If you have Netflix "Surviving Progress" is an interesting discussion. a Canadian film. Basically the world cannot support 7 billion people consuming like europe and north america.
this is an easy fix hoop.
grow your own or join a farm coop and keep your food dollars at home while supporting local sustainable agriculture..
we need to keep those farms alive because we are going to need them far more than we know..
you don't have to kill people off or stop consuming to survive progress
but you do have to consume intelligently
Begging the lady's pardon, but she's wrong. It's not an "easy fix." Farm co-ops and wise consumption are good things but they are certainly not the answer to the crisis of overpopulation.
I think that it's irresponsible to have children without giving any consideration to whether the Earth can support them under CURRENT levels of consumption. I'm not into guilt-tripping people for having kids, mind, but I believe we need to have an honest and open discussion about the impact of adding even more people to an already overburdened planet.
See also: Hot, Flat and Crowded by Thomas Friedman.
revising the US tax code to limit the number of deductions for dependents up to 2 children could be a start.
Hoop - I work in the Tax industry and I TOTALLY agree with you. Get rid of the Child Tax Credit too (even though I benefit from it) - no reason to use "social engineering" to encourge population growth when we're already over populated.
I hate to say this becouse it will stir up some issues from the past ....Tell the religious zealots to allow birth control in third world countries and here and in other industrial nations..........
Bingo.. give waynster the gold star..
the availability of birth control addresses both overpopulation and poverty...
investing in local food sources and making your purchases locally won't affect overpopulation
but they will go a long way towards the overuse of resources..
making BC available is a no brainer
DP: respectfully, sir, the third world has far worse reproductive problems than the first world.
we just eat and drink more.
because we can.
the hoop: i'm not sure what to make of your "no-brainers" anymore.
I get the feeling many of you are thinking local. Can you clarify?
China has a fairly strict hold on birth control. How fast are they growing? Plus isn't most of Europe's indigenous population on the decline?
I am all for giving or making birth control affordable in many applications to women who could benefit from it. But which areas are still exploding? Sub Saharan Africa? Middle East? Bangledesh? Yup.
Living near High Point, the more populated families I generally observe come mostly from Africa and parts close by. I don't see very many Catholic and Mormon families nearby that are as large as they used to be. I feel our newer immigrants help reinforce my observation.
Because of the "Arab Spring" and changes in the leadership of Islamic nations other third world nations, I don't think birth control/family planning is a major consideration nor wanted by the new dictatorships.
I pray for the women in those countries. Such cruelty goes on. We are lucky to be born or to have moved to a much more tolerant part of the world. I know the women of Afghanistan are not going to be celebrating the NATO forces leaving.
rich: it's not my job as an american to dictate to other people of differing customs how they should conduct themselves.
it is my job, however, to educate myself and try to lead by example.
i don't have much to worry about. the redblack line ends when i die.
you might want to be 'ware of my brother, though. he's a real a-hole, and he has kids.
I agree with you Redblack. I dislike how Women and children are treated in some Third World Countries. I know we can help people in the World just like most of our recent former Presidents. Not by forcing issues on anyone. http://www.voanews.com/content/george-bush-africa-cervical-cancer/1363615.html
Guess What. Here is an article talking about population peaking soon and then dropping. http://www.slate.com/articles/technology/future_tense/2013/01/world_population_may_actually_start_declining_not_exploding.html
From what I've read, it's not necessarily that our planet can't sustain the current numbers. Overpopulation isn't the problem. The problem is that more and more countries like India and China are rising to American levels of consumption. A few cars, a big house, a microwaves, couple TVs, throwaway clothing for everyone on the planet is what we can't sustain.
If we define "overpopulation" as the inability of a population to sustain itself FOR WHATEVER REASON then I think it's fair to say the Earth is already way overpopulated.
Got that? The crisis isn't looming. It's here.
But some parts of the world are clearly in a greater state of crisis than others. Not surprisingly, the countries with the biggest problems also tend to be the ones that have the highest concentration of people per acre of arable land.
Take China, for example. It's been crowded for centuries, and that's been a PROBLEM for centuries, too. Every few decades China will experience a terrible famine in which tens of millions of souls may perish. China's population then gradually rebuilds, only to be followed by another catastrophe and another cycle of rebuilding. And so it goes.
That's overpopulation, my friends.
Does this mean that more Chinese people driving cars and buying TVs isn't a problem, too? No. That's definitely a problem. But to say that overpopulation is merely a matter of resource distribution or increasing consumerism – as some people here have been doing – is simply wrong.
That's a left-wing answer to the problem,* but ironically, it's the same type of unscientific, ideologically based thinking that leads RIGHT-wingers to conclude that there isn't any problem in the first place!
