Re: >H Dilettantism
Mon, 19 Aug 96 21:33:13 GMT

Niklas Bostrom (alias "I") wrote:

>people who think they know something:they make very strong
>claims -and in many cases they don't even have a first
>degree in the subject!

But this is not an academic journal, this is a mailing list
for all sorts of people interested in transhumanism. We do
not only discuss scientific questions, but also art, values,
contemporary >H events etc. etc. The very diversity of the
contributors adds to the fascination of the extropian and >H
mailing lists. (And by the way, Niklas, you don't read most
peoples messages, so what could you know!)

>we should work towards the degree of discipline and
>responsibility that characterise the top 20% of the
>acadacademic community

I would make that "top 5%". Haven't you seen enough
academics to realise how many narrow-minded fools there are
at the universities. Even if we could persuade them that
radical future technologies are worth thinking about, do you
really believe that a person who need to be _persuaded_
about that could have a significant capacity of judgement
and would be able to contribute original ideas to the
discussion of fundamental transhumanist issues?

>People in other "movements", especially our opponents, are
>often worse than we are. So what.

Well, it gives us a justification for trying to spread our
views. And for this we will need all our energy and
enterprising drive, all the multifarious skills of the
various persons on these lists. In truth, I tell you: the
transhumanist movement is a boiling kettle, and amongst the
steams I discern the shapes of a mighty spirit in the
process of formation, an idea whose time has come...

Niklas Bostrom