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U.S. Transhumanist Party / Transhuman Party Chairman’s Third Anniversary Message

U.S. Transhumanist Party / Transhuman Party Chairman’s Third Anniversary Message

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Gennady Stolyarov II


On October 7, 2019, the United States Transhumanist Party celebrated its five-year anniversary, right after a milestone 2019 Presidential Primary election and the acceptance speech of the winning candidate, Johannon Ben Zion, who has been endorsed by the USTP to run for President of the United States in 2020.  November 17, 2019, only a month and a half after these momentous events, marks three years since I became Chairman of the USTP. While the vigorous, extensively discussed, and thoroughly tabulated primary election was the USTP’s most significant undertaking during its third year, occupying the majority of our efforts between April and October 2019, several other achievements are noteworthy as well.

In January 2019, the U.S. Transhumanist Party merged with the Transhuman Party and, after the dissolution of the Transhuman National Committee of the United States, became the sole remaining explicitly transhumanist U.S. political organization – the last, best hope for transhumanist politics to succeed, given that the USTP has continued to grow and attract public interest, even as other organizations failed to gather the necessary momentum and engagement of their members. In the words of Professor Angel Marchev, Sr., at the VSIM-2019 Conference in Ravda, Bulgaria, “This year it was empirically proved that direct democracy is a bad idea for starting projects. Leadership parties adopt a model that is working, and the fact that all three political centers in the United States were united is the best illustration of that. Leadership is necessary; direct democracy is not the way to do big projects – to change the world. […] Without quality leaders, you can’t do anything.” While the USTP has relied extensively on democratic processes in developing its Platform and endorsing its 2020 candidate for President of the United States, experience obliges me to agree with Professor Marchev’s fundamental point; indeed, even to organize and oversee democratic processes, leadership is required. There must be an umpire to objectively monitor and enforce the rules of engagement, and there must be a systematic, organized way to coordinate the logistics and infrastructure that enable voting and member participation to occur.

It is most impressive and gratifying when the energy to achieve great tasks arises spontaneously from within the community, but even in those cases, a call to action is necessary, as is the demarcation of the parameters of the task. A superb example of this phenomenon in action was our project to create Free Transhumanist Symbols which any person may use to represent the concept of transhumanism in general. The purpose of this project and the conditions for providing symbols (i.e., that they must be made available freely for use by others – either by being released into the public domain or via a Creative Commons license) galvanized the creativity of individual members to contribute a plethora of high-quality symbols within mere days. However, only leadership with a principled vision can provide the incentives and the structure for such creativity to become instantiated and for its fruits to be made available to the world. This experience, like so many others over the past year, has taught me that active engagement by leadership is a vital prerequisite for a member-driven, participatory organization to be feasible.

Even in organizations where conceptual policy stances are determined by voting, leadership is required for the everyday implementation of these agreed-upon concepts into practice. The USTP’s first test of this practical application in a legislative context came during March-May 2019, when we successfully achieved significant improvements to the provisions of Nevada Assembly Bill 226 by informing legislators of the true potential and limitations of implantable microchip technology – particularly through the testimony of Anastasia Synn and the Cyborg and Transhumanist Forum – the first transhumanist event in the halls of a State legislature.

Another important function of leadership is to present the public face of an organization, as the USTP leadership was able to do in the course of numerous events – both in-person and virtual – during the past year – including the Young Americans for Liberty meeting at the University of Nevada, Reno (February 16, 2019), Wellness and Longevity Seminar in Burbank, California (August 24, 2019 – also watch the subsequent discussion panel), the VSIM-2019 Conference in Ravda, Bulgaria (September 6, 2019), and RAAD Fest 2019 in Las Vegas, Nevada (October 3-6, 2019) – as well as interviews and conversations such as those with Tobias Teufel (July 9, 2019), James Strole (July 16, 2019),  Johannon Ben Zion (August 24, 2019), Steele Archer (July 1, 2019, July 31, 2019, August 7, 2019, September 10, 2019, September 25, 2019, September 29, 2019, and October 14, 2019),  Brent Nally (October 12, 2019), and Dr. Bill Andrews (October 12, 2019). Candidate Johannon Ben Zion on his campaign tour has already visited Washington, D.C., Pennsylvania, New York, and San Francisco and engaged with transhumanist and futurist organizations in those locations, as well as with scientific research institutions, policy think tanks, and political figures from other parties. The role of leadership is to represent the organization accurately and systematically to those who seek to educate themselves about the organization’s purpose, values, goals, and positions.

Membership growth has continued to be a core focus of the USTP leadership over the past year. As of this writing, the USTP has 1,859 members, as compared to 1,187 one year ago. The net number of members joining during the third year of my tenure as Chairman (672) materially increased from those joining during the second year (487), and it is my hope that the USTP might be able to surpass the 2,000-member milestone by the end of 2019. The USTP’s growth remains steady and is accelerating slightly; however, much work remains to be done in order to bridge the awareness gap regarding transhumanism and attract the numerous implicit transhumanists in the general public to the USTP. For this, continued outreach and projects to promote the visibility of transhumanism and the USTP will be necessary. Much of the USTP’s focus during 2020 will be on coordinating with the Ben Zion 2020 Presidential campaign to maximize its impact and enable it to achieve levels of public awareness similar to what the tireless 2016 campaign efforts of Zoltan Istvan were able to accomplish.

Numerous avenues for progress are open before us. While predicting the future is notoriously difficult and never exactly accurate, some noteworthy endeavors are on the horizon for the USTP.

