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Posthuman: More Human Than Human?

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posted on Jan, 25 2005 @ 11:23 AM
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The Sum of All Terror


Transhumanism is a loosely defined movement that has developed gradually over the past two decades …. Attention is given to both present technologies, like genetic engineering and information technology, and anticipated future ones, such as molecular nanotechnology and artificial intelligence. The enhancement-options that are being discussed include radical extension of human health-span, eradication of disease, elimination of unnecessary suffering, and augmentation of human intellectual, physical and emotional capacities… Transhumanists hope… we shall eventually manage to become posthumans, beings with vastly greater capacities than present humans. - Nick Bostrom


Although most of the planet is blissfully unaware of what is approaching, lulled by promises of a “great big beautiful tomorrow,” the near future will be anything but beautiful. A terrifying future thunders toward mankind, an impending fate embodied by monstrous, blasphemous combinations of human and animal genetic materials, of man/machine cyborgs, and of beings not only with increased capacities and extended life-spans, but also with re-engineered morality void of compassion.

This future is so abhorrent as to almost defy the imagination.

These new beings, and the transhumanists looking forward to their arrival, will not be benevolent.

Just the opposite.

Because the goal of those creating these beings will that they will replace human beings, that the new race will be posthumans. The word “posthuman” sounds innocuous enough. Until one realizes that “post” means “after.” As in “the human race is gone.”

Taken from: groups.yahoo.com...
And:
here.


Is this where we're headed? Mankind is it's greatest enemy. Something many of us have pondered and thought of, but where will the fatal blow come from?

Some think it'll come via A.I. or robotics. But what if there are certain people who wish to forcibly "evolve" the human race via nanobots and cybornetic implants?

Spooky stuff, and could be right around the corner.

Your thoughts, please.

X

Edited to fix links etc.

[edit on 25-1-2005 by Xatnys]

[edit on 25-1-2005 by John bull 1]




posted on Jan, 25 2005 @ 11:35 AM
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Originally posted by Xatnys

...what if there are certain people who wish to forcibly "evolve" the human race via nanobots and cybornetic implants?




...There are - they're called Eugenicists. Eugenics' roots date back to the mid-1800's - also called Social Darwinism, now neo-Darwinism and genetics...

The theories first were developed to defend the ruling class from the implications of certain scientific revolutions, especially Lamarck's theory of what's now called epigenetics and environmentally-induced mutation.

...Eugenics then was used for population control and depopulation. ...At the same time as the theory was made into an academic discipline, a disease (likely a bioweapon) called fibromuscular dysplasia (FMD) was loosed in the USA.

...Now FMD is out of control - and these fools think technology and transhumanism is the best and only way to solve the problem. Not.

...Environmental clean up and decontamination regulations would let the earth regain her balance and get rid of the gd bug.

Sigh. We need a Eugenics thread here...



.



posted on Jan, 25 2005 @ 11:40 AM
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We had one going for a day or two. You're right, eugenics is a topic we all need to take a closer look at. This 'science' or whatever it is, is the basis of many ethics courses taught in Medical school, and can be used to excuse some pretty nasty behaviour.

www.abovetopsecret.com...



posted on Jan, 25 2005 @ 11:46 AM
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There was a thread on Transhumanism somewhere around here or in BTS, but I can't find it for the life of me. Searched under Extropianism as well.



posted on Jan, 25 2005 @ 11:50 AM
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Originally posted by soficrow

...Eugenics then was used for population control and depopulation. ...At the same time as the theory was made into an academic discipline, a disease (likely a bioweapon) called fibromuscular dysplasia (FMD) was loosed in the USA.

...Now FMD is out of control - and these fools think technology and transhumanism is the best and only way to solve the problem. Not.

.



Ooops. Forgot to say that the chosen elite get to be treated and live, while the rest are left to die. Good plan, n'est pas?


.



posted on Jan, 25 2005 @ 11:54 AM
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I agree with you both on the need for regulation of any and all eugenic experimentation, at the very least.

