GB: Well I suppose a starting point for Sam would be: believing in God. Does he? Sam?
CB: That's one for you, Sam. It's the default position. No one has shown that it is unreasonable.
Elisa (On the medicalisation of grief): Formidably successful marketing campaigns are in place to sell sickness, particularly mental sickness. It is all about condition branding, redefine an existing condition, increase its importance or create a new one for an unmet market.. and give it a spectacular name: social anxiety disorder, seasonal affective disorder, post traumatic stress disorder, premenstrual dysphoric disorder... Redefine all expressions of human emotion as psychiatric problems and then you will ensure that there is always a market for your new drugs.
CB: I agree with you both. But what about when government takes a position?
GB (On Weaponology): Well the defence industry is good for the economy. Most of the advances in electronics and many other areas of technology have been driven by defence needs.
For example, it is unlikely that Watson Watt would have persevered with the development of radar had it not been funded by the Air Ministry in view of the impending threat from Hitler. Thus, landing at Heathrow would now be a dodgy experience.
The impetus to develop the jet engine was a direct result of needing faster aircraft to combat the Luftwaffe.
We wouldn't have Satnavs if it were not for the US needing accurate positioning systems for their missiles. And this GPS technology is used for civil aircraft navigation as well as in the aircraft TCAS (Traffic alert and Collision Avoidance System) which guards against mid-air collisions.
I could go on but won't!
CB: You are absolutely right that this is how things have happened! Does this make war a good thing? Given company A with faster transatlantic crossings with jet engines and company B with slower, who will prevail – war or no war? As for RADAR, it doesn't take a Nazi threat to make consumers really enthusiastic about landing on the tarmac at Heathrow – as opposed to 10 metres below.