  • Development of Tiered Membership: In a member-driven organization, the members who are more active and who have demonstrated an in-depth understanding of the organization’s positions, values, and operations should be rewarded with additional influence over the decisions made within the organization. Hitherto, every member of the USTP has had one vote in our internal elections. While this approach has yielded productive results in the course of the USTP votes thus far, it can nonetheless be improved. The vote of a long-time, dedicated transhumanist with extensive knowledge of transhumanist ideas as well as a high degree of familiarity with the USTP should have more influence than that of a completely new member who may have thus far only filled out our membership form but has not yet had time to study the USTP’s history and operations. Accordingly, USTP leadership will explore the possibility of developing a weighted or tiered voting system where members who demonstrate a strong commitment to and a thorough understanding of the USTP will be able to earn additional votes in so doing. The key to such a system, however, is objectivity; a set of criteria needs to be established that any member could potentially meet with the requisite effort and study, and whose satisfaction can be easily validated. Accordingly, USTP leadership welcomes suggestions as to what criteria might be used to objectively award additional voting power to members who fulfill such criteria.
  • Continued Membership Growth by Reaching New Demographics: Over the past year, I have come to the conclusion that the USTP has already engaged those segments of the existing transhumanist movement which are capable of becoming constructively involved with the USTP. In order to grow much further, the USTP needs to encompass individuals who are new to the transhumanist movement and to interest individuals from constituencies that share key common goals with the USTP. Many of these individuals are currently implicit transhumanists; they lead their lives in a manner that generally welcomes new technological advances and often have an optimistic outlook on the impacts of technology on humankind’s future. For those people to become aware of the transhumanist movement and involved with the USTP will require continued diligent communication by USTP leadership in as many forums as are made available to us. With each communication, recognition of the transhumanist movement spreads, and our ideas become expressed in “mainstream” discussions to a slightly greater extent. I was recently quite pleased to be able to assist teams of university students with a debate project regarding transhumanism, longevity, and their implications. After two conversations of approximately an hour in length each, I was able to convey insights about what transhumanism stands for, as well as answers to common objections and persuasive arguments in favor of transhumanism. Several days after our conversation, I received an e-mail from one of the debate teams, announcing that it had won the debate in its class, having taken a position in support of transhumanism. “Not only that,” one of the debaters informed me, “but we asked the class after we learned the result if we had actually changed anybody’s minds on the topic, and about half the class said that we had.” This is ultimately the most effective way to change minds – through in-depth interaction with a relatively small number of people at a time, but in a manner that makes an impact and enables the insights to spread throughout the society. Debates like this one are welcome signs that the cultural conversation is shifting toward actively engaging the ideas of transhumanism, which is necessary for these ideas to become instantiated in mainstream discourse and drive a more rapid rate of advancement. This path to growth does not yield instantaneous large-scale results, but it does represent the most sustainable and long-term successful approach, since it cultivates genuine, informed understanding of transhumanist ideas, which can then be spread to others by those who have become newly but accurately aware of them.
  • Continued Creation and Creative Utilization of Media: Since the emergence of Steele Archer’s Debt Nation channel as a hub for in-depth conversations among transhumanists, as well as the extensive efforts of Johannon Ben Zion to interview notable transhumanists, futurists, and life-extensionists on his Futurist New Deal Podcast, the public has greater access than ever before to the discourse that occurs on a regular basis within the transhumanist community. Such discourse is now memorialized and shared with the world, and those who are interested in day-to-day developments within the USTP and the transhumanist movement now have several venues which can provide them with detailed updates. The most important aspect of effective communication with the media is not ideological alignment; some will agree with us, whereas others will disagree and critique us – but that is to be expected for any growing movement with the promise of bringing about major change. The most important task, rather, is to accurately convey the facts about transhumanism and the USTP so that they are reported on accurately. Unfortunately, we live in an era where “fake news” abounds, and the quest for sensationalism, as well as merely sloppy journalism can lead to rumors, fabrications, and unverified assertions being published or broadcast as if they were facts. A community characterized by robust internal dialogue and ready to articulate the facts to those who need to receive them is our strongest possible asset in preventing misinformation from becoming dominant.
  • Anti-Troll Campaign: Unfortunately, one of the greatest obstacles to the success of the transhumanist movement comes from within – from a small faction of petty and adversarial detractors whose primary motive is power and who seek to smear other individuals and organizations within the transhumanist movement when those individuals and organizations take initiative and act independently of the detractors. These “trolls” often behave in a toxic manner – gratuitously insulting other transhumanists, leveling invented false allegations, or becoming fixated on non-issues that are then used as an excuse to disparage others and seek to thwart promising initiatives. Unfortunately, because the transhumanist movement is still small, these trolls presently have disproportionate power. Because some of them have credentials in academia and are experts in some area of research, their toxic and antisocial behavior has been tolerated for far too long. Indeed, even more unfortunately, some of the trolls have become ensconced in so-called “transhumanist” groups on Facebook which actually purge much genuine transhumanist content. But professional achievement is no excuse for mistreating one’s fellow human beings or intentionally undermining others for perceived personal power gain. In order for transhumanism to grow and achieve widespread respectability, our movement needs to take a stand against the small handful of obstructionist and corrosive personalities who would rather undermine their fellow transhumanists than come to terms with growth whose parameters they cannot personally dictate. During the next year, the USTP will send a strong signal that toxic behavior will no longer be countenanced; the trolls and their malicious tendencies will be publicly identified and called out – and a clear message will be sent that our movement does not welcome those who continue to gratuitously attack, ban, harass, and intimidate reasonable transhumanists.
  • Candidates for Non-Presidential Offices: Now that the 2019 Electronic Primary has concluded and the Ben Zion 2020 Presidential campaign is well underway, it is possible for the USTP to consider endorsing candidates for other federal, state, and local offices – and we would welcome interested individuals who wish to put themselves forward for such consideration. I anticipate that a several substantial candidate-endorsement and Platform votes will take place at various times during the next year.
  • Building Alliances with Like-Minded Organizations: The USTP will continue to build its network of Allied Organizations, seeking areas of common ground, such as advocacy for longevity, support for emerging technologies, pursuit of electoral and political reforms, and encouragement of cultural rationality. For some of these organizations, the best approach will be ad hoc collaboration on issue-specific initiatives. For other organizations, where the alignment is deeper, opportunities for longer-lasting strategic partnerships should be explored.
  • Development of a Systematic Plan for Ballot Access: While ballot access is an extremely formidable hurdle to overcome, the USTP will endeavor to maximize the realistic possibilities for Johannon Ben Zion, and possibly future endorsed candidates for other offices, to appear on as many ballots as possible. This will require a systematic survey of the ballot-access requirements in each jurisdiction and the identification of “low-hanging fruit” – those jurisdictions where ballot access is easiest to attain. The USTP will then develop an action plan for how that ballot access may be attained and what resources may be realistically necessary to achieve this – especially for a non-monetary organization operated entirely by volunteers.

While in the first five years of its existence and in the first three years of my tenure as Chairman, the USTP laid the groundwork for a vibrant, growing, and distinctive organization, the next five years may well be the period in which transhumanism becomes a household word – a concept that enters mainstream discourse and becomes seen more accurately as the worldview that can enable humankind to overcome its deleterious limits and select the best of all possible futures. The USTP leadership will endeavor to continue building an organization where members can readily participate and work on the instantiation of their visions toward such a future – all while actualizing the common goals and values of the Transhumanist Party and the broader transhumanist community. In the course of working toward the best possible future, we should also create the best possible version of transhumanism to serve as its vanguard.

U.S. Transhumanist Party Condemns Egregious and Intentional Misinformation from Biohackinfo and Nick Sobriquet

U.S. Transhumanist Party Condemns Egregious and Intentional Misinformation from Biohackinfo and Nick Sobriquet


October 22, 2019 – The United States Transhumanist Party / Transhuman Party (USTP) unequivocally condemns the false, invented, and malicious allegations contained in two recent articles – one by the pseudonymous authors Glyph and CyphR on the yellow-journalism “Biohackinfo” website, and another by the pseudonymous Nick Sobriquet, published in the Trigger Warning magazine edited by Rachel Haywire. These articles are part of a deliberate, coordinated attack on the transhumanist movement and the many decent, distinguished, accomplished, and benevolent people working within it. These articles also contain numerous outright lies and other half-truths and cherry-picked facts distorted beyond recognition. The USTP is of the view that the authors of these articles are well-aware that they are lying and are using the lies in order to sow chaos and exact vengeance for their side’s loss in the recent USTP Electronic Primary. These tactics – precisely the ones which led these detractors’ side to lose in the Electronic Primary – are despicable, unconscionable, and immoral. They must be exposed and called out as such wherever they are encountered. Furthermore, the content of the Biohackinfo and Sobriquet articles is libelous and defamatory. While the USTP does not consider it worthwhile to initiate legal action in response to these libels (at this time and barring further provocation), the USTP instead endeavors to bring the actual facts of relevant matters to light – for, echoing the words of Justice Louis Brandeis, sunlight is the best of disinfectants, and transparency on the part of the USTP is hoped to thwart the proliferation of the falsehoods spread by Biohackinfo and Sobriquet.

The USTP is the largest transhumanist political organization in the world – a non-monetary organization staffed entirely by volunteers and devoted to advocacy of emerging technologies, life extension, and rationality. Those who are interested in what the USTP actually stands for, can readily find out by consulting our Values, Platform, Transhumanist Bill of Rights, and FAQ.

The USTP Electronic Primary, which concluded on September 30, 2019, was the most open and transparent election known to USTP leadership. Extensive vote results were published on October 1, 2019, confirming Johannon Ben Zion’s victory in the election, including a PDF file illustrating the breakdown of the votes received for each ranking of each candidate, the instant-runoff process, and the validation of the accuracy of the calculations through the independent, open-source Instant-Runoff Voting Tool. A spreadsheet of all individual (anonymized) votes was also published, containing all of the calculations performed in connection with every single vote as part of each round of instant runoffs. Any person who voted in the primary may request that the USTP leadership provide that person with his/her/its randomly assigned Voter ID, using which that person could confirm the presence of his/her/its vote among the published results. During the election, all votes that were submitted electronically were manually validated by USTP leadership (the Chairman, overseen by four USTP Officers – the only individuals to ever have access to the names and e-mail addresses of the individuals who voted) to ensure that the votes originated from registered USTP members. Apart from several instances of unintentionally cast duplicate votes, which were discarded, there were no observed irregularities during the voting process. No candidate or side in this election perpetrated any manner of fraud, falsification, or attempts to enlist non-members to vote.

Unfortunately, Rachel Haywire, who did not win the election by any set of rules (ranked-preference, Condorcet, plurality), and, rather, finished in second place, did not accept defeat gracefully. Her responses and those of some of her supporters, rather, have been contrary to the expectations to which candidates specifically agreed in their Declaration of Interest forms when putting themselves forward for candidacy. These expectations included the following:

(6) The candidate must agree to participate in the USTP Endorsement and Electronic Primary process as set forth herein and to respect the outcome of that process, no matter whether or not the candidate is ultimately endorsed to run for the office of President of the United States.

(9) The candidate must agree to work collaboratively with the USTP during the campaign season and not to disparage the USTP as well as not to work contrary to the interests and goals of the USTP during that time.

Instead, certain supporters of former Candidate Haywire, including Sobriquet and the Biohackinfo authors, have decided to take it upon themselves to conduct a follow-on campaign of dishonesty and sensationalism, and gather their band of few followers to viciously attack the USTP in an undignified manner through yellow journalism and toxic lies.

USTP Secretary Pavel Ilin expressed a commonly held sentiment among the USTP members when he stated, “I love transgressive arts as a form of protest against oppression. But, as with any tool, there are appropriate uses of that tool. Creating chaos is good to resist totalitarian regimes, but it’s not productive when you have a voice and can play on a common cultural field along with other players. During the recent primary election, Rachel Haywire had access to all communication channels on the same terms as every single candidate. If you lost, you lost, you can be unhappy with that, but this is objective reality. Accusing people around without presenting any evidence will not help restoring any sort of justice. I against othering of anyone but I would like to call Rachel Haywire to seek a communication channel and form which will not push people away from her and will not hurt public image of transhumanism.”

