Friday, April 25, 2008

Someone else's still a problem

Quick word on the rice shortage, which somehow has become my new interest as far as planetary doom is concerned, ahead of the housing bust, devaluation of the US dollar and impending stock market implosion.

I wish I could find this quote I read yesterday, but some important guy said that we have been dipping into our rice reserves for 8 of the last 9 years, that is, that we've been overconsuming rice for at least 80 percent of the last decade. And people somewhere knew this? And no one made a fuss about it until now???

The more I look objectively at what goes on around me, the more I notice that somewhere in the last few generations, humanity lost the ability to think and plan collectively. I don't know that we were ever really able to before then, but it sure seemed that way. Now, everyone is looking to get rich quick, drive a nice car, have a huge house in the burbs, and nuts to the other guy. Sure, I think that way too, but at least I draw the line somewhere before "nuts to the other guy". Rice? Wheat? Corn? It's ok, it'll magically come up from somewhere, even though more land is being used to support our housing addiction, fewer people are farming, the world's population is growing, our climate is (for whatever reason) changing, and more people are eating meat, which takes a lot of rice, wheat and corn to raise. But it'll magically be ok. Of course it will.

I'm not asking for pity or looking for handouts. I've taken care of myself and my family, so food can stand to get more expensive and I'll be fine. But I find the idea of food riots and people eating dirt to survive pretty unsettling in this day and age, and nobody (me included) seems to have any idea how bad it's going to get.


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