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City of Eau Claire, Wisconsin : Public Beaches

 Beaches  Comments Off on City of Eau Claire, Wisconsin : Public Beaches
May 082016
 

To help protect the public from injury and reduce the risk if illness from using recreational waters, the Eau Claire City/County Health Department samples the water at six public beaches each week throughout the summer for bacteria levels. The six beaches are; Riverview, Big Falls, Half Moon, Lake Altoona, Lake Eau Claire and Coon Forks.

The ECCCHDclosed the following beach(es) to help protect the public and reduce the risk of illness.The beach(es) will remain closed until we can recheck bacteria levels. Please check back for updates.

Beaches fallunder the authority of State Statute 254.46 “Beaches. The department or a local health department shall close or restrict swimming, diving and recreational bathing if a human health hazard exists in any area used for those purposes on a body of water and on associated land and shall require the posting of the area.

Beaches are closed when:

The ECCCHD takes water samples weekly from public beaches during the summer to check bacteria levels. The department closes beaches when tests show that the level of harmful bacteria is too high or a beach receives 3 or more inches of rain in a 24-hour period.

Hazardous blue-green algae is sometimes present in lakes, ponds, and slow-moving streams when the water is warm and enriched with nutrients like nitrogen and phosphorous (fertilizer run-off). At times it can produce a toxic compound that can make you or your pets ill if you drink or come in contact with the water. The recommendation of the Wisconsin DNR is that if a scum-layer or floating algae mat is present in water it should not be used for recreational purposes. For more information on blue-green algae please visit the Wisconsin DNR Web Site at:

Swimmers Itch is a rash caused by contact with waters that are frequented by birds, snails and small mammals. For information on swimmers itch please visit:

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City of Eau Claire, Wisconsin : Public Beaches

 Posted by at 4:41 am  Tagged with:

Food supplements | definition of food supplements by …

 Food Supplements  Comments Off on Food supplements | definition of food supplements by …
Mar 272016
 

.

n.pl nonfood substances that are used to augment the dietary intake of minerals, vitamins, amino acids, and/or herbs.

Q. Have food supplements like Ginkgo Biloba been proven to delay memory disorders?

A. Many people are interested in the health benefits of food supplements, hoping that natural substances can have the same efficacy as drugs. The answer to this specific question is NO. A recent study that was published after testing 3,000 people has shown no difference between those who took Ginkgo and those who didnt. There is no food supplement, including Ginkgo Biloba that was scientifically proved to have the capacity to prevent or delay Dementia. Eating Romaine lattice, broccoli, cauliflower, and spinach have shown good results. Fish with Omega 3 have shown good results too.

Q. What is vitamins? And which one should I take? Im 35 years old and I want to take food supplements and I wonder what could be best for me.

A. The definition of vitamins is a material that your body needs in order to function well, but the body cannot create them. There is an overwhelming list of vitamins. And you need them. Luckily, most of our vitamins we need come from our food. Here is a link to wikipedia talking abot it: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Vitamin

Q. Is Omega 3 fatty acids helps brain development of babies? There are all sorts of food supplements that add omega 3 to their baby formula. Is it helpful? Can it harm?

I found a nice video with a pediatrician that explain that exactly!!

http://www.5min.com/Video/Omega-Oil-in-Formula—Good-or-Bad-6067

Link to this page: food supplements

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Food supplements | definition of food supplements by …

 Posted by at 1:48 am  Tagged with:

Dietary supplement – Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

 Food Supplements  Comments Off on Dietary supplement – Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Mar 272016
 

“Food supplement” redirects here. For food additions that alter the flavor, color or longevity of food, see Food additive. Flight through a CT image stack of a multivitamin tablet “A-Z” by German company Abtei.

A dietary supplement is intended to provide nutrients that may otherwise not be consumed in sufficient quantities.

Supplements as generally understood include vitamins, minerals, fiber, fatty acids, or amino acids, among other substances. U.S. authorities define dietary supplements as foods, while elsewhere they may be classified as drugs or other products.

There are more than 50,000 dietary supplements available. More than half of the U.S. adult population (53% – 55%) consume dietary supplements with most common ones being multivitamins.[1][2]

These products are not intended to prevent or treat any disease and in some circumstances are dangerous, according to the U.S. National Institutes of Health. For those who fail to consume a balanced diet, the agency says that certain supplements “may have value.”[3]

Most supplements should be avoided, and usually people should not eat micronutrients except people with clearly shown deficiency.[4] Those people should first consult a doctor.[5] An exception is vitamin D, which is recommended in Nordic countries[6] due to weak sunlight.

According to the United States Food and Drug Administration (FDA), dietary supplements are products which are not pharmaceutical drugs, food additives like spices or preservatives, or conventional food, and which also meet any of these criteria:[7]

In the United States, the FDA has different monitoring procedures for substances depending on whether they are presented as drugs, food additives, food, or dietary supplements.[7] Dietary supplements are eaten or taken by mouth, and are regulated in United States law as a type of food rather than a type of drug.[8] Like food and unlike drugs, no government approval is required to make or sell dietary supplements; the manufacturer checks the safety of dietary supplements but the government does not; and rather than requiring riskbenefit analysis to prove that the product can be sold like a drug, riskbenefit analysis is only used to petition that food or a dietary supplement is unsafe and should be removed from market.[7]

The intended use of dietary supplements is to ensure that a person gets enough essential nutrients.[9]

Dietary supplements should not be used to treat any disease or as preventive healthcare.[10] An exception to this recommendation is the appropriate use of vitamins.[10]

Dietary supplements are unnecessary if one eats a balanced diet.[11]

Supplements may create harm in several ways, including over-consumption, particularly of minerals and fat-soluble vitamins which can build up in the body.[12] The products may also cause harm related to their rapid absorption in a short period of time, quality issues such as contamination, or by adverse interactions with other foods and medications.[13]

There are many types of dietary supplements.

Vitamin is an organic compound required by an organism as a vital nutrient in limited amounts.[14] An organic chemical compound (or related set of compounds) is called a vitamin when it cannot be synthesized in sufficient quantities by an organism, and must be obtained from the diet. Thus, the term is conditional both on the circumstances and on the particular organism. For example, ascorbic acid (vitamin C) is a vitamin for humans, but not for most other animals. Supplementation is important for the treatment of certain health problems but there is little evidence of benefit when used by those who are otherwise healthy.[15]

Dietary elements, commonly called “dietary minerals” or “minerals”, are the chemical elements required by living organisms, other than the four elements carbon, hydrogen, nitrogen, and oxygen present in common organic molecules. The term “dietary mineral” is archaic, as the substances it refers are chemical elements rather than actual minerals.

Herbal medicine is the use of plants for medicinal purposes. Plants have been the basis for medical treatments through much of human history, and such traditional medicine is still widely practiced today. Modern medicine recognizes herbalism as a form of alternative medicine, as the practice of herbalism is not strictly based on evidence gathered using the scientific method. Modern medicine, does, however, make use of many plant-derived compounds as the basis for evidence-tested pharmaceutical drugs, and phytotherapy works to apply modern standards of effectiveness testing to herbs and medicines that are derived from natural sources. The scope of herbal medicine is sometimes extended to include fungal and bee products, as well as minerals, shells and certain animal parts.

Amino acids are biologically important organic compounds composed of amine (-NH2) and carboxylic acid (-COOH) functional groups, along with a side-chain specific to each amino acid. The key elements of an amino acid are carbon, hydrogen, oxygen, and nitrogen, though other elements are found in the side-chains of certain amino acids.

Amino acids can be divided into three categories: essential amino acids, non-essential amino acids, and conditional amino acids. Essential amino acids cannot be made by the body, and must be supplied by food. Non-essential amino acids are made by the body from essential amino acids or in the normal breakdown of proteins. Conditional amino acids are usually not essential, except in times of illness, stress, or for someone challenged with a lifelong medical condition[citation needed].

Essential fatty acids, or EFAs, are fatty acids that humans and other animals must ingest because the body requires them for good health but cannot synthesize them.[16] The term “essential fatty acid” refers to fatty acids required for biological processes but does not include the fats that only act as fuel.

Bodybuilding supplements are dietary supplements commonly used by those involved in bodybuilding and athletics. Bodybuilding supplements may be used to replace meals, enhance weight gain, promote weight loss or improve athletic performance. Among the most widely used are vitamin supplements, protein drinks, branched-chain amino acids (BCAA), glutamine, essential fatty acids, meal replacement products, creatine, weight loss products and testosterone boosters. Supplements are sold either as single ingredient preparations or in the form of “stacks” – proprietary blends of various supplements marketed as offering synergistic advantages. While many bodybuilding supplements are also consumed by the general public their salience and frequency of use may differ when used specifically by bodybuilders.

According to University of Helsinki food safety professor Marina Heinonen, more than 90% of dietary supplement health claims are incorrect.[17] In addition, ingredients listed have been found to be different from the contents. For example, Consumer Reports reported unsafe levels of arsenic, cadmium, lead and mercury in several of the protein powders that were tested.[18] Also, the CBC found that protein spiking (the addition of amino acid filler to manipulate analysis) was not uncommon,[19] however many of the companies involved challenged their claim.[19]

The number of incidents of liver damage from dietary supplements has tripled in a decade. Most of the products causing that effect were bodybuilding supplements. Some of the victims required liver transplants and some died. A third of the supplements involved contained unlisted steroids.[20]

Mild to severe toxicity has occurred on many occasions due to dietary supplements, even when the active ingredients were essential nutrients such as vitamins, minerals or amino acids. This has been a result of adulteration of the product, excessive usage on the part of the consumer, or use by persons at risk for the development of adverse effects. In addition, a number of supplements contain psychoactive drugs, whether of natural or synthetic origin.[21][22]

BMC Medicine published a study on herbal supplements in 2013. Most of the supplements studied were of low quality, one third did not contain the active ingredient(s) claimed, and one third contained unlisted substances.[23][24]

An investigation by the New York Attorney Generals office analyzed 78 bottles of herbal supplements from Walmart, Target, Walgreens and GNC stores in New York State using DNA barcoding. a method used to detect labeling fraud in the seafood industry. Only about 20% contained the ingredient on the label.[25][26]

Some supplements were contamined by rodent feces and urine.[27]

Only 0.3% of the 55,000 U.S. market dietary supplements have been studied regarding their common side effects.[20]

In early 20th century there were great hopes for supplements, but later research has shown these hopes were unfounded.[28]

“Antioxidant paradox” means the fact that even though fruits and vegetables are related to decreases in mortality, cardiovascular diseases and cancers, antioxidant nutrients do not really seem to help. According to one theory, this is because some other nutrients would be the important ones.[29][30] Multivitamin pills have neither proved useful[4] but may even increase mortality.[31]

Omega-3 fatty acids and fish oils from food are very healthy, but fish oil supplements are recommended only for those suffering from coronary artery diseases and not eating fish. Latest research has made the benefits of the supplements questionable even for them. Contrary to claims, fish oils do not decrease cholesterol but may even raise the “bad” LDL cholesterol and cause other harms. Also the use of cod liver oil is criticized by scientists.[32]

Alice Lichtenstein, DSc, chairwoman of the American Heart Association (AHA) says that even though omega-3 fatty acids from foods are healthy, the same is not shown in studies on omega-3 supplements. Therefore one should not eat fish oil supplements unless one suffers from heart diseases.[33]

The regulation of food and dietary supplements by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration is governed by various statutes enacted by the United States Congress and interpreted by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (“FDA”). Pursuant to the Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act (“the Act”) and accompanying legislation, the FDA has authority to oversee the quality of substances sold as food in the United States, and to monitor claims made in the labeling about both the composition and the health benefits of foods.

Substances which the FDA regulates as food are subdivided into various categories, including foods, food additives, added substances (man-made substances which are not intentionally introduced into food, but nevertheless end up in it), and dietary supplements. The specific standards which the FDA exercises differ from one category to the next. Furthermore, the FDA has been granted a variety of means by which it can address violations of the standards for a given category of substances.

The European Union’s Food Supplements Directive of 2002 requires that supplements be demonstrated to be safe, both in dosages and in purity.[34] Only those supplements that have been proven to be safe may be sold in the bloc without prescription. As a category of food, food supplements cannot be labeled with drug claims but can bear health claims and nutrition claims.[35]

The dietary supplements industry in the United Kingdom (UK), one of the 28 countries in the bloc, strongly opposed the Directive. In addition, a large number of consumers throughout Europe, including over one million in the UK, and various doctors and scientists, had signed petitions by 2005 against what are viewed by the petitioners as unjustified restrictions of consumer choice.[36]

In 2004, along with two British trade associations, the Alliance for Natural Health (ANH) had a legal challenge to the Food Supplements Directive[37] referred to the European Court of Justice by the High Court in London.[38]

Although the European Court of Justice’s Advocate General subsequently said that the bloc’s plan to tighten rules on the sale of vitamins and food supplements should be scrapped,[39] he was eventually overruled by the European Court, which decided that the measures in question were necessary and appropriate for the purpose of protecting public health. ANH, however, interpreted the ban as applying only to synthetically produced supplementsand not to vitamins and minerals normally found in or consumed as part of the diet.[40]

Nevertheless, the European judges acknowledged the Advocate General’s concerns, stating that there must be clear procedures to allow substances to be added to the permitted list based on scientific evidence. They also said that any refusal to add the product to the list must be open to challenge in the courts.[41]

Effects of most dietary supplements have not been determined in randomized clinical trials and manufacturing is lightly regulated; randomized clinical trials of certain vitamins and antioxidants have found increased mortality rates.[42][43]

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Dietary supplement – Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

 Posted by at 1:48 am  Tagged with:

Food fortification – Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

 Food Supplements  Comments Off on Food fortification – Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Mar 272016
 

Food fortification or enrichment is the process of adding micronutrients (essential trace elements and vitamins) to food. It may be a purely commercial choice to provide extra nutrients in a food, while other times it is a public health policy which aims to reduce the number of people with dietary deficiencies within a population.

Diets that lack variety can be deficient in certain nutrients. Sometimes the staple foods of a region can lack particular nutrients, due to the soil of the region or because of the inherent inadequacy of the normal diet. Addition of micronutrients to staples and condiments can prevent large-scale deficiency diseases in these cases.[citation needed]

While it is true that both fortification and enrichment refer to the addition of nutrients to food, the true definitions do slightly vary. As defined by the World Health Organization (WHO) and the Food and Agricultural Organization of the United Nations (FAO), fortification refers to “the practice of deliberately increasing the content of an essential micronutrient, ie. vitamins and minerals (including trace elements) in a food irrespective of whether the nutrients were originally in the food before processing or not, so as to improve the nutritional quality of the food supply and to provide a public health benefit with minimal risk to health,” whereas enrichment is defined as “synonymous with fortification and refers to the addition of micronutrients to a food which are lost during processing.”[1]

Food fortification was identified as the second strategy of four by the WHO and FAO to begin decreasing the incidence of nutrient deficiencies at the global level.[1]

As outlined by the FAO, the most common fortified foods are:

The four main methods of food fortification (named as to indicate the procedure that is used in order to fortify the food):

The WHO and FAO, among many other nationally recognized organizations, have recognized that there are over 2 billion people worldwide who suffer from a variety of micronutrient deficiencies. In 1992, 159 countries pledged at the FAO/WHO International Conference on Nutrition to make efforts to help combat these issues of micronutrient deficiencies, highlighting the importance of decreasing the number of those with iodine, vitamin A, and iron deficiencies.[1] A significant statistic that led to these efforts was the discovery that approximately 1 in 3 people worldwide were at risk for either an iodine, vitamin A, or iron deficiency.[4] Although it is recognized that food fortification alone will not combat this deficiency, it is a step towards reducing the prevalence of these deficiencies and their associated health conditions.[5]

In Canada, The Food and Drug Regulations have outlined specific criterion which justifies food fortification:

There are also several advantages to approaching nutrient deficiencies among populations via food fortification as opposed to other methods. These may include, but are not limited to: treating a population without specific dietary interventions therefore not requiring a change in dietary patterns, continuous delivery of the nutrient, does not require individual compliance, and potential to maintain nutrient stores more efficiently if consumed on a regular basis.[3]

Several organizations such as the WHO, FAO, Health Canada, and the Nestl Research Center acknowledge that there are limitations to food fortification. Within the discussion of nutrient deficiencies the topic of nutrient toxicities can also be immediately questioned. Fortification of nutrients in foods may deliver toxic amounts of nutrients to an individual and also cause its associated side effects. As seen with the case of fluoride toxicity below, the result can be irreversible staining to the teeth. Although this may be a minor toxic effect to health, there are several that are more severe.[7]

The WHO states that limitations to food fortification may include: human rights issues indicating that consumers have the right to choose if they want fortified products or not, the potential for insufficient demand of the fortified product, increased production costs leading to increased retail costs, the potential that the fortified products will still not be a solution to nutrient deficiencies amongst low income populations who may not be able to afford the new product, and children who may not be able to consume adequate amounts thereof.[1]

Food safety worries led to legislation in Denmark in 2004 restricting foods fortified with extra vitamins or minerals. Products banned include: Rice Crispies, Shreddies, Horlicks, Ovaltine and Marmite.[8]

Danes said [Kelloggs] Corn Flakes, Rice Krispies and Special K wanted to include “toxic” doses which, if eaten regularly, could damage children’s livers and kidneys and harm fetuses in pregnant women.[9]

One factor that limits the benefits of food fortification is that isolated nutrients added back into a processed food that has had many of its nutrients removed, does not always result in the added nutrients being as bioavailable as they would be in the original, whole food. An example is skim milk that has had the fat removed, and then had vitamin A and vitamin D added back. Vitamins A and D are both fat-soluble and non-water-soluble, so a person consuming skim milk in the absence of fats may not be able to absorb as much of these vitamins as one would be able to absorb from drinking whole milk.

Phytochemicals such as polyphenols can also impact nutrient absorption.

Ecological studies have shown that increased B vitamin fortification is correlated with the prevalence of obesity and diabetes.[10] Daily consumption of iron per capita in the United States has dramatically surged since World War II and nearly doubled over the past century due to increases in iron fortification and increased consumption of meat.[11] Existing evidence suggests that excess iron intake may play a role in the development of obesity, cardiovascular disease, diabetes and cancer.[12]

Fortification of foods with folic acid has been mandated in many countries solely to improve the folate status of pregnant women to prevent Neural Tube Defectsa relatively rare birth defect which affected 0.5% of US births before fortification began.[13][14] However, when fortification is introduced, several hundred thousand people are exposed to an increased intake of folic acid for each neural tube defect pregnancy that is prevented.[15] In humans, increased folic acid intake leads to elevated blood concentrations of naturally occurring folates and of unmetabolized folic acid. High blood concentrations of folic acid may decrease natural killer cell cytotoxicity, and high folate status may reduce the response to drugs used to treat malaria, rheumatoid arthritis, psoriasis, and cancer.[15] A combination of high folate levels and low vitamin B-12 status may be associated with an increased risk of cognitive impairment and anemia in the elderly and, in pregnant women, with an increased risk of insulin resistance and obesity in their children.[15] Folate has a dual effect on cancer, protecting against cancer initiation but facilitating progression and growth of preneoplastic cells and subclinical cancers.[15] Furthermore, intake of folic acid from fortification have turned out to be significantly greater than originally modeled in pre mandate predictions.[16] Therefore, a high folic acid intake due to fortification may be harmful for more people than the policy is designed to help.[14][15][17][18]

There is a concern that micronutrients are legally defined in such a way that does not distinguish between different forms, and that fortified foods often have nutrients in a balance that would not occur naturally. For example, in the U.S., food is fortified with folic acid, which is one of the many naturally-occurring forms of folate, and which only contributes a minor amount to the folates occurring in natural foods.[19] In many cases, such as with folate, it is an open question of whether or not there are any benefits or risks to consuming folic acid in this form.

In many cases, the micronutrients added to foods in fortification are synthetic.

In some cases, certain forms of micronutrients can be actively toxic in a sufficiently high dose, even if other forms are safe at the same or much higher doses. There are examples of such toxicity in both synthetic and naturally-occurring forms of vitamins. Retinol, the active form of Vitamin A, is toxic in a much lower dose than other forms, such as beta carotene. Menadione, a phased-out synthetic form of Vitamin K, is also known to be toxic.[20]

There are several main groups of food supplements like:

Many foods and beverages worldwide have been fortified, whether a voluntary action by the product developers or by law. Although some may view these additions as strategic marketing schemes to sell their product, there is a lot of work that must go into a product before simply fortifying it. In order to fortify a product, it must first be proven that the addition of this vitamin or mineral is beneficial to health, safe, and an effective method of delivery. The addition must also abide by all food and labeling regulations and support nutritional rationale. From a food developer’s point of view, they also need to consider the costs associated with this new product and whether or not there will be a market to support the change.[21]

Examples of foods and beverages that have been fortified and shown to have positive health effects:

“Iodine deficiency disorder (IDD) is the single greatest cause of preventable mental retardation. Severe deficiencies cause cretinism, stillbirth and miscarriage. But even mild deficiency can significantly affect the learning ability of populations…….. Today over 1 billion people in the world suffer from iodine deficiency, and 38 million babies born every year are not protected from brain damage due to IDD.”Kul Gautam, Deputy Executive Director, UNICEF, October 2007[22]

Iodised salt has been used in the United States since before World War II. It was discovered in 1821 that goiters could be treated by the use of iodized salts. However, it was not until 1916 that the use of iodized salts could be tested in a research trial as a preventative measure against goiters. By 1924, it became readily available in the US.[23]

Currently in Canada and the US, the RDA for iodine is as low as 90g/day for children (48 years) and as high as 290g/day for breast-feeding mothers.[24]

Diseases that are associated with an iodine deficiency include: mental retardation, hypothyroidism, and goiter. There is also a risk of various other growth and developmental abnormalities.[24]

Folic acid (also known as folate) functions in reducing blood homocysteine levels, forming red blood cells, proper growth and division of cells, and preventing neural tube defects (NTDs).[25]

In many industrialized countries, the addition of folic acid to flour has prevented a significant number of NTDs in infants. Two common types of NTDs, spina bifida and anencephaly, affect approximately 2500-3000 infants born in the US annually. Research trials have shown the ability to reduce the incidence of NTDs by supplementing pregnant mothers with folic acid by 72%.[26]

The RDA for folic acid ranges from as low as 150g/day for children aged 13 years old, to 400g/day for males and females over the age of 19, and 600g/day during pregnancy.[27]

Diseases associated with folic acid deficiency include: megaloblastic or macrocytic anemia, cardiovascular disease, certain types of cancer, and NTDs in infants.[28]

Niacin has been added to bread in the USA since 1938 (when voluntary addition started), a programme which substantially reduced the incidence of pellagra.[29] As early as 1755, pellagra was recognized by doctors as being a niacin deficiency disease. Although not officially receiving its name of pellagra until 1771.[30]Pellagra was seen amongst poor families who used corn as their main dietary staple. Although corn itself does contain niacin, it is not a bioavailable form unless it undergoes Nixtamalization (treatment with alkali, traditional in Native American cultures) and therefore was not contributing to the overall intake of niacin.[31] Although pellagra can still be seen in developing countries, fortification of food with niacin played a huge role in eliminating the prevalence of the disease.[30]

The RDA for niacin is 2mg NE(niacin equivalents)/day (AI) for infants aged 06 months, 16mg NE/day for males, and 14mg NE/day for females who are over the age of 19.[31]

Diseases associated with niacin deficiency include: Pellagra which consisted of signs and symptoms called the 3D’s-“Dermatitis, dementia, and diarrhea. Others may include vascular or gastrointestinal diseases.[30]

Common diseases which present a high frequency of niacin deficiency: alcoholism, anorexia nervosa, HIV infection, gastrectomy, malabsorptive disorders, certain cancers and their associated treatments.[30]

Since Vitamin D is a fat-soluble vitamin, it cannot be added to a wide variety of foods. Foods that it is commonly added to are margarine, vegetable oils and dairy products.[32] During the late 1800s, after the discovery of curing conditions of scurvy and beriberi had occurred, researchers were aiming to see if the disease, later known as rickets, could also be cured by food. Their results showed that sunlight exposure and cod liver oil were the cure. It was not until the 1930s that vitamin D was actually linked to curing rickets.[33] This discovery led to the fortification of common foods such as milk, margarine, and breakfast cereals. This took the astonishing statistics of approximately 8090% of children showing varying degrees of bone deformations due to vitamin D deficiency to being a very rare condition.[34]

Risk factors for vitamin D deficiencies include:

The current RDA for infants aged 06 months is 10g (400 International Units (IU))/day and for adults over 19 years of age it is 15g (600 IU)/day.[35]

Diseases associated with a vitamin D deficiency include rickets, osteoporosis, and certain types of cancer (breast, prostate, colon and ovaries). It has also been associated with increased risks for fractures, heart disease, type 2 diabetes, autoimmune and infectious diseases, asthma and other wheezing disorders, myocardial infarction, hypertension, congestive heart failure, and peripheral vascular disease.[34]

Although fluoride is not considered an essential mineral, it is seen as crucial in prevention of tooth decay and maintaining adequate dental health.[36] In the mid-1900s it was discovered that towns with a high level of fluoride in their water supply was causing the residents’ teeth to have both brown spotting and a strange resistance to dental caries. This led to the fortification of water supplies with fluoride with safe amounts to retain the properties of resistance to dental caries but avoid the staining cause by fluorosis (a condition caused by a fluoride toxicity).[37]

The tolerable upper intake level (UL) set for fluoride ranges from 0.7mg/day for infants aged 06 months and 10mg/day for adults over the age of 19.