The allegations in the Biohackinfo and Sobriquet articles are based on several “big lies” which were invented by the purveyors of the allegations and spread by means of a small circle of supporters of the Haywire campaign citing one another, thereby creating the appearance (but only a flimsy appearance) of a diversity of sources, which all stemmed from the same origin.

One big lie – which the USTP deplores and repudiates in full – is any assertion of a connection with convicted criminal, eugenicist, and suicidist Jeffrey Epstein, a man whose behavior in life and in death showed him to be the antithesis of a transhumanist and whom the USTP condemned unequivocally on August 5, 2019, while not even having been aware of Epstein’s existence prior to revelations of his misconduct by major media outlets. Allegations of Epstein’s connections to transhumanism were contrived by sensation-seeking journalists and spread by conspiracy-theorists seeking to undermine the image and reputation of transhumanism. Of course, the USTP leadership expressed staunch opposition to this hostile ploy and would not countenance it among USTP members or candidates. Associating transhumanism with Epstein unjustly and cynically smears the names of thousands of innocent, hard-working, innovative individuals who likewise deplore Epstein’s crimes.

While Epstein may have donated $100,000 to the Humanity+ organization – which is entirely distinct from the USTP – around 2011 (long before the USTP existed), there is absolutely no evidence of any continued or subsequent involvement of Epstein with any transhumanist organization, including Humanity+. Furthermore, on August 4, 2019, Humanity+ issued a statement which explained that Epstein’s donation had long ago been spent on AI research that “is diametrically opposed to the exploitative and abusive behaviors of Mr. Epstein that were recently revealed in the news. At the time [Humanity+] accepted this donation, Humanity+ had no knowledge of Mr. Epstein’s horrific alleged criminal activity, and we strongly condemn it.” While the USTP will let Humanity+ speak for itself on this matter, the above-quoted statement does not suggest any malfeasance, and no evidence has surfaced to the contrary since that statement was made. The Biohackinfo article is intentionally misleading in using statements such as that “The New York Times revealed that Humanity Plus, a transhumanist organization ran by Max More and his wife Natasha Vita-More, was so deep with Epstein that he was paying the salaries of some of its members, including its Vice-Chairman Ben Goertzel.” The only person known to have had his salary paid by Epstein was Ben Goertzel – and even this occurred without any knowledge of Epstein’s crimes. Yet by using the phrasing “some of its members, including […] Goertzel”, the Biohackinfo article intentionally impugns Max More and Natasha Vita-More by association, despite an absolute lack of evidence of any specific connection between them as individuals and Epstein. The USTP condemns this underhanded manner of aspersion against individuals without evidence. Similar despicable rhetorical tactics are found throughout the Biohackinfo article.

Another big lie is the assertion USTP’s decision on August 6, 2019, to postpone the Electronic Primary from August 10 to September 22 was somehow influenced by another organization or its leadership, or intended to derail the prospects of a particular candidate. Nothing could be further from the truth. The decision to extend the primary season and allow new candidates to announce themselves was made by USTP Chairman Gennady Stolyarov II after close consultation with the USTP Officers. All candidates, and all representatives of external organizations, were surprised by the decision’s announcement. The extension of the primary was motivated by the recognition that the chaos sown on social media by those who spread malicious and unsubstantiated allegations about an Epstein-transhumanism connection, made it physically impossible to prepare the ballots in time for August 10, while much of the USTP leadership’s time and attention was diverted toward policing various interactions among candidates and their supporters to prevent a degeneration into pandemonium. The primary was extended because those spreading false allegations created an environment that made it impossible for an orderly, rational vote to take place. As the USTP announcement on August 6, 2019, explained, “Because of this focus on crisis response, our limited resources are strained at this time, and thorough preparations for the election will take a longer time period.” Furthermore, USTP leadership recognized that “This is a time period when tempers are hot, a situation which is uniquely unsuited to thoughtful political decision-making. It is necessary to allow time for tempers to cool and for thoughtful analysis to occur on all sides regarding the candidates, their positions on the issues, and how the ideas of transhumanism could best be advocated for during the 2020 election cycle.” USTP leadership vowed that “The requisite civility needs to be restored to this primary election season, and, accordingly, the USTP leadership will work closely with the candidates to do so. The tone of this primary election season will be reset to align with the USTP’s values of thoughtful, rational, ethical, and policy-focused discourse.” The introduction of new candidates to the process was motivated by the USTP responding to concerns from many of its members, who did not perceive any of the original three candidates with enthusiasm and who sought other options. Notwithstanding, the introduction of new candidates did not undermine the prospects of the original three candidates, who were the only candidates remaining after Round 7 of the instant-runoff process.

The Biohackinfo article erroneously alleges that “The decision to allow more candidates to run was even more Machiavellian, as it split the votes.” This allegation is based on a complete misunderstanding of the ranked-preference voting system, where “vote-splitting” is not a consequential phenomenon, since a voter is asked – and in the USTP Electronic Primary, required – to rank-order all of the choices. After several of Rachel Haywire’s supporters declared their candidacies (an entirely optional action on their part, and one supported by Rachel Haywire), a voter who genuinely preferred those candidates could simply rank Rachel Haywire immediately below them – so that if/when those candidates were eliminated in instant runoffs, a vote for any of those candidates would subsequently be reallocated to Rachel Haywire. As the USTP leadership repeatedly explained on its website, social media, and e-mail communications pertaining to the election, “ranked-preference voting eliminates the incentives for tactical / strategic voting. By rank-ordering all options, you can comfortably put your genuine first choice first, no matter how other people are likely to vote. You are strongly encouraged to vote your conscience and give us your genuine preference order. This will maximize the probability of an outcome that you will find reasonable.” The Biohackinfo authors deliberately ignored this basic fact about how ranked-preference voting worked in order to contrive their “vote-splitting” allegation.

To support their bizarre allegation that the USTP had become “controlled” by Humanity+, the Biohackinfo authors stated that “Natasha Vita-More and others at Humanity Plus had started interfering with the primaries by endorsing BenZion”. A reasonable person will fail to understand how endorsing a candidate – which is any individual’s right in an election – would constitute interference. Natasha Vita-More and several other persons in leadership positions at Humanity+ also happen to be voting members of the USTP, independently of their roles at Humanity+. Endorsing and voting for candidates is their right as USTP members and would be entirely within the rules of any free and open voting system. No officer of Humanity+ had any privileged access to the USTP Electronic Primary results or any ability to alter or manipulate them. Only the USTP Chairman and four USTP Officers had the ability to view the names and e-mail addresses of individuals who cast votes.

Dinorah Delfin, the USTP Director of Admissions and Public Relations, explained that “Allegations about the USTP being under Humanity+ management are false and misleading – these are two different and separate organizations. I have volunteered for the USTP and its management team for almost two years. Fellow USTP Officers and I communicate extensively to make decisions about our initiatives and course of action, which also includes establishing strong bonds with any Transhumanist organization focused on educating and forwarding our shared cause of making accessible to everyone life extension and other transhumanist technologies. Allegations of conspiracy and foul play are not only false, but also undermine all of our efforts to make Transhumanism accessible for people even in the most remote areas of the world who are seeking for ways to regain hope in humanity and in our ability to help the world become a better place for all. Transhumanism is about improving the human condition, and while these false allegations show the worst of human nature, they also represent an opportunity to gain new insights and perspectives towards more conscientious self-actualization.”

When faced with countless lies, the best defense is to provide evidence for the truth.  No, there were no “paper-thin Facebook accounts from Bangladesh” (the USTP has a well-established application and verification process, and this process has been documented not just on social media, but also on the USTP website). Indeed, the USTP only has four members from Bangladesh, and only one of those members – a frequent poster on the Transhumanist Party Facebook group and a loyal and valued member of the USTP – voted in this election. Aspersions that there were “bought votes for [Candidate Ben Zion] from Bangladesh” are not only false – but they also smack of racist and nativist prejudice. The truth is that the sole USTP member from Bangladesh who voted annoyed Rachel Haywire and some of her supporters because of his imperfect English and the techno-optimist flavor of his posts, and therefore Rachel Haywire and her supporters invented the assertion that votes from Bangladesh were purchased. In fact, no money changed hands among any candidates and their supporters during the course of this election.

