This is a discussion on Global !Depopulation! within the General News anti misandry forums, part of the General category; The notion of overpopulation is wholly incorrect. Even third world nations, many of whom are still reeling from Aids and ...
- 13th-May-2007 #1
The notion of overpopulation is wholly incorrect. Even third world nations, many of whom are still reeling from Aids and other pandemics, are showing little or no growth. The fact of the matter is that these third world nations will have huge blocks of land to occupy in areas like Europe, North America and Russia especially - overpopulation problem solved.
Here is some commentary on the problem of 'underpopulation' for your perusal:
on ABC Radio National
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30 April 2007
Listen Now - 30042007 | Download Audio - 30042007
What are the implications for a world where the population has peaked?
Author Philip Longman explains that contrary to popular belief; global population is on a downward trend. He also looks at the political ramifications in the US where conservatives appear to have a higher fertility rate.
Michael Duffy: For much of my life the spectre of increasing population has influenced a great deal of public debate on many issues, particularly in the international arena. However, populations are now in decline in many countries, which raises some other interesting questions. Our next guest is Philip Longman, a senior fellow at a free market think-tank called the New America Foundation. He's author of the book The Empty Cradle.
Philip, welcome to the program. Let's start with birth rates around the world, not just in the west. What's the trend?
Philip Longman: Down, everywhere in the world. Fertility is falling. It's actually falling fastest where most people think it's rising the most, which is the Middle East, but really it's pretty much an unbroken picture, including most of the Third World these days.
Michael Duffy: I guess that will surprise many of our listeners who associate falling birth rates with prosperity. Why is it falling in other parts of the world?
Philip Longman: I think it's a number of factors. The first big mega-trend is that we're now approaching the point where 50% of the world's population lives in cities, and when you go from being a peasant out in the countryside to living in a city, the economics of childrearing change dramatically. Children are no longer an economic asset, they are more often an economic liability. So that's a big thing. Exposure of television, globally, global media in general puts images of rich people living the good life in the cities and people notice that they don't have many children or when they do have children they're rushed away by nannies, so there's an imitation effect too. People come to think it's sophisticated to have small families. And of course there's contraception.
Michael Duffy: How big a change is this? I mean, are we approaching the point when the world's population will actually start to decline?
Philip Longman: That is foreseeable. The population of small children is already declining, but we've got a lot of momentum; for the world as a whole we're at about 6 billion folks now and we'll probably go to 8 billion before it declines. But bear in mind that almost all of that extra 2 billion in is in the form of more old people, paradoxical as that might seem. So we have population growth but it's mostly population growth of elders.
Michael Duffy: Would this be an historical first, the world's population going backwards fairly quickly?
Philip Longman: Well, it's certainly not the first time that individual people have decided not to have enough children to replace themselves. Back in the time of Caesar Augustus, for example, the emperor was so concerned about the reluctance of people to marry and have children that he slapped bachelor taxes on Roman nobles who wouldn't do their part for the state. People do not necessarily breed up to the limits of their available resources. Sophisticated people living in complex economies and cultures often decide that they don't want children or don't want more than one or two, and so that has led to population declines. But there's a dynamic at work that self-corrects this over time, and we can talk about that if you want to but...
Michael Duffy: Sure. What might happen?
Philip Longman: Generally in our own time throughout the world and in other times there's a strong association between secularism and low fertility, and between adherence to any of the three big Abrahamic religions-Christianity, Judaism or Islam-and high fertility. So if you have a very secular society like Europe has become, for example, the secular elements literally don't breed, whereas the more conservative and traditional elements do. And so you have a gradual rebounding of birth rates, but what evolves through that is a much more conservative and traditional society. I would argue that the United States in the last 40 years has already seen a lot of that dynamic happen and that it accounts for the rising influence of evangelicals and religious conservatives in general...
Michael Duffy: And this is because Christian conservative Americans are having more children than the secular so-called progressive ones?
Philip Longman: Yes, that's right. In fact, if you look at the states that voted for George Bush in the last election, their fertility rate is 12% higher than the ones who voted for his opponent.
Michael Duffy: It's a big difference.
Philip Longman: Yes, and in fact if you just took those parts of the US that voted for John Kerry, they have a fertility rate equivalent to France, which is well below replacement levels.
Michael Duffy: And will this persist? Do we know if the children of conservatives are more likely to be conservative themselves?
