Genetic Research stops aging...

Magnus Itland itlandm at
Tue Nov 5 18:18:08 EST 1996

moran at wrote:

>cam at (Chris Malcolm) wrote:

>>In article <wpenrose.200.004A3E9F at> wpenrose at (William R. Penrose) writes:
>>>K. Eric Drexler, the nanotechnology man, claims in Engines of Creation that 
>>>one of the possible outcomes of the new science is endless, healthy life, with 
>>>death caused only by accidents and violence.  He then imagines that this would 
>>>make people very very cautious about their lifestyles.  It's one thing to risk 
>>>death in traffic or bungee jumping with forty years of life and a slow, 
>>>miserable decline and death ahead of you, he supposes, but a much different 
>>>thing if you can look forward to millenia of healthy life.
>This is, of course, why the elderly, with 1 to 15 years or so of life
>ahead of them, do the most bungee jumping, driving crazy, and
>generally doing stupid stuff that is likely to see them killed. :)

>You know, this has been a notion for as long as humans have thought
>about immortality--and if you think about it, it is just an obvious
>case of sour grapes.  Children, teenagers, and young adults have the
>greatest number of years of life ahead of them; however, they do not
>act conservatively about their lives.  As humans get older, heading
>into middle age and into their elderly years, they do not start acting
>foolhardy with their lives because they figure they only have a few
>years left to live, anyway.  People treat the idea of their death with
>concern only when it seems real to them, i.e. only when they think
>that their death is somehow quite possible in the "near" term.  If
>people's lifespans were greatly extended, I think you would see people
>acting  young--taking more risks, etc. because nobody who is young
>thinks that *they* are the one who could be killed doing something.

Actually, in my preliminary ramblings about the effect of an "age
vaccine", I have considered it probable that population levels will
actually go down.  People will wait with having kids till they are
500 and have a solid economy and have realized themselves. But they
will not wait with risky behavior of all kinds.  While most of us
suppose that we will die by some aspect of old age, few actually do.

  itlandm at The one and only Magnus Itland 
  No, you're wealthy, not rich. 
  Richness is the satisfaction of the heart.

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