There were no “countless polls” that indicated a Haywire lead. Rather, there was just one completely informal, unscientific Facebook poll, not sanctioned by USTP leadership, which was initiated as a curiosity by former Candidate Kimberly Forsythe, who herself later removed the poll after realizing the potential of such polls to be gamed and to provide misleading information. Rachel Haywire and her supporters spread the poll amongst their circles and stacked the poll in their favor – even though a Facebook poll has no means to prevent non-members from voting, and thus many of the approximately 41 votes cast for Haywire in that poll were from friends of Haywire who were not members of the USTP. Those who allege that the poll had any manner of significance fail to understand that the vast majority of the USTP membership did not follow day-to-day developments on Facebook and thus had no awareness of the poll. Furthermore, Rachel Haywire garnered 72 actual votes during the election, which was greater than her count in the poll – but her base of support primarily revolved around her Facebook circles, while other candidates were able to attract support from a broader base of individuals, many of whom do not necessarily spend significant amounts of time on social media. Regardless, the unscientific and subsequently removed poll played no role in any subsequent actions by the USTP leadership, which would have been the same had there been no poll, or had the poll displayed different counts.

Furthermore, contrary to allegations in the Sobriquet and Biohackinfo articles, there was no “Chosen One” (in fact, the USTP had reprimanded several candidates publicly for policy violations, including the candidate who eventually won), and the results were posted publicly for everyone to see, along with the objective metrics and scientific process used to conduct the entire voting campaign.

The Biohackinfo article decisively undermines its credibility when it asserts that Johannon Ben Zion was “ordained” “[a]t an unknown “transhumanist” festival that is a bland, blatant rip off of Haywire’s Extreme Futurist Fest”. That festival is RAADfestthe premier festival for supporters of life extension and world-class scientists to meet, share ideas, meet with tens of journalists and documentary filmmakers, and deliver presentations which subsequently enjoy worldwide reach. At the 2019 RAADfest in Las Vegas, Nevada, renowned speakers such as Dr. Aubrey de Grey, Dr. Bill Andrews, Liz Parrish, Dr. Jose Cordeiro, Dr. Ray Kurzweil, Dr. Sandra Kaufmann, Dr. Gregory Fahy, and tens of other world-class scientists, doctors, and advocates communicated with over a thousand attendees – and the many recordings of their remarks will reach hundreds of thousands more. Disparaging RAADfest as an “unknown transhumanist festival” is so misguided as to be ludicrous; indeed, this is the reason why the Biohackinfo authors did not mention it by name. Had they mentioned it, their article would have immediately been recognized as a disingenuous hack job by anyone who knows anything about transhumanism and life extension. Those who would like to view Johannon Ben Zion’s acceptance speech at RAADfest – which was seen live by over one thousand attendees and was met with a standing ovation – may do so here. (A further, professionally produced version of the recording is also forthcoming.)

By making wild and unsubstantiated claims and engaging in extraordinary leaps in logic, making repeated false accusations, engaging in character assassinations, and insulting and alienating a large number of USTP Officers, members, and potential members, while attempting to throw the entire organization into disrepute, Rachel Haywire and some of her supporters provoked so much ill will and aversion, that a large number of people – 57 out of 312 voters – ranked Rachel Haywire in absolute last place (below the “None of the Above” option). This was the downfall Sobriquet mentions in his article – a downfall brought upon by vicious, delusional, and irrational behavior that was completely devoid of reality and dignity, and which alienated Haywire and her followers from significant constituencies among the USTP membership.

The idea that the Transhumanist Party, a private organization run entirely by volunteers, and which has no assets, no income, and no method for accepting donations, is an “elite cabal” or “beholden to the global mega-rich” is not only completely false, but is an insult to the hard-working men and women who have donated countless hours of their personal time to advocate for goals such as curing disease and alleviating poverty, at great personal expense and opportunity cost. It is deeply reprehensible for Sobriquet to allege that “Beneath the surface of this movement lay a viper’s nest of ego, scandal, and filthy stinking money” – when absolutely no money was involved in the USTP election.

Sobriquet then alleges that “purges” began as soon as allegations about Epstein “came out”. In fact, there were no purges – just the expulsion of three repeat troublemakers who were former members of the USTP, as well as several other non-USTP members who had been added to the Transhumanist Party Facebook group by Rachel Haywire and her supporters due to a since-fixed error in the moderation settings. One of the banned individuals was a deranged troll who alternately went by the names Dominique Davis and Sebastian Lenoir, and who began harassing USTP members and Officers with completely unfounded and contrived allegations of despicable Epstein-like behaviors. On August 21, 2019, USTP Chairman Stolyarov made an announcement of the banning of Davis/Lenoir, which included the following remark:

I am convinced at this point that anyone alleging that the despicable behaviors of Jeffrey Epstein have any parallel in the transhumanist movement is making such allegations out of malice. Accordingly, I declare a zero-tolerance policy toward such allegations within this group. Any person making an allegation of pedophilia against a member of the USTP will be instantly banned from this group and from the U.S. Transhumanist Party. Such allegations are false, and those making them know them to be false. Moreover, any sensible person knows them to be false. False and malicious allegations are contrary to the USTP’s Community Guidelines and to the Constitution of the U.S. Transhumanist Party. Moreover, they are civil offenses under United States law.

There is only one possible intention of those who make allegations of pedophilia against innocent individuals – and that is to tarnish those individuals’ reputations out of spite and a desire to destroy. It is not only proper to ban those who seek to do so – it is absolutely necessary to preserve decency and civilized order and prevent the ruination of innocent lives.

Another individual who had been banned from the U.S. Transhumanist Party was Nick Sobriquet himself, but not until he had engaged in concerted trolling for a month. When the USTP extended its time window for candidates to declare themselves, Sobriquet – a citizen of the United Kingdom and ineligible for the Presidency of the United States – applied as a “National Bolshevist” candidate, espousing authoritarian and totalitarian views inimical to transhumanism. On August 13, 2019, after

the USTP leadership rejected his farcical “candidacy” based on its ineligibility and incompatibility with the USTP’s values, Sobriquet made a post which included a meme depicting angry, armed skeletons, a sickle-and-hammer flag with a design evocative of the Nazi flag, and the words “NAZBOL GANG ASSEMBLE” – clearly, everything that transhumanism is not. Throughout August and early September 2019, Sobriquet continued to post hostile memes of the “Nazbol” and “Trazbol” (Sobriquet’s invented “Transhuman Bolshevism”) varieties. Per the USTP leadership’s understanding, Sobriquet is not an actual national socialist but was rather, in a trollish fashion, using memes and tactics he knew to be antithetical to transhumanism in order to disrupt and undermine the discourse within the Transhumanist Party Facebook group. Nonetheless, he was tolerated for a long time with only written warnings and moderation of his posts.

The last straw regarding Sobriquet’s behavior came after the USTP leadership issued a formal warning to Rachel Haywire on September 6, 2019 – also for spreading various false allegations (documented in the warning). In the subsequent discussion thread, Sobriquet falsely accused the USTP leadership of being in the “pocket” of nefarious “interests” – even though, as was subsequently again pointed out to Sobriquet, the USTP is a non-monetary organization and is not influenced by money in making its decisions. Despite this, Sobriquet continued to impugn the integrity of USTP leadership by making accusations of “sinister behavior” and stating, absolutely without evidence, that “There are many ways in which a man can be bought and sold. Non-monetary organisation or not.” Sobriquet was specifically warned that casting these unsubstantiated and insulting aspersions would lead to his expulsion, but immediately afterward, he asserted that the USTP Chairman had no integrity – at which time Sobriquet was indeed banned – not because of that isolated statement, but because of the accumulation of hostile activities and unjustified aspersions that preceded it and were pushed by it over the edge of acceptability. After the conclusion of the election, Chairman Stolyarov specifically offered Sobriquet the option to rejoin the USTP, after Sobriquet made a post which suggested that he might accept the election results with grace. Sobriquet, however, politely declined – a decision which the USTP respected. It is unfortunate, however, that Sobriquet departed from his temporarily more high-minded tone by authoring an article filled with cynical and egregious libels.

