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  • Beyond Human

    Posted by James R. Rummel on January 1st, 2011 (All posts by )

    Anyone recognize this guy?

    marvel comics thor

    That is Thor, comic character from Marvel Comics. Based, of course, on the deity worshiped by the Norse.

    What can this object of ancient reverence do to warrant such regard? Like most thunder gods, he can hurl thunderbolts that destroy his enemies as long as he wields a mystical hammer called Mjolnir.

    ultimate marvel thor hammer mjolnis

    That is the main thing thunder gods do, after all, and it seemed to be something that would be extremely impressive to the Vikings.

    Anyone recognize these?

    both-9mm-carry-guns-with-spent-brass-and-loaded-magazines

    My favorite carry guns. They are smaller and lighter than that hammer thing, and yet I can still create thunder by no more effort than making a fist.

    Sure, it isn’t exactly the same thing. I can’t call the storm like Thor supposedly could, for example. But it still is a perfectly common, well known, mature technology that expands my abilities to something that is impossible for an unaided human being to duplicate.

    I’m bringing up the fantastically obvious due to this online article. (Hat tip to Glenn.) Some really strange young woman has a hobby where she cuts herself open in order to shove magnets down amongst nerve clusters. Says she can feel magnetic fields that way.

    Well, whatever. Back in high school I knew a girl who would do stuff like that if she was off her medication for awhile. She was really odd, as you might imagine, but at least she never claimed that she was slicing away in order to become a small “g” god.

    From the article ….

    “For decades, transhumanists have argued that science and technology are approaching (or have approached) the point at which humans can take evolution into their own hands. They can transcend limitations of sensation or movement or even lifespan that are purely the accident of evolution. Some thinkers focus strictly on the “post-human” physical body, while others write of evolved social systems, as well.”

    Can’t I do that right now without having to cut myself?

    (Cross posted at Hell in a Handbasket.)

     

    8 Responses to “Beyond Human”

    1. Michael Kennedy Says:

      How many “transhumanists” have passed algebra ?

    2. Mitch Townsend Says:

      @ Michael Kennedy: are you alluding to the characterization of progressives as people who want to change the world but can’t change a tire?

    3. morgan Says:

      Mitch, I like that discription –want to change the world but can’t change a tire. That’s priceless.

    4. larry stern [Fred Lapides] Says:

      I can change a tire. Have done so. But I prefer to let AAA do it and save my energy for other things. Cute but worthless snippy trope.

    5. Mike Cunningham Says:

      That reminds me of the Norse god who came down to earth, and met this young woman in a bar in London.

      They went back to her flat, and went at it like two sex-starved ferrets.

      In the morning, the Norse god smiled at his night-time partner, and decided to tell her who she had spent the night with.

      He said, ‘My love, I am Thor!”

      She said ‘Tho am I!”

    6. Michael Kennedy Says:

      I don’t think it is snippy to ask that people who purport to be better able to rule should be able to perform a few common tasks of civilization. I wouldn’t require shoeing a horse anymore but changing a tire, or more practically for me right now, put on tire chains, would show some minimal practical knowledge. There are far too many people in the self selected “elite” who are frighteningly ignorant. People who think Austrians speak Austrian or major newspaper columnists who think the Constitution is 100 years old and therefore unreadable, for example. I also place a few practical skills in my list.

    7. Tim Oren Says:

      You might find an old Randall Garrett story called ‘Frost and Thunder’ to be amusing and a propos.

    8. James R. Rummel Says:

      “You might find an old Randall Garrett story called ‘Frost and Thunder’ to be amusing and a propos.”

      Seems to be out of print. What is the gist?