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Show ALL Forums  > Science/philosophy  > New legal challenge for the Hadron Collider...      Home login  
Joined: 1/16/2008
Msg: 51
New legal challenge for the Hadron Collider...Page 3 of 9    (1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9)
What I can prove to Stargazer is less important that what can be proved to the court. How could this not be in the World Court's jurisdiction? It involves the security of every country.

Well, counsellor, you have yet to produce a single witness to the proposed "dangers" of the LHC. And, if this was brought before the World Court (aka the International Court of Justice in the Hague), then maybe they might have rendered a decision either way. However...and here's me being very generous, doing appy's work...

On 21 March 2008, a complaint requesting an injunction to halt the LHC's startup was filed by Walter L. Wagner and Luis Sancho against CERN and its American collaborators, the US Department of Energy, the National Science Foundation and the Fermi National Accelerator Laboratory, before the United States District Court for the District of Hawaii.[17][76][77] The plaintiffs demanded an injunction against the LHC's activation for 4 months after issuance of the LHC Safety Assessment Group's (LSAG) most recent safety documentation, and a permanent injunction until the LHC can be demonstrated to be reasonably safe within industry standards.[78] The US Federal Court scheduled trial to begin 16 June 2009.[79]
The LSAG review, issued on 20 June 2008 after outside review, found "no basis for any concerns about the consequences of new particles or forms of matter that could possibly be produced by the LHC".[5] The US Government, in response, called for summary dismissal of the suit against the government defendants as untimely due to the expiration of a six-year statute of limitations (since funding began by 1999 and has essentially been completed already), and also called the hazards claimed by the plaintiffs "overly speculative and not credible".[80] The Hawaii District Court heard the government's motion to dismiss on 2 September 2008,[1] and on, 26 September, the Court issued an order granting the motion to dismiss on the grounds that it had no jurisdiction over the LHC project.[81]
On 26 August 2008, a group of European citizens, led by a German biochemist Otto Rössler, filed a suit against CERN in the European Court of Human Rights, in Strasbourg, alleging the Large Hadron Collider poses grave risks for the safety of the 27 member states of the European Union and their citizens.[27][31][63] The request for an injunction was summarily rejected on 26 August, leaving the case that it violates the right to life still pending.[63] Late in 2009 an article has appeared in the Tennessee Law Review[82][83] reviewing the legal situation.

It even has citations.

Yes, the consequences of the Bikini Atoll explosion were tragic. But, again, without any reasoned and factual objections, then you expect...what?

But hey, we're still here.
Joined: 1/16/2008
Msg: 52
New legal challenge for the Hadron Collider...
Posted: 2/4/2010 6:04:22 PM

1. I just gave you a factual objection: People were killed in that instance because scientists, the experts in which you have complete faith, made an error.

That's a factual objection to your claim that scientists can't make fatal errors. A factual objection to your statement that if scientists say something is safe, then it's safe.

Who said scientists can't make errors? However, you have yet to produce a single citation of someone qualified to make a factual objection, based on science. All I've seen from you is "it could happen." Well, lots of things "could" happen. However, if all you have is "there's a chance," then by that logic we would have to stop any venture in which something bad "could" happen or there was a "chance" at a disaster.

I gave you another objection in a previous post, in which I pointed out that at least some scientist-advocates of the LHC are using an intentionally fallacious argument to reassure people that it's safe: The "natural cosmic ray collisions" reassurance.

You're assuming that your points aren't fallacious. And I've given you several objections to your assumptions. However, because that goes against your assertion, the best response you can give are sarcastic 'quips' about my profession and my "less than highschool" knowledge of physics.

When anyone, even someone Stargazer worships, is reassuring us that something is safe, then their use of dishonest arguments in that reassurance should negate any reassurance that we would have gotten from it.

An example of the "appy school of debate." When someone disagrees with you, minimize through sarcasm. And now you're questioning either their integrity or the strength of their argument. Neither of which you yourself have said you are unqualified to do due to your self-admitted lack of the understanding of the physics involved. See the problem here, yet?

Well, the victims of the error aren't still here, are they. Your experts made an error, and people were killed by it.

Okay...but can you cite a single example of where the LHC poses a singular threat? A single qualified source of objection? Hell, I've even tried to help you. Apparently, you lack the discipline or the interest to hear from anybody but yourself on why this shouldn't go forward.

I shouldn't have to say this, but please understand that the two objections stated above are two separate objections. Maybe you don't understand the basis of objection#2. But even if, as a result, you can say you don't understand #2, you should try to resist the temptation to post a reply that only addresses your lack of understanding of #2, but which does not address #1.

