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#482376 - 11/03/12 05:53 PM immortality and ethics, are you ready?
john hunter Offline


Registered: 05/16/11
Posts: 28
If dramatic life extention technologies were to become available to the human race, what effect would that have on the various modus operandi currently in operation on this planet?
What sorts of changes could be postulated?
What sort of comparisons or differences could we expect?
What sorts of problems could we expect that would have to be overcome?

What would the mechanisms of the perfect immortal society look like,
in your oppinion, hypotheticly speaking?

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#482377 - 11/03/12 06:17 PM Re: immortality and ethics, are you ready? [Re: john hunter]
Hagen von Tronje Offline

CoS Priest

Registered: 06/28/01
Posts: 10121
You're asking a question that's both 100% speculative and would require several hundred pages to explore fully.

What do I personally think would happen? Either:

a) If everyone somehow has this technology, overpopulation will lead to constant strife and conflict, resulting in war - and death.

b) If not everyone has this technology, the have-nots will go utterly apeshit and even more people will die.

Just seems obvious to me, going against the grain of four billion years of biology is going to get ugly.
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#482379 - 11/03/12 06:50 PM Re: immortality and ethics, are you ready? [Re: john hunter]
Johann Schmueser Offline


Registered: 11/03/12
Posts: 5
Loc: Ontario
Seems to me that things are going precisely that way, if the elections in the United States and the political climate here have are any measure of it. We are about to implode on our own sh it here, because we cannot work together across party and political lines. The divide is very distressing to those of us who have enjoy the diversity and richness of our multicultural and pluralistic society.

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#482380 - 11/03/12 06:55 PM Re: immortality and ethics, are you ready? [Re: john hunter]
Johann Schmueser Offline


Registered: 11/03/12
Posts: 5
Loc: Ontario
Hypothetically, the marginalized will rise up and demand what has been taken from them, or they will be segregated to the corpeortate interests whose greed and power wrested it from their hands over the last hundred years. The prospect for the world is a bloody one no matter how these matters work themselves out or not matter who wins in the end. Personally, it would be a good time for my wife and I to return to Canada if such violent upheavals begin in the USA.

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#482382 - 11/03/12 06:57 PM Re: immortality and ethics, are you ready? [Re: Johann Schmueser]
Hagen von Tronje Offline

CoS Priest

Registered: 06/28/01
Posts: 10121
Personally, it would be a good time for my wife and I to return to Canada if such violent upheavals begin in the USA.

Why? Assuming you're repying to me, are you postulating that only Americans will opt into such measures, and Canadians will naturally avoid life extension? That sounds...hilarious.
_________________________
"The devil I'll bring you," answered Hagen. "I have enough to carry with my shield and breastplate; my helm is bright, the sword is in my hand, therefore I bring you naught."

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#482383 - 11/03/12 06:59 PM Re: immortality and ethics, are you ready? [Re: Hagen von Tronje]
Quaark Offline

CoS Reverend

Registered: 08/22/03
Posts: 8818
Or, given that virtual reality simulations, robotics, pharmacological sciences, etc, will no doubt be extremely advanced, people will choose to live out their immortality in virtually sealed individual total environment chambers underground, given that there is no land shortage if one thinks three dimensionally.

Think just 100 stories deep, and the planet could support a trillion little immortal drugged zombies.

The number one fantasy will of course be having sex with God.

wink
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#482385 - 11/03/12 07:01 PM Re: immortality and ethics, are you ready? [Re: john hunter]
Johann Schmueser Offline


Registered: 11/03/12
Posts: 5
Loc: Ontario
Shit no. I am telling you that with a sick and aging wife, it would be bast to face issues in Canada; with my family to care for and my people to strengthen.

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#482386 - 11/03/12 07:06 PM Re: immortality and ethics, are you ready? [Re: Quaark]
Hagen von Tronje Offline

CoS Priest

Registered: 06/28/01
Posts: 10121
Taking that fantasy to the logical extreme, it would be prudent to remove people's brains as soon as medical technology permits, or rather, trim their bodies away from their brains. This would minimize the nutrients required to sustain life in this perpetual-virtual-reality scenario and maximize the number of lives sustainable, as well as cut back on necessary facilities, like waste disposal (all you'd need is a filtration system on your nutrient delivery machine).

Of course, by that time spambots will have reached such a stage that you actually cannot tell them from a real person, and the news will occasionally run features on innocent people who unknowingly married an ad bot, including Jerry Springer interviewing the bot in front of a live studio audience.
_________________________
"The devil I'll bring you," answered Hagen. "I have enough to carry with my shield and breastplate; my helm is bright, the sword is in my hand, therefore I bring you naught."

