[ExI] Natasha's Response re: Libertarianism, Extropiansim &Transhumanism

Kevin Haskell kgh1kgh2 at gmail.com
Thu Jun 23 10:11:41 UTC 2011


Quoting <natasha at natasha.cc>

>You have misunderstood and sorely misconstrued what I wrote. I will
briefly reply below:

Just to be clear, this is what you originally wrote: "

> For me, I am not a libertarian, an anarchist or a singulartarian.  I
> am transhumanist and I support Extropy above all else.  I don't like
> Extropy tethered to other stuff that is not expressly focused on life
> expansion and well being.

>Quoting Kevin Haskell <kgh1kgh2 at gmail.com>:

> Thanks, Natasha.  Regarding your reply, I needed to re-orient myself and
> just check out the differences between what you were expressing, and what
> understood Extropy to be as I remembered it, and did it the old fashioned
> way: Google.

>I have no idea what you are talking about.  Instead of googling, just
>go read Max More's writings and go to Extropy Institute's website.

Well, again, I was just attempting to clarify the differences between what I
'personally remembered' about Extropianism and what you had written.
That's...pretty much it.

As to Googeling, the Extropy Institute's website, with Extropy's principles
written by Max More within it, was the very first page that came up when I
did Google it.  So, it worked pretty nicely.

Lastly, why do you think I wrote, in my last sentence, "Thanks again for
sharing your particular thoughts on that, and for inspiring me to do my due
diligence to get better clarification on general Extropian philosophy (and
thanks to Max More,)" if I hadn't already read, by that time, the principles
of what Max More had written?

> So, it looks like some fine lines have been drawn in the past few years
> helped me understand the difference.  From your own perspective, and
> me if I am wrong, you wish to leave out any externalities which may affect
> the achievement of developing H+ technologies, such as politics, and just
> focus on the actual technologies themselves, and the benefits you would
> like to see them bring.

>What?  I am a proponent of technology.  I said libertarian, not
>politics. My focus is more on design, theory, and culture that is
>affected by technology.

Okay, thank you for the clarifications.

> Secondly, Extropianism, (as related to but different from Extropism, which
> was another new one for me,)  as as an idea seems to favor the positive
> future scenarios as expressed by Ray Kurzweil (who I take it you agree
> with,)

>Not completely. Extropism is Kevin Kelly's hijacking of Extropy but it
>is better just to say Extropy.

Fair enough.

> not really agreeing with Ben Goertel that H+ tech could just as
> easily lead us into either good or bad future, and we just don't know, and
> steadfastly separating yourselves from the dystopian future scenarios of
> Hugo de Garis.

>I do not agree with de Garis's artelict, but I wrote about these
>issues/arguments some years ago myself. I agree very much with Ben
>Goertzel and that has nothing to do with de Garis' artelict dystopic

Right. The point was to show that Ben held a moderate position of
expectations, as juxtaposed with Kurzweil's optimism and de Garis'
negativism.  Didn't mean to make you think I meant that Ben's 'negative' was
the same as de Garis' specific negative concept.

> In short, Extropianism has clarified that it expects, with effort, of
> course, a good outcome from H+ tech for both humans and machines, and
> different from Transhumanism, but rather, an optimistic branch that might
> best be described by Kevin Warwick's "Cyborginist" concepts.

>Extropy is transhumanism.  The Cyborgist ideas of Warwick are not a
>worldview and lack the vision of the transhuman and transhumanism.

So, if Extropy "is" Transhumanism, and this was really the original question
I started out with, why did everyone stop calling themselves "Extropians,"
(which means someone who supports the concepts of "Extropy"), and begin
calling themselves Transhumanists?  It was just a straightforward question
to everyone on the list about the change in terminology.

Regarding Warwick, his ideas seem to fit quite nicely within the
"Transhumanist" conecept.  Unless I am missing something, he is seeking
progress in health, length of life, and development of superior qualities of
people through the use and physical adaptation of technology. In short, he
is seeking the evolution of mankind through technology.

Since you define Extropy and Transhumanism as being the same, and wrote "I
don't like Extropy tethered to other stuff that is not expressly focused on
life expansion and well being," then you and Professor Warwick appear to be
working for the exact same thing.

> Would it be fair to say Natasha, that since you do not like the idea of
> Singularity, that this is the one main area that you are in disagreement
> with the Extropian ideals?

>I never said I do not like the Singularity or its theories.  In fact,
>I am involved with different working groups on the Singularity.

Forgive me. I thought that since your wrote "For me, I am not a libertarian,
an anarchist or a singulartarian" that you meant you didn't like the
theories of Singularity, and certainly am surprised to hear that you are
working with Singularity groups. Are you making a distinction in the
language, meaning that humans can't be "Singularitarians," but can just work
for the creation of the Singularity?

> Thanks again for sharing your particular thoughts on that, and for
> me to do my due diligence to get better clarification on general Extropian
> philosphy (and thanks to Max More.)

>I'm afraid your due diligence is not accurate and you have
>misconstrued what I said.  I said that I do not favor libertarian
>ideas or the dogma of singularitarianism, not the technological
>singularity.  Big difference.


My "due diligence" comment, if you read it again, above, was directed at my
clarification of the general Extropian philosophy, not what you said.  I was
merely thanking you for the inspiration to check.  Please re-read that if
you were not clear about it.

Regarding you, I was attempting to clarify your personal views, which is why
I asked you to correct me where needed.  You did so.

Incidentally, let's be clear on what you originally wrote.  You never
originally stated that you did not favor the "dogma" of Singularitarianism,
and that you did support the 'technological Singualrity,' you merely stated
that you did not consider yourself a Singularitarian.

Big difference.
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