Conditions commonly associated with fluoride deficiency are dental caries and osteoporosis.[36]

Some other examples of fortified foods:

Despite having some scientific basis, but with controversial ethics, is the science of using foods and food supplements to achieve a defined health goal. A common example of this use of food supplements is the extent to which body builders will use amino acid mixtures, vitamins and phytochemicals to enhance natural hormone production, increase muscle and reduce fat. The literature is not concrete on an appropriate method for use of fortification for body builders and therefore may not be recommended due to safety concerns.[42]

There is interest in the use of food supplements in established medical conditions. This nutritional supplementation using foods as medicine (nutraceuticals) has been effectively used in treating disorders affecting the immune system up to and including cancers.[43] This goes beyond the definition of “food supplement”, but should be included for the sake of completeness.

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Food fortification – Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Life extension – Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

 Life Extension  Comments Off on Life extension – Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Mar 272016
 

Life extension science, also known as anti-aging medicine, indefinite life extension, experimental gerontology, and biomedical gerontology, is the study of slowing down or reversing the processes of aging to extend both the maximum and average lifespan. Some researchers in this area, and “life extensionists”, “immortalists” or “longevists” (those who wish to achieve longer lives themselves), believe that future breakthroughs in tissue rejuvenation, stem cells, regenerative medicine, molecular repair, gene therapy, pharmaceuticals, and organ replacement (such as with artificial organs or xenotransplantations) will eventually enable humans to have indefinite lifespans (agerasia[1]) through complete rejuvenation to a healthy youthful condition.

The sale of purported anti-aging products such as nutrition, physical fitness, skin care, hormone replacements, vitamins, supplements and herbs is a lucrative global industry, with the US market generating about $50billion of revenue each year.[2] Some medical experts state that the use of such products has not been proven to affect the aging process and many claims regarding the efficacy of these marketed products have been roundly criticized by medical experts, including the American Medical Association.[2][3][4][5][6]

The ethical ramifications of life extension are debated by bioethicists.

During the process of aging, an organism accumulates damage to its macromolecules, cells, tissues, and organs. Specifically, aging is characterized as and thought to be caused by “genomic instability, telomere attrition, epigenetic alterations, loss of proteostasis, deregulated nutrient sensing, mitochondrial dysfunction, cellular senescence, stem cell exhaustion, and altered intercellular communication.”[7]Oxidation damage to cellular contents caused by free radicals is believed to contribute to aging as well.[8][8][9]

The longest a human has ever been proven to live is 122 years, the case of Jeanne Calment who was born in 1875 and died in 1997, whereas the maximum lifespan of a wildtype mouse, commonly used as a model in research on aging, is about three years.[10] Genetic differences between humans and mice that may account for these different aging rates include differences in efficiency of DNA repair, antioxidant defenses, energy metabolism, proteostasis maintenance, and recycling mechanisms such as autophagy.[11]

Average lifespan in a population is lowered by infant and child mortality, which are frequently linked to infectious diseases or nutrition problems. Later in life, vulnerability to accidents and age-related chronic disease such as cancer or cardiovascular disease play an increasing role in mortality. Extension of expected lifespan can often be achieved by access to improved medical care, vaccinations, good diet, exercise and avoidance of hazards such as smoking.

Maximum lifespan is determined by the rate of aging for a species inherent in its genes and by environmental factors. Widely recognized methods of extending maximum lifespan in model organisms such as nematodes, fruit flies, and mice include caloric restriction, gene manipulation, and administration of pharmaceuticals.[12] Another technique uses evolutionary pressures such as breeding from only older members or altering levels of extrinsic mortality.[13][14] Some animals such as hydra, planarian flatworms, and certain sponges, corals, and jellyfish do not die of old age and exhibit potential immortality.[15][16][17][18]

Theoretically, extension of maximum lifespan in humans could be achieved by reducing the rate of aging damage by periodic replacement of damaged tissues, molecular repair or rejuvenation of deteriorated cells and tissues, reversal of harmful epigenetic changes, or the enhancement of telomerase enzyme activity.[19][20]

Research geared towards life extension strategies in various organisms is currently under way at a number of academic and private institutions. Since 2009, investigators have found ways to increase the lifespan of nematode worms and yeast by 10-fold; the record in nematodes was achieved through genetic engineering and the extension in yeast by a combination of genetic engineering and caloric restriction.[21] A 2009 review of longevity research noted: “Extrapolation from worms to mammals is risky at best, and it cannot be assumed that interventions will result in comparable life extension factors. Longevity gains from dietary restriction, or from mutations studied previously, yield smaller benefits to Drosophila than to nematodes, and smaller still to mammals. This is not unexpected, since mammals have evolved to live many times the worm’s lifespan, and humans live nearly twice as long as the next longest-lived primate. From an evolutionary perspective, mammals and their ancestors have already undergone several hundred million years of natural selection favoring traits that could directly or indirectly favor increased longevity, and may thus have already settled on gene sequences that promote lifespan. Moreover, the very notion of a “life-extension factor” that could apply across taxa presumes a linear response rarely seen in biology.”[21]

Much life extension research focuses on nutritiondiets or supplementsas a means to extend lifespan, although few of these have been systematically tested for significant longevity effects. The many diets promoted by anti-aging advocates are often contradictory.[original research?] A dietary pattern with some support from scientific research is caloric restriction.[22][23]

Preliminary studies of caloric restriction on humans using surrogate measurements have provided evidence that caloric restriction may have powerful protective effect against secondary aging in humans. Caloric restriction in humans may reduce the risk of developing Type 2 diabetes and atherosclerosis.[24]

The free-radical theory of aging suggests that antioxidant supplements, such as vitaminC, vitaminE, Q10, lipoic acid, carnosine, and N-acetylcysteine, might extend human life. However, combined evidence from several clinical trials suggest that -carotene supplements and high doses of vitaminE increase mortality rates.[25]Resveratrol is a sirtuin stimulant that has been shown to extend life in animal models, but the effect of resveratrol on lifespan in humans is unclear as of 2011.[26]

There are many traditional herbs purportedly used to extend the health-span, including a Chinese tea called Jiaogulan (Gynostemma pentaphyllum), dubbed “China’s Immortality Herb.”[27]Ayurveda, the traditional Indian system of medicine, describes a class of longevity herbs called rasayanas, including Bacopa monnieri, Ocimum sanctum, Curcuma longa, Centella asiatica, Phyllanthus emblica, Withania somnifera and many others.[27]

The anti-aging industry offers several hormone therapies. Some of these have been criticized for possible dangers to the patient and a lack of proven effect. For example, the American Medical Association has been critical of some anti-aging hormone therapies.[2]

Although some recent clinical studies have shown that low-dose growth hormone (GH) treatment for adults with GH deficiency changes the body composition by increasing muscle mass, decreasing fat mass, increasing bone density and muscle strength, improves cardiovascular parameters (i.e. decrease of LDL cholesterol), and affects the quality of life without significant side effects,[28][29][30] the evidence for use of growth hormone as an anti-aging therapy is mixed and based on animal studies. There are mixed reports that GH or IGF-1 signaling modulates the aging process in humans and about whether the direction of its effect is positive or negative.[31]

Some critics dispute the portrayal of aging as a disease. For example, Leonard Hayflick, who determined that fibroblasts are limited to around 50cell divisions, reasons that aging is an unavoidable consequence of entropy. Hayflick and fellow biogerontologists Jay Olshansky and Bruce Carnes have strongly criticized the anti-aging industry in response to what they see as unscrupulous profiteering from the sale of unproven anti-aging supplements.[4]

Politics relevant to the substances of life extension pertain mostly to communications and availability.[citation needed]

In the United States, product claims on food and drug labels are strictly regulated. The First Amendment (freedom of speech) protects third-party publishers’ rights to distribute fact, opinion and speculation on life extension practices. Manufacturers and suppliers also provide informational publications, but because they market the substances, they are subject to monitoring and enforcement by the Federal Trade Commission (FTC), which polices claims by marketers. What constitutes the difference between truthful and false claims is hotly debated and is a central controversy in this arena.[citation needed]

Research by Sobh and Martin (2011) suggests that people buy anti-aging products to obtain a hoped-for self (e.g., keeping a youthful skin) or to avoid a feared-self (e.g., looking old). The research shows that when consumers pursue a hoped-for self, it is expectations of success that most strongly drive their motivation to use the product. The research also shows why doing badly when trying to avoid a feared self is more motivating than doing well. Interestingly, when product use is seen to fail it is more motivating than success when consumers seek to avoid a feared-self.[32]

The best-characterized anti-aging therapy was, and still is, CR. In some studies calorie restriction has been shown to extend the life of mice, yeast, and rhesus monkeys significantly.[33][34] However, a more recent study has shown that in contrast, calorie restriction has not improved the survival rate in rhesus monkeys.[35] Long-term human trials of CR are now being done. It is the hope of the anti-aging researchers that resveratrol, found in grapes, or pterostilbene, a more bio-available substance, found in blueberries, as well as rapamycin, a biotic substance discovered on Easter Island, may act as CR mimetics to increase the life span of humans.[36]

More recent work reveals that the effects long attributed to caloric restriction may be obtained by restriction of protein alone, and specifically of just the sulfur-containing amino acids cysteine and methionine.[37][38] Current research is into the metabolic pathways affected by variation in availability of products of these amino acids.

There are a number of chemicals intended to slow the aging process currently being studied in animal models.[39] One type of research is related to the observed effects a calorie restriction (CR) diet, which has been shown to extend lifespan in some animals[40] Based on that research, there have been attempts to develop drugs that will have the same effect on the aging process as a caloric restriction diet, which are known as Caloric restriction mimetic drugs. Some drugs that are already approved for other uses have been studied for possible longevity effects on laboratory animals because of a possible CR-mimic effect; they include rapamycin,[41]metformin and other geroprotectors.[42]Resveratrol and pterostilbene are dietary supplements that have also been studied in this context.[36][43][44]

Other attempts to create anti-aging drugs have taken different research paths. One notable direction of research has been research into the possibility of using the enzyme telomerase in order to counter the process of telomere shortening.[45] However, there are potential dangers in this, since some research has also linked telomerase to cancer and to tumor growth and formation.[46] In addition, some preparations, called senolytics are designed to effectively deplete senescent cells, that poisoning an organism by their secretions.[47]

Future advances in nanomedicine could give rise to life extension through the repair of many processes thought to be responsible for aging. K. Eric Drexler, one of the founders of nanotechnology, postulated cell repair machines, including ones operating within cells and utilizing as yet hypothetical molecular computers, in his 1986 book Engines of Creation. Raymond Kurzweil, a futurist and transhumanist, stated in his book The Singularity Is Near that he believes that advanced medical nanorobotics could completely remedy the effects of aging by 2030.[48]According to Richard Feynman, it was his former graduate student and collaborator Albert Hibbs who originally suggested to him (circa 1959) the idea of a medical use for Feynman’s theoretical micromachines (see nanotechnology). Hibbs suggested that certain repair machines might one day be reduced in size to the point that it would, in theory, be possible to (as Feynman put it) “swallow the doctor”. The idea was incorporated into Feynman’s 1959 essay There’s Plenty of Room at the Bottom.[49]

Some life extensionists suggest that therapeutic cloning and stem cell research could one day provide a way to generate cells, body parts, or even entire bodies (generally referred to as reproductive cloning) that would be genetically identical to a prospective patient. Recently, the US Department of Defense initiated a program to research the possibility of growing human body parts on mice.[50] Complex biological structures, such as mammalian joints and limbs, have not yet been replicated. Dog and primate brain transplantation experiments were conducted in the mid-20th century but failed due to rejection and the inability to restore nerve connections. As of 2006, the implantation of bio-engineered bladders grown from patients’ own cells has proven to be a viable treatment for bladder disease.[51] Proponents of body part replacement and cloning contend that the required biotechnologies are likely to appear earlier than other life-extension technologies.

The use of human stem cells, particularly embryonic stem cells, is controversial. Opponents’ objections generally are based on interpretations of religious teachings or ethical considerations. Proponents of stem cell research point out that cells are routinely formed and destroyed in a variety of contexts. Use of stem cells taken from the umbilical cord or parts of the adult body may not provoke controversy.[52]

The controversies over cloning are similar, except general public opinion in most countries stands in opposition to reproductive cloning. Some proponents of therapeutic cloning predict the production of whole bodies, lacking consciousness, for eventual brain transplantation.

Replacement of biological (susceptible to diseases) organs with mechanical ones could extend life. This is the goal of 2045 Initiative.[53]

For cryonicists (advocates of cryopreservation), storing the body at low temperatures after death may provide an “ambulance” into a future in which advanced medical technologies may allow resuscitation and repair. They speculate cryogenic temperatures will minimize changes in biological tissue for many years, giving the medical community ample time to cure all disease, rejuvenate the aged and repair any damage that is caused by the cryopreservation process.

Many cryonicists do not believe that legal death is “real death” because stoppage of heartbeat and breathingthe usual medical criteria for legal deathoccur before biological death of cells and tissues of the body. Even at room temperature, cells may take hours to die and days to decompose. Although neurological damage occurs within 46 minutes of cardiac arrest, the irreversible neurodegenerative processes do not manifest for hours.[54] Cryonicists state that rapid cooling and cardio-pulmonary support applied immediately after certification of death can preserve cells and tissues for long-term preservation at cryogenic temperatures. People, particularly children, have survived up to an hour without heartbeat after submersion in ice water. In one case, full recovery was reported after 45 minutes underwater.[55] To facilitate rapid preservation of cells and tissue, cryonics “standby teams” are available to wait by the bedside of patients who are to be cryopreserved to apply cooling and cardio-pulmonary support as soon as possible after declaration of death.[56]

No mammal has been successfully cryopreserved and brought back to life, with the exception of frozen human embryos. Resuscitation of a postembryonic human from cryonics is not possible with current science. Some scientists still support the idea based on their expectations of the capabilities of future science.[57][58]

Another proposed life extension technology would combine existing and predicted future biochemical and genetic techniques. SENS proposes that rejuvenation may be obtained by removing aging damage via the use of stem cells and tissue engineering, removal of telomere-lengthening machinery, allotopic expression of mitochondrial proteins, targeted ablation of cells, immunotherapeutic clearance, and novel lysosomal hydrolases.[59]

While many biogerontologists find these ideas “worthy of discussion”[60][61] and SENS conferences feature important research in the field,[62][63] some contend that the alleged benefits are too speculative given the current state of technology, referring to it as “fantasy rather than science”.[3][5]

Gene therapy, in which nucleic acid polymers are delivered as a drug and are either expressed as proteins, interfere with the expression of proteins, or correct genetic mutations, has been proposed as a future strategy to prevent aging.[64][65]

A large array of genetic modifications have been found to increase lifespan in model organisms such as yeast, nematode worms, fruit flies, and mice. As of 2013, the longest extension of life caused by a single gene manipulation was roughly 150% in mice and 10-fold in nematode worms.[66]

In The Selfish Gene, Richard Dawkins describes an approach to life-extension that involves “fooling genes” into thinking the body is young.[67] Dawkins attributes inspiration for this idea to Peter Medawar. The basic idea is that our bodies are composed of genes that activate throughout our lifetimes, some when we are young and others when we are older. Presumably, these genes are activated by environmental factors, and the changes caused by these genes activating can be lethal. It is a statistical certainty that we possess more lethal genes that activate in later life than in early life. Therefore, to extend life, we should be able to prevent these genes from switching on, and we should be able to do so by “identifying changes in the internal chemical environment of a body that take place during aging… and by simulating the superficial chemical properties of a young body”.[68]

According to some lines of thinking, the ageing process is routed into a basic reduction of biological complexity,[69] and thus loss of information. In order to reverse this loss, gerontologist Marios Kyriazis suggested that it is necessary to increase input of actionable and meaningful information both individually (into individual brains),[70] and collectively (into societal systems).[71] This technique enhances overall biological function through up-regulation of immune, hormonal, antioxidant and other parameters, resulting in improved age-repair mechanisms. Working in parallel with natural evolutionary mechanisms that can facilitate survival through increased fitness, Kryiazis claims that the technique may lead to a reduction of the rate of death as a function of age, i.e. indefinite lifespan.[72]

One hypothetical future strategy that, as some suggest, “eliminates” the complications related to a physical body, involves the copying or transferring (e.g. by progressively replacing neurons with transistors) of a conscious mind from a biological brain to a non-biological computer system or computational device. The basic idea is to scan the structure of a particular brain in detail, and then construct a software model of it that is so faithful to the original that, when run on appropriate hardware, it will behave in essentially the same way as the original brain.[73] Whether or not an exact copy of one’s mind constitutes actual life extension is matter of debate.

The extension of life has been a desire of humanity and a mainstay motif in the history of scientific pursuits and ideas throughout history, from the Sumerian Epic of Gilgamesh and the Egyptian Smith medical papyrus, all the way through the Taoists, Ayurveda practitioners, alchemists, hygienists such as Luigi Cornaro, Johann Cohausen and Christoph Wilhelm Hufeland, and philosophers such as Francis Bacon, Ren Descartes, Benjamin Franklin and Nicolas Condorcet. However, the beginning of the modern period in this endeavor can be traced to the end of the 19th beginning of the 20th century, to the so-called fin-de-sicle (end of the century) period, denoted as an end of an epoch and characterized by the rise of scientific optimism and therapeutic activism, entailing the pursuit of life extension (or life-extensionism). Among the foremost researchers of life extension at this period were the Nobel Prize winning biologist Elie Metchnikoff (1845-1916) — the author of the cell theory of immunity and vice director of Institut Pasteur in Paris, and Charles-douard Brown-Squard (1817-1894) — the president of the French Biological Society and one of the founders of modern endocrinology.[74]

Sociologist James Hughes claims that science has been tied to a cultural narrative of conquering death since the Age of Enlightenment. He cites Francis Bacon (15611626) as an advocate of using science and reason to extend human life, noting Bacon’s novel New Atlantis, wherein scientists worked toward delaying aging and prolonging life. Robert Boyle (16271691), founding member of the Royal Society, also hoped that science would make substantial progress with life extension, according to Hughes, and proposed such experiments as “to replace the blood of the old with the blood of the young”. Biologist Alexis Carrel (18731944) was inspired by a belief in indefinite human lifespan that he developed after experimenting with cells, says Hughes.[75]

In 1970, the American Aging Association was formed under the impetus of Denham Harman, originator of the free radical theory of aging. Harman wanted an organization of biogerontologists that was devoted to research and to the sharing of information among scientists interested in extending human lifespan.

In 1976, futurists Joel Kurtzman and Philip Gordon wrote No More Dying. The Conquest Of Aging And The Extension Of Human Life, (ISBN 0-440-36247-4) the first popular book on research to extend human lifespan. Subsequently, Kurtzman was invited to testify before the House Select Committee on Aging, chaired by Claude Pepper of Florida, to discuss the impact of life extension on the Social Security system.

Saul Kent published The Life Extension Revolution (ISBN 0-688-03580-9) in 1980 and created a nutraceutical firm called the Life Extension Foundation, a non-profit organization that promotes dietary supplements. The Life Extension Foundation publishes a periodical called Life Extension Magazine. The 1982 bestselling book Life Extension: A Practical Scientific Approach (ISBN 0-446-51229-X) by Durk Pearson and Sandy Shaw further popularized the phrase “life extension”.

In 1983, Roy Walford, a life-extensionist and gerontologist, published a popular book called Maximum Lifespan. In 1988, Walford and his student Richard Weindruch summarized their research into the ability of calorie restriction to extend the lifespan of rodents in The Retardation of Aging and Disease by Dietary Restriction (ISBN 0-398-05496-7). It had been known since the work of Clive McCay in the 1930s that calorie restriction can extend the maximum lifespan of rodents. But it was the work of Walford and Weindruch that gave detailed scientific grounding to that knowledge.[citation needed] Walford’s personal interest in life extension motivated his scientific work and he practiced calorie restriction himself. Walford died at the age of 80 from complications caused by amyotrophic lateral sclerosis.

Money generated by the non-profit Life Extension Foundation allowed Saul Kent to finance the Alcor Life Extension Foundation, the world’s largest cryonics organization. The cryonics movement had been launched in 1962 by Robert Ettinger’s book, The Prospect of Immortality. In the 1960s, Saul Kent had been a co-founder of the Cryonics Society of New York. Alcor gained national prominence when baseball star Ted Williams was cryonically preserved by Alcor in 2002 and a family dispute arose as to whether Williams had really wanted to be cryopreserved.

Regulatory and legal struggles between the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and the Life Extension Foundation included seizure of merchandise and court action. In 1991, Saul Kent and Bill Faloon, the principals of the Foundation, were jailed. The LEF accused the FDA of perpetrating a “Holocaust” and “seeking gestapo-like power” through its regulation of drugs and marketing claims.[76]

In 2003, Doubleday published “The Immortal Cell: One Scientist’s Quest to Solve the Mystery of Human Aging,” by Michael D. West. West emphasised the potential role of embryonic stem cells in life extension.[77]

Other modern life extensionists include writer Gennady Stolyarov, who insists that death is “the enemy of us all, to be fought with medicine, science, and technology”;[78]transhumanist philosopher Zoltan Istvan, who proposes that the “transhumanist must safeguard one’s own existence above all else”;[79] futurist George Dvorsky, who considers aging to be a problem that desperately needs to be solved;[80] and recording artist Steve Aoki, who has been called “one of the most prolific campaigners for life extension”.[81]

In 1991, the American Academy of Anti-Aging Medicine (A4M) was formed as a non-profit organization to create what it considered an anti-aging medical specialty distinct from geriatrics, and to hold trade shows for physicians interested in anti-aging medicine. The A4M trains doctors in anti-aging medicine and publicly promotes the field of anti-aging research. It has about 26,000 members, of whom about 97% are doctors and scientists.[82] The American Board of Medical Specialties recognizes neither anti-aging medicine nor the A4M’s professional standing.[83]

In 2003, Aubrey de Grey and David Gobel formed the Methuselah Foundation, which gives financial grants to anti-aging research projects. In 2009, de Grey and several others founded the SENS Research Foundation, a California-based scientific research organization which conducts research into aging and funds other anti-aging research projects at various universities.[84] In 2013, Google announced Calico, a new company based in San Francisco that will harness new technologies to increase scientific understanding of the biology of aging.[85] It is led by Arthur D. Levinson,[86] and its research team includes scientists such as Hal V. Barron, David Botstein, and Cynthia Kenyon. In 2014, biologist Craig Venter founded Human Longevity Inc., a company dedicated to scientific research to end aging through genomics and cell therapy. They received funding with the goal of compiling a comprehensive human genotype, microbiome, and phenotype database.[87]

Aside from private initiatives, aging research is being conducted in university laboratories, and includes universities such as Harvard and UCLA. University researchers have made a number of breakthroughs in extending the lives of mice and insects by reversing certain aspects of aging.[88][89][90][91]

Though many scientists state[92] that life extension and radical life extension are possible, there are still no international or national programs focused on radical life extension. There are political forces staying for and against life extension. By 2012, in Russia, the United States, Israel, and the Netherlands, the Longevity political parties started. They aimed to provide political support to radical life extension research and technologies, and ensure the fastest possible and at the same time soft transition of society to the next step life without aging and with radical life extension, and to provide access to such technologies to most currently living people.[93]

Leon Kass (chairman of the US President’s Council on Bioethics from 2001 to 2005) has questioned whether potential exacerbation of overpopulation problems would make life extension unethical.[94] He states his opposition to life extension with the words:

“simply to covet a prolonged life span for ourselves is both a sign and a cause of our failure to open ourselves to procreation and to any higher purpose … [The] desire to prolong youthfulness is not only a childish desire to eat one’s life and keep it; it is also an expression of a childish and narcissistic wish incompatible with devotion to posterity.”[95]

John Harris, former editor-in-chief of the Journal of Medical Ethics, argues that as long as life is worth living, according to the person himself, we have a powerful moral imperative to save the life and thus to develop and offer life extension therapies to those who want them.[96]

Transhumanist philosopher Nick Bostrom has argued that any technological advances in life extension must be equitably distributed and not restricted to a privileged few.[97] In an extended metaphor entitled “The Fable of the Dragon-Tyrant”, Bostrom envisions death as a monstrous dragon who demands human sacrifices. In the fable, after a lengthy debate between those who believe the dragon is a fact of life and those who believe the dragon can and should be destroyed, the dragon is finally killed. Bostrom argues that political inaction allowed many preventable human deaths to occur.[98]

Life extension is a controversial topic due to fear of overpopulation and possible effects on society.[99] Biogerontologist Aubrey De Grey counters the overpopulation critique by pointing out that the therapy could postpone or eliminate menopause, allowing women to space out their pregnancies over more years and thus decreasing the yearly population growth rate.[100] Moreover, the philosopher and futurist Max More argues that, given the fact the worldwide population growth rate is slowing down and is projected to eventually stabilize and begin falling, superlongevity would be unlikely to contribute to overpopulation.[99]

A Spring 2013 Pew Research poll in the United States found that 38% of Americans would want life extension treatments, and 56% would reject it. However, it also found that 68% believed most people would want it and that only 4% consider an “ideal lifespan” to be more than 120 years. The median “ideal lifespan” was 91 years of age and the majority of the public (63%) viewed medical advances aimed at prolonging life as generally good. 41% of Americans believed that radical life extension (RLE) would be good for society, while 51% said they believed it would be bad for society.[101] One possibility for why 56% of Americans claim they would reject life extension treatments may be due to the cultural perception that living longer would result in a longer period of decrepitude, and that the elderly in our current society are unhealthy.[102]

Religious people are no more likely to oppose life extension than the unaffiliated,[101] though some variation exists between religious denominations.

