Economics professor Peter Jacobsen writes about the wrongness of many of Paul Ehrlich’s predictions  in this article found at Paul Ehrlich is the author of the 1968 book, The Population Bomb. Professor Jacobsen states that in this book “Ehrlich announced to the world that the 21st century would be one of poverty and mass starvation brought about by overpopulation.”

Professor Jacobsen continues: “He famously claimed that England would no longer exist in the year 2000 because of environmental disasters caused by overpopulation, and his biggest claim to fame is losing a bet to the late economist Julian Simon about the increasing abundance of resources.”

Some population control advocates are not averse to coercion being employed as a means to bring about the changes they seek and Paul Ehrlich is one of them. Professor Jacobsen explains how “Ehrlich explicitly advocated for the use of forms of coercion if necessary to curb the population ‘problem’ in his 1968 book. In his chapter ‘What Needs to Be Done?’, Ehrlich said,

A good example of how we might have acted can be built around the Dr. Chandrasekhar incident I mentioned earlier. When we suggested sterilizing all Indian males with three or more children, he should have encouraged the Indian government to go ahead with the plan. We [the United States] should have volunteered support in the form of helicopters, vehicles, and surgical instruments. We should have sent doctors to aid in the program by setting up centers for training paramedical personnel to do vasectomies. Coercion? Perhaps but coercion in a good cause.”

Professor Jacobsen informs us that “Unfortunately, many countries listened to rhetoric similar to Erlich’s. In the 1970s China began its one child policy which is responsible for countless forced sterilizations and abortions. The architect of China’s policy utilized work from The Club of Rome, an anti-population think tank and intellectual fellow-travelers of Erlich.”

Population controllers are rather keen on telling others that they are having too many children. Their comments are most often directed at those living in developing countries. Some support the use of coercion as demonstrated in Peter Jacobsen’s article. Strangely, they never think that they are one of the ‘too many people’.