Re: Immortality and Resources

J. de Lyser (
Thu, 06 Feb 1997 16:43:07 +0100

At 13:06 5-02-97 -0800, you wrote:

>I'm not forcing you to do anything. You just *chose* to defend
>Lenin's Russia. As far as I'm concerned, any system in which I
>could be taken from my home by the authorities without warning and
>shot in the back of the head for no particular reason is a system
>which does not work. So I dispute your assertion, as well as pinning
>all the responsibility for making that assertion on you.

Again this happens in many political systems, most states are autoritarian
to some degree. There are those who choose to change such a system by
compromise, and there are those who get shot in the head, in these systems.
I'd sooner prefer to be of the first kind, than of the second, as people
who get shot in the back of the head, change nothing.

> >Counterproductive policies are present in most political systems. >
>Having a (minimal) state/ or having policies *should* allow a
> >society control over natural forces that become counterproductive,

> > saying there will be none in any other proposed system is utopy.
> >'laissez faire' ideals are very high on my list of priorities, but >
>assuring they keep working somehow is a logical goal isn't it ?

>The only sense I can make of this is that you are assuming that
>the state is necessary for redressing "counterproductive policies".
>But this is vague. I have no interest in redressing anyone else's
>counterproductive policies, as long as they don't mess with me, my
>friends, or my stuff.

nearly everything a person x does or doesn't do, will have an effect on
some person y... What do you suggest for solving problems ? I'm open for
alternatives, it's just that i know none, if there are, i am sorry for my

>There are problems involving commons,
>externalities, and public goods, and some of these are severe
>problems for local governments. But nearly all such things should
>be handled by local governments, yet most tax funds in my country
>go to the Federal government or to fulfilling Federal government

Aha, so you're not an anarchist, just a separatist ? The independant state
of southern California ? In our private mail we discussed your (and my)
ideal for an independant chunk of rock orbiting sol, for you and your
friends to build your own way of life. Does this involve cutting off
relations with the rest of humanity ? I'm sorry but this makes the
extropian ideal of space colonization look like a disguised form of
isolationism, instead of expansion. How 'entropic' ?

>Are you saying that if someone chooses to engage in
>"counterproductivity" on their own time and with their own stuff,
>that the State should step in and "correct" them? Please be more
>specific if this is not what you mean.

In extreme cases yes. What is the Anarcho Capitalist view on patents for
example ? I can imagine situations where ones 'ownership' of technological
processes, genetic codes etc, limits free trade and the freedom of the
individual, can't you ?

example: person A owns sythesised Gen X, he uses it for his product M in
bioindustry. Gen X can also be used to enhance certain chemical processes
in the human body. Person A has no intention of making it available to a
minority market of strange people who want to use it ( ;-) ). Person B, C,
and D have all suggested licencing the rights, but person A, won't hear of

I can see where people want to keep these to themselves, to create a trade
monopoly. You agree that monopolies are counterproductive ? Ofcourse
abandoning all patents and ownership rights on technology, would severely
limit R&D investement. Maybe a compromise should be found, who enforces
this compromise ? etc, etc...

>Assuring that "laissez faire" ideals "keep working somehow" doesn't
>seem to be anything that any State that I know has been very
>effective at doing.

agreed, states have their own interests, i'm very interested in rotating
democratic systems like in Athens, where no one holds his position long
enough to create 'state interests'. Ofcourse qualification tests are a must

>All that's needed is for people to refrain from
>violating one another's persons and property, and the vast majority
>of people do that anyway because it's how they want to be treated
>by strangers.

Ah ? I had my hopes set on becoming a career looter/pillager in such a
state, and finally make some deserved use of my physical strenght & body
size. ;-)

>The few who do not do that anyway hardly require that
>50% of the gross world product be spent on suppressing them, yet
>that's how much (approximately) this planet spends on government.

I agree with the basics, but what you're suggesting here is a governement
trimmed down to only functioning on justice/ military/police levels, in
fact a police state. I wonder what strange and possibly dangerous people
would be leading such a state.

>it is not true that all possible political systems legitimize the use of
violence to punish voluntary and consensual exchange.

The vagueness i was refering to was the possibility of conflict between
"voluntary" and "consensual".

>but my political ideal is a new thing that has never been done
>before, just as our ideal of eternal life is a new thing that has >never
been done before.

I'm sorry, but this is an obvious example of why i refered to your replies,
in the way i did, in our private mail. You're subtly suggesting here that
the two are to be linked by definition. Linking your personal political
convictions to extropic ideals. I hope you see my reasoning now, for the
conclusion i made earlier.

>Why spend effort on goals that are unrealistic, such as space
>migration, intelligence increase, and life extension? Why not focus
>on ones that are achievable instead, like cutting taxes while
>at the same time improving state-provided medical care and education?

realistic goals: majority of the people of earth are with you on
intelligence increase, space migration, life extension.

unrealistic goal: minority of people are with you on creating an agorist

>I thereby
>feel what amounts to nearly an obligation to oppose those dangerous
>ideals in argument wherever I encounter them.

Would you put your ideals of free trade before or after your ideals of
opposing other political systems ?

> I'm still not sure I understand why you
>are objecting to the response I made to Jim Legg.

as i mentioned before, people project their sense of logic and rationality
on their own political environment. Jims ideas were perfectly logical and
rational to HIM. I was objecting to the lack of understanding of that, in
general by replies from several people on this list. I may become a mild
libertarian, after some time spent on this list, as its ideas do interest
me a lot, but never, that is NEVER, will i let political ideals form an
obstacle for Transhumanist cooperation and communication. Something with
which not everybody on this list seems to agree. P.S. Jim has left us...

>No. I honestly believe that that the State is an atavism, a left->over, a
self-perpetuating relic of the violence and warfare that >routinely
characterized early Middle-Eastern civilization.

I'll remind you of that, when i come to conquer your planet with my space
fleet. And make the people on my planet happy, by giving them your planets
resources, causing them to elect me for another four years.

>Furthermore, I think it is the political structure of this planet that
>consitutes the single greatest barrier to transhumanist goals. I do not
>place a higher priority on political goals than on transhumanist goals,
>instead, my sense of urgency about my political goals stems directly
>from the fact that in my opinion implementing my political goals will
>directly and immediately contribute to my chances of success in
>implementing my transhumanist goals.

HA !, this is excactly what Jim Legg was trying to make you see, only he
had a different approach.

>Someone must oppose that majority and raise that awareness. Where >does it

true, i just hope you appreciate people who have the same (transhumanist)
goals, but different routes (maybe faster ones?) to acchieve those goals.

>Of course it is based on their personal financial improvement. If >enough
people got *sincere* about being interested in their personal >financial
improvement they might study a little microeconomics and >then it would
become quite obvious to them how the politicians are >robbing them blind.

And the other half would find that they would be payed far less, have far
fewer benefits etc, and we'd have a civil war on our hands.

J. de Lyser