How Do You Rate Our Chances of Long Term Survival? (1 Viewer)

How Do You Rate The Human Species Chances of Long Term Survival?

  • Clear sailing, full steam ahead.

    Votes: 0 0.0%
  • I’m optimistic humans can overcome any obstacles.

    Votes: 3 27.3%
  • I’m pessimistic that humans can turn the corner into the future.

    Votes: 2 18.2%
  • We will destroy ourselves, we’re doomed.

    Votes: 6 54.5%

  • Total voters
    11
  • Poll closed .

Users who are viewing this thread

    Huntn

    Misty Mountains Envoy
    Joined
    Mar 8, 2023
    Messages
    419
    Reaction score
    373
    Location
    Rivendell
    Offline
    The Human Species, how do you rate our chances at making it to a space traveling future versus destroying ourselves because 1) we don’t get along and 2) are selfish and 3) will destroy the environment kind of like bacteria that gobbles everything up and then perishes?

    Of interest consider two arguments/ideas.
    The Fermi Paradox which wonders why can’t we detect any civilizations anywhere.

    The Great Filter- an idea that the reason we see no evidence of intelligent life is because it’s just too difficult for civilizations to get their **** in one bag and that most (maybe not all) advanced civilizations collapse, ie destroy themselves before making it the stars.

     
    I'm an avid student of history as well as a huge Sci Fi fan so I'm very familiar with the Fermi Paradox

    I am also a strong believer in human ingenuity.

    Through out human history civilisations have risen and fallen and I am not sure that we will achieve starflight within the next hundreds of years. and as a matter of fact we may face a very grave future on the short term. But barring a total planetary destruction I still believe in humanity as a whole if we ever grow up. But short term I fear we have some serious lessons to learn before we get to that point.
     
    I'm an avid student of history as well as a huge Sci Fi fan so I'm very familiar with the Fermi Paradox

    I am also a strong believer in human ingenuity.

    Through out human history civilisations have risen and fallen and I am not sure that we will achieve starflight within the next hundreds of years. and as a matter of fact we may face a very grave future on the short term. But barring a total planetary destruction I still believe in humanity as a whole if we ever grow up. But short term I fear we have some serious lessons to learn before we get to that point.

    I happen to agree with Uncle Bob.

    This I Believe
    Robert A. Heinlein

    I am not going to talk about religious beliefs but about matters so obvious that it has gone out of style to mention them. I believe in my neighbors. I know their faults, and I know that their virtues far outweigh their faults.

    Take Father Michael down our road a piece. I'm not of his creed, but I know that goodness and charity and loving kindness shine in his daily actions. I believe in Father Mike. If I'm in trouble, I'll go to him.

    My next-door neighbor is a veterinary doctor. Doc will get out of bed after a hard day to help a stray cat. No fee -- no prospect of a fee -- I believe in Doc.

    I believe in my townspeople. You can knock on any door in our town saying, "I'm hungry," and you will be fed. Our town is no exception. I've found the same ready charity everywhere. But for the one who says, "To heck with you -- I got mine," there are a hundred, a thousand who will say, "Sure, pal, sit down."

    I know that despite all warnings against hitchhikers I can step up to the highway, thumb for a ride and in a few minutes a car or a truck will stop and someone will say, "Climb in Mac -- how far you going?"

    I believe in my fellow citizens. Our headlines are splashed with crime yet for every criminal there are 10,000 honest, decent, kindly men. If it were not so, no child would live to grow up. Business could not go on from day to day. Decency is not news. It is buried in the obituaries, but is a force stronger than crime. I believe in the patient gallantry of nurses and the tedious sacrifices of teachers. I believe in the unseen and unending fight against desperate odds that goes on quietly in almost every home in the land.

    I believe in the honest craft of workmen. Take a look around you. There never were enough bosses to check up on all that work. From Independence Hall to the Grand Coulee Dam, these things were built level and square by craftsmen who were honest in their bones.

    I believe that almost all politicians are honest ... there are hundreds of politicians, low paid or not paid at all, doing their level best without thanks or glory to make our system work. If this were not true we would never have gotten past the 13 colonies.

    And finally, I believe in my whole race. Yellow, white, black, red, brown. In the honesty, courage, intelligence, durability, and goodness of the overwhelming majority of my brothers and sisters everywhere on this planet. I am proud to be a human being. I believe that we have come this far by the skin of our teeth. That we always make it just by the skin of our teeth, but that we will always make it. Survive. Endure. I believe that this hairless embryo with the aching, oversize brain case and the opposable thumb, this animal barely up from the apes will endure. Will endure longer than his home planet -- will spread out to the stars and beyond, carrying with him his honesty and his insatiable curiosity, his unlimited courage and his noble essential decency.

