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Author Topic:   What do we do about the population crisis?
cavediver
Member (Idle past 1754 days)
Posts: 4129
From: UK
Joined: 06-16-2005


Message 1 of 45 (334478)
07-23-2006 9:22 AM


Forget global climate change for a moment... the human population is surely the biggest threat to our first world way of life.

  • What do we do?
  • How do we stop it increasing?
  • How do we reduce it?
  • What will happen if we don't?
  • Should we care?

All serious considerations accepted, no matter how un-PC, immoral, amoral, etc. It needs talking about, and we may as well start here...


Replies to this message:
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AdminPD
Inactive Administrator


Message 2 of 45 (334480)
07-23-2006 9:43 AM
Reply to: Message 1 by cavediver
07-23-2006 9:22 AM


Own Input
To get the ball rolling, I suggest that you provide your own thoughts on the questions you asked.
This message is a reply to:
 Message 1 by cavediver, posted 07-23-2006 9:22 AM cavediver has not yet responded

  
AdminModulous
Administrator (Idle past 214 days)
Posts: 897
Joined: 03-02-2006


Message 3 of 45 (337384)
08-02-2006 12:57 PM


Not wanting to step on admin-related toes...
It looks like cavediver doesn't want to start with his own ideas, or has forgotten about this thread. That said, I think it would be an interesting topic for the coffee house.

As such, I'm going to throw this one out for discussion.


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AdminModulous
Administrator (Idle past 214 days)
Posts: 897
Joined: 03-02-2006


Message 4 of 45 (337387)
08-02-2006 12:57 PM


Thread moved here from the Proposed New Topics forum.
    
cavediver
Member (Idle past 1754 days)
Posts: 4129
From: UK
Joined: 06-16-2005


Message 5 of 45 (337389)
08-02-2006 1:01 PM
Reply to: Message 3 by AdminModulous
08-02-2006 12:57 PM


Re: Not wanting to step on admin-related toes...
It looks like cavediver doesn't want to start with his own ideas, or has forgotten about this thread. That said, I think it would be an interesting topic for the coffee house.

Thanks Mod... more to do with trying to juggle buying/moving house and running a business!


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nwr
Member
Posts: 5585
From: Geneva, Illinois
Joined: 08-08-2005


Message 6 of 45 (337394)
08-02-2006 1:13 PM
Reply to: Message 1 by cavediver
07-23-2006 9:22 AM


What do we do?

We will probably do nothing, until it is too late.

How do we stop it increasing?

Birth control, more birth control, still more birth control.

How do we reduce it?

Abortion, more abortion, and still more abortion.

What will happen if we don't?

We won't. The likely result will be either a great increase in pain and suffering due to disease and famine, or a nuclear holocaust.

Should we care?

Yes, we should. But the people who have the ability to do something won't.

Sorry for the pessimism. But that's how I see it.


This message is a reply to:
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Quetzal
Member (Idle past 3982 days)
Posts: 3228
Joined: 01-09-2002


Message 7 of 45 (337407)
08-02-2006 2:27 PM
Reply to: Message 1 by cavediver
07-23-2006 9:22 AM


What do we do?/ How do we stop it increasing?

Only with draconian “one-child-per-family” laws can there be a realistic slow-down in the current exponential growth rate. It is highly unlikely that that will occur voluntarily. Besides, the one example where that was attempted (China), doesn’t exactly give me a positive feeling that it could be successful even if applied everywhere else. Our species appears to have a genetic predisposition to “be fruitful and multiply”, even if that concept wasn’t enshrined in the religious texts and teachings of several of the dominant religions (which it is) – and which incorporate the vast majority of humanity.

How do we reduce it?/What will happen if we don't?

I strongly believe natural processes will solve the issue for us. Catastrophic ecological disruption (or ecological collapse) is a very realistic scenario, in my opinion. We’re talking a biosphere-level “reorganization” whose results would be a disaster of biblical proportions from our point of view. It is interesting, however, to speculate on what a putative xeno-paleontologist a few million years hence will see in the fossil record. Will there be an identifiable “boundary layer” between the Holocene and the Whatever-comes-next-ocene? Or will there simply be evidence of a species that went extinct, as so many others have done?

Should we care?

