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Math Models Predicted Global Uprisings

samzenpus posted about 6 months ago | from the no-food-no-peace dept.

Math 265

retroworks writes "Just over a year ago, complex systems theorists at the New England Complex Systems Institute warned that if food prices continued to climb, so too would the likelihood that there would be riots across the globe. Sure enough, we're seeing them now. The paper's author, Yaneer Bar-Yam, charted the rise in the FAO food price index—a measure the UN uses to map the cost of food over time—and found that whenever it rose above 210, riots broke out worldwide. It happened in 2008 after the economic collapse, and again in 2011, when a Tunisian street vendor who could no longer feed his family set himself on fire in protest."

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Hindsight? (4, Insightful)

Joce640k (829181) | about 6 months ago | (#46293161)

Is that with hindsight or without?

How many "models" are going unreported because they didn't work out too well?

Re:Hindsight? (2, Interesting)

sjwt (161428) | about 6 months ago | (#46293175)

Its worse then that, their little graph only shows a handful of riots that they want to be on their.

I dont see any riots that do not meet their own agenda on it, hell the french riot a few times every year, I see none of the Australian riots I know of.
Total BS

Re:Hindsight? (-1, Flamebait)

Chrisq (894406) | about 6 months ago | (#46293179)

Its worse then that, their little graph only shows a handful of riots that they want to be on their.

I dont see any riots that do not meet their own agenda on it, hell the french riot a few times every year, I see none of the Australian riots I know of. Total BS

And of course Muslim countries are always rioting about something - they don't like a book, a cartoon, or a film or someone said that people of other religions should be given equal rights ... or someone said that they are violent and riot all the time.

Re:Hindsight? (4, Insightful)

Splab (574204) | about 6 months ago | (#46293227)

Racists much?

Currently there are massive riots in The Ukraine, Venezuela, Thailand; signs of growing civil unrest in central Europe - reports of riots in Brazil; All countries of course known for their muslim leadership...

Re:Hindsight? (-1, Troll)

Chrisq (894406) | about 6 months ago | (#46293237)

Racists much?

What race is Islam?

Currently there are massive riots in The Ukraine, Venezuela, Thailand; signs of growing civil unrest in central Europe - reports of riots in Brazil; All countries of course known for their muslim leadership...

You might like to compare the reasons fro rioting with those that cause muzzies to riot

Re:Hindsight? (4, Funny)

whistlingtony (691548) | about 6 months ago | (#46293281)

Hint. when denying racism, it's usually best to avoid using racist words in the same post. "Muzzies" indeed

Re:Hindsight? (5, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 months ago | (#46293335)

Islam is a religion not a race. Hence the term Muslim, which means a follower of Islam, is not a racial term. "Muzzies" would however fall under the definition of bigotry though. Which is similar but not quite the same as racism.

Re:Hindsight? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 months ago | (#46293353)

The key difference being you can't choose your race.

Instant moral judgement... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 months ago | (#46293363)

..."Muzzies" would however fall under the definition of bigotry though...

How can you make these snap decisions? Is there a training course for it, or are you naturally a moron?

In my world, "whistlingtony" falls under the definition of paedophile fascist. Or whatever is the current group that society is being taught to hate. Perhaps gypsies? Or Climate Change deniers...?

Re:Instant moral judgement... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 months ago | (#46293383)

Maybe people should stop throwing around words like racist in situations that they don't apply to.

Re:Instant moral judgement... (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 months ago | (#46293713)

Yeah , it got nothin' to do with Lance Armstrong, Nascar, the Olympics or any of the successful racists out there, dedicating their lives to racing.

Re:Instant moral judgement... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 months ago | (#46293825)

That's racist!

Re:Instant moral judgement... (1)

zakeria (1031430) | about 6 months ago | (#46293457)

I detect a riot about to happen and I never used some fancy Math

Re:Instant moral judgement... (2)

flyneye (84093) | about 6 months ago | (#46293721)

Nah, this is just /.
Kinda remind you of slam dancing in the pit, back in the 80s/90s.But with fewer skinheads.

Re:Hindsight? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 months ago | (#46293685)

Islam is a cult, founded by a thieving pedophile with mommy issues, based loosely on an older Hebrew Religion. Kind of like Catholicism and it's self serving take on the same religion. At least $cientology had the foresite to harvest money and power from the imagination of a schizophrenic Kansan.
We know they are cults by the results they produce which contrast the central message presented the suckers..er..public.

Re:Hindsight? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 months ago | (#46293345)

You didn't answer his question: What race is Islam?

