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Dumb and Dumber

Updated on November 29, 2014

Overpopulation is in Overdrive

Would you lie on railway tracks like this and wait for a train to hit you? No! of course not but that is what metaphorically is happening around the world as people wait for the overpopulation explosion to hit. And hit it will and very soon.

For all my research into the workings of the human mind the ways of man are too complex, often too ridiculous, and above all too unbelievably stupid to fathom. Since the invention of money and agriculture we have gone down the path of never ending destruction and are headed to an uncomfortable end of all the wonderful things given to us to make our life sustainable.

Perhaps it is the dreams that cross our path and which urge us to press on regardless of consequences. Maybe it's the threats and fears we conjure up and aim at each other like swords to bring opponents down. Then again it could be too that we are so conceited by our so-called successes that man has really done away with all thoughts of nature and of what our great Creator had in mind for us.

Whatever it is the confusion, the conundrum of life versus death, of survival over adversity and of making ourselves into something above all other things is taking us further from reality and landing us into a situation from which we cannot now escape.

something above all other things is taking us further from reality and landing us into a situation from which we cannot now escape.

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Mumbai Slum
Mumbai Slum

The Worst Situation to be In

A BBC Documentary presenter, Kevin McCloud, spent 2 weeks in the slum area in Mumbai, India, from which came a spectacular account of how a million or more people live crammed together in one square mile of space. It is filthy, smelly, and unsanitary and children crap everywhere on the pathways and passages along which people walk.

Kevin stayed with a family whose sole space was a room 12 foot square and where 20 people lived and slept. During the day it was a workshop where the grandfather made shoes, the women made other things and all cooking was done on the floor amidst everything else. The young girl of about 13 went to school but there were other children who did not. During the night rats ran around the people sleeping on the floor. There was only one bed, which belonged to the mother.

As he explored the areas of this 'city' within a city it reminded me of the 'forbidden city' in Beijing where a similar slum existed before development drove those people out. Here too development is looming to drive the tenants out as the land has become extremely valuable. It is adjacent to multi storey apartments and substantial housing owned by the well to do business people and one developer has his eye on it for more apartments.

Where will these people go, what will they do? At the moment they are part of a working community. They recycle Mumbai's waste, manufacture things like ceramics and at least one man is a millionaire who prefers to live here where the workers sustain his business. One of the manufactured items is the pull out handle and wheels which when attached to suitcases is used the world over.

Huge apartment blocks have been built to house people from areas like this in Mumbai but they are vertical slums. The outside of the 5 year old dwellings shown is a complete mess, rubbish is everywhere in the public spaces between them, the buildings are coated in rubbish, graffiti and badly stained from other things. Inside the occupants are at a loss to know how to live in these complexes divided and separated from the world they grew up in. The same story is happening elsewhere as well.

But one thing remains - the enormously out of proportion birth-rate. People do not have facilities like clinics to teach them about family planning, they do not have contraceptives, they do not know about safe sex or other things we take for granted in the west. While western societies are decreasing in size those of the east are doing the opposite. So where are common sense and the sharing of knowledge? Where is the pressure from others to change their ways? What, indeed, is the solution?

Are you aware of these enormous slums? - They are everywhere

Have you ever visited a slum area or seen people so poor they have no home?

A Look Inside Mumbai's Slum - The largest slum in the world

One million people in one square mile

Typical High Rise Slum
Typical High Rise Slum

Population Overdrive

For everyone born there is a cost

Countries like India, China, Mexico and the Philippines all have populations breeding out of control with religious or other forces driving them. China has taken steps in recent years to decrease the number of children born but people flee overseas where countries like Australia will not only allow them to have as many kids as they want but will pay them to do so. How dumb is that?

Religions like Islam and Catholicism encourage more and more children born into families no matter how much they cost or how they can be fed and clothed adequately. Recent studies show that western societies have an average of just 2.3 children per couple whereas Islam has 8.5 or thereabouts. So what is it that's driving this thinking?

Recently a debate on this issue, televised on the ABC pointed, out that Moslems believe that by overbreeding they can take over the world. England now has whole communities of Moslems in cities where it is a short time before they dominate the population. They are already taking office in government departments and gaining seats in parliament wherever they are. The Catholic Church operates on much the same policy except that its followers are in countries where they are educated and most are not willing to go down that track.

That may mean a big shift in our thinking before long but where do we go in the meantime?

The World is Running Out of Space

Its not only space but resources of all types. We will soon not have food enough to feed the populations that are now breeding out of control. The problem is it will hit everyone and wars will develop as people fight for food, water and even fresh air.

How Should We Manage the Future? - Is population restriction the answer?

Is greed and the rush for money the real culprit?

Greed - What is it?

