Every Generation

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May I ask whose brilliant idea it was to indoctrinate new generations on the need to have fewer children?

No, no, don’t answer. I’ve read a lot of science fiction written in the mid twentieth century, and I know.  The thinking parts of the culture in the dawn of the current era of abundance had time and leisure to get all panicky about excess population and how we were killing the planet, and a lot of other rather emo nonsense.

Also I went to school shortly after the middle of the twentieth century, and was lectured in every class about how the human race needed to find a way to stagnate…. er… to “keep population the same or reduce it.”

The only good thing about that rank stupidity was that it was marginally smarter than the tripe they pulled on my kids, where they tried to convince the kids to sign agreements they would never reproduce when they were thirteen.

Future generations, if there are any, will stare in awe at our magnificent suicide, and at the strange assumption that because we’d just had a baby boom, future generations would continue to reproduce at the same level…. forever.  Again, I think it was the ease of communication, and the exponential growth of a class that worked with their minds.

The Bible says something about the heart being deceitful…. but it has nothing on the mind.  Things you teach kids when they are very young tend to be unquestioned, unexamined and forever believed.

One of the things the last few generations have believed with absolute panic certainty is that each of us needs to do his/her part to REDUCE the human population.

The other thing they have believed with credulous certainty is that the population figures from the UN are accurate, instead of being — at BEST — guesstimations, and accurately at worst a steaming pile of bull of excreta completely imaginary.

To an extent I absolve my fellow Americans, at least those born and raised in the US for believing the smelly poo the UN numbers, because they are, after all, residents in one of the most efficiently organized countries in the world.  Stop laughing.  No, seriously, stop laughing.  Even the vaunted German efficiency (and I’m not sure they were ever that efficient, except they believed they were and projected that image) has decayed markedly.  And as for the British, please don’t go there.  No, I don’t think they were ever that efficient to begin with.

The thing is that as sideways and upside down as we are, over our vast territory, particularly when coordination and central organization are needed (or intrude, anyway, as we’ve seen in the case of tests/vaccines/etc.  Question: How many of these unexploded IED of uneeded and inefficient centralization did the last administration leave submerged in the law code, ready to blow us to kingdom come at an unexpected event? Don’t answer that. I like to sleep at night. And the problem was that these were the children of the mid century who refuse to believe that centralized isn’t better. Or perhaps they’re just pigs for power, greedy to get their command on.) we do remarkably well. Not great, but remarkably well. Compared to everyone else, that is.

The problem is people born and raised in America tend to assume that this is the baseline for humanity. Having been raised in a country where the Italians and the Irish are considered self-controlled and remarkably efficient, I’m always in awe of this strange, if admittedly enchanting delusion.

I’m not a hundred percent sure while people in other countries, like, say, Portugal, think that the population “count” makes any sense.  No, I’m serious. I don’t get it. Unless it is a rock bottom assumption that EVERYONE must be more organized then them. (Bizarrely it doesn’t even begin to be true.)  I know that they tend to believe our federal government has machine-like control over every aspect of civic and cultural life in the US (no.  I’m okay. Really, I’m okay. Let me have some water so I can stop laughing and type again.)

Only this illusion allows people to believe that — what is it now? 8 billion? Yeah. It’s about as accurate as climate modeling into the far future.  Computers and GIGO rule! — population count the UN puts out.

Seriously, guys, WE who are computerized, have a civic culture where people report a lot of their stuff whether it’s needed or not (is Thomas Jefferson spinning in his grave fast enough to power all of Virginia yet?) AND where most, if not all, of our births take place in the hospital, have only the most general ideas of how many people there are in the nation.

This is because — I’m not sure when, because I haven’t looked into it — at some point our politicians realized that having MORE people in their state/districts/etc gave them more power.  And they did what they always do with things that give them more power and control. They started fudging the reckoning.

It was most blatant under Clinton and Obama — the party of unbridled governmental power! Maybe they can use that as a slogan: “Our candidate is a walking poster for the memory unit of a nursing home, but we just want power” — whose administrations both insisted that “we must add in an arbitrary — computer generated (are we sure the computers don’t have it in for us) — number of people that are “undercounted.””

Guys, I looked at the numbers they were adding at the time. I also lived in one of the cities they added numbers to. Let’s just say at that time we didn’t have nearly that many either homeless or immigrants.  Now we might have that many homeless but — hint — they were attracted at the time of pot legalization, they weren’t spontaneously generated by the sidewalks and asphalt. They came from elsewhere, where my guess is they’re still counted.

And that’s not considering most of the Latin countries south of the border are undoubtedly still counting the population we’re supposedly undercounting.

So, here’s the thing, multiply that by… well, the countries of the Earth. Our politicians have incentive built into our system (and a few bad decisions by the Supreme Court) to over count us.  That doesn’t even begin to tally the incentive that countries that are net recipients of international aid have to over count their people. Remember most of that aid is calculated per-capita.

“Oh, Sarah! But look at all those immigrants. Surely they are reproducing massively!”

<Falls on the floor laughing. Then laughs some more.

Guys, no. Those cultures are just bizarrely, massively, EXPLOSIVELY unable to provide for their people.  And the west opened their doors. My guess is that each of those immigrants is still being counted at home, too. And probably their families are much higher on paper.

There is a game which everyone has heard of and social workers and others have seen play out in real life: welfare families in certain areas “borrow” children.  I.e. some children are share over several families, to boost the numbers and the payment.  This is certainly true for a lot of the illegal immigrants, because there is no way to keep accurate records/count them.

The insanity of giving welfare to illegal immigrants is another thing that will have the future going “Did they start putting LSD in the water then?”  But it’s worse than that, it was the explosion of unimagined prosperity in the 20th century. It gave humans illusions that they could make the world into paradise, and that there was no reason not to distribute the surplus to EVERYONE.  (The world doesn’t work that way, and being given unearned wealth most destroys humans. Never mind.)

Now, why did the west open their doors?

My guess is because our leaders have some inkling of how bad things are in terms of how many people are in the upcoming generations.  My guess is that they are becoming scared, because — get this — nonexistent people cannot have children.

As much as most people like to pretend I’m crazy when I say I think our world population is already falling (why this would be any more crazy than the UN’s baseless assertion that we’re drowning in babies, I don’t know) that’s what the actions of the government of EVERY developed country are doing.

They are in a desperate fight for resources: the biggest resource of all: PEOPLE.

The west is willing to take welfare cases and illiterate peasants, in the hopes — I would guess — that their children will be productive citizens.

Except that this is the government. Centralized governments. Remember what I told you about the efficiency of such an institution?

The imagined elites composed of technocrats are so far removed from third world peasants that they don’t even GET the massive difference. They also don’t get the difference in culture. They have — after all — traveled abroad and met their counterparts, and they’re ALL the same, right? there’s no real difference, right? (I think they’d find a difference, if they married into those cultures, but never mind.)

But cultures don’t work like that. And importing vast numbers of people from dysfunctional cultures is not going to end well.  Because when you import a group the culture lingers. And these cultures are what’s technically known as fucked up non-functional. So non-functional, in fact, that they can’t provide for their new generations, even when those numbers are falling. (Look, guys, apparently women in the Middle East have used the internet to find the rhythm method and vote with their wombs.)

Socialist/welfare/”blue model” governments need ever growing populations. Their dominance came in the mid-century, when that was the assumption.  They are trying to bring in people who’ll look after the aged, and contribute to the ponzi scheme their societies have become.

But they don’t understand people very well, since I think most such technocrats are lizard beings from Alpha Centauri (well, what IS your explanation.) So they’re madly competing for WARM BODIES.  Which, since they’re being attracted with welfare and hand outs are doing nothing but collapsing the grift-and-moralizing systems faster.

That’s the good news.  The bad news is that humanity has never been in a situation where each individual family had an incentive (economic, regulatory — well, guys, when you can’t leave the precious darlings alone for more than 2hours, and can’t let them walk to the park by themselves at ten, what do you think that does — emotional and propagandistic (that climbing population)) to have fewer children; where each “blue” government in its own territory had an incentive to REDUCE population, because each citizen is a LIABILITY who will require health care, welfare, etc. etc. etc., and yet where each of those countries also desperately needed a higher and higher population every 20 years, to be able to keep existing.

I don’t even know what to say to the situation, except that the West, in this as in everything else, is forging new paths. Now, they’re new paths in self-destruction, but what the heck.

It won’t last. Whatever comes after, this won’t last. It won’t last because it is at war with itself. And the way it seems to be breaking is the people of the various countries getting annoyed at the imports who refuse to fit in. And refusing to pay for welfare.