Most mainstream medical organizations and practitioners do not consider aging to be a disease. David Sinclair says: “Idon’t see aging as a disease, but as a collection of quite predictable diseases caused by the deterioration of the body”.[103] The two main arguments used are that aging is both inevitable and universal while diseases are not.[104] However, not everyone agrees. Harry R. Moody, Director of Academic Affairs for AARP, notes that what is normal and what is disease strongly depends on a historical context.[105] David Gems, Assistant Director of the Institute of Healthy Ageing, strongly argues that aging should be viewed as a disease.[106] In response to the universality of aging, David Gems notes that it is as misleading as arguing that Basenji are not dogs because they do not bark.[107] Because of the universality of aging he calls it a ‘special sort of disease’. Robert M. Perlman, coined the terms aging syndrome and disease complex in 1954 to describe aging.[108]

The discussion whether aging should be viewed as a disease or not has important implications. It would stimulate pharmaceutical companies to develop life extension therapies and in the United States of America, it would also increase the regulation of the anti-aging market by the FDA. Anti-aging now falls under the regulations for cosmetic medicine which are less tight than those for drugs.[107][109]

Excerpt from:

Life extension – Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

The Abolition of Work–Bob Black – Primitivism

 Abolition Of Work  Comments Off on The Abolition of Work–Bob Black – Primitivism
Mar 262016
 

The Abolition of Work

Bob Black

No one should ever work.

Work is the source of nearly all the misery in the world. Almost any evil you’d care to name comes from working or from living in a world designed for work. In order to stop suffering, we have to stop working.

That doesn’t mean we have to stop doing things. It does mean creating a new way of life based on play; in other words, a *ludic* conviviality, commensality, and maybe even art. There is more to play than child’s play, as worthy as that is. I call for a collective adventure in generalized joy and freely interdependent exuberance. Play isn’t passive. Doubtless we all need a lot more time for sheer sloth and slack than we ever enjoy now, regardless of income or occupation, but once recovered from employment-induced exhaustion nearly all of us want to act. Oblomovism and Stakhanovism are two sides of the same debased coin.

The ludic life is totally incompatible with existing reality. So much the worse for “reality,” the gravity hole that sucks the vitality from the little in life that still distinguishes it from mere survival. Curiously — or maybe not — all the old ideologies are conservative because they believe in work. Some of them, like Marxism and most brands of anarchism, believe in work all the more fiercely because they believe in so little else.

Liberals say we should end employment discrimination. I say we should end employment. Conservatives support right-to-work laws. Following Karl Marx’s wayward son-in-law Paul Lafargue I support the right to be lazy. Leftists favor full employment. Like the surrealists — except that I’m not kidding — I favor full *un*employment. Trotskyists agitate for permanent revolution. I agitate for permanent revelry. But if all the ideologues (as they do) advocate work — and not only because they plan to make other people do theirs — they are strangely reluctant to say so. They will carry on endlessly about wages, hours, working conditions, exploitation, productivity, profitability. They’ll gladly talk about anything but work itself. These experts who offer to do our thinking for us rarely share their conclusions about work, for all its saliency in the lives of all of us. Among themselves they quibble over the details. Unions and management agree that we ought to sell the time of our lives in exchange for survival, although they haggle over the price. Marxists think we should be bossed by bureaucrats. Libertarians think we should be bossed by businessmen. Feminists don’t care which form bossing takes so long as the bosses are women. Clearly these ideology-mongers have serious differences over how to divvy up the spoils of power. Just as clearly, none of them have any objection to power as such and all of them want to keep us working.

You may be wondering if I’m joking or serious. I’m joking *and* serious. To be ludic is not to be ludicrous. Play doesn’t have to be frivolous, although frivolity isn’t triviality: very often we ought to take frivolity seriously. I’d like life to be a game — but a game with high stakes. I want to play *for* *keeps*.

The alternative to work isn’t just idleness. To be ludic is not to be quaaludic. As much as I treasure the pleasure of torpor, it’s never more rewarding than when it punctuates other pleasures and pastimes. Nor am I promoting the managed time-disciplined safety-valve called “leisure”; far from it. Leisure is nonwork for the sake of work. Leisure is the time spent recovering from work and in the frenzied but hopeless attempt to forget about work. Many people return from vacation so beat that they look forward to returning to work so they can rest up. The main difference between work and leisure is that work at least you get paid for your alienation and enervation.

I am not playing definitional games with anybody. When I say I want to abolish work, I mean just what I say, but I want to say what I mean by defining my terms in non-idiosyncratic ways. My minimum definition of work is *forced* *labor*, that is, compulsory production. Both elements are essential. Work is production enforced by economic or political means, by the carrot or the stick. (The carrot is just the stick by other means.) But not all creation is work. Work is never done for its own sake, it’s done on account of some product or output that the worker (or, more often, somebody else) gets out of it. This is what work necessarily is. To define it is to despise it. But work is usually even worse than its definition decrees. The dynamic of domination intrinsic to work tends over time toward elaboration. In advanced work-riddled societies, including all industrial societies whether capitalist of “Communist,” work invariably acquires other attributes which accentuate its obnoxiousness.

Usually — and this is even more true in “Communist” than capitalist countries, where the state is almost the only employer and everyone is an employee — work is employment, i. e., wage-labor, which means selling yourself on the installment plan. Thus 95% of Americans who work, work for somebody (or some*thing*) else. In the USSR or Cuba or Yugoslavia or any other alternative model which might be adduced, the corresponding figure approaches 100%. Only the embattled Third World peasant bastions — Mexico, India, Brazil, Turkey — temporarily shelter significant concentrations of agriculturists who perpetuate the traditional arrangement of most laborers in the last several millenia, the payment of taxes (= ransom) to the state or rent to parasitic landlords in return for being otherwise left alone. Even this raw deal is beginning to look good. *All* industrial (and office) workers are employees and under the sort of surveillance which ensures servility.

But modern work has worse implications. People don’t just work, they have “jobs.” One person does one productive task all the time on an or-else basis. Even if the task has a quantum of intrinsic interest (as increasingly many jobs don’t) the monotony of its obligatory exclusivity drains its ludic potential. A “job” that might engage the energies of some people, for a reasonably limited time, for the fun of it, is just a burden on those who have to do it for forty hours a week with no say in how it should be done, for the profit of owners who contribute nothing to the project, and with no opportunity for sharing tasks or spreading the work among those who actually have to do it. This is the real world of work: a world of bureaucratic blundering, of sexual harassment and discrimination, of bonehead bosses exploiting and scapegoating their subordinates who — by any rational-technical criteria — should be calling the shots. But capitalism in the real world subordinates the rational maximization of productivity and profit to the exigencies of organizational control.

The degradation which most workers experience on the job is the sum of assorted indignities which can be denominated as “discipline.” Foucault has complexified this phenomenon but it is simple enough. Discipline consists of the totality of totalitarian controls at the workplace — surveillance, rotework, imposed work tempos, production quotas, punching -in and -out, etc. Discipline is what the factory and the office and the store share with the prison and the school and the mental hospital. It is something historically original and horrible. It was beyond the capacities of such demonic dictators of yore as Nero and Genghis Khan and Ivan the Terrible. For all their bad intentions they just didn’t have the machinery to control their subjects as thoroughly as modern despots do. Discipline is the distinctively diabolical modern mode of control, it is an innovative intrusion which must be interdicted at the earliest opportunity.

Such is “work.” Play is just the opposite. Play is always voluntary. What might otherwise be play is work if it’s forced. This is axiomatic. Bernie de Koven has defined play as the “suspension of consequences.” This is unacceptable if it implies that play is inconsequential. The point is not that play is without consequences. This is to demean play. The point is that the consequences, if any, are gratuitous. Playing and giving are closely related, they are the behavioral and transactional facets of the same impulse, the play-instinct. They share an aristocratic disdain for results. The player gets something out of playing; that’s why he plays. But the core reward is the experience of the activity itself (whatever it is). Some otherwise attentive students of play, like Johan Huizinga (*Homo* *Ludens*), *define* it as game-playing or following rules. I respect Huizinga’s erudition but emphatically reject his constraints. There are many good games (chess, baseball, Monopoly, bridge) which are rule-governed but there is much more to play than game-playing. Conversation, sex, dancing, travel — these practices aren’t rule-governed but they are surely play if anything is. And rules can be *played* *with* at least as readily as anything else.

Work makes a mockery of freedom. The official line is that we all have rights and live in a democracy. Other unfortunates who aren’t free like we are have to live in police states. These victims obey orders or-else, no matter how arbitrary. The authorities keep them under regular surveillance. State bureaucrats control even the smaller details of everyday life. The officials who push them around are answerable only to higher-ups, public or private. Either way, dissent and disobedience are punished. Informers report regularly to the authorities. All this is supposed to be a very bad thing.

And so it is, although it is nothing but a description of the modern workplace. The liberals and conservatives and libertarians who lament totalitarianism are phonies and hypocrites. There is more freedom in any moderately deStalinized dictatorship than there is in the ordinary American workplace. You find the same sort of hierarchy and discipline in an office or factory as you do in a prison or monastery. In fact, as Foucault and others have shown, prisons and factories came in at about the same time, and their operators consciously borrowed from each other’s control techniques. A worker is a par-time slave. The boss says when to show up, when to leave, and what to do in the meantime. He tells you how much work to do and how fast. He is free to carry his control to humiliating extremes, regulating, if he feels like it, the clothes you wear or how often you go to the bathroom. With a few exceptions he can fire you for any reason, or no reason. He has you spied on by snitches and supervisors, he amasses a dossier on every employee. Talking back is called “insubordination,” just as if a worker is a naughty child, and it not only gets you fired, it disqualifies you for unemployment compensation. Without necessarily endorsing it for them either, it is noteworthy that children at home and in school receive much the same treatment, justified in their case by their supposed immaturity. What does this say about their parents and teachers who work?

The demeaning system of domination I’ve described rules over half the waking hours of a majority of women and the vast majority of men for decades, for most of their lifespans. For certain purposes it’s not too misleading to call our system democracy or capitalism or — better still — industrialism, but its real names are factory fascism and office oligarchy. Anybody who says these people are “free” is lying or stupid. You are what you do. If you do boring, stupid monotonous work, chances are you’ll end up boring, stupid and monotonous. Work is a much better explanation for the creeping cretinization all around us than even such significant moronizing mechanisms as television and education. People who are regimented all their lives, handed off to work from school and bracketed by the family in the beginning and the nursing home at the end, are habituated to heirarchy and psychologically enslaved. Their aptitude for autonomy is so atrophied that their fear of freedom is among their few rationally grounded phobias. Their obedience training at work carries over into the families *they* start, thus reproducing the system in more ways than one, and into politics, culture and everything else. Once you drain the vitality from people at work, they’ll likely submit to heirarchy and expertise in everything. They’re used to it.

We are so close to the world of work that we can’t see what it does to us. We have to rely on outside observers from other times or other cultures to appreciate the extremity and the pathology of our present position. There was a time in our own past when the “work ethic” would have been incomprehensible, and perhaps Weber was on to something when he tied its appearance to a religion, Calvinism, which if it emerged today instead of four centuries ago would immediately and appropriately be labeled a cult. Be that as it may, we have only to draw upon the wisdom of antiquity to put work in perspective. The ancients saw work for what it is, and their view prevailed, the Calvinist cranks notwithstanding, until overthrown by industrialism — but not before receiving the endorsement of its prophets.

Let’s pretend for a moment that work doesn’t turn people into stultified submissives. Let’s pretend, in defiance of any plausible psychology and the ideology of its boosters, that it has no effect on the formation of character. And let’s pretend that work isn’t as boring and tiring and humiliating as we all know it really is. Even then, work would *still* make a mockery of all humanistic and democratic aspirations, just because it usurps so much of our time. Socrates said that manual laborers make bad friends and bad citizens because they have no time to fulfill the responsibilities of friendship and citizenship. He was right. Because of work, no matter what we do we keep looking at out watches. The only thing “free” about so-called free time is that it doesn’t cost the boss anything. Free time is mostly devoted to getting ready for work, going to work, returning from work, and recovering from work. Free time is a euphemism for the peculiar way labor as a factor of production not only transports itself at its own expense to and from the workplace but assumes primary responsibility for its own maintenance and repair. Coal and steel don’t do that. Lathes and typewriters don’t do that. But workers do. No wonder Edward G. Robinson in one of his gangster movies exclaimed, “Work is for saps!”

Both Plato and Xenophon attribute to Socrates and obviously share with him an awareness of the destructive effects of work on the worker as a citizen and a human being. Herodotus identified contempt for work as an attribute of the classical Greeks at the zenith of their culture. To take only one Roman example, Cicero said that “whoever gives his labor for money sells himself and puts himself in the rank of slaves.” His candor is now rare, but contemporary primitive societies which we are wont to look down upon have provided spokesmen who have enlightened Western anthropologists. The Kapauku of West Irian, according to Posposil, have a conception of balance in life and accordingly work only every other day, the day of rest designed “to regain the lost power and health.” Our ancestors, even as late as the eighteenth century when they were far along the path to our present predicament, at least were aware of what we have forgotten, the underside of industrialization. Their religious devotion to “St. Monday” — thus establishing a *de* *facto* five-day week 150-200 years before its legal consecration — was the despair of the earliest factory owners. They took a long time in submitting to the tyranny of the bell, predecessor of the time clock. In fact it was necessary for a generation or two to replace adult males with women accustomed to obedience and children who could be molded to fit industrial needs. Even the exploited peasants of the *ancien* *regime* wrested substantial time back from their landlord’s work. According to Lafargue, a fourth of the French peasants’ calendar was devoted to Sundays and holidays, and Chayanov’s figures from villages in Czarist Russia — hardly a progressive society — likewise show a fourth or fifth of peasants’ days devoted to repose. Controlling for productivity, we are obviously far behind these backward societies. The exploited *muzhiks* would wonder why any of us are working at all. So should we.

To grasp the full enormity of our deterioration, however, consider the earliest condition of humanity, without government or property, when we wandered as hunter-gatherers. Hobbes surmised that life was then nasty, brutish and short. Others assume that life was a desperate unremitting struggle for subsistence, a war waged against a harsh Nature with death and disaster awaiting the unlucky or anyone who was unequal to the challenge of the struggle for existence. Actually, that was all a projection of fears for the collapse of government authority over communities unaccustomed to doing without it, like the England of Hobbes during the Civil War. Hobbes’ compatriots had already encountered alternative forms of society which illustrated other ways of life — in North America, particularly — but already these were too remote from their experience to be understandable. (The lower orders, closer to the condition of the Indians, understood it better and often found it attractive. Throughout the seventeenth century, English settlers defected to Indian tribes or, captured in war, refused to return. But the Indians no more defected to white settlements than Germans climb the Berlin Wall from the west.) The “survival of the fittest” version — the Thomas Huxley version — of Darwinism was a better account of economic conditions in Victorian England than it was of natural selection, as the anarchist Kropotkin showed in his book *Mutual* *Aid,* *A* *Factor* *of* *Evolution*. (Kropotkin was a scientist — a geographer — who’d had ample involuntary opportunity for fieldwork whilst exiled in Siberia: he knew what he was talking about.) Like most social and political theory, the story Hobbes and his successors told was really unacknowledged autobiography.

The anthropologist Marshall Sahlins, surveying the data on contemporary hunter-gatherers, exploded the Hobbesian myth in an article entitled “The Original Affluent Society.” They work a lot less than we do, and their work is hard to distinguish from what we regard as play. Sahlins concluded that “hunters and gatherers work less than we do; and rather than a continuous travail, the food quest is intermittent, leisure abundant, and there is a greater amount of sleep in the daytime per capita per year than in any other condition of society.” They worked an average of four hours a day, assuming they were “working” at all. Their “labor,” as it appears to us, was skilled labor which exercised their physical and intellectual capacities; unskilled labor on any large scale, as Sahlins says, is impossible except under industrialism. Thus it satisfied Friedrich Schiller’s definition of play, the only occasion on which man realizes his complete humanity by giving full “play” to both sides of his twofold nature, thinking and feeling. As he put it: “The animal *works* when deprivation is the mainspring of its activity, and it *plays* when the fullness of its strength is this mainspring, when superabundant life is its own stimulus to activity.” (A modern version — dubiously developmental — is Abraham Maslow’s counterposition of “deficiency” and “growth” motivation.) Play and freedom are, as regards production, coextensive. Even Marx, who belongs (for all his good intentions) in the productivist pantheon, observed that “the realm of freedom does not commence until the point is passed where labor under the compulsion of necessity and external utility is required.” He never could quite bring himself to identify this happy circumstance as what it is, the abolition of work — it’s rather anomalous, after all, to be pro-worker and anti-work — but we can.

The aspiration to go backwards or forwards to a life without work is evident in every serious social or cultural history of pre-industrial Europe, among them M. Dorothy George’s *England* In* *Transition* and Peter Burke’s *Popular* *Culture* *in* *Early* *Modern* *Europe*. Also pertinent is Daniel Bell’s essay, “Work and its Discontents,” the first text, I believe, to refer to the “revolt against work” in so many words and, had it been understood, an important correction to the complacency ordinarily associated with the volume in which it was collected, *The* *End* *of* *Ideology*. Neither critics nor celebrants have noticed that Bell’s end-of-ideology thesis signaled not the end of social unrest but the beginning of a new, uncharted phase unconstrained and uninformed by ideology. It was Seymour Lipset (in *Political* *Man*), not Bell, who announced at the same time that “the fundamental problems of the Industrial Revolution have been solved,” only a few years before the post- or meta-industrial discontents of college students drove Lipset from UC Berkeley to the relative (and temporary) tranquility of Harvard.

As Bell notes, Adam Smith in *The* *Wealth* *of* *Nations*, for all his enthusiasm for the market and the division of labor, was more alert to (and more honest about) the seamy side of work than Ayn Rand or the Chicago economists or any of Smith’s modern epigones. As Smith observed: “The understandings of the greater part of men are necessarily formed by their ordinary employments. The man whose life is spent in performing a few simple operations… has no occasion to exert his understanding… He generally becomes as stupid and ignorant as it is possible for a human creature to become.” Here, in a few blunt words, is my critique of work. Bell, writing in 1956, the Golden Age of Eisenhower imbecility and American self-satisfaction, identified the unorganized, unorganizable malaise of the 1970’s and since, the one no political tendency is able to harness, the one identified in HEW’s report *Work* *in* *America*, the one which cannot be exploited and so is ignored. That problem is the revolt against work. It does not figure in any text by any laissez-faire economist — Milton Friedman, Murray Rothbard, Richard Posner — because, in their terms, as they used to say on *Star* *Trek*, “it does not compute.”

If these objections, informed by the love of liberty, fail to persuade humanists of a utilitarian or even paternalist turn, there are others which they cannot disregard. Work is hazardous to your health, to borrow a book title. In fact, work is mass murder or genocide. Directly or indirectly, work will kill most of the people who read these words. Between 14,000 and 25,000 workers are killed annually in this country on the job. Over two million are disabled. Twenty to twenty-five million are injured every year. And these figures are based on a very conservative estimation of what constitutes a work-related injury. Thus they don’t count the half million cases of occupational disease every year. I looked at one medical textbook on occupational diseases which was 1,200 pages long. Even this barely scratches the surface. The available statistics count the obvious cases like the 100,000 miners who have black lung disease, of whom 4,000 die every year, a much higher fatality rate than for AIDS, for instance, which gets so much media attention. This reflects the unvoiced assumption that AIDS afflicts perverts who could control their depravity whereas coal-mining is a sacrosanct activity beyond question. What the statistics don’t show is that tens of millions of people have heir lifespans shortened by work — which is all that homicide means, after all. Consider the doctors who work themselves to death in their 50’s. Consider all the other workaholics.

Even if you aren’t killed or crippled while actually working, you very well might be while going to work, coming from work, looking for work, or trying to forget about work. The vast majority of victims of the automobile are either doing one of these work-obligatory activities or else fall afoul of those who do them. To this augmented body-count must be added the victims of auto-industrial pollution and work-induced alcoholism and drug addiction. Both cancer and heart disease are modern afflictions normally traceable, directly, or indirectly, to work.

Work, then, institutionalizes homicide as a way of life. People think the Cambodians were crazy for exterminating themselves, but are we any different? The Pol Pot regime at least had a vision, however blurred, of an egalitarian society. We kill people in the six-figure range (at least) in order to sell Big Macs and Cadillacs to the survivors. Our forty or fifty thousand annual highway fatalities are victims, not martyrs. They died for nothing — or rather, they died for work. But work is nothing to die for.

Bad news for liberals: regulatory tinkering is useless in this life-and-death context. The federal Occupational Safety and Health Administration was designed to police the core part of the problem, workplace safety. Even before Reagan and the Supreme Court stifled it, OSHA was a farce. At previous and (by current standards) generous Carter-era funding levels, a workplace could expect a random visit from an OSHA inspector once every 46 years.

State control of the economy is no solution. Work is, if anything, more dangerous in the state-socialist countries than it is here. Thousands of Russian workers were killed or injured building the Moscow subway. Stories reverberate about covered-up Soviet nuclear disasters which make Times Beach and Three-Mile Island look like elementary-school air-raid drills. On the other hand, deregulation, currently fashionable, won’t help and will probably hurt. From a health and safety standpoint, among others, work was at its worst in the days when the economy most closely approximated laissez-faire.

Historians like Eugene Genovese have argued persuasively that — as antebellum slavery apologists insisted — factory wage-workers in the Northern American states and in Europe were worse off than Southern plantation slaves. No rearrangement of relations among bureaucrats and businessmen seems to make much difference at the point of production. Serious enforcement of even the rather vague standards enforceable in theory by OSHA would probably bring the economy to a standstill. The enforcers apparently appreciate this, since they don’t even try to crack down on most malefactors.

What I’ve said so far ought not to be controversial. Many workers are fed up with work. There are high and rising rates of absenteeism, turnover, employee theft and sabotage, wildcat strikes, and overall goldbricking on the job. There may be some movement toward a conscious and not just visceral rejection of work. And yet the prevalent feeling, universal among bosses and their agents and also widespread among workers themselves is that work itself is inevitable and necessary.

I disagree. It is now possible to abolish work and replace it, insofar as it serves useful purposes, with a multitude of new kinds of free activities. To abolish work requires going at it from two directions, quantitative and qualitative. On the one hand, on the quantitative side, we have to cut down massively on the amount of work being done. At present most work is useless or worse and we should simply get rid of it. On the other hand — and I think this the crux of the matter and the revolutionary new departure — we have to take what useful work remains and transform it into a pleasing variety of game-like and craft-like pastimes, indistinguishable from other pleasurable pastimes, except that they happen to yield useful end-products. Surely that shouldn’t make them *less* enticing to do. Then all the artificial barriers of power and property could come down. Creation could become recreation. And we could all stop being afraid of each other.

I don’t suggest that most work is salvageable in this way. But then most work isn’t worth trying to save. Only a small and diminishing fraction of work serves any useful purpose independent of the defense and reproduction of the work-system and its political and legal appendages. Twenty years ago, Paul and Percival Goodman estimated that just five percent of the work then being done — presumably the figure, if accurate, is lower now — would satisfy our minimal needs for food, clothing, and shelter. Theirs was only an educated guess but the main point is quite clear: directly or indirectly, most work serves the unproductive purposes of commerce or social control. Right off the bat we can liberate tens of millions of salesmen, soldiers, managers, cops, stockbrokers, clergymen, bankers, lawyers, teachers, landlords, security guards, ad-men and everyone who works for them. There is a snowball effect since every time you idle some bigshot you liberate his flunkeys and underlings also. Thus the economy *implodes*.

Forty percent of the workforce are white-collar workers, most of whom have some of the most tedious and idiotic jobs ever concocted. Entire industries, insurance and banking and real estate for instance, consist of nothing but useless paper-shuffling. It is no accident that the “tertiary sector,” the service sector, is growing while the “secondary sector” (industry) stagnates and the “primary sector” (agriculture) nearly disappears. Because work is unnecessary except to those whose power it secures, workers are shifted from relatively useful to relatively useless occupations as a measure to assure public order. Anything is better than nothing. That’s why you can’t go home just because you finish early. They want your *time*, enough of it to make you theirs, even if they have no use for most of it. Otherwise why hasn’t the average work week gone down by more than a few minutes in the past fifty years?

Next we can take a meat-cleaver to production work itself. No more war production, nuclear power, junk food, feminine hygiene deodorant — and above all, no more auto industry to speak of. An occasional Stanley Steamer or Model-T might be all right, but the auto-eroticism on which such pestholes as Detroit and Los Angeles depend on is out of the question. Already, without even trying, we’ve virtually solved the energy crisis, the environmental crisis and assorted other insoluble social problems.

