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Anti-Aging Progress? - My Four Annoying Opinions

Posted: Thu, June 13, 2013 | By: Anti-Aging / Supplements



I’ve been listening to transhumanists & immortalists banter about research & development & strategies in the Anti-Aging field for a while now…

Today, I’m going to assert Four of my Opinions - they might be regarded as argumentative, or contrary, or flat-out wrong, and that’s fine with me. 

But I’m pretty sure I am Correct, and I generally people who disagree with me as either fuzzy-headed or naive or misinformed or clueless, etc. If you do disagree, please put your rebuttal comments below.

#1 - IMMORTALITY DOESN"T NEED GOVERNMENT FUNDING.  I have a lot of dear friends in Longevity Parties and Longevity Alliances and other “lobby groups” and indeed, I am the co-founder of the USA Longevity Party… but really… I don’t think Immortalists should depend on governments to fund anti-aging research, and I think years and lifetimes spent pressuring governments to do this… is largely a waste of energy. People should quit devoting so much time asking the Nanny State to Help Us Live Forever.

The truth is, most knuckle-headed governments, like the USA, are very busy spending their time and our money on foreign wars and spying on their own citizens. Governments don’t allocate a lot of money to anti-aging research, and why should they?  They probably regard the desire for anti-aging medicines as something consumers need to demonstrate, which they haven’t yet. This brings me to my next point, it’s very banal and obvious, which is: IMMORTALITY WILL BE ATTAINED VIA BUYER DEMAND. When the public starts overwhelmingly opening up their wallets for anti-aging elixirs… research and improved products will follow.

#2 - YOU ARE NOT DOING ALL YOU CAN FOR RADICAL LIFE EXTENSION. This irritating opinion of mine follows #1. Because, due to Immortality being Market-Driven, the fat Christian housewife in Iowa who spends $300 a month on anti-aging products is serving the longevity cause more effectively than the transhumanist-atheist who just rants on Facebook all day long about how stupid Deathists are, but he never opens his wallet for any anti-aging medication or research, or anything. He thinks he’s helping immortalism, but his opinions aren’t backed up with cash. He’s just hot air. 

Additionally, many people in the Immortalist-Transhumanist world don’t look like they sincerely are Against Aging, because they eat crap and don’t exercise and don’t meditate and are blithely deteriorating right on schedule. What Immortalism & Transhumanism need are superfit superold heros, and there are many, like Fauja Singh, the 100-year-old Sikh marathon runner. He’s a sincere Superlongevity example that Immortalists and Transhumanists need to try to keep up with. Immortalists should be organizing marathons and endurance races and celebrating superfitness, but they’re generally not. Sure, Max More looks great, but do you look like him?  No?  I don’t either.  

#3 - FUTURE ANTI-AGING MEDICINE MIGHT BE COMPOSED OF VERY ANCIENT HERBS.  This is a boring idea for everyone who just can’t wait for nanobot-medicine and stem cells and bioengineering, etc., but the advantage is - herbal supplements have an excellent chance of being affordable and they link up with numerous traditions. For example, there’s a Chinese root called Astragalus that’s used in TA-65, and there’s 28 very familiar-sounding substances (like green tea and grape seed extract) in Dr. Bill Andrew’s Product B. 

No, it’s not futuristic, but in reality, these herbs have already been aiding human health for thousands of years and we’re learning how to extract only the desirable molecules. Pharmaceuticals have had huge success in the past and they will continue to be successful. If people start buying and swallowing anti-aging pills in the same quantities that Viagra is consumed, research and improved products will be available. We just have to demonstrate with our wallets that we want to live forever, as much as we want to get a good boner.

#4 - BIOHACKERS CAN MAKE IMMORTALITY AFFORDABLE FOR EVERYONE.  “Grinders” like Rich Lee say “patents are our blueprints” and they claim they can build medical tech equipment and provide medical services for 1-10% of the legal cost. IMO, biohackers and the Quantified Self crowd are the under-recognized “doers” and “makers” of transhumanism and immortalism. Operating as outlaws, ignoring stifling copyright laws, and taking personal risks, the biohack DIY crowd knows how to get equipment cheap and are willing to perform very complicated surgeries that would cost a fortune in a hospital. Support the Biohackers!  Someday, very likely, we will all need their black market, cut-rate services. 

