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July 28th 2017 print

Tony Thomas

Climate Science Comes Up Short

Temperatures refuse to rise, exterminate polar bears, melt the icecaps, engulf coastal cities or make Tim Flannery seem rational. Not that there isn't company in the upper ranks of ratbaggery. Meet Professor Matthew Liao, who yearns to bio-engineer smaller, drug-ready humans

shrinking manPeople unwilling to act on the climate-crisis narrative should be assisted with drugs that improve and promote conformity, according to eminent bio-ethicist Professor Matthew Liao, of New York University, who also wants to see parents dosing their children with hormones and diets to keep them shorter and less of a burden on the planet.

He wants such people to be given  the ‘love drug/cuddle chemical’ oxytocin. This would increase their trust and empathy and make them more ready to change to emission-saving lifestyles.

As his peer-reviewed study puts it, “Pharmacologically induced altruism and empathy could increase the likelihood that we adopt the necessary behavioral and market solutions for curbing climate change.” He emphasises there would be no coercion. The drugs would merely help those who want to be climate-friendly behaviour but lack the willpower

Once sufficiently drugged, parents would be less likely to reject notions of “human engineering” techniques that will be needed to create Humans 2.0. These amended species will be 15cm shorter than now, hence more energy efficient and less resource-demanding. His study,  Human Engineering and Climate Change, is in  Ethics, Policy and the Environment.[1]

Some US reaction to Liao has been adverse. Investor’s  Business Daily used the headline, “Global Warming Fever Drove This Professor Completely Mad”.[2] It said that warmists are “bummed they can’t find enough naive people to buy into their story”. The looniest tune yet played is Liao’s, it said.

Liao’s study theorises that shorter humans could be achieved through embryo selection during IVF, plus drug and nutrient treatments to reduce birth weights. (High birth weight correlates with future height; low weights obviously correlate with risk to the baby).[3]  Anti-growth hormones could be fed to toddlers by climate-caring parents to create earlier closing of their bubs’ epiphyseal (growth) plates. Oh, and he also wants ecocidal meat eaters bio-altered to induce unpleasant reactions if they put pleasure ahead of planet and tuck into a T-bone.[4]

His paper, although now five years old and sometimes mistaken for a sceptic hoax, features today on his personal website. It merited him a gig at a recent Leftist-stacked Festival of Dangerous Ideas at Sydney Opera House, where he spoke  in front of  a banner, “Engineering humans to stop climate change”. His compere was the respectful Simon Longstaff, boss of Sydney’s  Ethics Centre , who introduced his guest as a “really great speaker…He is on the up, this guy. He is on the up!”

Editor-in-Chief of the Journal of Moral Philosophy, Liao is chair of bioethics and director of the Center for Bioethics at New York University’s philosophy department — ranked world No 1 for philosophy, Longstaff said. Liao was earlier deputy director in the Program on the Ethics of the New Biosciences in the philosophy faculty at Oxford University. Longstaff said it was ranked world No 2. The mind boggles at what must go on those university philosophy/bioethics units ranked from third to 100?

Liao began his Opera House talk with a visiting speaker’s typical home-town warm-up, in this instance about Sydney being such a beautiful city. After that, warming to his topic, he fretted that the city “might go underwater” because of rising seas.

Many environmental problems, such as climate change, need collective action, he continued, but humans remain stubbornly individualistic, which why drugs that increase empathy and altruism might bestow the benefits of societal cooperation and engagement. Test subjects given oxytocin hormones were more willing to share money with strangers, behave in more trustworthy ways, and better read other people’s emotions, he said.

He continued,  “Making children smaller may be unappealing, but so is the prospect of having our children grow up in a world blighted by the environmental consequences of our choices and lifestyles…

“To combat climate change we can either change the environment or change ourselves.  Given the enormous risks associated  with changing the environment, we should take  seriously that we need to change ourselves.”