Which …. I don’t know. And the important thing is that no one does. Between our a amazing prosperity in historical terms, falling birth rates and a completely insane would be technocratic class, the only thing I can promise you is that we’ll live in interesting times.

 

251 thoughts on “Every Generation

  1. If anything, we’re facing a serious risk of demographic collapse. Sure, we’re bringing in lots of immigrants (legally or otherwise) but fertility is plummeting throughout most of the world, even in darkest Africa. Sure, they’re a few decades behind the curve, but it’s a stopgap measure, not a permanent solution. Our Great Society was built on the assumption we’d keep having kids at the same rate, and not only has the birth rate plummeted, we’re living about 10 years longer than we did in 1965.

    Think of China as an example. They’re only beginning to realize how badly they’ve screwed themselves over with their one-child policy. Even ending it hasn’t boosted the birth rate.

    1. Again – can’t remember where or when I saw it – on a link from Insty, perhaps? A disquisition on how cities in Africa (and IIRC, other places) can’t possibly have the population load they claim, based on things like google-earth satellite shots. Sparsely-traveled dirt roads, not much in the way of housing … now way is the population of those cities anything like what is claimed in the government/UN stats. Just … no way, not based on what we can see on google earth satellite shots.
      So – we’re being gas-lighted on a grand scale by practically everyone who has something to gain out of that gas-lighting. The twenty-first century is grand, isn’t it?

      1. Highly inflated numbers gives them much more aid to siphon off to friends and relatives, with the added benefit there are less people to complain about not getting said aid. At this point the African economy is a majority aid and its accompanying corruption based.

        1. By their “Fixed Quantity Of Pie” thinking, if Nation A inflates population by 20% and Nation B pumps the population by 25% then if Nation C fails to inflate its population it is giving the other nations a portion of what ought rightly go to C.

          They don’t want to cheat, but they would be remiss not to.

          1. I’ve a quibble that they don’t want to cheat. They just don’t want to be out-cheated by A and B.
            If not cheating was the goal, the response would be “They are cheating, we only need funding for [X amount] of people. They should be close to the same number.” instead of the occasional “They are cheating and we need more of the money going to them to cover where the people really are, in our borders.”

      2. and not enough people and goods travelling to and from the vast slums… makes me wonder if they are potemkin slums, basically.

    2. Not only allowing second children but having all the pictures showing two children.

  2. If there is one lesson that the History of intellectualism teaches, it is that our elites are nowhere near so smart as they imagine themselves to be, and they’re constantly scrambling to kicj sand over the flaws in their thoughts.

    1. So far as I can tell, that’s a feature of all self-selected elites throughout history. And past the first generation (which sometimes had to actually accomplish something to become elite) all elites are self-selected. They all firmly believe they were placed on Earth by Providence to tell the Unwashed what to do, and they continue to believe this even when confronted with the complete dearth of evidence supporting the notion.

  3. How can you call them ‘technocrats’ when they don’t understand how technology really works? When they can’t see that there are facts, and laws of physics, which will not change to accommodate their wishful thinking?
    ———————————
    There are a lot of idiots in the world that believe sticking a politically correct label on a thing will make it what they wish it to be, instead of what it is. They are full of shit.

      1. They identify as technocrats, so of COURSE we have to use their preferred collective noun!

        /sarc, just in case.

    1. Break the word down into the roots. -crat is rule by. Techno- is the same root as technology, so it is what technology is the study of. Technology could easily be understood as as the study of technique, how a task is done.

      Technocracy is rule by experts, those who are skilled in techniques. And there are people with strong backgrounds in technology, who are also technocrats. For a technologist, it is an easy self flattering and self serving belief.

      It is an unsound belief, but the strongest evidence of that is outside of the realm of engineering and the hard sciences. The basic case against it requires both a) knowledge of how technical expertise helps design better machines b) knowledge of the important ways humans differ from machines. If you understand humans but not machines, or machines but not humans, it isn’t immediately obvious from theory.

      So, a lot of technocrats are morons. No better able to articulate this than an elementary schooler with Down’s.

      But some of them have above average intelligence and actual technical skills.

      If you have strong technical skills, and are in the habit of using them on every problem coming your way, it can be difficult not to be a technocrat.

      Me? I like simple solutions, and hitting things with a bigger hammer. I am a recovering technocrat. I will never stop wanting to solve inappropriate problems with machines or laws or other such. There are lots of times when I have to struggle with myself, after I find myself doing that. And I may be worse off than many; I have policy preferences that I have worked out are technocratic, that I have not found the strength to discard.

      Anyway, if you just look at the subnormal studies majors, you will fail to grasp the essential features of the technocrats.

    2. It may be a reference to their dependency on technique. Like “all bigotry can be eliminated by word manipulation.”

        1. When I was young and in college and they were first rolling it out they openly admitted it was to control our thoughts.

          1. It is passing strange that treating everybody equally is RAAAACISSST!!! while treating them differently based on their race is not.

            Taking notice of that incongruity is also RAAACISSST!!!

  4. they tried to convince the kids to sign agreements they would never reproduce when they were thirteen.

    Aren’t those the same folks who mock kids that age vowing to “save themselves for marriage” and donning “purity rings”?

    And declaring that abstinence education is futile and suppressing sexual desire will drive you insane?

    1. Well, as to suppressing sexual desire driving you insane, they may be basing that on personal experience. Granted, they don’t suppress it often, but only a few live the hedonistic life they all apparently want, and that doubtless FEELS to them like suppression.

      1. I think its the *having* the sexual desire, but not having anyone you want willing to relieve you of it for anything other the the shortest term temporary basis. Unless you pay them. A lot.

        That’d make anybody nuts.

        As Ovid said if you would “love”, be “loveable” (feel free to fill in your favorite Anglo-Saxon explicative, because he wasn’t talking about agape.)

  5. as sideways and upside down as we are, over our vast territory

    Speaking of which …

    Angry US landowners are killing off renewable energy projects
    There’s an old saw in the trash business that says, “everybody wants their trash picked up but nobody wants it put down.”

    That’s not a perfect analogy for what’s happening with renewable-energy projects in New York and New England but the sentiment behind it is familiar. A recent Gallup poll found that 73 percent of Americans favor increased use of wind and solar energy. But in New York and the Northeast, adding large increments of new renewable capacity is getting increasingly difficult due to growing local opposition. Land-use conflicts are also hindering high-voltage transmission projects.

    Last May, Cambria in upstate New York rejected a proposed 100-megawatt solar project because it violated the town’s zoning laws, and another upstate town, Duanesburg, recently imposed a six-month moratorium on new solar projects.

    [SNIP]

    These land-use conflicts aren’t limited to the northeast. Last year, some 200 protesters were arrested while attempting to stop construction of a wind project on the island of Oahu. In Germany, the expansion of wind and transmission projects has been almost completely stopped due to widespread rural opposition.

    The conflict stems from the vacant-land myth: the notion that there’s plenty of unused land out there in flyover country that’s ready and waiting to be covered with wind turbines, solar panels, power lines and other infrastructure.

    The truth is that growing numbers of rural and suburban landowners are resisting these types of projects. They don’t want to endure the noise and shadow flicker produced by 500- or 600-foot-high wind turbines. Nor do they want miles of transmission lines built through their towns, so they are fighting to protect their property values and views.

    A fundamental constraint on the growth of renewables is they require lots of land to produce significant flows of energy. And as more large-scale renewable projects are proposed, more land, and more people, are being affected.

    Nuclear power, meanwhile, produces a lot more energy in a small amount of space, evidenced by the Indian Point Energy Center in Buchanan, which will be prematurely shuttered by April 2021. Indian Point produces about 16 terawatt-hours of electricity per year from a footprint of one square kilometer.

    Replacing that output with wind energy would require installing hundreds of turbines over some 1,335 square kilometers (515 square miles) of territory. Thus, from a land-use or ocean-use perspective, wind energy requires about 1,300 times as much territory to produce the same amount of energy as is now being produced by Indian Point. …

    1. And that ‘renewable’ energy is unreliable. Sometimes the wind don’t blow, and the sun don’t shine. Sometimes the wind blows too hard, and the windmills have to be stopped so they don’t fling 50-meter blades through the neighbors’ houses. We’ve all seen that YouTube video of the giant propeller eating itself in a high wind.

      I think it was Denmark that found out when you get up to about 40% ‘renewable energy’ your national electric grid gets unstable. Wind speed is always changing, clouds throw shadows on your solar panels, etc.
      ———————————
      Governments can only print money; they can’t make it worth anything. They can make it worth nothing.