Of course. I don’t want my kids to face starvation and global warfare over increasingly scarce resources. On the other hand, it’s not entirely clear what the options are at this point.


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Modulous
Member (Idle past 214 days)
Posts: 7789
From: Manchester, UK
Joined: 05-01-2005


Message 8 of 45 (337423)
08-02-2006 3:51 PM
Reply to: Message 1 by cavediver
07-23-2006 9:22 AM


Humanity is not immortal
All serious considerations accepted, no matter how un-PC, immoral, amoral, etc. It needs talking about, and we may as well start here...

To start with 5 years sterilization added to the end of every prison sentence (and of course during it).

However - our country isn't growing that much so...

Stop immigration and asylum. Not PC at all, but if we prevent overcrowded nations from spilling over to us...

Make the world rich. Difficult to acheive, but rich countries have a lower growth rate in general, so we really need to stimulate third world nations.

Or how about global compulsory sterility, and 'birth' licences to the select few (probably the rich in the end, but a 'fair' system would try to be in place).

Most of these solutions have terrible backlash potential though, so the chances are the ultimate solution to the problem will be:

Natural selection.


This message is a reply to:
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Parasomnium
Member (Idle past 807 days)
Posts: 2191
Joined: 07-15-2003


Message 9 of 45 (337446)
08-02-2006 5:07 PM
Reply to: Message 8 by Modulous
08-02-2006 3:51 PM


Re: Humanity is not immortal
Modulous writes:

Most of these solutions have terrible backlash potential though [...]

Yes, Intelligent Design does tend to have that effect, so I think I agree with you:

[...] the chances are the ultimate solution to the problem will be:

Natural selection.

We could stop spending this earth's wealth on the wrong things, like wars and weaponry. (If you don't produce a Joint Strike Fighter, think of the billions of dollars you could spend on the solutions to real problems - problems that matter.)


"Ignorance more frequently begets confidence than does knowledge: it is those who know little, not those who know much, who so positively assert that this or that problem will never be solved by science." - Charles Darwin.

Did you know that most of the time your computer is doing nothing? What if you could make it do something really useful? Like helping scientists understand diseases? Your computer could even be instrumental in finding a cure for HIV/AIDS. Wouldn't that be something? If you agree, then join World Community Grid now and download a simple, free tool that lets you and your computer do your share in helping humanity. After all, you are part of it, so why not take part in it?

This message is a reply to:
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Replies to this message:
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robinrohan
Inactive Member


Message 10 of 45 (337450)
08-02-2006 5:11 PM
Reply to: Message 9 by Parasomnium
08-02-2006 5:07 PM


Re: Humanity is not immortal
We could stop spending this earth's wealth on the wrong things, like wars and weaponry. (If you don't produce a Joint Strike Fighter, think of the billions of dollars you could spend on the solutions to real problems - problems that matter

If people feel threatened, they make weapons. Everybody feels threatened.


This message is a reply to:
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Replies to this message:
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Omnivorous
Member (Idle past 1078 days)
Posts: 3808
From: Adirondackia
Joined: 07-21-2005


Message 11 of 45 (337466)
08-02-2006 5:41 PM
Reply to: Message 1 by cavediver
07-23-2006 9:22 AM


Shantih
Forget global climate change for a moment... the human population is surely the biggest threat to our first world way of life.

What do we do?

Nothing. It's too late.

How do we stop it increasing?

We don't. The consequences will take care of that for us.

How do we reduce it?

War. Plague. Asteroids. Heat.

What will happen if we don't?

Nothing important.

Should we care?

For most of my life, I have cared. In order to look myself in the eye, I became a race traitor, then a class traitor, then a gender traitor, then a nation traitor...

My hopes rose and fell with neighborhood and planet, and now planet and universe. I no longer believe we matter very much.

I hope that life and sentience are emergent properties throughout the universe. I choose to believe so. Like Powdermilk Biscuits, that gives this shy person the strength to get up and do what has to be done.

The loss of one obscure planet won't matter much. I suspect many Gaias fail to solve the fouling and blooding of their nest.

Edited by Omnivorous, : Wild apostrophe.