However, this thread is focusing on a small sector of the community which is Transhumanism. A small sector of the nano and cybornetic technology trees that wish to change the face of humanity swiftly in the coming decade.

I fear that many in the above communities agree with the key ideals of Transhumanism, even if they are not "card carrying members" so to speak.

One can see many parallels between the Nazi eugenics programs of old, and these so-called present day pioneers.

Also, if we are to dig into this subject deeper, we can see possible conspiracies begin to emerge, such as:


Are these Microbiologists "disappearing" as part of a conspiracy linked to Transumanism?

Could that be part of a broad plan to leave "commoners" defensless from what is coming?

I do wonder.

X



posted on Jan, 25 2005 @ 12:13 PM
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This topic raises so many questions, I don't know where to begin.

  1. Who decides what needs improving?
  2. Who decides who gets improved?
  3. What happens to people who can't afford improving?
  4. Who are they going to test this technology on?

I could go on and on, but I think you get the idea. I agree that the word 'posthuman' has some pretty scary implications. It’s a little too close to posthumous for my liking. While there is nothing wrong with the pursuit of science in itself, there will always be someone who will use it to their own ends. And this one seems like it has potential to be very dangerous.



posted on Jan, 25 2005 @ 12:31 PM
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Actually I eluded to the study of the "science" of eugenics in a thread on global warming over in Fragile Earth. Many of the leaders of the world put vast resources into its study and its what backed the Nazi movement as well. Back then it was a scare tactic. It was a so called "proven fact" and used as an excuse to kill millions. "If the human race continued to interbreed, a breakdown at the genetic level would destroy us all"

Typical scare monger tactics we've seen for decades. Nowadays, nobody's ever been a proponant of eugenics. Now adays, our "scientist" develop new theories to scare us into feeding their hunger for fear. Oh the mechanism may change..eugenics, ice age,nuclear holocost,cold war,ice age,global whining..er uh..warming but the message is always the same; "Cower in fear for the destruction of humanity is at hand. Do what we tell you or you'll bring it all down upon us!"

Ya know what? Bull Crap! I'm sick of these man-made scare tactic agendas. Is this the next wave once we have finally gotten over this global warming bit? Well, of course it is. Why, our people in Hollywood have already began to give us a glimps of what our future holds through film. (They have been so accurate to date, ya know) And what devine mystic spark illuminates (careful) this knowledge of the future? Hell, I loved "I Robot" but to be that far in 30 years? I got news for you, 1984 was "slightly" exagerrated and I think this whole scenario may be as well.

I'm not trying to make light of this post or anyone's ideas. The people that ask these kinds of questions are the very people that prevent the worst from happeneing. I'm not upset at those, I'm upset at the perpetrators of these theories..because I know their motives.



posted on Jan, 25 2005 @ 12:39 PM
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Originally posted by Xatnys

Could that be part of a broad plan to leave "commoners" defensless from what is coming?

I do wonder.

X



...X - what you think is "coming" is already here. It's real. It's epidemic. It kills slowly, but eventually, it kills. Nearly 100% of Americans are infected by adulthood. It's in our food, water and air. Already. That's my first point.

My second point is that transhumanism is seen as the ultimate solution to this 'plague.' ...and I think they're wrong - there are other solutions.


good article btw.


.



posted on Jan, 25 2005 @ 12:54 PM
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Originally posted by soficrow
they're called Eugenicists. Eugenics' roots date back to the mid-1800's - also called Social Darwinism, now neo-Darwinism and genetics.

This is actually incorrect. NeoDarwinism and of course genetics itself are not eugenetic movements. Eugenetics was around before the modern study of genes. Certainly, either could be incorrectly used to 'justify' eugenetics, but then again anything can be twisted into justifying something stupid.


The theories first were developed to defend the ruling class from the implications of certain scientific revolutions, especially Lamarck's theory of what's now called epigenetics and environmentally-induced mutation.

Where is the basis for this claim? I have never heard of eugenetics being created as a bulwark against lamarckism. Also, epigenetics has nothing to do with lamarckism, and environmentally induced mutations are a part of darwinism, they are anathema to lamarckism.



