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contraception first or prosperity first?

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  • aditmore@juno.com
    I have heard that argument made by leaders in the field, but cannot point to any scientific studies. I start my counterpoint with the scientific maxim
    Message 1 of 1 , Jan 5, 2012
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      I have heard that argument made by leaders in the field, but cannot point
      to any scientific studies. I start my counterpoint with the scientific
      maxim "correlation does not prove causality" and suggest reverse
      causality. That reduced fertility caused industrialization and therefore
      not visa versa. Thus it is NOT a coincidence that Thomas Malthus lived
      at the beginning of the industrial revolution, for example, or that the
      plague preceded the renaissance. However there are a couple of reasons
      why generalized technology would reduce fertility, which basically is
      that technological forms of evening entertainment start competing with
      sex. These include electric lights, radio and television, and erotic
      photography and publication. So even if we partly accept the concept of
      prosperity driven demographic transition, we can get far more specific
      than "prosperity".
      Also, worldwide prosperity is far too expensive, polluting and
      resource intensive to be a solution, as making 7 billion people
      prosperous would inherently run us out of petroleum and push global
      warming past the point of no return. Thus that solution is impossible
      regardless of whether prosperity inherently reduces fertility or not.
      The resources necessary to do it that way simply no longer exist.

      On Wed, 4 Jan 2012 16:33:35
      If I am not mistaken you are pointing out the general concept of beliefs
      being affected by evolution, sociobiology, but not specifically about the
      beliefs regarding how many children one should have. Do you have examples
      of that specific concept?

      The rough outline would be that an LFG (Large Family is Good) belief
      system will evolve into existence by the fact that those without that
      belief will generally use birth control and thus reduce in numbers. I'm
      looking for something that in essence makes it clear that the demographic
      transition should not be used to predict longer term birth rates. Or to
      put it another way, the interpretation that the lower birth rates we see
      in developed countries being caused by women's empowerment, education,
      and wealth as if there was a mechanism forcing this to happen, is bogus.

      It would be nice to find a paper or sociobiologist that will make it
      clear that a better interpretation of that data is that until the advent
      of cheap birth control there was no difference in the birth rate between
      those that believed LFG vs those that had no particular beliefs. Now that
      cheap birth control does exist, there is a difference, and thus we see
      the vast majority of people that have access to birth control using it
      and decreasing in numbers relative to those that don't have birth control
      or believe some form of LFG.

      On Wed, Jan 4, 2012 at 8:51 AM, <> wrote:

      I had a sociobiology text but loaned it out, never got it back, and
      forgot the exact title and author; though I think the title was simply
      "Sociobiology" Let's see what wikipedia has to say about it.
      Yeah, the wikipedia article is pretty good except it requires some
      extrapolation to see the implications for overpopulation activists as
      it's not really spelled out for you.

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