Before Doomsday humanity was clearly on the path toward its dreadful termination. The Doomsday Events were caused in part by two hundred years of mining and consuming the Earth’s mineral wealth which had resulted in a huge, but temporary population explosion, and massive environmental pollution. There was no secret about this impending catastrophe, and the facts were broadcast, published, and exploited by all of the usual media pundits. Their goal was rarely to inform the public of the problems, but rather to enhance their own short term popularity by irrational blather. But, the fundamental problem had not been broached by the pundits until the famines became acute and worldwide — until it became obvious there were too many people for the resources available — but, it was an unpopular topic. Because of the efficiency of the worldwide food distribution system the numerous local food shortfalls were not seen as local famines as they would have been in the past, but rather as the unfair distribution of food to poor people where every they happened to live. These local agricultural shortfalls were precipitated, and aggravated by world encompassing climate instabilities. Eventually there were so many of them that they merged into a worldwide food shortfall, and then a worldwide famine. The potential instabilities in the food distribution system totally failed when the price of fuel oil to power the transportation system made even the efficient super tankers difficult to operate. These transportation problems were aggravated by having to be more carefully monitored, and guarded because of large scale organized robberies. When the bombs of Doomsday finally detonated everyone was shocked, and dismayed (a phrase the pundits are fond of saying) but no one was surprised. Everyone was expecting it even if they desperately didn’t want it to happen.
After this particular Doomsday precursor scenario there were very few human survivors, and even fewer species survivors because the Earth had been stressed beyond the breaking point on several dimensions even before The Doomsday Events. There were more H-bombs detonated in this building-stress scenario than in scenarios involving accidental detonations, because all of the nations were militarized to their utmost, and on a hair-trigger alert in preparation. What happened with this kind of total preparation wasn’t really a war between contending armies, it wasn’t even a grand mal seizure of the Earth, it was just a day long cremation of an already moribund planet.
Afterward, most of the healthy survivors were in the few Lifehavens and similar locations that had been outfitted, and peopled. There were a couple of small seed banks at extremely remote locations in Antarctica, but it required great difficulties getting there, and it was many years before expeditions were sent there to retrieve some particular seed specimens which had been lost elsewhere. With so very few people surviving it was decided to maximize population growth for a while, but to limit the populating of the Earth to a few particular places, and to let the remainder return to whatever was now its natural state. Everything north of the Tropic of Capricorn was left fallow for two hundred years. This was no imposition on the survivors, because there was plenty of un-populated property in the south. Everyone realized there had been advantages to the now destroyed civilization, but also it was absolutely clear that something had to be done to prevent such a disaster from recurring. Those never again statements had been mouthed by politicians since time immemorial, but this time it was truly different because with such a small population base and plenty of time, and knowledge readily available it became possible to lay out a reasonable course of long term survival. What became obvious was that human population must be controlled by human decision, and limited to a small number relative to the resources. Humans had long traditions of being subjected to published laws, and adding a few new ones wasn’t difficult to do when it was agreed that the need for them was great. The key new features, intended to prevent population explosions, were:
- Population of all the Earth would be set at a fixed number of living people. This number was to be set by the people themselves, but to stabilize the process it was only elders of ages 55-75, so they had personal knowledge of the problem, and were non-reproductive. This population vote took place once every ten years and was aimed at long term stability.
- To prevent population cheating every person was to be readily identifiable at all times by every other person.
- Every person has the absolute right to reside anywhere within the humanly habitable zone which is also defined by the elders’ vote. The Zone is very large but it is monitored to prevent extra humans from being created there.
- No person has the right to live outside of the habitable zone. This is to prevent inbred groups from starting a population race, which has been proven to be the primary cause of the Doomsday boom and bust cycle.
- The entire world is monitored by infertile guards whose job it is to maintain the population stabilized at the point defined by these self imposed laws.
These laws are strange to us free-breeding people, but they are required for these future people if they wish to avoid another Doomsday. In practice the population laws would not be very restrictive, because every woman could have two children. Furthermore, there would be an abundance of all necessities. People would find meaning, and status through personal arts and skills. Because of the abundance there would be far less need for military, and police protections, and these people’s lives would be so mild by modern standards that they would seem as pleasant gods, and angels to us. We moderns would probably find it boring, but that is because of our breathless adaptation to our current hyperventilating culture. There are thousands of cultures here on Earth even today, and it is stressful for most people to leave whatever one it is that they happen to live within, and move on to an alien one. Not just finding your kind of people in a new city, but rather moving into a totally new society would be quite wrenching. However, this mild new society would probably be easy for people raised within it to enjoy, and probably easy to become accustomed to even for us.
The alternative of course is to continue living life in the usual desperate way which in the long run brings on the usual devils, and demons, and unsolvable problems to which we are all acclimated. This would be okay, for the long run, if it were not for super weapons, but unfortunately we now have those weapons, and so humanity must choose to self regulate by some sort of laws or self destruct. The present situation is clearly on the side of self destruction.
In these blogs there have been quite a few different approaches to various types of survival strategies. Perhaps the one proposed here could work for a while, and if it did humans would have succeeded in creating a new life form. A creature that did not live by the laws of nature, but by the self imposed laws of man. Nature’s way is a short term future only for those who survive, and reproduce, but this new way is a long term future for those who choose to adapt their population to be sustainable within the environment in which they live.