Up@dawn 2.0

Monday, February 22, 2016

Quiz Feb23

Eugenics old & new, ch4

1. The term "eugenics" means what? OR, who coined it in 1883?
Image result for francis galton

2. Who was the pioneering feminist who advocated "more children from the fit..."?

3. What "aspect of the new Germany" did the LA Times endorse in 1935?

4. What was Singapore's "free market twist" on eugenics in the '80s?

5. What famous biologist favors eugenics and calls stupid a disease?

6. What are the Repository for Germinal Choice and California Cryobank?

BONUS: Name a political or legal theorist who defended a liberal version of eugenics? Which libertarian proposed a "genetic supermarket"?

BONUS 2: What German philosopher asserted a connection between life's contingent beginning and personal freedom?

"3-Parent Babies"-The British Parliament can be an archaic, backward-looking institution, wedded to tradition, and not known for taking a revolutionary stance. Yet its members have just made a groundbreaking decision, one that no other legislature has so far been willing to contemplate.

They approved legislation that makes Britain the first country to allow the creation of what many call “three-parent babies.” Supporters say the procedure will enable women to avoid passing on certain severe and even deadly genetically inherited diseases. But many regard the new law as an unwise, even immoral, move — the first step toward the creation of “designer babies.” Some even see it as a new experiment in eugenics.

“Three-parent babies” is a sensationalized term to describe a special form of in vitro fertilization, or I.V.F., that is better labeled “mitochondrial transfer.” (nyt, continues)


1. What is the correct basis of a fortuitous birth, if not simply a superior genomic profile and "an improved stock'? Is it a reasonable aim, to pre-select for personal health but not for social dominance?

2. "We have no business to permit perpetuation of citizens of the wrong type," said TR. Is it possible to enact this intention in public policy without violating human rights?

3. Why were Americans so naive about Hitler in in the 1930s? Are we wiser today?

4. Is it "coercive" to pay people not to breed?

5. Is education an adequate cure for genetically-rooted stupidity?

6. Do you agree with Sandel that there's no moral difference between eugenics or market-driven design? 75
A semi-serious followup to our interesting discussion last time of drugs, mountains, peak experiences etc. - Auden's drugs... James on the subjective effects of nitrous oxide... The Nitrous Oxide Philosopher... The Literature of Laughing Gas

And a public service announcement from the School of Life-

"...we don't have a correct sense of what a drug is and what the drugs might be that we in particular truly need. Essentially a drug is a thing, anything that alters your mood acting via either the body or the senses to make an impact upon the mind..." So that includes pomegranate juice, emmentaler cheese, the music of Mozart...

Day Tripper. In the circles where LSD eventually thrived, the moment of its discovery was more cherished than even the famous intersection of a fine English apple with Isaac Newton’s inquiring mind, the comic cosmic instant that gave us gravity. According to legend, Dr. Albert Hofmann, a research chemist at the Sandoz pharmaceutical company, fell from his bicycle in April 1943 on his way home through the streets of Basel, Switzerland, after accidently dosing himself with LSD at the laboratory. The story presented another example of enlightenment as trickster. As a narrative it was very fondly regarded because so many of us imagined a clueless botanist pedaling over the cobblestones with the clockwork Helvetian order dissolving under him.

At Sandoz, Hofmann specialized in the investigation of naturally occurring compounds that might make useful medicines. Among these was a rye fungus called ergot, known principally as the cause of a grim disease called St. Anthony’s Fire, which resulted in gangrene andconvulsions. Ergot had one positive effect: in appropriate doses it facilitated childbirth. Hofmann set out to find whether there might be further therapeutic applications for ergot derivatives. Indeed, he discovered some for Sandoz, including Hydergine, a medication that, among other things, enhances memory function in the elderly. Most famously, of course, Hofmann’s ergot experiments synthesized D-lysergic acid diethylamide tartrate, LSD. On April 16, 1943, he apparently absorbed a minuscule amount of the lysergic acid he was synthesizing through his fingertips. He went home (he doesn’t say how) and subsequently submitted a report to Sandoz. This reads in part:Photo

Drug Test Hofmann, right, cultivates mushrooms.
“At home I lay down and sank into a not unpleasant intoxicatedlike condition, characterized by an extremely stimulated imagination.”

A few days later at work, Hofmann decided to adopt the Romantic methods of Stevenson’s celebrated Dr. Jekyll. His experimental notes commence: ‘4/19/43 16:20 0.5 cc of 1/2 promil aqueous solution of diethylamide tartrate orally = .25 mg tartrate.” By 1700 hours he was reporting other symptoms along with a “desire to laugh.”

The laughter was Mr. Hyde’s, not Dr. Jekyll’s, because for most of this occasion Hofmann was in the grip of what less cultivated experimenters would later call a bummer.

“A demon had invaded me, had taken possession of my body, mind and soul. . . . It was the demon that scornfully triumphed over my will.”

Hofmann did make the journey home by bicycle, with the help of an assistant. Contrary to legend, there is no record of his falling. As the hours of Hofmann’s investigation passed, he felt progressively better. In the morning “everything glistened and sparkled.”

CBS Sunday Morning (@CBSSunday)
Dying wish: Advocates argue for and against the right to physician-assisted death cbsn.ws/1WANJxk pic.twitter.com/E0wbIjOfAj

Bioethics Centre (@BioethicsCentre)
A Tool to Help Address Key Ethical Issues in Research [Journal of Medical Ethics blog]blogs.bmj.com/medical-ethics…
Should you edit your children’s genes?