Philip Longman: They are, on balance. I mean, there's defections across the culture war divide on both sides but in general, as the proverb says, the apple doesn't fall far from the tree, and particularly if people go on to have children themselves, they tend to revert to the religion and the values of their parents when it comes time to raising their own children, even if they've gone through a period of rebelliousness themselves. So yes, it's as close to an iron law of sociology that there is.
Michael Duffy: Despite what you've said, you're predicting that world-wide the population is declining and it may actually go into decline at some point, in general would that be a good thing or a bad thing?
Philip Longman: Well, it's certainly far preferable to the future that a lot of people thought was coming back in the 70s when there was talk of a population bomb and mass starvation. So yes, that's good that we've avoided that, but this trend brings a lot of challenges with it, including even environmental challenges. But the biggest problem is that the structure of our economy and the structure of our government welfare systems are largely predicated on population growth. So social security systems, pension systems, healthcare systems, all of them come under enormous financial strain given the way we currently finance them. Much of what we count as economic growth, too, is just literally a warm body effect of there being more people making more stuff, consuming more stuff and thereby making the economy go around. We've really never seen a prosperous economy survive a long-term decline in fertility. In the short term a decline in fertility is very positive for the economy but in the longer term it gets ugly.
Michael Duffy: Why is it positive in the early times?
Philip Longman: Because in the first instance there's just fewer children to support and educate and there's still abundant numbers of workers and not yet many more elders, and so this is the sort of sweet spot that people talk about, the demographic dividend.
Michael Duffy: Is that where America is now?
Philip Longman: America is just past that point. China is in the middle of that. Japan was in the 70s and 80s. Some of the others...'Asian tigers' also enjoyed that moment in the 70s and 80s and 90s, but now are coming through to the other side of it, and so they now have fewer workers. China's labour supply is set to decline within ten years, meanwhile its population of elders will be exploding. So they have a short time to get rich before they get old.
Michael Duffy: And do you expect the problem of insufficient workers to become more and more apparent over the next decade in America?
Philip Longman: I don't think that...you know, when you say 'insufficient workers' that means there'll be something like a labour shortage in which anybody who wants to go out and get a job can get one. You can look at countries like Spain and Italy today that are very short on youth in the sense that youth has a very small share of the population, and yet the youth unemployment rate is 20%. Because of the general downturn in the economy that is threatened by population aging, young people don't necessarily make out with good job prospects. So that's a silver lining that isn't really there.
Michael Duffy: What can economies like America's and Australia's do about this? Can we realistically hope to increase the participation rate of people in the workforce, can immigration solve it?
Philip Longman: Immigration is helpful within limits, but immigrants typically don't arrive as infants, so there's much less rejuvenation of the population through immigration than there is through increasing the birth rate. There's estimates of how many immigrants it would take to keep Australia's ratio of workers to retirees the same as it is today, and it's been done for other countries as well, and the number is always mind-boggling, it's just staggering, you could never even contemplate that level of immigration. I think some of the prenatal things that Australia is trying and that other countries are trying...there's not a particularly stellar track record in the past, including in the Roman past under the emperor, but I think it's worth trying, it's worth doing.
I think one thing that turns out to probably influence fertility more than any other policy is one that people don't think of in connection straightforwardly with fertility and that is housing prices, that where housing is cheap or affordable, as it is in the United States, you get high birth rates, relatively speaking. The US has the highest birth rate of any industrialised country. Right next door to us is Canada where it's much harder to get a mortgage and home ownership is much less affordable, they have a European style fertility rate. So people do need to be able to make that nest and to make it in time before their biological clock runs down, it's a very important variable.
Russia, the largest nation on earth, (now offering plenty of landspace for the supposedly burgeoning population growth of the third world):
The TimesSeptember 24, 2005
Mother Russia now sees more abortions than babies born
From Jeremy Page in Moscow
IN THE two days since Lisa Petrachkova was born, Russia’s population has dropped by an estimated 2,000 people.
By the time she is one, more than 200,000 Russians will have died of unnatural causes; almost seven times the estimated civilian deaths in Iraq since the war began.
NI_MPU('middle');By her 50th birthday, Russia’s population could have halved, based on current trends. Little does she know it as she lies next to her mother, Masha, in a Moscow maternity ward, but Lisa is on the front line of a national fight for survival. By Russian standards, she is lucky to have made it even this far: last year, there were 1.6 million registered abortions in Russia and 1.5 million births.
“The situation is critical,” said Vladimir Kulakov, deputy head of the Russian Academy of Medical Sciences and an adviser to President Putin on the demographic crisis. “The most important thing for every nation is to have confidence in its future.”
