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03rd March 2017
When I was a boy, my folks told stories I thought were passed down to them through the generations about the America their people heard about in the 1700’s before they sailed west from Europe to the new world. It was an America with rivers so rich with fish that you could walk across the water on the backs of fish. They were just that densely packed. You could shoot game for dinner from the front door of your log cabin. The soil was so fertile you needed to jump aside once you planted a seed– or else– the new stalk springing up –would knock you down. These were the stories in the 1700’s that floated back to Europe and caused people to sail west over a strange ocean to a stranger world. Jesus literally called them to cross the waters.
My folks–or their folks– may have read the stories in books. You may have read these stories too. I know I did as well.
However the stories came down, the point was the same. America was a place of unlimited abundant natural resources where –with a bit of pluck –even the meanest soul could prosper.
And so America remained: a world unlimited natural resources even past the end of the frontier in the 1890’s. It was held that way by the exponential improvement of technology to extract resources. In 1830, a canal was installed beside the Juniata River in Central Pennsylvania to connect Pittsburg and Philadelphia. The canal was not far from my Great Great Great Grandfather’s house. Canals are roughly a 4000 year old technology. The earliest examples have been found in Mesopotamia or current Iraq. In 1849, a railroad was installed not far away. It instantly obsoleted the canal and made local farmers quite prosperous. My great grandfather contributed to the construction of a local Presbyterian church in Port Royal in 1880. His name remains in the stained glass. But after 1920, the railroads in conjunction with the new tractors run by internal combustion engines brought a flood of grain to markets from the Midwest that collapsed the price of grain. Most of my father’s generation were driven off the eastern farms. For decades you could see old dead barns beside the highways along the eastern seaboard. They were all torn down and sold in the 1990’s because their (antique) oak and chestnut fetched 3-5 times the price of new lumber.
Meanwhile the big Midwestern farms have continued their improvements in output. In the 1940’s they introduced nitrogen and phosphorous. In the 1960’s they introduced pesticides & herbicides. In the 1990 they introduced better hybrids and in the 2000’s agriculture went high tech and introduced genetic engineering. NAFTA in 1990’s exposed Mexican farmers to the Midwestern farms. Like my father’s generation of eastern farmers the Mexican farmers were wiped out. These farmers came north.
As early as 1798, Malthus argued that while technology improved arithmetically (or linearly) population increased exponentially (or geometrically). Here’s how Wikipedia puts it:
Malthus came to prominence for his 1798, essay on population growth. In it, he argued that population multiplies geometrically and food arithmetically; therefore, whenever the food supply increases, population will rapidly grow to eliminate the abundance. Between 1798 and 1826 he published six editions of An Essay on the Principle of Population, updating each edition to incorporate new material, to address criticism, and to convey changes in his own perspectives on the subject. He wrote the original text in reaction to the optimism of his father and his father’s associates (notably Rousseau) regarding the future improvement of society.
Malthus was proved wrong because successive waves of technology in the 19th and 20th century kept that world of unlimited natural resources alive. Why? Because even as populations exploded exponentially–technology improved exponentially– not linearly as Malthus argued.
That world of actual and perceived abundance in America continued even into the 1960’s.
My dad was stationed in the Presidio, San Francisco and Fort Ord, California in the early 60’s. Those areas were so cheap the middle class could live there. Not just houses but gas was cheap.
The future was even brighter and just around the corner. We were told that nuclear power would make energy too cheap to meter. Large scale space travel was a mere decade or two away. Cheap energy and desalinated water would open up all the world’s deserts to agriculture –starting with the deserts of southern California. Somehow everyone who was a kid from that period remembers the TV show called the Jetsons. That was the future. And it wasn’t that far away.
None of that promised future happened. It was all swept aside in the 1970’s. Nuclear energy development & water desalination research stopped. The era of dam building ended. Space exploration was scaled back. Gas prices exploded in 1973 (because of OPEC). Nuclear power prices exploded (because of Three Mile Island). Most of the international nuclear and desalination business went overseas. The Oroville dam in California that’s currently under stress was built in the 60’s. Like most of the rest of California’s water Infrastructure–no further money was provided for its maintenance. That type of dam only has a shelf life of 50 years.
