performance enhancing ethics

Discuss the philosophy found in the various incarnations of Ghost in the Shell

Moderator: sonic

In favor or against the use of athletic performance enhancing substances?

In favor.
1
10%
In favor if controlled and healthy for the athlete/person.
4
40%
Don't care, we are a species evolving by many unnatural means.
3
30%
Against except in certain domains like public safety.
1
10%
Against
1
10%
 
Total votes: 10

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simon's ghost
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performance enhancing ethics

Post by simon's ghost »

Since this place is quickly decaying, i don't see the obligation to write GitS related philosophy and decided to start a (not so) random debate!

What of the ethics of human performance enhancing? Mainly the way growth homones and other supplements are generally used in all sports.

I just want to see if there is any interest in this before I go on and on about it.

edit: I had a fifth option which simply said "Against." but the bloody thing was taken out when I submitted it. And I can't edit the poll... Sorry people.
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Epiphany
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Post by Epiphany »

WOW thats a tough one. I guess that in todays society if you want to perform with the top level atheletes you pretty much have to. I think they do need to control it but I can't figure how they could do that. After all they can't control any illegal substances these days. As long as we make extremely rich gods out of sports figures some will feel the need to juice up. Its to bad but the die has been cast and you can't undo that type of thing
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Jeff Georgeson
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Post by Jeff Georgeson »

I've added that "Against" option for you. Not sure why it was taken out.

Maybe we could have two different kinds of sporting events, one for non-enhanced humans and one for all types of enhancements, physical or otherwise. That might lead to all sorts of competing technologies.

We already have different levels of competition anyway--look at the Special Olympics.

And what about that double-amputee who was recently told by the IOC that he couldn't compete in the regular Olympics because his artificial legs might give him an unfair advantage?

--Jeff
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Epiphany
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Post by Epiphany »

Jeff Georgeson wrote: And what about that double-amputee who was recently told by the IOC that he couldn't compete in the regular Olympics because his artificial legs might give him an unfair advantage?

--Jeff
Seems all things point back to GITS. Build a better human :twisted:
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simon's ghost
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Post by simon's ghost »

Wow. Jeff still lurks... I just wet myself!
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Epiphany
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Post by Epiphany »

simon's ghost wrote:Wow. Jeff still lurks... I just wet myself!
I know what you mean. I was shocked when I saw him On-line tonight :D

Maybe thats a good sign 8)
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Post by Elmo_Redux »

I think that guy with the artificial legs is awesome, maybe like Jeff implied they should make a third Olympics - the normal Olympics, paraolympics and a new enhanced-Olympics for people who want to take advantage of all the augmentations science has to offer. To be honest about the only thing that would convince me to watch athletics would be high-jumpers with spring loaded legs, weight lifters with surgically implanted pistons in their arms, pharmaceutically enhanced javelin throwers.. etc.

Also it could provide a well-needed boost to the driving forces behind development in the fields of pharmaceuticals and prosthetics.

As far as I can see, the two major objections to allowing the 'everything goes' approach to sports are that firstly the drugs have negative effects on the athlete and it would be irresponsible to encourage them in this one area of society when taking them is seen as highly deviant behaviour elsewhere. And secondly, the use of enhancements undermines the hard work of those who don't use them and there is less value in something achieved by science than there is in something achieved by hard work alone.

While it's true that some of the drugs have negative side-effects or can shorten the life-span of the athlete, the same thing can be said of sport itself - even the most casual of athletic endeavors like jogging can have negative effects on your health or shorten your life. But that is what athletics is all about, it isn't about how long you can stretch your life out, but instead it's about what heights you can achieve with the time you have. Also by the very act of making these things legitimate we would enable the open development of safer alternatives.

As for the science versus hard-work issue, the production of a top-end athlete is already a largely scientific process. Gold-medal winners at the bejing Olympics will be people who have been under strict nutritional control, taking various concoctions and supplements to reach the optimum muscle growth and stamina capacity. Also their training will have been shaped by the need to reach a very exact anatomical balance so that their muscles will be of the right size, elasticity and will be able to exert force at the right level and rate to match the athlete's strategy. It in no way was just hard work and practice - so to remove all the boundaries of augmentation is just the step of acknowledging what sport has become and allowing it to take the next step.
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Post by Elmo_Redux »

this is the origonal article the BBC put out on the blade-runner guy if anyone is interested.

