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Overpopulation: Should anything be done?

rockwater
Posts: 273
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6/28/2013 2:08:27 PM
Posted: 3 years ago
Is overpopulation a major threat to modern society? Should governments do anything about it? If so, what?

I strongly oppose forcing, coercing, or paying people to limit the number of children they have.

Furthermore, there are serious economic problems when population growth becomes very slow, stops, or reverses itself. Look at China, where because of the One Child Policy, a married wife and husband have to support two sets of parents and four sets of grandparents with no siblings or cousins to help them. Look at Japan, where an aging population is becoming more and more expensive to support with healthcare and pensions, the middle-aged majority fiercely defend their cushy jobs, and the minority of young people find it very difficult to find anything other than low paying temporary work without benefits? How can an economy propsper with a huge portion if the population being old, retired, and sick and very few young people? How do you address overpopulation in an ethical way (killing, sterilizing, and punishing people for having children not being an option) without creating an economic catastrophe?
rockwater
Posts: 273
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6/28/2013 2:26:35 PM
Posted: 3 years ago
At 6/28/2013 2:11:54 PM, Wnope wrote:
How about more access to contraceptives and birth control?

That'd be a start.

Ok - but even if expanding acces to birth control slows global population growth to the rates now seen in developed countries, would the resultant glut of elderly people and lack of young people create an economic catastrophe?
sadolite
Posts: 8,842
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6/28/2013 2:35:15 PM
Posted: 3 years ago
Sterilize all those in favor of abortion?
It's not your views that divide us, it's what you think my views should be that divides us.

If you think I will give up my rights and forsake social etiquette to make you "FEEL" better you are sadly mistaken

If liberal democrats would just stop shooting people gun violence would drop by 90%
Stephen_Hawkins
Posts: 5,316
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6/28/2013 3:01:39 PM
Posted: 3 years ago
At 6/28/2013 2:35:15 PM, sadolite wrote:
Sterilize all those in favor of abortion?

Ignoring the utter ridiculousness of a sentiment (or the utter failure of this joke), this'll cause more births, and thus more problems, not less.
Give a man a fish, he'll eat for a day. Teach him how to be Gay, he'll positively influence the GDP.

Social Contract Theory debate: http://www.debate.org...
lewis20
Posts: 5,093
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6/28/2013 3:20:09 PM
Posted: 3 years ago
Doug Stanhope knows
Warning: very vulgar.
"If you are a racist I will attack you with the north"- Abraham Lincoln

"Do not wear clothing woven of two kinds of material" - Leviticus 19 19

"War is a racket" - Smedley Butler
Lordknukle
Posts: 12,788
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6/28/2013 5:28:18 PM
Posted: 3 years ago
Viruses, nukes, and zombie apocalypses seem to do the trick.
"Easy is the descent to Avernus, for the door to the Underworld lies upon both day and night. But to retrace your steps and return to the breezes above- that's the task, that's the toil."
GeoLaureate8
Posts: 12,252
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6/28/2013 6:05:28 PM
Posted: 3 years ago
Overpopulation is a myth. Look at the number of people on Earth vs the acres of inhabitable land.

China's metropolitan areas might be overcrowded but not the entire nation.
"We must raise the standard of the Old, free, decentralized, and strictly limited Republic."
-- Murray Rothbard

"The worst thing that can happen to a good cause is, not to be skillfully attacked, but to be ineptly defended."
-- Frederic Bastiat
DanT
Posts: 5,693
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6/28/2013 6:14:43 PM
Posted: 3 years ago
At 6/28/2013 2:08:27 PM, rockwater wrote:
Is overpopulation a major threat to modern society?
No.
Should governments do anything about it? If so, what?

Take all the warning labels off of products, and legalize following;
1.) suicide
2.) driving without a seat-belt
3.) Base jumping
4.) Drugs
5.) riding a bike & or motorcycle without a helmet
6.) etc. (you get the picture)
"Chemical weapons are no different than any other types of weapons."~Lordknukle
Lordknukle
Posts: 12,788
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6/28/2013 7:11:50 PM
Posted: 3 years ago
At 6/28/2013 6:05:28 PM, GeoLaureate8 wrote:
Overpopulation is a myth. Look at the number of people on Earth vs the acres of inhabitable land.

China's metropolitan areas might be overcrowded but not the entire nation.

Not really. If you define "habitable land" by its proximity to a water source and a food source, then it's quickly realized that there really isn't a lot of habitable land.

You can't just call praires in the middle of nowhere to be "habitable land."

