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How do antranshumanists expect to make transhumanism work for proles?

Submitted by Defasher in Anarchism (edited )

We're obviously facing a near future where rich people get superpowers, so how do anarcho-transhumanists expect to face that dystopian nightmare?

When proles are being further subjugated by the elite transhuman class, do ATs really think identifying as transhumanist in any way is going to win them anything other than scorn and mistrust from the majority of humanity?

How do you expect to not be seen as bootlickers and collaborators if your idea of good praxis is to work to be granted equal tech grafts, immortality and superpowers as the elite class, rather than fighting to abolish their crimes against nature altogether?

And how do you expect 8 billion people to be granted equal tech privileges anyway? It would speed up global warming so fast that 90% of the planet would be rendered uninhabitable in a matter of weeks.

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5

surreal wrote

we'll have to hack the rich eventually, hack their body/minds for funz.

4

zorblax wrote

anarcho-transhumanism cannot be achieved unless communism has already been achieved.

Whether it would create new classes -- upgraded and non-upgraded -- is a question of how much planning and forethought goes into it. The answer is probably "not much", but I don't think it's that big of a problem. I think there will be a class of people who want upgrades, and a class who don't, and I think in a society that relies on goodwill among individuals it's not a big deal if your neighbor is suddenly 50 times stronger than you, they're still your neighbor and you're still theirs.

Eventually, the idea goes, humans will be able to efficiently upload our minds to computers, and I think that's the end goal. Once you're a piece of data rather than a piece of matter, your freedom is near limitless, and with that you'll probably withdraw from the real world and live your life freely. I imagine a far future where Earth is untouched, save for a few small settlements of people who didn't want to upload and the occasional underground server farm. Sounds ideal to me.

Also, your other questions:

We're obviously facing a near future where rich people get superpowers, so how do anarcho-transhumanists expect to face that dystopian nightmare?

hacking 'em

When proles are being further subjugated by the elite transhuman class, do ATs really think identifying as transhumanist in any way is going to win them anything other than scorn and mistrust from the majority of humanity?

"We want those upgrades too!" is a pretty good rallying cry, at least in places not infected with ultraconservative religion.

How do you expect to not be seen as bootlickers and collaborators if your idea of good praxis is to work to be granted equal tech grafts, immortality and superpowers as the elite class, rather than fighting to abolish their crimes against nature altogether?

Loaded question.

And how do you expect 8 billion people to be granted equal tech privileges anyway?

Same way we grant 8 billion people equal medical access.

It would speed up global warming so fast that 90% of the planet would be rendered uninhabitable in a matter of weeks.

that doesn't even make sense.

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[deleted] wrote (edited )

1

kaiakerno wrote (edited )

We're obviously facing a near future where rich people get superpowers, so how do anarcho-transhumanists expect to face that > dystopian nightmare?

I would rather suggest stealing, copying and improving the technology and, of course, inventing some of our own. That includes hacking, but hacking machines, not people.

Same way we grant 8 billion people equal medical access.

So destroying the environment?

There's a lot of improvement we can do to the environment without cutting on medical access and technology in general. First step would be to move away from fossil fuels.

A start to justifying your argument would be explaining how it doesn't make sense. The only possible way that a transhumanist future would not be absolutely devastating on the environment is if countless technological feats were made, adding on even more layers of speculation and fiction onto the entire idea. Transhumanism is a dangerous thing to pursue, one which counters the entire green movement and relies on a future based on dreams and fantasies which have a much greater chance of destructive outcomes than anything else

"90% of the planet would be rendered uninhabitable in a matter of weeks" is a kind of overestimation, don't you think? Especially considering the TH technologies are not different from our current medical and computing technologies in any way that would be more ecologically taxing on the planet, and they would aim to replace much of the old technology, thus there won't be any noticeable increase in environmental damage because of them. Meanwhile reliance on better energy sources (solar, wind and, yes, nuclear) and carbon negative technologies should help us slow down and eventually stop/reverse global warming. Some of these technologies exist, some are in development but already deemed feasible.

We're past the point when we can fix environment with less technology. We have already created a problem, now we have to solve it. Like when you have broken a window, you can't just say "I won't throw any rocks at it again" and expect it to go back to normal.