Yet another individual banned from the USTP was Michael Lorrey, a former member who erroneously but insistently accused the USTP of violating federal law, even though the USTP was not conducting a federal election. As Chairman Stolyarov expressed, “There are, at this stage, no candidates running for federal office that have been endorsed by the USTP. This is a purely internal, advisory vote of a private organization, bound solely by that organization’s rules.” Yet Michael Lorrey, out of a misguided extreme nationalism, demanded that the USTP disenfranchise all of its Allied Members or else face a complaint from Lorrey to the Federal Election Commission (FEC). It was the threat of an FEC complaint, which would be a hostile legal action, which led Lorrey to be banned, since an individual demonstrating the intent to take hostile legal action against the USTP thereby places himself in opposition to and thus outside of the USTP. The USTP’s policy of allowing Allied Members to vote in the USTP’s internal elections had been contained in Article II, Section VIII, since November 2016, and had been prominently publicized since that time (including on the USTP’s Membership Application Form) such that Lorrey should have been aware of it from the onset of his membership. It is clear that Lorrey – who made the demand that the USTP verify voters’ citizenship using a blockchain – a completely impractical and extremely resource-intensive task for a relatively small, non-monetary organization, and furthermore a demand that would expose many individuals’ sensitive private information to an immutable presence on a blockchain – simply sought to derail the election altogether through his demand and threat. Lorrey’s threat was particularly malicious and frivolous in light of the fact that the FEC itself acknowledges on its own website that U.S. Supreme Court precedent in the case of Bluman v. FEC (2011-2012) supports the legality of the USTP’s approach toward Allied Membership – given that the USTP’s Allied Members do not contribute any money to the USTP or to any candidate but rather only offer their volunteer services in the form of advisory voting and other input of ideas:

Generally, an individual (including a foreign national) may volunteer personal services to a federal candidate or federal political committee without making a contribution. The Act provides this volunteer “exemption” as long as the individual performing the service is not compensated by anyone.  […]

In a decision that was later affirmed by the Supreme Court, the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia ruled that the foreign national ban “does not restrain foreign nationals from speaking out about issues or spending money to advocate their views about issues. It restrains them only from a certain form of expressive activity closely tied to the voting process—providing money for a candidate or political party or spending money in order to expressly advocate for or against the election of a candidate.” Bluman v. FEC, 800 F. Supp. 2d 281, 290 (D.D.C. 2011), aff’d 132 S. Ct. 1087 (2012).

At no point was any individual banned from the USTP for merely discussing a subject, offering a civil opinion, or disagreeing with the USTP leadership on an idea or course of action. All banned individuals engaged in some combination of wildly false allegations, threats of hostility, unrestrained name-calling, trolling, and denunciations of the USTP as a whole.

Sadly, with the sort of behavior Nick Sobriquet, the Biohackinfo authors, and their ilk have been demonstrating, it would be difficult for them to call themselves transhumanist, because not only are they not interested in improving the human condition (their actions to date have resulted in much harm, rather than benefit), but also because their words and actions represent some of the egregious human failings that transhumanism endeavors to overcome. In fact, to call them transhumanist would be to call coal a clean form of energy, or to suggest that lions are herbivores, or to say that tabloid journalism (precisely what Sobriquet and Biohackinfo have engaged in) is a form of art.

Furthermore, Sobriquet errs in asserting that “There was no constitution, no checks and balances, and no mandate.” The USTP Constitution can be found here for all to see, and the checks and balances and mandate stem from the same fair, transparent, democratic election process which the likes of Nick Sobriquet and the Biohackinfo authors seek to disparage and undermine. Yet, in spite of these aspersions, the USTP succeeded in carrying out its 2019 Electronic Primary election and endorsed a candidate in accord with the decision of the majority of our members.

As Arin Vahanian, USTP Director of Marketing, noted, “We are the thoughts we have, the beliefs we hold, the words we speak, the actions we conduct, and to a large extent, the way we treat other people, especially the needy. A faction of detractors has shown a callous and blatant disregard for the truth, and through toxic, irrational, and belligerent behavior, insulted countless people and unfortunately damaged the transhumanist movement in the eyes of the general public. We must rise above this manufactured chaos and show that we stand for more than this. We stand for goals such as curing disease, improving the human condition, and making the world a better, safer, kinder place for all humans, and not just a select few.”

Sobriquet is correct when he states that people should be better. He, the Biohackinfo authors, and Rachel Haywire should start by denouncing propaganda, chaos, libel, and slander, and then by apologizing for the reprehensible aspersions they have cast against innocent and decent human beings who earnestly desire and work toward a better world.

“No, there is no ‘filthy stinking money’, as Sobriquet suggests, but there is filthy stinking behavior perpetrated by a few individuals whose very goal is pandemonium and plunging the entire movement into chaos and ignominy,” remarked Vahanian. “This is an outcome that no genuine transhumanist will stand for. We call upon our community to remain focused on our goal of improving the human condition, through acts of kindness and benevolence and through a dedication to science, technology, and the arts, as we move toward the betterment of humanity.”

Do not believe malicious lies from disreputable sources. Look around this website, and find out for yourself what the U.S. Transhumanist Party / Transhuman Party actually stands for. If you like what you see, join us for free here

RAAD Fest 2019 Announcement of U.S. Transhumanist Party 2019 Primary Election Results and Johannon Ben Zion Acceptance Speech

RAAD Fest 2019 Announcement of U.S. Transhumanist Party 2019 Primary Election Results and Johannon Ben Zion Acceptance Speech

Gennady Stolyarov II
Johannon Ben Zion


At RAAD Fest in Las Vegas on October 6, 2019, Gennady Stolyarov II, Chairman of the U.S. Transhumanist Party / Transhuman Party (USTP), announced the results of the 2019 USTP Electronic Primary for President of the United States, and introduced the winner of the Electronic Primary and the USTP-endorsed candidate for President of the United States in 2020, Johannon Ben Zion.

Watch the video recording of the announcement and Candidate Ben Zion’s acceptance speech here.

See the detailed results of the 2019 USTP Electronic Primary here.

Read about USTP’s endorsed candidate, Johannon Ben Zion, here.

Join the U.S. Transhumanist Party / Transhuman Party for free, no matter where you reside. Click here to apply in less than a minute.

Announcement of Third and Fourth Virtual Debates Among U.S. Transhumanist Party Presidential Candidates – Gennady Stolyarov II Interviewed by Steele Archer of Debt Nation

Announcement of Third and Fourth Virtual Debates Among U.S. Transhumanist Party Presidential Candidates – Gennady Stolyarov II Interviewed by Steele Archer of Debt Nation

Gennady Stolyarov II
Steele Archer


On September 10, 2019, U.S. Transhumanist Party / Transhuman Party Chairman Gennady Stolyarov II was again interviewed by Steele Archer of Debt Nation, this time to discuss the two forthcoming official final virtual debates of the U.S. Transhumanist Party Presidential primary season.

Watch the interview here.

3rd Virtual Debate: Candidates Forsythe, Harris, Haywire, Holsopple, and Kerecz – Saturday, September 14, 2019, at 5:00 p.m. U.S. Pacific Time – See more details here.

4th Virtual Debate: Candidates Ben Zion, Schattke, Taylor, and Vrillon – Tuesday, September 17, 2019 at 6:30 p.m. U.S. Pacific Time – See more details here.

The Debt Nation show will co-host the debates, which will be livestreamed from The Unshackled YouTube channel.

Remember to join the U.S. Transhumanist Party for free before September 21, 2019, in order to be eligible to vote in the Electronic Presidential Primary that follows. Join here, no matter where you reside.

International Conference of Technoscientific Awareness in Solving 21st Century Problems – Announcement by Osinakachi Akuma Kalu

International Conference of Technoscientific Awareness in Solving 21st Century Problems – Announcement by Osinakachi Akuma Kalu

Osinakachi Akuma Kalu


Editor’s Note: The U.S. Transhumanist Party features this announcement by Osinakachi Akuma Kalu of the Transdisciplinary Agora for Future Discussions (TAFFDs), originally published on their site.  The announcement brings attention to a new conference from TAFFDs, focusing on technological advancements for prosperity, which the U.S. Transhumanist Party supports as part of our policy goals.

~ Brent Reitze, Director of Publication, United States Transhumanist Party, September 9, 2019


For the first time, futurists, transhumanists, longevity scientists, leadership experts and vertical farming agriculturists will be gathering in Africa. So, all is set for staging the International Conference on Technoscientific Awareness in Solving 21st Century Problems, a groundbreaking event organized by the Transdisciplinary Agora for Future Discussions (TAFFDs) in collaboration with the University of Rwanda. Themed “The 21st Century Information Tech/Digitization and Sustainable Governance in Developing Countries”, the program (slated to run from 7th – 11th of October 2019) shall provide spaces for exploration of the accelerating pace of technology adoption in Africa and other developing countries, the links between digitization and governance, and how technological effects could be channeled into developmental gains for these societies. There shall also be a futurist and transhumanist edge to the gathering, as ideas and innovations with orientations in transhumanism and life extension shall be discussed and related to Africa’s growth potentials. Leadership experts will bring insights especially in political and managerial terms on how these processes could best be guided into fruition.

As an assembly meant to attract fine and revolutionary global thinkers (futurism, transhumanism, life extensionism, vertical farming, IoT, digital leadership), the conference shall be deepened by a credible line-up of global delegates representing the Association of Professional Futurists, the Transhumanist Party, Singularity University, and several other leading groups in the sector of futurist tech, strategy, and societal development. With a platform presented to link inventors/inventions featured at the Conference’s tech (and particularly infotech and biotech) exhibition with key investors, further pragmatic opportunities are envisaged to be opened up in boosting start-up tech innovations to large industrial scales in Africa for diverse socio-economic benefits.  The vision, essentially, is that of the Fourth Industrial Revolution being engineered into manifestation in Africa. Rwanda, with its recent achievements and growing acclaim as Africa’s emerging tech capital, was so strategically chosen as the symbolic venue where this dawn of a new tech-driven age in Africa should occur.

