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LETTER: Doomsdayers love being wrong

In his letter of March 22, Jason G. Brent presents a fact-free belief system that has been proven wrong by results — and, sadly, has caused millions of deaths and human suffering.

The most visible modern advocate for the “finite Earth” or “overpopulation crisis” is professor Paul R. Ehrlich, whose 1968 book “The Population Bomb” predicated mass starvation and billions of deaths in the 1970s. Not only was this theory of finite resources proven wrong by experience, but Mr. Ehrlich famously lost a bet to economist Julian Simon on how the world’s population would affect the economics of the future. (Mr. Ehrlich continues to preach that his doomsday is coming, and he was wrong only about the timing. Right.)

Since 1968, as the world’s population has more than doubled (3.5 billion in 1968 to 8 billion in 2023), life expectancy has soared, infant mortality has plummeted and the standard of living for all of humanity has become markedly better.

Technology, a massive increase in agricultural productivity and human ingenuity has made this period the best time to be alive. Humans are better fed, live longer and have more economic opportunity than ever in human history. Conversely, efforts to control population through government intervention have resulted in disasters such as the China’s “one child” policy, which led to innumerable forced abortions, infanticide and a growing underpopulation crisis in China.

If we who believe in growth and bet on humanity are “fools” — as Mr. Brent asserts — why are numerous advanced nations paying mothers to have more babies to avoid disastrous population declines?

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