Finally, we must do away with far and away the largest occupation, the one with the longest hours, the lowest pay and some of the most tedious tasks around. I refer to *housewives* doing housework and child-rearing. By abolishing wage-labor and achieving full unemployment we undermine the sexual division of labor. The nuclear family as we know it is an inevitable adaptation to the division of labor imposed by modern wage-work. Like it or not, as things have been for the last century or two it is economically rational for the man to bring home the bacon, for the woman to do the shitwork to provide him with a haven in a heartless world, and for the children to be marched off to youth concentration camps called “schools,” primarily to keep them out of Mom’s hair but still under control, but incidentally to acquire the habits of obedience and punctuality so necessary for workers. If you would be rid of patriarchy, get rid of the nuclear family whose unpaid “shadow work,” as Ivan Illich says, makes possible the work-system that makes *it* necessary. Bound up with this no-nukes strategy is the abolition of childhood and the closing of the schools. There are more full-time students than full-time workers in this country. We need children as teachers, not students. They have a lot to contribute to the ludic revolution because they’re better at playing than grown-ups are. Adults and children are not identical but they will become equal through interdependence. Only play can bridge the generation gap.

I haven’t as yet even mentioned the possibility of cutting way down on the little work that remains by automating and cybernizing it. All the scientists and engineers and technicians freed from bothering with war research and planned obsolescence would have a good time devising means to eliminate fatigue and tedium and danger from activities like mining. Undoubtedly they’ll find other projects to amuse themselves with. Perhaps they’ll set up world-wide all-inclusive multi-media communications systems or found space colonies. Perhaps. I myself am no gadget freak. I wouldn’t care to live in a pushbutton paradise. I don’t what robot slaves to do everything; I want to do things myself. There is, I think, a place for labor-saving technology, but a modest place. The historical and pre-historical record is not encouraging. When productive technology went from hunting-gathering to agriculture and on to industry, work increased while skills and self-determination diminished. The further evolution of industrialism has accentuated what Harry Braverman called the degradation of work. Intelligent observers have always been aware of this. John Stuart Mill wrote that all the labor-saving inventions ever devised haven’t saved a moment’s labor. Karl Marx wrote that “it would be possible to write a history of the inventions, made since 1830, for the sole purpose of supplying capital with weapons against the revolts of the working class.” The enthusiastic technophiles — Saint-Simon, Comte, Lenin, B. F. Skinner — have always been unabashed authoritarians also; which is to say, technocrats. We should be more than sceptical about the promises of the computer mystics. *They* work like dogs; chances are, if they have their way, so will the rest of us. But if they have any particularized contributions more readily subordinated to human purposes than the run of high tech, let’s give them a hearing.

What I really want to see is work turned into play. A first step is to discard the notions of a “job” and an “occupation.” Even activities that already have some ludic content lose most of it by being reduced to jobs which certain people, and only those people are forced to do to the exclusion of all else. Is it not odd that farm workers toil painfully in the fields while their air-conditioned masters go home every weekend and putter about in their gardens? Under a system of permanent revelry, we will witness the Golden Age of the dilettante which will put the Renaissance to shame. There won’t be any more jobs, just things to do and people to do them.

The secret of turning work into play, as Charles Fourier demonstrated, is to arrange useful activities to take advantage of whatever it is that various people at various times in fact enjoy doing. To make it possible for some people to do the things they could enjoy it will be enough just to eradicate the irrationalities and distortions which afflict these activities when they are reduced to work. I, for instance, would enjoy doing some (not too much) teaching, but I don’t want coerced students and I don’t care to suck up to pathetic pedants for tenure.

Second, there are some things that people like to do from time to time, but not for too long, and certainly not all the time. You might enjoy baby-sitting for a few hours in order to share the company of kids, but not as much as their parents do. The parents meanwhile, profoundly appreciate the time to themselves that you free up for them, although they’d get fretful if parted from their progeny for too long. These differences among individuals are what make a life of free play possible. The same principle applies to many other areas of activity, especially the primal ones. Thus many people enjoy cooking when they can practice it seriously at their leisure, but not when they’re just fueling up human bodies for work.

Third — other things being equal — some things that are unsatisfying if done by yourself or in unpleasant surroundings or at the orders of an overlord are enjoyable, at least for a while, if these circumstances are changed. This is probably true, to some extent, of all work. People deploy their otherwise wasted ingenuity to make a game of the least inviting drudge-jobs as best they can. Activities that appeal to some people don’t always appeal to all others, but everyone at least potentially has a variety of interests and an interest in variety. As the saying goes, “anything once.” Fourier was the master at speculating how aberrant and perverse penchants could be put to use in post-civilized society, what he called Harmony. He thought the Emperor Nero would have turned out all right if as a child he could have indulged his taste for bloodshed by working in a slaughterhouse. Small children who notoriously relish wallowing in filth could be organized in “Little Hordes” to clean toilets and empty the garbage, with medals awarded to the outstanding. I am not arguing for these precise examples but for the underlying principle, which I think makes perfect sense as one dimension of an overall revolutionary transformation. Bear in mind that we don’t have to take today’s work just as we find it and match it up with the proper people, some of whom would have to be perverse indeed. If technology has a role in all this it is less to automate work out of existence than to open up new realms for re/creation. To some extent we may want to return to handicrafts, which William Morris considered a probable and desirable upshot of communist revolution. Art would be taken back from the snobs and collectors, abolished as a specialized department catering to an elite audience, and its qualities of beauty and creation restored to integral life from which they were stolen by work. It’s a sobering thought that the grecian urns we write odes about and showcase in museums were used in their own time to store olive oil. I doubt our everyday artifacts will fare as well in the future, if there is one. The point is that there’s no such thing as progress in the world of work; if anything it’s just the opposite. We shouldn’t hesitate to pilfer the past for what it has to offer, the ancients lose nothing yet we are enriched.

The reinvention of daily life means marching off the edge of our maps. There is, it is true, more suggestive speculation than most people suspect. Besides Fourier and Morris — and even a hint, here and there, in Marx — there are the writings of Kropotkin, the syndicalists Pataud and Pouget, anarcho-communists old (Berkman) and new (Bookchin). The Goodman brothers’ *Communitas* is exemplary for illustrating what forms follow from given functions (purposes), and there is something to be gleaned from the often hazy heralds of alternative/appropriate/intermediate/convivial technology, like Schumacher and especially Illich, once you disconnect their fog machines. The situationists — as represented by Vaneigem’s *Revolution* *of* *Daily* *Life* and in the *Situationist* *International* *Anthology* — are so ruthlessly lucid as to be exhilarating, even if they never did quite square the endorsement of the rule of the worker’s councils with the abolition of work. Better their incongruity, though than any extant version of leftism, whose devotees look to be the last champions of work, for if there were no work there would be no workers, and without workers, who would the left have to organize?

So the abolitionists would be largely on their own. No one can say what would result from unleashing the creative power stultified by work. Anything can happen. The tiresome debater’s problem of freedom vs. necessity, with its theological overtones, resolves itself practically once the production of use-values is coextensive with the consumption of delightful play-activity.

Life will become a game, or rather many games, but not — as it is now – — a zero/sum game. An optimal sexual encounter is the paradigm of productive play, The participants potentiate each other’s pleasures, nobody keeps score, and everybody wins. The more you give, the more you get. In the ludic life, the best of sex will diffuse into the better part of daily life. Generalized play leads to the libidinization of life. Sex, in turn, can become less urgent and desperate, more playful. If we play our cards right, we can all get more out of life than we put into it; but only if we play for keeps.

No one should ever work. Workers of the world… *relax*!

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The Abolition of Work–Bob Black – Primitivism

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Counselling and Hypnotherapy in … – Personal Empowerment

 Personal Empowerment  Comments Off on Counselling and Hypnotherapy in … – Personal Empowerment
Mar 262016
 

At times in our lives, we can all benefit from the help and support of another and personal therapy can make a huge positive difference.

With therapy rooms in Great Barr,Birmingham and Sutton Coldfield, I work on the basis that we are all unique and individual. This is reflected in Your therapy, therefore,my primary ethic is to ensure that you are at the forefront of everything we do, after all, your therapy is about and for You.

Asan experienced Counsellor and Psychotherapist, Iam Accredited by the British Association for Counselling and Psychotherapy (BACP) and a UKRCP registered Counsellor and Psychotherapist. As well as seeing individuals on a one to one basis, I also see couples for Relationship Counselling.

Appointments are available in the daytime and evening in north Birmingham(close to the Scott Arms crossroads, just off the A34 that links Walsall and Birmingham City Centre)and in Sutton Coldfield (near Banners Gate). Both locations are very easy to find, offer ease of parkingand arein easy reach of Birmingham, Walsall, Sutton Coldfield and West Bromwich. My FAQ page has address and map details.

Feel free to contact me I am happy to provide as much information as your require to allow you to make an informed choice. If you have any questions, would like any additional information or if you would like to set up an initial appointment, please contact me.

Im often asked about what happens in the first therapy session. Heres an article I published that gives an insight Click here.

Hypnotherapy is a very effective way to help you become a non-smoker. Information on how this works Stop Smoking Main Page

In follow-up to the previous two articles, below are some mindfulness exercises to experiment with. Experimenting with techniques is really important to find what you prefer and what fits best for you. Often we are advised to do things that may have been wonderfully beneficial or even life-changing for the person telling us, but it may not suit ourselves.

Read more .

I have recently been asked forthe address of my Facebook page Here it is- https://www.facebook.com/personalempowermenttherapy

If you have time, please share

Wishing you a lovely day

Duncan.

It is extremely hard to feelanxious or stressedwhen we have a sense of gratitude and appreciation for what we have in life. We are surrounded by such rich splendour and we have all created truly brilliant things in our lives, however, often these parts of us feel distanced and not felt. Read more .

Mindfulness is increasingly being recognised as being very effective to help people manage anxiety and depression. Put very simply, it is the practise of focusing our attention on being in the here and now without wishing it were different. It is enjoying the present when things are good and not holding onto it when it changes and being with the unpleasant without fearing it will always be this way. Read More .

Throughout our lives we encounter a vast range of experiences and many can indelibly ink themselves into our memories whether pleasant or unpleasant. Unpleasant and harmful experiences can often create symptoms of trauma that can stay with us for some time. Read more ..

It can be very easy for us to slip into unhealthy eating and drinking patterns and often this can be gradual which results into us putting on extra weight. Losing this weight isnt easy and not being as we would like to be can begin to chip away at our self esteem. It can also alter our behaviours for example it can influence how we dress or we may go out less or become a little less confident. Read more .

Keeping a journal can bring great benefits and you can do this in a number of ways. A valid point to remember is that this is your journal and often we can place undue pressure on ourselves to write every day or can give up if weve missed a few days or weeks. This is Yours so if you find it a help to write once a week, month, quarter then do so. Read more .

With seemingly an ever increasing number of therapies available, it can be hard to decide what to look for to ensure you have the help and support that is going to be best for you. From the greater researched and evidence based therapies of Counselling, CBT, Psychotherapy and EMDR to Life Coaching and complimentary therapies such as Hypnotherapy and Reflexology. Read more ..

We have been very fortunate to be able to show the pictures of Gary Davison. Garys artistic depth and expertise isexpressed through his photography and we are grateful to be able to incorporate them on this website. For more information on his photos, please go to facebook.com/gary.davison

Managing any strong emotion can be a challenge for us as when we are flooded with strong feelings, our ability to think rationally diminishes significantly. Anger is one of our primary emotions and is often sparked by frustration or injustice. Read more .

Attending any appointment for the first time can be a daunting prospect and this is especially true of Hypnotherapy due to the many myths that accompany it and the nature of the therapy.

So in the first session, what can you realistically expect? The information that is stated below relates to how I work and there maybe differences between different therapists. Read more.

In the previous article Do you value your sleep, it raised some significant points as to why sleep is so important for us to be able to function at our best. Its one thing to be appreciate this but achieving this cannot always be easy. Read more .

Sleep is a fundamental for our wellbeing and recent research emphasis this greatly.

Read more .

Therapeutic writing is very widely used form of self help. Writing is a form of expression and any form of expression helps us to manage and deal with our emotions. When faced with issues and problems in life, it can be very easy for our thoughts to spiral, go round in circles and meander down some dark negative alleyways and as this happens, our emotions become engaged.

Read more .

Its been 5 years since the smoking ban was introduced in England and it has been hailed as bringing huge benefits. It has brought about huge behavioural changes, for example, where for many its a natural act for smokers to disappear to the designated areas and for others, it has altered whether they go out socially or create their social interactions at home.

Read more .

Feeling inspired and being inspired can provide such powerful positive feelings. Often this means getting in touch with a thought, feeling, way of being or an emotion that we truly connect with.

Read more

From today, we are able to offer coaching and counselling via Skype. This can be done directly or through http://www.mootu.co.uk. It is very easy to useand begins with booking a session. To do this, simply email me or call and well arrange a mutually convenient time and I offer a free 15 minute taster to allow you to become familiar with talking to me over Skype.

As the New Year gets under way, we often look to make positive changes to ensure this year is a great year. Making it is not always easy. Read more

Relaxation is often under-estimated as a great way to alleviate stress. Living in the UK can be very stressful with a multitude of perceived demands that we place upon ourselves such as the need to earn a certain amount, to have our status needs met, to perform well as a friend, family member, work colleague or cope with demands such as brining up children or meeting our monthly outgoings. Also, we can feel a sense of guilt if were not being productive or if were not busying ourselves. Read more .

The way we view life can often influence our emotions and how we behave. We tend to attach meaning to things that happen to us such as the manner in which someone talks to us, how our team performs, watching the news etc.Read more

CBT has been given a lot of press over the last few years. This is largely due to it being an evidence based therapy meaning that organisations such as the NHS can see the differences that are being made. It is can also be a very effective therapy to allow people to free themselves from their self limiting thoughts and beliefs and for them to have tools and strategies to manage their lives effectively. Read more

An investigation by The Guardian has found that prescription rates for anti-depressants in the north of England are up to 3 times higher than in the south. NICE guidelines clearly state that pills should not be the first resort in helping mild to moderate depression and instead favour talking therapies such as CBT or Counselling as these work better and do not have risky side effects.

Read more

Life pressures often take their toll on our relationships. From long hours to the time and effort required to care for children. It is very easy for us to become distanced from our partner and for us to fall into routine ways of being where the enjoyment we used to share is less.

Read More

The tips below are to allow people to manage panic attacks and their symptoms. Some or all may be relevant and useful and these are only a guide of the more common ways to manage anxiety.

Read more

Panic attacks (also known as anxiety attacks) can be a terrifying ordeal as our mind gives a strong reaction to something it perceives as a threat. Read more ..

Weve moved offices and as such the landline number has changed from 0121 356 1276 to 0121 580 8015. If you dial the old number though, there is a recorded message to advise you of this change. My mobile remains the same and is probably the quickest way to get in touch.

Regards

Duncan (Quinney)

The Anxiety page of this website has been updated to include lots more information click here. Included now is information on Panic Attacks, General Anxiety Disorder, OCD, Eating Disorders, Substance Misuse and Phobias. As always, should you require any further information, feel free to email or call me. Regards Duncan

The NHS and Government are in the midst of their initiative Improving Access to Psychological Therapies which is pretty much as it sounds. It was found that there are a number of barriers to people gaining the support and help they may benefit from such as lack of NHS counsellors, long waiting lists, lack of awareness of what is available and the perceived stigma attached with seeking psychological support. Read more ..

A new page has been added. Click here Life Coaching in Birmingham. Having trained as a Coach some years ago, I am now offering this for appointments in Great Barr, Birmingham and in Sutton Coldfield. The Birmingham therapy room is at the Scott Arms betweem Walsall and Birmingham City Centre and close to West Bromish too. The Sutton Coldfield therapy room is walking distance from the town centre. I also provide Counselling, Cognitive Behaviour Therapy (CBT), Psychotherapy and Hypnotherapy at these locations too.

As always, feel free to contact me if you would like any further information or if youd like to set up an initial appointment.

Hypnotherapy can help alleviate the symptoms of anxiety. Anxiety is a human emotion experienced by everyone and if you imagine a scale of 1 to 100, where 1 is very low and 100 is very high, our anxiety levels are on that scale somewhere at all times. Sometimes we may be veering towards the upper end, other times we may move towards the lower end. For some people, anxiety can be particularly prevalent and they may feel that they are towards the top end of the scale for a lot of the time and are finding it hard to control this. Read more .

There are a number of reasons as to why exercise is good for us from the obvious physical effects but also from a psychological perspective. Exercise increases the release of natural opiates within the brain called endorphins which is chemically similar to morphine.

Read More

Counselling is a growing industry and the attendance of counselling and therapy is at last becoming more and more accepted. There has been, and to some extent, there still is a stigma attached with seeking psychological help as though those who engage with such therapies are perceived to be in need or are weak.

Read more.

Anxiety is a universal human emotion felt by everybody. We all sit on the scale between experiencing no anxiety to experiencing extreme anxiety and we can move up and down this scale daily, hourly or even by the minute. For some, their anxiety can be felt much more than others whether this be a temporary reaction to current stresses or pressures or whether its a long-term effect. Read more

Many large organisations now provide personal support to their employees which can bring many benefits to both employer and employee.

Read more .

The government have stated that they aim to cut the number of smokers by 50% over the next 10 years. Estimates show that currently approximately 21% of the population smokes with the aim to reduce this to 10%.

Please read more

Stress can be described as an imbalance between a persons demands and their ability to cope with those demands. The personal demands that cause this stress are ultimately imposed by the individual, therefore stress, to an extent can be indirectly self imposed.

Read more ..

Counselling is a talk therapy and many people gain great benefits from being able to openly and safely explore their inner world. Gaining a greater understanding and self awareness can often be the first steps towards making positive change or experiencing your world in a better way. Read more .

A panic attack is the bodys reaction to fear, however, it happens in normal situations when there is no need to feel fear. They are very common, occurring in about 5% of the population (1 in 20 people) . Read more .

It can be said that were all natural born non-smokers, and smoking is a temporary habit that will end at some point. Its the individuals choice whether this ends at the grave or in choosing to improve your life and free yourself.

Read more ..

With the festive season upon us, the subsequent New Years resolutions will sping into action and many people will seek to gain the freedom of being a Nonsmoker. Stopping smoking is the single best thing you can do to improve your health and increase your life expectancy. Read on Further .

I often wonder how the stigma once attached to seeking counselling has lessoned over the last decade. It maybe traditionally un-British to talk about ones feelings and the general belief has always been that there must be something wrong with a person if they needed counselling. Read on further ..

So, having made the decision to see a counsellor, having found one or been referred to one and booked an appointment, you now wait wondering what to expect in your first session. Making this step takes courage and strength as by this point youre likely to have acknowledged that theres an issue or set of issues, even if youre unsure of the exact details. Read on further .

Im pleased to announce I have launched my new website.

The new-look website is to enable users to navigate it easier to find out the information you want even quicker.

Visit link:

Counselling and Hypnotherapy in … – Personal Empowerment

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Transhumanism | Bioethics.com

 Transhumanism  Comments Off on Transhumanism | Bioethics.com
Mar 252016
 

March 8, 2016

(Fortune) As the Baby Boomer generation heads toward retirement, the number of Americans over the age of 65 is expected to hit 69 million people by 2030. That represents 20% of the U.S. population, up from todays share of Read More

March 2, 2016

PLOS Medicine(vol.13, no. 2,2016) is available online by subscription only. Articles include: Transforming Living Kidney Donation with a Comprehensive Strategy by Matthew B. Allen and Peter P. Reese The Rise of Consumer Health Wearables: Promises and Barriers by Lukasz Piwek, Read More

March 1, 2016

Bioethics(vol. 30, no. 3,2016) is available online by subscription only. Articles include: The Ashley Treatment: Improving Quality of Life or Infringing Dignity and Rights? by Caroline Harnacke The Ethics of Continued Life-Sustaining Treatment for Those Diagnosed as Brain-Dead by Jessica Read More

February 16, 2016

The Journal of the American Medical Association(vol. 315, no. 6, 2016) is available online by subscription only. Articles include: Machine Learning and the Profession of Medicine by Alison M. Darcy, Alan K. Louie, and Laura Weiss Roberts Policy Solutions for Read More

February 4, 2016

Science and Engineering Ethics(vol. 22, no. 1, 2016) is available online by subscription only. Articles include: The Convergence of Virtual Reality and Social Networks: Threats to Privacy and Autonomy by Fiachra OBrolchain, et al. Robotic Nudges: The Ethics of Engineering Read More

January 28, 2016

(CBS News) Its a pursuit that seems more like the plot of a science fiction movie than an actual goal of serious researchers around the world. But a number of scientists are fiercely working toward what was once only Read More

January 27, 2016

Scientific American(vol. 314, no. 2, 2016) is available online by subscription only. Articles include: Beware Prenatal Gene Screens Even Genius Needs a Benefactor by Nathan Myhrvold Talk Therapy by Anne Pycha For Sale: Your Medical Records by Adam Tanner Bitter Read More

January 15, 2016

Nursing Philosophy(vol. 17, no. 1, 2016) is available online by subscription only. Articles include: Radical Nursing and the Emergence of Technique as Healthcare Technology by Alan Barnard Cyborgs, Biotechnologies, and Informatics in Health CareNew Paradigms in Nursing Sciences by Ana Read More

January 14, 2016

Journal of Bioethical Inquiry(vol. 12, no. 4, 2015) is available online by subscription only. Articles include: Vaccine Refusal and Trust: The Trouble with Coercion and Education and Suggestions for a Cure by Johan Christiaan Bester Intellectual Property in Genetic Material Read More

December 29, 2015

(The Washington Post) But the discussion reflects a broader truth: We live in an age in which machine intelligence has become a part of daily life. Computers fly planes and soon will drive cars. Computer algorithms anticipate our needs Read More

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Transhumanism | Bioethics.com

 Posted by at 2:44 am  Tagged with:

Transhumanism: An Attempt To Use Technology To Turn Men Into Gods …

 Transhumanism  Comments Off on Transhumanism: An Attempt To Use Technology To Turn Men Into Gods …
Mar 252016
 

Did you know that the word transhuman literally means beyond human?

All over the world, scientists and intellectuals are joining the transhumanism movement. Those that adhere to this philosophy believe that the time has come for us to use technology to take control of our own evolution. By doing so, they believe that we can give ourselves superhuman powers and radically extend our lifespans. Right now, the most popular movie in America is Avengers: Age of Ultron, and in recent years we have watched films about mutants and superheroes become some of Hollywoods biggest moneymakers. But transhumanists believe that we will soon be able to literally turn ourselves into such superheroes as technology continues to increase at an exponential rate. And once we have superhuman powers and superhuman intelligence, they are convinced that we will eradicate all sickness, disease, poverty and war. Many of them actually believe that we will be able to achieve immortality and establish a utopia on Earth just a few decades from now. In other words, we wont need a God because we will have become our own gods.

At the core of the transhumanist movement is an unshakable faith in the inevitable technological progress of humanity. Yes, there are some transhumanists that have doubts, but for most transhumanists the solution to all of our problems is more technology. If you are not familiar with transhumanism, the following is a really good definitionthat I recently came across

Transhumanism is a cultural and intellectual movement promoting the aim of transforming the human condition fundamentally by developing and making available technologies to enhance human intellectual, physical, and psychological capabilities. Transhumanist thinking studies the potential benefits and hazards of emerging technologies that could overcome basic human limitations. It also addresses ethical matters involved in developing and using such technologies. Some transhumanists predict that human beings may eventually transform themselves into beings with such greatly expanded abilities that they justify a state of being known as posthuman.

Transhumanists want to help humans live much longer, and they also want to dramatically increase the quality of those lives. Ultimately, most transhumanists are fully convinced that they will be able to defeat death altogether. The following is a short excerptfrom an ExtremeTech article

One of the core concepts in transhumanist thinking is life extension: Through genetic engineering, nanotech, cloning, and other emerging technologies, eternal life may soon be possible. Likewise, transhumanists are interested in the ever-increasing number of technologies that can boost our physical, intellectual, and psychological capabilities beyond what humans are naturally capable of (thus the termtranshuman). Transcranial direct current stimulation (tDCS), for example, which speeds up reaction times and learning speed byrunning a very weak electric current through your brain, has already been used by the US military to train snipers. On the more extreme side, transhumanism deals with the concepts of mind uploading (to a computer), and what happens when we finally craft a computer with greater-than-human intelligence (the technological singularity).

So would you like to live forever armed with superhuman powers?

The most famous transhumanist in the world, Ray Kurzweil, actually believes that he is going to be able to do that. But first he has to stay alive long enough for the technologies that he believes are coming to be developed. So Kurzweiltakes 150 supplements a day in an attempt to keep his body in peak condition

The youthful 65-year-old currently takes 150 supplements a day, which he argues is the first bridge.

The idea is to build enough bridges to ensure the body holds out long enough for life-lengthening technology to come into its own.

He has likened the biology of the body to computer software and believes we are all out of date.

Kurzweil is absolutely convinced that if he can just stretch his life out long enough that technologies that will enable him to achieve immortality are right around the corner. In fact,in a piece that he wrote for CNN he expressed his belief that our medical technologies will be a million times more powerful than they are today just two decades from now

Health and medicine is now an information technology and is therefore subject to what I call the law of accelerating returns, which is a doubling of capability (for the same cost) about each year that applies to any information technology.

