Proactive Human Population Reduction

Mythopoeika

I am a meat popsicle
Joined
Sep 18, 2001
Messages
35,354
Likes
21,187
Points
309
Location
Inside a starship, watching puny humans from afar
Is this going to be implemented? Some of it to a limited extent in the next few decades. People are nice-ish when the going is good, when facing resource constraint they soon change. We live in interesting times.
Yes, it could turn really ugly when food/water/power runs out.
Then there'll be a population correction.
 

Ogdred Weary

Sooner than expected.
Joined
Apr 2, 2012
Messages
2,067
Likes
3,326
Points
159
Yes, it could turn really ugly when food/water/power runs out.
Then there'll be a population correction.
There's no "could" there. It will turn ugly long before any of those things actually run out, they just have to become unaffordable to a critical number of people. The Arab Spring occurred after a simultaneous grain failure in several countries, including Russia, who sold grain to Syria among others but weren't able to after a heatwave killed off a large amount of their crops in 2010, Russia had to and could afford to but from elsewhere. It's an interconnected World.
 

EnolaGaia

I knew the job was dangerous when I took it ...
Staff member
Joined
Jul 19, 2004
Messages
12,121
Likes
13,443
Points
309
Location
Out of Bounds
They should retire people early, so the younger ones can have a job ...
At the idealistic extreme this implies that being employed is all there is to it - i.e., that having and holding a job has nothing to do with experiential learning or skills development, and anyone can be plugged into, or disengaged from, any job at any time with no significant side effects.

While there are certainly lower-tier unskilled and semi-skilled jobs where such wanton swapping could be done without much disruption, such churning would be detrimental - and even sometimes catastrophic - when it comes to the increasing (and increasingly important) portion of the workforce performing skill- and knowledge-based jobs.
 

AgProv

Master of Uncertainty and Doubt
Joined
Apr 6, 2014
Messages
531
Likes
690
Points
99
I suspect practically everybody thinks in the privacy of their own minds, that the world would be enhanced if 60 - 90% of surplus human beings are thinned out... it's just that everybody's got a different opinion as to who constitutes the useless mouths (the telephone sanitisers , market researchers and tired TV executives, as Douglas Adams put it in his resolution of the conundrum)
 
Last edited:

blessmycottonsocks

Justified & Ancient
Joined
Dec 22, 2014
Messages
3,058
Likes
4,352
Points
154
Location
Wessex and Mercia
Robots. That's what we really need to offset a declining population.
I've argued this same point many times.

The ancient Romans, Egyptians etc. relied on slaves to get things done.
Obviously we cannot condone such an ethos today (although I acknowledge with sadness that there are more slaves today than there have ever been).
But with humankind's enormous inventiveness, we should be capable of using robots, or rather technology in general, as our slaves.
Then, the dangerous and flawed pyramid scheme argument that we must keep on swelling the population to support the people already here, could be rejected for good.
The difficulty is in persuading capitalists that sustainability is preferable to perpetual growth.
 

EnolaGaia

I knew the job was dangerous when I took it ...
Staff member
Joined
Jul 19, 2004
Messages
12,121
Likes
13,443
Points
309
Location
Out of Bounds
This is a completely non sectarian comment. When mammals get overcrowded they fight. None of us are immune from that reaction.
Agreed ... This strongly suggests conflict and fighting is a symptom and side effect of excessive population in a given space..

In addition, we historically tend to devolve into conflict and fighting when someone believes they've something significant to gain or lose.

This strongly suggests conflict and fighting are inevitable side effects of any globally-scoped effort at restricting / reducing that excess population.

One way or the other, a peaceful future is not a safe bet.
 

maximus otter

Recovering policeman
Joined
Aug 9, 2001
Messages
4,365
Likes
7,849
Points
234
Much current research suggests that the human population will peak at about 8B to 8.7B, then begin to drop.