Because pushing for ever lower energy and water costs is basic to civilizations health–and foundational to the industrial success of the USA in the 19th and 20th centuries –something really basic to American civilization… broke. (The anvil for was the immigration act of 1965 and roe v wade in 1971. The hammer was the Viet Nam war)
After 1970, or so space travel went from a decade or two in the future –or the near future– to a century or two in the future –or the far future–or past. The first Star Trek that came out in 1969, took place from 2250-2295. The first star wars came out in 1977, was supposed to have taken place “A long time ago, in a galaxy far, far away”.
Secular visions of near future did something radically different to the American experience. They turned profoundly dystopian. 2001 Space Odyssey released in 1968– began in ancient times with starving apes in the desert confronted by an alien obelisk and ended 30 years in the future with a computer gone mad in space and humans turned infantile–in the face of the same alien obelisk. The Mad Max series all took place in a desert with little to no water. As late as 2014, the movie Interstellar begins with the premise of worldwide famine so terrible that the only hope for mankind is another world somewhere in the galaxy.
This time last year I flew down to Port Canaveral for a cruise to the Western Caribbean. Across the bay is Cape Canaveral. A few days before we set sail. Elon Musk’s SpaceX took off and landed on a barge in the Atlantic. That was something that no aerospace company had been able to do in 50 years. Musk’s feat promises to slash the cost of space travel dramatically–because most of the cost of going into space consists of the cost of getting the first 200 miles off the planet’s surface. It made me dream that maybe –if I could stay healthy — in 20 years the cost of low earth orbit space flight might come down to where the middle class could afford it. I remembered the Jetsons.
From Port Canaveral we sailed across the Caribbean to Cancun. I took a tour of an old Mayan city called Tulum. Tulum had its astronomers too. This city was a walled enclosure with an entrance so tiny that we were forced to walk through single file. Inside were two square towers aligned east-west. Each tower had a square hole in the middle that sunlight would come through perfectly at summer and winter solstice. This marked the time for planting. The Central Americans are so deeply attached to the rising sun that their graves to this day all face due east.
The ability to reveal the summer and winter solstice gave the priest class and aristocracy of the old Mayas so much power — they were supported in everything by the farmers outside the walls.
Sometimes things did not go well. The rains didn’t come for a season or two.
In such instances the aristocracy of Maya thought it an honor to give themselves up for sacrifice. Their hearts were cut out and offered to their gods to bring back the rains. The rains returned.
The system went on for about 600 years from about 200 AD to 800 AD.
Then something happened.
About 800 AD the climate changed. This is the beginning of what has come to be known as the Medieval Warming Period. It went on for about 500 years from 800-1300. In the north the weather got warmer.
The Viking population exploded. They outstripped the ability of their lands to produce food for themselves. So they sailed south to raid, and to establish new colonies in England Ireland France and Russia. They sent outposts to Iceland and what was then Greenland. Their most adventurous explorers even traced the outlines of North America.
The same warming did some very interesting things in North America. It caused the rains to diminish so that the flooding stopped in the most fertile flood plains of the Mississippi River basin in south western
Illinois. Indians–likely ancestors of Choctaw-Chickasaw judging by their origin stories– came down from the high plains and started farming corn on the floodplains and developed the biggest earth pyramids in North America at place known as Cahokia.
On my trip to the Yucatan last year I learned that the rains also stopped in Central America. There the rain stopped in 800 AD. Naturally the nobility and priest classes offered themselves up for sacrifice. But the rains didn’t return as usual. So they kept on sacrificing themselves.
As the decades wore on and the rains still didn’t fall–sections of the leadership of Mayan cities all over Central America were sacrificed–including their children. They were so weakened that in 880 AD– the Toltec’s from Central Mexico invaded the Yucatan.
They had a different sacrificial procedure.
They would raid neighboring cities in order to take prisoners from the warriors and elites and sacrifice them. (The Aztecs learned their sacrificial practices from the Toltec’s.) The Toltec practice spread all over the Mayan cities of Central America.
In an orgy of wars over the next century the Mayans succeeded in killing off all the people in their cities. Leaving only farmers outside the walls to dig out a living.
Still the rains didn’t come. Mel Gibson’s movie Apocolypto gives a good visual of that time–except that Gibson shows a Spanish ship in the end his movie. The problem was that the Spanish arrived in Central America about 1519 or 500 years after the Mayans killed themselves and emptied their cities. 200 years before the Spanish arrived — the medieval warm ended in Europe. The rains returned to central and north America. The jungles grew over the old empty Mayan cities and the Cahokia was flooded out.
