Is Over-population or Poor Governing the Issue?

Discussion for Christian perspectives on ethical issues such as abortion, euthanasia, sexuality, and so forth.
Post Reply

Is over-population an issue, or just poor governing, or something else? (read post first)

The world is over-populated leading to poverty, starvation, poor education and/or the like
0
No votes
Poverty, famine, poor education and/or the like are caused by bad government and bad economic policies
5
100%
I don't know.
0
No votes
 
Total votes: 5

User avatar
Kurieuo
Honored Member
Posts: 9887
Joined: Thu Aug 05, 2004 6:25 am
Christian: Yes
Sex: Male
Creation Position: Progressive Creationist
Location: Qld, Australia
Has liked: 626 times
Been liked: 641 times

Is Over-population or Poor Governing the Issue?

#1

Post by Kurieuo » Mon Jan 20, 2014 5:11 pm

A discussion recently came up between Neo-X and myself.

Neo appeared to believe over-population was an issue. I claimed that there was no obvious correlation between over-population and many social issues that people believe arise due to such (e.g., poverty, crime, starvation, poor education, etc). Rather it is my belief that poor governance and greed, selfishness and power are at play.

Here is an extract I'd like to share:
  • "Some believe that reduction of the population is a key to economic growth, others argue that population reduction should be focused on what they judge to be undesirable sections of the population (see Eugenics).

    Other economists doubt that a correlation between population reduction and economic growth exists. Some economists, such as Thomas Sowell and Walter E. Williams, have argued that poverty and famine are caused by bad government and bad economic policies, not by overpopulation.

    In his book, The Ultimate Resource, economist Julian Simon argued that higher population density leads to more specialization and technological innovation, which in turn leads to a higher standard of living. He claimed that human beings are the ultimate resource since we possess "productive and inventive minds that help find creative solutions to man’s problems, thus leaving us better off over the long run". He also claimed that, "Our species is better off in just about every measurable material way."

    Simon also claimed that, when considering a list of countries ranked in order by population density, there is no correlation between population density and poverty and starvation. Instead, if a list of countries is considered according to corruption within their respective governments, there is a significant correlation between government corruption, poverty and famine." (Human population control, http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Human_population_control)
Thoughts?
"Whoever will call on the name of the Lord will be saved." (Romans 10:13)

___________________

Image

Danieltwotwenty
Ultimate Member
Posts: 2879
Joined: Sun Jun 19, 2011 3:01 am
Christian: Yes
Sex: Male
Creation Position: Theistic Evolution
Location: Aussie Land
Has liked: 37 times
Been liked: 11 times

Re: Is Over-population or Poor Governing the Issue?

#2

Post by Danieltwotwenty » Mon Jan 20, 2014 5:30 pm

I think sin and turning from God are the causes.
1Tim1:15-17
Here is a trustworthy saying that deserves full acceptance: Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners of whom I am the worst. But for that very reason I was shown mercy so that in me, the worst of sinners, Christ Jesus might display his immense patience as an example for those who would believe in him and receive eternal life. Now to the King eternal, immortal, invisible, the only God, be honor and glory for ever and ever.Amen.

User avatar
Furstentum Liechtenstein
Ultimate Member
Posts: 3295
Joined: Mon May 08, 2006 6:55 pm
Christian: Yes
Sex: It's Complicated
Creation Position: Young-Earth Creationist
Location: Lower Canuckistan
Has liked: 110 times
Been liked: 34 times

Re: Is Over-population or Poor Governing the Issue?

#3

Post by Furstentum Liechtenstein » Mon Jan 20, 2014 5:41 pm

I agree with Kurieuo. Man's sinful nature is the culprit. Population density is of little relevance, if any whatsoever. Monaco, with a population density of 16,253 per square kilometer is a far better place to live than Bolivia with 8 people per square kilometer. Bangladesh, at 965 people per km2 is much, much worse than crowded Monaco.

Other densly populated yet great places to live: Liechtenstein (210/km2), Switzerland (208/km2), Netherlands (466/km2), Belgium (311/km2). Neo's Pakistan has a population density half that of the Netherlands. If you had to choose between Islamabad and Amsterdam, where would you prefer to live?

FL y@};-
Hold everything lightly. If you don't, it will hurt when God pries your fingers loose as He takes it from you. -Corrie Ten Boom

+ + +

If they had a social gospel in the days of the prodigal son, somebody would have given him a bed and a sandwich and he never would have gone home.

+ + +

Danieltwotwenty
Ultimate Member
Posts: 2879
Joined: Sun Jun 19, 2011 3:01 am
Christian: Yes
Sex: Male
Creation Position: Theistic Evolution
Location: Aussie Land
Has liked: 37 times
Been liked: 11 times

Re: Is Over-population or Poor Governing the Issue?

