he Economist Thinks We’re Wrong

May 21, 2008 • News

The Economist continues to cling to the idea that limitless human ingenuity removes all limits imposed by the ecosystem. While they don’t say it, the implication of this editorial is that endless population growth is not only possible, but desirable. Nevertheless, the editorial does not make a convincing case that human welfare or that of the biosphere would be improved by continued population growth.

The editorial, like the one they did last September, is in need of a response. Post your responses, and see the 63 comments already made, at http://www.economist.com.

Malthus, The False Prophet

AMID an astonishing surge in food prices, which has sparked riots and unrest in many countries and is making even the relatively affluent citizens of America and Europe feel the pinch, faith in the ability of global markets to fill nearly 7 billion bellies is dwindling. Given the fear that a new era of chronic shortages may have begun, it is perhaps understandable that the name of Thomas Malthus is in the air. Yet if his views were indeed now correct, that would defy the experience of the past two centuries.

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