Monday, September 29, 2008

It's all about the money (and greed, and selfishness...)

A comment received not long ago, by someone who clearly bought into the myth of over-population:

"There are more than 6 billion human beings on this planet and we are already using up resources at an unsustainable rate. We cannot continue to increase the human population at this rate. I think it highly irresponsible for anyone to have more than 2 children and think that people who are doubtful about becoming parents should be encouraged not to do it. Only people who feel they are really ready and have the means and training to be parents should do it.

By choosing not to have children a woman is making a highly ethical decision. I am appalled by the number of people I know who have become pregnant through carelessness and have created a new human being by 'accident'."

You know, in the USSR - my birth country - there used to be a saying that stated (forgive my crude translation), "no person - no problem". It was always said half-jokingly, referring to the favorite method of the KGB to deal with whatever came up: just put any human being who caused any trouble against a wall, and shoot them. No trials, no judges. Quite simple for everyone.

Well, this is what comes to my mind whenever I hear the twisted philosophy of, "obviously, if we are using up resources there are too many of us - so let's shrink our population".

Our problem is not that there are too many of us. Our problem is that we are greedy, spoiled, selfish brats. Our problem is that we have absolutely ridiculous standards regarding what we "must have".

We all "must have" cars, even if we live in areas with good public transportation, because obviously we can't tolerate waiting a few minutes for a bus or even some wholesome exercise in the form of walking. We "must have" trips abroad twice a year, because we "work so hard and deserve it". We "must" change our whole wardrobe twice a year, and throw away what doesn't fit anymore - because we weren't taught to do anything with our hands, and therefore we don't know how to fix that button back on. We "must" have every possible domestic appliance plugged in and humming, because God forbid if we are reduced to the unworthy tasks of washing dishes or hanging laundry by hand. We "must" have all the latest gadgets. We "must" support a vain, hollow and immoral entertainment industry. And we "must" live in the midst of big, noisy, polluted cities because we can't bear to be away from it all. We must must must... well no. We don't.

The default assumption of people who cry out "no more than two children" is that there's really nothing a reasonable human being can be expected to do except to continue using up resources at the rate we have been. The solution? Let's get rid of potential addition to our numbers (by aggressive promotion of birth control, abortion "rights", eugenics and euthanasia) so that we (and our strictly limited number of children) can continue over-indulging ourselves like we are used to.

Look at a typical family with a child or two in the urban West, and a typical family with ten children in rural India, and compare the amount of trash and pollution both families produce. I don't have numbers on hand right now, but I believe it would be quite a pretty illustration of what I'm saying.

Finally, I don't know about you, but as a Jew I don't belong to a group that is exactly threatening to explode with over-population. Look at my grandmother's generation - it was largely wiped out (by sick people who believed they can decide who deserves to walk on this earth). Who knows when something like this might happen again - it was far from the first attempt to exterminate the Jews, and I'm not optimistic enough to think it will be the last one. Look at today's assimilation, intermarriages and low birth rate. Of course, I feel confident in the Lord's promise to preserve the Jewish people. However, so far our population is dwindling. Therefore, my heart rejoices when I see a Jewish woman with a toddler, a baby, and another one on the way.

I'm tired of the sick ideal of a world with almost no people, so that we can continue being slaves to our selfish whims. Instead of looking at babies and thinking "what a terrible accident" or "uh, one more source of pollution", let's roll up our sleeves and get some good hard work done, in honor of a world where we are all welcome, and all are required to work in order to preserve it.

58 comments:

MamaF said...

Dear Mrs Anna, very well said and well put.I agree with you. I'm myself a mother of four and i 'stopped' at 4 only because i've not been blessed again so far, but i'm ready to welcome a new life in every moment.
We live a very simple life with one quite low income but we really have all we need, we are clothed fed and in 'good company', we have a roof, we don't need anything else. Many blessing to you.
p.s. I've been following your blog for a while and really appreciate it :)
MamaF

Gothelittle Rose said...

Look at it this way: Those who are not afraid to have more than one or two children must earnestly teach our children to be upright and moral people. As time goes on we will find our cultures becoming more moral for the simple reason that we are reproducing and the eugenicists are not.

The fact that there are people out there wanting to kill some of us and keep others of us from reproducing should make us want to be the majority, not let some strange secular humanist, materialist line guilt-trip us into becoming the minority.

Erica said...

Oh, Anna, Perfectly, beautifully said. I seriously couldn't agree more! It's amazing what we'll say or advocate to justify our selfishness!

Looking Heavenward said...

A thousand "Amens!" for this excellent post, Anna!

Melian said...

The attitude expressed in the comment you addressed irks me to no end. I completely agree with what you are saying about limiting our use of resources, and I would argue that most large families have already found that to be a necessity in order to stretch their income. Just from the famillies that I know, those with many children use (and waste) MUCH less per person than those with smaller families who simply don't bother to think about those things. (Not that all small families fall into that trap.)

I'm also concerned about exactly what kind of "training" this person thinks one needs to be allowed to be a parent, but that's another issue.

Even more grating to me is the idea that this pop-culture attitude should be the basis on which a couple decides how many children to have. What about scripture? It seems clear to me that God speaks often of the blessing of children, and the joy of having many. Should we believe His word, or the world that turns its back on Him?

Anonymous said...

Such good thoughts, Anna....as usual! It seems we have taken greed to new heights....this is not God-honoring behavior.

Brenda

J said...

Anna, you make some great points. I think your argument is especially valid in "first world" countries. However, I was wondering whether or not you thought that this argument also applies to "underdeveloped/developing" countries. Take India for example. Ten years ago the Green Revolution helped to significantly reduce hunger in India. After a decade, however, India is now growing faster than its ability to produce rice and wheat. It seems as if food shortages are once again on the horizon for India's growing population. While the solution to this problem is certainly NOT population control (which, in my mind, is never acceptable), I think it is wise to at least acknowledge that exponentially increasing populations do place a significant burden on our planet's finite resources.

Gina Marie said...

Thank you for writing this.

