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Thread: Eugenics

  1. #81
    Logan Feynman's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Aramendel View Post
    It is perfectly normal for parents to weight possible advantages and disadvantages of something their child can be effected by and act accordingly what they think is best for the child.
    And still I don't think people make rational choices when weighing advantages and disadvantages. Some will scream 'GM children! The horror!' and others will scream 'I want the best start in life for my child!' and neither will ever look at the other side's arguments. Meanwhile, a great majority will do whatever everyone else in the middle is doing, because 'all my friends are doing/not doing it'. None of them will think rationally about it. Most of them will believe they are making the rational choice, however.

  2. #82

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    someone might know about this:
    Is it possible, that genetic engineering would make it such that sperm from an unmodified person is unable to naturally fertilise a modified person's egg? or modified sperm unable to fertilise unmodified eggs.

    I do not know much about the mechanisms, but isn't there a lot of stuff involving proteins and so on that surround the egg, that only lets 1 sperm in?
    Could that protein be altered by engineering, intentionally or otherwise?
    What about immune response to sperm?

  3. #83
    Donor cheeba's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by KathDougans View Post
    someone might know about this:
    Is it possible, that genetic engineering would make it such that sperm from an unmodified person is unable to naturally fertilise a modified person's egg? or modified sperm unable to fertilise unmodified eggs.
    ?

    Yes it is possible in theory. I am not saying we could do it right now, but the theory has already been put into practise with plant zygotes (ie plant sex cells). This was done by plant genetics companies to stop GM strains breeding with wild ones. Has had mixed success but still, the technique is there.

    With vertebrates, this isnt currently possible (I dont think), but off the top of my head it would be feasible.

    And yes - that would have some interesting consequences for a weird future where GM people couldn't breed with non GM.

  4. #84
    Donor Aramendel's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Zeekar View Post
    Comparing designer babies to the effects of non ionizing radiation, gm crops or to a CT scan is simply dumb. We know how those things operate, we know the effects, dangers and risks they represent while we simply do not understand how gene manipulation in humans would pan out and the first generation of designer babies would be test subjects without a doubt.
    We very much do not know the long term risks of non ionizing radiation and gm crops for sure. How can we? Those things do not exist (gm crops) or a used commonly (cell phones) long enough for long term studies. This is why some people are concerned about those (I am not one of them, though). The only knowledge we have about long term effects is from theory. You know, just as we would have with gene manipulation in humans.
    And, again, I am not saying we are in any way ready for such *now*. It will likely take a generation till that really happens. And before that we will have done this extensively with animals and plants.

    Also, we will not jump right to "designer babies". It will come gradually. The first "test subjects" will be likely those where even the use of an experimental technology will be preferable to doing nothing, i.e. children from couples whose families have a history of strong hereditary diseases.

    Quote Originally Posted by Logan Feynman View Post
    And still I don't think people make rational choices when weighing advantages and disadvantages.
    Claiming people never make rational decisions is just as bad as claiming people make only rational decisions. Avoid absolutes, they are never right.*

    We could agree that people will not always make rational decisions. So? That is human nature for you. How is that an argument for or against something? It is a universal factor, it applies everywhere.

    *Yes, that was intentional.

  5. #85
    מלך יהודים Zeekar's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Aramendel View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by Zeekar View Post
    Comparing designer babies to the effects of non ionizing radiation, gm crops or to a CT scan is simply dumb. We know how those things operate, we know the effects, dangers and risks they represent while we simply do not understand how gene manipulation in humans would pan out and the first generation of designer babies would be test subjects without a doubt.
    We very much do not know the long term risks of non ionizing radiation and gm crops for sure. How can we? Those things do not exist (gm crops) or a used commonly (cell phones) long enough for long term studies. This is why some people are concerned about those (I am not one of them, though). The only knowledge we have about long term effects is from theory. You know, just as we would have with gene manipulation in humans.
    And, again, I am not saying we are in any way ready for such *now*. It will likely take a generation till that really happens. And before that we will have done this extensively with animals and plants.

    Also, we will not jump right to "designer babies". It will come gradually. The first "test subjects" will be likely those where even the use of an experimental technology will be preferable to doing nothing, i.e. children from couples whose families have a history of strong hereditary diseases.
    Studies have been done on long term effects of non ionizing radiation same for GM crops. Now you can claim they haven't been around long enough which is frankly bull. Non ionizing radiation has been with us for ever in form of light or for the last 100 years in form of radio and TV waves and in all that time no effect on human tissue has been noticed. The theory behind it is very sound and very tested so you can not compare it to the current theory we have on human genetics where we dont even know how changing one gene will affect the others.

