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Aubrey de Grey on Colbert Report!


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#61 valkyrie_ice

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Posted 13 March 2009 - 07:19 AM

loved the vid, but I wanted to let people see what I just posted on the Popular Mechanics article mentioned in this thread. Hopefully a few people will see it and think about it seriously.



Lot of interesting posts and interesting comments, thought it might be worthwhile to address a few:

Overpopulation: Overpopulation is a big worry, one a lot of people fear because they live in cities where they can look out a window and see massive crowds. This makes it perfectly obvious that since the city is so overcrowded, surely so is our entire world. Sadly however, this is a mistaken belief. If one studies the statistical growth of birth to death rates, yes there is indeed a slightly higher rise of births to deaths, but these tell so little of the true story. When looked at from the perspective of individual nations instead of the whole planet, it becomes quite obvious that the birth rates in highly industrialized nations are dropping. In other words, due to advances in medicine, longer lifespans due to those advances, and reduction of a need to produce numerous children in order to ensure some of them survive, the need for multiple children per couple had been signifigantly reduced. As the less industrialized nations begin slowly moving into the modern era, this same process of voluntary reduction of multiple births will occur. This will cause the birth rates to drop dramatically, and begin to stablize our growth rate to a much less exponetial explosion. There will always be a steady trend to a larger population, but it will grow at a far slower rate.

Ageing is inevitable: Sad to say this posistion is one of utter ignorance of biology. Hydras, a one cell organism, divide constantly into two. They do not age, nor do they die of age related issues. In larger organisms, many species of turtle reach maturity and then do not age significantly as they continue to live. Turtle ages of over 150 have been recorded. Many other reptiles do not seem to age either, simply to grow slowly and get larger over time. In the human body, biological ageing is a process, one that is understandable, and one in which there is no difference in treating than in any genetic disorder, disease, or injury. Aubry de Grey has outlined the seven primary issues, the one which it seems possess not only the most damaging effects to our bodies, but also the ones in which research to prevent their occurance seems easiest to complete. As computing power continues to progress, and now that Obama has unfettered research in crucial areas such as stem cells, which can not only possibly lead to rejuvenation of damaged tissue, but to carrying genetic reprogramming into every cell in our bodies to remove the genetic defects in our DNA which lead to aging.

We have more important problems than aging: Like what? Human rights? Is it not a right we hold dear that everyone has a right to life liberty and pursuit of happiness? Death is the single largest killer in the history of our planet. Death has killed EVERY HUMAN WHO HAS EVER LIVED. Death has taken more lives than Stalin, Hitler, Gengis Khan, and Chairman Mao combined. Death has slaughtered more people than are currently alive today. Sarcastic? Indeed. But true none the less. We accept death, and by accepting it, we allow it to cheapen us all. We can watch tv and see people dying, and it is meaningless. 10,000 die in a tsunami, and it's just a number to us. War wipes out millions and it's just a statistic. We worry about global warming, a problem that MIGHT HAPPEN IN 50 to a 100 years, but death is killing all of us right now. We complain about our elderly, and the burden on the healthcare system of taking care of the old. We worry about our own retirement plans and who will take care of us when we get old, and bury us when we die. We are consumed in morbidity. We are shortsighted, because we have short lives, and we have accepted death as our constant companion, and thereby tolerate the violence and horror of the world around us. We solve our problems with violence because human life is cheap. When death comes to everyone, no-ones life has value. You want the world to become a better place, what better way to start than by giving value to the single most precious possession you have, your own life, because without it, you can do nothing at all.


Only the rich will have it: Indeed, at first. The first treatments will be expensive, require large sums of money to produce in limited quantities, and thus only affordable by the rich. All of which simply means they are the ginnypigs, and they will pay for the privledge of being test subjects. Just like they did for plastic surgery (boob jobs) current anti wrinkle treatments (botox) and numerous other medical advances that are now available everywhere. The funny thing is that following these massively expensive intial treatments, the drug manufactures are not going to want to rake in just these paltry profits. After all, what is 1% of the market? For the millions they will make off the rich, there are BILLIONS to be had selling to the public. As the research continues there will be a continious series of new treatments that will become more and more widely availible until a full permanant solution will be made. And during that time, our view of aging will change from that of inevitablity to conquerability, and from a natural process to a disease as deadly as polio, tuberculoses, and small pox. And when everyone has the potential to live for centuries, odds are we'll begin to start thinking in terms of making sure we're around to see those centuries.

These are just a few of the issues I chose to address directly, but there is far more information about SENS research available on the web for anyone interested. www.imminst.org is a good place to start if you are curious, as the forums there posses links to thousands of resources, as well as discussions about them.

It is inevitable that we will conquer death, the only things open to doubt is the timeframe, or whether we wipe ourselves out in the next 20 years.

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#62 Putz

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Posted 16 March 2009 - 03:14 AM

Only the rich will have it: Indeed, at first. The first treatments will be expensive, require large sums of money to produce in limited quantities, and thus only affordable by the rich. All of which simply means they are the ginnypigs, and they will pay for the privledge of being test subjects. Just like they did for plastic surgery (boob jobs) current anti wrinkle treatments (botox) and numerous other medical advances that are now available everywhere. The funny thing is that following these massively expensive intial treatments, the drug manufactures are not going to want to rake in just these paltry profits. After all, what is 1% of the market? For the millions they will make off the rich, there are BILLIONS to be had selling to the public. As the research continues there will be a continious series of new treatments that will become more and more widely availible until a full permanant solution will be made. And during that time, our view of aging will change from that of inevitablity to conquerability, and from a natural process to a disease as deadly as polio, tuberculoses, and small pox. And when everyone has the potential to live for centuries, odds are we'll begin to start thinking in terms of making sure we're around to see those centuries.


You are right, plus affluent people are rational and know that everyone having access to immortality is a good thing not only morally, but also economically, technologically, and ultimately better for their own well-being in the long-term. Humanity's success is only due to its miraculous synergistic network, the only ones that will try to disrupt this network are religious fanatics or other irrational people.




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