WA Delegate (non-executive): The United Mangrove Archipelago of Ransium (elected )
Last WA Update:
Embassies: Futaba Aoi, Evergreen Conifer, Eladen, A Liberal Haven, Singapore, The Federation of Anarchist Communes, Yggdrasil, Refugia, Hippy Haven, Antarctica, Sunalaya, Democratic Socialist Assembly, The Region That Has No Big Banks, The Leftist Assembly, Sonindia, The North Pacific, and 21 others.the South Pacific, the Rejected Realms, Philosophy 115, International Democratic Union, Osiris, Winterfell, Antarctic Oasis, Texas, Canada, Union of Free Nations, 10000 Islands, Oatland, The Bar on the corner of every region, Haiku, Spiritus, Portugal, Europe, Conch Kingdom, Wintreath, The Union of Democratic States, and Thalassia.
Regional Power: Extremely High
Today's World Census Report
The Safest in Forest
World Census agents tested the sharpness of household objects, the softness of children's play equipment, and the survival rate of people taking late walks to determine how safe each nation is to visit.
As a region, Forest is ranked 8,403rd in the world for Safest.
|1.||The Eco-Republic of Mozworld||Democratic Socialists||“Dream not of today”|
|2.||The Colony of Chilledsville||Authoritarian Democracy||“Smile! It's not that bad!”|
|3.||The Liberal Tropical Emirates of Velkia and the Islands||Left-wing Utopia||“For Freedom!”|
|4.||The Utopian People's Republic of Love and Nature||Liberal Democratic Socialists||“We are part of nature, we are the vessels of love”|
|5.||The CUP-Eladeni Isocracy of Liberal Liberals||Left-wing Utopia||“Can't we all just get along? Eladen Rep”|
|6.||The Theocracy of The Peoples Republic of Kent||Authoritarian Democracy||“Once Sinners, Now Doers”|
|7.||The Holy Green Woods of Ashrah||Scandinavian Liberal Paradise||“Libertas aut mortem”|
|8.||The Allied Planetary Archipelago of Aeterno Tranquillitas||Liberal Democratic Socialists||“Make logical choices, do the right thing, be creative.”|
|9.||The Republic of Nimros||Democratic Socialists||“Nec Temere, Nec Timide”|
|10.||The Confederacy of Kawastyselir||Left-wing Utopia||“In love, all are free”|
Last poll: “Shall we open embassies with Thalassia? ”
- : The Protectorate of Samuel Pepys departed this region for The Bar on the corner of every region.
- : The Protectorate of Samuel Pepys arrived from The South Pacific.
- : The Federation of Premea departed this region for The Great Experiment.
- : The Federation of Premea arrived from Geopolity.
- : Takome ceased to exist.
- : Heraeth ceased to exist.
- : Selch ceased to exist.
- : Hyon weed ceased to exist.
- : Sanctuary ct ceased to exist.
- : Embassy established between Forest and Thalassia.
Forest Regional Message Board
Let me say the most important thing first:
I'm very sorry if you felt attacked in some way by this!!! Let me explain a bit, if I can. I tried to allude to that when I said that "I'm absolutely NEVER, EVER against currently-existing people," but I should have elaborated a bit more, I think. I realize that this is perhaps the single most thorny, fraught issue that we have ever faced as a species, because it's more or less a direct inversion of the self-preservation instinct and seems to negate the inherent good that every human being is. I don't mean to chastise anyone who has children already, in any case, and even if you yourself are the eleventh or twelfth or seventeenth child of your parents, neither should you feel bad for existing. That would be absurd. We can only forward from here.
I also entirely agree with you (and to that end, The Young Ur) for saying that this region should not be an echo chamber. I would like to think that we are not that. I might offer that my being able to say such things as "there are too many people on Earth right now, and we're heading in the wrong direction" in fact shows that we are a robustly open and tolerant region, because in my Real World life, I keep this opinion so close to my chest that the only ones who've heard it are my family and one or two close friends, and not even all of them agree with me. I once joked in a college paper that this one opinion of mine would unite practically the entire human race against me: liberals, conservatives, Christians, Muslims, Hindus, the Vatican, capitalists, socialists, communists, anarchists, the young, the elderly, the rich, the poor, etc. etc. So in a way, just the fact that I can say my own piece and not be entirely chewed out and slammed as some kind of misanthropic abomination is a testament to the openness and ability of Forest to host diverse opinions. Having said that, I also realize that this one thing is legitimately just about the toughest pill of all to swallow for nearly everyone, in no small part because we are culturally conditioned (from whatever culture any reader of this comes from, I practically guarantee) to think of kids as good (which is true), to think of people as good (again, true), and to think that therefore "more people" is also good and the corollary, that "fewer people" is bad (which has also been true for nearly the entirety of human history, but not right now).
