--- In email@example.com
, "hibbsa" <hibbsa@...> wrote:
> Don - I agree the nature/nurture thing won't die, but with that said
> concepts rarely make it through revolutions unchanged. Things get
> fleshed out and in the process some concepts tend to get broken apart
> while others become merged together.
> You mention it may be too complex/intertwined to just 'cut and paste'. I
> don't know Don...we have to think about what happens every time a sperm
> fertilizes an egg. That process of mixing the DNA of parents, has to be
> standard and independent of what specifically is going on in the code
> It's bound to be complex, there is always another layer of complexity
> below. Or that's always been the story in science so far. But, something
> we can also is that evolution has to have solved this particular issue.
> I expect it will be a case of DNA having some 'cut here' markers,
> combined with an underlying genetic/selective mechanism that favours
> modularity (something we actually know to be the case even if the
> specific rules so far elude us)./
Yes, I see, you envision a still more advanced stage of technology than I was considering. At that advanced period in the future I am not quite sure that choices on the part of parents about characteristics of their children would have the same outcome as what we are considering in the "eugenics" framework today. Perhaps by that time, the genetic diseases and errors of metabolism of today would have been completely eradicated. And perhaps not just a few people, but everybody would be able to afford the new medical technology.
Then, If everybody were able to select with great precision the genes responsible for "intelligence," there could finally be some maximum alteration possible, so that eventually everybody would possess the same maximum degree of innate intelligence. At that point, all variations would be determined by environment or chance, and heritability would be zero. Just as all babies would be born free of genetic disease, so also all babies would be born with maximum intelligence. I am beginning to see this line of thinking as a kind of "reductio ad absurdum," but who knows, maybe our society will be able to engineer some great leap into an unknown future.
Donald W. Zimmerman
Vancouver, BC, Canada