Posted on | June 25, 2015 by Benjamin Dovecar
Humans will be extinct in 100 years says eminent scientist
(PhysOrg.com) — Eminent Australian scientist Professor Frank Fenner, who helped to wipe out smallpox, predicts humans will probably be extinct within 100 years, because of overpopulation, environmental destruction and climate change.
Fenner, who is emeritus professor of microbiology at the Australian National University (ANU) in Canberra, said homo sapiens will not be able to survive the population explosion and “unbridled consumption,” and will become extinct, perhaps within a century, along with many other species. United Nations official figures from last year estimate the human population is 6.8 billion, and is predicted to pass seven billion next year.
Fenner told The Australian he tries not to express his pessimism because people are trying to do something, but keep putting it off. He said he believes the situation is irreversible, and it is too late because the effects we have had on Earth since industrialization (a period now known to scientists unofficially as the Anthropocene) rivals any effects of ice ages or comet impacts.
World population growth chart.
Fenner said that climate change is only at its beginning, but is likely to be the cause of our extinction. “We’ll undergo the same fate as the people on Easter Island,” he said. More people means fewer resources, and Fenner predicts “there will be a lot more wars over food.”
Easter Island is famous for its massive stone statues. Polynesian people settled there, in what was then a pristine tropical island, around the middle of the first millennium AD. The population grew slowly at first and then exploded. As the population grew the forests were wiped out and all the tree animals became extinct, both with devastating consequences. After about 1600 the civilization began to collapse, and had virtually disappeared by the mid-19th century. Evolutionary biologist Jared Diamond said the parallels between what happened on Easter Island and what is occurring today on the planet as a whole are “chillingly obvious.”
While many scientists are also pessimistic, others are more optimistic. Among the latter is a colleague of Professor Fenner, retired professor Stephen Boyden, who said he still hopes awareness of the problems will rise and the required revolutionary changes will be made to achieve ecological sustainability. “While there’s a glimmer of hope, it’s worth working to solve the problem. We have the scientific knowledge to do it but we don’t have the political will,” Boyden said.
Fenner, 95, is the author or co-author of 22 books and 290 scientific papers and book chapters. His announcement in 1980 to the World Health Assembly that smallpox had been eradicated is still seen as one of the World Health Organisation’s greatest achievements. He has also been heavily involved in controlling Australia’s feral rabbit population with the myxomatosis virus.
Professor Fenner has had a lifetime interest in the environment, and from 1973 to 1979 was Director of the Centre for Resource and Environmental Studies at ANU. He is currently a visiting fellow at the John Curtin School of Medical Research at the university, and is a patron of Sustainable Population Australia. He has won numerous awards including the ANZAC Peace Prize, the WHO Medal, and the Albert Einstein World Award of Science. He was awarded an MBE (Member of the Order of the British Empire) for his work on control of malaria in New Guinea during the Second World War, in which Fenner served in the Royal Australian Army Medical Corps.
Posted on | May 28, 2015 by Benjamin Dovecar
They asked the father of algebra “what is man?”, to which he replied modestly:
- If man is modest and moral, thus = 1.
- If man is charming, we add to him a zero, thus = 10.
- If man is rich, we add to him another zero, thus = 100.
- If man is of noble blood, we add to him yet another zero, thus = 1000.
If the moral value (number 1) disappears in that person, all that remains are zeros, which are worthless.
Posted on | May 10, 2015 by Benjamin Dovecar
Torment of Tantalus
January 29. 2015
- 8 C
Location: Europe, Slovenia
It’s snowing lightly. A group of children at the bus station are happy because of the snow that has fallen overnight. They are snowballing one another, cheering when a snowball hits one of their schoolmates. Tina hides behind the trunk of an old pear tree. Out of breath, she puts her hands to her mouth to warm them up with her breath. She listens. She hears the melody of her mobile phone. She pulls it out of the pocket and curiously looks at the screen to check out the caller. Her body gets overwhelmed with warmth and a shiny smile appears on her freckled face when she reads the name Peter.
