As we are charged with the admonishment to walk circumspectly in this world, to expose the unfruitful works of darkness, to be not deceived, to be our brother’s keeper, to not be fearful and to embrace the unvarnished truth – it is in this spirit that we present the following conversation with Keith Hansen, touching on a few pressing issues of our day.
Eugenics: To improve the genetic composition of the human race.
George Bernard Shaw
I also made it quite clear that Socialism means equality of income or nothing, and that under socialism you would not be allowed to be poor. You would be forcibly feed, clothed, lodged, taught, and employed whether you like it or not. If it were discovered that you had not character enough to be worth all this trouble, you might possibly be executed in a kindly manner; but whilst you were permitted to live you would have to live well.
The Intelligent Woman’s Guide to Socialism and Capitalism and Fascism, 1927
Let me suggest that Dr. Galton’s concession to the fact that there are differences of type to consider is only the beginning of a very big descent of concession, that may finally carry him very deep indeed. Eugenics, which is really only a new word for the popular American term “stirpiculture,” seems to me to be a term that is not without its misleading implications. It has in it something of that same lack of a fine appreciation of facts that enabled Herbert Spencer to coin those two most unfortunate terms, “evolution” and “the survival of the fittest.” The implication is that the best reproduces and survives. Now really it is’ the better that survives, and not the best. The real fact of the case is that in the all-around result the inferior usually perish, and the average of the species rises, but not that any exceptionally favorable variations get together and reproduce. I believe that now and always the conscious selection of the best for reproduction will be impossible; that to propose it is to display a fundamental misunderstanding of what individuality implies. The way of nature has always been to slay the hindmost, and there is still no other way, unless we can prevent those who would become the hindmost being born. It is in the sterilization of failures, and not in the selection of successes for breeding, that the possibility of an improvement of the human stock lies.
–Read before the Sociological Society at a meeting in the School of Economies (London University), on May 16, 1904. It can be found in THE AMERICAN JOURNAL OF SOCIOLOGY Volume X; July, 1904; Number 1.
Getting rid of viruses is an admirable idea, but it raises enormous problems. In the first 1,400 years of the Christian era, population numbers were virtually stationary. Through epidemics, nature compensated for excess births by excess deaths.
I talked about this problem with the director of the Egyptian Academy of Sciences. He told me that scientists were appalled to think that by the year 2080 the population of Egypt might reach 250 million. What should we do to eliminate suffering and disease? It’s a wonderful idea but perhaps not altogether a beneficial one in the long run. If we try to implement it we may jeopardize the future of our species.
It’s terrible to have to say this. World population must be stabilized and to do that we must eliminate 350,000 people per day. This is so horrible to contemplate that we shouldn’t even say it. But the general situation in which we are involved is lamentable.
And yet solutions must exist. . . .
It’s a question of cost. We need $400 billion a year for fifteen years. To provide people with safe drinking water. To provide schooling for girls and low pensions for the elderly. With $4 billion over fifteen years we can not only reduce demographic pressure but halt population growth. Is there anything we can do to control industrial pollution? Not much. Carbon dioxide is the big problem. We are going to suffocate because of carbon dioxide. As you know, it stimulates breathing, and we shall all end up panting to death if amounts of carbon dioxide continue to increase. This increase is the result of a misguided energy policy. What’s more, we have preferred to invest enormous sums in nuclear energy produced by fission rather than by fusion, which is clean. But nuclear energy produced by fusion makes it possible to have the bomb! —UNESCO, Nov. 1991, p. 13
War Against the Weak: Eugenics and America’s Campaign to Create a Master Race 2003.
Cold Spring Harbor
Tuskegee Syphilis Experiment
50 U.S. Code § 1520a – Restrictions on use of human subjects for testing of chemical or biological agents
Restrictions on use of human subjects for testing of chemical or biological agents
(a) Prohibited activities The Secretary of Defense may not conduct (directly or by contract)—
(1) any test or experiment involving the use of a chemical agent or biological agent on a civilian population; or
(2) any other testing of a chemical agent or biological agent on human subjects.
(b) Exceptions Subject to subsections (c), (d), and (e), the prohibition in subsection (a) does not apply to a test or experiment carried out for any of the following purposes:
(1) Any peaceful purpose that is related to a medical, therapeutic, pharmaceutical, agricultural, industrial, or research activity.
(2) Any purpose that is directly related to protection against toxic chemicals or biological weapons and agents.
(3) Any law enforcement purpose, including any purpose related to riot control.
(c) Informed consent required
The Secretary of Defense may conduct a test or experiment described in subsection (b) only if informed consent to the testing was obtained from each human subject in advance of the testing on that subject.
(d) Prior notice to Congress
Not later than 30 days after the date of final approval within the Department of Defense of plans for any experiment or study to be conducted by the Department of Defense (whether directly or under contract) involving the use of human subjects for the testing of a chemical agent or a biological agent, the Secretary of Defense shall submit to the Committee on Armed Services of the Senate and the Committee on Armed Services of the House of Representatives a report setting forth a full accounting of those plans, and the experiment or study may then be conducted only after the end of the 30-day period beginning on the date such report is received by those committees.
(e) “Biological agent” defined In this section, the term “biological agent” means any micro-organism (including bacteria, viruses, fungi, rickettsiac, or protozoa), pathogen, or infectious substance, and any naturally occurring, bioengineered, or synthesized component of any such micro-organism, pathogen, or infectious substance, whatever its origin or method of production, that is capable of causing—
(1) death, disease, or other biological malfunction in a human, an animal, a plant, or another living organism;
(2) deterioration of food, water, equipment, supplies, or materials of any kind; or
(3) deleterious alteration of the environment.
Harold Blauer (1910 – January 8, 1953) was an American tennis player who died as a result of injections of 450 mg 3,4-Methylenedioxyamphetamine (code-named EA-1298) as part of Project MKUltra, a covert CIA mind-control and chemical interrogation research program, run by the Office of Scientific Intelligence.
Frank Rudolph Olson (July 17, 1910 – November 28, 1953) was an American bacteriologist, biological warfare scientist, and Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) employee who worked at Camp Detrick (now Fort Detrick) in Maryland. At a meeting in rural Maryland, he was covertly dosed with LSD by his CIA supervisor and, nine days later, plunged to his death from the window of a 13th-story New York City hotel room. The U.S. government first described his death as a suicide, and then as misadventure, while others allege murder. The Rockefeller Commission report on the CIA in 1975 acknowledged their having conducted drug studies.
Olson asked to quit the biowarfare program the week after the retreat:
Ruwet was surprised to see Olson at 7:30 in the morning, but asked him in. Olson told Ruwet that he was dissatisfied with his own performance at the retreat, that he was experiencing considerable self-doubts, and that in fact he had decided he would like to be out of the germ warfare business. He wanted to leave Camp Detrick and devote his life to something else.
Olson subsequently suffered severe paranoia and a nervous breakdown. The CIA sent him to New York City to see one of their physicians, who recommended that Olson be placed into a mental institution for recovery. This was Harold Abramson, an allergist-pediatrician, who was helping the CIA with the psychotropic research into the effects of the drug.
The ensuing police report said that on his last night in Manhattan, Olson purposely threw himself out of the window of his tenth-floor hotel room at the Hotel Statler, now Hotel Pennsylvania, which he had been sharing with Lashbrook, and died shortly after impact.
The Winnowing by Isaac Asimov
Questions? Concerns? Feel free to drop us a line any time at firstname.lastname@example.org.
These topics are discussed not from an argumentative or judgmental position, but rather in seeking to better understand the nature of the times in which we live.