climate change equality

Who is most responsible for climate change?

Last week I was at an event where we were discussing sustainability and inequality, and this slide came up in a presentation. It’s from an Oxfam report that you can find here, and it shows per capita emissions in a variety of countries. Specifically, it shows ‘lifestyle consumption emissions’. As it sounds, that’s a measure of carbon emissions based on the goods and services that we consume – car travel and flights, heating, food, consumer goods, etc. Each country is then broken down to show the difference in emissions between the richest and the rest. carbon-inequality
There are a number of things to draw out of this. The most obvious is that the richer people are, the more they tend to consume and the higher their carbon footprint tends to be. When you remember that climate change impacts fall first and most heavily on the poorest and most vulnerable, the injustice is stark. That’s true within countries as well as internationally.

The richest are most responsible for climate change, but the least affected. As I’ve said before, I reckon that when people look back on climate change in a hundred years time, they will have similar questions to the ones we ask about the age of slavery – how did the majority of people think that was okay? Why did it take so long for people to understand their moral responsibilities?

Another thing worth pointing out is the comparison between the USA and China. The carbon footprint of the richest 10% of Chinese citizens is lower than the poorest half of Americans, by some distance. China is the world’s biggest carbon polluter in total, but on a per-capita basis footprints are relatively small. China is not yet a nation of consumers. Most people don’t have a car or fly. The poorest half of China’s population – some 600 million people – have carbon footprints that would fall within a one-planet share.

The graph makes a good case for the basic principle behind my blog title. Those countries at the bottom of the graph are going to increase their consumption, along with all the other lower or middle income countries that aren’t in the G20. Nobody gets to deny poorer countries the right to develop, so if we have any hope of preventing catastrophic climate change, we have to reduce our emissions in the West.

42 comments

  1. The countries that negotiated the Paris deal recognise this. That’s why developing countries (comprising about 82 percent of mankind and all the world’s poorest people) are allowed by the deal to give overriding priority to “economic and social development and poverty eradication” and are merely encouraged “to move over time towards economy-wide emissions reduction or limitation targets”. In other words, they have neither any moral nor any legal obligation to reduce their emissions, either now or in the future. That may well be “climate justice” – but unfortunately the developing countries were responsible for essentially the entire expansion of GHG emissions since 1990 and are today responsible for over 65 percent of global emissions. And, as they understandably increase their consumption, they will continue to increase that percentage. Therefore, as Russia and Japan have made it clear they’re not interested in emission reduction, the full burden of emission reduction falls on the US and Europe. But they’re responsible for only (a shrinking) 25 percent of emissions. So, however clear they may be about their moral responsibilities, the citizens of the US and Europe cannot possibly make the reductions many scientists in the West say are necessary to prevent catastrophic climate change.

    Therefore, if those scientists are right, it seems inevitable that the world’s poorest and most vulnerable people will suffer – unless the Paris Agreement is radically renegotiated. And, after all the foolish congratulation and hoopla in Paris, that would seem to be exceptionally unlikely.

    Incidentally, according to the authoritative EU Joint Research Centre emissions database, China’s per capita emissions are a relatively large 7.73 tons CO2 – i.e. more than the EU28’s 6.87: http://edgar.jrc.ec.europa.eu/overview.php?v=CO2ts_pc1990-2015

      1. What do you mean by “dump”?

        Assuming you mean expressing a professional criticism, it’s very far from easy: analysing, understanding and communicating a correct interpretation of the terms agreed in Paris takes both legal expertise and the ability to explain the findings in understandable language. I believe Professor David Campbell achieves that here: http://journals.sagepub.com/doi/pdf/10.1177/0958305X16675524

        The only realistic solution would be to persuade either the UN or the major powers to abandon the Paris Agreement and start again. Perhaps you’ve got some ideas about how that might be achieved?

        1. The flaws in the Paris Agreement are obvious, the non-binding aspect of it being the most glaring. So just criticising it gets us nowhere.

          Unsatisfactory though it is, it took twenty years to get here. Scrapping it and starting again is not going to happen, neither have we got the time to do so.

          1. The real flaws are far from obvious. Otherwise we wouldn’t keep being told it was a “breakthrough”, “landmark achievement” etc. And the treaty itself isn’t non-binding – although parts of it are. Thus the exemption of developing countries from any obligation to reduce emissions is confirmed as their legal right – they don’t have to make reductions. (It’s been their right incidentally since the 1992 UNFCCC.)

