Tuesday, August 19, 2008


Population Reference Bureau - In mid-2008, world population stood at 6.7 billion, up from 6.0 billion in 1999. The next milestone, 7 billion, will likely be passed in 2011 or 2012.

During the 20th century, nearly 90 percent of population growth took place in countries classified as less developed by the United Nations - all countries in Africa, Asia (except Japan), Latin America and the Caribbean, and Oceania (except Australia and New Zealand). This remarkable development resulted from an unprecedented decline in death rates in LDCs brought about by the spread of public health measures, health care, and disease prevention, particularly after the end of World War II in 1945. These improvements evolved over centuries in the more developed countries, but the LDCs were able to benefit from them virtually overnight.

The imbalance in population growth seen over the last century will only intensify in the years to come.

Between 2008 and 2050, virtually all population growth will take place in the LDCs. Overall, the small amount of population growth projected for MDCs will be largely accounted for by the United States and Canada. But most of that growth will likely be due to immigration from LDCs. While the LDCs are projected to increase from 5.5 billion in 2008 to 8.1 billion in 2050, the MDCs are projected to grow from 1.2 billion to just 1.3 billion.

During 2008, about 139 million babies will have been born worldwide and 57 million people will likely die, so that global population will increase by 82 million. Overall, women would average about 2.6 children at the pace of childbearing in 2008, but that figure varies substantially from region to region and country to country. In MDCs, women average 1.6 children, a number insufficient to forestall eventual population decline. Some European countries and Japan are already experiencing more deaths annually than births. In the LDCs, excluding the large statistical effect of China, women average 3.2 children, twice that of the wealthier countries.

In the 50 UN-defined least developed countries, the number is even higher-4.7 children per woman.


For the first time, the world population is evenly divided between urban and rural areas. By 2050, urban residents are likely to make up 70 percent of the world’s population. . .

More than half of urban growth occurs in cities with populations of 500,000 citizens or fewer.

Megacities-urban areas with populations of 10 million or more-only account for 8 percent of the urban population.

Virtually all of the urban population growth will be happening in less developed regions. By 2050, North America’s population may be 90 percent urban.

Urban populations consume more food, durable goods, and energy than their rural counterparts.


At August 19, 2008 1:16 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

There's an obvious consequence to the dynamics suggested by these numbers. As a species, we will either rein in our appetites, both literal and figurative, or we will starve to death. The situation is similar regarding weaponry: we will either devise a way to curb our natural, human aggressiveness, or we will kill ourselves off - especially considering how increasingly lethal weaponry has become. We have reached a point where we have the know-how to create hell on earth. Ultimately we will discover that we NEED some kind of religion. Without some kind of moral compass that reaches beyond profit-taking and utility, we are doomed. Simply doomed.

At August 19, 2008 3:06 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

The power elite have already made life hell on earth for many people. Often they do it under the banner of religion, and religion teaches people to just sit on their hands while injustice happens.

We don't need religion.

OK 1:16, maybe YOU need religion, that is, if you are incapable of any ethics or moral compass on your own. Many of the rest of us are not so morally challeneged as to need religion to take meaningful benefical action. I'm sorry you are so weak on morality you need religion, perhaps some education could help you.

At August 19, 2008 3:24 PM, Anonymous pig bodine said...

"Nature does not know extinction; all it knows is transformation. Everything science has taught me, and continues to teach me, strengthens my belief in the continuity of our spiritual existence after death." The epigraph is a quotation from a pamphlet written by Wernher von Braun and first published in 1962
(epigraph from "Beyond the zero"-part one of Gravity's Rainbow)
[...] a million bureaucrats are diligently plotting death and some of them even know it [...]
Thomas Pynchon

At August 19, 2008 4:07 PM, Anonymous dispassionate observer said...

3:06, too bad your 'moral compass' does not point more directly towards civility.

At August 19, 2008 4:33 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...


Where religion is concerned, we are way past the point of civility. The world is being destroyed by fundamentalist idiots from three religions which all worship the same god. Their hatred of each other (basically over whose "prophets" are "correct") far exceeds their hatred of those with other gods or no god at all. Judaism, Christianity, and Islam are, taken together, a blight on the world that has brought humanity to the edge of extinction. All three must become extinct themselves before there will be any possiblity of peace and civility.

