The Fountain of Youth

For centuries upon centuries the lore of magical fountains, chalices and other devices meant for immortality or the the deceleration of the aging process have passed from generation to generation. The ideals of immortality have been sought after, fought over, challenged and coveted for about the same amount of time. Do you think we have ceased searching for the Fountain of Youth?

Think again.

We have continued the exhausting epic, no longer through tales, myths and magical means, but rather via the pursuit of sound, logical theories widely accepted by society. Its called scientific advancement, or more precisely, medical advancement. The shallow illusion of Eternal Youth is widely accepted as "plastic surgery" (as well as other non invasive or over the counter products claiming to have tapped the ever elusive Fountain). The search for immortality is now simply called called the Medical Practice. Everything from emergency treatment, routine care, medicines, and life saving or rather life sustaining surgery.

Think I'm exaggerating? What other purpose then, is that of the medical community? What has this advancement been designed for if not the forestalling of eventual death? There are of course benefits to all of this advancement. These benefits, while selfish in nature can and do prevent heartache, pain and grief. To save a life is to (hopefully) preserve the possibility of a valuable contribution to society. Of course, there's always the money end of it too.

The decrease in mortality rates of older generations, that is to say the preservation of vitality that leads to longer life spans has tapped, and strained our economy. This is where the downside of all this life saving comes into play. For every generation that survives well into or past their octogenarian years, we must have the an equal amount, or preferably greater amount of people coming up in the future generations to financially sustain the former. Also preferably, these people must be alive and in good health.

What does this all mean you ask? Over population. Its not a myth. While constant generation growths make for good current economies, it has a long term downfall that can, and will cost us all a great deal. We only have so much space in which we can live, work, rest and throw away our refuse. We have a finite amount (or a very slow renewal) of natural resources, and a finite amount of governmental financial resources to aid citizens. There are only so many jobs as well. When vast amounts of people begin living and thriving in a world that can realistically only sustain so many living creatures in all, we have a problem. It means clear cutting of forests not only for space, but also for wood to build the homes or offices that will be built there. There is no hope of replenishing the trees that will be cut down in those areas, in that area. Soon enough there won't be enough space to replenish trees or plants in the numbers that are required to maintain a natural balance in any area. Losing forests doesn't just affect wood as a natural resource, or the balance of chemicals in the air (namely oxygen, that gas that trees and plants emit that we kinda need to survive) but it also makes the soil nutrient poor, and in some cases can cause the loss of top soil altogether. (Meaning nothing can be planted or replenished there).

The increase of population will also affect things like social security (in America at least), but also health care, insurance and governmental aids like Medicare. It will certainly affect the employment market only not in a way that most imagine. Fresh water will only become more polluted by the factories that will need (and indeed some already are) to be built in order to handle the demand of whatever product they make. Utilities will be through the roof, as the natural resources used to make the power that we use everyday diminish. Prices for that will rise. Just this past year (August to August) our utilities companies have hiked their rates three times. We aren't even in a total all out no-holds-barred energy crisis yet.

Do I even need to mention the fact that so many people will inevitably change the face of the planet in such a way that the current global warming/climate crisis will seem like a bedtime story? I didn't think so.

And here we are, faced with people...everyday folks like you and I who are worried because people aren't having enough children. The quiverfull folks or just plain old devout (fundie) Christians who regularly lash out at anyone in a marriage who do not plan on having any children, or those of us who do not see child rearing as the mainstay of a good, solid marriage. They want to ban birth control , reproductive rights, and everything in between.

So much for reproductive responsibility. I actually heard one person ( a man of course) state that having as many children as you can is what everyone should do, regardless of health risks (to the mother), quality of life for the children, and the ability to afford so many children. He advocated going on welfare just so you can keep having kids. Wow.

Mother nature however, will have the last laugh. She always does. Because no matter how hard we try to stay alive, death will come. No matter how hard we try to stave off old age, it comes. If and when we become a big enough blight on this Earth, it will cure itself of the diseases. One way or another, nature always wins out.

Capitalists would do well to remember that. We are not the force that controls everything under the sun, and we never will be.

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