How many people per sq. mile?..or population again! : LUSENET : Countryside : One Thread

With all of this talk about how crowdwed we are lately and the old sayings that the entire world would fit comfortably in Texas, I thought I would do a little rudimentary math and see what reality was. I was quite surprised!!

Here's what I did....I measured myself as I am of "average" size, 24"wide across the shoulders and arms and 8" thick...I know y'all thought I was super thick, but no...and then I thought I'd give everyone more space than that and decided on 30"w by 10" thick for 300 square inches per person.

Here's the equations: 5,280 x 12= 63,360" per linear mile

63,360 x 63,360= 4,014,489,600 inches per sq.mile

4,014,489,600 divided by 300"= 13,381,632 people per sq.mile

6,000,000,000people divided by 13,381,632 people per sq. mile= ***448.3758035***

total square miles needed to fit 6 billion people.

Granted, no one wants to live shoulder to shoulder, but less than 500 square miles to fit the entire population of the earth tells me we ain't at capacity. I used to think that we were too crowded as well, but my veiw is changed. I now think we are just too selfish and too stressed.

What do you make of this?

-- Doreen (, December 26, 2000


Did you figure the ocean areas into this and the polar and arctic areas? Either way, you are correct in your assumption that there is still plenty of room for people.

But it seems they all want to live in the same place!!!

I wish all the "city dwellers" would build their high risers and big fine houses and stay in the cities with their rules and regulations and not come out in the country and make us abide by them!!!!!!!

-- Suzy in 'Bama (, December 26, 2000.

Hi Doreen:

The question seems to me to be more on how long resources can continue to support a growing world population. Even if it hasn't been exploited yet, there is a fixed supply of things like chemicals, oil and minerals and some day replanting trees may not meet demand due to how long it takes them to grow to harvestable size. Yes, technology in agriculture has kept up with population growth, but I think the law of diminishing returns will eventually set in. Mathius may yet prove to have been correct.

-- Ken S. in WC TN (, December 26, 2000.

I agree with Ken, It took millions and millions of years for most of the things we take for granted to develope, oil,natural gas, minerals, etc.etc. Man comes along and is using them up at an alarming rate. Just how long do you think these things will last? For every person out there more resorses are used to support that individual. Man isn't helping the planet any. I look at us as the cancer of the planet.When and only when we use up all of the natural resorces will planet earth finally rid itself of thee. We need population control of some sort, if for no other reason, think of the burdon you bestow upon your children.


-- hillbilly (, December 26, 2000.


We are not a cancer on the planet. We are the whole reason the rest of the planet exists. Yes, we are and have been abusing it, but don't start saying that if we all died it would be better. Better for whom? The worms and cockroaches? Are they the most amazing and awesome lifeforms here?

The mode of thinking that we are a cancer and or virus and need to be eradicated causes part of the problem of abuses and exploitation of our energy sources. If we address things and strive to create a sustainable society we can make a huge difference. If we throw up our hands and say it's time to kill half or more of us off so that the earth can be better off we will do more damage to the precious earth in that process. People are not to willing to off themselves or their children over soil microorganisms.

The point is....we would all fit shoulder to shoulder in less than 500 miles. I do not have the square miles of arable land mass available to post here, but perhaps someone else does. We are not overcrowded!!! We are abusive of our resources and we are stuck in the industrial ages short term mindset, but we can do things differently and still have quality of life available for billions more people. We just have to think!!(and perhaps the biggest thing we have to think about is that we are a creation, living off of and with other creations, we are not a virus as even the smallest minds and people won't fit on the head of a pin.)

-- Doreen (, December 26, 2000.

I try to stay away from these posts, but you snagged me. People who can be very reasonable when discussing tomato varieties or the best chickenhouse design tend to get irrational over something like this. First, don't take this personally. I'm not critical of people with big families, and those who think they'll make a difference by having only 2 1/2 kids are dreaming. It will require action on a massive scale (as in China) to make a difference.

