Re: poly: Why Demographic Transition?

From: Carl Feynman <>
Date: Tue Jul 28 1998 - 12:56:05 PDT

At 12:03 PM 7/28/98 -0700, you wrote:
>I've been puzzling over the demographic transition for a while.
>When a parent cares about their boy's mating changes, they also care
>how rich each of their boys is. With a strong enough effect, a rich
>parent may prefer to concentrate their resources on a few rich kids,
>rather than more poorer kids.

There was an article on this in the Economist a year or two ago, and they
suggested the same conclusion. IIRC, they reported on a study on some
technologically primitive tribe that supported this theory.

I wonder by what twisty physiology "wealth" is determined? It can't be by
comparison to the people around you, since all classes go through the
demographic transition together. If it is by comparison to how wealthy one
was as a child, then one would expect to see rapidly growing populations in
places with static living standards, like Argentina.

Perhaps it is an absolute scale, like never being hungry. In this case,
refrigeration and snack foods are a powerful contraceptive.

Received on Tue Jul 28 20:03:18 1998

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