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    Missile Defense

Technology has always found its greatest consumer in a nation's war and defense efforts. Since the last attempts at a "Star Wars" defense system, has technology changed considerably enough to make the latest Missile Defense initiatives more successful? Can such an application of science be successful? Is a militarized space inevitable, necessary or impossible?

Read Debates, a new Web-only feature culled from Readers' Opinions, published every Thursday.

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lchic - 12:09pm Mar 22, 2002 EST (#760 of 770)

Would this 'single large city' be Homeland or World?

lchic - 12:17pm Mar 22, 2002 EST (#761 of 770)

On the MARKET ... the price of a stock is said to C O R R E C T ...

The MARKET .... knows the correct price (that's assuming both buyers and sellers have full and perfect and truthful information) ..

So if the MARKET worked in a perfect way stock prices would always be correct.

The point about the MARKET is that it is the place to put money ... and money for putting is continually available.

If the MARKET worked perfectly - then - 'inflation' .... paying more to get the same ... would not be the factor it is, and has been, for the last thousand years .... where it (inflation) is seen in the demise in buying power of the 'face value' of the coin of the realm ... all nations.

mazza9 - 12:23pm Mar 22, 2002 EST (#762 of 770)
Louis Mazza

RShow55: "Mazza, do you have a reasonable reason for questioning the paragraph above?"

It has never been observed except in your IMAGINATION!!!!

We can speculate about pixie dust and magic wands too. Scientific method does not include the word maybe.

If you care to be scientifically rigorous then you must give credence to the fact that during the test last week we did employ ballons and "defeated" the decoys. There has been no evidence that balloons have been employed by NK, China, Iraq, Iran or any other countries that are trying to develop MRBMs or ICBM.


rshow55 - 12:34pm Mar 22, 2002 EST (#763 of 770) Delete Message

Markets do what they do -- sometimes very well - sometimes terribly - - and there are issues of fact and context involved that are very important. Market "imperfections" like the massive overinvestment in optic cable long lines, Enron , and many other massive disproportions show that, though the market can be superb for some things -- it ought not to be worshiped.

We need to fit what we do to facts , as they are -- and to the complexities, human and organizational, that are there.

There are plenty of times when an "ethic of common provision" is absolutely essential - and arrangements based on that ethic are essential - for societies, and systems of societies.

But logic at the "sound bite level" can't serve a lot of important needs -- because things are just too complicated.

When we apply SIMPLE models of structure to circumstances that have a more complicated structure than we are thinking of, we can get into trouble.

We can fail to see how things work.

And we can be misled by thinking we see "contradictions" where there are no logical contradictions -- though there may be aesthetic or moral tensions.

A complex system can be two "contradictory" things at the same time -- in different places within the larger structure -- without contradiction.

Bertrand Russell got caught up with this one -- but for complicated circumstances, and for dealing with complicated histories, it is an essential thing to know.

If you know it -- solutions that seem "classified out of existence" are seen, and these solutions can be real.

Some moral points can get clarified, too.

. . . . .

At the level of logic - there are things that need to be clarified -- some things said by "postmodernists," taken alone, deny the possibility of workable certainty. But if you look at logical structures of connection in the real world, and some statistical arguments that have been much discussed since John Maynard Keyne's wrote A Treatise On Probability . . . we can get to enough certainty, and enough agreement, to be a lot safer and more comfortable than we are today.

Here's an example:

MISSILE DEFENSE is an important subject. Current missile defense programs cannot work, are a waste, and mislead us. There is no contradiction between these points.

gisterme - 12:34pm Mar 22, 2002 EST (#764 of 770)

"...We know that the MD programs set out in public can't work tactically..."

That's simply not the truth, Robert. I challenge you to back up those words. I know you can't or you would have long all the things you've been saying "can't be done" are gradually coming to pass. Four out of six BMD successes, is the evidence I hold up to refute your claim, Robert. The claims you make like that, ones based on emotion rather than fact, can only work within a fog of ignorance, Robert. The fog on the technical feasibility of BMD is rapidly clearing. What's being revealed does not at all support what you claim.

"...MD, in the ways that matter to me, at least, appears to be a massive fraud. I'm not alone in feeling so..."

Now that is true. You're a part of a tiny minority that feels that way. Unless you can come up with some realistic objections to MD, such as proving the threat doesn't exist, or proving infeasibility of MD (that gets tougher every day). Everybody knows it's easy to proclaim "fraud" but not so easy to show it. In the case of BMD it's particularly hard to prove some sort of fraud is going on because, for a military system under development, the MD program is very open. All flight tests are public. Test performance whether success or failure is public knowledge.

Talk is cheap and claims (both pro and con) are easy to make about something like a technical development project so long as the end result of the project is still over the horizon. However, once results began to become manifest, one way or the other, talk becomes less cheap because claims become accountable to reality.

It's far easier to speculate about what can't be seen than about what can.

rshow55 - 12:40pm Mar 22, 2002 EST (#765 of 770) Delete Message

Mazza, I think you're being unbelievably stupid and dishonest in mazza9 3/22/02 12:23pm . Perhaps others disagree.

Science deals with notions of probability all the time - - and must.

And "we defeated balloons" is a statement that means no more than it does -- you have to think of the context. And I notice that you are not responding to my clear point in MD752.

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