What we need to do is get rid of the Attenboroughs, Thunbergs, Monbiots etc. with their relentlessly pessimistic and misanthropic theories; and acknowledge that we live in an era when there are more people, living longer, healthier and more prosperous lives than ever before.

Now: Back to the “Omigod! What’s going to kill us all today?” usual programming...

maximus otter
 

Naughty_Felid

No longer interesting
Joined
Mar 11, 2008
Messages
6,065
Likes
6,516
Points
294
Much current research suggests that the human population will peak at about 8B to 8.7B, then begin to drop.

What we need to do is get rid of the Attenboroughs, Thunbergs, Monbiots etc. with their relentlessly pessimistic and misanthropic theories; (BASED ON CURRENT SCIENCE), and acknowledge that we live in an era when there are more people, living longer, healthier and more prosperous lives than ever before.

Now: Back to the “Omigod! What’s going to kill us all today?” usual programming...

maximus otter
I just added that for you.
 

Naughty_Felid

No longer interesting
Joined
Mar 11, 2008
Messages
6,065
Likes
6,516
Points
294
Much current research suggests that the human population will peak at about 8B to 8.7B, then begin to drop.

What we need to do is get rid of the Attenboroughs, Thunbergs, Monbiots etc. with their relentlessly pessimistic and misanthropic theories; and acknowledge that we live in an era when there are more people, living longer, healthier and more prosperous lives than ever before.
maximus otter
see your other threads which you posted on saying the same old same old.

https://forums.forteana.org/index.php?threads/death-of-agriculture.66027/#post-1877394

We are not living in some golden age - let's face it, people our age, had that in the 70's, now we are facing people' s life expectancy is reduced, the poverty gap between rich and poor is getting wider.

Dunno why you post this stuff over numerous threads but you never answer when challenged.
 
Last edited:

blessmycottonsocks

Justified & Ancient
Joined
Dec 22, 2014
Messages
3,058
Likes
4,352
Points
154
Location
Wessex and Mercia
Much current research suggests that the human population will peak at about 8B to 8.7B, then begin to drop.

What we need to do is get rid of the Attenboroughs, Thunbergs, Monbiots etc. with their relentlessly pessimistic and misanthropic theories; and acknowledge that we live in an era when there are more people, living longer, healthier and more prosperous lives than ever before.

Now: Back to the “Omigod! What’s going to kill us all today?” usual programming...

maximus otter
In some respects I can agree with that view, but when I smell the polluted air, get trapped in gridlock on the M25, need to wait ages for an appointment with an NHS creaking at the seams etc. I can't help thinking that the overall quality of life would be better in a less overpopulated England.
 

maximus otter

Recovering policeman
Joined
Aug 9, 2001
Messages
4,365
Likes
7,849
Points
234
...but when I smell the polluted air, get trapped in gridlock on the M25, need to wait ages for an appointment with an NHS creaking at the seams...
Remember that you have a home, a car, a job to go to and a motorway on which to do it.

As to the sainted NHS, its problems are little to do with “overpopulation”.

;)

maximus otter
 

blessmycottonsocks

Justified & Ancient
Joined
Dec 22, 2014
Messages
3,058
Likes
4,352
Points
154
Location
Wessex and Mercia
Read and Heed:

Immigration control is not a strategy for reducing the overall human population (which is this thread's focus), and discussion of immigration issues will not be considered fair game in this context.
Obviously. If, however, each country took responsibility for maintaining its population at a sustainable level, that would then become a factor.
According to Wiki, England's population density is 424 people per Km2, which is the highest of any sizeable country in Europe (300% higher than France, 400% higher than Spain etc.).
If we were to take a lead in eco-sustainability to reduce our carbon footprint and improve the quality of life of our citizens, then I suspect an optimum population density for England would be somewhere below 300 ppkm2.
Encouraging couples through financial incentives to have no more children than the replacement rate would be a major factor in achieving a sustainable population, but so would controlling immigration.
 

maximus otter

Recovering policeman
Joined
Aug 9, 2001
Messages
4,365
Likes
7,849
Points
234
If we were to take a lead in eco-sustainability to reduce our carbon footprint and improve the quality of life of our citizens...
Which proceeds from assumptions with which l take issue, and projects an idealised outcome with which ditto.

