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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

Future Grind Episode 28: Ryan O’Shea Interviews Gennady Stolyarov II on the State of Transhumanist Politics

Future Grind Episode 28: Ryan O’Shea Interviews Gennady Stolyarov II on the State of Transhumanist Politics

logo_bgGennady Stolyarov II
Ryan O’Shea


Listen to Ryan O’Shea’s interview with U.S. Transhumanist Party Chairman Gennady Stolyarov II on the Future Grind podcast, where they discuss the state of Transhumanist politics. Mr. Stolyarov responds to some of the most detailed and well-researched questions that he has been presented with regarding contemporary political issues in the U.S. Transhumanist Party and transhumanist movement. The U.S. Transhumanist Party thanks Mr. O’Shea for enabling a thoughtful discussion that will be of interest to our listeners.

– Watch/listen on YouTube.

– Listen/download on the Future Grind website.

Become a member of the U.S. Transhumanist Party for free, no matter where you reside. Apply online here in less than a minute.

Description by Ryan O’Shea: In this installment of the Future Grind podcast host Ryan O’Shea sits down with Gennady Stolyarov II, Chairman of the US Transhumanist Party. Gennady took the reins of the Transhumanist Party when the organization’s founder, Zoltan Istvan, stepped down after his campaign for President in 2016. In addition to his work work with the Party, Gennady is a published author and composer, and he has contributed articles to the Institute for Ethics and Emerging Technologies, the Brighter Brains Institute, the Ludwig von Mises Institute, and many more. They discuss the current state of transhumanist politics, why Gennady believes that they are important in the first place, and how he feels that transhumanism can transcend socialism, libertarianism, and all other conventional ideologies.

The U.S. Transhumanist Party’s First 1,000 Members: An Aggregate Demographic Analysis

The U.S. Transhumanist Party’s First 1,000 Members: An Aggregate Demographic Analysis

Gennady Stolyarov II


On July 7, 2018, the United States Transhumanist Party finally reached its major milestone of 1,000 members.  The U.S. Transhumanist Party collects extremely limited information on its members as a way of respecting their privacy; generally, we only request enough information to be able to contact our members and identify where (in terms of general jurisdiction) they are located. However, it is still possible to derive some general, aggregated insights from overall membership data without compromising any individual member’s privacy. The U.S. Transhumanist Party makes such aggregated data available for the purposes of providing insights as to the composition of the largest transhumanist political organization in the world, which may indirectly (though not precisely) shed insights into the composition of the broader transhumanist movement – at least in terms of identifying where transhumanists tend to be concentrated and areas where the movement is making inroads, as well as continued challenges in reaching certain areas and demographics. Caution should be exercised, however, in considering this information to be “set in stone”, as it is merely a snapshot in time of membership composition, which itself will evolve as new members are added. Furthermore, it is possible that the proportion of individuals who have thoughts or sympathies that could be broadly construed as transhumanist would differ from the proportion of members of the U.S. Transhumanist Party – even based on incidental elements such as the current reach of the U.S. Transhumanist Party’s social networks and media presence, which may be uneven across various constituencies, but which we are always striving to improve.

Members by Type (United States or Allied)

United States Members (Eligible to vote in U.S.): 704 – 70.4%
Allied Members (Anyone else capable of holding a political opinion): 296 – 29.6%

Commentary: As was anticipated by U.S. Transhumanist Party leadership prior to this analysis, approximately 70% (70.4%) of members are eligible to vote in U.S. elections, and those members largely reside in the United States, while 30% (29.6%) of members are Allied Members – either U.S. residents who are not eligible to vote in U.S. elections, or transhumanists residing in other countries. All members, including Allied Members, are eligible to take part in the internal votes and deliberations of the U.S. Transhumanist Party, as we pride ourselves on our cosmopolitan, international character and see the future of humankind as gradually rendering national distinctions ever less relevant, since the transformative impact of technological progress transcends all national and ethnic boundaries and will hopefully benefit all humankind to the maximal extent possible.