This is the point where you would find a mirror very handy there, app.
Joined: 1/16/2008
Msg: 53
New legal challenge for the Hadron Collider...
Posted: 2/5/2010 3:42:50 PM

I, or anyone, is qualified to make the above-stated objection, my objection #1. It's quite simple, and doesn't require a physicist: Physicists and other scientists have made errors that killed people. But you're saying the LHC is safe because scientists are infallilble. But you said it yourself: Scientists can make errors. Sometimes fatal errors. So you can't justify your doglike faith in the infallibility of scientists.

First, please quote directly where I've used the word "infallible" to describe anyone involved in the pursuit of physics. Otherwise, you are simply employing an ad hominem argument intended to cast doubt on my arguments by implying blind faith. Secondly, you seem to mistake the difference between "qualified" and "capable." I'm capable of making all kinds of objections to all kinds of things. However, how valid those objections are depends entirely on my qualifications.

And speaking of arrogant presumption...

My objections #1 & #2 don't require me to be qualified in the mathematical theory of black holes, to which I've admitted ignorance. (Of course I admit your ignorance of that too)

I don't need you to "admit" anything for me.

And I pointed out that, to use a reassurance-argument (the natural cosmic ray collisions reassurance), and not mention that it has an obvious objection, is dishonest. The objection is obvious enough that, if they have an answer to it, they should have mentioned and answered it, not swept it under the rug. Dishonesty.

Actually, they have mentioned it. You just don't like the answer. Totally different.

Okay...but can you cite a single example of where the LHC poses a singular threat?

Yes. The head-on collisions could produce a black hole. We have that from physicists whose names I neglected to write down for you, because, at that earlier time, I didn't know you'd need them.

Actually, I've provided you links to them.

What have we heard from you, Stargazer? Not answers to objections 1, 2, & 3. We've instead heard endlessly repeated re-assertion of your faith in the infallilbility of scientists.

Again, please feel free to quote a single statement I've made in which the word "infallible" was used. No inferences. No "well, by saying x you meant y" type statements. A single quote with the use of the word "infallible." Scientists can and do make mistakes. But, as I've pointed out before, we're not talking about the work of a single, cartoon or Hollywood-style stereotyped "mad" scientist.

Speaking of which...

Yes, if it would result in no more Earth if we guess wrong, and if it involves new science such that we can't reliably assign a numerical probability, and if the reason for taking the risk is something inessential. Aye, there's the rub: What's inessential to most of us is entirely essential to a particle physicist.

There you go with the "scientists are so career minded, they wouldn't possibly speak out if they found actual reason to object." Except that's not the history of physics. Remember the hydrogen bomb? Scientists, including Oppenheim, spoke out against it on moral grounds and at the risk of their own careers. But you would stick with the Hollywood stereotype. Sad, really. Very, unimaginatively sad.

But in the meantime:

Summary of objections:

1. Physicists have made fatal errors, some due to miscalculations. So much for their infallibility.

Touched on that. Meanwhile...

2. Some physicists have used an intentionally, knowingly, dishonest argument in reassuring you about the LHC. (The natural cosmic ray collisions argument)

Again, you assume your argument is valid which would negate the validity of the scientific argument. And yet, you failed to provide a single qualification of that opinion. Only your repeated statements that your own knowledge of physics is lacking and yet your argument is valid because...well, it's your argument.

And one more, which I've repeated many times, but which, like the others, hasn't been answered:

3. The quick-evaporation reassurance is based on new physics, theory that is tentative and under construction. Not something on which to bet the Earth.

Okay, well, tell you what. Read this... ....and believe what you will. I'm bored with feeding the troll.
Joined: 1/16/2008
Msg: 54
New legal challenge for the Hadron Collider...
Posted: 2/6/2010 4:15:37 PM

And troll who had demonstrated a sub-highschool competence in physics has no business even mentioning anyone else's qualifications.

Enough is enough. You're not interested in anything other than your own opinion and I've lost all interest in feeding your need for self-superiority. Troll post on your own time.
Joined: 7/5/2006
Msg: 55
New legal challenge for the Hadron Collider...
Posted: 2/7/2010 7:35:29 AM
Just a few points I'd like to make...

Appreciative... to a small degree, I agree with you. If there is a significant risk of disaster in an experiment, I would prefer that such be performed away from our sole habitat. (The Moon, for example...) However, the risk must be presented as something more likely than a vague 'What If...'.

Yes, scientists DO make errors, but not always on the side of caution. Recall that when the first hydrogen bomb was tested, there were fears that it would set the atmosphere on fire. I'm all for caution, but why do you feel that the people proclaiming Doom are more credible than the ones at the other end of the spectrum?

