Friday, May 2, 2008

CIA Chief Cites Exploding Population As Top Security Threat

CENTRAL INTELLIGENCE AGENCY Director Gen. Michael V. Hayden cited "exploding populations in poor places" at the top of his list of three troublesome trends that threaten global security, along with a growing separation between Europe and America, and the emergence of China.
Many poor, already fragile states — where governance is difficult today — will grow rapidly. In Afghanistan, Liberia, Niger and the Democratic Republic of Congo, the population is expected to triple by midcentury. The number of people in Ethiopia, Nigeria and Yemen will more than double. Furthermore, all of those countries will have large concentrations of young people. If their basic freedoms and basic needs — food, housing, education, employment and so on — are not met, they could be easily attracted to violence, civil unrest or extremism.
He did not name the Philippines as one of those trouble spots where "population cluster bombs" are exploding, but it's high time Filipinos woke up to this problem. When all is said and done the blame has to be laid squarely on the Roman Catholic Bishops that the poor have no access to pills, condoms, IUDs and other non-abortive forms of modern birth control. I think that this is so obvious that those who deny it have to contort themselves into all sorts of illogical positions (not found even in the Kama Sutra) just to defend a policy that is ONE major cause of poverty, hunger and deprivation, and if the CIA chief is right of coming "violence, civil unrest and extremism." Considering that it will take decades to fix the problem, we better pull our heads out of the sand and see what greater evil has been wrought by infallible dogma.

President George W. Bush calls for more food aid to poor countries abroad for the 2009 fiscal year, but I sure hope the Philippines won't have to rely on mendicancy and charity of other nations to feed itself. As it is the government is selling cheap US rice at P25/kilo as its NFA stocks dwindle. Have we no pride? The current situation probably suits the Men in Skirts just fine while they twirl away with Pagcor and Vatican Roulette but it's time to stop listening to them and their insane dogmas.

Hippocrates, Maimonides and MesiaMd have some interesting reflections on the Perfume Canister Incident. Primum non nocere.

Jessica Zafra has uhmm, an axe to grind against Filipino's penchant for the absurd.

Abe Margallo has long commentary on the rice crisis in Man Does Not Live by Rice Alone. I hope he will follow it up with further analysis on the impact of CARP (land reform) on the long term prospects.

Angela Stuart Santiago
takes Manila Standard columnist Connie Veneracion to task for her opposition to the inclusion of Amado V. Hernandez's classic anti-imperialist work, Mga Ibong Mandaragit in the Philippine public school curriculum. Given that the Filipino language subject is 20% of the curriculum, it is certainly impossible to rely entirely on such mainstays as Florante at Laura and Ang Ibong Adarna to provide content for the subject. I welcome such an inclusion only so Filipinos can not only learn some masterful poetry in Tagalog, but also to see the now defensiveness of the work. "Ka Amado" is very rough going however and would be a challenge to read even at the College level. In fact, I doubt that very many teachers at the high school level could manage to read his work, much as few can handle Shakespeare or Milton. They have a hard enough time with the fairy tale Ibong Adarna. What will probably happen is they will substitute summaries done by the CPP NPA and its surrogates in the Republic of Diliman of what the works mean. Veneracion is right that the works would be a challenge for any modern Filipino to read or appreciate at the high school level.


Anonymous said...

The ban on contraception is a sort of snapshot of the pre-scientific beliefs of the Middle Ages, when they thought a man's seed contained little fully-formed infants and the woman's contribution was merely a place to nuture them until they had grown to the size of a baby. Monty Python did a searing satire about this in The Meaning of Life. American Catholics nod their head yes during the homilies, then go home and use contraception anyway. The Church is far more intractable when it comes to abortion.

stuart-santiago said...

on vatican roulette or "natural" method of contraception: the idea is to have sex when the woman is "safe", that is, not ovulating. but that's also when the woman is least likely to feel like having sex. of course what do the men in skirts care.

on ka amado being very rough going: indeed, much like shakespeare, but no one complains about shakespeare's english. why then is it all right to complain about ka amado's tagalog which is actually easier to understand than rizal's or bonifacio's or the pasyons' tagalog.

DJB Rizalist said...

difficulty of language is not an issue with great literature, which is always "strange". Shakespeare invented what it means to be human. that's the theory of harold bloom anyway, which i really like. what's the theory behind Ka Amado?

