“Peak Food”? No, the Average Person Has More Food to Eat

January 29th, 2015 by Roy W. Spencer, Ph. D.

There’s an article in yesterday’s Independent entitled, Have we reached ‘peak food’? Shortages loom as global production rates slow.

From reading the article, which is based upon a new report from two American universities and a German environmental institute, you would think that global food production is going down, while global population continues to rise.

WRONG. The rate of raise in production has apparently slowed for some commodities.

Now, imagine if peak oil was defined in this way? (It’s not). Or “peak global temperature”?

As far as I can tell, this is one more example of environmental fear-mongering.

First of all, food production is not limited by available land…it depends upon demand. If demand rises, so does food production. Hunger, malnourishment, and starvation are not due to a lack of food. They are almost always due to governmental policies which hinder farming or hinder the prosperity needed to import food.

What really matters is per capita food production. Not whether the rate of growth in just food production is slowing, because the rate in growth of the global population is also slowing:

worldgr

The real question is: As global population rises, is our food production keeping pace?

Not only is it keeping pace, it is speeding up.

You really don’t need to keep track of certain meats as the study did (such as chickens, eggs), just the staple grains which start the food supply. For example, the doubling of global soybean production in the last 20 years is primarily due to increased consumption of pork in an increasingly prosperous China, which requires soybeans for feed.

Here’s a plot I put together from U.N. statistics regarding the top staple foods the world consumes. As you can see, not only has global food production increased in recent years (as has global population), the ratio of the two shows the average person in the world has more food available to eat, not less:

global-food-production-by-year-top-6

So, how do studies like this ever get published? Lies, damn lies, and statistics.

But…but…isn’t global warming reducing crop production?

So far, there is no sign of that. As I’ve shown before, climate model predictions have essentially failed. Warming and precipitation changes in America’s heartland have failed to materialize…despite predictions to the contrary. The Earth as a whole has instead responded to increasing CO2 in the atmosphere with “global greening”.

But, without the threat of climate change and reduced food supply, universities and environmental institutes wouldn’t be able to get the money they need to survive, would they?


78 Responses to ““Peak Food”? No, the Average Person Has More Food to Eat”

Toggle Trackbacks

  1. Paul says:

    from what I recall US Federal Government interference with Biofuels and alcohol mandates raised the price of corn world wide leading in to the “Arab Spring” which started in Tunisia then spread (metastasized) to Egypt, Libya, etc

  2. jimc says:

    “So, how do studies like this ever get published?”

    As you answered, but with the additional catalyst of a complicit main stream media. Fortunately, the left doesn’t have the information monopoly they seek.

    • George A says:

      But they do seem to have a monopoly on the language. We’ve seen them rename “global warming” as “climate disruption” when the warming didn’t occur. Now they call an inflection point the “peak.” By that definition, we reached “peak population” in 1963 because that is when the growth rate started to decline.

  3. Paul1922 says:

    From what I recall the much vaunted “Arab Spring” started with riots in Tunisia over high price corn and wheat. This largely due to Federal biofuels and alcohol mandates that raised prices corn here in Midwest to historic levels. Then the Arab Spring spread (metastasized) to gypt, Libya, Syria. 30 plus years of federal military and civilian work have taught me that if you put washington in charge of sand and gravel we would have a shortage of that

  4. World Population Growth

    Year Population
    1 200 million
    1000 275 million
    1500 450 million
    1650 500 million
    1750 700 million
    1804 1 billion
    1850 1.2 billion
    1900 1.6 billion
    1927 2 billion
    1950 2.55 billion
    1955 2.8 billion
    1960 3 billion
    1965 3.3 billion
    1970 3.7 billion
    1975 4 billion
    1980 4.5 billion
    1985 4.85 billion
    1990 5.3 billion
    1995 5.7 billion
    1999 6 billion
    2006 6.5 billion
    2009 6.8 billion
    2011 7 billion
    2025 8 billion
    2043 9 billion
    2083 10 billion

    Given what has been happening and what is projected ANY change in the climate toward colder conditions is going to be a VERY BIG SERIOUS PROBLEM.

    • According to your numbers in 1960 it took 15 years to add 1 billion people. By 2043 it will take 40 years to add another billion people. There is a serious problem here, because these rapidly changing trends are likely (predicted) to go negative. That is going to represent a real problem for human populations. Wealthy countries simply don’t even reproduce at replacement levels. Japan’s population, for example, is already shrinking.

