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Talk:Voluntary Human Extinction Movement

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Wow, this is one of the oddest site's I've seen. Quite similar to that project where they all want to move to a single state so they can run it as a libertarian paradise (free-state project is it?) crossed with a suicide cult (I use the term in a snarky sense only). ArmondikoVd hominem 10:00, 18 November 2008 (EST)

It has nothing to do with any cult. Voluntary Human Extinction Movement is a movement which is completely based on scientific understanding of our planet, environment, humankind and the relation of humankind with the environment. As any political philosophy or social movement relies upon mass education, i.e. to acknowledge and educate people about their cause, Voluntary Human Extinction Movement also believes in mass education and public participation. At a first glance it may look like it is a group of some eccentrics, but if you dig deeper and carefully read their arguments from a scientific point of view (SPOV) and neutral point of view (not from human viewpoint), you will understand there is weight in what they are saying. --Earth 10:11, 18 November 2008 (EST)
I don't see it. That site has lots of stuff about addressing people's objections to the movement but I couldn't find anywhere on it that explained why voluntary extinction is the only solution to the world's problems. weaseLOIdWeaselly.jpg~ 13:11, 18 November 2008 (EST)
As the philosophical position of Voluntary Human Extinction Movement is quite difficult to understand for many people, it is written in a FAQ style. This page addresses many issues related to environment. Earth 15:29, 18 November 2008 (EST)
Looking at the VHEM pages I can't help wondering if we're looking at another iteration of Poe's Law.--Bobbing up 17:28, 18 November 2008 (EST)
I was about to comment something similar, re this chart. Hilarious. weaseLOIdWeaselly.jpg~ 17:57, 18 November 2008 (EST)
Cool. That really should go on the page. I wonder what the copyright situation is?--Bobbing up 18:09, 18 November 2008 (EST)

"Ecological Balance" is bullshit.[edit]

This has been pissing me off all morning. "Ecological balance" exists only in the minds of those human beings who think the world is naturally "supposed" to be a certain way. The notion that world is supposed to somehow have some sense of natural balance and justice is as silly as the idea that there's a god overseeing it. In nature, shit happens. Where's your "ecological balance" when asteroids crash into the planet? Some species evolve and come out on top, some don't. Nature doesn't give a shit either way. Ecological balance is a human construction, and humans are but another species within that construction, no more no less. PFoster 13:21, 18 November 2008 (EST)

I used to be of the belief that humans were a disease on the Earth, but I have long since taken PFoster's stance. The Earth's got a good three billion years in her. I figure that whatever we do will eventually be "fixed" and things will move on. Of course, I'd very much like to see us solve our problems. But, if we don't then so be it. --Edgerunner76, B.A.H. 13:46, 18 November 2008 (EST)
While not subscribing to the idea of "Voluntary Human Extinction" I do think there is a question of balance or at least sustainability. There is a limit to the quantity of stuff that we can continuously extract from the environment, and there is a limit to the quantity of pollutants we can put into the environment to have the recycled for "free".
I agree that the planet itself is in absolutely no danger from this as it has survived worse things than humanity. What is in danger from all this is the human race. If we don't reduce both what we extract from the environment and what we export to it then we are in trouble. New scientist recently ran an illuminating series of articles on this very point. --Bobbing up 14:53, 18 November 2008 (EST)
When asteroids crash into the planet, the temporary harm done to the local ecosystem is fixed by nature itself. But the gradual development of civilization results in gradual biodiversity loss and destruction of the ecosystem. The effect of an asteroid crash is "mitigated", but the damage done to the environment by human activities cannot be "mitigated". Think about forests. In West Africa alone, more than 90% of the forest is wiped out due to human activities. And this deforestation will continue, as human population growth will continue. Are you disputing the fact that a large number of species have become extinct only due to human activities? Yes it is true extinction events happened throughout the history of earth, but biodiversity loss due to human activities is different from that. Scientists have already predicted many well-known species like elephant may become extinct within 50 years if proper step is not taken. Human population is growing at an alarming rate and it will have a disastrous consequence on both ecosystem and human lives. Now if you think of a human-less world, there will be no anthropogenic air pollution, no anthropogenic water pollution, no anthropogenic deforestation, no gradual biodiversity loss, no green house gas, no anthropogenic climate change, no anthropogenic see level rise, no anthropogenic flood and Earth's ecosystem will return in it's form as it was 2.5 million years ago. Earth 15:27, 18 November 2008 (EST)
Everything you say is true, but you're presenting a false dichotomy where humanity either continues its destructive ways or else voluntarily chooses oblivion. I agree that overpopulation & depleting resources are major major problems, but the solution isn't to let humanity die out completely instead. There are many many things that are unique about humans & their achievements, & I think that many of them are worth preserving. We just need to find ways of addressing the problems we are creating. weaseLOIdWeaselly.jpg~ 15:52, 18 November 2008 (EST)
You keep saying there will be no "anthropogenic" this and "antrhopogenic" that if humans were gone. Well duh! What you don't address is will there still be climate change when humans are gone? History tells us yes. Will animals still go extinct? Yes. Will the Earth flood or freeze? Probaby. Just because you remove the word "antrhopogenic" from these causes, it doesn't mean they won't happen anymore.
I've got a counterexample for you: what creature in nature is capable (if not now, than in the future) of counteracting these harmful natural forces? What creature in nature can bring back extinct creatures, reverse climate change, or clean up the environment? It seems like, if you really believe that nature should go back to how it was pre-humanity, you need to advocate resetting nature, not leaving it. How do the empty skycrapers and rusting SUV's and decaying nuclear weapons that are left behind when we are gone add balance back to nature? JazzMan 17:17, 18 November 2008 (EST)