    As for GM crops, they have been around for the last 20ish years if you restrain yourself to the crops in which we have inserted on purpose some genetic material. Otherwise GM crops have been with us from the first days of agriculture except back then it has been done by random chance while now its done in the lab with us knowing what we are doing. Before those companies can place a new plant on the market they have to go trough testing which is on par with the tests done by pharmaceutical companies before they can launch a new medicine. But some people fear the unknown, things they dont understand so they express "concern" .


    

  6. #86
    Logan Feynman's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Aramendel View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by Logan Feynman View Post
    And still I don't think people make rational choices when weighing advantages and disadvantages.
    Claiming people never make rational decisions is just as bad as claiming people make only rational decisions. Avoid absolutes, they are never right.*

    We could agree that people will not always make rational decisions. So? That is human nature for you. How is that an argument for or against something? It is a universal factor, it applies everywhere.
    [/SIZE]
    Except there is a large body of well-documented evidence that, for the most part, people do not make rational decisions. We are susceptible to an incredible array of biases and incapable of recognizing when our biases impair our judgement. This has been proven to almost completely unrelated to intelligence. Our choices and opinions rarely change and any new information is twisted to conform to our preconceived notions.

    I'm not saying nobody ever makes a rational decision. It's just that it's very rare, especially when we feel strongly about something one way or the other.

    And that is a good argument against giving people the power to choose, expecting rational choices. Ok, framed like this, it's not only an argument against eugenics but also against democracy and free market. However, that's a discussion for another thread.

  7. #87
    Donor Aramendel's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Zeekar View Post
    Non ionizing radiation has been with us for ever in form of light or for the last 100 years in form of radio and TV waves and in all that time no effect on human tissue has been noticed. The theory behind it is very sound and very tested so you can not compare it to the current theory we have on human genetics where we dont even know how changing one gene will affect the others.
    a) Except in cell phones the energy concentration is higher. Personally I believe concerns about this being a load of bull too, but it is undeniable that they are not tested in the long term.
    b) I am not talking about the GM of humans based on our CURRENT knowledge of it. This is now the 3rd time I repeated that. The last time was in the post you quoted.

    As for GM crops, they have been around for the last 20ish years if you restrain yourself to the crops in which we have inserted on purpose some genetic material.
    16 years actually. That is still less than a generation or two, what has been used earlier in this thread as long term effects of human GM.

    Before those companies can place a new plant on the market they have to go trough testing which is on par with the tests done by pharmaceutical companies before they can launch a new medicine.
    And you think it won't when we start to GM humans?



    Quote Originally Posted by Logan Feynman View Post
    Except there is a large body of well-documented evidence that, for the most part, people do not make rational decisions.
    For that, I would like a source.

    And that is a good argument against giving people the power to choose, expecting rational choices. Ok, framed like this, it's not only an argument against eugenics but also against democracy and free market.
    Not only that. But also abortion, medical treatment, which field to study, basically *everything*.

    Something which is universal is essentially meaningless. If you take it as argument for allowing or not allowing a thing you also have to apply it everywhere. You can condense it to "Humans have no right to free will because they make mostly no rational decisions". I do not see that as valid reason to deny free will.
    Last edited by Aramendel; July 29 2012 at 05:21:16 PM.

  8. #88
    Logan Feynman's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Aramendel View Post
    For that, I would like a source.
    Ok. I have based that opinion on the past 19 years of persistent reading about psychology, economics, genetics and memetics. As it is late, I've just come home from a 12-hour shift at a news desk, and I've just lit up a joint, most of the sources I will post here will be wikipedia or bakadesuyo, as they're easiest for me to find on short notice. Both provide references to actual studies.

    Susceptibility to situationally-attributed behaviour:
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Stanford_prison_experiment

    Susceptibility to influence by authority or conformism:
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Milgram_experiment

    Susceptibility to emotional influences:
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ultimatum_game

    Attribution of negative motives to holders of different opinion:
    http://www.bakadesuyo.com/are-people...u-inherently-e

    Influence of nutrition on decision-making process:
    http://scienceblogs.com/cortex/2009/09/29/fasting/

    Influence of irrelevant psychological factors on political choices:
    http://www.bakadesuyo.com/why-politi...all-your-fault
    http://www.bakadesuyo.com/when-it-co...is-how-shallow