Last time I checked it was a religious choice, like 'Christian', or 'Jewish', or 'Buddist'.

Re:Hindsight? (1)

LF11 (18760) | about 6 months ago | (#46293507)

Wow you are completely ignorant about the topic. "Jewish" is a race, a culture, AND a religion. And Islam does have racial connotations in that battles involving Islam are often divided along racial divisions as well. The same applies to Christianity. There are exceptions of course, but the pattern remains.

Re:Hindsight? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 months ago | (#46293623)

Yes, Jewish is a race. Islam isn't as much as you may want to whine that it is. But don't worry, there's still a word you can use to describe him that isn't "racist". It's bigot. You see, you idiots with your limited vocabulary just go on to bastardize words. Learn the language.

Re:Hindsight? (1)

K. S. Kyosuke (729550) | about 6 months ago | (#46293657)

And Islam does have racial connotations in that battles involving Islam are often divided along racial divisions as well.

Except wherever the population exhibits either no such divisions (or, conversely, the picture is so variegated that no 1:1 matching of finely distinguished races/ethnicities and religious affiliations exist), like the clashes between the Muslim Indians and the Hindu Indians, right? And Indonesians seem to be largely the same case.

Re:Hindsight? (1)

flyneye (84093) | about 6 months ago | (#46293741)

uhm your heart was in the right place, but Judeans from Judea became the Jews. Unless you are Jewish to begin with, straining as hard as you can will not make you a Jew. You can convert, but will probably hear Goy jokes whispered wherever you go. Its a Raceligion.

Re:Hindsight? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 months ago | (#46293795)

Not much of a choice when the result of choosing something different is a public beheading.

Re:Hindsight? (1)

flyneye (84093) | about 6 months ago | (#46293667)

LOL, never heard that one, sounds like a toy from Mattel. "Muzzies, just wind them up and watch them cuddle".

Re:Hindsight? (1)

Ixokai (443555) | about 6 months ago | (#46293321)

I'm taking the "racists mush?" question to have been answered with "yes" when you go name a people "muzzies".

The point was, you're claiming Muslim rioting as a counterpoint, but even if its accepted that those riots are a part of this this trend of rioting spoken of-- they don't fit even your pattern, they *aren't* a counterpoint simply because you state it. Naming them to counter the argument is just racist handwaving at best: oh, well the Muslims (er, muzzies) are rioting, so clearly there's no pattern because, they like are muzzies, and muzzies, do that. You know. Cuz. They do. Muzzies. Riot.

There's no link between Muslims and the Ukraine and their riots unless you twist reality severely to try to force a point. The riots in the Ukraine are about (at least-- it very well may be a much more involved story) a segment of the population who has a history of successful revolution when in relation to serious belief of election fraud and corruption; and acts by the current government that are viewed as corrupt and against their interests (namely, aligning Ukraine more closely to Russia instead of the EU). Is that true? Dunno. But there's nothing Muslim about it.

To look at former Soviet satellite states and see their dislike for union with Russia as a sign of Muslim rioting just cuz, needs some serious [citation needed].

Thailand is a complex situation: they have a mix of pro-government people from varied situations, and anti-democracy forces who think there's something just wrong with their government and simple election counting when the counters have such tremendous control. Its sort of bemusing to hear some of riots which are specifically yelling: democracy bad! But, that is because of a nuanced and complicated situation they're going through, with an extremely wealthy subset seem to have democratic support of the rural masses at the cost of great disapproval in the middle classes of the city. This, of course, is a very broad stroke description of the situation. I'm not sure where to fall on the subject, and I lack seriously enough information to really have a solid idea. But.

The point is, it isn't because muslims happened. Culture happened. People happened. This is nuanced.

No comparison to the "muzzies" sheds any insight on this situation.

The because the real world is complicated, nuanced, and based on history and the context of real people living real lives.

Yes, some "muzzies" had riots, for reasons. That doesn't make every riot and every government going through growing pains because, you know, the muzzies.

Seriously, dude, you said "muzzies".

I should have just stopped there.

Racist much? Maybe not. Islamaphobic much, though?

Reads true.

Re:Hindsight? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 months ago | (#46293339)

'Islam' is not a race, you can argue he is sectarian, or that by 'Muzzies' he really meant 'Arabic people', but he has not made any statement that is specifically racist.

Re:Hindsight? (0)

drinkypoo (153816) | about 6 months ago | (#46293581)

I'm taking the "racists mush?" question to have been answered with "yes" when you go name a people "muzzies".

That's because you don't know the difference between a religion and a race.

Racist much? Maybe not. Islamaphobic much, though?