As a result, technologies to reprogram the software that underlie human biology are already a thousand times more powerful than they were when the genome project was completed in 2003, and will again be a thousand times more powerful than they are today in a decade, and a million times more powerful in two decades.

So will he be right?

We will just have to wait and see.

For a long time, many in the transhumanist movement (including Kurzweil) have been pointing to a time period between 2030 and 2050 during which they believe something remarkable will happen. They believe that during that time period something known as the singularity will occur. As technology increases at an exponential rate, they believe that artificial intelligence will begin to greatly surpass human intelligence at some point, and that humanity will merge with this new super intelligence. Once that happens, they believe that the world will change in ways that we cannot even comprehend today

Kurzweil and his followers believe that a crucial turning point will be reached around the year 2030, when information technology achieves genuine intelligence, at the same time as biotechnology enables a seamless union between us and this super-smart new technological environment. Ultimately the human-machine mind will become free to roam a universe of its own creation, uploading itself at will on to a suitably powerful computational substrate. We will become essentially god-like in our powers.

Does that sound good to you, or does it sound frightening?

Other transhumanists are not quite as optimistic as Kurzweil and his followers. Just consider what Max Tegmark, the author of Our Mathematical Universe: My Quest for the Ultimate Nature of Reality, had to say about what life will be like after the singularity

After this, life on Earth would never be the same. Whoever or whatever controls this technology would rapidly become the worlds wealthiest and most powerful, outsmarting allfinancial markets, out-inventing and out-patenting all human researchers, and out-manipulating all human leaders. Even if we humansnominally merge with such machines, we might have no guarantees whatsoever about the ultimate outcome, making it feel less like a mergerand more like a hostile corporate takeover.

Even some of the most prominent scientists in the world are skeptical of what an ultra-powerful artificial intelligence would mean for the future of humanity. The following is an excerpt from an article co-authored by Stephen Hawking

Looking further ahead, there are no fundamental limits to what can be achieved: there is no physical law precluding particles from being organized in ways that perform even more advanced computations than the arrangements of particles in human brains. An explosive transition is possible, although it may play out differently than in the movie: as Irving Good realized in 1965, machines with superhuman intelligence could repeatedly improve their design even further, triggering what Vernor Vinge called a singularity and Johnny Depps movie character calls transcendence. One can imagine such technology outsmarting financial markets, out-inventing human researchers, out-manipulating human leaders, and developing weapons we cannot even understand. Whereas the short-term impact of AI depends on who controls it, the long-term impact depends on whether it can be controlled at all.

But despite these reservations from many in the scientific community, many transhumanists are pushing ahead as hard as they can. Many of them are absolutely convinced that what they are doing will bring a new golden age to this planet. Just consider the words oftranshumanist Zoltan Istvan

Despite this, people continue to worry that technology and science that make our species more transhuman will be used to create a deeper divide in society for the haves and have-nots. Those worries are unfounded. A close examination of the issues show that transhumanist technology and science liberates us, brings us better health, and has improved the living standards of all people around the world. If you value liberty, equality and progress, it makes sense to embrace the coming age of transhumanism.

Doesnt that sound wonderful?

And there are even some transhumanists that couch their hopes and dreams for the future in religious terminology. For example, transhumanist Mark Pesce is fully convinced that transhumanism will allow ordinary humans to become as gods

Men die, planets die, even stars die. We know all this. Because we know it, we seek something morea transcendence of transience, translation to incorruptible form. An escape if you will, a stop to the wheel. We seek, therefore, to bless ourselves with perfect knowledge and perfect will; To become as gods, take the universe in hand, and transform it in our imagefor our own delight. As it is on Earth, so it shall be in the heavens. The inevitable result of incredible improbability, the arrow of evolution is lipping us into the transhuman an apotheosis to reason, salvation attained by good works.

That is some pretty strong stuff.

So what do you think about all of this? Please feel free to join the discussion by leaving a comment below

The rest is here:

Transhumanism: An Attempt To Use Technology To Turn Men Into Gods …

Talk:Colonization of Mars – Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

 Mars Colonization  Comments Off on Talk:Colonization of Mars – Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Feb 022016
 

Cost of a Manned Mission?[edit]

Is there any reliable information about the cost of a manned mission to mars? I think it would be useful to include in the article.

For anyone who digs this up, two ideas would be:

Q: How much will sending humans to Mars cost? A: Estimates of the cost of a human Mars exploration program over the years have been wildly disparate, leaving much confusion in their wake. On the high end of the scale was the Space Exploration Initiative proposed by President George H. W. Bush in 1989 at $450 billion; Mars Direct occupies the low end of the scale at roughly $30 billion. – http://www.marssociety.org/portal/c/faq

-Lexspoon 12:51, 20 June 2007 (UTC)

I know many are already aware that both “colonization” and “colonisation” are valid ways of spelling the word. Nevertheless, I thought it would be nice to make a note of it here since I noticed some people changing things to reflect one particular spelling. This may be done for the sake of consistency, but, in that case, it should be noted that the wikipedia article for the term is listed under Colonisation. –Xaliqen

Consideration ought to be given to retitling this entry “Settlement of Mars” rather than coloniz/sation, given the negative connotations the word “colonization” engenders in political discussion. Inevitably — amazingly — such diversionary concerns arise when discussing Martian settlement. Ericmachmer (talk) 21:48, 29 December 2009 (UTC)

The possibility of terraforming plays a great part all over the article. However, I’m in doubt about its feasibility. For one thing I believe it takes too long to wait for the results, and nobody is willing to invest a dollar into something that possibly (!) returns in some hundred or may be thousand years. For another, there is good reason Mars having such a thin atmosphere today. The long term stability of a terraformed environment is pretty unlikely. All this about the terraforming thing seems to be science fiction, while the colonization is not. So, how about reducing the idea of terraforming to a small paragraph with a link to the main article Terraforming of Mars? The whole article would be more believable if it concentrates strictly on technology that is in reach of men. — The Cascade (talk) 08:04, 12 March 2008 (UTC)

Yes, our presence will change the Martian environment, there is no doubt about it. I would not call this unintentional influence terraforming, because it surely does not aim to make Mars resemble Terra. Neither I would expect the unintentional changes to leed even into this direction. No, our presence will not terraform Mars. Probably, our presence will dirtyform it.

Still this is not what I meant. The article describes intentional terraforming. Sure, it is much easier to live on a terraformed Mars, but yet it is not possible with our current knowledge and technology. There are ideas, but nobody knows about the viability. It’s too premature. I find it nice to have that article Terraforming of Mars. It is a good article, and I definitely want to keep it, even grow it bigger, concentrate all available info in it. However, the article Colonization of Mars points to a more realistic scenario. It describes many ideas to colonize the planet without the need for terraforming, which is possible with known technology. I wouldn’t want to describe terraforming here as inevitable, which is not at all. I find terraforming too fantastic, and my impression is that it makes the article somehow fantastic, too. I’d rather want the article be realistic. — The Cascade (talk) 14:48, 12 March 2008 (UTC)

Sorry for being rude. And offensive for that matter… first of all the green house gases: Mars has a lots of it. atmosphere consists of >95% CO2. and there is frozen CO2 all over the planet… thats just not the reason why the atmosphere is so thin.

there are mainly two reasons:

1. mars is too small to keep a dense atmosphere. just not enough gravity to keep it.

2. no magnetic field. the charged particles from the sun (sun wind) just “blow” away the atmosphere.

We can think about a solution for (2), like building a superconductor coil around the equator. But because of (1) this wont help in the long run… terraforming mars is a nice dream. but as long as we dont invent a seriously new kind physics, it will be a dream..

Anyway i think it is good to mention the historical ideas about terraforming, just please also mention that it is just nowhere close to be imaginable for someone who studied physics.

135.196.213.146 (talk) 17:17, 25 January 2011 (UTC)

CAN MARS KEEP AN ATMOSPHERE?

Mars surface gravity is high enough to keep all gases except Hydrogen, Helium and Water. Further, water stays in the troposphere, (because of the cold trap), and is not normally lost to thermal escape. Mars HAS lost about 15 meters of water globally, but most of this was from UV light disassociating water into hydrogen and oxygen, with the hydrogen being quickly lost. If Mars was to have an oxygen atmosphere (and an ozone layer), it would keep its water for billions of years. In fact, even with out an oxygen atmosphere, Mars has kept its water for billions of years. Plenty of water is in its ice caps and as permafrost. It has not lost all of its water from thermal escape or any other method.

Scientists have shown that worlds with no magnetic field lose tiny amounts of air from solar wind erosion. This adds up over billions of years. However, it is not something that terraformers have to worry about over hundred of millions of year time scales. (100 million years is far longer than the lifetime of our species.)

Venus has no magnetic field and a solar flux more than 5 times what Mars has but it has not lost its atmosphere. Mercury has quite a strong magnetic field and basically has no atmosphere. The meme that no magnetic field = no atmosphere is far too simplistic. Venus is an obvious disproof of this idea.

Scientists think Mars had a 3 or 4 bar atmosphere early in its life and estimate that about 75% to 80% of this was lost to the solar wind. (The solar wind was ~100 times stronger at the start of the solar system and ~6 times stronger ~2.5 billion years ago.) Since it now has an atmosphere of 1/100th of a bar, where is its air?

In the soil. Lightning and UV radiation will form nitrates. On Earth these are recycled quickly by life. But in some regions like the Gobi desert, the nitrate beds are very deep. (Dozens of meters deep if I remember correctly, don’t quote me.) On Mars, most of the nitrogen was not lost, it has been deposited in the soil. Oxygen is too heavy for thermal escape, but will react with rocks or with salts to form perchlorates. Carbon dioxide will form carbonate rocks, be absorbed into CO2 clathrates, and be dissolved in ground water and form ice caps. Further, clays which are common on Mars will absorb carbon dioxide when they get cold, typically 4 to 6% by mass. Most of Mars’ atmosphere is in its soils and rocks.

If terraformers brought Mars atmosphere up to 1 bar pressure by dropping comets onto the planet, it would take 2 to 3 billion years of solar wind sputtering to reduce its air pressure to the point where humans still would NOT need a pressure suit. (Tho the pressure would be too low for humans to breath.) (This assumes that the Sun’s solar wind continues to decline or at least stays the same.) Claiming that we can’t live on a Terraformed Mars because the solar wind will erode the atmosphere in 2.5 billion years when the Earth’s biosphere won’t survive 800 million years (because the sun is warming) is silly. Let’s focus on the next two hundred to 200,000,000 years and let someone else worry about the time after that.

I’ll track down more references for these statements later. Out of time.

http://people.virginia.edu/~rej/papers03/Leblanc01.pdf

“Life and Death of Planet Earth, The: How The New Science Of Astrobiology Charts The Ultimate Fate” by Peter D Ward & Don Brownlee. // They show multicellar life likely won’t last 1/2 a billion years on Earth as the sun warms.

http://abyss.uoregon.edu/~js/ast121/lectures/lec14.html

http://www.nature.com/nature/journal/v272/n5656/pdf/272803a0.pdf

http://articles.adsabs.harvard.edu/full/1980LPSC…11.2479W

“Mars: A Warmer Wetter Planet” by Jeffrey S. Kargel // Discussed MEGAOUTFLO events in the past when the atmosphere in the soil out gases. Also talks about the 3 to 4 bar early Martian atmosphere & the martian water budget.

Warm regards, Rick. 65.110.28.47 (talk) 15:51, 27 May 2011 (UTC)

I think that the discussion of economics on this page pays too much attention to ways that Earth could economically supplement life on Mars, and not enough attention to how Mars could supplement Earth. It mentions trade between Earth and Mars without mentioning what exactly Mars would have to offer Earth. I think the entire feasibility of Mars colonization rests on Mars having something that Earth does not have, and at this point, I have a great deal of trouble seeing what that might be, except cheap land, which doesn’t seem to me to make up for the transportation and development costs that would go into it. Maybe a tourist industry, but I don’t think you could build anything bigger than a small city on the basis of the tourist industry. Preceding unsigned comment added by 66.57.230.223 (talk) 18:24, 6 July 2008 (UTC)

I agree with the above. The moon advocates have a myriad of ways to provide services/products to earth in a fiscal timetable, and value for value trades. However, this section on mars economics focuses mainly on earth providing economic benefits to mars and not an even exchange of value for value.Moonus111 (talk) 20:38, 1 October 2010 (UTC)

VIABILITY OF MARTIAN TRADE:

We know Mars has water enriched with deuterium (5 times more so than Earth). which is a viable export for cash. Strategic metals worth $10,000 / kg or more (gold and more expensive metals) can be shipped to Earth for a profit. Also, if there are asteroid bases, it is FAR cheaper to supply them from Mars than from Earth. Robert Zubrin suggested a triangle trade. High tech parts from Earth to Mars. Fuel, light industry supplies and food from Mars to the Asteroids. Asteroids send strategic metals back to Earth.

It is also easier for Mars to send stuff to Luna than it is to go from Earth to Luna. So if we get an industry collecting Helium 3 from the Moon, a similar triangle trade can be set up between the Earth, Mars and the Moon.

It won’t be profitable to go to Mars to get Platinum (for example). It would be cheaper to re-open marginal mines on Earth. But the platinum on Mars won’t have been picked over for hundreds of years – it will be right on the surface. If there are Martian colonists, they will be able to easily collect iridium, deuterium, rubidium, palladium, gallium, gold, etc, since there will be vulcanism and water created deposits right on the surface. These could be sold for a profit to get high tech, low mass supplies from Earth.

Mars has all of the elements needed for rocket fuel, plastics, industrial metals, computer chips and food. It also has a ~24 hour day night cycle which allows growing food economically. Coupled with Mars’ greatest resource (a shallow gravity well) it can supply needed materials to bases in the inner and outer solars system more cheaply than Earth can.

For example: On page 230 of “the case for Mars” Robert Zubrin shows that a mission to Ceres requires 50 times less mass to be launched from Mars rather than Earth. (If the mission requires 1,000 tonnes of supplies it can be done with two launches from Mars or 107 launches from Earth.) This assumes that no propellent has to be hauled to Ceres. If we have to bring return fuel as well, then the Earth based mission becomes even more hopeless. Even if space launches from Mars are 10 times more expensive than Earth, it would still be much more profitable to send supplies from Mars.

Luna has severe disadvantages for a self sustaining colony. It lacks 24 hour day night cycle which is a huge problem if you have to grow plants there. (Plants require a really tremendous amount of energy to grow with artificial light.) Its lack of atmosphere means that plants will die from solar flares unless you have thick glass walls which will crack from the day / night heat stress. It lacks ores since the moon is made up of junk rock (see page 220 ibid for why ores are rare on Luna but likely common on Mars). Elements like H, C, N, P, K & S are all rare or very rare on Luna and must be imported from else where. There is plenty of oxygen and silicon but they are tightly bound to the rock and require a huge amount of energy and hydrogen and carbon to extract.

For references to what I’ve said above (and far more details), see “The Case for Mars” and “Opening Space” by Robert Zubrin. 65.110.28.47 (talk) 14:40, 27 May 2011 (UTC)Warm regards, Rick.

WHY WAS COMMENTS ON ROCKET SLEDS / ROTATING SKY HOOKS DELETED? Space elevators are far more difficult to build than a rocket sled / sky ramp and or a rotating sky hook. If you are looking for cheap ways for a martian colony to make getting into space both methods are far more practical than a space elevator. Further, a sky ramp can put things into low Mars orbit, which a space elevator can’t do, unless you haul rocket fuel up and launch from part way up the the elevator. I suggest that a rocket sled or Mag Lev style sky ramp located on Pavonis Mons is so many more times more practical than a space elevator (especially for a small colony struggling for capital) that the space elevator reference should be considered to be removed as a remote fantasy. I did not site sources in this article, but provided links to Wiki pages where there ARE references. 65.110.28.47 (talk) 14:40, 27 May 2011 (UTC)Regards, Rick

While interesting, I’d not stress this too much until 1) the results are duplicated independently, and 2) a longer time period is tested. 34 days is hardly long enough to ensure the survival of earth-life in Martian conditions. Cumulative radiation affects, for example, could prove disastrous over the course of months/years. Additionally, one good solar flare would probably destroy any life exposed to it in the same environment that this lab used, which due to its lack of a magnetosphere, Mars would be greatly affected by (locally.) I don’t have a paper to cite, but discussions with some profs at the local university were not very positive on the long-term success of such tests. Note that hard questions were not asked/answered in the news articles cited, either. HammerFilmFan (talk) 12:20, 17 June 2012 (UTC)

On the 10th of November 2011 R.Schuster called for a citation for the statement: “It is not known if this is enough to prevent the health problems associated with Weightlessness.” However it is well known that no experiments were done in which human beings were subjected to fractional g accelerations for weeks or more at a time. The experimental evidence is from free fall in orbit. There does not need to be much documentation to show that we do not know something. So it seems we could just drop the citation needed template on the basis of common knowledge. We should do that or get rid of the statement. – Fartherred (talk) 02:18, 12 July 2012 (UTC)

In a number of edits on the 19th of July, Robertinventor among other things removed the sentences: “It’s impossible for any manned mission to Mars to keep to the requirements of the [[COSPAR]] (Committee on Space Research) guidelines for planetary protection. NASA currently follows COSPAR guidelines.” He replaced these with a second link to [[Manned_mission_to_Mars#Critiques]] and his comments about introducing Earth organisms to Mars affecting Mars’ biologically pristine condition. I have added the comment about NASA following COSPAR guidelines of planetary protection to the [[Manned_mission_to_Mars#Critiques]]. However, this is better addressed directly in the [[Colonization of Mars]] article because it is a direct concern of colonization. The time of a colonization mission cannot be until nations supporting launches to orbit consider that the research question of life developing independently on Mars or not has been sufficiently addressed. Technologies necessary to the colonization of Mars have not been sufficiently developed to have a one-way mission to Mars yet, so we are not waiting just for the COSPAR requirements to expire; but it is a definite road block. There are some advocates of colonization that want colonization started in their lifetimes, as do the backers of Mars One. So this is an item of interest to them. For a neutral point of view, we should not be promoting Mars colonization or minimizing or ignoring the problems. We should present significant facts that are published. – Fartherred (talk) 17:53, 24 July 2012 (UTC)

The article fails to point out how easy it is to colonize mars. It has wind, a steady stream of wind will blow on mars as a faint wistle effect. Mars is a dead planet. It can easily be colonized and solar power is not an issue. Ever here of electro-magentic generators? Its called free energy. They would be quite sufficient.–Asfd777 (talk) 14:49, 15 September 2012 (UTC)

People can get the idea of domes for Mars colonies by looking at many old science fiction magazine covers, but a transparent dome is impractical for Mars. Temperatures down to -143 degrees Celsius just overwhelm the limited heating available from a dome greenhouse. It is more practical for a greenhouse to be a buried cylinder with a portion of the curved roof made of glass and steel exposed to sunlight from mirrors that concentrate it as much as is needed to maintain operating temperature, and the skylight covered by insulation at night. I cannot give a reliable source for this but it is rather obvious to someone who knows a little physics. I would like to see a reliable source for the statement that domes are useful for trapping heat for greenhouses on Mars so that if it comes from a graduate student I can urge that they flunk out and if it comes from a professor I can urge that his research funds be cut back. – Fartherred (talk) 21:23, 14 September 2012 (UTC)

There has been the direct observation of many of the elements necessary for life and this could be supported by citation. However some of the elements necessary for life are necessary only in trace amounts and have not been directly measured yet. We have from the theory of the solar system forming from a cloud of gas and dust that Earth and Mars formed from planetesimals that formed from dust in neighboring regions of the cloud. Therefore the elemental composition of Earth and Mars should have been similar to start with and only limited differences in environment caused changes in composition over geological ages. That Mars is expected to have all of the elements necessary for life can be arrived at by synthesis from sources that I have found, but maybe someone can find the synthesis published. Then it could be included in the article. – Fartherred (talk) 10:14, 6 March 2013 (UTC)

The result of the proposal was no consensus. –BDD (talk) 17:51, 22 March 2013 (UTC) (non-admin closure)

Colonization of Mars Settlement of Mars Reflects modern terminology in the space advocate community without the distracting cultural baggage accompanying the term ‘colonization’ Relisted. BDD (talk) 16:33, 15 March 2013 (UTC) Ericmachmer (talk) 15:56, 6 March 2013 (UTC)

Comment I think consensus was quite clear, it was to not move. — 65.92.180.137 (talk) 01:55, 24 March 2013 (UTC)

Settlement of Mars , Mars settlement , Mars settlement should all redirect here. — 65.92.180.137 (talk) 02:08, 7 March 2013 (UTC)

Why is this useful? It seems to me that any worries about colonization should be addressed in the relevant sections up page. A lot of the info is literally duplicated from above. Also, it contains unsourced SYNTH from Robert Walker. Already have deleted some of the obvious duplication of info and unsourced opinions. The telerobotics paragraph is irrelevant so that was deleted as well. I have half a mind to delete the whole section. Warren Platts (talk) 17:14, 27 June 2013 (UTC)

This article now has an Advocacy section but no balancing Concerns section.

I kept a copy of the original Concerns section in my user space here: User:Robertinventor/Colonization_of_Mars_-_concerns

I expected this to happen as the author said he is nauseated by all the concerns sections on Project Mars and is on a cleanup mission, also to remove all content written by myself on contamination issues. I did not write this now deleted section, just contributed some material to it. Robert Walker (talk) 14:12, 14 July 2013 (UTC)

Please be aware that a Request for Arbitration has been submitted to address the long-standing user conduct issues that prevent the resolution of content disputes. The RFAR is at: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wikipedia:Arbitration/Requests/Case#Mars Robert McClenon (talk) 23:04, 14 July 2013 (UTC)

Can we include a more realistic-looking image (like CGI or something like that) as the lead one? The current one looks a little like it’s from a children’s magazine… –Againme (talk) 19:56, 16 October 2013 (UTC)

___________

Why not just stage something in Arizona, to convey the illusion that there are already people on Mars? It seems that this “childish” picture is sufficient to mislead the uninformed that Mars is already colonized. WikiEditor2563 (talk) 18:42, 5 November 2013 (UTC)

This is in response to a personal email I received from wikieditor Grayfell, who asked that I discuss this here. I need instruction from him or anyone so I can email him personally, I find communicating this way to be overly complicated and incoherent First, I’m writing the final pages of a non-fiction book, which includes several chapters on the colonization of Mars, exoplanets, etc, so I’m somewhat of an expert on the subject, regarding the real potential of a colony on Mars.

Now, the Colonization of Mars is a particularly unique subject, in particular regarding its inclusion in an encyclopedia, because there isnt actually a colony on Mars! And such a thing is certainly not inevitable. EVERYTHING about the colonization of Mars is opinion and highly speculative. The case can easily be made that nothing about this wiki page is encyclopedic! and that this web page is nothing but a bullhorn for the Mars advocates which certainly seems to be the case when some of the edits Ive made are undone before Ive even logged off! I mean, why would anyone be so vigilant about (of all things) the colonization of Mars?

Your sense of how things can be edited is too strict. Even your sense of what constitutes an encyclopedic tone is subjective and about which you dont have the last word. You and a few others are way too quick to simply undo others edits, and is arrogant.

First, why do you insist on using the word hospitable in describing Mars? That is entirely propagandistic. In no sense of the word, relatively or absolutely, is Mars hospitable. That might have been a matter of speculation to people in the stone ages, who gazed up in wonder but who couldnt have known any better; to Galileo; or even to early 20th century manbut NOW? given all that we know, in all its degrees of precision?

The sources that you are protecting belie the facts, and have no place in this wiki page. Anyone can write a science article these days and theres no reason their opinion is more relevant than mine. Even science articles are biased and often have a case to promote, and this is especially true for articles about Mars and the exploration of space. Furthermore, there are no sources that say that Mars has been colonized (regardless of unmanned research – which is truly amazing and gives me goose bumps), so maybe the entire Colonization of Mars page should be removed.

For the intro paragraph for this webpage, you need something for a general audience, not bogged down in misleading data. The fact is, a colony on Mars is science-fiction, and there are HUGE obstacles that prevent this from ever happening. this should be conveyed somewhere in the wiki page, preferably at the top, rather than cater to the dreamers and fantasists in some form of agenda.

For example, its FAR better to say that circumstances on Mars in fact would be deadly to all life as we know it (except for perhaps some extremophilic microorganisms) THAN deadly to most life because that implies that there are some forms of life on Mars, which is an OUTRAGEOUS implication, and propagandistic. Things that can be grown in simulated conditions on Earth do NOT change this simple fact! Mars is absolutely NOT hospitable to life and it is propagandistic to suggest that it does or might. Its not encyclopedic to suggest that there MIGHT be life on Mars when after the last 50 years of reconnaissance and actual soil and air analysisNO LIFE HAS BEEN FOUND ON MARS. Its very irrational at this point in the research – given all that we know, and we know a lot, and to a great deal of precision that there might be life on Mars. Thats a serious hang-up that is not supported by science, only by science-fiction fans and fantasists. Science doesnt HOPE or DREAM. Science simply collects facts.