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#482387 - 11/03/12 07:14 PM Re: immortality and ethics, are you ready? [Re: Hagen von Tronje]
john hunter Offline


Registered: 05/16/11
Posts: 28
Originally Posted By: Hagen von Tronje
You're asking a question that's both 100% speculative


I would like for this to remain well understood by all participents in this conversation.

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#482388 - 11/03/12 07:23 PM Re: immortality and ethics, are you ready? [Re: john hunter]
john hunter Offline


Registered: 05/16/11
Posts: 28
so it is generaly speculated so far that natural selection would have a field day in the event of... such an event.

what I am interested in is the characteristics of the survivors.


one problem that would most likely occure within a group of those who have received the technology, would be the fact that the longer one lives, the better they get at what they do, and the longer they have to get siriously pissed off at one of their associates,
and/or their authorities.


Edited by john hunter (11/03/12 07:26 PM)

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#482392 - 11/03/12 08:29 PM Re: immortality and ethics, are you ready? [Re: john hunter]
Zeviander Offline


Registered: 10/12/12
Posts: 26
Loc: MB, Canada
I am not quite sure this is a question of ethics. As Hagen von Tronje already pointed out, the technology would become just another method of contention between groups (the Have's, Have-not's and the Don't-want's), and I think it should be implied that it probably would never be universal.

As a Satanist, would I choose to become biologically immortal (despite it's likely impossibility given the decompositional nature of organic material)? Doubtful, to be very honest. Eternity is a very long time, and as a biological system, my capacity would likely be reached at some point (the brain contains a limited number of neurons for example, so memory would be limited).

Certainly, I would wish to have my life extended to a significantly long period (a thousand years seems like a good, round number), but to exist infinitely? I could not even fathom such a concept. It would mean I would outlive the Earth, the solar system, and even the universe (assuming it has an "end").

I think a better, more condensed version of this topic, revolving possibly around the ethics of medical technology (such as stem cell research) extending human life, reliably, another 50 or 100 years would be much easier to explore and discuss. However, if we are all learned individuals, we already know the major player's position on these issues.
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#482395 - 11/03/12 10:01 PM Re: immortality and ethics, are you ready? [Re: john hunter]
Nemo Offline
CoS Magister

Registered: 10/06/02
Posts: 12529
Loc: Point Nemo s48:52:31:748, w123...
No one has a better track record for successfully predicting future events than Ray Kurzweil.

In this brief interview with Time Magazine, he addresses many of your questions very directly.


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#482426 - 11/04/12 12:39 PM Re: immortality and ethics, are you ready? [Re: Zeviander]
Insurgent Offline
CoS Member

Registered: 08/08/01
Posts: 2312
Quote:
Eternity is a very long time, and as a biological system, my capacity would likely be reached at some point (the brain contains a limited number of neurons for example, so memory would be limited).


There's no reason why in such a technologically advanced future that excess human memory couldn't be stored on "expansion drives" of some sort. These memories would be instantly accessible in the very same way that current memories are accessible, if not more accurately; even triggered without conscious will but via association.

I think you're applying modern limitations to speculative future technologies.

Quote:
Certainly, I would wish to have my life extended to a significantly long period (a thousand years seems like a good, round number), but to exist infinitely? I could not even fathom such a concept. It would mean I would outlive the Earth, the solar system, and even the universe (assuming it has an "end").


Agelessness does not prevent death.

On society and agelessness:

By the time we even reach the point of this kind of technology we will have already begun to explore population control in a polite and feasible manner. This will begin at about the time that AHCs truly hit the market, resulting in the eventual abolition of labor as we've known it. Population requirements will be vastly reduced.
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#482432 - 11/04/12 02:43 PM Re: immortality and ethics, are you ready? [Re: john hunter]
Azeri Offline

CoS Member

Registered: 05/17/10
Posts: 216
Loc: Hell
My idea on eternal life is it certainly
possible through science at some point.
DNA can be stored.
A new body for all who want forever.
I think the possibility is exciting and can be
done some day.
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#482434 - 11/04/12 02:48 PM Re: immortality and ethics, are you ready? [Re: Azeri]
Bill_M Offline
CoS Reverend

Registered: 07/28/01
Posts: 11547
Loc: New England, USA
Originally Posted By: Azeri
My idea on eternal life is it certainly possible through science at some point. DNA can be stored. A new body for all who want forever. I think the possibility is exciting and can be done some day.

I'm more than my DNA. A genetic clone of myself wouldn't have my memories, knowledge, personality, etc. so I'd hardly call that some sort of extension of my life. Even if I believed that, there's no telling whether or not the next genetic clone of myself would think the same way and would want the line to continue.
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