Malthusian Neocolonialism ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ A reflection on the persistent Western concern with global population growth The various theories of human population growth can be placed into three broad categories: Malthusian Malthusian population theories view population as an independent variable increasing of its own volition and controlled only through an increase in mortality. (see slide 3) Neo-Malthusian Neo-Malthusian population theories, like Malthusian theories, view population as an independent variable, but argue that population growth can (and must) be controlled through a reduction in fertility. (see slide 4) Non-Malthusian Non-Malthusian population theories see population systemically as simultaneously an independent and a dependent variable, both influencing and being influenced by other variables. (see slide 5) MALTHUSIANISM (population control through mortality) ⁺ POPULATION carrying capacity TIME NEO-MALTHUSIANISM (population control through fertility) ⁺ POPULATION carrying capacity TIME NON-MALTHUSIAN POPULATION ECOLOGY ⁺ carrying capacity Level of productivity Fertility rate Technological input Mortality rate Cost of rearing children Labor value of children Support of elderly Energy expenditure Labor investment ⁺ POPULATION - Social and political organization Resources exploited Environmental impact Infant mortality rate Demand for labor Resource competition Migration carrying capacity - Malthusianism & Neo-Malthusianism Non-Malthusian Population Ecology October 12, 1999 Y6B*Day SOURCE: J.W. Wilmoth & P. Ball. 1992. "The Population Debate in American Popular Magazines, 1946-90." Population and Development Review 18: 640. The Population Bomb The most prolific author promoting the issue of overpopulation has been Paul Ehrlich, with 24 articles published on the subject in popular magazines alone. Statements made by Ehrlich . . . “The battle to feed all of humanity is over. In the 1970s and 1980s hundreds of millions will starve to death in spite of any crash programs embarked upon now.” --The Population Bomb (1968) “By 1985 enough millions will have died to reduce the earth's population to some acceptable level, like 1.5 billion people.“ --“Eco-Catastrophe” (1969) Other Statements . . . “The population bomb threatens to create an explosion as disruptive and dangerous as an explosion of the atom, and with as much influence on prospects for progress or disaster, war or peace.” --Greissimer, Population Bomb (1954) continue . . . “. . . No other phenomenon casts a darker shadow on the prospects for international development than the staggering growth of population.” --Pearson Report (1969) continue . . . “. . . To put it simply: the greatest single obstacle to the economic and social advancement in the underdeveloped world is rampant population growth.” --Robert MacNamara, President World Bank (1969) continue . . . “There are too many Asians for their own good. They have been breeding trouble for themselves --and for the world as a whole.” --J. Robbins, Too Many Asians (1959) continue . . . “China quite literally cannot feed more people . . . The greatest tragedy that China could suffer, at the present time, would be a reduction in her death rate. . . . Millions are going to die . . . . There can be no way out. These men and women, boys and girls, must starve as tragic sacrifices on the twin alters of uncontrolled reproduction and uncontrolled abuse of the land.” --W. Vogt (1960) Humanity was predicted to exhaust critical resources in the following order . . . gold . . . . . . . . . . . . . 1981 mercury . . . . . . . . . . 1985 tine . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 1987 zinc . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 1990 petroleum . . . . . . . . . 1992 copper . . . . . . . . . . . 1993 lead . . . . . . . . . . . . . 1993 natural gas . . . . . . . 1993 --Club of Rome, Limits to Growth (1972) Harrison (1993) conceded that . . . “Over the past two centuries, Malthus’ basic theorem has been turned upside down. Human ingenuity has so far been able to increase world food production in line with the increase in human numbers. but argued instead that . . . “It is not a resource crisis but a pollution crisis. . . . Life may survive in some lowly form, but we may not.” Others have also claimed that human population growth threatens the global environment. “. . . nearly one-third of the world's cropland (1.5 billion hectares) has been abandoned during the past 40 years because erosion has made it unproductive.” --Pimentel et al. (1995). “As the Worldwatch Institute has pointed out, if China's population increases by 500 million and their soil erosion continues unabated, it will need to import 200-400 million tons of food each year by 2050. . . . But by then, sufficient food imports probably will not be available on the international market.” -- Pimentel, et.al. (1996) continue . . . “29% of the nation’s 16,000 plant species are at risk of disappearing forever.” --Mark W. Nowak, NPG (1998) “34,000 species of plants in 200 countries threatened with extinction.” --World Conservation Union (1998) 70% of the biologists polled believe a mass extinction is already underway and that up to 20% of all living species could disappear within the next 30 years due to human activity. --J. Warrick, Washington Post (1998) The following claims of species loss have already been made . . . 