The science of biopolitics

Via the AoS Coblogger @JohnEkdahl we have this little bit from Ars Technica Oxytocin makes socializing more enjoyable.

First let’s clear up a common misconception. This is Oxytocin, a naturally occurring hormone not to be confused with OxyContin, the name brand for oxycodone a narcotic. (Ars’s comparison to pot does not help this confusion.)

Nevertheless, as someone who intends on making a career critiquing science and as a once upon a time scientist myself, oxytocin research has always scared the bajeezus out of me. It certainly raises the question: are there things in science that are simply to dangerous to research?

At first glance you might say “how does this even apply?” But I’ve been to conferences and seen people drooling over the possible applications here that are beyond scary. Oxytocin as a way of making the public more agreeable. Oxytocin as a weapon to effectively disarm a hostile force. Heck I once saw it suggested that you could use Oxytocin as a way of gaining the upper hand in a negotiation. (Granted I suppose if everyone is trying to use it that way it might not work, but it takes corporate espionage to a whole new level.) Oxytocin cologne or perfume!

Behavior modification is the wet dream of the progressive crowd. Everything from “nudging” to calls to add lithium to the water supply (in that fringe publication The New York Times.) The path oxytocin research is heading down will quickly add it to the list of things the leftists will insist on using to create their perfect world.

Here, have your Soma; it’s good for you. Plus your tax dollars paid to research it.

One comment to “The science of biopolitics”
  1. Ah, but consider: what drives the Left? Not the Free Shit Army and the public-sector union hacks but the ideologues, the Twitterers, the warriors for Social Justice?

    They are unhappy.

    That’s why they fixate so much on change and “justice” and redistribution and punishing badthink: they are unhappy people and they lash out at a world which doesn’t satisfy all their whims. A little applied brain chemistry might fix all that.

    How will the liberal outrage machine continue to function if there aren’t enough unhappy leftists?

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