...Now FMD is out of control - and these fools think technology and transhumanism is the best and only way to solve the problem. Not.

...Environmental clean up and decontamination regulations would let the earth regain her balance and get rid of the gd bug.


Sigh. We need a Eugenics thread here

There is already a recently active eugenetics thread.



posted on Jan, 25 2005 @ 12:55 PM
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Originally posted by Duzey
This 'science' or whatever it is, is the basis of many ethics courses taught in Medical school, and can be used to excuse some pretty nasty behaviour.

Can you name any of these medical schools that advocates eugenetics in ethics courses? Iknow people who have been in medical school and there is certainly nothing of the sort in their experience.



posted on Jan, 25 2005 @ 01:03 PM
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Originally posted by Nygdan

Originally posted by soficrow
they're called Eugenicists. Eugenics' roots date back to the mid-1800's - also called Social Darwinism, now neo-Darwinism and genetics.


This is actually incorrect.


Methinks it depends on your perspective. Here's something I'm working on for something else...


A. 3. TARGET: Individual voters.

STRATEGY:

1. Population Control

Background. From pre-history up to the 1700's, the OWO helped frontline rulers control the masses through religion - established and emerging religions were coopted and institutionalized - the OWO used the church(es) to support their strategy - and the priest class upheld the claim that rulership was a divine right, conferred by God (or Gods) . Several scientific movements emerged in the 1700's that threatened to blow the scam right out of the water - eg., paleo-geology, paleo-biology and especially, evolution. ...The OWO positioned to coopt science, and use it as their new power-base - the new theories of evolution were appropriated, modified and twisted to provide a "scientific explanation" for "ruler birthright" - and eugenics was developed as a 'science' to preserve the right to rule, by "proving" the genetic superiority of the ruling classes. ...By the early 1900's, "science" cum eugenics picked up where religion failed, for population control.




(Eugenics) must be introduced into the national conscience, like a new religion. It has, indeed, strong claim to become an orthodox religious tenet for the future, for Eugenics co-operates with the workings of Nature by securing that humanity shall be represented by the fittest races. What Nature does blindly, slowly and ruthlessly, man must do providently, quickly and kindly.

Francis Galton, Essays in Eugenics (1985) p.42
bevets.com...


1.1. Eugenics.




The word eugenics (from the Greek eugenes or wellborn) was coined in 1883 by Francis Galton, an Englishman and cousin of Charles Darwin, who applied Darwinian science to develop theories about heredity and good or noble birth. (I, Kevles 1985, p. x).

www.georgetown.edu...


History Highlights.




1700's - Eg., The French zoologist G. L. BUFFON (1707 – 1788) ...pointed out in his work ‘About the common descent from ancestors’ that not only donkey and horse, but human and monkey, too, belong to a natural family. BUFFON addressed a number of evolutionary problems nobody else had realized before. ...In his opinion, the majority of variations was of a non-genetic nature and caused by the environment instead. This idea was taken up by his pupil JEAN BAPTISTE de LAMARCK (1744 – 1829)...

1809 - These radical theories of evolution broke into the public domain - published in "Philosophie Zoologique," by Lamarck. ... Although the original theories were incomplete and flawed, Lamarck rightly focused on "acquired characteristics," and the impacts of environmental pollution and resulting mutations (now called epigentics - and researched by the US Environmental Genome Project (EGP), established in 1997).
- The theories were revolutionary because they questioned established ideas of inheritance, and threatened OWO control, which was based on religion-supported ideas of monarchs' "divine right" to rule, the innate superiority of the ruling classes - and the industrial revolution's disease-causing polluting factories and mines. ...
* The NWO counters with a long term marketing campaign - attacks French evolutionary theories - uses religion with masses, and wealthy young graduates from ruling class for academic front - but science doesn't go away - so the NWO moves to appropriate and control it.

