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Case #503 against blind faith--Stem Cell Research

 
 
Einherjar
 
  1  
Reply Mon 16 Jan, 2006 08:20 am
echi wrote:
How does a blastocyst not have a brain? No one even knows what a brain is, anyway.


The brain is a distinct organ, like a liver or a lung is a distinct organ. I'm confident that level of specialisaton in cells can be identified.
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Einherjar
 
  1  
Reply Mon 16 Jan, 2006 08:31 am
real life wrote:
And evidence of consciousness is not necessary for a living human being to be deserving of protection and preservation of life, at the very least.

Einherjar is in favor of bumping off folks in comas and cutting their organs out before the flesh is cold.


Actually, what I wrote was:

Einherjar wrote:
Personhood is, as far as I am concerned, conferred upon the mind of the individual, and is retained for as long as that mind retains the capacity for human experience (at present or in the future).

I would approve of harvesting the organs of people in permanent vegetative states who have not signed legal documents to the contrary.


real life wrote:
What about folks who have come out of comas after long periods of time?

http://www.usatoday.com/news/nation/2003-07-09-coma-usat_x.htm

http://www.cbsnews.com/stories/2005/02/12/earlyshow/main673662.shtml

Using Einherjar's rationale, these people would have been exterminated.


Not really, but using your strawman they would.

Wolf_ODonnell wrote:
Einherjar's logic is a little bit too on the extreme end, but so is yours, RL.


What's wrong with my logic? Or were you reffering to RLs strawman?

If there is fault in my logic (as presented in my own posts) I would like to have it pointed out.
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Anon-Voter
 
  1  
Reply Mon 16 Jan, 2006 10:10 am
Einherjar wrote:
echi wrote:
How does a blastocyst not have a brain? No one even knows what a brain is, anyway.


The brain is a distinct organ, like a liver or a lung is a distinct organ. I'm confident that level of specialisaton in cells can be identified.


At what point does a blastocyst think "Damn, I really would like a chocolate shake" ??

Anon
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Wolf ODonnell
 
  1  
Reply Mon 16 Jan, 2006 12:03 pm
Einherjar wrote:
What's wrong with my logic? Or were you reffering to RLs strawman?

If there is fault in my logic (as presented in my own posts) I would like to have it pointed out.


You know, I can't remember. I think it had something to do with the harvesting organs from comatose people thing. The logic was sound, but you took it to an extreme.
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Einherjar
 
  1  
Reply Mon 16 Jan, 2006 12:23 pm
Ah, the strawman then. This is what I actually wrote:

Einherjar wrote:
I would approve of harvesting the organs of people in permanent vegetative states who have not signed legal documents to the contrary.


Would you still consider that extreme?

If one person is dying from heart failiure, while another with a good and matching heart is brain dead (and scheduled to remain that way), wouldn't it be reasonable to transfer the working heart to the person who still has a shot at enjoying life? I've allowed for people with obections to contractually excempt themselves, but I'd like for the large majoity of people who just don't bother with such scenarios to be of use by default.
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echi
 
  1  
Reply Mon 16 Jan, 2006 03:12 pm
At some stage of development it is possible to detect brain activity, so that's when we say there's a brain? The determination depends wholly on technological capabilities. It is not sound reasoning.
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Einherjar
 
  1  
Reply Mon 16 Jan, 2006 03:29 pm
echi wrote:
At some stage of development it is possible to detect brain activity, so that's when we say there's a brain? The determination depends wholly on technological capabilities. It is not sound reasoning.


No, at a certain stage of development brain activity kicks in, (not a case of fading in (if there is such an expression)) and thus we rule out consciousness and sentience prior to that stage of development.

In determining when something constitutes a brain I'd look at the specialisation of cells. I know for sure that i wouldn't consider something to be a brain that didn't contain specialised braincells.

