I never really bought the Gaia principle, but this is the perfect disease to present as evidence of its existence. Perhaps the earth is scratching an itch.
don't blame Mother Gaia, blame Mother Rachael and her minions who stopped the mosquito spraying to save the birds and killed a couple million Africans by allowing a resurgence of Malaria, dengue, yellow fever, etc.
best comment is to point out that Brazil's birth rate is already below replacement level.
and a lot of discussion if the author is a "scientist". Actually it doesn't matter if she is a trained scientist: The problem is that the discussion is based on emotions and a utopian idea of ZPG as good for you, and a eugenic inspired idea about who should live, and even fantasy (mother Gaia gave us Zika to tell us to stop having babies) not hard reality based on facts.
Facts: A few thousand children will be born handicapped from Zika. Many will develop problems too late to abort them, so the pro aborts are making moms think if they live in Florida etc. they should abort the kid early just in case.
In Brazil the "experts" are using Zika to pressure the country to liberalize abortion law. But since you only can pick up microcephaly late in pregnancy, this means late term abortions, which are risky to mom and can leave you with a live baby, not to mention few doctors will be willing to do this. So how many moms will self abort because of the scary publicity and die? But of course, this will allow the experts to "prove" you have to allow more abortions.
Fact two: More kids will be born with Fetal Alcohol syndrome than with Zika microcephaly.
Fact Three: We docs saw the same scare tactics during the 1960's Rubella epidemic and thalidamide scare that was used to push legal abortion in the USA.
Notice no more Rubella in the US? It's the MMR...
but the same type of non scientific emotional feminist thinking is scaring moms from having their kids get MMR. And unvaccinated immigrants are still at risk.
and the WHO notes that worldwide there are 100 thousand cases of fetal rubella syndrome a year.
The Malthusian ideas that encouraged the British to see the Irish potato famine an opportunity, the Eugenics ideas of the 1900s which talked about the inferior races (i.e. the Irish and Jewish immigrants ) the Nazi idea of ubermensch and American ideas that one should sterilize the "unfit" in the 1930's and the Population bomb ideas of the 1970's are now being sold to you in the name of Zika
Or maybe in the name of "global warming".
This last article is in NPR, and argues that in fifty years the world will be uninhabitable from global warming, so don't have kids because they'll all die anyway.
I seem to remember similar arguments in the 1960's, we're all gonna die in a nuclear war so don't have kids because they'll all die anyway.
And then the predictions of Paul Ehrlich that even the NYTimes noticed didn't come true.
the NYTimes article say:
Ehrlich’s opening statement was the verbal equivalent of a punch to the gut: “The battle to feed all of humanity is over.” He later went on to forecast that hundreds of millions would starve to death in the 1970s, that 65 million of them would be Americans, that crowded India was essentially doomed, that odds were fair “England will not exist in the year 2000.” Dr. Ehrlich was so sure of himself that he warned in 1970 that “sometime in the next 15 years, the end will come.” By “the end,” he meant “an utter breakdown of the capacity of the planet to support humanity.”
As you may have noticed, England is still with us. So is India. Hundreds of millions did not die of starvation in the ’70s. Humanity has managed to hang on, even though the planet’s population now exceeds seven billion,
so what happened?
The man who saved a million people by the Green Revolution.
ne thing that happened on the road to doom was that the world figured out how to feed itself despite its rising numbers. No small measure of thanks belonged to Norman E. Borlaug, an American plant scientist whose breeding of high-yielding, disease-resistant crops led to the agricultural savior known as the Green Revolution. While shortages persisted in some regions, they were often more a function of government incompetence, corruption or civil strife than of an absolute lack of food.
aand, of course, with modern medical care that lets all your kids live, moms don't feel the need to have 7 kids. Right now, the population is expected to stablize soon, and in many countries, the negative demographic crisis is the problem.
And don't say: Muslims (Turkey and Iran have less than replacement birth rates). And I suspect that as China introduces modern farming etc. into Africa will mean that many countries there will soon stablize their population. (The "green" NGO's pretty well discouraged the green revolution and now discourage GMO crops that could feed people. And too many of these NGO's are against change that would destroy the good old fashioned days, something they see as utopia, but is actually days of hunger, want, and dying early of diseases that could be prevented)
None of the failure of his predictions has stopped Ehrlich from saying he was right.
What is being ignored is technology. again from the NYT article:
Some preternaturally optimistic analysts concluded that humans would always find their way out of tough spots. Among them was Julian L. Simon, an economist who established himself as the anti-Ehrlich, arguing that “humanity’s condition will improve in just about every material way.” In 1997, a year before he died, Mr. Simon told Wired magazine that “whatever the rate of population growth is, historically it has been that the food supply increases at least as fast, if not faster.”
But none of this is science: it is emotion driving the idea. Check the NPR article which all the opinions are emotional reactions to what they think are scientific predictions.
and of course, Ehrlich was inspired to write the population bomb because he saw a lot of poor people in India on the street.
and both the latest NYT editorial and the NPR article is about people who want to be praised when they live a selfish life without responsibility without having the mess and noise of children to distract them.
“You can sway a thousand men by appealing to their prejudices quicker than you can convince one man by logic.”
― Robert A. Heinlein,