Bare Bones Biology 257 – Getting From Here to There

Getting from Here to There is a new book by Robert Costanza and Ida Kubiszewski. I haven’t read it, but I like very much the first part of a review of this book by Gord Stewart in Solutions Journal, April 20, 2015.

“Business-as-usual is sure to deliver us a future that is both unsustainable and undesirable, with climate change arguably our most pressing problem. Had we begun to tackle it when first identified, incremental changes and modest actions along the way might have done it. With all the procrastinating, transformative change is now necessary.

“The same goes for other issues, from biodiversity loss and species extinction to air pollution and declining water quality. With the range and magnitude of environmental challenges we face, it’s easy to become discouraged.

“That’s why we need a focus and a plan. The focus is a clear vision of the kind of future we want. The plan is how to get there from here. This book offers both.”

150506-Witting-ASC_6705RLs copyAmen to that part.

But it’s nowhere near as complicated as he makes it sound, given that all – 100 percent all – of these problems could be solved if there were not too many people on earth to feed. And they cannot be solved so long as there are too many people for the earth to feed using the amount of food that the earth can produce.

Actually, that’s what the green revolution was about, giving us time to solve the population problem. You may have been told differently, but I was there and I remember. So long as we cannot feed the people – then – of course – hungry people want food and if they are hungry enough they are not concerning themselves about maintaining the health of our mother earth that produces all of our food.

If we could feed every mouth – then we could resolve the other problems. We can NOT feed every mouth by making more people than there is food. Food does NOT come from supermarkets. It comes from the earth. So whether or not that is our focus, we can’t do any of those other good things until we deal with the problem of overpopulation.

You must be able to see that we cannot possibly accomplish this when there are more people than there is food to feed them. And there is no place else to get food.

So what remains according to Mr. Stewart’s review? We need a plan. Yes indeed we need a plan. We need a plan that will reduce the overpopulation of humans on this earth, and because we waited way too long, we must plan at the same time to promote a healthy environment for the children; a plan to promote relevant education that will teach us how to not get into this fix again; we need a plan to end wars; we need a plan to promote compassion and to understand that unwise compassion can cause more harm than no compassion; we need a plan to revise our economics from the bottom up so that we can stop the growth for profit plan that simply makes things worse. And we need a few other things. We cannot have any of them unless we first reduce the population. That is simply a fact of life.

OK, I agree that I cannot do all those things, and neither can you, but I CAN tell you what will NOT work, and it will not work because all those problems are connected to each other at their root and stem. It will NOT work for me to try to prevent overpopulation while you work on all those other things. Because the tree of life has its roots in the soil of the earth, and overpopulation is the root and stem of the problem, and all those other aspirations are the branches. If the root dies, we will have NONE OF THEM. We ALL MUST contribute to reducing the population problem, fulfilling our obligation to the earth, BEFORE and at the same time that we work at whatever we love best. Nothing less will get us to where we must go if we are to rebuild a healthy human society.

No matter what happy fairy tales the corposystem feeds us.

This is Bare Bones Biology, a production of FactFictionFancy and KEOS radio, 89.1 FM, in Bryan, Texas. A copy of the podcast can be downloaded at:


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