»Hey Tina. Are you already at school?«
»No. What about you?«
»No. I forgot my notebook. I’m running home to get it and then back to school.«
»But will you manage to get back to school on time?«
»Yeah. Sure. No problem.«
»Great. You know, Metka told me that her uncle is going to be performing at her birthday party. You know. The magician.«
»I can’t wait.«
»Me too. So when will you be there?«
»Around five. My mom is gonna take me there. What about you?«
»At five as well.«
»Did you get her a present? I will give her a bracelet. You know, a red-blue one, it’s phosphorescent.«
»Yeah. I already got something. A CD.«
»You’ll see. It’s a surprise.«
»The bus is coming. I gotta go. Bye, I’ll see you. I love you.«
»Bye. Love you too.«
Tina smiles, kisses the mobile phone, grabs her schoolbag and runs over to the bus.
January 29. 2015
+ 40 C
Location: Africa, Congo
It’s stuffy and hot inside the pit. The bulbs throw faint light over the small bodies of sweating children who carry wicker baskets on their heads, filled up with minerals all the way to the top. They quietly walk past the ward, a young man in a military uniform armed with a tommy-gun. No one dares to speak or look at him, for he beat up a child to death yesterday, just because he has smashed the guard’s drink bottle by accident. He crashed his head with the rifle butt and threw his body in the mining cart.
The ones that have already emptied their baskets are returning down the same path. Bent and exhausted, they are moving towards a red blinking light in the distance. There is a hardly audible whisper.
»Do you know what it is we’re carrying in these baskets?«
»Did you see the guards’ and supervisors’ phones?«
»I’ve heard that they contain a particle made of ore we’re digging out here.«
»Really? But why do they need so much ore for such a small part?«
»I have no idea.«
»Oh. Do you think there’s a lot of phones like these in the world?«
»I don’t know. If there’s plenty, then we’ll be toiling in this mine for quite some time.«
»I’m scared I’ll die here. My legs and back hurt. Yesterday I coughed up blood.«
»I stumbled before. My leg hurts.«
»Do you know the name of this ore?«
»It’s called Coltan. Some also call it Tantalum. Watch out and be quiet.«
The pit widens and they get blinded by the blinking red light for a moment. They walk to the crouching boys who fill up the wicker baskets with their bare hands. They swing the baskets up, place them on their heads and start walking toward the carts to fill them with worthless children’s sweat and blood-soaked precious Tantalum ore.
Posted on | February 20, 2015 by Benjamin Dovecar
The Lie We Live
Wealth is not what we create and what we have. It’s what we are, our life and everything alive that surrounds us. Everything that nature creates for us and everything it gives us for free. Everything that enables us to live and survive. It’s the clean air we breathe, the drinking water, the fertile soil and its produce, the fruits we pick from the trees, the insects that pollinate the flowers, the birds that sing to us, the rustling of the forests, the oceans full of life — all this biotic diversity that surrounds us and feeds us. All this is the only wealth and our greatest treasure.
We, too, are part of this treasure. Unique, like every other being on this planet. Each one of us is invaluable. Unicom of the universe. A treasure that cannot be evaluated with money or weigh by gold.
It’s only when we understand this will we say goodbye from today’s world of “having more” and greet the new world of “being more”. The world enriched with humanity, social justice and ecological responsibility. That’s the world I write about. This is the ecohumanist world — the kind of world I want for me, for you, for our children, for mankind. The world where life is the only wealth.
Posted on | September 2, 2014 by Benjamin Dovecar
Vote for your world.
I vote for this world,
And I write about new word – ecohuman world.
Women of Israel and Palestine: Stand up and demand peace in the name of your children. Nobody but you — UNITED — has the power to stop this bloody madness.
Posted on | August 1, 2014 by Benjamin Dovecar
The Bloody Sandbox
The scorching sun shines above the children’s playground at the edge of a neighborhood park. Many boys and girls are chasing each other, laughing and playing with a colorful ball that’s bouncing around as if nothing could ever stop it.
