- John Taves
- Bellevue, WA
- United States
The conventional wisdom of demographers is fundamentally flawed.
In the conversation "Why do so many think that population growth is an important issue for the environment? Don't they know the facts of demographics?" Hans Rosling uses the "facts" of demography to argue we don't have to worry about population growth. Demographers have fundamental flaws in their thinking. In short, they are dead wrong.
Consider a belief that has these 2 characteristics: 1) believers average more than 2 children, and 2) they successfully pass along that belief to the next generation to at an average of at least 2 of those children. This belief will overpopulate the planet. Imagine that 99% of the population are non-believers, and 1% are believers. It would take many generations for the believers to rise to sufficient numbers so that demographers would notice them, but in the end, the birth rate will be determined by the believers.
This logic shows us flaws in the data collection and interpretation techniques that demographers use. Demographers must prove that these belief characteristics cannot exist if there is any hope that the downward trend of birth rates will continue and stay at or below an average of 2 children.
Their sampling techniques filter out beliefs that are passed to the next generation. This error means that if demographers tried to find groups that have beliefs that are not behaving according to the demographic transition predictions, they won't find them in their data.
Demographers use extrapolation techniques to predict future birth rates, but the logic dictates that they must find groups that are averaging the most children, and monitor their growth.