Thursday, June 19, 2008

A Maltus Moment....

Poor Thomas Robert Malthus, the 18th century economist that supposedly has been proven wrong over and over again. That populations can grow forever before collapsing. The naysayers at the alter of technology always believe that technology will cure all. I'll grant that technology can slow things down, but Malthus was only taking about mouths to feed, but the ability to consume at a geometric rate of population growth.

Unfortunately, what afflicts us is the exponential growth of desire. We not only have our needs growing faster, but our wants are growing even faster. Bigger homes, bigger cars, bigger stomachs. The oil crisis is a manifestations of all those biggers, not just mores. And that's the joy and torture of being human. Today, listen to your casual conversations either your own, or when eavesdropping. How many of them are about buying things beyond needs? If anyone wants to share their experiment findings, please put them in the comments.

The Malthus moment is not an outstripping of need over availability, it's the explosion of want over need.


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