In the last few years I have found myself immersed traveling around different cultures. A trend I have observed is that the more educated people has been, the more they are healthy and the more they are cooperative towards the rest. Following Malow’s hierarchy of needs one can easily understand why is it that education is so important to help establishing a better society. My favourite philosophers agree that in order for a human to act rationally he/she needs to know clearly which is his/her code of values and their aim in life.
Today’s reality whoever is discouraging to many in regard to the Global Educational trends. The divergence between the Global North and South in terms of educational development is increasing:
Why is it that development has continued growing uneven in these regions is the field of study of global studies and it requires a long discussion. One thing is certain: in order for ignorance to be cured there is only one medicine: cheap or free good access to all knowledge. For this reason I support strongly projects like Google Books and many others in local areas. I contribute to this global project by donating printed books and providing access to an online ebook collection of Humanities. Now, how are you contributing to this project?
Remember 1989? Well, as argued by many scholars, that years was the culmination of global interactions that “dynamized in many places of the world crisis phenomena and synchronized, the resulting transformation processes Had they been previously locates primarily in a national framework, now its global dimension is obvious. Thus began both reflect on the established order of the world is understood relationship with their respective areas of sovereignty in the resolution, as well, should be designed as the new world order.” (Read more on 1989 in a Global Perspective).
“The MIT Technology Review explains how CSI’s model works: “The evidence comes from two sources. The first is data gathered by the United Nations that plots the price of food against time, the so-called food price index of the Food and Agriculture Organisation of the UN. The second is the date of riots around the world, whatever their cause.” Plot the data, and it looks like this:……”
Joel Cohen is the author of the 1996’s bestseller on Population studies titled “How Many People Can the Earth Support?“. I remember some of its content and that it was one of the first book acquisitions I did from Barnes & Noble (from those times in which you actually went to the bookstore!). Now, 15 years later we are confronted with his favorite topic: overpopulation and his fetish with calculations for possible saturation points. Here’s what he thinks even though so many people has been born since he wrote his book doing numbers of saturation points of the world:
Humanity took until year 1800 to reach its first billion people. We added 1 billion people in just the past 12 years. October 31, 2011 marks a milestone in global population: 7 billion humans. That’s according to projections by the United Nations. EarthSky interviewed demographer Joel Cohen, professor of populations and head of the Laboratory of Populations at the Rockefeller University and Columbia University in New York. He explained the top 10 population trends in a world with 7 billion inhabitants.
1. One billion people are hungry, and 1 billion are obese. Cohen said this is the most important thing people should know about the population milestone of 7 billion. Too too many people on Earth today live without knowing where their next meal will come from.
A billion people are chronically hungry. That means they wake up every day hungry. They don’t get enough calories to get through the day and do a day’s work like you and me. And many of them have been hungry since they were born. And their brains aren’t fully nourished, fully developed. And they’re having a very hard time learning and coping with life’s problems.
At the other extreme there are about a billion people that are really, seriously obese. And that’s partly a matter of not getting a good food supply also — not a food supply that’s balanced for their needs. Roughly two or three billion people — we don’t know precisely — are malnourished as opposed to undernourished. That means they’re not getting the trace vitamins that they need to have a balanced diet.
In a world with 7 billion, 1 billion are hungry, 1 billion are obese. (UN)
2. Three billion people live on two dollars a day. Cohen said:
That is abject poverty. You try to live on two dollars a day for long and you’ll start losing weight pretty fast. So roughly half the world is in desperate poverty.
3. One billion people live in slums. Cohen said:
Right now, about half the world lives in cities — let’s say 3.5 billion, slightly more. And of those, a billion are living in slums without adequate sanitation, electricity, water, security, legal protection, transport, and inadequate housing conditions. When it rains, it leaks. Maybe a mud floor. So we, the world, have not provided home or food, have not reached minimum standards that we ought to be providing for people.
One billion people today live in slums. Image Credit: United Nations
4. Over 200 million woman have unmet needs for contraception. He said:
That means that they don’t want to have an additional child, and yet they’re not able to use modern means of contraception. These problems are not only abroad. We have, I would say, a very serious population problem in the United States. According to the United States Centers for Disease Control, in 2001, approximately half of the pregnancies in the United States were unintended. That means that the woman, or the couple either did not want a pregnancy at that time or did not want a pregnancy at any time. And that is a very serious problem of human well-being related to the lack of control over people’s own reproduction.
