- This book rivets readers via the fact that you can 'see'
it in action today all over the planet. For example: all the news and
talk shows for the past week spent hours on the tragic collapse of the
I-35 bridge in Minneapolis.
- As a prophetic reminder, in 1950 Eleanor Roosevelt said,
"We must stop running around trying to save ourselves after a tragedy
has already occurred. Unfortunately, history clearly shows that we arrive
at catastrophe by failing to act when we should have acted. The opportunity
passes us by and the next disaster is always more difficult and compounded
than the last one."
- In the most advanced society in the world prior to Hurricane
Katrina, engineers at LSU warned politicians in New Orleans and Louisiana
that levees were not sufficient to protect the city in case of a category
4 or 5 hurricane. Nobody listened to the academics! We know what happened.
- Engineers provided warnings and notice of deficient structural
integrity for more than 100,000 US bridges for years-true to form politicians
and officialdom proved impotent.
- Now we hear TV pundits lament, "We take our infrastructure
for granted...why wasn't something done when the deficiency ratings were
- On an environmental note from (Weks-ka-op)"Wecskaop:
What Every Citizen Should Know About Our Planet" by August Anson,
here is an environmental thought:
- "The planet's top biologists and climatologists
have been warning about the damage that our exploding numbers are doing
to earth's environmental
- infrastructure for thirty years.
- "Guess what? The politicians and officialdom (and
network television / mainstream media) pay no attention to the scientists
either. We are, on a planet wide basis, doing nothing.
- "In other words, we are taking the earth's environmental
infrastructure for granted despite serious alarm bells that have been sounding
- scientists for decades.
- "In this case, however, it is not a single city
or bridge that is going to reap the whirlwind--it is our entire planetary
life-support infrastructure that we are putting at risk."
- Anson writes about, "density-dependent feedbacks"
realized by all animal species. Growth climbs along an S-curve until it
levels out with deaths matching births. At present, the human population
growth curve mimics the exponential aspects of a J-curve in a nuclear detonation.
In fact, we're in the closing stages of that curve!
- Unfortunately, Americans think along the lines of linear
mathematics. Anson said, "Our early schooling leaves us ill-prepared
to interpret number sequences that are behaving in an exponential or non-linear
- Anson illustrates our growth in a simple experiment of
using dinoflagellates as a metaphor for human growth. Dr. Albert Bartlett
of Colorado University invented the experiment for his brilliant presentation
on human growth. I've seen the lecture in person. I wish the whole U.S.
Congress would see it! He portrays where unlimited growth 'seems' like
no problem until it becomes a dilemma that, like the I-35 bridge, creates
a disaster. The organism dies off in huge numbers with total collapse.
- Anson's Chapter 12 floored me! "Thresholds are
points that denote a limit or boundary, whether known or unknown that result
in serious or dramatic changes when transgressed. The boiling point of
water is such a boundary. It will remain a liquid until one more degree
of heat is added to create a tipping point to transform water into steam."
- From a wildlife standpoint, when we kill off millions
of prairie dogs, we create a cascading effect of species extinctions that
escape our knowledge. A prairie dog supports 67 other species. Once they
lose the rodent, they become part of a landslide extinction process. Given
enough time, humans may undermine their entire food chain without knowing
it. Today, bee populations vanish in ever greater numbers from chemicals.
Who, pray tell, will pollinate the worlds flowers and crops?
- Our 'unknowing' of our actions' consequences mean little
to natural systems. "All our excuses do nothing to mitigate the effects
of a calamitous blunder," Anson said.
- "Today a poor, hungry and rapacious humanity lays
waste to earth's biota and natural systems at rates unparalleled in human
history," Anson said. "How much worse might this become in the
decades to come?"
- How many people can the earth handle at our standard
of living? If we care to maintain the animals on the planet and honor
their existence, Anson estimates that two billion humans could live in
perpetuity at our present standard of living.
- News flash! We exceeded earth's carrying capacity 80
- Anson covers not only the natural world, but shows where
the Arab world suffers 30 percent unemployment today with 258 million people
on its way to 439 million by 2030. Can you imagine the political, educational
and emotional chaos of such numbers? If we see terrorists being developed
today by the "X" generation in the Middle East, can you imagine
when their population nearly doubles in 25 years? Anson portends third
world poor streaming into first world countries for a better life. That
occurs in Europe and the United States today.
- Near the end of the book, Anson answers questions that
average citizens might ask. He answers every excuse and every 'feel good'
question promoted by TV, radio and print media. You'll gain an education
beyond your wildest thoughts.
- What can we do for our planet? Anson said, "Over
the next three decades: governments must immediately and aggressively plan,
fund and implement a conservative roadmap for the future. Unless you think
that we need to add 600,000 people every three days to the planet, it's
time to get real and get on with population stabilization. Next, publishers
and educators must promote environmental sciences as prerequisites to graduation.
We must increase our educated and active citizens to work toward a common
goal of planetary sustainability. Next, presidents and world leaders must
read "Wecskaop" and other books to familiarize themselves with
what humanity faces. Then, initiate action at the highest levels. Religious
leaders worldwide must come to grips with antiquated 'unlimited births'
paradigms before humanity suffers unlimited deaths. In the end, print
and broadcast journalists must write and produce stories on what humanity
faces both good and bad.
- Wasn't it the comics Laurel and Hardy who said, "This
is a fine mess we've gotten ourselves into."
- "Wecskaop: What Every Citizens Should Know About
Our Planet" can be found at www.amazon.com ; www.barnesandnoble.com
or by calling Arman Publishing at Ph. 386 673 5576. ISBN 0-933078-18-8.
- What are the consequences for humanity and the natural
world if "Wecskaop" should happen to be in error? "If we
heed its cautions," Anson said, "we will slow our rate of growth,
educate all citizens on our planet, ensure that vast regions of earth's
biomes are set aside and protected from roads and human intrusion, and
we will expend our treasure and/or efforts to make life, health care, education,
cities and opportunities better for populations existing today---instead
of frantically keeping up with an avalanche of infrastructure and social
needs generated by an additional billion people followed by another and
another in the decades to come."
- Eleanor Roosevelt agrees!