While this sounds good on the surface, and I would love it to be the case, I can't get myself to that point. In a nutshell (maybe a coconut, since my explanations are hardly ever peanut-sized), I would point to the current distribution of resource consumption in the world today.
Roughly speaking, the richest 20% of the world's population (i.e. virtually everyone in N. America, Europe, Australia, parts of E. Asia, and so forth) consume roughly 80% of the resources and energy consumed by the species as a whole. It's massively unequal. Now, the current total use of resources and energy is already beyond what the Earth can sustain, and we are rapidly and in an accelerating way using up much of what the planet can give, so we are already, in our current configuration, beyond the Rubicon, so to speak. Without touching the number of people, if we were to simply rely on redistribution of resources and energy to achieve perfect equality across the human race, that would amount to siphoning off the majority of resources and energy used per capita from the top 20% and to the lower 80%. Everyone would have a resource and energy budget much closer to the current state of the 80% than the 20%, and we would still have not actually decreased the total use of resources and energy at all. It doesn't matter to the planet how the distribution of resources and energy falls; the only thing that matters is how much collective, total impact we are having as a species. Forgetting the human dimensions of living in such a world, if a ton of carbon is burned, it doesn't matter whether that is by one person or by a thousand; in the end, a ton of carbon still goes into the atmosphere, for instance.
So what matters is decreasing the total human footprint, not simply moving resources around within the species. And if the other 80% of the human race were to elevate to the top 20%'s level of consumption, that would balloon the total up a few times over, and if the existing state is already the "highway to hell," then that scenario would be the "fleet of private jumbo jets to hell," metaphorically speaking. This neither justifies the current wasteful lifestyles of the global "First World," and nor does it suggest that the rest of the world somehow "doesn't deserve" to have better living conditions, but it just recognizes the immutable and inevitable dynamic that for any given way of living, the resources and energy required must be multiplied out by the total number of people who are doing it at the same time. So any plan or scheme that doesn't ultimately reduce the total use of resources and energy in the aggregate, while perhaps a wonderful act of social justice or equity, nevertheless ignores the final problem that we are, collectively, using far more than the planet can give going forward right now. And whether we drive the planet into the ground as equals or as a small number of elites with a massive underclass of billions, the end result for the planet is the same. The total human footprint must come down, if we are to avoid destruction for ourselves and for much of the natural world.
And in light of that, maybe it becomes a bit more obvious that insofar as standards of living rise, and thus as the consumption of resources and energy also rises, it becomes all the more imperative to not blow the proportions of the total societal operation out of bounds. This is most efficaciously achieved by voluntarily, freely allowing the population to decline to parameters wherein everyone, everywhere can enjoy the same standard of living, and critically, where the total size of that operation is smaller and lighter and less than what is currently going on right now. Per capita savings in efficiency are meaningless if the total size does not shrink down as well, and by the same token, shrinking the total footprint is good for the planet, even if inequalities persist within the human race. The planet is a set of physical systems, not moral ones. And our systems have to ultimately conform to the limitations and capabilities of the natural world to sustain us, otherwise we will inevitably collapse and cause ruin for the future and for the natural world (and ourselves, I might add).
Now, this is NOT to say that we shouldn't be trying to decrease our individual impact. On the contrary, that is absolutely necessary, partially because we live for like 80 years, and that population would take decades or centuries to come down to Earth even if large numbers of people were to make the personal choice to either have zero children or one child. And we don't have that kind of time. In one of the books that I've read on the subject of overpopulation, I recall a study that determined that for an average American, the total impact of making rather extreme changes to lifestyle (e.g. not having a personal vehicle at all, never flying, moving to the city to minimize per capita impact, recycling everything, only using renewable energy, walking everywhere, foregoing most heating and all cooling, etc. etc.) is only about one-twentieth the total impact of what one additional person would use over the course of their entire lifetime. In other words, the study's conclusion was that the implementation of rather extreme changes to lifestyle on the part of 20 people was the same thing as 19 people living the way that they did originally, and the 20th person having never existed at all. Even if that figure is off the mark, and perhaps the ratio is closer to 10:1 or 5:1, the math of the situation is somewhat invincible. Changes to lifestyle, and even big changes to systems that only governments and societies can make collectively, and all of that sort of thing, simply does not measure up against the longitudinal total impact that people have over the course of their entire lifetimes, along with all of their descendants. By simply choosing to not make more people for a little while, or more accurately, by the human race collectively choosing to create fewer new people such that the total number of humans decrease, is by far the most powerful tool that we have to actually rein in the total human footprint. By all means, buy an electric car or just push your car into a lake and "fuggedaboudit," but if you have not yet had children or you are in a position to choose to either have more or to stop, consider the massive, paradigm-shifting option of adding fewer or no more people to the mix at all. Each person who is not added exceeds or equals the combined lifestyle and systemic changes of many people who have been added, and that in turn allows the remaining people who do exist a bit more wiggle room and opportunity to find more solutions and to make changes that can further help things and avoid driving us all off of a cliff.