5. Today, 1.5 billion people live in rich countries. Cohen explained:
6. Four billion people live in middle-income countries. Said Cohen:
These are the countries that have recently emerged from poverty with fast-growing economies. And I would put China, India, Brazil, many countries in Latin America in that realm of the middle-income. And that means on the order of Chile — let’s say 5,000 dollars a year income. That’s tremendous progress when you remember how recently China and India were really in desperate poverty. And many in those countries still are.
Four billion people live in middle-income countries like China. Image Credit: weirdchina
7. Economically at the bottom are 1.5 billion people. Cohen said:
Those people are living largely in sub-Saharan Africa, but in the new world also in Haiti, and in many of the provinces of South Asia in both Pakistan, Afghanistan, India, Bangladesh. There are hundreds of millions of people in dire poverty — the bottom billion as one Oxford economist calls them. So that gives you sort of a geographical picture of where these 7 billion people are.
Seniors now outnumber toddlers.
8. Seniors now outnumber toddlers, and this trend will continue to increase. Cohen explained:
In the last decade, the world passed a very major milestone. And that is that for the first time in history, the number of people 60 years old or more exceeded the number of people 0-4 years old. Basically, for the first time, the grandparents outnumber the grandchildren. In the year 2000, there were about 10 percent of the world’s people were age 0-4, and about 10 percent were age 60+.
What we’re going into now is the era of aging. And by 2050, we anticipate that the number of people 60+ will be about 3.5 times the number of people age 0-4.
In the richer countries, like the United States and Europe, this process of aging is already pretty far advanced and will pose some serious questions and challenges for our retirement systems. In the poorer countries, which have a younger population because they’ve been growing faster — that means more children, so higher proportion of young people — aging will increase even faster than in the richer countries, which have already made a transition in part, the beginning of a transition to aging. So aging is one big thing that’s happened.
Two-thirds of people worldwide will live in cities by 2030, experts predict.
9. More than half of Earth’s inhabitants today live in cities, and two-thirds will live in cities by 2050. Cohen said:
In 2000, a little less than half of the world’s people lived in cities. Somewhere around 2007-2008, it became about 50-50. And by 2050, we expect about two-thirds of the world’s people to be living in cities. Now the increase in the number of city dwellers, between 2000 and 2050 is expected to be about three billion people, which was the total population of the Earth in 1960.
Virtually all of that additional three billion people will be added in the cities of the developing countries, not the rich countries. The rich cities will grow somewhat, but the really rapid growth will be in the poor or developing countries.
And if you do the arithmetic, 50 years between 2000 and 2050, roughly 50 weeks per year, 50 times 50 is 2500 weeks in that half century. And yet we’re going to add three billion people in the cities. Three billion is 3,000 million. It means that developing countries have to add urban infrastructure for a million people every five days from now to 2050. Now if that isn’t a building job, I don’t know what is. And hardly anybody is thinking about the design of the cities so that they can accommodate those additional three billion people in a constructive and useful way.
More than half of women today have fewer children than the number needed to replace themselves and their partner. Image Credit: United Nations
10. More than half of women today have fewer children than the number needed to replace themselves and their partner. Cohen said:
In 2003, for the first time in human history, more than half the women in the world lived in countries or provinces where the rate of reproduction was below the replacement level. That is, they were having fewer children than required to replace themselves in the next generation. This represents a tremendous change over the previous half century. The rate of growth of the world population fell by almost half, from 2.1 percent per year in 1950 to 1.1 percent per year in 2000. And we expect it to continue to decline if we continue to educate women, to provide modern contraception, and to improve the status of nutrition and education.
Bottom Line: Humanity took until year 1800 to reach its first billion people. We added 1 billion people in just the past 12 years. October 31, 2011 marks a milestone in global population: 7 billion humans. That’s according to projections by the United Nations. EarthSky interviewed demographer Joel Cohen, professor of populations and head of the Laboratory of Populations at the Rockefeller University and Columbia University in New York. He explained the top 10 population trends in a world with 7 billion inhabitants. Many continue to face issues of dire poverty. The population is aging. For the first time, more than half the world’s women live in countries or provinces where the rate of reproduction was below the replacement level.
professor of populations and head of the Laboratory of Populations at the Rockefeller University and Columbia University in New York.