Obviously, unlimited popultion growth can't go on forever. We can stop it with wars, famines, diseases, or self-imposed regulation. But it will have to stop at some point.

So the question becomes not "What's the maximum number of humans the earth can support?" but "What's the optimum number of people for earth?" I'd say we've already outgrown the optimum. Lots of people will disagree with me, and I have no interest in arguing.

If you want to think about optimum population (or maximum for that matter), think about the fact that most of the earth's surface is virtually uninhabitable for humans. We already have a situation where most people live like feedlot cattle, with all their food and other needs brought to them from afar. Big scale agriculture, which makes this possible (among other things) depends heavily on fossil fuels for transportation, processing, fertilizers, pesticides, etc. This oil, coal & gas is obviously limited.

Think about the fact that "wide open spaces" are important not just to people who get to walk around on them, but to everyone on earth. South American forests oxygenate our air and affect our weather.

Pollution of all kinds is a result of crowding and overconsumption of resources. If you were the only person living on the Mississippi River, you could dump your sewage and all your garbage in and it would make no real difference.

You get the idea. Sure, we can try to see how many people we can pack onto the earth, but why?

-- Sam in W.Va. (, December 26, 2000.

The day I have to stand in Doreen's 500 miles is my last day. I have no use to spend my life however meager it might be with my nose stuck up your ___. That's not living to me.

Before you think about filling every square inch of land with humans, then more of your energy should be spent trying to figure out how to feed them.

We know how to populate the earth. no problem there, yet that is.

-- hillbilly (, December 26, 2000.

No one has suggested that we live shoulder to shoulder nor that we fill every available inch with people. I certainly don't think that we should do that, but I really don't see that the earth has "maxxed out" at supporting th population that we have or will have in the next 100 years or more.

The deal is that we are shortsighted only exploiting resources that are finite (and are polluting) and we haven't the cajones to stand up and say the number of people is not the problem the problem is the love of money,lack of interest in developing free energy to the point that we can ENJOY the resources that give us life because the quest for power and the consumeristic society we have created is just too much fun and too much of a nice escape from reality.

Instead of looking at the oil reserves and going..."oh no....we're all gonna die without oil!" why don't we look at the sun and the wind and the water flowing and the methane gases, and the fact that we can live on clean energy if we develop those technologies and stop chasing the Almighty Dollar with our gas guzzling homages to Henry Ford, and the power of man to ruin what sustains us? How about we change the way we look at things instead of trying to kill everyone?

-- Doreen (, December 26, 2000.

I told myself after my last little escapade into the controversial that I would stay out of it, but this one hooked me. This past year I have spent quite a bit of time in Haiti, where my church has a mission, hospital and school. It is a country that was stripped by western civilization back in the plantation days, the plantation owners were all pretty much killed by the slaves in a big uprising and no one has wanted it since. It is the poorest country in the third world, or maybe in the world. You don't see huge families because so many infants die. The politics is awful and everyone is poor by any standard you want to compare to (except for a very few ruling class type people). Gasoline is sold in pop bottles, or anything else that will hold it. No vehicle moves that doesn't have people hanging from every available hand or foot hold. There is not a thing that I could see that was wasted there. No land fills needed because everything was used. No pampers, no packaging, every tin can was something of value. For the most part the ordinary man there seems happier than we are here. I bring all this up because the way I see it, we, us western civilization people, are the most greedy, selfish, self-seeking population in the world. All this running after STUFF, has reduced us to people that for the most part can not even take time to be kind to other people. When I would go out walking in the villiage there, everyone had a smile. If you stopped to visit they would bring a chair out for you into the yard and give you the best they had to offer. It was not just because I was white and was a missionary, it is their culture. If we would just slow down and simplify, there really is enough for everyone.IMHO God Bless

-- diane (, December 26, 2000.


I'm not saying this to be flip, but perhaps some of the trash going into the landfills in the U.S. should be exported to Haiti. One man's trash...

