The Witterings Of Fools

The Telegraph have an open thread about the embryology bill, to answer the question “Do you trust UK scientists to use hybrid embryos ethically?”. I had a count, and found about 33 sensible comments, 20 moronic ones, 26 mildly stupid ones, 14 that expressed no opinion, and 6 attempts at humour, with varying degrees of success. Here are some of the highlights:

...This constitutes destructive experimentation for its own sake and no good will come of it. After all NO therapeutic treatments have resulted so far from the use of embryonic stem cells, whereas 73 have resulted from the use of stem cells from ’╦ťadult’ tissue, which does not involve the destruction of a human being.... Posted by Dr Tom Rogers on September 5, 2007 7:29 PM

Perhaps that’s becauseembryonic stem cell research is very difficult to do legally under current, outdated laws?

First we've had "genetically modified" food, which gave rise to unreproductive seeds which puts the farmers at the mercy of companies like Monsanto for buying the seeds for their next crop. Now we're into human-animal embryos. Who knows that in a few years you could actually be a "Monkey's Uncle"! Posted by Brian Merritt. on September 5, 2007 8:09 PM

This is just total logical disconnect.

this is a lot like a film deep blue sea when they do test on sharks instead of cows to help people with parkinson disease, but the sharks end up killing the scientists so something may end up going wrong with this experiment, i guess we'll have to wait and see! Posted by Daniel Spreckley on September 5, 2007 8:23 PM

It’s more like that film Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, in which human-animal hybrids were created and they fought crime..

The use of any embryo is an evil wickedness and it is this kind of evil wickedness, along with abortion, that makes God very angry indeed. ... When the ancient Israelites began passing their first born children through the fire as offerings to the god Molech, (much tissue of aborted embryos is incinerated) it was not long after that, that they were punished by God with invasion and captivity by the Assyrians. The people concerned can take this as an official warning. Posted by Charles Crosby on September 5, 2007 8:33 PM

Oh my. An official written warning from God.

The name Dr Josef Mengele comes to mind. Posted by Morris Hickey of Chigwell, Essex on September 5, 2007 9:34 PM

…And by Godwin’s Law, Morris Hickey loses the argument.

... When these experiments go wrong, and they will, --do not blame God. Posted by R. Kukkee on September 5, 2007 9:55 PM

Nice name.

This is Dr.Moreau of 'The Island of Dr. Moreau' fame by author HG Wells. This is potentially a precursor to the creation of loyally obedient Pig-Human, Warthog-Humans on the battlefields of the future. Cheap and disposable hybrid soldiers who are incapable of feelings of fear, quilt or mercy will be invaluable for performing well in violently mindless situation without independent thinking . Be prepared for more atrocities. Posted by future battlefield logistician on September 5, 2007 10:26 PM

Nice to hear from you, Mr Moreau. Fictional characters have been a silent majority for too long now. All sounds very Daleks of Manhattan to me, though. And here’s the winner of Screwiest Beliefs:

Having looked at the eu funded Chimera project, named after Homer's (not Simpson) lion/goat/snake creature, I am just hoping for an alien abduction and I will ask them if I can emigrate to wherever they come from. How could you ever trust people you don't know with such things, don't we owe it to our children to stop this horror? There must be other ways to find cures as has been done so far, but I fear it is too late, unless God intervenes. I think it is time to pray for deliverence. Posted by YORKY on September 5, 2007 10:30 PM

God and aliens. Good stuff.

... A referendum, please, of voters and taxpayers. (This would exclude people who get their entire living off the backs of working people - meaning, the public sector would not be allowed to vote itself a promotion of authority over the citizenry who pay their grotesque salaries and pensions.) Posted by Verity on September 6, 2007 12:56 AM

So… a referendum specifically excluding most scientists. Do we then subtract that from a general referendum to find out what relevantly qualified people think?

With the best will in the world, I am not sure you have any control over what is invented in future. I took a degree in sciences fity years ago! No official organisation has ever asked what I have done with my training! To nip it in the bud, you have to understand what is about to happen. You should have stopped Newton, Darwin and Einstein long before they thought of their dangerous ideas! But that is a tall order for a politician. Posted by Brian Lewis on September 6, 2007 4:15 AM

Brian Lewis Must Be Stopped! He’s a scientist! We have to stop him, so that The Visitors can harvest the Earth’s water!