Personally, I think of it like dieting and exercise: people will sometimes exercise and then say, "I ran for five miles, so I can eat this doughnut." That's the wrong way to look at it. Yes, exercising is good, and burning off excess calories is a good thing, but it is far, far better to simply not consume excess calories to begin with. You don't need to burn calories that you never initially consume. By the same token, you don't need to rewire and reconfigure the lifestyles of people who never come to exist at all, and that will also, in turn, make the prospect of changing existing systems easier, because it doesn't have to be done for as many people.
Perhaps this is also a way to conceive of it: imagine two human settlements on two equally-sized islands. One settlement has 10,000 people, and the other only has 1,000. How differently would those ten-thousand people have to live in order to bring their total requirements for food, water, shelter, energy, goods, and services down to what the island of one-thousand uses? [Not that things are quite this simple, but] the island with one-thousand people could be ten times as voracious on a per capita basis, and enjoy the use of ten times as much space, caloric intake, energy use, etc. and still only be equal in total consumption to the island of ten-thousand. Put another way, the island of ten-thousand could bend over backwards and reinvent the wheel, but unless they manage to bring their per capita consumption down by 90%(!), they would still be using more than the island of one-thousand people. And EVEN IF there were some wonderful way to reduce per capita consumption by 99.99% or something, that would still leave the island with one-thousand people with much more space left over for everything else in the natural world if they also implemented the same wonderful schemes, and there would still be more untapped resources to fall back on, and more wiggle room, than on the island with ten-thousand people.
I guess my point is that regardless of how people live, everything has to be scaled up to how many people are living at the same time. And per capita gains in efficiency are nevertheless eaten up and in fact obviated altogether by increasing the number of people who are doing the per capita consumption.
To further prove that we are not an echo chamber I must vehemently disagree. Downplaying the whole overpopulation issue as a species is in my opinion one if not the biggest error of our generation. Not only is every new person a new consumer adding to the demand of resources that the planet already cannot provide. Reducing overpopulation barring a new world war, a world wide disease or some major natural disaster(s) will also be the hardest one to accomplish because we would either have to tamper with one of the basic human rights or without governmental "guidance" it would require people to overwrite millennia of biological, cultural and religious programming.
Does this mean that everyone should stop having children.....no....but the idea that overall population growth will stop soon anyway or that we can accomplish the same thing without dealing with this subject is just wishful thinking. The UN's median projection for future population growth sees us hitting 10.9 bn by the end of the century, and it still hasn't plateaued at that point. Even at the lowest end of the 95% certainty projection, population doesn't hit maximum until near the end of the century - at nearly 10 billion people. We can make that figure lower and bring about the end of growth sooner - but only if we start taking this seriously and take the action needed, now!!
As Ruinenlust said this will however never be a popular opinion and no political party in a democratic country in its right mind will ever put this up for discussion but I don't like mollycoddling the situation that we are in. The point where you felt personally attacked is exactly the reason why this will always be a difficult subject to discuss because it deals with something that affects all of us on a personal level. Nonetheless....
"We are jeopardizing our future by not reining in our intense but geographically and demographically uneven material consumption and by not perceiving continued rapid population growth as a primary driver behind many ecological and even societal threats."
--World Scientists' Warning to Humanity: A Second Notice. *The Second Notice has more scientist co-signers (over 20.000 and counting) and formal supporters than any other journal article ever published.
To way in on this discussion of whether deciding not to have kids outweighs the problem of overpopulation, I honestly feel it depends on the wishes of the person, within reason. If one wishes to have kids, nothing should be barring them, and no one should be forcing them or guilt-tripping them into not having them. That being said, having kids for the sake of having kids should not happen, nor should people be having kids just to have a big family or to get the preferred gender. And as long as it matches with one’s moralistic and religious views, if one gets pregnant again but does not want any more kids, they should seek an abortion instead of doing nothing.
Kids are a wonderful thing, and I think that everyone has a right to them and a right to have their own biological kids, but you should have them because it is your dream to have kids, or because you want to have a child to make you laugh and happy, or because you want to have a “family” (as opposed to being single or a couple), not just for the sake of having kids.