40,000 species per year 250,000 species per year, with half the earth’s species gone by the year 2000, and all species gone by 2025. --Norman Myers, The Sinking Ark (1979) --Paul Ehrlich (1981) 40,000 species per year --Al Gore, Earth in the Balance (1992) 27,000 - 100,000 species per year --E.O. Wilson, Diversity of Life (1992) Population growth is also seen as the ultimate cause of “global warming”. Even our social problems are viewed as a consequence of population growth. “As population growth in our cities has increased, so have crime and competition for housing. As a result, Americans have taken to the suburbs to find cheaper housing and to regain open space and solitude.” --Mark W. Nowak, NPG (1998) “You tell me. Is the world in 2000 more crowded, more polluted, less stable economically and more vulnerable to disruption than the world in 1980? The answer has to be yes.” --John Weeks, Population: An Introduction to Concepts and Issues (2000) The whole literature has the feel of . . . . . . Chicken Little on Acid! Population Growth and Economic Development “. . . millions of dollars spent on empirical research have failed to provide convincing support for the view that population growth is an obstacle to economic development.” --Frank Furedi, Population and Development (1997) “The specialist literature exhibits a profound tension between the intuition that population growth has negative consequences for the living standards of developing societies, and the absence of empirical evidence to substantiate this sentiment. . . . when it comes to deciding on the impact of population growth, ‘feelings’ still tend to account for more than facts. ” --Frank Furedi, Population and Development (1997) Would Ehrlich have had the same reaction and felt the same way about overpopulation if he were walking down Fifth Avenue in New York, rather than through the hot sweltering slums of Delhi? Would Ehrlich have reacted the same way while walking through downtown Tokyo? . . . . . . or taking the Tokyo subway? “No statistical association …(exists)… between national rates of population growth and growth rates of income per capita.” --National Research Council (1986) Increased Food Production Average global caloric consumption has steadily increased over the past 40 years . . . * * * . . . during the same period that world population more than doubled. SOURCE: FAO 2001 presented in Lomborg 2002:109) SOURCE: IMF 2001 presented in Lomborg 2002:62) Food today cost less than one-third of what it cost in the 1950s. U.S. Population Growth Year U.S. Population Increase 1800 5,000,000 --- 1900 75,000,000 1,400 % 2000 280,000,000 273 % U.S. Population Growth 1. Only about 3% of the population growth in the U.S. throughout the 17th and 18th centuries is attributed to immigration. 2. The crude birth rate in the U.S. at that time was 55 births per 1000 population, comparable to the highest national birth rates in the world today, causing the U.S. population to double every 25 years. 3. During the 19th century, the U.S. population grew even faster: from about 5 million in 1800 to 75 million in 1900 (1400%) 4. The U.S. population continued to increase from 75 million in 1900 and to nearly 280 million in 2000. (280%) 5. Although contemporary American birth rates are low, the U.S. still maintains one of the highest population growth rates in the world --comparable to those of Zimbabwe and Thailand. New England vs. the American South 1. New England has historically had much higher birth rates and population growth rates than the southern U.S. 2. In the 17th century, New England was characterized by especially high birth rates. 3. In one sample of 90 families, an average of 7-8 children per family grew to adulthood, compared to only 2-3 children in the South. 4 Birth rates in New England during the 17th century were as high --and in some cases higher-- than birth rates in contemporary Africa, where the highest birth rates presently exist. 