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Is The Human Species On a Path To Self Destruction?

Is the human species on the wrong or right path?

  • The human species or civilization is currently on the wrong path heading towards self destruction.

    Votes: 9 45.0%
  • Human civilization's path is currently on the right course and will survive.

    Votes: 11 55.0%

  • Total voters
    20

Kandahar

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TimmyBoy said:
What makes you so sure terrorists don't have a nuke right now?

Umm, for the reason I cited in my previous post.

TimmyBoy said:
Maybe they do have one, but have intentionally chosen not to use it just yet. Terrorists are not stupid. They are calculating smart people. Terrorism is a smart person's game, not a game for the stupid.

And being smart people, they know that the longer they hold onto a nuke, the greater the possibility that they will be discovered before they can use it.

If a terrorist group got a nuke, I'm almost positive they would use it within six months.
 

TimmyBoy

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Kandahar said:
Umm, for the reason I cited in my previous post.

The only problem is your reasoning is not necessarily true.



And being smart people, they know that the longer they hold onto a nuke, the greater the possibility that they will be discovered before they can use it.

If a terrorist group got a nuke, I'm almost positive they would use it within six months.

I have run into some of the corrupt infrastructure in Eastern Europe. The people who control the nuclear weapons in the Former Soviet Union would certainly sell one of their nukes and use tricks in order to make them appear as if they are still in place when in actuality they are not. Just because a city hasn't been destroyed or a nuke hasn't been used, does not mean the terrorists do not have one. Terrorists could very well already have a nuke and have intentionally chosen not to use it yet. This is a much more plausible scenario than the scenoria you advocate. Osama Bin Laden's terror networks have alot of money and the russian mob would be more than happy to do business with the devil himself to make more money. The russian government and the russian mob are one of the same. I think you are a bit niave to think it impossible for one of these terror organizations to be unable to get ahold of one of these nukes. Their is so much corruption in the Former Soviet Union and other Third World nations like Pakistan, it isn't even funny. As a matter of fact, it is quite possible that Pakistani scietists might have passed on secrets to Al-queda and I think have already been implicated in passing secrets to North Korea.
 

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Another point I would like to make, is that their are alot of people in the Pakistani government who have their loyalties to Al-queda rather than the dictator Musharaff whom we currently support. It was one of the reasons why Al-queda has been able to get so close to Musharaff and almost suceed in assinating him several times. He got very lucky though.
 

Kandahar

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TimmyBoy said:
Just because a city hasn't been destroyed or a nuke hasn't been used, does not mean the terrorists do not have one.

It means that it's highly unlikely that they have one. Why would they be interested in obtaining nukes if they didn't plan to use them? And if they do plan to use them, why would they wait longer than the bare minimum of planning necessary to do so? Every passing day that they hold onto it is another day that they can be discovered by the authorities.

If you were an al-Qaeda operative, what possible incentive would you have to hold onto a nuke for a long period of time, and cautiously plan its use? You'd be much better off to take it to the nearest major infidel city in the back of a van and detonate it.

TimmyBoy said:
Terrorists could very well already have a nuke and have intentionally chosen not to use it yet. This is a much more plausible scenario than the scenoria you advocate.

No it isn't, as you have not provided any possible motive for them not using it at the first available opportunity.

TimmyBoy said:
I think you are a bit niave to think it impossible for one of these terror organizations to be unable to get ahold of one of these nukes.

Straw man. I said no such thing.
 

Scarecrow Akhbar

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The human race is the only species in the history of the world that has the ability to guide it's destiny. All the rest are doomed to eventual extinction.

So what's the big deal if we toast ourselves this week, or in ten millenia?

Certainly a full exchange of nuclear weaponry in the worst case Cold War scenarios could have killed humanity in the late stages of the Cold War (not under Kennedy, though, I don't believe we had sufficient fire power at the time). Chances are presently remote that such a situation will arise again, though with the crazy muslims who can tell?

But it's not like nukes are the only option. Asteroid dropping might become a future pastime of mankind. Certainly we've been playing with germs and genes and such, and that should scare the hell out of everyone. What if NOW creates a virus so that only female babies will be concieved in the future? That would end MANkind, certainly.

