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September 27, 2011 / 74

Too Many Rats in a Cage

When I started to write this post – my thought was that with the population pushing or exceeding 7 billion people, and the radical increase in global violence and governmental oppression, it could be that the effects of over-crowding are beginning to be seen.

So I thought I’d go out onto the internet and see what others have been writing about the subject.

Wow! Did *I* get a shock. Talk about group think!

So examples:

The Wiki on the original study –

A discussion on the subject – (Look especially at the comments of “Patty Inglish”)

And a nice piece on Societal collapse including the causes of collapse, the difference between collapse and decline, etc. Well worth the time to read. (I printed it out.)

So… MY thoughts?

Disease will take down the population soon – we’re too many rats in close proximity – and I think the “flu” that originated in the Mexico City slums was a disease propagation test – ie if a power such as a government were to engineer a fatal disease, what would the disease’s characteristics have to be (incubation, methodology of transmission, etc), and how long would it take to spread it all over the world. (Direct propagation would not be required.) The Mexico City slums would be a perfect test site – since the people who live there would not be expected to be world travelers – so from even such an isolated spot, how long would it take to go “global”? Or – it might not be a deliberate act – but might simply be a natural event – such as a new mutation of an old disease, or a new disease altogether. By the time we can get a cure – billions are dead.

Another problem modern society is experiencing is Modern Agriculture. The drive to feed the mushrooming population has required the food industry to radically increase the amount of energy required to produce enough food. Modern food production is oil-intensive from the machinery required to plant and harvest and transport the crops, to the chemicals used to increase yield such as the fertilizers and the herbicides and pesticides.

A factor not apparently being considered when learned folks write papers on the subject is if the distribution and energy industry collapsed, or even seriously declined, that it would take three to five years to grow even poor crops on land that had been chemically intensively farmed. Side effects of these oil-production processes include sterilization of the soil – so it requires three to five years to even BEGIN to restore soil health after chemicalization stops. (When we moved onto our little place, we couldn’t grow anything but hearty weeds for two years.)

So even after the collapse, there would be huge numbers of “survivors” who would starve to death because of sterile soil and also because of lack of knowledge of how to grow food. (There’s a LOT more to it than just poking seeds into the ground and waiting for dinner to spring up – ESPECIALLY without chemicals.)

So… I’m finding that what I thought was a simple explanation of our current societal problems and governmental problems – isn’t.. simple that is. But I think – after reading some of this information – that the diagnosis is correct. There ARE too many rats in the cage. And I realize also that unlike in the rat studies, there’s no researcher to save us from the end-game. The results of the situation will play themselves out and there appears to be little or nothing we can do about it.

Even though the black Death was “credited” with killing somewhere around 30% of the population of Europe, and even though the plague itself wasn’t the only thing killing off the people of the time, the overcrowding and disease are only single effects of the Too Many Rats issue. (Famine was also very BIG those days mostly due to climate changes like the Little Ice Age that made it cooler and wetter – and hunger made the people more susceptible to disease…)

The main issue of the Too Many Rats condition is simply over crowding, and the main manifestations of its presence appear to be mental and attitudinal – ie Too Many Rats is a SOCIAL disease – and the ONLY known cure is either reduce the number of rats (which will happen naturally) – or get a bigger cage (space exploration and colonization. )


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