    Examples of bias types affecting most people (most with studies cited):
    http://lesswrong.com/lw/58y/the_bias_you_didnt_expect
    http://singularity.org/files/CognitiveBiases.pdf
    http://lesswrong.com/lw/ji/conjunction_fallacy/
    http://lesswrong.com/lw/j7/anchoring_and_adjustment/
    http://wiki.lesswrong.com/wiki/Bias


    Quote Originally Posted by Aramendel View Post
    Not only that. But also abortion, medical treatment, which field to study, basically *everything*.
    Not everything. Just anything above a certain threshold of chance of causing serious and/or permanent damage to the planet or the race as a whole. Decisions on matters such as environmental policy, healthcare policy, human rights, education, warfare and human genetic engineering should all probably never be left to popular opinion.

    Quote Originally Posted by Aramendel View Post
    Something which is universal is essentially meaningless. If you take it as argument for allowing or not allowing a thing you also have to apply it everywhere. You can condense it to "Humans have no right to free will because they make mostly no rational decisions". I do not see that as valid reason to deny free will.
    I don't think I have to apply it everywhere. I think I can define less critical and more critical decisions potentially available to individuals, and try to fashion limitations proportional to their importance.

  9. #89
    מלך יהודים Zeekar's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Aramendel View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by Zeekar View Post
    Non ionizing radiation has been with us for ever in form of light or for the last 100 years in form of radio and TV waves and in all that time no effect on human tissue has been noticed. The theory behind it is very sound and very tested so you can not compare it to the current theory we have on human genetics where we dont even know how changing one gene will affect the others.
    a) Except in cell phones the energy concentration is higher. Personally I believe concerns about this being a load of bull too, but it is undeniable that they are not tested in the long term.
    b) I am not talking about the GM of humans based on our CURRENT knowledge of it. This is now the 3rd time I repeated that. The last time was in the post you quoted.
    The energy concentration doesn't really play that much of a role. It will heat you up more and thats it.

    Quote Originally Posted by Aramendel View Post
    As for GM crops, they have been around for the last 20ish years if you restrain yourself to the crops in which we have inserted on purpose some genetic material.
    16 years actually. That is still less than a generation or two, what has been used earlier in this thread as long term effects of human GM.
    You can not compare the complexity of a plant to a human. You dont need that long of a time period you just need to asses they arent harmful to humans.

    Quote Originally Posted by Aramendel View Post
    Before those companies can place a new plant on the market they have to go trough testing which is on par with the tests done by pharmaceutical companies before they can launch a new medicine.
    And you think it won't when we start to GM humans?
    They probably will when it moves from lab to open market.


    

  10. #90
    Donor Aramendel's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Logan Feynman View Post
    Susceptibility to...
    In other words, humans behave irrational under certain circumstances. You didn't need 50 links to prove that to me, that is fairly obvious.

    But the thing is - this does prove "humans make irrational decisions", but not "humans make the vast majority of their decisions not rationally".

    Not everything. Just anything above a certain threshold of chance of causing serious and/or permanent damage to the planet or the race as a whole. Decisions on matters such as environmental policy, healthcare policy, human rights, education, warfare and human genetic engineering should all probably never be left to popular opinion.
    How exactly can human genetic engineering cause "serious and/or permanent damage to the planet or the race as a whole"?

    You are still extremely vague about that, the only real thing you mentioned there was "changes in society and healthcare that would have been impossible to forecast". Lets ignore that this can also mean positive changes and simply say "negative changes in society and healthcare".
    Well, so does smoking and drinking, eating too fat food, having unprotected sex, having too many (or too few children), etc. By the very same argument we shouldn't be able to decide those things too. They are a nonissue if only few people do them but have a major negative effect if too many people do them. Just like genetic engineering of ones children.

    Also, everything you mentioned there are decisions about nationwide policies while human genetic engineering would be about individual decisions. They do not fit in there, they are in another ballpark.


    Quote Originally Posted by Zeekar View Post
    The energy concentration doesn't really play that much of a role. It will heat you up more and thats it.
    Which is also the reason why people are concerned about them.

    You can not compare the complexity of a plant to a human. You dont need that long of a time period you just need to asses they arent harmful to humans.
    That is actually the smallest problem. The real issue is how they effect the ecosystem in the long term, especially non-GM plants and animals. And this is something which is impossible to test, you only can release them and see what happens. Which is exactly what we did when we introduced GM crops at the end of the 90s.

    And, again - could you *please* finally realize this? - I am not talking about the current GM technologies and knowledge. You cannot compare their complexity to a human, but neither can you compare our knowledge of genetics now to that what we will have when we finally start to GM humans.
    Last edited by Aramendel; July 30 2012 at 05:44:04 PM.

