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Competitiveness and overpopulation: a sleeping, dangerous bomb nobody seems to care about

Updated on September 21, 2012

The real social problem

Today most people worry and think about possible roots for all the social problems we are facing- crime, unstable economy, political corruption, lack of morals and values, selfishness, greed and so forth. While it is certain that these issues are of extreme importance and deserve our attention, there is another big, terrible problem that a very few amount of people are aware of: competitiveness in a planet that is uncontrollably increasing.

Many people view being "competitive" as a good thing. In fact, when you read or hear that someone is "competitive" you will think of that person as intelligent, smart, and with a bright future. The truth is that when we put together "competitiveness" with population growth, the result is very close to pure chaos.

I am going to use some math here to later explain the extreme danger that is coming to our world if we don't do anything to stop the way it operates in terms of jobs and economy, not to mention social issues:

7,000,000,000 billion today in the world

Let's say 65% of them are less than 18 years old

But some countries put their children to work so let's decrease the 65% to 55%

That means that for everybody who can work based on the culture, the world needs a little but more than 3.5 billion jobs. As you can expect, there are not even half of that amount of jobs.

In the United States which is has a capitalistic economy which has become more more complicated as new laws have been passed that require special permits, certificates and otherwise any form of "proof" that you are capable to do the job, the panorama is turning somewhat bleak. Finding a job has become more complicated because not only are there more people competing for these jobs but also those who are already employed have been making it tougher for the unemployed to get the jobs. They have enforced the competitive level of such jobs such that what used to be a job easier to find several years ago, today requires a lot of effort. For example, I once applied for a simple cashier job a gasoline station. The prerequisite was to fill an assessment. For some reason, a person like me who am graduated with a Bachelor's, was unable to pass the assessment. I was as honest as possible. Problem is that no matter what they say about being as honest as possible to fill a job, that honesty works against you. For example, if you answer that you are introvert, if the recruiter definitely wants an extrovert, then forget about the job. You were honest... and you did not land the job. Effectively, it would have been worse if you lie because you introvert nature would have been noticed later and problem could have occurred.

Human overpopulation, aside from creating problems in terms of the increase in competitiveness that will end up with millions unemployed, means that because of the complexity of life today, many of these will end up in a criminal life out of desperation to survive. People who are financially stable do not take the time to think about how many others who are in the brink of collapse live their lives, and rapidly judge them without thinking what actually makes that people turn that way. Some say that "it does not matter", but the reality is that it matters a lot because, if we don't identify the roots, what makes a person turn bad, and what makes that person harm others, we cannot have the right tools to help avoid that to continue happening. Most criminals have a turbulent childhood. We say that no child deserves to live in a dysfunctional environment, but we still have a lot of bullying in the schools, we continue to endorse people to not plan their lives ahead and prepare so they can raise a family properly, and especially those who have financial stability do not care about others being able to improve financially, too. Selfishness is one of the greatest roots for everyday's problems, and one example of such selfishness is the irresponsible breeding of children in a world that has been found does not have the resources to sustain all people, at least they have not been managed to be reached by all people in the world.

As population grows and live a normal life of family and work becomes more and more complex, the real question is do we really want to live a life in the basis of an illusion? It's natural that a man and a woman dream of living a happily ever after life when married and raise their kids and enjoy their family time. Nevertheless, the stress at work, the possibility of constant traveling which means constant absence in the house, the reality of bullying and other forms of social problems at school, the risk of losing the job in an unstable economy and any other event that can happen simply obliterates such a dream. If you are this kind of person that tends to get angry easily, then this type of life is not good for you today. You have to know that today's most jobs require some sort of sacrifice, because of the high competition and the uncontrolled desire for power which makes managers to ask more from the employee, including their time with their family. Today there are many jobs that require people to basically be on-call. That means if you are in a concert with your son and your boss calls you because of an emergency and you are this kind of person who gives priority to your job over your children our of fear of being fired if you don't do what your boss tells you, then perhaps it's time now to think if you want to have such a life, instead of simply skipping having a family since the job is your number one priority. Remember, today there are millions of unemployed people as well as unhappy employed people ready to move to some new job, and many managers do not think it twice to fire someone regardless of the implications it can have over you and your family.

Today this is so common and yet nobody seems to address the problem. We continue to worry over the same things and do not realize that this explained above is a huge and extremely dangerous social problem that is getting out of control. Today it is easier for young people to recur to illegal activities due to not being raised properly. The easier solution is to find a way to have a business of your own, but then again it is not that simple. Generally here you need to be certified by doing the most basics of business. You cannot just pickup some place and begin cooking, you need ingredients and a proper place and you might to invest, the same happens with other kinds of jobs, you need some sort of permit and it is not free. Everything has turned very competitive and difficult, and yet there are more people coming and coming to this mess.

The only solution to this problem is to accept and admit that either we change the way the operates financially, or we decelerate the rate of birth. Competitiveness will turn ugly in a couple of decades if we don't give space for the people to have a normal life, if we decide to continue caring only for ourselves and the rest can screw up we will live in a world where suicide would be the only solution for many people, worse than it is today because the help given is not enough, is not free, and simply does not exist for these people. Crime and suicide are direct consequences of both overpopulation and increasing competitiveness to live a normal life- that is, not being living homeless and without any sort of healthy stability.