When I first heard of VHEMt a few months ago, I was horrified both at the logical fallacies of their argument (someone already mentioned the overall false dichotomy: "humans-overpopulate-and-destroy-the-planet" vs. "humans-go-extinct") and their goal, which is entirely contrary to the closest thing I have to a notion of a "meaning-of-life". None of us can help our fellow humans make their lives better if they don't exist. However, I quickly got over it. The probability that they convince enough people to stop reproducing to accomplish their goal ("enough people" meaning all people in this case) is negligible. The biggest impact they could possibly have is to convince a few of their fellow radical environmentalists to not have kids, which is entirely ok with me. They're absolutely right that the earth has too many humans on it, but as usual, the extreme position on how to fix that problem just doesn't make sense. OneForLogic 17:34, 18 November 2008 (EST)

You guys simply speaking from a human viewpoint. Someone above suggested "There are many many things that are unique about humans & their achievements, & I think that many of them are worth preserving". I will say for whose benefit these "achievements"? The answer is simply for the benefit of the humans. It may sound like a joke, but it is true. Someone suggested "meaning-of-life", if the life of one species do harm to the lives of all other species, that life is better to be ended (i.e. species extinction). Earth 23:49, 18 November 2008 (EST)
Regarding false dichotomy, noone addressed to the original issue, how we will solve the problems which environment faces due to human activities. Everyone is trying to bypass this argument by saying there are ways to solve these problems. What are the ways? Yes there are many theoretical way, but practically, frankly speaking, is extremely difficult. Do you think you can stop green house gas emission in an age when industry is growing rapidly? How will you stop overpopulation? And how will you stop pollution? How will you stop deforestation? Yes you may plant some tree in your garden and tell I have done great job in saving the environment, but does this mean the environment Earth had in lower Paleolithic will come back and the forest destroyed will be reforested? Earth 23:57, 18 November 2008 (EST)
In other words, "we can't do it right now so let's just give up". And hope that another ice age doesn't wipe out the very trees we are trying to save by killing off our species. Whoops. JazzMan 02:42, 19 November 2008 (EST)
Regarding human achievement, what is achievement in human viewpoint is destruction of environment. Yes, humans send men to moon. For who's benefit? For human's benefit. Yes humans have achieved progress in industrial technology, but this results in gradual degradation of the environment. Earth 00:00, 19 November 2008 (EST)
I could care less about the lower paleolithic. Or "the environment" as some sort of free-standing phenomenon. I care about human beings--and am an environmentalist only in that people need particular environments in which to thrive. Sperm whales are great, so are polar bears. I hope to have them around for a long time--but only in so much as their survival reflects the existence of a healthy biosphere that will continue to support a healthy and reasonably prosperous life for me and others of my species. In and of themselves, polar bears mean little to me--never seen one outside of a zoo, have no intention of going to the North Pole to see one in its natural habitat. I care about global warming because it fucks with agriculture and creates weather conditions that make people's lives more difficult, and ultimately impossible. But to bring this back to where I started it, to think that there is some sort of natural state of balance that exists outside of the human imagination is just silly--it brings people close to the type of religious environmentalism that CP rightfully scorns.PFoster 00:08, 19 November 2008 (EST)
Sigh. Luckily not everybody thinks as PFoster. You almost sound like a... Christian: (how's that for an insult?) God created the animals and trees and the sun to entertain humanity, etc. etc.. Well, that is quite a wrong attitude, in my very humble opinion. What matters is the whole world, including the human species. And what is wrong about natural state of balance? Nature lives in some kind of homeostasis, whether you accept Lovelock's Gaia theories or not. It adapts to changes, as well and fast as it can. Sure, it has never experienced a change like ours. Editor at CPOh, Finland! Why? 03:34, 19 November 2008 (EST)
A CHRISTIAN?. Hey, fuck you, too, buddy. There's nothing Christian or biblical in my point-of-view. It's straight-up material, selfish and humanistic. I'm interested in humans as a whole in great part because i am one, as are the overwhelming majority of my friends, family, and the people I rely on to get through my life--especially farmers. What's irrational--and almost sounds like a Christian--is thinking that polar bears or spotted owls have some sort of value in-and-of-themselves. They have value because PEOPLE value them. If their value isn't rooted in human desires and agency, it has to be rooted somewhere else--SOMETHING has to be the agent valuing them more than or less than something else. And if it's not humans, what is it? Homeostasis is nothing that exists in the world, it's something that exists in human conceptions of the world--conceptions that are socially, politically, and economically embedded and contingent on numerous power relationships. You're right, the whole world matters--but it matters because we as humans need it to survive. PFoster 09:52, 19 November 2008 (EST)