      1. Plus the wind turbines mass-kill birds, especially raptors. Lots of dead Bald Eagles at the wind turbine sites.

        1. This! Wipe out birds, and there goes income from hunting, and possibly crop losses from a pest-explosion due to the lack of bug-eating birds and bats. (Like China under Mao.) And wind turbine installations can seriously mess up ground-water flows and collection, depending on the local hydrology.

          1. And bats! I’ve copy edited more than one article about destructive effects of wind power systems on bat populations.

      2. I’ve read that Germany has to keep conventional power plants on line to cover for the gaps in renewable energy installations. As a result, Germany is now using more coal than before. IIRC, they decommissioned all of their nuclear plants after the Japanese earthquake. Who’d have thought that tsunamis would be a problem in the Schwartzwald?

        1. Brown coal in some cases, mined by drag-line. Yes, they remediate the results, but it’s still not pretty.

      3. And the “renewable” part is pretty much a scam as well. The tech needs LOADS of non-renewables, many of them highly toxic (where do they go when parts break or wear out?).

        It’s been a good grift while it lasted. I’m just glad that they didn’t try to convince everyone that *water vapor* was toxic.

        1. I do recall them preaching in some grade school class (probably one of the sciences… may have been 10th grade social studies, that teacher was a hardcore leftist, but that’s neither here nor there) that water vapor was, in fact, a serious greenhouse gas. Right up there with CO2 and the stuff that causes holes in the ozone layer.

          I think they didn’t bother with the “toxic” angle for that one because I’m fairly certain that not a one of my grade school classes would’ve bought it, even though we were almost certainly far dumber and more impressionable than the national average.

            1. Actually, most deaths caused by excesses of that pervasive chemical are attributed to its liquid and solid phases. Many deaths are also linked to its absence. Go figure.

              1. I suspect that what TRX was referring to was live steam which is a very nasty kettle of fish indeed. Can result in severe burns, blow up containment vessels, and cut through flesh if under sufficient pressure.

              2. More chances to be exposed to it in liquid and solid phases.

                Vapor form, though, is rare and freaking insanely scary.

                Kind of like those stats about how 25% of violent deaths are within X miles of home– which ignores that you spend 99% of your time in that area.

          1. to that teacher’s credit, it is far more of a warming agent than CO2 but they replaced the “Ozone Eating” agents with agents that are greater greenhouse agents. It is also a by product of many of their “clean” versions of energy.

          2. Well, H2O vapor IS a serious greenhouse gas. But yeah, they never take that into account when they’re compiling lists of things to ban. And I’m fairly certain it is toxic, but the toxicity level is higher than the level required to: (1) drown you, or (2) dilute your bloodstream to the point it can’t carry enough nutrients and oxygen to keep you alive.

    2. The entire ‘renewable energy’ shtick is dung. It uses huge amounts of land, it’s toxic to make (wind OR solar), toxic to dispose of, and totally unsuited to a stable power grid. Furthermore I am only now, in the last year or so, reading about people who are beginning to question whether taking that much dynamic energy out of the environment is remotely ‘environmentally friendly’.

      1. Just a few years ago I imagined having so many wind farms that wind overall had slowed considerably…and then I started to wonder, “What would happen to the environment if the air became stagnant, for some level of stagnant, because of these wind turbines?” I didn’t think about it too hard, but it also occurred to me that no one else did, either.

        With regards to solar, unless you’re putting the things on a roof, they are going to deprive the ground underneath of sunlight, and possibly rain as well. It’s not clear that this is going to be a net positive for the environment, and there are even environmentalists who think it’s likely a problem.

          1. Well, it would have been heating up the roof.

            PV solar panels are black things sitting out in the sun, so they get hot. One of the design challenges is to construct them such that cell efficiency stays up when the silicon they are made from heats up – efficiency will inevitably decline, but there are a few clever tricks which the Electrical Engineering secret societies impart to their younglings after they pass the grueling initiations and keggers.

            This article says panels get up to 149°F, which is pretty darn hot.

            That heat gets convected and reradiated out into the local environment, though panel mounting methods can make a big difference to how much goes into heating up the underlying roof. Those are Mechanical Engineering secret knowledge.

            I have not yet heard of any hybrid panels using liquid cooling across the backside of the PV panels to harvest that heat for something like a home hot water assist while also cooling the panels. Something like that would boost total system efficiency, but liquid cooling always leaks, and leaks would be a pain to service on home residential solar installations, so I think they all just use passive ambient air cooling.

            1. The heat of the panels vs the heat of the sunlight simply hitting whatever would be there in the absence of the panels, I am prepared to grant is probably a wash. But if any useful amount of energy is being transformed into electricity, then it is being removed from a dynamic system. I would dearly like to know what that removal might do. And I would be a great deal happier if I thought the people pushing solar power were giving it any thought whatsoever.

              1. PV solar converts incoming photons to electrical current, so absent the panel those photons would have been light hitting the roofing material, some of which would have been reflected depending on the roof color, and some of which would have been absorbed by the roofing, heating it up.

                The frequency of those incoming photons of light matters as well – see https://sciencing.com/effect-wavelength-photovoltaic-cells-6957.html for sciency stuff on that, but the bottom line is the cells can use photons within a limited frequency range due to physics, but that range stretches from lower (in the infrared) to higher (in the ultraviolet) that is visible to human eyes, in humans that are not werewolves.

                And as noted in the article, shiny solar cells are wasting any light that gets reflected by the shiny surface.

              2. The electricity produced by solar panels is simply transformed into heat elsewhere. Whether it’s used to power lights, TVs, refrigerators, computers or microwave ovens, it all eventually degrades to heat.

                The advantage is that every watt of solar power replaces a watt generated at 30% efficiency or less by a power plant, so, less than 1/3 as much heat is released into the environment. In addition, residential solar power is used within a few hundred meters of where it’s produced, nearly eliminating transmission losses.

                I am not a Global Warming Believer, but still not a great proponent of burning stuff to generate energy. It’s crude and primitive, it does damage the environment, and we are running out of stuff to burn. I put solar panels on my roof, and I’ll probably put up more in the future.
                ———————————
                Some folks believe ‘Soylent Green’ had a happy ending.

                1. I am not a Global Warming Believer, but still not a great proponent of burning stuff to generate energy.

                  Exactly. I’m all for doing research into clean, renewable energy. Burning Fossil fuels does pollute the environment as anyone who has lived anywhere near LA (or any other large city) and seen how BROWN the air gets on a bad day could attest (if they were interested in being honest). The big thing is honesty. IS solar and wind power appropriate, reasonable replacements for fossil fuels? Is Nuclear? Throw out all the emotional responses to those questions and do a serious cost/benefit analysis, keeping in mind that buy-in from the populace is also part of the equation (you can design all the poo-power gen you want, if nobody wants to smell the poo, they won’t use it).

                  I think that energy independence is also an important consideration (I’m in the US). Energy independence gives us options we didn’t have when we were beholding to countries full of people that hate our way of life for energy.

                  1. The point about fossil fuels is eventually they will become uneconomical to harvest. Which means we really should be looking for and developing alternatives. Wind, ground-based solar, and hydro, while renewable, aren’t readily portable, and are even more limited than fossil fuels. And yeah, the biofuels tend to be even more NIMBY. Which pretty much leaves us with nuclear or spacesats for the long term. Fusion doesn’t count because it isn’t technologically possible at this point.

                    Thing is, we need to develop nuclear and spacesats now, before we run into a world wide civilization and technology crash. Because recovery from that will be much harder as we try to go from wind power and wood heat, directly to nuclear, because we don’t have easy access to fossil fuels anymore.

                    1. Yup fusion is where it has been all my life, about 20 years away. That’s been what they’ve been saying about fusion since I first heard about it at the 1964 NYC Worlds fair in 1965. 3.5 and 4th gen Fission designs that are there but the left whines and ignores them.

                    2. “Wind, ground-based solar, and hydro, while renewable, aren’t readily portable, and are even more limited than fossil fuels.”

                      I’ll give you hydro isn’t very portable. Wind & solar can be. Well wind, depending on where you travel, maybe not (Oregon Coast OTOH, wind definitely works, maybe, wind might be too strong). Solar, OTOH, it is a generator alternative for RV’s … Don’t know how practical, but definitely quieter than generators in campgrounds.

                  2. Not being a GW Believer does not mean you cannot still abhor waste, fraud and abuse. Problem being the AGW Enthusiasts insist, “Two out of Three ain’t bad!”

