Sunday 28th of February 2021

of over-population...


Over-population is a sore point on many fronts. This cartoon from the New Yorker circa 1960s is frighteningly telling, but is it accurate?


In Australia, the saying "populate or perish" was famous. But the dynamics of population are not as clear as filling all the squares. As capitalism relies extensively on population growth, some people argue that this is a natural occurrence as if capitalism was a natural condition that will take care of itself — including excesses. The main question is "do we need to balance population versus nature?" 


As population growth is likely to exacerbate the situation of global warming — which many pundit don't "believe" in — and the natural decline — which many pundit don't care as long as one can see elephants in zoos — are we prepared to take the big step of population control? The Chinese did it and for a while they "paid a price", but it seems they managed to get through. In India, the situation is far more "messy" than it looks because of the multiplicity of "social castes". Presently the farmers are revolutionising against the central government which has made some pacts with the big agribusiness — ...


So where to on this important subject? Kit knightly tells us:



When there are lots of rabbits, you get lots of foxes. The foxes eat the rabbits, the rabbits decrease. Fewer rabbits feed fewer foxes. Fewer foxes means the rabbits grow more numerous. And so the cycle repeats.

This cycle has maintained life on this planet for millions of years before humans, and will do so for millions of years afterward. To seek to corral or control nature has been historically shown to be both impossible and unnecessary.

So yes, it’s important to oppose the pervasive myth on a purely intellectual level.

But it’s equally important – perhaps more important – to oppose it on philosophical, even spiritual level. To hold fast against the idea that human life, any life, can be reduced to a matter of cold arithmetic. That bankers or royals or scientists have any kind of right to decide exactly which people are necessary, and which are simply taking up space.

Simply put: we need to outright, in full voice, reject the idea that some people don’t matter. Or that people as a whole are an unnatural plague which needs to be cured.





This article by Kit Knightly on population is very simplistic. To some extend it is somewhat trying to ignore a finite reality. It is supporting a view of the Corbett Report on the subject, thus it should be correctly godly. It is not. It is completely wrong.


The equilibrium of foxes and rabbits is a wrong killer argument. Australia is a prime example where this "balance" is basically the source of the EXTINCTION of native species — and HUMANS HAVE HAD TO WORK HARD AT PROTECTING THESE SPECIES. Add escaped domestic cats to the mix and the result are catastrophic. Rabbits became a plague in this country — and this was not due to the lack of foxes. Cats, foxes and rabbits were introduced species. 




In order to limit the damage done by rabbits, myxomatosis was introduced to kill rabbits. Meanwhile cats ravaged the native species and it seems foxes prefer the edge of cities rather than the open fields. Poisons such as 1080 are used in baits to kill foxes. Cat eradication programs are also enacted. In the cartoon above, a returned WW1 soldier has been given a plot of land, but drought and rabbit plagues are enough to destroy any hope of making good. Macquarie Island has been cleared of introduced pests... This was not due to a "natural balance" but to a deliberate program of eradication...



The cycle of foxes and rabbits is based on a similar equation to :




But this equation is on a singular situation. When many such equation are concurrent with many different species, the result is chaos and extinction.


As well, this equation does not apply to humans directly — because humans have found ways to cheat nature. According to the prospect of what we do, we will be comfortable until we’ve taken all the land possible to breed more of us — and nature will have “disappeared”. Then we’ll eat our dead.


What is the magic number for the maximum population of humans on earth? 15 billion of us? 45 billion of us? Why not 150 billion? There is no rule, except common sense at this stage, but it can be calculable on how many square metres we allow for each other to live. Would life become tenuous for more people than less?


And what would this mean for natural spaces and wild species?  How long can we burn fossil fuels for? 


At one stage or another, we will have to make a stylistic relative choice for the survival of nature. And this will include control of populations. I would argue that it could be arbitrary but necessarily so. We do reject the idea that some people don’t matter, true. But the Western world, despite its aggressive stance on the planet, has more or less managed to control population growth, contrarily to religious views that promote population growth beyond sustainability. 


The "poor populations" of the planet syndrome, that of coping the end of the population control stick is a bit thin. It’s better to educate people to become more “intelligent” than breeding more of the same class of ignorance… It may sound elitist, but it could be a better way to share the limited cake.


