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The Book That Incited a Worldwide Fear of Overpopulation ‘The Population Bomb’ made dire predictions—and triggered a wave of repression around the world
Smithsonian Magazine ^ | January 2018 | Charles C. Mann

Posted on 03/12/2020 7:06:30 PM PDT by daniel1212

As 1968 began, Paul Ehrlich was an entomologist at Stanford University, known to his peers for his groundbreaking studies of the co-evolution of flowering plants and butterflies but almost unknown to the average person. That was about to change. In May, Ehrlich released a quickly written, cheaply bound paperback, The Population Bomb. Initially it was ignored. But over time Ehrlich’s tract would sell millions of copies and turn its author into a celebrity. It would become one of the most influential books of the 20th century—and one of the most heatedly attacked.

The first sentence set the tone: “The battle to feed all of humanity is over.” And humanity had lost. In the 1970s, the book promised, “hundreds of millions of people are going to starve to death.” No matter what people do, “nothing can prevent a substantial increase in the world death rate.”

Published at a time of tremendous conflict and social upheaval, Ehrlich’s book argued that many of the day’s most alarming events had a single, underlying cause: Too many people, packed into too-tight spaces, taking too much from the earth. Unless humanity cut down its numbers—soon—all of us would face “mass starvation” on “a dying planet.”

Ehrlich, now 85, told me recently that the book’s main contribution was to make population control “acceptable” as “a topic to debate.” But the book did far more than that. It gave a huge jolt to the nascent environmental movement and fueled an anti-population-growth crusade that led to human rights abuses around the world....

He was invited onto NBC’s “Tonight Show.”..For more than an hour he spoke about population and ecology, about birth control and sterilization, to an audience of tens of millions.

TOPICS: Education; Health/Medicine; History; Science
KEYWORDS: 1968; 1969; abortion; communismkills; culturalsuicide; doomsdaycult; environmentalism; fakenews; famine; finitepie; gandhi; globalwarminghoax; greennewdeal; humanrights; hunger; infacticide; liberalhype; nocoronavirus; nocronovirus; oraclesofdoom; pages; paulehrlich; populationcontrol; predictions; snowflakes; stanford; starvation; sterilization; thepill; thepopulationbomb; zpg
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Liberals scoff at the warnings of God's judgments, but magnify issues which will gain them power.
1 posted on 03/12/2020 7:06:30 PM PDT by daniel1212
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To: daniel1212
“Most of the people who are going to die in the greatest cataclysm in the history of man have already been born,” he promised in a 1969 magazine article. “Sometime in the next 15 years, the end will come,” Ehrlich told CBS News a year later. “And by ‘the end’ I mean an utter breakdown of the capacity of the planet to support humanity.”

Such statements contributed to a wave of population alarm then sweeping the world. The International Planned Parenthood Federation, the Population Council, the World Bank, the United Nations Population Fund, the Hugh Moore-backed Association for Voluntary Sterilization and other organizations promoted and funded programs to reduce fertility in poor places. “The results were horrific,” says Betsy Hartmann, author of Reproductive Rights and Wrongs, a classic 1987 exposé of the anti-population crusade. Some population-control programs pressured women to use only certain officially mandated contraceptives. In Egypt, Tunisia, Pakistan, South Korea and Taiwan, health workers’ salaries were, in a system that invited abuse, dictated by the number of IUDs they inserted into women. In the Philippines, birth-control pills were literally pitched out of helicopters hovering over remote villages. Millions of people were sterilized, often coercively, sometimes illegally, frequently in unsafe conditions, in Mexico, Bolivia, Peru, Indonesia and Bangladesh.

In the 1970s and ’80s, India, led by Prime Minister Indira Gandhi and her son Sanjay, embraced policies that in many states required sterilization for men and women to obtain water, electricity, ration cards, medical care and pay raises. Teachers could expel students from school if their parents weren’t sterilized. More than eight million men and women were sterilized in 1975 alone. (“At long last,” World Bank head Robert McNamara remarked, “India is moving to effectively address its population problem.”) For its part, China adopted a “one-child” policy that led to huge numbers—possibly 100 million—of coerced abortions, often in poor conditions contributing to infection, sterility and even death. Millions of forced sterilizations occurred. -

2 posted on 03/12/2020 7:10:12 PM PDT by daniel1212 ( Trust the risen Lord Jesus to save you as a damned and destitute sinner + be baptized + follow Him)
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To: daniel1212
"Published at a time of tremendous conflict and social upheaval, Ehrlich’s book argued that many of the day’s most alarming events had a single, underlying cause: Too many people, packed into too-tight spaces, taking too much from the earth. Unless humanity cut down its numbers—soon—all of us would face “mass starvation” on “a dying planet.” "

Agenda 21 to the rescue...

