The Wizard and the Prophet Ebook ☆ 640 pages Download ã Randarenewables

Book The Wizard and the Prophet

The Wizard and the Prophet Ebook ☆ 640 pages Download ã Randarenewables Ó From the best selling award winning author of 1491 and 1493 an incisive portrait of the two little known twentieth century scientists Norman Borlaug and William Vogt whose diametrically opposed views shaped our ideas about Crops that then saved millions from starvation Innovate was Borlaug's cry Only in that way can everyone win Mann delves into these diverging viewpoints to assess the four great challenges humanity faces food water energy climate change grounding each in historical context and weighing the options for the future With our civilization on the line the author's insightful analysis is an essential addition to the urgent conversation about how our children will fare on an increasingly crowded Earth A must read for anyone who cares about this planet and the pursuit of happiness of all its inhabitants Best book I've read in ages

Charles C. Mann ☆ The Wizard and the Prophet Book

From the best selling award winning author of 1491 and 1493 an incisive portrait of the two little known twentieth century scientists Norman Borlaug and William Vogt whose diametrically opposed views shaped our ideas about the environment laying the groundwork for how people in the twenty first century will choose to live in tomorrow's worldIn forty years Earth's population will reach ten billion Can our world support that? What kind of world will it be? Those answering these uestions generall A pretty good if overlong book about technical progress Wizards vs environmental activism Prophets More or less Mann does a good job of remaining even handed in this long running debate which became prominent in the US with John Muir vs Gifford Pinchot in the early 20th century Mann picked William Vogt as his Prophet poster boy I’d never heard of Vogt an ornithologist who studied the guano islands off Peru in the 1940s and went on to activism And I had trouble remembering who were the Wizards Or Prophets I knew a fair bit about Norman Borlaug the book's Wizard who won a Nobel Peace Prize as the father of the Green Revolution But I didn’t know the details of his career and just how hard it was breeding a dwarf high yielding wheat variety that could resist wheat rust an ubiuitous and destructive fungal disease Without any formal training in plant breeding which was just as well since he was trying unorthodox methods He got lucky and the Mexicans and then the world got wheat that yielded twice or three times the best previous yields See first comment for details of the development and acceptance of the miracle wheatThe new wheat varieties finally enabled India and other countries to feed themselves Which was the point of the exercise as they sure couldn’t before It’s a bit hard to imagine that Prophets would criticize this achievement but some do There’s an evil chain of thought from Malthus to eugenics to Nazis that said let those foreigners die they breed like rabbits anyway As Winston Churchill uipped declining to send food aid to Bengal in 1942 3000000 Bengalis British subjects all starved to deathMann had a hard time making some of the doom 'n' gloom Prophets' ideas seem reasonable Not that a lot of them aren’t but it’s hard to take people like Jeremy Rifkin or Paul Erlich seriously Or paving the world’s deserts or Germany with solar farmsThe middle part of the book is the weakest and I skimmed a lot of familiar material on energy use population growth and global warming Mann is careless at time with cites and facts he repeatedly gives an estimate of a global population of around 10 billion by 2050 but never cites a source In a brief fact check there is a range of UN estimates from 8 to 10 billion by 2050 or less likely higher And the global population may start to decrease about then Prosperous people have fewer kids More on projected population growth at second commentHis summary of climate change skepticism in an appendix is fair minded In my opinion as a geologist who’s looked into the topic in some depth the climate is warming but pretty slowly and this is unlikely to cause major problems I could be wrongAnd there’s a sweet optimistic coda à la “The Better Angels of our Nature” that says maybe we can somehow pull this off give everybody a decent life without totally trashing our planet I certainly hope so and though we may disagree on the details I expect you do tooThe book is closer to 35 stars but I've gotten impatient with writers who take 10 words when 2 will do Thus the round down But likely worth your effort to skim at least The Norman Borlaug bio is excellent

Mobi É The Wizard and the Prophet ☆ Charles C. Mann

The Wizard and the ProphetY fall into two deeply divided groups Wizards and Prophets as Charles Mann calls them in this balanced authoritative nonpolemical new book The Prophets he explains follow William Vogt a founding environmentalist who believed that in using than our planet has to give our prosperity will lead us to ruin Cut back was his mantra Otherwise everyone will lose The Wizards are the heirs of Norman Borlaug whose research in effect wrangled the world in service to our species to produce modern high yield Borlaug asked me if I had ever been to a place where most of the people weren't getting enough to eat Not just poor but actually hungry all the time he said I told him that I hadn't been to such a place That's the point he said When I was getting started you couldn't avoid them This is Dr Norman Borlaug next to Prof William Erskine who himself works in an office in my building here in Perth we co supervise one PhD student he's a wonderfully kind manSource for the photo alternatively Willie's wall where it hangs in a frameNorman Borlaug worked relentlessly to start the green revolution for which he won a Nobel Prize in 2005 Norman Borlaug is my idol and one of my main motivating factors in working in this fieldThis is William VogtSadly I don't have a personally relevant photo thereVogt was one of the original thinkers behind the environmental movement at one point the director of Planned Parenthood a strong proponent for population controlThis book is for the first few chapters a biography of both men They lived at the same time looked at the same problems even met once but came to different conclusions on how to help peopleMann takes the lives of both as exemplars for two ways to view the world Borlaug stands for 'wizards' who believe that for any problem there is a technical solution notable books are Darwinian Agriculture How Understanding Evolution Can Improve Agriculture and most silver and golden era science fictionVogt stands for 'prophets' who believe that such technical solutions are ultimately hubris humanity should go back and live in harmony with nature work on a small scale and scale back industry some notable books in that corner which I all detested The One Straw Revolution Ishmael An Adventure of the Mind and Spirit you can see I'm biased to which world view I come fromAfter the biographies come four chapters which look at problems mankind currently faces climate change loss of drinkable water air pollution food and the solutions both 'sides' have for each problem Here Mann loses me a bit since he shows these two worldviews as completely opposed the wizards want to build big desalination plants the prophets want to get people to stop wasting water and get water saving plants I live in Perth which has huge problems with water yet people have green European style lawns which do nothing but waste water in a very dry area I want the best of the wizard and prophet world I'd love there to be desalination plants I'd love for people to abandon green lawns why can't I have both?What impresses me is that Mann manages to show the upsides of both sides where they go well where they go wrong it's easy to fall into one sideWhat's impressed me the most is that Mann looks at both men's lives and finds flaws in both ways to view the world Both according to Mann missed the social view ignored the social scientists' view points Both usually ignored the structure of power Vogt as a representative of the rich West was often criticised for trying to tell poor people in developing countries to stop developing If you're poor and have no support from the state how else are you supposed to have a stable family but by having lots of kids? Borlaug on the other hand would often ignore or not see the political side of his work and would get frustrated by people pushing back corruption fear of change greed and especially power imbalances to which Borlaug was often blind That is to me the main takeaway of this book you cannot ignore the social side of your inventions you cannot ignore the system within which your work happens Progress doesn't magically happen by technology alone