Technoprogressive? BioConservative? Huh?
Quick overview of biopolitical points of view



UPCOMING EVENTS: Military



MULTIMEDIA: Military Topics

Primitivism, Progress, the Transhuman & the Technological Avalanche

The future is going to be wonderful (If we don’t get whacked by the existential risks)

The New Rules of Robot/Human Society

Genetic Modification Outside The Food Context

Scary, Thought-provoking, Futurist Prank by Singularity 1 on 1

The Artilect War

New Study Shows That Bones Are Incredibly Cool

TechDebate: Lethal Autonomous (“Killer”) Robots

Phil Donahue Talks About His Film “Body of War” and the Medical Efforts for Veterans

Futurists discuss The Transhumanist Wager

Morals and the machine

U.S. Drones Terrorize Yemen

I am Bradley Manning

The Myth of Online Transparency

The Love Police: Megaphone the Drone




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Military Topics




#7: Our Worst Frailty: An Electro Magnetic “Hit”

by David Brin

The EMP-vulnerability of our electric grid, our machines, transportation systems, tools, and homes is probably the most glaring “acute-impact” threat on our horizon.

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What I Told the CIA About Robot Ethics

by Patrick Lin

Robots are replacing humans on the battlefield—but could they also be used to interrogate and torture suspects? This would avoid a serious ethical conflict between physicians’ duty to do no harm, or nonmaleficence, and their questionable role in monitoring vital signs and health of the interrogated. A robot, on the other hand, wouldn’t be bound by the Hippocratic oath, though its very existence creates new dilemmas of its own.

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Why the October 6th D.C. Freedom Plaza Protest is Important to Technoprogressivism

by Kris Notaro

On October 6, 2011, protestors will converge on Washington D.C. to recreate Tahrir Square here in the United States. It is important to transhumanists and non-transhumanists alike because it calls for, in the end, the reduction of the use of money and technology to feed America’s imperial war efforts and to challenge those in charge to use our defense money for environmental purposes.

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How We Think About Money

by Mike Treder

What does money mean to us? How do we regard the amounts that we earn, and how do we respond when some of our earnings are taxed?

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Seasteading: Some problems on the way to Castle Sovereign

by David Brin

Inspired by Ayn Rand, PayPal co-founder Peter Thiel, along with Patri Friedman and others, are helping the Seasteading Institute plan a floating ‘start-up country’ off the coast of San Francisco, built on oil-rig like platforms in international waters.

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The Future of Europe

by Peter Wicks

Can Europe, whose motto is “unity in diversity,” help to navigate humanity through the upcoming decades like a clear-eyed Renaissance astronomer? Or will it simply sink, squabbling and sniveling, into irrelevancy?

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Captain America’s Enlistment and Experimentation: Was It Ethical?

by Kyle Munkittrick

Steve Rogers, the man who would become Captain America, was not subjected to an accidental burst of gamma radiation or the bite of a radioactive spider. Instead, he willingly enlisted and subjected himself to an experimental process for the creation of super-soldiers. His superpowers were deliberate and intended. However, the circumstances of Captain America’s enlistment into the army are, at best, questionable.

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An Epidemic of Paranoia

by David Brin

Self-delusion is the greatest of all human talents.

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The Ethics of Assassination

by Arthur Caplan

Is the killing of Osama bin Laden an “assassination”? And if it is, is it morally right?

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Our Worst Frailty: An Electro Magnetic “Hit”

by David Brin

The EMP-vulnerability of our electric grid, our machines, transportation systems, tools, and homes is probably the most glaring “acute-impact” threat on our horizon.

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Women-Only Leadership Idea Rejected

A proposal aimed at reducing war and encouraging peace by reserving high public leadership roles for women only received far less than majority approval in a recently concluded poll of IEET readers.

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Of Ebos, Egypt, and the Crackpot Utopian Imperative

by Rick Moss

You can always tell when you’ve got a bona fide crackpot idea. You’ll hear one or more of the following responses: A) They’ll never let you do that. B) That’ll never work. C) They’ll put you in jail. D) You’re gonna get us all killed.

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Women-Only Leadership: Would it prevent war?

by Hank Pellissier

“Girl Fight! Girl Fight!” This shrill cry on our primary school playground always stampeded us to the spectacle of young females scratching, kicking, biting, slapping and pulling hair. With luck—we boys hoped—a blouse might get ripped and we’d see a bra.

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Egypt: Lessons for US Foreign Policy

by Ramez Naam

Those who help to oppress a people inevitably will be targets of their rage.

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Unmanned War Systems and American Society

by Jeremy Weissman

Since the invasion of Iraq in 2003, the U.S. has moved rapidly from activating only a handful of unarmed unmanned flying systems to currently deploying over 7,000 unmanned systems in the air and over 12,000 on the ground, many of these heavily armed. There is every reason to suspect this rapid incorporation of military robotics will only accelerate.

