Why Do Civilizations Collapse? They Collapse because They’re Unstable

It’s a slapdown brought on by the arrogance of man. It’s a natural return to a natural environment. It’s the breakdown of “The Commons.” And therein lies the most terrible truth. The common holding of Earth’s resources by 7.9 Billion people is an impossibility — we know this because it’s getting worse — poor people worldwide are seeking American-style middle-class living and are speeding up the crash of the entire ecosystem.

Photo by MI PHAM on Unsplash

Which I find frustrating. Frustrating enough to put a link here to a clearly thought-out commentary on the problem. You can read the abstract or the whole thing — there’s no need to download the PDF if you just want to read it:

Well I did download the PDF. This is a valuable article, and it comes closest to showing a very twisted and narrow pathway to the survival of the human race, and to get your attention I want to try to scare you with a simple reality I’ve found in the article. Hence the annoying ‘bolding’ I’m about to use in this quote:

“The doubling of the world population since 1900 was openly discussed as we approached the first Earth Day in 1970 (e.g., 1.6 billion to nearly 3.7 billion). Since this first Earth Day, a half century ago, we have become transfixed by an endless stream of ecological catastrophes and human tragedies, somehow remaining silent on what has become yet another doubling of the world population from nearly 3.7 billion to more than 7.7 billion. [That’s more than a doubling in 50 years between Earth Days. fse] We have refused to publicly discuss how these catastrophes and tragedies are in many ways simply symptoms of the runaway population growth . . . [Population growth? Can’t he call it what it is, an explosion? fse]
Christopher Tucker, author, Chairman, American Geographical Society

Tucker is a good example of good science. I don’t doubt his data at all. I do think there are chinks in the sociology that we need to consider. Because I don’t see any progress in population reduction or a solution to a growing global middle class.

He says that we add 80 million humans to the planet each year — like ten New York Cities. And I am aware of global migration into cities, that more than half of all humanity lives in cities. And cities are very artificial environments. All their needs, food, water, power, fuels, durable goods — they all come from “out there.” And transport of food and goods uses oil, which increases global warming.

Sure, maybe in concentrated cities birth control may work out better, but I don’t see the necessary percentage of population thinking much on this matter. As Tucker noted, “ . . . we still tend to do little but admire the global population curve as it progresses ever upwards, occasionally bantering about when it might level off, as though fertility is completely out of our collective power to affect.” I’ve noticed — people get loud and often angry when I point out what seems to me to be a death wish. They generally want-to-have-babies!

I’m done. I can only put the information out there. My takeaway is a repeat:




Living in rural Panamá — non-extractive, non-capitalistic. Expat USA. Scientist, writer, researcher, teacher. STEM mentor +languages. Gargoylplex@protonmail.com

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Fred Ermlich

Living in rural Panamá — non-extractive, non-capitalistic. Expat USA. Scientist, writer, researcher, teacher. STEM mentor +languages. Gargoylplex@protonmail.com