Blessings,
Gina

Lady Violet said...

Good post Anna. You are right, I too think these people just want to continue living their consumer lifestyle and have no concept of living any differently.

Andrea said...

Anna, your remarks about how much we are conditioned to consume reminded me of an art book I stumbled across not too long ago. The book is called Hungry Planet: What the World Eats. Peter Menzel, the photographer in charge of the project, went around the world choosing families and asking them to buy a week's worth of groceries. He then arranged the food around the family and photographed them. It's amazing to see how some families get by on so little, while others consume so much. The proportions of fresh food to packaged food are also interesting to note. You can find the book itself at Amazon, and some pictures from the book are displayed in this blog post:

http://whatscookingblog.com/2007/10/31/weekly-groceries-from-around-the-world/

Peter Menzel has also produced an art book called Material World: A Global Family Portrait, in which families and all their possessions were photographed. Again, the differences between the families are quite amazing.

Anonymous said...

Though I don't agree with the commenter as a whole, I felt compelled to remark on this quote: "think that people who are doubtful about becoming parents should be encouraged not to do it. Only people who feel they are really ready and have the means and training to be parents should do it. "

Becoming a parent is very easy for most of us. Being a good parent is hard work. And while I believe children are a gift from God, I also think it is important to prepare for children, both emotionally and financially. It is something that is life-changing and should not be taken lightly. If people feel that they should not be parents, that should be their decision and it should be respected.

Cindi said...

Bravo! Standing ovation! I wish I knew you in real life. I would love to spend time talking to you. You are so well spoken (typed)!

Ways of Zion said...

Bravo! What a good post!

Happy Rosh HaShanna to you too!

scarletlillies said...

Anna, here's a fascinating website (and video) that addresses the opposite side of the issue - population decline and the possible impact that it could have 50 years down the road. Some interesting facts and speculation about current trends in family.
http://www.demographicwinter.com/index.html

Anonymous said...

What a wonderful post. Thank you.

Megan said...

I agree, Anna. I will not countenance any philosophy that devalues individual life for the "greater good". Who knows if the child that was never born because of the "two child maximum" philosophy wouldn't have made the world a better place, been a great leader, or maybe even "solve" the problem of pollution or lack of resources? On a personal level, I've decided that I will never base my decision to have more children on the "convenience" factor (as in, if we wait just another year, I'll be done with graduate school). What could be more important than bringing new life into the world?

Laura said...

I don't know, I don't think we are in danger of a world with almost no people. But I do think, to a certain extent that if people are hungry or suffering, it might be good to consider taking care of them before we spend our resources on brand new people. This would have to be on a society level and not family by family, but it is something for families to think about.
Also, I think we should consider that having children is possibly slightly selfish. By choosing not to have kids, we are saving our potential offspring the pain and hassle of going through life in this world.

MR said...

Hi Anna,

I totally understand what you're saying. I would love to have oodles of children! Unfortunately, my husband, his family and my family are all "zero population" people. We have one baby, and plan (sad, I know) to have another in about a year. I pray on a daily basis that something changes in my husband's heart.

Honestly, it seems that many of the world's problems could be helped by having larger families to care for one another - child care, elder care, family meals, etc.

I live in one of those large cities where everyone thinks they "need" a car. My husband and I have a car, but we drive it rarely (I currently drive it to work in the suburbs, because daycare is nowhere near my office --- this is not my first choice.), mostly one day on the weekend to visit my in-laws. It's something we're very conscious of - we have an 8 year old, VERY fuel-efficient car.

One last thing - we live in a heavily Jewish area. In fact, my husband went to a high school where more than half of the students were Jewish. However, most of the Jewish people I know have only 1 or 2 children. It seems that the mindset has affected Jews here quite a bit.

Ace said...

Hi Anna, Good Post! Hope you and your little one are doing well and that your DH is caring for you well. I am sure he is.

I agree wholeheartedly. I wonder if these people ever think ahead. I mean, do they always think they will be young, strong and able? Do they think their money and careers and hobbies will keep them warm? Will these things care for them when they are sick or dying?

No, the only thing we can take out of life is people and our love for each other. To spend your life in some sick quest of self indulgence will have a sad and lonely end. Also, not to be rude, but notice these people who think everyone ELSE is using up the planet's resources and want the helpless babies, the disabled and elderly dead and out of the way of their fun...never say "hey, I am using everything up, I am outta here". I am not for suicide, but hey, impose your values on yourself first.

It is just another false religion, worshipping the "created" and not the CREATOR. The Creator who wonderfully cares for and provides for ALL His childre, gives ALL HIS children life and dignity.

Many Blessings :)
Ace

Anonymous said...

As a fervent pro-choicer, I cannot endorse the idea of shaming women who have large families. A woman's decision whether to have children or not, large family or small, should be sacrosanct. Besides, you don't need shame in order to prevent overpopulation. Give a woman, economic opportunity, access to family planning resources, and the cultural freedom to make her own choices, and most will have small families without being shamed into it.

That having been said, overpopulation is clearly a problem both on a global scale, but also in certain localities. On the global level, you are absolutely right that western nations ought to make changes in order to reduce our relatively large drain on the world's resources. But overpopulation is a huge problem on a more local level too. India is a perfect example of the perils of overpopulation. Huge numbers of children live in serious poverty and suffer such ills as malnutrition, and difficulty accessing clean water and medical care. A woman who chooses to limit her family size so that the children she has have enough to eat and drink cannot be called greedy and selfish.

-- Pendragon

elena rulli said...

Well said, Anna, I totally agree!
Happy holidays to you and your wonderful family!

Tammy said...

I agree completely, Anna. Well-said!

Many people who learn that we have six children and have no plans to prevent future pregnancies, don't know how to deal with that information. Even those who say they believe it is the Lord who gives life talk out of the other side of the mouth when it comes to making "too many" of those babies.

And how do they determine how many is too many? It's almost always based on their income and how many children they can raise "comfortably" on that amount.

Our expenses over the years have increased a little, and that very gradually. As we go, we have found ways to cut costs by growing and making things that we used to buy. I think the Lord blesses us, too, and provides for each one of these little treasures HE has given.

