Wednesday, November 04, 2015

Paul Ehrlich was never right and was responsible for more murders than Hitler...

...but he meant well and the right kind of elites just loved his Big Ideas.

//I’m reminded of this again as embarrassed eulogies are being written for China’s one-child policy, which Beijing finally eased last week after a 35-year experiment in social folly and human cruelty. Instituted in the name of resource conservation, the policy resulted in millions of forced abortions and involuntary sterilizations, a male-female birth imbalance of 118-100, and a looming demographic disaster as Chinese grow old while the working population shrinks.

As government policy goes, the one-child policy was as repressive and illiberal as it gets: the ultimate invasion of privacy; the ultimate assault on the human rights of women and girls. Naturally, liberals loved it.

They loved it, in part, because it had been their idea to begin with. Paul Ehrlich helped get the ball rolling with his 1968 blockbuster “The Population Bomb,” which begins with the words: “The battle to feed all of humanity is over. In the 1970s and 1980s hundreds of millions of people will starve to death in spite of any crash programs embarked upon now.” Mr. Ehrlich, a biologist at Stanford, had no scholarly credentials as a demographer or an economist. But that didn’t keep him from putting a scientific gloss on a personal prejudice.

From “The Population Bomb” there came Zero Population Growth, an NGO co-founded by Mr. Ehrlich. Next there was the United Nations Population Fund, founded in 1969, followed by the neo-Malthusian Club of Rome, whose 1972 report, “The Limits to Growth,” sold 30 million copies. In India in the mid-1970s, the Indira Gandhi regime forcibly sterilized 11 million people. Then-World Bank President Robert McNamara praised her for “intensifying the family planning drive with rare courage and conviction.” An estimated 1,750 people were killed in botched procedures.//

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