The Sliding Scale of Wealth Versus Poverty

Take from the poor to give to the rich

The richest nations flog the poor ones and take as much as they need to increase their wealth. There is no doubt in my mind that for every rich person there are probably thousands of poverty stricken individuals who are slaving away to make pennies to drop into the hats of the rich guys.

So where is the balance and who is responsible?

When I was young 'profit' was a dirty word. It was simply not allowed. Shops could add a limited amount to the wholesale price of goods to pay their rent, pay wages and restock. But excessive profits were a disgrace. One would hang their head in shame if they were accused of taking excessive amounts of wealth without justification.

That was then and this is now. The paradigm has shifted and now the trick is to get whatever you can for something. There is no upward limit on what something can cost because economics has become a science and the more money one makes the better that person is thought of by those who are being fleeced.

When banks post a profit of several billions of dollars they are only acquiring that wealth one way. They are taking it from those who can least afford it. Sure, they may have investments which return an amount of profit but the real wealth is in the fees and charges they hit their customers with. Houses repossessed because of defaults in mortgage payments, businesses taken over for much the same reason, and shareholders being paid a small percentage of the massive overflow of wealth while the CEO and Board members take home wages of millions of dollars a year.

Meanwhile people are floundering under the weight of being predated upon by service companies, such as those who supply electricity, and other forms of energy. The disease for wealth has spread rapidly into all areas and the big boys at the top make squillions while the ones who work for a living are going backwards. That's the real facts behind the global downturn of this time.

People are out of patience, out of funds and out of their minds with worry while the great lords of industry are tucked away in homes worth millions, drive around in cars worth almost as much and are waited upon by more slaves to their greed. We are in the vicious cycle of wealth versus poverty that has plagued the human race since money was invented. Those without can never catch up to those who have it.

Is Profit a Dirty Word? - Or should we ignore the rich getting richer?

Is greed out of control?

The Downhill Slide

Recently a mine allowed a dam in Rumania to build up to such an extent that it overflowed with thick red highly toxic pollutants which invaded a whole town, killing several people. It flowed downstream into the Danube which is the drinking water source for millions throughout that country and others along its route.

It happened because of greed. Because of stupidiy and because money has made people who are dumb and dumber

The Things That Are Killing Us

Man Invents for more money

Where are the pollution police to stop the world sinking under man's inventions and abuse of nature?

One of the big industries in Mumbai's slum area is recycling plastic. The junk arrives in huge bags and is tipped on the floor in a room overflowing with plastic and other junk. Willing hands then strip off the paper and individual items are sorted and then dissected into small fragments that fall into other huge bins.

From here it is reworked into things like bangles and such. Indian ladies love bangles and the other products are also well liked. But what happens to them afterwards? Of course there is the bag handles mentioned above as well.

Plastic bags are another waste product in every country but they are not recycled and mostly go into waste tips. Children's nappies likewise go into these repositories to stay for up to a thousand years without breaking down. The lens I feature below targets plastic as a source of poison which, along with other things, will eventually lead to worldwide destruction.

Many do not think of the earth as their home but let me ask you. Would you spread junk around your home and leave it to rot on the floor for a thousand years? No! So why do it to the planet on which you live? It's also your home. Say no to plastic - I do.

Plastic Going to Landfill

The Oxygen is declining

Carbon Monoxide is Increasing.

It's a funny thing about gas. It can change its properties and become something else. That's what happens to oxygen in the atmosphere. The same oxygen we need to breathe in order to live is changing. The carbon, you know that black horrible smoke that is being poured into the atmosphere, is combining with the oxygen (you know that stuff we need to breath) to form carbon monoxide (a deadly gas) and carbon dioxide (which is not a deadly gas).

Combined they are causing global warming because they prevent the earth cooling by trapping heat just like a greenhouse does. That's why the climate is changing and is described as global warming.

But for every oxygen atom that is taken up by carbon to form these gasses it means one less for oxygen breathing animals. As billions and billions are lost each day the amount of oxygen available in the atmosphere is declining. But oxygen is also a factor in water, H2O. For every two hydrogen atoms one of oxygen is required. Less oxygen means less water as well.

When the earth was evolving oxygen was a by-product of many species of anaerobic (not oxygen reliant) life forms. As it accumulated in the atmosphere it allowed oxygen dependent life to evolve and for photosynthesis in plants to appear. These include all of the food we eat and now depend on. This happened over millions of years and oxygen is now the most important thing in sustaining life on earth.

The lens listed below tells more of the story.

Still images from Dreamstime - click here

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What Do You Think?

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    • Lady Lorelei profile image

      Lorelei Cohen 

      7 years ago from Canada

      I am back for a return visit. The new updates must have knocked out our likes so I get to like this wonderful article again. Have a great weekend.

