That Falling Sky

2005-05-19

I finished E.O. Wilson's book Consilience the other day, and I have to ask: Why oh why do otherwise intelligent people feel the need to end their books with the seemingly obligatory recitation of overpopulation, ecological destruction, and other chicken-little scenarios designed to invoke gloom, doom, and the need for massive government intervention against the spontaneous orders of economics, demographics, and human cultural evolution? Are they woefully ignorant of current demographic projections of impending negative population growth? Do they not know that pollution has declined significantly in every country that has reached a per-capita income of about $3,000 a year? Can't they see that urbanization leads to greater concentration of human populations, leaving more of the planet for wild areas? One would think that a lifelong scientist would take a more, well, scientific approach to his prognostications. But one would be wrong.


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