Unlike the Mayas in the Yucatan, the Middle East had an immense experience with drought going into prehistory.
The Middle East and North Africa were once a green savanna. About 5000 years ago or 3000 BC the rains stopped. The monsoon rains moved south. Over just 100 years the green savannahs of North Africa turned into the Sahara desert.
Scientists know this because they have taken core samples of the Atlantic floor off North Africa where the winds blow the deserts dust out to sea. They have found its all dust down to a layer about 5000 years ago– or 3000 BC.
Then the sediment lower down becomes full of pollen that normally grows from a savannah. The Sahara desert today is dotted with the bleached bones of hippopotamus, rhino giraffes, gazelles and a dozen other animals normally found further south in well-watered plains.
People of the period drew pictures of these game animals on the walls of caves in what is now the Sahara. From space scientists can see the curved outlines of massive lakes and long rivers all over North Africa.
The famous Sahara desert oasis are like the tips of icebergs–because beneath the Sahara today there are giant freshwater fossil water aquifers. http://news.mit.edu/2016/saharan-dust-monsoons-1123
Fossil water means the water was deposited 1000’s of years ago. Up until 40 years ago these same fossil aquifers underlay Saudi Arabia. But then the Saudis pumped the fossil water out to grow wheat in the desert. Over a period of 20 years they became the world’s fifth largest wheat producer. Then their wells ran dry. The water ran out. They don’t grow wheat anymore.
These droughts in the Middle East were not just a one-time event. They were a repeating problem.
Drought was one (of several) reasons for the collapse of the late bronze age. Between c. 1200 and 1150 BC drought helped destroy dozens of kingdoms in Greece Asia Minor Israel/Syria and Egypt.
A thousand years before the collapse of the late Bronze Age kingdoms mentioned above– drought also destroyed the early kingdoms of the 3rd millennium BC. Archeologists have learned to read the writing of the empires of the third millennium BC (2000-3000 BC)–& correlated those with earth core samples from the period and found that the Akkadians of Mesopotamia and the Old Kingdom of Egypt collapsed because of drought about 2150 BC.
Here is a list of civilization destroyed by drought. http://www.marionbrady.com/worldhist/DroughtCivilizCollapse.pdf
The bible picks up this narrative in the drought that starved Israel –but because of Joseph’s planning– not Egypt– in the time of Jacob and Joseph–or about +-1600 BC. By this time recurring and extended droughts had been going on for over a 1000 years.
Egypt had the benefit of the Nile which brought fresh water from the well-watered jungles of the far south. Canaan had no such secure water supply. The Canaanites were acutely aware of the limits of their resources. The land–and technology– could only support so many people. Because they were polytheists –meaning they were self-centered–(rather than God centered) they would have seen their choice as Hobbesian. Either cull their own people or be culled by nature. Why do I suggest this? I have read recent archeology pieces that have talked about how child sacrifice was not just a means to appease the gods of the Canaanites but also a primitive form of birth control. Sometimes but not always the children sacrificed were the children birthed by temple prostitutes.
The archaeological evidence comes from the Carthaginians who were a Phoenician colony. The Phoenicians were a Canaanite people. The gods of the Canaanites in Joshua’s time were the same as the gods of the Carthaginians 1200 years later and 2000 miles west in modern day Tunisia. What the archeologist have found in Carthage is a vast graveyard for baby bones all burned on one side. They date the bones to a 200 year period from roughly 400 AD to 200 BC. They have even been able to correlate their death dates to periods of drought. They have found that the death dates of the babies come in clusters centered on periods of drought and famine.
I wanted to be scrupulous about this proof because it puts on a still heavier weight to the faith of Abraham in nature’s God when he stayed his hand with Isaac– even in the face of nature’s coming betrayal. After all, the starving time did come to Abraham’s people in the time of his grandson.
Why is this important?
The foreboding about the future that would have been in the land of limited resources in Canaan in Abraham’s time is also with us today.
It began in the 1970’s when a radical shift in American culture occurred and caused secular Sci Fi movies to turn dystopian about fate of the world in the near future. The US went from a world (and world view) of population growth in the context of unlimited natural resources –that had been in effect since the discovery of the new world–to a world after 1970 — of population control in the context of limited resources.
Not coincidentally the US has shifted in subsequent decades from a Judeo Christian world view to what can best be characterized as a Canaanite world view. This cultural change has coincided in the west with a crumbling in the face of Islam.
