Twelve hundred years had not yet passed
When the land extended and the people multiplied.
The land was bellowing like a bull,
The god got disturbed with their uproar.
Enlil heard their noise
And addressed the great gods:
"The noise of mankind has become too much for me,
With their noise I am deprived of sleep.
Let there be a pestilence (upon mankind)."
(from the Babylonian epic, 'Atrahasis epic...1600 B.C.)
"In it Utanapishtim (Noah) tells Gilgamesh how he and his wife became immortal. When Utanapishtim was warned of the coming inundation, he took his family, retainers, and the people who built his ark into it with him, thereby establishing a good base for repopulating the earth. For this forethought, the gods allowed him to live forever.
There is also an element of bargaining in the story. When the gods realized that they had done away with all their workers, they promised Utanapishtim and humanity that they would never destroy them by a flood again. But they insisted on some changes. People's lives would have to be shorter. Clans would fight rather than care for each other and live in peace. There would be more dangers from nature: snakes, scorpions, lions, and wolves, for instance. The gods weren't going to put up with overpopulation again just because they had sworn not to destroy the world."
The Real History of the End of The World
"There was a time when the countless tribes of men, though wide-dispersed, oppressed the surface of the deep-bosomed earth, and Zeus saw it and had pity and in his wise heart resolved to relieve the all-nurturing earth of men by causing the great struggle of the Ilian war, that the load of death might empty the world. And so the heroes were slain in Troy, and the plan of Zeus came to pass."
(Homeric epic Cypria, attributed to Stasinos. 776-580 B.C.)
"One would have thought that it was even more necessary to limit population than property....The neglect of this subject, which in existing states is so common, is a never-failing cause of poverty among the citizens; and poverty is the parent of revolution and crime."
"After performing the most exact calculation possible....I have found that there is scarcely one tenth as many people on the earth as in ancient times. What is surprising is that the population of the earth decreases every day, and if this continues, in another ten centuries the earth will be nothing but a desert."
-Montesquieu (French Jurist and political philosopher)1721
"The command Be fruitful and multiply (was) promulgated, according to our authorities, when the population of the world consisted of two persons."
-William Ralph Inge
"The population is constant in size and will remain so right up to the end of mankind."
-Population, L' Encyclopedie ,1756
"Babies are the enemies of the human race."
"We have come to a turning point in the human habitation of the earth."
"It may be safely asserted....that population, when unchecked, increases in geometrical progression of such a nature as to double itself every twenty-five years."
-Thomas Robert Malthus 1830
"The happiness of a country does not depend, absolutely, upon its poverty or its riches, upon its youth or its age, upon its being thinly or fully inhabited, but upon the rapidity with which it is increasing, upon the degree in which the yearly increase of food approaches to the yearly increase of an unrestricted population."
-Thomas Robert Malthus (1798)
"A deeper look at the root causes of hunger will reveal that any claim that world hunger is caused by a lack of food is simply a self-serving agribusiness myth. In reality, food production has kept pace with population growth. Studies conducted by the U.N. Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) clearly indicate that it is abundance, not scarcity, that best describes the world's food supply. Every year, enough wheat, rice, and other grains are produced to provide every human with 3,500 daily calories. In fact, enough food is grown worldwide to provide 4.3 pounds of food per person per day, which would include two and a half pounds of grain, beans, and nuts, a pound of fruits and vegetables, and nearly another pound of meat, milk, and eggs.
What about the pace of population growth in the future? Although many argue that we should curtail population growth for ecological and socioeconomic reasons, history has not yet borne out the Malthusian concept that population growth equals hunger. Indeed, during the last 35 years per capita food production has actually grown 16 percent faster than the world's population. Moreover, as Peter Rosset of Food First states, "We now have more food per person available on this planet than ever before in human history."
The Fatal Harvest Reader: The Tragedy of Industrial Agriculture ED by Andrew Kimbrell
"As prosperity increases, so do the pleasures which compete with marriage, while the feeling towards children takes on a new character of refinement, and both these facts tend to diminish the desire to beget, and to bear children."
-L. Brentano (1844-1931)
The Doctrine of Malthus....'Economic Journal, 1910
"Misery, up to the extreme point of famine and pestilence, instead of checking, tends to increase population."
-Samuel Laing (1812-97)
"Poverty seems even to be favourable to generation."
-Adam Smith Wealth of Nations
"It is obvious that the best qualities in man must atrophy in a standing-room-only environment."