1831 - the British monarchy sponsors an around-the-world scientific expedition on the HMS Beagle. Two "scientists" are on board - Captain Robert Fitzroy, the Commander and Surveyor, who "committed suicide in 1865 by cutting his own throat," and Charles Darwin, a just-graduated 'naturalist,' elitist and malleable scion of the Wedgewood china empire.
* The NWO anti-Lamarckian-evolution campaign continues - develops and promotes theory of "progressive evolution" (ie., argues that industrial pollution doesn't cause damaging mutations) - and theory that 'biological inheritance' determines abilities, social status and economic position/survival. ...Young Herbert Spencer coins the term "survival of the fittest" to explain human social classes - later supports Darwin directly, publishes "Synthetic Philosophy" applying principle of 'evolutionary progress' to all branches of knowledge including biology, psychology, sociology - is credited with establishing sociology as an academic discipline in the USA. ...Young Thomas Henry Huxley drops his own biological research to become a publicist for Darwin's NWO theories of evolution and inheritance - and helps push the idea that humans need to control their own evolution to progress.

1859 – Charles Darwin publishes "On the Origin of Species by Means of Natural Selection, or the Preservation of Favoured Races in the Struggle for Life," after NWO marketing campaign has softened public and prepared way to redirect evolutionary theory - he "debunks" Lamark's evolutionary theories - and provides the evolutionary theory needed to prove that class superiority and the right to rule are inherited.

...


....and on to Galton, Eugenics, and it's various faces, mutations and permutations...


.

[edit on 25-1-2005 by soficrow]



posted on Jan, 25 2005 @ 01:42 PM
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Originally posted by soficrow
modified and twisted to provide a "scientific explanation" for "ruler birthright" - and eugenics was developed as a 'science' to preserve the right to rule,

Eugenics was around before darwin.


by "proving" the genetic superiority of the ruling classes.

How'd they manage to do that, without knowing about things important to genetics, like, genes.


Francis Galton, Essays in Eugenics (1985) p.42

Notice that this passage has nothing to do with genetics.


who applied Darwinian science to develop theories about heredity and good or noble birth

I would correct this to read 'who incorrectly applied...' Darwin himself stated that there are no ethics lessons in nature.


1809 - These radical theories of evolution broke into the public domain - published in "Philosophie Zoologique," by Lamarck. ... Although the original theories were incomplete and flawed, Lamarck rightly focused on "acquired characteristics," and the impacts of environmental pollution and resulting mutations (now called epigentics - and researched by the US Environmental Genome Project (EGP), established in 1997).

I'm sorry, but this is wrong. Lamarck talked about the will and urge of the organism, along with use and disuse, to result in the major features of evolution, not 'environmental mutations'. He -did- talk about, in a sense, a flow of information from the environment into the animal, but this is different from the normal usage of 'environmental mutations'. Lamarck was not a mutationist.


Young Thomas Henry Huxley drops his own biological research to become a publicist for Darwin's NWO theories of evolution and inheritance

I'm sorry, i can't read this utter crap anymore.



posted on Jan, 25 2005 @ 01:48 PM
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Originally posted by astrocreep
Actually I eluded to the study of the "science" of eugenics in a thread on global warming over in Fragile Earth. Many of the leaders of the world put vast resources into its study and its what backed the Nazi movement as well. Back then it was a scare tactic. It was a so called "proven fact" and used as an excuse to kill millions. "If the human race continued to interbreed, a breakdown at the genetic level would destroy us all"

Typical scare monger tactics we've seen for decades. Nowadays, nobody's ever been a proponant of eugenics. Now adays, our "scientist" develop new theories to scare us into feeding their hunger for fear. Oh the mechanism may change..eugenics, ice age,nuclear holocost,cold war,ice age,global whining..er uh..warming but the message is always the same; "Cower in fear for the destruction of humanity is at hand. Do what we tell you or you'll bring it all down upon us!"