4. Yet, throughout American history, New Englanders have maintained, on average, a higher standard of living than Southerners and, indeed, among the highest standard of living in the entire U.S. Japanese Rice Production A.D. 600 - 2000 * * * * * Compared to Other Asian Countries Today Population Land Area Population Density (sq.mi.) (per sq.mi.) ____________________________________________________ Japan California 128 mil. 145,374 880 33 mil. 155,973 211 U.S. 278 mil. 3,717,780 75 ____________________________________________________ The majority of land surface in Japan is covered with forests. Japan is Mostly Mountainous In Japan, it is as if half the population of the U.S. lived in southern California. Is Africa Overpopulated? Western Image of Africa . . . . . . and other developing countries Common terms used: “Population Bomb” * * * “Teeming Masses” Developed Countries Country Total Population (in thousands, 1999) Population Density GDP Per Capita Energy Consumption Per Capita (kilograms oil equiv., 1990-99) ______ _____________ (per square km., 1997) ______________ France 58,886 106 23,843 3,918 Germany 82,177 230 25,468 4,086 Italy 57,343 191 19,962 2,817 Japan 126,505 333 33,265 3,658 Netherlands 15,735 376 23,270 5,622 U.K. 58,744 240 21,921 3,938 U.S. 276,219 29 28,789 8,040 (US$, 1997) __________ _____________ ______________________________________________________ SOURCE: United Nations Underdeveloped Countries Total Population (in thousands, 1999) _____________ Ethiopia Population Density GDP Per Energy Consumption Per (per square km., 1997) ____________ Capita (US$, 1997) ____________ Capita (kilograms oil equiv., 1990-99) __________________ 61,095 54 104 287 Kenya 29,549 57 356 494 Nigeria 108,945 128 1,376 753 Sierra Leone 4,717 62 260 -- Sudan 28,882 11 59 -- Uganda 21,143 85 313 -- Congo 50,336 20 52 311 Country _________ ______________________________________________________ Annual Per Capita Fresh Water Withdrawals by Country (in cubic meters , 1987-1997) Developed Countries United States 1,677 Developing Countries Ethiopia 50 Japan 735 Kenya 87 U.K. 160 Nigeria 46 Germany 583 Sierra Leone 98 Italy 1,005 Sudan Canada 1,623 Uganda 669 20 France 700 Congo 8 ____________________________________________________ SOURCE: World Resources Institute Population density in Germany or Great Britain is: --twice that of Nigeria --5 times that of Ethiopia or Kenya --30 times that of the Congo! Yet, it is the African countries that are considered “overpopulated” . . . Per capita energy consumption in Germany and Great Britain is: --8 times that in Kenya --14 times that in Ethiopia! . . . Yet, it is population growth in the Africa that is seen as a threat to the global environment. Per capita energy consumption in the U.S. is . . . --3 times that of Germany or Great Britain --16 times that of Kenya or Nigeria --28 times that of Ethiopia! Total U.S. Energy consumption could support . . . --4.5 billion Kenyans or Nigerians --7 -- billion Congolese 8 billion Ethiopians! What the scientific research shows . . . “No statistical association . . .(exists). . . between national rates of population growth and growth rates of income per capita.” --National Research Council (1986) • Fertilizer use in Africa averages 12 kilograms per hectare: • 1/4th that of India • 1/36th that in Japan • Irrigation covers only 4% of cultivated land in subSaharan Africa compared to: • 26% in India • 44% in China.” -Robert Paarlberg (1994) Due to the failure of Malthusian-based theory to explain economic underdevelopment, the focus of the population debate shifted . . . . . . to a concern with the claimed negative effect of population growth on the global environment. Machakos District, Kenya Population Growth Machakos District, Kenya, 1932-1989 Annual Growth Rate Year Total Population (percent) _________________________________________________ 1932 240,000 --- 1948 366,000 2.68 1962 566,000 3.17 1969 707,000 3.22 1979 1,023,000 3.76 1989 1,393,000 3.09 _________________________________________________ SOURCE: Mortimore and Tiffen (1994) The Machakos region was described in rather bleak terms in 1937 by a British soil conservation officer as . . . “. . . an appalling example of a large area of land which has been subjected to uncoordinated and practically uncontrolled development by natives whose multiplication and the increase of whose stock has been permitted, free from the checks of war and largely from those of disease, under benevolent British Ruse. . . . Every phase of misuse of land is vividly and poignantly displayed in this reserve, the inhabitants of which are rapidly drifting to a state of hopeless and miserable poverty and their land to a parching desert of rocks, stones and sand.” However, . . . 1. During the 1950s: 40,000 hectares of land in Machakos District were terraced. 2. Hiatus in terracing during independence movement. 3. Terracing resumed and by 1985 the majority of arable land in the district was terraced. 4. 1994: 100% of arable land in the district protected. 5. Farmers use moldboard plows; manuring fields instead of fallowing; stall-feeding livestock replaced pasture-grazing. 6. Increased agricultural productivity. 7. Tree-density increased to 34 trees per hectare. Kano CloseSettled Zone, Nigeria Kano Close-Settled Zone African Sahel 1918 --average population density was 300-400 people per square mile, and that they were entirely supporting themselves from the produce of a soil which was considered not very fertile and which had been under cultivation for several hundred years. 