WIRING THE ARK

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HACKING MORTALITY

THE QUICK AND THE NOT DEAD

Life is old, but getting older.

I sense opportunity.

We are constantly told of technology’s disruptive power, its potential to alter the world, remake our life, but which we rarely believe because it almost never happens. Everything is still mostly the same. But imagine, for example, if technology so disrupted the world that it made older people the cool ones, the ones everyone comes to for wisdom, guidance, to seek the truth, to know what to buy, to live as long as possible.

Unlike the growing ranks of nonagenarians and centenarians, those who breach a 12th decade, known as supercentenarians, rarely face protracted illness or disability before they die, a boon that many of them have ascribed to personal habits.

Why is that?

Let’s go to them and find out! Maybe even ask for pieces of themselves.

But even as they indulged the notion that exceptionally healthy longevity can be explained by lifestyle, each agreed to donate DNA to a private effort to find the secrets in supercentenarian genes.

As everything becomes available to everyone, we’re all connected, we all have more than enough to eat, watch, consume, and the robots do life’s heavy lifting, might the very old prove to be the most fascinating among us? The most valuable?

Yes!

If unusual patterns in their three billion pairs of A’s, C’s, G’s and T’s — the nucleobases that make up all genomes — can be shown to have prolonged their lives and protected their health, the logic goes, it is conceivable that a drug or gene therapy could be devised to replicate the effects in the rest of us.

As technology satisfies all our other needs, how much might we alter our economy, politics, and culture to make sure everyone has the chance to live just ten years more? And if that potential lies in the old, the odd, the marginal?

The value paradigm shifts.

An age-defying mutation found in the genes of Amish people appears to be boosting their lifespan. Individuals carrying a single non-functional copy of the gene SERPINE1 live an average of 10 years longer than other members of their communities, according to new research.

I’d rather have that extra ten years than the next five new iPhones.

Does the future belong to the old?

Bill Gates is investing $50 million in venture-backed start-ups which are seeking to find a cure — or more likely, to limit — Alzheimers. Gates makes wizened bets, and it’s easy to imagine that an ecosystem of tech companies looking into the maladies of aging would ultimately lead to interest and expertise and spin-offs in new technologies exclusively for older people, or at least first for older people.

Talk about disruption.

Consider the elephant:

ELEPHANTS AND OTHER large animals have a lower incidence of cancer than would be expected statistically, suggesting that they have evolved ways to protect themselves against the disease. A new study reveals how elephants do it: An old gene that was no longer functional was recycled from the vast “genome junkyard” to increase the sensitivity of elephant cells to DNA damage, enabling them to cull potentially cancerous cells early.

What do the long lived and cancer-free human  among us possess?

Teach us! Show us! Help us be like you!

As we meld flesh with computing, those over age 50, or over age 100, could absolutely represent the next frontier. Old is the new black.

KODOKUSHI

When I was your age, Japan was the future.

The coolest tech, the coolest art, the oddest manifestation of human life in the developed world. We were all turning Japanese, or hoping so.

No longer.

Nokia punctured their reality, iPhone crushed their vision, China thwarted their ambition, and then age, Japan got old, really old, death old. But now, Japan goes back to the future — as it cloaks old and death with keen engineering acumen and its typical cultural kinks.

Japanese are dying. Alone. And from this I expect great things. Marvels. As China and the West tinker with flesh and consciousness in a mad rush to hack mortality, Japan, the breadth of its peculiarity notwithstanding, rightly intuits that death and loneliness are the next bold frontiers to conquer.

Kodokushi:

Miyu, who was 24 when we met, works for ToDo company, whose employees clean the homes of people who have died. Theirs has often been a “lonely death”, known in Japanese as kodokushi.

Lonely death.

It’s an increasingly common phenomenon in a country with an ageing population, more elderly people living on their own and fractured connections. Miyu is the only woman and the youngest employee in the 10-person company.

Imagine, a city of twenty million or more, so many that for most only the toilet is a private space, yet thousands, maybe hundreds of thousands, maybe millions are dying or soon will die — alone. No one knowing, no one caring. What an odd reality we’ve constructed for ourselves.

Lonely death is such a prevalent theme in Japanese life that some of the most calculating, conniving and outright evil elderly are making a killing.

A 70-year-old Japanese woman has been sentenced to death for the murder of three men, one of whom was her husband, and the attempted murder of another.

Chisako Kakehi is accused of using cyanide to kill her lovers and make millions from insurance payouts. Her lawyers plan to appeal the sentence. Prosecutors said she targeted wealthy men who were mostly elderly or sick.