Dr. Starkman is indeed hoping to discover black holes in the LHC interactions... but he ALSO stated that it would be difficult, because they would evapourate 'almost immediately'. You may want to double-check your references, before using them as evidence for your claims.

StarGazer... just a quibble, but the decision by the District Court in Hawaii didn't throw out the case because of the evidence presented - they stated that it was outside their jurisdiction.
Joined: 1/16/2008
Msg: 56
New legal challenge for the Hadron Collider...
Posted: 2/7/2010 7:11:45 PM

StarGazer... just a quibble, but the decision by the District Court in Hawaii didn't throw out the case because of the evidence presented - they stated that it was outside their jurisdiction.

Absolutely no quibble here, len, which is why I stated this clarification in message #90

And, to be accurate, I have to say the courts didn't exactly rule "in Cern's favour" as much as the "challenges" were usually out of the court's jurisdiction and purview.

Within every experiment, there is a margin of error however I have yet to hear of any groundswell of objection from the physics community or compelling argument from the non-scientific community that sufficiently leads me to believe that the LHC - which is currently operating by the way - poses any more harm than any natural phenomenon or other previous particle accelerator.

Again, I find it odd that, considering the project took more than a decade to complete, we are only now seeing any reaction at all. And even now, it seems confined to "well, how can they know it's safe?" Clearly, the idea that definitive statements that something is a hazard requires a quantification of that threat to be taken as a serious assessment is not well understood.

If that is the degree of attention that is paid by those who are now shouting "danger!" then gawd help us should a significant and quantifiable hazard present itself.
Joined: 1/16/2008
Msg: 57
New legal challenge for the Hadron Collider...
Posted: 2/8/2010 7:44:02 AM
Once again, we see app troll posting for the sake of the argument. Have fun appy, I'm not playing. Again, you offer nothing but the same old tired arguments. You offer nothing new.

<div class="quote">Perhaps Stargazer thinks that those LHC-opposing physicists are less qualified than he is, in such matters.

Or perhaps you're using the same old troll baiting technique. Another example is:

<div class="quote">Thank you Professor Stargazer. :-) Then the physists and other scientists who claim that the LHC would be a really bad idea are wrong, and Stargazer is right?

Well, one can logically argue the qualifications, for instance, of a chemist for dealing with high order theoretical physics. My father used to be a chemist. I don't recall him mentioning publishing any physics papers. But I'm certainly more interested in the specific objections of a professional physicist over the objections of App. So cite away!

Also, apparently App is of the assumption that Stephen Hawking came up with the theory of black hole evaporation on his own and it has since been so revered that no other physicist would dare make any attempt to confirm, refute or simply check the maths of this theory. And yet, the theory has been scrutinized. And still no massive groundswell of objection from the physics community.

In the meantime:

<div class="quote">"Margin of error", like the one that killed people when physicists miscalculated the yield of that Pacific nuclear test? Nothing wrong with an occasional error. It isn't that they _can_ happen. They do happen. Let's hope that one doesn't happen this time, when the price, as measured by the number of lives lost, would be considerably higher.

So, by this argument, the overall standard by which we measure acceptable risk is not by the greater number of successes but by the fewer failures. Interesting. So a mistake in design of an aircraft that results in the death of hundreds of people - absolutely tragic, yes - means we must ground all modes of transportation until such times as we can state with absolute assurance that no plane, train or automobile will ever crash again.

Nice to see you finally making an attempt at citing real sources. I'm certainly looking forward to looking them over with my very limited, less-than-highschool level understanding of the state of physics. Gee, you think they'll mention magnets?
Joined: 1/16/2008
Msg: 58
New legal challenge for the Hadron Collider...
Posted: 2/8/2010 7:08:59 PM
Oh App, we could go round and round over the same territory. I'm quite well aware of my understanding of the physics involved. When the weakness of your own arguments are pointed out, you resort to your own ad hominem attacks (your questioning of my scientific knowledge and my career path) and then lack the courage of your own convictions to even stand by them and cry foul when you perceive that you are being insulted in return. I would call that hypocrisy.

Okay, you say you offer "factual" arguments, by your own estimation. I've seen little more than conjecture and vague references to others work. The "black hole" argument you make seems to amount to "it could make an Earth-swallowing black hole." And yet, as I've attempted to point out (but it was an argument you rejected on now other standard than you don't believe it) is that such a "black hole" would be magnitudes of order - do you understand the meaning of that phrase? - smaller than the smallest sub atomic particle. So it would be utterly incapable of swallowing anything.

