Zoltan Istvan could be the next president of the United States after Tuesday. The chances of that happening are next to zero, as Istvan supporters will have to write his name on the ballot to vote for them, but that hasn’t stopped him from hitting the campaign trail and running online interviews with potential voters.
The journalist-turned-politician is running for the Transhumanist Party, which wants to introduce a Transhumanist Bill of Rights and support the rights of biotech-enhanced humans. Istvan has a lot of big ideas, one of which is a future of sports that considers humans as machines part of a wider team.
“I think sports are great when we allow ourselves to use drugs and enhancements,” Istvan said on Reddit Wednesday. “I think the future is the creation of new sports with new technologies, and turning humans sports more into Formula 1 type racing endeavors, where the scientists and engineers and coaches are just as important as the athletes.”
There are signs that Istvan may be onto something. The world’s first bionic Olympics took place earlier this month in Switzerland, with athletes competing through a series of everyday tasks. In the other direction, the World Future Sports Games wants robots to compete in Dubai next year, celebrating the achievements of humans in robot development.
Istvan has little chance of winning, and he wants to change how easy it is for minor party candidates to run in elections. Among his ideas include the introduction of a ranked voting system and to implement a form of direct democracy, acting as a “fourth branch” of government.
The party platform also has concerns about the future of the species. “To me, one of my major platforms is warning against existential risk,” Istvan said. It’s a shame our species doesn’t take it more seriously. I think existential risk demands an incredible space program.”
Photos via Zoltan Istvan