1950 --Kano close-settled zone village of Tumbau cultivated 75.8 % of the land. 1971 --87.2% of land in the village was cultivated. 1990 --bulk density, particle size distribution, percent organic carbon, total nitrogen, pH, cation exchange capacity (CEC), and exchangeable potassium, calcium, magnesium and sodium were stable (compared to analysis completed in 1977). --No evidence of yield decline. The rate of population growth actually peaked in the early 1960s and has been decreasing every year since. SOURCE: USCB 2001 presented in Lomborg 2002:47) The percent of world population living in countries with a fertility rate at or below replacement has been steadily increasing. “. . . the U.N.'s new proposal acknowledges that fertility is falling more rapidly than expected in some big, less developed countries with "intermediate" levels of fertility. These include India, Pakistan, Indonesia, Brazil, Mexico, Egypt, Bangladesh and the Philippines. (China at 1.8 is already below replacement level.) The U.N. concludes that the less developed nations are heading toward a fertility rate of 1.85, down significantly from the 2.1 of earlier projections. This would yield a maximum global population in the 8 billion to 9 billion range.“ --Wall Street Journal (March 4, 2002) Over the past 50 years, the Population Lobby’s justification for population control policies and programs directed at Third World countries has undergone repeated change. The principal justifications have been (in chronological order) . . . Poverty and Underdevelopment Political Instability and Revolution Environmental Degradation Women’s Health and Human Rights Which raises the following questions . . . 1. If “overpopulation” was never a serious factor compromising economic development . . . 2. If population growth has been declining steadily for several decades and no longer poses a serious threat to global environmental health . . . 3. . . . then why has a concern with “overpopulation” persisted for so long and in the face of scientific evidence to the contrary? What underlying concern persists in the West as each of the apparent explanations for population control fades and disappears? The obsession with population growth in the absence of clear demographic evidence that such growth portends peril requires explanation. We, thus, need to ask . . . . . . whose interests has the population control movement served? Malthusian Neocolonialism Malthusian Neocolonialism . . . . . . suggests that the Western concern (sometimes bordering on hysteria) over population growth in developing countries may derive more from a concern about its own economic and political position in the world than from a concern for the welfare of peoples in developing countries. This presentation also suggests that Malthusian population theory persists because it provides an appropriate ideological justification for neocolonial population control policies. Neocolonialism . . . A policy whereby a major power uses economic and political means to perpetuate or extend its influence over underdeveloped nations or areas. The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition . Competitive Fertility: --exists where fertility is linked to considerations of power. Strategic Demography: --The direction by groups with more power of population policies and programs against those groups with less power whose growth is considered a threat to existing power relations. “As history and science refute each argument in turn, population control groups simply shift to their next explanation in their war against people. The arguments change with time and circumstance, but the ‘solution’ remains remarkably familiar: ever more population control directed at the poorer, darker peoples of the developing world . . .(in ). . . the unspoken belief that too many of the ‘wrong’ kinds of people are procreating too quickly.” --Mary Haynes (1999) “. . . If the lower classes of Englishmen multiply more rapidly than those which are morally and physically superior, not only will the population of England deteriorate, but also that part of the population of American and Australia which descends from Englishmen will be less intelligent than it would otherwise be. Again if Englishmen multiply less rapidly than the Chinese, this spiritless race will overrun portions of the earth that otherwise would have been peopled by English Vigour.” --Alfred Marshall (1842-1924) “Numbers tell. France dreads prolific Germany. Germany trembles before yet more prolific Russia. Europe fears the awakening of the teeming yellow race. In South Africa, the whites stand aghast at the rabbit-like increase of the blacks.” --Edward Ross (1907) Providing development assistance to the newly emerging nations of the South without explicit population control . . . “. . . Would yield populations that would be larger and stronger than those that would arise from the perpetuation of past [colonial] policies . . . The now dominant powers