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We’re Transhumanity - Here’s OUR AGENDA

Posted: Fri, February 15, 2013



We Want Indefinite Life Extension. We Want to Live as Long as We Desire. We Seek Immortality.

We Want Peace, Justice, Fairness, and Liberty for All Humanity, in All Social, Political, Economic, and Educational Relationships.

We Want Involuntary Suffering Abolished in All Sentient Creatures. We Want a Compassionate Planet, Devoid of Predation, Pain, and Emotional Anguish.

We Promote the Advancement of Intelligence, both Biological and Artificial.

We Want Outer Space. We Want to Travel, Explore and Visit the Universe.

We Want Total Freedom to Enhance, Augment, Upgrade, and Experiment with Our Bodies.

We Want Politicians to Help Us or Get Out of the Way. We Want Federal Agencies - like the FDA and the Patent Office - to Support Us or Be Abolished.

We Accept Taxation that Helps Our Goals - i.e., Medicine, Education. We Reject Taxation that Thwarts Us - i.e., Military, Government Watchdogs.

We Want YOU to Join Us. 

——-

This agenda is subject to change. Please post suggestions in Comments below and they will be added to Suggested Amendments below.

SUGGESTED AMENDMENTS from TNet readers: 

1. There’s several of the usual complaints from people who don’t want suffering abolished. They feel this is an unreasonably difficult goal, and they see value in suffering.

2. Abolishing “predation” has many opponents. One commenter would prefer that “wildness” was spread throughout the galaxy. Many people don’t want “natural” predation genetically messed with.

3. One TNet contributor wants the 6th statement above to be expanded to: “We want the freedom to enhance, augment, upgrade and experiment with our bodies, not to be limited by our biological heritage but at the same time not forcing others to adopt our choices and seeking to eliminate options that would have a negative impact on peoples’ wellbeing.”

4. There’s numerous critical comments on Reddit.com’s of “Transhuman” and “transhumanism” subreddits. One commenters there doesn’t like the “We Reject Taxation…” statement. Others think the second statement is too “Fluffy.” 

5. Regarding item 4, one reader wants a cautionary statement added, about the dangers of superhuman AI. 

Additional manifestos, including Dirk Bruere’s winning entry in the “Transhumanist Declaration 2.0 Contest” are HERE



Comments:

Wonderful!!!... Almost Perfect!!!... This just need to make a mention about a Global Resource-Based Economy!!! wink

By Jherok Teijeiro on Feb 15, 2013 at 12:14pm

This should be the agenda of every living person. Damn religion…

By Herman on Feb 15, 2013 at 1:23pm

I think the notion of abolishing suffering in all creatures makes no sense whatsoever.  It is a feel good bit of fluff that cannot be achieved without rewriting most of the creatures pretty much from scratch.  So are you really doing any good those those creatures you effectively destroyed to replace them with something that made you feel good?  I don’t see how even if you could do it.  Also suffering/pain of at least some kinds is negative feedback from reality.  There is no way to learn/grow/adjust that I know of with only positive feedback.  Lastly many types of suffering are rather self-inflicted by places we haven’t yet developed in wisdom.  And we don’t develop in wisdom simply by making ourselves unable to suffer.
So this goal strikes me as ill conceived, undoable and making us look like a bunch of ungrounded mystics at best.

Please explain what “fairness”, “justice”, etc. is and is is not.  Otherwise this statement sounds good but has no substance.

I don’t see how taking from people by force to support what “We Want” is a good example of “fairness” or “justice”.

I see a lot of “We Want” but not a lot of “We will create / bring into being”. 

 

 

By Samantha Atkins on Feb 15, 2013 at 5:37pm

I would say involuntary suffering rather than all suffering.

Right now we have people like John Holdren making the highest science policy decisions.

By Sean Henderson on Feb 15, 2013 at 8:02pm

Best talk to a few ecologists before wiping out predation. Also some evolutionary biologists.

Personally I’d like to see wild nature spread throughout the galaxy, not eliminated in favor of nicely controlled little zoos.

By Dennis on Feb 16, 2013 at 4:36am

Earth’s ecosystem would collapse without predation and suffering in other animals. That’s why I don’t have a problem with not being bothered about animals that are not of a certain level of sentience/consciousness.

