The world population is rising but the U.S. isn’t exactly skyrocketing. Without immigration we would actually be declining.
I don’t think there’s any basis for condemning a US citizen for having too many children on overpopulation. The only real downside I see here is that now we all have to update our “Vagina, it’s not a clown car” posters.
I’m not trying to pick a fight with you >< I just didn’t see how it was odd, is all. :P And trust me, there are some really odd variants of my first name out there (I think it has more variants than any other name, actually.) Besides, I said you were right, how is that fighting? :)
I also grew up in an area where the kids I went to school with had very unusual names, such as Cream, Chime, Shelter, Ivory, Wonder, Merlin, etc. So I am really no stranger to oddly named children. Nobody had their names made fun of in my school, because they were all weird.
Per CIA world factbook, Greece has a population growth rate of +0.15% per year.
Russia has a population growth rate is -0.3% per year, nowhere near halving every generation. The yearly birth rate in Russia is 11 per thousand, which is greater than in Canada. Unfortunately, their yearly death rate is 16 per thousand, worse than Somalia, Ethiopia, and Rwanda. It is pretty clear that Russia’s problem is not due to their “urge to populate their future” or “self-indulgence”.
What is a generation then? Twenty five years? Fifty? One hundred?
Doesn’t matter, as the standard formula for population doubling (or in this case halving) of ln(2)/ln(1+(-.3/100)) says that it’ll take about two hundred years for the population to halve. Which is more than a generation, unless you know a bunch of two hundred year old Ruskies. I’d love to meet one and say “haha you’re ooooold!”
I know. However, the rate of population decline would need to be an order of magnitude greater to reach 50% within 20 years. Since the definition of “generation” isn’t fixed, I simply said it was nowhere near halving in a generation.
Normally a lot of genetics calculations use parameters that are estimates, so you wind up getting a confidence interval around an answer (IE: this happened 6-10 million years ago) instead of one answer.
Look, I live in one of the worlds smaller countries and I could still invite every last person on the planet over for a cuppa and fit them all on one of our islands.
The planet is a big place and the only reason we talk about overpopulation is because we like to spend resources on other stuff than what’s needed to keep everyone alive and we’re loathe to share our wealth with the darkies.
Or to put it in another way. The planet can sustain us all, and that doesn’t look like changing for generations to come, but if I need three Hummers and to fight two wars, then a kid in Africa must go hungry.
The point is that I never said anything about food. I was talking about pollution. You are wrong to think that the only reason we talk about population is because of food. War comes to mind. Pollution comes to mind. Hell, lack of land comes to mind. There’s more to sustaining people than raw tonnage of food. And there’s a LOT more to sustaining an ecosphere than that.
Land is hardly an issue and pollution wouldn’t be if consumption wasn’t so great.
Again we could end pollution fast by giving up a few luxuries.
I’m not saying it’s easy… or even that I’m interested in doing my part. It’s just that when people talk about overpopulation, they behave as if some religious nutcase didn’t have 15 children or if all those third worlders would just stop breeding, a lot of problems would go away.
And that’s not the case.
Overpopulation isn’t a problem. Overconsumption is… and the fact that all those poor people with lots of kids would like to eventually have two cars each too.
I have to disagree with you on that. At least from a short-term perspective, 500 million people in Nigeria doesn’t make a lot of sense, and that’s just one example. Any country where the economy and environment can’t support the number of people living there is a country with an overpopulation problem. On a global scale that may be fixable, but we don’t live on a global scale. We live on a nation by nation scale.
That said, where I disagree with Robert is that I don’t see where an overpopulation problem in Nigeria or elsewhere should impact how people in countries without that problem should act. Again, we aren’t living on a global scale so a couple in the US that has none or few children isn’t really doing anything to help the overpopulated parts of the world by making that decision, at least not as the world is currently organized.
And in most of the “overpopulated” countries that wouldn’t be a problem either if they didn’t lack money, infrastructure or whatever else they’ve lost (or never had) due to wars, corruption and the like.
Look at people going hungry in a very fertile Zimbawbe… it’s not because the population is too big (and a lady in Arkansas or wherever zipping it up after her 1,3 kids wouldn’t change a thing).
Fair enough. I’m not worried about them having 18 kids either. As I said, I’m worried about presenting it as a model and praising it, as though it is somehow a praiseworthy decision. I’m not asking for laws to prevent such things.