1

zorblax wrote

Sounds like fiction and presumption to me

The future is unwritten. Thinking you know what it holds is the greatest hubris humanity can know.

A future in which people upload their conscious to a computer would most likely be one in which it is "unhackable"

"unhackable" is a fairy tale. There is no such thing as perfect security, and there never will be. Anyway, a casual look at the state of modern computer security shows that it is hilariously weak, even in government or military sectors. Mostly it's that most people don't understand security, or just don't care about it.

So destroying the environment?

If my choices are to keep people alive or to try to revive a biosphere that's been a lost cause for 50 years, I'll take the former.

A start to justifying your argument would be explaining how it doesn't make sense.

90% of the planet uninhabitable in a few weeks due to greenhouse gas output? It's literally impossible.

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chaos wrote (edited )

But hacking the software won't get you 8 billion cybernetic bodies with mindlinks to hand out. It's a resource problem, not a software problem.

1

zorblax wrote

quite right, that's why I never claimed it was a solution to getting everyone those upgrades, rather it's a way to fight back against the robo-bourgeoisie.

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[deleted] wrote

1

ziq wrote (edited )

it is a corporation that is beholden to states

At this point I'd say the states are beholden to the biggest corporations. The corporations openly pay US presidents millions for political favors giving speeches to their executives.

imagine this transhumanist future world....reality is controlled by the google/facebook of the day, that provides the infrastructure for it to exist. if we upload and they have our data, they literally have us.

It's a scary thought. They already control all our data now, so once we've uploaded our minds to their servers, they'll really have full control over our every thought and emotion.

-1

Chomskyist wrote (edited )

Improving yourself isn't a crime against nature, it's literally the only way to face climate change and ensure the survival of our species...

Also your entire silly post is a series of fearful ad hominem attacks so I refuse to engage further.

4

Defasher wrote (edited )

How do you face climate change by increasing the factors that cause climate change tenfold?

And what's the point of humanity 'surviving' as brains in jars or whatever if the rest of the planet is destroyed?

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NEOalquimista wrote (edited )

Try not to assume for a second that the technology used for augmentation will always need to be pollutant/hazardous to the environment. We're just confident that we can improve how efficiently the energy is used for these devices, and that we can harvest that energy a lot more easily. Remember, we're not using fossil fuels, even the capitalist world is trying to replace them. It's all going towards clean energy. Maybe all comes down to waste disposal, which needs to be done properly. If you want to add something interesting to this conversation, those are my suggestions. Waste disposal, energy efficiency and autonomy for finding resources and building your own augments. You made those assumptions as if they were irrefutable facts already.

Oh, and I don't think transhumanism should be seen as a group of people "united" to put titanium on their balls. We're not:

a) not trying to accomplish any change to how society works. We just want to develop technology to improve our own functions, as long as it doesn't harm the ecosystem.

b) not united in any way. In fact, there's no point in considering transhumanists a different group or segment. There's no fight. No struggle here. Nothing that affects others necessarily.

But, look. I don't fight for transhumanism. I shouldn't feel offended by critics. I'm ready to give up this concept if it proves to be incompatible with a free and independent society. I'm just expressing this as a feeling of mine. If I can build my own augmentations and keep away from corporations, I'll do it. Because I like the idea of improving my fragile weird body.

4

Defasher wrote

Try not to assume for a second that the technology used for augmentation will always need to be pollutant/hazardous to the environment.

But then I'd be basing my arguments on pure speculation - as long as energy negative technology doesn't exist, and as long as resources need to be extracted to create transhumanist technology, isn't it just purely theoretical and therefore not practical or useful to the world we exist in?

not trying to accomplish any change to how society works. We just want to develop technology to improve our own functions, as long as it doesn't harm the ecosystem.

This is new. So antranshumanists won't upgrade their bodies if the upgrades can't be created without harming the ecosystem? That changes things. But it also means you're not going to be able to uprade yourselves any time soon, while capitalist transhumanists won't wait.

Does that also take into consideration the advantages over other members of the ecosystem you'll have by giving yourself new functions?

