You are here
Home > Perspective >

Food riots, economic sustainability, and the historical economic rate of growth

foodAs the world moves toward recession/ depression, dragged down by the bursting US bubble economy, food riots are beginning to occur in multiple locales around the planet. The inflation rate in 2007 for food staple prices has been around 40%. See WFP food aid costs up “dramatically” in past weeks for the figure. The world population is currently growing at something less than 2% per year.

The annual world population growth rate reached its peak in the late 1960s, when it was at 2% and above. The rate of increase has therefore almost halved since its peak of 2.19 percent, which was reached in 1963, to the current 1.15%.

The annual population growth rate is currently declining and is projected to continue to decline in the coming years, but the pace of the future change is uncertain (1). Currently, it is estimated that it will become less than 1% by 2020 and less than 0.5% by 2050.

See world meter population information from where these percentage figures were copied.

So what is the historical capitalist economic rate of growth? That is the rate of growth needed for capitalism to not go into an economic down spin, and that necessary percent of growth is considered to be about 3% by most economists.

Note that this rate of growth needed in GDP is actually higher than the rate of population growth. In other words, even without a growth in world population capitalism needs to continually increase production to maintain the numbers of jobs given to the workers, or employment of them. However, it is this increasing production of goods (most of them quite unnecessary goods) that is decimating the ecology of the planet, and not mere population growth alone.

What we have is a world economy that is not feeding the world’s population adequately, is not maintaining the world’s ecological stability, not providing employment security, and yet is still expanding, which without that expansion in production of goods it would go into an economic crisis of increased world unemployment!

When rates of annual capitalist expansion of GDP go below the average annual rate of economic growth by capitalism, that is called an economic depression, and leads to world political instability, such as we had in the ’30s. That is the ebb in the capitalist business cycle, as opposed to the peak.

The increasing number of riots and upheaval around the world due to the rising world food prices, is simply the first signs that capitalist economic activity is not meeting major human needs once again.

Do you even feel secure right here in the US? Enough said then. The capitalist business has you in its clutches, and in fact, has us all in its clutches as it tears the planet’s ecology apart. It would be impossible to make this monster economically sustainable. It just isn’t. And that’s no matter how many solar panels Fort Carson might install, or ‘green’ companies you might invest in.

One thought on “Food riots, economic sustainability, and the historical economic rate of growth

  1. over population is the main problem
    abuse of every kind is tolerated, whether it be starvation on a mass scale, or child abuse of an idividual.
    grow food now,,,tell everyone you know to grow food.
    get ready.

Leave a Reply

Top