X-Message-Number: 14309
Date: Mon, 14 Aug 2000 05:42:04 -0400
From: Paul Wakfer <>
Subject: Re: CryoNet #14282 - Crippling Vitrification (Installment #1)
References: <>

Much as I detested the idea because of what I considered many snide
remarks and devious methods which David Pascal had before used against
me, and began by doing so again in this message, I was persuaded by my
newly found interlocking fractal, Kitty, to objectively read and
evaluate what he had to say in the message, just as I am attempting
sincerely to do with other people.
I have now done so and here is the first installment of my reply.

After writing the above and being almost ready to send off the first
installment, I then realized that whether purposefully or innocently,
Pascal had almost suckered me by asking his own questions (which had
never been asked by the poster of the message to which I replied) and
then selectively choosing from my reply, text which was never intended
to answer such a question!

In reviewing his post again, I find that it is a wonderfully disguised
(perhaps innocently done) masterpiece of the art of selective text
quoting and rearranging. Based on his excellent talents in this area, I
strongly recommend to David that he seriously consider the business of
politics and political campaign writing and management. Perhaps my
experience is limited, but I have rarely seen his equal.

Because of this new view of his post, I was forced to rewrite and delay
my response.

> Message #14282
> From: 
> Date: Wed, 9 Aug 2000 11:02:09 -0400
> Subject: Crippling Vitrification
> There is something about truly bad marketing that is almost painful to
> watch.  It's like seeing someone dying of thirst trying to drink out of
> a sieve.  The means are so futile and counter-productive that watching
> it makes you wince.

If this is directed at me, then I am truly sorry to have caused Pascal
or anyone else such pain. Sometimes in trying to persuade people who are
fixed in their viewpoints, it is necessary to shake them up to get their
attention. This is in fact what I did at the start of the Prometheus
Project on CryoCare forum which resulted in an initial $100K per year of
pledges and started a sequence of events which, among other things, led
directly to the residency of the world's foremost organ cryobiologist
at 21CM and his work being of direct availability and applicability to
By that action, I caused one CryoCare member such pain that he bound me
to secrecy about his pledge of $2,500 per year until I had reached 50%
of the total without using the same "fundraiser" tactics again!
As I have stated several times before, I took that action knowing full
well the risk to my personal stature and being willing to risk the
censure of others for the purpose of gaining my and other's

> What brought this to mind for me was reading some recent posts from Mr.
> Paul Wakfer.

This was *one* recent post where I was answering important questions
that had been ignored by all those busy debating their own personal
viewpoints about identity. It is my considered estimate that if we had
one penny for every character which has been written in every cryonics
publication including CryoNet on the subject of identity, perfected
suspended animation would be assured.

> Apparently looking for funding from people in the cryonics
> community, he gave us an update on recent developments in vitrification
> at 21CM and INC.

That was *not* the purpose of my answer to Alan Mole.
My purpose was merely to answer his questions and in doing so, to shake
people on Cryonet from their complacency.

>  He then favored us with his view of cryonics (quote,
> 'a fringe group',

By any objective standard cryonics *is* a fringe group!
Please, let's be realistic here.

> 'fragmented,

Yes, it is also fragmented and always has been, with little cooperation
or good will between its different factions.

> cultist, inbred, ingrown and navel gazing',

All very true, as is the case for most starting paradigm changes when
they have been in startup phase for over a generation.

> a 'very small pond in which all these frogs are croaking to
> each other');

The cryonics community is extremely small relative to the rest of the
And most cryonicists spend far more time talking to each other about
cryonics than talking to non-cryonicists.

> of CryoNet postings ('99%' of which are 'busy with brain
> masturbation');

Whether intentionally or unintentionally Pascal has distorted what I
said by not quoting it in full context. My clear implication was that
this was only the *current* situation. However, even viewed over
greater time, CryoNet postings are mostly impractical dreaming, and
preaching to, or debating with the already converted. Most of the
people involved in major cryonics activity or other related
productive activities either do not read CryoNet or read and post to
it very rarely.
Thus, very literally, CryoNet posters are generally playing with their
own, or each other's brains.

