[ExI] The Myth of Stagnation

BillK pharos at gmail.com
Sun Nov 8 00:23:26 UTC 2009

On 11/7/09, Max More wrote:
> The philosopher Bernard Williams once wrote a piece on "The Tedium of
> Immortality". Although I have long thought his view reeked of sour grapes,
> he expressed similar sentiments to those I've heard many times over the
> years. "The Myth of Stagnation" is my rebuttal to those sentiments.
> http://strategicphilosophy.blogspot.com/2009/11/myth-of-stagnation.html

Interesting article.  You're the optimistic type, aren't you?   :)
(I'm more the 'glass half-empty' type).

I don't see immortality as an either / or situation.
I see it as the usual bell-curve of humanity. Some people already
commit suicide before their old age, because they don't want to live
any longer. Some people might last 150 years, some 500 years, and
perhaps a few for a very long time indeed.

As you say, avoiding arthritis and other disabling diseases of old age
will do a lot to encourage people to want to live longer.

The next problem is how to fund longer lives. Will 200 year-old people
still be working 9 to 5 jobs to get an income? Most people have lives
of work, eat, watch tv, and sleep, with a few weeks break each year.
How long to you expect them to want to continue?

I think immortality becomes more feasible if you assume other changes
in human society. i.e. Always good health, work ethic abolished and
all the essentials of life provided by machines, no starvation,
poverty or disease, nanotech empowering everyone, no wars,.....    You
can see why immortality is traditionally associated with heaven.


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