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Monday, August 17, 2009

Techno-Immortalism in a Nutshell

Either humans are like leprechauns or we're like red wagons. Since leprechauns aren't real but red wagons and humans are, we must be more like red wagons than leprechauns then. Since we can build red wagons that last thousands of years, then medicine can make people live thousands of years, too.

But we haven't actually ever made any red wagons that last thousands of years, which seems like more than a problem of mere detail for this "viewpoint." And the fact remains that even red wagons that might last for thousands of years aren't exactly living for thousands of years, which makes one wonder if saying humans are more "like" red wagons than leprechauns is really quite so useful as all that when everything is said and done, even if it is quite true.

PS: Of course, the even pithier version of techno-immortalism is just the question, breathlessly intoned, Don't you want to live forever? And the even pithier substance of that question is the infantile existential shriek: I don't wanna Di-ay-ay!


Michael Anissimov said...

I have another one, from the early days of Immortality Institute.

It's basically to get your audience to realize that after death is nothing: specifically "oblivion". So it would be something like:

"After death is only oblivion."
"Is there anything after death? No."
"Life or oblivion?"

I know my stuff.

Dale Carrico said...

I guess I don't understand how the insight that death actually is death lends any kind of support to techno-immortalist claims...