Humans are a natural species too. Maybe the natural balance is supposed to include us? Wazza (Not Wazzock, Wazza)Approach the Presence 00:16, 19 November 2008 (EST)

Yes, of course we are. For much of human history humans were not the major threat to the environment that they are now. The solution is not to eliminate the species, but to find ways to restore the balance between ourselves and the environment.--Bobbing up 02:50, 19 November 2008 (EST)

I just wanted to say...[edit]

...that reading the dissent on this page makes me feel a little better about myself. I know this is off topic I always thought that not really caring about the animal species on this planet, only for the sake of those species, made me a dirty evil capitalist. But I couldn't agree more with PFoster, Edgerunner, Bob, and Wazza. Record that for posterity, it's probably the only time you will see me type that statement. JazzMan 02:45, 19 November 2008 (EST)

I don't believe that I'm making the same point as PFoster.--Bobbing up 02:31, 20 November 2008 (EST)
I concur as well. After humans are gone, other animals will become dominant and the whole process will start again. I don't see it as our job to help the animals that are currently in existence survive. I do think that we should look after the human species as a whole, which obviously entails some drastic environmentalism, but if we fail, other animals will evolve and carry on. I honestly can't see humans destroying the earth totally or making it incapable of providing life at all. --DamoHi 03:46, 19 November 2008 (EST)
"Life will always exist, so why care?" is such a wrong attitude. And what's with this worship of human race? The world, nature, the environment, do exist by themselves, not only for our panem et circenses. I am also not sure, regardless of religious beliefs, that some other species will "become dominant", if by that you mean reach the highs (and lows!) humanity reached, that is being able to modify the planet to such a degree as us. Sure, eventually some species will take a similar path, but it may take one million year or a billion. Editor at CPOh, Finland! Why? 04:10, 19 November 2008 (EST)
I don't necessarily mean that a species with our abilities will emerge, though I suspect it likely given 500-1000 million years. Also it's a given that the changes will take a long time, at least a few million years. My point is simply that we shouldn't pretend that our wanting to be environmentally responsible is to actually save the earth, rather its to save human's continued existence on this earth. --DamoHi 06:50, 19 November 2008 (EST)
No, it's to save the Earth as we know it. Changes are inevitable, nature is all the time evolving, but our mission is to save the earth. As much as it is wrong to exterminate a village leaving only a couple with offspring alive ("they'll survive and multiply"), as wrong is to destroy the existing environment because something will survive. I really can't understand this anthropocentric view of "for humanity's sake". Editor at CPOh, Finland! Why? 07:03, 19 November 2008 (EST)
The point is that the choice isn't between leaving the village alive and leaving just the couple, it's between leaving just the couple or killing everyone. And we rely on the people of the village for survival but so long as even one of them is alive we'll be ok. If we get rid of ourselves the couple will survive, if we continue as we are they'll die, but we can also stay alive and keep the couple alive too, if we change our ways, and that's the option the VHEM haven't considered. Wazza (Not Wazzock, Wazza)Approach the Presence 07:35, 19 November 2008 (EST)
I agree with you that the third option is what we need. My issue is that we should accomodate both environment and humanity, I only don't agree with "nature will never die so we can change it as we like, it will survive anyway" nor with "nature is ours to do whatever we want. The only thing that matters is humanity and nature is just to please, and feed, humanity". To return to the village example, the village being nature - we may interact with the village; we may even require them to change their borders to give more space to us; but we shouldn't exterminate them all leaving just a couple who will survive (=destroy our environment). ANd no, we shouldn't either destroy ourselves to let the village prosper. Editor at CPOh, Finland! Why? 08:09, 19 November 2008 (EST)

Reply to Earth[edit]

Yes, we are "simply speaking from a human viewpoint". How could any of us claim not to be speaking from a human viewpoint? You are also speaking from a human viewpoint, just with a different opinion. & On whose behalf are you making judgements like "if the life of one species do harm to the lives of all other species, thatt life is better to be ended (i.e. species extinction)"? That certainly isn't how nature works; it's a moral judgement - I.E. a human viewpoint.

Regarding the achievements of humanity, I wasn't even talking about heavy industry or sending a man to the moon. I was talking about having rational and abstract thought, self-awareness, judgement, imagination, advanced communication, complex emotions - things that no other creature has developed. These things have led to everything that humanity has achieved, for better or worse, but in & of themselves they do not inherently destroy any other creature, & I believe absolutely that it is vital to preserve them for future generations. Yes, for humanity's benefit. If you don't appreciate these things, then frankly humanity is wasted on you.

