Don't Wait For the World To Change

I position I wholeheartedly endorse from Veritas, posting at Betterhumans:

We pour over the newest science and technology magazines. We visit tons of future-oriented sites (or better yet, subscribe to their RSS feeds). We keep an ear to the wind, straining to hear any mention of advances in nanotechnology, AI, VR, renewable energy, healthy life extension research, or the latest hint of a cure for cancer.

But too many of us have been complacent for too long.

"I'm just a student"
"I don't have enough money to make a real difference."
"What can one person do?"

Wrong, wrong, and so damn wrong. There's plenty of stuff you can do.

You futurists in the audience, those looking forward eagerly to a world of advanced technology and medicine capable of defeating ageing, think on this: just who else is most likely to help make that future a reality if not you? Progress does not take place in a vacuum; it requires growing support, both vocal and material, of first tens, then hundreds, then thousands, then millions of people.

If you're not helping to make it happen, then you're not helping - and you have but yourself to blame when the desired future lingers upon the edge of possibility, its benefits denied to you.

It doesn't take much to tip the balance: a single action on the part of thousands can change the world. A few hundreds of people have brought the Methuselah Foundation from nothing to its present position, for example: more than $8.5 million in pledges in support of serious longevity research, and a growing influence on the culture, aims and future of aging research. You too can help accelerate this success higher and onwards, as Veritas advocates:

Donate some loot to the Betterhumans' 300 seat on the Methuselah Foundation's MPrize. The purpose of the group seat was to let people who didn't have tons and tons of money to make a difference and achieve something grand. Funding research for healthy life extension is one of the grandest goals man has ever had. Doesn't take more than a couple of $20s to step up and make a difference. Every bit helps.

Don't stand to one side when you could help bring the future closer - and we can all help in one way or another.

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Comments

I am helping not with money but with my time and efforts -- building a blog dedicated totally to life extension. I will put a post on my blog today or tomorrow explaining the Methuselah Project and requesting donations.

My blog is lifeextension.wordpress.com.

Douglas Hanna

Posted by: Douglas Hanna at March 12th, 2007 12:58 PM

Shannon Larratt said in his write-up of Transvision 2004: "In my opinion, transhumanism doesn’t need ill-informed people who go off on flights of “what if” fancy. You know what? All of us have been doing that since we were five years old. What transhumanism needs is transhumanists." (http://www.bmezine.com/news/pubring/20040812.html)

It's important to consider that the ways one can contribute aren't always limited to giving money or time. Sometimes, if the regulatory bodies involved refuse to allow a trial to go forward or a theory to be tested, we as individuals may be obliged to try things out for ourselves.

Far too many transhumanists, for all our talk about radical optimism, turn into advocates of the precautionary principle when the prospect of actually trying something new on themself is suggested. Do we want to live in a future where biomedicine is better but still always limited to what the state will authorise?

"They always say time changes things, but you actually have to change them yourself." - Andy Warhol

Posted by: Ben Zealley at March 13th, 2007 10:27 AM

I can't contemplate money-making very well, so I don't think I'll make enough to make a significant contribution. Since I'm skeptical of all developmnts in drugs and treatments and untrusting if I am ignorant, I think studying the science is a better pursuit, in which case I might even be able to contribute to research people can use for developing treatments.

What probably needs to be done is more government-sponsored science so that we don't NEED donations, we just get them from taxes.

Posted by: Tyciol at May 7th, 2007 1:47 PM

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