Population Decline and the Fall of the Developed World

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Vic

Elite Member
Jun 12, 2001
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The US population has soared by 100 million in my life time already.
You are vastly over the mark on those metrics and are full throttle into the brick wall of resource scarcity and environmental destruction due to overpopulation.
And it all stems from immigration policy.

I want sustainability, which means far less growth than we have today. Which requires a huge reduction in immigration.
Population changes always lag by a generation or 2. So instead of watching the raw numbers, we have to calculate the trend. And the trend says we will see rapid workforce population decline in a generation even if the millenials started pumping out babies right now. Which they won't.
 

Moonbeam

Elite Member
Nov 24, 1999
70,112
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There are a lot more resources than energy and a lot more waste than carbon dioxide. Solar isn't going to create more copper, or nickel, or cobalt.
Yet historically science has always found ways around resource scarcity. Look at the latest research in battery technology.
 

Moonbeam

Elite Member
Nov 24, 1999
70,112
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The looming solution to all our problems
To offset entropy.

Because intelligence is the only potential solution (if a solution is possible) to a universe headed towards death by entropy.
(as I was saying before I saw your new post appear, is that the obvious answer is AI. Que Sera, Sera whatever will be will be, whether the end of humanity of a friend is not for us to see at least not yet.

But an AI is either the end of work or the end of humanity. But the option seems possible to me that individuals might be able to live a life with a guarantee of basic needs and no reason to work to earn them.
 

Vic

Elite Member
Jun 12, 2001
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Would that not imply that a person can't feed and house themselves. I remember reading somewhere that people not so long ago in Egypt could settle land and build there all of their own volition, no cost to own no taxes to pay, but that didn't sit well, apparently, in the new world order of things. Don't two people together automatically create an economy? So much of the economy today looks to be really about making a profit from or milking the economy while not contributing anything.
Hmm... this could be an interesting discussion. So subsistence living does not require economies, besides some bartering. But most people wouldn't want to live that way, given the choice. Early economies came about due to marauders who would go from village to village pilfering. This was inefficient because it discouraged the villagers from generating any excess production for fear that it would be pilfered. Eventually villages began raising their own armies to protect themselves, and economies were created to feed and house those armies as well all the rest who weren't farmers, hunters, or builders.
So I guess I should correct my earlier statement to say that economies exist so that not everyone has to be a farmer, hunter, or a builder, and so that farmers, hunters, and builders can enjoy a standard living greater than that of mere subsistence.
 
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Vic

Elite Member
Jun 12, 2001
49,615
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The universe is headed toward entropy. What it the purpose of solutions when there are none?
I hate nihilism.

Humanity exists upon an entropy gradient, little different than, say, fire. In fact, many physicists believe that life arises as an inherent byproduct of earth's entropy gradient. So the purpose of solutions, because the fire of humanity is self-aware, is to keep it burning as long as possible.
 

Vic

Elite Member
Jun 12, 2001
49,615
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You know for certain there isn't?
There is no way around heat death. But because it's something like a googol years in the future, it really shouldn't be a pressing concern for humanity. Just sayin.
 
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Moonbeam

Elite Member
Nov 24, 1999
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Hmm... this could be an interesting discussion. So subsistence living does not require economies, besides some bartering. But most people wouldn't want to live that way, given the choice. Early economies came about due to marauders who would go from village to village pilfering. This was inefficient because it discouraged the villagers from generating any excess production for fear that it would be pilfered. Eventually villages began raising their own armies to protect themselves, and economies were created to feed and house those armies as well all the rest who weren't farmers, hunters, or builders.
So I guess I should correct my earlier statement to say that economies exist so that not everyone has to be a farmer, hunter, or a builder, and so that farmers, hunters, and builders can enjoy a standard living greater than that of mere subsistence.
I suppose I can agree, but I really hate nihilism. You paint such a bleak picture of the damnation of the producing and preserving classes to an elite group at the mercy of a protection racket.
 
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Moonbeam

Elite Member
Nov 24, 1999
70,112
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I hate nihilism.