-- Ken S. in WC TN (, December 26, 2000.

pampers and packaging??? Ken, my point was look at how we are using our resources. What is in our landfills, or in our houses for that matter. I am just as guilty, I have a dump full of STUFF in my house that is really going to be useful for nothing much if this current world as we know it goes down the tube. As homesteaders a lot of us have taken the first step to simplify but I was very disappointed that y2k was a non-event - I did have hopes for a respite before the resourses were actually gone. But then, I guess that is another thread or two. They all end up at the same point to me. You could cut population, but without cutting greed the results will be the same.

-- diane (, December 26, 2000.

No, "we're all gonna die without oil!", only about half. Solar from the sun: How? Photo cells? Heating water to generate steam electric power? Solar technology would pay off in mega bucks, if there was a breakthrough technology. As it is with the current technology you could pave the state of Colorado with solar cells and not produce enough electricity to satisfy the current California demand. Water? A disaster. Look at the ecological disasters' dams have caused in the West. The East does not have enough water head to generate large scale hydo electricity. Methane gases? Another disaster as far an air pollution (nitrous oxides) from burning. Fission (like the sun)? After forty years of trying we still do not have the technology. If some company can develop this they will own the world. The only answer I see is to use less power (energy) for our day to day life or reduce population. Homesteaders have the right idea, just a little ahead of their time

-- JLS in NW AZ (, December 26, 2000.

Yes, selfish. Yes, stressed. And Yes,too populated for finite resources. The above posters covered it Nothing to add there.

JLS- like this one? "The radical of one century is the conservative of the next"-Mark Twain

-- sharon wt (, December 26, 2000.

Sharon, I like it. Only a slight problem. Does that mean I am going to become a conservative after the first of the year? On second thought, what is the difference when you are fighting for your country?

-- JLS in NW AZ (, December 26, 2000.

So what does it mean when you're a radical and conservative in many respects? Fusion????

Okay, less than 500 square miles of people....there are way more than 5,ooo tillable square miles of land in the united States alone. Are you guys asserting that 10 square miles of land per person isn't enough to feed one person?

What are you holding onto here? Where is your evidence that we need to get rid of people? Or is this just a concept you decided you liked and you want to ride that horse off the cliff just because you're on it?

We need to do things differently, but there is not a population problem. If there is, show me where my math is wrong, please. So do we address the problem or just kill people because it's easier than changing the way that we live?

-- Doreen (, December 26, 2000.


I think there is a problem with your math. It is not one person per square mile, but as many as your calculation can physically pack, sorry - asshole to elbow, into one square mile using your dimensions.

-- Ken S. in WC TN (, December 26, 2000.

Doreen, whyever do you keep repeating the phrase 'killing people'? Who said anything about killing people??

-- e (, December 26, 2000.

Hey!!! I made a mistake in my lat math right before Ken's post and I apologize and accept it as my mistake.

Earthmamma, perhaps the reason I keep referring to killing people is because I see the unborn as people. Most people in favor of population control do not.

-- Doreen (, December 26, 2000.

I guess I've had a change of heart. We need more people.

For Sale: hillbilly stud service.

-- hillbilly (, December 26, 2000.

Doreen, what do you mean by "unborn"? An actual fetus? Or the potential for one, as in the children one MIGHT have someday? I am an advocate of population control/decrease. My preferred method would be choosing not to get pregnant (you know, as in abstinence, birth control, or sterilization). I have discussed this with many, many people and read numerous articles about population control. Not ONCE have I come across anyone in favor of population control asking, expecting, demanding (or whatever term you want) abortion as a solution to excess population. The vast majority care deeply about the life that the living children would experience in an overpopulated world. They wish to achieve this by denying life to potential children PRIOR TO CONCEPTION. It is true that many (but not all) who support population control also support a woman's right to choose to abort or not. But they are supporting the choice, not demanding it. On the other hand, I have encountered a number of virulently anti-abortion people who also favor involuntary sterilization of women on welfare who keep having child after child.

