The Cure for Death Means Billionaires Will Live Forever—and Be Rich Forever

What do people think of this issue? A big issue or a small issue? What should be done, if anything? And of course, this doesn’t just apply to “immortality”. As soon as longevity therapeutics start becoming available, the wealthiest will always be able to take more, do more, and extend their lives more, than people with less money; so the lifespan inequality gap will start rising quickly.

Related Reading:

People are also concerned about “unintended consequences” around longevity biotech. We see frequently that new technologies and innovations result in serious problems that were unanticipated, or ignored early on. The Internet was thought initially to level the playing field so that small businesses and individuals around the world could sell everywhere easily, but it instead greatly enabled the creation of monopolies, so companies like Amazon and Google dominate global e-commerce. Social media was developed with the goal of “building community and bringing the world closer together” but instead it frequently fosters deadly conflict and misinformation, and polarizes people with personalized information bubbles . What does society look like if the top 1% of the wealthiest have life expectancies that increase 10%, 30% or 60% faster than the life expectancy increases of the bottom 95% of the population? Prices for longevity technologies may come down over time, but the wealthy will repeatedly get the most effective and expensive therapies as they become available, so the “lifespan inequality gap” will always grow. And, of course, wealth inequality and lifespan inequality will be mutually reinforcing; the more money you have, the longer you live, the longer you live the more money you get… How long will it be before human society starts looking like that of the bee colony, where the queen bee lives 5 to 10 times longer than the worker bees ? What if longevity science identifies a technology that will allow lifespans 10X longer, but costs $10 Million in medical procedures? What if monthly $50,000 “young blood transfusions ” allowed 5X lifespan improvement?

Hevolution Foundation, Saudi $ Billions into Anti-Aging


No doubt, it’s a further way the rich can leverage their advantages from wealth. But to carry this to an extreme: let’s prohibit any medical therapy that costs over $1 million. Let’s mandate euthanasia for any billionaire over 100. To make sure they can’t benefit to everyone’s detriment, so let’s ban all short, polluting air flights, all low mileage high-end sports cars, and certainly all expensive, healthful food. Make sure you take all these ideas very, VERY seriously, as long as you never try to reduce their wealth by taxing them more. In this post-sarcasm world, I will now take off my sarcasm hat.


No sir. The white hat hackers will level the playing field. The open source community will eventually bring the secrets to the public, at affordable prices.


An abtract entity like a corporation is already immortal and therefore pays no estate tax. Family farms and businesses will gradually cease to exist for this and other reasons such as economies of scale. This is a real issue that Karl Marx and others have addressed, but thus far the proposed cures have been much worse than the disease. Longevity science can make a dramatic difference in improving the human condition. I am optimistic that some wisdom will come with it


Money is not a net sum game. If a billionaire has lots of money, when he dies it doesn’t mean a bunch of poor people will get what he had. The governments print trillions of dollars out of thin air every year and they could give it to the people when there is a crisis like COVID. But then you get inflation.

There will always be rich people. Having them die early won’t make a difference to anyone unless they were a truly evil individual like Putin. Therefore I wouldn’t like to see dictators live forever.


I feel as though there’s a certain amount inevitability to all of this. If aging can be cured, and it’s looking increasingly likely, nothing is going to stop it. The truth is, there hasn’t ever been a time in human history where inequality hasn’t existed. There is already a longevity gap between the world’s poor and the wealthy.
For me, it seems like a natural part of our evolution as a species. While I’m sure initially, the wealthy will benefit, extending lifespan and curing aging will be the single largest business opportunity in humanities history. From an economic perspective it doesn’t make sense to prevent the masses from gaining access to it. Every human being is eligible. Billions of people. From a business perspective nothing even comes close. If human history is anything to go by, it’s going to get messy, but then when has it ever been any different?


The corporation comparison is apt: over their very long or immortal life, these “citizens” have extended their influence to capture government and eliminate competition. On the other hand, they also bring efficiencies and wealth to shareholders. Since most billionaires get their wealth through corporations, I expect them to act similarly.

My own protocol which i think deals with a lot of issues relating to aging by encouraging gene expression is quite inexpensive. The main cost is blood tests, but they are not needed for the low end.

Some of the proposed therapies are prohibitingly expensive. They may also not work.

