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April 9, 2014

Jonathan Tobin: Why Did Kerry Lie About Israeli Blame?

Samuel G. Freedman: A resolution 70 years later for a father's unsettling legacy of ashes from Dachau

Jessica Ivins: A resolution 70 years later for a father's unsettling legacy of ashes from Dachau

Kim Giles: Asking for help is not weakness

Kathy Kristof and Barbara Hoch Marcus: 7 Great Growth Israeli Stocks

Matthew Mientka: How Beans, Peas, And Chickpeas Cleanse Bad Cholesterol and Lowers Risk of Heart Disease

Sabrina Bachai: 5 At-Home Treatments For Headaches

The Kosher Gourmet by Daniel Neman Have yourself a matzo ball: The secrets bubby never told you and recipes she could have never imagined

April 8, 2014

Lori Nawyn: At Your Wit's End and Back: Finding Peace

Susan B. Garland and Rachel L. Sheedy: Strategies Married Couples Can Use to Boost Benefits

David Muhlbaum: Smart Tax Deductions Non-Itemizers Can Claim

Jill Weisenberger, M.S., R.D.N., C.D.E : Before You Lose Your Mental Edge

Dana Dovey: Coffee Drinkers Rejoice! Your Cup Of Joe Can Prevent Death From Liver Disease

Chris Weller: Electric 'Thinking Cap' Puts Your Brain Power Into High Gear

The Kosher Gourmet by Marlene Parrish A gift of hazelnuts keeps giving --- for a variety of nutty recipes: Entree, side, soup, dessert

April 4, 2014

Rabbi David Gutterman: The Word for Nothing Means Everything

Charles Krauthammer: Kerry's folly, Chapter 3

Amy Peterson: A life of love: How to build lasting relationships with your children

John Ericson: Older Women: Save Your Heart, Prevent Stroke Don't Drink Diet

John Ericson: Why 50 million Americans will still have spring allergies after taking meds

Cameron Huddleston: Best and Worst Buys of April 2014

Stacy Rapacon: Great Mutual Funds for Young Investors

Sarah Boesveld: Teacher keeps promise to mail thousands of former students letters written by their past selves

The Kosher Gourmet by Sharon Thompson Anyone can make a salad, you say. But can they make a great salad? (SECRETS, TESTED TECHNIQUES + 4 RECIPES, INCLUDING DRESSINGS)

April 2, 2014

Paul Greenberg: Death and joy in the spring

Dan Barry: Should South Carolina Jews be forced to maintain this chimney built by Germans serving the Nazis?

Mayra Bitsko: Save me! An alien took over my child's personality

Frank Clayton: Get happy: 20 scientifically proven happiness activities

Susan Scutti: It's Genetic! Obesity and the 'Carb Breakdown' Gene

Lecia Bushak: Why Hand Sanitizer May Actually Harm Your Health

Stacy Rapacon: Great Funds You Can Own for $500 or Less

Cameron Huddleston: 7 Ways to Save on Home Decor

The Kosher Gourmet by Steve Petusevsky Exploring ingredients as edible-stuffed containers (TWO RECIPES + TIPS & TECHINQUES)

Jewish World Review Feb 14, 2012/ 21 Shevat, 5772

Fretting libs: The population bomb is a bust, but they still don't get it

By Jack Kelly




http://www.JewishWorldReview.com | Economics has been called "the dismal science" in substantial part because the book that British clergyman Thomas Robert Malthus wrote in 1798 was such a buzzkill.

The industrial revolution was in its early stages but already was producing unprecedented wealth. Philosophers William Godwin (1756-1836) and Jean Jacques Rousseau (1712-1778) were wildly optimistic about the future of mankind.

Then Malthus poured cold water on their utopian dreams. Population growth makes endless progress impossible, he argued in "An Essay on the Principle of Population." Food production increases arithmetically, but population increases geometrically, he said. So sooner or later, population growth must end in famine, disease and war.

"An Essay on the Principle of Population" was enormously influential. Even though the real incomes of ordinary Englishmen grew by more than 70 percent between 1760 and 1860, pessimism became prevalent among British intellectuals.

There were two problems with Malthus' theory: Food production doesn't grow arithmetically. Population doesn't grow geometrically.

Malthus couldn't have known that the reaper and other inventions would increase exponentially the amount of food a farmer could produce; or that canning, freezing and refrigeration would preserve food that in his time spoiled. Nor could he have anticipated advances in birth control.

Latter-day Malthusians have no excuse. In 1968, Paul Ehrlich, a butterfly expert at Stanford, published "The Population Bomb." It was filled with apocalyptic predictions: "In the 1970s hundreds of millions of people will starve to death in spite of any crash programs embarked upon now," he wrote.

The president would dissolve Congress after the "food riots of the 1980s," Mr. Ehrlich predicted. In that decade 65 million Americans would die of starvation and disease. By 1999, our population would plummet to just 22.6 million. India and Britain would no longer exist.

He wasn't just wrong; he was tinfoil-helmet wrong. But Mr. Ehrlich's confidence was unshaken. In 1990 he recycled his erroneous arguments in a sequel.

Being so false a prophet did nothing to diminish Mr. Ehrlich's popularity on college campuses or with the liberal elite. Al Gore wrote a gushing foreword to his 1990 book. The MacArthur Foundation gave him a "genius" grant. For liberals, it's the narrative that matters; not the facts.

Liberals freaked out when the world population reached 7 billion in October. The catastrophes predicted by Messrs. Malthus and Ehrlich soon would be upon us if urgent measures weren't taken immediately to slow population growth.

But what the world faces isn't a population bomb. It's a population bust.

Population will grow until about 2050, the United Nations forecasts. But before the end of the century, it may fall by nearly 20 percent.

It takes 2.1 live births per mother to keep a population stable. Here are the total fertility rates in the world's most populous countries: China (1.54); India (2.62); the United States (2.06); Indonesia (2.25) and Brazil (2.18).

The average rate for European women (1.53) is well below replacement. But this birth dearth won't lead to "Eurabia," as some seem to fear, because fertility rates are falling fast among Muslims, too. They remain high only in Yemen and the Palestinian territories.

"Iran is experiencing what may be one of the most dramatic demographic shifts in human history," wrote Martin Walker in the Wilson Quarterly. When the mullahs took over in 1979, the total fertility rate was 6.5. Now, it's 1.7.

Birth rates remain high in about 40 mostly small countries. Only two of the 10 where rates are highest -- Ethiopia (13) and the Congo (19) -- are in the top 20 in population.

In 103 of 222 countries listed in the CIA World Factbook, total fertility rates are below replacement. In 37 more, they barely exceed it. Birth rates are falling in nearly all.

This means that in advanced countries, there won't be enough people working to pay for the pensions and health care of the elderly.

In those countries euphemistically described as "developing," the consequences of population decline will be worse. "The Islamic world will have the same proportion of dependent elderly as the industrial countries -- but one-tenth the productivity," noted David Goldman, who blogs at First Things.

As liberals fret about a phantom problem, they make the real one worse. They really ought to pay more attention to facts.

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JWR contributor Jack Kelly, a former Marine and Green Beret, was a deputy assistant secretary of the Air Force in the Reagan administration.

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