Gabby said...

to be clear, we are not advocating forced, contraception to 'solve' the overpopulation issue among the poor right?

also, we are advocating incentivizing (paying people to take pills) contraception either?

coz when the CIA says overpopulation is a problem, i get really worried they may not have any qualms at all on how to achieve their, er, 'objectives'.

just want to be very clear about the line this blog will not cross :)

DJB Rizalist said...


who cleans up our messes? who has to shoulder the costs when the philippines encounters self-inflicted disasters or problems it cannot handle?

there's no need to read more into the CIA's statements than genuine self-interest in trying to avoid having to bail us out yet once more.

surely our overpopulation problem is none of their doing. even when they were supplying us with contraceptives we were storing them at the CBCP warehouse instead.

this is our problem and we ought to do something about it. no need to look around for somebody else to blame or see threats where there are none.

Jego said...

Shakespeare invented what it means to be human.

I thought Jesus did that. He showed us that we're not just bipedal monkeys but creatures who actually had free moral choices. Love your enemies? Do good to those who hate you? That is so counter-intuitive and against all our natural instincts.

As for Ibong Mandaragit, I tried reading it when I was in elementary school, and as expected, I gave up and harbor irrational ill feelings toward it to this very day.

DJB Rizalist said...

Jesus was something more than human. Or so it is claimed by Christians. Much as I would like to concentrate on those aspects of him that are human, too much else that isn't clouds the issue for me.

Also, nowhere in the gospels does one feel Jesus overhearing himself, seeing his flaws (he has none!) and thereby changing and evolving.

I suspect, we cannot see him for what He truly was because the RCC has made him into something else for its own good.

Anonymous said...

Humans invented being human, Shakespeare merely captured it, comprehensively, in English. And that, too, is a human thing.

DJB Rizalist said...

bloom says Shakespeare invented what is MEANS to be human. the idea i think is that when you ask most any human being today what he or she thinks it MEANS to be human, he claims you will find the idea already somewhere in Shakespeare...i find this claim to be quite credible. but the more radical claim is that most people today would not be able to answer the question at all if Shakespeare had not existed, or would be giving quite radically different answers. this claim is controversial.

blackshama said...

With that statement, expect a battle royale in words between the world's Material Superpower (USA) and the Spiritual Superpower (Vatican)!

The CIA top honcho says

"Today, there are about 6.7 billion people sharing our planet. By midcentury, the best estimates point to a world population of more than 9 billion. Most of that growth will occur in countries least able to sustain it, a situation that will likely fuel instability and extremism, both in those areas and beyond."

The Spiritual Superpower will definitely say that this neo-Malthusian view is close to what Nazis thought as an ideal world regime.

With Hillary reportedly saying she (if elected President) will not hesitate to "obliterate Iran", the CIA chief's words take on a very worrisome context.

But really who's much to blame for this global environmental and political mess?

Answer: The USA

Who's gonna win the word war?

Answer: The Spiritual Superpower naturlich!

After all the Gates of Hell will not prevail over it, whether it was Stalinist, Maoist, or Capitalist hell.

Anonymous said...

You call the Vatican a spiritual superpower, yet Cathedrals stand empty throughout Europe and the last pope barely acknowledged the pedophile priest crisis which has devastated the American Church. When a diocese finds itself liable for $700 million dollars in jackpot payouts to claimants of abuse you can imagine the sacrificial giving by the parishioners is affected. The current Pope serves communion to pro-abortion politicians at a baseball stadium when just four years ago he issued a warning for such public figures to refrain from communion, in his capacity at the head of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith. A Cardinal who moved bad priests around from parish to parish now serves in the Roman Curia, kicked upstairs. Gives a whole new meaning to the "Peter Principle".

DJB Rizalist said...

chances are we shall all live to see the day when there will be 180 million suffering souls in this Archiplego. Chances are also we shall still be blaming America for it all...

DJB Rizalist said...

I guess my question is, don't WE have any responsibility at all for our fate. If so, what would you say that responsibility is? Is it really all somebody else's fault? Have we been doing everything right, we holy Christians, while everyone else is some evil superpower. that's victimology, man.

blackshama said...


Don't equate the American Church and the European Church (these are all particular churches with the problems you say) to the Catholic Church. The Church has realigned.Face it. It is no longer European or White. A smaller scale of the realignment is seen in the Anglican Communion.

Note that Benedict XVI would opt for a smaller church. While Benedict may pour a lot of energy in reevangelizing Europe and North America , the fact is the centre for church growth are no longer in these depopulated regions. This is what I mean as the Superpower Church.This is also what the CIA top honcho says is "overpopulating"

As for Benedict XVI giving communion to pro-abortion politicians, not even he can deny the sacrament if he has no personal knowledge of lack of state of grace of an individual.