#4

Post by Danieltwotwenty » Mon Jan 20, 2014 5:50 pm

Neo appeared to believe over-population was an issue.
I'm pretty sure Neo was playing devils advocate.
1Tim1:15-17
Here is a trustworthy saying that deserves full acceptance: Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners of whom I am the worst. But for that very reason I was shown mercy so that in me, the worst of sinners, Christ Jesus might display his immense patience as an example for those who would believe in him and receive eternal life. Now to the King eternal, immortal, invisible, the only God, be honor and glory for ever and ever.Amen.

User avatar
Jac3510
Ultimate Member
Posts: 5489
Joined: Tue Aug 03, 2004 6:53 pm
Christian: Yes
Sex: Male
Creation Position: Young-Earth Creationist
Location: Fort Smith, AR
Has liked: 137 times
Been liked: 336 times
Contact:

Re: Is Over-population or Poor Governing the Issue?

#5

Post by Jac3510 » Mon Jan 20, 2014 6:01 pm

Danieltwotwenty wrote:
Neo appeared to believe over-population was an issue.
I'm pretty sure Neo was playing devils advocate.
Agreed. With that said, I agree with K's point. The problem is not with the number of people on the planet. It's with the people who are in charge to some degree and with the attitude of those of us who consume far more than is necessary to a large degree (a sin the Bible calls gluttony, which I think applies to a lot more than just how much food we eat at any given time).

Here's something I wrote on the question, "Why Would A Good God Allow Bad Things To Happen?"
The opinion that we are basically good is no basis on which to try to argue the objective fact of God’s non-existence. It is simply an unjustified assertion. Others, then, will point to what they believe to be unjustified suffering (i.e., children starving to death in third-world countries). Before we allow them to condemn God for that, however, look at the clothes on their back, the shoes on their feet, the car they drive, the house they live in, and all the other niceties they enjoy. If they will not give up their luxuries so others can have basic needs, then what moral right do they have to condemn God? If they won’t help, why should they be mad at God?
EDIT:

So I was in a hurry with the last post and did not check what I was referring to. I posted the wrong page. This is the section I meant to cite. :oops:
Last edited by Jac3510 on Mon Jan 20, 2014 8:19 pm, edited 1 time in total.
Proinsias wrote:I don't think you are hearing me. Preference for ice cream is a moral issue
And that, brothers and sisters, is the kind of foolishness you get people who insist on denying biblical theism. A good illustration of any as the length people will go to avoid acknowledging basic truths.

User avatar
Kurieuo
Honored Member
Posts: 9887
Joined: Thu Aug 05, 2004 6:25 am
Christian: Yes
Sex: Male
Creation Position: Progressive Creationist
Location: Qld, Australia
Has liked: 626 times
Been liked: 641 times

Re: Is Over-population or Poor Governing the Issue?

#6

Post by Kurieuo » Mon Jan 20, 2014 6:46 pm

Danieltwotwenty wrote:
Neo appeared to believe over-population was an issue.
I'm pretty sure Neo was playing devils advocate.
Hi Dan,

Please don't take me wrong. My motivation here is honest. That is, I do not mean any disrespect towards Neo nor to intentionally place him on the spot. But, Neo has raised a very valid and serious argument in his exchanges with me.

While Neo explicitly affirmed that abortion was wrong, his devil's advocacy was putting forward "abortion as a solution to over-population". Neo was quite clear that he sees over-population as an issue.

To quote from that thread:
Neo-X wrote:
Kurieuo wrote:What are these issues that you see inherent in overpopulation? (helps to first know them)
Faster depletion of the planet's resources and its direct effect on humanity.

Most wars are fought for land and resources.

Every day, at least one billion people sleep hungry. That is one in every 7 people. 25000 people die every day of starvation and at least 18000 thousand are children below the age of 5.

One billion of humans, don't have access to water to drink or for sanitation. Aquifers are being depleted faster than they can be replenished.

I am sure you won't like your child sitting in a classroom with 200 other children instead of 30, with one teacher at hand? Overpopulation directly affects this. Infact here, in pakistan, my classroom size was about 110-120 students, in short it helped no one.

Would you think that an overcrowded hospital is good for you? No you won't. No one does.

I don't need to write about fuel and its impacts. You are very well aware of that.

Not to mention, that the irrigation soil, is getting used up too quickly.

Pandemics always grow faster in dense populations, you know that very well.

More poverty and crime follows.

