Paul Ehrlich: 'Collapse of civilisation is a near certainty within decades'

Meatpie

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A shattering collapse of civilisation is a “near certainty” in the next few decades due to humanity’s continuing destruction of the natural world that sustains all life on Earth, according to biologist Prof Paul Ehrlich. Do you agree or disagree?

Full article from the Guardian here
 

alexonedeath

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I disagree, because warnings such as Mr. Ehrlich's here have been issued many times before over the centuries. I think it's just a recurring hysteria. However, if he IS correct, I'm glad he's place the end of civilization in the next "few" decades rather than the next couple. Thirty years and I'll be out of here, and I really don't care what happens once I'm gone.
 

Meatpie

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Are you that old? 30 years more and you are gone? :retard: My gran is 90 and still doesn't want to die and soldiers on.
 

alexonedeath

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I'm older than deaddirty (and that's pretty old). I expect to be dead in 20 years. God bless your gran though. I hope she continues soldiering on happily for many, many years. The day may come when people who want to live forever actually can.
 

Meatpie

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I'm older than deaddirty (and that's pretty old). I expect to be dead in 20 years.
:retard: With advances in medicine people will be able to extend their lives beyond 100 in the next couple of decades so your chances of dying in the next 20 years are overestimated.

How old are you anyway?

My gran has dementia to the point she doesn't remember her exact age but she is able to have a conversation, meaningless most of the time but still you can talk ot her and she recognizes us.
 

alexonedeath

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I'm 66, but I do my best to stay away from doctors, and health care in general. If I can avoid allowing these medical advances to be practiced on me, maybe I can avoid hanging around for 35 more years.

If you have the sense that your gran is happy, then dementia isn't such a terrible burden for her. As long as she has loved ones to care for her, I wish her the chance to see 100 and beyond.
 

Meatpie

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Thank you for the wishes yes she is happy no other major health problems so far and she is able to read and watch TV. I think she will pass away soon.

66 is definately old. You can't totally avoid doctors but if you've managed so far without them you are in good health. Almost all people develop at least once chronic disease after age 40 and when you become 70 it's common to have two or three chronic diseases.
 

deaddirty

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Alex, I thought you were in your 30s for some reason! Milvus milvus will not be keeping a close eye on you quite yet (they haven't got the patience), but if you see a load of Gyps fulvus (the griffon vulture) like this

overhead it might be wise to visit your non-existent US healthcare - they have a sense for these things. I think it was Griffon vultures that I saw on holiday in the Grandes Causses of France in the 2000s (the same holiday that I learned about the seigneur who died from an excess of gallantry - it was a very educational holiday. They were gliding low like flying barn doors - they really did blot out the sum for a moment as they went over.
However in checking my facts for this post I discover that there are now four species of vulture in France ( https://www.google.co.uk/search?sou...9k1j0i131k1j0i46k1j0i3k1j0i10k1.0.m5M5D6TJeEI ). So that is tonight's good news.
No vultures back in Britain yet, though as well as our friend Milvus milvus, buzzards peregrines and goshawks are increasingly common. And among mammals the pine marten is gradually recovering and spreading which is excellent news since it preys on grey squirrels so effectively that in the areas where martens have returned the native red squirrel is also recovering. And beavers and wild boar have also reppeared and are doing well. The lynx was also reintroduced this year, though it is too soon to know if it will be a success.
 

alexonedeath

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Holy Cow, deaddirty -- the UK sounds like a wildlife paradise! All the rest of the planet's creatures will catch up eventually. People needn't be so worried. Everything will turn out just fine.

As for your remark, "...I thought you were in your 30s...", I WAS in my 30s, over a quarter-century ago. :D
 

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The depletion of Earth's natural resources will definitely be the final nail in humanity's coffin but I think human civilization as we know it will have collapsed way before we reach that point. There has been a lot of research that indicates automation will lead to high unemployment in the developed world in 20 years. Once a sizable chunk of the population can't find jobs and do not have a way to support themselves, social upheaval and revolution will resurge all over the world. It is true that this new age of automation will create new jobs but most people do not have the necessary education to attain them (there is a good reason software engineers and mathematicians are in high demand). Wealth disparity will make things even worse as have-nots will become more and more enraged by the lack of empathy and obscene lifestyle the uber rich enjoy. My grandfather is a staunch capitalist who has made a lot of money but even he recognizes that he is wealthy so long as the majority of people believe and endorse the system that makes him wealthy. Once people revolt against the system, then the whole things crushes down.
 

Meatpie

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I think some regions will manage to remain stable but overall more and more nations will decent into chaos and eventual societal collapse. That doesn't mean all people will die at once many will survive but most countries will look like Syria does today.
 

alexonedeath

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If I owned one of those luxury condominiums that have been built inside an old nuclear missile silo in the U.S. Midwest...I'd move in now, before the rush.
 

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Some countries are still somewhat isolated from the world and will very likely manage to survive. Western countries will however be hit pretty hard. Most Western societies have very complex economies and social infrastructure that most people take for granted. People are so used to being able to call 911 when their is a problem that they have no idea how to live in an anarchical system. I remember reading an article a few years ago about how the police department in Fairfield county in Connecticut which is one of the wealthiest counties in America was flooded with calls when cable was out. People tend to give in to panic when things go wrong which exacerbate any crisis. Most of the time stock market fall it is usually more because of herd psychology than bad economic indicators. We can already see the first signs of problems ahead. When people feel threatened or are unsatisfied they tend to look for leaders who promise harsh and radical solutions. This is where fascism begins. Now we have Trump in America and fascism is on the rise in Europe with the National Front gaining power in France and the Golden Dawn in Greece.
 
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