G. Stolyarov II B.J. Murphy Bobby Ridge Scott Jurgens Martin van der Kroon
July 15, 2017
In this interactive question-and-answer session, scheduled for 11 a.m. U.S. Pacific Time on Saturday, July 15, 2017, U.S. Transhumanist Party Officers answered members’ and the public’s questions about the ongoing activities and objectives of the United States Transhumanist Party and also discussed other issues of interest that relate to emerging technologies and how to ensure the best possible future for sentient entities.
The following Officers were present for this Q&A session:
The Nevada Transhumanist Party invited notable panelists to participate in a 2.5-hour conversation via Google Hangouts on Air, in order to discuss free thought and the prospects for children to be allowed the freedom to choose how (or whether) they will approach religion, instead of being compelled to follow the religious beliefs of their parents or the surrounding society.
This independent panel discussion was moderated by Mr. Stolyarov and occurred on Saturday, January 23, 2016, at 11 a.m. Pacific Time.
Each participant offered a unique, unfettered perspective on the subjects discussed. Panelists were asked to opine on the subject of how cultivating free thought and independent decision-making from a young age can result in children growing up to be more interested in advancing science and technology and solving the great problems of the human condition.
See the Constitution and Bylaws of the Nevada Transhumanist Party here. Of particular relevance are Sections XXIII and XXVI of the Nevada Transhumanist Party Platform:
Section XXIII: The Nevada Transhumanist Party supports the rights of children to exercise liberty in proportion to their rational faculties and capacity for autonomous judgment. In particular, the Nevada Transhumanist Party strongly opposes all forms of bullying, child abuse, and censorship of intellectual self-development by children and teenagers.
Section XXVI: The Nevada Transhumanist Party welcomes both religious and non-religious individuals who support life extension and emerging technologies. The Nevada Transhumanist Party recognizes that some religious individuals and interpretations may be receptive to technological progress and, if so, are valuable allies to the transhumanist movement. On the other hand, the Nevada Transhumanist Party is also opposed to any interpretation of a religious doctrine that results in the rejection of reason, censorship, violation of individual rights, suppression of technological advancement, and attempts to impose religious belief by force and/or by legal compulsion.
Adam Alonzi is a writer, biotechnologist, documentary maker, futurist, inventor, programmer, and author of the novels “A Plank in Reason” and “Praying for Death: Mocking the Apocalypse”. He is an analyst for the Millennium Project, the Head Media Director for BioViva Sciences, and Editor-in-Chief of Radical Science News. Listen to his podcasts here. Read his blog here.
Troy Boyle is a comic-book artist, writer, and former president of The National Atheist Party (now the Secular Party of America), which he co-founded in March 2011. Troy has worked for Image Comics, Desperado Publishing, Caliber Press, and Boneyard Press. Some of Troy’s comic-book art is included in “Mysterious Visions Anthology”, “Ppfszt!”, “Tribute”, and “The Return of Happy the Clown”. He also provided artwork for David Gerrold’s comic “A Doctor For the Enterprise”. See his Wikipedia page here.
Roen Horn is a philosopher and lecturer on the importance of trying to live forever. He founded the Eternal Life Fan Club in 2012 to encourage fans of eternal life to start being more strategic with regard to this goal. To this end, one major focus of the club has been on life-extension techniques, everything from lengthening telomeres to avoiding risky behaviors. Currently, Roen’s work may be seen in the many memes, quotes, essays, and video blogs that he has created for those who are exploring their own thoughts on this, or who want to share and promote the same things. Like many other fans of eternal life, Roen is in love with life, and is very inspired by the world around him and wants to impart in others the same desire to discover all this world has to offer. Roen also runs the Facebook page “Gods are unproven hypothetical conjecture“.
B.J. Murphy is the Editor and Social Media Manager of Serious Wonder. He is a futurist, philosopher, activist, author and poet. B.J. is an Advisory Board Member for the NGO nonprofit Lifeboat Foundation and an Affiliate Scholar for the Institute for Ethics and Emerging Technologies (IEET). He’s done work as a Tech Adviser for both TV and short films and is currently an Ambassador for artificial intelligence tech. company Humai.
