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Old 01-09-2006, 07:23 PM   #16
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I didn't quite get the horror over the lower birthrates. There are plenty of people in this world, and more and more ability to move to other locations. When I die, someone will take my place. I don't really care if that person looks like me or not.
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Old 01-09-2006, 07:23 PM   #17
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As opposed to having 1.2 children per couple? Just see how well a society fares with a few generations of that.

The ideal birth rate is just above 2.0 (accounting for mortality) with a relatively equal division of sexes. The USA has a stable birthrate, most other developed nations do not, they are below replacement levels and a factor in this is probably the abandoning of organised religion.
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Old 01-09-2006, 07:25 PM   #18
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I think it may be a good thing, especially when politicians are starting once again to use the word 'evil' to describe their enemies and justify their wars. And I'm not condemning any wars or politicians here, just the use of the word 'evil' when dealing with a secular issue. Leave the fire and brimstone for the priests and those who choose to believe.
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Old 01-09-2006, 07:28 PM   #19
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Oh, and about birthrates - surely if we keep arguing that the world is overpopulated, lower birthrates are better? In poorer countries they tend to have lots and lots of kiddies so that some will survive. Wealthier people don't have that problem, so I guess a birthrate of 2 or lower is ideal. Either replace the population or let it drop slightly. Don't expand it.

Yes, I know that is very simplistic, but sometimes simplicity works best.
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Old 01-09-2006, 07:28 PM   #20
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Quote:
Originally posted by A_Wanderer
As opposed to having 1.2 children per couple? Just see how well a society fares with a few generations of that.

The ideal birth rate is just above 2.0 (accounting for mortality) with a relatively equal division of sexes. The USA has a stable birthrate, most other developed nations do not, they are below replacement levels and a factor in this is probably the abandoning of organised religion.
Quite frankly I think it would do most societies good to downsize a bit. Too damned many people as it is. Perhaps the reason the birthrate is falling is that it needs to fall.
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Old 01-09-2006, 07:30 PM   #21
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Considering what a Western baby costs this planet in terms of resources, maybe it's inevitable that there will be a reduction.
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Old 01-09-2006, 07:33 PM   #22
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I'm glad that the Catholic Church doesn't have as much political power as it used to in Catholic countries, and I'm a practicing Catholic. It's not constructive for the government of a country telling people they can't use birth control or get divorced.
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Old 01-09-2006, 07:37 PM   #23
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If we aren't having enough kids then the government of the future will be getting less money in tax revenue to support more dependent old people. In Australia we enjoy a significant ammount of subsidised healthcare, maintaining that system in the long term presents some challenges that are by no means unique to our elected leaders, I think that the baby bonus is a smart move.

Global population is going to level out like a logarithmic graph at around 10 billion, the majority of that population is going to be religious. Who knows perhaps the very secular and rational societies that we strive towards will be their own undoing. Athough with gene therapies and aging populations with wealth we could wind up with an eternal population.
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Old 01-09-2006, 07:40 PM   #24
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Quote:
Originally posted by indra


Quite frankly I think it would do most societies good to downsize a bit. Too damned many people as it is. Perhaps the reason the birthrate is falling is that it needs to fall.
But to a point of demographic suicide? It is implausible but by no means impossible that The West as we know it (a broad set of nations with shared liberal democratic values and economic systems) will cease to exist in a century or two. What sort of nations will take their place, what sort of systems?

I am not certain that that would be a good thing, the best we can hope for is that those values and systems are adopted and furthured by the inheritors.
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Old 01-09-2006, 07:40 PM   #25
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Originally posted by deep
for history


it is arrogance to believe that a building can contain god
An interesting interpretation of my statement.

A building cannot hold God.

Cathedrals were built to honor and glorify God - they were places people met to worship God in Spirit and in Truth. It is not about the building, it is about what goes on inside. Sadly, as you point out, the buildings are for tours, not worship.

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America could get much closer to God if that stayed away from printed words on money

and from people using his name for their own vanity

by just following the teachings Jesus of Nazareth

Love and Charity and ministering to the poor
was about all he did
I think you sell the ministry of Jesus far too short. He did not minister to the poor, but to sinners (rich and poor). He was not about simply feeding people bread for today, but offering Himself as the Bread of Life.
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Old 01-09-2006, 07:58 PM   #26
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Quote:
Originally posted by A_Wanderer
If we aren't having enough kids then the government of the future will be getting less money in tax revenue to support more dependent old people. In Australia we enjoy a significant ammount of subsidised healthcare, maintaining that system in the long term presents some challenges that are by no means unique to our elected leaders, I think that the baby bonus is a smart move.

Global population is going to level out like a logarithmic graph at around 10 billion, the majority of that population is going to be religious. Who knows perhaps the very secular and rational societies that we strive towards will be their own undoing. Athough with gene therapies and aging populations with wealth we could wind up with an eternal population.
I partly agree with some of this. Our government is worried at what our population growth is going to do in the coming years especially when you consider their plans (or rumours of) to eventually abolish the aged pension and to make even more cuts to medicare. Our problem is we are living too long and spending nearly a 3rd of our adult life retired instead of working. Not that the aged pension does much to allow people to live moderately, but that's another arguement. Our reliance on immigration to boost our population is not an issue so much when we are breeding enough to help plump it up, but we are not. As for the baby bonus, yes it is a good idea for families or steady couples who are ready for children. But it also attracts those who aren't necessarily ready. And with the (again rumoured) increase to $6,000 by 2008, who knows what that will do to the welfare system. It's apparently definitely going up to $4,000 by next June already. Anyway, guess we'll have to wait and see.
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Old 01-09-2006, 08:02 PM   #27
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Analyses based purely on current population replacement rates are overly simplistic and ignore the positive effects inward immigration can have, provided it is well managed.
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Old 01-09-2006, 08:05 PM   #28
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Australia has had a lot of sucess with immigration over the years. About a quarter of our resident population was born overseas, the highest rate since federation.
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Old 01-09-2006, 08:11 PM   #29
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Quote:
Originally posted by A_Wanderer
But to a point of demographic suicide? It is implausible but by no means impossible that The West as we know it (a broad set of nations with shared liberal democratic values and economic systems) will cease to exist in a century or two. What sort of nations will take their place, what sort of systems?

I am not certain that that would be a good thing, the best we can hope for is that those values and systems are adopted and furthured by the inheritors.
To be blunt I don't much care what happens in a century or two. I think people are too worried about this world not being the same in 100 or 200 years. Of course it's not going to be the same as it is now! It will move and change and develop into something we can now only imagine. And that to me is a good thing -- not something to fear.

I'm sure people 100 - 200 years ago couldn't anticipate the current world, and most probably would have been horrified if they had a view into the future. But I'm very glad it's not the same world they had, and I'm betting the people a century or two from now will feel the same way.

So I don't see that declining population is such a big ass deal.
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Old 01-09-2006, 08:12 PM   #30
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What's inward immigration? Never heard the term before. It's been said if it were left up to us alone, our population would shrink due to our inability to breed with each other so we need our immigrants. And I dont mean we're suckers for blokes with accents, though it does help
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