                2. And every megawatt of power (average over a year) produced by solar is 2-4 (depending on latitude and local weather conditions) acres of land no longer available for other purposes. To produce the US’s electricity needs (never mind other energy uses that aren’t direct electric users) that would require about 1.4 million acres just for your “solar farm” (total cost, just for the panels, never mind control systems, storage for when the sun isn’t shining or to cover peak loads, etc, on the order of $100 billion), . While the total area of the US is about 2.43 billion acres, nearly one and a half million is a substantial chunk taken out of other uses and, therefore, with a pretty sizeable opportunity cost. Simply keeping the mirrors (solar thermal) or panels clean That needs to be done regularly. Looking at window cleaning costs it looks like probably on the order of $0.50 per square foot so about $22,000 per acre or about $30 billion for every round of cleaning which has to be done regularly or efficiency will fall off as dust, bird droppings, and other detritus starts accumulating on the collectors. Then, the panels themselves, as well as other parts of the system have a finite life and have to be replaced periodically.

                  Just looking at the panel cleaning costs (assuming quarterly cleaning, which is probably remarkably optimistic), that’s $120 billion per year or about $0.03 per kW-Hr just to keep the panels clean. Add in all the rest and you begin to see why Earth-based solar is not, currently, economically viable.

                  1. AH, but we have a solution to the bird droppings. Wind power bird smashers all around the solar farms!

                  1. Do not know the cost to create “green energy” via solar or wind. I do know what my local source of electrical power wants me to pay to use green energy … well okay, not really because I won’t pay extra for the privilege I haven’t paid attention to the actual extra charge that would be incurred.

                    If you have your own personal solar, then the local power company has to collect & pay for any excess power generated, which lowers the overall yearly bill considerably. Interestingly enough the one person who has done this hasn’t posted annual savings. Monthly examples when the system went in, but not annual. There is some cost to the local electric company, only because it is electric, water, and sewer.

                    Wells within city and a good portion of the urban growth boundary are ill advised for household use. All outstanding septic tanks were eminent domain out in the mid-late ’90s; I know we had to pay to do it …

                    FWIW. We’ve discussed retro adding solar panels to our existing home, but chose not to. Now new build, we’ll consider it … At least south facing panels, not entire roof.

            2. Hybrid solar systems – electric/hot war combos – very definitely exist. Not a new technology by any means. And yes, you do have to worry about the tubing.

      2. The entire ‘renewable energy’ shtick…wind OR solar

        Just an interesting note that you didn’t include hydroelectric on that list. It’s not your fault; no one else does either. But I remember that when I was in high school, water power was considered one of the big “renewable” sources. No one talks about it any more, and I wonder why? Is it just because the environmentalist have decided dams = bad, or is there something else.

        1. Greens won’t let you build dams anymore. The reasons are wide and varied, but they all basically amount to “no new dams”.

            1. Nod.

              It doesn’t matter to them that hydro-electric power is fairly “clean” energy.

              What matters to them is the “damage” to the ecology from a man-made lake. 😦

              1. For me, it depends on what gets buried under the lake. If it’s highly productive farmland, then that’s possibly a greater loss than the benefits from the hydropower. If it’s just a barren rocky canyon system, or low productivity crappy forest and poor farmland, then it makes sense to turn it into a lake.

          1. I’m for genetically modifying Beavers so they’re 20 ft at the shoulders and releasing them near the Greens…

            1. Seems to me that pleistocene beavers were 8 foot, 200 lbs monsters. What you really need is a cross between a glyptodont and a cave bear.

              1. Glyptodont x cave bear is a start. I was thinking Brontosaurus (pardon me Apatosaurus) sized. Then the greens really would turn green…

        2. My memory is that hydroelectric was a big talking point right up to the Carter administration. Carter, as I recall, proposed to actually build some new hydroelectric capacity, and the Greens promptly dropped all talk of hydroelectric like a recruit getting shut of a live grenade. This was when I formulated my definition of ‘renewable energy’ as “any form of power generation that is in no danger of being put into practical use”.

          You may recall that there used to be a good deal of loose talk about geothermal, which more or less stopped dead when somebody actually proposed to build a pilot project in Hawaii.

          I don’t think there is any way to make solar or wind practical, but if one develops, the Greens will oppose it bitterly.

          1. There was a geothermal generation station at Puna on the big island of Hawaii pretty much right where the 2018 Leilani Estates / Lower Puna eruption happened, and the generation cycle at that plant used pentane in a secondary stage to generate additional electricity from the hot brine coming up from the wells. When the lava was approaching they had to scramble and get enough tankage shipped in from the mainland to remove the stored pentane, which is highly flammable. In the end, lava actually flowed over the wellheads of several wells, and the plant is still offline, with the watermelon contingent trying to keep it from reopening because it clearly angers Pele.

    3. The Governator suggested that California build a massive solar farm in the Mojave Desert. It’s the desert, the sun shines a lot, and people generally don’t like to live there. In short, it’s about as optimal as you can get for a solar farm.

      IIRC, a green group got it shut down for habitat destruction.

      1. There’s a solar thermal plant in the California desert where mirrors concentrate light on a receiving tower. As rough on birds as a wind turbine, with the extra “benefit” of pre-roasting the birds as they’re killed.

        We have a few 10-ish MWe solar PV installations in the county. Looking at the one I drive by going to town, one could fit a damned big natural gas plant in there, easily 100 MWe or more in the same footprint. Grass still grows (sort of) under the moveable panels, but it had been good pastureland beforehand.

        1. Don’t forget the panels constitute a blinding problem for pilots approaching the area. Apparently they not only absorb solar energy they reflect tremendous glare.

          1. It depends on how they are sited. There’s a solar array the county installed a couple of years ago right at the approach end of one of the local GA airports and it’s no big deal, as even at the most inopportune sun angle it’s reflecting light up from a different direction that you are looking on final.

          2. It depends on siting – locally there are arrays near or under the approach path of two of the county-operated airports, and even at the worst sun angles they are not a big deal as that’s not where you are looking on final.

          3. It depends – there are solar arrays under the approach path now at two of the local county-operated airports which feed their revenue into the airport operations fund, and even at the worst sun angle they are not a big deal, as that’s not where you are looking on final.

          4. It depends – there are solar arrays under the approach path now at two of the local county-operated airports which feed their revenue into the airport operations fund, and even at the worst sun angle they are not a big deal, as that’s not where you are looking on final.

          5. The solar-thermal plant (pretty much unique) uses mirrors instead of PV panels. The array concentrates light onto the target tower, where some fluid (don’t recall which) is heated and vaporized for power. The problem is that birds get near the tower and get quick-fried in midair.

        1. I read somewhere that, based on window-washer statistics, keeping a thousand kilowatt solar farm clean enough to operate somewhat efficiently would cause as many fatalities as the same generation capacity from coal.

      2. My thought, decades ago, was to put an array of solar panels inside Mercury orbit, with the collected energy beamed to Lagrangian-orbit satellites which would microwave the energy to receivers in the Mojave. Of course, that was back before we’d pissed away our launch capability.

        1. I sometimes feel like I’m living in “Fallen Angels” – minus the space colonies.

  6. the children of the mid century who refuse to believe that centralized isn’t better.

    Everybody who attends a city council meeting, or a county commissioners hearing or observes the state assembly in session concludes that the folks in Washington MUST be better.

    Until they spend fifteen minutes watching floor speeches on CSPAN. (The first ten minutes are spent getting over the shock, the next four are required to convince yourself that yes, they did actually say what you thought you heard. The last minute is spent cussing.

        1. Drapes and furniture burn just fine, and such a fire will gut a stone building ricky-tick.

          1. Let’s spare the National Gallery and some of the Smithsonian, please? And parts of the National Archive, if possible.

            1. I personally favor using enhanced radiation weaponry, i.e. “neutron bombs”, for this application for just this reason – other nukes, and even orbital-plus kinetics like SMOD, are too destructive of stuff, chem is too persistent, and bio is too likely to get loose outside the target area.

              Actually, I just realized the ideal physical property neutral weapon would be some sort of space-based directed energy neutron beam, maybe coherent and maybe just a big neutron spotlight: Just set up a raster scan over your target area. That should zap even bacteria, so when you land your troops to collect the loot the smell would not even be too bad.

            2. I’ve been thinking that Chicago “deserves” a Kill Them All Plague.

              Perhaps that’s what DC deserves. 😈

        1. I suggested a bicentennial re-enactment of the burning, but alas nobody listens to me.

        2. For which I’m grateful, and what would they charge to burn the District of Columbia again?

          Back in 1996 there was a movie called “Independence Day.” In one scene, alien spacecraft zapped DC. I was startled when most of the theatergoers stood and cheered.

