Well, not really of course, but nonetheless. If there was any way to do this, it could work.
I read recently about a creative researcher, Dr. Corina Amor, who may have insight into curing old age1, allowing all of us to live to 130 or so.
Let’s say it worked and we could get this out to everyone on the planet. Suddenly all the geezers at the top of the game would be looking sixty, seventy, eighty years into the future.
It’s not just their grandchildren who’d have to deal with Florida being underwater and the entire Midwest USA being a dried up flatland of blowing dust. And India and China and Europe and Africa all dealing with similar and equivalent and worse catastrophes. It would become their personal future all of a sudden.
And they’re the ones with the power to actually try to steer us away from disaster.
I bet a lot of them would suddenly see the value of doing that, even at the cost of 1.2% less profit on the quarterly shareholder report.
Wouldn’t that be nice.
1. Personally, I’d wait before buying shares. The problem with curing old age is that it looks like old age may be our answer to cancer. By far the largest risk factor for cancer is old age. All that incorrect DNA accumulates over time and leads to cancer.
By slowing down the rate of cell renewal, (so, letting cells get older and older without replacement which is what old age is), cancers also grow much more slowly. In old age, some grow so slowly that they have no effect before the person dies of other causes. This allows old people to live longer, and that’s important for our success as a species. That’s why humans benefited from slowing down cancer in old age.
Humans’ superpower is knowledge of how to deal with everything in one’s life. Before the invention of writing, that knowledge could only be as extensive as the information accumulated by the old and passed on to the young. The old then were what libraries and the internet are now. Having old people around who knew what to do was a huge boost to the survival of the group.
Point being: if we cure old age, we may well just have a galloping cancer epidemic that _shortens_ life spans. Unless we can also figure out how to cure cancer.