> of cryonicists ('short-sighted, head-in-the-sand, money-hoarding',

This is my opinion, and is relative to what needs to be done, and to
their own professed desires.
But I did not say this was true of all cryonicists. Once again,
Pascal has distorted my remarks by out of context quoting whether
intentionally or unintentionally.

> half 'busy counting the number of identities on the head of a pin,
> and the other half are waiting for the Nanotechnology God
> to save their asses');

Frankly, I thought it was a neat manner of expressing what needed to be
made clear. :-)
Again, IMO, this is very true. Am I supposed to hide or distort what I
think is the objective truth?

> of cryonics organizations ('all jealously guarding
> their own "territory");

Again very frankly, I don't know any other rational conclusion to be
made from some of their actions.
What would Pascal rather me conclude: that they are politically turf
guarding, that they are too stupid to see what is best for them and the
rest of us, or that they really don't want life-extension after all.

> and, lastly, 'the intransigent, pig-headedness
> and/or power lust of the major cryonics leaders (of Alcor and CI)' who
> 'don't really want to live in a world where some upstart can succeed
> where they could not' and who 'were and still are masters of the art of
> political rationalization, casting doubt, and making false arguments
> just logical enough that they are believable to naive, trusting souls'.

Again, I have not been able to see any other conclusion. I am being
urged by some people to consider that these leaders may be simply
uninformed or misguided but well intentioned souls, and I am trying
hard to approach these people (and Pascal too) from that new viewpoint.

> (Mr Wakfer nonetheless conceded that 'If I become terminal in the
> near-term, I plan to toady-up to the whatever bastard is leading
> the most scientific cryonics organization at the time', despite
> the fact that in the future he expects 'all the current cryonics
> organization will either be out of business or as insignificant
> relative to the rest of the world as they are today').

Not only is this a clear instance of context clipping and rearranging
of text (again either innocently or for the purposes of distortion or
defamation), but Pascal appears to have not understood the meaning and 
import of "out of business or insignificant relative to the rest of the
world as they are today".

First, I will sign up and be frozen with the best methods possible if I
become terminal because the alternative is certain death. I have never
deviated from that fundamentally pro-cryonics position since I first
embraced cryonics 15 years ago.

Second, by the above phrase I do not mean that existing patients will
be lost. For example, CryoCare is very likely to soon "go out of
business" (IMO, it already has). However, its patients are fully
funded with intact funding and I fully expect that one of the other
cryonics organizations will accept their transfer and funding.
Thus, while cryonics leaders and organizations have been and still are
plagued by feuding, I acknowledge that they are also highly sincere and
dedicated to saving patient lives wherever those patients come from.
Everyone realizes that another "Chatsworth" must never again be allowed
to happen.
Finally, the statement quoted above is implied by something which seems
very obvious to me.  Once suspended animation is perfected, it will be
accepted by the establishment as a legitimate medical procedure for
terminal patients whose diseases/disorders can be reasonably seen to be
curable within the foreseeable future. If the success rate is high
enough (as shown by clinical trials), it may even become available as an
elective procedure for those whose quality of life is extremely poor and
who also can reasonably expect a cure within the foreseeable future. I
still think it may also be used to lower that costs of incarceration for
If/when these things happen, suspended animation, for those in
sufficiently good condition to survive it, will soon become available
in every major city in the US and large corporations will enter the
business of cryopreserving and storing the suspendees.
IMO, none of the current organizations are likely to succeed in a world
of such corporate competition. In addition, when this takes place the
volume of these large storage facilities will so lower costs and/or
create safety (don't forget their patients will still be considered
"alive") that it may be better for the older and smaller organizations
to transfer their patients for storage with the new companies. However,
these older organizations may well remain "in business" for the purpose
of cryopreserving those patients who are in such bad shape that the
establishment can/will not cryopreserve them and, as now, declares them
legally dead. 