If you aren't scared by rudimentary math and truth, this website is excellent:

http://www.zo.utexas.edu...

" For everyone presently on this planet to enjoy the lifestyle of an average American, we would need about ten planet Earths. We have only one. For everyone to live like an American, Earth can only support about one-tenth as many people. To increase the average quality of life, the number of people on Earth must be reduced. "
"Easy is the descent to Avernus, for the door to the Underworld lies upon both day and night. But to retrace your steps and return to the breezes above- that's the task, that's the toil."
Lordknukle
Posts: 12,788
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6/28/2013 7:12:55 PM
Posted: 3 years ago
At 6/28/2013 6:14:43 PM, DanT wrote:
At 6/28/2013 2:08:27 PM, rockwater wrote:
Is overpopulation a major threat to modern society?
No.
Should governments do anything about it? If so, what?

Take all the warning labels off of products, and legalize following;
1.) suicide
2.) driving without a seat-belt
3.) Base jumping
4.) Drugs
5.) riding a bike & or motorcycle without a helmet
6.) etc. (you get the picture)

Suicide is one of those things that aren't really affected by legality.
"Easy is the descent to Avernus, for the door to the Underworld lies upon both day and night. But to retrace your steps and return to the breezes above- that's the task, that's the toil."
DetectableNinja
Posts: 6,043
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6/28/2013 7:18:13 PM
Posted: 3 years ago
I don't think there's really anything to do to stop population growth.

I personally think we need (and when I say "we," I mean private organizations and companies, not the government) need to do MUCH more with GM/biotech foods, and we as consumers need to stray away from the organic fad. It's just a waste of resources to give a small percent of the population a warm fuzzy feeling while half the world starves to death.
Think'st thou heaven is such a glorious thing?
I tell thee, 'tis not half so fair as thou
Or any man that breathes on earth.

- Christopher Marlowe, Doctor Faustus
000ike
Posts: 11,196
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6/28/2013 7:21:37 PM
Posted: 3 years ago
At 6/28/2013 6:05:28 PM, GeoLaureate8 wrote:
Overpopulation is a myth. Look at the number of people on Earth vs the acres of inhabitable land.

China's metropolitan areas might be overcrowded but not the entire nation.

no, how about YOU bring up those numbers so your claim isn't so painfully unfounded.
"A stupid despot may constrain his slaves with iron chains; but a true politician binds them even more strongly with the chain of their own ideas" - Michel Foucault
Yin
Posts: 23
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6/28/2013 7:46:47 PM
Posted: 3 years ago
No one in the thread has yet defined "Overpopulation". So, how are we to know if anything should be done if we first do not understand what we are talking about?
Lordknukle
Posts: 12,788
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6/28/2013 8:10:25 PM
Posted: 3 years ago
"Overpopulation is a myth" is the creationism of most free marketers.
"Easy is the descent to Avernus, for the door to the Underworld lies upon both day and night. But to retrace your steps and return to the breezes above- that's the task, that's the toil."
DanT
Posts: 5,693
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6/28/2013 9:49:54 PM
Posted: 3 years ago
At 6/28/2013 7:12:55 PM, Lordknukle wrote:
At 6/28/2013 6:14:43 PM, DanT wrote:
At 6/28/2013 2:08:27 PM, rockwater wrote:
Is overpopulation a major threat to modern society?
No.
Should governments do anything about it? If so, what?

Take all the warning labels off of products, and legalize following;
1.) suicide
2.) driving without a seat-belt
3.) Base jumping
4.) Drugs
5.) riding a bike & or motorcycle without a helmet
6.) etc. (you get the picture)

Suicide is one of those things that aren't really affected by legality.

Not true. Cops try to stop people from committing suicide, and they even place people who are suicidal on lock-down.
"Chemical weapons are no different than any other types of weapons."~Lordknukle
Lordknukle
Posts: 12,788
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6/28/2013 10:31:46 PM
Posted: 3 years ago
At 6/28/2013 9:49:54 PM, DanT wrote:
At 6/28/2013 7:12:55 PM, Lordknukle wrote:
At 6/28/2013 6:14:43 PM, DanT wrote:
At 6/28/2013 2:08:27 PM, rockwater wrote:
Is overpopulation a major threat to modern society?
No.
Should governments do anything about it? If so, what?

Take all the warning labels off of products, and legalize following;
1.) suicide
2.) driving without a seat-belt
3.) Base jumping
4.) Drugs
5.) riding a bike & or motorcycle without a helmet
6.) etc. (you get the picture)

Suicide is one of those things that aren't really affected by legality.

