-2005, 00:11:46
Originally posted by Lazarus and the Gimp
Declare war on them.

With Black Flag and Raid!

Sir Penguin
29-01-2005, 02:42:26
Originally posted by Darkstar Flamer SP: I hate everything. Is there no good anywhere?[/B]
You complete douchebag, that's the exact opposite of what I said! :lol:

Originally posted by Darkstar

Why does/did you Mom feed you and care for you? Do you view that as unselfish or selfish? For any unselfish act you can think of, there are usually selfish reasons for it to be done. Not always. But then, Humans are not always sane. Nor are they fully sane. The most unselfish of people are often considered insane.
My mom fed me and cared for me because she's my mom. It's what they do. She never said, "Give me grandchildren, or no food for the rest of the week," or "Provide for me in my old age, or I'll stop helping you with your homework." It is what most mothers do, it's what makes them mothers. But who am I to argue with Darkstarfacts? ;)

And either you're being a dick, or you're being dense.


I'm not talking about people being selfish.
I'm saying that it doesn't matter if somebody is being selfish.
If somebody who is selfish does good things for selfish reasons, they should be applauded for doing good things, not maligned for being selfish.


Didn't they teach you that in grade 1?

SP

Darkstar
29-01-2005, 03:24:57
Originally posted by Sir Penguin
You complete douchebag, that's the exact opposite of what I said! :lol:


At least I am a success at something. ;)


My mom fed me and cared for me because she's my mom. It's what they do. She never said, "Give me grandchildren, or no food for the rest of the week," or "Provide for me in my old age, or I'll stop helping you with your homework." It is what most mothers do, it's what makes them mothers. But who am I to argue with Darkstarfacts? ;)

I know mom's that have. Quite a few, actually. Sometimes they don't let you know that you feed you and cleaned your behind and changed your diapers because they want grandkids, but that's there.

Every mom is human. And humans are incredibly self-centered. Even when they aren't. ;)


And either you're being a dick, or you're being dense.
I can't be both? I'm always dense. What do you think a Darkstar is?



I'm not talking about people being selfish.
I'm saying that it doesn't matter if somebody is being selfish.
If somebody who is selfish does good things for selfish reasons, they should be applauded for doing good things, not maligned for being selfish.


Didn't they teach you that in grade 1?

SP

Weren't you? You didn't make it clear.

If you weren't talking about such things, why'd you bring it up? :D

As long as it gets done, I don't care.

1st grade? Let me think... in first grade, they were beating me cause I wanted to write left handed. And do other things left handed, come to think of that. The teachers hated that. They were also mad that I could read and write already. They didn't like my approach to math either. Too many instances of:
T: "Lisa has 3 apples and Jack takes 2, who many apples does Lisa have? Little Darkstar?"
D: "3 apples"
T: "What? No. That isn't correct."
D: "Yes! If Jack steals 2 apples from Lisa, I'll take them back and give them to Lisa. Jack shouldn't steal!"

Oh yeah. I was teasing my sister. Cause I was all grown up in school, and she wasn't. ;)

Sir Penguin
29-01-2005, 05:02:23
Originally posted by Darkstar
Weren't you? You didn't make it clear.

All those times I said that that's what I was talking about, and I wasn't talking about what you were talking about, they weren't good enough for you? ;)

SP

Darkstar
29-01-2005, 05:08:09
:lol: Sorry. Just being extra dense. One of those lifetimes. :D