The frail Chisako Kakehi was no stranger to the metaverse.

The trial heard that she had joined matchmaking services in which she had specifically requested to meet men who were rich and childless.

How rich can you be if you are childless?

But what of all the alone-dying not killed off for insurance money, still with many more years of lonely death before them?

Government, private industry and research centers in Japan are all dutifully working on making learning, emotive robots, mostly in the familiar form of dogs or humans. The hope is these machines can alleviate the spreading open wound of chronic loneliness mixed with chronic aging. Care, comfort, contentedness, and then you die.

It beats dying without any of those things.

If you think a human, of any age, can’t love a robot, you are simply wrong. This is verifiable. But what we don’t know yet, but soon will, is can humans love a robot that responds to us just like the dead human they are now standing in for?

Can a robot adequately replace your departed mother, father, son, daughter, best friend, that person you interacted with everyday on Twitter but never actually met in the flesh?

Probably.

With all the images, check-ins, texts, shares, tweets, likes, conversations, comments, the entirety of life writ digital, all that information can — soon — be inserted into a robot form of your choosing. This man already built a chatbot, still just digital form, that responds to his texts much like his deceased father would.

While his father was dying of cancer James Vlahos made a controversial call; he turned his dad in to a chatbot, keeping his voice and memories alive long after he passed away, raising questions on whether we are moving towards a world of artificial immortality.

We are all dying. Many are seeking a workaround.

There may be no better people to uncover this, and build it, than the Japanese.

SOONER OR LATER IT ALL ADDS UP

Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg is worth $70 billion.

If he spent $3,000,000 every single day, not taking a single day off, he’d start running low on cash in the year 2100, depending on the vagaries of the stock market and how conservative his investment strategy.

Today, Mr. Zuckerberg announced he is donating $45 million, about a fortnight’s worth of spending, toward two social causes, helping provide more affordable housing to more poor people, and combatting America’s (alleged) incarceration problem. Oh, and last week, Mr. Zuckerberg donated an unknown amount to the “Human Cell Atlas” project (emphasis added):

Today the Chan Zuckerberg Initiative is announcing 38 science projects we’re funding towards our goal of curing all disease in our children’s lifetime.

They’re all part of a larger effort called the Human Cell Atlas to map out every type of cell in the human body. You can think of this like the periodic table of elements, but for the thousands of cell types in our bodies. Or you can think of it like the Human Genome Project, except on a much larger scale since we’re each made up of about 37 trillion cells. Once complete, it will help us understand all the states our cells can be in, and how to move cells from one state to another. That will help scientists everywhere make faster progress towards curing diseases

Curing, preventing and managing all diseases is a huge challenge, but it’s the right long term goal to focus on to improve healthcare for our children. I’m looking forward to following the progress of these projects.

I am skeptical.

Not of the effort, which I believe will help move humanity closer toward preventing what ought to be in the 21st century highly preventable diseases, nor am I skeptical that the knowledge gleaned through the work funded by Mr. Zuckerberg will be limited to only a few. I am relatively certain many children from around the world will live much longer, healthier lives in part due to the effort to map all types of cells.

My skepticism is that I think this is only one goal, a smaller goal at that, of Mr. Zuckerberg’s intent, which is: to live a radically longer life than has ever been lived before.

(Zuckerberg’s funded) project will not just produce a pile of inert data, the resource created will have endless applications. For example, a more detailed understanding of cell development could help stem cell research. Producing mature cells has proved difficult, and could be key to bringing cell therapies, such as TiGenix’s approach to repairing the heart following a heart attack, into the clinic.

You don’t have $70 billion and then spend a few million on mapping cells and call it a day. You spend at least one billion, five billion, twenty billion, thirty-five billion, maybe more, to live forever — or damn close.

Maybe our tech multi-billionaires are too afraid to state this publicly?

I wonder when they can state this publicly and rather than being mercilessly mocked, their efforts help push us over some tipping point, a point where we pivot from spending trillions fighting war, poverty, disease, and instead focus on ending aging or even death.


Imagine it were possible — even commonplace — to live to 1,000.

What would years 888-995 be like? A blur?

You’ll often hear older people comment how fast the years go by, which is true, because time is relative — more so, the older you get.

“For an average 30-year-old, a single year is just 3.33 percent of their life. By the time you’re 60, the years have shrunk even more, to just 1.67 percent of your life.”

And for your mother, who is now 783?


