Sept. 23, 2009: Reality check is needed regarding letter

in

To The Editor:
In last week’s Mailbag Mark Zilberman, LCSW took me to task for what he perceived as my dismissal of the human race as being the culprit in global warming. A careful reading would show that the opposite is true.
The problem of reading statements from another person is that we tend to view them in our own personal frame of reference. I did not “distance current human behavior” as charged, but on the contrary indicted them as the main source of our problem.
Someone once remarked that nobody ever woke up in 476 A.D. (the date historians define as the fall of the Roman Empire) and said, “Gosh, I’m in the Dark Ages.” The point is plain enough, transitions happen gradually, and the people who live through them, hardy ever realize what is unfolding.  Reality is a hard bone and it’s better to dream about things which are not real as one does have complete control over his wishful thinking. Thus we can rest easily in our delusions.. .
To solve one problem we are causing another. Nature does not supply the resources to sustain America’s lifestyle across the globe. Worse still, maintaining our relatively wealthy, comfortable and unsustainable lifestyles is now dependent on maintaining this imbalance. The world simply does not have the resources, renewable or otherwise, to sustain our lifestyles for the world’s masses. Most of today’s problems are the fact that the available resources in terms of food, water, urban space, arable land, oil, forests and jobs are inadequate to the needs of a growing populations. Every day another of 15,000 acres of rainforest is destroyed and another 150 metric tons of CO2 is released into the atmosphere. Turning over cropland from food growth, to plants for making bio fuels, removes farmland from the food chain. We have been unable to halt or reverse the fact of this global pollution, that in its turn contributes to global warming.
Are people capable of extrapolating anymore? Will we be left with only maggot piles of humans coughing in each other’s faces? Are we so silly as to believe that all of this makes no difference, and if it did, a benevolent god will straighten it all out for us? The choice is unconditional. We cannot have a good environment and a rapidly rising population.  The world needs to reduce its numbers to enjoy a equal life style or we are going to be dragged down to third-world levels and to eventual extinction. There are no shortages, just too many people. If we do not comply with nature, Nature will, by default, supply the remedy. These are unpleasant facts but the point raised is that they are facts. We can act on them or not, the option is up to us. This is not a charge of arrogance but rather a plea for a reality check.

Stuart E Buswell,
Margaretville