3 posted on 03/12/2020 7:11:29 PM PDT by Paladin2
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To: daniel1212

You’d think the Left would be thrilled with CORVID 19.

4 posted on 03/12/2020 7:12:40 PM PDT by ealgeone
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To: ealgeone

This fool caused more damage than we will ever know

5 posted on 03/12/2020 7:16:58 PM PDT by gibsonguy
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To: ealgeone

They most certainly are. They’re ecstatic about it.

6 posted on 03/12/2020 7:18:51 PM PDT by Maceman (PeopleExho vote Democrat sell their lives (and ours) to the government and their souls to the Devil.)
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To: KC_Lion; Sarah Barracuda; SkyDancer


7 posted on 03/12/2020 7:19:32 PM PDT by Army Air Corps (Four Fried Chickens and a Coke)
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To: daniel1212
This poltroon is still at Stanford, spewing his leftist crap.

Write this jackass here:

Paul R. Ehrlich

Stanford University

450 Serra Mall

Stanford, CA 94305–2004

Send him a post card and say he was wrong in every respect, including his wager with Julian Simon.Don't forget to mention he is a jackass.

8 posted on 03/12/2020 7:23:37 PM PDT by Fungi
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To: gibsonguy

him and that bitch Rachel Carson

9 posted on 03/12/2020 7:27:23 PM PDT by Chode (Send bachelors and come heavily armed.)
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To: daniel1212
For effect, The Population Bomb is #2 to Silent Spring.

Another work of fiction that has killed untold number of people world wide.

10 posted on 03/12/2020 7:32:12 PM PDT by Deaf Smith (When a Texan takes his chances, chances will be taken that's fore sure)
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To: ealgeone
You’d think the Left would be thrilled with COVID 19.

Yes, they are ecstatic. Furthermore, with evidence that the elderly are the most affected, the communists, er, Democrats see this as a means of eliminating the baby-boomer conservatives from the voting booth.

11 posted on 03/12/2020 7:39:11 PM PDT by Thommas (The snout of the camel is in the tent..)
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To: Fungi
Paul Ehrlich is know for The Population Bomb, but he should be known for his colossal loss when he bet on his predictions. The winner, the late Julian Simon, should be the name we remember.

In 1968, Ehrlich published The Population Bomb, which argued that mankind was facing a demographic catastrophe with the rate of population growth quickly outstripping growth in the supply of food and resources. Simon was highly skeptical of such claims, so proposed a wager, telling Ehrlich to select any raw material he wanted and select "any date more than a year away," and Simon would bet that the commodity's price on that date would be lower than what it was at the time of the wager.

Ehrlich and his colleagues picked five metals that they thought would undergo big price increases: chromium, copper, nickel, tin, and tungsten. Then, on paper, they bought $200 worth of each, for a total bet of $1,000, using the prices on September 29, 1980, as an index. They designated September 29, 1990, 10 years hence, as the payoff date. If the inflation-adjusted prices of the various metals rose in the interim, Simon would pay Ehrlich the combined difference. If the prices fell, Ehrlich et al. would pay Simon.

Between 1980 and 1990, the world's population grew by more than 800 million, the largest increase in one decade in all of history. But by September 1990, the price of each of Ehrlich's selected metals had fallen. Chromium, which had sold for $3.90 a pound in 1980, was down to $3.70 in 1990. Tin, which was $8.72 a pound in 1980, was down to $3.88 a decade later.

As a result, in October 1990, Paul Ehrlich mailed Julian Simon a check for $576.07 to settle the wager in Simon's favor.

12 posted on 03/12/2020 7:44:01 PM PDT by DoodleBob (Gravity's waiting period is about 9.8 m/s^2)
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To: DoodleBob

Thank you for the details on what I mentioned.

13 posted on 03/12/2020 7:46:48 PM PDT by Fungi
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To: daniel1212
Here is a contrary view from three years ago which asks conservatives to look at the other side of the coin, a contrarian view that is not traditionally advanced on these threads:

The population of the United States has doubled in my father's lifetime and redoubled in my lifetime. This is not an arithmetic but an exponential rate of growth which cannot be sustained for very many more generations. My concern about exploding population is not offered out of Hobbesian theories of want but out of real fears concerning liberty. Even assuming we are theoretically capable of feeding billions more people, are we actually able to do so as a free people operating in a free market in a free society? Or are the leftists right when they say that the problem is too much freedom and not enough organization? Are we populating ourselves into a statist dystopia?