Dr. Alan S. Green is a leading promoter of rapamycin to combat aging. His site is interesting.

BORN TO BE ALIVE

What if we are meant to live forever?

Of course you don’t believe.

It’s impossible.

But think of how the impossible continues to be made real, commonplace, even. Not only with things, but of life. For centuries, even those of stout faith would not dare honestly believe virgin birth possible — yet now there are test tube babies. Very old women, long presumed barren, can now give birth  — using another’s egg cells. And the resurrection of life? Literally possible! Though admittedly, still not for humans. But is even this only a matter of time? In digital form, it seems a near certainty. Tales from the Bible speak of a race of giants  — easily made real today using bionics, steroids, stem cells, gene editing. Placing two of every animal on a single ark? DNA is really, really small.

We are making the fantastical real.

Life first, death next.

We possess the potential to live beyond 100, 200, 500 years of age, like Noah, like Methuselah, like Adam. And it is no more unnatural than pacemakers, prosthetic limbs, hormone replacement therapy, or living inside a screen.

Now imagine this: the Bible is a makers guide, inspiring humanity’s technological progress and shepherding our ambition to live for hundreds of years, possibly forever.

We need only unlock its secrets, appropriate its ideas, replicate its magic.

God is waiting on us.

The Bible states that humans were endowed with the potential to live 1,000 years. But the actions of our predecessors demanded God strip us of this blessing. But what if that original potential remains? Locked inside us, ready to burst forth? The moment we become worthy.

Yes, the way forward will be messy, sometimes unsettling, shocking, oftentimes false, faulty.

But the fantastical will out.

We only need to believe.

 

FIFTY TRILLION

There are those among us who believe we can effectively “cure” aging. That is, with the right medications, such as rapamycin, and the right operations, such as rebuilding an old thymus gland, and following the right information, such as significantly reducing your daily caloric intake, people can live radically past 100.

150?

500?

You, this old.

Not you constructed with fake skin, your organs replaced by mechanical parts, nerve endings connected to computer processors, bionics for limbs, not that, but rather, you, essentially as you are now.

I do not believe this.

I believe something far more fantastical.

The Bible is a makers guide. It points the way.

Jesus was resurrected, lives forever, and if we follow his way, and mirror his miracles and deeds, that will lead us to, possibly, immortality.

I accept that this is a challenge to your beliefs.

Let’s consider, then, what others believe. What if we could cure aging so as to live well past 100, maybe to 200, maybe even to 500 — as humans, not borgs?

How much might that cost?

Aubrey de Grey is a pioneer and leading voice in the anti-aging movement. A biomedical gerontologist and Chief Science Officer of the SENS Research Foundation, which helps fund “regenerative medicine.”

Regenerative medicine is a branch of translational research in tissue engineering and molecular biology which deals with the “process of replacing, engineering or regenerating human cells, tissues or organs to restore or establish normal function”. This field holds the promise of engineering damaged tissues and organs by stimulating the body’s own repair mechanisms to functionally heal previously irreparable tissues or organs.

Regenerative medicine also includes the possibility of growing tissues and organs in the laboratory and implanting them when the body cannot heal itself.

When asked “how much money does Aubrey de Grey need to find a cure (for aging),” de Grey’s answer belies belief. 

Short answer: $1 billion over 10 years would do it with high probability.

Longer answer: clearly the question is not whether but when aging will be brought under comprehensive medical control. Thus, the right question is how much money is needed, over what time period, to hasten that time to the point where money will not make much difference any more because the rate of progress is limited by the simple difficulty of the research. See above for the number!

I suspect no one on this planet, with the presumed exception of de Grey himself, actually believes such nonsense.

Maybe some rich techie in Silicon Valley, where de Grey resides, might actually be willing to part with one billion. Thus, stating the number may make sense for that reason.

But to bring aging under control?

$1 billion?

More like $50 trillion.

Large research universities run through over $1 billion in R&D every single year.

$1 billion is not a price worth even considering. The SENS Research Foundation is not in possession of the philosopher stone.

$50 trillion is closer to the truth.

If it helps, the annual US Government budget is $4 trillion.

All the wealth in the United States — literally everything — is around $50 trillion.

Should we sell off everything, shut down the government — including the military — to fund radical longevity?

It’s certainly worth considering.

Erase from your mind the visualization of backsliding Israelites offering up all their gold to build a golden calf.  No doubt there are billionaires out there who believe their wealth will connect them to cures and concoctions, charlatans and geniuses who will, through tinctures and cryonics, medicinals and electronics, buy them an extra five or ten or twenty years.