No, our children do not have their own private rooms. No, they do not get everything they ask for handed to them. Yes, they wear second-hand and homemade clothing. Are they going to be scarred for life? I don't think so. Rather, I think they are developing character. They know that if they really want something, they can work for it and get it. If something gets broken, they set out to fix it. My girls LOVE to help me make their clothes.

If having more children has taxed us financially, it has only strengthened our family and taught us to rely on the Lord and work with our hands.

I like that.

Otter Mom said...

You put it into words very well. Babies are never an accident or anything bad, they are not responsible for their conception if it is in less than ideal circumstances. But God is always in control, He always knows what is best for us and every baby is a gift from Him, to be cherished & loved. We as a society are very selfish, and it's not just the "younger generation." There are ways to fix problems, but so many people seem to be too lazy to actually do any work!

Mary Catherine said...

You've probably observed this as well, but since I moved to the country I am continually struck by the fact that people who worry about overpopulation all seem to live in cities. And the problem is not that the world is overpopulated, but that the country is underpopulated! If you concentrate most of your population in a city, it will be very difficult for the people left in the country to grow food for everyone. And with factory-farm style food production, it is difficult to increase food to meet the needs of growing urban populations. But if you spread your population all over the countryside, food production will increase exponentially with the numbers of people who are on the land to cultivate it, and this exponential increase will continue until every inch of cultivatable land (not just arable, but cultivatable with raised beds for growing vegetables or mountain slopes for goats, or whatever ingenuity one might apply to use more difficult land) is in use, which, of course, we are NOWHERE NEAR having to worry about yet.

So, urbanization, definitely a problem. Overpopulation, pffffbt.

Heather said...

Anna~ How very true!! The choice of children, how many and when should be made between a husband and wife and no other.

As for my family we are in the process of scaling back as we have to much "stuff".

God Bless

Teaching Tips said...

Very well said!!

Sherri said...

Well put! I so totally agree with you. Interestingly, one of the problems these people overlook is who exactly do they expect to support them by paying their government pensions (Cdn and American, anyway) after they retire? You don't save for your own, you pay for your parents, and your children are supposed to pay for yours. Their generation I mean. Those "responsible" non-parents who wouldn't dream of cluttering up the planet with more people, because it might cut into their landfill space, are unconsciously expecting to live off the contributions of the surplus children of those so "irresponsible" as to have more than two. Funny, nobody bothers me about having four and wanting more...

Mary L. said...

Dear Anna,

You are absolutely right ! I was born in 1935 and grew up during the depression and the second World War. Television had been invented but was not available to the general public until after the war. The average family owned one car, most women stayed home to care for the home and family, all the children in my second grammar school walked home for lunch and no-one I knew had a dishwasher. We lived good lives without the need for a lot of "stuff". Television convinces people that they need all of the extras.

I once taught a women's home Bible study and as an exercise I gave each woman a sheet of paper with two headings. One said "necessities" and the other said "luxuries". I asked the women to make two lists of the things in their homes that fit in each category. Their lists of "necessities" included such things as dishwashers and washers and dryers.I pointed out that even though those things might be nice, people had managed to wash their clothing and dishes for thousands of years without those appliances and that "necessities" were things like food, water, clothing and shelter. This mindset has led to a society that values "things" as more important than welcoming a child. The Bible only and always speaks of children as a gift, a blessing and a reward. We need to be reminded that happiness does not consist of all the material things but in serving God, enjoying our families and being content with what we have.

Green Eyes said...

You know, Anna, I typically agree with 90% of what you say here on your blog. But this post... well, I agree 110%! I had to remind myself, "No need to cheer aloud... no one can hear you." ;)

Katie said...

My family is from China, and the population control over there is sickening. I don't want to go into exactly what goes on (though I'm sure everyone's aware of it!), but the destruction of the family is gruesome. The Chinese value family immensely; every child was blessed, and the ideas of birth control and abortion were unheard of. Since the Chinese gov't began it's genocide against babies, the destruction of the family has lead to countless horrors. This is what I see the west heading toward. What's sad, though, is that the gov't isn't forcing us to do it (though that's not good either), but that we ourselves have chosen to do this.

As for the overpopulation argument...anyone remember Maltheus? If he were right, we'd all be dead. I like to think of this issue along the empty fridge analogy. I'm not going to die in three days if I only have three days' worth of food in there. I will go shopping in due time and replace the food. This is akin to the innovations that will help us sustain our population.

Furthermore, having fewer children isn't a fix for anything, it's a mere bandage (and a poor one at that!). Like you said, the appropriate thing to do would be to cut back on consumption.

MarkyMark said...

Anna,

That's a good post! But you're right: we're not overpopulated; we just use our resources unwisely. For example, in certain parts of the world (India in particular), animals are considered gods, so the people don't use them for food; then, folks wonder why they experience famine. In India, they have HUNDREDS OF MILLIONS of cows; even using a fraction of them for food would cure their famine problems.

In America, we have families with HUGE houses. Years ago, the typical house had 1200 square feet inside; now, they're more than TRIPLE that! The garages alone often take up 900 square feet now, or 3/4 of the average house from 50 years ago. Whether in terms of materials used or energy used, the big houses are WASTEFUL. They take up more land. Their bigger rooms and high ceilings mean more energy is required to heat and light them. That's a waste of energy, since you either need energy to produce electricity to heat or light the bigger rooms; if gas heat is used, that more energy too. Finally, bigger houses require more wood and other materials for their construction; that's more trees cut; that means more energy used to cut the wood, make the materials, etc. So, the big houses that are popular here are wasteful in so many ways.

I'm going to sign off for now. Those are my thoughts...

MarkyMark

Brittany said...

