Re: Rifkin speaks in SCI AM

Anders Sandberg (
04 Sep 1997 09:40:49 +0200 writes:

> On Tue, 2 Sep 1997, E. Shaun Russell wrote:
> > Michael Bowling quoted Jeremy Rifkin:
> >
> > > "We're creating multiple personas. We're creating a thespian
> > >sense of personality where we see ouselves as works of art, and we see
> > >everything in our environment as a prop, as a set, as a stage, as a
> > >backdrop for filling ourselves in. We don't see ourselves as ever
> > >completed. We are in-formation."
> >
> > Wow. Those are beautiful words; you mean to tell me that Rifkin
> > sees the above sentences as *bad* things?
> That was a direct quote attributed to Rifkin. In the preceeding text the
> author, who apparently spoke with Rifkin, said the man considers
> individual human identies are, at least pertly, "endowments of the natural
> world," and that any technologies (genetic engineering in particular),
> that can alter that endowment can "undermine the sense of self."
> So yes, it appears he considers these *bad* things. Talk about
> polarity...

I'm starting to think Jaron Lanier was right in his much-cited (well,
somewhat-cited) editorial "Extropians and Stewards"
( where he suggests an
ideological division between those who want to preserve and those
who want to evolve. This seems quite similar to de Garis terrans vs.
cosmists. Rifkin is 100% on the Steward/Terran side.

It is interesting to note that these two views, while they can back
up some of their arguments with facts, are basically differences in
values and hence not resolvable through rational discussion.

Anders Sandberg                                      Towards Ascension!    
GCS/M/S/O d++ -p+ c++++ !l u+ e++ m++ s+/+ n--- h+/* f+ g+ w++ t+ r+ !y