Demian Zivkovic is the president of the Institute of Exponential Sciences (Facebook / Meetup) – an international technopositive think tank / education institute comprised of a group of transhumanism-oriented scientists, professionals, students, journalists, and entrepreneurs interested in the interdisciplinary approach to advancing exponential technologies and promoting techno-positive thought. He is also an entrepreneur and student of artificial intelligence and innovation sciences and management at the University of Utrecht.
Demian and the IES have been involved in several endeavors, such as organizing lectures on exponential sciences, interviewing experts such as Aubrey de Grey, joining several of Mr. Stolyarov’s futurism panels, and spreading Death is Wrong – Mr. Stolyarov’s illustrated children’s book on indefinite life extension – in The Netherlands.
Demian Zivkovic is a strong proponent of healthy life extension and cognitive augmentation. His interests include hyperreality, morphological freedom advocacy, postgenderism, and hypermodernism. He is currently working on his ambition of raising enough capital to make a real difference in life extension and transhumanist thought.
Third Interview of Gennady Stolyarov II and Wendy Stolyarov by Roen Horn of the Eternal Life Fan Club – May 2, 2015
Note by Mr. Stolyarov: On May 2, 2015, a hot spring day in Roseville, California, Wendy Stolyarov and I visited Roen Horn of the Eternal Life Fan Club and had a lengthy discussion with him on a wide variety of subjects: life extension, our illustrated children’s book Death is Wrong, healthcare policy, criminal punishment, and the political prospects of the Transhumanist Party and third parties in general. This was Roen’s third interview with us (watch the first and second interviews as well), and his skillfully edited recording offers a glimpse into its best segments. This conversation occurred approximately four months before Wendy and I took the step to found the Nevada Transhumanist Party, but my comments in this interview are a good example of the evolution of my thinking in this direction, as I was already inclined toward endorsing Zoltan Istvan’s 2016 Presidential run.
Peter Thiel, who has invested millions into the SENS rejuvenation research programs over the past decade, has of late been talking much more in public on the topic of treating aging. Having wealth gives you a soapbox, and it is good that he is now using it to help the cause of treating aging as a medical condition. One of Thiel’s recent public appearances was a discussion on death and religion in this context.
In the struggle to produce meaningful progress in rejuvenation research, the tipping point can come from either a very large amount of money, hundreds of millions of dollars at least, dedicated to something very similar to the SENS research programs, or from a widespread shift in the commonplace view of aging. At the large scale and over the long term, medical research priorities reflect the common wisdom, and it is my view that public support is needed to bring in very large contributions to research. The wealthiest philanthropists and largest institutional funding bodies follow the crowd as a rule; they only rarely lead it. They presently give to cancer and stem-cell research precisely because the average fellow in the street thinks that both of these are a good idea.
So it is very important that we reach a point at which research into treating degenerative aging is regarded as a sensible course of action, not something to be ridiculed and rejected. Over the past decade or two a great deal of work has gone into this goal on the part of a small community advocates and researchers. It is paying off; the culture of science and the media’s output on aging research is a far cry from what it was ten years ago. When ever more authorities and talking heads are soberly discussing the prospects of extended healthy life and research into the medical control of aging, it is to be hoped that the public will follow. Inevitably religion is drawn in as a topic in these discussions once you start moving beyond the scientific community:
The Venn diagram showing the overlap of people who are familiar with both Peter Thiel and N.T. Wright is probably quite small. And I think it is indicative of a broader gap between those doing technology and those doing theology. It is a surprise that a large concert hall in San Francisco would be packed with techies eager to hear a priest and an investor talk about death and Christian faith, even if that investor is Peter Thiel.
Thiel has spoken elsewhere about the source of his optimism about stopping and even reversing aging. The idea is to do what we are doing in every other area of life: apply powerful computers and big data to unlock insights to which, before this era, we’ve never had access. Almost everyone I talk with about these ideas has the same reaction. First there is skepticism – that can’t really happen, right? Second, there is consideration – well those Silicon Valley guys are weird, but if anyone has the brains and the money to do it, it’s probably them. Finally comes reflection, which often has two parts – 1. I would like to live longer. 2. But I still feel a little uneasy about the whole idea.
