Jordan Peterson highlighted the fusion between the “climate change” enterprise and Malthusian narratives of “overpopulation” during a discussion with Lex Fridman on the latter’s eponymous podcast, published Friday.
“The problem is underpopulation,” Peterson speculated, referencing Tesla CEO Elon Musk’s recent claim that an “underpopulation crisis [and] collapsing birth rate is the biggest danger civilization faces”:
Doing my best to help the underpopulation crisis.
A collapsing birth rate is the biggest danger civilization faces by far.
— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) July 7, 2022
Peterson added, “I think it’s a terrible problem that the West, for example, is no longer at replacement with regard to birth rate. It means we’ve abandoned the Virgin and the Child in the most fundamental sense. It’s a bloody catastrophe”:
Peterson described claims of “overpopulation” as an “anti-truth.” He observed the overlap between those claiming the existence of a global “overpopulation” problem with those calling for economic reduction via “degrowth“:
Everyone else is running around going, “Oh, there’s too many people!” Nope. I’ve learned that there are falsehoods and lies, and there are anti-truths, and an anti-truth is something that is so preposterous that you couldn’t make a claim that’s more opposite to the truth, and the claim that there are too many people on the planet is an anti-truth. People say, “Well, you have to accept limits to growth,” and it’s like, “I have to accept the limits that you’re going to impose on me because you’re frightened of the future?”
Those claiming the existence of anthropogenic “climate change” and “global warming” via consumption of fossil fuels regularly call for state-driven coercion via “tyrannical compulsion” to avert planetary “apocalypse,” Peterson noted.
Peterson also observed the nebulousness of the term “environment” and its linguistically improper usage by political and news media figures as a euphemism for “climate change.”
“Whatever the environment is,” he remarked. “The ‘environment.’ I don’t even know what that is. That’s everything. ‘I’m concerned about the environment.’ How is that different than saying, ‘I’m worried about everything’? How are those statements different semantically?”
Peterson noted how those claiming the existence of anthropogenic global warming both advocate and mandate systems that drive poverty, ostensibly as measures to halt their projections of planetary doom.
We’re going to go through a difficult period of privation because if we don’t accept limits to growth, there’s going to be a catastrophe 50 years in the future, thereabouts, and so to avert that catastrophe, we are going to make people poorer now. How much poorer? Well, not a lot compared to how much richer they’re going to be, but definitely — and they say this in their own models — definitely poorer than they would be if we just left them the hell alone.
When the aristocracy catches a cold, the working-class dies of pneumonia. All right, so now, we’re going to make people poorer. Okay, who? Well, we know who we make poorer when we make people poorer. We make those who are barely hanging on poorer, and what does that mean? It means they die, and so, what the Deloitte consultants are basically saying is, “Well, you know, it’s kind of unfortunate, but according to our models, a lot of poor people are going to have to die so that a lot more poor people don’t die in the future.”
Which of those two things am I supposed to regard with certainty? The hypothetical poor people that you’re going to hypothetically save a hundred years from now or the actual poor people that you are actually going to kill in the next ten years?
Well, I’m going to cast my lot with the actual poor people that you’re actually going to kill.
Those pushing an “environmental globalist Utopia,” he added, are “going to kill the poor” to “wipe out capitalism.”
Leftist governments impose inflationary policies that “make food prices more expensive,” he concluded. “Doesn’t that mean that hungry people die? Because that is what it means.”
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