Neuter Your Mind For Pure Power
Sex Is Where?
The world is not divided into sheep and goats. Not all things are black nor all things white.
- Alfred C Kinsey
Sex in the Head
by David Jones
Are men and women equally bright, or bright in the same way? One school of thought holds that men and women are identical in all respects, or if they aren't they should be, and we must appoint women extensively to scientific, technical, and military jobs to prove how earnestly we believe it. Another school claims that feminine intuition is at least as valid as masculine logic, and that feminist sciences and mathematics should be set up to compete with the male varieties. Daedalus now proposes a crucial test. He plans to abolish testosterone from the male brain.
Testosterone, the male hormone, gives men their male physical and putative mental character. It is claimed to underpin their interest in conquest and mastery - of women, rivals, materials, and territory. Science, for example, is the conquest and ownership of intellectual territory (which is why priority squabbles between scientists are so bitter. Daedalus wants top stop testosterone crossing the male blood-brain barrier, and see what happens.
To pass this barrier, testosterone has to escape from the big protein molecules that normally carry it. So DREADCO's biochemists are injecting a special coupling agent into the bloodstreams of male volunteers. It binds testosterone firmly to its protein. The hormone still gets round the body, maintaining male physique, beard growth, and so on. But it loses all access to the brain.
A man on DREADCO's 'Neutermind' will still be completely male. But his brain won't know it. He will be unaware of sexual desire or competitive challenge. Only direct physical assault will arouse him to sex or aggression. He will then react by blind, spinal-cord instinct-thus revealing what these basic human instincts are. Afterwards he will truly 'not know what came over him.' But Daedalus is most interested in his volunteers' mental life. Freed from the burdens and biases of manhood, will they develop childlike insights and subtle illogical intuitions? Will they find feminist algebra suddenly convincing? Most interesting of all, will their scientific creativity blossom or fade? Freud, who saw both art and science as sublimated sexuality would predict the latter. Without the spur of testosterone, he would say, they simply won't bother to go looking for trouble, mental or physical.
Neutermind could be useful too. As a depot drug, it should turn male criminals into placid, unadventurous citizens. And it would be the perfect way to tell art from pornography. Take a dose of Neutermind, and if it's still interesting, it's art.
Source: "Daedalus" column Nature 4 August 1994
What Were the Options Again?
Sex or Violence
by David Jones
President Clinton, like so many male politicians these days, faces repeated hostile probes into his sexual life. This seems unfair. In all primates, including man, the whole biological point of fighting your way up to being top male is to have your pick of females. As Daedalus discussed last week, sex and social dominance are both mediated by one hormone. The ambitious politician, urged on by testosterone, is thus trapped in Wood's double blind: 'if you've got the qualifications, you'd be mad to apply for the job'.
So Daedalus wants to uncouple the two drives fuelled by testosterone. The hormone must bind to two different sets of receptors in the brain: one for sex, the other for power and dominance. Receptors with such different functions can hardly be identical. So 'tweaked' variants of testosterone might be designed to bind preferentially to one or the other. In this connection Daedalus recalls the theory that a smelly molecule stimulates its receptor by means of its molecular vibrations. This mechanism may well apply to internal biochemical receptors. If so, then testosterone could be tweaked, not by risky chemical changes, but simply by isotopic substitution. It would be chemically unaltered, but its changed atomic masses would shift its vibrational modes.
Most mammals synthesize their sex hormones from cholesterol. DREADCO's chemists are now feeding test animals on various isotopically labelled cholesterols; these will be converted in vivo to labelled testosterones. Some should stimulate the creatures' fighting instincts; others will be peaceably aphrodisiac. When he has found the most efficient labellings, Daedalus will copy them in tablets for human use; ideally not cholesterol itself (health lobbyists would complain) but something further downstream in the biosynthesis.
The cruel double bind of the new Puritanism will relax at last. DREADCO's "Pure Power" tablets will channel the user's testosterone entirely into social aggression. Delighting in the meanest political in-fighting and ruthless wheeler-dealing, he will be unmoved by the most beguiling bimbos. Policemen and soldiers in mixed-sex forces, required to be lethally aggressive while treating their female colleagues with the most delicate courtesy, will welcome them too. By contrast, DREADCO's "Peace'n'love" tablets will appeal to nostalgic hippies. Their testosterone will all go into sexual enterprise, leaving them wallowing ecstatically at the bottom of the social ladder.
Source: "Daedalus" column Nature 11 August 1994
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