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Death is an Outrage :: Robert A. Freitas


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#1 Bruce Klein

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Posted 13 January 2003 - 08:45 PM


Death is an Outrage
By Robert A. Freitas Jr.

Each year, we allow a destruction of knowledge equivalent to three Libraries of Congress with an average value of about $2 million dollars for each human life lost. The solution: "dechronification"--nanomedicine tools that can arrest biological aging and reduce your biological age.

Based on a lecture by the author at the Fifth Alcor Conference on Extreme Life Extension, November 16, 2002 in Newport Beach, CA. Published on KurzweilAI.net Jan. 9, 2003

While you were reading this sentence, a dozen people just died, worldwide. There. Another dozen people have perished. I think this is an outrage. I want to tell you why I think so, and what nanomedicine can do to help.

Posted Image
Figure 1: Worldwide Death Toll in 2001

Let's look at the dimensions of the human holocaust that we call "natural death."

The death toll in the Year 2001 was worst in India. Almost 9 million casualties. The bodies were piled nearly as high in China. The United States fell in third, with 2.4 million fatalities. 21 nations lost over half a million lives, each. These 21 countries represented all cultures, races, creeds, and continents. The human death toll in the Year 2001 from all 227 nations on Earth was nearly 55 million people, of which about 52 million were not directly caused by human action, that is, not accidents, or suicides, or war. They were "natural" deaths


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#2 Casanova

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Posted 13 July 2003 - 10:16 PM

Not again. Lol

What if Freitas waved his magic nanowand, and brought all those billions of dead back to life?
What were all these dead persons, before they were born?

According to Freitas, they came from nothing, and returned to nothing, or their egos didn't exist, then existed, for a time, then winked out into nothingness.
That is a modern myth; a myth of scientism. But we are so close to it, that it doesn't appear as myth, but as truth.

If the first million persons on this planet, had been immortal, then you wouldn't be here.
The advanced civilization we inhabit, would never have been created by those first million immortals. They would have stifled progress, innovation, novelty.

Sorry, pals, but the price we pay for progress, is death.

#3 ocsrazor

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Posted 14 July 2003 - 02:25 PM

The price biological evolution pays for progress is death. To some degree cultural evolution also required this too. We don't have to pay this price though, exactly because our culture has developed to the point where it churns information at such a high rate that it does not require the death of individuals to continue its development. Individuals can change their own mind (their viewpoints, their skills, etc), and in the near future they will be able to literally change their minds. This is the right time in history for extreme longevity - the first million humans as a culture did not have enough connectivity and enough stored information in their cultures to continue forward development. We do have the momentum to continue forward even if older idea sets are preserved, because our society itself demands creation of new information.

Peter

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