And this poll should have had a third option, "mankind is totally lost and no one can tell".
 

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Scarecrow and Kandahar seem to be the only ones looking at alternatives? The rest of you are nukes nukes nukes.

Nuclear weapons won't be the end of mankind, it will be a tiny microbe or virus that rises up out of the polluted river beds.

We have had three very serious viruses since 1997...all capable of wiping out mankind. We have no combative drugs stored to innoculate the populace.

In the last 100 years or so, the world had three very serious plagues...like the bubonic, black plague...etc...now, we've had three in the last 8 years?!

Things are getting worse. In 1997, the bird flu was shown to attack the brains of lab mice and kill them...now the strain has changed...it has adapted to previous treatments...today, bird flu is being diagnosed in humans.

Our anti-biotics are over diagnosed and becoming useless against new variances of virus....these virus adapt and change because they too, have the will to survive. If just one of these viruses gets away, we could all be doomed...this is no joke.

We need to protect our environment, conserve our energy, stop ignoring global warming, and elect a president that actually gives a crap about the environment instead of raping Mother Nature.

"What have they done to the earth?
What have they done to our fair sister?
Ravaged and plundered and ripped her and bit her
Stuck her with knives in the sight of the dawn
And tied her with fences and dragged her down"
Jim Morrison
 

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Well In 7th grade sience we conducted an experiment with fruit flies. They were in a tube and died in a couple of days. This wasn't their natural course of life in the world as opposed to their tube. However the outcome was the same; all life exsiting in an closed environment, like earth, will eventually over populate and exaust itself.

I suppose if humans have a couple more thousand years of existance they'll find another habitable planet but the cycle just starts over.
 

Scarecrow Akhbar

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Saboteur said:
Well In 7th grade sience we conducted an experiment with fruit flies. They were in a tube and died in a couple of days. This wasn't their natural course of life in the world as opposed to their tube. However the outcome was the same; all life exsiting in an closed environment, like earth, will eventually over populate and exaust itself.

I suppose if humans have a couple more thousand years of existance they'll find another habitable planet but the cycle just starts over.

1) Some men aren't fruit flies. (San Francisco is an exception)

2) The Earth isn't a sealed bottle. If nothing else, we have an entire solar system at a minimum, if not a galaxy, of natural resources waiting for us.

3) Even without extraterrestrial resources, there's no limit to human ingenuity. Needless to say, most of the industrialized countries are experiencing near-zero direct population growth, with noted increases mainly coming from immigration from more primitive places. This trend will further flatten as technology spreads.
 

Scarecrow Akhbar

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Hoot said:
Scarecrow and Kandahar seem to be the only ones looking at alternatives? The rest of you are nukes nukes nukes.

Nuclear weapons won't be the end of mankind, it will be a tiny microbe or virus that rises up out of the polluted river beds.

We have had three very serious viruses since 1997...all capable of wiping out mankind. We have no combative drugs stored to innoculate the populace.

In the last 100 years or so, the world had three very serious plagues...like the bubonic, black plague...etc...now, we've had three in the last 8 years?!

Things are getting worse. In 1997, the bird flu was shown to attack the brains of lab mice and kill them...now the strain has changed...it has adapted to previous treatments...today, bird flu is being diagnosed in humans.

Our anti-biotics are over diagnosed and becoming useless against new variances of virus....these virus adapt and change because they too, have the will to survive. If just one of these viruses gets away, we could all be doomed...this is no joke.

We need to protect our environment, conserve our energy, stop ignoring global warming, and elect a president that actually gives a crap about the environment instead of raping Mother Nature.

"What have they done to the earth?
What have they done to our fair sister?
Ravaged and plundered and ripped her and bit her
Stuck her with knives in the sight of the dawn
And tied her with fences and dragged her down"
Jim Morrison

There is no single virus capable of eradicating humanity. As the pathogen spreads through the population it will continue to evolve, and this certainly means reverting back to a mean lethality of less than it's peak, which is never 100% anyway. It's what viruses do.