Endorsements for the Conference have been received from the Scientific Innovation Research Group (SIRG), U.S. Transhumanist Party, Futurist New Deal Podcast, International Longevity Alliance, Open Source Mode, and MyTalent Africa, among others. More endorsements would yet be appreciated, as well as a response to our call for sponsorship and partnership. A host of benefits are assured for stakeholders and attendees of the Conference, not least the fact that much more in terms of reputational capital stands to be garnered by individuals and institutions who get to participate in this very significant, historic, and transformative project. 

Visa is on arrival and easily accessible. 

Trailer:

For more info, contact:

Website: taffds.org

Conference site: https://conference2019.taffds.org/

 

 

Transhumanists Need New Symbols – Statement by Gennady Stolyarov II

Transhumanists Need New Symbols – Statement by Gennady Stolyarov II

Gennady Stolyarov II


Transhumanists: we need new symbols in place of “H+ / h+” – which are not the best representations of our movement as a whole. We need inspiring, meaningful, unambiguous symbols that are developed through grassroots efforts within our community and made freely available for anyone to use.

Infinity Ankh by Nic Nassuet

The U.S. Transhumanist Party / Transhuman Party (USTP) calls upon graphic designers, artists, marketing experts, philosophers, and other interested individuals to design a series of new symbols representing transhumanism in general. There is no limit to the number of symbols developed or the kinds of artistic and design directions that are pursued. The only condition of this collaboration is that any resulting symbols be released into the public domain in entirety and become available for free download, reuse, and upload to popular image repositories such as Wikimedia Commons. Ultimately, it will be user preference that will determine which symbols will achieve widespread adoption – but the USTP encourages a thousand (symbolic) flowers to bloom.

TH Symbol by Gennady Stolyarov II

 

Please join us in this collaboration. View the many symbols generated in response to it thus far here. We expect numerous new symbols to be added to our gallery over time.

You may submit your symbols via e-mail to USTP Chairman Gennady Stolyarov II here, as well as link to them in the comments on this article or post them on any social-media thread where this article is being shared. By contributing symbols in response to this project, you grant your consent to have those symbols released freely into the public domain and to be used by any individuals at no monetary cost to them worldwide and in perpetuity, without the right to use those symbols being limited to any particular individual(s) or organization(s) or subject to the control of any such individual(s) or organization(s). You agree that no person, at any time in perpetuity, would be able to claim any intellectual property rights over the symbols generated in response to this collaboration.

Infinity Arrow by Michael Murray

 

The USTP also encourages all transhumanists to abandon the use of any variants of the “H+ / h+” symbols for the purpose of referring to transhumanism generally or as a whole, for numerous reasons which shall be explicated below. In November 2016, when leadership of the USTP passed to Chairman Stolyarov, the USTP made the decision to discontinue the use of “H+ / h+” and to replace it with its current “exponential infinity” logo. Now the USTP calls upon all other transhumanists – including candidates competing for the USTP’s endorsement in the forthcoming Electronic Primary – to replace any uses of “H+ / h+” with original and unrelated symbols which are likely to better represent what transhumanism stands for.

Transhumanist Wolf by Michael Passavant

1. The “H+ / h+” symbols are ambiguous and can refer to many other matters besides transhumanism. Many of these uses are, in fact, better known than transhumanism. In chemistry, “H+” refers to a hydron, the most common of which is the simple proton. In physics, “h+” refers to an electron hole. Among mobile-phone networks, “H+” stands for Evolved High-Speed Packet Access, the fastest of the 3G networks. Even the streaming service Hulu uses the “h+” symbol while an entire chain of “H+ Hotels” has been established across Germany. Surely, transhumanists can do better than a derivative symbol which has many other, mostly unrelated uses and will be overshadowed in the public mind by those uses.

2. The “H+ / h+” symbols were attempted substitutes for transhumanism; we need to openly embrace transhumanism instead. The symbols originated in the course of the 2008 rebranding of the World Transhumanist Association into Humanity+, yet the USTP holds that symbols depicting the transhumanist movement should be focused on promoting and reinforcing connections with the word “transhumanism”. Transhumanism is the technically accurate name for our philosophy advocating the dramatic improvement of the human condition through science and technology. We should not shy away from the term “transhumanism” – but rather we should proclaim it proudly and articulate it accurately. Intellectually honest persons with dispositions open to truth and learning will understand and appreciate this unabashed transparency, and they are the allies we should seek to cultivate.

We do not need to fear misunderstandings from the public but should rather challenge those misunderstandings when confronted with them. Transhumanism is our philosophy, and we should advocate it clearly and openly by that name.

3. The use of the “H+ / h+” symbols is largely limited to the United States, whereas transhumanism is a global and cosmopolitan movement. Consistent with the spirit of the Transhumanist Bill of Rights, transhumanism includes the promise of a better life for all sentient entities, not limited to a particular culture or any particular national boundaries. Our symbols also need to be universal, cosmopolitan, and inclusive – encompassing both today’s humans as well as sentient entities and forms of intelligence and sapience that have yet to arise.

4. Transhumanism is much more than a single organization. A movement and a philosophy cannot be confined to a particular corporate entity; to confine it thus is to stifle its growth and transform a living, open philosophy into a staid and centrally controlled dogma. This is not in itself a criticism of the Humanity+ organization, but rather a recognition that the movement as a whole is not the same as any given organization within it. It is confusing to have symbols that could potentially refer to a single organization but also to the movement as a whole. A cleaner approach would be to leave the “H+ / h+” symbols to the Humanity+ organization – since its rebranding occurred long in the past and is a fait accompli – while adopting new, more creative, and more representative symbols which anyone could use in the capacity of referring to transhumanism as a whole – much like anyone may use a cross to refer to Christianity, a crescent to refer to Islam, a Star of David to refer to Judaism, a torch to refer to liberty, a red flag or red star to refer to socialism, or a fleur-de-lis to refer to France. No one owns these symbols, and their meanings transcend any particular individual or group. It is for this reason that the USTP calls for the new symbols of transhumanism to be released into the public domain; they will also not be confined to the USTP itself but will rather be usable by any transhumanist to refer to all of transhumanism – including those parts of the transhumanist movement which are outside the USTP.

5. Transhumanists may become unable to use the “H+ / h+” symbols anyway. It has come to the USTP’s attention that the Humanity+ organization has recently embarked upon a campaign to enforce its trademark in a broadly construed manner. Humanity+ owns a trademark to a stylized lowercase “h+” logo but has, per the understanding of the USTP, taken the position that any use of “H+” or “h+” in the context of transhumanism is sufficiently similar to be an infringement of that trademark. The USTP considers this position to be overly reaching and impracticable to enforce completely, given that Creative Commons versions of “h+” symbols which are distinct from the Humanity+ logo have been available and used in at least tens of thousands of instances for over a decade. However, the USTP as an organization does not have a direct stake in this matter and has already differentiated itself in its logos and other graphics. Out of an abundance of caution, the USTP recommends that transhumanists discontinue using the “H+ / h+” symbols more broadly.

Our more general concern is that there is always a danger with a broader intellectual movement resorting to essentially proprietary symbols. Proprietary symbols can potentially lead to intellectual “gatekeepers” emerging and restricting the growth of the movement – whether or not this is any entity’s current intention. A philosophy which can potentially be adopted by anyone should also utilize symbols that could potentially be adopted by anyone without the need to seek permission or approval. In order to continue the remarkable growth that transhumanism has experienced in recent years, it is therefore prudent for all transhumanists outside of Humanity+ to immunize themselves by discontinuing the use of the “H+ / h+” symbols. By ceding the ground of those symbols to Humanity+, transhumanists in all areas of the movement gain the much more important territory of intellectual freedom in preventing the gatekeeper phenomenon from emerging. No single transhumanist organization, including the USTP itself, should become the gatekeeper of the transhumanist movement as a whole.

6. Transhumanists needs to embrace techno-optimism and pursue a more hopeful, heroic vision of the future. In practice, the “H+ / h+” symbols are insufficiently connected with radical life extension and the potential for technology to solve many of today’s pressing social problems. While there is nothing inherently wrong with toned-down variants of transhumanism as such, they should not be the only ones. When perceiving the “H+ / h+” symbols, one does not immediately associate them with the heroic ambitions that ought to characterize the transhumanist movement – ambitions toward biological immortality (or indefinite life extension), radical abundance, and humankind seizing control of its own evolution – ambitions toward solving, within our (hopefully greatly extended) lifetimes, every problem that afflicts the contemporary world.