Oh, so you do understand the difference, but you were simply being disingenuous? Explain why anyone should be interested in your bullshit.

Re:Hindsight? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 months ago | (#46293673)

There is a link between the Ukraine and the Arabic states. Both have harsh climates, poor access to potable water, and wealth concentrated in the hands of a few, often of different race than the local population. So increases in food price, or poor crops or cultural issues causing restricted food or water to the poor is _immediately_ felt. There's little "safety net" for them, and the priveleged wealthy aren't focused on helping them in crisis.

The result is riots, for pretty much the same reason in both places.

Re:Hindsight? (1)

AmiMoJo (196126) | about 6 months ago | (#46293719)

What race is Islam?

The line is blurred. Jews consider themselves a race, but Judaism is also a religion. When people talk about Muslim countries they mainly mean middle eastern ones run by Arabs or Asians (and don't confuse Asians with Orientals).

Re:Hindsight? (1, Insightful)

a_n_d_e_r_s (136412) | about 6 months ago | (#46293261)

Occupy wall street was a protest against the rich in the little country known as USA.

A typical muslim country is it ? Not really.

Well, it's at least a land full of religious conservatives who don't drink tea but rather push it into the river.
There are many people who read and think too much about ancient obsolete books and think they have all the answers.

Re:Hindsight? (1, Interesting)

AmiMoJo (196126) | about 6 months ago | (#46293743)

Occupy was peaceful though, at least until the cops started attacking the protesters. Unfortunately it seems that the only way to create real change is to riot now, as governments have made damn sure peaceful protest is ignored.

Re: Hindsight? (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 months ago | (#46293285)

It's not race. It's an ignorant culture/religion that creates these problem.

It's not racist to criticize a culture or religion, even if liberals try to convince you otherwise.

Re: Hindsight? (0)

benjfowler (239527) | about 6 months ago | (#46293329)

Or lack of culture, as it were.

Re:Hindsight? (1)

flyneye (84093) | about 6 months ago | (#46293661)

Muslims aren't a race , Einstein.

Oh yeah. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 months ago | (#46293727)

Islam isn't a race. It's a religion. Also, in Thailand most of the vielence is in the southern parts, in islamist areas. They want to have their own islamist country there. Ukraina also has very strong islamist influence. Central europes unrest is partly caused by islam. Religion of peace, yeaah.

Re:Hindsight? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 months ago | (#46293297)

the french riot a few times every year

Citation needed.

French organizations protest regularly -- if you are in a big city, depending on the causes that you support, you may find a protest you can go several times a week. That is not a riot. I can't think of any cases where a French person in recent history burned themselves alive.

Re:Hindsight? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 months ago | (#46293427)

Nonsequitor much?
Self-immolation isn't a riot either, in any sense. It is, however, a form of protest.

Re:Hindsight? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 months ago | (#46293619)

Nonsequitor much?
Self-immolation isn't a riot either, in any sense. It is, however, a form of protest.

TFA [arxiv.org] refers to food riots, in particular. If you flip off the driver for cutting into your lane, your protestations don't fall under the subject of the model.

Re:Hindsight? (3, Insightful)

K. S. Kyosuke (729550) | about 6 months ago | (#46293565)

I dont see any riots that do not meet their own agenda on it

Or, they're simply trying to demonstrate that lack of food security causes riots, not that all riots are caused by lack of food security.

Re:Hindsight? (5, Funny)

Chad Smith (3448823) | about 6 months ago | (#46293177)

Models don't eat anyways

Re:Hindsight? (1)

p43751 (170402) | about 6 months ago | (#46293301)

mod up. Soo funny.

Re:Hindsight? (1)

plebeian (910665) | about 6 months ago | (#46293423)

I agree that the complexities of the world are hard to model, that does not mean the basis for the story is incorrect. Food prices have long been tied to an increase of social unrest (http://www.foreignpolicy.com/files/fp_uploaded_documents/130308_Bellemare%20Food%20Price%20Volatility%20and%20Social%20Unrest%20January.PDF provides a decent analysis of the situation). Those who write off the tie between food prices and rioting do so to their own detriment.

Re:Hindsight? (1)

Lumpy (12016) | about 6 months ago | (#46293505)

Well the popular "hampster uprising" has not happened, but a lot of the doomsayers are still holding out for it to happen. It has become one of the most desirable outcomes.

Who wouldn't want a cute fuzzy wuzzy supreme leader?