Liao insists his human engineering  is all voluntary, but should be incentivised by tax breaks and health-cost discounts. What he failed to explain is how toddlers could volunteer to restrict their adult height to say, 5ft (152cm).

Liao asked, “Is it ethical for parents to make choices that would have  irreversible effects on their children’s lives? Not all human engineering involving children is necessarily controversial. For example, many parents are happy to give their children [anti attention-deficit disorder] drugs, such as Ritalin, to concentrate better in school.

“Making children small is more controversial so proceed with care. But parents  are permitted to give hormones so a daughter likely to be 6ft 6in (198cm) could instead be 6ft (183cm). On what ground should we forbid parents who want to give hormone treatments so that children become 5ft tall rather than 5ft 5in tall? If climate change would  effect millions of children including one’s own children,  then these children may also later appreciate and consent to the parents decisions.”

Liao’s paper says tall people create energy waste by their food intake, extra fuel for their cars, more fabric for clothes, and more wear and tear on shoes, carpets and furniture.[5] “Think of their lifetime carbon footprint, it is quite a lot,” he told interviewers during his Australian sojourn (he must have arrived by row-boat).

To curb planet-hurting population growth, a  UK doctors’ group had recommended that Britons confine themselves to two children. Liao instead suggested each British family be given emissions targets and within that, be incentivised to have either two normal-height children or multiple smaller ones.[6]

“We think we now have optimal height, and that  we should not do anything to mess with our height, but the reality (can be) much more fluid,” he said, noting that everyone was much shorter in the 19th century with no harm done. He said height is seen by many as a social advantage but that was not a reason to scratch the shortness-creating idea.  As his paper says, bungee jumping, tattoos and running marathons are also minority tastes but legitimate activities.

Ever-hopeful, Liao believes that once a few people started shortening their children, others might be similarly inspired, especially if given tax breaks. He conceded that poorer people are already shorter on average, and should not be encouraged to further shrink their offspring.

He told his audience that many people wanted to give up eating meat but enjoyed the taste too much.  To assist, their immune systems could be  primed to react to meat “and induce some sort of unpleasant experience, very mild. (Laughter). Even if the effect was not for a lifetime, the learning effect could persist a long  time.”

A safe way to induce such intolerance could involve a “meat patch”, akin to a  nicotine patch, that people could wear before going out to eat, he said. Liao concedes that the present “tackling” of climate change by changing behaviour (less travel, LED bulbs etc) and by top-down emissions schemes are inadequate. This has led to drastic and risky geoengineering proposals like   mirrors in space and seeding oceans with iron filings. Better and safer to use existing bio-medical techniques to alter humans instead, he says.

Liao dropped political correctness to remark that US women “of lower cognitive ability” bred faster under 18 years. If they could be cognitively enhanced with Ritalin or Modafinil, which some parents already give their children to improve concentration at school, these women might have lower birth rates. He also pre-empted Pauline Hanson by saying various public health measures are similarly taken, despite risks. He said, “People routinely vaccinate  to prevent acquiring diseases even though vaccinations have sometimes side effects and can even lead to deaths.”[7]

He agreed that bio-engineering against obesity would be climate-effective, “but  I focus on height because the issue of obesity is very politically sensitive,  raising a lot of issues and, on top, some discriminatory aspects –  talk about obesity, you know…a tricky situation.”  So Liao put this planet-saving measure aside because of potential backlash from “obesity identity” activists. Anti-height measures, however, are politically safe because tall people are already advantaged.

Liao wants each person to become carbon neutral, otherwise we should spend more money on space exploration – presumably so mankind find a new home on some other planet. “Scientists tell us we are close to the point of no return,” he said, apparently unaware of the hundreds of failed tipping point predictions.

Question time produced one ripper from an elderly lady, Margaret, who seemed a warmist sympathiser: “What percent of the  population would need to adopt any of these measures before they became effective  in altering the rate at which we are going through climate change?”