> Now I expect the bastard in charge of the most scientific organization
> at the time, or even the bastard in charge of the second or third most
> scientific, will probably let bygones be bygones and haul up a bucket of
> liquid nitrogen for Paul somewhere or other, but I have to confess I
> don't think it will be for his PR contributions to vitrification.

Much to their credit, it is part of the principles of all cryonics
organizations of which I am aware, that services are available to
everyone with the necessary funding. That no judgment of the worth of
customer/patient will affect their decision to accept him/her, and for
example, that even someone of a Hitler's ilk would not be denied
By "toady-up" I simply meant "ask" to be signed up to someone with
whom I had major and fundamental disagreements, and perhaps even
dislike. As it is now there are a few of us who will not sign-up with
any existing organization (until urgent need is clear). We would
rather take the small risk of eternal death than sanction what we
feel is either gross irrationality or conscious evil.

> As far
> as fund-raising and public relations go, I find his general approach in
> that area to be how can I put it?  -- poorly conceived.

Again, my post was in answer to Alan Mole's query. It was not part of
any "fund-raising and public relations". It was a "tell it like it is"
from Paul Wakfer, radical individualist. BTW, the "tell it like it
is" approach by Mike Darwin during the 1980s in the pages of Cryonics,
drew many major activists into the cryonics movement including me. But
in truth, it is no artifice of mine. It is the way that I have always
lived my life.

> The substance of his post seems to be that, as he puts it,
> 'perfected whole body suspended animation could be "just around
> the corner", if we could only
> get these, quote, 'short-sighted, head-in-the-sand, money-hoarding
> cryonicists to fork over the necessary cash'.   Laudable goal!

Here Pascal has well summarized my post.
However as I stated above in reply to Pascal's quote of the latter text,
this is "purely relative to what needs to be done and to their own
professed desires. Also I did not say this was true of all cryonicists."

> How do we do it?
> Answer:  violent personal abuse. Well -- true, that is one
> possible technique among many.  The only question is -- does it work?

The above question was not asked by Alan Mole.
Thus, none of my text was meant to answer it.
And I most certainly never said or implied that the answer was
"violent personal abuse".
In fact from the use of this phrase, I am not sure the Pascal even
understands the fundamental principle of all freedom philosophies
enshrined in the US Constitution as "freedom of speech", that "words"
even abusive ones, by definition cannot be "violent"!

> Suppose a nanobiotechnology researcher at Cornell (where twelve doctoral
> candidates in the subject were recently admitted, incidentally)

12 or 1200, it is still irrelevant to my objections to our reliance on
nanotechnology for life-extension purposes (but more on that

> were to send Mr. Wakfer a public open letter and go, "Dear Mr. Wakfer,
> you bastard:  you are a short-sighted, money-hoarding, inbred, ingrown,
> navel gazing, intransigent, pig-headed, fringe cultist masturbator
> waiting for the Vitrification God to save your ass:  give me several
> thousand dollars
> for research!   Dazed at the clarity of this appeal, would Mr. Wakfer
> pull out his check book and start scribbling zeroes?  I think all that
> the researcher would get would be more examples of Mr. Wakfer's
> extensive collection of adjectives.

Very funny and clever indeed, but quite irrelevant since I never have
done any such thing as part of a fund-raising letter. Nor have I ever or
would I ever say such a thing to any given individual.

> But, worse, suppose that you are an actual potential investor looking
> for a place to put your money.  You stumble across Cryonet and read Mr.
> Wakfer's post -- period -- and nothing else.  What do you learn about
> the state of vitrification from it?

We already know that the chance of such people as Pascal has
hypothetically imagined funding any of our research is practically zero,
and that any such individual who might will read further and/or not be
put off by only one post. Besides my post also contained some positive
and important information. It was designed with several (perhaps
conflicting) purposes in mind.