And since I am posting, I will address your opening post. Overpopulation does not necessarily have to do with actual "space" per person, rather the amount of resources available. I actually agree that the consumption rate is a large part of the problem. However, as has been noted in this forum numerous times, people are NOT changing their consumption habits.

-- Joy Froelich (, December 27, 2000.

Another limited resource is water. Would LA be what it is now within bringing in water from hundreds of miles away? Would many of the large cities in the Southwest exist without water from someplace else? Yes, water can be recycled - it is done out in space. I have read, in London, a glass of drinking water has been through seven previous people.

A problem with an unrestrained population as I see it, even if resources keep up, is it doesn't leave room for either error or Mother Nature. North Korea and much of the northern half of Africa are good examples. Bad harvests and the population starves. A change in rainfall patterns and the population starves. Political disruption and the population starves. Inept governments and the population starves. Wars and some of the population starves. An economic depression may not starve the population, but there are many who would suffer.

An unchecked population is much like someone going on a spending binge. You max out one credit card, so you get another. You take out a home equity loan and use it for a trip to Vegas. You not own a vehicle for everyone of driving age in the family, but all are driving late-model, top-of-the-line ones, such as Junior driving a $25,000 pickup. Sooner or later the piper has to be paid. In this case it may be bankruptcy. For a population it may be starvation.

Population control, to me, is building in a buffer, much like someone living well within their means, as many homesteaders do.

I made my contribution via a fairly simple operation about 20 years ago. A lot of my male friends have done the same.

-- Ken S. in WC TN (, December 27, 2000.

Julie, yes, I mean babies in the womb. I refuse to call them "fetus'" as it's a way of psychologically distancing yourself from the fact that it's a baby. For a very interesting study on the major progenitors of the poulation control theory check out Margaret Sanger's writings. She was the Founder of Planned Parenthood and essentially a Nazi.

I do agree with taking responsibility for your actions and/or inactions on every level. I truly believe on a societal level that is where most problems come from...deferral or rejection of responsibility.

My point is not that everything is just fine fine,and don't consider what you do or change your habits, just that we would all fit inside a 500 square mile area and we still have plenty of resources if we begin to address our problems and start to realize that we do not have the luxury of having zero impact on the future...if we take care of today, and think about what we do there will be plenty left over for future generations. If we run headlong destroying as much as we can just to have fun and live for today, we are in for it.

There is just no way that there are too many of us when we only take up 500 square miles. Perhaps the births we want to prevent contain the people who might have the final fixes for Tesla's theories to have completely free energy. Free of pollutants (for the most part, some at manufacture), free to operate. It was amazing to me when I did the math that we would in actual reality all fit in such a relatively small area. It speaks volumes.

Hillbilly, sorry, but I don't think you're going to make a lot of money off your proposal.

-- Doreen (, December 27, 2000.

Doreen, relax, take a deep breath and clear your head. You are the only one here talking about killing people. Theoretically human population could be reduced to any level you choose in only one generation without killing anybody - just by having fewer babies. Of course in the real world I imagine we'll have to depend on war and disease. Education about the problem along with incentives for voluntary action would be a nice alternative, but I guess I'm too cynical to think that's going to happen.

-- Sam in W.Va. (, December 27, 2000.

Sam, I am relaxed.

All I am saying is there is not a problem with the number of people that we have. I don't want to bore you anymore with the facts as you would just continue to insist that there is a problem with the number of people we have.

-- Doreen (, December 27, 2000.

Hey, never are all absolutely correct. I just found a site that says the earth only can sustain 529 million people, so 5.5 billion of us need to eat lead. Who's first? Here's the site:

-- Doreen (, December 27, 2000.

In response to the casual name-calling of Margaret Sanger, may I attempt to direct those of you with a tendency to an open and enquiring mind,to another perspective:

try this

-- Earthmama (, December 28, 2000.