Do you disagree with me?  Please leave your comments below.



Comments:

Hank,
  If I didn’t know better I would assume you are frustrated.I am aware that at times it seems we move slower than a turtle swimming thru peanut butter.I too become frustrated but I am not sure of an alternative path.
The only comment I would like to make is your opposition to
government funding.I am not a fan of the government being the ONLY source of revenue but I am not keen on precluding their involvement for the following reasons:1-They have the money.I know that sounds crass but I don’t see people lining up to sign checks for research.2-Government involvement at the beginning will make it difficult for them to oppose it later.The closer we come to “indefinite life extension"the more controversy we will face.I thing the religious right wing will go ballistic if people can avoid death.It makes religion virtually superfluous which will send fundamentalists off the wall.
We need to build a relationship with elected officials in order to convince them that,“we are for real.“I am not against your proposal but,on the other hand we should not be confident that a lot of politicians will endorse our work.Sadly,politics is too often about the next election,not the next generation.
                                                Pax Tibi,
                                              Tom Mooney

By Tom Mooney on Jun 13, 2013 at 3:11pm

I totally agree.  And, I will add that I have started to personally look into wave Genetics as a meanst to relengthen teleomeres externally with no drugs.     

I believe that death sucks and needs to be eradicated.  I believe it can be and that more people need to get on board with it and quit whining about their miserable lifestyle disease. 

By Barbara Finney on Jun 13, 2013 at 4:31pm

Although governments will not fund true radical longevity research, it is good to have advocacy groups spreading the word and informing others about developments.  The majority of people are only interested if a Brazilian footballer kicked a ball to the left instead of the right, or if a soap opera star likes the blonde instead of the brunette .  If the government tells them that they could live longer (i.e. work longer and take their pension later), that would be political suicide. So, no, the government will not fund this type of research but there is still scope in general advocacy.

Your points 2 and 3 are based on a traditional view of antiaging, one which in my view will not succeed in any event.  It is true that many plants can provide useful remedies and that these remedies will become more widely known if the public demands them.  But the net result is that these will not lead to radical life extension and certainly not biological immortality.

As for the bio-hackers, I am willing to be convinced.

By Marios Kyriazis on Jun 14, 2013 at 4:23am

Tom and Marios - Yes, I agree. I think my point #1 was too strongly worded. It is good that there are people pressuring governments for anti-aging funding.Very Good. I wish them success!  It is true, Tom, what you say, that they do have the funding…

regarding points #2 and #3 - I am hoping that pharmaceutical “telomere extenders” can be developed.

By Giovanni Santostasi on Jun 15, 2013 at 9:51pm

I’m not sure why you would decry govenrment funding here.  Most of the most promising research developments that are likely to improve longevity, like stem cell research, the human genome project, genetic therapy, and cancer research, are heavily funded by the government right now.  It’s not focused on aging, and it would be more effective if it was, but nonetheless; if we do get anti-aging treatments in our lifetimes, I would bet money that more then half of the research involved would be done with government funding, and that’s not a bad thing.  And it’s not just about government funding, either; getting the FDA on board so they don’t get in the way of anti-aging medicine and human enhancement in general is vital.  Don’t underestimate the importance of political action.

By Yosarian2 on Jun 21, 2013 at 2:25pm

Yosairan - you might be right - I just read this: http://dish.andrewsullivan.com/2013/03/08/the-disease-lobbies/

It says there’s 53 different lobbies for different diseases. My POV is that an anti-aging lobby has to stand at the end of the line, and it’s a long line. But… the article does say that every $1,000 spent on lobbying produces $25,000 in funding, so that does make it seem worthwhile.

By Giovanni Santostasi on Jun 21, 2013 at 6:35pm

The governments of the world need to keep their hands off life-extension and immortality research.  They would politicize it in a heartbeat.  Some of the info I have suggest they may already have suppressed a LOT of research as part of their kissing up to big pharma all the time. 
As to living longer to work longer and get pensions later, well, the world is changing.  Governments will soon hopefully be obsolete and the age of the individual will rise.  What best drives any sort of research is and always has been “enlightened self-interest.”  And not trusting enough people with resources to share what they learn I am doing my own research.

By Barbara Finney on Jun 21, 2013 at 9:05pm


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