[ExI] "If I can't be me, then I might as well kill myself"

Lee Corbin lcorbin at rawbw.com
Wed Jan 20 05:26:55 UTC 2010

Fuld Auditorium, January 9, 2024. Professor Harvey Flockenbird of
Princeton gives a press conference in the wake of his startling
paper---universally heralded by physicists---presenting the first
full and complete Grand Unified Theory of physics.

"Professor Flockenbird! Professor Flockenbird!", cry the reporters,
"just one question!" But the questions go on and on until finally
a young reporterette asks, "Dr. Flockenbird, in layman's terms is
I am given to understand that in your theory every femto-second
each particle of matter is completely disintegrated? How then is
it possible for us to go on thinking of matter as having duration
and being substantial?"

"Well," says the professor, "the utter destruction of matter
takes place on the order of zepto-seconds, a small fraction of
a femto-second. Before a whole femtosecond is up, however, the
*information* that constituted the matter---having been bounced
around and re-digitized and analoged trillions of times---
causes particle quadrupoles to organize and recreate the
matter, whether it be quark, gluon, or electron."

"But then," she follows up, "doesn't that mean that each one
of us, each human being, is instantaneously destroyed and re-
created billions of times each second?"

"Oh yes," he replies, "after all, our bodies are made of ordinary

It was this statement, made on January 9 in Fuld Auditorium, that
precipitated the wave of suicides across Europe and North America.
"My life has been nothing but a tissue of lies," exclaimed Matthew
Soleil, best-selling professor of philosophy just before he took
his own life. "I'm not the person that I thought I was, and, worse
than that, it's clear that I never was! Each second I become someone
else, a complete stranger. Obviously, there is no point in going
on. Because there is nobody "here" to go on for."

A counterclaim was made by Christopher Reich of the University
of Glasgow. "What we have here is, sadly, just evolution in action,
although this is the first time that fitness has descended from
philosophy. All of these poor unfortunates simply fail to understand
that the continuity of their lives is fulfilled entirely by the
continuity of the *information*, and that the actual particular
sub-atomic particles, which do flash out of existence all the time,
being replaced much later, are only temporary and unimportant
carriers of the actual content."

Alas, people were to be completely stubborn on this point, as they
always had been about teleportation scenarios, and the last un-uploaded
people all killed themselves not many years later as they grew to an age
where they could finally understand the TOE of the early 21st century.


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