Author Topic: Episode #662  (Read 8076 times)

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Offline The Latinist

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Re: Episode #662
« Reply #15 on: March 18, 2018, 10:58:03 AM »
What I think it that you’re nuts. Just being honest.
I would like to propose...that...it is undesirable to believe in a proposition when there is no ground whatever for supposing it true. — Bertrand Russell

Offline Igor SMC

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Re: Episode #662
« Reply #16 on: March 18, 2018, 11:22:41 AM »
Well... thanks for the honesty... xD

But for you to state that my hypothesis is worthy of a "nut", it implies that you qualify that as an event of extremely low probability.... I'm a true skeptic and I can change my stance on ideas, given the evidence. Can you point to any particular information that drastically reduces the probability of that happening? Maybe another statement that he made?

I just would like to reiterate the feasibility of the hypothesis: One patient, communicates his inner family. The doctor of the family conducts the procedure. That's it. Absolutely no need to take any more assumptions as true.

I would also like to point out that I DO NOT TAKE THAT CLAIM AS TRUE. Just that I've found that it could be a healthy and fun intellectual activity to find evidence for and/or against this claim.
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Offline daniel1948

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Re: Episode #662
« Reply #17 on: March 18, 2018, 11:33:53 AM »
What do you guys think about the hypothesis that Stephen Hawking committed assisted suicide on Einstein's birthday?

I think it does not matter. At all. Of course, AFAIK there's no evidence at all. Just your imaginative supposition. Now you want people to go searching for anomalies that might support your thesis. Well, knock yourself out, but know that you'll be in the company of conspiracy theorists throughout the ages. Of course, I have no doubt that if you put your mind to it you'll discover plenty of anomalies to support your idea.

I have a question about Hawking:

He communicated by twitching his cheek when the right letter went across the screen. Why didn't he use Morse code, or some other code, perhaps of his own devising, twitching his cheek to trigger a code key? He'd have been able to write much faster.
Daniel
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Online CarbShark

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Re: Episode #662
« Reply #18 on: March 18, 2018, 11:42:05 AM »
What do you guys think about the hypothesis that Stephen Hawking committed assisted suicide on Einstein's birthday?

Think about it...


I think that’s a hypothesis that’s impossible to falsify. There is no evidence that would prove it false.





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Offline daniel1948

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Re: Episode #662
« Reply #19 on: March 18, 2018, 11:52:57 AM »
I watched the quantum chess video... Not worth your time.

I thought it was kind of cute. Silly, but cute. And I thought that Hawking was a good sport to allow himself to be used in it.
Daniel
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Offline Igor SMC

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Re: Episode #662
« Reply #20 on: March 18, 2018, 12:33:27 PM »
Reality: There is a recorded statement from Hawking where he said "“I would consider assisted suicide" given some circumstances.

Everyone here: You are completely nuts, conspiracy theorist that completely lacks reason for thinking that is a possibility.

( I would like to point out that conspiracy theories are about huge groups of people hiding a secret to control the population, involving lots of impossible logistics and anomaly hunting. Do you guys really put the "sick person who publicly declared he would commit assisted suicide deciding to do it on an iconic date to him", something that would involve a handful of individuals in one single family; in the same basket as "Alex Jones crew, 9/11 truther, moon landing denier"? Does that assessment of probability really sounds reasonable to you?
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Offline daniel1948

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Re: Episode #662
« Reply #21 on: March 18, 2018, 12:53:59 PM »
Conspiracy theorists start with a conclusion that they have some emotional or political reason to like, then they search for factoids that would support that theory. You have selected an idea that appeals to you, and suggested that people search for factoids that would support your conclusion. But I was not intending to suggest that yours is a conspiracy theory. Just that reasoning backwards from a conclusion and searching the internet (of all places!) for "evidence" is the modus operandi of conspiracy advocates.

But personally, I don't care whether Hawking died of natural causes or chose to ask his loved ones to end his life. (It's not really assisted suicide when someone else would have to do it for you. That would just be a requested mercy killing. And would put your loved ones in danger of prison. Do you really want to prove that Hawkings' relatives were guilty of murder under British law?)