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#24: The Uncertain Future of Transhumanism

by Mike Treder

Let’s consider four distinct scenarios of technological development and transhumanist assimilation that might take place over the next 15 to 20 years.

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Eschatological Taxonomy Poster

by Jamais Cascio

Being a scale for comparing, contrasting, and understanding the sundry manners in which the Apocalypse may arise, as structured by me.

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IEET Fellow Patrick Lin on NPR

Dr. Patrick Lin, a Fellow of the IEET and an assistant professor of philosophy at California Polytechnic State University, was a featured guest on a recent edition of the NPR program “Talk of the Nation,” discussing the ethics of robot warfare.

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Skrying Excremental Fans from Idaho and Manhattan

by J. Hughes

With the US facing a possible double dip recession, and a resurgent far right political movement poised to sweep into Congress in the Fall elections, I found myself reading two strangely complementary dystopian novels about economic collapse. The first, Patriots: A Novel of Survival in the Coming Collapse by Survivalblog writer James Rawles, is a manual for right-wing survivalist gun-nuts dressed up like a novel. The second, Gary Shteyngart’s Super Sad True Love Story, is an example of contemporary literature at its finest. Although from nearly opposite ends of the social universe both novels see the spiraling economic and political crisis in the United States ending in the complete collapse of the Republic as we know it.

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Israel’s Value to TransHumanism

by Hank Pellissier

Imagine this sci-fi scenario: A small tribe with unique literature, customs and myths believes they’ve been “chosen” for a glorious destiny. But they’re driven out of their native land, forced to wander the globe for aeons, persecuted and annihilated, until they’re impelled by a utopian novel to return to their homeland. They name their new city after the inspirational book and their country becomes a technological powerhouse… but still, they’re surrounded by enemies. They wage eternal war, they hover between hope and apocalypse”¦ their contributions to humanity are astounding but they continue to fear total extinction. Familiar? Of course. I’ve described Israel and the Jews.

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Anthropic Shadow: Observation Selection Effects and Human Extinction Risks

by Milan Cirkovic

(by Milan M Cirković, Anders Sandberg and Nick Bostrom)  We describe a significant practical consequence of taking anthropic biases into account in deriving predictions for rare stochastic catastrophic events. The risks associated with catastrophes such as asteroidal/cometary impacts, supervolcanic episodes, and explosions of supernovae/gamma-ray bursts are based on their observed frequencies. As a result, the frequencies of catastrophes that destroy or are otherwise incompatible with the existence of observers are systematically underestimated. We describe the consequences of this anthropic bias for estimation of catastrophic risks, and suggest some directions for future work. DOI: 10.1111/j.1539-6924.2010.01460.x

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The Most Important Technology Nobody’s Ever Heard Of

by Chris Mooney

There’s a dangerous gap between the importance of geoengineering as a possibility on the one hand, and the complete lack of public awareness about it on the other.

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DIY Science, Democracy, and Dogma

by Patrick Lin

Ordinary citizens today have access to much greater destructive power than ever before, and this may force the evolution of democracy, which has turned somewhat into dogma.

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IEET appoints Dr. Sean Hays as Securing the Future Program Director

Sean Hays Ph.D. has accepted appointment as the director of the IEET’s Securing the Future program.

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The Other Kind of Aliens

by David Brin

In response to a flurry of interest that’s been stirred by Stephen Hawking’s new Discovery Channel show—specifically, his lead-in episode about extraterrestrials, wherein he recommended against our calling attention to ourselves—I’ll offer a hurried little riff here, about Hawking and aliens, with added contributions by and about Paul Davies, Robin Hanson, and others.

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History is Contingent, Built on Flukes, Accidents, and Surprises

by Mike Treder

Yesterday in Shanghai, a woman miscarried. The child that wasn’t born would have led a unified China to attack and defeat India, Russia, and finally Europe, resulting in a Chinese empire that ruled the world from 2050 to 2100. Instead, China wilted under internal political strife caused by economic and environmental pressures, and became a second-rate power in the 21st century.

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The Uncertain Future of Transhumanism

by Mike Treder

Let’s consider four distinct scenarios of technological development and transhumanist assimilation that might take place over the next 15 to 20 years.

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Deus Ex

by Kyle Munkittrick

Transhumanism spans a huge swath of intellectual territory, straddling bioethics, philosophy, science fiction, engineering, and computer science. Throw in conspiracy theories and cyberpunk nihilism and you have all the ingredients for Deus Ex.

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Patrick Lin Appointed as Fellow of the IEET

Dr. Patrick Lin, director of the Ethics + Emerging Sciences Group at California Polytechnic State University, San Luis Obispo, has accepted an appointment as Fellow of the Institute for Ethics and Emerging Technologies for 2010.

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So much for high tech—what about high touch?

by Mike Treder

In a recently concluded poll, IEET readers showed a mix of attitudes toward the “scientific discoveries and technological accomplishments” of the last ten years. Now we want to know what you think about the social and political developments of that same period.

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