God gave us the earth. We have dominion over the plants, the animals, the trees. God said, ‘Earth is yours. Take it. Rape it. It’s yours.’
--Ann Coulter, Fox-TV: Hannity & Colmes, 20 Jun 01

Save lives! Click here!
Join the World Community Grid with Team EvC!
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This message is a reply to:
 Message 1 by cavediver, posted 07-23-2006 9:22 AM cavediver has not yet responded

    
Parasomnium
Member (Idle past 807 days)
Posts: 2191
Joined: 07-15-2003


Message 12 of 45 (337583)
08-03-2006 2:18 AM
Reply to: Message 10 by robinrohan
08-02-2006 5:11 PM


Re: Humanity is not immortal
robinrohan writes:

If people feel threatened, they make weapons. Everybody feels threatened.

The problem is that people don't recognize a real threat when they see one. The weapons we should be making are not of the explosive kind. We should make "weapons" against climate change, against overpopulation, pollution, draught, et cetera.

Those are the real threats.


"Ignorance more frequently begets confidence than does knowledge: it is those who know little, not those who know much, who so positively assert that this or that problem will never be solved by science." - Charles Darwin.

Did you know that most of the time your computer is doing nothing? What if you could make it do something really useful? Like helping scientists understand diseases? Your computer could even be instrumental in finding a cure for HIV/AIDS. Wouldn't that be something? If you agree, then join World Community Grid now and download a simple, free tool that lets you and your computer do your share in helping humanity. After all, you are part of it, so why not take part in it?

This message is a reply to:
 Message 10 by robinrohan, posted 08-02-2006 5:11 PM robinrohan has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 15 by iano, posted 08-03-2006 6:45 AM Parasomnium has responded
 Message 19 by robinrohan, posted 08-03-2006 8:51 AM Parasomnium has responded

  
Nighttrain
Member (Idle past 2104 days)
Posts: 1512
From: brisbane,australia
Joined: 06-08-2004


Message 13 of 45 (337598)
08-03-2006 4:02 AM


Roll the dice
We will get the future we deserve. If the brilliance of Russians creating incurable diseases isn`t used by last-ditch terrorists, then we will slowly strangle on disappearing resources. If global warming desertifies greater areas or moves the buried methane deposits under the oceans, then you can kiss birth-control goodbye. If the lack of assistance to the 40 million Aids victims in Africa means a continent is vacant, should we expect a refill from the burgeoning Asiatics?
Or, as our religionista predict, God will wield a scythe and do the same job.
Me? I`m building a Mars rocket. :D
    
U can call me Cookie
Member (Idle past 3063 days)
Posts: 228
From: jo'burg, RSA
Joined: 11-15-2005


Message 14 of 45 (337611)
08-03-2006 6:01 AM
Reply to: Message 1 by cavediver
07-23-2006 9:22 AM


The only way to stop it increasing is to make the morbidity rate (MR) equal the birth rate (BR), overall.
Inorder to reduce it, the MR must overtake the BR, overall.

Neither is likely to happen, barring some widespread catastrophe (ala' Bird Flu?)

Some sort of enforced measure of curbing population growth is unlikely to go down well with the greater public. The majority of people want to bear children, and also don't particularly wish to die young.

So i would say leave it to nature to take care of this. It will, sooner or later.

In the mean time, i feel methods should be looked at to protect the human species (and others, of course), in the event of Earth's exhaustion, like Planetary Terraforming, and methods to slow down said exhaustion; its gonna happen; i'd rather it be later than sooner.

In the "greater scheme of things" (if such a thing even exists), could it be said that humans aren't really that important (except to us). If we do die out, probably others will come after us. Life will carry on.


"The good Christian should beware the mathematician and all those who make empty prophecies. The danger already exists that the mathematicians have made a covenant with the devil to darken the spirit and to confine man in the bonds of hell." - St. Augustine
This message is a reply to:
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iano
Member (Idle past 51 days)
Posts: 6165
From: Co. Wicklow, Ireland.
Joined: 07-27-2005


Message 15 of 45 (337614)
08-03-2006 6:45 AM
Reply to: Message 12 by Parasomnium
08-03-2006 2:18 AM


Re: Humanity is not immortal
Those are the real threats.

They are indeed. But as in driving, its only when the threat has broken a stop light and sits right in your path do you think of applying the brakes.

In the meantime its party on...and it would be a brave, if soon-extinct politician who attempted to close the beer taps


This message is a reply to:
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Replies to this message:
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