Abstinence ~ now there's an unrealistic approach! -LOL-

There's 12 people per square mile where I'm at, and it's been this way for quite some time. I like it, that's why I'm here.

-- ~Rogo (, December 28, 2000.

Regarding M. Sanger, since I wasn't there nor was I able to talk with her, I will not insist that she said the things she is attributed with saying, but I would like to point out that the propaganda from one's own foundation regarding controversial comments of the founder is not the most unbiased place to look for the truth about said founder's comments.

Does anyone find it interesting at all that when you do a search regarding sustainable population that nearly all of the info is from some division of the UN?

-- Doreen (, December 28, 2000.

Doreen, I hope I didn't cause offense to you or anyone else. Just wanted to introduce the idea that we don't have to go for maximum population - whatever that is. Like a lot of things, world population vs world resources is a really complex picture, and we probably won't know what we're doing until it's too late. My suggested approach (of slowing down bwfore we have to) needn't harm anyone and might make the world a better place to live. I do respect you and appreciate reading your posts!

-- Sam in W.Va. (, December 29, 2000.

Sam, you didn't offend me at all. I don't believe that we need to do whatever we can to cover every inch of productive land either. I just do not accept the premise that we are overpopulated at this point. I do believe we are terrifically over consumptive. I suppose that the matter of population is directly relative to what you hold dear. Life vs. Stuff and convenience. And to Julie, if she's still there, I forgot to say that I do not believe it is killing the unborn if you use birth control...I know some people do. However, I believe that if God wants you to conceive you will do so even with birth control. I am one of the early failures of the pill....and I know lots of other people who were conceived despite their mom using the pill.

-- Doreen (, December 29, 2000.

Doreen, keep up the good work.

-- Cindy (, December 30, 2000.


I think you need to do more study on roaches. Not only are they fasinating but they were here before us and experts say they will be here after us. As a pest control person I dealt with these critters a lot. They're awesome.If they'd get much bigger,we would not be the 'dominant' species.

Also if not for a huge meteor man would not even be a problem since he was lizard food in those days.

-- Nick (, December 31, 2000.

Oh Nick...that is so funny.....I too am amused by people who are convinced of the importance of humans on this planet, for the good that we are really needed!!! Cracks me up.......seems a no-brainer that Earth would be indescribably better off without us here! Nature needed us like a toothache.....but now that we're here......let's remember that...every day....

-- Earthmama (, December 31, 2000.

Two things.1) Having more respect for a creature that lives off feces says a lot.2)I offer first.

-- Doreen (, December 31, 2000.

Yeah,Doreen get nasty.Why not?If logic fails you,call names.

You really do need to learn more about cockroaches.Among other things.

Nick is fixed,so he's not contributing to any further population growth.And,hey,he's and old guy.He won't be around all that long for you whippersnappers to kick around.Don't hold your breath,though.

So what is your real problem?

"I'll offer again-you first"?Well, so far you seem to be the only one talking about killing existing people.I know you can't be refering to euthansia,by that comment, bc you oppose it.My,my, do try to be nice,now.

No offence.

-- sharon wt (, December 31, 2000.

I didn't call names....did I? Logic has obviously failed. I reitterate 500 square miles. All of us. Cockroaches take up more space than that in all likelihood.

My problem is that you insist there is a problem.Also that in light of actual fact you continue to not want to be confused by facts. And yes, I do have a lot to learn. There is never an end to learning,once I've learned it all, I'm outta here. Lead by example then. What's so tough about that? I thought you said on a previous thread that not only did you wish you had never had children, but that Nick, or perhaps a previous husband, (I am not sure) had 4. So, lead by example.

I know that cockroaches eat other stuff, but they do indeed eat feces. And it is appalling that people keep saying that we are a virus on the planet, a cancer, we don't belong, but the insects!!!!Now there is a remarkable kingdom! One worthy of continuing here on this planet, as we are just some freak accident and they BELONG. I mean, puhleease. I am not for the extermination of all insects either. So of course, as I revere life, ALL of it, that just isn't PC. Tough, Sharon. I must be evil. I kill roaches and think people have rights. Even you.