What is the connection between a Canaanite world view and weakness in the face of Islam?
As it happens –it’s worth noting one of Winston Churchill’s famous quotes. Back in 1899– after his participation in a war in the Sudan, he said.
Individual Moslems may show splendid qualities. Thousands become the brave and loyal soldiers of the Queen: all know how to die: but the influence of the religion paralyzes the social development of those who follow it. No stronger retrograde force exists in the world. Far from being moribund, Mohammedanism is a militant and proselytizing faith. It has already spread throughout Central Africa, raising fearless warriors at every step; and were it not that Christianity is sheltered in the strong arms of science—the science against which it had vainly struggled—the civilization of modern Europe might fall, as fell the civilization of ancient Rome.
Islam being monotheistic is inherently stronger than pagan religions–whether those pagan religions are practiced officially in Africa or unofficially in Europe and America.
Ok so there is the weakness in the face of Islam. But what caused the secular cultural shift in the 1970’s, from a Christian world view to the Canaanite world view–in the first place.
The short answer is western civilization having shifted its faith from Christianity to Science (as mentioned by Churchill) — western civilization in the 1970’s lost faith in science to deliver the future–(because of some pseudo-science–as I’ll show).
As a result–there was a civilization wide failure of nerve.
But Unlike the Mayans or the Canaanites there were not famines in the west.
Rather resources became more expensive.
In the 1970’s gas prices exploded (because of OPEC). Nuclear power prices exploded (because of Three Mile Island). That was about it. These things caused loss of wealth and opportunity but not starvation.
So why this great fear of famine.
Something else must have been at work.
The fear of famine didn’t come from the US or Europe. Rather it came from India or Mexico or other parts of what was then known as the 3rd world.
The change in culture did not come so much because of extreme events like drought or famine–or objective events.
Rather they came about because of a change in world view. The USA and Europe internalized the fear and envy of what was then called the 3rd world. How does that happen? Atheists have no protection from envy. What the 1960’s, is famous for is the excellence of western/American science and technology and the passions of nonwestern peoples. America put a man on the moon and the European empires collapsed and American cities burned.
There were two books of the period that rocked the academic world. The first was Paul Ehrlich’s 1968 book The Population Bomb and the second was the Club of Rome 1972 book called The Limits Of Growth
According to Wikipedia:
The Population Bomb is a best-selling book written by Stanford University Professor Paul R. Ehrlich and his wife, Anne Ehrlich (who was uncredited), in 1968. It warned of the mass starvation of humans in the 1970s and 1980s due to overpopulation, as well as other major societal upheavals, and advocated immediate action to limit population growth. Fears of a “population explosion” were widespread in the 1950s and 1960s, but the book and its author brought the idea to an even wider audience. The book has been criticized since its publishing for its alarmist tone, and in recent decades for its inaccurate predictions. The Ehrlichs stand by the basic ideas in the book, stating in 2009 that “perhaps the most serious flaw in The Bomb was that it was much too optimistic about the future” and believe that it achieved their goals because “it alerted people to the importance of environmental issues and brought human numbers into the debate on the human future.”
This picture of population growth is again presented by a conservative Roy Beck in 2015.
–and a liberal Hans Rosling in 2010
They both show a steadily declining percentage of western peoples to the rest of the world.
In 1971 the Supreme Court passed Roe V Wade.
As to the second book … The Limits of Growth that came out in 1972–according to Wikipedia:
The original version presented a model based on five variables: world population, industrialization, pollution, food production and resources depletion. These variables are considered to grow exponentially, while the ability of technology to increase resources availability is only linear. Two of the scenarios saw “overshoot and collapse” of the global system by the mid to latter part of the 21st century, while a third scenario resulted in a “stabilized world.”
The third possibility where there was a “stabilized world” involved population control.
The Limits Of Growth made the same point that Malthus did in 1798. Population grows exponentially while technology grows linearly. While Malthus was ignored in 1798–the Limits of Growth became gospel for secular society.
So why was Malthus ignored and the Club Of Rome’s Limits of Growth turned into gospel?
Because the underlying Christian faith of western civilization had rotted out. (The modern reason for the rot in the public culture of the USA has to do with the work of the Frankfurt School in American Universities. The ultimate reason for the rot in the USA and Europe is because of a mistake that Calvin made.)
