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Enshrining human , transhuman  and posthuman  self agency through Property Rights  law and statute

Enshrining human , transhuman and posthuman self agency through Property Rights law and statute



draft of 10 dec 2011 presentation to terasem on second life...subject to revision between 01 dec and presentation date

draft of 10 dec 2011 presentation to terasem on second life...subject to revision between 01 dec and presentation date



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  • My proposition is that a proactive stance should be taken so that what those who wish to move human evolution along can do so without diverting time, and resources to ask line-item permission from any other human or social, cultural, theistic or governmental jurisdiction or construct. There are a wide range of implications enabled by successful application of “Property Rights” to support human self-directed evolution in all of its manifest forms. I am going to some use language which may bring forth some strong discussion….Please in advance let me make apology to those whose sensitivity I may offend.
  • I had a hard time deciding on a term to cover self-ownership in a way that applies to humans , transhumans , posthumans or any type of cybernetic or digital construct and especially to medicine in all its forms preventative, regenerative, crisis-management and palliative.What I did was find a search term which seemed to bring up scholarly papers covering the derivatives of self-ownership of one’s body.
  • Religions in large measure attempt to justify the taking away of the capacity to make many decisions about our bodies through interpretations of scripture writings.Property Rights are removed from the individual and in the extreme tolerate “honor killing” of children and family members by some religious cultures. Capital punishment imposes upon individuals the condition that if they destroy the rights of others to enjoy their own bodies they will in turn be stripped of this ownership by the state or some third party society agrees to delegate this function to.The killing of “un believers” in the middle ages or “Witches” at Salem are all instances where self-ownership was stripped by others without justification by or permission of the person whose body was being damaged.
  • Be it women as second-class citizens, slavery of one class or nationality by another, or apartheid , or treatment of gay/lesbian/bi-trans-sexuals or the treatment of jewish persons by the German 3rd Reich, we have a history overflowing with person’s debasing the rights of others to enjoy their most prized possession their own bodies without just cause. Perhaps laws against rape also detail how one person may not interfere with the enjoyment or use by another person of their own body.
  • The history of medicine delegating doctors, regulators and other third parties to interfere with the chemicals, therapies, devices a person may direct to have control over to control their own body functions has changed but is still does essentially the same thing…third parties exhibit control over the use you wish to make of your own body. In balance the citizen of today does have more capacity to take back this control than ever before…however the cost in time , effort and money reduces the degree to which we actually control our body when dealing with healthcare issues.
  • Academic literature has collected a lot of valuable material to enrich our discussion.
  • There does appear to be a logic track to justify tightly-held personal ownership rights as part of an already accepted system of rights.
  • Legally minded persons do recognize that property rights may be used by individuals to back their perceived rights to modify their bodies. Yes something as demure as the right for someone to wear to work and in public places tattoos, display cosmetically reshaped bodies as a method of self-expression is a discussion area where general agreement in much of the world stands behind the freedom to choose how to modify your own body…..irregardless of prior, present or future intent for personal uses of such modifications… If in due course this also enables one to create personal gain , wealth, power and such , this “commodification” would be supported by the application of “Property Rights”.
  • While we all think first of our own jurisdictions , the global jurisdiction is the final goal of any crystallization of a Human Right.
  • Those who oppose the idea of self directed modification to drive directed evolution of everything from your “Omics” to various levels of organelle substitution or addition to cybernetic modifications to transloading or uploading into a digital substrate with or without subsequent downloading to a cybernetic or organic construct may use quite a variety of arguments and forums to sway social, cultural and political constructs to crystallize opposing views into “LAWS”. Property Rights may be the simplest method for individuals to decouple their activity from the force or effect of those who would for a wide range of motives choose to derail the aforementioned activities.
  • This statement may indeed cover the issue…..humans with sufficient skill and sophistication to apply knowledge to “controlled material” AKA one’s own body may have an already established justification to have “property rights” to this body.
  • This is by no means an exhaustive list of issues related to our discussion of Property Rights over your body, but is meant to facilitate the detailing of such a list.
  • I really believe that simple recognition of the ownership of one’s body by the resident consciousness may by itself have one of those 10^9<10 types of impacts on the world as we know it. This recognition then marginalizes the arguments to and against the other means to this end.The bottom line is that when you control the discussion you are in much better than if you are responding to the arguments of others, who by setting the area for discussion thereby lessening your chances of winning such an argument.