    • siobhanryan profile image


      7 years ago

      Thought provoking lens.

    • profile image


      7 years ago

      @Lady Lorelei: I agree 100%. They are important issues that need to be dealt with, instead of the head buried in the sand. The governments don't care.

    • Lady Lorelei profile image

      Lorelei Cohen 

      7 years ago from Canada

      I think that your articles are always so very thought provoking and intelligently written. I get lost in so the words you voice within so very many of your articles. Over population is a major issue as well as pollution, poverty, world hunger, and all the other issues which come along with our increasing population numbers. Thank you once again for an excellent article.

    • howtocurecancer profile image


      8 years ago

      I favorited. I like the way you write it and I think we all can help to preserve the environment, but for overpopulation, I think the education is the most important.

    • MargoPArrowsmith profile image


      8 years ago

      Well done

    • profile image


      8 years ago

      I understand the gravity and seriousness of over-population, but believe me the rich are not responsible for it. The rich are also not responsible for poverty. Poverty and population are serious problems though and have to be tackles with awareness, rules and regulations. People who work hard make money, there are many who weren't born with a silver spoon, they weren't from the rich class. However, poverty is very difficult to eradicate, people who do not even have the basic amenities cannot think in any other terms than food and clothing. Serious thinking and revolutionary methods are required to tackle them. A subject that is brought out so nicely in this lens with the power of words and feelings.

    • ChrisDay LM profile image

      ChrisDay LM 

      8 years ago

      I do believe that only disaster can turn us back from the brink (if it doesn't overwhelm us). We are too greedy and too stupid to take a hint.

    • jvsper63 profile image


      8 years ago

      Very interesting and sad. Really good job writing about such a controversial issue.

    • profile image


      8 years ago

      Birth Certificates were not required in the U.S. until 1933 during the Great Depression. Most people don't know the significance of this. Basically the government ( the money people in power) needed something of value to back the dollar. So some genius came up with the idea that every persons productivity had a certain value but they needed a way to track this hence the Birth Certificate. On the bottom of the Birth Certificates here in the U.S. there is a number that looks like a serial number. If a person knows how, it is possible to look this number up on the Stock Exchange which will tell you what you are worth on the stock market. Nice isn't it? While overpopulation is a problem without question the ones who are going to have to address it are those who suffer from it the most. The question is how does one go about educating people about the ramifications of this problem? Any thinking person would be frightened by the valuable information you have shared here.

    • Kailua-KonaGirl profile image


      8 years ago from New York

      Lady Mermaid is right. there is a lot of controversial food for thought targeted at all visitors to this lens. Being the old woman that I am, I have been thinking, talking and fighting about these issues for so many years it that it wasn't fashionable at the time I got started. Does any one listen? Hell no. Now we are approaching the era that should have been corrected years ago and still few will listen or act on the problems. Yes, greed is a huge factor. Irresponsibility is next in line. Last but not least is ignorance and just being too damn lazy to make a change in ones own life. Norma, you are a lensmaster with whom really knows her stuff when it comes to creating a lens of substance. Thank you for your input. Leaving you with another Squid blessing and an addition to "My Squid Angel Wings" lens. You go girl!

    • lollyj lm profile image

      Laurel Johnson 

      8 years ago from Washington KS

      Exceptional lens. You have put your words where your heart is.

      Your lens addresses many of the topics that make me say "hmmmm."

      Even if all we do is look at our own country -- at the destruction of resources, plants, trees, green spaces -- it's enough to sicken us to death. The question is, can outraged voices in the thousands override the self satisfied smirks of a few very wealthy elite?

    • Lady Lorelei profile image

      Lorelei Cohen 

      8 years ago from Canada

      This lens is definitely brain food. Best wishes.

    • Krafick profile image


      8 years ago

      Very nice lens. Thank you for the good work.

    • profile image


      8 years ago

      nice and interesting lens :)

    • photofk3 profile image


      8 years ago

      Extremely thoughtful and interesting article discussing important issues. I'm an optimist, so I don't see our future so dark, but I have to admit that you are realstic in what you describe.

    • ChrisDay LM profile image

      ChrisDay LM 

      8 years ago

      You are sooo right here - good wake up call but is the alarm clock on 'silent'?

    • profile image


      8 years ago

      You have named many issues here: Slums, Overpopulation, Greed, Finite Resources, Oligarchy, Corruption, Irresponsible Leadership, Pollution, Apathy, and all are worthy of our combined efforts to fix the wrongs and make things right. I believe it is mankind's progression that will fix these things or mankind's near extermination that will be something akin to a Reset Button. Either way, your voice is not alone.


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