The Other McCain

"One should either write ruthlessly what one believes to be the truth, or else shut up." — Arthur Koestler

Call Me Old-Fashioned, But …

Posted on | June 3, 2014 | 48 Comments

. . . as the father of six children, the standard method of procreation has always seemed to me both efficient and fun.

Others, however, consider the natural way of baby-making to be too messy and unscientific, and so Progress demands a Brave New World of “reproductive technology,” about which Alexis Madigral of The Atlantic enthusiastically cheers. Synthetic gametes? Excuse my skepticism, Doctor Frankenstein, but I still prefer the messy natural way.



  • RKae

    What’s the opposite of a Luddite? Is there a word for that? Is there a word for people who think science is ALWAYS right, ALWAYS beneficial, ALWAYS “progress”?

    We have no trouble creating people. The damned things are everywhere!

  • Escher’s House

    Yes, it’s Sheldon Cooper. And he prefers this method, much to the consternation of Amy Farah Fowler.

  • richard mcenroe

    Look at the bright side. Synthetic gametes would do away with the need for immigration amnesty since we could just tailor our passive, dependent voters right in the womb.

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  • Evi L. Bloggerlady
  • eponymous1

    The word that comes to mind for the dogmatic faith in “science” as the universal answer to all human inquiry is “scientism.” I’m not sure if there’s a good word for the adherents of “scientism.”

  • Dana

    But p-i-v sex is always rape, and you are now revealed as a rape supporter, and rapist! I denounce you!

  • Dana

    Consider what the author seems to think is a good thing, the ability to move beyond natural copulation to procreate, has wrought. We have had fifty million unborn children slaughtered in this country since 1973, while, at the same time, couples who cannot procreate normally have been spending tens, and sometimes hundreds, of thousands of dollars to have their “own” children. We have people seeking to adopt unwanted babies from Russia and China and other places.

    The obvious, humane solution, would have been to have those couple who want children, but cannot have them, to be able to adopt without so many stupid and expensive restrictions. But I guess that such a simple idea is wrong for our oh-so-sophisticated society.

  • K-Bob

    If you have something I want or need, and I have something to trade in return, like money, it’s the job of people like barack to insert themselves between us and extort the exchange from both sides.

  • K-Bob


  • CrustyB

    Unnatural methods for unnatural people who do unnatural things to each other.

  • Zohydro

    “Kissed”… I believe we understand what was really said!

  • pabarge

    Alexis Madrigal is male.

  • ChandlersGhost

    And yet somehow conservatives are the repressed prudes.

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  • Zohydro

    That lesbian “throuple” from Massachusetts is ready to embrace these new technologies…

  • Quartermaster


  • Evi L. Bloggerlady

    Anti Science? Come on, there is chemistry!

  • Quartermaster

    That’s siiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiick!

  • EdwdLny

    Those folks just love their eugenics ,don’t they. And, why are they so ashamed of their offspring, or potential offspring. So ashamed that they feel the need to remove nature and all of her vagaries from life.

  • Evi L. Bloggerlady

    I suspect the one in the middle can do it the old fashioned way (has anyone checked “her” equipment or chromosomes?)

  • Paul H. Lemmen

    Heh. The trnny in the middle probably has his original equipment attached.

  • Paul H. Lemmen

    Stupid liberals seems to fit (if repetitively redundant).

  • Dana

    Oh, I don’t know: the silver haired lady is hot, hot hot!

  • Finrod Felagund

    I always thought the opposite of Luddite was technoweenie.

  • Finrod Felagund

    Love is a matter of chemistry, sex is a matter of physics.

  • Finrod Felagund

    Grin grin wink wink nudge nudge say no more.

  • Zohydro

    Why, yes… Yes it is!

  • Zohydro


  • Zohydro

    I rather fancy the blue-haired one…

  • Bob Belvedere

    At the end of the room a loud speaker projected from the wall. The Director walked up to it and pressed a switch.

    “… all wear green,” said a soft but very distinct voice, beginning in the middle of a sentence, “and Delta Children wear khaki. Oh no, I don’t want to play with Delta children. And Epsilons are still worse. They’re too stupid to be able to read or write. Besides they wear black, which is such a beastly colour. I’m so glad I’m a Beta.”

    There was a pause; then the voice began again.

    “Alpha children wear grey. They work much harder than we do, because they’re so frightfully clever. I’m really awfully glad I’m a Beta, because I don’t work so hard. And then we are much better than the Gammas and Deltas. Gammas are stupid. They all wear green, and Delta children wear khaki. Oh no, I don’t want to play with Delta children. And Epsilons are still worse. They’re too stupid to be able …”

    The Director pushed back the switch. The voice was silent. Only its thin ghost continued to mutter from beneath the eighty pillows.

    Brave New World, Chapter 2

  • Jane the Actuary

    Actually, none of these items are especially radical (#3 is amped-up natural family planning/fertility awareness). The game-changer would be an artificial womb, and I think were a long ways away from that. But everything I see about the “future of reproduction” tends to remove fathers from the picture.

  • richard mcenroe

    And sometimes engineering but I don’t judge.

  • Anon Y. Mous

    #4 is extremely radical. They are contemplating the production of “female sperm” and “male eggs”. See:

    This would allow homosexual couples to reproduce, or for that matter, it would allow asexual reproduction.

  • Dana

    Well, you would, but I’m 61 years old, and the silver-haired lady appears to be much more age appropriate to me.

    Which brings me to another point, which will (probably) not win wide acceptance: ladies, when your hair starts turning grey, you don’t have to color it! Men know that you’re getting older, and we really don’t care all that much, given that we’re getting older at the same rate.

  • Zohydro

    The silver-haired tabby is “Brynn” and she’s only 34!

    (The blue-aired tom is “Doll” and 27 and the tall, dodgy looking lemon in the middle is “Kitten”, 30…)

  • Jane the Actuary

    That’s a fair point, but it’s not a game-changer, since lesbian couples seem to be find with sperm donors, and gay men still need a uterus, not just an egg.

  • Quartermaster

    Us Engineers agree.