Political Philosophy and the Science of Longevity

Of interest to those who like to see how the other half thinks about engineered longevity, here is a long post from a political philosopher in the "social justice" (i.e. forced redistribution of property) camp: "One of Rawls's 'simplifying' assumptions is that all the participants in the social contract are healthy, productive members ... Rawls invoked this simplifying assumption to help bracket particular complexities like healthcare, and in so doing come to an understanding of how wealth and income should be distributed and the weight to place on rights and freedoms. The problem is that this one simplifying assumption pretty much erases many of the central questions of justice that are in need of being addressed. To bracket them, so that attention can be placed on wealth, income and rights and freedoms gives one the impression that science and health policy are secondary, or even tertiary concerns. And that has certainly been the (unfortunate) consequence for the field 4 decades later. The reality today is that the inborn aging process is now the major risk factor for disease and death after around age 28 in the developed countries and limits average life expectancy at birth to approximately 85 years ... Aging predisposes our bodies to fall apart, making us vulnerable to chronic diseases like cancer, heart disease and stroke. Advances in evolutionary biology point us in the direction of potential interventions in the aging process that could expand the opportunities humans could have for health. Our neglect of human biology and science in general is unjustified."

Link: http://colinfarrelly.blogspot.com/2009/05/myth-of-homo-primaeva.html

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