Posted in Aesthetics, An ideal economy, An ideal environment, An ideal life, An ideal society, tagged eco footprint, economic growth, global population, global warming, housing prices, land availability, population warning on April 20, 2010|
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So the british, at least, are finally starting to openly question whether their island has reached the limits of sustainability, as they contemplate having 70 million people packed into the UK. That’s really quite a few too many; 20 million is just plenty, thanks.
What really strikes me as sad, is the number of people who will respond with a “but there are plenty of empty or underpopulated places on the earth… if you feel too squeezed, just move there!”
Yes, but the elephant in the closet is something that economists call “central place function,” which simply means that humans need jobs, and jobs are concentrated in cities, because people and resources are concentrated in cities. Sure, I could move to Bumbleville, SD, but, what would I do to earn a paycheck? Farm? The agrobusinesses have made it so that individual farming is unsustainable. My only option would be to drive 60 miles to a job at Wal-Mart. (more…)
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Posted in Aesthetics, An ideal life, An ideal society, Cultural crossroads, tagged atheism, darwinism, evolution, humanism, organized religion, rationalism, science on April 2, 2010|
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Posted on Good Friday, 2010.
Though I hesitate to call myself theist (see for example my post “What would it be like to have faith?”), I also find that I instinctually recoil at people and organizations who call themselves ‘atheist.’
Why is that?
Type 1 Atheists.
Partly, I am suspicious of their motives. Biologists tell us that the nearly universal human desire to worship god is a displacement of our parental instinct. That is, we have all evolved with a strong sense of needing a parent to protect us. This has served a very useful evolutionary function, because animals which rely on parents have higher survival rates than those which do not. And so the need for god is a symbolic manifestation of this instinct, only we map our notion of ‘parent’ on the cosmos as a whole. This is why religion is almost universal in human society. And this is why a psychologist would first look at any atheist, and wonder how much of what they are asserting is due to genuine ideological conviction, and how much of it comes from their personal need to rebel against whatever their mind sets up as “parent figures.” This will weed out a certain portion of strident atheists, I think, and suggest to them that their issues with “god” may well stem from issues with their own upbringing. Because, I mean, why assert the non-existence of god so stridently? There is, as any theologian will tell you, no positive proof that god exists, and so, why beat up on the poor guy? (more…)
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