Liao, hitherto a picture of confidence, fumbled and stalled, saying it was empirical and had no idea in lieu of further and needed research: “So right now I am just sorting out ideas … we would need to figure out these further questions.”

I can tell him now: if the 7.5 billion people on the planet all shrank by 15cm, it wouldn’t lower global temperatures one jot.

The   climate-catastrophe evidence Liao cites for his Humans 2.0 makeover is the notoriously-flawed UK Stern Report (Stern is now calling for US$90 trillion funding for climate change) and the melting-Himalayan-glacier 2007  IPCC report run by then-IPCC chair and Rajendra Pachauri. [8] This report was so howler-laced that the InterAcademy Council ordered a forensic audit. The report found “significant shortcomings in each major step of IPCC’s assessment process”.

Tony Thomas’s book of essays, That’s Debatable – 60 Years in Print, is available here.



[1] Two co-authors are from  Oxford, where Liao did his Ph.D.

[2] September 30, 2015. Broken link but text cited.

[3] The paper says, “Birth weight at the lower edge of the normal distribution tends to result in the adult’s being ≈5 cm shorter. Birth height has an even stronger effect for adult height. If one is born at the lower edge of the normal distribution of height, this tends to produce ≈15 cm shorter adult height.” It continues that certain drugs could potentially regulate birth size and weight.

[4] The paper says “While eating red meat with added emetic (a substance that induces vomiting) could be used as an aversion conditioning, anyone not strongly committed to giving up red meat is unlikely to be attracted to this option. A more realistic option might be to induce mild intolerance (akin, e.g., to milk intolerance) to these kinds of meat.”

[5] The paper says, “Reducing the average US height by 15 cm would mean a mass reduction of 23% for men and 25% for women, with a corresponding reduction of metabolic rate (15%/18%), since less tissue means lower nutrients and energy needs.”

[6] British children were singled out because they each put 160 times more demand on the planet than an Ethiopian child, his paper says.

[7] No Leftist outrage ensued

[8] Pachauri, then 74, in 2015 was charged in New Delhi with sexual harassment and stalking involving a woman staffer less than half his age.  He resigned abruptly from the IPCC, was fired from his own think-tank and   the trial has been delayed via   costly procedural stages.  Strongly asserting his innocence, he is also suing the staffer for defamation.

 

Comments [24]

  1. Bill Martin says:

    This is definitely one of those situations which “if it were not true, you couldn’t make it up”. Of course the idea can be easily developed further by a scheme of getting rid of large chunks of populations by drugging them to enthusiastically top themselves to save the planet, polar bears, glaciers, etc. in the full knowledge that their selfless sacrifice will be highly valued by future, vertically challenged generations. Not sure how to incentives this aspect, but there must be a way to do it.

    One further thought: philosophy is the Greek word for “love of wisdom”. While that’s a well-known fact by most lay people, the vast majority of today’s philosophers seem to be utterly oblivious of it. They seem to confuse it with random, fanciful, irresponsible speculation for their own amusement and for the justification of their paycheck.

    • bts says:

      Over the years I have read in QO many an article or comment that I have found scary, but this one goes at once to the very top of the list.
      I have always had a problem with the simplistic proposition that, where climate change and environmentalism are concerned, “the science is settled”. It has always seemed to me that as soon as a seemingly reputable scientist screams “apocalypse now”, another seemingly as reputable cries “it’s all nonsense”.
      Professor Liao’s reported propositions, assuming that they have been accurately reported, take climate change and environmental fashion to a truly hideous new level. Perhaps I am overreacting, but I cannot see any difference of substance between the proposed types of deliberate human engineering and the activities of, to make an obvious comparison, Dr Mengele. To suggest that the obvious difference is that in the brave new world there will be parental choice, when there was not even the pretence of choice for the subjects of Dr Mengele’s human engineering, is to close one’s eyes to the reality of modern political life. Each day’s national news seems to bring to light some new form of totalitarianism, albeit for our own good if only we had the intelligence to understand.
      I take one other thing from Professor Liao’s reported comments. They confirm my long standing fear that environmentalism, climate change alarmism and multiculturalism have become nothing more than what I might call political cottage industries, giving immense practical political and social power to ambitious people who are comtemptuous of the very idea that in a truly free and democratic society they ought to get up on the hustings and ask their fellow citizens to give them by vote the power over others that they so obviously crave.
      Quem deus vult perdere prius dementat. Indeed.