At August 19, 2008 7:07 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

is 5, La Guerre, II

Humanity i love you
because you would rather black the boots of
sucess than enquire whose soul dangles from his
watch-chain which would be embarassing for both
parties and because you
unflinchingly applaud all
songs containing the words country home and
mother when sung at the old howard
Humanity i love you because
when you're hard up you pawn your
intelligence to buy a drink and when
you're flush your pride keeps
you from the pawn shop and
because you are continually commitings
nuisances but more
especially in your own house

Humanity i love you because you
are perpetually putting the secret of
lifer in your pants and forgetting
it's there and sitting down
on it
and because you are
always making poems in the lap
of death Humanity
i hate you

At August 19, 2008 7:10 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...


i thank You God for most this amazing
day:for the leaping greenly spirits of trees
and a blue true dream of sky;and for everything
which is natural which is infinite which is yes

(i who have died am alive again today,
and this is the sun's birthday;this is the birth
day of life and of love and wings:and of the gay
great happening illimitably earth)

how should tasting touching hearing seeing
breathing any--lifted from the no
of allnothing--human merely being
doubt unimaginable You?

(now the ears of my ears awake and
now the eyes of my eyes are opened)

At August 19, 2008 7:52 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Lord, protect me from those who kill in your name.

At August 19, 2008 7:54 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Die Off: population crash resources.

At August 20, 2008 4:45 AM, Anonymous Gas Pants Press said...

What is the freaking point of this article? Is this really 'Progressive' news? Looks a hell of a lot more like a Malthusian psychological press release from some Rockefeller neo-eugenic project.

What is the 'progressive' point of getting us 'developed' white liberal westerners all feared up about immigration (invasion) and population growth (explosion) in 'less developed' countries? What's the point, Sam?

And you continue to publish the Malthusian population crap on this website regularly. You just might get us progressive liberals in the right frame of mind for whatever depopulation measures need to be taken (or just happen to happen) to ease the stress on 'carrying capacity'.

When you know damn well it is the political economics of power, capitalism, imperialism and over-consumption by US (you and me) who are the problem.

There is an explosion of greed & fear; a scarcity of imagination and cooperation. Economic "growth" backed by stealth and force is the main, immediate problem - not population growth. The problem is neo-colonial extraction and war, obscene inequalities and arrogant waste. The problem is that the privileged few guzzle and consume too much of the world's resources. Instead of seeing other people as a threat, or as competition for scarce resources, we should see them as cooperative allies in building a sustainable economic and food model.

"Die-off" is manufactured, just like everything else - and the first thing to go must be the mind.

At August 20, 2008 9:32 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

So exactly what non-malthusian resources are going to miraculously appear to make your utopia possible, 4:45?

At August 20, 2008 2:27 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

4:45 - WORD! WORD, I say! Every time I have tried to say the same I have been shut down and attacked here because Sam is SO FOOLED on this fearmongering issue, and so is most of what's left of "the left"! Thanks for speaking up!


Scroll down and click to a page called "Our crowded planet NOT" – which most people find a total surprise.

Come on, Sam, get a clue on this one! You can't defeat an enemy that has outposts in your head!

At August 20, 2008 4:40 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I visited BEarthright and it looks to me like a lot of fast talk for people who aren't quite in touch with reality. There seem to be a lot of arbitrary assumptions used in the figures and the reasoning of "Our Crowded Planet Not."

At August 20, 2008 6:59 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

It's just gobsmacking incredible how we so willingly and mindlessly do the work of keeping US under THEIR control FOR the wealthpower giants!

For Godsake and just for starters, is there anything but anything upon this earth MORE obvious than the natural fact that Mother Nature's Birth Is Uncontrollable?? There is nothing MORE COMMON than reproduction – that's existence existing, transcending – sex and birth – common as common gets. The most common flower on earth is the lowly DAISY