Okay, let's try this argument. It is estimated by the independent scientists who reviewed the safety of these concerns stated in their report that the universe has conducted approximately 10 to the power of 31 - that's 1 one with more than 30 zeros behind it - LHC-strength events since the beginning of the universe. And yet we have not witnessed a single destructive event that can be attributed to one of these events.

In comparison, the total number of visible stars in the universe amount to approximately 10 to the 21 power. You think such an event would have gone unnoticed by now?

Indeed, if this were really a concern, the universe would be peppered with planet-mass and moon-mass black holes. After all, the LHC is only attempting to reproduce conditions found in the first few milliseconds following the big bang. In which case, if such stable and accreting black holes were a consequence, then surely we would be able to observe them in abundance, shouldn't we? And yet, we only ever have seen the signatures of stellar mass (a few times the sun's mass) black holes and the supermassive black holes at the center of galaxies.

What about interactions between matter and the magnetic fields of pulsars. You don't get much more extreme environment than around a neutron star. We should be able to observe the disintegration of neutron stars into black holes. And yet, we haven't. Hmm.

Or are you going to tell me that, after 30 years of studying the subject, my knowledge of astronomy is infantile, too? Oh, please do.

Tell you what App. If it's such a hazard, why don't you do something about it. If the strength of your arguments and your knowledge of science is so much more superior than the rest of us, file your own challenge before the International Court of Justice in the Hague? Should be a cakewalk for you.
Joined: 1/16/2008
Msg: 59
New legal challenge for the Hadron Collider...
Posted: 2/10/2010 6:06:01 AM
Hey App, in another thread you wrote:

I'm going to forgo replying to the LHC "safe-black-holes" flamewarrior today in order to reply here.

Interesting how when you post, your posts are "legitimate" questionings of science. Whenever someone challenges your assumptions, they're a "flamewarrior." Clearly what is good for the goose is only purview of the goose. The gander is clearly not entitled to a differing opinion.
Joined: 1/16/2008
Msg: 60
New legal challenge for the Hadron Collider...
Posted: 2/10/2010 6:07:13 PM

No, actually I don't. Perhaps you meant "orders of magnitude"?

I don't have time for this today.

Ooops...a little thing called editing. But, if you don't have time, then why respond to such a minor infraction of the language?

So, do you understand the meaning of the phrase or don't you? And how it applies to the above-mentioned example?
Joined: 11/7/2009
Msg: 61
view profile
New legal challenge for the Hadron Collider...
Posted: 2/11/2010 6:22:53 PM
Do people not realize that we've made all kinds of micro black holes in the laboratory before and the world has not ended?

...of course not. The mob will bring all scientific inquiry and advancement to a screeching halt based on the erroneous and manipulative statements by activists who wish to advance their political positioning.
Joined: 1/16/2008
Msg: 62
New legal challenge for the Hadron Collider...
Posted: 2/11/2010 7:52:32 PM
First of all, App...

<div class="quote">By the way, perhaps you mean the _observable_ universe.

You just love to correct my English. However, this would be a distinction without a difference. Visible stars in the universe generally tend to be considered observable.

Hey, we can keep going round and around with this but, quite frankly, it's pointless. I'm not going to convince you of the relative safety of the experiment and you're not going to convince me of the potential hazard. The kind of absolute assurance you're looking for doesn't exist in science. But the potential rewards to this experiment are nothing less than a possible complete rewriting of the laws of physics.

Yes, several scientists including physicists have expressed concerns that Hawking's theory of black hole evaporation is flawed. However, a large majority of them seem to side with Hawking including some major heavyweights in the science. And there is no debating Hawking's brilliance or his insight. Do I admire these people for their knowledge and expertise? You bet. Do I worship at the alter of science? No. I'm just not convinced the "risk" is sufficient to put off or cancel the experiment, not to mention throw away the investment that has already gone into its construction.

Besides, when anyone resorts to this sort of petty argument style....

With your sub-high-school physics competency, you shouldn't be talking about anyone else's qualifications.

....they no longer become worth the effort of engaging with.
Joined: 8/30/2009
Msg: 63
New legal challenge for the Hadron Collider...
Posted: 2/12/2010 9:07:40 AM
Typical. I came in this thread to possibly learn something about the LHC and physics (albeit I'm smarter than the average person, I'm not that well versed), communist trash has to come in here and spout off her piece about something completely unrelated.
Joined: 1/16/2008
Msg: 64
New legal challenge for the Hadron Collider...
Posted: 4/2/2010 5:17:18 PM
Comparatively speaking, I'm more concerned with being trampled by a stampeding herd of dinosaurs.
Joined: 11/30/2007
Msg: 65
view profile
New legal challenge for the Hadron Collider...
Posted: 4/2/2010 5:52:22 PM
"a step into the unknown" != "oh god, oh god, we're all going to die!"
Joined: 1/12/2008
Msg: 66
New legal challenge for the Hadron Collider...
Posted: 4/4/2010 11:21:41 PM

The arguement is certainly a valid one as the challengers say the scientists are too wrapped up in 'groupthink' and haven't proven beyond a reasonable doubt that these experiments would be harmless....