would in effect be creating a future world in which their own peoples would become progressively smaller minorities, and possess a progressively smaller proportion of the world’s wealth and power.” --Frank W. Notestein, United Nations (1944) A decline in the Euro-American population in relation to Asia ... “. . . might be decisive in its effects on the prestige and influence of the West. . . . The question is not merely one of military strength and security: it merges into more fundamental issues of the maintenance and expansion of Western views and culture.” --British Royal Commission on Population (1946) “These peoples are problems, even hazards, for all of the countries of the world as endemic and epidemic diseases, as areas of economic dependency, as explosive centers of unrest and rebellion and as possible disturbers of world peace if and when they should attempt the age-old nostrum of alleviating their population pressure by aggressive action against presumably more favourably situated peoples. It is desirable, in fact essential, that they be extricated from their adverse state at the earliest possible moment.” -- J.O. Hertzler, The Crisis in World Population (1956) “China with a projected 1975 population almost double the expected figures from the United States and Russia combined, would be the strongest contender for world leadership. Such a mass, equipped with modern arms and disciplined by a dictatorship, if bent on conquest, could be stopped only by a united world outside.” --Kingsley Davis, sociological demographer (1959) “Opinion in the West is now conscious of the fast demographic growth in the Third World. Large scale publicity is given to the ‘rise of the coloured people’ or to the ‘swarming of the hungry’; Westerners feel rather like masters or servants in a castle, watching great masses of ragged people multiplying in the countryside around obviously to no good intent.” --Alfred Sauvy (1969) “The ever-mounting tidal wave of humanity now challenges us to control it or be submerged along with all our civilized values.” “A world with mass starvation in underdeveloped countries will be a world of chaos, riots and war. And a perfect breeding ground for Communism. . . . We cannot afford a half a dozen Vietnams or even one more. . . . Our own national interest demands that we go all out to help the underdeveloped countries control their population.” -- Campaign to Check the Population Explosion “In the domain of evolutionary theory, the consequence of any sustained difference between the rates of growth of two populations occupying the same ecological niche is straightforward: the eventual complete displacement of the slower growing by the faster growing one.” --Paul Demeny (1990), Editor, Population and Development Review “Virtually all current population projections anticipate slow population growth in today’s more developed regions and comparatively rapid growth in the less developed regions. . . . If trends continue for another generation or two, the implications for the international political order and the balance of world power could be enormous.” --Foreign Affairs (1991) Regarding the falling birth rates in the North and the rising birth rates in the South . . . “The implications for the international political order and the balance of world power could be enormous . . . Diminution of the influence of the West. . . .(as a result of existing demographic trends). . . could create an international environment even more menacing to the security prospects of the Western alliance than was the Cold War.” --Nicholas Eberstadt, American Enterprise Institute (1991) Paul Kennedy asks if democratic values can . . . “. . . maintain their prevailing position in a world overwhelmingly peopled by societies which did not experience the rational scientific and liberal assumptions of the Enlightenment.” --Paul Kennedy, Preparing for the Twenty- First Century. (1993) “At the end of World War II, the developed countries accounted for almost 40 percent of the world population. Today they hold about 20 percent, heading --if growth in the developing countries does not slow-- towards as little as 12 percent. . . . The cost of our population program is a fraction of not doing it.” --Timothy Wirth, U.S. State Dept. (1993) The Malthusian Solution “Instead of recommending cleanliness to the poor, we should encourage contrary habits. In our towns, we should make the streets narrower, crowd more people into the houses, and court the return of the plague. In the country we should build our villages near stagnant pools. . . . But, above all, we should reprobate specific remedies for ravaging diseases.” Thomas Malthus Margaret Sanger called for the . . . . . .(extermination of). . . "weeds … overrunning the human garden" . . .(and the sterilization of). . . "genetically inferior races” . . .