            1. Saw it in NH. Nobody stood and cheered but there was a fair bit of whooping and clapping. Although nuking NYC got a bigger positive response.

        3. Yeah. But you know, I’d be doing it “from the other side.”
          I mean if I had a time machine and went….
          Uh…. You know.
          Um….
          You know, I wonder if younger son can build a time machine.
          At the least, it will make a good story.

      1. “Every normal man must be tempted, at times, to spit on his hands, hoist the black flag, and begin slitting throats.” (H. L. Mencken)

    1. “Until they spend fifteen minutes watching floor speeches on CSPAN.”

      Ah, but while the Representatives are idiots, surely they know how to appoint intelligent bureaucrats, right? That’s why we don’t need any systems of accountability for removing them from office — indeed, we need a powerful Public Union that will make sure they are practically immovable, regardless of how awful they may be….

    2. The issue is not so much centralization as much as levels of centralization. The grand illusion of One Man In Charge, who issues All The Orders is their dream, because they hope to be-

      *The Man In Charge
      *The Immediate Underling That Has The Authority
      *The Special Services Secretary (with kneepads)

      Makes for great fiction, doesn’t it? Which is exactly what it is.

        1. Not at all, but I remember quite a few people saying that they would gladly slurp the Presidential cigar if Clinton kept their (insert their favorite political point here).

  7. I know that they tend to believe our federal government has machine-like control over every aspect of civic and cultural life in the US

    You’ve gone and reminded me of the days when they wanted to do the US census through statistical sampling and extrapolation in lieu of actual enumeration.

    Which calls to mind reporting on multiple Census bureaus being caught fudging their numbers because they only managed to complete about eighty percent of their surveys in any given quarter. So yeah, hard to see how simply pulling the numbers out of the government’s [behind] would provide worse data.

    1. “You’ve gone and reminded me of the days when they wanted to do the US census through statistical sampling and extrapolation in lieu of actual enumeration.”

      In theory, as someone who’s familiar with proper statistical methods, I actually agree with this approach! It’s rather pointless to try to literally count each and every person in a country of over 330 million people; statistical methods ought to be more accurate than a literal count.

      In practice, as someone who’s familiar with improper statistical methods, and how they can be abused, I’m wary of this approach. Who’s going to trust the counters? Perhaps I’ll be ok with it, if the methodology can be completely open, and subject to criticism by anyone and everyone. I don’t recall any discussion done to help ensure that we have the proper level of transparency, though.

      There are probably no good solutions to this: a true census is certainly impossible, but there’s a serious issue of trust that needs to be addressed if we move to statistical methods. Furthermore, it may even be unConstitutional — the Constitution doesn’t say “a statistical analysis shall be made of the People”! I would propose that, if we’re going to move to a statistical analysis of the People to replace a Census, that a Constitutional Amendment that describes both the methods, and the necessary levels of transparency, to accomplish such task, would be in order, and may even put people’s minds at ease.

      I would also add that, if we could dodge the trust issue, a statistical analysis would have an added benefit: since we’ll only be counting thousands of people (as little as 1,000, perhaps, or maybe 50,000, say, as much as 1,000 per State), it will do wonders in preserving the privacy of the People in general! (And it will avoid situations like when the Census was used to round up Japanese-descended Americans…)

  8. a civic culture where people report a lot of their stuff whether it’s needed or not

    Did anyone else here see the reporting on the data mined by “Free Tax Preparation” software? (First clue: ain’t nothing free.) Hell, we’re already inured to data strip-mining by Facebook, Google and their evil twins.

    And as we’ve learned, the FISA Court is not exactly submitting requests to fine=toothed readings and vigorously skeptical inquiries. More like: they make rubber stamps look repressed.

  9. We spent a couple of weeks in Romania in 2010, attending the Romanian-American University. One of the things we did was visit the local EU office and meet a couple of “representatives,” and a higher official -he seemed to be the head of the delegation. Very professional and distant….and then, he spontaneously began talking about how Europe needed to get its population up, or, “We will become a museum.” Suddenly very human, rather pensive.
    That’s probably a major driver behind their, “let’s let everyone in and assign them by quotas,” strategy. They really are between a rock and a hard place, totally self-inflicted.

    1. Agreed. And the Eurocrats refuse to accept that the new-comers might have a very different world-view that is not exactly amenable to becoming secular, modern, and Western at the drop of a hat.

      1. The Eurocrats refuse to accept that the new-comers, PERIOD. “Stay in your enclaves, don’t trouble the upper castes and mind your place.” The Eurocrats have been in search of a better grade pf peasant for over two hundred years and they imagine this new batch will work out just fine. After all, they selected for people who knew how to be ruled by an bunch of inbred snobs.

  10. Our politicians have incentive built into our system (and a few bad decisions by the Supreme Court) to over count us.

    The problem in America is exacerbated by having fixed the number of Congressional districts at 437 rather than one district for every 400,000 people (more or less – see: Montana, Wyoming, the Dakotas, etc.)

    That means if bureaucrats in California (53 districts, slightly over twelve percent of the House) fudge round-upward for error when they count their population they are not simply adding one more congressional district (bad enough) — they are stealing a district from another state. And the wonderful thing about congressional districts is that, unlike Senate seats (and contrary to certain MSNBC personalities) they can be gerrymandered (by Democrats’ Republicans need not apply.)

    Absolutely NO incentive for anybody to falsify round upward their numbers there, eh? And we all know of the unimpeachable integrity of politicians.

    Besides, if a Pennsylvania bureaucrat rounds Philadelphia’s numbers upward that is simply to protect their representation against those lying California (Illinois, New York, Florida …) thieves. They don’t want to but they’re forced to do it.

    1. The Glorious But Slightly Panicked Over This Whole Virus Thingee Bear Flag Peoples Republic is very, very concerned with counting people who are not countable but really should be here according to their models, especially those criminals who are breaking the law just by being here, so I hope the DJT administration will be heavily monitoring the 2020 Census process in the Golden State.

    2. I have to wonder if that fixed number of districts is more harmful to the Republicans or the Democrats. I mean, my gut instinct is that it hurts the Republicans more, but I haven’t seen (or done the math myself) any numbers to back it up.

      1. It is a good question. 825 Congressional Districts (330M divided by 400K) would certainly provide far more representation of various interests, and would make corralling representatives more challenging. It would seem likely to provide more districts for urban areas as well as non-urban and thus might not affect the partisan make-up very much.

        It would certainly make it easier holding elected officials more accountable, so that ain’t gonna happen.

        1. For crying out loud 435 of ’em can’t get diddly squat done (not necessarily a BAD thing) you want to add another 400 of these leaches to society? As to which side it hurts more right now its the “red” side as we count (and estimate, i.e. make up) those who are neither eligible to vote, nor readily enumerable. This favors the cities where these phantoms are most likely counted and gives an advantage to the “Blue” side.

  11. Did they start putting LSD in the water then?

    Have any studies been done on the psychoactive effects of Fluoride?

    Asking for a friend.

  12. … importing vast numbers of people from dysfunctional cultures is not going to end well.

    Importing vast numbers of people from functional cultures tends to not work out so well, either. Ask the Angles who invited in the Saxons in the Sixth Century. Or the Anglo-Saxons who (effectively) invited in the Danes a few centuries later …

    1. Nit, the Angles, Saxon & Jutes were “invited in” by the Roman-Celtic Brits. 😈

        1. the soviets were invited into Poland in 1939.
          ok, they were invited by Germany, but still they were invited.

      1. And the Picts are reportedly still pissed about how the neighborhood has gone downhill since they let that white-trash in, grumbling about the paperwork required to build a proper henge these days.

        And the construction quality ain’t what it was.

        1. Chuckle Chuckle

          There was a Prince Valiant strip that I read years ago, an elderly King Arthur was talking with one of Valiant’s adult sons about all the “visitors” to Britain since the Celtics arrived in Britain.

          Valiant’s son asked “did the Celtics come in peace”?

          Arthur said “No”.

          I suspect that the Picts didn’t “come in peace” either. 😆

  13. Heed not your fears: I just spent a couple of weeks at Disney World and I observed there are lots and lots and lots of American people making babies.

    Maybe not East-coast urban youts or coastal corridor Californians with poop-stained Guccis, but I can personally confirm there are a whole lot of kids with parents with southern accents. And well-behaved kids, even under the stress of a trip to visit The Mouse, so by implication being raised well and properly.

    Obviously Disney is a biased sample, so take this with whatever grain of salt seems proper, but there was no kid shortage visible to me.

    I think if the indocrination takes and the population crashes, it will be in the urban metroplexes – flyover country is doing just fine.

