Talkies

A world where everyone has enough? plus Tavis and Maya

What if we lived in a world where everyone had enough, where every one mattered, where people lived in harmony with nature?   Author Martin Adams says it’s possible.  Plus, Tavis Smiley tells of his 28-year friendship with Maya Angelou.  And grey water: a solution to the drought?  With host Kris Welch.

  • k9kilowatt

    Thanks for the fascinating interview with Martin Adams! I couldn’t call in at the time but I was dying to hear his thoughts on human overpopulation. Does every person have a right to land and water when 10+B are crowded onto a biosphere in crisis? … while all trying to live comfortably? Not to discount inequality, and I get utopianism, but overpopulation seems to throw in a painful wrench in any dreamy future. @EarthMediaArts … see @humpsmarter for a sense of my concern.

    • Hi k9kilowatt, thanks for your comment—glad I checked this board. I’ve clarified my thoughts on overpopulation in Land: A New Paradigm for a Thriving World.

      “Other efforts at resolving our social problems are also
      failing. For example, limiting population growth on its own
      cannot resolve today’s social problems, since overpopula-
      tion is not the root cause of our social imbalance. A larger
      population that harmonizes with nature can live in greater
      balance with nature than a small population that con-
      sumes wastefully and destroys nature in the process. But
      even so, with the human lifestyle the way it is, population
      growth remains a huge concern: It will eventually destroy
      our planet’s fragile ecology if left unchecked.”
      (Chapter 15. A New Paradigm, Land: A New Paradigm for a Thriving World)

      Basically, I consider overpopulation itself to be a definite threat to our ecosystem in our present economic system, which is unlikely to change overnight. Therefore, overpopulation is a threat to be reckoned with.

      That said, I believe that overpopulation has two causes: It seems both cultural and economic. If we totally transform our economy to collect all of nature’s value on behalf of humanity, people will only use land and other gifts of nature to the extent they absolutely have to. This will drastically impact our collective ecological footprint. Also, it will lead to a drastic increase in wealth for society, which in turn is likely to naturally decrease people’s desires to reproduce. So either way, I think one of the ways to target overpopulation would have to include a complete reform of our economic system.

      Hope this answers your question.

      • k9kilowatt

        Well put, and thanks for your quick reply! I’m eager to read your book and continue the discussion. So happens I’m planning a show about overpopulation and our shared future for Terra Verde– KPFA’s weekly environmental talk show. The subject ties into so many critical issues, especially with the housing and water crises being so intensely palpable these days around here in CA and elsewhere. Yet the media rarely deals with overpopulation head on. Perhaps it’s too taboo(?). Cheers to you for not avoiding it or other juggernauts like capital and private property. The relationship between reproduction rates and wealth (however we define it) can be perplexing and it merits exploring further. (Over)population can serve as a launching pad for leaping into any and all aspects of the necessary paradigm shift you speak of… and not a moment too soon, as Kris said. If you’re interested in joining the dialogue feel free to write: [email protected] … Kudos again for thinking bold and big!

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