Re: A Message to the Membership

From: Robert Bradbury (
Date: Wed Jan 05 2000 - 10:20:04 MST

On Tue, 4 Jan 2000, Robert Owen wrote:

> What you describe is a situation in
> which Extropians found themselves outlawed, or at least officially
> prohibited from engaging in their practice. In the Western democracies
> this would not be a political but a constitutional (i.e. legal) issue, and if
> there was a remedy, it would be found in the courts, and not in social
> or political action.

Robert, if you accept the general premise that a THism/EIism philosophy
is one that allows indefinate extension of ones longevity, then one may
also want to accept that one should have a choice as to when to end
your conscious life. Currently that is legally prohibited in all
but one state and a couple of countries. As a result of that, millions
of people are condemned to a gradual decay of their physical brain
matter that, given our best medical knowledge, will result in an
unrecoverable mental state! I.e., the laws are condemning "selves"
to death.

So, we *are* in a state where the rational choices that EI/TH-ists would
make are outlawed. I remember quite well the discussions of 10-20
years ago in the U.S., calling for a constitutional convetion to correct
things like, income taxes, privacy rights, etc. These may be legal or
constitutional issues, but they *rapidly* spin over into politics.
The requirements for electing the officials to change the constitution
or calling a constitutional convention to make the legal changes required
(granting new personal rights) create a *highly* political process. The
courts are not a viable solution if we are in the realm where the the courts
go against our perspective or choose not to rule on various subjects.
This in increasingly likely to be the case because we have entered
the period where past principles are not applicable because the
fundamental definitions have changed. {E.g. if you make 20 copies
of yourself, is each of them an individual with a right to vote?}

If the courts decide, your copies are not individuals with the rights
of individuals, what will your position be and what will you do?


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