(producing). . . "more children from the fit; less from the unfit". --Margaret Sanger, Pivot of Civilization 1922 “Since the inferior is always numerically superior to the best, the worst would multiply itself so much faster . . . Given the same opportunity to survive and procreate . . . That the best would necessarily be pushed to the background. Therefore, a correction in favor of the better must be undertaken.” --Adolf Hitler, Mein Kampf (1934) * * * * * Note the similarity of the above quote to the statement below . . . “In the domain of evolutionary theory, the consequence of any sustained difference between the rates of growth of two populations occupying the same ecological niche is straightforward: the eventual complete displacement of the slower growing by the faster growing one.” --Paul Demeny (1990), Neo-Malthusianism a.k.a. Malthusianism - “Light” or a “Kinder & Gentler” Malthusianism “It cannot be expected that the most powerful military nations will sit still while other nations reverse the balance of power by the mere process of breeding.” --Bertrand Russell (1929) Comparing international migration to the growth of a disease . . . “It is comparable to what happens in human cancers. . . . it is perfectly legitimate to compare the invasions of Puerto Ricans in New York and of Jamaicans in London and other parts of Britain to metastases in cancer.” --Sir Julian Huxley, UNESCO (1963) “(The) . . . greater prolificacy of the non-white population is wholly a function of the relatively less restrained reproductivity of those with meagre schooling. . . . (This) . . . trend hampers the advance of the nation as a whole, and particularly tends to retard the economic and social advance of non-white communities.” --Frank Lorimer, Sociologist (1969) “. . . nations which control their birth rates in order to maintain a high standard of living should . . .(not have to). . . provide for the surplus populations of other countries which breed without consideration of economic and social consequences.” --Karl Sax (1945) “Family planning programs provide information and services to help people achieve their own fertility objectives. By contrast, population policy involves explicit demographic goals.” --World Bank Report (1984) “Why does the family planning movement . . . Which is the predominant approach to population policy have as its slogan ‘every woman has the right to have as many children as she wants’? We would not justify traffic control by saying that ‘every driver has the right to drive as he pleases.’” --Kingsley Davis, Sociologist (1982) “The degree of coercive policy brought into play should be proportional to the degree of seriousness of the present problem and should be introduced only after less coercive means have been exhausted. Thus, overt violence or other potentially injurious coercion is not to be used before noninjurious coercion has been exhausted.” --Berelson and Lieberson (1979) Bernard Berelson is a former president of the Population Council “For a coercive program to work, a hugely expanded commitment of administrative and financial resources will be necessary. The world will be watching India’s policy closely to see if and how state governments follow up their new legislation with bigger budgets and more effective action.” --Population Crisis Committee “A cancer is an uncontrolled multiplication of cells; the population explosion is an uncontrolled multiplication of people. Treating only the symptoms of cancer may make the victim more comfortable at first, but eventually he dies -- often horribly. A similar fate awaits a world with a population explosion if only the symptoms are treated. We must shift our efforts from treatment of the symptoms to the cutting out of the cancer. The operation will demand many apparently brutal and heartless decisions.” --Paul Ehrlich (1971) Praise for Indira Gandhi for establishing Emergency Rule in 1975, which called for the mandatory sterilization of all Indian men with three or more children and which resulted in coercive sterilization programs. . . “. . . The political will and determination shown by the leadership at the highest level in intensifying the family planning drive with rare courage and conviction.” --Robert McNamara, President, World Bank (1975) Criticism of the U.S. for not supporting Indira Gandhi’s mandatory sterilization proposal . . . “We should have volunteered logistical support in the form of helicopters, vehicles and surgical instruments. We should have sent doctors. . . . (Is this) . . . Coercion? Perhaps, but coercion in a good cause.” --Paul Ehrlich (1976) “Most donor representatives here greatly admire the Chinese for their achievements: a success story brought about by massive direct and indirect compulsion. . . . It is time for donors to get away from too narrow an interpretation of volunteerism and certain governments in Asia using massive incentive schemes, including disincentives and other measures of pressure, still deserve international support.” --Walter Holzhausen, UNFPA (1984) Garrett Hardin Lifeboat Ethics & Mutual Coercion Mutually