Another good thing about blogging is that when you get of a bit of l'esprit d'escalier, you can always put it in another post. Weeks after what will be forever remembered in Thought Experiments legend as the October of the Transhumanists, obscure pro-death arguments are still throwing themselves at me. The Wurzels provided one, now Vakulynchuk provides another.
Vakulynchuk, as the well-informed readers of Thought Experiements will not need telling, is the Stalin-tached rabble-rouser in Eisenstein's classic Commie propaganda flick The Battleship Potemkin. I watched it recently when suffering from a brief but debilitating bout of food-poisoning. (When you're ill and there's nothing better to do, The Battleship Potemkin is the kind of worthy film you can force yourself to watch.) It is notable chiefly for two things: the famous Odessa steps sequence and, amusingly, the apparently arbitrary insertion of unnecessary captions, especially at the beginning (my favourite is "Boiling soup" - I defy even the most reverential film buff not to hoot between chin-strokes when that little beauty pops up).
Anyway, Vakulynchuk leads the crew of the Potemkin in their mutiny against the cruel Czarist officers, and is killed along the way. His brave sacrifice inspires the others, ultimately to glorious victory, much in the manner of other revolutionary martyrs such as Che Guevara, Jesus Christ, and Michael Hutchence.
Which leads us to such questions as: in a transhuman world, what do we do for our martyrs? Must all revolutionary heroes be like Castro and grow old enough to witness the full, dismal extent of their failure? Or will death be so unthinkable a price to pay when immortality is on offer that nobody will ever be prepared to lay down their precious life for anything? I don't know. I'm just running it up the flagpole to see if anyone salutes.