There is therefore an issue of public acceptance, but i dont see that as the main problem

Like Mike I enjoy philosophical discussions, but they must remain abstract or non-stop flame wars erupt. We could have a rule that current events are off limits, but events over 100 years ago are fair game. We might all agree that WW1 was a horrific tragedy that neither side won. Unfortunately discussion of the American Civil war still causes flame wars most of the time and that was over 150 years ago. Back on topic–we are already ruled by a gerontocracy in much of the west. Nancy p, Donald p, Joe B, and Mitch m. All older folks, but not necessarily the wisest of the wise. Would lige extension extend the gerontocracy? Is the younger generation any better?

1 Like

We’ll probably get access to them too one way or the other, I’ll hope.

But another part of me is full of glee that a random Internet site has just made an entire class of dystopias impossible. If there is a miracle drug out there that makes you super-smart or reverses aging or something, and for some reason like an evil conspiracy or just bad luck it never “made it”, someone on Longecity will have taken it within a week of it first being mentioned online. And if they report that they think it worked, a couple hundred people will figure out hare-brained and probably illegal ways to get some.


What do I care if billionaires are able to extend their lives more easily than I am? It’s none of my business what they do with their money. In fact, I’d do the same thing if I were a billionaire.

How is complaining about rich people going to help anyone else live longer? I’d rather focus on stuff I actually have control over.


No sir. The white hat hackers will level the playing field. The open source community will eventually bring the secrets to the public, at affordable prices.

This is an interesting idea that I think we may want to explore more. My first thought when seeing this was that it seems unlikely that white hat biohackers are ever going to be able to duplicate the well-funded labs and clinical trials of the biotech and pharma industries, but then again perhaps they wouldn’t have to.

It might help to look at the different potential classifications for longevity therapeutics, and I’m sure this will change over time, but right now a rough way to look at it might be something like this (other approaches and ideas are welcome):

  • Small Molecule Drugs (like rapamycin).
  • Blood Factors / Blood Services (e.g. plasmapheresis)
  • Stem Cells / Biologicals (proteins / peptides, mRNA products, etc.)
  • Cellular Reprogramming
  • Gene Therapy

Its interesting to think about how treatment options may evolve over time, and potentially counteract the tendency for these therapies to primarily benefit the very wealthy. And its interesting to consider how countervailing trends or scenarios could play out to “level the playing field” a bit. I’m assuming most of the visitors here are not the billionaires.

So I don’t view this discussion as an adventure in political philosophy. I’m more interested in the pragmatic issue of what actions people may be able to take, or will likely take, to counter this potential issue, and get access to these therapeutics that may be out of their price range (in the USA).

Small Molecule Drugs: As we’ve seen with rapamycin, many longevity drugs may be generic (or soon be generic - like SGLT2 inhibitors), and available at moderate costs in the US, and at low cost from other countries like the India pharmacies. The good news is that many new drugs are priced differently in different countries, so people can share pricing as people do here to find the best value locale. New drugs are more challenging and tend to be very expensive. And, pretty much all the longevity drugs will first come out for specific disease conditions… e.g. heart disease, sarcopenia, etc… There may be groups of biohackers that can copy and produce some drugs, but I have not heard of much in this area. Another strategy people might use is to try to identify existing drugs that target the same pathway as a new drug might do. Some drugs will be available from the lab supply companies and increasingly people may be taking this avenue - as people are already doing with 17-alpha estradiol, IRISIN, etc. - and perhaps identifying reliable lab supply groups off-shore.

Blood Factors / Blood Services (e.g. plasmapheresis) - this type of thing would seem to perhaps have a lower barrier to entry than the typical pharmaceutical (new drug development) endeavor. There are already many of these places in central and south america that are not limited by much regulation - so places like minicircle and other longevity clinics that are popping up around the world. It would seem that in the Longevity field, more and more medical tourism will be a factor; both on the high end where people are getting early access to specific gene therapies, etc., and on the lower end, where people just want lower cost plamapheresis, etc. It seems that these types of products and services might be more amenable to reverse-engineering and coping, and thus duplicated at a lower cost outside the US, where costs of living are lower, and thus service pricing can be lower. Of course, there are increased risks in these scenarios due to the lack of regulation. Some examples of these: Longevity Clinics: What They Are, Services & More . At some point we’ll have to develop a database of all the off-shore longevity clinics, their services/prices, and ratings from customers. I’m hearing from more and more people who are visiting and getting services at these sites.