Agreed Upon __________________________________________________________________________ “...no single person or institution has the right to destroy, waste or use more than a fair share of its resources.” . . . “It is a mistake to think that we can control the breeding of mankind in the long run by an appeal to conscience.” . . . “Coercion is a dirty word to most liberals now, but it need not forever be so.” . . . “Every new enclosure of the commons involves the infringement of somebody's personal liberty.” . . . “The only kind of coercion I recommend is mutual coercion, mutually agreed upon by the majority of the people affected.” _______________________________________________________________ SOURCE: Tragedy of the Commons • Development theories consistently argue that economic development in the Third World requires the elimination of traditional values and practices. • Policies which seek to eliminate “traditional” practices have, therefore, been a dominant theme in Western development theory. “For all their talk of rights, the right of people to live according to the customs and practices that they have evolved over hundreds of years, appears to be one right which population activists can casually reject.” --Furedi (1997) The concept of unmet need implies that . . . “. . . two billion people in the past 30 years were added to the world’s population because their parents were two stupid to figure what to do.” --Paul Demeny (1994) Timothy King of the World Bank argued that China’s onechild policy violated the basic human right of each couple to bear two children. Being allowed only one child . . . “. . . does not deny individuals their complete rights of reproduction or the joys of family life, but it undeniably reduces them, both for parents and for children, and puts great strain on the emotional ties between the two.” --Timothy King, World Bank (1984) “It creates a very disagreeable impression to see people who are white, European, or of European origin, trying to sow the seeds of sterility in populations that are about to escape from under their domination.” --Alfred Sauvy (1949) Interests served by a focus on overpopulation: 1. Minimizes role of colonialism in underdevelopment. 2. Downplays inequalities in global economy. 3. Draws attention away from the high consumption levels in the West. (see next three slides) 4. Serves Western strategic interests. 5. Supports a growing environmentalist and population control/research constituency. (see fourth following slide) The American Dream Who pose more of a threat to the environment? * * * Africans and Asians or Europeans & Americans Environmental solutions for the privileged . . . Yuppie Environmentalism: Use an "environmentally responsible" credit card to ease your conscience while you buy your TV's, VCRs, designer clothes and the gas to feed your new SUV! . . . all the things that fill up the landfills and pollute the air! Fund it and they will come . . . The Family Planning Funding Trough Challenging Neocolonial Assumptions Globalization Alert! A major multinational corporation has allocated one quarter of a billion dollars for the purchase of land in developing countries. The money will be funneled through a Western-dominated international organization whose voting members disproportionately represent individuals and corporations from the U.S. and Europe. The land purchase is designed to remove valuable land from indigenous ownership and control in order to have it be at the disposal of the mostly white employees and customers served by the international organization in question. announcement translated . . . Intel Corporation has announced that it is donating $250 million to Conservation International for the purchase of land in developing countries. Conservation International is a major international organization that undertakes biodiversity research, conducts its own ecotours and supports the ecotourism industry. The principal beneficiaries of both the biodiversity research and ecotourism industries are disproportionately white middle and upper-middle income citizens from the economically advantaged countries in Europe and North America. ”The Malthusian motive: the will to control the population of the poor rather than the consumption of the rich; the desire to eliminate poverty by reducing the numbers of the poor rather than the inequalities of society. . . . . . . If we claim that there are too many people on the earth, then why are we so sure that we are not the excess ones --we westerners who individually consume and pollute as much as 50 or more African or Indian peasants? In all my years in the field of population, I have never one single time heard a member of the population establishment say that there were too many upper-middle class white Anglo-Saxon Protestants in the world. . . .” --Pierre Pradervand, Africa Report (1974) . . . This solution is never considered . . . . . . Stop middle-class white people from breeding! Whew, . . . Done!