Hi Anna,

I have read your blog here and there and I find it quite enjoyable. I am a Christian and a stay at home mom. I agree with you on many things. I too am appalled at this whole "overpopulation and global warming thing." As a matter of fact I have trouble understanding why anyone believes it. I once heard a pastor preach on this subject and how silly it is. He said he had drove all over the country and had lived in several states. He said there is so much empty land here in the United States. Farms, forests , deserts with no one living there and the earth is running out of room so people claim. Conserve water? A limited supply? That is silly to anyone who actually payed attention in science. When water evaporates it goes up to form clouds and then falls back to the earth as rain. So where is the water going? It's all nonsense. I think the earth being overpopulated is what women who really just don't want children tell themselves and others so they will not look so bad. You are right of course. It's really all about people being able to have whatever they want when they want it. People are truly spoiled. I don't believe in birth control. It can do damage to a womans body and some pills are really forms of abortion. The Bible says children are a blessing. I wish people would view them as such.

Courtney said...

Well put Anna! Although I must note it is interesting to find out that Americans aren't the only ones who think this way. Sometimes it is hard to fathom other countries, like Israel for example, having the latest and greatest, simply because the only things we ever hear are of the tiny little starving villages that are amazed when a foreigner shows them something from the "west". My husband and I were talking the other day after being passed by a large car full of plugged in 9 year olds, that this next generation is going to be the most immature, selfish adults this world has ever seen, and it is sad that it is our generation who has made them that way with parents who just cant lay down the rules and feel "bad" about Junior not having everything his friends have. It is interesting that this phenomena is world wide... really drive the point home a little more.

justme27 said...

Thanks for sharing on this Mrs. Anna. I agree. There are so many areas that are not populated- why can't we just move to one of those?

We should put people (and children) before THINGS.

Neuropoet said...

It is sheer ignorance to believe that we have a population problem - what we have is a laziness and consumerism problem. We need more people, but we need people who have been raised with a good old-fashioned "work-ethic" -- we need people who are willing to get their hands dirty to work and help others. You can never have too many good people in this world. Families who have more than two children usually do so out of a love for children, and children who are loved grow up to know how to love in others. We need people who know how to love - people who will love all humans, no matter how "different" they are from themselves. People are wonderful - God said so himself - they deserve to grow up in loving families, and to be able to create more loving families. That is the way to truly change the world. We do not have to be a race that constantly takes, takes, takes from the world - we can give - that's what is so different about humanity when you compare us to other creatures on this planet. Yes, we are capable of "taking" more than we need, but we can "give" more than we need to take as well. Look at people like Mother Teresa - she was the youngest in her family - perhaps her parents shouldn't have had another child? Perhaps they were irresponsible? No, it is not little humans that are the problem, it is the selfishness of the big ones that needs to be tamed.

~Jenny

Anonymous said...