Not true. Cops try to stop people from committing suicide, and they even place people who are suicidal on lock-down.

I'm sure they do, but the effects of that are marginal at best.
"Easy is the descent to Avernus, for the door to the Underworld lies upon both day and night. But to retrace your steps and return to the breezes above- that's the task, that's the toil."
wrichcirw
Posts: 11,196
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6/28/2013 10:42:14 PM
Posted: 3 years ago
At 6/28/2013 7:46:47 PM, Yin wrote:
No one in the thread has yet defined "Overpopulation". So, how are we to know if anything should be done if we first do not understand what we are talking about?
At 8/9/2013 9:41:24 AM, wrichcirw wrote:
If you are civil with me, I will be civil to you. If you decide to bring unreasonable animosity to bear in a reasonable discussion, then what would you expect other than to get flustered?
Lordknukle
Posts: 12,788
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6/28/2013 10:44:11 PM
Posted: 3 years ago
At 6/28/2013 7:46:47 PM, Yin wrote:
No one in the thread has yet defined "Overpopulation". So, how are we to know if anything should be done if we first do not understand what we are talking about?

It's a pretty simple definition that wouldn't have wasted other people's time if you had just bothered a google search.

"Excessive population of an area to the point of overcrowding, depletion of natural resources, or environmental deterioration."

http://www.thefreedictionary.com...
"Easy is the descent to Avernus, for the door to the Underworld lies upon both day and night. But to retrace your steps and return to the breezes above- that's the task, that's the toil."
sadolite
Posts: 8,842
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6/28/2013 11:28:40 PM
Posted: 3 years ago
At 6/28/2013 3:01:39 PM, Stephen_Hawkins wrote:
At 6/28/2013 2:35:15 PM, sadolite wrote:
Sterilize all those in favor of abortion?

Ignoring the utter ridiculousness of a sentiment (or the utter failure of this joke), this'll cause more births, and thus more problems, not less.

How so
It's not your views that divide us, it's what you think my views should be that divides us.

If you think I will give up my rights and forsake social etiquette to make you "FEEL" better you are sadly mistaken

If liberal democrats would just stop shooting people gun violence would drop by 90%
wrichcirw
Posts: 11,196
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6/28/2013 11:38:16 PM
Posted: 3 years ago
At 6/28/2013 10:44:11 PM, Lordknukle wrote:
At 6/28/2013 7:46:47 PM, Yin wrote:
No one in the thread has yet defined "Overpopulation". So, how are we to know if anything should be done if we first do not understand what we are talking about?

It's a pretty simple definition that wouldn't have wasted other people's time if you had just bothered a google search.

"Excessive population of an area to the point of overcrowding, depletion of natural resources, or environmental deterioration."

http://www.thefreedictionary.com...

His point is that no one has been able to properly define "excessive population".
At 8/9/2013 9:41:24 AM, wrichcirw wrote:
If you are civil with me, I will be civil to you. If you decide to bring unreasonable animosity to bear in a reasonable discussion, then what would you expect other than to get flustered?
Mirza
Posts: 16,992
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6/28/2013 11:53:45 PM
Posted: 3 years ago
At 6/28/2013 10:44:11 PM, Lordknukle wrote:
At 6/28/2013 7:46:47 PM, Yin wrote:
No one in the thread has yet defined "Overpopulation". So, how are we to know if anything should be done if we first do not understand what we are talking about?

It's a pretty simple definition that wouldn't have wasted other people's time if you had just bothered a google search.

"Excessive population of an area to the point of overcrowding, depletion of natural resources, or environmental deterioration."

http://www.thefreedictionary.com...
Circular.
Yin
Posts: 23
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6/29/2013 7:57:03 AM
Posted: 3 years ago
At 6/28/2013 11:53:45 PM, Mirza wrote:
At 6/28/2013 10:44:11 PM, Lordknukle wrote:
At 6/28/2013 7:46:47 PM, Yin wrote:
No one in the thread has yet defined "Overpopulation". So, how are we to know if anything should be done if we first do not understand what we are talking about?

It's a pretty simple definition that wouldn't have wasted other people's time if you had just bothered a google search.

"Excessive population of an area to the point of overcrowding, depletion of natural resources, or environmental deterioration."

http://www.thefreedictionary.com...
Circular.

Precisely.

Is anyone able to proffer a definition of "overpopulation" without being circular?
RoyLatham
Posts: 4,488
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6/29/2013 9:51:39 AM
Posted: 3 years ago
Overpopulation is having too many people for available natural resources to support, resulting in widespread poverty and famine.

