Re: Present Dangers -- the list thus far

Brian Manning Delaney (
Sat, 28 Aug 1999 23:56:24 -0700

Kathryn Aegis wrote:

> Not to be a 'list mom', but this thread is
> becoming increasingly fragmented and has
> some unrelated discussion. Because I would
> like to see something actually come of this, I
> would like to list out the 'dangers' mentioned
> thus far:


> 5. Demographics-- a present lack of diversity
> within transhumanism [....]


> Have I missed any?

Hi Kathryn,

I'm new to the List (but "old" to the issues). My two cents here is that you've put two separate issues under 5, and I'd like to add a demographics-related 3rd point (#7 -- I know you didn't ask for new points! Sorry!):

5. Demographics-- bad for PR.

6. Demographics-- bad for transhumanism itself (sources for new ideas are limited).

7. Demographics-- suggestive of a blind spot, a lack of self-awareness of our motives, perhaps even a _problem_ with our motives? Or perhaps simply: worth thinking about?

I'm a Nietzschean, and a perennial self-doubter, but, doubt aside, I think it's worth asking what the _extreme_ demographic skewedness can tell us about our views themselves: whence the views, what might they aim at that goes beyond what we normally tell ourselves is the aim? (etc.).

We typically answer these questions from within transhumanism itself, which is, in the end, not to answer them at all (for the same reason a pragmatist isn't answering the question Why pragmatism? when s/he replies: "Because it works.")


Brian Manning Delaney
(No need to CC replies to me.)