You done? (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 months ago | (#46293637)

You KNOW who this is (APK): You going tto apologize for libeing me, or do I have to take to the next level? Think this over pal before you get all "upset" because 1 thing I am absolutely correct on, is being righteously indignant about this libel from yourself directed MY way here -> http://yro.slashdot.org/commen... [slashdot.org]

* Now, since you've called me "weak" in computing AND called my app a malware, that link SHUT YOUR LITTLE YAP didn't it fuckface?

Yes, it did (you shut the fuck up & ran) - & then ac posts occurred (which I KNOW are you, trust me, & more than just suspicion)... so, that all said & aside, if your "gander/goat" is gotten & up?

Care to call my app a malware here again, libeling myself? Didn't work last time Forrest (you RAN), OR would you care to debate the points I post on it (which started the ordeal & libel from yourself) - but you NEVER validly disproved my points on them either, now did you? Nope...

Try do it now then - I will shred you, easily (and you KNOW it, hence all you had was libeling myself).

APK

P.S.=> You're a punk pal - but one I destroyed easily wtih facrts, here (your post was parent to it, beneath one of my posts on hosts) & your libel is clear in it http://yro.slashdot.org/commen... [slashdot.org] & I shot your crap to pieces..,. care to debate that too? apk

Re:Hindsight? (1)

Catiline (186878) | about 6 months ago | (#46293509)

How many "models" are going unreported because they didn't work out too well?

According to my model, 100% of them.

Foundation (2)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 months ago | (#46293167)

hari seldon did that first with psychohistory I seem to recall..

Re:Foundation and Empire (2)

rusty0101 (565565) | about 6 months ago | (#46293361)

But even he was unable to forsee the Mule.

Re: Foundation and Empire (1)

xmundt (415364) | about 6 months ago | (#46293593)

That is the problem with random mutations. They are unpredictable, both in when they will appear and in how they will affect society.

Meanwhile in Finland.... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 months ago | (#46293169)

...goverment is thinking of increasing the tax of food from 14% to 22% ...Because it's the best way to suck money out of people. Everyone needs to eat :)

Re:Meanwhile in Finland.... (0, Troll)

Viol8 (599362) | about 6 months ago | (#46293187)

"a Tunisian street vendor who could no longer feed his family set himself on fire in protest."

Well, it was also the constant harassment from officials too according to wonkypedia.

However I have limited sympathy with a certain type of person who you see on TV bleating that they can't feed their 5 or 10 kids. Perhaps if they'd invested some money in contraception or maybe just kept their pants on occasionally they wouldn't be in this situation. Unfortunately reproduction ability isn't governed by IQ - if it was there wouldn't be over 7 billion and counting on this planet already.

Re:Meanwhile in Finland.... (0)

benjfowler (239527) | about 6 months ago | (#46293475)

The story was that he killed himself because he was a Muslim who couldn't handle taking orders from a female authority figure -- a female policeman in this case.

The lord giveth... (4, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 months ago | (#46293283)

Meanwhile, here in Norway the VAT for food items was reduced from 25% down to half. The consumers didn't notice because the shops just pocketed the difference and pretended nothing had happened.

Everything is not always the govt's fault.

Re:The lord giveth... (1)

dargaud (518470) | about 6 months ago | (#46293693)

Same in France with the VAT on restaurants. Pissed off the gov who reinstated the tax after a few years.

Re:The lord giveth... (1)

Opportunist (166417) | about 6 months ago | (#46293817)

What did anyone expect? That some business owner simply forgo profit?

The price of a good is not dependent on its production cost. The price of a good is only dependent on how much you can ask to net the highest profit. The only time the production cost comes into play is when the asking price drops below the production cost, then it simply will not be produced anymore. Else it doesn't matter jack how much it costs to make it, the price will ALWAYS be what someone is willing to pay.

Your masters will learn to tune the system (4, Insightful)

nut (19435) | about 6 months ago | (#46293181)

What worries me about this sort of knowledge, is that it could make it possible for political leaders to keep the masses working their asses off just above the breadline. But they can avoid pushing it so far that they get the kind of political activism that might result in regime change.

Re:Your masters will learn to tune the system (4, Informative)

BlackPignouf (1017012) | about 6 months ago | (#46293315)

it could ???
"Bread and circuses" is a 2000 years old expression.

Re:Your masters will learn to tune the system (1)

swb (14022) | about 6 months ago | (#46293659)

You mean to say it's a 2000 year old *system*, not just an expression.

Re:Your masters will learn to tune the system (1)

Ramirozz (758009) | about 6 months ago | (#46293759)

Not government, businesses. They are always pushing people to work their asses off just above the breadline. Not all of them, but food prices are directed by inflation, so the minimum wages. What you are mentioning is part of the game already. And the government doesn't care.

