What’s Wrong with the World?

The Anchoress reminds us of the greatest answer ever to this question:

Dear Sirs;

I am.

Sincerely,
G.K. Chesterton

The world would be a much better place if we all answered this question in the same way. I doubt anyone could improve on this answer: it sums up an acknowledgement of our own failings and an acceptance that the only person we can control is ourselves. If we really want to make the world a better place, we need to start with ourselves.

Quote of the Day

“There is no part of the administration of government that requires extensive information and a thorough knowledge of the principles of political economy, so much as the business of taxation. The man who understands those principles best will be least likely to resort to oppressive expedients, or sacrifice any particular class of citizens to the procurement of revenue. It might be demonstrated that the most productive system of finance will always be the least burdensome.”

— Alexander Hamilton (Federalist No. 35, 1788)

Reference: The Federalist

Quote of the Day

“There is no part of the administration of government that requires extensive information and a thorough knowledge of the principles of political economy, so much as the business of taxation. The man who understands those principles best will be least likely to resort to oppressive expedients, or sacrifice any particular class of citizens to the procurement of revenue. It might be demonstrated that the most productive system of finance will always be the least burdensome.”

— Alexander Hamilton (Federalist No. 35, 1788)

Reference: The Federalist

This could end very badly…

Artificial letters added to life’s alphabet – tech – 30 January 2008 – New Scientist Tech

Two artificial DNA “letters” that are accurately and efficiently replicated by a natural enzyme have been created by US researchers. Adding the two artificial building blocks to the four that naturally comprise DNA could allow wildly different kinds of genetic engineering, they say.

Eventually, the researchers say, they may be able to add them into the genetic code of living organisms.

This just strikes me as something with potentially awful, unforeseen consequences. As Mark Shea is fond of saying, the history of the human race can be summed in two sentences “What could it hurt?” followed by “How was I supposed to know?” This falls into that category.

Hat Tip: Slashdot

This could end very badly…

Artificial letters added to life’s alphabet – tech – 30 January 2008 – New Scientist Tech

Two artificial DNA “letters” that are accurately and efficiently replicated by a natural enzyme have been created by US researchers. Adding the two artificial building blocks to the four that naturally comprise DNA could allow wildly different kinds of genetic engineering, they say.

Eventually, the researchers say, they may be able to add them into the genetic code of living organisms.

This just strikes me as something with potentially awful, unforeseen consequences. As Mark Shea is fond of saying, the history of the human race can be summed in two sentences “What could it hurt?” followed by “How was I supposed to know?” This falls into that category.

Hat Tip: Slashdot