We need to ignore global warming because I'm not surrendering my lifestyle just to pay higher winter heating bills, and we need to finally elect a president that understands the Constitution and is willing to finally restore government to those limits.

Mother nature exists to get raped. It's how Aphrodite got her start.
 

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Kandahar said:
It means that it's highly unlikely that they have one. Why would they be interested in obtaining nukes if they didn't plan to use them? And if they do plan to use them, why would they wait longer than the bare minimum of planning necessary to do so? Every passing day that they hold onto it is another day that they can be discovered by the authorities.

If you were an al-Qaeda operative, what possible incentive would you have to hold onto a nuke for a long period of time, and cautiously plan its use? You'd be much better off to take it to the nearest major infidel city in the back of a van and detonate it.



No it isn't, as you have not provided any possible motive for them not using it at the first available opportunity.



Straw man. I said no such thing.

I really don't understand the concept of "straw man" when it comes to debate because I am not a professional debater. But what I do understand is man's capability to destroy itself. The fact of the matter is, the current mentality that is present in the mind of mankind generally speaking is making it a more likely scenario for his own self destruction. If, hypothetically speaking the terrorists have a nuke, but haven't used it, it is because of fears of reprisals on their own people or how the US might respond to such an attack, perhaps the US might respond to nuclear terrorism by using nuclear weapons against other Third World Nations that the US deems as harboring terrorists or use nuclear weapons against nations the US considers to have been responsible for the transfer of such technology to terrorists or other rouge states. Either way, I wouldn't under-estimate the corruptness of the Former Soviet Union nor of the Third World States. It's been clearly shown that some of these top nuclear scientists in some of these third world states are sympathetic to Al-Queda and have sold nuclear technology to states that are an enemy to the US. I have heard that Al-queda has made the claim that they already possess some WMD but will only use them if the US uses WMD first. I do not know if this is really true, but I wouldn't count out that possibility.
 

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Scarecrow Akhbar said:
There is no single virus capable of eradicating humanity. As the pathogen spreads through the population it will continue to evolve, and this certainly means reverting back to a mean lethality of less than it's peak, which is never 100% anyway. It's what viruses do.

There is not YET a single virus capable of eradicating humanity, but that is likely to change in the next 20 years. Such a virus would probably be manmade; there is no fundamental reason that a virus couldn't have a near-100% fatality rate, be as transmissable as the common cold, and have an incubation time just long enough to spread it around.

Hopefully the first people to develop it are responsible people...but manmade viruses certainly will represent an existential threat to mankind.
 

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As far as the human population is concerned, exponential growth can't continue forever. The world reproductive rates peaked around 1990 and have declined ever since. This reflects the total fertility rates in underdeveloped countries and highlights

-improved standard of living
-improved status of women
-increased use of birth control

http://darwin.bio.uci.edu/~sustain/bio65/lec16/b65lec16.htm

One way of analyzing carrying capacity of the earth is to calculate its net primary productivity (NPP). This is the total amount of solar energy converted into biochemical energy through plant photosynthesis, minus the energy needed by those plants for their own life processes. It represents the total food resource on earth. This is shown on the chart.

http://users.rcn.com/jkimball.ma.ultranet/BiologyPages/P/Populations.html

A graph provided by the link courtesy of the U.N. Long Range Population Project of the World shows growth from now until 2150 and gives three possible outcomes:

-stable population of 11.5 billion
-increase and drop to present values (6.4 billion)
-population over 20 billion and rising

The worlds concensus is that we will reach 9 billion and then begin declining near the end of the century because of the factors shown in the chart. So we will not overpopulate the planet, but could still die of something else entirely. My money is on a germ or virus. As far as the giant asteroid is concerned, I will research that because the odds of it happening are something like 1:100,000,000,000.
 
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Hoot said:
We have had three very serious viruses since 1997...all capable of wiping out mankind. We have no combative drugs stored to innoculate the populace.

In the last 100 years or so, the world had three very serious plagues...like the bubonic, black plague...etc...now, we've had three in the last 8 years?!


Hoot.....your kidding right? In the past few years, we have had the avian influenza, west nile virus, and SARS.

