X-Message-Number: 12295
Date: Sat, 21 Aug 1999 00:11:26 -0400
From: "Stephen W. Bridge" <>
Subject: George Smith's Future

To CryoNet
From Steve Bridge
August 20, 1999

Reply to:  Message #12286
                 From: "George Smith" <>

                 Subject: The "Alternative Universe" is the Future - reply to 
                 Date: Thu, 19 Aug 1999 11:32:23 -0700

>My entire point is that I suspect that "cryopreservation" research AT
>THIS TIME is unnecessary.  The 'juggernaut" I refer to is international 
>medical technology as a whole:  CAT scans, MRI. the entire transplant 
>industry, micro-surgery techniques, fiber-optic surgery - all the reasons 
>that medicine today is so incredibly expensive and profitable resulted 
>from the ongoing efforts of this "juggernaut".

>I am sure 21CM will continue.  But so will the really LARGE and 
>POWERFUL giants of medical research technology.  I simply doubt that
 >new and elegant even "reversable" cryopreservation methods will be
 >necessary once the tools which will come from nano research come on 
>I wouldn't be the least bit surprised to discover that straight freeze
>techniques (lacking ANY cryoprotectant) will succeed due to the coming 
>new technology.
>Only time will tell if I am wrong about this.
>It is too soon to be certain.


[quote from Saul Kent] >>The reason I think "WE" can do it is because 
>>we  *are* doing it. 


>You mean, you BELIEVE you are doing it.  Maybe, as I suggest, you 
>will discover you have been wasting your time, like trying to go to the 
>moon in an airplane.  Maybe not.  At this juncture, you CAN'T know.
>This is only being honest.

Odd, George.  Because if Saul can't know, YOU CAN'T KNOW EITHER.

Your conclusions from all of this don't seem logical.  You seem to be 
saying that:

1.  Current cryopreservation research efforts might be necessary or 
might not.  "It is too soon to be certain."

2.  Future developments in medicine and nanotechnology will almost 
certainly make even straight freeze patients recoverable; but maybe not.  
"It is too soon to be certain."

3.  Therefore, today the best choice is to sit on our butts, let others 
do the research (even though no one else in the world seems to give a 
damn about the particular problem we are concerned about), and hope 
that somehow all will go well in the future.

It's a comfortable philosophy.  Cheap.  Leaves plenty of time for 
typing opinions on CryoNet.  No one has to leave his home or do any 
real work.  Not terribly *realistic*, of course; but then, what the 
heck?  We're cryonicists; what do we know about reality?

Unfortunately, it is entirely possible that those anonymous executives 
at those giant medical research companies out there won't ever care 
about the lives of those cryonicists currently alive, and maybe not 
EVER care about ANYONE except their bankers.

It is also entirely possible -- many here would even say "likely"-- 
that straight freezings or poor freezings of human today cause enough 
damage to make future repair of the individual's memories and 
personality difficult or impossible.

So we have at least five basic possibilities for this future (with 
multiple variations):

1.  Group A (21st C.M. group) finds the answer to placing patients 
into stasis and reviving them.

2.  Group B (the Big Boys) finds the answer to placing patients into 
stasis and reviving them.

3.  Both find the answer but only one finds it in time to help 
today's cryonics members.

4.  One finds the answer but only because of clues (and possibly 
financial success) generated by the other.

5.  Neither finds the answer.  No one gets revived.

Remember, everyone, this is a TWO-step problem.  If you are frozen 
in such a way that your memories and personality are lost (beyond 
whatever your genetic structure gave you and what can be pieced 
together from your CryoNet posts - overly simplified, I know), 
then no nanotechnological geniuses will do anything more than 
produce a clone of you.  Interesting, but not what I'm in cryonics 
for.  And we don't even know yet WHAT part of you is the "essential 
stuff," so we can't test to see what is "good enough."

No one today but cryonicists are working on Step One.

It looks to me from the five possibilities above that four require 
that BOTH Group A and B work on the problem.  Like you say, we can't 
predict the future and we don't know who will find the answers.  As 
others have said, "The best way to predict the future is to invent 
it."  So we work on making the future into what we want.

Since the Big Boys are not even thinking about the specific problems 
we are concerned with right now, it only makes sense to support those 
who are.  A bird in the hand is worth a lot more than two in the bush - 
and the bush looks pretty darn empty right now.  

When faced with a problem that affects your survival, you can choose 
to sit there and trust in God (or Nanotechnology or the Medical 
Industry or "our Friends in the Future") to make everything work.  
Or you can do everything possible yourself to make it work - and 
make it work soon enough to help YOU.  

If George is right and the Giants of Medicine solve the problems for 
us, then perhaps you have lost some time you might have spent typing 
on CryoNet.  

If George is wrong and the Giants of Medicine never get around to 
solving the problems - and we could have solved them ourselves - 
then you will have lost the Future.  And even wasted the time you 
spent typing on CryoNet.

I think the proper aphorism here might be "God (or Nanotechnology 
or the Medical Industry or "our Friends in the Future") helps 
those who help themselves."

Steve Bridge

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