The human population on planet Earth has reached for the first time in history 7 billion as reported by the United Nations. As of today, October 28, 2011 at 16:44 (GMT+1) it was estimated to be 6.92 billion by the United States Census Bureau and you can check their World Population Clock. and 7 billion by . But also, we can also acknowledge that this is also the first time in human history in which most humans have access to medical services, potable water, electricity.
As Susa Lewis from Nova acknowledges, “For most of human existence our ancestors led precarious lives as scavengers, hunters, and gatherers, and there were fewer than 10 million human beings on Earth at any one time. Today, many cities have more than 10 million inhabitants each, and populations continue to skyrocket.”
Also, the UN World Urbanizaiton Prospects reviewed that “Through most of history, the human population has lived a rural lifestyle, dependent on agriculture and hunting for survival. In 1800, only 3 percent of the world’s population lived in urban areas. By 1900, almost 14 percent were urbanites, although only 12 cities had 1 million or more inhabitants. In 1950, 30 percent of the world’s population resided in urban centers. In 2008, for the first time, the world’s population was evenly split between urban and rural areas. There were more than 400 cities over 1 million and 19 over 10 million. More developed nations were about 74 percent urban, while 44 percent of residents of less developed countries lived in urban areas.”
Nova has the following interactive map in which you can trace the dramatic growth of human populations over recent centuries, and see where on Earth as many as three billion more people may live by 2050.
New challenges for humans will continue appearing with so many of us living here. However, it is not the number what really matters but how we are all going to live here. Currently, Thomas Malthusfamous argument from 1798 in which he said “that population growth was a critical problem, reasoning that because human population grows exponentially while our food supplies grow linearly, that our growth would lead to massive problems” has already been proven wrong.
But what has still not being solved is the current philosophical crisis in which we live. For a great part of human history, the world has been ruled by a collectivist philosophy of life that in the words of Ayn Rand “promoted the subjugation of the individual to a group (kings, oligarchs, nobility, religions, patrimonialists, corporations, parties, communities)—whether to a race, class or state does not matter. Collectivism holds that man must be chained to collective action and collective thought for the sake of what is called “the common good.” The previous sentences are very important and cannot be passed without understanding its historical results. You can further explore them in the work of Leonard Peikoff titled “The Ominous Parallels“.
For more information regarding human population check the following links:
“Dictatorship nations are outlaws. Any free nation had the right to invade Nazi Germany and, today, has the right to invade Soviet Russia, Cuba or any other slave pen. Whether a free nation chooses to do so or not is a matter of its own self-interest, not of respect for the non-existent “rights” of gang rulers. It is not a free nation’s duty to liberate other nations at the price of self-sacrifice, but a free nation has the right to do it, when and if it so chooses.
This right, however, is conditional. Just as the suppression of crimes does not give a policeman the right to engage in criminal activities, so the invasion and destruction of a dictratorship does not give the invader the right to establish another variant of a slave society in the conquered country.” Ayn Rand. The Virtue of Selfishness, 104
Gaddafi came into power as an assassin and terrorist. He started out murdering, continued murdering and had been going out murdering until today. His death is no panacea but it is surely a victory for the Libyan people and their 2011 Revolution.
Starting in February 15th, 2011 a series of peaceful protests asked for change in the country and they were met with military force by the Gaddafi regime. Thousands were hurt and killed. Gaddafi proclaimed his despotic discourse that same night and said that the only way he was going to leave Libya was going to be in a cuffing. Indeed, that’s how he will leave the history of the country.
The fight for Libyans has not finished; loyalists around the Algerian and Nigerian borders are still present and the opposition continues.
I celebrate the capture of this dictator and our attention needs to be focused now in the continues shipping of supplies of medicine, fuel and food were for Libya’s urban centres. As the philosopher Ayn Rand mentioned in the quote with which I begun this post; it is necessary as well, that we keep a close attention to the outcome of this Libyan revolution in order to avoid that another variant of a slave society in the conquered country with national or international control.