Thursday, June 3, 2010

I think we're in big trouble

Things that humans do that have dubious benefit and a huge cost:
  • Armed conflict
  • Conservatives and liberals arguing
  • Nations
  • Capitalism
  • Car-based society
The first three seem like the same thing to me, in principle: "us and them" thinking. We're right and you're wrong. I come from this country and you don't. I don't want my tax dollars helping those people. In earlier posts, I've complained that Jesus encouraged "us and them" thinking. This is how I'm convinced that he was the son of no worthy god. If that's the best the Supreme Being can come up with, then I say we get ourselves a new Supreme Being.

Capitalism works in the very short term for a very small percentage of the population. Even in the U.S., there are children living in squalor. Capitalism doesn't work for them. It doesn't work for the vast majority of the world. There are way too many starving people out there to allow ourselves to say that capitalism works. I don't know whether a communist society would work any better; I have no knowledge of any communist country where the people are well off. That doesn't mean there aren't any. Capitalism is also obviously really bad for the environment. And now the economy is going to hell. We need something that works a lot better for everyone, something sustainable.

I saw an ad in a magazine recently, talking about how food production will have to double in order to feed the projected human population of nine billion in the year 2050. See, this is the wrong way to look at it. We need to make sure that the population doesn't reach nine billion. We need to start educating people and empowering women. Once women can choose for themselves whether to have children and how many children to have, surely they will start having fewer children. I'm probably naive and wrong. But it seems plausible, and it can't hurt, unless it gets religious fanatics so worked up that they declare all-out war to impose their theocracy.

I assume at this point that we are in trouble, that we rich are about to join the rest of the world, that food supplies are going to hit a big bump of some kind, that all of these governments going bankrupt will cause some worldwide economic crisis that dwarfs anything we've ever seen. I'm afraid that a lot of people will die, no matter what we do. There is still hope for us, I think, but I also think that we've crossed a line that will inevitably result in unprecedented human die-offs. I'm afraid that it will be in the billions.

Surely there are a few super-geniuses in the world who are working on a real plan to save the world. Not just turning the lights off and carpooling. That kind of stuff only delays the inevitable. We need a gigantic change, a new way of looking at things. I'm trying to think of it, but I bet there are people far smarter than I who could come up with something good.

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