      • padraic says:

        I came to similar conclusions, bts, on reading the above article. Hitler may be dead but his spirit lives on in the environmentalist religion. And making people shorter and switching from meat to lentils won’t achieve a reduction in greenhouse gases.

  2. Ian MacDougall says:

    1. Thermometers tell us little. While there is ice and snow at the poles and on the Himalayan Plateau, this planet’s overall heat content will lie within a stable range: as with a glass of iced water in a warming room. Said heat will show up mainly as sea-level rise. BUT…
    2. Tony Thomas, one of this site’s leading climate ‘sceptics’, has not fired the biggest cannon in his arsenal, and is clearly keeping it for his closing, final and decisive salvo.
    That debate-stopping argument is quite simple:
    Despite evidence to the contrary such as sea-level rise, the Earth’s climate could not possibly be changing in a warmer direction; because if it was, in the political final analysis and wash-up, it would likely be bad for established business. And particularly so for the fossil-carbon business.
    Hence IMHO the very strong correlation between right-wing (‘conservative’) politics and climate-change denial.
    Of course, such a political posture is anything but ‘conservative’, as the gaseous products of coal combustion (particularly carbon dioxide [CO2]) cause a net trapping of heat in the atmosphere. In the short term, it might be good for ‘conserving’ the assets and incomes of such as coal barons, but not those like us primary producers, whose assets and incomes are threatened by the extremes of weather predicted by mainstream climatologists.

    • whitelaughter says:

      Conservatives – are people who distrust change, and accept that even a beneficial change can have unforeseen negative consequences.

      Climate change – is the idea that environmental change will be a bad thing.

      It should be obvious to Blind Freddy that Conservatives were the ideal audience to give the idea of climate change a fair hearing. That they have by and large rejected it proves, not that their is some conspiracy of big business, but that the advocates of climate change couldn’t argue their way out of a paper bag! No, you will not sway an intelligent audience by appealing to groupthink, nor by the Appeal to Authority fallacy, nor by threats.

      The threats are the most counterproductive. A migrant who has fled here to get away from a Soviet “Do as we say or die” government is going to be unimpressed with a protest march full of Marxists claiming that unless we do what they say – we’ll die.

    • From your post- “Hence IMHO the very strong correlation between right-wing (‘conservative’) politics and climate-change denial.”

      Well IMHO the whole catastrophic AGW scenario/Global warming/climate change/unexpected weather events [or what ever new name the 'true believers' can invent] is just a hysterical invention in an attempt to justify socialism/’collective economic activity’/government control of the economy/loss of freedom and free markets, and that such an invention became necessary [and fashionable] after the Berlin wall came down and it became patent to anybody with even a modicum of common sense that communism had utterly failed. Communism is merely the logical end product of socialism being put into practice.
      What will it take before you have enough evidence that catastrophic AGW is a scam? A politician in Washington or Canberra being killed and eaten by a polar bear?

