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10 Gulf Daily News Thursday, 13th October 2011 The population bomb... most By HerBert Grimes TThe worldserious exampleaboutalwaysoff. he population is almost scribed as a bomb that is to go was Paul erlich’s book The Population Bomb in which the de- first three sections were entitled Too Many We must stop these Sir, People, Too Little Food and A Dying Planet. This is an old concern. In 1798, when there were fewer than a bil- M Y maid came home crying because her sister had arrived the pervious night from Sri Lanka. lion people in the world, Thomas Malthus She took her sister to her new published his famous Essay on Population Bahraini employer’s home in Galali in which he was convinced that “the period – my maid helped bring her for when the number of men surpass their them. means of subsistence has long since arrived” . The family told my maid that she Last week’s statistics said that the world is no longer allowed to see her, her population has grown seven times since sister will have no days off and will Malthus’s prediction of apocalypse and the occasion will, no doubt, be marked by con- begin working at 5am and finish at cerns that, this time, the world will not be 11pm or later. able to feed itself. Is this acceptable? Yes, she came The past century has seen a rapid quicken- here for a better life and I am sure ing of population growth. It took the world she is grateful for the job. But this is population millions of years to reach the first a cruel and extreme punishment – billion but only 123 years to get to the sec- Published letters are not allowing ond billion, 33 years to get to the third and not necessarily the her, who is only 27 years to get from there to the fifth. views of the Editor. new here, to The sixth and seventh billions have taken Readers wishing to see her sister, just 12 years each. make a complaint not giving her As medicine has improved and the quality through the GDN any days off of food improved out of all recognition in the should provide full de- and making world’s successive agricultural revolutions, tails of the complaint her work such life expectancy has grown. A person born in together with their long and hard 1800 could expect only to live into his early contact telephone hours. 40s. Now he can expect almost twice as long numbers. n Maids deserve humane treatment and better working conditions Why would a life. anyone want This evident good news, which is spread- is acceptable. And more importantly, can because her mother was undergoing treat- ing around the globe, brings with it concerns to work in such conditions? What is this maid someone please advise me how I can help ment. about the battle over scarce resources, such to do to receive fair treatment from this fam- my maid help her poor sister? Now my wife is here, but her condition is as water. ily? If she seeks out her embassy’s help, she Please help not well and she insists on bringing her son will be accused of “running away” . on family visa to take care of her. There are already 1bn people who have no access to clean water or electricity. There are Such inhumane treatment happens all over help the children When I contacted the General Directorate Bahrain and the Middle East. Why many Arabs 2.5bn who have no effective sanitation. The concerns are made all the more worry- ing because it is the poor parts of the world – I don’t say all – feel their employees don’t deserve to see their families or a day off? I SHALL be grateful if you pass my request to authorities to consider it on humanitarian grounds. of Nationality, Passports and Residence, I was told that he can’t come on family visa be- cause he is above 18. that are growing fastest. I don’t understand this part of your culture I am a Bahraini and have retired from a key I told them that I am a loyal Bahraini and Ninety per cent of population growth and the power this family has to devalue the ministry after 32 years. My family has been served this beloved country and the gov- is taking place in developing countries in poor maid’s life. living with me for about 20 years. ernment and that we are ready to defend Africa and Asia which raises the prospect, in She has not come here to be treated like a One of my sons travelled to Baluchistan, Bahrain until our lost drop of blood. the minds of the alarmed, that destitution slave, with no rights. With treatment like this, Pakistan – having valid resident permit – to I asked why I can’t bring my son on my caused by population growth in the Third why would she attempt to do a good job or take care of his sponsorship. But I was not given a reasonable World will show itself in demands on immi- work hard? response. gration into developed countries. The fear mother whom I would like I sent there for I appeal to authorities to grant family visa can incite authoritarian solutions such as two things from compulsory state birth-control policies. treatment fol- to Bahrainis’ children who are above 18 or the Arab read- lowing kidney citizenship on humanitarian grounds so they In fact, the answer to the fears about popu- lation growth is essentially the same as it ers – please tell problem. can live here peacefully and serve the coun- was in the last years of the 18th century. me, how this His permit try. Three years before Malthus wrote, treatment of expired and he Being a loyal Bahraini, I hope authorities French mathematician and social scientist another human could not return will consider my request favourably. Condorcet predicted that the problem of population growth would be solved by rea- soned human action. Increases in productiv- ity and better education of the people would change behaviour and allow the world to TODAY is Thursday, October 13, the 286th Sanchez wins Nobel Peace Prize for spon- 1999 - French MPs adopt a law giving their pioneering use of tiny loans – micro- day of 2011. There are 79 days left in the soring plan to end civil wars in Central unwed gay and straight couples the same credit – to lift millions out of poverty. sustain a greatly enlarged population. year. Highlights in history on this date: America. rights previously limited to the married. 