How many people does it take to run a civilization?
And the more things you are doing — the more productive and wealthier you want your civilization to be — the more people it can use.
It’s people who do things. Without people, the things won’t get done. People aren’t the problem, they’re the solution.
But the non-problem of “too many” people bothers Jonathan Porritt, a “green” advisor to British Prime Minister Gordon Brown. Porritt says if Britain is to feed its population “sustainably,” her population will have to be reduced to 30 million. Britain’s current population is about 61 million, twice that. So . . . do we have 31 million volunteers?
Porritt says “Population growth, plus economic growth, is putting the world under terrible pressure.” That terrible pressure of making it easier and easier to survive.
Industrialized, capitalistic countries are often slammed for consuming a disproportionate share of the world’s economic output.
Less often mentioned is that these countries also produce the lion’s share of the output. They can do so to the extent that people with brains and initiative are free to function. Free to work, keep what they earn, benefit from planning ahead. Let people be free, and they’ll feed themselves fine. They will expand resources.
You want to “sustain” economic development, Mr. Government Official? Get out of the way.
This is Common Sense. I’m Paul Jacob.