> Is there a place for an investor to get hard data on where their work on
> vitrification stands at the moment?

This question was not asked, instead the question asked was:

>> This is a request for a pointer to a site that summarizes the
>> current state-of-the-art.

My text quoted below was designed to answer *that* question not Pascal's

> Wakfer:   There is no site where this is all summarized. The
> information is very scattered, and/or not yet written down.

Am I supposed to mask the truth?

> Has research in vitrification procedures such as the use
> of a high pressure chamber to prevent crystallization been successful?

Again Pascal does not quote the exact statement to which my quoted text
below is responding:

>> As I recall the overall status, vitrification was promising and it appeared
>> crystalization might be prevented during freezing by using a high pressure
>> chamber.  However it tended to occur during thawing too unless very high
>> thaw rates were used.

> Wakfer:   This was only an interim step during the research which Greg
> Fahy was doing to reversibly cryopreserve kidneys. In fact, not only was
> it always deemed impractical for whole body humans, but he very soon
> found that the pressure itself induced additional unrecoverable damage,
> and soon after abandoned the pressure approach.

This is a true and objective summary of what happened. Indeed, I sent a
copy of my entire post to Dr Fahy and he wrote me saying that he had no
corrections to my description of the technical points.
What criticism Pascal has of this particular informative answer is not

> Has 21CM in fact done any actual brain research at all?

This question of Pascal's is not similar to anything that was asked.
Thus, the text quoted below cannot be construed to be an answer.

> Wakfer:   21CM is not working with
> brain slices. That is the research project of the Institute for
> Neurocryobiology's

BTW, I mistyped here. If should be "Neural Cryobiology".

> Hippocampal Slice Cryopreservation Project (HSCP), in
> full cooperation with 21CM, of course. What you have read about 95% is
> that *rabbit kidney* slices have been loaded and unloaded.

The full statement to which the above text and that below were
responding was:

>> Now I gather that 21CM has found improved vitrification fluids that
>> by themselves leave brain slices ~95 percent functional (not after
>> freeze-and-thaw, just after exposure to the fluid.)

and the full text of the response was:

> No. This has not been demonstrated yet, partly because 21CM is not
> working with brain slices. That it the research project of the Institute
> for Neurocryobiology's Hippocampal Slice Cryopreservation Project (HSCP)
> in full cooperation with 21CM, of course. What you have read about 95%
> is that *rabbit kidney* slices have been loaded and unloaded (immersed
> to equilibration and then fully washed-out), with 95% recovery in
> comparison to controls simply kept in a nutrient solution. In addition,
> this "viability" is not assessed in terms of "functionality" since that
> cannot be done for kidney slice, which are no longer "functional" by
> definition. Instead the viability is only "cellular" viability as
> determined by the intracellular sodium/potassium ratio, which can only
> be kept stable by a cell whose mitochondrial energy cycle is completely
> operational. While this is a good measure of cellular viability it does
> not measure all cellular function nor does it measure intercellular
> functionality which is crucial for brain tissue.
> INC is now trying to garner the funds to proceed to show that the
> improved CPA also give higher (than the 52% we currently have) cellular
> viability for rat hippocampal slices even after vitrification and
> thawing.
> Once that is complete, INC hopes to get back the original project of
> obtaining propagation of evokes potentials across a brain slice as
> outlined in the research proposal at http://neurocryo.org Of course,
> this will require still more money, but if successful will give a very
> meaningful and realistic demonstration that these vitrified/rewarmed
> hippocampal slices have truly been through perfected suspended
> animation.
> Whole brains will then be the next step, and thereafter whole bodies!

which contains nothing inaccurate in answer to the statements to which
is was responding, so we
are again left to wonder: just what is Pascal driving at?

> Does that mean they're viable?

This question was not asked.
My text below was to explain the different meanings of the term
"viability" (see my full original text above).

