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A Transhumanist Bill of Rights?

Discussion in 'Science and Technology' started by Laika, Oct 15, 2016.

  1. Laika

    Laika Well-Known Member
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    The US Transhumanist Party drafted a proposed "bill of rights" in response to the scientific and medical challanges anticipated technologies represent and delivered them to the US Capitol in December 2015.

    http://www.ibtimes.co.uk/zoltan-ist...-transhumanist-bill-rights-us-capitol-1534388

    This is part of a much larger debate regarding the future consequences of technologies that could enhance human beings mental and physical powers as well as more general threats and changes.

    http://europe.newsweek.com/transhumanism-zoltan-istvan-civil-rights-21st-century-453884?rm=eu

    (Both of the above sources are not neutral but for the purpose of introducing the subject they'll do.)

    The draft had 6 articles, which included:

    1. Recognising the rights of cyborgs, sentiment artifical intelligences and other advanced sapient life forms.

    2. Preventing religious, cultural or ethnic perspectives from imeding scientufic efforts towards life extension and the health of tge public.

    3. A right to morphological freedom- the right to do with ones physical attributes or intelligence (dead, alive, conscious or unconscious) whatever one wants as long as it does no harm to others.

    4. Taking reasonsble precautions against existential risks such as rouge artificial intelligences, asteroids, plagues, weapons of mass destruction, bioterrorism, war, global warming among others.

    5. Measures to embrace and fund space travel, as an ultimate safeguard to preserving humanity in the event the earth is destroyed or becomes uninhabitable.

    6. Classify involuntary aging as a disease and direct the government to fund scientific research in life-extension technologies.

    Full text here:
    http://www.transhumanistparty.org/TranshumanistBillofRights.html

    At a glance, this looks like a publicity stunt to raise awareness but it is none the less food for thought. Do you think in principle we need such a bill of rights to respond to these challanges or is this "pie in the sky" technological utopianism?
     
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  2. Quintessence

    Quintessence Tale Weaver
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    Yup. Finding these folks progressively more creepy, if not downright dangerous.
     
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  3. Willamena

    Willamena Just me
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    They want the "right" to be unconscious?
     
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  4. Laika

    Laika Well-Known Member
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    I think they want the right to alter mental states such as when we are unconscious and sleeping. Maybe something like technologically induced lucid dreaming.

    ...Although I can imagine that may give coma patients entertianment options for years being out of it?

    I think they may be starting a GM theme park of extinct animals soon. :D

    [​IMG]
     
  5. icehorse

    icehorse Well-Known Member
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    A lot of interesting ideas here, but they don't seem cohesive to me. More like a grab bag. It seems that we could make a few categories to contain this scattered list, and it would be easier to discuss...
     
  6. Mestemia

    Mestemia Advocatus Diaboli
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    Asteroids?
     
  7. Nous

    Nous Well-Known Member
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    I would like to know what method this organization proposes for recognizing "sentient artificial intelligences".

    How about recognizing the fundamental rights of the the sentient natural intelligences that we know exist--such as the right to be free from unnecessary and non-beneficent suffering?
     
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  8. Penumbra

    Penumbra Veteran Member
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    Seems alright to me for the most part.

    The hardest one is about the cyborgs and such. There's definitely going to be a lot of awkwardness when machines are seemingly sapient enough that people aren't sure if they have consciousness or just a facade of it. We can't even prove if another carbon-based human is truly conscious or a philosophical zombie, let alone a silicon-based human. If we get to a point where we're not sure, we'd have to err on the side of granting rights imo.
     
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  9. Laika

    Laika Well-Known Member
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    I dont know the answer to that one but in practice if the machine "fights back" there is a conflict that may require rights to remedy it.
     
  10. Nous

    Nous Well-Known Member
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    Gosh, the other day I was trying to change the filter on my vacuum cleaner, and it seemed the whole machine was trying to fight with me--and it wasn't even plugged in!
     
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