I sometimes wonder if hype about artificial intelligence, the wonderful or terrible things it will do for or to us, functions as a deliberate distraction.
On Earth Day 2009, we are reminded of the ecological importance of recycling. As a professor in the Department of Ecology and Evolution at The University of Chicago, Jerry A. Coyne must be keen on recycling: He even recycles worn-out arguments for Darwinism. If “evolution” meant simply that existing species can undergo minor changes over time, or that many species alive today did not exist in the past, then evolution would undeniably be true. But “evolution” for Coyne means Darwinism — the theory that all living things are descendants of a common ancestor, modified by unguided natural processes such as DNA mutations and natural selection.
Today is Earth Day. And it is worth pondering once again how marvelous Earth really is. Yet I find my mind today asking why anyone should care for Earth. From the materialist perspective, we are not really “supposed” to be here. And, we’re the late-comers to the party! So it always amazes me that many materialists are such avid environmentalists. But maybe this should not be surprising; after all, if one is a materialist, the earth is all there is, so we better keep it going! This response, however pragmatic, doesn’t satisfy me, though. For why should we keep anything going? For if the materialist is saying that the Earth is of intrinsic value, we can (indeed we must!) ask, Read More ›