> Wakfer:    "viability" is not assessed in terms of
> "functionality" since that cannot be done for kidney slice, which are no
> longer "functional" by definition. 

Again correct, and I certainly thought that I was making it sufficiently
clear that the 95% is the viability (as determined by the cellular Na/K
ratio) of the processed slices wrt the controls.
But if it was not clear to you, perhaps it is now. I do sometimes assume
that my readers have more background than they actually do. It is a
mistake that I will try to rectify in future.

> Is the procedure at least applicable to the human brain, then?

Nothing close to this question from Pascal was asked by Alan Mole.

> Wakfer:    it does not measure all cellular
> function nor does it measure intercellular functionality which is
> crucial for brain tissue.

Here the quoted text, about methods of measuring viability, has no
relevance to any "procedure" of cryopreservation.
There is no complete procedure yet in place for any whole brain. I was
speaking of the cellular viability of brain slices which we are
currently using as a marker of cryopreservation success. We will next
upgrade that to intercellular functionality by means of videomicrography
of an action potential wave propagating across a brain slice. In
parallel, 21CM will (hopefully) be working on whole brains and will use
the slice results for guidance. One plan is to attempt to do
videomicrography of action potential waves across the whole brain
surface as a measurement of the integrated viability of the whole brain.
From there research might go to whole heads which could even be grafted
to live animals in order to show viability, as Dr Robert White has done.
However, I really do not know Dr Fahy's plans in those areas. 

> 21CM is at least looking for ways to apply it to human suspended
> animation, correct?

Again this question is not remotely like anything asked by Alan Mole.
Why is Pascal juxtaposing his own questions with text from me which was
never intended to answer that question?

> Wakfer:    the pronouncements and
> policies of 21CM on the subject of suspended animation research changed
> back and forth so many times that even I, a relative insider, could not
> keep track of them.

This change in plans of 21CM was part of the reason why my plans and the
need for the Prometheus Project and afterwards the HSCP also vacillated.
It is well documented that 21CM has promised to make shares available
for outside purchase for over 3 years now and has never done so.
Similarly, whether their research plans will include brain
cryopreservation or only establishment applications have changed back
and forth during the last 4-5 years.
As one of the 3 founders of 21CM I know that the original mandate of
21CM was to only do establishment oriented, above freezing research led
by Mike Darwin, in order to build bridges to the establishment medical
research community (a job which Mike has developed better than I
expected). Cryovita Laboratories Inc. was given the mandate to do all
the below freezing research which had been the goal of its founder the
late Jerry Leaf. This turned out to be unachievable because Cryovita
could not attract any scientists to work for and with it (not even
Darwin who preferred to do everything through his own company,
Biopreservation of which he had full control). That is why, in 1997,
Cryovita decided to sell all its assets to 21CM at a time when 21CM was
planning to do brain cryopreservation research. It is after 1997, when I
became *less* of an insider that I could not keep track of what were the
current 21CM plans.

> At least funding attempts, like the Prometheus Project,
> are getting the project some interest and support, right?

The exact question asked by Alan Mole was;

>> Also, Prometheus had received some money but afterwards the site never seemed
>> to be updated. [Did it get more or what?]

Which my response below was designed to answer, not Pascal's question.

> Wakfer:   PP was pure pledge campaign to attempt to garner sufficient
> support to perfect suspended animation. It was never intended to collect
> any money until it had sufficient pledges to do the project, and it
> never received a cent.

Yes, that hypothetical and honest approach was the only way that I could
see to gauge the amount of support for suspended animation research. It
was a way through the chicken and egg problem involved with bandwagon
effects, and, at 40% of its goal, it came damned close to succeeding!

> Well um where does that leave whole body suspended animation then?

Again, this is Pascal's question not similar to anything asked by Alan
Mole. Certainly if it had been asked I would not have answered it so
simplistically as by the quote below.

> Wakfer:   just around the corner"!