2007 - Myanmar’s junta arrests three most This is, indeed, what has happened. 1307 – King Philip IV the Fair of France has 1988 – Egyptian author Naguib Mahfouz 2000 - The death toll in an attack on a US prominent political activists, believed to economic and social development has been every member of the Templar order in the becomes first Arabic-language writer to warship rises to 17 after the navy says the be among the last leaders remaining at accompanied by big reductions in birth rates country arrested, accusing them of heresy win Nobel Prize for Literature. 10 sailors missing are presumed dead. large from a student group at the fore- and the emergence of smaller families as the and immorality. 1990 – Christian leader General Michel 2001 - President Hosni Mubarak issues an front of a 1988 democracy uprising and 1815 – British occupy South Atlantic is- Aoun seeks asylum in the French Embassy order that 83 suspected Islamic militants protests that started in August. norm. land of Ascension to prevent Napoleon’s in Lebanon following attack on his strong- stand trial in Egypt’s state security court. 2008 - Police fire tear gas at thousands As europe and North America underwent escape from St Helena, the closest island. hold by Syrian forces. 2002 - The run-off vote for president of of pro-Serb Montenegrins who pelt state industrialisation, this was the pattern they 1860 – The first aerial photograph is taken 1991 – Twenty-one blacks are killed in Serbia, the dominant republic of the two- buildings with rocks to protest their gov- experienced. The period of greatest popula- from a balloon over Boston in the US. attacks in South Africa’s black townships. republic Yugoslav federation, is declared ernment’s recognition of Kosovo’s inde- tion growth coincided with the greatest re- 1880 – Transvaal declares independence 1992 – The pyramids, the Sphinx and oth- invalid after voter turnout reaches 45.5 pendence. At least 34 are injured. from Britain. er monuments survive a Cairo earthquake per cent, necessitating a fresh election. 2009 - Russia pushes back against US ef- corded growth in living standards. 1889 – Boers rebel against British in South that kills 400 and injures 4,000. 2003 - Philippines forces shoot and kill forts to threaten tough new sanctions if That is why economic growth remains Africa. 1993 – A fanatic fan of tennis player Steffi Fathur Rahman Al Ghozi, allegedly a major Iran fails to prove its nuclear programme the key to the population debate. The other 1923 – Ankara, formerly Angora, becomes Graf is convicted of stabbing her arch-rival figure in regional terrorist group Jemaah is peaceful, dealing an apparent setback great intellectual ferment of the latter years new capital of Turkey. Monica Seles and receives a two-year sus- Islamiah. He escaped from prison in Ma- to President Barack Obama’s hopes for 1937 – Germany guarantees inviolability pended sentence. nila on July 14. Moscow’s backing for fresh penalties of the 18th century was the argument about of Belgium. 1995 – A Dusseldorf court finds four 2004 - Ex-soldiers who toppled presi- against Tehran. the merits of free trade, given its most elo- 1943 – Italy, during the Second World War, young right-wing extremists guilty of dent Jean-Bertrand Aristide in a deadly 2010 - With remarkable speed – and flaw- quent expression in Adam Smith’s The Wealth declares war on Germany, its former Axis setting a fire to a house in Solingen, kill- revolt say reinforcements are advancing less execution – miner after miner climbs of Nations. partner. ing five Turks in the deadliest attack on on Haiti’s capital to halt violence that has into a cramped cage deep beneath the It is still true that trade between free na- 1952 – Egypt reaches an agreement with foreigners in Germany since the Nazi era. killed 48 people – a move that threatens Chilean earth, and is hoisted through Sudan on Nile waters. 1996 – A Kurdish faction captures the city conflict with armed Aristide militants and 2,000 feet of rock and sees precious sun- tions is the best way of ensuring that the 1968 – The new military government in of Sulaymaniyah in northern Iraq after UN peacekeepers. light after the longest underground en- ingenuity of enterprising human beings is Panama names a civilian cabinet. having lost it to Kurds, supported by Iraqi 2005 - Islamic militants launch a major at- trapment in history. harnessed for a growing population. Where 1969 – The Soviet Union sends third President Saddam Hussein. tack on police and government buildings there are shortages, they are caused by the spacecraft into orbit in as many days, 1997 – Queen Elizabeth II begins a con- in the provincial capital of Nalchik in Rus- putting seven cosmonauts in space. troversial visit to India to mark the 50th sia’s volatile Caucasus region, turning the poor having inadequate entitlement to food, 1970 – Canada and China say they will es- anniversary of the subcontinent’s inde- city into a war zone wrecked by gunfire THERE are some things one can not by an overall shortage of food. tablish diplomatic relations. Taiwan breaks pendence from Britain. and explosions. At least 49 people, includ- only achieve by a deliberate leap The fact that Malthus has always been ties with Canada. 1998 – A gas explosion sets off a pile of ing 25 militants, are killed. in the opposite direction. One has wrong before does not, in itself, mean he 1985 – Tamil guerillas attack troops in two gunpowder used to make illegal fireworks 2006 - Bangladeshi economist Muham- to go abroad in order to find the ceasefire violations in Sri Lanka. in Tultepec, Mexico, obliterating a two- mad Yunus and the Grameen Bank he home one has lost – Franz Kafka, must be wrong again. But we have it in our Austrian author (1883-1924). 1987 – Costa Rica’s President Oscar Arias block area and killing 10 people. founded win the Nobel Peace Prize for power to make him so.
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