    1. Having spent a weekend in Duluth for a dance competition, it would appear those families well off enough to have kids in competitive dance are having plenty of kids. My wife and I are, by far, the minority in this sample with only the one child. Nearly every other team member had siblings, and it seemed like the other teams were similar, with a lot of little kids sitting in the audience.

      Not a representative sample obviously. It was very white and middle class, even for a very white and middle class area of the country.

    2. I noticed a growing number of families with 2+ kids joining the church where I sing. Anecdata are not proof, but it appears that in some places, the trend is shifting a whisker bit. Will it be enough? Probably not at first.

      1. Anecdotally (i.e. this is NOT data) family sizes for evangelicals seem to be in the 3-5 range. Not the 9 one of my friends in junior high had (Yes Catholic) had but still bigger tan the average upper class groups. In the high school my daughters were in onlies were common with a smattering of 2’s and 3’s. Being an Only was weird when I was a kid lo 45-50 years ago I literally was one of about 2-3 in my peers (about 300 kids in my grade).

        1. I WANTED 11. In our church, when the kids were little, family sizes were six to seven. We got glared at because, you know, Catholic, two kids 3 1/2 years apart… They knew we were using contraception.
          Only of course we weren’t.

          1. I didn’t want 11. Definitely wanted more than one. TGPTB disagreed and didn’t grant my wishes, or genetics, YMMV on reason. I sure don’t know.

          2. More anecdotal evidence. Both maternal Grandparents were from families of 11 . Paternal grandparents 2 and 3, and the 2 was Catholic but that was only that way I suspect as married late and husband died young. Parents were both 3rd from families of 4. I’m an only, wife is 2 of 3. We have 2 daughters. They are the ONLY (would be) great grand children on the maternal grandparents side. Paternal side has 8 other 2nd cousins, all older than mine. I’m nearly the youngest of the first cousins on the paternal side and we started late due to reproducing when working constantly with teratogens (as my physical Organic wife did for grad school) is at best unwise.

    3. Locally, when school is out for vacation, the grocery stores are packed with kids. I think it a combination of flyover country as well as having a large number of LDS members in the area.

      Even the Costco in SW Oregon gets a bunch of kids on Fridays and weekends. Not clear on why Friday, but it seems to be “take your sick kid shopping day”. I’ve learned to avoid Friday/Costco runs.

        1. I know of districts & alternative schools who have gone to 4 day school weeks, made up by slightly longer hours M – Th. Started as fund savings for districts. When more funding was made available, teachers & staff, essentially said collectively “No” to going back to 5 days a week, and a good portion of parents … seems they liked their 3 day weekends.

    4. Aye. I had cause to go in the local Farm & Home during a busy time the other day. There was no shortage of children or multi-child families.

  14. “But they don’t understand people very well, since I think most such technocrats are lizard beings from Alpha Centauri (well, what IS your explanation.)”

    This is a completely absurd conspiracy theory, and I’m surprised, Sarah, that you’re entertaining it!

    The lizard people are from Betelguese.

          1. If Sarah is familiar with the source material, you should get ready to start dodging Carp.

        1. No, no. The lizard people are time traveling lawyers from Mars. Interstellar capabilities are just a side effect of the time travel.

          Geeze, people. Keep up, would ya?

          1. No no no: Humans are time travelers from Mars.

            How else to do you explain that the natural human diurnal cycle (tested by putting people in caves with no external day-night cues) lines up better with the Martian day than the Earth day?

            The lizard folk are from Venus from back before they drive too many SUVs and it went into runaway glowbull warmening.

              1. No, not Mars. Planet Whassname, between Mars and Jupiter. Too much greenhouse gassiness.

                1. Actually, not enough, it cooled off and they went torpid except those that escaped.

                  Heresy I know.

    1. They cannot possibly be Lizard People. Ok, I’ll admit that the natural climate of DC is warm and swampy, but the technoweenies keep all the government buildings we’ll air conditioned. They’d all be in torpor.

  15. Every generation
    Blames the one before
    And all of their frustrations
    Come beating on your door

    Okay, that said…

    I found it interesting where you said “Things you teach kids when they are very young tend to be unquestioned, unexamined and forever believed.”

    Indeed. A lot of my own beliefs and values, in broad sweeps anyway, were set in quite early childhood. And while I’m no longer a believer in the god I was raised to, the values that came with that early religious instruction have, in many ways, stuck. And while I try to have a relatively consistent value system based on a few initial principles/axioms (the heath and overall welfare of people, not just “greatest good for the greatest number” but considering individuals as individuals being chief) it’s not really possible to take every possible situation and analyze it down to see how it “fits” those core principles. In many cases that early imprinting takes over. I try, from time to time, to take bits of that imprinting out examine it in light of my “core principles” (which, themselves, are part of that early imprinting) and see if it fits or might need to be modified. But even the “simplest” of human beings is far to complex for even the brightest (and I am far from that) human mind to fully grasp. And so, the imprinting, which itself is the culmination of millennia (at least) of cultural evolution, weeding out the least effective parts to leave something reasonably functional in place.

    Indeed much of the world’s current trouble comes from simply trying to toss all that aside in favor of some hair-brained schemes that haven’t been fully analyzed, indeed can’t be because if a single individual is too complex for any individual to fully grasp, entire societies are orders of magnitude vaster.

    Not sure where I’m going with this, but there it is. 😉

    1. To be fair, that song is wrong. Most generations don’t/didn’t blame the previous one, because THEY DIDN’T EXPECT THE WORLD TO BE PERFECT. This is a new and crazy notion. I hope it passes soon.

      1. We’re now at the point where the generation after blames the one before because the one before expects the one after to be perfect– to the one before’s idea of “perfect”– and then blames the one after because they are 1) human, 2) were raised by the generation before.

        It’s a rare case where blaming the one before is not that bad of an idea…..

      2. Well, if one considers the historical time horizon of most people “every” means “the last three to five” at most…so Boomers and later. 😉

        Now, generations looking aghast at the one coming after is a whole other ballgame, going back to Socrates, at least. (There’s a quote, often misattributed to Socrates, from a 1907 dissertation which summarizes complaints about youth by the ancient Greeks.)

    2. The problem with tossing aside several thousand years worth of Judeo-Christian morality and replacing it with the New Age Religion of the Month Club, is that those thousands of years have given time to smooth the rough edges and spackle over the cracks.

      It’s like the Army’s occasional attempts to come up with a basic infantry weapon to replace the M-16. The M-16 platform has been refined for over half a century. Absent a really revolutionary new technology, no new gun is going to be better.

      And, frankly, what the New Age Religion of the Month Club has to offer is not new. It’s mostly warmed-over hedonism, with irresponsibility sauce and a side order of Marxist drivel.

        1. But that was Not Invented Here, so it was a non-starter at the time. At least (some) Army procurement decisions have gotten wiser over the decades, see the adoption of the FN ‘Minimi’ as the M249 SAW to replace the M60.

          1. Yeah, but there’s a company in Reno that pretty much has finally perfected the M-60, basically fixing the farked up cold war big-defense-contractor engineering.

            Besides if the idiot who was assigned to measure out captured MG-42s back during WWII had not screwed up their math in converting things to 30-06, the fast-tracked US copy would have passed testing and entered service during the war, and probably still be in use today along the lines of the Bundeswehr MG 3.

  16. I know, rhetorical questions don’t require answers, except I will.

    “May I ask whose brilliant idea it was to indoctrinate new generations on the need to have fewer children?”

    Let’s start with Thomas Maltus, so I guess you can say this whole movement started seriously about 1800. But it never really took off until the United Nations arrived on scene. And even then it was pretty low key until the 1960s and 1970’s. I remember during the early 1970’s while in Middle School that the entire school population was subjected to a series of TV shows called, The 21st Century. Produced by CBS and first shown in 1967, and narrated by Walter Cronkite. While big on pushing science, technology, and space, it also had a strongly recurring thread of impending doom and dystopia running through it. Overpopulation and overconsumption of non-renewable resources was going to kill us all. And it seems to have mushroomed from there.

    Now add every radical feminist since then; Maggie Sanger and the abortion industry; the rise of the two income families; and you have a scene where the norm is all the sex you want but none of it can be for reproduction purposes. And the ones saying no sex for children are just those hung up old conservative prudes clinging to their guns and Bibles.

    1. I recall a SF work set in the not-so-far future..by my memory wants to say Larry Niven… which describes a society with a sharp distinction between sex-for-recreation, which was uncontrolled, and sex-for-reproduction, which was very tightly controlled. However, this general attititude is almost a standard trope of modern SF. It’s in the water, so to speak. Besides ignoring the reality of sexually transmitted disease (which most literary and other advocates of sex-for-recreation routinely ignore as inconvenient), this reversal of traditional morality has an unstated background assumption of Malthusian population growth.

