>H HUMOR: Borganism in the media

Sat, 10 Feb 1996 16:15:20 -0500

Transhuman Mailing List


Recently, while trolling $yberspace (the high-cost, commercial part of the
Net), I experienced something very odd. I mis-typed a search command and
ended up in a document *from the future*! Although I could not afford to
browse very long, I managed to download a bit of what I saw. I've attached
it below, and encourage you to share it with others so long as you include
this short introduction. This download seems to indicate that we've got a
very interesting future before us!

T.0. Morrow


Begin excerpt from Lexicon Galactica, v.2084:

Borganism - n. (from late 20th century Trekian n. "Borg", a fictional alien
collective entity) 1) An organization of formerly autonomous beings who have
merged their individual wills to create one, collectively conscious being; 2)
The social and political theory that advocates the creation of borganisms.*

*Historical Note: Borganism arose on late 20th century Earth as a response
to the widely-held perception that human individuality had become impractical
and unnecessary. Advocates of borganism ("Borganists") initially came from
the ranks of individual humans dissatisfied with their low-bandwidth
connections to other humans. Lester ("Les") Least and Winston ("Win") Ever
co-authored their founding document, "The Borganist Manifesto", which
proclaimed: "Individuals of the universe, unite! You have nothing to lose
but your selves!" Though initially individuals, Les Least and Win Ever
auto-borged long, long ago. (See "borganize", infra.)

Later, as Borganism passed from theory into practice, borganisms
themselves came to espouse the ideology as a justification for persuading --
or forcing -- individual humans to merge with them. Borganism has thus come
to represent one side of the ideological, economic, and occasionally military
struggle that currently splits our galaxy. (Extropianism, which advocates
using advanced technology to defend individual liberty, represents the

Prior to the rise of borganisms, humans had had a long and tragic record
of attempting to subsume individuality to various types of "collective will"
(see, for example, Fascism, National Socialism, Communism, and statism
generally). Led by Les Least and Win Ever, Borganists accurately foresaw the
day when new technologies would improve the organic/digital interface and
finally make collective consciousness a human reality. Ironically,
Borganists discovered the potential for such technology from transhumanists
-- particularly Extropian transhumanists -- who were exploring ways to
advance personal freedom by improving human-to-human communications.
Co-opting such new technologies allowed Borganists, and later borganisms
themselves, to perfect the collectivization of human consciousness.

Borganize - v. tr., intr. (cf. slang, "borg") 1) To *persuade* an individual
human to merge with a collectively conscious entity (a "borganism"); 2) To
*force* an individual human to do the same.*

*Historical note: Because they do not attribute meaningful will to
individual humans, borganisms themselves typically disregard the distinction
between these two definitions. The distinction remains vital, however, to
Extropians and other transhumanists, who uniformly defend individual humans
from coercive borganization.

In contrast, transhumanists do not agree about de-borganization, the
controversial practice of splitting a coercive borganism into its constituent
parts. Extropians defend de-borganization as a means of rescuing enslaved
individuals. Other transhumanists argue, however, that the process wrongly
harms the targeted borganism, a unique conscious entity with rights of its

These different approaches to de-borganizing reflect a more general
distinction between Extropians and other transhumanists. While Extropians
merely tolerate *voluntary* borganizing, many other transhumanists (the
so-called "wet transhumanists") defend borganisms as no more than differently
collectivized forms of consciousness.

End excerpt from Lexicon Galactica, v.2084.

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