Pascal has once again mixed up several things and, in the fashion of
many of his previous posts, made the worst of them, possibly to slant
things to his own purposes, but, in deference to Kitty's admonition to
me, possibly quite innocently.

However, I actually supplied the answer (which Pascal has strangely
neglected to quote) when I wrote:

> 21st Century Medicine (21CM) has developed ice blockers and new
> cryoprotectants which enable vitrification at high enough cryoprotectant
> (CPA) concentrations that recrystallization during thawing should be
> avoidable at the rate of warming which can be reasonably achieved.
> All of this has been hastened by the development by Critical Care
> Research (CCR - a split-off of the original 21CM) of perfluorocarbon
> perfusion methods which allow very rapid cooling and warming of whole
> bodies even, right down to the vitrification holding temperatures
> required.

Let me now expand this more completely to make my case for "just around
the corner" (meaning 10-15 years depending on funding).

1) The Prometheus Project (PP) had a major effect on suspended animation
research mainly because no one before had any idea that so much money
might, even hypothetically, be brought to bear on that goal by the small
number of cryonicists.
2) It is my considered opinion that much of the push by other
organizations to do research which occurred just after the startling
beginning success of the PP pledge campaign was in *competition* with
that project. This may relate to any or all of the efforts of CI and of
BPI/21CM during 1996-1997.
3) PP made it possible to get Dr Fahy to move to the west coast and join
21CM staff. Once that was accomplished, fully one half the pledges to
PP, became effectively unavailable and, in enlarged form, instead were
invested in 21CM (by Saul Kent and Bill Faloon).
4) Some of the PP pledges plus those of others who had been waiting for
a more concrete and detailed proposal were donated to the HSCP.
5) If sufficient funding is *directed* to it for that purpose, then 21CM
will most certainly quit vacillating about its suspended animation
6) Whenever I mention "brain cryopreservation" I am also implying
whole-body suspended animation, for which it is merely the first
necessary step.
7) The quote above which you omitted is a short statement about the
major roadblocks which *were* on the road to perfected suspended
animation and how they have now all been reduced to clearly manageable
8) As far as I am aware there are now *no* major roadblocks left (ie.
no more "breakthroughs" are needed). There is only the practical and
painstaking developmental and proving-out work to do. And *that* is
why I am so certain that perfected suspended animation is "just around
the corner" (given the funding, of course).

> Now let me be plain about this:  I'm not opposed to vitrification.  On
> the contrary!  I think Paul Wakfer is absolutely right to push for
> research, and absolutely justified in appealing to people in cryonics
> for funds.  I don't even think Paul Wakfer is a bad guy.  Indeed I think
> he is a good guy, a fine man trying to do a very good thing.  I mean,
> really: it would be nice if vitrification were here, and any Cryonet
> reader not busy brain-masturbating might be very well advised to send
> Mr. Wakfer some spare dough towards that end.  But is there anyone
> likely to do so after hearing such a string of abusive and
> self-destructive statements like the above?

For those people who rationally examine the issues instead of the
personalities or words used, and who really love life and want to
greatly extend it, how I say something should not matter, only what I
say. And I did get *your* attention, didn't I? As I have asked above,
do you wish me to lie or distort the truth about cryonics and
vitrification research? That is something I will not do for any
promotional purpose. Being a "marketing communications" professional
according to your website, perhaps you have a different view of what is

> If a person is serious about getting funding for a project, there are
> four things he needs to do.
> One:  find and talk to the people best capable of providing it.

That is for promoters and sociable people which I am not, have never
been and likely never will be.

> Two:  give them plausible reasons why it will benefit them directly
> and monetarily.

The "direct benefit" should be obvious to any cryonicist with minimal
knowledge. The "monetary benefit", in any terms comparable to most
market investments, has few plausible reasons to recommend it.
The possibilities of both direct and monetary benefit have been examined
from various viewpoints many times before on this list and elsewhere.
Every time someone advances the idea it gets attacked with every
possible reason why it won't work, many of which are very reasonable.
Thus, the end goal gets ignored and its funding defeated because few are
willing to risk their assets to extend their lives.

