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We've never had it so good - and it's all thanks to science

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  • Ian Pitchford
    We ve never had it so good - and it s all thanks to science Acclaimed author Matt Ridley on why it s high time we cheered up about the new technologies
    Message 1 of 1 , Apr 2, 2003
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      We've never had it so good - and it's all thanks to science

      Acclaimed author Matt Ridley on why it's high time we cheered up about the new
      technologies

      Thursday April 3, 2003
      The Guardian

      If you debate the new genetics in Europe and America these days you get asked
      the same question in two different ways. The average European says, with dread:
      "How do we stop people doing x?" The average American says with excitement:
      "When will I be able to do x?" For x, read "test myself for future dementia
      risk," "change my unborn children's genes," or even "fill my blood vessels with
      nano-robots to enable me to live to 150".

      To the jaded European palate, the American attitude seems silly and
      irresponsible. Caution should be the watchword for all new technology. I beg to
      differ. I think the American optimism is necessary and responsible. It is the
      European pessimists who are in danger of causing real harm. Caution has risks,
      too.

      My techno-optimism is deeply unfashionable in Europe, where Jeremiah is treated
      as a serious, cautious and - let's face it - cool guy, but Pollyanna is a silly
      twit.

      We discuss the potential drawbacks of genetic testing or genetic modification
      of crops. We do not discuss the suffering and environmental damage that will be
      caused by holding back innovation.

      Full text
      http://www.guardian.co.uk/life/opinion/story/0,12981,928170,00.html
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