This is a false hope.

A lie.

Technology — advancement — does not work that way.

Neither the president of the United States nor the founder of Google possesses a better smartphone than you, probably not even a better television.

For things to work, really work, they must work for all. Not for morality sake but because magic gains its power only through spreading itself to all.

Back to Jesus.

If I am right that for us to conquer aging, conquer death, we must follow his way, reproduce his miracles — and we have already reproduced some, such as virgin birth — then the actual cost will be nearly everything.

Matthew, chapter 19:

And behold, one came to him and said, Teacher, what good thing shall I do, that I may have eternal life? And he said unto him, Why askest thou me concerning that which is good? One there is who is good: but if thou wouldest enter into life, keep the commandments. He saith unto him, Which? And Jesus said, Thou shalt not kill, Thou shalt not commit adultery, Thou shalt not steal, Thou shalt not bear false witness, Honor thy father and mother; and, Thou shalt love thy neighbor as thyself. The young man saith unto him, All these things have I observed: what lack I yet?

Jesus said unto him, If thou wouldest be perfect, go, sell that which thou hast, and give to the poor, and thou shalt have treasure in heaven: and come, follow me. But when the young man heard the saying, he went away sorrowful; for he was one that had great possessions.

And Jesus said unto his disciples, Verily I say unto you, It is hard for a rich man to enter into the kingdom of heaven. And again I say unto you, It is easier for a camel to go through a needle’s eye, than for a rich man to enter into the kingdom of God.

Fifty trillion.

TWO GENS TO IMMORTALITY?

How soon immortality?

This soon?

And they marvelled all. And his mouth was opened immediately, and his tongue loosed, and he spake, and praised God. And fear came on all that dwelt round about them: and all these sayings were noised abroad throughout all the hill country of Judaea. And all they that heard them laid them up in their hearts, saying, What manner of child shall this be! And the hand of the Lord was with him. And his father Zacharias was filled with the Holy Ghost, and prophesied, saying —

That’s from Luke, which begins not with the story of Jesus but of John.

John’s parents were very old. John’s mother was considered far too old to give birth.

Today, these concerns have been made inconsequential, by science.

John — yes, that John, the John who paves the way for Jesus — shocked everyone in the village not simply because of his parent’s age, but because he could communicate almost from birth.

He could speak and give praise.

Question: When do we make this real?

Will CRISPR enable this? Embedded electronics?

When does a speaking baby go from shocking, haunting oddity to so commonplace as to become the new norm?

And thou, child, shalt be called the prophet of the Highest: for thou shalt go before the face of the Lord to prepare his ways.

John went just before Jesus, preparing the world for his arrival.

With Jesus, came resurrection.

How soon for us?

Is it this soon:

When the ‘test tube’ baby from the parents now able to give birth can speak — words, sentences — from almost the moment of birth?

Then grows to adulthood.

How soon is this?

Ten years? Thirty years?