In addition, while I respect religious traditions, I really don’t understand or agree with those dogmas and traditions which proscribe having large families, especially when those who follow those doctrines tend to be on the poorer side. While I am Jewish and I go to a modern-orthodox synagogue (although I myself am conservative) and I respect those who wish to have an ultra-orthodox way of life, I find it somewhat irresponsible when many of them go off and have so many children despite having a very niche, not so well paying job (many ultra-orthodox people work in the Judaica industries or in synagogues).
While I consider Harry and Meghan to be big hypocrites (Taking a private jet to a climate summit?!), I agree with their view in the issue: they wish to have kids, but they are being conscientious and limiting themselves to two, and they are going to teach their kids to be eco-friendly and passionate about the environment. This is the same model my parents took with me, and I hope to pass it down to my kids when I have them one day.
In closing, I certainly respect those who love being surrounded by family and children, and who wish to have them of their own. When I am older, I hope to have two kids of my own, so that I can have fun with them and guide them and have a familial life, like the household I come from. But you do not need to have many kids to do this, and so while you certainly can go ahead if you wish and have kids, you must remain cautious and conscientious of the amount of kids you are having and the resources they are using.
If you wish to have kids but you do not want to use many resources, have them grow up in an eco-friendly household and teach them not to overuse resources. In the end, the best thing we can do at the moment for the climate is to teach and encourage others to be more considerate of the energy and resources they take up, and encourage them to take a stand against the powers that seek to destroy our environment.
The problem with children is that they often end up living lifestyles/having values that are the polar opposites of their parents' because adolescence often prompts rebellion. I certainly did for a while! People should absolutely have the right to have children but it would be wonderful if just one became the norm among people who desire to reproduce! Unfortunately, the USA's government incentivizes having as many children as possible. I suspect that the same approach is utilized by many other governments across the world.
One area in which I have always bested my parents (who did not raise me to be extraordinarily environmentally conscious but always supported my interest in nature as well as unintentionally living a fairly low footprint lifestyle) is maintaining small housing and transportation footprints. However, living efficiently and avoiding use of motorized transportation whenever possible slashes expenses and that has been the primary driver for those lifestyle choices throughout my lifetime.
I am currently mainintaining a fairly small food footprint compared to them because they eat dairy and eggs. However, I started eating meat as a teenage rebellion thing and then met my meat-loving ex which caused my meat intake to get out of control. During an acid trip a few years ago I started to become disgusted about the animal product business. I could literally perceive the suffering when I had a slice of sausage pizza during the trip. Hearing animals screaming and tasting their pain definitely prompted a thorough evaluation of my lifestyle! For a while, I clung to hope that alternatives to animal suffering would come about structurally. Finally, I decided to take personal responsibility and cut animal products out of my diet 100% I did not require a transitional phase...animal products are not physically addictive drugs, so there is no inherent need to wean yourself off of them (I should note that I have developed quite a bit of discipline since I turned 30.).
Agreed as to the thoughts on children. I've had somewhat similar ones myself.
As to cats: unleashed cats are indeed dangerous to wildlife. And they should be as they are predators. That's their nature and one of the reasons that I say bless their savage hearts. I love cats. It'd truly be a sad day for me to see their nature change more that it already has. Symbiotic, but still wild. I don't believe that they feel anything like human love, but they can be "affectionate" in their sensuality.
Humans in cars, particularly those that are uncaring, careless and/or needlessly cruel are a danger and not only to our cats.
I’ve recently started reading the book “The Hate U Give”, and it is really good and I’d recommend reading it, especially if you do not know very much about racism and police brutality, or if you are dealing with white privilege. Not only does it seem very accurate, it is also very heart moving, and it does a good job at explaining the socioeconomic issues BIPOC people face in a simple yet incredibly thematic format. I also like how it is adult enough that it covers the issues and deals with these terrible problems, yet it is still suitable for teens to read. It also presents all of its views in a format that is easy to read and more like a realistic fiction than a nonfiction manifesto, yet it retains its themes and its purpose. I would really recommend it
Hello to you, my old friends of Forest! This might be a little too much of a shameless plug, and I would like to apologise for that.
So... I do stats analysis, i.e. using NS Stats and making graphs to see if the categories correlate, or any other relationships. More about it here: viewtopic.php?f=13&t=475174&sid=d85cde37c1df2a0655769bb8a834507f
And I would like to ask permission on if I could use your Greenness Index for my data? I will indeed give credit to Forest and the author.
Here's a sample graph with Combined Industries Index (CII), my own creation on sum of normalised industries (all the industries, manufacturing, and agriculture... excludes Tourism. I should add that too!), mapped against Forest's formula for Greenness Index.
I really do hope and wish to use this formula for more analysis. Thank you for hearing me out, and hope you all have a great day! ♥