Nathan Bedford's Maxim: the more population density, the less liberty.

Look about you and consider how the left has compressed our liberties in the last three quarters of a century. Think of the strictures placed upon you for the environment. For example, it is no longer legal to burn a wood stove in parts of California. It is now the federal government that tells you as a rancher in Wyoming whether you could have a pond out back for geese and ducks. Your ability to charge rent in your New York City apartments has been controlled for decades by the government because of overcrowding. Your right to shoot a deer has been severely restricted and regulated and taxed. Your right to shoot a deer or a bear may have been entirely eliminated and there are no resemblance to the America of my forefathers who actually went hunting with Daniel Boone. The size of the toilet you flush and the bulb with which you illuminate the darkness is no longer a matter of choice.

The list is endless, indeed there is virtually no area of your life that is not currently regulated by the federal government or the state government and much of that is justified by the need to protect your neighbor from you. You also want the government to protect you from your neighbor, that is why we have zoning ordinances for example. All of these things come with density of population. A density of population which we might be able to feed but can we endure? Can we endure as free men? Can we feed them as free men?

Against this we have the inherent liberty to have children. Because one regards overpopulation as a threat to liberty does imply he also condones curtailing the liberty to have a family. Conversely, nor does it imply in any way that we should condone abortion. Perhaps we ought not to subsidize more children, but if you think we should, even as we do, perhaps, if we wish to be consistent, we should subsidize an unlimited inflow of immigrants?

The hordes rushing into Europe ought to give us pause before we blandly dismiss the downside of overpopulation.

14 posted on 03/12/2020 7:47:58 PM PDT by nathanbedford (attack, repeat, attack! Bull Halsey)
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To: Maceman

Unless it affects them.

15 posted on 03/12/2020 7:52:34 PM PDT by xp38
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To: Chode

I sense a nerve hit.
They’re both wrong.

16 posted on 03/12/2020 7:53:40 PM PDT by sasquatch
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To: daniel1212

Overpopulation ceased to be an issue with liberals about 20 years ago when they discovered that ‘persons of color’ were responsible for virtually all of the population growth. Once they found that they couldn’t pin the blame on Western countries, i.e white people, the liberals lost interest.

I actually heard a rep from the World Wildlife Fund say in a radio interview in the late ‘90s that they didn’t discuss the effects of overpopulation on wildlife any longer because it would sound racist (since 3rd world countries were responsible). That’s pretty much about the time liberals lost interest in overpopulation.

17 posted on 03/12/2020 7:53:50 PM PDT by Stevenc131
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To: daniel1212
I vividly recall when Ehrlich appeared on Johnny Carson’s Tonight Show. He made a big splash, with Johnny’s enthusiastic backing. Then of course Earth Day 1970 seemed to confirm that we were approaching an apocalypse. The “Environmental Handbook” published for the occasion added to the hysteria. Filled with the damndest layer of bullshit ever squeezed between two covers but taken as gospel by the useful idiots of “The New Left (same as the Old Left)”.
18 posted on 03/12/2020 7:54:01 PM PDT by hinckley buzzard (Power is more often surrendered tha)
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To: Fungi

I’m not a collector, but I would LOVE to have that check. My understanding is Dr. Simon never cashed it; he had it framed and it was hung up in his office.

19 posted on 03/12/2020 8:00:35 PM PDT by DoodleBob (Gravity's waiting period is about 9.8 m/s^2)
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To: Deaf Smith; daniel1212
#3 is Coming of Age in Samoa: A Psychological study of Primitive Youth for Western Culture by Margaret Mead (New York: Morrow, 1928), which portrayed Samoans as leading happy and satisfied lives because due to permissive lifestyles and lack of moral restraints--which is the opposite of how they actually lived. According to the Intercollegiate Studies Institute, Margaret Mead's sloppily researched book "misled a generation into believing that the fantasies of sexual progressives were an historical reality on an island far, far away."

In 1961, I am ashamed to say, my mother had to introduce Margaret Mead at a presentation.

20 posted on 03/12/2020 8:01:16 PM PDT by Fiji Hill
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