I wonder whether this has all been done before. witness the Centaurs (half man, half horse) of Greek mythology. Were they, indeed, half man half animal? Had someone already been dabbling in such "breeding"? The mind boggles as to why they should have done that, or, indeed, why scientists should wish to do so today. ... Posted by TESS NASH on September 6, 2007 7:47 AM

I shall listen to your opinion, because you believe in Centaurs.

No they wont be happy until they have created a monster! Posted by Edd Herts on September 6, 2007 8:02 AM

Yeah, that’s scientists down to a tee.

Of course these people can be trusted,they are after all doing this research to help us humans and if a few thousand animals die in unimaginable pain then why not? Posted by Mr Barnett on September 6, 2007 8:43 AM

I’m always eager to know what Mr Barnett’s opinion is of the imaginary news in Mr Barnett’s head.

I doubt they could create any monsters worse than the ones already inhabiting the streets of our cities! Successive governments have, through their efforts at interfering with natural selection, completely failed to produce a society fit to live in. Hopefully, the scientists will breed a human cross with a tiger and lamb and produce some politicians able to deal with the real world. Posted by Ken Allan on September 6, 2007 8:46 AM

Sorry, what?

Are these the same scientists who say that this that and the other is bad for you one day, and tell you that they are good for you the other, depending on the "fad" for that day? I wouldn't trust them as far as I could throw them! Posted by Karl on September 6, 2007 8:58 AM

I wouldn’t trust TV nutritionists to perform embryology either. What’s your point?

Of course we trust the scientists - and anyway what's so bad about having cows with human heads?Life in the milking parlour would be much more interesting for all concerned although abattoir days may be a problem for some. Posted by Ben Corde on September 6, 2007 10:57 AM

In the spirit of generosity, I have classified this one as an attempt at comedy.

No I certainly don't trust them.Many politicians and judges are the result of the same technique and donkeys brains just aren't up to it. Posted by harry hunt on September 6, 2007 11:01 AM

I am rapidly running out of generosity.

Hitler wanted a supreme arryan race,there are numerous people in this country who consider themselves a superior race.though intelligence dictates otherwise.isnt it a frightening thought having these in goverments cloned .or are they intelligence already we hear the same old garbagge year in year out.and the chorus of adoration from the zombies in the media. Posted by Joseph walker on September 6, 2007 11:07 AM

What media has Joseph Walker been reading?

We have to trust the scientists and let them do the job they're trained for.Anything that can improve the human condition must be investigated.Just think of some of the benefits.Humans that could fly,live underwater etc, women laying eggs instead of the pain of live birth, god the mind boggles at the possibilities. Posted by ernest ragwarter on September 6, 2007 11:17 AM

While Ragwarter’s enlightened spirit is encouraging, his vision of the future appears to be lifted from an old Busted video.

Hybrid Embryos now and Frankensteins later! Atomic bombs destroy on mass scale and Frankensteins destroy in singles; destruction is the common theme. ... Posted by Sridhar Rao on September 6, 2007 12:04 PM

That’s true. Frankensteins are a total bust at singles nights.

Do you know about GENADA ?It is a newest genetic technology that could be implemented to everyone "in live" from the distance! By deteriorating the organism,destabeling it via continious caloric starvation :destructing its hormonal functions to cause a low metabolism and scarsity.All that is a clinic experiment, leading to a crucual level of the gap of surviveling. Then becomes a plasmal shock: to be or not to be . If the individual survives it began a cito- telomerasa and a recombination of DNA on a level of the babyborn.That is a reborness in live. so that To create a hibryd embryos from stem sells will be absurd and will be not justify the aim.The truth is the genada which is an unprecedental interuption ,forbidden of all laws on the Earth.The scientists could be explain that and care about everyone.GENADA is a new event.But because of its existing they do not allow anything else to be done. Posted by Nevena Dimitrova on September 6, 2007 12:37 PM

Alright, put your foil hat back on, Nevena.

I don't trust any human being not to be corrupted by power. And I think it's wrong to create an embryo with the express purpose of killing it. Posted by KP on September 6, 2007 1:14 PM

This might be a fiar point if KP knew what the phrase “express purpose” meant.