A thousand years ago we lived an outdoor life, in an unpolluted environment. We ate an organic, locally-sourced, mainly vegetarian diet, and took lots of aerobic exercise.

Life expectancy was 40.

;)

maximus otter
 

EnolaGaia

I knew the job was dangerous when I took it ...
Staff member
Joined
Jul 19, 2004
Messages
12,121
Likes
13,443
Points
309
Location
Out of Bounds
Which proceeds from assumptions with which l take issue, and projects an idealised outcome with which ditto. ...
No less idealised than smugly focusing on how good some of us have it today and assuming there's no need to consider how well the intricate web of mutual worldwide interdependencies affording us this relative luxury can hold together.

At least BMCS recognizes that things change, and there's an endless series of tomorrows within which such change can play out ...
 

EnolaGaia

I knew the job was dangerous when I took it ...
Staff member
Joined
Jul 19, 2004
Messages
12,121
Likes
13,443
Points
309
Location
Out of Bounds
... Encouraging couples through financial incentives to have no more children than the replacement rate would be a major factor in achieving a sustainable population, but so would controlling immigration.
(Emphasis added)

Immigration policies affect the population of a particular nation, not the global population of all humans (the context for this thread). It doesn't matter how you arrange a set of pieces on the game board if the problem concerns how many pieces are in play.

... And there will be no further warnings against comments on immigration in this thread. They'll simply disappear.
 

blessmycottonsocks

Justified & Ancient
Joined
Dec 22, 2014
Messages
3,058
Likes
4,352
Points
154
Location
Wessex and Mercia
Which proceeds from assumptions with which l take issue, and projects an idealised outcome with which ditto.

A thousand years ago we lived an outdoor life, in an unpolluted environment. We ate an organic, locally-sourced, mainly vegetarian diet, and took lots of aerobic exercise.

Life expectancy was 40.

;)

maximus otter
With respect Maximus, that strikes me as a very strange argument.
I have no doubt that life was nasty, brutish and short 1,000 years ago, but is that an excuse for us not to wish to improve things today?
I would like my grandson to live to a ripe old age and enjoy his life in a less overcrowded and polluted environment.
 

Ogdred Weary

Sooner than expected.
Joined
Apr 2, 2012
Messages
2,067
Likes
3,326
Points
159
With respect Maximus, that strikes me as a very strange argument.
I have no doubt that life was nasty, brutish and short 1,000 years ago, but is that an excuse for us not to wish to improve things today?
I would like my grandson to live to a ripe old age and enjoy his life in a less overcrowded and polluted environment.
So, you would like all the benefits of modernity with none of the drawbacks? Wouldn't we all.
 

blessmycottonsocks

Justified & Ancient
Joined
Dec 22, 2014
Messages
3,058
Likes
4,352
Points
154
Location
Wessex and Mercia
So, you would like all the benefits of modernity with none of the drawbacks? Wouldn't we all.
Which takes us back to Mythopoeika's point about making technology our slave. If we are inventive enough, then surely modernity doesn't have to mean more pollution and overcrowding?
 

Ogdred Weary

Sooner than expected.
Joined
Apr 2, 2012
Messages
2,067
Likes
3,326
Points
159
Which takes us back to Mythopoeika's point about making technology our slave. If we are inventive enough, then surely modernity doesn't have to mean more pollution and overcrowding?
Unfortunately, there is no "we", people are selfish, short-sighted and happy to ignore things they don't want to notice, we have all sorts of built in biases as a species. I like many of the benefits of modernity, hell, who doesn't? But they come at a price, "we" will not cooperate in reducing our problems, we can't even agree on what the problems are, let alone the solutions.

