Professional space scientists are making proposals for human adventures a million years on into the future which if they convince our governments to pursued them at our present rate the habitat destruction created by such misadventures will eliminate humans by the end of our century. If humanity is going to progress on into the distant future it must survive every single day between now and then and that means without destroying itself on any of those days. Or without totally destroying or consuming those things the Earth provides which we need to survive. Somehow, these scientists, and I will not accuse them of being mad-scientists because it is likely that they are all legally sane, seem to ignore some obvious facts which should be at the front of every futurists planing.
Humanity presently has some 30,000 atomic bombs ready to explode. Wars happen quite frequently throughout history and often all of the contenders come out of it much worse off after the war than when they entered into it, even the winners, and those wars were conducted with conventional weapons.
Even Sun Tzu, in his Art of War about 500 BC said, “no nation should enter into a war unless it is absolutely necessary for the survival of the nation.” “War is dangerous!” Today, with so many nations possessing atomic weapons of extermination (WOEs) any use of them risks setting off a chain reaction where a high percentage of the whole stockpile will be exploded. The use of those weapons would destroy the nation using them, and therefore would violate Sun Tzu’s prime suggestion, but even worse the use of them would destroy everyones nation, even those those people totally innocent of any involvement in the conflict. All of that is obvious to anyone who casts even a casual glance at the problems of our modern world and an all out war.
The mass circulation magazine, Popular Science March, 2011, page 46 has a multi-page feature article starting off, “Earth won’t always be fit for occupation. We know that in two billion years or so, an expanding sun will boil away our oceans, leaving our home in the universe uninhabitable.” The article then proceeds with a hash of other equally distant problems, that we could needlessly get ourselves into a snit about, while totally ignoring our existential risks that face us every day that are a thousand times more likely to happen and cause our civilizations to collapse.
There are talks about plans for setting up cities in space, on asteroids, and on the Moon, as if that were economically responsible. What they don’t consider is that it would take decades for humanity to accomplish that task, of questionable value, while the world slides into disasters such as famine caused by agricultural collapse which precipitate wars of extermination. These wars are not man made, in a sense, but are Mother Nature’s way correcting massive imbalance caused by an out of control humanity. We don’t want them to happen, just like we don’t want to die, but these things are all but inevitable and at our current state of development no longer in the distant future.
If this rush to build space colonies is pursued, it will just bring on the Doomsday war sooner. Instead of resource wasting extravaganzas we must use our time and money finding ways of making Earth habitable in a permanently sustainable way rather than try and make a small city on the Moon. To succeed we must have an Earthboutn population at a number which can be maintained in a healthy condition with abundance for everyone.