Re: Can I kill the original?

From: Harvey Newstrom (
Date: Fri May 05 2000 - 11:40:35 MDT

A copy of "John Clark" <> wrote on Friday, May 05,
2000 12:27 AM,

> Harvey Newstrom <> Wrote:
> > What is death?
> Having a last thought. The original can think my thoughts just as well as
me the copy,
> so as long as the original lives there is no last thought.

I'm afraid I detect circular logic here. You believe that the copy and the
original are the same person. Therefore, you believe that the original can
think the copy's thoughts because they are the same person. Therefore, you
believe that there is no last thought. This is a self-referencing arguments
that only works if you already believe as you do.

Suppose you believed the original and the copy are separate people. You
would then think that the original might diverge from thinking the same
thoughts as the copy. Therefore you might believe that there would be a
last thought if one of the copies were killed. Your explanation only
reinforces your own belief. It does not influence those who hold different
beliefs. It is similar to quoting the Bible or referring to God while
debating an atheist. It doesn't have the effect on the atheist as it does
on the believer.

> In almost all of the sort of thought experiments we see on this list we
are invited
> to assume the part of the original and asked what our disposition toward
the copy
> should be. Why is that? You could just as easily take the role of the
copy, made
> one hour ago complete with memories of when you were a child. So now, what
> you going to do about the original?

I see no difference no reason why the copy or the original should act or be
treated differently. I believe other people have made similar statements.
For those who believe that both the copy and the original should live, it
doesn't matter which is the original. Only those who want to upload into a
better body seem to want to kill the original (inferior) body after

> >To me, what I am avoiding is loss of control.
> That sounds like free will and that does not compute. There are only two
> everything you do is because of cause and effect and you're a machine, or
it does
> not and you're random. Either way you don't control anything, but it
doesn't matter
> because you feel like you do.

I do not require free will for my viewpoint, and you are correct when you
state that it does not matter. If I have free will, or I think I have free
will, or I claim to think I have free will, or I think I don't have free
will, doesn't matter. Whatever I think of free will, I would like these
thoughts to go on. I do not want to have a final thought on free will, so
my desire is the same as yours to avoid a final thought.

Harvey Newstrom <>
IBM Certified Senior Security Consultant,  Legal Hacker, Engineer, Research
Scientist, Author.

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