New York Times on the Web Forums Science
Nazi engineer and Disney space advisor Wernher Von Braun helped give
us rocket science. Today, the legacy of military aeronautics
has many manifestations from SDI to advanced ballistic missiles. Now there is a controversial push for a new missile defense system.
What will be the role of missile defense in the new geopolitical
climate and in the new scientific era?
(437 previous messages)
lunarchick - 08:57am Oct 26, 2000 EDT (#438 of 448)
My point was:
The technical innovations gravitate into America.
This happens because USA has venture capital.
The innovations generate $endlessly.
Making USA a Superpower.
As a Superpower it has an obligation to nourish and sustain world peace.
You refer to other cultures .. specify.
kalter.rauch - 10:07am Oct 26, 2000 EDT (#439 of 448)
Earth vs <^> <^> <^>
The US has attracted innovation since it was born......before "venture capital". It's because the people that made America great were mostly Germans unleashed from stifling mental oppressions.
rshowalt - 11:49am Oct 26, 2000 EDT (#440 of 448)
On the subject of Missile Defense. A main rationale for spending sixty billion dollars on an anti missile system that probably wouldn't work was to save us from N. Korean missiles.
We're safer now, because of the conversations and accomodations being achieved by the U.S. administration and the N. Koreans. It looks like there will be no N. Korean nuclear missile threat.
The worst things don't always happen. Maybe other "hopeless" problems will resolve, through skillful human contact and negotiation.
lunarchick - 05:50pm Oct 26, 2000 EDT (#441 of 448)
I hear K. saying "You can take a German out of Germany and take the German out of the German" .. are you sure on this ... aren't they pernickerty creatures of habit and don't they all keep diaries - still!?
lunarchick - 05:53pm Oct 26, 2000 EDT (#442 of 448)
sixty billion dollars ... did that relate to a loan to be taken out, or use of treasury surplus - -- if the latter ....
kalter.rauch - 08:18am Oct 27, 2000 EDT (#443 of 448)
Earth vs <^> <^> <^>
lunarchick......perhaps a new hearing aid?!?!? You confuse precision with pedantry......
......perhaps you know my friend Rudi, with his little German helmet...hmmmmmm?!?!?
kalter.rauch - 08:33am Oct 27, 2000 EDT (#444 of 448)
Earth vs <^> <^> <^>
rshowalt......so, once Albright delivers Kim Jong Il his very own copy of The SubGenius Video, ARISE! to add to his vast library(20,000+ tapes according to The Net), everyone will live happily ever after......until Castro has his Big Dream II, or Qwadaffy reads revenge in the desert stars, or...or...or......?!?!?
Mutually Assured Distrust is MAD
You're essentially calling for the world's intelligence organizations to join forces in a Secret Shadow ORG......
rshowalt - 10:48am Oct 27, 2000 EDT (#445 of 448)
If I've ever denied the importance of American military strength, or military strength to any nation stae, or if I've ever denied the importance of good military information, I don't recall it. Don't think I ever made such a mistake.
I've said that nuclear weapons are militarily useless, corrupting, a clear danger to the safety of the world, and should be taken down. That is, I'm advocating the abolition of
one kind of weapon, for practical reasons that are in the essentially universal interest of human beings, whether they be soldiers or civilians. An analogy I'd use, but with renewed force, is asbestos, a long used insulation and fiber material now known to be unacceptably toxic. People responsible for buildings take down asbestos, not because they are against fiber, or insulation, but because a particular technical arrangement happens to be unacceptably dangerous.
The argument for taking down nuclear weapons is of the same sort, but hugely magnified. Nuclear weapons, in the current internet world are even more unacceptably dangerous than they used to be, and they could (in my view, probably will) destroy the world unless they are taken down.
If the U.S. wanted to get nucs down, I believe that something close to 99% of all the nuclear weapons in the world could be dismantled, and the weapons could be effectively outlawed, within a few months.
You speak of a "joining forces" of intelligence agencies. Don't think I've ever advocated that, (though intelligence operations of different nations have been communicating in various ways for centuries.)
Communication between intelligence agencies would be a good thing (
if they could check what they were telling each other ) because it would make surprises less likely, and it is surprises that make agressive military action a paying proposition.
No military, ever, wants to attack a fully informed enemy in a prepared defensive posture. So wide distribution of good information weakens offensive chances, and strengthens defenses. That is to say, widespread information serves the cause of stability. With the internet, and with more and more information flows, conventional war is getting to be less and less a reasonable kind of "politics by other means."
We'd have a far, far safer, more stable world if we outlawed nuclear weapons. Nobody wants to think of these weapons, because everybody is so viscerally afraid of them (as moviemakers know) but if we could overcome that fear, the mechanics of taking them down, according to the take down proposal of #266-269, this thread, which has now been much discussed, would be straightforward.
I still have some hopes for that proposal. So long as it is buried in a talkboard thread, and not validated by institutional means and more widely discussed, it can't bear fruit. But that validation may not be impossible. If people I'm talking to believed what I believe about the cast of characters (real names) in this thread since September has been, I suspect it would be possible.
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