Re: A Message to the Membership

From: J. R. Molloy (
Date: Wed Jan 05 2000 - 01:09:03 MST

Robert Owen wrote,
>Further, it does not seem to me that the practice of Extropianism
>depends on the vagaries of public opinion or sentiment, or on the
>prevailing political climate. Of course one is free to imagine scenarios
>in which this position is tested, but all of them seem unlikely to me.

In further support of your comments I'd add that we may change the *practice* of
Extropianism to conform to the vagaries of public opinion, if doing so will keep
public opinion, sentiment, or the prevailing political climate from landing us
in jail (or otherwise penalizing and inhibiting our activities). But no matter
how we change the practice, extropy continues to evolve complementarily to

"I will change what I've written in my book, but I can't change the fact that
the Earth revolves around the Sun."
--Galileo, explaining himself to the Pope

The position of Extropianism (the promotion of extropy) vis a vis politics,
speaking just for myself obviously, amounts to persuading politicians to get out
of the way, frankly. Certainly the practice of Extropianism (as a philosophy of
life) has political repercussions and implications. That does not, nevertheless,
argue for members taking any position with respect to social problems such as
crime, underemployment and unemployment, and illiteracy, or to political issues
such as taxation, public assistance, or business regulation. Popery and politics
may seek to ban transhumanism, but that should not convince transhumanists to
embrace Popery nor to engage in politics. On the contrary, as you've indicated,
when our Transhumanist Movement becomes politicized, or infected with political
memes, it loses its extropic quality, and at that point dissociation becomes
eminently transhumanist.

To identify and classify destructive meme pools as Greg Burch has begun to do:
1) Greens, 2) Religious Groups and 3) Hate Groups and Opponents of Liberty
need *not* incite politicization. As I see it, these groups represent contagious
memes, socio-genic illnesses, and mass hysteria more than factions of any body
politic. When you try to explain the theory of heliocentricity, you probably
want to avoid groups that consider it blasphemy punishable by death. So, by
cataloging potentially troublesome groups, Greg helps the Movement to avoid this
kind of pitfall.

--J. R.

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