To be honest the cheetahs he uses don't seem to be as good as biological legs and he isn't exactly in the top end of olympic sprinters.
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Post by GhostLine »

i don't think i really care...unless the research is applicable to physical therapy/ rehabilitation....
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simon's ghost
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Post by simon's ghost »

Well...it's already evident (from pro athletes) that steroïds do accelerate the recovery for muscle, tendon and ligament injuries. I sometimes wonder why they aren't prescribed after some types of surgery, especially if it's only for a short period and the risks are close to nil. I'm thinking of shoulder injuries which are incredibly tricky. The human shoulder is very complex. It is composed of at least a dozen of muscles that are extremely interdependant: they are somewhat intertwined and compensate for one another. Surgeries tend to have a 50% succes ratio and do not completely restore all of it's multidirectional functionality. Why not give it a boost? Tearing a ligament in your knee (like I have) can dramatically reduce your quality of life for an extended period. I took a whole year to recover and another year to cast my brace aside, but I still feel, and it's been more than 10 years now, that I'm only at 90% and during my recovery my other knee suffered from having to compensate. so now both of my knees are at 90%. For the same injury (torn ACL) a pro athlete will recover in 6 to 8 months and be ready to compete again.
They drink really good juice.

All the same, I think the possibilities given by these drugs can be interesting, but the debate for me is about the reasons for cheating and the reasons not to.
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Re: performance enhancing ethics

Post by Jeni Nielsen »

simon's ghost wrote:Since this place is quickly decaying, i don't see the obligation to write GitS related philosophy and decided to start a (not so) random debate!

What of the ethics of human performance enhancing? Mainly the way growth homones and other supplements are generally used in all sports.

I just want to see if there is any interest in this before I go on and on about it.

edit: I had a fifth option which simply said "Against." but the bloody thing was taken out when I submitted it. And I can't edit the poll... Sorry people.

I really think steroids are stupid. They're a product of a culture that is obsessed with body image and performance. I don't care about baseball that much but I'm pretty sure whatever street cred baseball had with me was ruined by the whole doping scandal.

I consider myself a bodybuilder. I lift weights in an attempt to look better and be stronger and also for my mood and health. I would never ever ever in a million years take steroids. I think that even though most people can not gain much muscle without performance enhancing drugs they are still a crutch. I think making another olympics would be a good idea but how would you enforce which drugs could be used or would you even try? I think that kind of competition might be harmful to the competitors if they though they could push themselves too far.

I hadn't heard the argument that steroids speed muscle recovery. i know that steroid creams are used for various things, but I think it might be interesting to learn more about that.
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Post by sonic »

I said against, mostly because I don't think people should be playing with drugs that aren't necessary.

Didn't know about the steroid thing though- if it heals you *and* it is 100% safe and controlled, then I guess it'd be okay if closely regulated.

As to the sprinter with the artificial leg, I think they should compromise with him- especially after all he's done to overcome disability and regain his dignity, it seems unfair and cruel of them to ban him. Can't they design a heavier, less springy leg for him that somehow reaches an acceptible level of fair competitiveness. I mean, at least until it matches the lightness and springyness of the lightest and springyest actual real-legged competitor. I saw a girl on the Chinese news with two of those spring legs performing the long jump, and she was just incredible. I really cheered for her; she took my breath away with how gracefully she ran with them.
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Post by sonic »

Ack, and Jeni should have my avatar if she's a body builder, lol. That's one well-muscled shot of Blaze :P (I am a fan of muscles on women, I'm into having them too- blame it on a female fighting game character upbringing. Also, if I don't make it all turn to muscle it turns to flab- there's only one way or the other for me. People who naturally have no weight on their bodies amaze me; all so... long and slinky like that. Everything must feel so wonderful and light- like a gymnast :wink: ...Actually I know women like that who specifically won't work out because they don't want to weigh more or look bulkier from muscle. I think that's weird, but to each their own).

Imagine a world where people took body-enhancing drugs to waste their muscles away so they won't weigh anything, or people took things that way built up their muscles and wasted all the fat. Freaky. Work with what you have and be happy, I say. Though if you get injured, then use whatever is above-board and available to you to help recovery- there's nothing more frustrating than having something you could do before denied to you because of it. And I'd be all for anti-aging drugs too if they were safe, so I don't know what that says about me...
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Post by Elmo_Redux »

Normally I hate advertising, but I just saw this advert and thought of you guys and this thread. It's already led to me and a couple of friends trying to learn to play football wearing stilts, we expect to have broken legs by the end of next week - fun though! :D
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Post by sonic »

That's great... that's just great! :lol: :mrgreen:

(also, I hope you guys don't fall off your stilts!)
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