> Three:  listen and respond respectfully to any criticisms or hesitations
> or objections on the part of the potential investor.

I am asking for donations not investments, for which a lot of the
"return" is automatically obtained from the tax relief. But Pascal is
correct. I have not been as "respectful" in the past as I might have
been. That has now changed (thanks to Kitty). OTOH, neither has Pascal
been very respectful to me in his past posts. Is he now willing to
follow suit?

> And four:  remain pleasant and courteous if you lose the sale

WRT the "sale", I have always done so. Losing the "sale" does not bother
me that much, but getting attacked and character assassinated often
I do admit.

> after all, nobody bats a thousand, and the person who
> turns you down today may very well change their mind tomorrow.

Why else do you think that I am back?

> Of the four, perhaps the most important is the third:
>  showing a willingness to
> listen and address people's objections.  It doesn't matter if those
> objections seem stupid to you:  they don't seem stupid to the investor,
> and they're the ones with the money.

Again, *I* am not after investors! In addition, I think that I have
shown many times that I have no trouble or impatience with lack of
knowledge or even questions which might appear stupid. (I have been a
successful professor and technical teacher at various times in my life).
Finally, I also do know how to "market", having personally obtained over
thousand signatures in Libertarian party (Canada) petition drives of the
70s, and, as President of the Libertarian Party of Canada, talked 50
candidates into running for election and arranged for their campaign
funding. The difference now is that in cryonics I find considerably more
crippling complacency and a "leave it all to our friends of the future"
attitude, which IMO needs to be shaken out of the couch-potato, dreamer
carcasses which so many cryonicists call life-desiring bodies.

> The campaign to fund vitrification
> deals with all these factors disastrously; but nowhere so badly as that
> third factor.

Pascal has missed the point. There *is* no "campaign to fund
vitrification". Any such "campaign" ended with the failure of the
Prometheus Project. INC has virtually no chance to fund vitrification!
All that it is trying to do is first finish its current plan project and
then perhaps be able to supply Dr. Fahy with a small amount of funding
independent from his employers at 21CM.

> Why has vitrification not taken the world of cryonics by storm?  Mr.
> Wakfer's feeling seems to be that it's because cryonicists are by and
> large morons.

Not at all. I have found that even brilliant people are not very good at
integrated, long-range, prioritizing, cost/benefit analyzing, rational
Did Feynman get cryopreserved? NO!
Did Heinlein? NO!
Did Pauling? NO!
Did Leary? NO!
I could go on and on.

> Well, OK, perhaps not everyone is in Mensa,

Frankly, it would be negative to me if they were!

> but I think a
> simpler reason may be that, dumb as they are, even cryonicists are able
> to grasp the simple fact that preventing damage (however fine a goal) is
> not the same thing as repairing it.  If absolutely perfect vitrification
> procedures were developed tomorrow, what would it mean?  It would mean
> that you come out of cryostasis in about the same shape you had going
> in. So, if you happen to have a stroke and fall downstairs and lie there
> for several hours or days before being reached by a trained funeral
> director or traveling team, you enter cryostasis with brain damage,
> spinal damage (assuming your spine isn't lopped off and thrown away
> entirely via neurosuspension), and severe ischemia.  And that's how
> you come out.

First, by assuming that the perfected suspended animation procedure
would be applicable to someone with several hours of ischemic damage and
clotted circulatory system, Pascal show that he has little understanding
of cryopreservation procedures and requirements. Almost certainly in
this case, a large amount of additional damage would occur during any
currently imagined cryopreservation procedure before full stabilization

Second, his example shows ignorance of the statistics of deaths which
show that the vast majority of people die under circumstances for which
they would be in good shape for a perfected suspended animation
procedure if that procedure were available in major medical centers
throughout the industrialized world and were available for *early* use
as a *life-saving* operation, both of which it will surely become once
it successfully completes clinical trials.
As before Pascal is making the error of applying the *current* paradigm
(total methods by which things are done) to the *completely changed*
circumstances of a world wherein perfected suspended animation has
completed clinical trials!

