Friday, March 08, 2013

Give yourself a laugh today, pick holes in Ehrlich's wild predictions • Brendan O’Neill

Link: (via

ONE of my favourite pastimes is picking holes in the population panic-mongering of people such as Paul Ehrlich.
It's so easy: dig up any prediction made by these sourpussed baby-fearers 20-odd years ago, contrast it to how things actually turned out, and hey presto, you have hard evidence that Malthusian miserabilists always overstate how bad things are going to get.
He predicted that "by the year 2000 the UK will be simply a small group of impoverished islands, inhabited by some 70 million hungry people". Nope. I can report that Britain is doing so well that we're more freaked out by an alleged obesity epidemic than by hunger.
Ehrlich said India would not survive the 1970s. As a result of too many brown babies being born, we'd see the "dissolution of India as a viable nation".
Wrong again. India's population has more than doubled since 1970, from 550 million to 1.2 billion, yet there are fewer hungry people, more in the middle class, bigger cities, and life expectancy has risen from 49 years in 1970 to 65.1 years today. If India is anything to go by, more people means more stuff, more development, more life - not more disaster.

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