Most signed up members arrange to freeze anything that's left.
November 24 2004, 11:33 AM
There is a big concern in Alcor about getting a bad preservation, and for good reason. Those last two cases were really bad. The possibility of revival is generally thought to be "non-zero" (as Merkle once wrote I think)-- so the possibility of revival in really bad preservations is just closer to zero... much much closer to zero. Say, what are the odds YOU being physically here a thousand years from now? Not being signed up, I'd say that you're even closer to zero than those bad preservations, right? We can help you do something about that-- Well, if you ever change your mind, let us know. I'll have fun going over these posts in a million years. I'll be able to say "Yes, I remember TWrelated. I wonder who that really was?". Are you at least writing a biography.
I've often wondered how cryonics would look if you just followed the money.
November 24 2004, 12:32 PM
I guess depositing cheques for bad preservations can look pretty bad to an outsider and I suppose it's possible that someone smiles when they deposit the cheque. To grant you your cynicism-- nothing wrong in that-- I've often wondered how cryonics would look from a strictly follow-the-money point of view. I've been too busy working out my philosophy of life and finding myself, that it never occurred to me that some people pursue money for its own sake. I can see all sorts of flaws in the piano trade for example-- or in life in general-- where it's quite believable that money-love is the driving force-- which love, of course, is the root not just of a few evils-- but of literally all evil-- if you believe some prophets.
So in the example you raise-- yes-- the cynic would say that regardless of how good or bad the preservation was, Alcor still gets their cheque. There is no built-in incentive to provide customer satisfaction because dead or frozen men can't complain. The interesting feature of what you're saying is that the efforts that I've seen to do quality control and analysis don't seem to have gone anywhere. You might arrange a cryonics company to be paid 50% on a half-ass job and 100% on a great job, for example. I don't think that's physically possible. I think we're facing a total 100% trust situation here.
I think the reporting function is really important because Alcor's reputation (or any cryonics outfit's reputation) is only as good as their last preservation. So regardless of who is responsible for those last two situations, Alcor's reputation (in your eyes at least) declines correspondingly. More on this later. Good question. Tough question-- though-- full of physical problems and paradoxes. How would YOU deal with this problem if YOU were a cryonicist? Put yourself in our shoes for a bit and see what you can come up with. De Bono's lateral thinking might work across people too. Let's "lateralize" the problem.
As long as someone says, "hey, we don't think this proceedure is going to be effective or worthy given the circumstances, but if you want to go through with it we'll be glad to take your money", the purchaser knows what they're in for.
What I was asking is if there's a chance a conversation like that took place, or did Alcor quietly just take the money.
I guess its an ethical, moral business practices question...
Every member already knows, in advance, that they might not be rescued in time but they sign papers authorizing Alcor to go ahead and do what they can anyway. What you'd like to see already is in place. How do you think I'm able to know this? Duh! In terms of "conversations taking place"-- that's hardly how it works. The paperwork says it all. You don't seem to have any regard for Alcor at all-- I'm beginning to wonder about you. What do you think we're trying to do here, as members? I guess I don't understand your angle as well as I thought I did.
TWrelated either fails to understand, or fails to acknowledge, that cryonicists who sign up, whether with Alcor or any other company I know of, have their funding arranged in advance, and rely on their company to make their best effort to preserve them regardless of the circumstances.
Having said that, I ask TWrelated who he thinks the cryonics company should refund the money to, were they to think a preservation attempt to be futile. The money was already, in most cases, given to the company by the cryonicist, or arranged to be irrevocably given at "death" via an insurance policy.
And the reality is they are only morally obligated to provide the best service they can to the now officially deceased cryonicist. The irony is they have no legal contract any longer with a dead person. They have been paid, basically, for the promise of the deceased cryonicist to become a donated research specimen (in the case of Alcor) or to become the recipient of specialized cemetary services (in the case of CI).
I think that puts it rather down to earth where it belongs.
cuz I know that the chances of you being able to understand cryonics is ~nil, seeing as how your brain is obviously petrified:
Alcor and the people working to cryopreserve its patients are almost all members. As members, they themselves plan on being cryopreserved someday. In order to maximize their chances of being cryopreserved, and of getting a good cryopreservation, they need to convince possible interested onlookers that they are doing a good job and that cryonicists are trustworthy and dedicated. That way some of these interested onlookers may sign up themselves and in the future even help to cryopreserve the cryopreservation teams of today. Same logic applies to storage of cryopreserved patients: those Alcor members who help ensure the safety of today's patients also plan to be stored there as well. And they try to do a good job of it because they know that interested onlookers may be interested in joining. And they want to convince said interested onlookers that they will be well looked after, in hopes that said interested onlookers may someday look after the current caretakers.
Well, all this should be fairly obvious to anyone who has a certain modicum of intelligence and has done a certain amount of research into cryonics. It looks as if that idea does not apply to you, TW Related, as your sorry a*s has been hanging around here for at least a year without you seeming to have picked up on these ideas.
...but at the same time, if we treat the attitude as a devil's advocacy position, it's useful. On the face of it, for example, it appears that Alcor can simply preserve bodies in any condition and that there is no overt indication that Alcor goes through remorse, agony and outright crisis, when a member is not preserved with the utmost quality possible. We haven't beat ourselves up over the loss of integrity of the brain structure of the October cases, for example. There's only a shrug of shoulders. Now, to be fair-- we're seeing an extra measure of effort being put into the standby effort. So this new standby effort is, in fact, a nice piece of hard evidence that a devil's advocate has to look at. What would a devil's advocate say about this new standby policy? Why would Alcor do that if they only wanted to deposit a cheque? TWr does, indeed, seem obtuse for someone who has hung around here a bit, but I think TWr represents the tip of the iceburg in terms of public skepticism so using TWr's position as devil's advocacy is actually useful, I think.
"sertain minimum level of knowledge and logic appraisal skills"
Hey, I may be dumb, but I can spell.
I guess my point was lost.
I was wondering why time, effort and expense would be put into an obviously hopeless case.
Apparently, once a contract is signed and fees paid, Alcor carries through on it's part of the bargain not matter what the circumstances. As I said, since they're in the freezing business rather than the revival business, it's all the same to them (and you, too).
I'm sincerely trying to understand this business, but it appears very cultish, with it's own codes and secret handshakes to the outside observer.
...means that the person would theoretically be reconstituted as the same person with more amnesia than he would have otherwise. That's the best form of "not entirely salavageable" and it goes downhill from there. The worst form of "not entirely salvageable" might be something to think through further, although with future nanotech, I don't think we'd end up with mentally retarded resescutees. And of course I know we're talking human beings here-- however we're also dealing with a form of future medical science and we would abide by the Hippocratic oath as well. Does that explain the position?