Thursday, January 16, 2020

Attenborough's support for the status quo is the problem

Further to our earlier post, the naturalist and BBC personality, David Attenborough, confirms yet again that he is seeking to be a celebrated misanthrope, as well.

Attenborough has warned that humans have “overrun the world” in a trailer for A Life on Our Planet, a forthcoming documentary looking at the changes on Earth during his lifetime.

But for the record, we repeat for emphasis once again, population growth is a sign of social success, not something to be decried and that the rising numbers will eventually begin to drop. 

European and North American fertility rates peaked in 1955, dropping steadily since, and in Europe are now well below replacement. In Asia and Latin America, fertility has fallen steadily from about six in 1950 to below three in 1995. In Africa, fertility peaked at 6.75 in the early 1960s, dropping slowly since.

It is an often heard comment that there are too many people in the world, and overpopulation is the cause of hunger. The real cause must be kept from us. In a world of plenty, a huge number go hungry. Hunger is more than just the result of food production and meeting demands. The causes of hunger are related to the causes of poverty. The major cause of hunger is poverty itself. Hunger in today’s world is tragic and unnecessary. When food is treated as a commodity, those who can get food are the ones who can afford to pay for it. Access to food and other resources is not a matter of availability, but rather of ability to pay. Put bluntly, those with the most money command the most resources, whilst those with little or no money go hungry. This inevitably leads to a situation whereby some sections of humanity arguably have too much and other sections little or nothing. To understand why people go hungry you must stop thinking about food as something farmers grow for others to eat, and begin thinking about it as something companies produce for other people to buy.

World hunger exists because:
(1) capitalism dispossessed hundreds of millions of people from their land; the current owners are the new plantation managers producing for the mother countries;
(2) the low-paid undeveloped countries sell to the highly paid developed countries because there is no local market because the low-paid people do not have enough to pay
(3) the current Third World land owners, producing for the First World, are appendages to the industrialised world, stripping all natural wealth from the land to produce food, lumber, and other products for wealthy nations.

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