In the near future, a cult-like ruling family worships symmetry and condemns asymmetry. By association, they are condemning much of nature as there are many instances of asymmetry in nature (crooked trees, irregular shapes of clouds, ect). To further "defy" asymmetry and nature they take control of a modern industrialized nation and arrange their royal marriages based on consanguinity from the beginning of their reign and for many subsequent generations. This time period may well span hundreds of years.
I was pleasantly surprised to find a similar post here:
Though the time seemed to be more of an ancient setting, it was a helpful analog. Yet, it should be noted that my core question of genetic engineering's potential role in this matter remains unresolved.
If natural selection were to run its course, then over time the long run propensity of the ruling family's heirs that did not have any harmful traits will approach zero. This is due to inbreeding having the effect of increasing the relative proportion of homozygotes to heterozygotes. I'm not familiar with bio-statistics, so I'm not sure if this happens at a geometric rate or an exponential rate. Technical details aside, since the ruling family will be ruling indefinitely or at least for centuries, inbreeding will most likely create many genetic "weak-links".
By utilizing present or near-future genetic engineering, the ruling family wishes to counteract the harm that may result from inbreeding from things such as having two recessive alleles. I have two specific implementations in mind:
The ruling family first "perfects" their genomes (becoming immune to all diseases/cancers/deformations) before inbreeding and hope that no matter which combination of traits are inherited, the offspring will be strong.
Micro-manage each conception and "pre-ordain" the desired trait combinations. (Presumably more involved than choosing eye color?) And assuming no outside DNA is ever introduced.
In the present day/near future, if all moral limitations were lifted, how feasible would the above solutions be? How robust could we expect this kind of solution to be; would there be inherent random mutations that no amount of genetic engineering could address? If the consensus is one or both are not realistic, then what needs to happen in terms of technology to facilitate the goal of prolonged inbreeding?
- other genetic engineering solutions are welcome
- Goal: A solutions that strikes a good balance between being realistic and awe/fear-inspiring
- Budget: Unlimited
- Era: present, near future
- Moral restrictions: little to none
- Duration: ideally indefinitely (as the title suggests), or at least 500 years
- Inbreeding type: immediate relatives (seen as more "symmetric")