Enshrining human , transhuman  and posthuman  self agency through Property Rights  law and statute Enshrining human , transhuman and posthuman self agency through Property Rights law and statute Presentation Transcript

  • Enshrining human , transhuman and posthuman self agency through Property Rights law and statute Presented by Morris Folke JohnsonTo : Colloquium on the Law of Futuristic Persons 10 December 2011 Amphitheatre, Terasem Island, Second Life
  • Definition• Self-agency: a developmentally based transformation in conceptualizing self as a purposeful agent capable of shaping motives, actions, and future possibilities.“Research in Nursing & Health, 2003, 26, 20–29”
  • History-Religion• God gave us self agency, self agency that allows us to make our own decisions - good and bad. Through a lot of the bills that the church has obviously been supporting and spearheading - like the liquor laws, they are trying to control that legal self agency we have been given. All this shows is fear and the need to be in control. If God was truly a part of the church, then they wouldnt have this fear and need to be in control. http://www.abc4.com/content/news/top%20stories/story/The-secret-untold-story-behind-Utahs-new-liquor/zTDj3R5_qkClr_IPeUKQnA.cspx?rss=20
  • History-Culture-The disenfranchisement of the individual isreinforced by caste and gender constructionsthat have historically created a loss of self-agency for women and lower castes“Purifying the earthly body of God: religion and ecology inHindu India By Lance E. Nelson …. Pg. 124 “
  • History- Medicine• How the patient-doctor relationship affects self- agency…• Patients are often more successful at self-advocacy if the particular problem they are describing also connects to some aspect protected under the "Patient Bill of Rights." However, self-advocacy can also resolve other situations, such as differences of opinion between the patient and doctor, or personality conflicts, or even minor problems in delivery of health care.“ http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Self-advocacy ”
  • Current Views• A growing body of research has documented the contributing role of self-efficacy beliefs in self development, adaptation, and change at different phases of the life course-“Role of Affective Self-Regulatory Efficacy in Diverse Spheresof Psychosocial Functioning” Child Development, May/June2003, Volume 74, Number 3, Pages 769–782
  • Self-Agency VS Ownership• Women are, therefore, entitled to independent land rights solely on the basis of having rights as humans. Likewise, the interdependence principle refers to the fact that rights are interconnected with each other, so that the fulfilment of one right is tightly connected to the fulfilment of other rights. From this perspective, the fulfilment of the rights to political participation, and to an adequate living, (just to mention some examples), would be tightly connected to the right to land. “Gender & Development Vol. 16, No. 1, March 2008 pgs. 55-71”
  • Human Rights in a Posthuman World• We can view appearance discrimination cases in the workplace as presenting the question of how and when the law will permit the commodification of workers bodies VS• …by treating the human body as uncommodifiable, and treating everything else as property, we sufficiently protect human rights and dignity from the threats posed by property rights• “Conference Papers -- Law & Society; 2008 Annual Meeting, p1, 0p.”• http://my.news.yahoo.com/woman-gets-100-silicone- injections-to-have-the-world-s-biggest-lips.html
  • Human Rights in a Post Human World: Critical Essays/DiscussionFocusing on the human right to development, the authorexamines why the UN Declaration on the Human Right toDevelopment has not attracted more attention and goes on tohighlight the work of Arjun Sengupta and its implications forthe human right to development. It goes on to examine how inthe current world scenario the emancipatory potential ofhuman rights may be carried forward• http://www.oup.com/us/catalog/general/subject/Law/PublicI nternationalLaw/InternationalHumanRights/?view=usa&ci=97 80198061762