What matters is Hawkings' life, and that he will be sorely missed by scientists, science enthusiasts, and skeptics.
Daniel
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Offline lucek

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Re: Episode #662
« Reply #22 on: March 18, 2018, 06:22:16 PM »
On Cara's no pi day around the world. No the US is one of only a few countries that are middle endian (MDY) but that doesn't mean the rest of the world is little endian (DMY). Pi day works in big endian countries (YMD) like china canada parts of Australia etc. So happy belated pi day to all the big endians on 2018/3/14.
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Energy is just the ability to do work.

Offline Fast Eddie B

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Re: Episode #662
« Reply #23 on: March 18, 2018, 08:48:39 PM »
Going full pendantic here, but...

It’s Daylight Saving Time - no “s” on “Saving”.

In an episode that talks about idiosyncrasies in human perception, I imagine Cara might have had the right name up on her screen but subconsciously or out of habit added the “s” - as did every rogue, I think.

I was kinda surprised none of them brought it up, knowing what sticklers they can be!

Offline Igor SMC

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Re: Episode #662
« Reply #24 on: March 18, 2018, 08:50:11 PM »
Quote
Just that reasoning backwards from a conclusion and searching the internet (of all places!) for "evidence" is the modus operandi of conspiracy advocates.

Well, the huge difference from what I did from the conspiracy advocates is that I did not took the conclusion as true. It was an honest answer, and if anyone came up with a piece of information that could decrease the likelihood of that, it would be completely ok for me. As a skeptic should, the way of thinking will always be more important than the conclusion.

But it frustrates me to see that no one is willing to accept the premise (not even for a moment and for the sake of the argument). It seems that everyones opinion is that "a sick person is willing to commit assisted suicide" is completely absurd, worthy of instant dismissal and categorized the idea as conspiracy-worthy. Also, asking honestly for help to credit or DISCREDIT a premise is what skepticism is about. You guys are basically saying that no critical thinking skills should be applied at all.

What is the opinion of you guys about the death of David Bowie? He was also a British citizen, and a public person. He had cancer, and his cancer was spreading. He released an album with very explicit Death mentions (Something happened on the day he died / Every man has a black star, A black star over his shoulder, And when a man sees his black star, He knows his time, his time has come (From Elvis) / Look up here, I'm in heaven, I've got scars that can't be seen, Look up here, man, I'm in danger, I've got nothing left to lose). The rate of his releases close from his death also points towards the fact that he knew that his day was coming. And let us not forget the fact that his clip Lazarus was literally shot with him in a hospital bed. So, it makes absolute sense to consider as a reasonable HYPOTHESIS that as a way to prevent further suffering, and at the same time do something "meaningful" with the date chosen, he would consider to exert control upon his own death...

The family of David Bowie would never oficially accept that claim, since by British Law this kind of thing is illegal:

Quote
The law
Both euthanasia and assisted suicide are illegal under English law.

Assisted suicide
Assisted suicide is illegal under the terms of the Suicide Act (1961) and is punishable by up to 14 years' imprisonment. Trying to kill yourself is not a criminal act.

Euthanasia
Depending on the circumstances, euthanasia is regarded as either manslaughter or murder. The maximum penalty is life imprisonment.

Stephen Hawking's condition was slowly deteriorating through time, and his Words-per-minute count was only decreasing every passing year. Being unable to communicate properly is extremely frustrating, and when he first faced this possibility, HE ATTEMPTED SUICIDE.

Quote
Professor Stephen Hawking has admitted that he “briefly tried to commit suicide” in the 1980s when his worsening neurological disease left him unable to breath or speak without assistance.
Source: http://www.independent.co.uk/news/people/stephen-hawking-admits-he-briefly-tried-to-commit-suicide-in-discussion-on-assisted-dying-9611930.html

Furthermore, his final condition perfectly fits the profile of THE VAST MAJORITY of people who seek Euthanasia: People who have a terminal illness that has progressed to the point where natural death is "reasonably foreseeable". This is The Norm, Not an "Anomaly".
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Legality_of_euthanasia

Also relevant: Stephen Hawking's second ex-wife says death is 'a relief for him' from his disabilities.
http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-5498269/Professor-Stephen-Hawking-dead-76.html

The hypothesis of him choosing to die on March 14th is very reasonable. He was slowing losing the only movements he got left (Facial expressions, eye twitching). If he lived for a few more years, he would inevitably see himself stuck in a body WITH ABSOLUTELY NO WAY OF COMMUNICATING, and that with all certainty, is not a life worth living. That would be a terrible torture for him... If he had to avoid that scenario, why not do it while he still could do so? Why not have a last joke, and at the same time pay tribute to THE MOST IMPORTANT SCIENTIST of all his life and career?

