re: The myth of over-population


Richard Moore

Bcc: contributors

From: “Peter Hollings”
Date: 2 December 2009 19:16:58 GMT
To: “‘Richard Moore'” <•••@••.•••>
Subject: FW: FW: The myth of over-population

Richard –
 Some comments from an astute environmentalist on the article you sent.
 Peter Hollings
From: Emily Spence
Sent: Wednesday, December 02, 2009 1:35 PM
To: Peter Hollings
Subject: Re: FW: The myth of over-population
Peter, I wish that it were as simple as this description that you forwarded, but it is not so when one tabulates in other factors such as ecological footprint and, as part of that, carbon footprint; looming water shortages caused by deglacialization and other sources (like over-pump rates and droughts), ocean acidification, looming resource shortfalls (oil, certain metals, minerals, sea life, etc., etc.), energy demands, rates of deforestation… At the heart of all of these troubles lies, indirectly, population size, as well consumption rates (while nearly everyone, regardless of wherever he is on the economic ladder, always wants more “stuff” and services and more money to buy more “stuff”and services).

Hi Peter & Emily,

The article I posted argued that we have enough land to grow food for everyone in the world if we use the land wisely instead of wastefully. The same argument DOES apply to each of the items I underlined above. That is, we can become sustainable EITHER by killing off 80% of the world’s population, OR we can become sustainable by cleaning up the way we use resources. 
The folks who run the world and control the global economy prefer to kill off 80% of the world’s population so that they can continue to profit from the way we misuse resources. They are busy pursuing that agenda, and are now succeeding in killing off about 6 million children a year, with the help of IMF policies, biofuel production, CIA-sponsored civil wars, etc. Anyone who goes around supporting the myth of over-population is contributing to this genocide agenda.

It is a mistake to say the problem is that people want ‘stuff’. The problem is the supply chain that brings cheap stuff to people at the expense of the environment and of the people in the global south. To blame it on ‘wanting stuff’ encourages people to think that by driving less and consuming less they will solve the problem. That won’t solve the problem, instead it contributes to the problem by misdirecting our attention from what needs to be done.


From: Larry Victor
Date: 2 December 2009 19:49:01 GMT
To: Richard Moore <•••@••.•••>
Subject: Re: The myth of over-population

Richard, in terms of making food available, I agree with you. But, that is not the only factor. What is the whole ecological footprint of each person re their “standard of living”? What do people contribute to pollutions of all types, and the drain on energy?  Freeman Dyson has speculated that with the right NEW technologies Earth could support many TRILLIONS.  And then, there was the Dyson Sphere that morphed into Larry Niven’s RINGWORLD.  BUT, what about the near future?  A real threat is that the rapidly developing world (read Steward Brand’s The Whole Earth Discipline on the plus side of world urban slums) be propagandized to demand more and more industrial-style products and energy? True, with a cognitively uplifted population with new worldviews and technologies Earth could support more – but for the immediate future and without radical economic/political change, population may still be a highly significant factor – not the MOST. No factor is the most significant; searching for the fighting to establish the MOST significant factor is one of our great difficulties.

I’ve not done the calculations but I speculate that a rapid cut of the human population to 1/5 of current might postpone the climate change threat a few decades – so long as the population is then kept constant.  I am NOT recommending this, but others might be working towards this end.  When I first read the Club of Rome’s LIMITS OF GROWTH I then wondered if they ran the scenario with what I then called “The Operation” with a sharp cutback of the population. I wonder if anyone actually ran that scenario?

PS:  I find your take on Climate Change disturbing.  Climate Change is far more complex than the main media presents, and what critics as you also present, IMHO.  This is a very complex problem with many non-linear feedback loops. Typical to ALL professionals, climate change scientists can also have a narrow focus on CO2, which doesn’t eliminate it as a factor.  In my analysis, looking at as much of the conflicting info I can find, the Climate Threat is MUCH MORE SEVERE that we imagine, but nothing is fully fixed.  The melting sea ice in the Arctic might bring about a little Ice Age in Europe and greater drought in North America; and maybe not.  Minor fluctuations aren’t trends. Some measure of temperature may go down while others go up. The really scary thing is that IF the threat is real (actually major changes ARE coming, just what and when can be debated) there are NO DELIBERATIVE BODIES ON EARTH capable of working on this issue.  And, there are powerful forces working to insure that such deliberative bodies don’t emerge.

Hi Larry,
We don’t need new technologies and we don’t need a ‘cognitively uplifted population’. What we need is ‘radical economic/political change’. Unless we achieve that it doesn’t matter what we talk about here on the Internet. We can believe what we want and say what we want and it won’t make one iota of difference. As long as the political system stays the same, the genocide program will continue, along with the destruction of the Earth and of species and of our own quality of life.
Anyone who thinks change can come through the political system should now know better, given the Obama scam. Everyone wanted change, so they sold us a con man who promised change, and then went on to accelerate everything Bush was doing. To be more accurate, neither Bush nor Obama ever does anything except read speeches. The government is run by the Cheneys and the Geithners who report directly to the central bankers. The Presidency is strictly a PR job. That’s how the political system works, at least since JFK, who made a bold attempt to reassert the role of President and the Constitution. Since then they’ve made sure no such person could ever get nominated by a major party.
There is only one reason I spend time writing about things like the overpopulation myth and other myths. That reason is to let people know that whatever activism they are engaged in is a WASTE OF TIME, unless it is aimed at changing the political system. 
In fact, every other form of activism should be called ‘channeling’. That is, elites are channeling our activist energies into useless wastes of time that are either irrelevant, or actually support the elite agendas. Lowering our individual consumption is a waste of time. Campaigning for candidates is a waste of time. Supporting the Copenhagen conference is contributing elite agendas. The conference has nothing to do with global warming, and everything to do with establishing a world government. And that world government is not about achieving peace or sustainability, but about consolidating an elite global dictatorship.
Global warming is a complete and total scam. It is all based on lies, as we now know from the leaked emails, and many thanks to whichever insider finally listened to their conscience. Gore started the lie by manipulating his graphs to pretend co2 causes warming, rather than the other way around. The IPCC models begin by ASSUMING co2 causes warming and that the Earth has no way of absorbing co2 or of regulating temperatures. Those assumptions are wrong. As we know from the leaked emails, global temperatures have been falling for decades. 
In terms of policies, our goal needs to be sustainability, not some minor reduction in this or that. And the goal of sustainability cannot be pursued while the existing political system continues. 
If you think changing the political system is impossible, then you might as well forget about politics and causes and just enjoy yourself while you can. And as long as all the activists are wasting their time with other things, changing the political system will be impossible. If we all redirected our activist energies to dealing with the REAL PROBLEM, we would be able to create solutions together.
From: Bill Blum
Date: 2 December 2009 22:57:31 GMT
Subject: Re: The myth of over-population