      • Lewis says:

        One of the problems with a declining population are the demographics of ages. An older population will not have younger people to lean on; in the US, to pay their Social Security and Medicare. Further older people don’t work as hard as younger people and are more conservative in their outlook. What this leads to is governments taking more from younger people to give to older people and to less risk taking by younger people.

        It becomes a deteriorating society in numerous ways. In my opinion, this is the best reason to continue to allow immigrants into the US, but on a worldwide basis, it’s going to get tough as birth rates continue to fall.

  5. Food production has increased because the climate has been quite favorable. If cooling sets in this will no longer be the case.

    • An Inquirer says:

      Very little of the increased food production is due to a warming or more favorable climate. The main drivers have been improved farming practices, improved seeds, and increasing CO2. Of course, one could imagine the climate cooling enough to take parts of Canada and southern Argentina out of production, but I do not anticipate that much cooling.

  6. Titus says:

    IMO its not the quantity that’s the problem.

    Quantity is increased with the use of GM crops, intensive land use, chemical pesticides and fertilizers.

    The problem will come with the unstainable nature of this mix which is causing poor quality and disappearing soils. Also the crops are becoming less nutritious and causing malnutrition not from quantify but quality.

    My twocents worth……

  7. Sun Spot says:

    The increase in CO2 from roughly 275 ppmv to 395 ppmv has had a dramatic positive effect on C2 and C3 plant life (food). These plants were on the edge of CO2 starvation at 275 ppmv.

    • John F. Hultquist says:

      Your number (275) seems a bit high, although the concept is correct. Rapidly growing fields, say corn, can depleted the CO2 on a very still day. Wind and turbulence replenish the needed CO2.

      • David A. says:

        Not so fast.

        Plant nutrition is tied to nitrogen, not carbon. And experiments show higher CO2 doesn’t help nutritive value:

        “Higher CO2 tends to inhibit the ability of plants to make protein… And this explains why food quality seems to have been declining and will continue to decline as CO2 rises — because of this inhibition of nitrate conversion into protein.”

        — University of California Davis Professor Arnold J. Bloom, on Yale Climate Connections 10/7/14, http://www.yaleclimateconnections.org/2014/10/crop-nutrition//2014

        “BLOOM: “It’s going to be fairly universal that we’ll be struggling with trying to sustain food quality and it’s not just protein… it’s also micronutrients such as zinc and iron that suffer as well as protein.”

      • David A. says:

        Plus there is already evidence that higher temperatures are decreasing crop yields below what they would be otherwise:

        “For wheat, maize and barley, there is a clearly negative response of global yields to increased temperatures. Based on these sensitivities and observed climate trends, we estimate that warming since 1981 has resulted in annual combined losses of these three crops representing roughly 40 Mt or $5 billion per year, as of 2002.”

        Environmental Research Letters Volume 2 Number 1
        David B Lobell and Christopher B Field 2007 Environ. Res. Lett. 2 014002 doi:10.1088/1748-9326/2/1/014002
        “Global scale climate–crop yield relationships and the impacts of recent warming”
        http://iopscience.iop.org/1748-9326/2/1/014002

        • Bryan says:

          I admit I did not read the article, but this claim is tough to swallow…

          Consider:

          Even with the recent warming the climate is not much if any warmer than it was during the medieval warm period or the Roman warm period. In fact, arguably it is cooler now than during those times.

          It is not even drastically warmer than it was during the little ice age.

          We are told that the warming has been disproportionately at night and in very cold places. Such warming seems unlikely to be a big negative for crops.

          Surely warmer weather helps crops in some places. This should offset part of any negative effect.

          Farmers adapt to different conditions. They can vary seed varieties, irrigation, and cultivation techniques.

          Significant crop losses due to the meager warming we have seen so far? It seems very doubtful at best. But, like equally unlikely claims of increased severe weather due to global warming, it is part of the narrative that the bad stuff is happening already. They have to push this narrative to try to overcome people’s common sense understanding (based on their own experience) that the little bit of warming that we have seen so far is not very consequential, and if anything is a benefit rather than a detriment.

