View Poll Results: In your opinion, which is the greatest threat to the planet/

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  • Global Warming

    8 15.38%
  • Human overpopulation

    27 51.92%
  • Planet-killing meteor

    9 17.31%
  • Death of the Sun

    8 15.38%
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Thread: Greatest threat to this planet.

  1. #31
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    Re: Greatest threat to this planet.

    Quote Originally Posted by DA60 View Post
    The universe as a whole and/or other species on other planets (assuming they exist).

    Besides, other then slowly destroying the planet and causing great misery for huge numbers of people, I don't see a great point to humanity's existence at this point in it's evolution. Though it seems to be INCREDIBLY, slowly improving.

    You disagree...fine.
    What is the point of the existence of any creature, or of the universe itself?

    Perhaps the purpose of mankind is to bridge the gap between carbon based life and silicone based life. We may just be a necessary intermediate step.

    But, then, that supposes that there is a grand design and a goal to creation, and, further, that "creation" is the correct term.
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  2. #32
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    Re: Greatest threat to this planet.

    Quote Originally Posted by Bob Blaylock View Post
    There is no threat to this planet. To even ask the question misses an important point. To best illustrate the point that is missed, I'll quote a chapter from the novel Jurassic Park

    Hammond seemed to revive, and began bustling around, straightening up. “Well,” he said, “at least that disaster is averted.”

    “What disaster is that?” Malcolm said, sighing.

    “Well,” Hammond said, “They [dinosaurs] didn't get free and overrun the world.”

    Malcolm sat up on one elbow. “You were worried about that?”

    “Surely that's what was at stake,” Hammond said. “These animals, lacking predators, might get out and destroy the planet.”

    “You egomaniacal idiot,” Malcolm said in a fury. “Do you have any idea what you are talking about? You think you can destroy the planet? My, what intoxicating power you must have.” Malcolm sank back on the bed. “You can't destroy this planet. You can't even come close.”

    “Most people believe,” Hammond said stiffly, “that the planet is in jeopardy.”

    “Well it is not,” Malcolm said.

    “All the experts agree that our planet is in trouble.”

    Malcolm sighed. “Let me tell you about this planet” he said. “This planet is four and a half billion years old. There has been life on this planet for nearly that long. Three point eight billion years. The first bacteria. And, later, the first multicellular animals, then the first complex creatures, in the sea, on the land. Then the great sweeping ages of animals—the amphibians, the dinosaurs, the mammals, each lasting millions upon millions of years. Great dynasties of creatures arising, flourishing, dying away. All this happening against a background of continuous and violent upheaval, mountain ranges thrust up and eroded away, cometary impacts, volcanic eruptions, oceans rising and falling, whole continents moving… Endless constant and violent change… Even today, the greatest geographical feature on the planet comes from two great continents colliding, buckling to make the Himalayan mountain range over millions of years. The planet has survived everything in its time. It will certainly survive us.”

    Hammond frowned. “Just because it lasted a long time,” he said, “doesn't mean it is permanent. If there was a radiation accident…”

    “Suppose there was,” Malcolm said. “Let's say we had a bad one, and all the plants and animals died, and the earth was clicking hot for a hundred thousand years. Life would survive somewhere—under the soil, or perhaps frozen in the Arctic ice. And after all those years, when the planet was no longer inhospitable, life would again spread over the planet. The evolutionary process would begin again. It might take a few billion years for life to regain its present variety. And of course, it would be very different from what it is now. But the earth would survive our folly. Life would survive our folly. Only we,” Malcolm said, “think it wouldn't.”

    Hammond said, “Well, if the ozone layer gets thinner—”

    “There will be more ultraviolet radiation reaching the surface. So what?”

    “Well. It'll cause skin cancer.”

    Malcolm shook his head. “Ultraviolet radiation is good for life. It promotes mutation, change. Many forms of life will thrive with more UV radiation.”

    “And many others will die out,” Hammond said.

    Malcolm sighed. “You think this is the first time such a thing has happened? Don't you know about oxygen?”

    “I know it's necessary for life.”

    “It is now,” Malcolm said. “But oxygen is actually a metabolic poison. It's a corrosive gas, like fluorine, which is used to etch glass. And when oxygen was first produced as a waste product by certain plant cells—say, around three billion years ago—it created a crisis for all other life on our planet. Those plant cells were polluting the environment with a deadly poison. On earth, the concentration of oxygen was going up rapidly—five, ten, eventually twenty one percent! Earth had an atmosphere of pure poison! Incompatible with life!”

    Hammond looked irritated. “So what's your point? That modern pollutants will be incorporated, too?”

    “No,” Malcolm said. “My point is that life on earth can take care of itself. In the thinking of a human being, a hundred years is a long time. A hundred years ago, we didn't have cars and airplanes and computers and vaccines… It was a whole different world. But to the earth, a hundred years is nothing. A million years is nothing. This planet lives and breathes on a much vaster scale. We can't imagine its slow and powerful rhythms, and haven't got the humility to try. We have been residents here for the blink of an eye. If we are gone tomorrow, the earth will not miss us.”

    “And we might very well be gone,” Hammond said, huffing.

    “Yes,” Malcolm said, “we might.”

    “So what are you saying? We should not care about the environment?”