      • Ian MacDougall says:

        CURSES! CURSES! CURSES! CURSES! CURSES!
        MY PLAN’S EXPOSED!!!
        I was hoping that hysteria over AGW would start a free-for-all: a revolution, or bring on a civil war: stuff like that! At least bring down the Turnbull government!
        The warnings about AGW were just a means to a dastardly, mean spirited, but oh how devilishly delightful end: socialism, collective economic activity, government control of everything, and to buggery with freedom and free markets!!!
        Everyone off to the salt mines! We will have victory!!
        It would also be nice to see the Berlin Wall restored and the Cold War start all over again. But what hope of that now???
        “What will it take before you have enough evidence that catastrophic AGW is a scam?”
        Well if only one of the scientists involved in the CSIRO, Royal Society or other endorsee in the list of 198 were to roll over and denounce the whole scammeration, it would be a start.
        But they are painfully and mysteriously slow off the blocks on that.
        It would also be a big help if some of the more religious types (and I notice there are quite a few around this site) were to fall to prayer and ask Almighty God to do whatever is necessary to change the properties of CO2 and the other greenhouse gases so that their molecules no longer trapped heat outgoing or heat incoming. This of course to be done in such a way as not to cancel out the positive benefits of such heat-trapping. This might involve God in subjecting His Universe to one helluva stretch in the garage, but I see no reason why He would not oblige.

        • Jimbob says:

          “Scientific prophecy” at its’ very best.

          “AGW – in 100 years of thereabouts we will all either drown or be burnt to a cinder. This is an incontrovertible “fact” because the high priest in white lab coats tell us so!”

          Hmmmmm………..not a religion you reckon?

        • Ian, the first two ‘climate commissioners’ from Bob Hawke’s ‘climate commission’ – Bill Kinninmonth and David Evans BOTH resigned because they basically believed that catastrophic AGW was exaggerated. They had enough integrity to quit when the evidence didn’t match the theory. You can vouch for the 198 CSIRO scientists if you wish, but I would trust Bill and David over almost all the ‘experts’ in the world concerning this topic.
          PS sorry for the late reply but I have been away.

    • Anthony Cox says:

      What gibberish. I enjoy the articles here and its good to have an alarmist pest around to keep the blood circulating but you are abysmal. Alarmism is quintessential leftism at work masquerading as an issue of morality; all the ingredients of leftism are present: false evidence, corruption, cronyism, disdain for the hoi polio and self-regard along with that filthy greed which only the left can muster and which depends on legitimising theft through official state means.

      “net trapping of heat in the atmosphere”

      You’re an idiot.

      • ianl says:

        Note (from the trollster):

        > “Thermometers tell us little”

        followed by:

        > “Net trapping of heat in the atmosphere …”

        Absolutely pathetic – the “planet” is warming (it is always warming or cooling, no longer-term stasis) and has been since the collapse of the Little Ice Age, but measuring this with thermometers or satellite proxies tells us little, he says. Only the expansion of deep ocean water abysses through immeasurable warming (unconfirmed by the Argo buoys specifically deployed to measure this possibility) can possibly be accepted as empirical evidence, he says. How the minutely warming atmosphere can in turn warm deep oceanic abysses is left unexplained, avoided by order of the CAPS LOCK and repetitive, low-level sarcasm.

        Trollster’s 5th Law of Thermodynamics. His 4th Law is that heat attracts cold, like iron filings to a magnet or something. He really is abysmally stupid.

        And the actual topic of this thread – astro-turfing by Professor Liao – is studiously avoided. Of course Liao was loudly self-promoting, but it seems that laughing at this is akin to climate denial or something. Now watch the stale old accusation of economic self-interest surface yet again as a straw man.

        It is obvious, though, that the bulk of the population gropes along the same lines, refusing point-blank to think for themselves. Since in a democracy only the number of votes counts, I have long despaired. The Disenlightment proceeds.

        • Ian MacDougall says:

          ianl
          “Trollster’s 5th Law of Thermodynamics. His 4th Law is that heat attracts cold, like iron filings to a magnet or something. He really is abysmally stupid.”
          Is straw-man stuff like this the best you can do?
          Truuuuly pathetic!!!

      • Ian MacDougall says:

        AC:

        You’re an idiot.

        And a merry Christmas to you,too.

  3. Alice Thermopolis says:

    “Hence IMHO the very strong correlation between right-wing (‘conservative’) politics and climate-change denial.”