1.avian flu-one reported death

2.west nile virues-62 cases/no deaths. This is suprisingly good seeing as how
there are what, 100 million Americans? I dont have a calculator large
enough to show how small that percentage is.

3.SARS-3,461/170 deaths worldwide.

As far as the last 100 years are concerned, try 1,500 years. Give or take a decade when the first case of bubonic plague was recorded. The last recorded case was in 1920 where 60,000 people died. This was in Manchuria.
The black plague was from 1348 till 1357 and killed, ohhh I dont know, 25%-50% of Europe. Yeah, we had the Spanish flu, but that was before penicillin was discovered. We have not a global pandemic in a very long time. This is another case of the media trying to up their ratings. Christ, if its not global warming, its killer bees. If its not killer bees, its killer west nile mosquitos. If its not west nile mosquitos, its the flu. Trust me, the CDC is spending our tax dollars very wisely. Of course, whats scary is that they reported three lab mice missing that were carrying the ebola virus.
 

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Hoot said:
We have had three very serious viruses since 1997...all capable of wiping out mankind. We have no combative drugs stored to innoculate the populace.

In the last 100 years or so, the world had three very serious plagues...like the bubonic, black plague...etc...now, we've had three in the last 8 years?!

Ddoyle said:
Hoot.....your kidding right? In the past few years, we have had the avian influenza, west nile virus, and SARS.

1.avian flu-one reported death

2.west nile virues-62 cases/no deaths. This is suprisingly good seeing as how
there are what, 100 million Americans? I dont have a calculator large
enough to show how small that percentage is.

3.SARS-3,461/170 deaths worldwide.

As far as the last 100 years are concerned, try 1,500 years. Give or take a decade when the first case of bubonic plague was recorded. The last recorded case was in 1920 where 60,000 people died. This was in Manchuria.
The black plague was from 1348 till 1357 and killed, ohhh I dont know, 25%-50% of Europe. Yeah, we had the Spanish flu, but that was before penicillin was discovered. We have not a global pandemic in a very long time. This is another case of the media trying to up their ratings. Christ, if its not global warming, its killer bees. If its not killer bees, its killer west nile mosquitos. If its not west nile mosquitos, its the flu. Trust me, the CDC is spending our tax dollars very wisely. Of course, whats scary is that they reported three lab mice missing that were carrying the ebola virus.

Opps...I meant to say 1000 years, not 100...that would've been closer. Thanks for catching that.

The fact is, we had 3 very serious plagues over a span of 1000 years, or more, and then suddenly we have 3 in the last 8 years? That should give pause to anyone.

To anyone out there....don't worry about nuclear war, a virus will get us long before a nuclear holocoust happens, so cheer up!
 

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I don't think human beings are on the right path, but I think the right path is inevitable also. So we'll get there soon enough. Humans will survive, current civilizations may not.
 

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Scarecrow Akhbar said:
1) Some men aren't fruit flies. (San Francisco is an exception)

2) The Earth isn't a sealed bottle. If nothing else, we have an entire solar system at a minimum, if not a galaxy, of natural resources waiting for us.

3) Even without extraterrestrial resources, there's no limit to human ingenuity. Needless to say, most of the industrialized countries are experiencing near-zero direct population growth, with noted increases mainly coming from immigration from more primitive places. This trend will further flatten as technology spreads.


Ah but the question is do we have enough fresh water to last us another thousand years? And will we be too busy killing each other over it to even care if there is more out in space?
 

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"Ah but the question is do we have enough fresh water to last us another thousand years? "

Your kidding, right? Where do you think all the water we use goes? Off into space? Its very molecular essense disappears?

No, we will not run out of fresh water because the Earth's environment is more or less closed. Water evaporates, condenses and turns into rain. Rain falls and collects in lakes, rivers, streams, underground aquifers and fills up the water shed. The water George Washington used to brush his wooden teeth with could be the same stuff you use to fill your bong with.
 

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I think everyone needs to take a step back from terrorist, disease, and other threats, and needs to look at the big picture.

And read the Book Ishmael. It'll help.
 

