X-Message-Number: 10045
Date: Sun, 12 Jul 1998 14:26:07 -0500 (CDT)
Subject: Re: Gambling

Let me try one last time, very briefly.

Everything is an issue of gambling.  Certainty is not possible in advance.

My point about the "face on Mars" was simply this: it was a worthwhile gamble 
because of the 
potential payoff.  

(1) Yes, the evidence gathered SO FAR seemed to indicate little likelihood of 
life on Mars.  

(2) Yet there was the visual evidence which LOOKED LIKE an artifical monument.

(3) As there was already a photographic mission going into orbit the gamble 
seemed worth it.

Compare this gamble with cryonics.  It seems a worthwhile gamble of my time and 
money for the 
potential payoff: survival.  

(1) Yes, the evidence on cryonics gathered SO FAR seems to indicate little 
likelihood of life 
after death via cryonics.  

(2) Yet there is the evidence that makes cryonic suspension LOOK LIKE a means to
halting the 
progress of biological death.  

(3) As there already exist cryonics groups providing freezing capabilities, the 
gamble seems 
worth it.

For those who OMNISCIENTLY KNOW IN ADVANCE that the face on Mars COULDN'T be 
artificial, I ask 

you to remember that you are GAMBLING based on limited information.  The same 
for those who 

claim to OMNISCIENTLY KNOW IN ADVANCE that cryonics CAN'T be successful.  This, 
too, is a GAMBLE 
based on limited information.  

Please note the parallels.  Probability theory remains valid.

The only debate regards how much are you willing to gamble - whether you think 
the odds should 
ALWAYS determine whether you should take any chance.

I think it would have been ridiculous to NOT look.  I'm glad that we spent the 
money on that 

gamble.  The payoff would have been enormous and the probablities were 
uncertain.  I also spend 
money on the cryonics gamble.  I see no difference. 

-George Smith

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