More of us is going to lead to conflict, thus there are philosophical views that wars are necessary to reduce the number of the human population that breeds like foxes and rabbits. We have found ways to cheat nature with peace and vaccines. 


Global warming with more people can only increase the speed of such, unless the emissions per new capita are also limited to zero… 


All people matter. But more of us does not mean a better life. There will a point at which we will have to choose our own population "balance". Nature won't help us here.



Gus Leonisky


Unpopular atheist.








Human population is growing exponentially [this is the wrong mathematical term used here*]. What will this mean in the future?

Fewer than 800 million people populated the Earth in the mid-18th Century. Today, barely 250 years later, we are more than 7.7 billion and will continue growing until 2050 by at least another 2 billion.

Taking into account the fact that human beings appeared on Earth more than four million years ago, what happened in our recent history for the number of inhabitants on the planet to start multiplying exponentially? The tipping point was generally accepted to be the Industrial Revolution, but there are many smaller revolutions that contributed to population take-off which have brought the planet to its current dangerous overpopulation: revolutions that are medical, technological, agricultural, financial, transport and demographical in nature, among others.

Asia, the world's most populous continent

About 61 % of the global population live in Asia, the world's most populous continent. China alone is home to 1.44 billion people and India to 1.39 billion, accounting for 19 % and 18 % of the world's population respectively.

Overpopulated areas face many challenges, most of which stem from the impact of climate change or human overexploitation of natural resources, but a recent study published by Nature Communications points to rising sea levels as one of the greatest dangers. According to this study, coastal areas currently inhabited by 300 million people are set to experience annual flooding by 2050, unless measures are taken to hold back the water — a figure three times higher than previous estimates.

Asia is the area at greatest risk of flooding due to climate change, due to its very low-lying land and overpopulation. Of the 300 million people at risk, 237 million live in six countries: Bangladesh, India, China, Vietnam, Thailand and Indonesia.

The Indonesian capital of Jakarta, along with its suburbs, is currently home to over 30 million people and it is expected to be entirely submerged by 2050; the Indonesian government is therefore considering moving their capital elsewhere. The main reason for this is the continuous extraction of groundwater, which is speeding up the rate at which the city is sinking.


Causes of overpopulation

It took hundreds of years to reach one billion inhabitants, yet in little over two centuries this figure multiplied sevenfold. Why? There are a series of factors that favored the spectacular growth:


Falling mortality rate, mainly due to medicine: the Industrial Revolution brought with it a revolution in the world of medicine. Scientific progress allowed us, from then onward, to overcome diseases that previously could only end in death. The invention of vaccines and discovery of antibiotics such as penicillin saved thousands of lives and were a key factor in unfettered population growth. As the number of annual deaths fell, while births remained constant, so the population increased.


Progress in food production: for its part, scientific research and technological improvements saw more efficient agricultural production, resulting in year-round crops, more resistant seeds, pesticides, and so on…. aspects that Malthus had not taken into account when putting forth his catastrophic theory condemning the human race to disappear. Improvements In fishing and livestock methods also contributed to the provision of more food with which to nourish the population.


Migration and urban concentration: in certain countries, the impact of migration and accumulation of the population in cities was very important, but not only with respect to demographic growth, but also in relation to wealth generation. Currently, over half the global population live in cities of more than 300,000 inhabitants and which are expected to continuing growing until they reach 70% of the population. 

Over the past 200 years, the global population has multiplied sevenfold #Overpopulation



Effects of overpopulation

What does this constant growth mean? There are several direct consequences of overpopulation:

Exhaustion of natural resources: the main effect of overpopulation is the unequal and unrestrained use of resources. The planet has a limited capacity to generate raw materials and each year the natural resources deficit – the consumption of resources at a faster rate than the planet is able to generate them – is reached earlier. Consequently, in developing countries, overpopulation causes fierce rivalries to control resources. Territorial conflicts over water supply are due in many cases to geopolitical tensions and can end in war.


Environmental degradation: unbridled use of natural resources, as well as growth in energy production from coal, oil and natural gas (fossil fuels) is having a negative impact on the planet. Consequences number, on the one hand, deforestation and desertification, extinction of animal and plant species and changes in the water cycle and the most direct consequence of all in the form of emissions of large quantities of greenhouse gases leading to global warming.