The concept of indefinite life extension feels uncomfortable to people, thinks Thiel, because we have become acculturated to the idea that death, like taxes, is inevitable. But, he says, “it’s not like one day you’ll wake up and be offered a pill that makes you immortal.” What will happen instead is a gradual and increasingly fast march of scientific discovery and progress. Scientists will discover a cure for Alzheimer’s and will say, “Do you want that?” Of course our answer will be “Yes!” They will find a cure for cancer and say, “Do you want that?” And again, of course, our answer will be “Yes!” What seems foreign and frightening in the abstract will likely seem obvious and wonderful in the specific. “It seems,” Thiel said, “that in every particular instance the only moral answer is to be in favor of it.”
One of Wright’s objections was to articulate a skepticism about whether the project of life extension really is all that good, either for the individual or for the world. “If [I] say, okay I’ll live to be 150. I’ll still be a sinner. I’ll still be conflicted. I’ll still have wrong emotions. Do I really want to go on having all that stuff that much longer? Will that be helpful to the world if I do?” This roused Thiel. “I really have to disagree with that last formulation…it strikes me as very Epicurean in a way.” For Peter Thiel, Epicureanism is akin to deep pessimism. It means basically giving up. One gets the sense he finds the philosophy not just disagreeable but offensive to his deepest entrepreneurial instincts and life experience. “We are setting our sights low,” he argued, “if we say everyone is condemned to a life of death and suffering.”
Reason is the founder of The Longevity Meme (now Fight Aging!). He saw the need for The Longevity Meme in late 2000, after spending a number of years searching for the most useful contribution he could make to the future of healthy life extension. When not advancing the Longevity Meme or Fight Aging!, Reason works as a technologist in a variety of industries.
This work is reproduced here in accord with a Creative Commons Attribution license. It was originally published on FightAging.org.
“Death is Wrong” Reviewed by Robert W. Franson of Troynovant
Read the excellent new review by science-fiction author and literary essayist Robert W. Franson of Death is Wrong. The review is published on Mr. Franson’s website Troynovant, which offers extensive literary and philosophical analysis.
Here is an excerpt: “Death is Wrong is a short book, clearly written and easy to read. I like the personal approach: it doesn’t talk down and is quite accessible. A striking concept presented quite reasonably and supported matter-of-factly. There are apt quotations from a variety of thinkers, including several of my personal heroes of modern times: Francis Bacon, Benjamin Franklin, Friedrich Nietzsche. These people and some scenes from nature are nicely illustrated by Wendy Stolyarov. For readers who want a little more about the background concepts, there is a brief Appendix discussing the seven basic causes of senescence, such as cell loss and atrophy. There are some links for further learning. It’s a good book, entertaining and thoughtful, and certainly gives us a challenge to think about.”
Indefinite Life Extension: The Pay is $Infinity – Article by Eric Schulke
World awareness of indefinite-life-extension research increases the percentage of people who will then want to contribute to its success. When we inform the mainstream of most of the industrialized world and beyond, about the people, projects, and organizations working directly and indirectly toward indefinite life extension, then a percentage of that world – which is a lot of people at even a fraction of 1% – will be helping to execute the projects that need to be completed to see if we can make this happen.
It looks like we can make indefinite life extension happen, and in more of our lifetimes. All arrows point to the probability of this occurring. We can stop a lot of things that are like the diseases and damages that cause aging already. There are ways to move genes around to cure some diseases; other diseases have been fixed by delivery of proteins in ingenious ways. We can move material between various nuclei, tag specific neurons, custom-make enzymes, do intricate work on the nano-scale, create amazing new methods and mechanisms for working in our cells, and there are countless other inventions. The numbers of them are increasing in fields across the spectrum by the day.
There are also dozens of organizations with countless projects that are working directly toward indefinite life extension every day. Begin contributing to the research and the support structures that help this all excel. Stand up for your life by getting involved. There is seriously way too much to know and experience in this universe to be laying around in a graveyard for eternity.
Everything that humans do is about striving for sustainability and development. Our elders are among the most important capital that we have. Humans, are as far as we can see, among the universe’s most important capital. We can’t afford to “let the universe down”, so to speak, by letting our negligence cause it to lose any of the extraordinary phenomena of sentience that it has produced. Do you know how long it took it to do that? Do you know how many times it failed to do that across the universe?