Russia’s population has been in decline since 1992 due to poor medical care, one of the world’s least healthy diets, and a national weakness for vodka.
Experts say the crisis is reaching a critical level that threatens not only its economic development, but its very existence.
According to the Federal Statistics Service, the population of 143 million could plummet to 77 million by the middle of this century. It dropped by almost half a million in the last year alone.
Mr Putin raised the issue in April, calling it a “national crisis”, but the Government has yet to respond. Mr Putin is now under pressure to dip into the Stabilisation Fund, designed to save excess oil revenues, to arrest the population decline.
“Everyone says they agree with me and we have to do something, but they have yet to take action,” said Professor Kulakov. He was among the first to highlight the issue in Pravda, the Communist Party newspaper, in 1986, but his article fell on deaf ears.
After the collapse of the Soviet Union, he tried to get the Duma to provide incentives for families to procreate but conservative politicians blocked his proposals. Only now is the Kremlin sitting up and listening. Life expectancy for Russian men has dropped to 58.8, which is 20 years below the average in Iceland. The main killer is heart disease but death by unnatural causes — industrial accidents, car crashes, military conflict — comes second, killing 200,000 people every year.
“This looks like a battlefield loss rate,” said Irina Sbarskaya, head of the Federal Statistics Service population department.
Russia’s birth rate, meanwhile, has risen slightly as baby-boomers from the 1980s reach reproductive age. But it is still way below the levels needed to keep the population stable. The result is that Russia will not have enough workers to drive its economy by around 2020.
Natalya Rimashevskaya, a population analyst, said: “We have reached a point of no return. In terms of numbers there will never be more of us than before. But this is not the worst of it. The danger is that we are reaching another point of no return, in terms of the quality of the population.”
That much is already clear from the number of Russian schoolchildren, which has dropped by one million a year since 1999, according to the Education Ministry.
There are now 5,604 schools in Russia with only ten pupils each. The short-term solution is to attract immigrants, especially ethnic Russians from former Soviet republics. But an influx of immigrants in the 1990s has already triggered a violent xenophobic backlash which threatens Russia’s social stability.
Over the long term, life expectancy in Russia will gradually improve if the Government maintains political stability and economic growth.
The problem comes in trying to increase the birth rate.
According to Professor Kulakov, 10 million Russians are sterile due to botched abortions, venereal diseases and exposure to radiation or harmful chemicals. Among those who are fertile, as in the West, couples are choosing to have fewer children, and later, because of the cost of raising them.
The Russian Government pays new mothers a one-off stipend of 8,000 roubles (£150) and then 500 roubles a month after the first year. But that barely covers basic costs. Masha Petrachkova, 26, and her husband, Aleksei, delayed having children in order to finish their studies and save enough money to move out of her parents’ apartment. She would like a second child, but is worried about supporting Lisa. “We’ll see how life goes and we’ll try to give Lisa everything she wants but it will be hard,” she said. “If you don’t have the financial resources in Russia, then you shouldn’t give birth.”
Depopulation is becoming a global phenomenon:
Growth Strategies, 5/1/05
THE NEW DEMOGRAPHY OF DEPOPULATION
World depopulation has become the most important demographic trend of our time, writes Ben Wattenberg in Fewer: How the New Demography of Depopulation Will Shape Our Future (2004). The global downward trend in fertility is both long-term and pronounced. The United States is now the only industrialized country in the world with a fertility rate at or above replacement level (the 2.1 births per woman per lifetime required for population stability). Fertility rates in less Â· developed countries, including those in Africa, Asia, Mexico, South America and the Middle East, have dropped dramatically over the last 35 years and now average just 2.8.
Wattenberg has been writing on this issue for years, but in March 2002 the United Nations finally caught up, making a major revision in its population projections (by assuming the developing world's Total Fertility Rate could eventually drop to 1.85). Writes the author:
For at least 650 years, since the time of the Black Plague, the world's population has headed in only one direction: up. But within a few decades, the number of people on earth will level off and then likely go down over an extended period of time. Never have birth and fertility rates fallen so far, so fast, so low, for so long, in so many places, so surprisingly.
In countries - both modern and less developed -throughout the world, birthrates and fertility rates have fallen at an astonishing rate. Because of extremely low fertility, Europe has already begun losing population and is projected to fall from 725 million today by approximately 100 million people or more by mid-century, and continuing thereafter. Japan will fall from over 125 million to just 110 million. In less developed countries the fertility rate is about 2.7 and falling fast; about 25 such countries are already at or below replacement level.