Re:Your masters will learn to tune the system (1)

sproketboy (608031) | about 6 months ago | (#46293827)

"make it possible for industrial leaders and bankers to keep the masses working their asses off just above the breadline."
FTFY

Hari Seldon would be pleased... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 months ago | (#46293197)

'nuff said

And Weatherchick Predicts Snow In Winter (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 months ago | (#46293205)

Not at all surprising, even for a chick.

Populations go up... (0, Troll)

Viol8 (599362) | about 6 months ago | (#46293211)

... food availability goes down for the same amount of farmland.

Sure , we could chop down all the forests and bulldoze all the other wild habitats to use more of it for agriculture , or ... people could use contraception or keep their fscking pants on now and then. If I see one more sob story of some halfwit who can't feed their ten kids....

Re:Populations go up... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 months ago | (#46293263)

Exactly. It might be easier to feed the family if it were smaller.......

Callous knobhead (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 months ago | (#46293289)

Typical libertarian psycopath response, that.

How about we manage to BOTH keep our pants on AND manage to muster some empathy for people who are actually starving? Some of you cretins are such ethical one-trick ponies it's embarassing.

Re:Callous knobhead (2, Insightful)

benjfowler (239527) | about 6 months ago | (#46293333)

Oohhhh, and if we don't always, constantly show "empathy" (and of course, soon after, give free money and lebensraum to people who fuck up, and want everyone else to take responsibility for it) for others, we are BAD people.

Right.

This place is turning into a low-rent knockoff of Comment Is Free.

Fuck "empathy". If Third World assholes can't keep their legs crossed and they end up in a Malthusian catastrophe, why should we bail them out.

Re:Callous knobhead (1)

Viol8 (599362) | about 6 months ago | (#46293381)

Spot on. But some expect some self hating bleading heart to mod you down anytime soon.

Re:Callous knobhead (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 months ago | (#46293763)

Depends. Do you want your HDTV to cost $500 or $2000?

If you want it to cost $500 then you want that third world to be a viable place to manufacture and do business in. What does that mean? That means not telling Third World assholes to keep their legs crossed etc.

Re:Callous knobhead (1)

Ramirozz (758009) | about 6 months ago | (#46293789)

I am assuming you didn't read the story. Check the list, not all of them are third world countries. France, Sweden, Greece... come on, the US, a first worl country is in that path to. But, what they all have in common? the same economic system.

Re:Callous knobhead (0, Troll)

qbast (1265706) | about 6 months ago | (#46293421)

How about ... not ? I can manage some empathy for people starving without their fault (for example war refugees). I will spare none for idiots who breed like rabbits and expect others to feed their spawn.

Re:Callous knobhead (0)

benjfowler (239527) | about 6 months ago | (#46293483)

Agreed. The fact that there is some kind of human right to breed out of control is a complete nonsense, and must end.

Re:Populations go up... (1, Troll)

silentcoder (1241496) | about 6 months ago | (#46293391)

Coming from a country where it's a political hot potato to have insurance cover birth control but not viagra... I find your comment incredibly stupid.

Re:Populations go up... (-1)

Viol8 (599362) | about 6 months ago | (#46293519)

" I find your comment incredibly stupid."

Sadly people like you are part of the problem. But keep your head in the sand if it makes you feel better.

Re:Populations go up... (1, Insightful)

silentcoder (1241496) | about 6 months ago | (#46293553)

>Sadly people like you are part of the problem. But keep your head in the sand if it makes you feel better.

People like me ? And what pray-tell kind of people, am I ?
You know exactly fuckall about me.
You don't know if I'm married or single. You don't know if I have children. You don't know if I'm monogamous, polyamorous, a swinger. You don't know which gender I identify with, what my sexual orientation is, whether I'm religious and if so what religion.
You don't know if I like anal sex, giving or receiving, you don't know whether I like bagels or pizza more.
You literally know absolutely nothing about me - except the one thing I have told you in that comment: a clear indication that I believe birth control should be readily available.
Considering I am not biologically capable of having children - clearly this is not out of personal concern.

Absolutely everything else you may think you know about me is based entirely on extrapolation from that solitary un-contexted statement with zero affirming evidence.

I will therefore, take your declarations regarding my head and sand (about which I'll tell you something new about me: I know that this expression is fucking stupid because no animal actually does that - least of all the ostrich and I should know as I live in their native habitat) and being part of "the problem" as just more utterly ignorant claptrap.
How can you know whether I'm part of what you perceive as the problem ? How can you know what I propose to do about it ?
You have no idea of my thoughts on *anything at all* !
Yet you feel you know me well enough to make such declarations based purely on what you imagine I may, possibly, think.