DIRTY SMARTPHONE

Whatever dad likes, I like, that’s what the little boy said, near as I could tell, I couldn’t actually hear him, to be honest, but I saw him staring up at the other man, smile on his face, eager, if dad loves it, I love it, that was the clear expression on his face, and a remarkable face it was, so nearly ((human)) my heart wanted to break, and the man, a real man, he appreciated the details of his android boy as much as the actual sentiment, that was clear, and it made me realize that I hadn’t seen one of those android children in years, what with procreation now returning to normal, well, not normal, but it’s happening once again, after more than a generation where our children were nearly all wiped out, the horror and pain of that leading us ((humans)) quite naturally to just stop having children, even if we could, most couldn’t, because why go through that physical pain, that emotional turmoil, have a child, a living child, then witness them quickly be overwhelmed by our world, the sanitized environment not able to provide them with the germs and bacteria and a trillion more living unseen things they needed to survive, and your little boy or girl or undetermined withering away over the next 12–24 months, just devastating, and our best scientists, even Giant Brain, couldn’t stem this new black plague, only that was wrong, it was the opposite of a plague, in fact, that was the crux of the issue, we had gotten so good at ridding the world of everything we deemed a toxin, everything that could have harmed us, and it had made life much more bountiful, for a time, for those living, the GMOs and the Soylent and 3D printed food, and the UV lights and pasteurization and the sanitizing drones that sprayed the air and ground and water, killing off the impurities, and the self-cleaning driverless cars, and all the sterilizing bots as commonplace as bus stops in the 20th century, and the pill bots that cleaned out our insides, there wasn’t even a need to poop anymore, not more than about once every couple weeks, plus there was never much of a need to interact with people in physical space, in screen was always better, and all those hopeful parents, they meant well, they wanted the absolute best for their child, the choice was given to them and they took it, selected the very best DNA from multiple parties, two women, two men, or sometimes one woman, three men, the very best attributes from the very best available, but combined all that cleanliness turned out to be not quite godliness, as more and more of us were felled by whatever bug or virus or bacteria, all those natural bits that remained, and it was the smartphone that saved us, people like me, old people, long mocked, we never wanted to give up our smartphones, the rest of the world had long since moved on, pods inside their ears transmitting their brainwaves to the outside world, controlling devices, and their voice interacting with Giant Brain, which was everywhere, and I guess it was all so much better than our silly old smartphones, but people like me, we hate to give up what works, what we’re used to, and all those taps and swipes and touches, and all the germs on the screen clutched in our hand, we wound up being stronger, stronger against the unseen enemy, and finally our scientists, their vanity and status having long since precluded them from accepting defeat, in a final effort to understand why us older folk remained healthy as the children died, they realized our nasty, germ-infested, dirty, buggy smartphones had made us immune, and so now everyone uses a smartphone, and we’ve reduced our reliance on the sterilizing bots and the drones periodically spray bad germs over us, and the children are living past age 2 now, and more are having children and so those little android boys and girls, I suspect they are as extinct as the smartphones nearly were, and it’s kinda sad because the android boy clearly loves the man and he’s almost aware of that feeling, poor guy.

BREASTS COST EXTRA

Breasts?

Oh, very large. Very large.

When?

Fourteen? Yes, well may I suggest sixteen?

No? Fair enough.

And then —

A penis? Also? We don’t get much call for that combination.

5’10”, yes, perfect.

Remember, race is covered only up to twice by the government. Except, not Asian. That you still have to pay for.

Green eyes, oh, my favorite.

Too light? This? No? This? Excellent!

Oh, wait. At this combination, it won’t be eligible for any affirmative action programs. Unless there’s a major culture shift, obviously.

You’re okay with that? Good, good.

Now we can edit out the Parkinson’s and Alzheimer’s, taking the odds down to as close to zero as possible.

However, we can’t guarantee against late onset breast cancer if you insist on it having DNA from the three of you.

Yes, I realize that’s a sensitive topic.

Now, let me show you these. I realize it’s more than you expected, but we can go from an 8–8–4 physical, intellectual, social to a 12–10–8.

Yes, I suppose we can do a 15–15. Your carrier will need to be extended an extra week. Are you prepared to compensate him for that?

Unfortunately, no, we can’t go any higher, society still places rules on those with an unfair advantage. I know, backwards thinking. No, I’m sorry, we can’t make any assurances regarding any special talents. Not in the 21st century, at least. But the recipient can legally make changes to any of these starting at age 16, and who knows what will be available by then.

What? Oh, funny, but no, it’s all the same, I’m afraid. Don’t we wish. We can’t edit in obedience. But, if you want, we can reduce the physical score slightly and, might I suggest, a blotted complexion. Oh, we can adjust their microbiome. That will create a somewhat less pleasant body odor and breath. Or, thinner hair, perhaps? Should have the desired effect. Plus, that has the added bonus of making it want to fit in with all the latest sanctioned micro-cultures. Very anti-establishment.

Wonderful.

You’ll also need to sign this. You promise to the best of your abilities you won’t let it have intercourse with a non-premium nor a first cousin from any source. Excellent.

Let’s discuss facial structure. You seemed to have a preference for rounder. But with the body type you’ve selected, I wonder if these might work better for you. Remember, if you’re unhappy, you can return it within 30 days and start again, that’s covered by your employer.

