Immortality and Personal Finance

chris arkenberg
Tue, 23 Apr 2002 11:31:15 -0700

>So the question is: does my personal financial contribution to
>immortality research probably matter quite a lot?  Or does it probably
>matter fairly little?

Well, if you think you'll actually be around to benefit from your 
investment & your research...

Given the current projections for population growth and the ongoing 
depletion of the world's natural resources, life extension research 
in general tends to exist in a vacuum of selfish fantasy. You either 
end up with the most privileged 3% living to 400, or a population 
bloat of 15 billion impoverished humans. LE research also seems 
somewhat ignorant of the very real problems  which threaten the lives 
of people every day.

 From the CDC for 1999:

725,192 deaths from cardiovascular diseases
549,838 deaths from malignant neoplasms
167,366 deaths from cerebrovascular diseases

In the past 2 years I've watched a 50 year old man die of ALS 6 
months after diagnosis, and stood by the side of a 48 year old woman 
as she died of an acute bone marrow transfer. It took 3 weeks from 
diagnosis to her death.

I contribute to my 401(k) and my Roth IRA but, hell, I'm not even 
sure I'll make it long enough to reap the benefits - and I'm only 31.

I feel that the brilliant minds in LE might do better researching 
cancer or heart disease or immune deficiencies. I'd rather have a 
rich life of 80 years than live to 170 and watch generations of 
friends and family die from disease.