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ddoyle00 said:
"Ah but the question is do we have enough fresh water to last us another thousand years? "

Your kidding, right? Where do you think all the water we use goes? Off into space? Its very molecular essense disappears?

No, we will not run out of fresh water because the Earth's environment is more or less closed. Water evaporates, condenses and turns into rain. Rain falls and collects in lakes, rivers, streams, underground aquifers and fills up the water shed. The water George Washington used to brush his wooden teeth with could be the same stuff you use to fill your bong with.

right, the same water that flowed forth in Archemedies Urine could very well be in the drink by your side right now.

The Problem with water, is it is the greatest solvent there is. Damn near everything disolves in it, execpt non-polar and hydrophobic molecules, like oils and fats. Pollutants and nutrients alike fall prey to the awesome disolving power of water.

The trick, which we are learning pretty well, is to take all the other junk out. The Technology is still fairly new, and a little cost prohibitve for world wide use. I have do doubt it will get there though. H2O is the way to go!

A few things, like photosynthesis, phosphorus reactions, some Hydrogen fuel cells and systems will dissociate water into hydrogen and oxygen. The Earth and the universe are filled with Hydrogen beyond comprehension. Oxygen is all over the place also, once we can get a better energy system, we can make our own at will.
 
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Saboteur

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ddoyle00 said:
"Ah but the question is do we have enough fresh water to last us another thousand years? "

Your kidding, right? Where do you think all the water we use goes? Off into space? Its very molecular essense disappears?

No, we will not run out of fresh water because the Earth's environment is more or less closed. Water evaporates, condenses and turns into rain. Rain falls and collects in lakes, rivers, streams, underground aquifers and fills up the water shed. The water George Washington used to brush his wooden teeth with could be the same stuff you use to fill your bong with.


Nope not kidding. Pollution is our biggest threat because earth IS a closed environment. And the polluted water that evaporates is the polluted water that rains in our already polluted lakes, rivers streams and underground water tables. I'm sure you're going to ignore that this is real. At least you'll be happier.

http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/world/1887451.stm

http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/sci/tech/1691732.stm

http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/americas/2966322.stm

http://www.villagevoice.com/news/0234,otis,37614,1.html

http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/science/nature/2943946.stm

http://msnbc.msn.com/id/3068267/

http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2005/09/19/AR2005091901295.html

There's tons more, enjoy and good luck.
 

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libertarian_knight said:
right, the same water that flowed forth in Archemedies Urine could very well be in the drink by your side right now.

The Problem with water, is it is the greatest solvent there is. Damn near everything disolves in it, execpt non-polar and hydrophobic molecules, like oils and fats. Pollutants and nutrients alike fall prey to the awesome disolving power of water.

The trick, which we are learning pretty well, is to take all the other junk out. The Technology is still fairly new, and a little cost prohibitve for world wide use. I have do doubt it will get there though. H2O is the way to go!

A few things, like photosynthesis, phosphorus reactions, some Hydrogen fuel cells and systems will dissociate water into hydrogen and oxygen. The Earth and the universe are filled with Hydrogen beyond comprehension. Oxygen is all over the place also, once we can get a better energy system, we can make our own at will.

Good to know that after we're all dead the next animals, probably insects, to evolve and think that there is a god that made them in it's image will have clean water.

STOP SMOKING THE BANANA PEELS AND GET INFORMED!
 

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Saboteur said:
Nope not kidding. Pollution is our biggest threat because earth IS a closed environment. And the polluted water that evaporates is the polluted water that rains in our already polluted lakes, rivers streams and underground water tables. I'm sure you're going to ignore that this is real. At least you'll be happier.

http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/world/1887451.stm

http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/sci/tech/1691732.stm

http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/americas/2966322.stm

http://www.villagevoice.com/news/0234,otis,37614,1.html

http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/science/nature/2943946.stm

http://msnbc.msn.com/id/3068267/

http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2005/09/19/AR2005091901295.html

There's tons more, enjoy and good luck.