Now that is arrogant and stupid in the extreme - just like the comment I replied to.

Re:Populations go up... (-1)

Viol8 (599362) | about 6 months ago | (#46293663)

"People like me ? And what pray-tell kind of people, am I ?"

Well going by that whining self righteous queenie rant you're obviously fairly young, early 20s, maybe teens and probably gay. Its also obviously quite clear that you're the sort who think people have no responsibility for the amount of children they have if they can't get free birth control else you wouldn't have thought my comment was stupid. Either that or you simply didn't understand it.

"a clear indication that I believe birth control should be readily available."

Actually it wasn't clear at all. Is english a 2nd language for you?

"Considering I am not biologically capable of having children"

Being gay doesn't mean you're incapable, you just don't want to. So if you were angling for a bit of sympathy you're out of luck pal.

Re:Populations go up... (1)

silentcoder (1241496) | about 6 months ago | (#46293705)

>Well going by that whining self righteous queenie rant you're obviously fairly young, early 20s, maybe teens and probably gay.

You got every single one of your guesses wrong.
I am in my mid-thirties, married, polyamorous and bisexual and my wife is currently pregnant.

> quite clear that you're the sort who think people have no responsibility for the amount of children they have if they can't get free birth control

Nope, I didn't say that - I do however have the capacity to do math and say that if poor people have ready access to birth control for free they are more likely to use it - because people who spend their entire income on a place to live and a meal don't have anything to spare on your ideas and abstinence doesn't EXIST in the real world.

>Actually it wasn't clear at all. Is english a 2nd language for you?

Yes, actually, but it happens to be one I have a university degree in - from how terrible *your* English is -you MUST be a first language speaker however. To paraphrase G.B. Shaw: nobody who had been taught English could possibly use it so badly - only native speakers rape English.

>Being gay doesn't mean you're incapable, you just don't want to.

That sentence was badly put I admit -it should have read "get pregnant" not "have children" - I'm having a child in June.

> So if you were angling for a bit of sympathy you're out of luck pal.

I have neither the need nor the desire for sympathy - I was EXPRESSING sympathy, not asking for it.

You know... the headline on this site says it's for smart-asses, you are only *half* qualified to be here (the second half - I'm saying you're an ass).

And you still know practically nothing about me - but you have told me a great deal about you: you are a judgmental moralist who blame the oppressed for their own oppression. You call me part of the problem - I say you ARE the problem.

Re:Populations go up... (2)

qbast (1265706) | about 6 months ago | (#46293413)

Efficiency goes up as well. Today 10 farmers or 10 hectares can produce much more food than it could 300 years ago.

Re:Populations go up... (1)

benjfowler (239527) | about 6 months ago | (#46293501)

"Past performance is not indicative of future returns".

The Green Revolution has run its course. Increases in yield per acre are stagnating, in some cases, dropping, because of resource depletion and bad farming practices.

Because the easy wins have been made, and improvements in yields are stagnating, if not, falling (because of loss of topsoil, aquifer depletion, salination, etc).

Yet, the Third World population is spiralling out of control. Our looming resource-depletion Armageddon will start in places like Egypt first, where they have drastically exceeded the land's carry capacity, and they're culturally totally incapable of getting a grip on the situation. They think Allah will make it all good, and will do so until Western border guards start shooting at the refugees.

When the end comes, it'll hit us HARD. I, for one, are hoping we're tooled up for a fight, because it'll literally be a fight for survival.

Re:Populations go up... (1, Interesting)

Viol8 (599362) | about 6 months ago | (#46293535)

At what cost? Loss of wild habitats, sterile monocultures , pesticide poisoning of what little wildlife is left, fertilizer runoff causing o2 depletion in the rivers, soil erosion due to constant tilling, huge CO2 footprint due to fossil fuels required to produce agrichemicals and machinery to work the land and so on and on and on.

The methods of 300 years ago had survived for millenia. The way we've abused the planet in the last century we'll do well to be able to maintain this production for the next 100 years, never mind 1000.

Re:Populations go up... (1)

qbast (1265706) | about 6 months ago | (#46293601)

At what cost? Loss of wild habitats, sterile monocultures , pesticide poisoning of what little wildlife is left, fertilizer runoff causing o2 depletion in the rivers, soil erosion due to constant tilling, huge CO2 footprint due to fossil fuels required to produce agrichemicals and machinery to work the land and so on and on and on.