    This I believe.

    --Robert A. Heinlein
     
    I happen to agree with Uncle Bob.

    This I Believe
    Robert A. Heinlein

    I am not going to talk about religious beliefs but about matters so obvious that it has gone out of style to mention them. I believe in my neighbors. I know their faults, and I know that their virtues far outweigh their faults.

    Take Father Michael down our road a piece. I'm not of his creed, but I know that goodness and charity and loving kindness shine in his daily actions. I believe in Father Mike. If I'm in trouble, I'll go to him.

    My next-door neighbor is a veterinary doctor. Doc will get out of bed after a hard day to help a stray cat. No fee -- no prospect of a fee -- I believe in Doc.

    I believe in my townspeople. You can knock on any door in our town saying, "I'm hungry," and you will be fed. Our town is no exception. I've found the same ready charity everywhere. But for the one who says, "To heck with you -- I got mine," there are a hundred, a thousand who will say, "Sure, pal, sit down."

    I know that despite all warnings against hitchhikers I can step up to the highway, thumb for a ride and in a few minutes a car or a truck will stop and someone will say, "Climb in Mac -- how far you going?"

    I believe in my fellow citizens. Our headlines are splashed with crime yet for every criminal there are 10,000 honest, decent, kindly men. If it were not so, no child would live to grow up. Business could not go on from day to day. Decency is not news. It is buried in the obituaries, but is a force stronger than crime. I believe in the patient gallantry of nurses and the tedious sacrifices of teachers. I believe in the unseen and unending fight against desperate odds that goes on quietly in almost every home in the land.

    I believe in the honest craft of workmen. Take a look around you. There never were enough bosses to check up on all that work. From Independence Hall to the Grand Coulee Dam, these things were built level and square by craftsmen who were honest in their bones.

    I believe that almost all politicians are honest ... there are hundreds of politicians, low paid or not paid at all, doing their level best without thanks or glory to make our system work. If this were not true we would never have gotten past the 13 colonies.

    And finally, I believe in my whole race. Yellow, white, black, red, brown. In the honesty, courage, intelligence, durability, and goodness of the overwhelming majority of my brothers and sisters everywhere on this planet. I am proud to be a human being. I believe that we have come this far by the skin of our teeth. That we always make it just by the skin of our teeth, but that we will always make it. Survive. Endure. I believe that this hairless embryo with the aching, oversize brain case and the opposable thumb, this animal barely up from the apes will endure. Will endure longer than his home planet -- will spread out to the stars and beyond, carrying with him his honesty and his insatiable curiosity, his unlimited courage and his noble essential decency.

    This I believe.

    --Robert A. Heinlein
    Consider when Heinlein wrote this, likely during the optimistic boom times (50s?). The prosperous Western Countries have shown over and over again that though policy they either don’t give a damn, or can’t see the big picture, that shipping tens maybe hundreds of millions of jobs East for profit and the detriment of the environment and their fellow citizens is self destructive.

    I’ve said for decades we will not voluntarily grapple with this issue as long as there is big money to be made, and fellow citizens who allow themselves to be disenfranchised, until some great calamity forces us to. I never believed I‘d see the Arctic melt in my life time, and you’ll remember how Al Gore was ridiculed by the Right for saying it was going to happen. It’s much easier for Humans to turn a blind eye if there is money to be made, until you are personally effected and forced to acknowledge that our greediness blinds us to reality until we are knocked up side the head by it.
     
    I happen to agree with Uncle Bob.

    This I Believe
    Robert A. Heinlein

    I am not going to talk about religious beliefs but about matters so obvious that it has gone out of style to mention them. I believe in my neighbors. I know their faults, and I know that their virtues far outweigh their faults.

    Take Father Michael down our road a piece. I'm not of his creed, but I know that goodness and charity and loving kindness shine in his daily actions. I believe in Father Mike. If I'm in trouble, I'll go to him.

    My next-door neighbor is a veterinary doctor. Doc will get out of bed after a hard day to help a stray cat. No fee -- no prospect of a fee -- I believe in Doc.

    I believe in my townspeople. You can knock on any door in our town saying, "I'm hungry," and you will be fed. Our town is no exception. I've found the same ready charity everywhere. But for the one who says, "To heck with you -- I got mine," there are a hundred, a thousand who will say, "Sure, pal, sit down."

    I know that despite all warnings against hitchhikers I can step up to the highway, thumb for a ride and in a few minutes a car or a truck will stop and someone will say, "Climb in Mac -- how far you going?"