  8. John F. Hultquist says:

    I get and read a farm news publication from central Washington State.
    Each month the stories are about better land and water use, better products, and higher yields. The crop given most space in the January issue is potatoes. They are better than ever and yield an average of 60,000 pounds per acre.
    A major crop in north-central US is corn. There is a National Corn Yield Contest. Top yield was 308 bushels per acres, using irrigation. An Iowa grower using no-till non-irrigated land got 261 bushels per acre.
    Many of these mid-west lands have been farmed for 150 years.
    There are “land grant” universities, NGOs, and companies that work to improve farming and the quality of the crops.

  9. JohnKl says:

    Hi Roy and Titus,

    Titus states:

    “The problem will come with the unstainable nature of this mix which is causing poor quality and disappearing soils. Also the crops are becoming less nutritious and causing malnutrition not from quantify but quality.

    My twocents worth……”

    Fair points but these problems can be easily remedied with attention and care. Chemical pesticide use can easily be reduced without damage to crops because many if not most farms use far more than they need to sometimes over a hundred times the recommended amounts on their crops to make absolutely sure no pest survives. In non-English speaking countries the farmers often don’t read the instructions and douse their field with far more than necessary. GM crops should be labeled at the market, and consumers should know the products their buying. Intensive farm use and pesticide issues can also be addressed by composting (which should also involve pasteurizing the biological waste to avoid later contamination of crops-this happens in third world countries), crop rotation, combining symbiotic plants together for Nitrogen soil retention and many other practices known to work over time.

    The issue has never been peak resources but peak know-how. When will the population of the world’s proudly uninformed achieve such numbers the crowd out intelligent solutions? Time will tell.

    Have a great day!

  10. Gordon Robertson says:

    @Roy…” Hunger, malnourishment, and starvation are not due to a lack of food. They are almost always due to governmental policies which hinder farming or hinder the prosperity needed to import food”.

    Good grief Roy, that is one of the biggest loads of capitalist blarney I have ever heard. Hunger, malnourishment and starvation are not due to a lack of food???

    With you capitalists it’s always about prosperity and how people are starving because it is their own fault. Give your head a shake. There are people in sub-Saharan Africa who are born into abject poverty, subsisting on maize as their prime form of nutrition.

    The problem with corn is that it is missing a key amino acid, which leads to life-threatening conditions like kwashiorkor, a severe protein deficiency.

    Do you know what the capitalists are doing? Some of them like Bill Gates are over there telling souls dying of such dreaded diseases that they have AIDS due to sexual promiscuity.

    No. People are starving because of capitalists and capitalist policies. Right there in your own country of the good, old US of A, capitalists (Republicans) stood up en masse to prevent people having a universal health care system. I am sure they’d do exactly the same if anyone tried to introduce a program to feed the poor.

    After all, a capitalist mantra is ‘no free lunches’.

    • Roy Spencer says:

      …says Gordon as he enjoys the fruits of a capitalist system.

      • David Appell says:

        It’s not really a capitalist system, is it Dr. Spencer? Farmers get huge payments from the government, win or lose, and so do the Big Ag companies.

        Farming is now in no way a capitalist venture — it’s a highly socialized one.

      • David Appell says:

        And let’s not mention the huge — I mean HUGE! — bailout Wall Street received from the federal government and the Federal Reserve in 2008-9.

        I don’t even know how much it came to to the nearest trillion dollars…. Does anyone here? Dr. Spencer?

        • The need for the bailout which triggered a near economic collapse was caused by packaged up dodgy housing loans. These dodgy housing loans were made possible by ‘progressive thinking’ members of the US government, who allowed loan regulations to be loosened to the point where huge some of money were given to poor people with no capacity or interest in repaying those loans. Everyone apparently benefited. The government officials looked good. The banks made even more money. The members of the public who had money in the bank or bank shares, enjoyed the increased profits. And there is no doubt Appell would have championed all this amazing social justice right up until the point where it blew up in everyone’s face. At this point, Appell would instantly switch to warning all of us about those greedy capitalist pigs.

    • Slywolfe says:

      “There are people in sub-Saharan Africa who are born into abject poverty, subsisting on maize as their prime form of nutrition.”

      How were they getting along before capitalists ruined it for them?

    • JohnKl says:

      Hi Gordon Robertson,

      So much wrong with your statement, so little time for me to respond just now but I’ll try anyways.

      “With you capitalists it’s always about prosperity and how people are starving because it is their own fault. Give your head a shake. There are people in sub-Saharan Africa who are born into abject poverty, subsisting on maize as their prime form of nutrition.”

