A Modest Proposal
nobody at vox.xs4all.nl
Tue Sep 20 03:51:26 EST 1994
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txpljfg at UABCVSR.CVSR.UAB.EDU writes:
>I believe that the pursuit of such an idea in any serious fashion
>would constitute a serious perversion of the values that have motivated
>many of us to pursue science in the first place: that is to facilitate
>improvements in the human condition.
Science and its whore technology are almost singlehandedly responsible for
steady deterioration in the conditions of human life ever since the
seventeenth century. In particular medical, agricultural, hygeinic, and
transportation technologies, and the hubristic pride that accompany them, are
largely to blame for the population catastrophe that is facing us. Read
Stephen Toulmin "Cosmopolis: the Hidden Agenda of Modernity" and Joseph
Schwartz, "The Creative Moment,"
Many individuals who choose science as a career may well be sincere within
narrow range of vision which science offers. Such people have been coopted
both by social prestige and by the illusion of doing good. It is time some of
them expanded their moral horizons.
>To commit mass assault on very
>large numbers of people would be a crime that would ramk those who
>committed the act with such luminaries as Joseph Stalin, Hitler etc.
Guilt by alleged association? I remember others who practiced such
of moral argument (Joseph McCarthy, ...)
>I submit that if anyone ever receives the slightest wiff that someone
>is pursuing this idea seriously, that such persons should be exposed
>for what they are and prevented from pursuing such avenues.
This of course is exactly the reason why the people who are embarking on the
program I propose need to be careful about their identity.
>It was bad
>enough the The Bomb had to be invented. To produce biological weapons
>with a similar human destructive potential would actually be worse,
>because the would not even be the excuse of a world war to justify
>maiming millions of people.
The recurrent horror of history is the use of violence and terror to
the dominance of one group over another. The Nazi threat was used to justify
massive development and exercise of political and military power, including
the the bomb, as part of a larger agenda: to establish Euro-American
economic hegemony over the entire world, and to establish a claim to the
legitimacy of this hegemony. The strategy worked, pretty much, but at a cost
that was far greater than that wrought by the bomb itself -- it is estimated
that more resources have been used up in the last twenty years by citizens of
the wealthy countries of the world than were used up in the entire preceeding
history of mankind!
The present proposal has no aim of dominance or hegemony, only the good of
entire species. There is no destruction involved, rather it will bring about
pause in a destructive process that is already taking place.
>It is fortunate that the proposer is obviously not a serious
>immunologist and does not appreciate the complications in the
>production of such a virus, the resources required for such a large
I know very well the nature of the efforts required. That is why I am asking
for help. Six scientist working together could do it in a few years. The
resources would have to be obtained creatively, but scientists can be very
creative in this sphere.
>and the unforseen effects produced by such a monstrosity. If
>such a thing would be produced,
The patient is sick with a terminal cancer. Neither religous objections to
medical intervention nor the uncertainty of the prognosis can be tolerated as
arguments to withhold vigorous treatment.
>it would most likely be through the
>sanction of some government with substantial resources.
The major governments of the world would never sanction such an action, not
even covertly, though they do have research programs in place to investigate
more morbid possibilities. The governments of the developing world have other
things on their plate. The terrorist governments are not interested because
offers little leverage for them, and much potential for censure.
>I think that the main benefit of that so-called "modest proposal" is
>that it shows that there are always people who are willing to pervert
>science for hideous ends in the name of one "good"thing or another be
>it "population control" (nice ephemism! It's been used before!), or
>"racial purification". We must all be vigilant for such things. We
>can never let up, even for a second, or there could be more
The Nazi era is of course a huge black mark on the history of mankind. There
have been many other episodes of even greater horror that aren't remembered
well because it serves no contemporary political agenda to remember them. The
Mongol hordes, and so on. Some episodes are all the more horrible because
have been consciously swept under the rug of history. I am thinking of
examples like the slaughter of the native Americans (tens of millions dead,
many from the diseases of European urban provenance) and the slave trade
(perhaps a hundred million dead) and the general destruction of indigenous
cultures all over the world. And there are more contemporary examples such as
Cambodia, Rwanda (which very few in America will remember in ten years) and
But these abominations are symptoms, if anything, of the population crisis.
What I am poposing is of an opposite nature to the holocausts of history. It
is unrelated to any agenda of domination. It does not use suffering to
compromise the moral integrity of individuals. By applying this technology
with care, it is possible to achieve reversal of the population explosion
without harming anyone.
As in many other cases where good things have been done by serious people,
only the disinterested cooperative efforts of a small number of individuals
can succeed. There are always a few people who have the courage to see and
beyond the limitations imposed by the corrupt moral authority of power.
Let's make it happen!
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