-- Doreen (, January 01, 2001.

I forgot to add amongst other problems, I have unexpected creosote build up in my stove, and it's sleeting out....Happy New Year to all! Long live the Insects!

-- Doreen (, January 01, 2001.

Doreen, keep up the good work!

-- Cindy (, January 01, 2001.

Now perhaps I misread the intent of you post to Nick,but sure sounded like "Eat sh*t & die". If I'm incorrect, and you are happy to have Nick,and myself, on this forum,despite our occassional disagreement with you on religious matters,then I graciously retract the calling names part.

Now,If you would read all people's posts more carefully,you would not jump to so many inaccurate conclusions. As follows:

Not that it is really any of your business,but I have 0 birthchildren.None. Nadda. Zilch. Is that now clear? As in,never have & never will,since my husband is fixed. I did however help raise my stepson.So I have raised kids or I guess kid.And,I raised him like my own.It mattered not that he wasn't a birthchild. So, please reread the thread in question.

Now,let's see,you've also been nosey about how I feel about child raising.Well, as I have stated on other threads,I think it is the toughest job there is.I have worked hard jobs,but none as hard as that.It requires skills from all areas of life.Once you've raised a child to adulthood at least fairly successfully,or at least got them to survive that long as one of my older freind put it,there isn't anything you can't do.Climb the highest mountain,swim the deepest sea,piece of cake after childraising,if you have any energy left!

I am honest enough to admit, not only to myself, but to others, that I would not want do it over.A comman feeling among parents who have finished their childraising,by the way. Most of the people I've talked to over the years,from all political and religious persuasions,have echoed much the same sentiments.

And,I don't hesitate to tell the young people I know that they don't have to rush out and have kids.Or even ever have kids,if they don't feel they are suited to being a parent.I am from a generation that was not told that.I had to learn it on my own.Perhaps you are of a younger generation that has been offered the option.Lucky you that we paved that road for you.

But to you,I suppose,I now hate kids and favor abortion.Let's see,now,Mother used to say "don't jump to conclusions,you might break your neck."

And,not that it is also any of your business,but the person who has multiple kids is Nick's exwife, the person he had the misfortune of meeting when he was very young and very stupid.And the sum total was seven, not four.Five,on welfare,is what I wrote.She became a good Catholic,too,while doing that. Nick's Catholic relatives,by the way, were outraged.Again,please reread the thread in question. I don't think you can fairly hold either of us responsible for her actions.After all,I certainly wasn't the father,and except for the first two,Nick wasn't either.

So-Here's our example-2 adults & 2 kids.OK with you?

All our siblings have done their part very well in fact,to slow down population growth 7 adults on one side and 6 kids. 9 adults on my side and 6 kids. All of whom we cherish. Now if we could only get the siblings to live lower on the food chain,which is where you and I do agree.

Well,I've gone on & on.I'll have to address your other concerns later.I need to get off this thing and get my paperwork done.

Sorry to hear about your cresote problem.Stoke a hot fire every morning and clean it out once or twice thru the season, if needed.Burn only well seasoned wood-if it sizzles, it's too wet.We have standing dead that we keep on reserve,if we run low in the heating season. Cured on the stump.

-- sharon wt (, January 01, 2001.

Wow. You really didn't have to go through all of that ya know. Sorry, but I don't remember every single detail of everything that I read. I recall distinctly reading that you "regretted" the child(ren) and that really threw me. So I recalled my emotional reaction more than particulars. See, I am not perfect, nor do I think I am.

I am not nosey about your child raising philosophies as that is not what this is about.

It's simply that we have more than enough space and capacity for many more of us including the irresponsible ex. There's a quote from Ghandi that is something like "There is more than enough for everyman's need, but not for everyman's greed." I think that pretty well summarizes my view on the population and resources issue. Even if Ghandi wasn't a Christian, he is very worthy of study as a revolutionary.

