A Bunch of Fun Facts

  • We individually consume practically nothing of what we produce
  • No one knows how to make a smartphone or a commercial jetliner
  • Planning mostly does not work
  • Some dictatorships work
  • Poverty will be over across the world by 2035
  • The so-called “natural resources” are all man-made
  • We will never run out of natural resources — we will keep making more natural resources
  • Ideas matter more than stuff
  • The poor of today are richer than the richest of yesterday — and the richest of today will be poorer than the poor of tomorrow
  • Climate change is not a problem, just like the population problem before it
  • DEMOCRACY has little to do with FREEDOM

 

17 thoughts on “A Bunch of Fun Facts

  1. The poor of today are richer than the richest of yesterday — and the richest of today will be poorer than the poor of tomorrow

    The yesterday and tomorrow are metaphors for several decades.

    Like

  2. Language nazi corrections:

    No one person knows how to make a smartphone ….
    Poverty will be over ….

    Didn’t fully grasp this one:

    We will never run out of natural resources — we will keep making more natural resources.

    As a whole, yes. And the ones we are most dependent on, we will find alternatives before they are fully depleted. But, aren’t there some very rare minerals that we can possibly run out of, if we mine and utilize all of it. Also didn’t understand the “making” part. Some of these may not be feasible to be made by us and need to be mined. Unless you meant the more common natural resources: water, oil, coal, forests etc.

    Like

  3. I disagree with Atanu Dey’s statements like poverty will be erased by 2035 or the poor of today are richer than the ancient rich but “We will never run out of natural resources — we will keep making more natural resources.” is correct but subjected to technology:
    Earth’s mass=5.9 x 10^24 kg or 5.9 trillion trillion kg.
    1 km^3 of mass of average rock is about 2.5 billion ton or 2.4 trillionth of earth’s mass and one can’t even ID it precisely by a ‘dot’ on a globe or map. India produces about 0.65 to 0.7 billion ton of coal/yr.
    Actually the earth contains huge amount of some mineral by % mass of earth: 32% as iron, 13.9% as magnesium, 1.4% as aluminum, 0.63% as (awe inspiring)titanium. Problem is how to get them out. Another avenue is making new material like ceramics.
    If only 50% of earth’s land area is inhabited and to the density of Uttar Pradesh, the Earth’s population would be about 70 billions or 10 times the present.

    Like

    • “What then is the intellectual advantage of civilization over primitive savagery? It is not necessarily that each civilized man has more knowledge but that he requires far less.”
      -Thomas Sowell, Knowledge And Decisions

      Like

    • Lin:

      My statement “poverty will be over across the world by 2035” is certainly not a fact, just a conjecture. Time will tell but the trend is what I am looking at.

      Your calculations about the mass of the earth and other bits are not pertinent. What I mean by “we will keep making more natural resources” is that all resources are man-made. Resources don’t exist in nature. Only stuff exists. Uranium, for example, is stuff that is found on earth. It is not a natural resource. It becomes a resource when humans invent the technology. More about that in a separate post. Preview: Science discovers; engineering builds; technology invents.

      Like

      • “Your calculations about the mass of the earth and other bits are not pertinent. What I mean by “we will keep making more natural resources” is that all resources are man-made. Resources don’t exist in nature.”
        You misread what I said. I quoted the mass of earth to illustrate actually humanity has lots of unexploited resources. I certainly agree resources are ‘man-made’
        Aluminum was unknown to ancient and was discovered in 1825
        Titanium was discovered in 1791
        ……………
        Sometimes, the ancients let great discoveries passed by them
        Zoroastrianism originated from ancient Persians worshipping burning of natural gas leaked to the ground.
        ‘Hell’, an indispensable component to many religions actually came from ancients’ interpretation of volcanism OR burning of underground coal seams that occasionally cropped up as holes with inferno underground.

        Like

      • Before technology was invented in the late 19th century to use petroleum, any person digging for water used to curse his/her bad-luck if they struck smelly, undrinkable, black oil.

        After automobiles and engines running on petroleum derivatives were invented, the same bad-luck turned into great fortune.

        Same way if technology comes up which can use all our trash for energy, we would be ‘creating’ more natural resources, which was hitherto known as trash.

        Like

  4. “What then is the intellectual advantage of civilization over primitive savagery? It is not necessarily that each civilized man has more knowledge but that he requires far less.”
    -Thomas Sowell, Knowledge And Decisions

    Like

    • Atanu Dey’s “The poor of today are richer than the richest of yesterday” is not:
      “the intellectual advantage of civilization over primitive savagery”
      Like it’s senseless to compare a caveman to a modern man.
      The rich of old became rich because they controlled or taxed certain economic activities like agriculture, weaving/textile..
      while the poor of today, particularly those in the 3rd world still lack economic opportunity.
      Obviously the first thing in the mind of indian poor is whether they or their families are properly fed. And the rich of old were well fed.
      Being said, the poor of today do have an important advantage over the rich of yesterday that they’ve access to modern vaccines.

      Like

      • To add to poor of today are richer than yesteryears. There was a time, I read only the very rich could afford to drink water in a glass tumbler. Today anyone can have a glass of water in a glass. Likewise, one can argue we all have access to telephone, to talk to a loved one in an emergency which was absent through the ages for the rich. This is all in the abstract. Three full meals a day? That is another story.

        Like

      • Lin, your point about “the rich of old became rich because they controlled or taxed certain economic activities like agriculture, weaving/textile” is totally irrelevant to the matter at hand. I will write a separate post on that point anyway. Thanks.

        Like

  5. “The poor of today are richer than the richest of yesterday — and the richest of today will be poorer than the poor of tomorrow”

    The poor of tomorrow will have more than today’s Bill gates and Warren Buffett? Challenges credulity. Some thing to ponder about.

    Like

    • Indeed, it does sound strange that the richest of today will be poorer than the poorest of tomorrow. But it is empirically verifiable for the past — and is unlikely that that trend will not continue.

      Like

      • That really depends on the time gap.
        –Modern poor are obviously better off than caveman chieftains
        –but I doubt if a modern poor is better off than an rich 1 or 2 centuries back of the same ethnic grouping
        For sure if in-vitro meat, nuclear fusion, cheap/affordable androids.. become reality, humanity will enter a new phase.
        Imagine a person enters a restaurant and savours a 12 oz steak grown from a human tissue sample that person gave the chef the night before. At least no more pork or beef or dog meat ban; great isn’t it?

        Like

        • I am glad that you actually think about all this. You will have to continue to consider the matter a bit more before you get my point. More in my next blog post.

          Like

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s