Into the void rushed the emotion and imaginations of other cultures.
The Limits of Growth –like computer simulations of weather hundreds of years in the future — was a projection. A bit of imaginative math– a kind of pseudoscience.
As CS Lewis put it — as the basis for action “the battle is between faith and reason on one side and emotion and imagination on the other”. Emotion and imagination won out in the 1970’s.
To understand this consider that reason and faith would have dictated that the people best equipped to deal with exponential population growth by exponentially increasing technological improvements would be most likely to keep up high birth rates whereas the people least equipped to exponentially improve technology would be most likely to reduce their birthrates. Instead it has been just the opposite. The west along with every other technologically advanced country now in the world have been no wiser than the Mayans.
What does emotion and imagination do?
The problem stated by the Population Bomb and the Limits Of Growth had its best expression in the terrifying story of Easter Island. A friend of mine was there recently. This is the sort of image that the liberals have imagined around the child bed of their followers. This is a true story but a false analogy.
In 1200 AD Polynesians sailing east across the pacific from Australian waters landed on the south Pacific island we call Easter Island. It was a lush island covered with palm trees.
Over the next 300 years the population grew to about 14000. The settlers cut down the trees to clear lands, make boats and provide rolling logs to move the idols of their ancestors into place. The problem was that they brought rats with them. The rats ate palm seeds so no new palm trees grew. Eventually they stripped the island of all its trees so they could not build boats to get off the island.
They were marooned. Rain stripped the soil. They couldn’t fish.
The island could not support the population. Cannibalism set in. They killed and ate each other for two centuries before the first Europeans arrived in the early 1700’s. By that time the Easter Island population had declined to under 2000. The people sheltered in caves to defend themselves from each other. The idols to their ancestors had been tipped over and lay face down.
This is the image of the fate of earth that the Limits of Growth and the Population Bomb painted. A planet marooned in space destined to overpopulate and strip itself of resources.
In the end people will resort to cannibalism. There will be a population crash. This happens all the time in nature in predator prey relationships.
Why not with people? Certainly it has happened in the past as with Easter Island.
Even Google’s deep mind has found that when it sets two computer factions against each other for limited resources –they will resort to increasingly violent (computer) behavior.
To prevent this– the logical thing to do according to liberals is to limit population growth and move to development that can be sustained via green energy sources that are renewable over many millennium.
The dangers foreseen by the Limits of Growth and the Population Bomb have not been wrong.
While starvation has not affected the west–Extended drought has not gone away. Up until recently–the desert southwest and California have both been hit by drought since about the year 2000.
Both California and the southwest have been saved by the foresight of the generations of people that lived there from 1900-1970. They built an immense water works system that has not been updated for almost 50 years– even as the population has doubled.
Jerry Brown’s father, Pat Brown, back in the 1960’s– was the last of the governors who planned for the future. The environmentalists after 1970, killed most water works plans.
The same drought that hit the US southwest and California also hit Israel and Syria about the year 2000.
Syria– in the face of drought– rolled over and died. The farmer’s lands all dried up. They were wiped out. They all migrated to Syria’s cities. They then became tinder for the civil war there and the mass migration to Europe.
Something very different happened in Israel. Israel demonstrated that the Club of Rome’s Limits of Growth was wrong –just as Malthus was before them. Israel demonstrated that technology can increase resource availability not linearly –but rather, exponentially.
I can recall as a boy in the 1960’s being told about the starving Indians in India. (And therefor eat your beets, broccoli or asparagus). The USA and parts of Europe experienced abundance but not much of the rest of the world. The developed world had long lives and small families whereas the underdeveloped world had short lives and large families. Hans Rosling graphs this well in the “greatest graphs ever shown”. It shows that since the 1960’s most of the world has been trending toward longer lives and smaller families. There has been an explosion of wealth around the world including Mexico and India. They are living longer and eat better. To the point that American health and wealth stats today are similar to the rest of the world.
No scenario in the Limits of Growth projected a world in which the technology changes rapidly enough to return the world to say–a pre-1970’s American condition. A world of unlimited natural resources—and therefor a world ripe for unlimited population growth.
I first encountered this possibility on a business trip to San Francisco a couple of years ago. The zeitgeist of the area reminded me of the early 60’s. I recalled as a kid the world seemed like it was on the technological edge beyond which were limitless possibilities. More importantly –there was profound confidence in technology to take us there.
