Sergio M.L. Tarrero, BSc
Lifeboat Foundation International Director of Audiovisual Communications
Sergio Martínez de Lahidalga Tarrero, BSc, is a screenwriter and filmmaker deeply concerned with the institutionally mediated transmission of socially corrosive beliefs, thoughts, and behaviors. His abiding interest in the forces that drive people apart, particularly those deriving from religious doctrine, inspired him from a young age to ponder what it would take to move people to embrace the primacy of rational thinking over enculturated dogma. In Sergio’s view, an important idea to disseminate widely is that an ethical and contemplative life does not depend on theological postulates.
Although a physicist by training, Sergio has focused professionally on the creative arts, particularly the worlds of music, film, television and advertising. He has read extensively about cultural evolution as a natural phenomenon, driven partly by a Darwinian selection process that is to a certain extent analogous to that which drives biological evolution. An epiphany derived from the very source where the term meme was coined, Richard Dawkins’ chapter from his classic book The Selfish Gene: Here on Earth, we alone have the possibility to affect our genetic and memetic replicators, and thus to control our biological and social evolution with foresight and intelligence.
We can become more than the mere vessel for the natural coevolution of our selfish replicators, our genes and our memes. What each person does with his/her time, what he/she learns and thinks, and the ideas he/she helps spread, evolve or perpetuate, is increasingly important to the outcome of this huge, multibillion-dimensional matrix. Mass coordination, education, and mutual respect and support necessary to promote avoidance of nationalistic, racial and religious “labels” that accentuate our adversarial “us vs.them” impulse are also key to achieving global peace and the successful coevolution of our planet’s various societal superorganisms.
Sergio considers that, at this dangerous historical juncture, the effective and wise use of mass media and humanitarian global policies may be the best tools to avert catastrophe. He is of the opinion that we must not shy away from developing an ongoing open-minded dialogue with all parties to respectfully but pointedly critique those ideologies which help create or perpetuate unjust social conditions, specially human rights abuses, including extreme poverty and unaccessibility to basic education.
There are obvious challenges for the survival of our species on a world stage characterized by nuclear, biological and nanotechnological capabilites. To the extent that ideological differences underlie many regional conflicts, Sergio believes we should develop our capacity to engage in a bloodless war of ideas through memetic engineering at many levels. Global politics could thus become a meme by meme replacement process involving deployment of new memes via global education through the mass media including the Internet; cultural and psychological assistance programs to help the average person deal with the new realities in an informed manner; logic-based empowerment programs for effecting social change; and incentives for social diversification, especially in hotspots characterized by abusive conditions, regimes, or religions.
In parallel to this, Sergio favors the development and rapid deployment of smart technologies to facilitate global monitoring and vigilance, such as the Lifeboat Foundation’s SecurityPreserver proposal, and to engage in both classic top-down surveillance, and bottom-up sousveillance (that is, surveillance by the citizenry of those in positions of power). He also advocates the development of the various other shields proposed by the Lifeboat Foundation, but he is emphatic about the importance of promptly implementing a Friendly Artificial Intelligence the ultimate great attractor that will help us avoid existential risks in the long run.
Since 2004, Sergio has been involved in the video archiving and preservation of seminal events in the fields of nanotechnology (Foresight Institute) and life extension (Immortality Institute, World Transhumanist Association). He is also involved in capital development and fundraising for key business and non-profit organizations, including the Lifeboat Foundation and the Machine Intelligence Research Institute. He has also recently established a publishing company in Spain in order to disseminate landmark works in the Spanish speaking world. Among the first books to be published in Spanish by Editorial Paradigma are Sam Harris’ The End of Faith and Letter to a Christian Nation.