archive: Re: SETI Why would anyone look forward to sharing this galaxy?

Re: SETI Why would anyone look forward to sharing this galaxy?

jerry and judy ( jerbidoc@zianet.com )
Thu, 8 Oct 1998 15:52:23 -0600

>Sorry Jerry,
>But I think that almost everyone on earth would think it was "okay" if
>NASA
>found life forms living on Europa. Of course if they were something
>tasty like lobster, some folks might want to eat them. But the cost would
>likely prevent that from occurring.

I too would love to know if life can get started and seemingly thrive on a
site as far from the sun as is Europa (or Titan) with other long-term
reliable sources of warmth, but I feel secure with this curiosity because
if those guys were a threat to us, we would know it by now, or at least we
could stay far enough away(?) What I find risky is the attitude that most
humans have, probably because of popular books and movies, that encounters
with extra-solar life will be safe and somehow beneficial! This is so
illogical and reckless that I think someone should speak up. Once the
'cat's out of the bag' we won't be able to get it back in! and then all the
realization of how arrogant and stupid it was will be for naught. One
thing that's dependable about homo sapiens, it seems is we're arrogant and
stupid as often as we're humble and clever! Do you agree ?

>> Humans don't even seem to want to share the Earth with terrestrial
>life,
>> with which we're very closely related, and whose survival will have a
>major impact on our
>>own! Isn't this attitude part of what Dr. Sagan called being
>>'authentically' human? It's perfectly acceptable to kill all top
>predators from the
>>troublesome wolves and coyotes to rattlesnakes and black widows that
>>are just trying to eek out a living, on and on, some of the most highly
>>evolved creatures of this epoch!
>
>I don't get it. When they took up a collection for the children of the
>woman
>who was killed by a mountain lion, wasn't it only about 10% of what was
>collected for the poor little mountain lion kittens that were also left
>mother-less after the rangers killed the mother lion?
>(I wonder what the little human orphans will think of their fellow
>humans).

You're probably wrong, we as a society, will be paying much more for the
children even in this case, than for those kittens. Think about it. But
the kittens would have surely died or been killed without their mother. Is
this a case of humans being humble and clever instead of being arrogant and
stupid?

>>, but we await with bated-breath the data from Mars or the Antarctic!
>
>True..
>
>> Don't get me wrong, it would be constructive to know whether life can
>> arise on Mars or Europa, but that's all, we haven't evolved all this
>time
>> with an 'us or them' attitude to change
>
>Come lunchtime, yes many of us do want to eat. If other species have
>to die so that we may live, so be it. That's life on this earth.

In my mind, this isn't about eating, it's about longer life expectancies
and having too many children (and thankfully not losing any!). You can't
say "That's life on this earth." when we have changed the ecologically
balancing rules, but haven't drastically changed our reproductive behavior!

>>now, and the stakes will be very much higher in the next few millennia!
>>than they've ever been in the last 5 million years. That was a
>cakewalk!
>>Lions, leopards and huge cave bears, yawn!!! (I know, it's lions and
>>tigers and bears, oh my!)
>
>If by this, you mean that there are ETI out there that may not like us
>
>>It's probably is a very dangerous universe out there, I'd advise to
>>keep a very low profile and be very quiet! Shsssshhh!
>
>and might want to hurt us..?.. You are starting to sound a little
>paranoid.
>If they are a few million years more advanced and war-like, we won't
>feel a thing. It will all be over in a micro second. However, most folks
>think that's unlikey. There's no reason, nothing to gain & etc.
>(and maybe even expensive).

Wow, that's what we have on our side? It will all be over in a micro
second? or they may not have the current expenditures to apply to 'the
problem'? You're making me more paranoid.

>>And SETI, don't do anything (more) that's irreversible!!!
>
>If you are worried about an ETI hearing our radio transmittions, it's
>too late. They have aready reached hundeds of other star systems.
>And we can't call them back now.

This is probably incorrect. I've was corrected on another newsgroup for
saying that signals have reached out 60 LYs by now, so I don't know. The
argument from these radio guys was that commercial broadcasts would only
reach out a few LYs before becoming so diffuse and undecipherable, so as
not to worry. But they said if our exact 'position' in the background was
known that anything is possible. Beyond that, if the 1974 SETI
transmission pointed towards the Hercules Cluster was powerful enough to
reach 5 kiloparsecs then 'anyone' in that long cone will be able to detect
it.

>>Jerry
>>
>><rest snipped for bandwidth>
>
>Maybe this whole thing should have been snipped. In order to save
>bandwidth,
>I too will do my part and not copy this to any list. Only you will be
>able to scan
>this reply. Pease don't hit the reply button for me. I've used up enough
>spare
>time already.. Maybe Later, Rich <>

I don't know what you're referring to, because I found this on the list.

Jerry