From: John Grigg (email@example.com)
Date: Fri Feb 22 2002 - 02:42:14 MST
Vanessa Novaeris wrote:
Okay so if the global population is already projected to fly off the charts, AND we have all this wonderful scientific progress in fertility (on a planet that's already too densely populated), AND our life expectancy is predicted to increase continuously, couldn't this be a problem? So if there are more babies in addition to longer lifespans, wouldn't the population density be even higher? Does anyone else see a problem with this? To be honest, it kind of scares me - I get anxiety attacks just going out to the shopping mall on a Saturday afternoon. Too many people!!!
As has already been said, you will see lots of people when living in high population growth regions! And yet so much of the earth is not populated so there is so much room to grow. I realize though not every square mile of the planet is optimal for human habitation!
I think at least for a long time, only the middle-class and better in developed nations will generally have real access to serious life extension tech which really makes a difference in lifespan. Birthrates in the developed world are already at an all time low. I don't see these "near-immortals" breeding like rabbits and overpopulating the planet! lol
A good question in my mind is how radical life extension will coincide with fairly mature nanotech. I think before we have to worry about an immortal population which greatly overtaxes the earth's resources as we perceive them now, we will have technology to fairly easily handle the population pressures both on and off planet. I think looking back on things in the year 2040 will see us doing fine in this regard.
I'm all for the prospect of an extended human lifespan. But it makes me crazy to think about people spending so much time, energy & money on making their "own" biological child when there are so many children already here (for adoption) that need homes & loving families. To me, this whole compulsion of biological heredity is irrational. Why are we investing so much energy trying to make more people - we already have too many! Why not spend more time improving the quality of life for the ones who are already here? I realize I might be missing something here - perhaps its because I'm much too young & I don't have children, but I just don't understand. I'm probably way off the mark with this one so I'm already prepared to get chewed out :P
LOL! I am close with several couples who had extremely hard times trying to adopt children. It took them years and a lot of money to finally get the chance to bring a child into their home. So adoption is no easy answer, certainly not with all the red tape and bureaucracy involved.
I do agree there are many children, especially in the third world, who desperately need to be adopted into good homes. This is done to an extent, but at nowhere the scale needed. Again, doing this expensive.
I think a prepared couple having a child of their own that they will love and nurture is a very beautiful and important thing. I don't see why biological and social motivators for this behavior should be seen as bad, as long as they are kept in perspective.
In the developed world we do not have too many people!! This is a very popular myth. In fact, many developed nations(especially in Europe) are not even producing enough children to simply replace their current population levels! And believe me, these governments are very aware of the longterm problems they will be facing. They need young workers to replace the old ones retiring who are now drawing government benefits. And at least to an extent, a developed nation's size determines their potential economic and political power.
Some interesting thoughts by a Stanford professor.
Ben Wattenberg testifying before the House Ways and Means Subcommittee on Social Security
September 21, 2000
An article from an Australian source:
This archive was generated by hypermail 2.1.5 : Fri Nov 01 2002 - 13:37:40 MST