Example if you have 4 hands robot hands in addition to your flesh hands and I just have the flesh hands, won't I become obsolete and not be able to compete with you?

not united in any way. In fact, there's no point in considering transhumanists a different group or segment. There's no fight. No struggle here. Nothing that affects others necessarily.

I'd be more willing to accept that if I didn't keep getting attacked by antranshumanists for being anticiv, and even accused of being transphobic and genocidal for no reason other than my opposition to civilization.

0

Chomskyist wrote

We can't stop climate change, so the only alternative is to make ourselves immune to it.

When we survive (ignoring your sad Futurama inspired fantasy) in an evolved form, then we can use future tech we develop to bring the planet back to life, and in a much more logical and more just form. For example, we can program our new lion replacement species to not harm humans. And we can design everything on Earth to survive on just sunlight so there won't be any starvation. And the new plants can be much more efficient at photosynthesis, like bamboo forests.

3

Defasher wrote

How will you overthrow the fascist transhumanist overlords when they have immortality / superpowers / giant robot bodies and you don't?

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NEOalquimista wrote

We don't overthrow fascism with transhumanism. That's not what it's for. It doesn't have political motivations. It's just a thing we seek to improve as a side objective. By adding anarchist influences, we end up searching ways to build our own and not rely on corporations for them.

And.. of course. I won't be thinking about transhumanism when the world goes down. Transhumanism, at least in short term, is not going to save the world, comrade.

0

Chomskyist wrote

Couldn't have said it better myself comrade!

Except, why won't transhumanism save the world? We can alter ourselves and our surroundings to survive any catastrophe.

4

chaos wrote (edited )

I think the point they're making is that transhumanism is not an ideology, it's simply the ability for humans to enhance themselves in whatever way they choose.

5

Defasher wrote

Then why attach anarcho- to it if it's not meant to be political?

1

Chomskyist wrote

The reason you should support anarcho-transhumanism is so that the fascist transhumanists don't take over. We need to push for anarcho-transhumanism, not fascist transhumanism.

11

chaos wrote

In all fairness, in a capitalist world, there is no way that transhumanism can not be misused to create further divisions between haves and have nots.

8

Defasher wrote

That's my whole point. Why pretend that transhumanism is going to be used for good, when it's obviously only going to be available to the wealthy?

3

kaiakerno wrote

That's our whole point. To make sure that once these technologies are available, we implement affordable mass-production of them as soon as possible, for all to enjoy.

2

Chomskyist wrote (edited )

Exactly. We can even automate the processes to create the technology, from mining to factory production to delivery :) no humans ever need to labor again.

3

ziq_postcivver wrote

You're going to send your robots to Africa to mine their land to make your tech upgrades?

That sounds like a disaster waiting to happen.

2

kaiakerno wrote

Well, we are right now mining their land to make our current tech upgrades: a new iPhone -- or three -- every year. You'd expect people to be at least a little bit more reluctant to undergo surgery often than to buy a new brick. From an ecological perspective I am not educated enough, but my general impression was that we don't need to urgently stop mining. We need to do it cleaner, and eventually mine from space. Mining is a contribution to the climate change, but not the biggest one. Please correct me if I'm wrong.

An anarchist quasi-state (in the meaning that it is a significant piece of land not under control by another state, sufficiently organized to build complex production lines) could mine from its own land, if it has the necessary resources. If that is not feasible, I don't think there's a reason why an anarchist community cannot trade with others, even with corporations, i.e., we could buy resources.

And if provider of resources is also an anarcho-communist community with compatible values, we could, hypothetically, propose to ally or merge with them, share the resources and produce some of the technology there, and some here, benefiting everyone, including them.

4

Defasher wrote (edited )

Okay, one more question. If the only way to counter fascist transhumanism is for people to be anarcho-transhumanists, doesn't that mean everyone is forced to upgrade their bodies or else risk being seen / treated as an inferior race?

If the rich stop being the only immortal cyborgs, and allow anarcho-transhumanists to all become immortal cyborgs too, but I decide to remain a mere mortal, doesn't that put me at a serious disadvantage?

4

kaiakerno wrote (edited )

We are anarchists. We are, by definition, against the concept of inferiority of one being to another. This can be said for all branches of anarchism, even anarcho-capitalism subscribes to this in principle. So, in principle, the answer is "No".