The discovery of life on another planet would be the biggest breakthrough OF ALL TIME. That milestone has not been reached, so to imply that life may exist on Mars because of some dumb simulation here on Earth, or the unrestrained enthusiasm for such, does NOT belong in an encyclopedia. Maybe in Bizarre Fantasy Weekly, but not an encyclopedia.

This wiki page should not be used as a voice for dreamers, fantasists, or space tourism promoters. Now, I should be free to say THIS in the introductory paragraph maybe now you can appreciate how much restraint Ive been exercising.

The intro para to this wiki page should say, or convey, this specific point, because its realistic, not bogged down with misleading data, doesnt promote an agenda, and is entirely, as you say, encyclopedic:

It is absolutely true that This does not preclude the possibility that man might one day step foot on Mars and scout around, but whether or not we ever get to Mars seems less a matter of scientific progress, than the balance of power between sane and crazy which is properly referenced by National Geographic but which you reject because YOU HAVE AN AGENDA TO PROMOTE, which is in complete violation of the Wiki terms of service.

Its not scientific or encyclopedic to HOPE for something, just to state the facts or what can be reasonably surmised where scientific proof of something may be impossible, which seems to be the case, to a large degree, in this arena.

Given what we know, it makes more sense, at this point, to surmise that man will NOT colonize Mars, even though of course theres nothing to stop him from trying. This opinion should be conveyed, somehow, in the wiki page for this topic.

Bearing in mind that if someone wants to learn about Mars they are better served by the wiki page for Mars, because as a planet there is, of course, much to be said. WikiEditor2563 (talk) 20:03, 5 November 2013 (UTC)

As I indicated above, there are really no facts regarding a colonization of Mars, only opinions – much of which is wild speculation – so the idea of “reliable sources” regarding this is somewhat meaningless – since no one’s been to Mars! One could challenge anyone who claims to be an expert on this subject. For that reason I don’t understand why this webpage is so bulky! There seems to be nothing on the plus side for Mars! So where does the optimism come from?

Even for reliable sources, some things are still a matter of subjective opinion, or involve tremendous amounts of speculation, particularly about a colony on Mars. Such opinions are very biased, it’s nave to deny this. This occurs, for example, when a “specialist” says something will happen in 20 years – which gets them off the hook, and implies “let the next generation do it while we still collect a paycheck.” Engineers are not magicians, they can’t turn lead into gold. There’s an incentive to push things ahead 20 years and not a more realistic 50 – or 100. 20 years seems more within reach, so project funding is maintained. Imagine if they said 50 years – funding would stop! When a specialist at NASA says “something can be done” its because if he said “it can’t be done” he and the rest of his pals would lose their jobs! So this website CAN’T be a bullhorn for NASA or the Mars advocates. AND IN THIS ARENA, MANY THINGS MUST BE SURMISED, and this Wikipedia page includes a lot of surmising and speculating. Who do you think has their fingers crossed the hardest? NASA. When we read their articles we need to take everything they say with a few grains of salt, and be skeptical of their optimism, because the idea of a colony on Mars IS outrageous, for many reasons (and hence the book I’m writing). For starters, heavy payloads can’t land gently on Mars – but that’s just a distraction, that’s not even one of the REAL obstacles. Maybe these reasons are just more intuitive to me than you, based on years of reading and my own point of view, for which I have 2 science degrees to support, but you have a point of view too, it’s hard for ANYONE to be completely objective, we’re all rooting for one side or another.

Also, there are a lot of “opinions” on Wikipedia, everything isn’t sourced. Everything I’ve contributed to Wikipedia is objective, restrained, suitable for a general audience, and free of promotion. Even the part about “balance between sane and crazy” but I knew that would be deleted, even though some science articles are describing some things in this arena as just that. The content I’ve repeatedly posted to introduce this Wikipedia page is both historically correct, succinct, insightful, and captures the spirit of the concept without going overboard.

_____________________ I only

What’s interesting is that you haven’t substantiated any of your disagreements with me, just condescending threats and warnings.

As I just said to another editor,

So saying that something is “sourced” is, in the end, somewhat meaningless. Which is why I put a higher priority on relevance and readability than the source material. It goes without saying that ALL of my edits are informed through the research I’ve been doing the last 15 months – and which is ongoing.

And again, regarding the “warring,” it takes two to tango. WikiEditor2563 (talk) 19:37, 13 November 2013 (UTC) __________________________

WikiEditor2563, why are you removing sourced, relevant text and wikilinks? [2] –NeilN talk to me 18:30, 13 November 2013 (UTC) _______________________

Note: this editor has now been indefinitely blocked. andy (talk) 22:56, 13 November 2013 (UTC)

I have no particular expertise in the area but as an ever-curious reader here is what struck me about the article:

My two cents anyways. –NeilN talk to me 00:27, 14 November 2013 (UTC)

As far as I can see the article now has no mention of the requirements for planetary protection of Mars. Particularly, increasing evidence of possible habitable regions on present day Mars surface for microbes. This is a recent news story in Nature about the warm seasonal flows now found in equatorial regions: Water seems to flow freely on Mars – Any areas of water could be off-limits to all but the cleanest spacecraft.

Current guidelines for Planetary protection require us to keep Mars free of Earth life so that we can study it in its pristine state. This is an international requirement under the Outer Space Treaty which all space faring countries and countries with space ambitions except N. Korea have signed and nearly all other countries as well.

There is much published on planetary protection issues for rovers on Mars, as of course is an ongoing thing – there is not so much published on planetary protection for future human missions to Mars, although the issues are of course far greater for humans.

This is one article Human Missions to Mars a Challenge for Planetary Protection:Gernot Groemer

There are also general statements in some of the COSPAR documents but no detailed discussion or technical details.

I think the general assumption is that the humans would be sent to Mars only after the current exploration phase is already completed, at a point when requirements for protection can be relaxed somewhat, but there is no set criterion for the end of the exploration phase (which I personally think must surely last at least several more decades, probably longer, before we have a reasonable understanding of Mars by way of ground truth).

On the idea that perhaps it might be a major issue for human missions to address, there is this 2012 space.com article, with remarks from Cassie Conley planetary protection officer. Manned Mars Missions Could Threaten Red Planet Life – which of course is a bit out of date not mentioning the newer 2013 resuults.

Suggestion: to say that

Robert Walker (talk) 14:00, 5 January 2014 (UTC)

Hello everybody! I’m interested in reading about the feasability of a martian space elevator, such as mentionned by the end of the Tranportation section of this article. I already found an articles about the Space Elevators on Earth and the Moon. Now I need data about the martian one. Can anybody find them and add them to the article? Thanks. 80.82.235.62 (talk) 15:28, 4 April 2015 (UTC) A Martian lost on Earth;)

In the section, Economics, there is a link to Economics of extraterrestrial resource extraction which at first sounds pertinent to colonization of Mars, but when one follows the link it leads by redirect to the asteroid mining article which is only indirectly related to Mars colonization. This link is particularly distracting because although it is attached to the words “economic problem” it does not elaborate the economic problem of the Colonization of Mars. – Fartherred (talk) 04:48, 14 April 2015 (UTC)

Magnetosphere does nothing to UV or gamma rays, only to charged particles like beta and alpha rays. Now the sentence is misleading, but magnetosphere is good to mention in context of other radiation. I just don’t have clue what is the effect size..? 91.159.81.20 (talk) 01:58, 3 May 2015 (UTC)

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Talk:Colonization of Mars – Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

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Jan 112016
 

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Origins of Eugenics: From Sir Francis Galton to Virginias …

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Oct 232015
 

Sir Francis Galton. Courtesy of the American Philosophical Society. [2.1]

ENLARGE [2.2] Faces and Races, illustration from a eugenical text, Racial History of Mankind. Courtesy of Special Collections, Pickler Memorial Library, Truman State University.

[2.3] Harry H. Laughlin and Charles Davenport at the Eugenics Record Office. Courtesy of Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory Archives.

Sir Francis Galton first coined the term eugenics in 1883. Put simply, eugenics means well-born. Initially Galton focused on positive eugenics, encouraging healthy, capable people of above-average intelligence to bear more children, with the idea of building an improved human race. Some followers of Galton combined his emphasis on ancestral traits with Gregor Mendels research on patterns of inheritance, in an attempt to explain the generational transmission of genetic traits in human beings.

Negative eugenics, as developed in the United States and Germany, played on fears of race degeneration. At a time when the working-class poor were reproducing at a greater rate than successful middle- and upper-class members of society, these ideas garnered considerable interest. One of the most famous proponents in the United States was President Theodore Roosevelt, who warned that the failure of couples of Anglo-Saxon heritage to produce large families would lead to race suicide.

The center of the eugenics movement in the United States was the Eugenics Record Office (ERO) at Cold Spring Harbor, New York. Biologist Charles Davenport established the ERO, and was joined in his work by Director Harry H. Laughlin. Both men were members of the American Breeders Association. Their view of eugenics, as applied to human populations, drew from the agricultural model of breeding the strongest and most capable members of a species while making certain that the weakest members do not reproduce.

Eugenicists attempted to demonstrate the power of heredity by constructing pedigree charts of defective families. These charts were used to scientifically quantify the assertion that human frailties such as profligacy and indolence were genetic components that could be passed from one generation to the next. Two studies were published that charted the propensity towards criminality, disease, and immoral behavior of the extended families of the Jukes and the Kallikaks. Eugenicists pointed to these texts to demonstrate that feeblemindedness was an inherited attribute and to reveal how the care of such degenerates represented an enormous cost to society.

The ERO promoted eugenics research by compiling records or pedigrees of thousands of families. Charles Davenport created The Family History Book, which assisted field workers as they interviewed families and assembled pedigrees specifying inheritable family attributes which might range from allergies to civic leadership. Even a propensity for carpentry or dress-making was considered a genetically inherited trait. Davenport and Laughlin also issued another manual titled How to Make a Eugenical Family Study to instruct field workers in the creation of pedigree charts of study subjects from poor, rural areas or from institutionalized settings. Field workers used symbols to depict defective conditions such as epilepsy and sexual immorality.

The American Eugenics Society presented eugenics exhibits at state fairs throughout the country, and provided information encouraging high-grade people to reproduce at a greater rate for the benefit of society. The Society even sponsored Fitter Family contests.

ENLARGE [2.4] Kallikak family of New Jersey Normal and Degenerate Lines (enlarge to view additional eugenical pedigree charts). Courtesy of Paul Lombardo.

ENLARGE [2.5] Eugenics Display. Courtesy of the American Philosophical Society.

[2.6] Winners of Fittest Family Contest. Courtesy of the American Philosophical Society.

[2.7] Harry H. Laughlin photograph. Courtesy of American Philosophical Society.

ENLARGE [2.8] Comparative Intelligence Chart. Courtesy of the American Philosophical Society.

ENLARGE [2.9] Virginias Racial Integrity Act of 1924 (enlarge to view additional Virginia legislative acts). Courtesy of Special Collections, Pickler Memorial Library, Truman State University.

In 1914, Harry H. Laughlin attended the first Race Betterment Conference, sponsored by J. H. Kellogg. The same year, in his Model Sterilization Law, Laughlin declared that the socially inadequate of society should be sterilized. This Model Law was accompanied by pedigree charts, which were used to demonstrate the hereditary nature of traits such as alcoholism, illegitimacy, and feeblemindedness. Laughlin asserted that passage of these undesirable traits to future generations would be eradicated if the unfortunate people who possessed them could be prevented from reproducing. In 1922 Laughlins Model Law was included in the book Eugenical Sterilization in the United States. This book compiled legal materials and statistics regarding sterilization, and was a valuable reference for sterilization activists in states throughout the country.

Proponents of eugenics worked tirelessly to assert the legitimacy of this new discipline. For Americans who feared the potential degradation of their race and culture, eugenics offered a convenient and scientifically plausible response to those fears. Sterilization of the unfit seemed a cost-effective means of strengthening and improving American society.

By 1924 Laughlins influence extended in several directions. He testified before Congress in support of the Immigration Restriction Act to limit immigration from eastern and southern Europe. Laughlin influenced passage of this law by presenting skewed data to support his assertion that the percentage of these immigrant populations in prisons and mental institutions was far greater than their percentage in the general population would warrant.

Laughlin also provided guidance in support of Virginias Racial Integrity Act, which made it illegal for whites in Virginia to marry outside their race. The act narrowly defined who could claim to be a member of the white race stating that the term white person shall apply only to such person as has no trace whatever of any blood other than Caucasian. Virginia lawmakers were careful to leave an escape clause for colleagues who claimed descent from Pocahontasthose with 1/16 or less of the blood of the American Indian would also count as white.

The language of Laughlins Model Sterilization Act was used in Virginias Eugenical Sterilization Act to legalize compulsory sterilizations in the state. This legislation to rid Virginia of defective persons was drafted by Aubrey E. Strode, a former member of the Virginia General Assembly, at the request of longtime associate, Albert Priddy, who directed the Virginia Colony for the Epileptic and Feebleminded in Lynchburg, Virginia.

2004 Claude Moore Health Sciences Library

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Origins of Eugenics: From Sir Francis Galton to Virginias …

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Raleigh SEO Marketing Agency

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Oct 232015
 

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Eugenics Board of North Carolina – Wikipedia, the free …

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Oct 162015
 

The Eugenics Board of North Carolina (EBNC) was a State Board of the state of North Carolina formed in July 1933 by the North Carolina State Legislature by the passage of House Bill 1013, entitled ‘An Act to Amend Chapter 34 of the Public Laws of 1929 of North Carolina Relating to the Sterilization of Persons Mentally Defective’.[1] This Bill formally repealed a 1929 law,[2] which had been ruled as unconstitutional by the North Carolina Supreme Court earlier in the year.

Over time, the scope of the Board’s work broadened from a focus on pure eugenics to considering sterilization as a tool to combat poverty and welfare costs. Its original purpose was to oversee the practice of sterilization as it pertained to inmates or patients of public-funded institutions that were judged to be ‘mentally defective or feeble-minded’ by authorities. In contrast to other eugenics programs across the United States, the North Carolina Board enabled county departments of public welfare to petition for the sterilization of their clients.[3] The Board remained in operation until 1977. During its existence thousands of individuals were sterilized. In 1977 the N.C. General Assembly repealed the laws authorizing its existence,[4] though it would not be until 2003 that the involuntary sterilization laws that underpinned the Board’s operations were repealed.[5]

Today the Board’s work is repudiated by people across the political, scientific and private spectrum.[citation needed] In 2013, North Carolina passed legislation to compensate those sterilized under the Board’s jurisdiction.[6][7]

The board was made up of five members:[1]

The State of North Carolina first enacted sterilization legislation in 1919.[8] The 1919 law was the first foray for North Carolina into eugenics; this law, entitled “An Act to Benefit the Moral, Mental, or Physical Conditions of Inmates of Penal and Charitable Institutions” was quite brief, encompassing only 4 sections. Provision was made for creation of a Board of Consultation, made up of a member of the medical staff of any of the penal or charitable State institutions, and a representative of the State Board of Health, to oversee sterilization that was to be undertaken when “in the judgement of the board hereby created, said operation would be for the improvement of the mental, moral or physical conditions of any inmate of any of the said institutions”. The Board of Consultation would have reported to both the Governor and the Secretary of the State Board of Health. No sterilizations were performed under the provisions of this law, though its structure was to guide following legislation.[8]

In 1929, two years after the landmark US Supreme Court ruling of Buck v. Bell[9] in which sterilization was ruled permissible under the U.S. Constitution, North Carolina passed an updated law[2] that formally laid down rules for the sterilization of citizens. This law, entitled “An Act to Provide For the Sterilization of the Mentally Defective and Feeble-Minded Inmates of Charitable and Penal Institutions of the State of North Carolina”, was similar to the law which preceded it, although this new Act contained several new provisions.[2]

In contrast to the 1919 law, which had mandated sterilization for the “improvement of the mental, moral or physical condition of any inmate”, the new law added a new and far-reaching condition: “Or for the public good.” This condition, expanding beyond the individual to greater considerations of society, would be built on in the ensuing years.[2]

The 1929 law also expanded the review process to four reviewers, namely: The Commissioner of Charities and Public Welfare of North Carolina, The Secretary of the State Board of Health of North Carolina, and the Chief Medical Officers of any two institutions for the “feeble-minded or insane” for the State of North Carolina.[2]

Lastly, the new law also explicitly stated that sterilization, where performed under the Act’s guidelines, would be lawful and that any persons who requested, authorized or directed proceedings would not be held criminally or civilly liable for actions taken. Under the 1929 law, 49 recorded cases took place in which sterilization was performed.[10]

In 1933, the North Carolina State Supreme Court heard Brewer v. Valk,[11] an appeal from Forsyth County Superior Court, in which the Supreme Court upheld that the 1929 law violated both the U.S. Constitution’s 14th Amendment and Article 1, Section 17 of the 1868 North Carolina State Constitution.[12] The Supreme Court noted that property rights required due process, specifically a mechanism by which notice of action could be given, and hearing rights established so that somebody subject to the sterilization law had the opportunity to appeal their case. Under both the U.S. Constitution and the N.C. State Constitution in place at the time, the Supreme Court ruled that the 1929 law was unconstitutional as no such provisions existed in the law as written.[11]

The North Carolina General Assembly went on in the wake of Brewer v. Valk to enact House Bill 1013,[1] removing the constitutional objections to the law, thereby forming the Eugenics Board and creating the framework which would remain in force for over thirty years. The Board was granted authority over all sterilization proceedings undertaken in the State, which had previously been devolved to various governing bodies or heads of penal and charitable institutions supported in whole or in part by the State.[2]

In the 1970s the Eugenics Board was moved around from department to department, as sterilization operations declined in the state. In 1971, an act of the legislature transferred the EBNC to the then newly created Department of Human Resources (DHR), and the secretary of that department was given managerial and executive authority over the board.[13]

Under a 1973 law, the Eugenics Board was transformed into the Eugenics Commission. Members of the commission were appointed by the governor, and included the director of the Division of Social and Rehabilitative Services of the DHR, the director of Health Services, the chief medical officer of a state institution for the feeble-minded or insane, the chief medical officer of the DHR in the area of mental health services, and the state attorney general.

In 1974 the legislature transferred to the judicial system the responsibility for any proceedings.

1976 brought a new challenge to the law with the case of In re Sterilization of Joseph Lee Moore[14] in which an appeal was heard by the North Carolina Supreme Court. The petitioner’s case was that the court had not appointed counsel at State expense to advise him of his rights prior to sterilization being performed. While the court noted that there was discretion within the law to approve a fee for the service of an expert, it was not constitutionally required. The court went on to declare that the involuntary sterilization of citizens for the public good was a legitimate use of the police power of the state, further noting that “The people of North Carolina have a right to prevent the procreation of children who will become a burden on the state.” The ruling upholding the constitutionality was notable in both its relatively late date (many other States had ceased performing sterilization operations shortly after WWII) and its language justifying state intervention on the grounds of children being a potential burden to the public.[14]

The Eugenics Commission was formally abolished by the legislature in 1977.[4][15]

In 2003, the N.C. General Assembly formally repealed the last involuntary sterilization law, replacing it with one that authorizes sterilization of individuals unable to give informed consent only in the case of medical necessity. The law explicitly ruled out sterilizations “solely for the purpose of sterilization or for hygiene or convenience.”[5][16]

At the time of the Board’s formation there was a body of thought that viewed the practice of eugenics as both necessary for the public good and for the private citizen. Following Buck v. Bell, the Supreme Court was often cited both domestically and internationally as a foundation for eugenics policies.

In Buck v. Bell Oliver Wendell Holmes wrote, in support of eugenics policy, that

We have seen more than once that the public welfare may call upon the best citizens for their lives. It would be strange if it could not call upon those who already sap the strength of the State for these lesser sacrifices, often not felt to be such by those concerned, to prevent our being swamped with incompetence. It is better for all the world, if instead of waiting to execute degenerate offspring for crime, or to let them starve for their imbecility, society can prevent those who are manifestly unfit from continuing their kind. The principle that sustains compulsory vaccination is broad enough to cover cutting the Fallopian tubes.[9]

Despite the Supreme Court rulings in support of eugenics as constitutionally permitted, even as late as 1950 some physicians in North Carolina were still concerned about the legality of sterilization. Efforts were made to reassure the medical community that the laws were both constitutionally sound and specifically exempting physicians from liability.[17]

Framing eugenics as supporting the public good was fundamental to how the law was written. It was argued that both for the benefit of the private citizen, and for the costs to society of future possible childbirths, eugenics were a sound and moral way to proceed. This was stated in the Board’s manual of policies and procedures, in which the practice was justified:[18]

No Place For Sentimentality

There can be no place for sentimentality in solving the problems of the mental health of our citizens. We would be less than human were we to feel no compassion for our unfortunates. But it is a peculiar paradox of human nature that while the best stock of our people is being lost on the battle fronts of the world, we make plans for the betterment and the coddling of our defectives.

In the press, opinion articles were published arguing for a greater use of eugenics, in which many of the reasons above were cited as justification. Even the Winston-Salem Journal, which would be a significant force in illuminating North Carolina’s past eugenics abuses in the modern era, was not immune. In 1948 the newspaper published an editorial entitled “The Case for Sterilization – Quantity vs. Quality” that went into great detail extolling the virtues of ‘breeding’ for the general public good.[20]

North Carolina’s Selective Sterilization Law

Protects…

It Saves…

Proponents of eugenics did not restrict its use to the ‘feeble-minded’. In many cases, more ardent authors included the blind, deaf-mutes, and people suffering from diseases like heart disease or cancer in the general category of those who should be sterilized.[22] The argument was twofold; that parents likely to give birth to ‘defective’ children should not allow it, and that healthy children borne to ‘defective’ parents would be doomed to an ‘undesirable environment’.[23]

Wallace Kuralt, Mecklenburg County’s welfare director from 1945 to 1972, was a leader in transitioning the work of state eugenics from looking only at medical conditions to considering poverty as a justification for state sterilization. Under Kuralt’s tenure, Mecklenburg county became far and away the largest source of sterilizations in the state. He supported this throughout his life in his writings and interviews, where he made plain his conviction that sterilization was a force for good in fighting poverty. In a 1964 interview with the Charlotte Observer, Kuralt said:

“When we stop to reflect upon the thousands of physical, mental and social misfits in our midst, the thousands of families which are too large for the family to support, the one-tenth of our children born to an unmarried mother, the hoard of children rejected by parents, is there any doubt that health, welfare and education agencies need to redouble their efforts to prevent these conditions which are so costly to society?”[19][24]

Among public and private groups that published articles advocating for eugenics, the Human Betterment League was a significant advocate for the procedure within North Carolina. This organization, founded by Procter & Gamble heir Clarence Gamble provided experts, written material and monetary support to the eugenics movement. Many pamphlets and publications were created by the league advocating the groups position which were then distributed throughout the state. One pamphlet entitled ‘You Wouldn’t Expect…’ laid out a series of rhetorical questions to argue the point that those considered ‘defective’ were unable to be good parents.[21]

While it is not known exactly how many people were sterilized during the lifetime of the law, the Task Force established by Governor Beverly Perdue estimated the total at around 7,500. They provided a summary of the estimated number of operations broken down by time period. This does not include sterilizations that may have occurred at a local level by doctors and hospitals.[10][25]

The report went on to provide a breakdown by county. There were no counties in North Carolina that performed no operations, though the spread was marked, going from as few as 4 in Tyrrell county, to 485 in Mecklenburg county.[10]

Some research into the historical data in North Carolina has drawn links between race and sterilization rates. One study performed in 2010 by Gregory Price and William Darity Jr described the practice as “racially biased and genocidal”. In the study, the researchers showed that as the black population of a county increased, the number of sterilizations increased disproportionately; that black citizens were more likely, all things being equal, to being recommended for sterilization than whites.[26]

Poverty and sterilization were also closely bound. Since social workers concerned themselves with those accepting welfare and other public assistance, there was a strong impetus to recommending sterilization to families as a means of controlling their economic situation. This was sometimes done under duress, when benefits were threatened as a condition of undergoing the surgery.[27]

What made the picture more complicated was the fact that in some cases, individuals sought out sterilization. Since those in poverty had fewer choices for birth control, having a state-funded procedure to guarantee no further children was attractive to some mothers. Given the structure of the process however, women found themselves needing to be described as unfit mothers or welfare burdens in order to qualify for the program, rather than simply asserting reproductive control.[3]

Many stories from those directly affected by the Board’s work have come to light over the past several years. During the hearings from the NC Justice for Sterilization Victims Foundation many family members and individuals personally testified to the impact that the procedures had had on them.

NCEB Case Summary: Elaine Riddick

This thirteen year old girl expects her first child in March 1968….She has never done any work and gets along so poorly with others that her school experience was poor. Because of Elaine’s inability to control herself, and her promiscuity – there are community reports of her “running around” and out late at night unchaperoned, the physician has advised sterilization….This will at least prevent additional children from being born to this child who cannot care for herself, and can never function in any way as a parent.

Elaine Riddick is a fifty-one-year-old African American woman who was born in Perquimans County, North Carolina. Born into a poor family, one of seven children, the family was split up by the County Welfare department after her parents were deemed to be unfit. Elaine and one sister were sent to live with her grandmother, while the remaining five were sent to an orphanage. It was shortly after this family upheaval, when Elaine was 13, that she was raped by a 20-year-old man with a history of assault and incarceration. Elaine subsequently became pregnant.

