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Monday, November 1, 2010

Ehrlich and Holdren: Death “Reasonable Price to Pay” for Well-being of Society

“a small net increase in deaths” is “a reasonable price to pay”

Redoubling efforts to halt the growth of the human population and eventually reduce it

Instituting worldwide campaigns to emphasize limiting the number of sexual partners, and to increase the use of condoms and spermicides. Such changes would both lower the incidence of STDs and encourage the evolution of reduced virulence in them (Ewald, 1994). Special attention should be paid to methods that can be adopted by women (e.g., Rosenberg and Gollub, 1992; Rosenberg et al., 1992, 1993), which would tie in neatly to related methods of improving the epidemiological environment by limiting human population growth (Ehrlich et al., 1995).

From Ehrlich we switch gears to John P. Holdren, who authored (also with Paul Ehrlich) an article called “The Meaning of Sustainability: Biogeophysical Aspects” in the World Bank document Defining and Measuring Sustainability. In the article, the diabolical duo propose a stark reduction in the percentage of humans on earth:

“No form of material growth (including population growth) other than asymptotic growth, is sustainable; Many of the practices inadequately supporting today’s population of 5.5 billion people are sustainable; and at the sustainability limit, there will be a trade-off between population and energy-matter throughput per person, hence, ultimately, between economic activity per person and well-being per person.”

“This”, Holdren and Ehrlich continue, “is enough to say quite a lot about what needs to be faced up to eventually (a world of zero net physical growth), what should be done now (change unsustainable practices, reduce excessive material consumption, slow down population growth),and what the penalty will be for postponing attention to population limitation (lower well-being per person.”

The most gruesome and interesting part of their elucidation is buried in the notes (page 15). In speaking about all kinds of intolerable “harms” that counteract sustainability, Holdren and Ehrlich are willing to make an exception for pollution, if it will cut some time of the average life expectancy:

Harm that would qualify as tolerable, in this context, could not be cumulative, else continuing additions to it would necessarily add up to unsustainable damage eventually. Thus, for example, a form and level of pollution that subtract a month from the life expectancy of the average member of the human population, or that reduce the net primary productivity of forests on the planet by 1 percent, might be deemed tolerable in exchange for very large benefits and would certainly be sustainable as long as the loss of life expectancy or reduction in productivity did not grow with time. Two of us have coined the term “maximum sustainable abuse” in the course of grappling with such ideas (Daily and Ehrlich 1992).”

In the horrible euphemistic way these proposals disguised as “possibilities” are usually being presented lies hidden a horrible truth. These head-hunters of the scientific dictatorship are not simply powerless psychopaths exchanging abstract ideas. They are powerful sociopaths rather, occupying key positions within the marble halls of academia and government. In the final equation, they are after you and your children.

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