The scare of overpopulation peaked in the late 60s and early 70s. The publication of Paul Ehrlich's "The Population Bomb" in 1968 was a key contributor. Key predictions included worldwide famine leading to the collapse of society before 2000. For those who may have missed it, this did not happen. Technology vastly increased food production.

Ehrlich bet a free market economist that the prices of certain basic commodities would soar, while the free market guy bet they would actually be cheap decades hence. They were in fact cheaper.

Great famines occurred in India and China in the 1950s. Now famines are only caused by rulers preventing food aid from being delivered.

The United Nations now predicts that the world population will stabilize of it's own accord within 50 years.

I think that the greatest threat is a political movement enforcing green energy, banning genetically engineered food, and demanding a primitive lifestyle. Technology produces at least a 12x increase in food production, and green energy is about six times as expensive as fossil fuels. That would produce poverty and starvation in the Third World. The radical ecology movement is more like a religion than anything else, and it is subject to extreme fanaticism.

It's not likely to happen, because people don't die without a fight, but nothing in realm of politics and neo-religion can be ruled out.
lewis20
Posts: 5,093
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6/29/2013 11:17:20 AM
Posted: 3 years ago
At 6/29/2013 9:51:39 AM, RoyLatham wrote:
Overpopulation is having too many people for available natural resources to support, resulting in widespread poverty and famine.

The scare of overpopulation peaked in the late 60s and early 70s. The publication of Paul Ehrlich's "The Population Bomb" in 1968 was a key contributor. Key predictions included worldwide famine leading to the collapse of society before 2000. For those who may have missed it, this did not happen. Technology vastly increased food production.

Ehrlich bet a free market economist that the prices of certain basic commodities would soar, while the free market guy bet they would actually be cheap decades hence. They were in fact cheaper.

Great famines occurred in India and China in the 1950s. Now famines are only caused by rulers preventing food aid from being delivered.

The United Nations now predicts that the world population will stabilize of it's own accord within 50 years.

How is the population possibly going to stabilize in 50 years? The exponential curve that is population will simply level off?
"If you are a racist I will attack you with the north"- Abraham Lincoln

"Do not wear clothing woven of two kinds of material" - Leviticus 19 19

"War is a racket" - Smedley Butler
Stephen_Hawkins
Posts: 5,316
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6/29/2013 11:31:36 AM
Posted: 3 years ago
At 6/28/2013 11:28:40 PM, sadolite wrote:
At 6/28/2013 3:01:39 PM, Stephen_Hawkins wrote:
At 6/28/2013 2:35:15 PM, sadolite wrote:
Sterilize all those in favor of abortion?

Ignoring the utter ridiculousness of a sentiment (or the utter failure of this joke), this'll cause more births, and thus more problems, not less.

How so

How does making abortion (and therefore the termination of life) illegal (which is the obvious consequence in a democracy where the majority believe that abortion ought to be illegal) raise the population? In the same way that criminalising driving will cause more people to use public transport.
Give a man a fish, he'll eat for a day. Teach him how to be Gay, he'll positively influence the GDP.

Social Contract Theory debate: http://www.debate.org...
Cermank
Posts: 3,773
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6/29/2013 11:33:09 AM
Posted: 3 years ago
Overpopulation is good, as long as the demographics are in our favour. As long as the high population is provided with resources that maximise our productivity, its all good.
darkkermit
Posts: 11,204
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6/29/2013 11:37:20 AM
Posted: 3 years ago
At 6/29/2013 11:33:09 AM, Cermank wrote:
Overpopulation is good, as long as the demographics are in our favour. As long as the high population is provided with resources that maximise our productivity, its all good.

I think it really depends. In the short-run, I'd say decreasing the population would lead to higher wages, since each new worker becomes less productivity due to marginal decrease in productivity. However, people's value in economic growth is the creation of capital, and ideas. However, these can only be appreciated in the future, not the present.
Open borders debate:
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Stephen_Hawkins
Posts: 5,316
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6/29/2013 11:38:38 AM
Posted: 3 years ago
At 6/29/2013 11:33:09 AM, Cermank wrote:
Overpopulation is good, as long as the demographics are in our favour. As long as the high population is provided with resources that maximise our productivity, its all good.

Overemployment, meaning literally "too much", means it is a necessary problem. Resources cannot be magically spawned like a game of garry's mod, so the population needs to change (either in its growth/size, or its needs).
Give a man a fish, he'll eat for a day. Teach him how to be Gay, he'll positively influence the GDP.

Social Contract Theory debate: http://www.debate.org...