Humanity exists upon an entropy gradient, little different than, say, fire. In fact, many physicists believe that life arises as an inherent byproduct of earth's entropy gradient. So the purpose of solutions, because the fire of humanity is self-aware, is to keep it burning as long as possible.
When I read this "I hate nihilism"my first thought was well this is why I love you but then I realized something I have been thinking about for a long time. That the reason that conscious self awareness seeks to defeat entropy is because self awareness is the joy of being in love with life itself. The tendency of the will to live is built into the structure of the universe. The purpose of the universe is to become aware of itself, to realize itself as God.

PS: With regard to substance living what if the the drudgery of subsistence was done by AI robotic labor.
 
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nickqt

Diamond Member
Jan 15, 2015
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Societal collapse is inevitable and is due to multiple factors. A drop in labor will effect the "quality of life" of the people who are able to eek by as society collapses, but it isn't going to lead to societal collapse...it is just a symptom of it, same as the wealth gap, air/water/soil pollution, climate change, etc.
 

FelixDeCat

Lifer
Aug 4, 2000
27,988
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Yeah, no. The biggest threat to the world is overpopulation.
Exactly. There are way too many people on this planet. A planet full of growing pollution, lack of food, freshwater and dwindling resources.

The population needs to collapse by at least 50% worldwide from 8 billion to 4 billion to make the planet more habitable and resources sustainable.
 
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kt

Diamond Member
Apr 1, 2000
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Exactly. There are way too many people on this planet. A planet full of growing pollution, lack of food, freshwater and dwindling resources.

The population needs to collapse by at least 50% worldwide from 8 billion to 4 billion to make the planet more habitable and resources sustainable.
Aren't you all about being pro-life? Or have you now switched side?
 

FelixDeCat

Lifer
Aug 4, 2000
27,988
1,392
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The US population has soared by 100 million in my life time already.
You are vastly over the mark on those metrics and are full throttle into the brick wall of resource scarcity and environmental destruction due to overpopulation.
And it all stems from immigration policy.

I want sustainability, which means far less growth than we have today. Which requires a huge reduction in immigration.
You are 100% correct. But dont tell that to Biden. It seems as though he wants the US population well over a billion before he leaves. And almost noone will speak English.
 
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Muse

Lifer
Jul 11, 2001
35,255
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Yeah, no. The biggest threat to the world is overpopulation.
Certainly more than depopulation. And climate change is very definitely an existential threat. Plus, the developed world was built on fossil fuel production, which peaked some time ago and is going downhill. Economic expansion has been rendered impossible. Get a fucking grip.
 
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Muse

Lifer
Jul 11, 2001
35,255
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So you don't support abortion, but are all in on culling of the human population?
That's the oxymoron the Republican party is standing on, thin ice getting thinner and thinner.
 

Muse

Lifer
Jul 11, 2001
35,255
6,808
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To add more context, I'm sure most everyone would agree that resource depletion is bad. Peak oil, peak phosphorus, water scarcity, etc are all common subjects. But what is the most important resource of them all? Labor.

I would like to hope that a left-leaning forum such as this one would agree with that. Labor is the resource that makes all other resources possible. And with population decline, labor is what's becoming more scarce. And the consequences are dire.
Nobody told you about automation?
 
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Vic

Elite Member
Jun 12, 2001
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Nobody told you about automation?
Automation will never make labor obsolete. Literally never. It will make certain jobs obsolete, particularly lesser skilled jobs, but overall automation will always create more jobs than it destroys.
Think of automation as a tool, because that's what it is. And tools create jobs for those who know how to wield them.
 

Vic

Elite Member
Jun 12, 2001
49,615
12,213
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Exactly. There are way too many people on this planet. A planet full of growing pollution, lack of food, freshwater and dwindling resources.

The population needs to collapse by at least 50% worldwide from 8 billion to 4 billion to make the planet more habitable and resources sustainable.
Tell me you didn't read the OP or watch the video in the OP without telling me you didn't read the OP or watch the video in the OP.
 

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