Zoltan Istvan: “The Growing World of Libertarian Transhumanism”

(Note:Zoltan Istvan is founder of The Transhumanist Party, and ran for President in 2016. He is currently running as a Libertarian candidate for Governor of California in the 2018 election. IPR previously published excerpt from a response to the following article)

Transhumanists are curiosity addicts. If it’s new, different, untouched, or even despised, we’re probably interested in it. If it involves a revolution or a possible paradigm shift in human experience, you have our full attention. We are obsessed with the mysteries of existence, and we spend our time using the scientific method to explore anything we can find about the evolving universe and our tiny place in it.

Obsessive curiosity is a strange bedfellow. It stems from a profound sense of wanting something better in life—of not being satisfied. It makes one search, ponder, and strive for just about everything and anything that might improve existence. In the 21st century, that leads one right into transhumanism. That’s where I’ve landed right now: A journalist and activist in the transhumanist movement. I’m also currently a Libertarian candidate for California Governor. I advocate for science and tech-themed policies that give everyone the opportunity to live indefinitely in perfect health and freedom.

Politics aside, transhumanism is the international movement of using science and technology to radically change the human being and experience. Its primary goal is to deliver and embrace a utopian techno-optimistic world—a world that consists of biohackers, cyborgists, roboticists, life extension advocates, cryonicists, Singularitarians, and other science-devoted people.

Transhumanism was formally started in 1980’s by philosophers in California. For decades it remained low key, mostly discussed in science fiction novels and unknown academic conferences. Lately, however, transhumanism seems to be surging in popularity. What once was a smallish band of fringe people discussing how science and technology can solve all humanity’s problems has now become a burgeoning social mission of millions around the planet.

At the recent FreedomFest, the world’s largest festival on liberty, transhumanism was a theme explored in numerous panels, including some I had the privilege of being on. Libertarian transhumanism is one of the fastest growing segments of the libertarian movement. A top priority for transhumanists is to have freedom from the government so radical science experiments and research can go on undisturbed and unregulated.

So why are so many people jumping on the transhumanist bandwagon? I think it has to do with the mishmash of tech inundating and dominating our daily lives. Everything from our smartphone addictions to flying at 30,000 feet in jet airplanes to Roombas freaking out our pets in our homes. Nothing is like it was for our forbearers. In fact, little is like it was even a generation ago. And the near future will be many times more dramatic: driverless cars, robotic hearts, virtual reality sex, and telepathy via mind-reading headsets. Each of these technologies is already here, and in some cases being marketed to billions of people. The world is shifting under our feet—and libertarian transhumanism is a sure way to navigate the chaos to make sure we arrive at the best future possible.

Full Commentary by Zoltan Istvan @ The American Conservative http://www.theamericanconservative.com/articles/the-growing-world-of-libertarian-transhumanism/

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