Brave New World 2013

, Malcolm A. Kline, Leave a comment

Aldous Huxley call your office.

“Imagine that psychologists are scanning a patient’s brain, for some basic research purpose,” Christopher Shea writes in The Chronicle Review. “As they do so, they stumble across a fleeting thought that their equipment is able to decode: The patient has committed a murder, or is thinking of committing one soon. What would the researchers be obliged to do with that information?”

“That hypothetical was floated a few weeks ago at the first meeting of the Presidential Commission for the Study of Bioethical Issues devoted to exploring societal and ethical issues raised by the government’s Brain initiative (Brain Research through Advancing Innovative Neurotechnologies), which will put some $100-million in 2014 alone into the goal of mapping the brain. The commission has been asked to examine issues facing researchers and society now, as well as those around the corner.”

“It will be months, at least, before we learn the group’s answer to that question and others raised by advancing neurotechnology.”

So, what’s on your mind?


Malcolm A. Kline is the Executive Director of Accuracy in Academia.
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