Wednesday, December 20, 2006


A couple of weeks ago I posted to the Further Left Forum a request to gather contributor’s ideas as to what the top three world problems seem to be to them and what they believe to be the solution to each may be. And there it languishes surprisingly enough. Although my original idea was for a better profile of the people posting to Forum, I also had a curiosity as to whether it had become little more than a bulletin board for internet gleanings, socialist literature quotations and pet political peeves, with no real original thinking or activism beyond the keyboard. I still don’t know and won’t until someone tells me. Either there or, now, here.

I have listed 10 headings under each of which may lie the roots of any of the others or different names or extensions. ie. Imperialism could be thought to cover oppression, poverty, hunger, terrorism and war.

CRIME / CIVIL DISOBEDIENCE - Law is not the cure for crime, it is the cause.

GLOBAL WARMING - Air conditioners are not the cure for hotter days, they're the cause.

WORLD HUNGER - Agriculture is not the cure for famine, it is the cause.

IMPERIALISM - Occupying countries doesn’t make them feel like home to anyone.

OPPRESSION - Wealth is not the cure for insecurity, it is the cause.

OVERPOPULATION - Mankind’s slightest indiscretion wounds earth mortally.

POLLUTION - Sawing off a limb we’re out on.

POVERTY - The base of a pyramid whose peak is as far away as it can afford.

TERRORISM - Does a uniform make a difference?

WAR - Elite asset management, population control and profit taking

Since it was my curiosity that prompted this fill-in-your-own-blanks poll, I will go first, with no intention of influencing anyone else, as unavoidable as that seems to be.

Priority #1 - War must be abolished and any weapons of war and means of their manufacture must be destroyed. The use and manufacture of weapons used against nature such as chemical fertilizers, defoliators and repellents must also cease.

Priority #2 - Population growth must at least be stopped, if not reversed. Poverty, famine, and pollution are the direct result of a never ending attempt to produce more food to feed the unchecked, always starving increase in population resulting from the last food production increase. Growth economies rape and poison the earth in the production of more for endless profit as if population increase was a natural inevitability. Since our food supply is artificially abundant we must educate the entire world population about and encourage the use of contraception, despite religious arguments otherwise. If there exists one key, natural element in inter human antagonism is having to crowd around a too small food bowl.

Priority #3 - Most central governments rule over populations far too large to be considered representative or to feel responsible for them. Returning administration of human affairs to tribes composed of a “circle of friends,” with only a clan or council of “fair witness” environmental overseers coordinating larger projects. Intertribal affairs need only involve the tribes, with the overseers as arbitrators only if requested. This should be incentive for a return to individual participation in the community welfare.

The request for replies is quite serious, even to my friends and or readers whose shyness, antagonism, erudition or illiteracy has been accepted as excuses for not commenting in the past. So have at it …

This post will remain at the top until 2007 for your convenience.


mullet said...

no politics?

Anonymous said...

I'm only going to address one for the moment - Overpopulation
While I find questionable the notion that the planet cannot produce enough to maintain all six billion of us and many more to boot, it seems undeniable to me that those who control the resources are, in a word, stingy. However, as long as those who can change the distribution of resources choose not to, there will continue to be way too many of us and not enough natural disasters & plagues to keep our numbers in line.

I think people breed mostly for just a couple of reasons: they are biologically driven to it; and, their egos allow them to convince themselves that children from their loins are better than other children [a circumstance which, incidentally, I think also helps ensure the continuation of the species]. The former I see as a practically insurmountable condition. Unless science comes up with a vaccine for horniness, people will keep on fucking. The latter is just damn sad and indicates a poor understanding of genetics, parenting or both.

So how do we fix the problem? As much as I am a fan of adoption instead of reproduction for people who want children, I've recently come to question the value of adoption by those living in the first world, particularly in the United States. US citizens suck up a disproportionate amount of the world's resources and spew out a disproportionate amount of the world's pollution. Adopting a child from another country creates another US consumer, which is ultimately a Very Bad Thing. Of course, I recognize and deeply appreciate the value of providing for a child who otherwise would languish in an orphanage or live an unending existence in a "temporary" state of fosterage. I just wish there were a way for more people with the ability to adopt children to avoid feeding the beast in the process. Anyway, adoption is still a better option than breeding.

So, the question becomes, how do we convince more people to adopt rather than breed? One method is to set the example. For myself, I'm not having kids and working toward putting myself in a position where adoption would be beneficial. Another method is to spread education about adoption and work toward dispelling the myths that surround it and the stigmas that are attached to it.

Greater availability of birth control options would go a long way toward helping things. However, not only do birth control options have to be available, people have to feel the need to use them. Breeding is seen as everyone's right; one can criticize others for any number of choices they make in the world, but suggesting that reproduction is a poor choice is viewed as blasphemy. People need to come to an understanding that reproduction is not just a personal right, that it affects the whole world.

Well, that's my rant for today :)

gregrandgar said...

Mullet - politics will be around as long as two people are left on the planet.

Erica - thanks for your well considered and expressed views on the most important, most primary problem of them all, overpopulation. As you said, adoption is the best solution to absorbing the "extra people" but doesn't address the overproduction of new models in the countries from which the adoptees are being procured. War has served as the only man made, preemptive birth control. And genocidal tyrants, lest we forget them.
In perusing the list of population growth amongst nations, the African continent averages around 3.5% increase or a doubling in little over 20 years. A rate of 1% (US=.91%) still doubles the population in 70 years. World wide education and birth control facilities should be able to make that a negative percent as it is in Germany, Greenland, Poland, Czech Republic, Hungary, Russia and South Africa.

troutsky said...

Im going to be a little more general and say loss of liberty and unavailability of non-violent processes to create change are biggest problems.These result in the unequal distribution of wealth and power which cause overpopulation, environmental destruction, war, poverty, violent culture etc. I also think the welding of religion to our hollow system of politics makes it even more dangerous and fraudulent.

gregrandgar said...

Hello again, Troutsky, thanks for offering feedback on this. I find myself at a loss as to how any form of government, or distribution of wealth and power, unless specifically addressing reproduction, could possibly have anything to do with our initial overpopulation as realized in the 1950s when ZPG was proposed, and not pushed very hard by the UN since by the way. The growth rates fifty years later show a marked change in the countries showing a less than 1% annual increase, which is still not a halt but does have to do with the government's concerted education program on reproduction and the need to reduce growth of the population. Still I can't make the connection of wealth and power to a worldwide population growth problem. I would like to understand.

dotbar said...

Hey thanks for the comment on my blog! I would like to post a very intellectual, witty and awe-inspiring comment on your blog, but, alas, I seem to be none of these things. I will, however, note that you have a very gutsy, half-naked pic of yourself which is very intriguing.

mullet said...

OK dotbar....felt the same myself...but i drew the line at nudity! brazen, i tell thee! brazen......

sexy said...