Wednesday, September 21, 2016

People count

Climate change may very well end civilisation unless humanity does something. Population engineering is a proposed answer to dealing with the issue. Unfortunately, it is merely a twenty-first century rebranding of discredited Malthusian population control views. Its proponents say that if men and women have fewer children, the climate would be better off - people beget more people, and more people beget pollution. The more moderate adherents seek to end tax breaks for families or levying fines on each additional child a couple brings into this world while the more etreme call for eugenic controls such as compulsory contraception and sterilization as ways to reduce population and pollution to save the world.

However, they have things backside forwards. Instead of focusing on population reduction efforts, those concerned about climate change should focus on making the present redundant economic system more efficient by replacing it. As Marx and Engels pointed out a century and a half ago Malthus failed to account for the fact that more people meant more brains and hands to develop increasingly effective, efficient methods of food production to provide more calories to more people. The solution to worldwide climate change will come from the deliberate work of millions of people: diplomats, engineers, inventors, teachers, and, yes, parents who work collaboratively to share ideas, institute best practices, and design and implement the technology to fix the planet’s problems. Creative ideas originate collectively from the research and experiences of many different people. Limiting the number and diversity of individuals who can contribute to the development of solutions is a shortsighted and self-defeating approach to environmentalism.

More people with the brain power to think out solutions and the muscle power to implement them is exactly what the world needs. No matter what anyone says, people are much more than just a polluting parasite on the planet.

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