    In Professor Roger Pielke Jr’s recent talk as the GWPF (London)on ‘Climate Politics as Manichean Paranoia’, he indicated “climate change” – however defined, yet so seldom defined – is a “completely politicised” issue in the US.

    See video here:http://www.thegwpf.org/video-roger-pielke-jrs-talk-on-climate-politics-as-manichean-paranoia/

    If that’s the case here – it’s now all about one’s politics and no longer has little to with (objective, measurable, verifiable, honest)truth – then the opposite of IMHO must apply too, as denandsel suggests above.

    Are we jammed between a manichaen rock and a hot place on this vexed issue?

    IMHO Michael Crichton got it right in his “State of Fear”:

    “I am not arguing that global warming is the same as eugenics. But the similarities are not superficial. Those who opposed the theory were shouted down and called reactionary, blind to reality, or just plain ignorant. But in hindsight, what is surprising is that so few people objected. The past history of human belief is a cautionary tale. As Alston Chase put it, “when the search for truth is confused with political advocacy, the pursuit of knowledge is reduced to the quest for power.” That is the danger we now face. And this is why the intermixing of science and politics is a bad combination, with a bad history. We must remember the history, and be certain that what we present to the world as knowledge is disinterested and honest.”

    • Ian MacDougall says:

      Alice:

      And this is why the intermixing of science and politics is a bad combination, with a bad history.

      Are you saying here that political decision-makers should ignore the advice coming from scientists? And that those who do ignore scientific advice tend to make better decisions than those who don’t?
      Tony Abbott dismissed the science underpinning climate change and AGW as “crap”; not on the basis of any superiority of scientific understanding, but for purposes of accommodating himself to the ‘conservative’ political environment he had chosen to move within. In so doing, he made a (scientifically ignorant) judgement call. Such ‘conservatism’ is based on the shifting sands of wishful thinking, and a desire to learn whatever political dances are desired by those calling the tunes in the LNP Coalition.

      http://www.theaustralian.com.au/archive/politics/the-town-that-turned-up-the-temperature/news-story/6fe0d32a32e42341a12b999f6da82ec5

  4. Lawrie Ayres says:

    I will take these people seriously when they volunteer to jump off tall buildings to do their bit to save the planet. They remind me of the imams who convince suicide bombers they will get to heaven by blowing themselfes and others to smithereens. If heaven was guaranteed why wouldnt the imam take the direct route? Why do not these folk so concerned with saving the planet set an example?

    • Ian MacDougall says:

      Lawrie:

      I will take these people seriously when they volunteer to jump off tall buildings to do their bit to save the planet.

      198 scientific organisations world-wide endorse the position that climate change has been caused by human action. (See the URL below.) Why should any sympathiser or member of any one of them do that? Please explain?
      In my view, we are far more valuable holding up the Torch of Reason in regions where darkness prevails. Like around the fossil carbon shills of the extreme right of the LNP, and on this site. Here amid the beating tom-tom drums, there is much missionary work for us to do before any of us can saddle up, say “come on Tonto, our work’s done here” and ride off into the sunset.

      https://www.opr.ca.gov/s_listoforganizations.php

      • Jimbob says:

        Hi Ian

        Is human “reason” infallible?

        • Ian MacDougall says:

          Jimbob:

          It’s the best, and only, source of insight we have.
          It beats revelation every time, because conclusions based on reason are so testable, while those based on revelation are not. There have been as many revelations as there have been prophets.

          • Jimbob says:

            Hi Ian

            Do I take it from your response that “reason” is indeed fallible? You are not correct to say that conclusions based on “revelation” are not testable. Of course they are! If a prophecy comes to pass, it was a true prophecy; if it doesn’t, it was obviously a false prophecy. The only critical matter is the matter of timing. Just because something hasn’t come to pass yet, doesn’t mean that it won’t at some time in the future.

