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|UK Longevity News|
|American Government and Life|
Contents are provided for information only, under the right to free speech. Opinions are the authors' own. No professional advice is intended. If you wish others to be legally responsible for your health, life or finances, then please consult a professional regulated according to the laws of your country.
Volume 1 no 1. First published April 1987. ISSN 0964-5659.
Status Report from Longevity Books.
Apart from a few faithful regulars our recent additions and mailings did not provoke a great response. However we have recently mailed the customers of Life Extension Products Ltd and plan further mailings of similarly minded organisations. We have had three replies to our request for entries for a skills list, which were gratefully received. As yet there is no volunteer for the Cambridge Sci Fi stall. We point out that there is $100 expenses offered by the Venturists.
U.K. Longevity News.
Life Extension Products Ltd have introduced various new products to meet popular demand. They sell a vitamin E powder. It is now well known to most people who take vitamins that oil-filled vitamin E capsules carry risks in that the oil can become rancid. The combination then does more harm than good. Using the powder gets over this problem. We have added Dr Wilfred Shute's famous book on the vitamin to our stock, and recommend it to all who haven't read it.
Mr Max O'Connor, the president of Mizar Ltd., the UK Cryonics company, plans a four year stay in America. This will obviously reduce the speed of progress of cryonics in the UK but I am assured by the remaining directors that the company will remain in business and actively seeks new members. Ideally they would like the addition of new people who are skilled in the relevant fields, but they plan to undertake additional training themselves so that they can meet any eventuality. Anyone who wants to make suspension arrangements in the UK can still contact Mizar Ltd with the confidence that they can supply the best overseas services that Alcor can offer. However a service based in the UK is very much in the future.
Tomorrow's World on 2 April carried a short item on cryonics. The Star carried an excellent report on 10 April about the research done by the American Cryonics Society, and its cooling and reanimation of the dog Miles. This research was performed last summer but has only just come to the attention of the news media. ITV's News at One carried pictures and an interview with Dr Paul Segall. His research is behind that being performed by Alcor, but both projects are funded by the Life Extension Foundation in Florida. We have a few copies of The Star for anyone interested.
The American Government and Life.
The official government view is given by the following excerpts from an article in April 1985:Richard Greulich, Scientific Director of the National Institute On Aging (NIA), is reported to have said: "The IA's goal is to improve Life, rather than extend it. We're interested in the quality rather than the quantity of life. The proper role for gerontology is not, to search for the key to immortality but to fnd ways of improving the lot of the swelling number of old people. Anti Aging News comments that a policy that condones and encourages the death of human beings is immoral. A NIA paper by N.L. Reidrick on the effects on lifespan of mice by a compound known as 2ME, and its capability to prevent the diseases of aging, comments..."such a strategy will be successful only if the maximum lifespan does not increase...
The substantial advances made in life extension. with the introduction of the Life Extension Foundation's Project 2000 have caused the American government to step in on the side of death. Using methods originated by the Nazis in the 1930s they have raided the offices of General Nutrition, Lederle and the Lile Extension Foundation. I only have details of the raid on the Life Extension Foundation, but in true Nazi style people were threatened by guns and axes whilst their personal posessions were confiscated. Nobody was arrested, and nobody was read their rights. Books such as 120 Year Diet and Engines of Creation were confiscated.
However the company remains in operation. As the books that were taken are perfectly legal and produced by reputable publishers. New stocks will be obtained and they will continue to remain on offer.2 Hitler got nowhere by burning books and I don't suppose that his successors wall achieve much either. Although the 1985 article from Anti Aging News is in a "collector's edition", I will provide photocopies to anyone interested free of charge.
Unfortunately, the Life Extension Foundation have made claims for their products that are not approved by the FDA (the US Government's drug regulatory authority). The fact that these claims are supported by scientific literature is no defence. The correct procerure is to have a separate company selling the scientific information, and a separate company selling the products. It is a pity that the Life Extension Foundation have made these small legal transgressions, because they will be unable to claim punitive damages against the individuals concerned with the raid.
Round Up of March's magazines.
The Life Extension Report made no mention of the raid, as it probably went to press before it took place. Its update on Project 2000 included news of its investment in Alpha 1 Biomedicals (a company that is working on Thymosin), a grant aide to Alcor for their new facility in Riverside. California, the use of computers in aging research, studies of D|NA repair mechanisms, and the differences between normal and cancer cells. There were additional reports Nerve Growth Factor and Alzheimer's disease, and transdermal Estrogen therapy for Menopause. The magazine was concluded with an article Your Chances of Reaching the Age 100 by Saul Kent. Alpha 1 Biomedicals is quoted on the US OTC market, and is also working on an AIDS treatment. As of the publication of Life Extension Report its share price was $11.50.
The Immortalist had an article on Space Replicators by Conrad Schneiker. This discussed the use of nanotechnology for use in space exploration. Another article discussed why children make the best immortalists, and anonymous psychologist U.N. Ami continued his series More Effective Living. In addition there are as ever numerous short items of news and comment relevant to immortalism.
Cryonics carried a blow by blow account of the Life Extension Foundation raid, and news of disputes between the various American cryonics societies. (Fools fighting in burning houses, I call it, or possibly Dallonics or Crynasty) On the positive side it discusses the move by Alcor to its new premises and there is an article on room temperature superconductivity. A short report mentions that an anonymous physician has joined the Alcor suspension team. (To subscribe to Cryonics. please contact Mizar Ltd.)
This quarter's Journal of the Mega Health Society carries a brief mention of the raid together with reports on BHT Tryptophan, the use of vitamin C to combat addictions, choosing a multi-vitamin, rutin and bioflavinoids. dental work and back pairs, and a book review of Forever Young, a book that we may well stock sometime in the future.
The current Notebook of the American Cryonics Society (the one on the news) starts with an adulatory profile of Saul Kent. The main article is on perfusion experiments, and details the monkey cooling and reanimation mentioned in The Star expected later in the year. Physiological signals from the experiment will be coupled to an IBM-AT computer. This is followed by a number of short items including suspension funding arrangements. Trans Times's new computer is the subject of another article. This is followed by two articles on libertarianism and immortalism. Two poems by David Pizer lead into a final exhortation for readers to send in articles. A year's subscription to this bi-monthly costs $30 (international) and can be obtained from ACS, Suite 368. 870, Market Street, San Fransisco, CA94012, U.S.A. '
The news coming from the USA is not all good news, and it may well be that for the concept of immortalism to survive to be of any use-to those now living, the movement will need a base in another country. It is almost inevitable that one day mankind will learn how to make death optional. Whether the authorities will allow this present generation to be the one that achieves this is another matter entirely.
Max O'Connor became Max More and founded the Extropians, a highly successful futurist organization based in the USA. As far as I know he never returned to the UK. The US government seems much more tolerant of life extension, and indeed joins government around the world to put billions into nanotechnology. However there are always health fascists who try to gain political acceptance by glorifying death, so far without much success. Squabbles remain in the cryonics service providers, although there is now a strong movement to align Alcor and CI to provide a unified standby team in the UK. 2002 saw a "cryonics summit" in the USA between the organisations. The news media still re-discover cryonics every few months, and the subject receives a totally disproportionate amount of cover considering the relatively small number of people signed up. A competition held by the New Scientists in 2002 suggested that 30% of the population approve of cryonics, so in the UK alone nearly 20 million people are potential patients of a cryonics service provider. But still the number of sign ups number in the tens, never mind millions!
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