“The “Population Bomb” Echoes

madhedgefundtrader's picture

Pack your portfolios with agricultural plays like Potash (POT), Mosaic (MOS), and Agrium (AGU) if Dr. Paul Ehrlich is just partially right about the impending collapse in the world’s food supply. You might even throw in long positions in wheat, corn, soybeans, and rice.

The never dull, and often controversial Stanford biology professor told me he expects that global warming is leading to significant changes in world weather patterns that will cause droughts in some of the largest food producing areas, causing massive famines. Food prices will skyrocket, and billions could die.

At greatest risk are the big rice producing areas in South Asia, which depend on glacial run off from the Himalayas. If the glaciers melt, this crucial supply of fresh water will disappear. California faces a similar problem if the Sierra snowpack fails to show up in sufficient quantities, as it has in recent years.

Rising sea levels displacing 500 million people in low lying coastal areas is another big problem. One of the 79 year old professor’s early books The Population Bomb was required reading for me in college in 1970, and I used to drive up from Los Angeles to hear his lectures (followed by the obligatory side trip to the Haight-Ashbury).

Other big risks to the economy are the threat of a third world nuclear war caused by population pressures, and global plagues facilitated by a widespread growth of intercontinental transportation and globalization. And I won’t get into the threat of a giant solar flare frying our electrical grid.

“Super consumption” in the US needs to be reined in where the population is growing the fastest.  If the world adopts an American standard of living, we need four more Earths to supply the needed natural resources. We must to raise the price of all forms of carbon, preferably through taxes, but cap and trade will work too. Population control is the answer to all of these problems, which is best achieved by giving women an education, jobs, and rights, and has already worked well in Europe and Japan.

All sobering food for thought.

To see the data, charts, and graphs that support this research piece, as well as more iconoclastic and out-of-consensus analysis, please visit me at www.madhedgefundtrader.com . There, you will find the conventional wisdom mercilessly flailed and tortured daily, and my last two years of research reports available for free. You can also listen to me on Hedge Fund Radio by clicking on “This Week on Hedge Fund Radio” in the upper right corner of my home page.

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Sudden Debt's picture



fredquimby's picture

Yeah I opted out of one of your US airport zappers last week, on that very worry!!

pointer's picture

Global warming?  In FL there have been record freezes the past 2 years.  I thought global warming was Al Gore's BS story to try and implement a carbon tax.

Mainstream media was touting global warming at first, then it changed to "climate change".

I'm more worried about the military industrial complex than I am global warming.

Nels's picture

I agree that global warming is bunk, and think that global cooling is what's in our immediate future.  The lack of sunspots is suggestive of another little ice age, if not the next real ice age which is a bit overdue.  Which will indeed lead to crop failures.

So, the guy is right on action, but for the wrong rationale.

RacerX's picture

Yeah same here. I read "global warming" and my bullshit detector immediately went to Defcon 5. MadHedge is pretty liberal tho--so it's understandable. Too bad he is blinded by his politics.

MrBoompi's picture

You can deny or debate the causes of food shortages, but that doesn't negate the fact there will be food shortages. Problems with oil and food can certainly jeopardize at least a billion lives.

Citxmech's picture

"Population control is the answer to all of these problems, which is best achieved by giving women an education, jobs, and rights..."

Most important part of the article is right there.

Ignore it at your own risk.

covert's picture

development causes regional cooling. what's needed is more capital growth, not population reduction.



masterinchancery's picture

Yes, this article is beyond idiotic, quoting 30 year old nonsense.

IQ 145's picture

 It is complete rubbish. Apparently the Mad Hedge Fund Trader really is "Mad"; the proff. he's quoting is a dis-credited fool with a one note song he's been bangin on for ever. There is absolutely no global warming; none.

Flakmeister's picture

Proof? There is none on which you call rely, so STFU with such baldface bullshit.

And yeah, your IQ may be 145, in octal.

BobPaulson's picture

I've always gotten a kick out of the MENSA types. Hey man, not all the guys who did well at school had zits, weighed 50kg and never got laid. 

Flakmeister's picture

  Crickets.... you are now a discredited joke. So do us all a favor and STFU.