*Or I should say, it's a NON-answer to the problem.
no left-winger that i know thinks that rampant consumerism is the only part of the overpopulation equation. that's malthusian overpopulation.
overpopulation, obviously, means "over peopled."
i can square my beliefs, DP. i'm all for safe and legal abortion and passing out prophylactics like candy.
but i also believe in consuming less and repurposing more so that demand for new stuff drops and other people have more access to the resources that i would have consumed.
at 5% of the world's population, americans do consume almost a quarter of the world's resources. now, if china and india start emulating that behavior, that accounts for all of the world's resources. and we haven't even talked about europe and australia, let alone africa, south america, and indonesia.
>>i can square my beliefs, DP. i'm all for safe and legal abortion and passing out prophylactics like candy.
Let's see what we can agree on.
► I'm for wisely implemented birth control, here and abroad.
► I'm for early and responsible sex education, first by parents and, failing that, by schools. Abstinence should be discussed.
► I'm for subsidized condoms and bc pills for adults.
► I'm not for handing out condoms "like candy," because that sounds like we're giving them to little kids. And I don't think little kids should be having sex in the first place. If they are having sex, chances are that a condom won't help them any.
► I'm not for using abortion as a form of birth control. And neither, for that matter, is Planned Parenthood.
None of what I'm saying here contradicts the thesis that Americans are doing more than their share to hasten the planet's demise.
redblack - poor canadians where do they fall in the equation? kidding of course; they consume similar to us.
kids have sex.
it's a fact.
they do so now.. they did so when we were kids.. and they did so when our parents and grandparents and greatgrandparents and ... were kids.
they do so in spite of being aware that abstinence is the socially appropriate action.
if condoms are available..
even kids use them.
i kept a bowl on the sideboard when i had teens passing regularly through my house
and i had to refill it..
my son't friends thought that his mom was cool
as it turns out ... there were no unintended pregnancies in that crowd...
or outbreaks of STDs for that matter.
Was that because of my "candy" bowl or simply luck?
but i do know that more than one parent thanked me later for having the nerve to put that bowl there
kids will have sex when they are ready
it's up to us to make certain that they are prepared
even if they become ready a lot sooner than they had planned
planned sex and resulting planned pregnancies aren't a large problem
it's unplanned sex that more often has unintended consequences..
the hoop: canada has about a tenth of the u.s. population. if their consumption is similar to ours, that would put their consumption at 2-3% of the world's resources. of course, that also falls under the definition of malthusian overpopulation, but it's nowhere near the drain on the planet that america creates.
DP: i was using a colloquialism. i didn't intend to connote children having sex.
and, yes, we agree on all of your bullet points. furthermore, i believe we should implement those points and lead the rest of the world by example.
another example we should set is consumption of food and energy.
do people really eat three meals a day? not judging anyone, here. just asking.
i'll use myself as an example. as a physically-active construction worker, i require a pretty calorie-rich diet, and i eat about a meal-and-a-half a day. fruit, grains, and protein for break during work, and a home-cooked meal at night. we rarely cook more than we can eat, unless we're making food in a crock/stock pot that will serve us for more than one dinner. no fast food and very little - if any - processed food, but we occasionally eat dinner at local restaurants. (okay, i'll confess to a monthly brunch at jak's too. couldn't really call it living without that.) it's working out pretty well so far.
just wondering how other people view and approach their nutritional requirements.
>>i kept a bowl on the sideboard when i had teens passing regularly through my house and i had to refill it.. my son's friends thought that his mom was cool
–Ha. No disrespect, Jo, but I certainly wouldn't have let my kid hang out at your place or any other place where the grown-ups put condoms out in a dish. To me, it sounds like you were trying to be the "popular" parent. You know, like the parent who supplies alcohol for their teenager's house parties on the grounds that the kids will be drinking anyway, so it'd be better for them to drink at home . . .
That philosophy was fashionable among parents in the late 1970s, when I was a teenager. It's very out of vogue now, though, and for good reason.
>>as it turns out ... there were no unintended pregnancies in that crowd... or outbreaks of STDs for that matter.
–That's possible, but regardless of how trusted you thought you were, I doubt that all of your son's friends would have shared their sexual health status with you.
In the meantime, I wouldn't be surprised if you had undermined a few family relationship's there, with your message of: "Never mind what your parents say. Teen sex is fine by me. Here, have a condom."
But of course you'd have no way of knowing what damage you'd done in that area, would you? And even if you did, it's unlikely that you'd own up to it here.
Now pitch me another softball if you wish.
I was not trying to be the popular parent.
I was trying to be the parent whose son didn't knock a girl up and spend the rest of his life literally paying for that mistake.
I was also trying to be the parent whose kid did not die from an STD.
Did I talk with my kids about the unintended consequences of sex? Of course I did. None of my pregnancies was planned.
I didn't intend to supply his whole crowd with condoms but it turns out that if they are available they get used..so I refilled the small bowl that set next to my keys often.
Your judgments are showing.
I didn't tell kids that sex was OK.
I told them that if they were going to have sex, it was their responsibility to protect themselves and their partners.
If telling kids not to have sex actually worked as a regnancy prevention strategy, it's likely a good many of us wouldn't be here. A bit of genealogical research uncovers an astounding number of 6 and 7 month first pregancies that survived to adulthood.
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