Don’t believe one optimistic word from any public figure about the economy or humanity in general. They are all part of the problem. Its like a game of Monopoly. In America, the richest 1% now hold ALMOST 1/2 OF ALL UNITED STATES WEALTH. Unlike ‘lesser’ estimates, this includes all stocks, bonds, cash, offshore accounts, and material assets held by America’s richest 1%. Even that filthy pig Oprah acknowledged that it was at about 50% in 2006. Naturally, she put her own ‘humanitarian’ spin on it. Calling attention to her own ‘good will’. WHAT A DISGUSTING HYPOCRITE SLOB. THE RICHEST ONE PERCENT HAVE LITERALLY MADE WORLD PROSPERITY ABSOLUTELY IMPOSSIBLE. Don’t fall for any of their ‘humanitarian’ CRAP. ITS A SHAM. THESE PEOPLE ARE CAUSING THE SAME PROBLEMS THEY PRETEND TO CARE ABOUT. Ask any professor of economics. Money does not grow on trees. The government can’t just print up more on a whim. At any given time, there is a relative limit to the wealth within ANY economy of ANY size. So when too much wealth accumulates at the top, the middle class slip further into debt and the lower class further into poverty. A similar rule applies worldwide. The world’s richest 1% now own over 40% of ALL WORLD WEALTH. This is EVEN AFTER you account for all of this ‘good will’ ‘humanitarian’ BS from celebrities and executives. ITS A SHAM. As they get richer and richer, less wealth is left circulating beneath them. This is the single greatest underlying cause for the current US recession. The middle class can no longer afford to sustain their share of the economy. Their wealth has been gradually transfered to the richest 1%. One way or another, we suffer because of their incredible greed. We are talking about TRILLIONS of dollars which have been transfered FROM US TO THEM. All over a period of about 27 years. Thats Reaganomics for you. The wealth does not ‘trickle down’ as we were told it would. It just accumulates at the top. Shrinking the middle class and expanding the lower class. Causing a domino effect of socio-economic problems. But the rich will never stop. They just keep getting richer. Leaving even less of the pie for the other 99% of us to share. At the same time, they throw back a few tax deductible crumbs and call themselves ‘humanitarians’. Cashing in on the PR and getting even richer the following year. IT CAN’T WORK THIS WAY. Their bogus efforts to make the world a better place can not possibly succeed. Any 'humanitarian' progress made in one area will be lost in another. EVERY SINGLE TIME. IT ABSOLUTELY CAN NOT WORK THIS WAY. This is going to end just like a game of Monopoly. The current US recession will drag on for years and lead into the worst US depression of all time. The richest 1% will live like royalty while the rest of us fight over jobs, food, and gasoline. So don’t fall for any of this PR CRAP from Hollywood, Pro Sports, and Wall Street PIGS. ITS A SHAM. Remember: They are filthy rich EVEN AFTER their tax deductible contributions. Greedy pigs. Now, we are headed for the worst economic and cultural crisis of all time. Crime, poverty, and suicide will skyrocket. SEND A “THANK YOU” NOTE TO YOUR FAVORITE MILLIONAIRE. ITS THEIR FAULT. I’m not discounting other factors like China, sub-prime, or gas prices. But all of those factors combined still pale in comparison to that HUGE transfer of wealth to the rich. Anyway, those other factors are all related and further aggrivated because of GREED. If it weren’t for the OBSCENE distribution of wealth within our country, there never would have been such a market for sub-prime to begin with. IF IT WEREN'T FOR THE OBSCENE, UNREASONABLE, AND UNJUST DISTRIBUTION OF UNITED STATES WEALTH, THERE NEVER WOULD HAVE BEEN SUCH A MARKET FOR SUB-PRIME AND THERE NEVER WOULD HAVE BEEN A COLLAPSE IN THE HOUSING MARKET. Which by the way, was another trick whipped up by greedy bankers and executives. IT MAKES THEM RICHER. The credit industry has been ENDORSED by people like Oprah Winfrey, Ellen DeGenerous, Dr Phil, and many other celebrities. IT MAKES THEM RICHER. In fact, they specifically endorsed Countrywide by name. The same Countrywide widely responsible for predatory adjustable rate sub-prime lending and the subsequent collapse of the housing market. ENDORSED BY OPRAH WINFREY, ELLEN DEGENEROUS, AND DR PHIL. Now, there are commercial ties between nearly every industry and every public figure. IT MAKES THEM RICHER. So don’t fall for their ‘good will’ BS. ITS A LIE. If you fall for it, then you’re a fool. If you see any real difference between the moral character of a celebrity, politician, attorney, or executive, then you’re a fool. No offense fellow citizens. But we have been mislead by nearly every public figure. We still are. Even now, they claim to be 'hurting' right along with the rest of us. As if gas prices actually effect the lifestyle of a millionaire. ITS A LIE. IN 2007, THE RICHEST 1% INCREASED THEIR AVERAGE BOTTOM LINE WEALTH AGAIN. On average, they are now worth over $4,000,000 each. Thats an all time high. As a group, they are now worth well over $17,000,000,000,000. THATS WELL OVER SEVENTEEN TRILLION DOLLARS. Another all time high. Which by the way, is much more than the entire middle and lower classes combined. Also more than enough to pay off our national debt, fund the Iraq war for twenty years, repair our infrastructure, and bail out the US housing market. Still think that our biggest problem is China? Think again. Its the 1% club. That means every big name celebrity, athlete, executive, entrepreneur, developer, banker, and lottery winner. Along with many attorneys, doctors, politicians, and bankers. If they are rich, then they are part of the problem. Their incredible wealth was not 'created', 'generated', grown in their back yard, or printed up on their command. It was transfered FROM US TO THEM. Directly and indirectly. Its become near impossible to spend a dollar without making some greedy pig even richer. Don't be fooled by the occasional loss of a millionaire's fortune. Overall, they just keep getting richer. They absolutely will not stop. Still, they have the nerve to pretend as if they care about ordinary people. ITS A LIE. NOTHING BUT CALCULATED PR CRAP. WAKE UP PEOPLE. THEIR GOAL IS TO WIN THE GAME. The 1% club will always say or do whatever it takes to get as rich as possible. Without the slightest regard for anything or anyone but themselves. Reaganomics. Their idea. Loans from China. Their idea. NAFTA. Their idea. Outsourcing. Their idea. Sub-prime. Their idea. High energy prices. Their idea. Oil 'futures'. Their idea. Obscene health care charges. Their idea. The commercial lobbyist. Their idea. The multi-million dollar lawsuit. Their idea. The multi-million dollar endorsement deal. Their idea. $200 cell phone bills. Their idea. $200 basketball shoes. Their idea. $30 late fees. Their idea. $30 NSF fees. Their idea. $20 DVDs. Their idea. Subliminal advertising. Their idea. Brainwash plots on TV. Their idea. Vioxx, and Celebrex. Their idea. Excessive medical testing. Their idea. The MASSIVE campaign to turn every American into a brainwashed, credit card, pharmaceutical, medical testing, love-sick, celebrity junkie. Their idea. All of the above drive up the cost of living, shrink the middle class, concentrate the world’s wealth and resources, create a dominoe effect of socio-economic problems, and wreak havok on society. All of which have been CREATED AND ENDORSED by celebrities, athletes, executives, entrepreneurs, attorneys, and politicians. IT MAKES THEM RICHER. So don’t fall for any of their ‘good will’ ‘humanitarian’ BS. ITS A SHAM. NOTHING BUT TAX DEDUCTIBLE PR CRAP. In many cases, the 'charitable' contribution is almost entirely offset. Not to mention the opportunity to plug their name, image, product, and 'good will' all at once. IT MAKES THEM RICHER. These filthy pigs even have the nerve to throw a fit and spin up a misleading defense with regard to 'federal tax revenue'. ITS A SHAM. THEY SCREWED UP THE EQUATION TO BEGIN WITH. If the middle and lower classes had a greater share of the pie, they could easily cover a greater share of the federal tax revenue. They are held down in many ways because of greed. Wages remain stagnant for millions because the executives, celebrities, athletes, attorneys, and entrepreneurs, are paid millions. They over-sell, over-charge, under-pay, outsource, cut jobs, and benefits to increase their bottom line. As their profits rise, so do the stock values. Which are owned primarily by the richest 5%. As more United States wealth rises to the top, the middle and lower classes inevitably suffer. This reduces the potential tax reveue drawn from those brackets. At the same time, it wreaks havok on middle and lower class communities and increases the need for financial aid. Not to mention the spike in crime because of it. There is a dominoe effect to consider. IT CAN'T WORK THIS WAY. But our leaders refuse to acknowledge this. Instead they come up with one trick after another to milk the system and screw the majority. These decisions are heavily influensed by the 1% club. Every year, billions of federal tax dollars are diverted behind the scenes back to the rich and their respective industries. Loans from China have been necessary to compensate in part, for the red ink and multi-trillion dollar transfer of wealth to the rich. At the same time, the feds have been pushing more financial burden onto the states who push them lower onto the cities. Again, the hardship is felt more by the majority and less by the 1% club. The rich prefer to live in exclusive areas or upper class communities. They get the best of everything. Reliable city services, new schools, freshly paved roads, upscale parks, ect. The middle and lower class communities get little or nothing without a local tax increase. Which, they usually can't afford. So the red ink flows followed by service cuts and lay-offs. All because of the OBSCENE distribution of bottom line wealth in this country. Anyway, when you account for all federal, state, and local taxes, the middle class actually pay about the same rate as the rich. The devil is in the details. So when people forgive the rich for their incredible greed and then praise them for paying a greater share of the FEDERAL income taxes, its like nails on a chalk board. I can not accept any theory that our economy would suffer in any way with a more reasonable distribution of wealth. Afterall, it was more reasonable 30 years ago. Before Reaganomics came along. Before GREED became such an epidemic. Before we had an army of over-paid executives, bankers, celebrities, athletes, attorneys, doctors, investors, entrepreneurs, developers, and sold-out politicians to kiss their asses. As a nation, we were in much better shape. Strong middle class, free and clear assets, lower crime rate, more widespread prosperity, stable job market, lower deficit, ect. Our economy as a whole was much more stable and prosperous for the majority. WITHOUT LOANS FROM CHINA. Now, we have a more obscene distribution of bottom line wealth than ever before. We have a sold-out government, crumbling infrastructure, energy crisis, home forclosure epidemic, credit crunch, weak US dollar, 13 figure national deficit, and 12 figure annual shortfall. The cost of living is higher than ever before. Most people can't even afford basic health care. ALL BECAUSE OF GREED. I really don't blame the 2nd -5th percentiles in general. No economy could ever function without some reasonable scale of personal wealth and income. But it can't be allowed to run wild like a mad dog. ALBERT EINSTEIN TRIED TO MAKE PEOPLE UNDERSTAND. UNBRIDLED CAPITALISM ABSOLUTELY CAN NOT WORK. TOP HEAVY ECONOMIES ALWAYS COLLAPSE. Bottom line: The richest 1% will soon tank the largest economy in the world. It will be like nothing we’ve ever seen before. The American dream will be shattered. and thats just the beginning. Greed will eventually tank every major economy in the world. Causing millions to suffer and die. Oprah, Angelina, Brad, Bono, and Bill are not part of the solution. They are part of the problem. THERE IS NO SUCH THING AS A MULTI-MILLIONAIRE HUMANITARIAN. EXTREME WEALTH MAKES WORLD PROSPERITY ABSOLUTELY IMPOSSIBLE. WITHOUT WORLD PROSPERITY, THERE WILL NEVER BE WORLD PEACE OR ANYTHING EVEN CLOSE. GREED KILLS. IT WILL BE OUR DOWNFALL. Of course, the rich will throw a fit and call me a madman.. Of course, they will jump to small minded conclusions about 'jealousy', 'envy', or 'socialism'. Of course, their ignorant fans will do the same. You have to expect that. But I speak the truth. If you don’t believe me, then copy this entry and run it by any professor of economics or socio-economics. Then tell a friend. Call the local radio station. Re-post this entry or put it in your own words. Be one of the first to predict the worst economic and cultural crisis of all time and explain its cause. WE ARE IN BIG TROUBLE.