I am not sure why you wanted me to write this, since this is pretty much common knowledge.
Neo, apologies in advance for putting you on the spot. However, I hope you more take it as a compliment that I opened a thread for this.

You opened my eyes to an often embedded but not immediately obvious argument in support of abortion, which I acknowledge you yourself believe abortion is for some reason wrong.

Nonetheless, your belief assumed over-population causes these issues here quoted, and this I disagree with... and so I was interested to garner the thoughts of others.
"Whoever will call on the name of the Lord will be saved." (Romans 10:13)

___________________

Image

User avatar
neo-x
Ultimate Member
Posts: 3560
Joined: Sat Mar 26, 2011 2:13 am
Christian: Yes
Sex: Male
Has liked: 227 times
Been liked: 106 times
Contact:

Re: Is Over-population or Poor Governing the Issue?

#7

Post by neo-x » Tue Jan 21, 2014 4:09 am

No problem K, I appreciate the effort, and no worries I think its a good topic and I had hoped our previous conversation could have been more in line with the like of this thread, but anyway I will be watching this thread closely and if its alright with you may play the DA again.

I find abortion wrong in the same way you find it wrong, that it is unlawful and immoral to take human life, which obviously the human fetus is. The point is not when life is conceived enough to be called a person, the point is what life is it? I have always find this a bit baffling, the human fetus is in nature, a human being...and some people have a hard time understanding that.

Having said that, I have seen women aborting children because they have too many already to feed, like really poor homeless, illiterate people (most who wouldn't know what birth control or abortion is), slaves etc. India, china, pakistan, are prime examples.

I am sure there is some truth to what you are saying e.g better governance but frankly, don't you think its so idealistic that its near impossible (perhaps not in the west)...like in countries as india and china and pakistan?

There is one fact, that the population is rising. No matter how much space we currently have, it will eventually run out. That is the problem. Now I admit that abortion is not a solution to this, but it looks like a restraining factor.

Now FL gave a nice comparison of population densities. Netherlands' population is 16.77 million, pakistan's population is 169 million. But what if Netherlands' population triples in the next 80 years within the same space they currently have...what then? Would a solution like birth control or abortion be viable then? Even if you have good governing, eventually will it fail? Sadly as much as I don't like abortion, in a situation like that, I don't see how mass birth control could be avoided. I think that is something I would like your thoughts upon, how you see this in the long run and in the big picture, given that abortion is morally wrong.

Moreover, abortion today in the west is a choice, in the east like china, its a forced policy...now do you think that sterilization (one way to avoid abortion at all as you mentioned) should be a choice or should it be forced?

I understand these are a lot of questions, you can direct me to some source if you like and if you would like to post, you can take one question at a time. That is if you would like to. Either way there is no rush. I would like others to chime in too if they like. This is something that has been on my mind lately.
It would be a blessing if they missed the cairns and got lost on the way back. Or if
the Thing on the ice got them tonight.

I could only turn and stare in horror at the chief surgeon.
Death by starvation is a terrible thing, Goodsir, continued Stanley.
And with that we went below to the flame-flickering Darkness of the lower deck
and to a cold almost the equal of the Dante-esque Ninth Circle Arctic Night
without.


//johnadavid.wordpress.com

User avatar
Furstentum Liechtenstein
Ultimate Member
Posts: 3295
Joined: Mon May 08, 2006 6:55 pm
Christian: Yes
Sex: It's Complicated
Creation Position: Young-Earth Creationist
Location: Lower Canuckistan
Has liked: 110 times
Been liked: 34 times

Re: Is Over-population or Poor Governing the Issue?

#8

Post by Furstentum Liechtenstein » Tue Jan 21, 2014 4:30 am

neo-x wrote:Now FL gave a nice comparison of population densities. Netherlands' population is 16.77 million, pakistan's population is 169 million. But what if Netherlands' population triples in the next 80 years within the same space they currently have...what then? Would a solution like birth control or abortion be viable then? Even if you have good governing, eventually will it fail?
Good governing isn't the product of low population density. Look at Singapore: extremely high population density but the place is governed well. To answer your question, if the Netherlands' population triples and values remain constant, good governing there can be expected to continue.

Good governing will fail when values are perverted. We may be seeing that process in the USA already.
neo-x wrote:I am sure there is some truth to what [Kurieuo is] saying e.g better governance but frankly, don't you think its so idealistic that its near impossible (perhaps not in the west)...like in countries as india and china and pakistan?
I think it is impossible to expect good governance in any Muslim or Hindu or officially atheist nation. Notice that I deliberately used the word impossible.