And how exactly does it contradict simple fact that food availability does not go down?

The methods of 300 years ago had survived for millenia. The way we've abused the planet in the last century we'll do well to be able to maintain this production for the next 100 years, never mind 1000.

Oh yes, lament about 'good old days' and abuse of planet while using your computer, living in nice apartment, driving a car and enjoying modern medicine. We are quite adaptable species, when environment changes we will adapt again.

Re:Populations go up... (1)

K. S. Kyosuke (729550) | about 6 months ago | (#46293699)

But it's not like there's no progress possible regarding the state of affairs from three hundred years ago, is it? Replace pesticides with better weed management (physical or mechanical techniques), overuse of fertilizers with more reasonable dosages (aren't the Israelis are onto something with drip irrigation?), fossil fuels with sustainable energy sources etc. Really, when you think about it, it appears to me that we increased agricultural production hand in hand with minimizing human labour by merely switching to an agricultural equivalent of carpet bombing. I'm thoroughly convinced nowadays that what the world will need in the centuries to come will be some advanced robotic equivalent to human labour and its fine hands - the agricultural equivalent of precision guided missiles, so as to speak.

Re:Populations go up... (1)

Ramirozz (758009) | about 6 months ago | (#46293777)

Availability is a technological issue that in most cases is solved, and if it is not is because bad management of resources or access to technology. The scarcity argument was ok 100 years ago, not today, even with GMO. Food prices go up and down because inflation, and inflation is uncontrolled because how the banking system works and because the same system works with speculation. Then there is this false idea that people are in control of their lives. Poor people (I mean, really poor) will always have more children, it is their scape. You will be amazed to see research that demonstrates that it is not only the lack of access to birth planning techniques but also how sex is an scape in very problematic areas... and a cultural requirement in some areas. So poverty is the cause for big, unplanned, families.

Truman show (1)

TempleOS (3394245) | about 6 months ago | (#46293243)

I live in a CIA bubble. They set-up fake companies just so I can work, if I want to. I'm not interested.

did they really? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 months ago | (#46293267)

A few weeks ago I tried to test the theory from this paper, and get some data on the Ukrainian food price index. After a bit of digging on the FAO site I just could not find the "food price index" data. It could very well be my ineptitude.. but where is the data?

Interesting (1)

water-and-sewer (612923) | about 6 months ago | (#46293277)

I've read a lot of those old "doomsaying" articles and in general they're interesting. But the Malthusians have been preaching the same apocalypses for a long time now and they've generally failed to come true.

I agree resource scarcity is essentially at the root of most of our problems, and over at http://www.dictatorshandbook.n... [dictatorshandbook.net] the discussion basically revolves around the idea that religious wars are a proxy for resource grabs, while bad governments either prevent more violence or promote it to achieve short-term political gains.

Bring on the world war and let's get back out of everyone's face. And let the MiddleEast burn, so we can do something nice on the ashes.

Hey speaking of predicting uprisings, I'll bet Dice's models never predicted so many Slashdotters would bail out in disgust their commentary on the new Beta was ignored! See you on Usenet at comp.misc.

Re:Interesting (-1, Flamebait)

benjfowler (239527) | about 6 months ago | (#46293337)

Exactly. Muslims rioting, doing illegal immigration, etc, is at its root, a resource grab by feckless, morally, culturally inferior people, against people who work hard, don't hyper-breed, and do the right thing.

The Muzzies are in for a rude awakening when we start mining the borders and shooting at the boats.

Re:Interesting (1)

drinkypoo (153816) | about 6 months ago | (#46293585)

I've read a lot of those old "doomsaying" articles and in general they're interesting. But the Malthusians have been preaching the same apocalypses for a long time now and they've generally failed to come true.

Except this guy predicted riots which then did not fail to come true. So uh, what does that have to do with this?

Predicted two years ago, it works. (4, Informative)

esldude (1157749) | about 6 months ago | (#46293313)

http://news.slashdot.org/story... [slashdot.org] A rare instance of getting it right. This very prediction was predicted before the riots happened. Predicted when, and wasn't too terribly far off I suppose. Of course slashdot having no memory didn't even realize it was already covered.

My formula (2)

erroneus (253617) | about 6 months ago | (#46293373)

AngryPeople + BadGovernment = Uprising

Re:My formula (1)

Ramirozz (758009) | about 6 months ago | (#46293813)

I would say Stupid economic system (speculation, scarcity, inflation) -> Bad Governmen -> Angry People -> Uprising... it is a chain. This will happen even in relatively peaceful places like Costa Rica. Check the pattern: the system creates money based on inflation, inflation makes everything cost more (or money worth less and less, as you want to see it), Governments can't keep up, ever (see the US... even China has a huge debt), more borrowing, food and basic services fail, roads fail, infrastructure fails, labor oportunities go down, inequality, raise of racism, crime (poeple fighting each other for stuff). It begins with the poor and immigrants (the one with less oportunities) then the middle class follows... when an important part of the middle class is affected, riots start.