            Burying heads in the ground gets nowhere. Facing up to the reality of what happened in Paris is essential if we are to understand where climate negotiations now stand: after 25 years of negotiation we have an outcome that’s a disaster for anyone who believes urgent and substantial emission reductions are essential. That may be most unwelcome but it’s true. Perhaps you’re right that starting again is not going to happen. So what alternative do you propose?

  2. If you’re listening to politicians, you’ll hear how fantastic it is, but then they lined up to say how historic the Copenhagen talks were if you remember. You’ll get a much more realistic appraisal from NGOs, campaigners and scientists.

    I’m fully aware of where Paris gets us, and I write about solutions every week. Perhaps you don’t think they’re solutions and that I’m wasting my time, but what have you got to offer besides the wringing of hands?

    1. “You’ll get a much more realistic appraisal from NGOs, campaigners and scientists.”

      Not really. Their view tends to be that the PA has real potential and is at least a start – but a start that fails to go far enough (e.g. the INDCs are inadequate). Nonetheless (they say) it provides opportunities for tightening up over time, so it represents a basis for qualified optimism.

      Unfortunately that’s not a realistic interpretation. For that you have go to the boring old legal profession. As Professor Campbell (I’ve provided the link) correctly says the PA “gives the newly industrialised countries such as China and India a permission to emit as much as they see fit.” As those countries are responsible for over 60% of global emissions and, as two developed countries – Russia and Japan – are plainly not interested in emission reduction, the whole burden falls on N America and W Europe. But, as they’re only responsible for (a shrinking) 25% of emissions, a realistic solution is virtually impossible. Unless of course the PA is dramatically renegotiated.

      That’s “where Paris gets us”. And I’ve seen nothing on your website that indicates that you are “fully aware” of this nor have I seen anything approaching a solution to this most serious problem.

      1. Given that it took 20 years to get it, it’s the deal we have. What else can it be other a starting point for further action?

        For the third time of asking, what do we do about it, other than complain?

        1. Since the enactment of the UN Framework on Climate Change in1992, the West (the US and EU) has been determined to persuade “developing” countries (exempt from emission reduction obligations) to agree that, as they became industrialised, they should move into the “developed” category (with reduction obligations) . But they resolutely refused. That’s why Copenhagen failed. In the pre-Paris negotiations, the developing countries stuck to that position and this time the West weakly capitulated. And, to make matters even worse, the Paris Agreement actually strengthens the permission granted to newly industrialised countries not to make reductions. That’s why the deal is a disaster for anyone who believes urgent and substantial emission cuts are essential if mankind is to avoid potentially calamitous climate change.

          In other words, 20 years of negotiation have achieved nothing. Not much of “a starting point”.

          That’s a realistic assessment of where we are. It may be unwelcome – but that doesn’t make it a complaint.

          The only solution – as I’ve said many times – is to renegotiate the Paris Agreement. Unlikely perhaps – but arguably not wholly impossible.

          1. Having heard you and Jeremy I’m left wondering where we go from here then? The conclusion appears to be that we complain to our MP’s that the PA is inadequate. But will we? What strength do we really have for renegotiating and what can we seriously ask?

  3. I think your analysis is wrong Robin, on several fronts. To say ‘the US and the EU’ wanted everyone else to move to the ‘developed’ category is mistaken for two reasons. First, the US never ratified Kyoto. The Republican half of America see a binding treaty as impinging on sovereignty. It smacks of global government and they’d have none of it. Sure, China shot down Copenhagen, but the US would never have ratified a binding agreement. The compromise of voluntary contributions was necessary from both sides, and we can’t caricature the West as right and the developing countries as refuseniks.

    Secondly, there are a bunch of reasons why developing countries couldn’t be classified as ‘developed’ for the sake of emissions. One is that they’re not developed. You might persuade a few middle income countries to accept binding agreements, but try telling India that their hands are now tied and they can’t use coal power. Never going to happen, not with millions of people without electricity. Then there’s the matter of per capita emissions – as shown in the graph above, the lifestyles of the West are far more carbon intensive and that should be recognised. Then there’s historic emissions, and the fact that places like Britain got 150 years of coal power free long before anyone started worrying about climate change.