Flakmeister's picture

 Ok, enlightened one, lets see your estimate of the breaking point for population on the earth. I dont even think you have the skills to use simple math to make an estimate here on the hedge. Go ahead and surprise everyone here.

If someone predicts something and is off by a couple years, it does not negate the thesis.

the mad hatter's picture

You are such a troll. Go read about a scientific experiment to understand that global warming is real.


CO2 has two double bonds and can absorb infrared radiation. We are making more CO2 than ever before.

Global warming does not necessarily mean "warming" where you happen to live but broader shifts in global weather patterns.  Like MHFT said, it's about the growing unpredictability. Likewise, who would have seen the record freezes in citrus-producing FL this year? Places where you could grow rice, wheat, and corn you won't be able to in the future.

IQ 145's picture

 You have no idea what you're talking about. The subject of infra-red absorbtion of CO2 can be studied; and in fact the maximum global heating effect of doubling the CO2 levels in the atmosphere, which we have not yet done, can be calculated; because it's a physical phenomenon. The answer is .5 degree Centigrade. All alarmist calls for action are political / psychological phenomenon. All predictions of significant global warming are based on junk computer models that are useless. Out of every ten-thousand molecules of gas in the air, 3 are CO2. Doubling this number probably will result in an undetectable rise in temperature; that is to say within the statistical noise of the measurement.

Kayman's picture

Uhhh... and you, of course, own an infallible crystal ball.

This winter has been the coldest, with the most snow in maybe 40 years.

Trees and plants need CO2 and are a natural carbon sink.

I observe.  And what I observe, is that this planet needs cleaner air and water, but carbon is not a problem.

I also observe that ratchetting up the rhetoric does not matter the argument any more persuasive.

Flakmeister's picture

 You displayed your scientific acumen over in the peak oil threads and ran away when confronted with any data. I suggest you crawl back into your hole, or hang out in the PM threads. More your style...

Flakmeister's picture

  Hey, trained atmospheric scientists must have missed this. You should write a paper and subject it to peer review. Or better yet, challenge a researcher in your area and schedule a debate at the local community college. I am sure if you provide free cookies you'll get a hell of a crowd.

RichardENixon's picture

I'll go if he'll throw in some Chex Party Mix.

RockyRacoon's picture

An open bar will be a real hit.

nihilist's picture

Your stupidity is appalling.  What does CO2 having two double bonds have anything to do with infrared absorption rates?  So you exploit your limited knowledge of the chemical composition of CO2 in order to create some semblance of credibility.  The fact of the matter is CO2 is most efficient at absorbing blackbody IR radiation at approx ~4.2 um and ~14 to 16 um wavelengths.  The Earth's black body IR radiation peaks between ~8 to 10 um, CO2 is very ineffective at absorbing IR at this range, ergo you have IR absorption saturation by CO2 at these ranges.  But again, the Earth emits IR radiation at these ranges.

The fact of the matter is dihydrogen oxide is much more efficient at absorbing IR at these ranges.  So in order to attain a linear increase in effective warming at these ranges you need an exponential increase in CO2.  Which we will never attain.  In addition, the 2nd law of thermodynamics dictates that heat moves from a region of high energy (warmer temps) to a region of low energy (cooler temps).  The Earth is surrounded by the vast coldness of space, to contain all that heat, you need force to do some work.

If you don't understand this concept, which would not be surprising since a lot of you global warming alarmists are too stupid to understand this, I suggest you read your refrigerator's manual and figure out why you need electricity to keep it cold all the time.

Kayman's picture

Global Warming (now morphed into "Climate Change") is a Political and Religious Cult not a Scientific Proof.

First you paint all legitimate questioning to their bogus arguments and doctored numbers as " the Deniers". 

Then diseminate all the pseudo science with all the bluster you can muster.

The sun is 1,000,000 times the mass of the earth, plants need  absorb CO2 to grow and flourish.

 All the grunting and groaning in the world will not change the fact that so-called Climate Change science is based on proving a faulty premise; hide all the data that does not coincide with your presuppositions.

Hey- Climate Change is going on as we speak- up,down, sideways.  And to think children are being taught this bullshit in schools.