  11. #91
    מלך יהודים Zeekar's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Aramendel View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by Zeekar View Post
    The energy concentration doesn't really play that much of a role. It will heat you up more and thats it.
    Which is also the reason why people are concerned about them.
    Yes but those people are retards.

    Quote Originally Posted by Aramendel View Post
    You can not compare the complexity of a plant to a human. You dont need that long of a time period you just need to asses they arent harmful to humans.
    That is actually the smallest problem. The real issue is how they effect the ecosystem in the long term, especially non-GM plants and animals. And this is something which is impossible to test, you only can release them and see what happens. Which is exactly what we did when we introduced GM crops at the end of the 90s.

    And, again - could you *please* finally realize this? - I am not talking about the current GM technologies and knowledge. You cannot compare their complexity to a human, but neither can you compare our knowledge of genetics now to that what we will have when we finally start to GM humans.
    Tbh if you allowed it now some people would still go for it. Just like those "men" who go at clinics and try to make sure they get a male offspring.


    

  12. #92
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    Loving the discussion - more + to the Serious Business forum

    I think that where I stand is a series of contradictions based on selfishness as much as anything else.

    If I meet a woman and we decide to have children, if the option to tweak certain characteristics is available I'd probably take it. Things like "less likely to be a fatty", "More likely to be tall", "Huge johnson" etc. Whether things like that are available and RELIABLE by the time I have kids (next 10 years) who knows, but it's possible to some degree at least.
    This is based on "give them the best chance possible to succeed"

    My view on eugenics on a large scale is less clear, in that I would not want to see a Gattica society.

    Similarly, I would be against every man and his dog/The Man having my genome on file. The implications are (as discussed here) around the potential misuse.

    I have a slightly tangental question, but not sure whether deserves it's own thread: The "right" to have children. Is this a eugenics question, or should I start a new topic? My interest comes from the usual - unending news reports of people having children who can't afford/look after them, and then abusing them/killing them etc. I am heavily conflicted on this subject, as my libertarian principles support a degree of "survival of the fittest" and lack of interference from authorities, but at the same time holy shit we don't just allow any person to drive a car/own a gun/fly a plane, they have to prove they're not a completely useless human being - but anyone can have a child.
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  13. #93
    Movember '12 Best Facial Hair Movember 2012Donor Lallante's Avatar
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    I agree with most of that JForce. I would use trait selecting for my kids if I could.

  14. #94
    Movember 2011 RazoR's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lallante View Post
    Russia - forced sterilisation of pyschoneurologically or genetically abnormal persons (usually women).
    Hearing of it for the first time, honestly.
    But i think such women wouldn't get preggers in the first place.

    There should be drawn a clear line between informing the people of possible consequences and forcing them.

  15. #95
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    I agree.

  16. #96
    Djan Seriy Anaplian's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sp4m View Post
    I agree.
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  17. #97
    Movember '11 Ginger Excellence Movember 2011Movember 2012 sarabando's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by JForce View Post

    I have a slightly tangental question, but not sure whether deserves it's own thread: The "right" to have children. Is this a eugenics question, or should I start a new topic? My interest comes from the usual - unending news reports of people having children who can't afford/look after them, and then abusing them/killing them etc. I am heavily conflicted on this subject, as my libertarian principles support a degree of "survival of the fittest" and lack of interference from authorities, but at the same time holy shit we don't just allow any person to drive a car/own a gun/fly a plane, they have to prove they're not a completely useless human being - but anyone can have a child.
    i think a new thread would be wise

  18. #98
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    Quote Originally Posted by sarabando View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by JForce View Post

    I have a slightly tangental question, but not sure whether deserves it's own thread: The "right" to have children. Is this a eugenics question, or should I start a new topic? My interest comes from the usual - unending news reports of people having children who can't afford/look after them, and then abusing them/killing them etc. I am heavily conflicted on this subject, as my libertarian principles support a degree of "survival of the fittest" and lack of interference from authorities, but at the same time holy shit we don't just allow any person to drive a car/own a gun/fly a plane, they have to prove they're not a completely useless human being - but anyone can have a child.
    i think a new thread would be wise
    Not really.
    The universal right of the sanctity/autonomy of body is covered with having children (UN charter). The same autonomy protects you from having your organs harvested after death or in a near death coma (without pre-consent).

  19. #99
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    makes you think

  20. #100
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    Just let this subforum die already.
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