Since 2013, through grassroots advocacy by a newer cohort of transhumanists, including the USTP’s founder Zoltan Istvan, a more exuberant, direct, and techno-positive vision of transhumanism has gradually emerged to the forefront of public awareness and inspired many to consciously seek to transform the flawed contemporary world into a new Transhuman Era of our civilization. The new Transhuman Era needs new symbols which properly convey the spirit of techno-optimism and indefinite, open-ended improvement of length and quality of life in all respects.

Become part of the effort to shape the vision for the new Transhuman Era of our civilization by helping to create its symbols. Deploy your skills and imagination to help us represent our aimed-for future of indefinite lifespans, perpetual progress, and unending prosperity for all – and exemplify the spirit of radical abundance by sharing your creations freely with the world.

Gennady Stolyarov II is the Chairman of the United States Transhumanist Party / Transhuman Party. Find out more about him here

Codex of 13 Expectations (C13X) – U.S. Transhumanist Party Candidates’ Agreement of August 9, 2019

Codex of 13 Expectations (C13X) – U.S. Transhumanist Party Candidates’ Agreement of August 9, 2019


August 10, 2019 – As part of the action plan previously announced by the U.S. Transhumanist Party / Transhuman Party (USTP) to elevate the tone of the 2019 campaign season, current USTP Presidential primary candidates Rachel Haywire, Johannon Ben Zion, and Charles Holsopple met via conference call with USTP leadership on August 9, 2019, and arrived at 13 major points of agreement and commitment, which shall hereafter be termed the Codex of 13 Expectations (C13X).

The USTP leadership and the candidates hope that the commitments of the C13X can enable all of the candidates’ supporters and other observers of this election to de-escalate tensions and observe principles that enable the most constructive possible outcomes to be achieved, irrespective of which candidate wins the election. Furthermore, the C13X is anticipated to serve as a model of desirable behavior to the new candidates who enter the race while enabling each of their candidacies to be a positive experience for all.

Codex of 13 Expectations (C13X) – U.S. Transhumanist Party Candidates’ Agreement of August 9, 2019

1. The candidates agree and the USTP expresses its official position that Rachel Haywire is not a Nazi, not a fascist, and not alt-right. All persons are hereby put on notice that the USTP considers this position to be supported by ample evidence of Rachel Haywire’s own public statements, which have included strong criticisms of Nazism, fascism, and the alt-right. While the USTP cannot control or police the speech of individuals, it does urge the critics of Rachel Haywire to refrain from applying such labels to her, as doing so devalues the seriousness of the harm inflicted by actual Nazi, fascist, and alt-right movements.

2. The candidates agree that any manner of false flagging of content is completely unacceptable and a violation of freedom of speech. The candidates urge all of their supporters and all other persons to desist from such false flagging. Candidates who distribute promotional or information content regarding their campaigns or regarding transhumanist ideas more generally deserve the opportunity to have that content seen and considered on its merits.

3. The candidates agree to refrain from asking their supporters to initiate any hostile actions against other candidates or those other candidates’ supporters. Any coordination of mass hostile action against persons holding different political opinions or candidate preferences is considered unacceptable during this campaign season.

4. The candidates agree to adhere to the principle of proportionality. If faced with frustrating, offensive, or even more damaging conduct by others, the candidates will only respond up to the level of the offense or damage caused by such conduct and will endeavor to avoid overreaction or disproportionately strong retaliation.

5. The USTP will crowdsource the questions for the Third Virtual Debate among the candidates, and the candidates agree to focus on civil, substantive, high-minded answers to those questions during the debate.

6. The candidates agree to collaborate in order to set a positive and constructive tone for the remainder of the USTP primary season, especially in any external portrayals of the process and of the USTP to the general public or to some subset of the general public. The candidates shall not disparage the USTP and shall address any grievances internally to the USTP leadership rather than escalating them to the public realm.

7. The candidates agree to keep the communication amongst themselves and with USTP leadership more professional and more formal. While this does not necessarily bar any method of communication, structured and thoughtfully worded e-mails are preferable to a string of text messages. Professional, formal communications allow for more thought to be invested in both composing and responding to correspondence and rationally considering the nature of any given situation that might arise, instead of being instantaneously reactive on the basis of often flawed first impressions.

8. In recognition that any winning candidate would need to secure the support of at least 25 percent of the then-existing USTP membership, each candidate agrees to pay attention to the concerns and sentiments of USTP members in general, including members who are not supporters of that candidate and members who might disagree with that candidate.

9. The candidates agree not to focus their election rhetoric on controversies unrelated to the USTP or to the ideas of transhumanism – including any matters related to Jeffrey Epstein or the history of Humanity+, which are not actionable issues in this election and are not germane to the value that transhumanist ideas and policy proposals could bring to the public. The candidates agree to refrain from any rhetoric that undermines the perception of transhumanism in the public eye.

10. When faced with multiple hypotheses and incomplete facts regarding any given situation, the candidates agree to thoughtfully consider all reasonable hypotheses and not to immediately attach themselves to the most egregious or extreme hypotheses.

11. The candidates agree to give individuals whom they encounter during the campaign season the benefit of any doubt regarding those individuals’ motivations, even if those individuals’ conduct appears to be less than ideal.

12. The candidates agree to keep superlongevity or significant life extension as a significant area of focus of their campaigns.

13. The candidates agree to work to expand the reach of the transhumanist movement and USTP by building alliances with various futurist and future-oriented organizations and other groups which may implicitly align with the values and goals of transhumanists.

Artist Dinorah Delfin, The Transhumanism Handbook, and a Super Wellness and Longevity Seminar and Book-Signing Event in Burbank, California

Artist Dinorah Delfin, The Transhumanism Handbook, and a Super Wellness and Longevity Seminar and Book-Signing Event in Burbank, California


 

August 8, 2019 – Artist, activist, and futurist, Dinorah Delfin shares her essay “An Artist’s Creative Process: A Model For Conscious Evolution” – for free download.

Abstract: “A great future is opened to humanity. Our interconnectedness with nature, the tools we use, and the narratives we create, is reaching a pinnacle. For the first time in human history, we have the means to consciously alter the fate of our evolution. New technologies are not only becoming increasingly embedded in our biology—giving us unprecedented human abilities—but this transition is also driving us to explore new notions of what it means to be human.

In transitioning to this post-human era, how can one adopt a framework for cognitive and physical enhancement that accounts for ways to ensure that this new era is also more consciousness-oriented, safe, and egalitarian? In this essay, I’m presenting five art projects I created from 2007 to 2017 to showcase how an artist’s creative process, coupled with Transhumanist sensibilities, can lead to positive social change and towards a future that is more just and humane.”

 

Ms. Delfin’s essay is available in the newly published “The Transhumanism Handbook” (Switzerland: Springer Nature, 2019. #1 New Release in Preventive Medicine on Amazon.com) – edited by Newton Lee, Chairman of the California Transhumanist Party and Founder and President of the Institute for Education, Research, and Scholarships (IFERS); an award-winning nonprofit public charity organization.

“This book is a milestone publication in transhumanist thought,” says U.S. Transhumanist Party Chairman Gennady Stolyarov II – whose essay on the topic of transhumanist politics is also featured.

This 858-page book showcases the work of over sixty transhumanists around the world including David Wood (Transcending Politics), Dr. Jose Luis Cordeiro (The Death Of Death), Dr. Michael Rose (UC Irvine), and social entrepreneur Liz Parrish (BioViva).

To commemorate this special achievement, there will be a super Wellness & Longevity Seminar & Book Signing Event on Saturday, August 24, 2019, at the Burbank Marriott Airport Hotel & Convention Center in California.

Contributing authors who will be present include Newton Lee, Gennady Stolyarov II, Dr. Michael Rose, and artist Dinorah Delfin.

Registration to this event is required.

You can purchase The Transhumanism Handbook in full. All proceeds (minus the publisher’s share) are donated to ongoing charity projects in education, research, and scholarships.

Please help spread the word! Thank you.

U.S. Transhumanist Party / Transhuman Party Extends the 2019 Presidential Primary Campaign and Voting Season

U.S. Transhumanist Party / Transhuman Party Extends the 2019 Presidential Primary Campaign and Voting Season


August 6, 2019 – Due to various extraordinary developments and the effort to improve the discourse surrounding the Transhumanist Presidential Primary, the United States Transhumanist Party / Transhuman Party (USTP) hereby announces the following measures regarding the 2019 process for the USTP to arrive at its endorsement for a candidate running for the position of President of the United States of America.