FL
Hold everything lightly. If you don't, it will hurt when God pries your fingers loose as He takes it from you. -Corrie Ten Boom

+ + +

If they had a social gospel in the days of the prodigal son, somebody would have given him a bed and a sandwich and he never would have gone home.

+ + +

User avatar
Kurieuo
Honored Member
Posts: 9887
Joined: Thu Aug 05, 2004 6:25 am
Christian: Yes
Sex: Male
Creation Position: Progressive Creationist
Location: Qld, Australia
Has liked: 626 times
Been liked: 641 times

Re: Is Over-population or Poor Governing the Issue?

#9

Post by Kurieuo » Tue Jan 21, 2014 5:36 am

neo-x wrote:I find abortion wrong in the same way you find it wrong, that it is unlawful and immoral to take human life, which obviously the human fetus is. The point is not when life is conceived enough to be called a person, the point is what life is it? I have always find this a bit baffling, the human fetus is in nature, a human being...and some people have a hard time understanding that.
Thank you for answering and clarifying why you see abortion as wrong.
neo-x wrote:Having said that, I have seen women aborting children because they have too many already to feed, like really poor homeless, illiterate people (most who wouldn't know what birth control or abortion is), slaves etc. India, china, pakistan, are prime examples.
Ok, it is this sentence here I think is of utmost importance as it really personalizes matters.

This here is not an over-population issue, but rather a very real and sad issue caused by complex social issues. The woman being homeless and having too many to feed is ultimately a government caused social issue, since they're failing to look after all their citizens. Her aborting, or perhaps even infanticide, is not a form of her own population control. It is a moral dilemma caused by the de-valuing of human life, people's attitudes and ultimately a society governed by people at the top who don't really give a damn or are incompetent.

Take India, which still very much have their caste system that in a way justifies a higher caste ignoring lower ones such that Dalits aren't even really human. Or Pakistan which has religious, historical and sociocultural factors that might contribute to a devaluing of human life of those outside not ones own. To say that this is all caused due to over-population is too simple. No, it is caused due to attitudes, selfishness, greed and false beliefs and religions that have deceived a great deal.

When I reflect on Scripture, in particular those parts that say to let our light shine, a city on a hill cannot be hidden in darkness (Matthew 5:14-16). Or John 18:2 where Jesus says, "I am the Light of the world; he who follows Me will not walk in the darkness, but will have the Light of life." All this conjures up a picture of the world clouded in total darkness. Not just when it comes to sin, but when it comes to truth. And sadly, many are caught up in regardless of population.

So, re: the woman, I feel for her situation. The moral dilemma, particularly so if she was raped as sadly so often happens by those preying upon the weak, is does she risk all her children's lives or the one she is unable to herself feed? Now there are just hundreds or people who'd love to adopt. If the government put in place good adoption processes, even boxes where unwanted babies could be placed (as a man in South Korea is doing), than many children could be saved. That is at least a partial solution. Christian Churches has often helped in this manner.. but the lists of those wanting to adopt who may be unable to have children are very long in Western countries.

Idealistic? Perhaps since there will always be a veil over the world. Common sense? I think so. Should we try? We are called to be a light so most definitely. Over population the issue? I don't see how. Reducing population a solution? Unrealistic. Not to mention it is kind of a reverse idealistic view to think mass abortions can be provided, let alone everyone would just socially accept enforced abortions for 30 years (as some propose) which devalues human life and freedoms that governments ought to uphold. And as such, I'd expect people would rightly protest, even violently so, to eventually rise up and topple their government. I mean isn't it to this massive scale that'd be needed, and isn't this unrealistic itself that 1) it could be affordably rolled out to such an extent and 2) there be no backlash?

So at the end, I'd much rather be idealistic over moral methods to help people and the government to fix issues, rather than be idealistic over immoral methods that de-value human life, human rights and would lead to further injustices simply to get the human population down which probably wouldn't fix matters anyway.
neo-x wrote:I am sure there is some truth to what you are saying e.g better governance but frankly, don't you think its so idealistic that its near impossible (perhaps not in the west)...like in countries as india and china and pakistan?
You keep assuming that over-population is the issue, but that's the whole point. I disagree that over-population is the issue, and therefore if you want to reduce the population (via birth control or abortion) then you're still going to be left with the same issues. Only you've compounded them with further devaluing of human life where birth control entailed an abortion.
neo-x wrote:There is one fact, that the population is rising. No matter how much space we currently have, it will eventually run out. That is the problem. Now I admit that abortion is not a solution to this, but it looks like a restraining factor.
As FL pointed out, Singapore is quite dense. I again disagree that reducing human life (via abortion or some other means) will restrain issues.
neo-x wrote:Now FL gave a nice comparison of population densities. Netherlands' population is 16.77 million, pakistan's population is 169 million. But what if Netherlands' population triples in the next 80 years within the same space they currently have...what then? Would a solution like birth control or abortion be viable then? Even if you have good governing, eventually will it fail? Sadly as much as I don't like abortion, in a situation like that, I don't see how mass birth control could be avoided. I think that is something I would like your thoughts upon, how you see this in the long run and in the big picture, given that abortion is morally wrong.
Again, assuming over-population is an issue.

