Saturday, September 8, 2007

How to Reduce the Population without Resorting to Genocide, Eugenics, and/or Any Megalomaniacal Policy

There are more than 6.6 billion people on Earth, and apparently, that's putting a strain on the Earth's resources. Anyway, here's a slightly Utopian (eu- or dys-, you decide) vision to try to solve this problem.

LIST #1. These prerequisites are otherwise impossible, but they'll actually make the second list easier to do:

1. All nations, and all people within all nations, must have relatively equal access to food. In one of the lectures in The Story of B, there's a good argument that people are made of food, and not any other substance in the universe. And here's what I think about it: Generally speaking - and I detest generalities - underdeveloped, developing, and/or otherwise poor countries have higher birthrates than more affluent countries, and by the same token, these poor countries have a larger starving population than more affluent countries. If food creates people, then I can assert that while there is enough food to sustain a high birthrate, there isn't enough food to keep those same people alive long enough, relative to richer nations.

2. Racism must end. Impossible, yes. At least racial/ethnic/religious/sexist/etc. paranoia must end. There's a feeling in many varying localities around the world of present and historical majorities feeling threatened by the influx of present and historical minorities to a given locality, through immigration and/or a higher birthrate. In which case one or more of the minorities would become the new majority, thus creating a new social dynamic one must adapt to. It's basically the "They took our jobs!" mentality (or the hilarious reduction of it in South Park). That attitude needs to stop. While it doesn't directly affect this entry, we've resolved not to resort to genocide or eugenics or any generally evil thing to do to humanity. Besides, a successful living thing learns to adapt to his/her environment.

3. The people of the United States of America (or U.S. Americans, according to an infamous beauty pageant contestant) need to stop eating in excess.

LIST #2. Okay, let's assume the prerequisites have been achieved: No one starves, people learn to adapt to changing environments and societies, and we U.S. Americans aren't so generally overweight. Great. Here's how we reduce our population without resorting to evil:

1. If we want to cap the human mass to, say seven billion, we need to produce only enough food for seven billion people.

2. Each human must only replace themselves with at the very most one human. That is to say, a human couple an choose to create zero children, one child, or at the most two children during their lifetime. The same thing applies for a king and his harem of 999: They can produce zero to at the most 1000 heirs. Various cultural and/or religious mandates prevent this from becoming a reality, but I'm just throwing it out there, knowing that food will ultimately be the decider of population.

3. This is pretty much a reiteration of B's teachings (Daniel Quinn's writings), less effective with my words, so read The Story of B. Anyhow, if in 2010 we produce enough food for seven billion, and the world's population in 2010 is seven billion, seven billion it will remain. What if we produced enough food for 6.75 billion in 2011? If food is distributed evenly amongst all humans, it would only amount to a slightly smaller sandwich, not noticeable to the least bit. What about food for 6.5 billion in 2012? Food for 6.25 billion in 2013? Food for six billion in 2014? All the while, the outgoing humans (sad but true) are perpetually replaced by incoming humans, though the birthrate would slow down due to less food. Thus suggestion #2 of list #2 would be achieved in spite of dogma and cultural traditions.

Anyhow, this is a pipe dream for many, to be achieved in either of two ways: (1) a worldwide dictator to force this plan at first, only to become corrupted by power and resort to crimes against humanity, and not achieve the goal, or (2) enlightening the world, simultaneously in several minds and localities over a period of time, similar to the Industrial Revolution, sans the Luddites. But you know that whenever a change is a-comin', whenever a peaceful revolution happens, Captain Ned Ludd and his cronies will resist. It happens.

Obviously choice (1) is satirical, so there really is only one way to lessen the strain of the world, or I daresay, to save the world.

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