As for family and their additions to the populace, let's say my family is doing their fair share and there isn't one of my nieces or nephews that I would rather do without. They are a blessing.

Parenting is the most difficult job on the planet. It also seems to be the most rewarding and you never retire from it. people should take it very seriously, but of course many don't. Maybe that is really the crux of the population question here. ? It's not necessarily how many people but the quality of those people that causes so many to think there are too many of us.

I think you, Nick and I vary strongly on politics and religion. Que sera. I don't feel that we all need to be in complete agreement about everything, but we should certainly be able to express why we believe what we believe and the ramifications of those beliefs when extrapolated over time. I am not looking for consensus but for well thought out reasonable supports of our suppositions on important topics. So if you do that, I think it's very worthwhile having even a radical disagreement!

I know what I believe and I know why I believe it. Yeah, I am too emotional for a lot of people, but that is as much a part of me as breathing and not something that is likely to change. So if you'd care to address the other concerns I expressed that would be great.

The creosote problem will be okay. Thanks for your advice, that is usually what I do, but there were some mechanical failures. Thank God I didn't have a fire!!!

-- Doreen (, January 01, 2001.

Sam, you didn't offend me at all. I don't believe that we need to do whatever we can to cover every inch of productive land either. I just do not accept the premise that we are overpopulated at this point. I do believe we are terrifically over consumptive. I suppose that the matter of population is directly relative to what you hold dear. Life vs. Stuff and convenience. And to Julie, if she's still there, I forgot to say that I do not believe it is killing the unborn if you use birth control...I know some people do. However, I believe that if God wants you to conceive you will do so even with birth control. I am one of the early failures of the pill....and I know lots of other people who were conceived despite their mom using the pill.

Doreen, I believe we are very much overpopulated at this point. Yes, if we can somehow manage to convince people to be more conservative, to drive smaller cars, or better yet take the bus, and stop taking hot showers, and only shower once a month or so, and stop putting down carpet in their homes, and stop watching tv, and stop buying so much other STUFF, why, yes, we could conceivably support even more people than we are attempting to support now. I might add that the majority of people in the world already live without all the "necessities" that we in the first world enjoy so much, so these folks won't be able to reduce their living standards very much.

The point is, and I think Sam in W. Va. said this very clearly, we don't have to make this choice; we can continue to enjoy a comfortable lifestyle, and at the same time improve living conditions for our brothers and sisters in the third world, IF we are forward looking enough to stop producing babies in such a wholesale fashion!

Please don't take this to mean that I'm in favor of useless consumerism, because I'm not. I just believe that we need to not only live more spiritually, but also plan for the future, since we live on a very finite planet.

It's sort of like what has happened here in Oregon with our timber industry. I, along with lots of other people, have been calling for reduced logging for over thirty years, but the "powers that be" continue to log and log like there's no tomorrow. Now, the vast majority of the area is cut over (in 1966 there were only two roads into the east side of the local National Forest, now there are roads every quarter mile or so in most the forest, with the clearcuts which are the reason the roads were built.) My position was that, sooner or later, we'd be forced to cut down on the amount of timber we were removing, because the forest was a finite resource. I preferred to PLAN for reduced logging rather than waiting until we HAD to reduce the amount of timber we removed due to our running out of trees. Now, we've come to an uncomfortable compromise; the loggers think the last remnants of forest should be cut, and the "enironmentalists" think we should eliminate all logging.

Wouldn't it have been much better to plan our logging industry, along with our population numbers, in order to use the resources we need without overusing them, with the result that someone a generation or two down the pike has to suffer from our greed?

Gotta go; our environmentally conscious county commissioners are being attacked by the one commissioner who is a "good old boy", the friend of those who would rather cut and run, the future be damned. I'm involved in the strategy of defending the "good" commissioners against some brutal propaganda and charges of illegal conduct. Wish me luck!


-- jumpoffjoe (, January 09, 2001.

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