I don't have answers to all the earth's problems, but I believe answers are worth looking for in order to preserve humanity and our environment, not in order to take humans out of the loop. weaseLOIdWeaselly.jpg~ 08:03, 19 November 2008 (EST)

Well, either way I think RW has called BS on the whole idea, it is essentially the FSP but with even less chance of success and even more ludicrous goals and methods (three accronyms in one sentence, go me!). ArmondikoVd hominem 08:24, 19 November 2008 (EST)
OK, what's FSP? I looked at WP's disambiguation page & I can't work it out. File Service Protocol? Folsom State Prison? Food Stamp Program? Free Scotland Party? What? weaseLOIdWeaselly.jpg~ 08:42, 19 November 2008 (EST)
Isn't it the name of a new political porn flick starring Matt Damon?DamoHi 08:46, 19 November 2008 (EST)
Free State Project we have a fairly snarky article about it. I compare the two because it's two movements that require a lot of people (in the case of VHEM, it's essentially everyone) to get together and do the same thing. Otherwise you're just wasting time on a really idiotic goal. Niether are a solution to a percieved problem and niether are in any way realistic. ArmondikoVd hominem 08:54, 19 November 2008 (EST)
Of course, the Free State Project will, by definition, immediately succeed once it reaches 10,000 members (I think that's the number, anyway). VHEM needs 6.5 BILLION members (and growing) to join, and then they need to wait ~80 years, and then there's still no gaarantee of succeeding. Also, even if the FSP doesn't succeed, the members are still advancing their cause (by voting and campaigning in their respective districts, hopefully gaining support for their ideas). But if VHEM doesn't succeed, they are killing themselves off, forcing their membership to get smaller. JazzMan 13:36, 19 November 2008 (EST)


We need some! Wazza (Not Wazzock, Wazza)Approach the Presence 19:45, 19 November 2008 (EST)

Indeed! Goat! ArmondikoVd hominem 06:41, 20 November 2008 (EST)
I added goat, now hows about some snarky commentary by someone with suitable levels of bile? Wazza (Not Wazzock, Wazza)Approach the Presence 08:18, 20 November 2008 (EST)
I could have sworn I added snark to this yesterday... Must be losing my mind. JazzMan 13:41, 20 November 2008 (EST)

All this junk[edit]

First of all, I could have chosen a nastier title but didn't. On to the point. The fact remains that we are causing this. This is not nature causing it. Nature is very, very slow; climate change happens over millions of years. We can change the climate within a few centuries. We are responsible for our actions, and trying to brush them off like this is inexcusable. --Prim arthropleura.jpg 23:10, 19 May 2009 (UTC)

Actually, climate change is much more rapid than "millions of years". Look at the history of the recent ice ages. Also, what is the "this" that "we" are causing? What sections are you referring to? ħumanUser talk:Human 23:42, 19 May 2009 (UTC)
CUR, why post this on the VHEM article talk page? Are you suggesting their response to climate change is a respectable one? WēāŝēīōīďWeaselly.jpgMethinks it is a Weasel 21:47, 20 May 2009 (UTC)
No, but I am responsing to several comments above. --Prim arthropleura.jpg 19:53, 21 May 2009 (UTC)
So, er, like, which ones? ħumanUser talk:Human 20:55, 21 May 2009 (UTC)

I could care less about the lower paleolithic. Or "the environment" as some sort of free-standing phenomenon. I care about human beings--and am an environmentalist only in that people need particular environments in which to thrive. Sperm whales are great, so are polar bears. I hope to have them around for a long time--but only in so much as their survival reflects the existence of a healthy biosphere that will continue to support a healthy and reasonably prosperous life for me and others of my species. In and of themselves, polar bears mean little to me--never seen one outside of a zoo, have no intention of going to the North Pole to see one in its natural habitat. I care about global warming because it fucks with agriculture and creates weather conditions that make people's lives more difficult, and ultimately impossible. But to bring this back to where I started it, to think that there is some sort of natural state of balance that exists outside of the human imagination is just silly--it brings people close to the type of religious environmentalism that CP rightfully scorns
-- Actually, I suppose I'm not responsing correctly. A more appropriate response would be that there is a natural balance, it just changes over millions of years. --Prim arthropleura.jpg 20:58, 21 May 2009 (UTC)

Darwin Awards[edit]

There should be a crossover. — Unsigned, by: / talk / contribs 18:25, 3 February 2010 (UTC)


I found this movement a long while back, and I have to say that it baffles me. Of course, it is impractical and evolutionarily naive. Clearly, unless this movement led to genocide, not humanity but only potential principled environmentalists would die out. There would be a selection pressure in favor of any personality traits that predispose one to avoid this movement, which might in the long run make overpopulation worse (think antibiotic resistance). Although, since VHEM probably won't win many converts, human psychology is complex, and human generations are long, VHEM probably won't have any substantial effect on the gene pool. But you can imagine that if VHEM somehow managed to get the human population down to 0.01%, humanity would then consist of descendants of the 0.01% of people who were the very least likely to continue VHEM.

What's far more confusing about the movement, however, is this ecological set of values. Personally, while I would prefer to have as much biodiversity as possible on the planet, if I had a choice between the extinction of human beings and the extinction of every species on the planet except the minimum necessary for human survival, I'd surely pick the latter. The qualities that are unique to the human species seem to be the very most valuable ones; a high degree of intelligence, abstract thought, and extremely complex social relationships based in that abstract thought. "Life", in and of itself, is comparatively not so valuable. I don't really accord a colony of bacteria substantially more value than a rock (although the bacteria are perhaps more complex and interesting than most rocks). Nor do I think of a "species" as having value just because it is a species. The sadness of losing a species is largely because such a process is irreversible and thus the utility that species might have had (aesthetically, in an ecological niche, or as a source of knowledge or technology) is permanently lost (after all, evolution never works quite the same way twice). --Quantheory (talk) 08:02, 30 August 2010 (UTC)

I musta missed something[edit]

What part of VHEM isn't blatant satire? - David Gerard (talk) 12:04, 30 August 2010 (UTC)

Certainly not the 'nuke 'em all' solution referred to in the third footnote.--Greeneggs (talk) 15:26, 25 June 2014 (UTC)


If these people were serious in their beliefs, they would have voluntary euthanated themselves by now. It does not appear to be the case. GooRoo (talk) 00:57, 1 January 2011 (UTC)

Not really because suicide isn't necessary to bring about the goal. Indeed, it could be detrimental as it prevents people spreading the belief - one reason that suicide cults don't spread very far. Scarlet A.pngbomination 01:01, 1 January 2011 (UTC)
Either way, it's a pointless goal in the greater scheme of the universe. This planet and all life on it will be extinguished and consumed by the Sun, when it will eventually become a red giant. Sun 1 Earth 0. GooRoo (talk) 01:13, 1 January 2011 (UTC)
But then "nature" has also been consumed by the sun. The entire point is to rid the Earth of the effects of the human race and its technology, giving it a chance to evolve and run "naturally". The premise therefore relies on humans being somehow "unnatural" and thus the world needs to return to a state where humans don't feature in it. Scarlet A.pngbomination 01:17, 1 January 2011 (UTC)
The movement will fail and it will never happen. If people want to kill themselves by all means, I wont stop them. GooRoo (talk) 01:35, 1 January 2011 (UTC)
But no one wants to kill themselves. It's incredibly important not to create some silly strawman of this. Scarlet A.pngbomination 18:31, 1 January 2011 (UTC)

Hi, I'm back after a long time. You guys turned this page into a complete criticism piece. To understand VHEMT's philosophy, you have to understand properly how our ecosystem works. To answer GooRoo's question, all animals in the ecosystem of this planet has a particular "duty"/role. For example, tertiary consumers like tigers help to maintain the natural number of primary consumers like the herbivores. Herbivores help to maintain the proper number of plants. If the number of the organisms in any trophic level increase or decrease, it will affect the entire ecosystem.

Now look at the role of humans in our planet's ecosystem. All mammals are hunters (except human, off course). They do not store food, they consume only that amount of food which is necessary for their survival. But contrary to other animals, humans are traders, they want a surplus. This is why they consume more resources than what is necessary for their survival. This results in permanent depletion of Earth's resources. You want example? Dodo, Passenger Pigeon, Caribbean Monk Seal, Carolina Parakeet etc. For example, consider the case of Carolina Parakeets. They were considered pests, and were killed indiscriminately. Why? Because humans wanted to produce surplus food through agriculture. Does this activity of humans do any good to the ecosystem? No, it destroys the ecosystem. This is exactly the point why the activities of human beings should be considered "unnatural". What humans have contributed to the nature? Green house effect, deforestation, habitat loss for other animals, sea level rise, melting of polar ice and consequential disturbance in local ecosystem. So what is positive in mankind's survival? --Earth (talk) 15:37, 26 January 2011 (UTC)

You may also want to consider destroying beavers, viruses and large asteroids as they also fit your criteria. Scarlet A.pngbomination 15:47, 26 January 2011 (UTC)
In fact, we can generalise futher and say that the most damage to the ecosystem is done by the ecosystem itself. The number of extinctions that can be traced directly and solely to human activity is quite minimal compared to the number that die out naturally (estimated to be at least 90%). The entire concept is based on a flawed and false dichotomy of "natural" and "unnatural" that you can't define except on your own ad hoc terms that can apply equally to so-called "natural" processes. The climate is nowhere near as warm as it is when there are supercontinents and the rate of anthropogenic heating is quite small compared to what is experienced under natural processes on both small (weather patterns) and large (ocean drive climate changes) scales. Not to say that AGW isn't a problem, just that it needs to be placed into perspective - and anyone who has actually studied the natural environment, rather than someone who just gets it out of Greenpeace based propaganda and half-baked hippy opinions, will be capable of doing that. Scarlet A.pngbomination 16:05, 26 January 2011 (UTC)
Earth, do you practice what you preach? If so please set an example so other believers can follow. FreeThought (talk) 16:37, 26 January 2011 (UTC)
I'd like to share a revelation that I've had during my time here. It came to me when I tried to classify your species and I realized that you're not actually mammals. Every mammal on this planet instinctively develops a natural equilibrium with the surrounding environment but you humans do not. You move to an area and you multiply and multiply until every natural resource is consumed and the only way you can survive is to spread to another area. There is another organism on this planet that follows the same pattern. Do you know what it is? A virus. Human beings are a disease, a cancer of this planet. You're a plague and we are the cure. Blue Talk 19:35, 26 January 2011 (UTC)
Well set a personal example then, if you truly believe what you preach. FreeThought (talk) 00:24, 27 January 2011 (UTC)
You do realize that was a direct quote from The Matrix, right? Blue Talk 02:26, 27 January 2011 (UTC)
Yes, I was being sarcastic. FreeThought (talk) 02:57, 27 January 2011 (UTC)
(being humorous) Well, there is NO big task assigned to VHEMT supporters ("May we live long and die out"). The only thing you have to do is to use contraceptives while fucking, this how you can save this planet :D --Earth (talk) 06:11, 27 January 2011 (UTC)
(being serious) Except thanks to the fact you're ageing and not reproducing you're sending the average age of the population rocketing upwards. It's bad enough with the current ratio of workers to pensioners, and that's in a comfortable developed-world society. You want to go preach that to those living in slums that don't have access to contraception and often have to get their children to work from age 5 just to get the money to live? The concept is fundamentally flawed and suffers from fractal wrongness. Scarlet A.pngbomination 15:04, 27 January 2011 (UTC)
Sure, the first world is experiencing that problem. The third world, due to our blowing it up so many time, is experience the opposite - a very young average population. ħumanUser talk:Human 09:50, 16 July 2011 (UTC)

Earth says:

  • all animals in the ecosystem of this planet has a particular "duty"/role (and then he goes on to describe an idealised ecosystem.)

This is view of ecology based on the idea of stasis. It would fit well with the creationist view of a 10,000-year-old Earth with each animal having a particular "role" in an unchanging environment. In fact the "roles" are constantly being changed and redeveloped in order to respond to either gradual change or occasional cataclysmic events like meteors. --BobSpring is sprung! 15:44, 27 January 2011 (UTC)

Wouldnt it be more right to say that roles dont really exist?? Like there just something we made up rather than ""real"" things?? Pegasus (talk) 00:51, 1 April 2011 (UTC)

Popular culture relation[edit]

When I started reading this, the first thing that came to mind was a movie called "Appleseed". Of course its not a perfect analogy, but it has some similarities (btw the movie is an animated CGI film directed by Shinji Aramaki. Did anyone else think of something similar?--JabberwockDownTheHole (talk) 00:51, 1 April 2011 (UTC)

Earth-centric view of the environment[edit]

Even if the Earth was reduced to a smouldering ball of magma (Mrs. O'Leary's cow kicked over an anti-matter missile--whoopsie!), would the trade-off still be worth it if in four hundred years we introduced new biomes and lifeforms to, say, the moons of Jupiter or Mars or just a few trillion Dyson Spheres? There are very few naturally habitable planets and if Earth has taught us anything it takes seriously billions of years to even get a couple of prokaryotes on the few that do exist. This of course is a massive assumption as, assuming that the human race is even around that long, that the technology will even still be around. But considering that the planet will well outlast any silly human critters, even after the nuclear apocalypse, I still think that it's better for people to chug along. After all, the chickens and tigers and whatever other slightly-less-silly-than-human-critters that inherit the planet after we die off ain't exactly chomping at the bit to build biospheres or space stations or whatever. Unless some other species evolves to intelligence, but then we're just facing the same problem all over again. --Dr. Swordopolis (talk) 23:51, 31 October 2011 (UTC)

I can't make sense of your argument. Are you talking about benefits to humanity or to the natural world? WeaseloidWeaselly.jpgMethinks it is a Weasel
I think it's a case of saying "we have intelligence and we have the evolution-given right to use it to fuck up the biosphere in our own special way". We're not going to destroy the universe, and odds are that life will continue with or without us. In a trillion years time no one is going to even know we were here - there will be literally nothing left of us. So voluntarily going extinct to "preserve nature" is just plain pointless. Link=User:Armondikov...I'll edify your couch potato! 00:13, 1 November 2011 (UTC)
What I was trying to get at is that environments only naturally arise in a very small number of areas over a very large period of time. It's extremely unlikely that somewhere like, say, Venus could ever have an ecosystem even close to the biodiversity of earth on its own. An intelligent species could speed up this process from several billion to several thousand years. This is of course a massive assumption, assuming that humans or anyone could develop such technology and would be interested in deploying it, but assuming that it is possible wouldn't it be better to have an intelligent species around to do the hard task of seeding, say, Mars with oxygen and water? Because if humans did indeed go voluntarily extinct who, if anyone, is going to go around building these new life-friendly landscapes? Abiogenesis and multicellular evolution takes foreeeeeever, even on Goldilocks planets. --Dr. Swordopolis (talk) 11:22, 1 November 2011 (UTC)
Re "wouldn't it be better to have an intelligent species around to do the hard task of seeding, say, Mars with oxygen and water?". Better for whom? What I struggle with in your argument is the assumption than introducing life to uninhabited planets is somehow objectively desirable. I can understand making ecological changes to benefit future generations of humans, or to benefit the existing ecosystems on our planet (VeHeMent is a flawed variation of this) but you seem to be arguing that creating external ecosystems is an end in itself & a reason for humanity to survive. WeaseloidWeaselly.jpgMethinks it is a Weasel 13:44, 1 November 2011 (UTC)
"re: or to benefit the existing ecosystems on our planet" This is precisely what I mean when I say that this is an earth-centered view of the environment. What is so special about an ecosystem on Earth that those things rock and need to be protected but a non-Earth ecosystem(s) in aggregate possessing similar or even enlarged ecosystem biodiversity and carrying (at the cost of rendering Earth a smoldering crater, assuming we buy the VEHM argument otherwise) isn't worth it? This next sentence isn't quite related to the VEHM strawman, but as an aside seeding other planets with life is desirable. Earth only has a carrying capacity of so many people. Even if you solved the problems of water and food, there's just only so much SPACE. So even if you only think that intelligent life is worth protecting/enhancing, eventually we will just plain hit a hard limit. And unless someone invents the many processes required to completely divorce the human race from needing to interact with any non-human lifeforms you're going to have to create new ecosystems during the process. --Dr. Swordopolis (talk) 02:25, 3 November 2011 (UTC)
If you take the meaning of life as being just the reward of pure experience, then it is your duty to allow as many entities to experience as possible. Seeding new ecosystems to produce life might be one way of fulfilling this. Therefore, we should survive to colonise Mars and cause our own panspermia. Not that I take the meaning of life as this exclusively, though. Link=User:Armondikov...I'll endanger your VCR! 13:54, 1 November 2011 (UTC)
I don't find the notion that we have a "duty" to all lifeforms compelling. Look at how we treat viruses. We do what suits our needs (individually or as a species). Anything we do to protect or promote other organisms is also benefiting us in some way. WéáśéĺóíďWeaselly.jpgMethinks it is a Weasel 14:05, 1 November 2011 (UTC)
I don't, either. I'm just saying that even if you do buy all of the other VEHM arguments (that people dying off is good for the environment, that it'll stay that way, that there is such a thing as ecological balance/improvement, etc.) why would their goal not be more fulfilled by seven Solar System planets with a biomass four times that of Earth unless there was something particularly special about Earth? I don't think there's anything particularly special about our beautiful blue planet other than the fact that it's the only reachable place where 7 billion+ humans and who knows how many other lifeforms can live--a limitation which may or may not be overcome for the lifespan of the planet and/or the human race. If the limitation can be overcome, then the price of a wrecked Earth (necessary to support humanity's technological progress) is well worth that of external ecosystems (which is only achieved in a reasonable timeframe by humanity's technological progress). Again, there are a lot of assumptions in that chain of thought like the human race being able to live that long, human beings being able to develop the technology at all, human beings being interested in applying it, etc. but it is food for thought. --Dr. Swordopolis (talk) 02:25, 3 November 2011 (UTC)

The Matrix quote[edit]

I'm nitpicking to the extreme, but a virus isn't an organism. It's rogue DNA/RNA that is largely worthless until assimilated into a cell. I just brushed up on this, and I must say that the Wikipedia article is quite interesting.--Tiberius Gracchus.jpg. 02:21, 24 November 2011 (UTC)

Just to nitpick your nitpick some years later, but sorry, just discovered this bowel movement group tonight and your comment along with it. Of equal worth, as you missed important factors. By your standard, Enterobacteriaceae are largely worthless until assimilated into a cell, therefor they are not alive or something. Viral status of life is still being argued by many and sundry. However, Enterobacteriaceae are obligate parasites or symbiants and are part of the argument for life definitions that impact the debate on whether a virus is alive or not. I'm more simplistic, self-replication, uses DNA and/or RNA, it's alive, pending some greater understanding of life in the future.Wzrd1 (talk) 04:57, 2 April 2013 (UTC)
Whether a virus "is" or "is not" alive is a moot point anyway, as it's all an abitrary categorisation that doesn't really exist in reality. Scarlet A.pngtheist 09:38, 2 April 2013 (UTC)
The principle issue with saying a virus is alive is it has no senses and no metabolism. Both are generally held to be requirements for a living thing. King Skeleton (talk) 23:25, 2 December 2014 (UTC)
One other thing to remember (besides that we're NOT supposed to side with Agent Smith) is that there is no instinctive settling of population levels in anything; that would require each species to have a hive mind, for starters. This is on a species level, mind; in family/pack levels, number of offspring usually has to do with how much food is available, translating to how much energy there is to spare for reproduction after dealing with hunger. And infant mortality certainly isn't for lack of trying, at least not among altricial species (passerines, woodpeckers, and mammals qualify). What does settle the numbers is best thought of as a combination of predation, privation, and harshness of the elements. All of which any given life-form generally strains against. The idea of a pact-like natural balance is effectively pareidolia; the reality is more like a thousand-way stalemate that's unaware of its own existence. (At least until sapience entered the picture.) The problem, I think, is encapsulated in the idea that without humans, the rest of Nature could evolve in peace. Except evolution isn't really an action that can be taken; it's strictly accidental, ultimately. Eugenics & Co. aside, it's not something that can be planned. Not to mention that evolution can't be said to be its own purpose; evolution and biodiversity aren't the same thing. In fact, I get the feeling there's a sense of chthonic teleology in here--that humans actually derailed Nature from a pre-planned evolutionary pattern. Although in the case of chthonic teleology, a thought that might be worth pursuing. That Nature intentionally created sapient humanity as a way to let Earthly life exist elsewhere in the universe, even after solar expansion. (Although I'm scared that something like Deep Green Resistance would respond that Nature would need to be chastised for its unwillingness to accept its proper, preordained-or-thereabouts end.) Skyknight 20:22, 13 November 2014 (UTC)

Someone undo all of the bullshit that accumulated on this page.[edit]

Hey, hidden moonbat. If you want to make big sweeping changes to a article then the first you you do is discuss it in the Talk article. Not vandalize the article and hope no one will notice. Moron. Dr. Swordopolis (talk) 06:40, 13 March 2014 (UTC)

Contrary to popular opinion, wiki vandalism means things like replacing an article with "ADMINS SUCK MY COCK LOL", not any edits that disagree with one's viewpoint, no matter how cranky they are.--ZooGuard (talk) 08:42, 13 March 2014 (UTC)

Fascinating, Captain[edit]

I don't at all agree with the philosophy espoused by these guys, but there is a certain logic to it. The existence of lots of humans puts pressure on, and damages the ecosystem. This causes lots of suffering. So we can end suffering by ending humans. Still... it seems to fundamentally disagree with some basic tenants of human philosophies. They think wilderness is more valuable than humanity, I'd say neither one is of more of less value. I'm sure many would say humans are superior. They think sentience, art, culture, science, knowledge, etc are without merit, or are even bad... while I believe them to be the redeeming factors that make us worth saving. It basically boils down to a fundamentally different worldview of the place of humanity in the universe, and the purpose of life, or of civilization. In short, I can't find any problems with their view other than that it goes so completely against my worldview.

One thing I can't get past though: They admit that it goes against human nature to voluntarily go extinct, but none the less see it as necessary because they see human nature as destructive. Reproduction is also a part of human nature. So if you want to change human nature, why not aim to change the greed and shortsightedness that create the problems? It strikes me as no more difficult to change humanity's destructive/greedy nature than it does to change the desire to reproduce (Read: Not easy). - Brian, Dec 1 2014

The existence of volcanos does that too, you don't see a movement aimed at destroying the mantle. King Skeleton (talk) 04:12, 2 December 2014 (UTC)
Well destroying the mantle would also destroy all life on Earth... but even if that were not true, it would indeed be a foolish undertaking. Ah, well... I guess I still prefer this lot to the polar opposite of "everything in existence is humanities for the taking, wilderness and long-term sustainability be damned", but only because the other side has been much more successful. - Brian, Dec 2 2014
But "long-term sustainability be damned" is also likely to cause humanity's extinction.--TiaC (talk) 22:54, 2 December 2014 (UTC)
The other obvious problem is that no matter how long Earth's biosphere lasts it's all going to die when the sun goes nova anyway, so if we kill it first isn't really relevant if the biosphere is what we're supposed to be saving: this comes out of the enviro-woo idea that the Earth would be stable and eternal without humans, which is basically just the Biblical creation myth with humans re-cast as Satan (thus Earth will exist in a "fallen state" as long as we're around). Given we're the only species we know of that could even potentially do anything about the sun killing everything, killing ourselves off would actually be a death sentence for the entire planet too. Yeah, "let's reverse entropy" is hardly a minor task and might not be possible at all, but still. King Skeleton (talk) 23:00, 2 December 2014 (UTC)

VEHM's paradox[edit]

Even if technology allowed us to create sustainable habitats on earth and other planets, these are desirable only from a human perspective. Creating conditions on Mars suitable for Earth-like organisms is not necessarily making Mars a better place. -- If VEHM use the second sentence as justification as to why humans shouldn't colonize other planets (because otherwise it'd fuck up their timetable), they've completely destroyed their own argument for the movement itself. If the exact content or even existence of a planet's (or astrological region's) biosphere doesn't matter, even if it's a (near-)completely dead planet like Mercury or Mars, then why should we care about the composition of Earth's? In a galaxy that in all probability contains billions of Earth-like planets and trillions of rocky planets, what is so special about the Earth that only the quality of its particular biosphere should be judged? Why shouldn't humans be searching for and contacting the civilization of other planets with biospheres and getting them to become voluntarily extinct? Is it okay for thousands of planets with carbon (or whatever) biospheres to dwindle in deprivation and death as long as the Earth's heals?

Also, this argument gets weirder and weirder once you move away from planetary colonization and talk about colonizing other astrological regions, such as with space stations or a purely digital sapient race bouncing information signals between relays. Apparently, the cosmologically expanding region of previously near-empty space cannot have its sanctity violated.

A Troubling Prospect[edit]

The worst thing about this concept is that the people who are intelligent enough to get it are the ones who will stop breeding, while the ones who do not have the mental capacity to understand it are the ones who will keep relentlessly breeding. This just makes the whole situation even more uncomfortable for everyone.

ASIDE: Does anyone else just love the fact that VHEMT themselves actually replied to (albeit an older version of) this article? RockyRob97 (talk) 13:08, 26 September 2017 (UTC)

What will happen[edit]

...To all the species that are directly or indirectly dependent upon humans (which would include leprosy, HIV, and various other diseases, domesticated animals, human-manipulated-environment-users etc). There are also the species which humans have bred from very small populations into self sustaining ones etc, etc.

And viable extra-terrestrial human populations would need a suitable ecosystem to sustain them. Anna Livia (talk) 16:16, 15 April 2019 (UTC)
To be blunt, natural selection would happen. ikanreed 🐐Bleat at me 16:18, 15 April 2019 (UTC)