We humans possess some ugly instincts, hardwired into us over evolutionary time. The ape inside is not a pleasant fellow; he'd rather tear down pillars of success into a rubble of equal poverty for all than than use those pillars to raise up the areas between to a higher level of living. He's ever ready to believe the worst, to choose mysticism over science, hold the irrational beliefs of peers over demonstrated reality, and live in lazy ignorance rather than work to be educated.
All instincts can be mastered, and we are the masters of the ape inside - if we choose to be. Not a lot of mastering going on in the majority of the comments at AlterNet to a reprint on longevity science, however. I am always amazed at those people who stand convinced that new medical technologies and capabilities will be restricted to the "elites" - this flies so much in the face of even a cursory examination of the present day and recent history that it rises to the level of myth. It is a defining belief held as a part of tribal membership, divorced from any need to conform to reality. From this errant belief, it's a short slide into jealousy, envy and the tearing down of pillars - better all to die in poverty than any small group live longer.
And so, the barbarians.
Make no mistake, there are factions in our centralized, over-regulated, over-governed societies that aspire to call themselves "elites," enriching themselves at cost to the rest of us, parasites warring to leverage the mechanisms of the state to force their agendas. But you'll note that these "elites" - whomever you might think they are - have no greater access to medical technologies than any average fellow who takes care of his finances. This is the way the world actually works: new technologies move from dream to expensive, clunky reality to cheap and effective product in a fraction of a lifetime. So it was - and continues to be - for heart surgery, so it will be for gene therapy, and so it will be for the first true longevity therapies capable of repairing age-related cellular and biomolecular damage.
In the field of longevity medicine, as for all beneficial technologies under development, we all win together, or we all lose together. There is no other end to that story.