  1. Extension of Campaign Season: The campaign season is hereby extended by six weeks. Voting will begin on Sunday, September 22, 2019. Membership registration to become eligible to vote is hereby extended to the end of Saturday, September 21, 2019.
  2. Minimum Voter Turnout: The USTP primary election shall have a minimum turnout requirement of 50 percent of the membership of the USTP at the time that membership registration closes. This is in accord with the principle that elections should be representative of the constituency among which they are held. In United States Presidential elections, the voter turnout has consistently exceeded 50 percent of the eligible voter base. Therefore, setting the minimum turnout at 50 percent is reasonable as a way of expecting a similar level of participation. This minimum turnout requirement will mean that, once voting opens, it will remain open until the latter of one week hence or the end of the day at which 50 percent of members have voted. At present, there are 1,686 members in the USTP, so the minimum turnout requirement will be 843 members. The actual minimum turnout threshold may become larger by September 21, 2019, as more people join.  Any candidate that receives our endorsement will therefore need to persuade more than 25 percent of the then-eligible USTP membership to support that candidate as any part of a preference order that would enable that candidate to prevail in a ranked-preference vote after any needed instant runoffs. This may mean that the voting period will be longer than initially anticipated. Candidates will be free to continue to campaign for existing members’ support during that voting period, and the USTP will send periodic reminders for members to cast their ballots. No vote results will be announced until the minimum voter-turnout threshold has been met. Periodic announcements about how many votes have been cast will be made, however.
  3. “Rewind” of Campaign Season and Reopening of Candidate Registration Window: Because of the acrimonious tone of the public discourse in early August 2019, there will be a “rewind” of the campaign season to an earlier stage – both symbolically and in practice. This is an opportunity to dial back the adversarial tone and also adopt a more thoughtful approach to the future of transhumanist politics. We welcome input from the transhumanist community about how to move forward. As part of the rewind, because many members have expressed the desire for additional options, the window for candidate registration is hereby reopened until the end of Saturday, September 14, 2019. Any individual interested in becoming a candidate may indicate such interest by completing the Presidential Candidate Declaration of Interest Form. All new candidates will be subsequently required to complete the standard candidate questionnaire via e-mail and participate in the USTP’s subsequent events preceding the primary election.
  4. Conference Call Among the Candidates: The current candidates will be expected to participate in a private conference call amongst themselves and including key USTP Officers, including the Chairman, Campaign Director, and others who wish to mediate for the purpose of achieving an improved tone to the rest of the campaign season.
  5. Third Virtual Debate: A Third Virtual Debate will be held in September at a mutually agreed-upon time, with stricter ground rules. Questions for the debate will be crowdsourced in advance from the transhumanist community, and candidates will have three minutes to respond to each question. Prior to the debate, the necessary parameters of civil engagement will be emphasized and enforced throughout.
  6. Candidate-Specific Resource Pages: The USTP will prepare candidate-specific resource pages, similar to the profile pages, where every candidate will be able to feature their campaign imagery, videos, merchandise, and other noteworthy information. There is currently still a dearth of exposure among the public to the candidates’ substantive views and activities; these pages will act as convenient centralized resources that candidates could share to inform members and motivate them to vote.
  7. Structured Candidate Communication with Members: Prior to the start of the voting, each candidate will have an opportunity to send one message to the USTP Google Group, outlining the strongest (but civil and constructive) case that candidate can make for why the voters should support him or her. The messages will all be submitted to the moderation queue in the Google Group and held for simultaneous release, preceded by a message from the USTP Chairman, informing members that these candidate solicitations will be coming.

These measures are an executive decision agreed to jointly by the USTP Officers. Reasons for the decision include the following:

  1. This is the USTP’s first primary election, and, as such, some aspects are necessarily tentative and experimental at the onset. We need to be open to refining our approach in accord with our limited resources and continual learning about what elements allow for effective and representative political decision-making processes.
  2. It was an extraordinarily poor confluence of events that the USTP has had to focus most of its recent efforts on dispelling unwarranted associations between the convicted criminal abuser Jeffrey Epstein and transhumanism, less than one week prior to the originally scheduled start of the primary vote. Because of this focus on crisis response, our limited resources are strained at this time, and thorough preparations for the election will take a longer time period.
  3. This is a time period when tempers are hot, a situation which is uniquely unsuited to thoughtful political decision-making. It is necessary to allow time for tempers to cool and for thoughtful analysis to occur on all sides regarding the candidates, their positions on the issues, and how the ideas of transhumanism could best be advocated for during the 2020 election cycle.
  4. An essential principle of democracy is that the outcome be representative of the wishes of the constituency which any candidate would claim to speak for. As a result, setting a minimum turnout requirement reinforces the principle that the members of the USTP as a whole – and not some small subset thereof – will need to decide the outcome of the election. Any candidate wishing to win the USTP nomination will need to convince diverse segments of the transhumanist movement of the merits of his or her approach and will need to build bridges and find common ground in order to achieve this.
  5. The requisite civility needs to be restored to this primary election season, and, accordingly, the USTP leadership will work closely with the candidates to do so. The tone of this primary election season will be reset to align with the USTP’s values of thoughtful, rational, ethical, and policy-focused discourse.

Pursuant to the authority of the Chairman in Article II, Section II, of the USTP Constitution, the following measures are hereby in effect. Candidates are expected to adhere to these measures pursuant to the commitments which they made in the Presidential Candidate Declaration of Interest Form, including the following questions, to which affirmative answers were required and provided:

• Do you agree to participate in the USTP Endorsement and Electronic Primary process and to respect the outcome of that process, no matter whether or not you are ultimately endorsed to run for the office of President of the United States?

• Do you agree to work collaboratively with the USTP during the campaign season and not to disparage the USTP as well as not to work contrary to the interests and goals of the USTP during that time?

We thank our candidates and their supporters in advance for their cooperation.

Empowering Human Musical Creation through Machines, Algorithms, and Artificial Intelligence – Essay by Gennady Stolyarov II in Issue 2 of the INSAM Journal

Empowering Human Musical Creation through Machines, Algorithms, and Artificial Intelligence – Essay by Gennady Stolyarov II in Issue 2 of the INSAM Journal

Gennady Stolyarov II


Note from Gennady Stolyarov II, Chairman, United States Transhumanist Party / Transhuman Party: For those interested in my thoughts on the connections among music, technology, algorithms, artificial intelligence, transhumanism, and the philosophical motivations behind my own compositions, I have had a peer-reviewed paper, “Empowering Human Musical Creation through Machines, Algorithms, and Artificial Intelligence” published in Issue 2 of the INSAM Journal of Contemporary Music, Art, and Technology. This is a rigorous academic publication but also freely available and sharable via a Creative Commons Attribution Share-Alike license – just as academic works ought to be – so I was honored by the opportunity to contribute my writing. My essay features discussions of Plato and Aristotle, Kirnberger’s and Mozart’s musical dice games, the AI-generated compositions of Ray Kurzweil and David Cope, and the recently completed “Unfinished” Symphony of Franz Schubert, whose second half was made possible by the Huawei / Lucas Cantor, AI / human collaboration. Even Conlon Nancarrow, John Cage, Iannis Xenakis, and Karlheinz Stockhausen make appearances in this paper. Look in the bibliography for YouTube and downloadable MP3 links to all of my compositions that I discuss, as this paper is intended to be a multimedia experience.

Music, technology, and transhumanism – all in close proximity in the same paper and pointing the way toward the vast proliferation of creative possibilities in the future as the distance between the creator’s conception of a musical idea and its implementation becomes ever shorter.

You can find my paper on pages 81-99 of Issue 2.

Read “Empowering Human Musical Creation through Machines, Algorithms, and Artificial Intelligence” here.

Read the full Issue 2 of the INSAM Journal here.

Abstract: “In this paper, I describe the development of my personal research on music that transcends the limitations of human ability. I begin with an exploration of my early thoughts regarding the meaning behind the creation of a musical composition according to the creator’s intentions and how to philosophically conceptualize the creation of such music if one rejects the existence of abstract Platonic Forms. I then explore the transformation of my own creative process through the introduction of software capable of playing back music in exact accord with the inputs provided to it, while enabling the creation of music that remains intriguing to the human ear even though the performance of it may sometimes be beyond the ability of humans. Subsequently, I describe my forays into music generated by earlier algorithmic systems such as the Musikalisches Würfelspiel and narrow artificial-intelligence programs such as WolframTones and my development of variations upon artificially generated themes in essential collaboration with the systems that created them. I also discuss some of the high-profile, advanced examples of AI-human collaboration in musical creation during the contemporary era and raise possibilities for the continued role of humans in drawing out and integrating the best artificially generated musical ideas. I express the hope that the continued advancement of musical software, algorithms, and AI will amplify human creativity by narrowing and ultimately eliminating the gap between the creator’s conception of a musical idea and its practical implementation.”