Ya know what? Bull Crap! I'm sick of these man-made scare tactic agendas. Is this the next wave once we have finally gotten over this global warming bit? Well, of course it is. Why, our people in Hollywood have already began to give us a glimps of what our future holds through film. (They have been so accurate to date, ya know) And what devine mystic spark illuminates (careful) this knowledge of the future? Hell, I loved "I Robot" but to be that far in 30 years? I got news for you, 1984 was "slightly" exagerrated and I think this whole scenario may be as well.

I'm not trying to make light of this post or anyone's ideas. The people that ask these kinds of questions are the very people that prevent the worst from happeneing. I'm not upset at those, I'm upset at the perpetrators of these theories..because I know their motives.


Well I can totally see where you're reasoning comes from. But I think that discounting the threats that are viable with the coming maturity of Nanotech would be at best unwise, at worse, fatal.

The things that we're looking at are not "black and white". Even if you take out any form of "motive" for any group to want to force an evolutionary step upon humanity. If you take out the intentional human element, there are still a million things to worry about.

You have to question containment procedures of ALL forms of Nanotech. You have to question how much autonomy will be given to the devices.

Like I said, I understand where you're coming from. That the "big boys" scare us via different mechanisms as our civilization needs to be steered into various directions.

But let's not forget the times where technology was sold as a road to wonderous and beneficial bliss, only to be turned into the bane of humanity.

The wonderful Atom was poised to bring in a new age of growth and prosperity. The energy was supposed to be used for the good of mankind, etc. We've all see the old reels that spoke of the amazing things that the atom would bring us. Everything short of a flying car.

Granted some would say Atomic power has been a success(although not as it was proposed), it really is only known for it's destructive power.

Or let's look at the good old days of NASA. Everybody was high on the vibe of "Space travel"(cue Star Trek intro) and it was just wonderful.

What was the space program in reality though? The development of a missle platform for launching the much lauded Nuclear devices that were built in abundance, rather than helping humanity.

Now, that whole period of the Cold War era was ruled by MAD, and so you had the "big boys", pretty much the same big boys who spoke of the great wonders of the atom, and the uses of space, those same "big boys" were then instilling fear in the public. Can you say "Duck, and cover!"? I can.

So really, what you end up with, is either way you slice it, looking at the vantage point of "fear mongers" or "Snakeoil salesmen", both are part of the same beast. And even though we've seen their kind in each era, the threats are actually there, it's just the degree of threat that varies from their word.

And then you must ask yourself "Why? why is that the way it is?"

And so far, my answer is: "Because we have foolishly built a society based on perpetual war."

All advances seem to stem from a very harsh and militaristic tech tree. Almost anything that reaches civilian hands, was first the sole property of the military industrial complex.

Ain't that something?

Now, why would the awesome power of nanotech be any different? Be a realist and ask yourself that again?

In a civilization, which currently models success off of perpetual war, all applications of technology must first hold a practical military purpose, or funding will falter.

Now sure, every nation has enemies, yadda yadda ad infinum. I'm not hear to argue that. I'm just saying that there are clear and present dangers found in just about all new science and the resulting tech.

Always has been.

Always will be. At least, as long as our society is based upon a war that cannot stop.

Well, that's my take on it currently, sorry for rambling.

X

And I agree with you Sofi, but sometimes it's better to pose a question to viewers than to force a statement. I want people to read and ask the same questions. The answers are there, I know ya know that. Thanks for the help.


X



posted on Jan, 25 2005 @ 02:48 PM
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Originally posted by Xatnys

Well, that's my take on it currently, sorry for rambling.


X


Not at all. I am glad you went further to elaborate your opinion. I see your point as well.

Nanotechnology might well be in the category of a credible proven threat such as nuclear holocost one day. It certainly presents some points to consider. I guess my biggest gripe had to do with the comment on eugenics and not really nanotech. Certainly mankind has faced proven threats before and will again and I was wrong to give the impression we should discount those.

