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Methuen
Metalhead

Joined: Tue May 19, 2015 4:55 pm
Posts: 1460
Location: United Kingdom
PostPosted: Fri Feb 19, 2021 4:05 am 
 

That Guardian article that DD shared is also a bit... well, Guardian-y.

The argument there is that the problem isn't population, it's finance/lifestyle/The West. He makes the argument that if everyone lived like 'a traditional Indian villager', we could have even more people crammed onto the earth. It's a way of acknowledging the real problem (growing populations with middle class American lifestyle aspirations) without offering any kind of sensible answer beyond vague complaints. People do not want to live like it's 1400 AD - that's miserable (and of course, I'm sure he doesn't mean it for him or his four children). It's a bad hypothetical argument, too, as that world (let's all live like penicillin hasn't been invented) isn't sensibly conceivable. I mean, he's strictly correct - if people could be made to live like medieval peasants, then yes a lot of the problem goes away (with lowered lifespans and so on) - but I'm not quite sure that he's right, for some reason.

Quote:
If everyone on Earth lived the lifestyle of a traditional Indian villager, it is arguable that even 12 billion would be a sustainable world population. If everyone lives like an upper-middle-class North American (a status to which much of the world seems to aspire), then even two billion is unsustainable. Population decline is welcome news, but it needs to be considered in a larger context. Population stability or decline is not an environmental panacea if it is accompanied by continued growth in consumption.

This means that overpopulation is a red herring.


SciFi has always done a good job at answering the non-answer of the population question - Asimov designed a future world in which a much larger population on Earth is crammed into huge cities and live the life of worker ants; standardised housing, transport, with standardised food, a communist-style system of social credit, and total state control to keep all of the plates spinning. 2000AD comics did the same thing - great big cities with total control needed to govern the massive populations. Iain Banks avoids the problem by making us post-scarcity via technology. The Expanse series takes the Asimov model and uses it to make work unnecessary - people are weaned for their entire life by a state made necessary by the total overpopulation of the earth, as otherwise it'd be mass starvation and death.

I don't have a solution, I'll be clear - and from a lot of reading (and articles like those) I know that no-one else does either, most of all not acronym-bothering politics specialists.

darkeningday wrote:
The imminent threat posed by human overpopulation, as outlined and popularized by Paul Ehrlich’s The Population Bomb and Donella Meadows’s The Limits to Growth in the 60's and 70's has been roundly and soundly rejected by science. That it's racist and makes up the intellectual argument for ecofascism is unrelated to it being factually and wholly wrong. And Fred Pearce is not a youth activist.


A bunch of academics bickering doesn't disprove all of those new cities in China, does it ? Ignoring half of the problem ignores the whole problem, in this case - as I've hoped to demonstrate above. (You can also just look at the ever increasing volume of land built on for housing, globally - you can even just look at satellite photographs over the last 40 years).



edits for grammar/spelling

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Sepulchrave
Metalhead

Joined: Mon Jul 27, 2015 7:29 pm
Posts: 1819
PostPosted: Fri Feb 19, 2021 10:39 am 
 

Wahn_nhaW wrote:
The M.D. you mentioned, I don't even wanna type his name. There are always people like these and they always rise to the surface in times like these. I'm trying my best not to let the existence of such people color my view of the whole humanity, which is also something that takes patience, work and experience.


Ima ih i kod nas ovdje :D, Gordan Lauc, Ivan Pavuna, čak i Ivan Đikić, you name them, they know how to use media for their own advantage!
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Yngwie Malmsteen was a huge Yngwie Malmsteen fan before he fired every singer he ever had and decided to do it on his own. He finally got to front his favourite band. Good for YJM.

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Prigione Eterna
Metal newbie

Joined: Sun Jul 12, 2020 12:43 pm
Posts: 82
PostPosted: Fri Feb 19, 2021 11:48 am 
 

Actually, the concern about overpopulation is the opposite of racism, at least as far as I'm concerned.
Take Europe, there's now a widespread rhetoric that the reproduction rate is too low to support social security and current rates of productivity and on and on. In France, for example, policies have been implemented to encourage French citizens to have more children. If this was a real concern, any rational politician would welcome that thousands of mostly male and young immigrants eager to do lowly jobs for meager wages are washing on Europe's shores.
Besides, a high rate of population growth in developing countries is less of a problem because their lifestyle doesn't impact the environment as heavily. So it's not true that anyone concerned about overpopulation is pointing the finger at Africa or Asia. If anything, controlling population growth would make more sense where it's possible for people to stay longer in school and technology allows less need of workforce.
Also, promoting contraception in places where it's not easily available would imply an effort by Western countries, perhaps through the WHO or the UN or humanitarian organizations or whatever. That way developing countries could have more leeway not to rely on sheer numbers of workforce to build the economy and focus on more advanced sectors like industry, technology or tourism rather than agriculture etc.

To be honest, not being concerned about overpopulation is merely another face of the neoliberal myth of infinite growth.
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Wahn_nhaW
Metal newbie

Joined: Sat Dec 10, 2011 1:34 pm
Posts: 140
Location: Belgrade, Serbia
PostPosted: Fri Feb 19, 2021 3:54 pm 
 

Sepulchrave wrote:
Wahn_nhaW wrote:
The M.D. you mentioned, I don't even wanna type his name. There are always people like these and they always rise to the surface in times like these. I'm trying my best not to let the existence of such people color my view of the whole humanity, which is also something that takes patience, work and experience.


Ima ih i kod nas ovdje :D, Gordan Lauc, Ivan Pavuna, čak i Ivan Đikić, you name them, they know how to use media for their own advantage!


Ne sumnjam. :D If only people would learn to ignore them, you know?
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