BobPaulson's picture

No. The second law just states that heat cannot of itself pass from a colder body to a hotter body.


A second law analysis or argument would only be valid if we were talking about the extremely long term cooling of the earth. I actually don't understand why you cite the second law here.

The mass of the atmosphere compared to the mass of the earth is fantastically small. It's temperature with respect to abrupt changes in CO2 concentration can hardly be expected to play a long term role in the temperature of the earth. The timescales upon which the CO2 concentration is changing is minute compared to other astrological changes. That's why people compare it to an asteroid impact.

Drop a sugar cube into a cup of coffee. It generates a chaotic and turbulent mixing and diffusion and heat transfer between the sugar and water. No scientist on earth would dare predict the detailed outcome of even that simple phenomenon. They can guess the beginning and end and give you a statistical picture of what would happen on average is you did it 1000 times.

Assuming nothing will happen, and that it is worthwhile to potentially risk the global ecosystem when you're not really sure what will happen, is essentially what the deniers advocate. I'm sure there were many voices on Easter Island advocating such an empirical trial-and-error experiment when it became clear there would soon be no trees on the island.



Vendetta's picture

16 megaships create as much C02 as all the cars in the world


if so, which actually makes sense, ending 'free trade' as it is currently implemented, would help resolve the issue and I'm in support of it.  Why ship trinkets 4,000 miles when we can produce these trinkets at home?

Confuchius's picture

Your post sparks an idea!

Perhaps the shipping industry might try the ancient technology of atomic powered steam generation, as all submarines and modern carriers use. While you're at it prehaps that might also be useful in replacing dirty coal-powered electric power generation ashore.

What do you think?

Flakmeister's picture

 Wow...my opinion of you went up a very small notch..

Hexus's picture

I'm sure plenty of the people railing against the article are all for nuclear power, we just don't like your depopulation agenda. Personally I think thorium power is the future, but the govenment won't invest in it, because cheap energy would mean economic growth and the plague of humanity would only become worse.

SilverBaron's picture


They know that the more people there are the harder it is to keep them under control.  And the more likely it is that someone will be born that is smart enough to invent something that will render their wealth irrelevant.  Power mad control freaks.

Flakmeister's picture

  Where the fuck have I been presenting a depopulation agenda?

I am laying out a few facts and calling out the egregious bullshit. All I am saying is that our species in on a crash course of its own making. The writing is on the wall. Deal with it in your own way. Wishing it wasn't a problem don't fix it and denial certainly doesn't either.

I don't even pretend to know what to do, and it is a moral dilemma.  If I did have a few ideas, I sure as hell wouldn't discuss it here.

Bob's picture

That's sulphur, not CO2.  But let's park half of them anyway. 

BobPaulson's picture

And particulates. But a lot of the hillbillies don't know the difference. 

Don't worry, smoking is good for you. Phillip Morris has all kinds of studies on it.

alien-IQ's picture

Global warming causes freezes (if it's freezing).

Global warming causes heat waves (if it's too hot).

Global warming causes floods (if it rains too much).

Global warming causes droughts (if it doesn't rain enough).

Cows farting causes Global warming. People farting causes global warming also...so do your part to help stop global warming and STOP SPEWING YOUR BULLSHIT ALL OVER US!

By the way...global warming cults cause people to behave like sheep...as evidenced by you.

francis_the_wonder_hamster's picture

My all-time favorite was when Danny Glover blamed the Haiti earthquake on global warming.


Really Danny?

Hexus's picture

I can't believe they let that gimp into Bohemian Grove, the elitists have SOME standards surely...

Flakmeister's picture

Danny Glover is an idiot, being in couple of movies and having a microphone stuck in your face doesn't make you an authority on anything...

Wait, I take that back, it makes you an authority on what it is like to be in couple of movies and what it feels like to have a microphone stuck in your face.

francis_the_wonder_hamster's picture

Well I happen to live in California, the "greenest" state in the union.  Those Hollyweird idiots have far to much sway in politics here.  I don't even want to get started on a list as it is almost as depressing as it is humorous.

AmericaRacket's picture

 To see this bullshit get one star is extremely satisfying.  There will always be fools and liars.  And we now can say unequivically that the global warming lemmings are well amongst them.

