[extropy-chat] Cryonics without comprehensive brain disassembly?- No

Robert J. Bradbury bradbury at aeiveos.com
Thu Apr 22 18:18:08 UTC 2004

On Wed, 21 Apr 2004, Brett Paatsch wrote:

> Threads do get long if obfuscations and diversions get thrown in
> all over the place.

I'm not intentionally trying to obfuscate.  Sometimes my mind
will pick up in the middle of a discussion and perhaps
misinterpret points or wander around things.  People like
Chris Phoenix or perhaps Hal have discussed recently how
to present scientific arguments -- that is not one of my
stronger points.

> So I'll put back the relevant bits that you removed.

Not intentionally.

> >> >... what separates cryonics (that posits that the self can survive
> >> > the disassembly of  the brain in which one currently experiences
> >> > it) from religious systems that believe the same thing?  Isn't it a
> > > > case of pick your belief-poison?

> [Robert]
> >  I would like to correct a misperception -- cryonics does *not*
> > strictly require the disassembly of the brain.
> -----------------------------------------------------------------
> Therefore:
> Your asserted that:  "cryonics does *not* strictly require the dissassembly
> of the brain".
> I asserted that it does.  That's binary. You've taken one position
> with your "perception".  I have taken the other with mine.
> Do we agree on this much?

Yep, we agree that there are (at least) two positions.  [One could
get into complicated hair-splitting with regard to what "disassembly"
means that might produce more positions.]

I would assert from my reading of Ralph's paper and other knowledge
with regard to what nanorobots (*or* even biorobots) can do that
"disassembly" is not necessary (it might be useful but not necessary).

> I'd like you to be able to communicate the truth of your perception
> to me like I have an IQ of 100, and a whole lot of other things to do
> with my time. Which I do. But I don't have to rush. Although I am
> in a different time zone to you.

I'm not sure that this can be done.  If one reads Ralph's paper,
then one reads all of the work by Freitas on what Nanorobots can do,
then if one reads the Robiobotics business plan on what bionanorobots
can do (which I haven't seriously applied to the question of cryonics),
then we might be able to have a head-to-head conversation on the subject.
But to present it to the level of someone with an average IQ you are
presenting a requirement that, at least from my perspective, I have
to spend years educating such a person such that they understand
all of the concepts involved.

The scenario you suggest probably isn't about to happen.  I'll tell
you a sad story (getting off track again).  One of the most beautiful
women I have ever known, who I thought was quite intelligent, told me
that she could never fall in love with me because she was intimidated
by how smart I was.  That was quite revealing with respect to the
fact there are some knowledge bases that are extremely difficult to
communicate across intelligence boundaries.

> In short I want you to think of me as if I was an average voter. If you
> can't convince the average voter without calling in assistance from
> Eugene or Anders or anyone then *you* don't perceive the truth of
> your position well enough to be polically effective with it on your own.

Sorry, while I would like the average voter to believe in cryonics
(or at least not be opposed to it) I don't much care if he/she does.
I don't want to live in a world of reanimated individuals where most
people are at the level of what we now consider to be average.  I want
to live in a world where people have the time, interest, energy, resources,
etc. that it is much more extropic than ours currently is.

You can accuse me of being "extropically prejudiced" and I will
not object.

> If you can then you can teach others to do it. And you will be
> effective.  Politicians are not a lot brighter on scientific matters
> than the average voter.

I understand this.  But I would hope that we might develop a system
where both the "average voter" and the "politicians" become much
more educated and perhaps intelligent.

> Be warned the average voter feels perfectly capable of rejecting
> you and everything you care about as irrelevent because the average
> voter has other things on his/her mind. To the average voter the
> most valuable time in the world is not yours its theirs.

Reasonable point.  But as the recent discussion by Chris Phoenix
shows "fact", "belief" and "faith" are mixed up in very complex
ways by the human mind.  How one deals with them is complex as well.

> The average voter does not think they are an idiot. The average
> voter thinks their vote is as good as yours.

Understood.  And this is perhaps a shortcoming of our system
of one-person = one vote or "all persons are created equal".
These are fantasies.  The reason you put a CEO in charge of
a company or appoint a committee at NIH to schedule genome
sequencing priorities (etc.) is because one recognizes
that there are people who are going to do a better job at
certain tasks because their experience or knowledge bases
are greater than the average voter off of the street.

The votes of informed or educated people are clearly worth
more than uninformed and/or uneducated people.  Would you want
group of a dozen people plucked from rural communities in
India to be sitting on the Federal Reserve Board of the United
States setting interest rates (which tend to influence
interest rates around the world)?  Hell no!

If ExI were to adopt a political position I might lobby for it
to be -- "you have the right to vote -- but you must be qualified
to do so".


P.S. Also -- I have not seen where you point out that Ralph's paper
strictly requires the disassembly of the brain.  If my memory serves
me correctly I do not think that it does.

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