DailyDirt: Playing With Biological Fire?

from the urls-we-dig-up dept

There was a time when, if something was viral, it was almost certainly a bad thing. (Now, being viral could mean you're going to be the next Justin Bieber.) With current biotech research, the end of common diseases could be at hand or we could be launching ourselves into the next era of viciously untreatable illnesses that we've had a hand in creating. Hopefully, we're not going to be living out a bad sci-fi movie plot anytime soon. Here are just a few potential precursors to the apocalypse, though. As always, StumbleUpon can also recommend some good Techdirt articles, too.


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    Lawrence D'Oliveiro, Feb 9th, 2011 @ 5:58pm

    To Those Who Demur About “Playing God” ...

    The term “playing God” is often brought up by those scared of every new scientific development. It’s worth noting that when anaesthetic was invented, there were those who saw it as contrary to God’s wishes, since it said in the Christian Bible that women were supposed to suffer in childbirth.

    (Interesting to compare the reaction to labour-saving machines that obviated the need for men to work “by the sweat of their brow”, as per that same Christian Bible passage. Those didn’t seem to raise anywhere near the same religious fuss...)

     

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      Michael Ho (profile), Feb 9th, 2011 @ 7:20pm

      Re: To Those Who Demur About “Playing God” ...

      For the record, I'm all for "playing god" -- as long as we at least try to minimize the potential damage. Rivers on fire were literally the result of unregulated chemical pollution not too long ago....

       

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        Lawrence D'Oliveiro, Feb 9th, 2011 @ 8:08pm

        Re: To Those Who Demur About “Playing God” ...

        I’m not just for it, I don’t think we have a choice any more. Our technological progress so far has irretrievably changed our environment (not just our surroundings, but our social structures and even our bodies). This has led to some unexpected effects (good and bad), but it is too late to stop and say “thus far and no farther”. The only way we can ameliorate the bad effects of technology is with even more technology. It is impossible to simply revert the system to a previous state; the only way is forward.

         

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    Rose M. Welch (profile), Feb 9th, 2011 @ 6:33pm

    Justin Bieber is a bad thing.

     

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    Christopher (profile), Feb 9th, 2011 @ 11:04pm

    I never understood why we had to make diseases that were even worse than the ones we already had. There just is no SANE reason for it, because these things are going to be stolen and used by terrorists sooner or later.

    Just focus on finding cures for the diseases that we already have, and LOCK UP those who try to make even worse diseases.

    To the first poster... no such thing as 'god'. Yes, there might have been very powerful people in the past, but that doesn't make them 'gods' anymore than us having nuclear weapons would make us 'gods' to people living 2000 years ago.

     

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    Jimr (profile), Feb 10th, 2011 @ 5:28am

    Flaming Mo!

    We are not "playing god" but just doing God's will. After all if God did not want us doing it then a sign would appear or some divine action would occur to stop us.... maybe the Muslim extremists are working under the divine guidance of the one true God.

    Just like those nay says that claim if God wanted us to fly we would have been given wings. Well we where given wings through out minds and the power of invention. Like our three eyed fish friend, blinky, how do we know it was all not part of some divine plan.

     

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    Shon Gale (profile), Feb 10th, 2011 @ 6:21am

    Well remember when the word Hacker meant you were just good at computers. The bad guys were called Crackers. I started out being a hacker then it became a bad thing because the media thought Hacker sounds better than Cracker or maybe they were just white folks nervous about the word Cracker.

     

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    Pixelation, Feb 10th, 2011 @ 8:37am

    You know, if Intellectual Ventures would get off their asses and produce the Photonic Fence for sale we wouldn't have to bother messing with releasing sterile mosquitos. Oh, that's right, they're just patent trolls and don't have any real products. Too bad.

     

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    Acoi, Feb 10th, 2011 @ 8:54am

    Nice reference

    "and I, for one, welcome our new insect overlords." Nice Simpsons Reference.

     

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