      The so-called western capitalists countries feed themselves. As to sub-Saharan African nations, primarily Islamic, they haven’t exactly been known to feed themselves well for the thousands of years since the lands had been take from their original owners. Look at Google maps much of that region is DRY DESERT! Years ago Egypt and other nations in the region had been green and lush, much has changed since then. As to relying on only one form of vegetation like maize to provide all your nutrition, you should be careful. Capitalists and others have known this for CENTURIES. However, white potatoes do contain all eight amino acids that cannot be manufactured by the human body and populations have subsisted on them in the past especially native Americans. Btw, I wouldn’t try relying only on rice either as the amino acid content proves low. Most Asians combine them with legumes, meat or other foods.

      “Do you know what the capitalists are doing? Some of them like Bill Gates are over there telling souls dying of such dreaded diseases that they have AIDS due to sexual promiscuity.”

      Many in that region do have HIV, some have full blown AIDS however they may obtained it.

      “No. People are starving because of capitalists and capitalist policies. Right there in your own country of the good, old US of A,”

      Perhaps, but believe me they eat better here than Indonesia, and many other countries around the world. Personally, I wouldn’t want to compare US diet with socialist countries if I were you. How about the 45 million starved to death by Stalin in his day. North Korea recently starved a couple million to death a few years back. American used to feed the world during the so-called CAPITALIST years. Now that we’re a moronic welfare case civilization who knows how many suffer. I’m almost sure the numbers will grow.

      As to universal health care, it doesn’t exist. Someone will always be rationed out of some highly demanded services whatever the system. If you have a program to feed the poor please enlighten us. We’d all love to see the plan.

      Have a great day!

    • People are starving because of corrupt governments, wars, failed states… Progressive nitwits blame everything on the few things in our society that actually work. No, US agriculture is massively subsidized in some areas. It’s more like crony capitalism or even socialism. Of course, to Gordon the capitalists are still to blame. Because everything in the world is the fault of the capitalists. Yes of course, if it wasn’t private enterprise, there would be no employment, no roads, education system, medicine, or pensions. But private enterprise is still pure evil of course.

    • H.C. Daulton says:

      Dr. Spencer 100% correct. Government regulations are beginning to cause me, as a rancher, lost production. More importantly, economics of ranching is such that if offered greater commodity prices I could easily double or more my production overnight, and much more in the long term. As revenue and cost structures change, so does production. It is the failure of the public, as led by the press, to understand that economics is about dynamics; ever changing relationships. So sad.

  11. David A. says:

    “precipitation changes in America’s heartland have failed to materialize…”

    Have you ever heard of California?

  12. The problem even though many do not believe in AGW or at least CAGW is it has many thinking in terms of a warming planet(hence no food problem) while ignoring the possibilities of what might happen if the planet should cool which I fully expect.

    In addition billions of dollars keep going into infrastructure for the assumption the climate will warming.

    A big mistake and waste of money.

  13. Dave O. says:

    Being a farmer myself, I can attest to the fact of an overabundance of food and low prices for agricultural commodities mainly due to advanced farming technology (GMO’s, GPS, fertilizers, etc) and also the availability of affordable fossil fuel. If the Left (communists/socialists/warmists) ever get their desire of unaffordable fossil fuel, then we could see a shortage of food and mass starvation.

    • David Appell says:

      “For wheat, maize and barley, there is a clearly negative response of global yields to increased temperatures. Based on these sensitivities and observed climate trends, we estimate that warming since 1981 has resulted in annual combined losses of these three crops representing roughly 40 Mt or $5 billion per year, as of 2002.”

      Environmental Research Letters Volume 2 Number 1
      David B Lobell and Christopher B Field 2007 Environ. Res. Lett. 2 014002 doi:10.1088/1748-9326/2/1/014002
      “Global scale climate–crop yield relationships and the impacts of recent warming”
      http://iopscience.iop.org/1748-9326/2/1/014002

      • Roy Spencer says:

        I know the people who actually work in this business, David…rather than pointy headed ivory tower types. They say there is no why to back out climate trends. Instead, researchers like this make assumptions that support their predetermined conclusions. Did they factor in greater drought tolerance, more efficient water use, and the fertilization effects of increased CO2? Increasing CO2 and warming has probably been a huge net plus for agricultural productivity. Hundreds of papers by plant physiologists have been written on the subject.