Now for the decision of some Archbishops to move paedophile priests from parish to parish is a different issue from Benedict's giving of communion to individuals. How morally culpable Benedict is something that God only can know. But Benedict has acknowledge his shame about the issue and has taken great steps to set things aright. This Pope deserves our benefit of the doubt at least or at most our prayers.


I have to take an anti-American government stance here not an anti American stand (for having lived amongst them and having lifelong friends among them,I know are decent, fair and place in high regard justice and freedom)

Much of the political and economic trouble the world now experiences is a result of the morally questionable decision of the Bush government to invade Iraq.

Also the environmental dimension of the problem is made worse by the fact that the USA has not acceeded to the Kyoto environmental treaties. The United States is in the best position to seek moral leadership but it didn't.

The Spiritual Superpower is the only state to say that a better world order is a multi-polar one. And it has been pretty consistent in this stand.

DJB Rizalist said...

There is one outstanding difference between the "American Superpower Empire" and the Roman Catholic Church. It is the fact that every four years the people who hold power in one can change its direction, democratically. And much as I disagree with you on Iraq, this year, the people will decide if they agree with you or with me. (I have a feeling they will agree with you).

But as for the RCC, which will never agree to becoming "multipolar" what are the chances that its "people" will ever have a say in its policies and directions, no matter how obviously much they have harmed the world and its people too?

How many times has the Roman Empire Church ever admitted to being "wrong" when it even claims to be infallible whenever it wants to declare such infallibility?

The Spiritual Superpower says the better world is "multipolar" one? As long as it doesn't include itself maybe. But no other 'super power' not even Hitler, Mussolini and Stalin has been as absolutely full of hubris than the RCC.

As for Kyoto, the US has done more to curb its own environmental pollutions than all the ones who signed it combined! Besides news today is the world is COOLING!

Anonymous said...

Blackshama: While Benedict may pour a lot of energy in reevangelizing Europe and North America , the fact is the centre for church growth are no longer in these depopulated regions. This is what I mean as the Superpower Church.

I see, you are focusing on sheer numbers of adherents rather than moral authority as the criteria for spiritual superpower. Well it was just last month that the Vatican reported the Islamic world had overtaken the Catholic Church in numbers. "Wide is the gate, and broad is the way, that leadeth to destruction, and many there be which go in thereat" -- Jesus Christ

blackshama said...


Is Islam one organized religion?

No. There is no central authority in Islam. If there was,why would Benedict talk with Shias and Sunnis separately?

Is Christianity one organized religion?

No. there are thousands of Christian ecclesial communities.None of them accept a single CEO as we would say.

Is the Catholic Church one organized religion?

Yes. It has one CEO, the Pope.


The Church has accepted that it made a mistake in the Galileo affair.

Since Vatican II the Church has accepted the multipolar view. Benedict is unlikely to change that.

Now whether the Church will "change" due to the sensus fidelium of its members, I have to douse cold water to your rhetoric. It does.

The theology for this has been splendidly made clear by John Henry Cardinal Newman.

Newman is about to be beatified by Benedict XVI. This is a rather late Vatican recognition. Better late than never.

One theological idea that needs to be explored is whether this sensus fidelium extends beyond the Roman communion.Recall that Vatican II has declared that all Christians are in an "imperfect" communion.

So DJB, there's hope for women priests! and for a reconsideration of "traditional" teaching.

As for the hubris of the Church,you are confusing the hubris of the Popes for the Church.

This is a common pitfall of critics of the Roman Church!

BTW I don't belong to the "people" that will decide whether Bush's Iraq policy is wrong or not. I am not a citizen of the USA. I hold only one citizenship, a Filpino one. But I hope my American friends will uphold common sense above your sense and mine

blackshama said...

No worries DJB. The publishers would come out with Ibong Mandaragit komiks soon.

I recall that we used to laugh at the "Noli" komiks. Chapter one "Ang Piging" merited only one frame in the komiks version!

The komiks version was forbidden literature in my Filipino lit class!

Let's see how they will do with Amado Fernandez's opus.

The Nashman said...

there are 400 Million USAmericans...that is equally scary as 90 Million Filipinos...especially since they are sending high school drop outs in the Middle East...


theology, the church, the popes, etc... all look same...

DJB Rizalist said...

the nashman--
Well at our current rate of population growth, we should get to 400 million in just two and half doubling times, about 100 years!

That is if war, chaos and famine don't set in first.