-Stewart L. Udall
"Ideal mankind would abolish death, multiply itself million upon million, rear up city upon city, save every parasite alive, until the accumulation of mere existence is swollen to a horror."
-D. H. Lawrence
"The continued growth in the number of people who inhabit this planet will inevitably increase the substantial damage that the atmosphere, the water table and the arable soil have already suffered."
-from "A Call to Reason," signed by 87 Nobel Laureates in support of the International Conference on Population and Development, from the New York Times ,Aug, 30,1994
"The sex wars entered modernity with a chilling new campaign against the dangerous 'them' sponsored by the cocky new science of eugenics.
Cries about "race suicide" began right after the Civil War. The original AMA campaign against abortion had featured the "loins of our women" more or less pitted against the loins of aliens. But no one stormed about cheering for children, lots of children, more ardently than Teddy Roosevelt. While he commanded the bully pulpit, President Roosevelt lavished praise on large families- "Work, fight and breed!" He heaped scorn on those who were not doing their bit. "The man or woman who....has a heart so cold....and a brain so shallow and selfish as to dislike having children, is in effect a criminal against the race and should be an object of contemptuous abhorrence by all healthy people."
James A. Morone
"It is due to coldness and selfishness, to love of ease, to shirking,....to an utter and pitiful failure"
"Misery, up to the extreme point of famine and pestilence, instead of checking, tends to increase population."
Samuel Laing (1812-97)
"The power of population is indefinitely greater than the power in the earth to produce subsistence for man. Population, when unchecked, increases in a geometrical ratio. Subsistence only increases in an arithmetical ratio. A slight acquaintance with numbers will show the immensity of the first power in comparison with the second."
-Thomas Malthus (1766-1834)
An Essay on the Principle of Population 1798
"Increasing population is the most certain possible sign of the happiness and prosperity of a state: but the actual population may be only a sign of the happiness that is past."
"We have been God-like in our planned breeding of our domesticated plants and animals, but we have been rabbit-like in our unplanned breeding of ourselves."
"Our position requires that we take immediate action at home and promote effective action worldwide. We must have population control at home, hopefully through a system of incentives and penalties, but by compulsion if voluntary methods fail....We can no longer afford merely to treat the symptoms of the cancer of population growth; the cancer itself must be cut out."
The Population Bomb
"The question of how many people the world can support is unanswerable in a finite sense. What do we want? Are there global limits, absolute limits beyond which we cannot go without catastrophe or over-whelming costs? There are, most certainly."
Every hour there are over 9,000 more people on earth
"Estimates are that there are about a billion squatters in the world today-one of every six humans on the planet. And the density is on the rise. Every day, close to two hundred thousand people leave their ancestral homes in the rural regions and move to the cities. Almost a million and a half people a week, seventy million a year. Within 25 years, the number of squatters is expected to double. The best guess is that by 2030 there will be two billion squatters, one in four people on earth."
Shadow Cities: A Billion Squatters, A New Urban World
"We are currently adding a Los Angeles worth of people to the world every three weeks.
Every week over a million new cars come out of the factory and onto the streets
If everyone in U.S. & Mexico & Canada (365 million) could live in Indiana it would be no more crowded than Toronto and half the state would be empty. Every person in the world could move to Kansas and it would be less crowded than Madrid….
"Overpopulation is the fountainhead of most of the other catastrophes discussed in this book. If only the world population were to become stable at, say ,50% or 75% of its present level, most environmental and public health problems would become more easy to manage....if the world population continues to grow at its present rate, a plethora of catastrophes, including those represented by the Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse, will be certain to overtake us sooner or later. Ironically , these catastrophes will serve as feedback mechanisms to limit the population, albeit at a terrible cost in human suffering. For this reason, I believe that overpopulation is the most crucial global problem that we face today."
Walter J. Karplus
"The results of human reproduction are no longer solely the concern of the two individuals involved, or of the larger family, or even of the nation of which they are citizens. A stage has been reached in the demographic development of the world when the rate of human reproduction in any part of the globe may directly or indirectly affect the health and welfare of the rest of the human race. It is in this sense that there is a world population problem."
-Harold F. Dorn
The Pill: II Loretta Lynn, 1973
For several years I've stayed at home
while you had all the fun,
And every year that came by
another baby come.
There's gonna be some changes made
right here on nursery hill.
You've set this chicken your last time
'cause now I've got the Pill."