So what can we do about it? Well, not much. Unfortunately, we are stuck on a runaway train. The problem has gone unchecked for too many years. The US/global depression is comming thanks to the 1% club. It would take a massive effort by the vast majority to prevent it. Along with a voluntary sacrifice by the rich. THATS NOT GOING TO HAPPEN. But if you believe in miracles, then spend your money as wisely as possible. Especially in middle and lower class communities. Check the Fortune 500 list and limit your support of high profit/low labor industries (Hollywood, pro sports, energy, credit, pharmaceutical, cable, satelite, internet advertising, cell phone, high fashion, jewelry, ect.). Cancel all but one credit card for emergencies only. If you need a cell phone, then do your homework and find the best deal on a local pre-pay. If you want home internet access, then use the least expensive provider, and share accounts whenever possible. If you need to search, then use the less popular search engines. They usually produce the same results anyway. Don't click on any internet ad. If you need the product or service, then look up the phone number or address and contact that business directly. Don't pay to see any blockbuster movie. Instead, wait a few months and rent the DVD from a local store or buy it USED. If you want to see a big name game or event, then watch it in a local bar, club, or at home on network TV. Don't buy any high end official merchendise and don't support the high end sponsors. If its endorsed by a big name celebrity, then don't buy it. If you can afford a new car, then make an exception for GM, Ford, and Dodge. If they don't increase their market share soon, then a lot more people are going to get screwed out of their pensions and/or benefits. Of course, you must know by now to avoid those big trucks and SUVs unless you truly need one for its intended purpose. Don't be ashamed to buy a foreign car if you prefer it. Afterall, those with the most fuel efficient vehicles consume a lot less foreign oil. Which accounts for a pretty big chunk of our trade deficit. Anyway, the global economy is worth supporting to some extent. Its the obscene profit margins, trade deficits, and BS from OPEC that get us into trouble. Otherwise, the global economy would be a good thing for everyone. Just keep in mind that the big 3 are struggling and they do produce a few smaller reliable cars. Don't frequent any high end department store or any business in a newly developed upper class community. By doing so, you make developers richer and draw support away from industrial areas and away from the middle class communities. Instead, support the local retailer and the less popular shopping centers. Especially in lower or middle class communities. If you can afford to buy a home, then do so. But go smaller and less expensive. Don't get yourself in too deep and don't buy into the newly developed condos or gated communities. Instead, find a modest home in a building or neighborhood at least 20 years old. If you live in one of the poorer states, then try to support its economy first and foremost. Be on the lookout for commercial brainwash plots on TV. They are written into nearly every scene of nearly every show. Most cater to network sponsors and parent companies. Especially commercial health care. Big business is fine on occasion depending on the profit margins and profit sharing. Do your homework. If you want to support any legitimate charity, then do so directly. Never support any celebrity foundation. They spend most of their funding on PR campaigns, travel, and high end accomodations for themselves. Instead, go to Charitywatch.org and look up a top rated charity to support your favorite cause. In general, support the little guy as much as possible and the big guy as little as possible. Do your part to reverse the transfer of wealth away from the rich and back to the middle and lower classes. Unfortunately, there is no perfect answer. Jobs will be lost either way. Innocent children will starve and die either way. But we need to support the largest group of workers with the most reasonable profit margins. We also need to support LEGITIMATE charities (Check that list at Charitywatch.org). This is our only chance to limit the severity and/or duration of the comming US/global depression. In the meantime, don't listen to Bernanke, Paulson, Bartiromo, Orman, Dobbs, Kramer, OReiley, or any other public figure with regard to the economy. They are all plenty smart but I swear to you that they will lie right through their rotten teeth. IT MAKES THEM RICHER. These people work for big business. The 'experts' they cite also work for big business. They are all motivated by their desire to accumulate more wealth. THEY WILL LIE RIGHT THROUGH THEIR ROTTEN TEETH. So don't fall for their tricks. Instead, look at the big picture. The economic problems we face have been mounting for well over 20 years. All of them caused or aggrivated by a constant transfer of wealth from poorer to richer. Soon, it will cause the first ever GLOBAL DEPRESION. Its not brain surgery. Its simple math. Like I said, you are welcome to run this by any professor of economics or socio-economics. If thats not good enough, then look up what Einstein had to say about greed, extreme wealth, and its horrible concequences. I speak the truth. GREED KILLS. IT WILL BE OUR DOWNFALL.