If this was the case, how many people would need to be involved? JUST 4 PEOPLE. His children, and a medic or nurse to handle the procedure. Perfectly feasible. The complexity of the problem is so small that it is irrelevant. Also, people who choose Euthanasia prefer to die "peacefully at home", or "peacefully with the family".

So... can anyone tell me if I'm making a reasonable argument here? Or my argument did not move your opinion not even a little bit?
« Last Edit: March 18, 2018, 09:43:32 PM by Igor SMC »
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Online Harry Black

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Re: Episode #662
« Reply #25 on: March 18, 2018, 09:12:55 PM »
Maybe he did commit suicide.
But there isnt enough evidence beyond the coincidence of the date to think he did.
Lots of stuff is possible but that doesnt mean its worth assuming it to be true. We can all make up 'just so' stories for a narrative we like, so its worth waiting for more indicative evidence before thinking something is likely or spreading it as a theory.

Offline Igor SMC

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Re: Episode #662
« Reply #26 on: March 18, 2018, 10:21:29 PM »
Maybe he did commit suicide.

Thats precisely my point. MAYBE he did it. I'm only taking the hypothesis as far as the evidence allows to.

My idea was never to do something like "The evidence clearly point to that direction, therefore, we can logically conclude the hypothesis".
My idea was to move the hypothesis a little bit higher in the spectrum of probability. Take it from the absurd probability, passing the "statistical chance a random individual would commit Euthanasia", up to something that is "reasonably likely".  I asked for help to help me asses correctly the probability, for higher or for lower.

At one moment, his typing speed was TWO WORDS PER MINUTE.  My last post contains 770 words. Imagine what is like to have to do 7 hours of face gymnastics to write that. Now, imagine that next year it would take you 12 hours. In 3 years, it could take you 24 hours of constant eye twitching to write that. Add to that the fact that he couldn't do absolutely ANYTHING by his own. Imagine what is like not being able to drink a glass of water, cleaning yourself after going to the toilet... not even being able to look at the ceiling without assistance. Nothing. In this scenario, it would make perfect sense to try to avoid that fate that for sure was coming.

I've found another reference to the family contemplating Euthanasia when his communication speed was seriously compromised:
Quote
By the time Stephen was in his thirties, his speech had deteriorated so much that only his family and best friends could understand him.
Then at 43, he contracted pneumonia and the prognosis looked so bad, Stephen’s doctors asked his wife if they should turn off his life support.
Source: https://www.hwns.com.au/Blog/6-surprising-facts-about-Stephen-Hawking
(But that gets me confused regarding the British Law... if Euthanasia is illegal in UK, how come the doctors would have suggested this? Can this be a lie? Can an Skeptic from UK give a little insight here?)

That would make two separate incidents of the family or Hawking himself contemplating death as opposed to suffering.

After researching a little bit more on the decay of his communication rate and level of autonomy (Which was null, even moving his body to a more comfortable position required assistance), I now place the probability of the hypothesis between "Likely" and "Very Likely". But no further than that. For sure, never as high as "extremely likely". Do you guys agree with this assessment? Or should it be just "Likely", or "less likely" ?
"Knowledge is preferable to ignorance. Better by far to embrace the hard truth than a reassuring fable"

Online CarbShark

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Re: Episode #662
« Reply #27 on: March 19, 2018, 01:31:55 AM »


So... can anyone tell me if I'm making a reasonable argument here? Or my argument did not move your opinion not even a little bit?

No, you are not. Anytime you have a hypothesis that cannot be falsified you are not being reasonable.


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Offline Igor SMC

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Re: Episode #662
« Reply #28 on: March 19, 2018, 01:58:32 AM »
You are wrong to state that this claim cannot be falsified. This is completely different from a god hypothesis, invisible dragon in the garage argument. The fact that a statement cannot be falsified is something that, by definition, would not change its status given new events ( otherwise it would have been classified as falsifiable in the first place).

Some member of the family could acknowledge the fact. An autopsy could reveal chemicals in the blood, etc...

You are confusing "is not falsifiable by the general public" with "is not scientifically falsifiable".
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Offline Tassie Dave

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Re: Episode #662
« Reply #29 on: March 19, 2018, 03:18:42 AM »
It doesn't need investigating. Either way it's the family's business.






 

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