    “No, of course not.”

    “Then what?”

    Malcolm coughed, and stared into the distance. “Let's be clear. The planet is not in jeopardy. We are in jeopardy. We haven't got the power to destroy the planet—or to save it. But we might have the power to save ourselves.”
    I was wondering how many get this. The planet, the solar system, the galaxy and the universe couldn't care less what we do or don't do. We have to care because it's our home, not because of some duty to the universe. Funny that so many atheists actually make the Earth out to be some sort of deity to be worshiped.
    You can't reason anyone out of a position they didn't reason themselves into in the first place.

  3. #33
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    Re: Greatest threat to this planet.

    Quote Originally Posted by Dittohead not! View Post
    What is the point of the existence of any creature, or of the universe itself?

    Perhaps the purpose of mankind is to bridge the gap between carbon based life and silicone based life. We may just be a necessary intermediate step.

    But, then, that supposes that there is a grand design and a goal to creation, and, further, that "creation" is the correct term.
    I do not know...nor do I wish to discuss it (nothing personal).

    I have a very negative view of humanity in general and I do not think it would be any great loss were it to cease to exist (though again, I do not wish for that to happen).

    Others disagree...whatever.


    Good day.

  4. #34
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    Re: Greatest threat to this planet.

    Quote Originally Posted by aheeejd View Post
    Humans!
    Quote Originally Posted by DA60 View Post
    Humanity...period.
    Quote Originally Posted by Medusa View Post
    humans l think
    I see a few people are likely rooting for Ebola to go airborne.
    You can't reason anyone out of a position they didn't reason themselves into in the first place.

  5. #35
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    Re: Greatest threat to this planet.

    Quote Originally Posted by grip View Post
    I'm taking this poll question means "threat to human life", not literal destruction of the planet?

    Which excluded other possibilities, like Artificial Intelligence gone amok or a massive solar flare frying all our electrical equipment.
    Quote Originally Posted by Summerwind View Post
    Until the OP comments to that effect, I'll take the OP as written.
    It's all in the eye of the beholder. Different people have vastly different perspectives on this. For some, human life is everything. For others, it's a plague on the planet. And who knows what other perspectives there are. I think there is some scientific certainty that everything eventually comes to an end. Our personal lives, our race, life on Earth, Earth itself, the solar system, the galaxy, etc.... I think it is the survival instinct of all successful living things that drives us and also makes it very difficult for us to conceptually grasp the certainty of entropy and the end of life at our own level and greater.
    You can't reason anyone out of a position they didn't reason themselves into in the first place.

  6. #36
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    Re: Greatest threat to this planet.

    Quote Originally Posted by TeleKat View Post
    Nuclear warfare actually. The "dangers" listed are either too mild or too unrealistic to be considered valid threats.
    Very low on the threat threshold. Humanity would still survive.

    As to threats to Earth itself, the number one unknown planet killer would be a micro black hole passing through our core. Game over for the planet, and probably the solar system.

  7. #37
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    Re: Greatest threat to this planet.

    Quote Originally Posted by Papa bull View Post
    It's all in the eye of the beholder. Different people have vastly different perspectives on this. For some, human life is everything. For others, it's a plague on the planet. And who knows what other perspectives there are. I think there is some scientific certainty that everything eventually comes to an end. Our personal lives, our race, life on Earth, Earth itself, the solar system, the galaxy, etc.... I think it is the survival instinct of all successful living things that drives us and also makes it very difficult for us to conceptually grasp the certainty of entropy and the end of life at our own level and greater.
    Sorry, but "planet" only has one meaning regardless of your desire to attempt to put some sort of belief into it. If you wanted to discuss life or human life on the planet you should say so.
    jallman: "It's all good. At least you have a thick skin and can take being poked fun back at without crying. "

  8. #38
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    Re: Greatest threat to this planet.

    Quote Originally Posted by grip View Post
    I'm taking this poll question means "threat to human life", not literal destruction of the planet?

    Which excluded other possibilities, like Artificial Intelligence gone amok or a massive solar flare frying all our electrical equipment.
    Quote Originally Posted by Summerwind View Post
    Until the OP comments to that effect, I'll take the OP as written.
    Quote Originally Posted by Summerwind View Post
    Sorry, but "planet" only has one meaning regardless of your desire to attempt to put some sort of belief into it. If you wanted to discuss life or human life on the planet you should say so.
    Planet does only have one meaning, but I'm not going to bust someone's balls if they see "planet" and they think "mankind". Their thoughts on the subject would still be interesting and I don't see the point in being a thought nazi over it.
    You can't reason anyone out of a position they didn't reason themselves into in the first place.

  9. #39
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    Re: Greatest threat to this planet.

    Quote Originally Posted by Papa bull View Post
    What is the greatest threat this planet faces?
    the death of the sun is the only "disaster" that is inevitable.



  10. #40
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    Greatest threat to this planet.

    Quote Originally Posted by TurtleDude View Post
    the death of the sun is the only "disaster" that is inevitable.
    Actually, I understand that another larger galaxy is going to collide with ours (the Milky Way). That's gonna be a show none of us will get to see but tickets on the 50-yard line for that would be awesome.
    You can't reason anyone out of a position they didn't reason themselves into in the first place.

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