Open Lifespan as conservatism: a defence of human life as existing value, part 3: particular valuing, the pan-biological argument

In part 1 I introduced 3 kinds of conservative dispositions or attitudes, following G.A. Cohen.

  1. Valuing the valuable -> Particular Valuing
  2. Valuing the valued -> Personal Valuing
  3. Accepting the given

In part 2 I mentioned 4 different arguments in the context of Particular Valuing that can be formulated for the ongoing and unending preservation of individual human lives:

  • The pan-conservative argument: Valuing all actual, existing entities in general,
  • The pan-biological conservative argument: Valuing all actual, existing biological lives in general,
  • The pan-human, weak anthropocentric, conservative argument: Valuing all actual, existing human lives,
  • The ecological diversity argument: Valuing all actual, existing, living instances of ecological diversity.

In part 2 I worked out the first, most general pan-conservative argument in detail.

Today we discuss the more specific pan-biological conservative argument: Valuing all actual, existing biological lives in general.

Continue reading “Open Lifespan as conservatism: a defence of human life as existing value, part 3: particular valuing, the pan-biological argument”

Open Lifespan as conservatism: a defence of human life as existing value, part 2: particular valuing, the pan-conservative argument

In part 1 I introduced 3 kinds of conservative dispositions or attitudes, following G.A. Cohen.

  1. Valuing the valuable -> Particular Valuing
  2. Valuing the valued -> Personal Valuing
  3. Accepting the given

Today we start to discuss different arguments to be made for indefinite healthy longevity a.k.a Open Lifespan in the context of Particular Valuing.

Now if we think along the line of Particular Valuing a la Cohen, we can make an argument for the ongoing and unending preservation of individual human lives according to at least 4 different respects/arguments:

  • The pan-conservative argument: Valuing all actual, existing entities in general,
  • The pan-biological conservative argument: Valuing all actual, existing biological lives in general,
  • The pan-human, weak anthropocentric, conservative argument: Valuing all actual, existing human lives,
  • The ecological diversity argument: Valuing all actual, existing, living instances of ecological diversity.

In the current post I spell out the general form of the argument in details using the first type of pan-conservative argument as a vehicle. Continue reading “Open Lifespan as conservatism: a defence of human life as existing value, part 2: particular valuing, the pan-conservative argument”

Open Lifespan via conservatism: a defence of human life as existing value, part 1

Introduction

Open Lifespan (OL) is the philosophy of biomedical longevity thinking itself and its limits. Its central part seems to be rooted in political philosophy, but not in the sense of applied ethics, so the task is to re-apply existing concepts in this discipline in order to illuminate its own problematics and in order to seek potential answers to t he problems of those pre-OL political philosophies. The original formulation of OL philosophy started referring to and in the context of the central and centrist liberal tradition, but now it’s time to look to the left and to the right for further considerations and new angles. At the time of this writing, this means looking into Marxian formulations on the left, and libertarian and perhaps conservative conceptualisations on the right. Generally, political philosophy as a political tradition, as well as an academic discipline ignored health and life expectancy issues actively and down-prioritised the central role these issues play in the life of individuals and institutions, so this tradition has a lot to compensate for.

For a starter let’s cite from Open Future: Open Life(span) as a foundation to reinvent liberalism:

Strange as it sounds but Open Lifespan is about conserving life if viewed from an unbiased angle. It is about conserving, maintaining human life using what we are familiar with as human life as its starting point. Open Lifespan is life conservatism at its most revolutionary, as I said it earlier when immersing this thought into liberal thinking.

G.A.Cohen’s Resucing Conservatism essay

The philosophically deepest formulation of conservatism I’ve found so far was G.A. Cohen’s unfinished Rescuing Conservatism: A Defense of Existing  Value, Chapter 8 of Finding Oneself in the Other

Cohen says his conservatism is of a Hegelian type, by which he means exploring ‘modes of finding oneself in the other’, where ‘the subject is at peace with the object’.

In our current essay, we use his deep conceptual advances and apply it to a mode of finding and re-finding oneself in oneself, in the longer term. This is eminently doable, as Cohen himself does not say, his small c conservatism only applies in a Hegelian, ‘other’ setting and as it actually requires intellectual effort to realise the value of human longevity. What we loose though, apparently, is the Hegelian ‘subject-object’ type-of conservatism, which is not that big of a sacrifice to make in our context. 

The meat of Cohen’s assay is distinguishing between the following 3 kinds of conservative dispositions or attitudes.

3 cases:

  1. Valuing the valuable -> Particular Valuing
  2. Valuing the valued -> Personal Valuing
  3. Accepting the given

In what follows we introduce all 3 of them. Continue reading “Open Lifespan via conservatism: a defence of human life as existing value, part 1”

OL and the economy of time, part 4: how and why can Open Lifespan society be classless?