Then in 2014 the Israelis announced that they had become water independent. How to understand this?
In 2006 a group of Israeli desalination plant managers, government officials, and businessmen flew over for a conference in Chrystal city VA with US desalination experts. I attended the conference and peppered the Israelis with numerous recommendations on how best to reduce desalination costs. I reported on that conference in a blog I wrote at the time that was popular with the desalination research community. http://www.rdwaterpower.com/?s=israel&x=0&y=0
In the time since that conference the Israelis have developed a world class water desalination system at the world’s lowest cost. They have achieved a feat of literally biblical proportions. They have freed Israel from drought virtually forever.
Their most recent plants– desalinate their water for about $500@acre foot and send it to their cities. Then they clean the water to brown water standards and send the water to their fields.
There is something more.
By reducing desalination costs to a quarter of current US desalination costs– the Israelis have brought the world within striking distance of a goal I mentioned at RDWaterPower.com 10 years ago.
If water desalination were moved from the business level to the political level. For example, there would, imho, be a political benefit to a joint statement made by the US President and the Prime Minister of Israel to the effect that the two countries planned to work together collapse the cost of water desalination by a factor of 10 in the next 10 years–and thereby make it economically possible to turn the world’s deserts green — and double the size of the habitable planet.
I think that this would have the same effect as Reagan’s Star Wars Speech. That speech changed the future because it changed the bad guy’s expectations about the future.
Former Prime Minister Shimon Peres has been actively pushing for Israel to get involved with nanotechnology as a way to reduce costs for things such as desalination. Senator Domenici of New Mexico has been championing desalination research in the USA. But neither the Kadima Party or the Republican Party leadership currently recognize the profound impact on world affairs that cheap desalinated water would have–and how close that reality is. Someone might want to get leadership up to speed on this.
What would the policy look like today?
The UN has major policy initiatives on both water and CO2. CO2 gets all the headlines. The policy would be to shift the headlines to water.
Specifically, the policy is to kill the cost of American water and energy so desert and even subarctic farming anywhere on earth and mars is profitable–and advance vertical farming. The trump administration has already announced its energy policy is to make America energy independent. Trump also mentioned energy “dominance” last year in his North Dakota speech last year. So what I’m talking about is in line with his already stated vision—because the cost of energy is 30-50% of the cost of water.
Here is one of many specific example of an initiatives that I would advance.
Trump is such a PT Barnum that he could go to the United Nations and with the sound track of 2001 Space Odyssey playing –announce a worldwide contest. A prize of $100 million dollars would be awarded to the first company that could make 10 products profitably from seawater on three continents—excluding salt and water. The first group to desalinate seawater for $400@acre foot on three oceans would get 1 billion dollars and an obelisk on earth and mars deserts with their name on it plus the name of the sponsor who put up the 1 billion dollars prize. When that goal is achieved, then the first group to desalinate seawater for $300@acre foot on three oceans would get 1 billion dollars with their name on it plus the name of the sponsor who put up the 1 billion dollars on the same obelisk on earth and mars deserts. Rinse repeat for $200@acre foot and $100@acre foot. Prize contributors and contestant winners would get obelisks on earth and Mars deserts with their names on them. All the Obelisks would have the cross of Christ on them.
Trump could probably get a couple billionaires to kick in the prize money if they were promised that their names would be on a small obelisk on Mars.
(There is method to setting up contests as they generally produce 10 times more research than just allocating the resource. So a billion dollar prize would generate 10 billion worth of R&D. Also the big prize might entice Elon Musk into the game because he’ll need desalination technology for his Mars program slated to reach mars in 2024)
(But really funding for desalination and energy research could be structured many different ways.)
Another idea is to reclassify nuclear technology to that of a renewable energy so as to make it eligible for already allocated DOD energy related funding.
I have dozens more ideas like this.
The technology to double –even triple the size of habitable earth is only about 10 years off. It’s going to happen anyway. Water desalination cheap enough for desert farming is going to happen anyway.
What’s more, there is an agricultural revolution being born today called vertical farming.
This technology uses water so efficiently that even today’s expensive desalinated water is profitable for farming.
Vertical farming is as profound as the Neolithic revolution that started farming in the first place 10,000 years ago. Vertical farming reduces the chances of world starvation to virtually zero for… hundreds of years even when the population of earth is 10 times the size of today’s population. That’s long enough to provide the time needed to acquire the technology to launch people to the stars.