Among the modern nations, only the United States is an exception to the trend, as it is likely to grow from about 285 million to about 410 million people by mid-century because of higher fertility and continued robust immigration.
What is driving this trend is the "demographic transition" - the shift from high birth and death rates to low ones - extending to developing as well as developed countries. The demographic transition accompanies (or follows) other transitions of modernization: the economic (to freer markets) ; the social (to greater female autonomy) ; the political (to more pluralism) ; and the technological (to greater information availability). But no one really knows the outcome of this trend because it has never happened before.
What happens to businesses when markets stop growing? What happens to pension plans when there are fewer workers than retirees? What happens to politics when there are fewer taxpayers to pay for public spending? And how does a nation with a falling population defend itself against larger enemies (can you say, "nuclear proliferation"?).
The potential implications of depopulation have also been considered by demographer Nicolas Eberstadt. For example, what will be the effect on families in a world where the only biological relatives for many people will be their ancestors?
Author Charles Mann takes the scenario one step further by assuming advanced human longevity (via various technologies being developed now). In "The Coming Death Shortage" (The Atlantic Monthly, May 2005), Mann postulates that the result of expensive longevity treatments will be a tripartite society: the very old and very rich on top; a mass of the ordinary old; and the diminishingly influential young.
Contemplating these issues may seem premature, Mann concedes, but the consequences will undoubtedly be profound. All this represents merely a sketch of a future, writes Eberstadt, whose social, political and economic outlines promise to break sharply with anything in recorded experience.
Copyright FutureScan May 2005
Provided by ProQuest Information and Learning Company. All rights Reserved
- 13th-May-2007 # ADSAdvertisement Circuit advertisement
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- 14th-May-2007 #2
Re: Global !Depopulation!
Russia's population decline spells trouble
One demographer predicts that the ratio of worker to pensioner will be 1 to 1 within two decades.
By Fred Weir | Special to The Christian Science Monitor
MOSCOW – Russia is facing a demographic crisis so dire that its population could shrink by half within 50 years. The only obvious solution – to encourage youthful immigrants from overpopulated Asian neighbors such as China – is so politically sensitive that Russian leaders refuse to even discuss it.
Russia's challenge is a double whammy. Like most of the developed world, birthrates have fallen far below levels that would sustain the population. At the same time, Russian death rates, particularly among working-age males, have skyrocketed due to post-Soviet poverty, substance abuse, disease, stress and other ills.
Russia's population has fallen from 149 million a decade ago to just over 144 million today. Male life expectancy now stands at 59 years, with the average Russian woman living 72 years.
Demographic experts say that the country is losing one million of its population annually, and the nosedive is accelerating.
"Whole regions of Siberia and the Russian far east are already depopulated, and new deserts are appearing even in former 'black earth' regions of central Russia," says Lev Gudkov, a demographer with the independent Russian Center for Public Opinion Research. "We will not be able to maintain our industry, agriculture or our armed forces."
Since the USSR's collapse, mortality rates among young males have risen to levels never before seen in peacetime. Mr. Gudkov predicts that there could be one pensioner for every worker in Russia within 20 years. "Not even a rich economy could survive that kind of strain," he says.
Russian women, who tend to be as well-educated and career-oriented as their Western counterparts, have been been having fewer children since the 1970s. Births now stand at 1.1 per woman, far short of the 2.4 babies each that would be needed to stabilize the population.
Russian nationalists have widely blamed the demographic crisis on women, and their proposed solutions boil down to removing them from the labor market and sending them home to have more children.
Most Western countries compensate for lower birthrates by permitting temporary and permanent forms of immigration, which provide both skilled and unskilled workers to keep economies growing and tax revenues flush.
But even after the fall of the Iron Curtain, Russia has resisted that solution.
"The only acceptable sources of immigrants for us are the Russian-speaking populations of former Soviet countries in the Commonwealth of Independent States," says Yevgeny Krasinyev, head of migration studies at the official Institute of Social and Economic Population Studies in Moscow.
The severity of Russia's population decline has been masked by an influx of mainly ethnic Russian immigrants from the former Soviet states of Central Asia, the Caucasus and the Baltics, but the flow from the CIS is slowing to a trickle. Alexander Belyakov, a pro-Kremlin parliamentarian and head of the Duma's Resources Committee, says: "We will encourage people to come from CIS countries, but Russia does not need any other immigrants."