In the previous, third part of our study we introduced our main thesis defining  Open Life Society as the Free Association of Open Lifespan (Citizen) Producers. We started to work out an argument, using only the vocabulary of OH workers and OL citizens leading to the conclusion that in an OL Society that can be characterised as Free Association of Open Lifespan (Citizen) Producers, literally everybody should do OH duties for that OL society to qualify as such.

In other words the defining feature of OL Society is OH technology and work, and in terms of social roles it means OH workers are the one defining this society.

For the basic thought experiment and vocabulary please check Open Lifespan Possible World part of Part 2.

The main bundle of problems I’d like to discuss today is related to whether such an OL society can be described as a class society?

The crucial problem to analyse here is whether OH workers in an OL society can form an actual economic class in the Marxian sense.

The answer is an unambiguous NO, OH workers cannot form a class and hence OL society is not a class society. But we need to leave behind some conceptual sweat before we can reach this conclusion. So let’s start the intellectual exercise.

First, I introduce the concept of class, class division, class society, class oppression, class struggle following mainly G.A. Cohen’s reading of Marx.

Second, I specify the Open Lifespan possible world a bit further to situate the class-question.

Third, I introduce separate arguments to show why OH workers cannot form a proper class in an OL society.

Fourth, I try to describe the role of OH worker further by describing it as a mandatory social role.

Continue reading “OL and the economy of time, part 4: how and why can Open Lifespan society be classless?”

OL and the economy of time, part 3: Towards a Free Association of Open Lifespan Producers

Continuing the Open Lifespan and the economy of time series here. The following draft contains top level theses and foretells conclusions, a Grundrisse if you like, not as formally elaborated argument yet, as content beats the form currently. As such, this post is the most significant so far in terms of leading into the heart of the analysis and emerging new insights, but not in a yet analytical way. The ampleness of the draft material enforces this and the modified summary reflects the current status. Conceptual hardship remains but the robust outlines shine through. For the basic thought experiment and vocabulary please check Open Lifespan Possible World part of Part 2.

Summary of the whole study

Open Healthspan as a Service (Product) completely re-defines production as an activity by re-producing, re-generating indefinitely Open Lifespan bodies and lifetimes, including that of Open Healthspan workers providing these very services. This service leaves no space for alienation anymore. No objectification of labour, no externalisation of work -> no alienation. An Open Life Society, equipped with Open Healthspan as the main service product implements the real economy of time by exclusively producing additional healthy human lifetime. It neutralises the logic of capital but not killing it off with a revolution or anything. Just makes it redundant by making abundance in only one dimension by default, that of biological human lives. Leaves scarcity in other dimensions as it is.  An Open Life Society is the Free Association of Open Lifespan (Citizen) Producers. It continuously produces abundant human labour time and indefinitely and mutually reproduces all of its citizens.  Continue reading “OL and the economy of time, part 3: Towards a Free Association of Open Lifespan Producers”

Open Lifespan, Luck Egalitarianism and Lifelong Radical Equality of Opportunity; 2 arguments

In Open Lifespan, Luck Egalitarianism and Lifelong Radical Equality of Opportunity, part 1 I introduced different equality of opportunity (EOP) concepts in the literature and quickly described radical luck egalitarianism related to radical EOP. After this I have radically extended the concept of (already) radical EOP by introducing 3 new types of (dis)advantages and corresponding EOPs along the line of being alive, when and for how long. Continue reading “Open Lifespan, Luck Egalitarianism and Lifelong Radical Equality of Opportunity; 2 arguments”

Open Lifespan, Luck Egalitarianism and Lifelong Radical Equality of Opportunity, part 1

Equality of Opportunity (EOP from now on) is one type of equality concept where, and here I try to phrase it as generally as I can, individuals are pursuing any kind of life opportunities (mostly by choice) and the problem is to establish how equality can be guaranteed in terms of pursuing these opportunities within society. These opportunities usually reflect particular social positions as well. As examples, let’s mention job openings, applying in educational institutions, eligibility for health care procedures and so on. Continue reading “Open Lifespan, Luck Egalitarianism and Lifelong Radical Equality of Opportunity, part 1”

Self-Ownership and Open Lifespan: the libertarian problem of benefiting from maximum healthy longevity technology, part 1

Introduction and quick stating of the problem

The full self-ownership principle – FSO from now on – is known as a core libertarian principle. It is expressed throughout appealing to the concept of full self-ownership of individuals and guaranteeing them a stringent set of exclusive rights to the control and use over themselves as persons, their bodies, abilities, labour and use of their time.

Healthy longevity technology is aiming to provide biomedical tools to expand the healthy and maximum lifespans of people as much as possible.

Amongst peoples supporting healthy longevity many are libertarians, and several actually see libertarianism as a good (if not the best) ideological fit to support healthy longevity technology.

The argument am going to hash out here in details is that assuming the availability of such a technology the FSO principle must be rejected as maintaining human bodies and persons throughout maximum longevity limits amounts to such a dependence on this technology as to lead to the loss of full control over those bodies and lives. Continue reading “Self-Ownership and Open Lifespan: the libertarian problem of benefiting from maximum healthy longevity technology, part 1”