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A room of one's clone

Oct 4, 2012, 09:28 AM
Authors : Daniel
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Post date : Oct 4, 2012, 09:28 AM

The scientific arguments for and against cloning are as abundant and complex as the rules contained within the Yellow and Orange books.

Put crudely, those in support point to an end to world hunger, advancements in medicine so far only imagined, and more giant pandas.

But there are massive downsides, too – not least an end of the DNA diversity that prevents each of us being too closely related not only to everyone else but also to the filling in our bacon sandwiches.

Then there’s the horrible possibility of several versions of, say, Robert Mugabe or Kelvin MacKenzie (one’s a surly, self-aggrandising dictator; the other’s the president of Zimbabwe).

I wouldn’t want to share a lift with a single version of either of those guys, let alone be a cousin on my sow’s side to hordes of the rotters. Also – as has been pointed out here before – giant pandas are hugely daft.

So, more power to the cloning naysayers, who would be even more powerfully armed were they to lock and load the subject of taxation.

If every individual was reproduced strictly one clone at a time, there’d be little problem tax-wise: your new self would carry on from where the old left off, with the same personality, memories and National Insurance number.

(It’s the faceless corporation that uses you as a quasi-immortal drone that’s gonna be laying out large to a robocountant. Not only are you a full-time employee, you’re a breathing, complaining, taking-an-hour-for-lunch wasting chattel.)

You asexually reproduce numerous replicas willy-nilly, however, and you get problems with the Revenue, for sure.

At the very instance of creation, each clone would be you exactly, meaning you and they would be taxed as one person, no?

When a version goes on to have its own life experience and make its own choices, however, it would become a taxpayer completely separate from the hive of yous, while remaining a connected person. A creepy, unnatural connected person who probably hates you.

That said, the fact there are multiple versions of you in play probably means you’re either an insane biologist playing god (GOD, I SAY!) and taxes are beneath you, or you’re cannon fodder/being farmed for organs.

The former sort will need a tricksy lawyer; the latter should make full use of the inheritance tax gift allowance as soon as possible.


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