[extropy-chat] Financial Times on transhumanism: The most dangerous idea on earth?
pgptag at gmail.com
Fri May 27 16:25:57 UTC 2005
growing number of people think it will soon be within our reach to become
something more than human - healthier, stronger, cleverer. All we have to do
is live long enough to be around when science makes these advances. If we
are, then we may just live forever.
This idea, known as transhumanism, is steadily spreading from a handful of
cranks and Star Trek fans into the mainstream and across the Atlantic. But
it is an idea that Francis Fukuyama, famed for proclaiming the end of
history when US-style liberal democracy triumphed in the cold war, has
described as the most dangerous in the world.
This FT article is reasonably balanced and tries to explain both side's
viewpoint. Besides Fukuyama's book, the article quotes and outlines MORE
THAN HUMAN by Ramez Naam, FANTASTIC VOYAGE by Ray Kurzweil and Terry
Grossman, and CITIZEN CYBORG by James Hughes. Conclusion: The biotechnology
revolution has caused Fukuyama to revise his contention that we have reached
the end of history - history rolls on, but driven by scientists instead of
kings. What all these writers have in common is the firm belief that the
biotech era will shake up the old political allegiances and create new
dividing lines. On one side will be those who believe such meddling
unnatural and unwise. On the other, those who want to take the offerings of
the biotech revolution and become something more than human. Won't you be
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