> What does vitrification do to get you up and running as before?  Well --
> nothing.  But wouldn't vitrification prevent further damage, isn t
> prevention good?  Sure it is. Is prevention the same thing as cure? No.

Again Pascal through ignorance mixes up apples and oranges. We are not
talking of mere vitrification. We are talking of fully perfected
suspended animation (FPSA), which is quite different.
The minority of people who become terminal in the type of circumstances
that you describe above will be declared dead by the establishment as
they are now, and will become candidates for *cryonics* procedures. They
will likely not be able to be treated in a fully reversible manner and,
IMO, is it highly unlikely that they will ever be restored to life as
they were. Still I personally would want the chance even then.
> Of course, perfected vitrification procedures may be applied perfectly
> and in time.  But what are the chances of that?  I believe a recent post
> of Mike Darwin stated that over two-thirds of cryonic suspensions are,
> to put it delicately, 'less than ideal'; Jim Yount put the number at 70%;
> I myself think that an examination of the number of current cryonics
> patients receiving 'ideal' suspensions would be even less than that --
> 0%, if we take the much-heralded but as-yet-undeveloped-and-unavailable
> vitrification as the ideal.  But, going with the earlier numbers, this
> means that three out of four people being suspended are going to be in
> pretty bad shape going in.  Such bad shape that only nanotechnology or
> something damn close to it will be able to help them.  Tylenol or
> shiatsu just won t do.

Again, Pascal has missed the point that FPSA having passed clinical
trials will change all of this enormously. All these "less than ideal"
suspensions are only occurring because the cryonics patients are not
under terminal care in facilities which are geared to immediately
beginning FPSA at the optimal near-death time. Pascal should really try
harder to open his mind to what the new paradigm could be and most
likely will be.
> And will the number of people able to get ideal vitrification treatment
> even be as much as that?  At the moment it looks as though vitrification
> will cost even more than current options, and be even more complex and
> difficult to implement.  Mr Fred Chamberlain has said that vitrification
> may kick the price of neurosuspension alone up to $120,000, and that
> Alcor members may be forced to choose between that and a second-rate
> (ie the currently available) version.  What does whole body come to
> then?
>  A quarter of a million?  Ten times $120,000 -- the equivalent of ten
> heads?  Twelve times?  And who implements it?  BioTransport alone?

And volume and supply and demand will lower the cost, which will likely
be paid by standard health insurance. Again, we have been through this
all before. Again, I ask Pascal to open his mind to the new
possibilities and the way that market forces will be applied to a
radical new life paradigm.

> Which, as Mr Wakfer puts it,  now seems to be going nowhere, at least on
> the topic of cryonic suspension - .

We need BioTransport now, but we hardly will once FPSA has passed
clinical trials.
> All these problems may work themselves out.  Let's hope so.  But right
> now, at this moment, vitrification does not work, is not available, and
> doesn t seem like it will be in the near-term.  Even if it is developed
> at some point, it may not be affordable, and it may be so complex to
> implement that it may more often than not prove impossible to apply in
> real-life situations.

All either wrong or incredibly pessimistic for a cryonicist!

> All that may change, and I hope it will, but given
> all this, is a cryonicist necessarily a buffoon, a clod, a villain, for
> not viewing INC as the Second Coming and offering up his bank account
> forthwith?

Sarcasm is not necessary. I intimated no such thing and do not think so.
I am asking people (Pascal included) to open their minds to new thought,
new paradigms, new optimism, and a re-evaluation of their priorities
based on the description of research results that I am providing.

BTW, if Pascal wishes to ask his questions above independently, and
without presupposing my answers, then I will be happy to answer them to
the best of my ability.

To be continued.

Paul Wakfer

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