This site is supported by the advertisements on it, please disable your AdBlocker so we can continue to provide you with the quality content you expect.

Welcome to Our Community

Wanting to join the rest of our members? Feel free to sign up today.

The Question Concerning "Growth"

Discussion in 'The Philosopher' started by Justin S., Jul 25, 2007.

  1. Justin S.

    Justin S. Member

    Joined:
    Sep 3, 2004
    Messages:
    1,007
    Likes Received:
    3
    Trophy Points:
    38
    Location:
    Chicago, IL
    For some, this will seem painfully obvious and of questionable taste for a philosophy forum. Admittedly, it's essentially grade school science...however, one often encounters staunch resistance to "awareness"/acknowledgment of the problem of "growth"- whether it be population, production/consumption, or what have you. I distinctly recall being asked, on this forum, what threat overpopulation (or "numbers"/logistics/growth) presented.

    This resistance (or ignorance) has a profound effect on our discussions here, and for philosophy generally. Therefore, I present the following video. The speaker is guilty of a number of unpardonable sins, but the main thrust of the issue should stand out regardless (his empirical claims, not his metaphysics).

    If you can spare 57 min (or even segments) I highly recommend this video as an introduction to this determining issue.

    http://media.globalpublicmedia.com/RAM/2005/08/AlbertBartlett.ram

    (Albert Bartlett is a Physics prof. at Boulder, CO)
     
  2. Accolade2289

    Accolade2289 New Metal Member

    Joined:
    Jul 22, 2007
    Messages:
    100
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Location:
    Los Angeles, CA
    Read Daniel Quinn's novel Ishmael. If you think it is a problem now, imagine in the future. Seriously, that book changed my life.
     
  3. Seditious

    Seditious GodSlayer

    Joined:
    Jul 26, 2005
    Messages:
    2,333
    Likes Received:
    1
    Trophy Points:
    36
    Location:
    New Zealand
    certainly one has to first suggest growth is a problem, before claiming "awareness" or "acknowledgement" of that problem is resisted---surely the 'awareness' or 'acknowledgement' of killer unicorns is resisted too, and will be until someone first introduces why they think it is actually a problem; what the problem is.

    the science of growth, the technology/sustainability issues, and the disease risks of dense population may be grade school, but to call it a problem that maybe some people will starve or die or what have you, that brings in your own ethical opinions that need explication and explanation, yamean? 'for sake of argument, there is unsustainable growth' the instant question is 'so what?'---so maybe we'll stop breeding so much, or maybe some will die, or maybe wars will break out, in other words 'maybe the same old shit will keep happening', but what is the great problem we're supposed to acknowledge?
     
  4. Scourge of God

    Scourge of God New Metal Member

    Joined:
    Mar 1, 2007
    Messages:
    804
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Most people are useless. Who cares if they really HAVE to die, kill 'em anyway and use whatever excuse is convenient.
     
  5. MURAI

    MURAI -

    Joined:
    Nov 6, 2002
    Messages:
    3,789
    Likes Received:
    6
    Trophy Points:
    38
    Location:
    Canada
    Do you have the video in another format than real media?
     
  6. Blowtus

    Blowtus Member

    Joined:
    Jul 14, 2006
    Messages:
    906
    Likes Received:
    2
    Trophy Points:
    18
    Location:
    Straya
    I found Asimov's bathroom analogy the most interesting bit from all that ;) The guy did make an interesting point or two but wow was it long winded...
     
  7. Seditious

    Seditious GodSlayer

    Joined:
    Jul 26, 2005
    Messages:
    2,333
    Likes Received:
    1
    Trophy Points:
    36
    Location:
    New Zealand
    Blowtus, any chance you wanna take pity on a 56k dial up customer and summarize his interesting points? [​IMG]
     
  8. Blowtus

    Blowtus Member

    Joined:
    Jul 14, 2006
    Messages:
    906
    Likes Received:
    2
    Trophy Points:
    18
    Location:
    Straya
    I skipped large chunks of what appeared to be the same stuff re-hashed, so I may have missed another interesting point or two ;)


    "I like to use what I call my bathroom metaphor. If two people live in an apartment, and there are two bathrooms, then they both have freedom of the bathroom. You can go to the bathroom anytime you want, stay as long as you want, for whatever you need. And everyone believes in freedom of the bathroom. It should be right there in the constitution. But if you have twenty people in the apartment and two bathrooms, then no matter how much every person believes in freedom of the bathroom, there’s no such thing. You have to set up times for each person, you have to bang on the door, ‘Aren't you through yet?’ and so on.” And Asimov concluded with one of the most profound observations I've seen in years. He said, “In the same way, democracy cannot survive overpopulation. Human dignity cannot survive overpopulation. Convenience and decency cannot survive overpopulation. As you put more and more people into the world, the value of life not only declines, it disappears. It doesn’t matter if someone dies, the more people there are, the less one individual matters."

    The whole thing basically made the point that growth as a fixed % is unsustainable, and that people do not consider the maths of % growth enough. Where there is some absolute limit, exponential growth goes from 'not close to the limit' to 'the limit' very, very quickly, compared to the overall time scale.

    If someone wants to fill in what I missed in my rampant skipping, please do :)
     
  9. Seditious

    Seditious GodSlayer

    Joined:
    Jul 26, 2005
    Messages:
    2,333
    Likes Received:
    1
    Trophy Points:
    36
    Location:
    New Zealand
    so overpopulation is going to take the wool off our eyes about saving the precious human life?

    this doesn't sound like a problem at all... curbing overpopulation to preserve this moral nonsense about sacred life and rights sounds more like preserving today's problem than a solution---holding the ubermensch at bay. I'd rather solve two birds with one stone and have the living change their politics while the other fuckers die.
     
  10. infoterror

    infoterror Member

    Joined:
    Apr 17, 2005
    Messages:
    1,191
    Likes Received:
    2
    Trophy Points:
    38
    "Growth" seems to be one of those things assumed to be good by the nature of it being in the present tense, and not yet apocalyptic, like "progress."
     

Share This Page