The U.S. Transhumanist Party began to collect information about members’ specific jurisdictions in December 2017. This information was supplemented in the present analysis by additional information known directly to U.S. Transhumanist Party leadership regarding particular members’ jurisdictions of residence. As a result, 437 out of 1,000 members were able to be matched with a particular jurisdiction of residence, which is at presently utilized for aggregate data-analysis purposes only. The U.S. Transhumanist Party does not collect more granular residence information about its members, other than their U.S. state or non-U.S. country of residence.

Members by U.S. State
(Only members who identified their state or otherwise were known to reside there were tabulated.)

Non-U.S. Members by Country
(Only members who identified their country of residence or otherwise were known to reside there were tabulated.)

Commentary: The plurality of United States Members of the U.S. Transhumanist Party reside in California, while other states of prominent member presence include New York, Florida, Arizona, Ohio, Texas, Colorado, and Washington. This is not surprising, given the concentration of technologically oriented businesses in California, as well as the high population numbers in many of the other listed states. Colorado, Nevada, and Oregon, however, appear to have higher concentrations of Transhumanist Party members relative to their populations. Allied Members have a widespread international presence and representation on almost all continents. Among non-U.S. members, the largest numbers appear to be in the United Kingdom and Canada – where transhumanists often closely interact with their counterparts in the United States – as well as India, where we attribute the prominent member presence to interest in technology, a rapidly changing society and economy, strong ties with the West through immigration and educational exchange, as well as the fact that India is now the world’s second-most populous country.  Unfortunately, the world’s most populous country, China, is only represented by one member (who recently immigrated there). We attribute this to the lack of political freedom in China and the restrictions on information access imposed by the Chinese government. While the Chinese government has numerous favorable attributes – including a pragmatic, pro-economic-growth, generally pro-technology outlook, the unfortunate inclination toward authoritarian control of the social and political spheres prevents what would have been many otherwise highly beneficial collaborations between the U.S. Transhumanist Party and residents of China.

Members by Gender

Commentary: The U.S. Transhumanist Party does not directly inquire about any member’s gender – nor does the U.S. Transhumanist Party take any position on gender issues, the origin of gender, post-genderism, or related matters – other than to affirm its commitment to inclusivity and openness to all individuals who share our Core Ideals, irrespective of their gender, gender identity or expression or lack thereof, or specific views on gender issues. However, an aggregate analysis of member composition by gender may be informative as to the extent to which the U.S. Transhumanist Party could continue to expand its reach and the effectiveness of its message.

For most members, it was possible to discern their gender by considering their names – since names are most often gender-specific – or, if the members happened to be personally known to leadership of the U.S. Transhumanist Party, this information was also utilized to accurately determine those members’ genders. For some members such a determination was not possible based on the information provided, so they were classified as “Unknown” for purposes of this analysis. This is a sufficiently small category that it was grouped with those members who are known to specifically identify as agender or non-gender.  The U.S. Transhumanist Party does not guarantee the complete accuracy of this analysis, but we are reasonably confident that at least 95% of the members’ gender was identified accurately. Based on this confidence, we can also posit that the material conclusions of the analysis would not be affected if additional or revised information about a small number of members’ gender were made available.

Male Members: 854 – 85.4%
Female Members: 133 – 13.3%
Agender Members and Members of Unknown Gender: 13 – 1.3%

There is nothing gender-specific about transhumanism, and the aspirations and values of transhumanism are aimed at benefiting all humans and other sentient entities – so, at first glance, it is rather difficult to understand why a significant apparent proportional difference by gender exists in U.S. Transhumanist Party membership counts. There is no single definitive hypothesis as to why this is presently the case. However, the existence of this difference was anecdotally known to U.S. Transhumanist Party leadership prior to this analysis, and a heuristic figure of 80% male / 20% female composition for the transhumanist movement as a whole was used in communications on this issue. It is noteworthy that, while the actual proportions are possibly closer to 86% male  /14% female, the composition of newer members (those who signed up in 2018) has been 83.4% male / 15.2% female / 1.3% unknown, so it is possible that proportionally more individuals who identify as female are becoming aware of and interested in transhumanist ideas and the work of the U.S. Transhumanist Party. Furthermore, many female members of the U.S. Transhumanist Party are prominent public figures whose work appears regularly on our website and whose contributions to the actualization of our goals are highly valued.