The rich buy themselves bouquets of ROSES – the rich hate everything common – it is the rich who OWN THE LAND – it is THOSE WHO OWN THE EARTH (and want you to let their heirs keep it forever) who NEED for YOU to buy into the meme'd-up fear of overpopulation! If we do things differently (there is SO MUCH possibility!), there are NOT TOO MANY OF US at all! All of us on the globe could stand together in one city in Florida! This planet is NOT AT "CARRYING CAPACITY" – that's a meme you've swallowed – wise up! – rise up! – it is where education is withheld from people that population doesn't level off – where jobs are withheld from people who must eat – better education and better living conditions = no overpopulation problem. We are creating enough wealth for every family on the globe (2 working persons) to have $200,000 per year – that amount meets needs for good, comfortable lives and good education for the next generation - Society had no right to strip away everyone's birthright to a place to put their feet without compensation - no right! - and society has NO RIGHT to withhold jobs – work is the first condition of life – bear no fishee, bear no eatee – the insertion of money between work and eat does not change the fundamental situation! The wealthpower giants CREATE JOB SCARCITY – THEY CREATE LAND SCARCITY – they mis-use land – cause great waste - then they tell you there's too many of you! – and you buy it! What a comedy of human unintelligence! The overpowered wealth giants don't want to give you commoners a crack at running the planet because you have convinced them you are mental midgets - BECAUSE JUST LOOK AT WHAT YOU LET THEM GET BY WITH! – Just look at the memes you will spread for them! Everything we thought our country was is lost to us – we are lost to ourselves, to our own good sense! we are unnecessarily continuing the world to writhe in bloody hell – we are comfortable with our selfdestruction – sleeping every night with constant acquiescence to extreme extreme maldistribution of wealthpower and it's conjoined results! Pleasure-principle, non-reality people doing enough good to get themselves a good reputation without EVER going near what would solve our problems! Get RID of the idea of having wealthpower giants and get rid of wealthpower giants – this enormous lack of power you have allowed yourselves is why you can fix NO PROBLEM ON EARTH until you murder the stupid and unjust idea of having unlimited personal fortunes!

The time will come (if we survive) when it will seem incredible to posterity that supposedly rational people - even the learned - opposed in the name of reason economic equity, equal economic justice for all...and spent their energies and time convincing themselves there were too many of them and that's what the danger was and that's why they were so unhappy...

THIS is our human insane reality: two people do a fortnight's work, and we give one of them $1 and the other $50,000,000 [average, all his life] $1,000,000,000 [peak rates of pay]. We give 99% of people less than the world average, we give 90% of people less than a 10th of average, so that we can give 1% of people more than average, so we can give 1% of people up to a million times average. We calmly sit by while a few rake most of the money out of the social pool of work/ wealth/ products of work. We look in the pool and we say: Isn't it sad that there is so little in the pool for most people (there must be too many of us!), and we make no connection between this and the people pumping out most of the water in the pool with a fleet of siphon trucks...while each and every family earns, makes, creates US$200,000 a year of wealth/ products of work.

We know and believe that the rich get richer and the poor get poorer - we know that this has been going on for millennia - the few getting richer and richer and richer [and more and more powerful] for millennia, and most getting poorer and poorer and poorer [more enslaved] for those same millennia, and yet we don't know we are robbing *every one* of ourselves of everything.

The American dream of freedom from tyranny was founded on the prevention of unjust wealth concentration - and we don't know we have utterly neglected that path. The price of democracy is vigilance, and we do not even know we have been utterly unvigilant regarding the root and fount of democracy, freedom, and justice, peace, happiness, and survival.

Every day, every hour, every human is turning out misery, turning the handles that turns out minced humans minced happiness, not because they are evil, just because they are wrong - just because they do not dump their mindless faith in human custom and use common sense.

People have brains - but they keep them away from certain areas of their realities! Let us for once set aside our lemming faith in the crowd and bring our behaviour in front of the tribunal of our wits.

Governments cannot save us - they have been devoured by superwealth. Only a grassroots growth in awareness, realism, sobriety, simple good sense, maturity, practicality in the people can drive events to safety and peace.

People are the resource that gives all value to other resources.

STOP swallowing lies and THINK.

At August 20, 2008 7:05 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

4:40 gives a quick blanket dismissal that took no thought at all. 4:40 cannot point to any error in the reasoning, nor give a fact that counters, but prefers to subtly dissuade others from seeing BEarthright for themselves. I wonder why 4:40 does this thing.

At August 20, 2008 10:05 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Dear Sam,

Thank you for publishing informational articles on overpopulation and future population trends, even though a few perceptually challenged folks will always scream "Malthus! Malthus!" no matter how factually the pieces are written.


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