    With those things in mind, it wouldn’t have been fair to lump everyone in together and demand reductions as if we’re all the same. Hence the principle of ‘common but differentiated responsibility’ that was so vital to keeping talks going. One proposal to get around that was to get developed countries to pay for the transition. When it became obvious that the idea of climate finance was all talk and the West wasn’t actually going to pay, a new approach was needed. That compromise was voluntary contributions.

    Sure, it’s an inadequate arrangement. We know this, and this is another thing you’re getting wrong. You seem to think you have a realistic view and everyone else has their head in the sand. I work with NGOs and campaigners every day, and I can categorically say that this is not the case. I don’t personally know a single person who thinks it’s a satisfactory agreement.

    However, and this is by far and away the central point – Paris is the deal we have. Another one cannot be negotiated in anything like a relevant time frame. We do not live in an ideal world. We don’t always get what we want. We have to work with the Paris Agreement as it is, and working to undermine it when there’s no chance of replacing it with anything better is deeply counterproductive. Hence my efforts to point out how we work well within it, with examples like Sweden last week, and Ethiopia coming up next week.

    My question to you is the same as it has been all along: since you can’t have another agreement, have you anything constructive to say?

    1. Thanks, Jeremy, for your considered response. Unfortunately it contains some misunderstandings and errors of fact. The former are what matters, so I’ll deal with them now.

      1. You seem to think I’m critical of the position being taken by developing countries. Not so. About 40 percent of the world’s population has to exist on less than $2.5 per day – all in the developing world. Therefore in my view those countries have every right, both moral and legal, to prioritise poverty elimination over emission reduction; a right established by Article 4.7 of the UNFCCC. India is a perfect example: as you say, it’s not going to give up coal power. And that’s true of many developing countries – including China. Take South Africa as just one example: it’s recently commissioned two massive 6 x 800 MW coal-fired power plants (the Kusile and Medupi plants). Is it likely to give them up? Er … no.

      That’s why these countries insisted, very understandably, on the UNFCCC exemption from any obligation to cut their emissions – an exemption confirmed (and strengthened) by the Paris Agreement. With their vast problems re poverty, electricity and water access etc., who can blame them? Certainly not me. That’s why, as you say, these countries are not interested in being classified as ‘developed’. Nor is there any possibility of lumping everyone together and demanding reductions as if we were all the same; I’m certainly not interested in so doing. Note incidentally that developing countries use the term ‘common but differentiated responsibilities’ as a reference to their legal position established under the UNFCCC.

      The Article 4.7 exemption may not have seemed quite so important in 1992 when, for example, the US and EU28 were responsible for 41 percent of emissions and China and India for only 13 percent. But now that the position’s reversed (US/EU28 24 percent and China/India 36 percent) it matters a great deal – especially as overall emissions have grown by about 60 percent since 1992, with the developing world responsible for essentially the entire increase. As developing countries are now responsible for 65 percent of all emissions and show every sign of increasing that (see for example South Africa above) and as Russia and Japan seem unconcerned about emission reduction, the exemption puts the entire burden of reduction on the US and Europe (responsible for only 25 percent), making urgent and substantial cuts in overall emissions impossible. (OK, you may say that nothing’s impossible – but, as the only “solution” is renegotiation of the Paris Agreement, I think we agree it’s extraordinarily unlikely.)

      2. I’ve never suggested that anyone in the West (NGOs, campaigners, scientists etc.) thinks the PA is satisfactory. Far from it – read my 11:34 am post on February 18. But do any of these people really understand that giving the “newly industrialised countries such as China and India a permission to emit as much as they see fit” (Professor Campbell) makes, for the reasons stated elsewhere, urgent and substantial emission reduction impossible? Maybe – but I haven’t seen any evidence for it. Do any of the people you work with every day understand that this is the real problem (and not for example the inadequacy of the INDCs)?

      But there are a lot of people who most certainly do consider the PA to be satisfactory. And they of course are the representatives of the newly industrialised countries who, on behalf of the developing world, successfully negotiated an agreement giving them what they want. So far as they’re concerned, economic development and poverty elimination are considerably more important than urgent and substantial emission cuts. So they don’t think the PA is ‘an inadequate arrangement’. And, as they speak for some 82 percent of the world’s population, it’s hard to gainsay them.