Its already underway. A massive campaign to divert our attention. Trump, Buffet, OReiley, Pickens, Norris, and several other well known public figures have been running their mouths about the economy. Finally admitting a hint of severity after almost 2 years of denial. They even have the nerve to acknowledge the possibility of a US/global depression. Still, they refuse to acknowledge the single greatest underlying cause. GREED KILLS. IT WILL BE OUR DOWNFALL.

A word for those who respond with the usual 'I know more than you. Look how smart, knowledgable, and articulate I am' crap. Let me say this in advance. I don't claim to be an expert in this field. But I did go on record with these predictions long before any public figure uttered the word 'recession'. If you search long enough, you will find my early postings from '05' and '06'. Including the first draft of this rant. Since then, I've gone on record against people like Greenspan, Bernanke, and Paulson. So far, my predictions have been accurate. Like I said. This is not brain surgery. For the mostpart, its simple math. When you concentrate the world's wealth, you also concentrate its capital and shrink the middle class along with the potential market for every major industry. Homes go unsold. Bills go unpaid. Banks fail. More products go unsold. Jobs are lost. More banks fail. and so on. and so on. It happened 80 years ago. It will happen again. This time on a global scale. Throughout the cycle, the rich will tighten their grip. Concentrating the world's wealth and resources even further and ensuring the collapse of every major economy worldwide. Think it can't happen? Think again. GREED KILLS. IT WILL BE OUR DOWNFALL.

Another thing. I don't want credit for any of this. Otherwise, I would have given my full name a long time ago. As far as I'm concerned, you can put this rant in your own words and take credit for all of it. I don't care. Just spread the word. Otherwise, the greatest injustice of all time will go down in history unchecked.

Jennifer said...

Well said, Anna!
Every time I here of someone saying anything about "over population", I can't help but think that they have never been to Montana or Wyoming or North/South Dakota (USA) or Northern Canada, among other places. I know that there are countries over in Europe/former USSR that are smaller than these states, yet have more people in them. And the world is over-populated?! The next time someone says something about it to you, let them know that a whole town in North Dakota is for sale at less than $100,000. No joke. Of course, it's a ghost town and there is a reason no one lives there. But still ... If space is what you desire, than that surly would fit your bill!

And you are right about that amount of waste a family goes through. My fathers' house, which is a family of 3, goes through more rubbish than our family of 7. Why? Because a family of 3 has more dispensable income than a family of 7 does. And that family of 7 makes things go much farther and is much more careful about "using up" as much of a product as they can. Not to mention the fact that a larger family needs a larger vehicle, as opposed to the smaller vehicle the family of 3 can get away with. And with that larger vehicle comes larger gas bills. Now who do you think is putting more "green house gasses" into the air? The small family who doesn't think much about running here and running there? Or the larger family who needs to plan out everything together because gas is so expensive to fill and use in their larger vehicle?

That's kind-of a no brainer, I think.

Jennifer D

Mrs. Santos said...

Very well said. Children are a blessing from the Lord and there are no accidental people. God bless you.

Mrs. Santos

Kim from Canada said...

Hello Anna,
In light of this post, I thought you might enjoy this link -
makinghome.blogspot.com/2008/09/some-subtle-effects-of-birth-control.html
Also a good post on the world's view of leaving the size of your family in God's hands. A good read. Thanks for sharing your thoughts on the subject.

Anonymous said...

Wow. I think it is sad to assume that just because you have modern conveniences means that you are selfish and greedy. I love my DRYER and DISHWASHER because they allow me more time with my family. How is it ok to have a washer but not a dryer? Not all people who have money are greedy...we do well and tithe, give freely and regularly help out friend or family who need it. I once loved your blog lately have been very turned off by the negativity and judgments towards others...whether it is this post on the dryer or feeling like I have the right to breastfeed in public whether I am able to do it modestly or not...I have been made sad to see such a lovely blog turn in such a way and cast so many judgments.

USAincognito said...

AMEN!!! :)
Well put and well written...and I completely agree!

Bethany Hudson said...

"Finally, I don't know about you, but as a Jew I don't belong to a group that is exactly threatening to explode with over-population." Well said, Anna! Good point. The waste that I see when I look over the world is not that there are so many resources that new lives would use, but all the lives that are being neglected and destroyed because there are not enough hands and hearts to care for them! I'm an as much of an environmentalist as the next Democrat-in-Seattle (City of Tree-Huggers), but I'm more concerned about the state of the world's orphanages than it's oceans.

Btw... Shana Tova!
~Bethany

Anonymous said...

All I can say is "amen"!!!!! You put that into words beautifully!

Chief Cook and Bottle Washer said...

Lovely post, Anna. So very true.

Anonymous said...

thank you for this great post. There are lots people who needed to hear this more often.

Jessica said...