Rising unemployment: on the other hand, a high number of workers exist for a limited number of vacancies and this seems destined to lead to high rates of joblessness in the future. This in turn could provoke rising crime and social revolt.


Rising living costs: all the above will lead, at the end of the day, to increasing living costs in most countries. Fewer resources, less water, the packing of many people into confined spaces and a lack of money are provoking an increase in the cost of living whereby only a percentage of the population will be able to cover all their needs.


Technological advances: on the positive side, high concentrations of people in urban areas also brings with it research and development in the quest for solutions to the population’s needs. An example is the popularisation of communication technologies and the generation, collection and use of Big Data for sustainable ends, as well as the emergence of Smart Cities adapted to ensure good living conditions for the increasing population.


The depopulation of rural areas in favour of cities may, paradoxically, create major challenges for such places. It results in a growing number of under-utilised infrastructures, due to migration away from these rural areas, and previously domesticated landscapes whose ecosystems deteriorate without human attention.

As you can see, the impact of overpopulation is tremendous. Overpopulation is one of the biggest challenges humanity is facing and threatens the near future of the planet in economic, environmental and social terms.


SourcesUnited Nations Population FundWorld Population HistoryOur World in DataInfo Lasopublico.esConserve Energy FutureBBCSociology, DiscussionPopulation MattersFertilabExpansiónNaciones UnidasEl País



*Should human population be growing exponentially, we would already be at more than 250 billions (Gus-approximation) humans on this planet. 

towards 2100...



121 million births and 121 million deaths by 2100

Causes unknown, war excuded.


Meanwhile back in 1958:





the race to the bottom to stay on top?...

One Billion Americans



If the most challenging crisis in living memory has shown us anything, it’s that America has lost the will and the means to lead. We can’t compete with the huge population clusters of the global marketplace by keeping our population static or letting it diminish, or with our crumbling transit and unaffordable housing. The winner in the future world is going to have more—more ideas, more ambition, more utilization of resources, more people. 
Exactly how many Americans do we need to win? According to Matthew Yglesias, one billion.
From one of our foremost policy writers, One Billion Americans is the provocative yet logical argument that if we aren’t moving forward, we’re losing. Vox 
founder Yglesias invites us to think bigger, while taking the problems of decline seriously. What really contributes to national prosperity should not be controversial: supporting parents and children, welcoming immigrants and their contributions, and exploring creative policies that support growth—like more housing, better transportation, improved education, revitalized welfare, and climate change mitigation. Drawing on examples and solutions from around the world, Yglesias shows not only that we can do this, but why we must


Read more:




One Billion Americans: The Case for Thinking Bigger is a book by Matthew Yglesias, first published in 2020. One Billion Americans argues for a variety of programs, including increased government spending on child care and day care, the use of S-trains for urban transportation, and increased immigration to the United States, under the general rubric of increasing the American population.[1][2] It suggests that a substantial increase to the population of the United States is necessary to perpetuate American hegemony.[3] The book gives special attention to housing policy, critiquing zoning requirements that limit urban density in American cities.[4]

Jacob Bacharach panned One Billion Americans in a review for The New Republic, arguing that the policies it recommends are only loosely connected to Yglesias's central proposal to vastly increase the population of the United States.[5] Felix Salmon, reviewing One Billion Americans for The New York Times, noted that while the policy recommendations presented in the book are good, the premise for vastly increasing the US population is impossible and unjustified.[1]


Read more:


(By the way congrats to Wikipedia for 20 years of publication. At this level, congratulation to the 146,573th new reader of our little site YD ( since 2005. 



Gus: By the time the USA reach one billion, India would be at 5 billion and China edging 3 billion. Africa would be on 3.5 billion. Europe would be at 1.5 billion. on the whole the world population would be 15 billion and increasing. By then global warming would be at plus 6 degrees Celsius above present levels and the wilds of nature non-existent. 


Despite his enormous journalistic and analytical credentials, it appears that Matthew Yglesias is a beeding idiot. But he could be right and we're on our merry way on a race to the bottom... Something will push us into a reset, if not now, sometimes in the future... See: whether trump is an idiot or we do not like him... in conformity is the jailer of freedom and the enemy of growth. —JFK...


Growth is a major problem in a VERY limited environment... Hey, pay attention, you, at the back of the class!... Read from top.