      1. Fiction was picking it up a bit in the ’50s and early ’60s. RAH touched on overpopulation (as a driver for emigration in Farmer in the Sky and for the rice grown on the moon and shipped via catapult in TMIAH), though I don’t recall any of his stories getting into dystopia over population.

        That started (AFAIK) with Harry Harrison’s 1966 Make Room! Make Room!, filmed as Soylent Green. The theme carried on in various flavors afterward, but Paul Ehrlich’s “nonfiction” The Population Bomb in 1968 already had some of the battlespace prepared.

        As a misguided youth in 1970, I supported the Zero Population Growth people. Alas, I never had the opportunity to correct that mistake by actually having kids…

        1. I’m a Crank. My basic assumption was always that ZPG was a crock, and an excellent way to be supplanted by people who liked babies. It was only later that I learned some sound reasons for dismissing ZPG as dung.

  17. Two hours, hell, you can’t leave them alone for a five minute drive to the post office– so a five minute drive becomes an hour long ordeal.

    *************

    A related issue with the birth rate for immigrants/illegals is that their paperwork is jacked up, too.
    If you’re an illegal, you go to the hospital in labor, tell them you’re a minor and don’t know who the father is, and walk out without paying. That screws with all kinds of numbers.

  18. Has anyone noticed what is happening on the border between Turkey and Greece??
    There a vigilante groups stopping “Refugees” from coming into Greece. They are NOT being nice about it. They are also showing their displeasure of the NGOs, aid workers, and “Journalists” and letting them now that the area is not healthy for them. While Turkey is pushing these “Refugees” toward Grease and Europe.
    This doesn’t look like it will end well. It appears that the Greeks at least have gotten tired of the INVASION!
    We will see what happens but more violence is assured.

    1. A few years ago Hungary started stringing barbed wire, setting up guard towers, and putting armed troops on their border. After the initial “OMFG how horrible!” the enemedia have been silent since.

    2. I caught a headline about Turkey using an armored vehicle to knock down the border barrier.

        1. Ah, yep.

          Reports that Turkish special forces types salted in the “refugees” (according to the article, not sure where I read that) are shooting at the Greek forces go along with the armor. With both belonging to NATO, there might be some interesting discussions before that organization finishes self destruction. Or, still more dithering.

          “Mister Phelps, this treaty will self-destruct in 3 months.”

  19. The Left loves to trumpet their Love Of The Children!! often and loud.
    And it’s a front, like most of what they proclaim, a lie, an untruth.

    A basic fact is that if people like something, they want more of them, and want to spend time with them. For instance, I like bass guitars, so I have lots of them, and spend time building and playing them. The same can be said of some for books, or guns, or games, ect.

    Now, examine the Left’s line about loving the children. Instead of trying to get more, they work super hard to make sure that less are made, all around the world, by actively pushing birth control & abortion. The few children of Leftist who survive to be born are often shoved aside to nannys, daycares, boarding schools, summer camps, and anywhere possible to keep the child away as long as humanly possible (unless they are needed as a political prop, of course).

    Conclusion- the Left is lying, but that’s not anything new.

    1. The big drawback with children is that, after the first one or two, it is nearly essential that the parents* grow up, an action refused by a large number of Boomers and especially those identifying as Left.

      They are’t actually proclaiming their love of children, as they’re activating your love of your children.

      *I use the term in lieu of the more accurate “sire & dam” for purpose of conciseness.

      1. Who raised Chelsea? Not her parents. Chelsea was trotted out for photo/video ops, otherwise, unseen nanny raised her. That is something I noted as difference between Clinton’s & Obama’s. Latter may have nanny’s (maybe), but I’d believe mom & grandma were both heavily involved in raising the two girls.

      2. Gotta have somebody o inherit all the loot you finagled off the public. AND an anointed one to inherit your political positions. Plus, they are a channel to launder money. See: Hunter Biden.

  20. In the past, we needed lots of children to take care of older parents. Will tech change that enough in the future. As we develop robots to do lots of work for us, will we be able to get by without an ever expanding population?

    1. AHAHAHAHAHAH.
      Sure thing. The Robots will save us all….
      Because they’re just as inventive as humans and….
      Guys, can you find my eyes. I think they rolled under the sofa.

      1. Is that sarcasm? I sense that. Well, I for one want my shiny new robot body. I’m tired of the bio parts wearing out for good. It’s not the future until we have those. And flying cars, with protection against other drivers.

      1. “To err is human. To really mess things up, you need a computer”.

        Seen in a programming office. 😉

        1. Garbage date in, garbage results out … even if the computer and program running are 100% correct & effective. Create a fool proof program & you will find that fools will find a way to muck it up.

          Is my 35 years as a programmer showing? sorry

          1. I’m not and never been a programmer (not counting messing around, mostly fruitlessly, in BASIC in High School), but I married one, and have been dealing with their temperament since she got an Apple II i n college. This is why I have no trust in ‘self driving’ cars; in my mind’s eye I can see the mess that will result when 10,000 copies off the same model suddenly turn left in heavy commuting traffic, for no readily apparent reason.

          2. “Computers Do Exactly What You Tell Them To Do, Not What You Want Them To Do.”

            Years of programming?

            I’m not counting but I’ve done my share of it. 😀

            1. “Computers Do Exactly What You Tell Them To Do, Not What You Want Them To Do.”

              Well familiar with that one. I’d been known to exclaim “Noooooooooo…..” a few times. Or more likely “well that didn’t work …”, or “uh, …., you can’t do that …” (sometimes the “you” was even me). Haven’t coded now for 4 years, I’m retired. Slowly loosing the itch …

              Don’t take this as hope for the person you married. I am/was somewhat inoculated my college freshman year when forced to take my first computer class on a teletype (yep dating myself). To say I hated/despised that class is understating it, a lot. To the point where 6 years later when someone pointed out I’d be a good programmer, I laughed. My response was “h*ll no” … famous last words. Within a year we paid way more than we could afford on an … Apple IIe (OTOH that computer was used one way or another for about 20 years …), and I started a new career.

              Not going to state nothing I wrote wasn’t mission critical, at least financially, for someone or someones. But a critical undetermined update bug or malicious hack wasn’t ever going to cause any, let alone multiple vehicles suddenly turn left all at the same time because of my code. FWIW, I share the thought. Don’t mind the driver assist options, because driver can essentially say, “Oh h*ll no.” (People do know that the “newer” driver assist to keep vehicles between lines counts on the road actually having lines … right? Just FYI.)

      2. As any truly horrified sysadmin who has ever created a mail loop can tell you, with feeling.

  21. On the subject of immigration, in an ideal world I’d say “throw open the border”, people coming here would learn how great a truly free society is and if not them then their children would be all-in on the subject of freedom.

    Unfortunately, we don’t live in anything like that ideal world. And, as you say (and I have pointed out before), importing a bunch of people who are opposed to the very idea of freedom is not a good way to keep freedom alive. (They’ve been oppressed? Sure. The traditional reaction to oppression is not to seek freedom, but to change roles–seek to be the oppressor rather than the oppressed. The founding of the US saying “hey, let’s try freedom instead” is very much the exception.) That we have news and media bound and determined to stomp on the idea of freedom (including most of those “elites” working to open those gates) locally.

    You simply can’t keep importing wholesale people opposed to your very core values and expect to see those core values respected.

    1. Keep in mind that the Left has been pushing for things like domestic abuse to qualify as “oppression” for purposes of refugee status for would-be immigrants to the US.

    2. Part of the reason that our attempt worked out is because we decided to get out right as the oppression was starting, rather than after it went on for awhile.

  22. As I like to joke: “We have to stop reproducing! It’s the only way to save the Earth for future generations!”

    Sadly, the other side doesn’t see that as a joke.

  23. Well, I wanted to contribute, but when you can’t get anyone to assist…

  24. If someone wants a little perspective on the folly of Wall Street today. The Dow closed down 7.9%. The greatest percentage drops in history were 22% in . . . 1987, followed by the various drops in 1929, 1929, 1929, 1922, 1907. So yes, the number of points is the highest in history (so is the market overall) but the percentage of value “lost?” Thppppth.

    Where are the adults in the room?

    1. Some days ago somebody informed me that the Dow had never recovered from the housing collapse.

      Got a little pissy when I pointed out that when you compared highest high before that, vs the low that was supposedly the End Of Everything, it was like double at the new low…..