I doubt that the writer of this post knows a double bond from a double cheeseburger, and he makes this pseudo-scientific bullshit.  It has already been extablished that the global warming clique at the East Anglia University was harrasing skeptics, fabricating evidence, and in general engaging in reprehensible fraud.  The 3,000 "scientists" who built the fake "consensus" included scientists who insisted on being removed and were not and political hacks with no credentials.  The 30,000 plus scientists on record expressing skepticism, despite the possibility of severe retribution of TPTB, who own the grants and therefore own the colleges were roundly ignored. 

Water vapor is far more greenhouse intensive than CO2.  Water-vapor also oscillates.  By any logic, we should be far more concerned with water-vapor increases than CO2.  CO2 is a minor greenhouse gas, and human emissions make up an almost negligible part of CO2 levels.  And on and on and on.  But the shills, liars, and idiots who piss out global warming propaganda will all persist, as will all the pains in the ass who have ever walked the earth.

TDoS's picture

Funny, that MHFT piece is actually about FOOD PRICES. Too bad hard line proponents of endless consumption would rather get their panties tied in knots over global warming than recognize that FOOD PRICES ARE INCREASING -- and no, it's not all because of dollar devaluation. Russian wildfires, Australian flooding, etc, ARE playing a part.

For a bunch of people on an econ site, you sure ignore supply and demand pretty readily.

masterinchancery's picture

The climate varies, but 100000 years of temperature data and 12 years of satellite measurement establish that it does not vary because of CO2 or human activity. Solar activity, orbital changes, water vapor, and changes to the ocean's conveyer belt are the primary causes. Volcanic activity may contribute at times.  Hence the need to fabricate data and create such lies as the "hockey stick"; Goldman and other cronies need the income from emissions trading.

SilverBaron's picture

Not to mention they would like to see us all priced out of the energy market and reduced to third world beggar status.

MrBoompi's picture

Global warming lemmings. LOL Funny I don't see a "who gives a shit" attitude around here when it comes to money.

AnAnonymous's picture

Global warming does not necessarily mean "warming" where you happen to live but broader shifts in global weather patterns. 


Ah, ah. You made me laugh. So you think that people who claim that global warming is not real  because they have snow in their backyard does not know they are telling drivel? That you can not represent an average trend by one sample?

Very naive if real.

Actually the key is the article:

Rising sea levels displacing 500 million people in low lying coastal areas is another big problem.


If there is a climate change and if people are causing partially  it to happen, these events are calling responsibility.

The US citizens do not want responsibility: they want the good consequences for them and reject the bad consequences on others. The story of their existence.

Expect loads of denial, misrepresentation just to avoid taking responsibility.

The US citizens have engineered many crisis so they can benefit from them. Climate change is another. They will use it to extort even more from the unlucky guy who will get caught in the bad consequences of climate change.

Dont expect admittance by the US, it would be self indiction. Just like the US monetary policies can not generate inflation according to Bernanke...

SilverRhino's picture

Rising sea levels displacing 500 million people in low lying coastal areas is another big problem.

Looks to me like this is an economic opportunity for people to buy land behind the coasts and then a nice building boom as it happens. 

Shit changes, static systems are typically dead systems.   Deal with it.


Calmyourself's picture

I do not think you get it..  There is a magic climate equilibrium and once we reach it well then the twelfth Madi shows up and voila; paradise on earth.  Until then shut up and keep that lifestyle on the down low, we have a climate to modify for the Goracle and the Madi..

Confuchius's picture

If you were to bother to dive the reef fringes of the Caribbean's limestone islands down to the level of many early caves; you would find stalactites and stagalmites caused by dripping rainwater; at a depth of over 50 meters. The 50 meter + RISE in sea level over the past 10 to 20 thousand years does not seen to have impeded the "development" (if you wish to be charitable) of homo SAPiens...


Find another meme to terrify the sheeple.

Maybe Islam? Wild Shiites? highjackers flying into skyscrapers? Surely there must be some excuse to instigate "(Secret) Continuity of Government (If you want to be charitable and call it that).

Homeland insecurity? TSA? (Terrify the Sheeple at Airports?)