"There is room in the world, no doubt, and even in old countries, for a great increase of population, supposing the arts of life to go on improving, and capital to increase. But even if innocuous, I confess I see very little reason for desiring it. The density of population necessary to enable mankind to obtain, in the greatest degree, all the advantages both of cooperation and of social intercourse, has, in all the most populous countries, been attained. A population may be too crowded. though all be amply supplied with food and raiment. It is not good for man to be kept perforce at all times in the presence of his species. A world from which solitude is extirpated, is a very poor ideal. Solitude, in the sense of being often alone, is essential to any depth of meditation or of character; and solitude in the presence of natural beauty and grandeur, is the cradle of thoughts and aspirations which are not only good for the individual, but which society could ill do without. Nor is there much satisfaction in contemplating the world with nothing left to the spontaneous activity of nature; with every rood of land brought into cultivation, which is capable of growing food for human beings; every flowery waste or natural pasture ploughed up, all quadrupeds or birds which are not domesticated for man's use exterminated as his rivals for food, every hedgerow of superfluous tree rooted out, and scarcely a place left where a wild shrub of flower could grow without being eradicated as a weed in the name of improved agriculture. If the earth must lose that great portion of its pleasantness which it owes to things that the unlimited increase of wealth and population would extirpate from it, for the mere purpose of enabling it to support a larger but not a better or a happier population. I sincerely hope, for the sake of posterity, that they will be content to be stationary, ling before necessity compels them to it.
It is scarcely necessary to remark that a stationary condition of capital and population implies no stationary state of human improvement. There would be as much scope as ever for all kinds of mental culture, and moral and social progress; as much room for improving the Art of Living, and much more likelihood of its being improved, when minds ceased to be engrossed by the art of getting on. Even the industrial arts might be as earnestly and as successfully cultivated, with this sole difference, that instead of serving no purpose but the increase of wealth, industrial improvements would produce their legitimate effect, that of abridging labour....Only when, in addition to just institutions, the increase of mankind shall be under the deliberate guidance of judicious foresight, can the conquests made from the powers of nature by the intellect and energy of scientific discoverers, become the common property of the species, and the means of improving and elevating the universal lot."
John Stuart Mill (1848)
Principles of Political Economy
"I despise Birth-Control first because it is a weak and wobbly and cowardly word. It is also an entirely meaningless word; and is used so as to curry favor even with those who would at first recoil from its real meaning. The proceeding these quack doctors recommend does not control and birth. It only makes sure that there shall never be any birth to control.....But these people know perfectly well that they dare not write the plain word Birth-Prevention....where they write the hypocritical word Birth-Control. They know as well as I do that the very word Birth-Prevention would strike a chill into the public."
"A lot of so-called conservatives today don't know what the word means. They think I've turned liberal because I believe a woman has right to an abortion. That's a decision that's up to the pregnant woman, not up to the pope or some do-gooders on the religious right. It's not a conservative issue at all"'
"Numerical population counts can be juggled and arranged to suit particular mind-set beliefs. For various humanitarian reasons we can consider that increases of populations are natural and rightful. Every fetus resulting from an impregnated human egg has its right to life. But considerations of earth's carrying capacity are a different matter, for that carrying capacity has much to do with what kind of right to life everyone will have in the future.
This distinction is seldom made. But it is a very important one to future-seers-if they propose to see into the real future rather than into mind-set telepathic osmosis.
Understanding the limits of earth's carrying capacity introduces a new vista of ecological change-routes into the future. If earth did not have a carrying capacity, or if it had an inexhaustible one, then there could be no overpopulation problem. "
Your Nostradamus Factor
"When you think about the growth of human population over the last century or so, it is all too easy to imagine it merely as an increase in the number of humans. But as we multiply, so do all the things associated with us, including our livestock. At present, there are about 1.5 billion cattle and domestic buffalo and about 1.7 billion sheep and goats. With pigs and poultry, they form a critical part of our enormous biological footprint upon this planet.
Just how enormous was not really apparent until the publication of a new report, called "Live-stock's Long shadow.," by the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United nations.
Consider these numbers. Global livestock grazing and feed production use "30 percent of the land surface of the planet" Livestock-which consume more food than they yield-also compete directly with humans for water. And the drive to grazing land destroys more biologically sensitive terrain, rain forests especially, than anything else.
But what is even more striking, and alarming is that livestock are responsible for about 18 percent of the global warming effect, more than transportation's contribution. The culprits are methane-the natural results of bovine digestion-and the nitrogen emitted by manure. Deforestation of grazing land adds to the effect.