Thank you so much for this! It was absolutely wonderful. My mother and I often talk about how selfish people are and how sad it is. Not saying that I'm perfect, I still have a long way to go but I am a lot less selfish and overinduldged than I was at 20. You are very insightful and I enjoy reading your posts very much!

CappuccinoLife said...

Oooh, do I get to be first commenter this time??? :)

First, blessings to you through the holidays!

Once again you have hit the nail on the head. Here in the US our financial crisis has really got me thinking about just how spoiled we are in the West, and in the States in particular. I keep hearing these dire warnings about how you won't have such an easy time getting a loan for a house or a car, and I wonder "Why exactly is that such a bad thing?". It will force people to purchase only what they can afford, and if enough people are forced to do that, home and car prices will have to go down or they won't sell at all.

I recently ran into a comment about one well known large family here, with the commenter putting "wearing hand-me-down clothing" in her list of the "terrible suffering" children in large families endure. I was stunned. That is a perfect example of the ridiculously inflated expectations we have developed. We are "entitled" to everything being brand new, big, and luxurious. If it's not, we're "suffering" and we whine and complain.

My sons and I have been watching "1940's House" and it really struck me that although we are "low-income" and our lives are Spartan compared to typical American lifestyles, we know absolutely nothing about deprivation.

lol. I've just talked about how spoiled we are, and not about population at all. I'll keep that short--It is my firm belief that human beings (our children) are our most valuable resources and our best hope for the future.

Milena said...

Anna - bravo. A wonderful post.

Happy Rosh Hashanah - I await more great writing when your celebrations and contemplations conclude.

cmoursler said...

Amen!
People act like their child must be constantly entertained, coddled and have items purchased for them so the child won't be "deprived". I agree with mother Theresa in this- the west lives in great poverty-loneliness. We embrace small families and "me" time and then wonder whither the emptiness? Life isn't things, it's relationships.
cm.oursler- U.S.A
humanshearthesilence.blogspot.com

Mrs. Anna T said...

Ladies, thank you all for your contribution. You brought up so many great points - I couldn't possibly include all that in my original post.

I just wanted to clarify, since someone here expressed concern about feeling "judged" for having modern appliances at home, is that I never said there's something inherently bad with having nice new things and appliances. What bothers me is that things become loved more than people. I'm not sticking my nose into anyone's trash can to see how much trash they produce. I'm FAR from perfect myself in this area, and the only thing I'm saying is that we can, as needed, limit our use of resources in order to welcome children.

Anonymous said...

I agree with you on the whole that the Western world could waste a lot less. However, I also think that families and societies do need to think about the resources needed for more children. As one poster above so aptly put it, a society should first think about feeding its own hungry before thinking about making more babies. The same goes for families.

I also agree with another poster who stated having children is selfish. Most people have children for selfish reasons (they love having someone to take care of, they need someone to love, they want to lead a big family, they would feel lonely otherwise, they want someone to take care of them in their old age, etc). People have children to fulfill a human need or desire, usually, and not in order to make the world a better place. (I know many have Biblical convictions, but ultimately, the decision to procreate usually rests on one of the above factors. You don't see infertile women bemoaning the fact that they can't fulfill a commandment, but rather, that they have no baby to hold). That makes having children an act I do for myself, or a selfish act.....it is just as selfish as deciding not to have children; it's simply for different reasons.

Each family wants the best for their children. For some families, that means giving birth to many children so that they can experience the day to day compromises and joy of sharing few resources. For others, it means limiting their family size so the few children they have can enjoy more resources. Each family has made a legitimate choice, based on its desires - thus a selfish choice. (Obviously, I'm using the word selfish in a rather controversial manner here; I simply want to emphasize that having kids is no more or less selfless than not having them).
Tammy

ladyakofa said...

Let me chirp in one more thought....

Clearly, it's an issue of trusting God to take care of us, whether we're small sized or big sized families.

We look at numbers, percentages, etc and create policies that ineffectively attempt to disrupt God's order instead of trusting Him.

We pay severely for it when we do that. I need not cite examples, the news on media say it all.

Anonymous said...

Brittany said " I don't believe in birth control. It can do damage to a womans body and some pills are really forms of abortion. "
I just wanted to point out that there are barrier and natural forms of BC which have no effect on a woman's body.

Jo-snazz said...

I'm so thankful for my five, and it's all my body could have. God bless you.

Organizing Mommy said...

Ooops. I signed a comment under my daughter's name, who's only 14. I'm the mom.

Karen said...

So true!! My country has only 5% of the world's population yet we use 25% of the world's resources. If it were only averaged out per person we wouldn't have a problem AT ALL yet all anyone can think to do is cry "overpopulation!" whenever we start running low on resources.

I don't mean to point fingers but I've met a lot of people and it sure seems to me that the people with the fewest kids and the most money are the biggest guzzlers of resources on the planet!! I mean seriously huge houses with cathedral celings, 3 cars per household and an uncountable plethora of electronic gizmos. The richer they are and the less kids they have, the more money they use. I don't believe larger families of the past could come close to what most of these families use now.

We have stuff too, but we also get along without a lot and are not always greedy for more as it seems like everyone else around us is.

Right now with our "gas crisis" (pish) they are running commercials on t.v. that say idiotic things like "the American people DEMAND more oil now!". I just find it sickening. We could so easily switch to natural sources such as solar fuel in just a few years, I don't see that it's worth crying about. There is a TEENAGED boy who just improved the functioning of solar panels by his own design (something scientists couldn't do!) and was able to run an entire school on solar energy. As the sun is getting hotter, I think this is a good plan!

This one boy's invention could practically save the world, and just think if he hadn't been born!!

Anonymous said...

Whenever I encounter one of these folks who feels they should complain about overpopulation and dictate the size of other people's families, my suggestion to them is quite simple.

"To help ease the strain of overpopulation on the planet, why don't you set an example yourself, and leave?"

It never fails to make them change the subject ... They don't like it at all when the tables are turned.

Linda said...

whoohoo.. AMEN to everything you said! I could have written the article myself.. *lol* You've voiced my opinion entirely!

blessings from the netherlands!