Solving the Death Problem by Steven Mussey MD


This story hit the front page of The Washington Post on Easter Sunday:

Technology Wizards are moving into healthcare to “solve the problem of death.

These guys treat the “death problem” like some sort of iPhone App technical glitch.

“We’ll just get our team on that mortality issue, find the problem in the code causing death and then…Badda Bing, Badda Boom… instant immortality! Death problem solved!”

Wow…. I wish us doctors had thought of that!

Finally, the medical community is responding to this absurdity. From the article:

…some have been dismayed by what they see as Silicon Valley’s superiority complex and insistence that the current methods used to fight disease are outdated and ineffective. At a medical conference in August 2012, for instance, Vinod Khosla, one of Silicon Valley’s most revered venture capitalists, likened the practice of medicine to witchcraft…
The reaction from the medical community was swift. Columbia University-educated physician Bijan Salehizadeh tweeted that he was “getting nauseated” from “the anti-doctor rantings of the silicon valley tech crowd.”
Some scientists also say they are concerned that private money — which can include seven-figure research grants and salaries that are two or three times what is offered in academia — distorts research priorities.
Preston Estep, director of gerontology for Harvard Medical School’s Personal Genome Project, says some of the philanthropists are doing more harm than good by funding what he calls “pseudoscience” — approaches based more on emotional appeal than solid research. Of some of the work that is being funded by the tech crowd, he said, “nobody takes it seriously.”

The comments section to the article grew quickly and is worth reading.

The tech community’s hubris is like smart doctors who wrongly believe they can also be investment wizards or real estate tycoons…..

So, what happens if we suddenly start living to be 150 or older?

  • 401K Retirement Plans are toast.
  • Retirement, as a concept, just vanished. Are you okay with that?
  • The lines at Disney World just got worse.
  • Should we stop having kids? If we don’t die, what’s the sense in making more people? Where will we put them all?
  • Fortunately, while the technology brains are working on infinite life-span, fast food companies will be researching ways to counter these efforts, creating more “Super-Duper” options.
  • Speaking of fast food, since everyone gains so much weight every year, how much will someone weigh when they reach 250 years of age?
  • Does that mean medical care becomes obsolete? HEY! I need a new job!
  • Frequent technology upgrades are rendering vast sections of our Earth forever poisonous and uninhabitable. That means less space for more people as we all live forever…. Hmmmm….
  • We recently learned California, the “breadbasket of America,” will soon run out of water. So… let’s populate it with even more people?
  • What about all these people trying to get permanent disability in their 40’s and 50’s over dubious reasons?
  • If we “solve the death by aging problem,” get ready for the “death by war problem.”

Bottom line here: A lack of longevity is not the problem. The issue is quality. Too many people at the relatively young age of 50 already weigh so much and do so little, simply walking across a room hurts their knees and makes them short of breath. Then, they want handicapped parking tags, early disability and power scooters.

Amazingly, thanks to current medical progress, people are living longer lives, roaming from one buffet to another on their motorized wheelchairs.


Take advantage of the lifespan you have now. Keep moving. Never retire. Stop eating so darn much. If you retire, get out and volunteer every day of the week!

…and stop spending so much time reading crap like this on your computer!

Douglas Farrago MD

Douglas Farrago MD is a full-time practicing family doc in Forest, Va. He started Forest Direct Primary Care where he takes no insurance and bills patients a monthly fee. He is board certified in the specialty of Family Practice. He is the inventor of a product called the Knee Saver which is currently in the Baseball Hall of Fame. The Knee Saver and its knock-offs are worn by many major league baseball catchers. He is also the inventor of the CryoHelmet used by athletes for head injuries as well as migraine sufferers. Dr. Farrago is the author of four books, two of which are the top two most popular DPC books. From 2001 – 2011, Dr. Farrago was the editor and creator of the Placebo Journal which ran for 10 full years. Described as the Mad Magazine for doctors, he and the Placebo Journal were featured in the Washington Post, US News and World Report, the AP, and the NY Times. Dr. Farrago is also the editor of the blog Authentic Medicine which was born out of concern about where the direction of healthcare is heading and the belief that the wrong people are in charge. This blog has been going daily for more than 15 years Article about Dr. Farrago in Doximity Email Dr. Farrago – [email protected] 

  2 comments for “Solving the Death Problem by Steven Mussey MD

  1. Bill Ameen
    April 20, 2015 at 9:50 am

    Uh-oh….Looks like we’re gonna need to move into outer space to find another planet to f*** up!!

  2. Steve O'
    April 20, 2015 at 9:44 am

    In the deeply metaphorical chapter Genesis, the following phrase appears:

    Then the LORD God said, “Behold, the man has become like one of Us, knowing good and evil; and now, he might stretch out his hand, and take also from the tree of life, and eat, and live forever”– therefore the LORD God sent him out from the garden of Eden, to cultivate the ground from which he was taken.
    So He drove the man out; and at the east of the garden of Eden He stationed the cherubim and the flaming sword which turned every direction to guard the way to the tree of life.

    What is God’s beef with eternal life for humans? The previous sections discussed people taking command of facilities that they could not handle properly. One of our eternal lusts is to live forever. And another is, through manipulation of the world by our own, to have godly powers over it. This always seems to wind up in disaster. Even the atheists get is.

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