NY Times Dec 2006
"there doesn't seem to be much danger of a Malthusian catastrophe. Mankind appropriates about a quarter of what is known as the net primary production of the Earth (this is the plant tissue created by photosynthesis)-a lot, but hardly near the point of exhaustion....Raw materials have become more abundant, not scarcer. Certainly, the impact that people will have on the climate is a problem; but the solution lies in consuming less fossil fuel, not in manipulating population levels."
"The biggest problem facing the earth is human overpopulation, and here the target constituency is people who want to have children, who are politically unassailable. They do not even have to speak out in favor of further overpopulation. All they have to do is continue having babies, and We, the grown-up babies, can barely bring ourselves to mention the problem, never mind do anything about it. A related problem is the wave of extinction sweeping the earth due to habitat destruction: the planet is being carved up to accommodate more babies. Here, it is a popularity contest between human babies and animals, many of which are unpersonable, nameless invertebrates. These countless endangered species can never parallel the political force of the goo-goos and poops of a single human infant, although the cutest and furriest ones might be granted a new life as the infant's plush toys. this planet-devouring homonuclus is now a force of nature, a weedy, invasive species going through its natural cycle of overshoot and die-off, and We who must Do Something about it are really just its gonads going through their involuntary spasms. "
Reinventing Collapse: The soviet Example and American Prospects
"The Indians and Africans, who are not treated well by their Dutch masters, use the seeds (of this plant) to abort their children, so that their children will not become slaves like they are....They told me this themselves."
-Maria Sibylla Merian's 1705 Metamorphosis of the Insects of Surinam (about the Peacock Flower)
"Have we beaten Malthus? Two centuries after his work we still do not really know."
Jeffrey D. Sachs director of the Earth Institute at Columbia University.
"Resource scarcity will be a direct cause of confrontation, conflict, and war."
"More than 6 Billion Terrestrial humans inhabit the Earth, and yet the vast majority are walking about in a daze, as if in a drugged-down stupor. When you get right down to it, because most people actually do not have a very clear idea of what is really happening on the very planet where they were born and have passed their entire life."
-Richard Sauder PhD
"Mo' People, Mo' Problems."
Return of the Population Bomb article in Science Vol 322 31 October 2008
Overpopulation is threatening life as we know it on the planet, say members of a movement called Global Population Speak out www.gpso.wordpress.com/
which aims to persuade at least 50 "respected voices," to "speak out in some way" about the problem for a month next year
"...the majority of the reduction in crime over the last decade and a half can be attributed to the legalization of abortion, first in certain states, then in the entire nation.
Obviously, unwanted children are more prone to crime, probably because they are not raised with sufficient caring...."
The authors (Freak-onomics) that a lag of 20 years is expected because criminality peaks for individuals in their 20s.
This fact should be considered by those who for ideological or religious reasons want to block women from terminating unwanted pregnancies."
Brookhaven, NY, May 25,2011
article "The Specter of Malthus Returns: It remains to be seen whether his famously gloomy prediction is truly wrong or merely postpone" by Jeffrey D. Sachs
article: The World's New Numbers" by Martin Walker Wilson Quarterly Spring 2009
in Scientific American magazine Sept 2008
See: "The Population Surprise" by Max Singer The Atlantic Monthly, Aug 1999
Book: "Pre-Malthusian Documents Of Population: A Study in the History of Economic Thought" by Charles E. Strangeland
Book: "How Many People Can the Earth Support?" by Joel E. Cohen
See: "A Flood of Immigrants" World Press Review, April 1998
Book: "Too Many People: The Case for Reversing Growth" by Lindsey Grant
EARTH warily greets 6 billionth…..
Book: "How many People Can the Earth Support?" by Joel E. Cohen
Book: "Too Many People: The Case for Reversing Growth" by Lindsey Grant
Book: "The Empty Cradle: How Falling Birthrates Threaten World Prosperity and What to Do About It" by Phillip Longmen
Book: "Fewer: How the New Demography of Depopulation Will Shape Our Future" by Ben J. Wattenberg
Book: "Ecology, Economics, and Population Taboos" by Garrett Hardin
Book: "Anti-Abortionist at Large" by Raymond Dennehy
Book: "A Population History of the United States" by Herbert S. Klein
Book: "Woman Of Valor: Margaret Sanger and the Birth Control Movement in America" by Ellen Chesler
Book: "Rising Life Expectancy; A Global History" by James C. Rilley
Book: "Cognitive surplus: Creativity and generosity in a connected Age" by Clay Shirky
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