No shit, Sherlock! (1)

ReeceTarbert (893612) | about 6 months ago | (#46293377)

Do we really need complex systems theorists to tell us that "if food prices continued to climb, so too would the likelihood that there would be riots across the globe"?!?

Okay then, where do I apply for D.O.T.O.M.O.O. (Department of the Obvious Made Obviously Obvious)?

RT.

Just as much (4, Insightful)

Chrisq (894406) | about 6 months ago | (#46293385)

Racist much? Maybe not. Islamaphobic much, though?

If you mean hating an ideology that wants to subdue or kill all others then I suppose I am just as islamaphobic as the allies in WWII were naziphobic.

Re:Just as much (-1, Troll)

benjfowler (239527) | about 6 months ago | (#46293517)

Heh, the liberals who cry "Islamophobia" at the drop of a hat, are the same people that Lenin once called "useful idiots".

"Anti-racists" are useful idiots for extreme-right Islamists who want to subdue and rape the world.

You want a fedora with that? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 months ago | (#46293627)

Gotta love autistic neckbeards who are so anti-social they see "liberals" everywhere they look. Not everyone who actually cares about other human beings is a communist you confounded moron.

Re:You want a fedora with that? (1, Flamebait)

benjfowler (239527) | about 6 months ago | (#46293823)

Sure, keep displaying your ignorance with that false dichotomy, and demonising people who don't want to pay to have their countries filled up with illiterate, violent scum.

Sure, you might be happy to have your kids pack-raped by roving gangs of young Muslim men. YOU might be happy with suffering disrespect and hatred at the hands of foreigners in your own country. Just don't inflict it on me or my kids, and furthermore, don't expect me to pay for it.

I DON'T want to be forced to pay through the nose for the slum-ification of my country because some fucking liberal hipster wants to smoke shisha.

Re:Just as much (0)

AmiMoJo (196126) | about 6 months ago | (#46293755)

Hating the ideology is fine, hating practitioners of Islam simply because they believe it is not. A phobia is an irrational fear or hatred, and since not all Muslims are bad people to hate/fear them all fits that description.

Hitler was a Roman Catholic. That religion has some pretty nasty ideas. Hating all Roman Catholics on that basis would be considered a phobia.

Re:Just as much (0)

Chrisq (894406) | about 6 months ago | (#46293807)

Hating the ideology is fine, hating practitioners of Islam simply because they believe it is not.

I agree that is the ideal, the allies should have hated Nazism as an ideology whereas they should not have hated practitioners who simply believed it. Ideally we should always give people the chance to reform where to do so does not put others at risk, bearing in mind the necessity of punishment as a deterrent.

I freely admit that I don't always live up to that ideal, when I read about Muslims holding little girls by the hair before shooting them at point-blank range, kidnapping and raping women, or destroying buildings full of innocents I feel some hatred towards the people, not just Islam.

Please remember, (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 months ago | (#46293397)

Correlation does not imply causality!

Dang straight! (1)

cascadingstylesheet (140919) | about 6 months ago | (#46293401)

I demand that Scrooge McDuck release all the grain that he has hoarded in his Money Bin, right now!

Perfect name (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 months ago | (#46293461)

I can't help but point out that a guy named "Yam" is talking about food shortages....

News at 11! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 months ago | (#46293583)

When people can't feed themselves they become desperate!

The Bread Price (1)

prefec2 (875483) | about 6 months ago | (#46293681)

The so called bread price was always a key trigger for uprisings. If the price climbed faster than the actual income of the people, hunger was unavoidable. And of course people tend to become violent when they have suddenly not enough to eat.

I call BS... (5, Insightful)

captainpanic (1173915) | about 6 months ago | (#46293689)

In 2006, the food index was only 127. Yet, there were 15 large scale riots, 9 large scale strikes, 6 wars, of which at least 2 new wars in 2006, and countless other conflicts not mentioned on the wikipedia page about conflicts in 2006. And I just picked a random year.

Conflicts (general): http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/C... [wikipedia.org]
Strikes: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/C... [wikipedia.org]
Riots: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/C... [wikipedia.org]
Food index: http://www.fao.org/worldfoodsi... [fao.org]

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