  • Why choose Property Rights ……as opposed to Human Rights?• “transhumanists do not accept that there is any "essential natural essence to being human" that must be respected, an essence that I believe we must hold on trust, untampered with, for future generations. It is difficult to define what constitutes this essence, without referring to a soul or at least a "human spirit" - the latter of which does not require any religious belief, but does require that we see ourselves as more than just machines. The fact that at least a large majority of transhumanists are atheists and they do see humans as machines might explain, in part, why they believe no such respect is required. “• http://www.mercatornet.com/articles/view/transhumanism_the_dangers _of_creating_humanity_2.0/
  • Looking for Testable law• USA….Human Tissue Bill …. section 32 ‘establishes that property rights are created where there has been “an application of human skill” to controlled material’• ROHANHARDCASTLE, LawandtheHumanBody: Property Rights,Ownership• and Control, Oxford, Hart Publishing, 2007, Hardback, 210 pp., £40.00
  • Potential Test case situation #1:Person who is diagnosed terminal with <90days life decides to order his live body bedeanimated and put into cryogenic stasis10 days later, in hopes that a body in that statewould have a greater chance of successfulreanimation of an undamaged consciousness insome biological, cybernetic or synthetic digitallife-form…
  • Potential Test case situation #2:• Woman wishes to have her placenta cooled and frozen after delivering a child and does so. …. Woman bequests placenta to her child in her will and dies shortly after in a car accident.• Child has need for stem cells derived from the tissue 10 years later to grow a new limb.
  • Potential Test case situation #3:• -person reads journal papers and self diagnoses a lead to a treatment not within the scope of standard approved therapies ….a very limited number of replicated successes exist….the person procures all the required services without asking for ethics or regulatory body approval, simply asserting right to manage his body as if it were any other piece of personal property….
  • Potential Test case situation #4:• A person wishes to consume a pharmaceutical substance not approved by regulators of his country or admissible for importation to his country asserts right to acquire , transport and consume said substance to alter in a manner purported to enhance the normal capabilities of his neurological function asserting right to alter his personal property in a manner of his own choosing and within the scope of his own personal comfort level for risk aversion.
  • http://www.mercatornet.com/articles/view/transhumanism_the_dangers_of_creating _humanity_2.0/• Person wills his assets to be managed by a computer program which he terms an artificial general intelligence which he has satisfied has captured enough of his mindfiles so as to act on his behalf as if it were he……The AGI immediately upon his death orders his body frozen and asserts the right to act as his custodian until a reanimation procedure can be carried out….under what conditions can property rights be transferred to others
  • Issues• -Qualifications for person to assume complete unrestricted self- agency/ownership…age, intellectual capacity, knowledge/education….tests of ownership• -When does diminished capacity/infirmity result in relinquishment or transfer of said ownership to a custodian or other third party.• -When does criminal activity result in loss of self- agency to a third party.
  • Issues• -what is the appropriate function for regulators such as FDA, DEA when third parties cease to have the capacity to interfere with the rights an individual gains when they gain legal recognition of self agency and self ownership over their own bodies.• -what other changes to current law are natural derivatives of personal property rights that recognize self-ownership of one’s body.
  • The Scope of The Paradigm shift• When Singularity University speaks of changes that may impact the lives of a billion persons in less than 10 years I immediately think of the enshrinement in law and statute of personal property rights that include the ownership of own your own body.
  • To Contact Me:• On Second Life… MorrisFolkeJohnson• Email- lifespan.pharma.inc@gmail.com• To download a copy from the Web:• http://www.slideshare.com/lifespan.pharma.inc• Phone/FAX- 306-447-4944• Cel/mobile 701-240-9411• Snail Mail:• SW34-01-16-W2nd meridian, Rd 707 South, Box 10, Beaubier, Saskatchewan, Canada, S0C-0H0