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From att!CHARON.arc.nasa.gov!Hanson Fri Jun 15 00:00:14 1990
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Date: Thu, 14 Jun 90 20:31 PDT
From: Robin Hanson <>
Subject: Re: Science Court (Fact Forum)
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In <> Thomas Donaldson writes:
>I don't think the problem of choice
>can be resolved simply by creating or finding a consensus among "experts".
>You must make the choice, regardless.  Most people who have lived a 
>certain length of time come to realize that "expert consensus" is 
>usually a sign that they're all wrong and something quite different is
>coming down the road, rather soon.

I find it hard to believe Thomas means this literally.  Most experts agree that
walking across a freeway is unsafe; is that an indication that there's
probably a good reason to do it?  What could be "coming down the road"
besides speeding cars?

This all may seem to be off the subject of cryonics, but it's not.  There
are people I care very much for who are turned off by cryonics because it
seems so much like a cult.  Most people run (not walk) from "true believers" 
who come to your door and tell you, with that absolutely sure look in their 
eye, that they have THE MOST IMPORTANT news you will ever hear, that
everything THEY (experts/government/media) tell you is always wrong, and
that you must join US and give your all.  The reaction is immediate,
emotional, and deep.

Yes, I know, we don't go door to door, and the news IS important.  But Thomas's
post sure sounds like "everything they tell you is wrong".  Thomas of course
has a right to this opinion, and I imagine one had to be quite a contrarian 
to get into cryonics early, but I can't see cryonics really taking off
if it is associated with this view.  Eventually cryonics must seem as 
conservative as buying life insurance.  Which it really is.

Robin Hanson   (or )
415-604-3361  MS244-17, NASA Ames Research Center, Moffett Field, CA 94035
415-651-7483  47164 Male Terrace, Fremont, CA  94539-7921 

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