Experts say that Russia not only has no immigration strategy, it has no effective laws to govern the issue at all. "There are only prohibitions," says Viktor Voronkov, director of the St. Petersburg Center for Independent Social Research. "This guarantees that most immigration remains illegal, a boon to only the black market and the criminalized part of society." Tens of thousands of migrant construction workers, from Ukraine, Moldova, and other CIS countries fuel a growing housing boom on Moscow's outskirts, yet few have legal status in Russia or pay any taxes.
Mr. Vorontkov says the main obstacle to rational immigration guidelines is a deep fear of being overwhelmed by outsiders. "Xenophobia remains very strong, not only in the Russian street but at the highest levels of officialdom as well," he says. Most feared of all is China, sparsely populated Siberia's teeming neighbor. Experts say there are already as many as 200,000 Chinese living and working in Russia, mostly in trade and small manufacture.
Even among the most open-minded Russian experts, the idea of inviting Chinese workers to till Siberia's abandoned farmlands or lend their entrepreneurial skills to Russia's depressed cities seems dangerous. "The situation on the Chinese border is already out-of-control due to illegal immigration. Russia needs to protect itself," says Mr. Krasinyev. "Letting Chinese workers come in large numbers looks like a solution, but is it really?" says Vladimir Iontsev, a Moscow professor of demography. "You have to ask yourself, would Russia still be Russia?"
Male life expectancy now stands at 59 years, with the average Russian woman living 72 years
The wicked flee when none pursueth. Proverbs 28:1
'Rise like Lions after slumber In unvanquishable number - Shake your chains to earth like dew Which in sleep had fallen on you - Ye are many - they are few.'
Percy Bysshe Shelley
"When the people fear their government, there is tyranny; when the government fears the people, there is liberty. "
The internet has been a lifeboat for men's opposition to the floodings of feminism.
- 15th-May-2007 #3
Re: Global !Depopulation!
That is quite the gender divide isn't it? I suppose the United Nations institute of fairness and equality will get right on that.
Since so many people have been brainwashed to the overpopulation mantra, though I thought some might want to read through this blog while they await the UNs timely response:
Interestingly, it makes mention of Machiavellian predictions of extinction, which have not come to pass, and discusses the Machiavellian mindset in its relationship to past civilizations like Rome. i.e. how depopulation, not overpopulation, tore away at the once great empire following a decline in morality and the basic family unit. Veeerrryy interesting.
- 15th-May-2007 #4
Re: Global !Depopulation!
- 15th-May-2007 #5
Re: Global !Depopulation!
Just as feminism was taking hold in Rome, birth rates began to plummet as well. Here's a quote that's as hilarious today as it was when it was made in the times of ancient Rome:
“If we could survive without a wife, citizens of Rome, all of us would do without that nuisance.” So proclaimed the Roman general, statesman, and censor Quintus Caecilius Metellus Macedonicus, in 131 B.C. Still, he went on to plead, falling birthrates required that Roman men fulfill their duty to reproduce, no matter how irritating Roman women might have become. “Since nature has so decreed that we cannot manage comfortably with them, nor live in any way without them, we must plan for our lasting preservation rather than for our temporary pleasure.”
Have we learned anything from history? Nope, not a thing.
- 15th-May-2007 #6
Re: Global !Depopulation!
The thing is...
I don't really give a rat's ass about a depoluting earth. We DO in fact have the technology to deal with it in a proper fashion...
BUT, the problem is that at the same time as the rise of feminism, we ALSO had the rise of rampant SOCIALISM all throughout the West, leading to a MASSIVE debt which we have still not made even a tiny dent in paying off!
This is how the "overall trap" has been working on us.
Marxism has always wanted to destroy Capitalism. But if the debt says the same, and your population decreases by 50%... the people that are left are still responsible FOR THE WHOLE DEBT! ... anyone?... this is the way to destroy Capitalism: Mega Socialism = Massive Debt... Declining Population + Massive Debt = the end of Capitalism.
I wrote about this a while ago, if you are interested:
- 15th-May-2007 #7
Re: Global !Depopulation!
Those are some good insights Rob and I loved the commie quotes. How many people out there in t.v. la la land would have heard this one for example:
"Gentlemen, comrades, do not be concerned about all you hear about Glasnost and Perestroika and democracy in the coming years. They are primarily for outward consumption. There will be no significant internal changes in the Soviet Union, other than for cosmetic purposes. Our purpose is to disarm the Americans and let them fall asleep." -- Mikhail Gorbachev
You're one hundred percent right. We are being taken over and it's an inside job.
The wall didn't fall down because communism died. It fell because when they looked over the wall one day, they could no longer discern the difference between us and themselves.