Wednesday, August 12, 2015

Men Without Chests

Bill Gates is obsessed with IQ (he also released software with bugs, so he could corner the market - which accounts for those endless updates - and also allegedly used to release bugs in his software that made other browsers crash). The military is obsessed with IQ. Schools are obsessed with it. Lots of people are.

There is a lot more to life than having a high IQ.

This quote is from the No Ma'm blog.

"It is an outrage that they should be commonly spoken of as Intellectuals. This gives them the chance to say that he who attacks them attacks Intelligence. It is not so. They are not distinguished from other men by any unusual skill in finding truth nor any virginal ardour to pursue her. Indeed it would be strange if they were: a persevering devotion to truth, a nice sense of intellectual honour, cannot be long maintained without the aid of a sentiment which Gaius and Titius could debunk as easily as any other. It is not excess of thought but defect of fertile and generous emotion that marks them out. Their heads are no bigger than the ordinary: it is the atrophy of the chest beneath that makes them seem so." ~C.S. Lewis, The Abolition of Man

This one I've know for years.

"But as the wise Solomon said, wisdom enters not into a malicious mind, and science without conscience is but the ruin of the soul, thus it behooves you to serve, to love, to fear God, and on him to repose all your thoughts and all your hope, and by faith formed in charity to adhere to him, so that you may never be separated from him by your sins." - Fran├žois Rabelais


kurt9 said...

Many of the new intellectuals do have "chests", or at least the balls to tell the naysayers who claim that aging cannot be cured are wrong. Intellectuals such as Aubrey de Grey and others have both chests and balls.

It is the non-technical intellectuals who lack both chests and balls.

Mindstorm said...

Aging can be mitigated, that's all. How would you reverse somatic mutations and epimutations, for example? You couldn't get rid of entropy. Of course, if you want to write books that sell, like Ray Kurzweil, then better don't allow truth to get in the way of a good theory.

kurt9 said...

How would you reverse somatic mutations and epimutations, for example?

CRISPR and stem-cell based regeneration. Aging can not only be mitigated. It can be eliminated completely. Entropy is a concept that applies only to closed systems. The body is clearly not a closed system as it receives inputs (air, water, food) and has outputs (air, sweat, waste) thus making it an open system.

You might want to familiarize yourself with the SENS concept (

In any case, the term "men without chests" refers to men who are too timid to go up against the usual consensus and to engage in productive accomplishment. Those of us who are into life extension and transhumanism clearly have chests and balls.

Mindstorm said...

You are wrong. There are other possible contexts to entropy than the thermodynamic one:
You still have to shunt it somewhere else in an open system. Well, if it comes to operating on DNA, then where it might be?

Mindstorm said...

Take for example the active transfer of ions. You still have to 'piggyback' on another ion gradient through the membrane. Or consume ATP, which leads back to another (H+) gradient between the inside and outside of mitochondria. Nothing is free, basically.

Mindstorm said...

Or perhaps "Nothing comes free"?