To take your education example. With higher population, you should have a higher number of teachers and not just students. Something is wrong with the governing process if you're in a situation where there are 150 or so students in a class to one teacher. As such, decreasing population you'll still have 150 students in a classroom because it is the accepted norm. Change isn't going to happen because there are less people. Change will happen when your government decided to fix the issue and encourages hiring of more teachers. The government needs to invest its money more into its people -- which costs money -- bit an investment in education should see greater economic return to the country later on.

As for space? Julian Simon argues, "higher population density leads to more specialization and technological innovation, which in turn leads to a higher standard of living.... [human beings possess] "productive and inventive minds that help find creative solutions to man’s problems, thus leaving us better off over the long run". Now, the only barrier really, is that human life is not valued. Money is placed before the person and bad governing and economic policies largely cause the issues, not over population. And given this, reducing the population isn't going to fix matters at all. It may just exacerbate matters if done in a de-humanising and immoral way via negative eugenics or the like.

So "abortion" is not even a solution in my head to over-population, because I don't agree that over-population is the issue.
neo-x wrote:Moreover, abortion today in the west is a choice, in the east like china, its a forced policy...now do you think that sterilization (one way to avoid abortion at all as you mentioned) should be a choice or should it be forced?
If over-population is considered to be an issue, then I did propose sterilization as being less immoral than abortion. For sterilization can not result in the taking of a human life.

China given its one child policy which the government even enforces through forced abortions, it would be better forcing women/men to become sterile after one child. Obviously, it's a matter of which is the lesser of two evils. Why opt to go for a human corpse no matter how small, when you can just enforce contraceptive methods?
Last edited by Kurieuo on Tue Jan 21, 2014 7:17 pm, edited 2 times in total.
"Whoever will call on the name of the Lord will be saved." (Romans 10:13)

___________________

Image

PaulSacramento
Board Moderator
Posts: 8840
Joined: Fri Mar 25, 2011 12:29 pm
Christian: Yes
Sex: Male
Creation Position: Theistic Evolution
Location: Ontario, Canada
Has liked: 114 times
Been liked: 331 times

Re: Is Over-population or Poor Governing the Issue?

#10

Post by PaulSacramento » Tue Jan 21, 2014 12:33 pm

Not sure if such a thing as "over-population" exists per say, more like "overly-dense population centers".
People tend to "clutter" around cosmopolitan areas and then you find 1000's of acres of land with no one on them.

User avatar
Kurieuo
Honored Member
Posts: 9887
Joined: Thu Aug 05, 2004 6:25 am
Christian: Yes
Sex: Male
Creation Position: Progressive Creationist
Location: Qld, Australia
Has liked: 626 times
Been liked: 641 times

Re: Is Over-population or Poor Governing the Issue?

#11

Post by Kurieuo » Tue Jan 21, 2014 7:38 pm

So true Paul. Especially in our countries, well at least talking from my own.

I mentioned India's caste system and also made reference to Pakistan in my previous post, but didn't mean to single them out. However, the correlation seems to be those who are poor are considered less than human, and this perhaps filters down to the government such that where there is extreme poverty -- the attitude is likely one of well let's sustain those who are more wealthy, do contribute and so are "more human".

This is displayed across all cultures and countries. The attitudes are rife in Australia, and no doubt rife in the US, even if the issues aren't as visible. Just the following video I came across re-prompted me just how pervasive it is that human life is de-valued based on wealth:

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-IhGSCC3LlI[/youtube]

It is amazing how here, in Australia, when someone is down and out how many love to kick you in the guts when you're down. I've seen it happen to someone close. By and large no one wanted to give them a hand. In some sense, some seemed to relish being "above" them or superior in some way. Even family didn't help because the person was written off as "on drugs". You're an outcast, and many prefer you that way as it gives them a sense of power and an excuse to wash their hands of helping another person.

The solution is to change attitudes and create a culture where ALL human life is valued. Not to further erode the value of human life. And I'm not judging, as I myself have lots to learn and work on.
"Whoever will call on the name of the Lord will be saved." (Romans 10:13)

___________________

Image

Post Reply