[extropy-chat] Animals

Avatar Polymorph avatar at renegadeclothing.com.au
Sat Feb 14 00:12:15 UTC 2004

----- Original Message ----- 
From: "Robert J. Bradbury" <bradbury at aeiveos.com>
To: "ExI chat list" <extropy-chat at lists.extropy.org>
Sent: Thursday, February 12, 2004 5:29 AM
Subject: Re: [extropy-chat] Animals

> On Thu, 12 Feb 2004, Avatar Polymorph wrote:
> > The sun's expansion would destroy life on Earth in 500 million years, well
> > prior to it turning into a red giant.
> From an extropic perspective is unreasonable to assume this scenario.
> (I have not bothered taking on all of the astronomers who promote this
> perspective however -- since it is perhaps hundreds to thousands of
> individuals and I simply do not view it as worth my time).
> For this statement to make sense you either have to argue that humanity
> will be extinct or will have exited the solar system long before that
> "natural" condition might take place *or* argue that humanity if it
> exists as long as 500 million years will not engineer either the Earth
> or other habitats or the sun so this simply will not happen.  One then
> has real probabilities problems.
> You cannot ignore the presence of intelligence as a component in the
> evolution of the universe.

Of course Robert... I meant, if we left them alone on the Earth and the Earth
as it is and was. I.e. we "remove" ourselves elsewhere (certainly one
scenario often discussed). I do not believe in the moral existence of "species", only
individuals and their social choices. Individuals die, not species, as actual
neurological entities. Perhaps you could say "species" exist as a meme. They
exist within a physical definition. But not a moral definition. All death should occur
by consent. All sentient or semi-conscious lift should be offered choice. This is my
perspective, one informed not by a post-humanist perspective but a post-species
perspective (along the lines of Broderickian "Exes"). This means that I do not go
along with greens and the likes of David Suzuki, since I see the environment as a
tool for neurologically based beings (and including those to come such as AIs).
Though our present biosphere has a spiritual dimension nonetheless it will be
set aside so far as the neurological kingdom is concerned... in a strange reversal
of the myth of Eden we will enter a new Garden, of non-neurological plant and 
nanomaterial and energy systems - we will all eat of the fruit of eternal life and the
fruit of knowledge.

> Humans are not "actively selecting" for intelligence in dogs and cats, not
> even in sheepdogs.
>>Ca-ca.  Go to any dog show and watch the performance of the animals --
>>I doubt you would be able to claim we are not selecting for intelligence.

Active surely means active. It means a deliberate, planned, tested and implemented
breeding programme with specific sets of objectives. E.g. memory, puzzle solving,
anticipation, extrapolation, guessing, social rapport etc..

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