Yet another weird SF fan

I'm a mathematician, a libertarian, and a science-fiction fan. Common sense? What's that?

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Yet another weird SF fan

Saturday, December 10, 2005

I Must Be Slow

I didn't think of the following analogy (about the recent Israeli law on indirect euthanasia) first:

This is weird. I just checked Drudge, and he links to a story that says Israel just passed a law approving the use of machines to euthanize terminally ill patients. The rationale is that Jewish law forbids human beings to kill ("murder" is the correct translation) other human beings, but machines are allowed to do it.

I love that rationale. The person who turns on the machine is totally free of guilt.

I think this logic explains a lot of the episodes of the old Batman TV series. The Joker, for example, puts Batman and Robin in, oh let's say a giant milkshake machine that turns on at midnight, and then he leaves. I always thought those scenarios were written for dramatic effect. It's not very dramatic if the Joker sneaks up behind Batman and Robin while they're sharing a tender moment in the jacuzzi and fires a shot that enters through the base of Batman's spine and exits through Robin's forehead. But if you put them in a milkshake machine and then leave at five minutes to midnight, the drama becomes as palpable as the throbbing homosexual tension.

I always thought that was the idea, but apparently, it's not. Apparently, the idea was that if a machine killed Batman and Robin, the Joker couldn't be prosecuted, and he could go on with his life, perhaps reforming and becoming an interior designer or a choreographer.

Question: Will this same idea be used in Iraq to excuse timed terrorist bombs? After all, it's a well-known fact that Islam resembles Judaism (but, according to an article in The New York Observer, with an extra Y chromosome).


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