RESURRECTION AGAIN

I want to die I want to die so badly, but what’s the point, they’ll just bring me back, I suit them, I’m clever — for my time — well kept, lacking color, that’s what they want, it tells us apart, yes, there’s more than just me, there’s thousands of us, maybe hundreds of thousands, part slave, part pet, a helper bot in past-human form, I think back to when I was alive — alive the first time — and as a child attending church and the story of Jesus, and I recall the book of Peter, “blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, according to his great mercy, he has caused us to be born again,” and we all believed, at least we said we believed, but we placed our faith in our own works, our own brains, our own machines, and then in the machines they birthed, until bringing back from the dead became real, the Bible is a makers guide, first with bugs, then lizards, then mammals, then humans, humans like me, humans from the past, from the 21st century, seems such a violation of our faith, I know, a violation of our humanity, of the rhythm of the cosmos, but we did it, we made resurrection a reality, though not we, exactly, those who came after me, nearly 200 years after, using the dating you and I understand, but it’s not how we imagined, it’s horrible, I’d rather be dead, the people today, they still call themselves humans, they are different from us, what they call past-humans, I’m a past-human, you’re a past-human, today’s humans they are bigger, stronger, faster, yes smarter, which is disheartening, as I was always one of the smartest people of my time, and now I’m well below average on smartness, on strength and stamina, and worse, these new humans, better humans — future humans — they use various drugs, implants, neurologics, robotics and other creations, most I still don’t understand — and they live hundreds of years, literally, in fact, none of them I’ve ever met has even witnessed a person dying, nor even know of a person who died, I’m still not certain the maximum age they can live, they claim the ceiling is 1,000, but they aren’t even half-way there yet, and they just assume that as they edge closer to 1,000 they’ll create something even grander, using their big brains and great machines, something that keeps them alive longer still, truly alive, not returned alive, probably they are right, they are that much better than us, that much more advanced, except they bore easy, and they have so many minor needs, and so they bring us past-humans — human humans — back to life, we are easy to recognize, sickly looking by comparison, smaller, obviously not as smart, pale like a corpse, we are brought back to serve them, do whatever they want, which is always something demeaning, always, because the truth is they don’t need us, not at all, not for our labor, not for our brains, in an idle moment they may ask what life was like our first time, their eyes wide and mind visceral, like how we would drive by a particularly horrible car crash, but they are quick to lose interest and return to belittling us, making us do errands that do more to remind us how lesser we are than actually benefiting them, some like to have us fight one another or just harm ourselves, but mostly we are here to give them praise for everything they do, which is nothing, really, nothing but glorify themselves, and I want to die but I can’t, because they would just bring me back again, unless I found a way to just completely burn myself alive, turn my body to ash, that should work, I’ve started to gather everything I need, in fact, but they feed us well and they take interest when we copulate, so we have that, though I’ve never actually seen them engage in physical sex, maybe it’s no longer necessary, or maybe they have something better, you can’t really ask, they frown upon questions, and how they access knowledge is beyond me, but that’s why we’re here, to serve and glorify, serve and glorify, and sometimes I think back to when I was a real human, a human in my own time, fully human, and wonder what my people could have done to stop the progression that led to this world, a world where the future is superior but where the past is treated like dirt, but don’t worry, this is your first time being brought back, it all seems so strange now, and you think you have no voice, but that’s the effects of the return trip, speaking will return in a day or so, as will all your faculties.

SKIN

The book of psalms says “behold, children are a heritage from the Lord, the fruit of the womb,” but I force myself to feel nothing toward those children, what the law deems my children, which is a travesty, they are not mine, I feel nothing of them and I will never allow myself to feel anything for them, except animus, because though they come from my eggs, my DNA, that much is true, that’s been proven in court, but I never wanted them, I wish they were never born, but they were born, all 9 of them, at least 9, there may be more, and now I am forced to pay for them, the costs of their upbringing, pus a stipend for their fathers, 6 fathers, all of whom I do feel something for, a something close to hate, a hate that demands vengeance, because even though I am rich, very rich, in fact, and can afford to support all 9 children and all 6 terrible fathers — not fathers, thieves — and for this, I vow to do all I can to destroy them, I want them to suffer for what they’ve done, for stealing my skin, that’s the only explanation, they got my skin which allows certain doctors — who also disobey the law, for a price, no doubt, but they’ll also pay because I vow to find out who they are as well — but together the men and their doctors used my skin to grow eggs which, obviously, were then fertilized with the male’s sperm, then implanted in a surrogate, and now they go before the court and claim that the child, their child, is my child, and because I am wealthy, I must pay, which I will, that’s the law, you pay for your genes, wherever and however they are used, a law I’ve long supported, but no longer, and though it is written in Titus, “so train the young women to love their husbands and children,” I am neither young nor will I be trained to love, and until the law cracks down on this practice, until they go after those who steal DNA, who illegally grow eggs, who generate fertilized eggs without explicit consent of the various parents, until then people like me must pay, but I promise to have revenge, I have enough money to find out how they got my skin, who they worked with, and when I know all the parties involved I will inflict retribution, violent retribution, biblical.

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