I seldom disagree with you politically, but in this case I strongly do so.  Let me ask you this: ALL ELSE BEING EQUAL would a large decrease in population have significant social benefit?  For example, would the removal of 50 million cars from the US highways have a great effect on traffic jams, parking problems, pollution, accidents, stress, et al?  That’s just one example of the benefits.

Hi Bill,
Yes, as I said, we could achieve sustainability by killing off 80% of the world’s population. I think it would be better to remove 50 million cars from the highways by creating sustainable transport infrastructures and reducing our transport needs by localizing our economies. It could be easily done with the trillions of dollars that has been gifted to the central bankers while Saviour Obama makes pretty speeches. 
From: Bill Ellis 
Date: 3 December 2009 02:21:54 GMT
To: Richard Moore <•••@••.•••>
Subject: Re: The myth of over-population

rkm wrote:
….. I’ve been looking quite a while for a good article on the ‘over-
population problem’. This one is very good. The URL, and excerpts from
the article, are below…. (snip)

As usual Richard, you analysis of the world starvation is right on.
     It is not the failure of agriculture, or nature, than makes it look like overpopulation. It is the failure of economics. Today agriculture produces some 8400 calories per per day per person on the planet / It takes only 2000 for an adequate diet. Money is the problem.  Millions of people do not have the money to buy food. This is the cause of starvation in the Third World. The cost of food in the Industrial countries is going up faster that the money income of people. As the end of the oil era arrives. We will be seeing starvation reach our shores. 
One of the precursors to wide spread starvation is the rapid rise of local food pantries. CSAs (community Supported Agriculture), organic gardening, and free food systems. I have a large garden, rows of berries, 5 apple trees, 6 maples (for sugar), and 4 nut trees.  This is my hobby. But it also produces a good share of the food we eat and bushels to give to neighbors and the local food cupboard.  I see the day when the free food system becomes a global network. And supplying the world with food becomes part of our life’s purpose. The more we give the more is given to us. No money is needed.
Bill Ellis

Hi Bill,
Thank you for enriching our discussion. I must amend what I said about activism being a waste of time. Your kind of activism, and the Transition Town kind of activism, are not a waste of time. But it is not the immediate benefits, such as supplying a bit of food, that is most important. Those kind of gains will be wiped out as the global dictatorship expands its agendas and outlaws our various activities. Your kind of activism is useful because it is about people empowering themselves and creating new solutions beginning in the grassroots. 
By creating our own solutions, and by learning how to work together in our communities on an inclusive basis, we will be creating the new political system. 
It is not money that is the problem, but rather the way money and credit are created. What we learn from this is that money is a very powerful tool, for either good or evil. The money system creates the incentive structure that channels people’s behavior. If we look at the Mondragon experiment, we can see how the money system can be a powerful force for good:

We see another example of a ‘good’ credit system in North Dakota, where the state has its own bank:

My own Community Development Model needs to be improved, but it is a good ‘think piece’ about how worker co-ops and local currencies can be combined with the Transition Town movement in order to transform society:

From: “Claudia Woodward-Rice”
Date: 3 December 2009 03:00:43 GMT
To: “‘Richard Moore'” <•••@••.•••>
Subject: Is the World Overpopulated?

Given human behavior and our rapacious attitudes, of course it is. 

Hi Claudia,
I get so tired of everyone blaming the victim for problems, and assuming there is something wrong with human nature. We are born into a culture, we are conditioned from infancy to that culture, and then we do what makes sense in that culture. We do not create the culture, it is there when we are born. 
If we look at human history, 99% of our cultures have been egalitarian and sustainable. And then, a mere 6,000 years ago, a tiny fraction of human history, hierarchical cultures were imposed on us by self-serving elites. During most of that time most of us have been slaves. It was not the slave’s fault that they were slaves. And it’s not the consumer’s fault that everything they buy serves to destroy the world. We were not expelled from the Garden of Eden for our sins, the Garden of Eden was taken away from us, and then the Garden of Eden story was invented to make us believe it was our fault. (Read: The Story of B, by Daniel Quinn)
We are now in a time of rapid cultural change. This not because of human nature, but because culture has become plastic, intentionally manipulated and molded by advertising and other elite endeavors. 
Unless we want to become slaves again, which is the direction elites are taking us, we must ourselves engage in the process of cultural change. We can only do this by ignoring the elite’s political system, ceasing to debate about ideologies, and learning how to work together in our communities for our common benefit. Not just working with people we agree with, but by working with everyone in our communities. Inclusiveness is the key to cultural transformation.

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