            That means that we who are waiting to see the effects of the prophecy can choose to dismiss the “prophecy” as being nonsensical because it is yet outside our experience. The event “prophesied” or “revealed” may not even happen in our own lifetime. Future generations will probably look back and judge us for being so ignorant and narrow minded.

            My question for you is how is this any different to the fruits of “reason”? Once upon a time it was quite “reasonable” to believe that the Sun went around the earth. This reasonably accords with what we actually see. In the morning we “see” the sun rise in the east, it quite literally “travels” through a defined distance and sets in the “west”. I could go on and on….flat earth? Lamarckian evolution? edge of the earth? all very reasonable based on what we see. Who’s to say what we take for “scientific” certainty today is nothing more than a mix of half truths and ignorance?

            And by the way, scientists are the most plentiful of “prophets” aren’t they? A scientific “truth” or “law” must surely predict the future infallibly. Until then, it’s just another theory which may end up being disproven by better thinking, a unique insight by some yet unborn genius or may never come to pass because an old, silly prophecy might just come true: Jesus might return and end the world as we know it!

  5. Ian MacDougall says:

    Jimbob, (@ July 31, 2017 at 8:43 pm)

    Jesus might return and end the world as we know it!

    Perhaps.
    Well, there are 2 approaches as I see it.
    For the first approach one has simply to remember a number: 24.
    Remember that, and you carry round inside your head the number of stars in the Universe. That is 10^24, or 10 raised to the power of 24, or a 1 with 24 zeroes after it.
    And around the one star that we know about in a bit of detail, we have around 10 planets in orbit. So we can raise 10^24 by an extra zero, and get an idea of the number of planets in the Universe, give or take a few.
    Assuming that our Earth is as biologically typical as it is in other ways, then 10^24 x10 = 10^25 is around the upper limit of planets in the Universe with intelligent life, as presently known to people with a handy astronomical telescope. So I suggest the trigger number to carry round in the head a much easier to remember 25.

    From a theological perspective, God’s Creation is mind-bogglingly vast.
    But then theology has to go one step further, and stuff it all up completely.
    I refer to the story bequeathed to us in Genesis 1.
    We are asked to believe that in the beginning, all was perfect..There was just the Sun, Moon and stars, and here on Earth, the Garden of Eden, with Adam and Eve amusing themselves as best they could. But then disaster. A talking snake persuaded Eve to take a bite out of a nice apple (?) that they had both been specifically forbidden by God Himself to eat.
    God had created the stars and galaxies, and invented quantum physics, and the chemistry, geology and biology that flow from that quantum physics. But when He discovered that a bite had been taken out of that apple, He really did His block. And so human history began: a litany of war, death, pillage and destruction without end.
    Genesis tells us that the fruit (‘apple’) was from the Tree of Knowledge of Good and Evil. So we might ask, what field of human endeavour deals with that?
    The answer: philosophy, a branch of which is science.
    So I conclude, thinking for myself here, that the Original Sin was philosophy, science and thinking for oneself. And by no mere coincidence, that is what the priests of all religions urge us not to do: rather to simply believe what they tell us, and to keep them in the manner to which they are accustomed. One of the yarns they want us to believe is precisely that one above: the Garden of Eden story.
    And there is no way out of it for them. Trendy Anglican clergy may say that Eden is a parable, and not to be taken literally. But in that case, everything in scripture is set up the same way.
    A blind alley there.
    Jesus came to pay the price for that Original Sin and to redeem the Earth. He also probably had to also visit a fair few of the other 10^25 planets and do likewise: get himself crucified, electrocuted, boiled in oil or whatever the favourite death to be imposed by the local Pontius Pilate might be: and an awful lot of times.
    He would be forgiven for chucking in the Redeemer’s job in favour of becoming a beachcomber up there somewhere in the Whitsundays.

  6. AlanIO says:

    Given that Australia is moving north at 50mm per year and humans do make a mess physically as well as verbally, it should be prudent for us all to stop spending and begging for everything. AlanIO