Re: organ donation

From: Samantha Atkins (
Date: Sun Feb 24 2002 - 05:37:01 MST

Philip Howison wrote:

> Would it not be more extropian to encourage trade in human organs?
> I realise this sounds gruesome to many people, but it would
> definitely result in increased organ availability. It would be difficult

Does it get us generally closer to the type of world we
wish/need to live in? It doesn't look much like what my goal
is. On the one hand it is ghastly unpleasant and subject to
tons of abuse. On the other hand I wonder how much worse it is
to sell all of one's hopes, dreams, ambitions, talent and
productive time to merely eat and pay the rent while never
claiming one's own dreams. Selling a kidney seems almost clean
in comparison. If a person can choose one questionable trade-off
freely then why not the other?

> to effectively police the trade but I think the returns would be worth it.
> Peoples selfish instincts are usually much more reliable than their
> altruism...

Except in situations of unequal power and wealth the selfishness
of the more powerful will, other things being equal, swam the
self-interest of the weaker. If people can be coerced and
persuaded to do and go along with some of the stupid things of
today then I find it very hard to believe that many could not be
persuaded to part with an organ even if it was not, on
reasonably objective analysis, in their interests. If that is
so then granting such trade legal status would legalize a
nightmare with serious moral and health repurcussions.

- samantha

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