      3. I agree entirely with your ‘central point’. Yes – ‘Paris is the deal we have’. And, although it’s plainly not what you and the people with whom you work want, it’s certainly what the representatives of the developing countries want: an agreement giving them permission to prioritise economic development and poverty elimination over emission reduction. I have a lot of sympathy with that position, so haven’t got the slightest desire ‘to undermine’ the Agreement.

      It’s you, not I, who insists that urgent and substantial emission reduction is essential if humanity is to avoid potentially catastrophic consequences. As you know, I’m agnostic about that. Therefore it’s you, not I, who should be seeking a ‘constructive’ solution to what you should regard as a major problem. Yet I’ve seen no sign of your so doing. So here’s the challenge: if, like many in the West, you truly believe that substantial emission reduction must have overriding priority (i.e. that, in the final analysis, it’s more important that poverty elimination), how do you propose that countries responsible for 65+ percent of global emissions might be persuaded to give up their rights under Article 4.7 of the UNFCCC, Article 10 of the Kyoto Protocol and Article 4.4 of the Paris Agreement?

  4. To answer your specific question at the bottom: I don’t.

    I do not propose that developing countries give up their rights. What I propose is that developing countries leapfrog past fossil fuels altogether, and build a renewable, circular economy first time round wherever possible. I propose that we make fossil fuels obsolete, and a sustainable economy the default choice. I write about this every week.

    You seem to think that an international agreement is the only solution, but that was never true, before or after Paris. A robust international agreement could have been the biggest and most useful tool, which is why it was such a big focus. Now we know it won’t be. We will have to work with what we have, and the many other tools at our disposal.

    1. ‘… I propose … that developing countries leapfrog past fossil fuels altogether, and build a renewable, circular economy first time round wherever possible. I propose that we make fossil fuels obsolete …’

      Good luck with that Jeremy. Today wind/solar comprise about 2% (if that) of total world energy, about 85% of which is provided by fossil fuels – with the developing world continuously adding more (especially coal for electricity supplies). New coal plant (e.g. the S African ones I mentioned) will probably still be operating by 2040. I find it hard to see how – in view of that background – you’re going to achieve the urgent, substantial reductions in GHG emissions you insist are essential if humanity is to avoid possibly catastrophic climate change.

      I fear you’re living in dreamland. But, as I said, good luck.

      1. And you want to cancel and start again on an agreement that took 20 years to negotiate? Your plan makes stopping climate change completely impossible. But then since you’re not convinced there’s any need for GHG reductions, then I suppose you can hold that tension better than most.

        I’m well aware of the difficulty of what I’m proposing, but see what you make of today’s post on Ethiopia. It certainly isn’t ‘dreamland’.

        1. Wow – just as I’ve suspected for some time, you either don’t read or don’t understand what I write. Three examples in one short post:

          1. You assert that I ‘want to cancel and start again on an agreement that took 20 years to negotiate.’ Go back and read my 2:46 pm post yesterday where I made it plain where my sympathies are. As I said, ‘it’s … what the representatives of the developing countries want: an agreement giving them permission to prioritise economic development and poverty elimination over emission reduction. I have a lot of sympathy with that position, so haven’t got the slightest desire ‘to undermine’ the Agreement’. Understand now?

          2. You refer to my ‘plan’. It’s surely clear by now that I don’t have a ‘plan’. I use my experience and qualifications to analyse international negotiation, politics and policy and to communicate my findings. So, in a sense I’m a reporter. Reporters don’t have to have a ‘plan’ – indeed they’re usually most effective if they stay objective.

          3. As I’ve said many times (including in the final paragraph of yesterday’s post), I’m agnostic regarding the claimed need for GHG reductions. Without scientific training I’m not qualified to judge – therefore I’m neither convinced nor unconvinced.

          As for dreamland, I’m referring to your stated ambition that ‘developing countries leapfrog past fossil fuels altogether’. Since (as I’ve pointed out many times) developing countries are responsible for over 65 percent of global GHG emissions (caused by burning fossil fuels). Moreover they were entirely responsible for the huge 60 percent increase in GHG emissions since 1992. So perhaps it’s just a bit late to expect them to ‘leapfrog past fossil fuels altogether’? Sounds like dreamland to me.