      1. I can understand people not knowing enough history to make accurate assessments of modern levels of pollution vs what Victorian cities heated by coal and transported by horses were like. I don’t CONDONE it, but I understand. But people who don’t have the capacity to remember what happened twenty years ago should have keepers, like the chimps they resemble.

        1. I recall hearing, as a kid, of the coal-fired heating era from Those Who Were There… being amused/bemused at the idea of snow that fell and remained white. Coal ash, snow…. black.

    2. Doesn’t bother me too much. Or rather, it’s a temporary annoyance.

      The rates on the Dow go up and down, up and down, up and down.
      The rates on the Dow go up and down, all the live long day.

  25. The US military has a wealth of knowledge in estimating populations by examining the available infrastructure. RAH pointed this out by stating Moscow’s population was seriously overstated by the CCCP poobahs; if you looked at the rails and roads and rivers into that city there was no way those could bring in sufficient food for such a large population.
    So, it occurs to me that if you truly wanted to know the population of, say, Houston, look at the tonnage of sewage daily generated, and divide that by the sewage each individual generates. That method could not possibly be less accurate.
    Regarding immigration apologists. They will shout “We’ve always been a nation of immigrants!” True. But we’ve never before had immigrants and a welfare state. When my ancestors came over here mid-nineteenth century, fleeing the potato famine, there weren’t gov’t offices signing them up for free healthcare education, job training, welfare etc. It was “Root, hog, or die!”
    I’m a hidebound old curmudgeon, but it seems to me women might be better served focusing on doing the things men can’t do as opposed to proving they can do everything a man can do. I’ll leave off now, and let everyone decide what those things might be.

      1. Which method?

        The problem with the ‘measure the sewage’ method is that that only works in places with working sewers that everyone actually uses. (Hint, it’s not runoff from working sewers that causes Poop Lettuce Syndrome(tm) at your local woke corporate burrito joint)

        Even in upscale wealthy suburbs I have seen immigrants (H1Bs have families too) copping a squat in parking lots. Busy, occupied parking lots, like the one that I was waiting in line to get out of while witnessing the extrusion.

          1. Does that water measurement include purchases of bottled water, or is it just measuring the usage of the water people get from the tap? Because if I lived in Mexico City, I sure wouldn’t be drinking the tap water. So if your friend’s measurement was only including the tap water usage, it would be easy to end up with an undercount. (Which is not, of course, evidence that the official population numbers are correct, either; it’s just an example of how easy it is to miss a vital piece of data and screw up your estimate.)

        1. I don’t claim it to be flawless. Just better than what we do now, and a tactic to say “Bullshit” when looking at some country’s intentionally inflated claims. Prolly wouldn’t work so good in Frisco, for example.

  26. How utterly demeaning, to suggest “every mother a teacher” instead of outsourcing the job to public indoctrination centers. It takes a professional to reach the three R’s!

    1. And if they fail, it’s because of not enough parental involvement and support.

      Which is why those homeschoolers MUST send their kids to the failing public schools, so that they will be forced to improve the schools.

      But parents are incapable of teaching as good as the schools.

      *head spins*

      (Yes, have heard all of these from the same person.)

      1. The basic problem with the public schools, beyond the usual Leftist idiocy, is that the unspoken contract between teachers and parents has broken down. It used to be that parents generally accepted that a certain amount of indoctrination would take place, but in return the little monsters would be taught to read, write, and handle basic math. The Educationists got sidetracked into all kinds of unproductive issues, like playing amateur Psychologists, and started failing to drive the basics into pointed little heads. So the parents no longer back the teacher right-or-wrong, and so it’s no longer possible to reestablish the discipline necessary to get the basics back on track.

        I don’t see any way to fix this, short of vouchers. A voucher system means not only can parents send their child to any school he (or she) can get in to, but the schools can set policies that include actual expulsion. Or, hell, real in-school punishments. Toe the line, or Jr. has to look elsewhere.

        1. Too many teachers decided that they had authority over the parents– and that a kid being maimed was an acceptable cost.

          *shudder*

        2. Voucher system? The Educational Professionals scream Bloody Freaking Murder, Utter Destruction of the Public Education System, the Doom of Civilization, and The End Of The World As We Know It if anyone suggests removing One Thin Dime from their revenue stream. They may reluctantly let students go, but the share of public tax money set aside to fund the system for them had better not go with them.

          1. The Supreme Court knocked the Teachers’ Unions into a cocked hat a while back. They’re fighting a rearguard action, but I don’t see them getting their reduced income back up any time soon. What this will mean to the Voucher fight remains to be seen.

        3. Before the Fed horned its way into the education system, there was no “unspoken” about it. If teachers – or the school board itself – didn’t perform to the expectations of the parents, they could be thrown out.

          Now, they’re an occupying force from Fedland, completely exempt from any local oversight. (at least in my area)

        4. I chatted with a parent at DisneyWorld last week about schooling – this individual, from East Texas, reported that the local schools there still used paddling, as long as the parent signed on, and that roughly 60% of the parents do so sign-on. This parents’ observation was that at least for his kids, he was fine signing the little miscreant up for two sets of backside swats if their behavior reached that level of punishment, one at school and then another when they got home.

    2. It takes an Education Professional to drag out for twelve years and more instruction in reading, writing, and basic math that should take half the time, if that.

      1. Indeed – my daughter got homeschooled in a coule of periods: and it was amazing to me how few hours of the day it took to keep her level with her public school class. An hour or two a day, with the concentrated attention of one or two people worked out to the equivalent of a single teacher trying to teach a class of thirty or forty kids of her age and attention span for six or eight hours a day. Weird, that.

  27. If Muslim women are quietly rebelling through subtle contraception, and many Catholics get rid of oopsies on the dee-el . . . is there anyone left to compete with us Mormons through generational increase? Our ‘our families are smaller these days’ lament is that our average family size is ‘only’ 4 kids now.

    -Albert

    1. Practicing Catholics don’t, generally, although thanks to bad catechesis too many think birth control is perfectly fine.

      Culturals might, it’s the over-culture norm, after all.

      No different than Cultural Mormons or Cultural Jews– keep the clothes, the food and the quirky stuff, dump the stuff that’s hard.

    2. Among Protestants, Southern Baptists, the PCA, the Wisconsin and Missouri Synod’s of the Lutherans, all spring immediately to mind.

      I wonder what these groups all have in common…

  28. Whenever I meet someone who exclaims “There are too many people in the world!” I always agree with them. I tell them, “You’re right. There are too many people in the world. We should get rid of some of them. YOU GO FIRST!” When I tell them to go first, I always look them straight in the eyes, then they stutter and then want to change the subject.

  29. “May I ask whose brilliant idea it was to indoctrinate new generations on the need to have fewer children?”

    Thomas Malthus. 1798, An Essay on the Principle of Population. Morons in favor of simple solutions have been touting his (overly simplistic) population growth analysis ever since.

    “My guess is because our leaders have some inkling of how bad things are in terms of how many people are in the upcoming generations.”

    No way. There’s no frigging way in the world they are capable of having that thought.

    As I sit here, 9:16 AM on March 10th, 2020, there are STILL flights landing from Iran and China at Toronto airport. Those people are STILL being passed through customs with zero health checks and zero quarantine. Meanwhile Kung-Flu is going exponential.

    And ten Indians with a pickup truck and a Mohawk flag is all it takes to block a major rail line. During a pandemic.

      1. I will see you Prime Minister Shiny Pony, and I will raise you Joe Biden.

        Joe Biden is the reason the population of the free world used to pray for Obama’s health…

        1. And anyone who thinks Slow Joe if elected would last more than a couple of months in office post-inauguration is deluding themselves.

          “Oh, look, Lovable yet Gropey Uncle Joe suddenly has developed a cognitive disorder: Invoke the 25th amendment section 4!”

          That is, unless he picks The Dowager Empress as his Veep, in which case it’s a sheet and a bedpost for Joe.

          1. Naww she’d just sneak over from the U.S.N.O. grounds and quietly smother him with a pillow. She would know her way around the executive mansion including the private areas. No matter the method if Slow Joe chose the Untamed Shrew as a VP his life expectancy after 20 Jan 2021 is probably measurable in Milliseconds,

            1. It confuzzles me to see the effort and enthusiasm these candidates are putting forth to become Trump’s whipping boy. Nary a one has a snowball’s chance in November.

  30. The welfare state turns a society’s children (and their presumed future productivity) into a commons. Tragedy inevitably ensues.

    1. When the anti-child left starts talking and think no one is listening they talk about “parental sociopathy”.

      No, they are not talking about parents who are sociopaths and destroy their children. They are talking about parents valuing their children above other people.

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