Hudson Valley Skeptics Message Board › Limits
Clinton Corners, NY
We the People, after failing in our first attempt to form a more perfect Union abandoned our Federation and constituted a Republic. The Constitution of that Republic limits citizenship to an elite that I suppose Plato would approve of. A debate occurred concerning the numerical limit of citizens that a Representative should have and in 1792 it was set at 33,000 citizens per Representative. Since the late 1700's the number of people that have become citizens has increased in a wonderful and appropriate way, except in my mind for the thousands of business entities with supernatural personhood. The number of citizens each Representative now answers to is approximately 700,000. Over the years the number of Representatives in the House has increased with the current limit of 435 set in 1911. This has inflated the power of the Representatives and devalued my representation by approximately 21,000%. (I may some day try and figure out if the penny has held up better.) Maybe we should build a new House in Kansas for 9135 Congressional members returning towards the original reasoned representation. Pity the poor lobbyists who would have to invest in new suites of power. Leave the Senate in D.C. Divide and conquer.
But how we are governed is hardly the only limit I perceive I face.
My humanity, but that's for another day.
As I posted regarding limits as a subject for a Meetup, I'll start with a link to a video of Prof Justin Lewis and his economic concerns (under 18 minutes in length). Although I enjoy his initial discussion of the rationality of limiting our knowledge, I suppose the majority of this talk is about the exponential pressure of diminishing returns. He may mention some absolute limits. If I may use a metaphor, I believe he might agree that history shows that there comes a time when cultures experience a change of state from relatively fluid existence to a frozen rigidity or a boiling, gaseous evaporation (fear or anger, flight [from the overpowering] or fight).
Turning also to Paul Ehrlich I found a fairly current video (fall of 2011) that expresses his concerns put forth long ago in The Population Bomb. In the first 7 minutes he is introduced and he discuses his personal history as a foundation and framework. Then he begins his comment which goes to about the 45 minute mark after which he takes questions (which I won't review at this point).
In 2009 he and his wife elaborated on The Population Bomb writing that, "the publisher insisted that a single author be credited, and also asked to change their preferred title: Population, Resources, and Environment.'" . . . "The Ehrlichs regret the choice of title, which they admit was a perfect choice from a marketing perspective, but think that "it led Paul to be miscategorized as solely focused on human numbers, despite our interest in all the factors affecting the human trajectory."
note (minute 36)- Changing consumption patterns in the "little ice age".
note vis-a-vie climate change and agriculture, Jared Diamond mentions that in the temperate zone, winter is the best pesticide.