- Faisel Butt
- United Kingdom
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Why Nick Bostrom is wrong about the problems we face as humanity
Please watch the linked TEDtalk :“Nick Bostrom on our biggest problems”
NB's argument for death of ageing being a problem for humanity is the loss of information. Doubling the lifespan of people would only result in more information being lost when they die.
Although we should seek ways to prolong our lives it is not in any way one of humanity's biggest problems. The process of natural death and birth at the current rate does not seem to interfere with the progress of humanity.
The lost information in the library of Alexandria isn't comparable to the information an individual possesses. When people die of ageing they have usually spread their ideas and the information relevant to humanity. The library was the accumulated knowledge of a civilisation that cannot be retrieved.
NB completely overlooks the quality of information and its relevance to humanity.
Death is a problem for humanity when it's premature. When people die before they have chance to fulfil their potential and contribute to humanity. A substantial amount of people die prematurely of preventable causes. This is where we lose information relevant to humanity.
Should we succeed in preventing these deaths in the future, the challenge is to create societies where everyone have access to knowledge and education in order to harvest their potential.
Extrapolating deaths to include the possible future offspring as NB does is just a way to inflate numbers for dramatic purposes. Following this logic abortion, contraception, homosexuality and abstinence are all major problems of humanity.
NB states the abstinence of trans-humanism as a big problem. Surely we can benefit from this technology, but is being in a constant state of happiness and comfort really beneficial to humanity? I believe that overcoming challenges is how we grow as humans. Branches on trees grow towards the sunlight because the part that does not receive sunlight grows faster.