[ExI] My resignation from the WTA / H+ Board

Stefano Vaj stefano.vaj at gmail.com
Sat Dec 20 16:34:18 UTC 2008

On Sat, Dec 20, 2008 at 3:24 AM, Kevin H <kevin.l.holmes at gmail.com> wrote:
> With all respect, it seems that your idea of transhumanism is more on the
> order of a religion.  I don't think the problem is that the WTA is too
> moderate.

Even before the issue radicalism/"realism", there is the issue of
execution and real goals. For instance, the debate amongst voting
members on the change of trade name was perceived as a choice between
"fidelity to one's ideas" (or ideas one used to have...) and "success
in the mainstream".

Now, it has been noted by a few people of very different persuasions,
unfortunately without obtaining much attention in comparison with the
delusional "philosophical" debate above, that Humanity Plus, while
presenting a number of "ideological" issues in itself, presumably
sounds *less* palatable to most people than "transhumanists" (as in
"those accepting the idea of a transition towards something
more-than-human"), since it obviously implies the conceited and very
arrogant idea that WTA itself and its members would correspond... to a
superior, deluxe version of humanity, on the line of the "The
Illuminati" or "The League of Supermen"!

Having said that, we should first make clear to ourselves whether we
actually intend to go after the mainstream, which would require making
WTA slogans and messages as *different*, *strong* and *simple* as
possible, or we are futilely going on trying to appease the small
circles controlling most of the mediatic-cultural-political power in
western countries and defining what is "politically correct" and

To insist in the second option, which is already well represented by
the blatantly defensive overuse of words such as "responsible",
"ethical", "humane", "reasonable" in WTA literature and the
hyperqualification of our messages, is not really likely to generate
more funds or a larger, motivated membership, since it does little to
reassure our adversaries and risks to be found boring and confusing by
our most immediate public.

In fact, the stigma allegedly attached to the relatively innocent and
humble word of "transhumanism" does not depend on its semantics, but
on the well-justified rejection of our ideas by environments who
widely share different, or even opposed, value systems that are
basically non-negotiable for them, let alone in the name of
"reasonableness", and represent the definition itself of what is
"ethical" for them.

Unless WTA actually renounces to its ideas to the point of becoming an
absolutely pointless organisation, it is easy to prophesise that such
stigma will quickly attach to "humans-plus" as well. That is, as long
as anybody will have ever heard of that name or paid any attention
thereto, something on which I would not be too optimistic.

Stefano Vaj

More information about the extropy-chat mailing list