When the social worker, Marion Payne, assigned to the Riddick family found out that Elaine was pregnant,[29] she pressured Elaine’s grandmother into signing a consent form for sterilization (Riddick’s grandmother, being illiterate, signed the form with a simple ‘X’ symbol). On March 5, 1968, when Elaine was 14 years old, she was sterilized under the authority of the board. The procedure took place hours after Elaine had given birth to a son.[30] Riddick learned only years later the extent of the procedure, testifying to its effect over her life in a lawsuit brought against the state of North Carolina with the assistance of the ACLU in 1974. She cited failed relationships, physical pain and suffering, and psychological trauma. Unfortunately for Riddick, her lawsuit did not end in success; a jury found against her, and the NC Supreme court refused to hear her case. It would not be until the hearings of the NC Justice for Sterilization Victims Foundation that her story was to be widely heard once more.[31][32]

Junius Wilson was born in 1908 in North Carolina and grew up near Wilmington. In 1916 he was sent to the North Carolina School for the Colored Deaf and the Blind, a segregated state school in Raleigh that was the first southern school for black deaf children. Since this was a segregated school, students there were not given the resources of other schools. They were not taught American Sign Language and developed their own system of communication. This worked within the institution, but because it was their own, it did not travel, and so students and deaf from other schools were unable to understand them.[33]

Wilson stayed there for six years, learning rudimentary sign language, until a minor infraction lead to his expulsion. While at home in Castle Hayne, Wilson came to the attention of the legal system when he was accused of the attempted rape of a relative. It is unclear whether the charge had merit – biographers speculated that his misunderstood behavior stemming from communication difficulties may have led to the situation – but what is not in doubt is that in 1925 Wilson was declared legally insane by a court and committed to the state Hospital for the Colored Insane in Goldsboro, North Carolina, which became Cherry Hospital in 1959.[34] In 1932 he was surgically castrated under the provisions of the eugenics laws in place.[35]

Wilson would remain committed to the state facility for decades. In 1990, he was given a new social worker, John Wasson. Wasson came to find out that not only was Wilson not mentally disabled, but that the hospital staff had known for years that he was not. To compound the situation, the legal charges against Wilson dating back to 1925 had been dismissed in 1970; put bluntly, for twenty years he had been committed to the hospital without legal justification. In interviews with hospital staff, Wasson found that it had been considered the most ‘benevolent’ course of action, since Wilson was thoroughly institutionalized at that point, with many of the same difficulties in learning and communication that had been his burden since birth.

Wasson instigated the legal challenge to Wilson’s incarceration. In 1992 Wilson was formally declared a free man. Since he had no close relatives or family members able to care for him in his advanced age, a cottage was found for him on the grounds of Cherry Hospital. Wilson would live there until his death in 2001.[36][37]

Not all who testified before the Committee were sterilized by the Eugenics Board directly. In many cases people who were sterilized were operated on by local clinics and doctors. It was argued that in many of these cases patients were not fully educated as to the nature of the procedure and were urged into it by doctors or social workers who were making judgements based upon their patients’ economic situation. Young women of limited means who had multiple children were specifically targeted for sterilization by many case workers.[38]

Mary English was one such case. In her personal testimony she explained that in 1972, she had been newly divorced with three children. She went to see a doctor at a Fayetteville OB/GYN clinic for some medical complaints. The doctor offered her entry into a program that would negate any need for future birth control. English signed the required paperwork, and was sterilized after the birth of her third child. It was years later, when she went back to the doctor to have the procedure reversed, that she found out it was permanent.[39]

English went on to detail her struggles with depression and retold experiences of friends and neighbors who had gone through similar situations at the hands of their own doctors. As for the clinic at which English was sterilized, she claimed that it was still operating, though declined to name it, or the doctor responsible for her sterilization.[40]

The Winston-Salem Journal’s “Against Their Will” documentary, released in 2002, based in part on Joanna Schoen’s research of the North Carolina Eugenics program, is credited with spurring public interest and demands for action to repeal laws and explore the possibility of compensation for affected people. This five part series gave extensive background to the work of the Eugenics Board, with detailed statistics, victim’s stories, and historical information on the broader Eugenics movement in the United States in the Post-WWII era.[29]

Then-Governor Mike Easley offered an apology to victims of the policy in 2002. At the time, North Carolina was the third State in the nation to officially apologize for eugenics practices, following behind Virginia and Oregon though North Carolina was the first State to go beyond a formal apology to actively considering compensation in some form.[41] Easley set up a committee to study the history of the Eugenics Board with instructions to provide recommendations on how to handle what it termed ‘program survivors’. The committee recommended five specific steps:[42]

The recommendations lay dormant in the North Carolina Legislature until 2008, when a study committee was appointed. The House Committee gave its own recommendations which in large part mirrored Easley’s committee’s findings though it went further, in establishing a suggested dollar figure of $20,000 compensation per surviving victim. The House committee also recommended training, the creation of memorials, and documenting survivor experiences, and the creation of a database to store sterilization records for future research. While the House committee recommended setting funds aside for these purposes, the Legislature did not grant funding in 2008.[43] The house committee was co-chaired by State Representative Larry Womble, who has been a public advocate in the state house for victim’s compensation. Womble announced he would be stepping down and not seek re-election after a horrific car crash in late 2011.[44][45]

In 2008, Beverley Perdue was elected Governor of North Carolina. As part of her platform she pledged to take up the sterilization situation.[46] In 2010 Perdue issued an executive order that formed the North Carolina Justice for Sterilization Victims Foundation (NCJSVF).[47]

The Task Force was made up of the following:[6]

The Foundation recommended that compensation be raised to $50,000 per victim, in a 3-2 vote. They also voted for funds for mental health services and historical displays and exhibits documenting the history of sterilization in the state.[10] It is not yet clear how many victims will be satisfied by the amount; many have granted detailed interviews that documented their severe emotional trauma in the wake of the procedures, and have been outspoken in demanding higher sums.[48]

On April 25, 2012, North Carolina’s Gov. Perdue announced that she will put $10.3 million in her budget proposal to allocate towards issues surrounding eugenics. The funds are intended to aid with $50,000 payments to verified North Carolina eugenics victims. The remainder of the monies will be used to support the continued efforts of the NC Justice for Sterilization Victims Foundation as they provide outreach and clearinghouse services to help Eugenics victims. Governor Perdue stated,[49]

We cannot change the terrible things that happened to so many of our most vulnerable citizens, but we can take responsibility for our states mistakes and show that we do not tolerate violations of basic human rights. We must provide meaningful assistance to victims, so I am including this funding in my budget.

Gov. Perdue’s budget proposal is in accordance with the recommendations of the January 2012 final report issued from the Eugenics Compensation Task Force. The board suggested that living victims and those who were not deceased when verified by the foundation receive a tax-free, lump sum payment of $50,000. The N.C. Justice for Sterilization Victims Foundation reports that there is still an increase in the number of confirmed/verified eugenics victims. As of April 25, 2012, 132 people in 51 counties had been matched to the North Carolina’s Eugenics program records.[49]

In 2013, the General Assembly of North Carolina passed an appropriations bill to give compensation, up to $50,000 per person, to individuals sterilized under the authority of the Eugenics Board of North Carolina.[7][50]

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beach monitoring program – Iowa Department of Natural Resources

 Beaches  Comments Off on beach monitoring program – Iowa Department of Natural Resources
Sep 302015
 

Routine water quality monitoring is conducted at all of the State Park beaches and many locally managed beaches in Iowa. In order to help protect the health of those wishing to recreate at the beaches, the Iowa Department of Natural Resources works with various public health and management agencies throughout the state to inform the public of the most current water quality conditions. Outdoor recreation at beaches in Iowa is typically limited to the time period between Memorial Day and Labor Day. Therefore, most beach monitoring is conducted and standard swimming advisories are issued during this time frame. Results for specific beaches are published as soon as they become available.

For up to date information, call the DNR Beach Monitoring Hotline at (515) 725-3434. If you have any questions or concerns, contact us by email.

o Beaches that have had two or fewer one-time standard (samples over 235 cfu/100 ml) exceedances of the state standard during a running five years will be monitored less frequently. These beaches will be monitored on a weekly basis from the week before Memorial Day through Labor Day. All other state-owned beaches will be monitored from April 15th through October 31st.

Posting of Signs/Advisories

Why monitor beaches?

Swimming in lakes or any other natural body of water involves risks. By far, the greatest risk is drowning caused in part by cloudy water, fast currents, submerged objects, or the lack of lifeguards. Water at Iowas state-owned swimming beaches is monitored to assess the public health risk from waterborne diseases that may result from immersion in the water.

What is the DNR monitoring?

Water samples from the beaches are analyzed for microorganisms, known as bacteria.These indicator bacteria are one-celled organisms visible only under a microscope.High levels of these bacteria indicate that the water has come into contact with fecal material. Indicator bacteria (Bacteria that normally are not pathogenic [disease causing] but serve as indicators of certain types of pollution such as sewage or gasoline spills) are commonly used by state environmental agencies and by the U.S. EPA to determine the suitability of beaches for swimming-type uses.

Can these bacteria make me sick?

The indicator bacteria for which we monitor do not themselves make you sick. These bacteria are easy to collect and analyze and are relatively safe to handle. They are very common in the environment, including lakes and rivers.High levels of these bacteria indicate that the water has come into contact with fecal material and that pathogens or disease-causing microorganisms may be present.

Why doesn’t the DNR monitor pathogens?

Disease-causing organisms, known as pathogens, exist as bacteria, viruses or parasites.Monitoring for these pathogens is expensive and difficult. Large volumes of water are needed to monitor for pathogens because they are present in such small numbers. Many different types of pathogens exist and testing for a single pathogen may not accurately assess the health risk present due to other pathogens. Because indicator bacteria occur in greater numbers than pathogens and are easier to isolate in a laboratory, monitoring for them is more cost-effective.

What are the sources of these bacteria and pathogens?

Fecal bacteria, and sometimes pathogens, are present in the intestines of warm-blooded animals, including humans. They are carried into the water with fecal material. Fecal contamination occurs due to improperly constructed and operated septic systems and sewage treatment plants, manure spills, storm water runoff from lands with wildlife and pet droppings, or direct contamination from waterfowl, livestock, or small children in the water.

Samples are collected weekly at 37 state owned beaches from April 15 through October 31.This period corresponds to the recreational season when the Iowa Water Quality Standards, designed to protect swimming-type uses, is in effect. Water samples are taken at three locations along the beach and at three water depths (ankle-, knee- and waist-deep).The water from these locations is mixed to form one sample, which is placed in a sterilized bottle and taken to a laboratory for analysis.

What levels of indicator bacteria are considered safe?

The United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has guidelines for the amount of bacteria acceptable in water bodies designated for primary body contact recreation, including swimming and water skiing. In Iowa, these waters are called “Class A waters”. The bacteria level in the water is acceptable if the geometric mean is not greater than 126 colonies per 100 milliliters of water for E. coli bacteria.According to U.S. EPA guidelines, the geometric mean is calculated using at least five consecutive samples collected during a 30-day period. Additionally, Iowa also has a “one-time” standart for E. coli bacteria of 235 colony forming units per 100 milliliters of water.

What factors cause high levels of bacteria?

Fecal contamination of beach water occurs due to improperly constructed and operated septic systems and sewage treatment plants, manure spills, storm water runoff from lands with wildlife and pet droppings, or direct contamination from waterfowl, livestock, or small children in the water. In Iowa, rain appears to be one of the most important factors in generating high levels of bacteria.Surface runoff after a heavy rainfall may transport high levels of fecal bacteria to the water at the beach. The rain also increases the sediment in the water causing it to be murky. Since bacteria are destroyed by sunlight, murky water aids in their survival.

What are the potential illnesses associated with swimming? Thousands of people swim at Iowa’s beaches every year and most of them do not get sick. However, children, the elderly and people with weakened immune systems have an increased risk of becoming ill when in contact with contaminated water.A variety of diarrheal diseases, and other infections such as skin, ear and respiratory infections, are associated with swimming in contaminated water. Diarrhea is one of the most common illnesses associated with swimming. Diarrhea is spread when disease- causing microorganisms from human or animal feces get into the water. You can get diarrhea by accidentally swallowing small amounts of water that contains these microorganisms. To date, the DNR has received no verified reports of illnesses caused by swimming or water skiing in Iowas waters. However, these illnesses could be under-reported because the symptoms are so common and people can be infected by these pathogenic microbes through other means, such as from contaminated meat, not washing their hands after using the bathroom or changing diapers.

How can I avoid getting sick?

Avoid swimming after a heavy rainfall when indicator bacteria levels are generally higher and the water is murky. Avoid swallowing the water. Young children swimming at the beach can leak fecal bacteria and associated pathogens from their diapers, so change your childs diapers often and visit bathrooms frequently. If you or your child has diarrhea, please stay out of the water because you may contaminate the water with fecal material. Although swimmers with diarrhea do not mean to contaminate the water, this is often how disease is spread.

Can I eat fish from waters with high levels of fecal contamination?

Yes, high levels of indicator bacteria or pathogens have no influence on the quality of fish for human consumption. While alive, the fish is protected from water-borne contaminants by the skin, scales and mucus covering its body. Proper fish cleaning, rinsing, refrigeration and cooking should always be used.

Additional information can be found atHawkeye Area WQ Initiative

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beach monitoring program – Iowa Department of Natural Resources

Alabama Eugenics

 Eugenics  Comments Off on Alabama Eugenics
Sep 262015
 

Alabama

Number of victims

There were 224 people who were sterilized, of whom approximately 58% were male. All of the sterilized were deemed mentally deficient. In terms of the total number of people sterilized, Alabama ranks 27th in the United States. Of the 32 states that had sterilization laws, Alabama is the state with the 5th lowest number of sterilizations.

Period during which sterilizations occurred

The period was 1919 to 1935 (Paul p. 246)

Temporal pattern of sterilizations and rate of sterilization

After the passage of the sterilization law in 1919, the number of sterilization appears to have been low. Gosney/Popenoe (p. 194; see data sources) report no sterilizations yet at the end of 1927, but the number for the end of 1929 was 44. After that year, the number of sterilizations increased. The last sterilizations occurred in June 1935 (Paul, p. 246). Between 1930 and 1935, the annual number of sterilization was about 30. The rate of sterilization per 100,000 residents per year was about 1.

Passage of law(s)

According to Edward Larson, Alabama began its long flirtation with eugenicsbefore any other state in the Deep South (Larson, p. 50). At the 1901 meeting of the Medical Association of the State of Alabama (MASA), Dr. William Glassell Sommerville, Trustee of the Alabama Insane Hospitals, declared it a proven fact that the moral disposition for good and evil, including criminal tendenciesare transmitted fromone generation to anotherand is as firmly believed by all scientific men as the fact that parents transmit physical qualities to their children (Dorr, Defective or Disabled?,pp. 383-4). At that same meeting, John E. Purdon stated that it was a proven fact that criminality, insanity, epilepsy, and other alleged manifestations of degraded nerve tissue were hereditary (Larson, 50). He emphasized that [i]t is essentially a state function to retrain the pro-creative powers of the unfit (Larson and Nelson, p. 407). He suggested that the use of sterilization would benefit the race by saying, [e]masculation is the simplest and most perfect plan that can be adapted to secure the perfection of the race (Larson, p. 50). Finally, Purdon explained his belief that the goodness, the greatness, and the happiness of all upon the earth, will be immeasurably advanced, in one or two generations, by the proposed methods (Larson and Nelson, p. 407), and, based on his belief thatweakness begets weaknessfeared that humanitarianism would assist the imperfect individual to escape the consequences of his physical and moral malformation (Dorr, “Honing Heredity,” p. 29).

Over the next decade, MASA was encouraged by many authorities such as physicians and Birminghams medical society to draft a bill to legalize the sterilization of the unfit. In 1911 at the annual MASA meeting, Walter H. Bell of Birmingham declared that any person who would produce children with an inherited tendency to crime, insanity, feeblemindedness, idiocy, or imbecility should be sterilized (Larson, p. 51). He believed that sterilization was an easy, safe and practical method of prevention with no restrictions or punishment attached (Larson and Nelson, p.410).

The MASA, however, continued to delay taking action until 1914 when it created a committee of physicians who would research needful data in regard to defective children, with a purpose to urge upon the state legislature the proper provision for the care of such defectives (Larson, , p. 60). During the 1915 MASA meeting, C.M. Rudolph suggested the formation of a home for mentally ill children. He stressed the importance of segregating the unfit youth because he believed it shrewd to [s]egregate the defectives of one generation to prevent the multiplication of their kind in the next (Larson, p. 60). In this same meeting it was decided that an Alabama Society for Mental Hygiene (ASMH) would be formed and led by William Partlow as a liaison with the National Committee for Mental Hygiene (NCMH) and to survey Alabamas defectives (Larson, p. 60). That year, MASA collectively agreed to support eugenic sterilization (Dorr, Defective or Disabled?, pp. 386-87).

In 1919, the MASA and the ASMH reached their goal. In the next regular session of the State legislator, a bill was passed to create the Alabama Home (Larson and Nelson, p. 413). Buried within the law was a clause granting permission to the superintendent of the Home for the Feeble-Minded in Tuscaloosa, to sterilize its patients. This was the first law passed in Alabama that supported sterilizations (Paul p. 239).

In 1934, Partlow wanted permission to sterilize all discharged patients from the Home (a procedure he was already practicing as superintendent) (Dorr, “Eugenics in Alabama”). Partlow proposed a bill that gave the superintendent of any state hospital for the insane complete power to sterilize any or all patients upon their release. The bill also proposed the creation of a board with three doctors who would have the right to sterilize a larger group of people. Finally, the anticipated bill granted permission for county public health committees to sterilize anyone in a state or local custodial institution (Larson and Nelson, p. 418). Although Partlows bill was passed in both the House and the Senate, the bill was vetoed by Alabamas Governor, Bill Graves after consulting with the Alabama Supreme Court on the bills constitutionality (Larson and Nelson, p. 422). In 1935 the Alabama State Supreme Court viewed the bill and deemed it unconstitutional because it violated the Due Process Clauses of the state and federal constitutionsa sterilization victim would not have the right to appeal to a court against his or her sterilization (Larson and Nelson, p. 422). A second version of the bill was drafted and, similarly, passed in both houses but was vetoed by the Governor (Larson and Nelson, pp. 422-23). Soon after this second veto, Partlow discontinued the practice of sterilization (Larson and Nelson, p. 424).

Partlowsbill, however, was unsuccessfully reintroduced in 1939 and again in 1943. In 1945, legislation was created that asked for the right to sterilize every inmate or person eligible for entrance in the states insane asylums. This bill was passed by the senate but was rejected by the house (Larson and Nelson, p. 426).

Groups identified in the law

In the 1919 law, William Partlow included in his draft the permission for the superintendent of the Home for the Feeble-Minded to sterilize any inmate (Larson, p. 84). Inmates were any person confined in a poor house, jail, an orphanage, or a boarding school in the State (Larson, pp. 48-49). In the 1935 bill, it was proposed that any sexual pervert, Sadist, homosexualist, Masochist, Sodomist, or any other grave form of sexual perversion, or any prisoner who has twice been convicted of rape or imprisoned three times for any offense be sterilized. It was also suggested granting permission to county public health committees to sterilize anyone in a state or local custodial institution (Larson and Nelson, p. 418).An expansion of the law, proposed by Alabama State Health Officer Dr. James Norment Baker, called for the sterilization of anyone committed to state homes for the insane and feebleminded, reformatories, industrial schools, or training schools, , as well as any sexual pervert, Sadist, homosexual, Masochist, Sodomist (Dorr, “Protection,” p. 173) as well as anyone convicted of rape twice. The bill was considered unconstitutional and vetoed by Governor Bill Graves.

Process of the law

In the 1919 law, the superintendent of the Alabama Home for the Feeble-Minded was given the authority to sterilize any inmate (Larson, pp. 48-49). This law held only one limitation on sterilization in the Alabama Home. The superintendent of the Alabama Insane Hospitals had to agree upon the sterilization of the inmates from the Alabama Home for the Feeble-Minded (Larson, pp. 105-06). This absence of safeguards for inmates in the law made it possible for William Partlow to sterilize every inmate of the Home. This law was drafted by Partlow and was the only sterilization law passed in Alabama. Although this law passed, Partlow continued to try to strengthen the power to sterilize in Alabama through other bills. All of his attempts, however, failed.

Precipitating factors and processes

The entire Southern region in general was more hesitant to adopt eugenic ideals for many reasons. One of the most important Southern values was its traditional emphasis on family and parental rights, which eugenics challenged (Larson, p. 8). The Southern sense of family also encouraged relatives to take responsibility for individuals who might otherwise be subject to eugenic remedies in state institutions (Larson, p. 9). Most immigrants in the South came from the British Isles, the same area most Southerners originated from. Subsequently, a community existed in the South including many immigrants, unlike the North and West where Americans focused their eugenic ideas on ethnically diverse immigrants (Larson, p. 9). The strength of Southern religion also played a role in the overall rejection of eugenics in Alabama. Religion lent itself to conceptions of congregations as extended families and many people in the South accordingly apposed segregating the unfit (Larson, pp. 13-14). In comparison with the rest of the United States, Progressivism in the South was relatively weak due to the comparatively small size of its typical carriers, secular groups, urban professional middle classes, and the more educated (Larson, p. 17). Moreover, the Deep South was lagging other regions in biological research programs, as well as scientists and education, which shifted the advocacy of eugenics to state mental health officials and local physicians (Larson, pp. 40-44). The MASA and leaders such as William Partlow were extremely important to the eugenics movement in Alabama. Without the organizations and leaders that were produced from the MASA, Alabama may have never started eugenic practices.

Overall, Alabama was not in favor of sterilization, which is reflected in the comparatively low number of sterilization victims. In general, the people of Alabama were more in favor of segregation of the unfit than sterilization (Larson, pp. 60-63). However, inadequate funding of such facilities for segregating the feeble-minded as well as over-crowding seems to have facilitated a push toward sterilization (Larson, pp. 90-91). Even though mental health surveys placed Alabamas feeble-minded population at more than 7,000 persons, the new facility could accommodate only 160 residents, and was filled within two months of it opening (Larson, p. 90).

Groups targeted and victimized

Among those targeted were males, including some of the delinquent boys who[m] we fear might escape (Larson, p. 106),the poor, mental deficien[ts] and the feebleminded (Larson, p. 151). People who could be committed to the state mental health hospital included people in prison, a poor house, and orphanage, or a state boarding school (Larson, pp. 48-49).

While Alabama never established a facility for feebleminded blacks (see Dorr, Defective or Disabled?,p. 387), Gregory Dorr has argued that the absence of such a facilty should not lead observers to conclude that eugenics in Alabama lackedracist elements, for the limitation ofeugenicsto the sterilization of whites (in contrast to Virginia) reflected the belief that the “betterment” of theblack “race” could not be achieved by such measures. In fact, by the timethe wall of segregation had started to come to down in the 1970s and no longer assured second-class citizenship of Blacks, African Americans had become the targets of extra-institutional and extra-legal sterilizations, reflective of a more general southern racist view that it was necessary”to further protect the white race itself from black folks” (Dorr, “Defective or Disabled?,” p. 383; see also Dorr, Segregation’s Science).

The Relf case

The cause of forced sterilization in Alabama was not helped by the Relf case. By 1973, the focus had moved away from sterilization of the mentally deficient and those imprisoned, to the use of sterilization as birth control. The Relf family was on welfare, and living in a public housing project in Montgomery, Alabama. Two Relf sisters, Minnie Lee, age 14, and Mary Alice, age 12, had been receiving shot of Depo-Provera as a form of long term birth control (Rossoff, p. 6). When the use of the drug was no longer allowed, the mother was mislead into signing a consent form allowing the sterilization of her daughters. Mrs. Relf was unable to read or write, so she signed the form with an X, without any physicians explaining the conditions to her (Roberts, p. 93, Carpia, p.78, Caron, p. 211, Southern Poverty Law Center). She thought she was signing a form consenting to additional shots, when she was actually consenting to sterilizations (Tessler, p. 58). A third daughter, Katie Relf, also received the birth control shots, but refused to open the door to her room when the official came to get the three girls to be sterilized. Because she was 17, she could not be sterilized without her own consent. (Larson and Nelson, p. 440) Later, when Mrs. Relf realized that her daughters had been sterilized, she sued the surgeons and other associated groups for $1,000,000 (Rosoff, p. 6). As a result, a moratorium was placed on federally funded, coerced sterilizations until a decision was reached by the Department of Justice.

Other restrictions placed on those identified in the law or with disabilities in general

In 1919, Alabama passed legislation that made it the first state in the Deep South that made it illegal for people with venereal diseases to marry (Larson, p. 88).

Feeder institutions and institutions where sterilizations were performed

(Photo origin: http://www.tuscaloosanews.com/apps/pbcsi.dll/bilde?Site=TL&Date=20110305&Category=NEWS&ArtNo=110309845&Ref=AR&MaxW=600&border=0)

The Alabama Home for the Feeble-Minded opened in Tuscaloosa, Alabama in 1919 as a result of the law in favor of a home for the feeble-minded.Two months after the Alabama Home for the Feeble-Minded opening, the institution was completely full of people from poor houses, jails, orphanages, and boarding schools (Larson, pp. 48-49, 90). In 1927, this school was renamed the Partlo State School for Mental Deficients (Larson, p. 106). The school is now known as the Partlow State School and Hospital. Its closure has been announced in 2011 (“W.D. Partlow Developmental Center to close”).

