Re: Help! Leisure or Extro-Holocaust?

Keith Elis (
Sat, 13 Sep 1997 15:01:33 -0400

Holly Pearson wrote:
> Dear Extropians,
> I am on of you. I am intelligent, hard working and in my deepest
> yearnings an extropian to the core. Despite this I am falling behind. I am
> dying (slowly). Despite my best efforts at maintaining a healthy body,
> quick mind, balanced diet, and adequate regiment of exercise,
> anti-ozidants and smart drugs - I AM BURNING OUT. I am hitting, like a brick
> wall, the limits of my biology and psychology/neurology. I can no longer
> keep up with the demands the free-market is placing on me. At the rate
> everything is accelerating, things can only get worse for me. I will be
> lucky to be alive in 5 years - I will run out of energy far sooner.
> Despite working over 50 hours per week and spending another 10 keeping
> up with science & technology trends, I am still falling behind
> economically. I expect the skills I have now will be obsolete by the end of 98.
> I no longer have the time nor energy to gain new skills at the rate
> required by today’s free-market. I will probably be obsolete within 2
> years and dead with 5 unless something very *fundamental* changes from the
> free-market hell which is killing me.
> Now this is pretty sad when I share your extropian dreams of a better
> future while at the same time being increasingly being denied
> opportunity from achieving them. I am a human being and I am an extropian.

Yes. Now I see where you are coming from with your "Evolve or die!"

The pace of change is great. The pace of change is increasing. The pace
of change will be even greater. And yes, we will all struggle to keep up
with it. We will all be spending more and more time absorbing the
implications of these changes. There will come a point when the crippled
brains that evolution gave us will be unable to keep up. Many would
agrue that this is precisely the reason why efforts should be made to
slow or at least control the pace of change.


The pace of change is not a problem to be solved. It is a fact of life
that human beings should synergize with. Yes, it does require that you
evolve. But realize that you are intelligent, and you can control your
own evolution to a point already. Intelligence is never obsolete. You
think the problem is a free market. We don't have a free market. Your
solution is to slow things down so you can catch your breath? I say
speed them up so I can augment my inefficent physical form with
something more capable. The future is not a hundred, fifty or even ten
years down the road. You share extropian dreams of a better future?
Well, to get there, we will have to watch as the world we know it is
entirely turned on its head. Your inflexibility may deny you the very
future you long for.

> ...and so does every other human on this planet who wants to live and
> have a better future.

You deserve nothing. Nature owes you nothing. You are insignificant. So
am I. Get this stuff out of your head. It's crippling you. You are a
human being. Perhaps you don't realize this, but the birthright of every
intelligent being is not life or vitality, but complexity. I would even
go so far as to say that you have an obligation, in the face of known
physical law, as an intelligent being to become more complex.

Markets be damned. The problem is not evolution, or selfishness, or
change. The problem is entropy. Don't waste your limited mental
resources on disasterbation. Channel yourself into becoming more
complex. Entropy is your enemy. Not me.

> Look, I want to evolve as much as the next person - but I should have
> the right to grow at *my* pace. Don’t you get it? I am evolving as
> fast as I can! But the free-market (an autoevolutionary and human
> invention if there ever was one - and one which almost everyone on this list
> praises) doesn’t give a DAMN about *my* pace. EITHER I ADAPT TO *ITS* PACE
> OR DIE! As the Bionomics Institute as so poignantly pointed out ‘The
> free-market follows the dictates of biological evolution where the
> strongest, smartest and fittest survive’(end quote). Now if that is not a
> Fascist dictate what the fuck is?!

Yes, yes, yes! Nature is fascist! Now you've got it! Waste your energy
trying to fight the facts and you will indeed be dead in five years.
There may come a time when we have the potency to change the facts.
Omega-point? Dyson? Who knows. Your goal is to make it that far. The
tools for my survival are on their way.

> Again, help - I want to live! I want to live in the amazing future
> that is unfolding. Shouldn’t everyone get an *EQUAL* chance to live well
> in the future?

Everyone has an equal chance already. The smartest person in the world
can still be fooled by the dumbest. The strongest can still be killed by
the weakest. We are, for all practical purposes, equal. Consider the
range of possibilities. How smart can we be? There is no upper bound
that I know of. How far up the scale are we? Smarter than protozoa and
dogs, at least. But we are the protozoa compared to the potential of
posthumanity. No one has any better chance than any other. All your
money, all your resources may be rendered worthless at the Singularity.
We are all on equal ground. The substantial difference will be a result
of how soon you realize your potential.

> Otherwise aren’t extropians nazi’s - either by choice or by default?

Quit that.

> Sincerely,
> Holly Pearson