The precautionary principle  JAN 12 2002

Precautionary Principle: "It doesn't sound like a revolutionary idea. Indeed, it sounds like common sense: better safe than sorry; look before you leap. But, in fact, the precautionary principle poses a radical challenge to business as usual in a modern, capitalist, technological civilization."

I'm all for analyzing risk and then plunging forward, but I hope the precautionary principle catches on more here in America, especially when dealing with important irreversible (or nearly irreversible) processes like growing of genetically engineered foods in the wild and constructing black holes in laboratories. The level of technology available to humans has always been ahead of our understanding of it, but with the tools of modern physics, quantum mechanics, and biotechnology available to us, the level of possible danger** is rising more quickly than even the technology.

** It's easy to be all doomy and gloomy about this, but the level of possible goodness arising from our increasingly powerful technology is rising quickly as well...so all hope is not lost yet, I guess.

kottke.org

Front page
About + contact
Site archives

Subscribe

Follow kottke.org on Twitter

Follow kottke.org on Tumblr

Like kottke.org on Facebook

Subscribe to the RSS feed

Advertisement

Ads by The Deck

Support kottke.org shop at Amazon

And more at Amazon.com

Looking for work?

More at We Work Remotely

Kottke @ Quarterly

Subscribe to Quarterly and get a real-life mailing from Jason every three months.

 

Enginehosting

Hosting provided EngineHosting