Re: Why are we allowed to age?
Sat, 12 Apr 1997 05:25:41 -0400

>Leaving aside the question of personifying genes, which in truth don't
>give a damn about anything, I do think you are coloring them a bit
>harshly. There is some advantage to the gene in keeping mom and pop
>alive, especially as long as they can breed with fidelity, it just
>isn't a strong enough advantage to change the genes quickly. Most of
>human evolution took place when old age was not a common cause of death
>so it really did not help a lot to have a long natural life span. It's
>not so much that genes don't want old folks around as that it's just
>not high on their priority list.

It would also seem to me that the mechanism of evolution -
mutation->adaption->normalization could be short-circuited by extreme
longevity or immortality. Swift turnover and ability to issue offspring
that may be more suited to a changing condition are probably evolutionary

Not that I'm wild about it as an individual....

Michael Tilford:,