Stem Cells / Biologicals (proteins / peptides, mRNA products, gene therapy, stem cells, etc.) - another area that, depending on the manufacturing requirements, may lend themselves more easily to either serious biohackers or duplication in lower cost countries. There are quite a few (and increasing) biohacker collectives / labs being formed in many cities with highly educated workforces and so this is a potential avenue for some groups of people: BioCurious (Santa Clara, CA): , CounterCulture Labs, Berkeley CA: and others: These Bay Area biohackers tried to disrupt health care. New doc shows what went wrong.. Ultimately, any city with a strong biology/science/medical academic center would be able to duplicate this type of effort.

And as these longevity therapeutics become more validated, I’m sure we’ll see different countries taking different approaches to providing them to their populations just as we see today with different countries pursuing different healthcare system approaches. For a wealthy country with an aging population (Germany, Italy, Japan, Singapore, etc.) it would seem make a lot of sense to provide these therapies and drugs freely to their populations so that people can avoid typical late-life disease and medical costs, and push those expenses out while also allowing people to work longer and be effective in the workforce longer. And then of course, if one country starts to do this there will start to be a black market in the drugs, as those drugs are shipped to other countries.


Let’s take a look at the past then…


The open info may come from the funded scientists themselves. It has already happened in the field of Covid vaccine development. Drs. Maria Bottazzi and Peter Hotez (Baylor College of Medicine, TX) have developed a patent-free vaccine, which is being produced in India. India administered 70 million doses of what they call Corbevax, in August 2022. To date, there have been no reported adverse reactions.


I just want to ask a simple question (I don’t need an answer, just think about it). Are you going to buy whatever is within your means to increase your life/health span? I am. So, at what income level do we say ‘we’re going to do it, but you can’t’?

Many are against the rich and them getting more rich. But the fact is that without the rich some of the larger studies and innovations may never take place. Look at the Metformin trial going on, the government didn’t take an immediate shine to it happening as they didn’t see aging as a disease. The bottom line is usually (not 100% of the time, but usually) to get big dollars it has to show how it’s going to make big dollars.

And why don’t people look at the other side? The rich, as a subgroup, are the largest consumer of anti-depressants. I don’t see big pharma denying sales to them because they’re such bad people. They take the money when it suits them and then poo-poo the rich when it makes great press. I would also bet that if any one of us found a personal supplement regimen that was pure gold, and a billionaire offered to back us to bring it to the public, we would accept the offer. If I’m wrong about that I accept it, but I don’t think I am.

I’m not rich by any means, but I wouldn’t turn down the opportunity to be so. On top of that, if I did get rich bringing an incredible new supplement regimen to market, I sure wouldn’t want anyone saying I couldn’t take it.

Don’t beat me up, it’s just my two cents which, admittedly, may only be worth one cent.


Name a technology that first was not financed by the richest, but ultimately massively benefited the masses.

1 Like

Do you think that if a life-extending drug demonstrated strong evidence that it would extend the typical human life by 10 or 15 years, it should be covered by health insurance?

If an anti-cancer drug that increases the lifespan of cancer patients by 3 to 5 years is covered by health insurance, why should it be covered by health insurance vs. life extension drug for “healthy” people not be covered when it provides equal or better lifespan increases?


I suspect that if we could live till 200 or more yrs if we are healthy, that might be OK, but an ever-increasing share of the world’s money will become devoted to clinging onto just a few more years of existence. Ultimately we must face the fear of death and realize that it’s not “The End”, but instead a transition to a different state of matter, energy, etc. whatever you believe. When we come to the end of our 200-300 yrs of existence, we will still be facing the same question; shall I keep going on? and it’s also OK to not go the whole distance as well.


Well, there was Insulin…

On 23 January 1923, Banting, Collip and Best were awarded U.S. patents on insulin and the method used to make it. They all sold these patents to the University of Toronto for $1 each. Banting famously said, “Insulin does not belong to me, it belongs to the world.” He wanted everyone who needed it to have access to it.


At some point you have to wonder if the scientists doing all the basic science and academic research that will lead to longevity therapies, might get a little pissed off if they can’t afford the treatments their research ultimately results in (for themselves, their parents, their kids, etc.). I would not be surprised to see some “leakage” of IP (intellectual property) into the broader biohacker community from academics and corporate researchers who want more people to benefit from this science.

If it’s one out of xxxxxxx I’d say humanity benefits enormously from the wealthy leading the way with new technology.

Back to learning. Thanks for having this resource.

1 Like