In practice I can speak only from the anarcho-communist perspective, and the answer is still "No".

Even with the current level of production, our civilization can already provide necessities (water, food, shelter, safety, medicine, education, technology, communication and complete access to culture) to all persons on Earth, and demand much less of their time than now -- as soon as we transform competition of enterprises into cooperation of workers and direct democratic control by both workers and consumers, eliminating a lot of useless and harmful jobs in the process. With the rise of transhumans (and don't forget AIs), productive capacity will increase further, but the demand on worker time will (unlike under capitalism) shrink, not increase. Pretty soon we'll reach a point where all the work that needs doing is performed either by passionate humans that genuinely want to do it or by AIs that are either also self-determined passionate persons or enjoy it by definition in their programming, or simply don't care. Probably that is the moment when we can finally let go of money and whatever remained of economic inequality will be gone.

Of course, by choosing to pass augmentation, you are limiting your ability to contribute to the society to a degree. But this won't reduce your worth as a human being and won't impede your access to goods and services. Except, of course, there might also be forms of leisure requiring augmentation, but this future society will probably deeply care about accessibility as well.

So, you choose to remain a pure human? Your loss. IMHO, you'll miss out on a lot of good stuff. But things that are valuable to you won't be taken away. You will not be looked down upon, and will not be at an economic nor social disadvantage.

Besides, it's never too late to change your mind.

3

ziq_postcivver wrote (edited )

That's a whole lot of speculation that all depends on anarchism becoming the worldwide system of choice and capitalism ceasing to exist. It's a nice idea, but it's really very unlikely anarchism will gain a foothold. The rich aren't about to just release their grip on the world and give us universal equality. Just the idea of 8 billion people and their offspring being made immortal and using up resources for eternity is enough to send the rich into genocide mode.

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amongstclouds wrote

I feel like this line of argument applies to all anarchists. This whole movement is built around 'what could be' if we only dropped 'the current state of things' so I am unsure as to what the point of all this is other than technophobia.

3

ziq_postcivver wrote

I don't want to be rude but other forms of anarchism don't create hierarchies by their very design..

3

kaiakerno wrote

There's a long way to that kind of future, and maybe it will never come.

And yes, it will unlikely happen with one sudden revolution. I personally think it will be cooperatives and small communities providing for themselves, then cooperating with each other and uniting together to provide for themselves better. Until they reach critical mass.

But that is beside the point. How exactly does TH create hierarchy by design?

3

ziq_postcivver wrote (edited )

It creates a superhuman class. It would be like living in an X-Men comic where some humans are all-powerful but most are defenseless.

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kaiakerno wrote

If anyone can become a "superhuman", then there is no border between those classes. And remember, anarchy is about "no leaders" rather than "no rules", and it is not anarchy if oppression of a regular human by an augmented one is tolerated.

3

kaiakerno wrote (edited )

Besides, there are all kinds of potential augmentations. Some augmentations, those that enhance physical strength, are likely to be considered weapons and be treated as such. (I honestly haven't made up my mind on weapons yet: I used to consider gun control a necessity, and now that I noticed many anarchists to be against it, I'd like to examine that other point of view before I form a strong opinion on this.)

But these are unlikely to be very popular in a healthy society. I was thinking more in line of upgrades that allow you to interface with computers to control them and receive their output by thought. Or those that restore vision to vision-impaired or fix any other kind of disability.

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Defasher wrote (edited )

I have the same critique of anarcho-communism as I so with AT. Individualist anarchism isn't utopian, however. I exist in anarchy right now.

1

kaiakerno wrote

Anarcho-communism works: there have been functional countries like this, for example, Catalonia in 1936-39 and maybe Makhnovist Ukraine in 1917-21. They worked very well for their people, and were both destroyed mostly by the external forces.

So, it's hardly utopian.

2

Chomskyist wrote

No... because we're anarchists, we don't believe in hierarchies.

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ziq_postcivver wrote

Whether you believe in them or not, they'll still exist.

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kaiakerno wrote

That's why as anarchists, we identify them, evaluate whether they are justifiable and dismantle them if they are not.

Dismantling doesn't need to happen by taking the advantage away from somebody: making that advantage universally available is much better.