sunset from behind the wire

sunset from behind the wire

Tuesday, February 3, 2015

Designer Babies - Coming Soon

It's coming - and it's only a matter of when. Cracking the human genome and the perfecting of gene splicing opened the door to creating genetically superior humans, so-called designer babies. Today Britain took the step of legalizing the slippery slope.
(Fox News) Britain voted on Tuesday to become the first country to allow a "three-parent" IVF technique which doctors say will prevent some inherited incurable diseases but which critics see as a step towards creating designer babies. (Read More Here - Fox News)
The treatment is known as "three-parent" in vitro fertilisation (IVF) because the babies, born from genetically modified embryos, would have DNA from a mother, a father and from a female donor.
Justified as a cure for illness
"I wouldn't stand here and defend the concept of designer babies -- choosing the colour of the eyes and all the rest of it. This is about purely dealing with those terrible, terrible illnesses," opposition Labour lawmaker Andrew Miller, chair of parliament's science and technology committee, told the debate. 
International charities, advocacy groups and scientists had urged Britain to pass laws to allow the treatment, saying it brought a "first glimmer of hope" for some families of having a baby who could live without suffering. 
"We have finally reached a milestone in giving women an invaluable choice, the choice to become a mother without fear of passing on a lifetime under the shadow of mitochondrial disease to their child," Robert Meadowcroft, chief executive of the Muscular Dystrophy Campaign, said following the vote.
The late Ricardo Montalban, a native
of Mexico, wearing a white wig, plays
the evil "Khan" in Star Trek:The 
Wrath of Khan (1982) 
It made for great science fiction - from Huxley's Brave New World to Star Trek's Wrath of Khan and the famous Star Wars clone Imperial Army. 

Once the door is open, "refinements in technique" can take place, which move forward toward this seemingly inevitable human leap. Will all perfect male babies born in the future look just like me? Yes, it's likely. Would America use me as the pattern for the new clone army that they will want to produce to fight ISIL? Why not?

In all seriousness, this will be the mark of the future - where rich nations will be able to 'design' babies free of genetic weaknesses while poor nations will not. Thus the future generations of genetically superior, stronger, longer lived, more intelligent, more attractive and disease resistant children will inherit the Earth - the Brave New World. And Britain will be recalled in future history books as the nation that took the first step.

Japanese Scenario

I claim the privilege of worshiping God according to the dictates of my own conscience, and allow all men the same privilege, let them worship how, where, or what they may -- so long as doing so does not injure people intentionally.

I could care less if people pray at the Wailing Wall or roll out a prayer rug five times a day. I don't care if they worship no God at all. People need to make decisions for themselves and that is the proper order of things. 

France and England, notably in the West, have allowed Islamic ghettos to be created wherein national law is set aside in favor of Sharia. There are costs to doing that as the French have learned and the British are figuring out for the first time. Honor killings and beating women seem to follow the practice of Sharia. In Egyptian communities it often also includes genital mutilation of young women. Those practices of intentional injury, whether cultural or religious, violates my own and hopefully everyone else's personal axiom of religious tolerance.

Over the weekend, a senior Japanese diplomat described the beheading of the two Japanese nationals by the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL) as Japan's 9/11. "It is time for Japan to stop daydreaming that its good will and noble intentions would be enough to shield it from the dangerous world out there. Americans have faced this harsh reality; the French have faced it, and now we are, too."

Prime Minister Shinzo Abe promised to make the terrorists pay. "No country is completely safe from terrorism. How do we cut the influence of ISIL, and put a stop to extremism? Japan must play its part in achieving this." Abe said the Self Defense Forces must have the mission of rescuing Japanese citizens overseas. Abe also said Japan will not join the US-led coalition fighting ISIL.
The ISIL executioner is responsible for precipitating a cultural clash whose implications and ripple effects are enormous, but not yet determinable. What is especially outrageous to the Japanese is that the ISIL executioner said on the video that he was killing the hostages because Japan was a member of the US-led coalition against ISIL. Japan has never participated in the US-led fight against ISIL in Syria or Iraq in any fashion. 
Actions, especially lies, have consequences. Prime Minister Abe has the support of the people for seeking revenge, but in a Japanese way. Japan will join the nations determined to kill ISIL, but not the US-led coalition. Japan will send assassins.
Many of us have speculated about what set of circumstances or sequence of events would re-awaken Japan's martial spirit. Ironically and naively, US policymakers and planners have struggled for decades to persuade Japan to increase its defense budgets; to take on a greater share of responsibility for its own defense, and to participate more in multilateral, global security operations by committing self-defense forces.

Some experts judged that North Korean missile shots and nuclear tests would heighten Japan's concern for its own defense. They were partially correct. Japanese forces, acting in self-defense, have developed the defense plans for attacking North Korea. They could and would quickly destroy North Korea's puny nuclear weapons and missile infrastructure without US help, should the occasion arise. Japanese leaders have the will to attack North Korea in self-defense. Oddly, the North Koreans do not seem to appreciate Japan's capability to destroy North Korea - as a place suitable for human habitation.

Other experts judged that China's pretense to be the regional hegemon and its assertion of sovereignty over Japanese-claimed islands would be the catalysts for Japanese nationalism and militarism. They also have been partially correct because Abe's government has identified China as a threat; increased the defense budget; has sought amend the Constitution; and has committed to building an aircraft-carrier based maritime self-defense force.

Another impetus for steady, but slow rearmament has come from recent operations. These include naval support missions based in Mumbai, India, during the US fight to overthrow the Taliban; anti-piracy patrols off Horn of Africa; naval exchange visits with India, and participation in peacekeeping and humanitarian missions.

None of those, however, have had the effect of the two beheadings in arousing Japanese nationalism and the national outcry for revenge. The ignorant Islamists who call themselves jihadists have done more in a single weekend to awaken the Japanese military spirit than anything North Korea, China and the US have done in seven decades. They have awakened a sleeping giant that is extremely dangerous.