VIDEO TRANSCRIPTION

Shane: “My name is Shane Trejo. I am doing a video report for Populist Brief news, here talking with journalist Ford Fischer today. Marion Le Pen in her CPAC speech today brought up transhumanism as a threat that the youth are opposed to, at least in Europe. Ford is doing a documentary on transhumanism right now. So do you agree with Le Pen that transhumanism is a threat that needs to be opposed right now?”

Ford: “The point of what I am doing basically is to interview people kind of on both sides of the issue so I am not really out there advocating in favor of transhumanism or against it. What I do think we have to do is actually start talking about the issue. I think it is certainly relevant and something that will change society over the next decade or two decades. With that in mind, it’s better to start talking about the issues before they happen than to confront them after they have already appeared in society and wonder what to do. So it’s important to start thinking about this now.”

Shane: “So from what you have seen while doing the documentary, did you see any possible negative aspects that could happen with transhumanism as this technology is being adopted?”

Ford: “With anything experimental, there is always risks. So one of the issues that people have talked to me about… is most transhumanists have kind of a libertarian view of self-ownership, I have the right to do what I want with my own body and experiments. However, those things can have externalities. For example, if somebody is hacking their body… and they rely on insurance for example, right, they are in an insurance pool and that money is taken away from someone with an infectious disease, that would be something that would be an externality in the world that exists now that has to be considered. There have to be questions… in addition to not preventing people from doing these things and allowing them to do what they want with their body, you have to also make sure that what they are doing doesn’t cause adverse effects for others… The libertarian position is certainly as long as you don’t end up hurting other people you should be able to do what you want with your body.”

Shane: “You’ve told me about some of the things you are covering in your documentary like gene editing, microchippings, and things along those lines. So what do you think would be the most wild bit of transhumanism that you have uncovered since you started your documentary?”

Ford: “So I have covered of few people… in the sphere of gene editing and so far I haven’t seen anything super profound that has come out of that. People have mostly experimented with trying to get rid of certain types of diseases like HIV and herpes using gene editing basically totally outside of the FDA… But having discussions with people regarding gene therapy that can be very fascinating. For example: What kinds of optimizations might you do to your unborn child? Is it ethical to choose your child’s eye color, to choose for them to be stronger, taller or smarter? Right, if you can create genetic predispositions for people, it poses a bunch of different ethical questions.”

Shane: “Do you think that the transhumanist moment has already arrived, or is it something coming down the pike?”

Ford: “In a way, transhumanism… it’s just how you define the mark of are we transhuman or not. So transhumanists ultimately appreciate the ideas of using technology to elongate lifespan, but we’ve been doing that for the last century. Lifespans have been going up because of modern medicine. Is medicine technology that is augmenting your body? In a way. Dick Cheney, you know, his heart is working because he has technology in there. Is Dick Cheney a cyborg?”

Shane: “Yeah, his heart doesn’t even really beat anymore, but he’s still living. He walks amongst us.”

Ford: “So he’s still alive because he’s combined his body with technology in a sense. So that kind of radical technology, it just depends on what you consider an exact benchmark. I have heard one claim that we will be transhuman when the average lifespan is 120. I think that will probably happen in our lifetime… But who knows? There could be some kind of catastrophe on Earth that holds that back. You never know what happens. But depending on your definition, it could be happening in the next few decades.”

Shane: “Do you think that it will eventually be a point that is demagogued by politicians like, we need to protect humans from the transhumanist threat?”

Ford: “Just like normal politics, it’s not just left vs. right. You can kind of identify four quadrants. You have left-wing authoritarianism in real life like communists, state communists, right. You have right-wing authoritarianism which could mean from a Republican all the way up to a Nazi… You have right-libertarians who are capitalists and free market type people, and there is the idea of left-libertarians which are somehow socially egalitarian and libertarian if such a thing is possible. In the world of radical technology, what will probably come out is what you have on the libertarian right, you have what you call libertarian transhumanists. What this means is free markets as applied to your body… On the authoritarian right, you would have a right-wing bioconservative. This would be the type of person who would say it goes against God, it goes against nature, it is bad for moral reasons… There is a position that people probably haven’t seen yet which would be called a left-wing bioconservative… That would be somebody who believes that I don’t want transhumanism because it exacerbates social inequality. That ableism, racism or sexism is somehow made worse [because of transhumanism making the elites more powerful]. The libertarian-left sphere… would be someone who is in favor of these technologies but at the same time to make sure they are available for everyone. Single-payer Bernie Sanders transhumanism, gene editing for everybody if gene editing for some. I think that ultimately we could have a partisan breakdown on the issue.”

Shane: “It will be definitely interesting to see how that unfolds. Now tell us all about your documentary and other projects.”

Ford: “So my film is called ‘Transhuman: Biohackers and Immortalists.’ It’s sort of a working title, but so far there is a half hour version done that is available only to my Patreon subscribers as well as the people who helped fund the film. Additionally, you can find me on Facebook or my company News2Share on Facebook and Twitter as well.”

More information on his documentary can be found here. Visit News2Share for Ford’s latest updates.

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