No one supports a planned contraction of our population and economy.
Yet everything gets better with fewer people.
Those that are on the fence with respect to having children will decide to have none. Those that want a family can still enjoy one child. If we are worried about inappropriate selection for males we can provide a tax incentive for having females.
Those that care about growth and having more stuff can be assured that as the population falls there will be more resources per capita available, especially if we can induce the population to fall faster than the depletion rate of non-renewable resources.
There will be much less chance of war. There will be less traffic. Housing will be more affordable. Forests and wildlife will bounce back. The air and waters will clear. We will have more land available to grow food the old way when fossil energy is depleted. We will have space to move when climate change forces relocation.
To be open and honest, there will be a large reduction in paper wealth and credit with a shrinking economy, but that’s going to happen soon regardless of what we do. Instead of waiting for a crash we can anticipate the contraction and implement policies to ensure some fairness between rich and poor.
There will also be a lot less advanced technology. But again, that’s going to happen soon regardless of what we do due to depletion of non-renewable energy and other resources.
Fewer iPhones and more forests and fish for our grandchildren is a very good trade-off.
What I’m really talking about is getting ahead of the curve in a planned, controlled, and civilized manner. Rather than letting nature take over in a chaotic painful collapse.
I think it’s a hopeful positive message. Something to fight for.
Why doesn’t every wise leader and concerned grandparent and environmental activist and climate scientist and biologist in the world scream this message every chance they get?
The limits to growth today are so obvious and in our face that the time is ripe to start a new narrative about how we might live in a finite world.
I suspect the majority of citizens would support the idea of a stable or falling population. But I also suspect the majority would oppose big government forcing population reduction and economic contraction policies.
Breaking through this opposition will require limits to growth awareness.
And limits to growth awareness will require us to find a way to override our evolved denial.
It would help if more people who understand what is going on would speak up.
Silence guarantees a despot rising to blame others, war, and chaos.
4 thoughts on “Why is my message so unpopular?”
I’ve really appreciated your posts…I found them at the beginning of a personal journey through the inevitability of overshoot and collapse, and they continue to provide food for thought on the other side of the stages of grief.
Unfortunately, I don’t have an answer. I just want to say I’m equally perplexed. I work with some very smart people, building complex computer systems. In our work we confront paradoxes that should prepare us for truth that goes against the grain of assumptions, and usually, after some failures, find our way to the right solution. It often involves holding space for two competing truths, making space for both rather than bludgeoning one or the other into submission. So I feel that my peers should be well-equipped to see the paradox at the heart of default societal belief systems like “infinite growth on a finite planet.”
However…not. And the way the issues at hand are ignored, minimized, rationalized or belittled has the whiff of override from another level. I can see the moment when the eyes acquire a glaze…when the mouth betrays the slight hint of a smirk…when glances among the participants of a conversation convey a shared secret of which the speaker is not a part.
I shouldn’t dwell on why this is so, though I’m curious. It doesn’t matter, after all. It is enough that a decision has been taken. Perhaps there is a kind of pleasure in closing your eyes at the top of the roller coaster, and easing into the descent. Maybe if we were all “consenting adults” in playing the belief system out to the (dreadful) endgame, it wouldn’t be so bad. This world is, however, full of children. Why isn’t this thought the one that motivates each individual to at least grapple with these concerns, at least once in their life? It disappoints me. It makes me doubt the spirit in the core of those whom I want to regard as good.
As I grapple with this problem I finally wonder about the reality of many people. The opacity and degree of indifference to the looming crisis is suggestive of simulation. I say this not because I seriously entertain the idea, but to underscore the places I end up, failing to find reasonable explanations for an illogical lack of concern.
Anyway, let me know if you find an answer, lol. 🙂
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Thank you for the beautiful heartfelt thoughts.
It is fascinating how otherwise intelligent people can ignore reality. You can see the mechanism at work in a person’s eyes when starting to discuss overshoot issues. It’s like a curtain draws down. Watch for it and you will see it.
If it is not inherited denial of reality, as explained by Varki, then we need another really big and powerful genetic explanation.
The overshoot problem and its consequences are just to overwhelming to face. People need hope and a future they can believe in in order to get out of bed in the morning. They (realistically) have a fantastic feeling of impotence against such an enormous and unmanageable predicament. Most of us are locked in our life choices and situation. Nobody can turn the global situation around anymore. Facing up to overshoot would also mean admitting that the last 70 years we screwed up completely. But nobody is to blame, except for human (technological) optimism, competition, and the biological wish to have many children. It’s too much. And it’s going to be horrible.
Most people are stupid, wait no, better, they are retarded.
That’s why, simple and raw, most people are retarded. they worship themselves as gods, like they own the entire planet; they are ignorant and stupid, selfish and greedy.
This is why they deny it. They think they deserve everything, they have the rights to do anything they want.