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View Diary: Why Can't We Have "Inverse-Amish" Communities That are Hyper-Scientific and Technological? (95 comments)

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  •  Well, Eureka had potential (2+ / 0-)
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    Troubadour, trumpeter

    when I first started watching this TV show I thought it was going to be about something like that, but actually Global Dynamics works for the Defense Department. And something goes horribly, drastically wrong there in every episode. And the only guy who can fix it is our common-sense, non-scientist sheriff, sigh.

    TV and movies have a long, sturdy tradition of painting science and scientists as corrupt, evil, wrong-headed and blind. Spielberg probably bears some of the blame for our culture's view of science.

    I love it that Obama's channeling Harry Truman: "I don't give 'em hell; I just tell the truth and they think it's hell!"

    by sillia on Thu Dec 20, 2012 at 08:33:22 AM PST

    •  Our culture's view of science is largely to blame (0+ / 0-)

      on the fact that we inherited our technological foundations from a bunch of ex-Nazis, and had to dance a tango with the Soviet Union to avoid armageddon.  But we don't need to be chained to the past like that, and certainly not to a present that's nothing more than trivial gadgets.

      In Roviet Union, money spends YOU.

      by Troubadour on Thu Dec 20, 2012 at 08:45:18 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  Ah, ah, now ... the sheriff didn't "fix" problems (2+ / 0-)
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      sillia, Troubadour

      per se ... he asked the right questions to get the science guys to fix the problems.  That was his real talent.

      And really, only Beverly was portrayed as "evil" - the other scientists' main failing was not thinking through all the possible consequences after getting caught up in the "golly gee wow, that's cool!" trap.  And that's a human failing, not a science failing.

      Yeah, I liked Eureka - even the reboot, which I thought was at least original. :)

      •  The Sheriff understood that science ran the show (0+ / 0-)

        and he was just there to make sure things didn't run off the rails.  That's what all the normal jobs in a town dedicated to science would be like.  People might not understand everything that's going on around them, but they'd get to participate nonetheless, have a sense of being part of something larger than themselves, and have tangible proof of the value of that participation rather than lame-ass faith.

        In Roviet Union, money spends YOU.

        by Troubadour on Thu Dec 20, 2012 at 11:03:26 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

      •  I liked it too (0+ / 0-)

        and I also like the sheriff and his reasoning. It's just that everybody else there seems out of control. As you say, not seeing consequences. In reality most scientists are cautious, often too cautious.

        It was Spielberg who makes scientists malevolent. And I think that has had an effect.

        By the way, did you watch Warehouse 13? I just love the interesections in it with Eureka.

        I love it that Obama's channeling Harry Truman: "I don't give 'em hell; I just tell the truth and they think it's hell!"

        by sillia on Thu Dec 20, 2012 at 11:52:27 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  Luurrrve Warehouse 13! (1+ / 0-)
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          sillia

          Actually, the first scientist portrayed as "evil" per se really was Frankenstein, who created a "monster" and then abandoned it (in the book) and rejected it (in the films).  Try some of the Frankstein movies made by Hammer Films in the '60's, starring Peter Cushing.  Dang, but that portray of Frankenstein would have made Lucifer slap his forehead and "I could have had a V-8!" :)

          There are lots of films where scientists are shown as "evil" or "malevolent", starting with the beginning of film.  How about the 1930's version of "The Island of Dr. Moreau?"  Charles Laughton was definitely malevolent in that one!

          Heck, if you read Jules Verne, Nemo kinda comes across as slightly malevolent (or at least obsessed), and Robur, Master of the Air is definitely malevolent.

          So, I don't think we can lay the blame exclusively on Spielberg.  He may have expanded the meme somewhat, but he definitely had a strong foundation to work from.  

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