          1. Jeremy: you had a post yesterday entitled ‘Addis Adaba’s Light Rail’. It ended with ‘more on Ethiopia tomorrow’. But I don’t see anything more – haven’t you posted it yet/

          2. You’re absolutely right that I don’t understand your position – or more to the point, I don’t understand why you bother to engage in this debate at all. You seem to put an awful lot of time into basically saying ‘nothing can be done’, and those trying to do anything are kidding themselves. It’s a position only a climate agnostic could take, and in my view – sorry to be blunt – a completely futile contribution.

            I’ve asked you many times whether you have any constructive solutions. You won’t come out and say it, but I’m guessing it’s a no. Last chance, and then we move on.

          3. Jeremy:

            You’ve said your ambition is that ‘developing countries leapfrog past fossil fuels altogether’. I’ve pointed out that, as those developing countries are already responsible for 65 percent of emissions, it’s an ambition that cannot possibly be achieved. It’s a fact – there’s no ‘solution’ to it.

            However, I believe your overriding ambition is that humanity should make urgent and substantial cuts in GHG emissions. In total contrast, the developing countries, determined to eliminate poverty, believe the way forward (their ‘solution’) is to prioritise economic development over emission reduction.

            My suggestion is that you (1) abandon your ‘leapfrog past fossil fuels’ ambition as obviously unworkable and (2) focus instead on determining and communicating how the West might persuade the developing countries that poverty elimination and emission reduction are compatible. To be clear, I’m sure you think they are – but that’s not the problem: your challenge is to work out a way of persuading China, India etc. that they’ve got it wrong.

            That, Jeremy, is my ‘constructive solution’. It means you’ll have to rethink your position and do some hard thinking. Not easy – but I don’t see you giving up.

          4. The time when the West could tell people what to do is over. Developing countries is too broad a category and I’m aware that we’re generalising, but a large number of them don’t need to be convinced in the way you suggest. Did you miss the fact that 48 countries pledged to switch to 100% renewable electricity at the end of last year? That kind of leadership is pretty rare in the West.
            https://makewealthhistory.org/2016/11/23/dozens-of-countries-aim-for-100-renewable-energy/

            Have you noticed that it’s now China hectoring the US on climate action, and not the other way round? China doesn’t need persuading that they’ve got it wrong – they know it and they’re working on it, as I described in considerable detail a few weeks ago.
            https://makewealthhistory.org/2017/01/10/lets-talk-about-china/

            I also think you’re missing the fact that renewable energy is now competitive with fossil fuels and is rapidly becoming the default choice. Many countries are already leapfrogging fossil fuels. That’s an observable trend. The only question is how fast it can happen, not if it will happen.

            I don’t see these sorts of developments anywhere in your analysis, which seems to me to be working from outdated assumptions about where the power lies and how change happens. I don’t want to be naive and I welcome a challenge to my position, but I find your case pretty thoroughly unconvincing. So yes, I will carry on. I won’t carry on with this discussion though. Neither of us are going to budge by the looks of it.

          5. ‘Outdated assumptions’? Hmm … here are some developing countries with recently commissioned, under construction and/or planned coal-fired power plants:

            China, India, Myanmar, Indonesia, Vietnam*, Cambodia*, Dominican Republic*, the Philippines*, Iran, Brazil, South Korea, Cambodia*, Zambia, Guatemala*, Laos, Morocco*, Namibia, Oman, Senegal*, Sri Lanka*, Thailand, Uzbekistan, South Africa, Bangladesh*, Pakistan, Kenya*, Turkey and the Balkans.

            Not much leapfrogging there. Much of all this was or is being funded by China and India. Also one developed country, Japan, is investing massively in coal-fired plant both at home and overseas. And these countries are responsible for over 50 percent of global emissions. I can provide evidence of all these data (and more) – but, unless you ask for it, I won’t bother as I suspect you’d prefer to pretend this isn’t happening. (NB: the eleven countries marked * are listed amongst the 43 countries you say have signed up to the 100% renewable target.)

            Yet that’s just coal: the EIA says that ‘fossil fuels still account for more than three-quarters of world energy consumption through 2040’.

            PS: you say, ‘The time when the West could tell people what to do is over’. I wholly agree. That’s precisely why I said you try to ‘persuade the developing countries that poverty elimination and emission reduction are compatible’ i.e. you’ve demonstrated once again that you don’t read what I say.