    I believe in my fellow citizens. Our headlines are splashed with crime yet for every criminal there are 10,000 honest, decent, kindly men. If it were not so, no child would live to grow up. Business could not go on from day to day. Decency is not news. It is buried in the obituaries, but is a force stronger than crime. I believe in the patient gallantry of nurses and the tedious sacrifices of teachers. I believe in the unseen and unending fight against desperate odds that goes on quietly in almost every home in the land.

    I believe in the honest craft of workmen. Take a look around you. There never were enough bosses to check up on all that work. From Independence Hall to the Grand Coulee Dam, these things were built level and square by craftsmen who were honest in their bones.

    I believe that almost all politicians are honest ... there are hundreds of politicians, low paid or not paid at all, doing their level best without thanks or glory to make our system work. If this were not true we would never have gotten past the 13 colonies.

    And finally, I believe in my whole race. Yellow, white, black, red, brown. In the honesty, courage, intelligence, durability, and goodness of the overwhelming majority of my brothers and sisters everywhere on this planet. I am proud to be a human being. I believe that we have come this far by the skin of our teeth. That we always make it just by the skin of our teeth, but that we will always make it. Survive. Endure. I believe that this hairless embryo with the aching, oversize brain case and the opposable thumb, this animal barely up from the apes will endure. Will endure longer than his home planet -- will spread out to the stars and beyond, carrying with him his honesty and his insatiable curiosity, his unlimited courage and his noble essential decency.

    This I believe.

    --Robert A. Heinlein
    Shiny happy people holding hands...

    Until you realize:
    Father Michael is molesting kids or burying them in his back yard.
    The neighbor helps a stray cat but not a person of color.
    The number of murders and robberies that occur on highways.
    His fellow citizens vote for people like Trump and his sycophants.
    All of the fake/pirate merchandise you can find everywhere.
    What can I say to someone who believes almost all politicians are honest. The low paid (no paid at all, ha!) doing their level best are usually bureaucrats.
    The human race is destroying their own planet, (not so) slowly but surely.

    No wonder he wrote sci-fi.
     
    The odds that we'll one day be able to travel to and colonize other planets are exceedingly low, practically nil. The universe is mostly a vast vacuum that is incredibly hostile to life, and humans are specifically evolved to this planet and all of it's myriad characteristics.

    Consider that even much of the planet we evolved on is hostile to our survival -- we can't survive underwater and that is 2/3 of the planet, not to mention areas of extreme heat and cold. But to colonize elsewhere you'd have to find a planet that was almost an exact duplicate of earth in its current state -- same atmosphere, same gravitational pull, same solar radiation. Just a little off -- too much toxic gas in the atmosphere, insufficient ozone layer, etc. -- and it'd be no different than trying to breath underwater, i.e., instant death.

    Not to mention that even if you could find a goldilocks planet, to colonize it you'd have to find a way to get there. The closest neighboring star system is Alpha Centauri, and it's estimated it would take 6000 years to get there with current technology.

    But, again, the universe is simply not conducive to supporting life and our existence is the exception, not the rule, as a near infinite number of circumstances had to line up for life to develop. That doesn't mean that it's impossible that life is elsewhere in the universe -- there are an estimated 200 billion trillion stars, and if each hosts a system of planets then that creates a lot of opportunities. Roll the dice enough times, so to speak, and you would expect an occasional life supporting planet to develop as an exception to the norm, just as it did here.

    But human existence is entirely dependent upon this planet continuing to be livable for us. At some point that will not be the case -- either we'll damage it to the point that it will no longer support us, or another giant asteroid may come along causing a mass extinction, or eventually the sun will simply expire and go super nova -- and at that point the human race will cease to exist. In the meantime, enjoy what time you have and do your best to try to make the world a better place while you're here.
     
    The odds that we'll one day be able to travel to and colonize other planets are exceedingly low, practically nil. The universe is mostly a vast vacuum that is incredibly hostile to life, and humans are specifically evolved to this planet and all of it's myriad characteristics.

    Consider that even much of the planet we evolved on is hostile to our survival -- we can't survive underwater and that is 2/3 of the planet, not to mention areas of extreme heat and cold. But to colonize elsewhere you'd have to find a planet that was almost an exact duplicate of earth in its current state -- same atmosphere, same gravitational pull, same solar radiation. Just a little off -- too much toxic gas in the atmosphere, insufficient ozone layer, etc. -- and it'd be no different than trying to breath underwater, i.e., instant death.

    Not to mention that even if you could find a goldilocks planet, to colonize it you'd have to find a way to get there. The closest neighboring star system is Alpha Centauri, and it's estimated it would take 6000 years to get there with current technology.

