Re: The Politics of Transhumanism

From: Mike Lorrey (
Date: Tue Jan 15 2002 - 11:46:46 MST

Damien Broderick wrote:
> At 01:11 PM 1/14/02 +0000, Fabio wrote:
> > a nazist/communist/racist/etc could just adopt that
> >central meme and discard the rest (including the word "transhumanism"
> >itself) without a second thought.
> I've never read them, but I gather that sf writer Stephen Stirling's series
> of novel about South African Nazi racist supermen, the Draka, does
> something like this. And one of Jerry Pournelle's spin-off series
> glorifying combat apparently has the gene-engineered Sauron supermen who
> luckily get defeated by the brave free normals (yeah, right). If anyone's
> read these books, it might be interesting to hear how they fit into this
> discussion.

Well, the Sauron were gene engineered to be superior soldiers, nothing
more: superior clotting, healing, strength, and, of course, agression.
Then they built combat cyborgs as well for similar purposes. At the end
of the war against the Saurons, when the First Spartan Empire was
collapsing, one Sauron battleship made it to the odd, out in the boonies
planet of Haven, where the Co-Dominium had dumped the most recalcitrant
ethnic groups the US and the Soviets didn't want to deal with on earth:
the Navaho, Cherokee, Afghanis, Israelis, etc. who had, in Haven's harsh
climate, bred into something of natural supermen themselves. They
interbred with the survivors of the last Sauron ship for hundreds of
years during the dark ages between the first and second Spartan "Empires
of Man".

The Spartan empires have had religious proscriptions against sentient
machines, and also maintain a blockade against the star system of the
Mote race, a species with a tendency for exponential population growth
and breeding individuals optimized for special tasks, like battle or
engineering, diplomacy or management, etc... (see "The Mote in God's
Eye" and "The Gripping Hand", where references to the Sauron war are
evident). The Spartans are also quite imperialist in their dealings with
human colonized in the past being rediscovered (see "King David's
Spaceship") where a planets status in the empire is determined by its
indigenous spaceflight capability at the time when it is inducted into
the Second Empire.

Sparta was originally founded as an isolationist Constitutional
Monarchist Republic, much like Ancient Sparta, where individuals earn
their citizenship, with an aversion to foreign involvements. This
isolationism changed when an ambitious Terran Senator sought to subvert
the Spartan republic with a guerrilla insurrection of 'non-citizen'
transportees funded and supported by Senator Bronson's industrial wealth
and technical help from the Japanese planet Meiji (see "Prince of
Mercenaries", "Prince of Sparta", and "Go Tell The Spartans".)

The evolution over time of this idealistic republic into a repressive
Empire is supposed to be a lesson to the citizens of the US about the
dangers of trading freedom for security, and of staring too long into
the abyss.

Mike Lorrey

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