Rob woutat when peril looms in our progress chicken recipes easy healthy

Cotton was easy to grow, and unlike food, its fibers could be stored for long periods of time. But the seeds had to be pulled out laboriously by hand. Whitney’s cotton gin pulled out the seeds mechanically and made the process quicker.

The first result was that cotton became a more profitable crop and more cotton was planted, which in turn brought a need for more people to pick the cotton, which resulted in the need for more slave labor. The 1790 census counted 697,897 slaves; 20 years later, there were 1.2 million, a 70-percent increase.

One indirect result of whitney’s invention was our civil war, but we’re not inclined to think about the long-term consequences of developments in technology as long as the prospective, short-term result seems positive. Think about college student mark zukerberg and his friends, who conceived the idea of connecting the whole world socially through the internet.Million people


“right now,” he said, “with social networks and other tools on the internet, all of these 500 million people have a way to say what they’re thinking and have their voice be heard.

“think about what people are doing on facebook today,” he added. “they’re connecting with the audience that they want to connect to. It’s almost a disadvantage if you’re not on it now.”

We might have wished there had been a less naïve, more sober-eyed adult in the room to temper his enthusiasm, to say, “let’s stop for a minute here, mark. Let’s think about how this could go wrong. Do you really believe all those 500 million people mean well? That there aren’t some evil-minded people among them who’d use this idea to do harm? And how could we prevent that before launching it?” or do we not worry about these things if the profits look good?Million people

Even the most forward-thinking, most imaginative thinkers of the early 1800s probably could not have foreseen the cotton gin someday leading to the civil war, but they could certainly have seen that it would lead to dramatic changes in land use, manufacturing, and labor, and wondered about the possible negative possibilities. They certainly knew that slavery was morally wrong and that it could someday become a political issue.

And it should have been much easier to imagine that a tool like facebook wouldn’t always be used for cheery purposes, that it even could be used deceitfully by one government to create havoc in another country by disrupting its election process.

In the realm of technology, we have nothing akin to an environmental impact statement.Million people when self-check-out lanes were opened in supermarkets, did anyone ask what could go wrong here? After all, they lessen the chance that shoppers will have to wait in long lines. Customers will be happy.

Some of those happy customers were the ones who cheated the system by putting an expensive steak on the scale with the bar code facing upwards, then indicate on the screen that the steak is lettuce or cauliflower and thus cost the cheater less, or by pasting a cheap sticker price over a more expensive one.

If they’d thought about the probability that, given the chance, some people would cheat the system, maybe they wouldn’t have made it so easy. Now albertsons and some other stores have done away with self-checkout lanes. Looking forward to the past, the company now says it wants to give its customers more personal service.Million people

Tobacco was first used in the ninth century for religious purposes, but manufacturers gradually added more ingredients – the RJ reynolds company lists 236 — to invent a product that would be more addictive and to increase profits. The CDC says that the use of tobacco causes almost six million deaths per year worldwide and will cause an additional two million more each year by 2030.

Changes in technology are inevitable, and they’re probably more often beneficial than not. But it’s just not in us to wonder what the costs might be. Did the developers of the drone and the self-driving car wonder about that?

Somewhere on this planet today, somebody is about to make a discovery or invent something that will, sooner or later, have a dramatic effect on mankind, and I’ll bet my social security check he’s not thinking about possible long range consequences.Million people