    But, again, the universe is simply not conducive to supporting life and our existence is the exception, not the rule, as a near infinite number of circumstances had to line up for life to develop. That doesn't mean that it's impossible that life is elsewhere in the universe -- there are an estimated 200 billion trillion stars, and if each hosts a system of planets then that creates a lot of opportunities. Roll the dice enough times, so to speak, and you would expect an occasional life supporting planet to develop as an exception to the norm, just as it did here.

    But human existence is entirely dependent upon this planet continuing to be livable for us. At some point that will not be the case -- either we'll damage it to the point that it will no longer support us, or another giant asteroid may come along causing a mass extinction, or eventually the sun will simply expire and go super nova -- and at that point the human race will cease to exist. In the meantime, enjoy what time you have and do your best to try to make the world a better place while you're here.
    I disagree with your assessment of survivability.
    All humans really need is energy.
    Given that, we can create our own habitations, mine oxygen, etc.

    With time, better technology and the political will, we can master the solar system in 2-300 years.
     
    I disagree with your assessment of survivability.
    All humans really need is energy.
    Given that, we can create our own habitations, mine oxygen, etc.

    With time, better technology and the political will, we can master the solar system in 2-300 years.
    I don’t see any reason to be an optimist at this point. I think it’s going to take a historic crisis and tens/hundreds of millions dead or dying and possibly it will be too late if the Earth turns into an oven before we see the light and can find the will power.
     
    I read much Heinlein when I was younger. His drift into libertarian nonsense was unfortunate.

    Beyond that? Well, the planet even if it gets too hot would continue to survive long after humans leave/die off. We could, in theory, make it uninhabitable but that is unlikely. Animals and plants will adapt. I do doubt the ability for large scale communitarian action to move humanity toward the future. Too much toxic theomythology prevents that.

    As for aliens and contact? We are arrogant in our assumptions either way. Imo, which you may call arrogant, the distances involved are far too great. We do not know how civilizations may or may not have formed, rose, declined and died. We do not know what environmental issues they may have dealt with or ignored. Perhaps a better question is why would aliens bother with this little mud ball? We haven’t done any interstellar traveling. We have barely made it to our companion which is less than 1/4 million miles away.

    I prefer to think that there is life and civilizations on other worlds. It is unlikely that they would encounter us or vice versa for a long time. We have only been technologically “advanced” for a couple of hundred years. Even that is questionable when we see Twitter, Facebook, reality TV and Tik Tok “challenges”. Growing up? Not by a long shot.
     
    I read much Heinlein when I was younger. His drift into libertarian nonsense was unfortunate.

    Beyond that? Well, the planet even if it gets too hot would continue to survive long after humans leave/die off. We could, in theory, make it uninhabitable but that is unlikely. Animals and plants will adapt. I do doubt the ability for large scale communitarian action to move humanity toward the future. Too much toxic theomythology prevents that.

    As for aliens and contact? We are arrogant in our assumptions either way. Imo, which you may call arrogant, the distances involved are far too great. We do not know how civilizations may or may not have formed, rose, declined and died. We do not know what environmental issues they may have dealt with or ignored. Perhaps a better question is why would aliens bother with this little mud ball? We haven’t done any interstellar traveling. We have barely made it to our companion which is less than 1/4 million miles away.

    I prefer to think that there is life and civilizations on other worlds. It is unlikely that they would encounter us or vice versa for a long time. We have only been technologically “advanced” for a couple of hundred years. Even that is questionable when we see Twitter, Facebook, reality TV and Tik Tok “challenges”. Growing up? Not by a long shot.
    The thing is if there is interest by an advanced species to know if they are alone or not, it would not be a stretch to intercept radio waves…the other obvious issue is do we want to draw attention? Apparently humans do. :)
     
    The thing is if there is interest by an advanced species to know if they are alone or not, it would not be a stretch to intercept radio waves…the other obvious issue is do we want to draw attention? Apparently humans do. :)

    Our transmissions are at most 120 light years out.

    For all we know, the Boötes Void is the result of a 200 million year-old civilization that put Dyson spheres around a whole buttload of suns.
     
    Our transmissions are at most 120 light years out.

    For all we know, the Boötes Void is the result of a 200 million year-old civilization that put Dyson spheres around a whole buttload of suns.
    Hmm…how does a buttload compare to a crap ton?

    Sorry, couldn’t resist.
     
    The Human Species, how do you rate our chances at making it to a space traveling future versus destroying ourselves because 1) we don’t get along and 2) are selfish and 3) will destroy the environment kind of like bacteria that gobbles everything up and then perishes?