One possibility is that the initial gender difference in U.S. Transhumanist Party membership composition is an artifact of a similar gender difference in the “tech” industry, with which many (though not all) transhumanists happen to have some association. Any gender disparities in the “tech” industry existed prior to the emergence of transhumanism and arose completely independently of transhumanism or transhumanist projects or activism. It may simply be the case that individuals in the “tech” industry are more likely to be aware of transhumanism and developments in Transhumanist politics in the first place, and it takes additional work to reach constituencies outside of the “tech” industry. Fortunately, if this interpretation is accurate, then the U.S. Transhumanist Party is one of the best available vehicles for undertaking this task, since its leadership is predominantly not culturally or organizationally tied to large technology companies or the norms of Silicon Valley, but rather tends to be substantially more diverse and independent in terms of backgrounds, skill sets, and outlooks.

Ultimately, we seek to grow our membership everywhere and work toward an entire world which identifies as transhumanist. With this, we encourage everyone, of all genders, countries, backgrounds, and skill sets, to sign up for absolutely free membership in the U.S. Transhumanist Party and begin to contribute to the progress of our mission to put science, health, and technology  at the forefront of politics and thereby create a world of indefinitely long life, universal abundance, rational and policy-oriented politics, and protection against all existential risks. The composition of our membership going forward can be affected by you.

The U.S. Transhumanist Party’s Commitment to Inclusivity and Cosmopolitanism – Official Statement by Gennady Stolyarov II

The U.S. Transhumanist Party’s Commitment to Inclusivity and Cosmopolitanism – Official Statement by Gennady Stolyarov II

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Gennady Stolyarov II


The United States Transhumanist Party takes this opportunity to reaffirm its commitment to inclusivity and its support of the ideas and aspirations of a diverse, cosmopolitan membership and a transhumanist and life-extensionist community that we hope will someday encompass the entire world.

Per Article III, Section II, of our Constitution, “the United States Transhumanist Party condemns any hostile discrimination or legal restrictions on the basis of national origin, skin color, birthplace, ancestry, gender identity, or any manner of circumstantial attribute tied to a person’s lineage or accident of birth.” We hold that any of the above circumstantial attributes are not germane to a sentient entity’s ability to contribute value to worthwhile endeavors to advance a brighter future, and therefore decisions in politics and organizational membership alike should be made without regard to those attributes. If a sentient entity (which includes humans today, but could potentially also include non-human intelligences in future eras) has skills, ideas, and initiatives that could improve the outcomes of an organization or society, then placing obstacles in the way of that sentient entity on the basis of irrelevant circumstantial attributes is deeply counterproductive and self-undermining.

To reinforce our welcoming and inclusive stance, the U.S. Transhumanist Party recently published the eloquent statement by Director of Recruitment Martin van der Kroon, “We Would Like to Welcome Everyone” – which should leave no doubt as to where we stand.

Recently, a fledgling group, calling itself the Transhuman Party or “TP 3.0” and describing itself as an organization that is “three days old, with fresh ideas”, took issue with the composition of the leadership of the U.S. Transhumanist Party and asked, “Do you want to be governed by the all-white-men leadership of the current Transhumanist Party (TP 2.0)?” There are many flaws with the above question and the manner in which it is posed. Setting aside the inescapable irony that the question itself was posed by a person who would be identified as a “white man” (Hank Pellissier), it is an error to presume that the Officers of the U.S. Transhumanist Party seek to “govern” rather than merely administer the infrastructure for a party that will become increasingly self-governing as it accumulates a critical mass of members who can initiate their own projects and discussions. (This is already happening if one knows where to look!)