Also, according to my understanding brain activity doesn't just fase in, it "turns on", andremains continously active, quite suddenly, after a period of rare sporadic activity preceded by no activity.

Anyway, do you concede that it is intuitive to confer personhood upon human minds rather than genetically distinct human zygotes? If not, how do you deal with identical twins and chimeras?
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echi
 
  1  
Reply Tue 17 Jan, 2006 01:44 pm
Einherjar--

If there is a point where the brain actually turns on I would find that to be extremely interesting. I will look into that. Thanks.
I am not sure what you are trying to illustrate with the identical twins/chimera argument, however. It seems to me that even though we can't tell what sort of form it will eventually take, it is still a human being (possibly more than one). Perhaps I just don't see your point, though.
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Einherjar
 
  1  
Reply Tue 17 Jan, 2006 02:15 pm
Report back if you find anything, I just realized that I'm relying on some TV program from years back, which is not good.

I'll try to clarify my position tomorrow, I don't have time now.
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echi
 
  1  
Reply Thu 19 Jan, 2006 12:52 pm
Redirected to ABORTION THREAD.
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Wolf ODonnell
 
  1  
Reply Fri 20 Jan, 2006 05:58 am
The stem cell conversation isn't related to the abortion thread, because most embryonic stem cells come from IVF.

You cannot abort a fetus and get stem cells from it, because by the time it is a fetus, it is too late, the stem cells have already started to differentiate (in other words, to specialise and become different cells).

I would say that no embryonic stem cells come from abortion.

It all comes from IVF, where eggs are taken from a mother and fertilised. The majority of them are kept frozen and the majority of them the mother wouldn't want. After all, would you want to give birth to twenty babies?
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echi
 
  1  
Reply Fri 20 Jan, 2006 11:42 am
wolf--

Maybe you're right. Maybe the abortion topic and the stem cell topic are too unrelated to combine for the purpose of debate. I'm afraid, however, that I see no real difference. I don't like the idea or practice of IVF. I haven't been able to convince myself that an embryo is any less than a fetus.
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real life
 
  1  
Reply Sat 21 Jan, 2006 12:11 am
You are right on Echi. The abortion topic and the embryonic stem cell topic are inevitably going to address the same issues:

When does life begin?

Is the newly formed a person? If not, then when?

and so on.

Those who insist that there is a difference are unable to define at what point they think a human life does begin (if not at conception).

That is why I have continually gone back to the prudent position of erring on the side of caution and life, instead of on the side of reckless disregard and death.

The current standard methods of IVF treat the unborn in a cavalier fashion, implanting a few and discarding many. This is no different than an abortion.

IVF could be carried out with respect for the unborn, but it is generally looked at as a business ( and a very profitable one).

Meanwhile ADULT stem cell research keeps showing impressive gains which are all but ignored by those who want to insist (or imply) that without federal funding for EMBRYONIC stem cell research then there is NO stem cell research being done. A more dishonest position is hard to imagine when addressing this issue.

Why aren't these squeaky wheels clamoring for dough to be sent where the progress is real and tangible?
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Wolf ODonnell
 
  1  
Reply Sat 21 Jan, 2006 06:10 am
real life wrote:
Meanwhile ADULT stem cell research keeps showing impressive gains which are all but ignored by those who want to insist (or imply) that without federal funding for EMBRYONIC stem cell research then there is NO stem cell research being done. A more dishonest position is hard to imagine when addressing this issue.


Why do you think that is? Hm. Could it be because, hm, let's think about this, there are far more restrictions on embyronic stem cell research because of people who share your viewpoint?

Could it be because Bush limited the embryonic stem cell line and those that can be worked on were infected with animal proteins? Could it be because, hm, in order to create new embryonic stem cell lines, you need to get IVF blastocysts and parents may not be as willing to give those up?