        • David Appell says:

          Dr Roy Spencer wrote:
          “I know the people who actually work in this business, David…”

          Appealing to authority, Roy?

          I don’t care who you know, Dr. Spencer; I care what you can prove. Do you have any legitimate scientific rebuttal to the work of Bloom et al, or do you just find it inconvenient for the ideology you display here nearly every day?

          • JohnKl says:

            “I don’t care who you know, Dr. Spencer; I care what you can prove.”

            Pretty amusing statement since you haven’t proven a thing yourself. Your data-less quote regarding supposed negative effects to yield due to warming contained no empirical evidence. The claim of financial loss to some growers since 1981 proves nothing about yields.

            The archeological record provides enormous evidence of much warmer climates millenia ago, much greater vegetative cover world wide and much larger and more diverse animal life forms. Check geological sources the enormous bio-mass including flora and fauna trapped in permafrost provides enormous evidence of vastly better conditions under a WARMER CLIMATE, including millions of mammoths, mastadons, dyre wolvds etc.. Investigate, Scientific American articles, archeological texts and even Wikipedia if your stuck in a rut. The data is there.

            Have a great day!

          • David Appell says:

            JohnKL: Is there some reason you are ignoring the paper I referred to?

            Environmental Research Letters Volume 2 Number 1
            David B Lobell and Christopher B Field 2007 Environ. Res. Lett. 2 014002 doi:10.1088/1748-9326/2/1/014002
            “Global scale climate–crop yield relationships and the impacts of recent warming”
            http://iopscience.iop.org/1748-9326/2/1/014002

          • JohnKl says:

            David A: Is there some reason you prefer speculation to data?

            Briefly inspecting some of the linked data sources you provided I came up with such nonsense as:

            “Our results suggest that for each additional degree (??C) of future warming during summer months, corn and soybean yields could potentially decrease by 13% and 16%, respectively, whereas if modest increases in total summer precipitation (i.e.?50?mm) were to occur, yields may be boosted by 5?10%, counteracting a portion of the negative effects associated with increased temperature”

            In other words pure speculative fancy. One of the other linked articles suggested increasing CO2 levels beyond a certain point slowed down the rate of growth found in previous CO2 rises but didn’t observe any actual data showing disruption. Btw, given all the voluminous data revealing enormous benefits from CO2 increases any supposed data showing the opposite would have to replicated by many thousands of INDEPENDENT individuals throughout the world under controlled conditions to eliminate other possible causative agents before I will believe a word of it. Nevertheless, I will inspect more of the link later. It’s getting late.

            Have a great day!

        • David Appell says:

          “Dr Spencer wrote:”
          “Instead, researchers like this make assumptions that support their predetermined conclusions. Did they factor in greater drought tolerance, more efficient water use, and the fertilization effects of increased CO2?”

          Why don’t you read the paper and find out? I gave you the link.

        • Each year about 350,000 research papers get published. Most of this is garage. It doesn’t take much effort for nitwits like Appell to dig up the worst of the worst papers (that conform to his crank beliefs), and present them as if they meant something. Meanwhile, in the real world, crop production continues to rise.

      • David Appell says:

        “Did they factor in greater drought tolerance, more efficient water use, and the fertilization effects of increased CO2?”

        If you would actually *read* the paper, you’d find their conclusions are AFTER CO2 fertilization.

        • Dr. Strangelove says:

          Take note of the disclaimer in the paper of Lobell and Field.

          “While an empirical study cannot attribute directions of causality, we assume that climate variations caused yield changes, and not vice versa. This analysis also assumes that year-to-year management changes were either uncorrelated with climate, or were themselves caused by climate, and thus did not bias the interpretation of the climate’s influence on yields, and that errors in FAO global yield data are independent of temperature and rainfall.”

          In short, they assumed the correlations are causation but they don’t know which are the causes and which are the effects. I guess with that disclaimer they can make any conclusion they wish.

        • Appell is the master at digging up junk papers that confirm what he already believes, while simultaneously ignoring the hundreds of other papers that point to the opposite.

  14. KevinK says:

    I see the knicker knotter’s are out in force. How many decades must pass before we can say that predictions of future starvation will always be in the FUTURE ?

    Heck, Ehrlich has made a career out of this nonsense, if you are all so worried about it why the heck don’t you grab a shovel and get to tilling and planting fer ….. sake.

    You’ll be good and tired and won’t have time left over to fool around making predictions.