I share your concerns about pollution, overcrowding etc. There are too many problems globally to enumerate here and we would only disagree on what those were anyway. In terms of population I think there are something like 10 times too many people on Earth, you and many others might disagree and feel the reduction doesn't need to be as drastic. That reduction wouldn't necessarily sort out all our other problems either.

I'm not seriously suggesting culling anyone as a solution, for what it's worth I don't feel there are "solutions, just as there is no "we". I mention this just to highlight how difficult it is to address such large scale issues. I do feel a population correction is imminent, I'm not especially worried and lose little sleep over it, I also don't think that I will necessarily be spared or that I and the people I care about are immune from suffering, some people seem to have that attitude. Few people really care that much about anyone other than themselves and their friends and family, we are apes with illusions of grandeur.
 

blessmycottonsocks

Justified & Ancient
Joined
Dec 22, 2014
Messages
3,058
Likes
4,352
Points
154
Location
Wessex and Mercia
Unfortunately, there is no "we", people are selfish, short-sighted and happy to ignore things they don't want to notice, we have all sorts of built in biases as a species. I like many of the benefits of modernity, hell, who doesn't? But they come at a price, "we" will not cooperate in reducing our problems, we can't even agree on what the problems are, let alone the solutions.

I share your concerns about pollution, overcrowding etc. There are too many problems globally to enumerate here and we would only disagree on what those were anyway. In terms of population I think there are something like 10 times too many people on Earth, you and many others might disagree and feel the reduction doesn't need to be as drastic. That reduction wouldn't necessarily sort out all our other problems either.

I'm not seriously suggesting culling anyone as a solution, for what it's worth I don't fee there are "solutions, just as there is no "we". I mention this just to highlight how difficult it is to address such large scale issues. I do feel a population correction is imminent, I'm not especially worried and lose little sleep over it, I also don't think that I will necessarily be spared or that I and the people I care about are immune from suffering, some people seem to have that attitude. Few people really care that much about anyone other than themselves and their friends and family, we are apes with illusions of grandeur.
Fair enough Ogdred.
We seem to be in agreement that there are too many people on Earth. I would dearly like humanity to be proactive in remedying this. Not through euthanasia, as you (jokingly, I'm glad to see) suggested. But through financial incentives and education. I'm probably a bit more of an optimist than you. I do acknowledge though that if we cannot or will not do something to control the human population, then Mother Nature (if you'll excuse me the anthropomorphism) may well do it for us.
 

Ladyloafer

Abominable Snowman
Joined
Feb 21, 2019
Messages
506
Likes
959
Points
93
the main problem with talking about human population controls is it seems to be in isolation about humans. breathing polluted air from too many people doing too much stuff is bad for humans, polluting the drinking water is bad for us, using technology/robots/AI is about serving humans.

well ok, of course, but all this affects all other life on this planet too. and we've been doing this since we existed, but since the industrial age its at a global, and often irreparable rate.

technologically i'm sure we could already find a way to increase food production, have clean water for all, medical and social care for all, and spread out the global population around the world. and maybe fit another couple of billion in too.

but we don't want to. its uneconomic. and its the £££ and $$$ that count. someone somewhere has to be making money from it. (or political power).

and most people do see that we, as the dominant species of earth have some kind of responsibilty to other life on earth, but, but, but, now we have this and that, and we don't want to give it up.

obviously we can't 'cull' existing people! and morally how can we say 'this person can have medical care that keeps them alive for many more years, but that person can't'? we, do say that but its based on economic costs. if thats not an issue, then we treat them. and once the treatments and medicines exist then we can't uninvent them.

so obviously birth control needs to be the major decider in population control. and globally there have been great strides in this in the last few decades around the world.

https://www.positive.news/society/5-possible-solutions-overpopulation/
 
Last edited:
Top