While we are not sure exactly what it means to have “all-white-men leadership” (since race is itself an artificial construct with no basis in biology), we do know for certain that the 650 members of the U.S. Transhumanist Party as of this writing are among the most diverse populations possible – given that the Transhumanist Party accepts Allied Members from throughout the world, as well as people of ages that would not meet the threshold for qualification to vote in most jurisdictions. As long as people can think and form political opinions, they are welcome to take part in our deliberations and initiate projects under the Transhumanist Party’s auspices. Furthermore, the U.S. Transhumanist Party recently initiated its Foreign Ambassador Program, which was intentionally created to enable us to benefit from the diverse perspectives of transhumanists from all over the world.

Any centralization in our current structure is transitional in nature and arises out of necessity, given that the Transhumanist Party is not yet large enough for a steady stream of grassroots action to drive its activities. In my ideal hoped-for circumstances, every member of the U.S. Transhumanist Party would be empowered with at least the tools for constructive change that I currently have at my disposal as Chairman. Our Officers are accountable to our diverse membership, and we take into consideration the reasonable viewpoints and interests of everyone among that membership. We greatly respect and value transhumanists of all genders, morphological features, and geographical and demographic backgrounds – and we look up to many eminent transhumanists who happen to exhibit any combination of these circumstantial features.

Is there an issue in the transhumanist movement generally that individuals of certain demographic characteristics tend not to join in as significant numbers as might be hoped for? Unfortunately, yes – and it is difficult to explain adequately. However, this issue has existed with regard to many technologically oriented and futurist movements for a long time and is the result of a complex combination of factors that cannot be easily unraveled – although continued discussion regarding it is certainly worthwhile. Still, there should be no doubt as to the direction in which the U.S. Transhumanist Party would like this situation to evolve. Growth in support from any demographic, whether or not such growth is proportional to the general population, is desirable and should be strived for.  Hypothetically, and only as an example, if all the women of the world became supporters of transhumanism and life extension tomorrow, this would be an occasion for great celebration, as it would mean that our efforts will have succeeded in persuading slightly more than half of the world’s population. Personally, I would have no concern whatsoever if such a major growth meant that my demographic attributes placed me into a minority among transhumanists and life-extensionists – and I would certainly welcome more people who happen not to have my particular attributes rising into positions of leadership and impact. Given the many prominent female leaders of our broader movement – including Elizabeth Parrish, Miss Metaverse (both Advisors to the U.S. Transhumanist Party), Laura Deming, Elena Milova, and Maria Konovalenko, to name just a few – there is opportunity here for anyone who wishes to join us an advocate and collaborator to rise as high as their interests and merits take them.

Additionally, our current team of Officers is not at its limit, and judging its composition by a snapshot in time does not present the full picture. We are always happy to consider new additions to our team and to create positions for individuals who have particular beneficial talents to contribute. Completely irrespective of your circumstantial attributes, we are interested in what you can do to help advance humankind into the next great era of our civilization. If you can bring value in terms of your knowledge, efforts, and character – we are interested in considering you for an Officer position. We hope that, with further growth and activity, we will continue to build bridges within the diverse transhumanist community and discover individuals who can assist us in implementing our ambitious and far-reaching vision. If you are interested in becoming an Officer of the U.S. Transhumanist Party, please do not hesitate to e-mail me here with a description of your interest in the Transhumanist Party, your skill set, and what roles you would like to perform – and we can discuss further.

 

Gennady Stolyarov II, FSA, ACAS, MAAA, CPCU, ARe, ARC, API, AIS, AIE, AIAF

Chairman, United States Transhumanist Party

September 29, 2017