Do We Want Science to Re-design Human Aging?
Dr. Gregory Stock, author of Redesigning HUMANS: Our Inevitable Genetic Future takes on environmentalist Bill McKibbon, who’s newest book, a critique of human genetic engineering and other emerging technologies, titled Enough, will be published by Times Books in April.
Both McKibben and Stock talk at length about Physical Immortality:
1. We'd loose meaning with immortality
2. Immortality = Selfish
3. The 115 year lifespan is fine
4. Is this a path we really want to go down?
5. we should 'rectangularize' the curve.. push lifespan as far out as we can.. then die
1. Immortality is helpful to think about, but it's a long way off.
2. 'We don't even understand the human lifespan problem'
3. Even if we could stop aging, there would still be accidents
4. Fear of Immortality will slow research and harm many people that may have lived longer.
5. If you stop germ line engineering then you'll have to stop everything (in vitro fertilization, etc) there's no defining line in enhancement technology.
6. to 'rectangularize' the curve is philosphy/abstract.. and not helpful to science in the 'trenches'
part 1: http://easylink.play...Aging/Sage4.wvx
part 2: http://easylink.play...Aging/Sage5.wvx
part 3: http://easylink.play...Aging/Sage6.wvx
Full Link: http://www.sagecross...sts_archive.cfm
About Bill McKibben:
Bill McKibben is a former staff writer for The New Yorker.
His books include Hundred Dollar Holiday, Maybe One, The End of Nature, The Age of Missing Information and Hope, Human and Wild.
The End of Nature, published in 1989, sounded one of the earliest alarms about global warming; the decade of science since has proved his prescience. In Maybe One, he took on the most controversial of environmental problems-- population.
The father of a single child himself, McKibben maintains that bringing one, and no more than one, child into this world will hurt neither your family nor our nation--indeed, it can be an optimistic step toward the future. Now, in Hundred Dollar Holiday, he makes a cse for a more joyful Christmas. McKibben contends we can have a far more meaningful and satisfying holiday by sharply reducing the amount of money we spend on it.
By setting an informal target budget for gifts -- and substituting homemade presents and gifts of time for playstations, camcorders, and five irons -- we can begin to recover the things that really matter: family togetherness, community, faith and fun. McKibben is a frequent contributor to a wide variety of publications, including The New York Review of Books, Outside, and The New York Times.
McKibben lives with his wife and daughter in the Adirondack Mountains of New York, where he is a Sunday school superintendent of the local Methodist church.
About Gregory Stock:
Gregory Stock has explored the larger evolutionary significance of humanity’s recent technological progress for many years, and he examined the subject at length in his 1993 book, Metaman: The Merging of Humans and Machines into a Global Superorganism (Simon & Schuster). Following its publication, he spent a year at Princeton’s Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Affairs looking specifically at the implications of recent breakthroughs in molecular genetics. It was as an outgrowth of that work that he teamed up with John Campbell to organize this conference, the first ever on human germline engineering. Currently Dr. Stock is directing the Program on Science, Technology, and Society at UCLA and is a visiting senior fellow at the Center for the Study of Evolution and the Origin of Life.
Stock received a Ph.D in biophysics from Johns Hopkins University and an M.B.A. from Harvard Business School. He has published research papers on developmental biology, limb regeneration, and laser light scattering, and has designed computer software for electronic banking networks. He has appeared on hundreds of radio and television shows from Larry King to Good Morning Australia to discuss various aspects of technology and human values, and is the author of four books besides Metaman. His exploration of values, The Book of Questions, was a NY Times bestseller that has now sold over 2 million copies and been translated into 15 languages.