Opposition

Although the original bill went largely unnoticed by the population (Paul, pp. 239-40), the movement did meet considerable opposition in Alabama. Chief among these objectors were the Catholics, who were entirely against eugenics and any form of birth control in general. Alabama Catholicswrote legislators and spoke out at public hearings in response to their bishops plea to use every means at our disposal to help defeat this bill (Larson, p. 151). Protestants were similarly concerned. A Baptist claimed that he found in the Bible all the warrant he required to vote against the bill (Larson and Nelson, p. 420). Trade unions were also against expanding the sterilization law. As one laborer anxiously said, theres nothing in the bill to prevent a labor man from being railroaded into an institution where he could be sterilized on suspicion of insanity or feeble-mindedness (Larson, p. 141). Similarly, Alabamas Governor, Bill Graves was extremely important to the opposition of eugenics because of his decision to veto the 1935 bill and its revision. He claimed [t]he hoped for good results are not sure enough or great enough to compensate for the hazard to personal rights that would be involved in the execution of the provisions of the Bill (Larson and Nelson, p. 422).

Overall, however, the population in Alabama was perhaps not as supportive of eugenic sterilization laws as in other American states.

Bibliography

Carpia, Myla F. Thyrza. 1995. “Lost Generations: The Involuntary Sterilization of American Indian Women.” Master’s Thesis, Department of American Indian Studies, Arizona State University.

Dorr, Gregory M. 2006. Defective or Disabled?: Race, Medicine, and Eugenics in Progressive Era Virginia and Alabama. Journal of the Gilded Age and Progressive Era 5, 4: 359-92.

——-. 2008. Segregation’s Science: Eugenics and Society in Virginia. Charlottesville: University of Virginia Press.

Dorr, Gregory M. 2011. “Protection or Control: Women’s Health, Sterilization Abuse, and Relf v. Weinberger.” Pp. 161-90 in A Century of Eugenics in America, edited by Paul Lombardo. Bloomington: Indiana University Press. Larson, Edward. 1995. Sex, Race, and Science: Eugenics in the Deep South. Baltimore: Johns Hopkins University Press. Larson, Edward J., and Leonard J. Nelson.1992. Involuntary Sexual Sterilization of Incompetents in Alabama: Past, Present, and Future. Alabama Law Review 43: 399-444. Noll, Steven. 1995. Feeble-Minded in Our Midst: Institutions for the Mentally Retarded in the South, 1900-1940. Chapel Hill: University of North Carolina Press.

——-.2005. The Public Face of Southern Institutions for the Feeble-Minded. The Public Historian 27, 2: 25-42. Paul, Julius. 1965. ‘Three Generations of Imbeciles Are Enough’: State Eugenic Sterilization Laws in American Thought and Practice. Washington, D.C.: Walter Reed Army Institute of Research.

Relf Original Complaint. Available at

Roberts, Dorothy E. 1997. Killing the Black Body: Race, Reproduction, and the Meaning of Liberty. New York: Pantheon Books.

Rosoff, Jeannie I. 1973. The Montgomery Case. The Hastings Center Report 3, 4:6.

Southern Poverty Law Center. Relf v. Weinberger. Available at

Tarwater, James S. 1964. The Alabama State Hospitals and the Partlow State School and Hospitals. New York: Newcomer Society in North America.

Tessler, Suzanne. 1976. Compulsory Sterilization Practices. Frontiers: A Journal of Women Studies 1, 2: 52-66.

“W.D. Partlow Developmental Center to close.” Tuscaloosa News 4 March 2001. Available at

Link:
Alabama Eugenics

Nazi eugenics – Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

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Aug 152015
 

Nazi eugenics were Nazi Germany’s racially based social policies that placed the biological improvement of the Aryan race or Germanic “bermenschen” master race through eugenics at the center of Nazi ideology.[1] Those humans targeted were largely living in private and state-operated institutions, identified as “life unworthy of life” (German: Lebensunwertes Leben), including but not limited to prisoners, degenerate, dissident, people with congenital cognitive and physical disabilities (including feebleminded, epileptic, schizophrenic, manic-depressive, cerebral palsy, neuroatypicals, muscular dystrophy, deaf, blind) (German: erbkranken), homosexual, idle, insane, and the weak, for elimination from the chain of heredity. More than 400,000 people were sterilized against their will, while more than 300,000 were killed under Action T4, a euthanasia program.[2][3][4]

After the eugenics movement was well established in the United States, it was spread to Germany. California eugenicists began producing literature promoting eugenics and sterilization and sending it overseas to German scientists and medical professionals.[5] By 1933, California had subjected more people to forceful sterilization than all other U.S. states combined. The forced sterilization program engineered by the Nazis was partly inspired by California’s.[6]

In 1927, The Kaiser Wilhelm Institute for Anthropology (KWIA), an organization which concentrated on physical and social anthropology as well as human genetics, was founded in Berlin with significant financial support from the American philanthropic group, the Rockefeller Foundation.[7] German professor of medicine, anthropology and eugenics, Eugen Fischer, was the director of this organization, a man whose work helped provide the scientific basis for the Nazis’ eugenic policies.[8][9] The Rockefeller Foundation even funded some of the research conducted by Josef Mengele before he went to Auschwitz.[5][10]

Upon returning from Germany in 1934, where more than 5,000 people per month were being forcibly sterilized, the California eugenics leader C. M. Goethe bragged to a colleague:

“You will be interested to know that your work has played a powerful part in shaping the opinions of the group of intellectuals who are behind Hitler in this epoch-making program. Everywhere I sensed that their opinions have been tremendously stimulated by American thought . . . I want you, my dear friend, to carry this thought with you for the rest of your life, that you have really jolted into action a great government of 60 million people.”[11]

Eugenics researcher Harry H. Laughlin often bragged that his Model Eugenic Sterilization laws had been implemented in the 1935 Nuremberg racial hygiene laws.[12] In 1936, Laughlin was invited to an award ceremony at Heidelberg University in Germany (scheduled on the anniversary of Hitler’s 1934 purge of Jews from the Heidelberg faculty), to receive an honorary doctorate for his work on the “science of racial cleansing”. Due to financial limitations, Laughlin was unable to attend the ceremony and had to pick it up from the Rockefeller Institute. Afterwards, he proudly shared the award with his colleagues, remarking that he felt that it symbolized the “common understanding of German and American scientists of the nature of eugenics.”[13]

Adolf Hitler read racial hygiene tracts during his imprisonment in Landsberg Prison.[14]

Hitler believed the nation had become weak, corrupted by the infusion of degenerate elements into its bloodstream.[15]

The racialism and idea of competition, termed social Darwinism in 1944, were discussed by European scientists and also in the Vienna press during the 1920s. Where Hitler picked up the ideas is uncertain. The theory of evolution had been generally accepted in Germany at the time but this sort of extremism was rare.[16]

In his Second Book, which was unpublished during the Nazi era, Hitler praised Sparta, (using ideas perhaps borrowed from Ernst Haeckel),[17] adding that he considered Sparta to be the first “Vlkisch State”. He endorsed what he perceived to be an early eugenics treatment of deformed children:

“Sparta must be regarded as the first Vlkisch State. The exposure of the sick, weak, deformed children, in short, their destruction, was more decent and in truth a thousand times more humane than the wretched insanity of our day which preserves the most pathological subject, and indeed at any price, and yet takes the life of a hundred thousand healthy children in consequence of birth control or through abortions, in order subsequently to breed a race of degenerates burdened with illnesses”.[18][19]

In organizing their eugenics program the Nazis were inspired by the United States’ programs of forced sterilization, especially on the eugenics laws that had been enacted in California.[20]

The Law for the Prevention of Hereditarily Diseased Offspring, enacted on July 14, 1933, allowed the compulsory sterilisation of any citizen who the opinion of a Genetic Health Court” suffered from a list of alleged genetic disorders and required physicians to register every case of hereditary illness known to them, except in women over 45 years of age.[21] Physicians could be fined for failing to comply.

In 1934, the first year of the Law’s operation, nearly 4,000 persons appealed against the decisions of sterilization authorities. A total of 3,559 of the appeals failed. By the end of the Nazi regime, over 200 Hereditary Health Courts (Erbgesundheitsgerichte) were created, and under their rulings over 400,000 persons were sterilized against their will.[22]

The Hadamar Clinic was a mental hospital in the German town of Hadamar used by the Nazi-controlled German government as the site of Action T4. The Kaiser Wilhelm Institute of Anthropology, Human Heredity, and Eugenics was founded in 1927. Hartheim Euthanasia Centre was also part of the euthanasia programme where the Nazis killed individuals they deemed disabled. The first method used involved transporting patients by buses in which the engine exhaust gases were passed into the interior of the buses, and so killed the passengers. Gas chambers were developed later and used pure carbon monoxide gas to kill the patients.[citation needed] In its early years, and during the Nazi era, the Clinic was strongly associated with theories of eugenics and racial hygiene advocated by its leading theorists Fritz Lenz and Eugen Fischer, and by its director Otmar von Verschuer. Under Fischer, the sterilization of so-called Rhineland Bastards was undertaken. Grafeneck Castle was one of Nazi Germany’s killing centers, and today it is a memorial place dedicated to the victims of the Action T4.[23]

The Law for Simplification of the Health System of July 1934 created Information Centers for Genetic and Racial Hygiene, as well as Health Offices. The law also described procedures for ‘denunciation’ and ‘evaluation’ of persons, who were then sent to a Genetic Health Court where sterilization was decided.[24]

Information to determine who was considered ‘genetically sick’ was gathered from routine information supplied by people to doctor’s offices and welfare departments. Standardized questionnaires had been designed by Nazi officials with the help of Dehomag (a subsidiary of IBM in the 1930s), so that the information could be encoded easily onto Hollerith punch cards for fast sorting and counting.[25]

In Hamburg, doctors gave information into a Central Health Passport Archive (circa 1934), under something called the ‘Health-Related Total Observation of Life’. This file was to contain reports from doctors, but also courts, insurance companies, sports clubs, the Hitler Youth, the military, the labor service, colleges, etc. Any institution that gave information would get information back in return. In 1940, the Reich Interior Ministry tried to impose a Hamburg-style system on the whole Reich.[26]

After the Nazis passed the Nuremberg Laws in 1935, it became compulsory for both marriage partners to be tested for hereditary diseases in order to preserve the perceived racial purity of the Aryan race. Everyone was encouraged to carefully evaluate his or her prospective marriage partner eugenically during courtship. Members of the SS were cautioned to carefully interview prospective marriage partners to make sure they had no family history of hereditary disease or insanity, but to do this carefully so as not to hurt the feelings of the prospective fiancee and, if it became necessary to reject her for eugenic reasons, to do it tactfully and not cause her any offense.[27]

Excerpt from:

Nazi eugenics – Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

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THE Margaret Sanger

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Aug 152015
 

Abortion clinics were originally set up with the intention of slowing the population growth of Afro-Americans and others racial groups considered mentally or otherwise inferior.

Margaret Sanger’s Planned Parenthood is the major force behind the abortion and pro-choice/abortion movement in America. If you are proud of being pro-choice, you should know more about the most responsible person for the pro-abortion-rights movement and abortion industry in the 20th century.

“Lothrop Stoddard was on the board of directors (of Margaret Sanger’s Population Association of America) for years…. He had an interview with Adolf Hitler and was very impressed. His book, The Rising Tide of Color Against White World Supremacy, was written while he served on Sanger’s board. Havelock Ellis, one of Sanger’s extra-marital lovers, reviewed this..book favorably in The Birth Control Review”.

At a March,1925 international birth control gathering in New York City, a speaker warned of the menace posed by the “black” and “yellow” peril. The man was not a Nazi or Klansman; he was Dr. S. Adolphus Knopf, a member of Margaret Sanger’s American Birth Control League (ABCL), which along with other groups eventually became known as Planned Parenthood.

Margaret Sanger’s beliefs about social works of charity are revealing: She criticized the success– not failure– of charity… She called for the halt to the medical care being given to slum mothers, and decried the expense to the taxpayers of monies being spent on the deaf, blind and dependent. She condemned foreign missionaries for reducing the infant mortality rates in developing countries, and declared charity to be more evil than for the assistance it provided to the poor and needy. Sanger’s thinking moved to fascism in an elitist attitude that presumes to judge who is worthy to live and to die.

“Planned Parenthood is the largest abortion provider in America. 78% of their clinics are in minority communities. Blacks make up 12% of the population, but 35% of the abortions in America. Are they being targeted? Isn’t that genocide? We are the only minority in America that is on the decline in population. If the current trend continues, by 2038 the black vote will be insignificant. Did you know that the founder of Planned Parenthood, Margaret Sanger, was a devout racist who created the Negro Project designed to sterilize unknowing black women and others she deemed as undesirables of society? The founder of Planned Parenthood said, “Colored people are like human weeds and are to be exterminated.” Is her vision being fulfilled today?” quoted from blackgenocide.org

Adolf Hitler – Fuehrer of Nazi Germany “The demand that defective people be prevented from propagating equally defective offspring. . . represents the most humane act of mankind.” Mein Kampf, vol. 1, ch. 10 from Hitler and Eugenics

Margaret Sanger – Founder of Planned Parenthood “. . .we prefer the policy of immediate sterilizarion, of making sure that parenthood is ‘ absolutely prohibited ‘ to the feeble-minded.” The Pivot of Civilization, p102

“Can two walk together, except they be agreed?” Amos 3:3

Now: The preborn child is often targeted for death if tests show that it may have a physical or mental handicap. The American eugenics program has no central sponsor but does have several large advocacy groups, including Planned Parenthood, NARAL (National Abortion Rights Action League) and the National Abortion Federation.

“In the past few years there has been a frantic effort on the part of Planned Parenthood ideologues to revise their own history. Much of the effort has been waged in an attempt to distance the organization and it’s founder, Margaret Sanger, from charges of radical racial bigotry. Mike Richmond draws from a selection of authors to demonstrate that Sanger and Planned Parenthood are rooted in eugenics, and have earned a despised place in history along with Adolf Hitler and the German Third Reich were.” from “Life Advocate, Jan.-Feb., 1998, Vol. XII, Number 10,

Another link between Margaret Sanger, American Eugenicist and Adolf Hitler, Eugenics practitioner: “The leaders in the German sterilization movement state repeatedly that their legislation was formulated after careful study of the California experiment as reported by Mr. Gosney and Dr. [Paul] Popenoe. It would have been impossible, they say, to undertake such a venture involving some 1 million people without drawing heavily upon previous experience elsewhere.” Who is Dr. Paul Popenoe? He was a leader in the U.S. eugenics movement and wrote (1933) the article ‘Eugenic Sterilization’ in the journal (BCR) that Margaret Sanger started. How many Americans did Dr. Popenoe estimate should be subjected to sterilization? Between five million and ten million Americans. “The situation [in the U.S.A] will grow worse instead of better if steps are not taken to control the reproduction of mentally handicapped. Eugenic sterilization represents one such step that is practicable, humanitarian, and certain in its results.”

from

First, put into action President Wilson’s fourteen points, upon which terms Germany and Austria surrendered to the Allies in 1918.

Second, have Congress set up a special department for the study of population problems and appoint a Parliament of Population, the directors representing the various branches of science: this body to direct and control the population through birth rates and immigration, and to direct its distribution over the country according to national needs consistent with taste, fitness and interest of individuals. The main objects of the Population Congress would be:

a. to raise the level and increase the general intelligence of population.

b. to increase the population slowly by keeping the birth rate at its present level of fifteen per thousand, decreasing the death rate below its present mark of 11 per thousand.

c. to keep the doors of immigration closed to the entrance of certain aliens whose condition is known to be detrimental to the stamina of the race, such as feebleminded, idiots, morons, insane, syphilitic, epileptic, criminal, professional prostitutes, and others in this class barred by the immigration laws of 1924.

d. to apply a stern and rigid policy of sterilization and segregation to that grade of population whose progeny is tainted, or whose inheritance is such that objectionable traits may be transmitted to offspring.

e. to insure the country against future burdens of maintenance for numerous offspring as may be born of feebleminded parents, by pensioning all persons with transmissible disease who voluntarily consent to sterilization.

f. to give certain dysgenic groups in our population their ( another Pro-Choice) choice of segregation or sterilization.

g. to apportion farm lands and homesteads for these segregated persons (sounds like a return to the plantation for a life of slavery) where they would be taught to work under competent instructors for the period of their entire lives.

The first step would thus be to control the intake and output of morons, mental defectives, epileptics.

The second step would be to take an inventory of the secondary group such as illiterates, paupers, unemployables, criminals, prostitutes, dope-fiends; classify them in special departments under government medical protection, and segregate them on farms and open spaces as long as necessary for the strengthening and development of moral conduct.

Having corralled this enormous part of our population and placed it on a basis of health instead of punishment, it is safe to say that fifteen or twenty millions of our population would then be organized into soldiers of defense—defending the unborn against their own disabilities.

The third step would be to give special attention to the mothers’ health, to see that women who are suffering from tuberculosis, heart or kidney disease, toxic goitre, gonorrhea, or any disease where the condition of pregnancy disturbs their health are placed under public health nurses to instruct them in practical, scientific methods of contraception in order to safeguard their lives—thus reducing maternal mortality.

The above steps may seem to place emphasis on a health program instead of on tariffs, moratoriums and debts, but I believe that national health is the first essential factor in any program for universal peace.

With the future citizen safeguarded from hereditary taints, with five million mental and moral degenerates (Sanger was known for her attitudes on free sex, adultery and abortion. Under this provision, Ms. Sanger’s sexual profligacy and pro-abortion – murder of the unborn- would have placed Sanger, herself, into this category) segregated, with ten million women and ten million children receiving adequate care, we could then turn our attention to the basic needs for international peace.

There would then be a definite effort to make population increase slowly and at a specified rate, in order to accommodate and adjust increasing numbers to the best social and economic system.

In the meantime we should organize and join an International League of Low Birth Rate Nations to secure and maintain World Peace.

“Summary of address before the New History Society”, January 17th, New York City

Highlights in red inserted by website author.

Margaret Sanger, Sterilization, and the Swastika by Mike Richmond Good assessment of Sanger’s beliefs and the affect of her influence

See the article here:

THE Margaret Sanger

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Eugenics in Virginia: Buck v. Bell and Forced …

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Aug 042015
 

Photograph of Supreme Court Justice Oliver Wendell Holmes. Courtesy of the Library of Congress. [1.1] Supreme Court Justice Oliver Wendell Holmes, Jr. in Buck v. Bell

It is better for all the world, if instead of waiting to execute degenerate offspring for crime or to let them starve for their imbecility, society can prevent those who are manifestly unfit from continuing their kind Three generations of imbeciles are enough. ~Oliver Wendell Holmes

Writing for the majority in the Supreme Courts affirmative decision of the Buck v. Bell landmark case, Oliver Wendell Holmes Jr. described Charlottesville native Carrie Buck as the probable potential parent of socially inadequate offspring, likewise afflicted stating that her welfare and that of society will be promoted by her sterilization.

Current scholarship shows that Carrie Bucks sterilization relied on a false diagnosis premised on the now discredited science of eugenics. It is likely that Carries mother, Emma Buck, was committed to a state institution because she was considered sexually promiscuous, that the same diagnosis was made about Carrie when she became an unwed mother at the age of 17 due to being raped, and that her daughter Vivian was diagnosed as not quite normal at the age of six months largely in support of the legal effort to sterilize Carrie.

2004 Claude Moore Health Sciences Library

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Eugenics in Virginia: Buck v. Bell and Forced …

Eugenics in the United States – Wikipedia, the free …

 Eugenics  Comments Off on Eugenics in the United States – Wikipedia, the free …
Jul 212015
 

Eugenics, the social movement claiming to improve the genetic features of human populations through selective breeding and sterilization,[1] based on the idea that it is possible to distinguish between superior and inferior elements of society,[2] played a significant role in the history and culture of the United States prior to its involvement in World War II.[3]

Eugenics was practised in the United States many years before eugenics programs in Nazi Germany[4] and U.S. programs provided much of the inspiration for the latter.[5][6][7] Stefan Khl has documented the consensus between Nazi race policies and those of eugenicists in other countries, including the United States, and points out that eugenicists understood Nazi policies and measures as the realization of their goals and demands.[5]

During the Progressive Era of the late 19th and early 20th century, eugenics was considered[by whom?] a method of preserving and improving the dominant groups in the population; it is now generally associated with racist and nativist elements[citation needed] (as the movement was to some extent a reaction to a change in emigration from Europe) rather than scientific genetics.

The American eugenics movement was rooted in the biological determinist ideas of Sir Francis Galton, which originated in the 1880s. Galton studied the upper classes of Britain, and arrived at the conclusion that their social positions were due to a superior genetic makeup.[8] Early proponents of eugenics believed that, through selective breeding, the human species should direct its own evolution. They tended to believe in the genetic superiority of Nordic, Germanic and Anglo-Saxon peoples; supported strict immigration and anti-miscegenation laws; and supported the forcible sterilization of the poor, disabled and “immoral”.[9] Eugenics was also supported by African Americans intellectuals such as W. E. B. Du Bois, Thomas Wyatt Turner, and many academics at Tuskegee University, Howard University, and Hampton University; however they believed the best blacks were as good as the best whites and The Talented Tenth” of all races should mix.[10] W. E. B. Du Bois believed only fit blacks should procreate to eradicate the races heritage of moral iniquity.”[10][11]

The American eugenics movement received extensive funding from various corporate foundations including the Carnegie Institution, Rockefeller Foundation, and the Harriman railroad fortune.[6] In 1906 J.H. Kellogg provided funding to help found the Race Betterment Foundation in Battle Creek, Michigan.[8] The Eugenics Record Office (ERO) was founded in Cold Spring Harbor, New York in 1911 by the renowned biologist Charles B. Davenport, using money from both the Harriman railroad fortune and the Carnegie Institution. As late as the 1920s, the ERO was one of the leading organizations in the American eugenics movement.[8][12] In years to come, the ERO collected a mass of family pedigrees and concluded that those who were unfit came from economically and socially poor backgrounds. Eugenicists such as Davenport, the psychologist Henry H. Goddard, Harry H. Laughlin, and the conservationist Madison Grant (all well respected in their time) began to lobby for various solutions to the problem of the “unfit”. Davenport favored immigration restriction and sterilization as primary methods; Goddard favored segregation in his The Kallikak Family; Grant favored all of the above and more, even entertaining the idea of extermination.[13] The Eugenics Record Office later became the Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory.

Eugenics was widely accepted in the U.S. academic community.[6] By 1928 there were 376 separate university courses in some of the United States’ leading schools, enrolling more than 20,000 students, which included eugenics in the curriculum.[14] It did, however, have scientific detractors (notably, Thomas Hunt Morgan, one of the few Mendelians to explicitly criticize eugenics), though most of these focused more on what they considered the crude methodology of eugenicists, and the characterization of almost every human characteristic as being hereditary, rather than the idea of eugenics itself.[15]

By 1910, there was a large and dynamic network of scientists, reformers and professionals engaged in national eugenics projects and actively promoting eugenic legislation. The American Breeders Association was the first eugenic body in the U.S., established in 1906 under the direction of biologist Charles B. Davenport. The ABA was formed specifically to investigate and report on heredity in the human race, and emphasize the value of superior blood and the menace to society of inferior blood.” Membership included Alexander Graham Bell, Stanford president David Starr Jordan and Luther Burbank.[16][17] The American Association for the Study and Prevention of Infant Mortality was one of the first organizations to begin investigating infant mortality rates in terms of eugenics.[18] They promoted government intervention in attempts to promote the health of future citizens.[19][verification needed]

Several feminist reformers advocated an agenda of eugenic legal reform. The National Federation of Womens Clubs, the Womans Christian Temperance Union, and the National League of Women Voters were among the variety of state and local feminist organization that at some point lobbied for eugenic reforms.[20]

One of the most prominent feminists to champion the eugenic agenda was Margaret Sanger, the leader of the American birth control movement. Margaret Sanger saw birth control as a means to prevent unwanted children from being born into a disadvantaged life, and incorporated the language of eugenics to advance the movement.[21][22] Sanger also sought to discourage the reproduction of persons who, it was believed, would pass on mental disease or serious physical defect. She advocated sterilization in cases where the subject was unable to use birth control.[21] Unlike other eugenicists, she rejected euthanasia.[23] For Sanger, it was individual women and not the state who should determine whether or not to have a child.[24][25]

In the Deep South, womens associations played an important role in rallying support for eugenic legal reform. Eugenicists recognized the political and social influence of southern clubwomen in their communities, and used them to help implement eugenics across the region.[26] Between 1915 and 1920, federated womens clubs in every state of the Deep South had a critical role in establishing public eugenic institutions that were segregated by sex.[27] For example, the Legislative Committee of the Florida State Federation of Womens Clubs successfully lobbied to institute a eugenic institution for the mentally retarded that was segregated by sex.[28] Their aim was to separate mentally retarded men and women to prevent them from breeding more feebleminded” individuals.

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Pierre Teilhard De Chardin | Designer Children | Prometheism | Euvolution | Transhumanism