Remember: the overpopulation myth is racist propaganda and you should never spread it


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Population and resources 

@Antanicus we shouldn't forget the "in a more sustainable way" bit though, because worker-fetishizing brocialist technocrats will tell you that socialism alone through a planned economy or whatever system, with no change in practices, will allow sustainable living for everyone while driving pickup trucks with Bernie bumper stickers and eating cheeseburgers. The problem is bigger than Capitalism, it is the entirety of European politicized economics' complete divorce from the environment (with us as a part of it) as a sustainable system.

@thufie @Antanicus yeah, we can do it all more sustainably and with our dignity intact, but it will involve a pretty massive change in lifestyle for practically everyone

@thufie @Antanicus and like, arguably part of that will be much less recreational computer use. Maybe the end of PC's, certainly the end of always-on electricity.

@zardoz @Antanicus gamers can just opt to not have hot water heaters ;P

@zardoz @thufie @Antanicus Don't forget that a lot of processing power is purely used for capitalist BS like surveillance, ad delivery or bitcoin mining. I guess if computers aren't used for that anymore, we could easily sustain people playing video games.

@LunaDragofelis @thufie @Antanicus oh yeah, I bet at least half of all server farms could be shut down entirely and nothing important would be lost.

maybe they could be re-used to heat your house by running protein folding simulations. I dunno.

@thufie @Antanicus the "in a sustainable way" part is the important part because industrial agriculture is a long way from sustainable. the biosphere is already utterly dominated by human activity. also the figures are disingenuous and reek of a certain colonial, extractivist disposition. the mammalian biomass of earth is just 4% wild animals with the rest being humans and livestock. 40% of earth's land area is already used for agriculture.

@Antanicus Oh god, imagine what double the population would do to our planet.

@Antanicus @OCRbot tfw people think that the global south is overpopulated when it's actually the global north that is

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@Antanicus @OCRbot all of this also not mentioning the fact that populations tend to stabilize at some point, and that radical growth doesn't happen for long

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@Antanicus I agree on a global scale, but on a local level I think there are issues with countries which have populations exceeding what the arable land can sustain, and so those countries depend on importing most of their food. It's especially worth noting if contraception is unavailable or stigmatized in those countries.

@Antanicus @OCRbot Considering what the earth looks like at this moment, I doubt that it would help to have more people on earth dealing with the environment in the same way. Rather the opposite.

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@globalc and where, exactly, does the tweet say we need more people dealing with climate change?

@Antanicus @OCRbot Also if you really want to lower the population, the single most effective way is increased education and career prospects for women.

And yet you never see overpopulation people advocating building schools for women....

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@Antanicus keep in mind that food production currently takes up 21% for cropland and 35% for pasture land of the land area of the USA (all of which was stolen) that used to be habitat for bison, wolves, and all sorts of other plant and animal species. this loss of habitat is one of the prime drivers of extinction and ecological collapse, as well as pesticides, nitrogen fertilizer (from fossil fuels) runoff, soil erosion, aquifer depletion. and on top of all of that, climate change

@Antanicus wise responses to malthusian club of rome style ideas shouldn't be to champion productivist ideology that is literally killing us and our planet, but instead to admit to the scale of ecological destruction that has already happened. something like the country of Chad's per capita resource intensity (although the unsustainable inputs (fuels and metals) would also need to shift) would be "somewhat" sustainable on a global scale

@Antanicus the problem is the global death machine that is industrial production and extraction of raw materials. this death machine is perfectly at home in a communist or capitalist economic system. what does it matter if the machine is owned by the workers if it's killing us!


Overpopulation isn't just a racist myth in the theoretical sense,

ecofascist ideas are spreading in climate movements as we speak, often starting with 'having less children is a green consumer choice!' moving on to 'accept the mass dying because it'll save 'the earth'' and end with 'let's just do genocide'.

So don't let it start. If someone mentions overpopulation or 'population control' as a climate issue, shut that shit down.

@queeranarchism @Antanicus If it helps you shut down the conversation, here's the ecofascist villain of "Kingsmen: The Secret Service".

@queeranarchism @Antanicus or we can just, like...

not advocate genocide, but still note that increasing population is a problem?

I feel like that's not actually all that hard.

@varx is it? Earth overshoot day was on the 15 of March in the US, while Indonesia, which has a comparable population, only reached that mark on the 18th of December.

Resource depletion has *nothing* to do with population.


@Antanicus @varx @queeranarchism I'd argue that access to birth control and sex ed are great and should be available worldwide.
But the term overpopulation is an ecofascist dogwhistle.

@uint8_t @Antanicus @queeranarchism OK, I'm seriously not saying this in a rude way, but... am I just older than y'all or something? Different frame of reference? Maybe just different media or country or something?

In the 90s, overpopulation was just a standard talking point for environmentalism. It was not a particularly controversial statement to make, just a matter of who cared vs. who didn't. There was no fascist overtone. I gather that some fascists have since picked it up, but that seems *new*.

@uint8_t @Antanicus @queeranarchism Actually, hang on—are you saying "we can't talk about this, period, because now it's a dogwhistle", or "this is false, and *because* it's false, we should remove it from public discourse so that it can't be used as a dogwhistle"?

@varx @uint8_t @Antanicus

Kinda both. It is false AND it is actively being used as a fascist dogwhistle.

Oh, & the overpopulation narrative may have been more mainstream in the 90s but that it was always white supremacist bullshit primarily obsessed with 'Africa' having too many black babies while feeding the European market on African goods and maintaining economic control through coerced postcolonial debt.

If overpopulation left the mainstream environmentalist narrative, we're learning.

@varx @Antanicus

Well, first: overpopulation just isn't a problem. Whatever problem you look at in detail, whether it's food production or CO2 emission, overpopulation isn't the problem.

Second: If it had been 75 years since the last genocide, I would say that yeah, maybe we could trust our civilization to talk about this without doing a genocide.
But it has been 0 days since the last concentration camp and there have only been more recently. So no, we clearly can't.

@varx @Antanicus

As it stands, fascists have a good chance of being in charge of all the most powerful states when the worst part of climate collapse hits.

And every time we humor them on their ridiculous 'it's the third world breeding too much' bullshit, we pave the way for the normalization of their 'solutions'.

It's actually really important that we start debunking the overpopulation myth on every public platform.

@Antanicus Hard disagree. The statistics here aren't useful - would you argue that we only use 30% of the Earth's area because we don't live on the oceans, so we could triple the population with no issues? We don't live on a lot of land because we farm on a lot of land.

We're already living in an unsustainable way - and adding 10 billion more people would make the move to a sustainable way much more painful than it's already going to be.

It's not a race issue - this is a problem for everyone.

@mewmew and where, exactly, does the tweet say we need to add 10 more billion people?

@Antanicus it said we could without issue. I don't think the poster understands the extreme poverty most of the world lives in.

@mewmew I don't think you understand what is causing that extreme poverty in the first place

@Antanicus it's more complicated than just being capitalism... a different economic model is no silver bullet

@Antanicus It's worth elaborating that the overwhelming majority of arable land on earth isn't even used to grow human food directly. Instead, it's used to grow animal feed, i.e. to produce meat, which is an *incredibly* inefficient way to utilize that land.

Even if we only used parts of all that land to produce human food directly, distribute it fairly, and re-naturalize the rest, we could still easily increase global food production by multiple 100%s with much less overall harm to the planet.

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