Saturday, June 03, 2006
The new Al Gore - The man who was "elected" by the people in 2000
The Hay Festival * Lord Rees on "Humanity's defining moment"
As he, himself, tells it he "used to be the next president of the United States". Many of us wince because there is truth in that. Al Gore looks good, and sounds good. He stands head shoulders above the current incumbent of the White House who has made America a mean-spirited nation, and who is despised by people in most of the countries in the world.
Lord Rees, head of the Royal Society of Britain, was another distinguished guest who spoke at Hay. "Humanity has reached a "defining moment" in our dominion over the planet and our ability to destroy it, according to the head of the Royal Society, Britain's premier scientific institution. "The 21st century is the first in the Earth's history where one species has our planet's future in its hands and could jeopardise life's immense potential," Lord Rees told an audience at the Hay festival yesterday."
- The eminent physicist, who is Astronomer Royal, said scientific advances had made it much easier for individuals to commit devastating acts of terror on a much greater scale than 9/11, using for example biological weapons.
- "In a global village there will be global village idiots. And with this power, just one could be too many," he said. These might not be fundamentalists, but those with the mentality of a computer virus designer or arsonist, he added. "Even a single person will have the capacity to cause massive disruption through error or through terror. We are kidding ourselves if we think that technical education leads to balanced rationality."