            PPS: re ‘China hectoring the West’, as I said here (https://makewealthhistory.org/2016/11/29/six-reasons-why-trump-could-be-won-over-on-climate-change/#comment-191599): ‘Of course China is pushing for action: they’ve secured a deal that is hugely to their advantage (and to the West’s disadvantage) and they’re determined to see it implemented.’ Forgotten already?

          6. Read your own comments! You suggested I “focus instead on determining and communicating how the West might persuade the developing countries”.

            I also remember your comment in response to my long post about China, which didn’t engage in a single point that I made.

            I’m not ignorant of coal’s role (and there’s a story behind many of those names you list). We’re talking about decades-long trends. Compare that list to the same one five years ago, and then in five years time. And you are aware that over 80% of the world lives in a developing country? Of course the majority of emissions are coming from developing countries. It’s only gross inequality that has kept the West ahead for so long.

            Have the last word. I’ve wasted enough time on this thread. And if we do talk about this again on another post, we’re going to have to have better categories than developed and developing, by the way. Not nearly enough nuance. The priorities for poor, middle and high income countries are all different and it’s not really fair to talk about China and Zambia as if they’re the same.

          7. Do try to calm down, Jeremy.

            Re my list – five years ago many of these smaller countries were not investing in coal. Now they are. And in thirty years time – not just five – their coal plants will still be operating.

            Not only am I aware that over 80% of the world lives in a developing country (I’ve reminded you of that several times) but I’m also aware that the three billion people living on less than $2.5 a day also live in a developing country. That’s precisely why developing countries are determined to lift them out of poverty by prioritising economic development. Which they believe means investing in fossil fuels. And that in turn is why the majority of emissions are coming from developing countries – quite understandably determined to overcome the West’s gross inequality. But I’ve told you all this so many times.

            Finally, it’s not just ‘not really fair’ to treat China and Zambia as if they’re the same – it’s completely absurd. Yet that’s how three UN treaties – the UNFCCC, the Kyoto Protocol and now the Paris Agreement – treat them. It’s an issue right at the heart of the climate issue. So, while it’s wholly understandable that, for example, Zambia, Ethiopia, Botswana and Tunisia should be exempt from making emission cuts, it’s nonsensical that, for example, China, South Korea, Iran and Saudi Arabia should also be so exempt. Yet that’s what these treaties provide.

          8. The Paris Agreement no longer has formal designations of developed and developing, so every time we talk about this we conflate old UN categories and our own shorthand, that’s my point. But we’ll pick this up another time.

          9. “The Paris Agreement no longer has formal designations of developed and developing…”

            It doesn’t need to: the UNFCCC is the parent UN treaty on climate change, so the PA was executed under its ‘umbrella’. Therefore everything in the former is included in the latter unless specifically amended. (If you doubt this, read the PA preamble on page 1 plus the various other references to “the Convention” throughout its text.)

  5. Robin Guenier says ‘With their vast problems re poverty, electricity and water access etc., who can blame them? Certainly not me. That’s why, as you say, these countries are not interested in being classified as ‘developed’.’

    But, countries, like people, don’t try to grow in order to eliminate poverty. They want to grow to become as powerful as others, hopefully more so, and as soon as possible.

    It stems from fear of being vulnerable to the whims of another’s power. It is a very human desire but it perpetuates fear – the real basis of our woes.

    1. Well, in the West fear and competition may be a factor. Countries where people live in destitution need to grow to eliminate poverty. I don’t think places such as Haiti or Madagascar have ambitions to be world powers. There’s nothing wrong with growth where people don’t have enough.

    2. You say, ‘countries … don’t try to grow in order to eliminate poverty’.

      It’s not as simple as that. For example, China’s growth over the past 20 years or so has lifted about 650 million people out of poverty – a ‘miracle’ that enabled the UN to achieve one of its ‘Millennium Goals’ before the target date. And there’s no question that China aimed to achieve that – one reason being that continuing poverty was (and is) seen as a threat to the power of the Chinese Communist Party. But of course that growth has also been the basis of China’s emergence as a global superpower. And India’s heading the same way.

      So here’s the dilemma: for larger developing countries (Jeremy’s right about Haiti and Madagascar) growth can eliminate a nation’s poverty but increase its power. But, unless we want those people to stay poor (and surely that’s unconscionable?), I believe we have to live with that.

      1. The processes, (& opportunities), along the way vary. The normal outcome is the same.

        I don’t see a dilemma. Our real priority ought to be to keep poverty and squalor away from everyone.

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