No, the argument is not valid. The group claiming that non-sense about black holes gobbling up the earth seem to forget that the entire concept of a black hole was developed by physicists. If they don't believe the analysis performed by physicists based on the physics of black holes, they have no reason to argue that black holes exist in the first place.
 Divorced, Broke, Bald
Joined: 7/9/2009
Msg: 67
New legal challenge for the Hadron Collider...
Posted: 4/5/2010 8:18:46 AM
So ... we (as a society) won't listen to scientists when they pretty much unanimously agree on global warming, but when a few raise some doubts about things that most of us don't have any real understanding about, we start chewing our fingernails. I guess it's only a problem to be fixed if we (the individuals in society) don't actually have to do anything about it.

Of course, caution is important. But when seeking discovery, risk is often involved. For good or for bad, if you are reading this, you have benefitted from countless experiments and risks; people have died in the process. Shall we abandon all scientific pursuit because there is risk? Would you really go back to the stone age?
Joined: 2/25/2009
Msg: 68
New legal challenge for the Hadron Collider...
Posted: 4/6/2010 2:23:29 AM
Yes, but that test hasn't been at full power, not even close. And it seems the LHC is due for several more months of maitenance now regardless. And no one cant' tell me that groupthink isn't a problem.
Joined: 1/16/2008
Msg: 69
New legal challenge for the Hadron Collider...
Posted: 4/11/2010 4:53:38 PM
Well, I for one look forward to the new discoveries that will come from the LHC at full power. Is it "possible" for a black hole to be created? Sure. There is a mathematical probability, I'm sure. There's a mathematical probability that I will walk out of my house tomorrow and get conked on the head by a meteorite and die. Or get trampled by a herd of dinosaurs.

And, if we do get sucked in by a black hole, well, I guess you can tell me "I told you so."
Joined: 2/8/2004
Msg: 70
New legal challenge for the Hadron Collider...
Posted: 4/11/2010 10:22:01 PM

Yes, but that test hasn't been at full power, not even close. And it seems the LHC is due for several more months of maitenance now regardless. And no one cant' tell me that groupthink isn't a problem.

Yes.... maybe it WILL end up producing enough power to fire up a flashlight after all! :)
Joined: 1/12/2008
Msg: 71
New legal challenge for the Hadron Collider...
Posted: 4/13/2010 8:48:28 AM

Physicists have raised doubts about the safety of the LHC.

Which physicists?

The upshot is that collisions that are much more energetic than the LHC will produce, happen all the time from cosmic rays, without causing a problem.
Joined: 1/12/2008
Msg: 72
New legal challenge for the Hadron Collider...
Posted: 4/14/2010 8:08:38 PM

Additionally, of course some of the physicists who question the LHC's safety have given the same answer to that objection.

Which physicists?

I could go back to the web and get all those names for you,

No, I don't think you could.
Joined: 1/16/2008
Msg: 73
New legal challenge for the Hadron Collider...
Posted: 4/14/2010 8:57:56 PM

So now I'll explainl it again:

Sure. All very plausible. Now, can you provide any observational evidence where this may have occurred? Any at all?
Joined: 3/31/2010
Msg: 74
New legal challenge for the Hadron Collider...
Posted: 4/15/2010 7:18:37 AM
Teller was wasn't completely sure that the first nuclear test wouldn't light the atmosphere on fire...
The average person has no business having an opinion on this experiment. I know I'm too stupid to have an opinion on it and have to take it on faith that the collective mind of science is smart enough to not do anything incredibly stupid.
Joined: 1/12/2008
Msg: 75
New legal challenge for the Hadron Collider...
Posted: 4/15/2010 11:46:53 AM

It goes against the purposes they want to use it for if it should self-immolate or suck itself into a void.

Your so-called logical thought processes selectively excluded the fact that should it ``self-immolate or suck itself into the void,'' the scientists in question would be too dead to study anything. Hence, that would be more self-defeating as it would put a permanent end to such studies.
Show ALL Forums  > Science/philosophy  > New legal challenge for the Hadron Collider...