By Reeve Armstrong on Feb 16, 2013 at 6:03am

I think that the different points in this manifesto are fine and adequately reflect what transhumanism is about, however I agree with Samantha Atkins.. you need to add substance and in my opinion, change the overall tone of the manifesto. The rhetoric is domineering and demanding where it should be persuasive and inviting.. Perhaps a little rephrasing would do the trick..

By Toni Bico on Feb 16, 2013 at 7:01am

Respectfully, I feel that the term “government watchdog” is possibly misused here. In my experience, these are typically private organizations (i.e. one which does not receive tax dollars) which exist to monitor the government for waste, corruption, etc. (see http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Category:Government_watchdog_groups_in_the_United_States) and seem generally consistent with transhumanist values.

Perhaps the true intent was to reject the use of tax dollars for government surveillance of private citizens?

By Francisco on Feb 16, 2013 at 9:02am

In the one on space there is nothing there about actually exploiting space/off planet resources. It is worded like we are to be perpetual universe tourists but never build a business, home, orbital, space colony or much of anything else.  This is a large weakness.

By Samantha Atkins on Feb 16, 2013 at 9:13pm

Funny that some of us seem to ignore the distinction between “predation” and “aggression”.

Now, with the former we usually refer to carnivorous animals routinely feeding on other species.

But for those unconditionally obsessed with “suffering”, most deaths, pain and stress arise from the second, which is spread throughout the animal kingdom, if anything more so amongst erbivorous where ethological ritualisation is less common, and more generally from Darwinian pressures (eg, competition for food, territory, sexual mates) which do not necessarily have to do with either.

So, my impression is that their primary concern with predation has more to do with psychological grounds, rather than with consistent, rigorous ethical grounds, as objectionable as they may be.

By Stefano Vaj on Feb 17, 2013 at 5:20am

You lost me at taxation. Also, taxation is incompatible with the goal of eliminating suffering, unless you are a masochist.

By Thomas Watts on Feb 17, 2013 at 4:14pm

I think the whole eliminating taxation for the military would be a bad thing. Maybe a reduction in the military but total nonsupport of it would be bad unless we could somehow unite all of the human race under one banner which will not happen for a LONG time (We’d all need life extension to see that).

By John Daniels on Feb 17, 2013 at 8:26pm

Perhaps a little science should be explained.

Ecosystems depends on predation to keep population levels in check. If herbivores have no predators, their population will grow until they strip the vegetation bare, and they all starve.

Evolution depends on an arms race between predators and prey. Computer experiments with genetic programming have shown that without that, evolution proceeds at a much slower pace.

Eliminate these two things and you’re free to design your own new organisms and put them in zoos, carefully managed and fed. But it seems rather pointless and boring, and I don’t see why anyone would bother.

Perhaps though this is a pointless discussion. If you can’t see the beauty and power and intrinsic worth of the natural world, I can’t convey it to you in a blog comment. I can only suggest that you get out of your house and experience it.

By Dennis on Feb 18, 2013 at 6:21am

@Dennis:ù
“Ecosystems depends on predation to keep population levels in check. If herbivores have no predators, their population will grow until they strip the vegetation bare, and they all starve.”

Just to play the devil’s advocate, this is not strictly true. We can well imagine stable ecosystems where herbivores simple kill one another in order to compete for scarce pastures, either literally and violently, or simply by starving their co-specifics to death. In fact, this is one actual regulatory mechanism in place, because not all herbivores are predated.

The reasons however why such scenarios appear to be of much less concern to abolitionist fundamentalism than exterminating lions, castrating them or changing them biotechnologically into furry cows, seem to me of an obvious psychological nature.

Same as the refusal to take into consideration, instead of such genocidal fantasies, the more economic alternative of providing predators with preys who *like* to be hunted, or whose ability to suffer pain is automatically “shut down” when they are defeated and prior to worst part of their being killed.

“Eliminate these two things and you’re free to design your own new organisms and put them in zoos, carefully managed and fed. But it seems rather pointless and boring, and I don’t see why anyone would bother.
Perhaps though this is a pointless discussion. If you can’t see the beauty and power and intrinsic worth of the natural world, I can’t convey it to you in a blog comment. I can only suggest that you get out of your house and experience it.”

Yup. I am more or less on the same line, here. But not out of any deference to the “natural” world as-it-is, but for a taste for diversity and life. Heck, if I could resurrect a few T-Rex and provide them with a reasonable facsimile of their habitat, à la Jurassic Park, I would not hesitate a second, as “artificial” as this endeavours would be.

By Stefano Vaj on Feb 19, 2013 at 9:51am


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