  1. http://imagine2050.newcomm.org/2013/06/06/eugenics-in-the-pop-culture-imagination/

    Just an interesting article I found during class discussion. I'm not an author, but I wanted to supply it just in case someone else found the relationship between monetary power and eugenics interesting.

  2. Discussion Question:

    The question is proposed above "Is it "coercive" to pay people not to breed?" My question is, however, is it "coercive" to pay people to breed? In countries where the birth rate is low, is it right to pay women to have babies to sustain the population rather pursuing their life long goals that did not involve being a mother?


  3. DQ: Is education an adequate cure for genetically-rooted stupidity?

    Answer: While I will agree that education can be thought of as a cure towards preventative measures to some degree—in relation to the general public—I would not necessarily classify education as a “cure” for genetically-rooted stupidity. I feel that education would be an assisting tool in bringing awareness to these individuals, however due to genetic factors these people will continue to struggle with their intelligence.

  4. So, while I was reading I had a question on how and who decides what determines intelligence. I think that there are a lot of factors that can be played into this. I mean, what about savants? They are brilliant human being but are they technically classified as stupid? and how can we put a number on something so abstract? I find these videos very thought provoking.


  5. Quiz Question:

    How did women in Singapore who were being urged to "breed" feel about the situation?


    1. The policies that urged women to "breed" for Singapore were very unpopular and were resented.

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  8. Quiz question: Which famous biologist opened the Eugenic Records Office in Cold Springs Harbor, Long Island?

  9. I was on Facebook the other day and there was this story of a drug that NZT from limitless was based off here is a link to that article

  10. Are we on the same path the Nazis followed? Is the idea of "Modern" thinking simply the old eugenics resurfacing as "science"?

    Read the link below to find out more:


  11. Here is a very interesting video that talks about differences in IQ among populations. Note:I don't agree with everything they say.


  12. DQ #2
    I think the best way to enact this intention would be to not incentive giving birth to an outrageous number of children by the lower class by not giving anyone any welfare for the third child born and children born later.

  13. Which group was the original target for the Repository for Germinal Choice?

  14. quiz question: who was one of the California Cryobank co-founders?

  15. "We have no business to permit perpetuation of citizens of the wrong type," said TR. Is it possible to enact this intention in public policy without violating human rights?

    I would say no and honestly, i don't think that this is the right way to go about things at all. Some of the most important people important people in history: Albert Einstein, Hellen Keller, Abraham Lincoln, and Steven Hawking would have been considered citizens of the "wrong type". everyone can contribute in some way and cutting that off is only taking away from a society no matter how good it looks genetically.

  16. Quiz Question:
    Which president wrote Charles B. Davenport?

  17. Here's a video that seems to summarize various parts of the reading and also mentions other reaches of eugenics.


  18. Quiz question:
    What do Anglo-American political philosophers mean by "liberal euginics"?

    1. noncoercive genetic enhancements that do not restrict the autonomy of the child

  19. DQ:
    Ethically speaking, who has a right to an individuals genetic information. Should this be kept private or should it be a free source for companies and governments to use in the ways they see fit.

  20. I found the Repository for Germinal Choice interesting. So, here is an article that has additional information on it.


  21. Quiz Question:

    What demographic did old Eugenics disproportionately target?

  22. Is it "coercive" to pay people not to breed?

    Although I disagree with the idea of now allowing specific people to procreate, those who choose to get payed not to breed likely had no desire to do so in the first place. However, in situations where an incredibly poor person needed something to stay alive, and have no other choice, this is an exact form of coercion. As stated in the book, old Eugenics targeted the poor. Paying people not to breed isn't even a half step away from forcing them, especially if there were no other options for them.

  23. DQ: Is it "coercive" to pay people not to breed?

    I do not think it is necessarily forceful to provide someone with monetary compensation in exchange for the right to reproduce. I say this because it is generally up to the recipient to accept the compensation; wherein, they would be giving up this right by personal choice. Having said that, if the scenario indicated that the individual's only choice were to accept the compensation or be forcefully removed from the society; then, I would most likely consider it to be a coercive type of action which threatens the freedom of the being. Anyways, that's just how I feel about this issue!

  24. Here is an interesting article about how genetic engineering and eugenics are intertwined (I.E: Similarities and Differences); it also explains the possible benefits from these as far as medical research is concerned in the future!


  25. Is it the parents' job to preserve their child's life no matter the cost?


  26. Quiz Question: What eugenic scientist is related to Charles Darwin?

    Interesting article on Nazi Eugenics: http://historynewsnetwork.org/article/1796

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  28. Addison, Sarah, and Heather discussed how offering someone to become sterilized can ultimately cause regret in people who are not financial well of and/or young in age.

  29. Phillip Shackelford, Lee Gish, and Darcy Tabotabo we discussed topics from last weeks conversations on recreational drugs and our mid term report

  30. Kayleah, Shivan, and Bell

    We discussed if education is a "cure" for genetically-rooted stupidity. We agreed that stupidity cannot be genetic, and a better word would be ignorance. Ignorance can be cured with education. Shivan also brought to light that everyone is ignorant to certain an extent when young and wisdom comes with age, although education would definitely help. We also discussed our midterm report.

  31. A link on the history and morals of Eugenics if you are interested: