May 5, 2018

PITY THE POOR MALTHUSIANS:

No, Thanos Is Not 'the Real Hero' of Infinity War (JONATHAN V. LAST, May 04, 2018, Weekly Standard)

[I]n a neo-Malthusian world, Thanos and his plan to wipe out half the beings in the universe because of overpopulation is, admittedly, a little extreme. And maybe misunderstood. But fundamentally kind of on to something.

No, really. Here's Slate (of course) arguing that "when Thanos suggests that life has expanded beyond our environment's ability to sustain it, he kind of has a point." Here's Inverse: "His 'evil' plan makes a certain amount of rational sense: The greatest enemy of the Marvel Cinematic Universe isn't Thanos; it's overpopulation that will eventually lead to famine and ruin." Here's Forbes tip-toeing up to the line before throwing up their hands and saying It's complicated!

Here's Josh Brolin--who plays Thanos it the forkin' movie--"You want to write him off as insane. And yet what he's doing makes sense, if you break it down."

And to be honest, I have a certain weakness for these kinds of arguments, because it is now settled-science that movies often confuse the good guys and the bad guys.


Except that when it comes to Thanos, there's no real way to make that case. As Sonny Bunch observes, Thanos is more or less a stand in for Paul Ehrlich, and as such, he's wrong on the real-world merits, obviously. Overpopulation may be a problem for butterfly colonies, but it is not a problem for humanity because, unlike insects, humans have both technology and labor economics. Don't @ me--just check the scoreboard. We're now at a point where even the New York Times the rest of the bien pensant world admits that the author of The Population Bomb was fool who caused a great deal of misery.

On the other hand, Killmonger is kind of the hero of Black Panther.

Posted by at May 5, 2018 7:44 AM

  

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