Old, Old Age
I've been spending a lot of time in the land of the very, very old lately--my father has just recently been admitted to a "senior center". Perhaps soon I'll have a chance to write more about these things, but at the moment I just have one observation to make: it's really hard to see how best to manage old age (duh). If you arrest one aging process with drugs or technology, you open the door to other types of deterioration. A pacemaker stops heart disease from killing someone, but sometimes at the cost of letting dementia become their primary problem. Fix, fix, fix ... and eventually you'll wind up dying of the thing medicine can do least about, regardless of whether that's the best way to go. And yet, how else to do things? If you have a medical problem and there's a way to fix it, it's nearly impossible to look far into the future and say "I'd rather this death than that." Nobody actually wants any death at all! So: puzzling. More later, if time permits.
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