You are an important asset to reality, and you are dying, being killed by aging, disease, and biological frailty, and so are all the people around you. You are under attack by mechanisms that are working to kill you at all times. There is not a day that goes by that they don’t drag you closer to your grave. Some of us aren’t able to help ourselves, because those people are dead now. You are still alive, you can still help yourself. There is still a chance for you. You are still able to continue taking part in the marvels and wonders of the universe. Seize the opportunity. Seriously, what more do you want? How much is enough to entice you to stay? What more could you ask for? How much can a person voluntarily throw away? The journey, work, and fun are profoundly fulfilling, and the pay is $infinity.
Come on, let’s get going. We want you on our teams. Be a leader to your peers on this issue. Don’t procrastinate or let your anxiety about talking to people about it let them down. All you have to do is lead them to the extensive networks of indefinite-life-extension projects and organizations. We have the tools and insights to convince people over time, if you would only give them that first chance. A new thought opens a person’s mind more by allowing that person to collect, think about and sort through more insights related to it. Every wave of people that joins us makes it that much easier to get the next and bigger wave to join in. This is critical. Get the people around you to read and think about the various facets of this life-and-death reality, and join its groups and websites. Subscribe to the Movement for Indefinite Life Extension page here to get a lot of core information about organizations, events, activism opportunities, and related topics.
Remember now: when the percentage of world awareness of this cause goes up, then indefinite life extension, if it is possible, will get here faster.
Now that my campaign to spread over 1,000 Death is Wrong books to children has succeeded, I have asked myself what I could do to spread the book and its message even further. In an effort to increase the readership of the book, I have made the Second Edition available for FREE download as a PDF file. Perhaps, in this way, the book could reach tens or even hundreds of thousands of readers. Thus far, PDF versions are available in English, Russian, and Spanish.
If you have read the PDF version and enjoyed it, consider purchasing the paperback version on Amazon for yourself, a friend, or a child, and/or consider making a PayPal or cryptocurrency donation via the sidebar on The Rational Argumentator.
Death is Wrong – by Gennady Stolyarov II, Illustrated by Wendy Stolyarov
Click on the cover for a high-resolution image that you can download, save, and distribute.
Over 1,000 Kids Will Indeed Be Taught That Death is Wrong – Article by G. Stolyarov II
At least 1,029 children in at least 14 countries will be taught that death is wrong as a result of the successful provision of Death is Wrongbooks to 50 longevity activists throughout the world. On August 7, 2014, the last book shipment, free for all recipients, was made, paid for by the funds raised through the Indiegogo campaign I ran in coordination with the Movement for Indefinite Life Extension (MILE) from February 22 through April 23, 2014. (Read Eric Schulke’s earlier article about the success of the fundraiser and the tremendous efforts and publicity that made it possible.) While some of my critics, such as Slate’s Joelle Renstrom, preemptively proclaimed that the funds raised would fall well short of the goal, we actually not only reached the goal in time but even exceeded it – and we have already spent all the money raised on providing free books to children.
I am triumphantly proud to report that the fundraiser’s target of providing a book for every $5 raised has been strictly adhered to. In repeated postings to various social-media outlets – conducted at least once weekly – I did not stop seeking out new dedicated recipients until 1,029 books were provided. My persistence paid off, as every posting made new people aware of the book and its promise in spreading the message of indefinite longevity to children.
I have created a table displaying the numbers of books sent to longevity activists in each of 14 countries, the total cost of shipments in each country, the costs per book by country, and the total project costs.
Our Indiegogo campaign raised $5,141.00 in total. Printing and shipping the books cost slightly more than this amount – $5,259.23 – largely because international shipments are often more expensive than domestic shipments within the United States. An additional amount of $453.05 was paid in fees to Indiegogo, PayPal, and the payment processor used by Indiegogo to make transfers to my bank account. However, all of the cost overruns were covered out of my personal funds – and therefore I consider myself to have made an additional $571.28 donation to this distribution effort. This is certainly a worthwhile expenditure for facilitating the spread of life-extensionist ideas among the next generation of scientists, technologists, doctors, philosophers, and activists – people whom we will need to join us in the struggle against death, so that we might have any hope of personally achieving indefinite lifespans.
While some shipments are still en route, many of the ones that have reached their destinations have already begun to have significant impacts.
Some activists have sent us videos and pictures of children responding to Death is Wrong and its message.