In the shadow of a small pine tree, two four-year olds, Maria and Mohammad, are playing in a sandbox that seems to have been made just for the two of them. After a few tries followed by the girls’ laughter, the boy finally succeeds in building a sand cake strong enough so it wouldn’t crumble. They laugh and clap in amusement, but their voices quickly drown in the sound of the nearby road traffic. A white pigeon coos on the branch above them.
Not far from there, Maria’s mother, who’s sitting on a nearby bench, looks out from behind the newspaper and smiles as she notices how the little girl leans over to the boy and gives him a kiss on the cheek. She feels happy and tears form around the rim of her eyes. A few steps closer, Mohammad’s mother stops knitting for a moment. She presses the unfinished sweater onto her chest as she watches the two kids playing.
Mohammad offers Maria the blue cup he used for making the sand cake. As she begins to fill it up, Mohammad helps her because he’s already an expert in making things out of sand. They hold the cup together and then quickly turn it around. When the boy moves his hands away, Maria lifts it up. Surprise! A beautifully shaped sand cake appears in front of them.
Maria’s brown eyes flash in excitement. But then, moments later, she bursts into tears as the cake suddenly collapses and falls apart into pieces.
Mohammed’s mother, still watching what’s happening, rushes over to the kids, hugs Maria and begins to comfort her.
“Don’t cry, little girl. You’re going to build a new sand cake with Mohammad!” She caresses her shiny blond hair and looks at her mother who just came over and kneeled down next to them. Mohammad starts crying, too, but Maria’s mother wraps her arms around him, trying to cheer him up.
“Your mom is right, now we’re going to build a lot of cakes together — the whole sandbox of cakes, aren’t we?” The two mothers look at each other and smile.
The white pigeon observes curiously what’s happening underneath. Suddenly, he lifts his head up and looks into the cloudless summer sky.
Four hours have passed since then. A TV crew gathers in front of a huge hole in the ground that’s surrounded by a crowd of enraged people. There’s heavy damage on the nearby houses.
The camera rolls. Holding a bent piece of a blue cup in his hands, the reporter begins: “This afternoon a missile hit this part of town. According to local reports, 23 people have been killed, mostly children and theirs mothers. Once again the victims were those who were the least guilty for the insanity that’s going on.”
He lifts up the cup. “Unfortunately we’ll never know if this boy or girl could ever build their first sand cake.”
The reporter bends down, picks up a white blood-splattered feather and moves it closer to the camera.
“All that’s left is this white feather, a destroyed symbol of peace. It’s a disgrace for everyone to whom violence and wars mean more than the lives of their children, mothers, wives and our common future.”
The violent shouting in the background gets louder.
“REVENGE! GIVE US WEAPONS, WAR, WAR!”
The cameraman shuts off the camera. “I’m getting sick of this. Where the hell are we? Planet of psychos and idiots? How much longer are we gonna look at this?”
“For as long as we let it,” mumbles the reporter, looking at the crowd. “For as long as the majority who want peace allow to be led by the few of those who feed themselves by violence and hatred so they can rule.”
“KILL THE ENEMY, KILL THE ENEMY!”
Posted on | June 30, 2014 by Benjamin Dovecar
Posted on | June 14, 2014 by Benjamin Dovecar
8 acts of kindness to animals that will restore your faith in humanity
and one of millions cruel reality’s.
Posted on | April 29, 2014 by Benjamin Dovecar
I was really surprised at the outcome of my traffic count on this only 7.2 km long way from my home to my work place. I counted an incredible 682 cars, 8 half-empty or completely empty buses, 12 trucks, 3 motorcyclists and just 3 bicyclists and 2 pedestrians.
That’s what the structure of traffic (including pedestrians and drivers) should look like on this part of the road — or in the world for that matter — if we truly want to do something about what we always talk about yet take too little action: saving energy and fossil resources, clean the air, lessen the consequences of climate change and especially improving our health. It’s imperative that we step from words to personal actions. Immediately. All of us.
Posted on | April 19, 2014 by Benjamin Dovecarkeep looking »