    All the predicting is wasting air that the plants could be using instead.

    Oh and those evil fossil fuels, before we used them to run the tractors something like 25 percent of the land had to planted with food for the horses. Now with fuels that 25 percent is feeding people instead.

    Cheers, KevinK.

  15. Remember David my prediction is based on a long duration of very low solar activity which has yet to materialize
    therefore it is not possible to know if I am correct or not.

    Once the maximum of solar cycle 24 ends and if the solar parameters head toward my low average values only then will we know if I am correct or wrong.

    At that time David you may have the opportunity to say I was wrong.

    • David Appell says:

      Salvatore:
      Salvatore: I’m well aware that you are going to make excuses for any and all of your predictions that haven’t come true, but this one is pretty clear.

      You wrote (and correct me if I’m wrong):

      “…here is my prediction for climate going forward, this decade will be the decade of cooling.”
      Salvatore del Prete, 11/23/10
      http://ourchangingclimate.wordpress.com/2010/10/20/andrew-dessler-debating-richard-lindzen/#comment-8875

      You wrote, “going forward…..” Over 4 years ago. That had nothing to do with any solar cycles or sunspot numbers.

      You said, “going forward.”

      “Decade of cooling?” We’ve seen no such thing.

      You were wrong, Salvatore. Simply wrong. Time to admit it.

  16. stevek says:

    A question I wonder about is will the birth rate eventually start to accelerate. I think it will and sooner than many think. I’m guessing a couple of generations. Why ? Because evolution is ‘finding’ a way around the pill and other birth control. For example being to undisciplined to take the pill daily is a strong trait in terms of evolution because it increases your offspring. A woman sleeping around used to be negative trait because of disease and not having partner around long enough to support kids which would lead to less chance of offspring surviving. Now sleeping around is good bc of advances in health care and food stamps. If we look at the poor today we see women having babies at almost half the age of the richer population. That means the poor hv 2 generations for every 1 generation of the rich. I know many grandma’s in their early forties or late thirties.

    The bottom line is evolution will find a way around birth control and education. And it won’t take long. Look at the Russian fox study. Not many generations needed to change wild foxes into tame foxes.

    So do I start investing in baby companies ? Babies r us is private company.

  17. David Appell says:

    “The current drought is tied to natural cycles.”

    Prove it.

    California has warmed ~ 1.3 C since 1895.
    What effect does that have on evaporation rates?

    PS: The comment section of your site isn’t working for me in either Chrome or IE.

    • None. Unless precipitation rates change. If water evaporates in 2 hours at 30C or 1 hour and 57 minutes at 31.3C the difference is completely unimportant. Get off your obese arse for a change and actually go outside and do some gardening, rather than make utterly moronic statements like this.

  18. John F. Hultquist says:

    In the Great State of Washington the production of apples early in the 1920s resulted in about 10,000 pounds per acre. By the 1930 yield was about 20,000 pounds per acre. 30,000 in 1976. 46,800 in 2014. Be aware that many orchards of old large trees are being replaced by small trees planted at “ultra high density” spacing. Yields per acre continue to rise for various reasons.
    We won’t run out – eat all you can.

  19. Dr. Strangelove says:

    There is no food shortage today and in the foreseeable future. On the contrary, there is too much food. The recommended food consumption for an adult male is 2,000 kilocalories per day. The world’s food production is over 5,300 kilocalories per capita per day. If you eat that much, you will die of obesity.

    A billion people are hungry because they cannot afford to buy the overflowing supply of food. And we throw away 30% of food production, and cows and pigs eat more grains than humans. There are more cows than humans by weight. Poverty is the problem, not climate change.

    • JohnKl says:

      Dr Strangelove,

      Great post, and quite accurate. One of the more counterfactual bits of nonsense present among academics seems to be the completely strange belief that the planet has run out of food. The most hilarious cretins can be found in this country who insist we apparently cannot find adequate nutrition or quantities of food. The ignorance regarding nutrition, health and science in general staggers the mind. One might consider that if the planet truly lacks the ability to feed itself, then how is it exactly that China with 1.3 billion people, 1/12 the arable land found in the U.S., much less developed agricultural technology than western industrialists since adapting CAPITALISTIC reforms in recent decades has been a consistent net EXPORTER of food? The U.S. frequently imports. Is it something in the water? Has the food as Gordon contends suddenly lost it’s vitamin content? Is CO2 damaging plant life despite being a plant food as David implies? Perhaps the average IQ of most Americans dropped with the increased faith in academic institutions and the musing of the many intellectually destitute minds that seem to inhabit them.