No, definitly not! Like most controversial proposals concerning scientific experiments the people involved play down risk and dangers and highlight only the benifits. ... Despite all the safeguards that will be put in place, the likelihood then, is some maniac will secretly exploit the situation to make a hybrid monster. Creating an embryo using human and animal cells is ethically and morally wrong and should never be allowed. Posted by Vic Cayford on September 6, 2007 2:45 PM

I reckon it’ll be that Krang. He’s always doing shit like that.

No I do not trust scientists to use such experiments ethically. They are human and are therefore open to corruption. To illustrate my misgivings let me explain why I gave up holding an organ donor card. Imagine that I (or you) am in a serious condition after an accident. I am not dying but am, of neccessity, hooked up to all sorts of life support systems. Then someone important (a politician, or maybe Royalty) is brought in to the next ward needing a life saving transplant and I am found to be the ideal tissue type. How long do you think it would be before the doctors decide that my case is hopeless and my life support system switched off ?. After all knighthoods could be on offer. Please dont tell me that doctors would not do such a thing and they are there to save to save life not take it. I point you towards the enormous profits made by abortionists. I repeat, I do not trust scientists to behave ethically. As has already been posted, ethics can change over time. Posted by Peter W on September 6, 2007 2:45 PM

Nobody wants your organs, Peter.

It is no secret that the supposed Hypocratic oath rythmes or can quite simply be substituted with the phrase Hypocritical Oath. Just take a quick search through say Google Doctor British news crime and see what you get. Case proven!! Doctors, scientists are not beyond reproach in this downward spiralling out of control politburo. After all, many doctors appear in the news for all kinds of issues and decision misjudgements. Personally, I'd rather dance around a tree 3 times and look to the heavens for divine inspiration or rain. Before I let one near my body for any medical diagnosis. Posted by slidingbye on September 6, 2007 3:53 PM

Someone tell the Darwin Awards people that it might be worth watching this guy.

The philosophical / religious premise that the natural world is ordered and that this ordering and its underlaying laws can and should be discerned for the benefit of mankind, gives science its legitimacy and its nobility. Science is thus a cultural endeavor that springs from faith and reason and its attendant notions of what is right and what is not. ... Posted by Gordon Neil on September 6, 2007 7:05 PM

…but mostly reason.

I don't think so. If you think of scientists then nuclear weapons, processed food, toxic pharmaceuticals, the Internet and other malevolent creations spring to mind. ... Posted by Ivor Griffiths on September 6, 2007 9:11 PM

…said Ivor Griffiths, on the Internet.

At a Speech Day at my school, a visiting Scion of the Arts said, in reference to the Teaching of Science: "Unless you incorporate a religious background into the curriculum you will beget a race of Educated Devils." My fear is that once the Jinn is out of the bottle, there will be no stopping some mad or bad scientist from trying at some stage to create a chymera between an Ape and a Human. It is quite possible that this has already been attempted, perhaps during the Hitlerian regime...There really MUST be an effective and rigorous system of checks and balances when it comes to scientific research 'done in the name of humanity' (sic). As for incorporating human and animal tissue into one egg, I find this instinctively 'bad' and taboo, though if you asked me exactly why, I would be hard put to describe the reason, other than reference to my earlier remarks above. Posted by richard on September 7, 2007 8:12 AM

Yes. “(sic).” That’s all I have to say on this one.

Remembering the old maxim; If it works, don't F*** with it. Recalling too, that Mad Cow Disease was caused by feeding animal tissue to animals, approved by that August body, the British Veterinary Society. 'Nuff said? Posted by Kevin Gallagher on September 7, 2007 9:13 AM

‘Nuff from you, yes.

NO. I wouldn't trust anyone who wants to produce unnatural monsters for any purpose whatever. Posted by Richard Johns on September 7, 2007 1:01 PM

How about embryologists creating admixed cell lines?

If this perverse nation can accept creation of human beings, and that is what those "embryos" are, just to be destroyed, than, by this very perversity of caring about animals more than humans, this abomination should be stopped. Onward animal liberation! Posted by Ben Stanley on September 7, 2007 8:07 PM

Is there a debate that can’t be about animal liberation if you try hard enough?