(As to going to the stars–the chances of earth being marooned are starting to abate. –At his wedding in January my rocket scientist nephew informed that the recently NASA announced eM drive –is, in fact, a warp drive.)
If what I’m talking is going to happen anyway–what’s the point of bringing it to the attention of the Trump administration?
Creating a vision actually organizes and reshapes the world because it changes people’s assumptions about the future and organizes work so as to make that future happen expeditiously. For example the democrat’s green energy vision has collapsed the cost of wind and solar to a fraction of what they were a decade ago.
Further a green earth policy undermines the reason for abortion and the Canaanite world view.
As well, as I mentioned the Trump administration by promulgating this Green Earth vision over on top of the democrats green energy vision–advances the republican agenda while scrambling the democrat party on many levels.
Then of course there is the geopolitical calculations I mentioned before. North Africa and Mexico –instead of being conduits for refugees – become buffer states. China’s habitable size nearly doubles.
The real question is one of who gets the credit for returning the world to a state of unlimited natural resources and thereby killing the raison d’être for limiting birth rate because of limited resources–this the Canaanite world view … that the west has lived under since the 1970’s.
Leftist blogs are already talking about how technology’s exponential growth may keep up with population growth. But they do not have a grand vision as yet. A grand vision would look like a Green Earth policy for the republicans where the goal would be to create and implement the technology to double or triple the size of habitable earth.
This policy is much more expansionist and offensive than the liberal’s defensive Green Energy policy. I don’t think we would be met with unwilling administration ears on this.
Peter Thiel, Trump’s Liaison to Silicon Valley — made a speech at the republican convention last year in which he described the whole of America of the early 60’s in similar terms as I did of just the San Francisco California when I was a boy. Thiel said:
Where I work in Silicon Valley, it’s hard to see where America has gone wrong. My industry has made a lot of progress in computers and in software, and, of course, it’s made a lot of money. But Silicon Valley is a small place. Drive out to Sacramento, or even just across the bridge to Oakland, and you won’t see the same prosperity. That’s just how small it is.
Back when my parents came to America looking for that dream, they found it right here in Cleveland. They brought me here as a one-year-old and this is where I became an American. Opportunity was everywhere. My dad studied engineering at Case Western Reserve University, just down the road from where we are now. Because in 1968, the world’s high tech capital wasn’t just one city: all of America was high tech.
It’s hard to remember this, but our government was once high tech, too. When I moved to Cleveland, defense research was laying the foundations for the internet. The Apollo program was just about to put a man on the moon–and it was Neil Armstrong, from right here in Ohio. The future felt limitless.
Finally Trump himself in his inauguration speech said:
Finally, we must think big and dream even bigger. In America, we understand that a nation is only living as long as it is striving.
We stand at the birth of a new millennium ready to unlock the histories of space, to free the earth from the miseries of disease and to harness the energies, industries, and technologies of tomorrow. http://abcnews.go.com/Politics/full-text-president-donald-trumps-inauguration-speech/story?id=44915821
But there is more. A grand vision to turn the earth green would provide the opportunity to take credit for the Judeo/Christian tradition and more specifically Christ. Getting the Judeo/Christian tradition and Christ credit for restoring hope to the world–rather than just technology–will provide faith and strength to the world when the current technological wave weakens and slows–as it will in time–(but no time soon)
We’re talking about putting Christ on an Obelisk on Earth and Mars for starters. A small Obelisk might be something Musk would carry with him to Mars in 2024. Trump could set the deadline for developing the energy and desalination technology to coincide with the SpaceX manned Mars mission.
(There is also prudent reasoning here as well. What was it that Armstrong said when he put his first foot on the moon? “One small step for man. One giant step for Mankind.” American imagination and courage failed within years of this exploit. What they called “future shock” set in. In order to avoid that –the burden and credit for great exploits needs to placed on Jesus.)
Nor do I think that we would be met with unwilling ears in the Trump administration which is already moving to scale back federal support for abortion. The new CIA director is not Moslem. He is Christian.
Mike Pompeo. an evangelical Christian, has been quoted as saying “Jesus Christ Is the Only Solution for Our World”.
I did this 7 minute video last year to inspire entrepreneurs and to create a new earth based on the new Green Earth Policy. Without going into details on technology or theology–it shows how the vision works. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FRYPRsXbYbgn
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