    Of interest consider two arguments/ideas.
    The Fermi Paradox which wonders why can’t we detect any civilizations anywhere.

    The Great Filter- an idea that the reason we see no evidence of intelligent life is because it’s just too difficult for civilizations to get their **** in one bag and that most (maybe not all) advanced civilizations collapse, ie destroy themselves before making it the stars.

    When you gave two alternate possibilities you left out the possibility of continuation. That we continue on as we have been is the possibility which I think is the most likely.

    That we destroy ourselves I suppose is possible, but unlikely in an absolute sense. We might be rather diminished of population by hardship brought on by acts of nature or our own actions. Anything I can foresee is unlikely to kill off all of us. There would be a place somewhere on Earth, or in the Earth, that had climate conditions that would allow for survival until the Earth could heal. Might take thousands of years to heal. We might revisit living in caves around a fire without a written language. Or any other tools which we didn't make from rocks and sticks. As long as a few survive and the sun continues to shine there is hope for mankind.

    I've studied physics and have done the math. I cannot see a way around it. We simply don't live long enough lives to travel to another sun and then find a planet suitable to live on.

    Maybe we could teraform a planet or moon in our own solar system to live on as well as continuing to live on Earth.
     
    Warnings About Artificial Intelligence: Talked about here:

    ————
    I’m a big fan of the Star Trek Next Gen idea of the Socialist Utopia. Imagine your life spent improve yourself, helping your species and the planet, not pushing a broom, digging a ditch, or handing people food across a counter as a means of supporting yourself. Automation makes this prospect more likely but it arguably is not compatible with Capitalism, and the small percentage who holds most of the wealth.

    So I am ahead of myself with the idea of humans creating a socialist utopia. We are not anywhere close to that. We are closer to cave people than Star Trek, we are selfish. To much me, mine, not enough we, us. Yes 200 years ago small tribes did pull together, but that no longer exists for the most part.

    Anyhow, while not an economist by any means, I’ve been citing an issue with Capitalism and automation forever. The common good seems to be something that is begrudged, because it means money comes out of my pocket to support someone else.

    Capitalism has historically been great at creating wealth, but not for everyone, it feeds our selfishness. Although there are a few exceptions, mostly Capitalism and corporations only cares about making money for me, a small group of we, they don’t care about the big we, they are happy to send jobs other places to pollute the Earth and disenfranchise fellow citizens (we are supposed to be on the same team) and pay other people at slave wages so I can be wealthy. And then you want me to pay taxes to support these other losers? :oops:
     
    Last edited:
    No one gets out of here alive. That's life as it is, followed by death.

    But it is possible that the human race will survive until the sun stops shining.
    I’ll say if we do survive until the sun stops shining, there is a good chance that we’ll have found another sun to live near by. This takes me back to ideas that are our obstacles, the Fermi Paradox and The Great Filter.

    However, we are talking about is the human species here and what we do to each other for personal advantage around the globe, despite relative great intelligence, even what we do to fellow citizens based on race and prejudice, people on our team, as a matter of routine. Is this a characteristic of higher intelligence? Maybe, when applied to humans. That’s why I don’t have confidence in the ability of the species to navigate into the future. Too much me, or small groups of we benefit over the masses.

    Then there are those who would argue the masses are a burden they don’t need to worry about, but the only reason a Musk like person can build a space ship or develop the electric car is because hundreds of millions of people banded together in some form to allow someone like this with the idea and energy, and an economic system that allowed him to gather great wealth. It definitely can’t be accomplished alone.

    But in this country and much of the West, Corporations, the manufacturers of wealth, undercut hundreds of millions of fellow citizens to send manufacturing East, so they personally could gather wealth. Btw, I also look at China’s leadership with a critical eye, but it’s all part and parcel of the same thing, being humans.

    This is how humans operate when the opportunity is presented to them. The governments who are supposed to be looking out for everyone, let it happen, the individuals in power become consumed with holding that power.

    A good philosophical discussion is are we as a species burdened by slugs/sheep who exist just to provide the “great” one’s shoulders to stand on? Or do our tendencies, our prejudices, tribal natures, prevent others who might be great, from rising- a dog eat dog mentality, as long as I can benefit. 🤔

    If it was up to me great wealth would be capped and the excess plowed back into society, while recognizing that human corruption is the constant threat to this idea and not only this idea but every human idea.
     

    Create an account or login to comment

    You must be a member in order to leave a comment

    Create account

    Create an account on our community. It's easy!

    Log in

    Already have an account? Log in here.

    Advertisement

    General News Feed

    Fact Checkers News Feed

    Sponsored

    Back
    Top Bottom