That's not entirely true about the evaporation, many of the toxins in bodies of water, to no go up with the water, granted some do. The biggest toxicity problems as far as rainfall goes, are the dissolved gases and particulates in the air, which tend to be acidic, like sulfates, CO2, Nitrates, or possibly low-altitude Ozone. Otherwise, rainwater tends to be very clean.

Run off from over use of pesticies, herbicides, and urbanization; and dumping pose the biggest problem for clean water overall. And yes, the earth is (pretty much, except for the very important influx of energy from the Sun, minor space stuff, meteors, the occasional asteroid, etc, and loss of some light gasses like Hydrogen) yeah it is functionally closed, in terms of simplified closed system dynamics. However the poster said a SEALED bottle, which, it is not.
 

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libertarian_knight said:
That's not entirely true about the evaporation, many of the toxins in bodies of water, to no go up with the water, granted some do. The biggest toxicity problems as far as rainfall goes, are the dissolved gases and particulates in the air, which tend to be acidic, like sulfates, CO2, Nitrates, or possibly low-altitude Ozone. Otherwise, rainwater tends to be very clean.

Run off from over use of pesticies, herbicides, and urbanization; and dumping pose the biggest problem for clean water overall. And yes, the earth is (pretty much, except for the very important influx of energy from the Sun, minor space stuff, meteors, the occasional asteroid, etc, and loss of some light gasses like Hydrogen) yeah it is functionally closed, in terms of simplified closed system dynamics. However the poster said a SEALED bottle, which, it is not.

So when's the mission to Titan to see if the water is drinkable?

I never said this environment is SEALED either, infact I mentioned finding another habitable planet in the future. But I don't think we'll get to one before we kill ourselves. But you missed that I guess...

I don't appreciate being talked to like I'm an idiot because the environment is in undeniable trouble. I wish you guys would've read my posts and comprehended them... Now we can't be friends.
 
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Saboteur said:
Good to know that after we're all dead the next animals, probably insects, to evolve and think that there is a god that made them in it's image will have clean water.

STOP SMOKING THE BANANA PEELS AND GET INFORMED!

I am the one that needs to get informed? Weren't you the one that said pollutants go up with the water during evaporation?
 

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Saboteur said:
So when's the mission to Titan to see if the water is drinkable?

I never said this environment is SEALED either, infact I mentioned finding another habitable planet in the future. But I don't think we'll get to one before we kill ourselves. But you missed that I guess...

I don't appreciate being talked to like I'm an idiot because the environment is in undeniable trouble. I wish you guys would've read my posts and comprehended them... Now we can't be friends.

I never said you said the environement is "sealed." I said "the poster" said that, to which one of your responses was "the Earth IS a closed system." I had treated you with nothing but respect. If you carry on this way, I will treat you like an idiot, because seem to behave like one.

Responses concerning the smoking of banana peels, incorrect comprehension of statement in English concring what someone else said, and lack of scientific concepts concerning a subject matter you are talking about, are not things of Genius. You have insulted me in two posts. Now I am done.

We can carry on to the subject at hand, and to the extent of water resource dangers.

I find it interesting that in some of the articles you had posted (the first few having nothing to do with the water cycle itself) that the economic "law of the commons" is favored over conservation by price mechanism.

I know, before our houses were charge for water use, I used a great deal more water. Since then I applied low pressure faucets, reduced my toilet capacity, and generally waste much less. Any Price mechanism, be it privatization or use taxation, can go great lengths toward reducing demand and consumption. When things are "free" at the point of delivery, common usage usually creates massive waste and destruction. "Public Ownserhsip" of the delivery infrastructure can also cause degredation as well. In fact, as noted in a couple of your posted articles, as much as 50% of water in some areas is lost to leaky pipes, and of course, governments "own" 95% of those pipes. Not to mention government subsidy of water use for agriculture, to the point of excess, and run off.

As a secondary concern regarding run-off government also subsidize fertilizers and pesticides, coupled with increase water usage by subsidy, the water is wasted, and pesticides and fertilizers pollute the waterways and water bodies. Not to mention government run water treatement facilities, or government prohibitions of ecological water treatement systems (marsh systems, as water treatment).
 
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