Also, have you forgotten that the majority of restrictions are on public-funded ES cell programs and that privately-funded programs don't have as many restrictions? The private programs are obviously not going to publish as much data as the public ones, because they'd want to keep as much of it as secret as possible so they can profit from it. (You don't think that's the case? I've seen papers released by people who work in companies. A lot of the data in them is blanked out, including many of the techniques).

Frankly, I couldn't care less which type of stem cells give the results. However, to restrict one and not the latter will obviously skew results in favour of that which has no restrictions.
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real life
 
  1  
Reply Sat 21 Jan, 2006 10:05 am
You are uncovering the whole premise that Kicky started this thread with.

The president won't support funding for 'x'.

Is that the same as the president is restricting 'x' ?

Obviously not.

A refusal to fork over federal dollars is not the same as banning or outlawing a practice.

But the squall from the Bush bashers has been the he stopped stem cell research cold by refusing to fund embryonic research.

As you point out, private funding still exists. Also a whole lot of successful ADULT stem cell research is going on.

The disingenous sloganeering from the political opponents of the president is what gives people the false impression that without $$ from the pocket of every citizen, then these poor sick folk are gonna die.
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Wolf ODonnell
 
  1  
Reply Sat 21 Jan, 2006 11:38 am
real life wrote:
You are uncovering the whole premise that Kicky started this thread with.

The president won't support funding for 'x'.

Is that the same as the president is restricting 'x' ?

Obviously not.

A refusal to fork over federal dollars is not the same as banning or outlawing a practice.

But the squall from the Bush bashers has been the he stopped stem cell research cold by refusing to fund embryonic research.

As you point out, private funding still exists. Also a whole lot of successful ADULT stem cell research is going on.

The disingenous sloganeering from the political opponents of the president is what gives people the false impression that without $$ from the pocket of every citizen, then these poor sick folk are gonna die.


Your arguments are equally as disingenous. If you restrict funding, you restrict research because the researchers can only do so much with the money they have. It's as simple as that.

There are very few private sources that would fund stem cell research. You think the pharmaceutical companies would fund ES cell research, research that would completely cure any ailments? I severely doubt it.

Who does that leave? Hm? The Reagans? The rich folk?

Compare that to the funding the adult stem cell researchers get.
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real life
 
  1  
Reply Sat 21 Jan, 2006 11:50 pm
Wolf_ODonnell wrote:
real life wrote:
You are uncovering the whole premise that Kicky started this thread with.

The president won't support funding for 'x'.

Is that the same as the president is restricting 'x' ?

Obviously not.

A refusal to fork over federal dollars is not the same as banning or outlawing a practice.

But the squall from the Bush bashers has been the he stopped stem cell research cold by refusing to fund embryonic research.

As you point out, private funding still exists. Also a whole lot of successful ADULT stem cell research is going on.

The disingenous sloganeering from the political opponents of the president is what gives people the false impression that without $$ from the pocket of every citizen, then these poor sick folk are gonna die.


Your arguments are equally as disingenous. If you restrict funding, you restrict research because the researchers can only do so much with the money they have. It's as simple as that.

There are very few private sources that would fund stem cell research. You think the pharmaceutical companies would fund ES cell research, research that would completely cure any ailments? I severely doubt it.

Who does that leave? Hm? The Reagans? The rich folk?

Compare that to the funding the adult stem cell researchers get.


Well then let's make sure that you are the one honest man in this debate. How much have you given to fund ESC research?

If your answer is nothing, then apparently you also are 'restricting' embryonic stem cell research if you haven't given a dime of YOUR money to it, right?

And I'd be willing to bet that Kickycan who started this whole line of whine has not donated a copper to ESC research. So he too is restricting it, isn't he?

Every little bit helps. Pony up, boys. Put your money where your mouth is.

How many other things are you 'restricting' Wolf , by not giving your money to them?

No I don't think it's disingenuous to say that the president has NOT restricted ESC by refusing to fund it. I think it is disingenuous to imply that he has 'restricted' it by not doling out public monies for it.
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