Elbow room, please…

I’m not far in, but on my nightstand is Thomas Friedman’s “Hot, Flat, and Crowded.” It’s about our nightmare of too many people competing for too few resources on a planet that can’t sustain the demands. (And it all reminds me of my poly sci 101 class and the prof’s basic definition of politics: Who gets what when, where and how.) Friedman also throws in his thoughts on how to get out of the mess, although I haven’t gotten to that part, save his cradle-to-cradle concept (reusable resources in all manufactured goods).

Still, I had to share this snowflake: We’ve got a whole lotta people living on planet Earth. Yes, I know that you’ve noticed — especially if you’ve ever been to, say, Wal-Mart, not that many people will fess up to shopping at the big-box giant that appears barren of a social conscience.

Back to the snowflake: Friedman suggests checking out infoplease.com to illustrate the population explosion. He plugged in his birth year of 1953, when 2.681 billion people roamed the earth and calculated, that if he lived to be 100, that he’d share the planet with some 9.2 billion people by the year 2050.

I plugged in my birth year, and found some 3.631 billion people scuttled about in 1969. Fast-forward to today and that number has more than doubled, with 6.8 billion souls — all vying for, or wishing they could vie for, that coveted parking spot at the nearest big-box retailer.

Check out infoplease and add Friedman’s book to your reading list.

-Christy

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