Transhumanity, like it or not? (was: Prince Charles gets nervous)

Russell Turpin deafbox at
Mon Apr 28 18:05:03 PDT 2003

Jeff Bone:
>Short version of the argument "for" follows. One of the two following 
>possibilities is certain to happen:
>(1) Humanity and its intellectual descendants will eventually cease to 
>exist, probably sooner
>rather than later.
>(2) Humanity and its intellectual descendants will proliferate throughout 
>the universe.
>.. Basically, if humanity is to have its diaspora, we're going to have to 
>be fundamentally different from what we think of as human today. So the 
>net-net seems to be that if humanity is to survive long-term in any sense, 
>it will have to be different from what we think of as "human" today.

The problem with the argument above is that it
essentially closes the option for people who DON'T
want to become trans-human. You almost seem to say
that they are doomed to extinction, in the not too
distant future, or at least, that you view the
latter as a sort of lifeboat to that probability.

For much of humanity the continuation of humanity
-- meaning primates like you and I now are -- will
remain qualitatively more important than the
propagation of its "intellectual descendants." If
they view it as either-or, they will sacrifice the
creation of the latter to the survival of the former.
If you say the latter isn't possible, they will say:
let's work on it more. Regardless, they do NOT view
the latter as an acceptable alternative to the

I don't see any reason to presuppose such a choice.
I think you're giving up the interesting space too

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