Bursting the Bubble

23 Feb

February 15, 2012

Bursting the  Bubble
In 1900, the world’s population was about 1.6  billion. Then came that fantastic resource called  petroleum. This substance was the basic ingredient in a number of products such  as gasoline and plastics.
Chemists soon discovered that petroleum could be  used to produce fertilizers (to enhance plant growth), pesticides (to kill the  animals that eat the crops) and herbicides (to kill undesirable plants that compete  with the crops for nutrients).
Fuel from petroleum ran the machines that planted  the seeds and harvested the crops, and took the crops to market. This same fuel  was used in the processing, packaging and preservation of these  crops.
The supply of food grew abundantly. This led to a  population explosion. Now in 2012, a mere 112 years later, we have 7 billion  people on this planet. That is a 338% increase in population in just over a  century.
This increase in population is based upon a weak  foundation of drugged-up soils and drugged-up plants. Soils have been drained of  their nutrients and are sustained by steroids called  fertilizers.
Take a look at some of the severe side effects of  steroids on the human body and you can get an idea of what is happening to some  of the world’s arable land.
I have to side with the United Nations Millennium  Project on this issue, because it is obvious that the world’s population can’t  keep on growing indefinitely.
I know that there are some who think that there’s  some sort of conspiracy afoot aiming to radically reduce the world’s population.  They point to the Georgia Guide Stones and an assortment of other half-baked  theories. They also blithely state that the entire population of 7 billion can  fit into the state of Texas. This is an infantile argument. Putting the world’s  population into Texas is fine only if you like the idea of living in a feedlot,  knee-deep in excrement.
These jokers also say that the problem is not  over-population but rather under-population. Oh sure, as if countries in Africa  and Asia face famine because there are not enough mouths to feed. Now that’s voodoo economics!
And there’s so much empty space on this planet  that needs to be filled. There’s a reason that places like the Sahara and Gobi  deserts, Siberia, Greenland, northern Canada and Antarctica are sparsely  populated or completely unpopulated, and I will not go through the  reasons.
On average, just over 10% of the world’s land is  arable, that is, suitable for growing crops. In India, an amazing 55% of the  land is arable, and people still go hungry. But what about all that basmati rice  from India?  you ask. Doesn’t  matter, people are still going hungry in India. Czarist Russia became known as  the breadbasket of Europe (basket case, surely) when the Czar ordered wheat to  be exported for foreign exchange, but this came at the cost of millions of serfs  going hungry.
Another 40% of the world’s land is considered  agricultural in that livestock are raised there. The production of meat requires  a lot of nutrients: one kilo of meat requires up to 10 kilos of grain, making  livestock an inefficient source of nutrients, unless you pump the animals with  steroids and anti-biotics.
Finally, there are those who say that you need  population growth in order to sustain economic growth and prosperity, the old  trickle-down effect. I such that they change their old economic paradigm based on the perpetual growth ponzi scheme, and replace it with one based on increased happiness and individual liberty derived from a more rational use of  resources.
Those who rail against population control are  often religious fanatics who blindly drink the kool-aid of their superstition.  Others see depopulation conspiracies. (Conspiracies do exist, but you need a  cold, dispassionate eye to seek out, identify and stop them. First, you need to  free your mind of all superstition, so that you may clearly see the threats to  individual liberty of body, mind and- if you it exists –  soul.)
In the end, it doesn’t matter what you and I say  or think. The way things are going Mother Nature and human folly will combine to  bring about a spectacular and uncontrollable reduction in world  population.
Have a nice day.

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