desirability of aging.

Malcolm McMahon cuhes at csv.warwick.ac.uk
Thu Jun 2 04:32:10 EST 1994


In article <2s7uop$p5n at acmex.gatech.edu>,
>
>The initial aspects of a means to stop aging if it were cheap enough to be
>generally available would be devastating to our society.  One third of our
>society would be back at work (as they would be essentially very knowledgeable
>twenty year olds) and the birth rate would not slow down significantly.  This
>cannot help but to generate a lot of war and other craziness as the 
>population increases.  
>
I'd have said that the effects of a cure for ageing that was _not_
cheap enought to be generally available, or which a clique tried to
keep to themselves would be a great deal more devestating. People
would rightly regard anyone that came between them and the cure as
threatening their life.

When you think about the motivations for having children I would guess
that the birth rate _would_ slow significatly. People would feel less
urgency about having kids.

At the same time there seems no reason why a cure for aging should
affect the menopause. As I understand it a woman simply runs out of
eggs. 

The point is, I think, that when you consider the population equations
the life-expectancy is only, at most, a multiplicative factor while
the birth rate is an exponential factor. I would presume that quite a
modest decline in birth rate would compensate for a large change in
longevity.


>The way I hope aging research progresses is for it to reduce old age 
>infirmity (as it is doing now), but still keep the limit at ~85 years.  As
>our society progresses, the age limit will hopefully move upwards with
>the onset of the disease getting closer and closer to the maximum age limit.
>Basically, people staying young until they die.

I wonder how it would feel to be coming up to the age limit in perfect
health and with a clear mind.

Malcolm




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