Re: SOC: Opposition to Transhumanism

From: Robert Bradbury (
Date: Sun Jan 02 2000 - 23:37:15 MST

On Sun, 2 Jan 2000, Natasha Vita-More wrote:

> ... I do have two
> thoughts: (1) Using a political group as a target to oppose may be
> overbroad, unless, however, the group is unarguably vindictive. In that I
> was once a Green Party electee and a transhuman at the same time, I cannot
> agree with you that Greens (in general) are a threat to our culture. It is
> the alarmist environmentalists and alarmist anti-genetic engineering
> advocates that are ridiculously and arrogantly obtuse.

I would have to add to Natasha comments the opportunist marketeers. I haven't
been in Europe for a year or so, and was fairly stunned while flying
through Zurich on Swiss Air at the subtle "Green" emphasis on "Natural"
products on both the in-flight video (you had to go through a screen
that said nothing but "Natural" to get to the movies) as well as the
butter on your meal trays screaming "Natural". When I asked the flight
attendent about this, they had no answer as to why this was being presented
so blatantly.

I can only suspect that the V.P. of Marketing at Swiss Air has a brother
who is a farmer getting his markets cut out from under him via growth
hormone enhanced cow products. (One would presume the Swiss landscape
makes it more marginal and more likely to suffer from competition
in agricultural products.)

Now, of course this presents an interesting opportunity. A directed
campaign at Swiss Air, asking them if they would prefer to fly planes
powered by the "incantations of wizards" could point out how on the
one hand they embrace technology, yet on the other hand they are trying
to deny it. It would probably only take letters from 3-4 of us
(particularly if we bought some stock and wrote as stockholders)
to get the thing up to corporate "significance" level (if we got some
press as pro-progress folks take on luddites, it would be even better).

When you are dealing with individuals making "food" choices it is one
thing. When you are dealing with a food supplier making choices that
force a more expensive choice upon you, then you have a very interesting
case, particularly when the supplier inherently and obviously must rely
on scientific technology for their business. Why can't I select the
"un-natural" meal choice and get a discount on my ticket?

Even if you can't move Swiss Air directly, you can do it indirectly
through Delta becase of their Code-Share agreements. The U.S. pro-tech
culture can directly confront the European luddites. (Which isn't to
say that all Europeans are that way, its just a bias thats been setup
by the press, primarily due to the Mad Cow disease handling).

Food for the mental grist-mill.


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