Physics, myths, etc.

From: Thomas McVey <>
Date: Mon, 02 Oct 2000 00:41:07 -0800

> Date: Sat, 30 Sep 2000 01:16:01 -0400
> From: Carl Fink <>
> > Either Chaos is inherently evil or it isn't.
> Sure, if you think that "evil" is a well-defined word, which of
> course it is not. I consider raping or killing someone in Bosnia
> because she's a Muslim, or Rwanda because she's a Hutu, to be evil,
> but clearly many hundreds of thousands (millions) there would
> disagree.

Well, in RW philosophy, you've got those who believe in a universal ethics (like Pete Singer), and those who don't (Richard Rorty). Funnily enough, Rorty believes that the root of ethics is to tell sentimental stories to each other to teach and agree on what ethics is, i.e. the route to ethics is through "myths".

> Peter Metcalfe <> wrote:
> I don't know of any physicists who consider quantum mechanics to
> represent a "higher level of reality". I've never even found it
> particularly complex or hard to understand -- anyone who passed
> calculus should recognize its simplicity.

Well, Dirac said anyone who wasn't shocked by Quantum Mechanics hadn't fully understood it. And I have to say that when I first learnt about quantum tunneling my reaction to the lecturer was "oh fuck off, that can't happen". :)

> Certainly the quantum isn't inherently contradictory. It does seem
> to contradict relativity, but for that very reason physicists assume
> that one or the other is flawed, which rather defeats your argument.

Err, no it rather proves it in fact. If folks who like to get down to the gnarly roots of the way the world works like physicists can do the feat of reconciling conflicting views of the universe in the absence of better theories, then I can't see why unwashed semi-literate barbarians (or effete Lunar aristocrats, or narrow-minded overeducated Malkioni prigs) can't find some plausible reason why We're Right And Those Foreign Bastards Over There Are Wrong, Even If All The Facts Appear To Support Them.

I mean, we're dealing with Religious Fanatics who'd think that folks in Northern Ireland and the Middle East are being way laid back about religious disputes, that the Kansas Board of Education are dangerously open to new ideas, who'd think that Tomas Torquemada and the Pope who issued the Malleus Malificarum were a bit lax on punishments to the heretics, and who'd think Ian Paisley, Osma Bin Laden, Pat Robertson, and Louis Farrakhan are just too damn reasonable and moderate to be really serious about religion.

Something tells me getting them to agree what the sun really is going to be , err, challenging.


> Carl Fink

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