      Of course, the lack of proper nutrition, greater enervation among the public and associated problems might just have to do with increased reliance on consuming those OVER FED COWS AND PIGS STUFFED TO DISTORTION WHILE THE POOR GO WITHOUT!!! The ancient Greeks new this to be the case and discussed it even in Plato’s Republic.

      In ancient Greece the wealthy ate substantial quantities of animal products but the peasants did not. You may know, this dietary division of the classes gave ancient Greek philosophers and physicians the opportunity to observe a distinct division of health between the classes. In describing the mode of life of the citizens of The Republic, Socrates says:

      “They will feed on barley-meal and flour of wheat, baking and kneading them, making noble cakes and loaves; these they will serve up on a mat of reeds or on clean leaves, themselves reclining the while upon beds strewn with yew or myrtle. And they and their children will feast, drinking of the wine which they have made, wearing garlands on their heads, and hymning the praises of the gods, in happy converse with one another. And they will take care that their families do not exceed their means; having an eye to poverty or war……of course they must have a relish-salt, and olives, and cheese, and they will boil roots and herbs such as country people prepare; for a dessert we shall give them figs, and peas, and beans; and they will roast myrtle-berries and acorns at the fire, drinking in moderation. And with such a diet they may be expected to live in peace and health to a good old age, and bequeath a similar life to their children after them.”[2, 3]

      Glaucon protests that this substantially plant-based diet seems fit only for pigs, that the people should have “sauces and sweets in the modern style.” Socrates retorts that doing so will create a “State at fever heat” and goes on:

      “Now will the city have to fill and swell with a multitude of callings which are not required by any natural want; such as the whole tribe of hunters and actors, of whom one large class have to do with forms and colours; another will be the votaries of music–poets and their attendant train of rhapsodists, players, dancers, contractors; also makers of divers kinds of articles, including women’s dresses. And we shall want more servants. Will not tutors be also in request, and nurses wet and dry, tirewomen and barbers, as well as confectioners and cooks; and swineherds, too, who were not needed and therefore had no place in the former edition of our State, but are needed now? They must not be forgotten: and there will be animals of many other kinds, if people eat them.”[3]

      To which Glaucon says: “Certainly.”

      And Socrates says:

      “And living in this way we shall have much greater need of physicians than before?”

      To which Glaucon says: “Much greater.”

      In other words, Plato or Socrates already observed, more than 2000 years ago, that wealthy people eating their rich diet had affluent diseases and early mortality, and the peasants eating a frugal diet could expect “health to a good old age.”

      Sound reasoning then and now.

      Have a great day!

    • Slywolfe says:

      Poverty is one problem, but distribution is another, and perhaps greater problem. And the distribution problem is not for lack of transportation or supply, but usually due to political and criminal diversion. A well-fed polpulace is not as easily controlled as one dependent on government largess (and/or efficiency).

  20. Salvatore Del Prete Says:

    October 23, 2010 at 17:50

    PART 4- CLIMATE PREDICTION GOING FORWARD. JUST TO REPEAT

    Starting NOW, not ten years from now ,or sometime in the future but now, one will see a steady decline in global temperatures. This decline will be due to the items that control the climate, the sun, volcanic activity, soi oscillation, pdo/amo,nao,ao all phasing toward a cooler mode. The co2 concentrations will have NO effect.

    Note : I said the decline would be due to the sun and other items phasing toward a cooler mode.

    David, the problem thus far is not that my prediction for solar/climate interactions is wrong but rather the sun has not PHASED toward a cooler mode post 2010. It has instead been in a mode of mostly moderate activity, solar flux range of 120-150 way above the sub 90 I think is needed for a cooler climate over a long duration of time.

    David, you should correct yourself and say solar activity is much higher post 2010-2014 then I predicted, therefore the verdict on his prediction is still pending.

    That is the fair assessment of where my prediction stands thus far.

  21. Thanks, Dr. Spencer.
    Good to know this is just more scare tactics.

  22. Bil Danielson says:

    Gordon Robertson, here’s your alternative: blood, whips and guns, or money (capitalism).

    Take your choice, you have no other.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Collectivization_in_the_Soviet_Union

Leave a Reply