[ExI] Religion and banking

Stefano Vaj stefano.vaj at gmail.com
Sat Aug 14 15:58:34 UTC 2010

On 13 August 2010 18:47, The Avantguardian <avantguardian2020 at yahoo.com> wrote:
> China and Islam are only dangerous to us because of an epic fail on our part.

Absolutely. But I always wonder what an Iranian or Chinese
transhumanist would think of those exchanges.

Islam of course is a more mixed issue, being a universalist religion
which installed itself destroying or at least repressing civilisations
and value systems I am much fonder of. But it should be kept in mind
that nowadays in Iran the conservative clergy is more open to
compromise with the West which might ensure its internal social and
economic power (see Rafsanjani), while many Iranians who are
enthusiastically support the country's nuclear plans are religiously
not especially fervent, and some of them are even nostalgic of the
Shah regime...

But coming to China, what should a Chinese transhumanist do or think?
Most criticisms here have to do with its socialist past or its
authoritarian aggressive-capitalist present. But one wonders if such
political and economic systems are not a rather thin veneer over
deeper cultural traits, which may explain why Chinese communism was
fairly different from Russian communism, and Chinese capitalism is
more similar to - albeit subtly different from - Japanese or Korean
capitalism than to American or Russian capitalism. In turn, Russian
capitalism is closer to German capitalism in the Kaiser era than to
British capitalism.

Ultimately, however, a Chinese citizen may have preferences as
everybody else on how his or her country should be ruled and evolve,
but is hardly going to complain about its taking an economic,
technological or political lead according to its own specific identity
and worldview. For sure, US citizens never complained when it was
their turn from 1918 to 2000...

Stefano Vaj

More information about the extropy-chat mailing list