Watch this brief, charming video of Aleksander Kelley interviewing his sister Hanna, who has been giving out Death is Wrong books to kids she knows. Thanks go to David J Kelley for making this possible.
Here is Hanna again, handing a book to a friend. This is a wonderful and inspiring vignette of what can happen as a result of our dedicated and persistent activism in support of indefinite life extension.
Roen Horn of the Eternal Life Fan Club has begun a strongly publicized series of book giveaways, the first of which he captured on camera. Here is his video featuring two kids who know that death is wrong.
Accompanying Roen’s video are excellent graphics like this one.
The books were enthusiastically received at the Church of Perpetual Life in Hollywood, FL, a science-based Transhumanist church, whose primary focus is on ending death and reversing aging. Here is a picture kindly provided by Officiator Neal VanDeRee, where he presents a copy of Death is Wrong to the music teacher Dr. Angie Cook Wong and one of her students, who sang at the service.
Some of the book recipients have been librarians throughout the United States. Jameson Rohrer, the Transhumanist Librarian, has connected me with fellow librarians who have placed the books in libraries near them. Here are images of Death is Wrong books on display.
Successes like this one and many others have been chronicled on The Rational Argumentator, on a dedicated page that I continually update, informing readers of new developments in this unprecedented distribution effort. The updates are not finished. As the remaining book shipments arrive and books are given out to children, there will be more pictures, videos, and promising news to share. Indeed, even these impacts will just be the beginning. The true effects of this effort will be seen years and decades in the future – as the young readers of the books grow up and are hopefully motivated to develop their lives and pursuits in directions that will aid us all in overcoming the greatest enemy – death. I will know that my success is complete once even one young researcher or activist informs me, “I read Death is Wrong all those years ago, and it was this book that nudged me onto the path of discovery and development toward who I am today.” We supporters of indefinite life extension still have tremendous obstacles to overcome in achieving our vision. I hope that this effort to distribute over 1,000 Death is Wrong books will erode those obstacles at least somewhat – gradually injecting the ideas of indefinite life extension into the cultural mainstream and nurturing the next generation of advocates for this most worthwhile of endeavors.
Photograph Courtesy of Eric Schulke
“Death is Wrong” Distribution Campaign Nears Completion – Update of August 6, 2014 – by G. Stolyarov II
Only 9 Death is Wrong books remain to be sent out as part of our worldwide distribution effort! If you wish to help in providing the books out to children, this is your last chance to get your free shipment now.
10 books were recently sent to Jason Limbert – a long-time supporter of radical life extension in Mississauga, Ontario, Canada. He will be distributing these books to children in his extended family, their friends, and children of neighbors.
3 books were sent to children of relatives of Wendy Stolyarov, my wife and the illustrator of Death is Wrong.
2 books were sent to RJ Lewis in California, a mother, inventor, publicist, and supporter of life extension and cryonics.
We continue to receive excellent exposure from the previous shipments. Here is a picture sent by Jennifer Huse of the shipment that recently arrived at the Spot the Knot medical spa in Eatontown, New Jersey.
Roen Horn of the Eternal Life Fan Club has begun a strongly publicized series of book giveaways, the first of which he captured on camera. Here is his video featuring two kids who know that death is wrong.
Accompanying Roen’s video are these excellent graphics.
All this was made possible by our distribution campaign. We see here great examples of the impact this book is having right now. We are making history by gradually injecting the ideas of indefinite life extension into the cultural mainstream. Help us finish this effort by spreading our last freely available books! To receive your free shipment, e-mail me at firstname.lastname@example.org with (i) your name, (ii) your MAILING ADDRESS, (iii) your support for indefinite life extension, (iv) the NUMBER OF COPIES of Death is Wrong requested, and (v) your plan for spreading the books to children, free of cost to them.
“Death is Wrong” – Book Distribution and Call to Action – May 28, 2014 – Video by G. Stolyarov II
– Provide (i) your name, (ii) your mailing address, (iii) a statement of your support for indefinite life extension, and (iv) a brief description of your plan to spread the book to children in your local area. Remember that all copies received pursuant to this initiative would need to be offered to children free of charge (as gifts or reading opportunities) and may not be resold.
– Provide the number of copies of Death is Wrong that you are requesting.
– Preferably, provide an indication that you would be willing to send photographs of the books that have been delivered to you as well as events where you will be distributing the books.