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    • ESP1983 profile image

      ESP1983 5 years ago from Tampa, Florida

      But then if there is no solution as help reduce that divergence, then problems arise. See, some companies can really be picky, and/or some universities and colleges be lacking of sufficient lectures that may be needed to do the job. If there is no will to train new employees and companies to instead look on what it is already inside the job market (i.e. the employed), there is no way to stop chaos from being created. And so it looks to me that bringing more people to the mess is not going to be pretty. In 20 years things will get more competitive. Add to it the substitution of human force to mechanical gadgets, computers and animated technology (which I covered in a separate hub). If the employers don't anything, and people keep breeding, there is no way of escaping a scary scenario of big unemployment and therefore crime and social problems. In reality, the sad truth is that nobody is willing to cooperate. From my part, I have decided not to have children on my own. The possibility of adopting may arise later, if I decide it. I will have to do my best to survive but a I am not going to be illusory and live from dreams I'll never see. Some can call that being negative. I call it being realistic. Companies, governments and people in general do not address this problem. Our world is already flooded with unemployed people, some who lost their jobs without any fault, but because companies preferred to rebuild themselves and choose to store more on the managers pockets, some who can have 50 lives without knowing what it is to have a bad credit score.

    • CHRIS57 profile image

      CHRIS57 5 years ago from Northern Germany

      We are talking about market situations. There is a supply (producer) side and a demand (consumer) side. In case of job markets the demand side are the companies, the supply side are the job seekers. But the demanding corporations turn into supply side market participants if they try to sell their products. And sale of products is only possible if there is a demand by consumers. Here we have the perfect circle. If consumers don´t have income to buy products the product market may collapse. Still all beyond my imagination of what that has to do with population growth.

      My company runs a handful of operations and offices in the US. From our perspective hiring people in the US is more difficult than in Europe. The limiting factor is qualification and/or the ability to learn. That in turn can not be attributed to the job seekers, but to the somestimes ridiculous divergence between education (universities, colleges) and job requirements. Sorry to say so.

    • ESP1983 profile image

      ESP1983 5 years ago from Tampa, Florida

      The economy is controlled by a very small sector and people who are in extremely high positions are complicating the path to prosperity for those who are in lower positions. I am not sure how things work in Germany but here in America, resources are very badly distributed. As more people enters the job market, the process of being hired is getting much and much more complicated. Many companies today don't even use people to monitor and select potential employees, they are selected by a machine which automatically rejects those who do not meet certain minimum requirement which are not really that "simple". I once had an interview and just because they required a minimum amount of experince in a specific version of a computer program, they rejected me. Imagine how hard it is to land a job with so strict requisites and add to that the effect of interviewing more people. Companies here are becoming tougher to get employees because in the sake of saving money they are not willing to invest in training. Therefore, there are much more people now than jobs available, at least here. I read that certain parts of Europe are in a much worse situation, like Spain with a % of unemployment in a shocking 25%. As soon as I finish my graduate degree here I am willing to move somewhere else, and not limit myself to the U.S. because even though th job market is difficult all over th globe at least "increasing" my radius of search should help me, and now let's consider in top of what I am saying, companies are much more willing to get people who are already employed. When you consider this, and you realize that realistically there are no symptoms to try to change this, then we have to lower the population growth rate such as unemployment and therefore crime and social problems don't get even scarier.

    • CHRIS57 profile image

      CHRIS57 5 years ago from Northern Germany

      I understand that unemployment is a very serious issue. It certainly has to do with too few jobs offered for too many applicants. Again, where is the link to overpopulation? The closest i can get to correlate population with economic prosperity is by investigating market behaviour dynamics. In most cases high population is good for economy and for progress to concentrate consumers and producers.

      That is definitively the other way around, compared to your thesis. It means that highly populated areas have advantages over low population areas. It is a main driver for forming megacities. How would you explain the concentration of specialized markets in few locations. Why are diamond makers concentrated in few streets of Amsterdam or Antwerp, just to give an example. Why are the diamond makers not spread all over the planet to take more advantage of having less competition?

      What is true for poor/rich diamond makers is true for the job market in general.

    • ESP1983 profile image

      ESP1983 5 years ago from Tampa, Florida

      There is a serious problem on overpopulation, Chris. If you are unemployed you can notice it quickly when you have to compete with an average of 20 to hundreds of other people, if we continue to irresponsibly reproduce in twenty years instead of hundreds we will be talking about thousands, making the job market a real lottery. There are NOT sufficient jobs right now for all the people, if we say there is no overpopulation problem, we are not living the reality of the world. Human growth must decelerate. As more people are unemployed and get desperate to pay bills and not become homeless, they will do things like steal and enter into crime to survive. This is serious.

    • CHRIS57 profile image

      CHRIS57 5 years ago from Northern Germany

      ...and yet nobody seems to address the problem.

      Well, to be frank, there is no such problem. Overpopulation or a more scientific expression population density is of no importance to the problems you mentioned in your hub.

      First of all most countries on this planet are far from being overpopulated. Concentration of population in some large megacities may hold some environmental hazards, but to generalize this to argue about crime rate, unemployment, hardship of life is off topic.

      I think all those problems are much more subject to political achievement, than to biological population growth.

      If education is missing, you only get uneducated, uncompetitive workforce. If political standards concerning gun control are missing, this immediately leeds to high crime rates (just compare the US to peer and more densly populated economies in Japan and Europe).

      I agree with you that life gets more complicated. But not because of too many people living, but because of technological progress, that connects the whole planet on the fast lane, from transport to communication.

      A last one: if you address food for feeding the 7 billion, then of course this may be an issue. But again, has little to do with population. Starvation is highest in the least densely populated countries, not in the countries with highest density ( like Hongkong, Singapour, The Netherlands).


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