X-Message-Number: 14851
From: "John de Rivaz" <>
References: <>
Subject: Re: Cryonics & Europe
Date: Sun, 5 Nov 2000 12:22:38 -0000

> Message #14839
> Date: Sat, 4 Nov 2000 03:29:18 -0800 (PST)
> From: "D. den Otter" <>
> Subject: Cryonics & Europe (Was: Opinions in general about cryonics
> As for funding the new cryonics organization: if you
> want to keep the pricing within acceptable limits,
> perhaps even engage in some "charity freezing", *and*
> have a strong, viable organization, you MUST have one
> or several outside (not cryo-related) sources of
> income. Membership fees, life insurance and the odd
> donation just won't do the trick, period.

Yes, I agree. Another reason is that if you want a lot of extremely skillful
and difficult tasks to be performed you either have to have *all* the skills
youself (unlikely in this case), or pay high fees to someone else to perform
them or find volunteers. If you can't do the tasks yourself or find
volunteers you have to trust someone who is charging these high fees not to
be extortionate. If you have a huge amount of money behind you professionals
will be aware that they cannot extort and get away with it. If your finances
are weak, they know they may be able to get away with it - you can't afford
to investigate irregularities.

Yet I am not happy with the other suggestion of multi-level. The problem
with it is even if successful, it can be transient. Once I was involved with
something called Terra Libra, got in near the start after reading their
flyer in Venturist Voice, and, yes, I started making money.  But what
happens - they change management and drop early members sitting at the top
of the pyramid "getting money for nothing". Succeed and you get thrown out
for success. Fail -- well you just fail. They also had a spin off called
"Life Money Success" which I later discovered was designed to fail after the
leaders sold it. It was taken over by some enthusiasts who were determined
to keep it going, but it gradually withered and died. Yes, Multi-level can
make money in the short term, but it does not have staying power that is
appropriate for an organisation which by its very nature has to be stable
for 50 or more decades.

However the public stock markets and technology investment in particular
could be used to make serious money over a period of time.

Looking at the Cryonics Institute's accounts as published in The
Immortalist, its total expenses for the last complete year of accounts was
approx $300K, some of which was offset by income from operations. It has
substantial investments, some of which are in technology. It is noticeable
that a third of the expenditure was taxation - if there had been no taxation
it would in fact have nearly covered its expenses from income from
operations. I would imagine that this anomaly is explainable in that a lot
of the taxation arose from activities in the investment accouts.

If you wanted to fund your new cryonics organisation from a safe source,
then I would guestimate that you'd need of the order of $6M (drawing 5%) to
do so. Using the ten ten rule for technology investment,
if you start with $600 you could get there in about  40 years. (Add another
zero to the input and reduce the number of decades.)

I suggest drawing 5% because it is not practicable to use the 25% average
growth from technology as a source of income at 25% because on short time
scales this growth may not be apparent, ie in one year the holdings may even
make a loss, whereas in other years they may show growths in excess of 100%.

> Another way to stay in business is by keeping
> operating costs to a minimum. This can be done by
> means of (advanced) automation, for people are usually
> more expensive than machines, certainly in the long
> run. The latter are often more reliable as well, which
> is an added bonus.

Another way to stay in business is arranging the growth generating parts in
economically free countries that do not have capital taxation. Only pay
taxes when capital is realised to turn into income. A wide membership ought
to contain some international tax accountants who will give their time to
the cause ignoring any professional "ethic" that precludes giving time. At
the very least they should work on a payment by results contract, ie if no
satisfactory arrangement can be concluded for their research they are not
paid for it. It is far too easy for these people to charge tens of thousands
of dollars to "prove" you can do what you wanted to to.

> At the very least, the LN2 storage should be a fully
> insulated and "closed" system, which is only opened
> for patient insertion/removal. This too could be
> almost fully automated etc., but these matters are
> somewhat beyond the scope of this post.

And also much easier said than done.

> The bottom
> line is that Europeans have the *means* to create
> their own self-sufficient organization, but still need
> a "triumph of the will".

An inappropriate phrase if ever the was one. The film "Triumph of the Will"
should have been more correctly called "Subjugation of the Will" but then
its backers would never have stood for that :-)

What I don't think it is sensible to expect is for any one individual to say
to other individuals "give me your money and I will set up an organisation".
It has been tried in may fields of human endeavour, and the resulting
organisation will struggle, if indeed it ever appears. Don't try and spend
money promoting gift schemes. Hoping you can raise money by persuading
people giving theirs to you is not going to work.

Cryonics is unique as far as I can see inasmuch as it thrives on
technological progress. That fact could be used  by a young person to make
the money required for what Mr den Otter has proposed. If the ten-ten
progress is not there, then it may well be that technbological progress will
never get to the stage where revivals are possible anyway. But otherwise, a
"20 something" European could read this message, say nothing, invest his
relatively small sum of momey in a technology mutual fund OEIC or unit trust
and come back decades later with a fait accompli.

>The US cryonics orgs are not
> the real problem

Of course not. They appeared without any organisations on other contients as
role models. Their very existance provides support for anyone else starting
up now.

> From: 
> Date: Sat, 4 Nov 2000 10:24:41 EST

> Dave Pizer suggests that Europe and Asia might be able to support one or
> new cryonics organizations.
> I still think history suggests otherwise, for the near term. The USA  is
> indeed different from other countries, in varying degree, in several ways.

An important factor may be that internal transport is much easier than
internal transport inside Europe, ie between European countries.


> But it isn't a case of either-or. Why should Eurpeans wait until--maybe,
> day--a reliable European organization exists? In fact, if Europeans and
> others join CI, for example, they can still form a European organization
> later, and probably much more easily with their CI experience to draw
> Very little money would be "wasted," if any, and time and lives might be
> saved.

This is what I have thought for years, and I strongly agree. If he is not
already in CI, Mr Den Otter could join CI using the trust method (with term
insurance if he feels he needs it) and then have the funds available if
technology advances enough to make his funds of suitable magnitude.

But if I ever get huge sums of money and decide I could set up a cryonics
facility with it, then it will be where I live, not necessarily where other
existing European cryonicists live. So would anyone else do the same thing
with money they had generated.

We have already seen this happen. Alcor UK was set up where its principal
benefactor happened to live. I presume that CI is in the Detroit area
because that is where it was started and its relatively new facility was
built not far away. Alcor did move from California to Arizona because of a
more favourable state legal climate, but there may have been other factors
such as the location of its principal officers. Hopefully others may post
here and correct any erroneous assumptions on my part.

Sincerely, John de Rivaz
my homepage links to Longevity Report, Fractal Report, music, Inventors'
report, an autobio and various other projects:
http://www.autopsychoice.com - should you be able to chose autopsy?

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