My biggest peeve is those who push a theory such as eugenics, which we now know had very little basis in actual science as much as it did in politics, to scare people into doing their bidding. For the most part, global warming is today's eugenics (although lacking the death toll) and is used mostly now as a blackmail device for fundraising and is sponsored more by lawyers and politicians than the actual open-minded people conducting the research. Why bother to spend the money on research if we are to ignore the findings? Because they didin't come out the way we planned. Hell, we have even tried to skew data and cannot make the fit. The same went with eugenics. Entire facilities were built dedicated to its study in the 40s and 50s. Now, no one would ever admit they ever sudscribed to such travesty.

But, I'm way off topic on ya and I should know better.

Just wanted to thank you for clarifying and allowing me to refine my position. After reading what I typed, I knew it didn't represent my defined opinion. One must differentiate between credible threats and flights of fancy created by those with something to gain. Its too early in this technology to make that assertation for me. As with global warming, I'll probably err on the side of caution until its better researched.

Better safe than sorry. Boy, does that ever ring true?



posted on Jan, 25 2005 @ 07:08 PM
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Originally posted by Nygdan

I'm sorry, i can't read this utter crap anymore.


...and I'm sorry if I'm stepping on your assumptions. (Not.)

FYI - I do acknowledge that my representation of Lamarckian evolutionary theory is not well accepted. Nonetheless it is also true that his ideas are being re-interpreted in the light of epigenetics, with specific reference to epigenetics. (Ie., see the Wikipedia entry for Lamarck for a mention.)

The history presented in my post above deals with the "managed" evolution of scientific thought for political purpose, in an historical perspective - and it's perfectly legitimate.



posted on Jan, 25 2005 @ 07:43 PM
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Originally posted by Xatnys

And I agree with you Sofi, but sometimes it's better to pose a question to viewers than to force a statement.


X


ahhh gotcha. ...the professional persona gets checked when I go anonymous and all passionate... sorry - don't want to hijack your thread.


...So there are several ways to tinker with the human body - nanotechnology being only one - but you want to focus on nanotech - because it can go waayyy out of control, right?

....So we're talking about some microscopic little machines that can take over human bodies, and change them, and maybe reproduce themselves - and not just the body that they're injected into, but maybe they could spread and infect other people too...???

Yipes. scary stuff. ...and how will anyone even know until after it happens, and the little suckers are already loose? ...and what if we can't kill them?

Is there anything to stop people from doing these kinds of experiments? ...Like laws or regulations, or some kind of controls?



posted on Jan, 25 2005 @ 08:22 PM
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Originally posted by soficrow
...and I'm sorry if I'm stepping on your assumptions. (Not.)

You didn't step on any assumptions, you simply demonstrated that you haven't the foggiest idea as to what you are talking about. Normally I read that sort of stuff anyway, its often pretty interesting, but that, well, that was just such tripe, that even I couldn't stomach it. I'm not trying to be insulting, and I suppose you wouldn't be insulted anyway, but, really.




The history presented in my post above deals with the "managed"

replace that with 'imagined' and you'd be a bit closer.


evolution of scientific thought for political purpose, in an historical perspective - and it's perfectly legitimate.

Sure, its legitimate, but its also garbage. Its legitimate garbage, you've got that covered at least.



posted on Jan, 25 2005 @ 09:13 PM
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Originally posted by Nygdan

Originally posted by soficrow
...and I'm sorry if I'm stepping on your assumptions. (Not.)

You didn't step on any assumptions, you simply demonstrated that you haven't the foggiest idea as to what you are talking about.


Nygdan - you're obviously interested only in namecalling - and have little respect for me or anything else, including this thread. So how bout you just back off? ...If you want to pursue this, I'm perfectly able to defend my thesis. Start another thread.



posted on Jan, 26 2005 @ 08:38 AM
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Hey, lets not get nasty. All people are welcome to thir opinions without being harrassed. Nygdan, I can see nothing that soficrow posted that warranted the insults you made. That may very well be your opinion and your welcome to express that, however, please attempt to use a bit more tact. Calling someone's assertions garbage and telling them they haven't the foggiest idea of what they're talking about does little to negate their post and such character assasination goes against the theme and motto of this board. Got info and evidence? Post it. We welcome your ideas but not your bullying.



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