merits of this discussion

dmschanoes dmschanoes at
Tue Nov 11 07:18:38 MST 2003

----- Original Message -----
From: "Louis Proyect" <lnp3 at>
In Jack Weatherford's "Savages and Civilization" you can find a very
useful discussion of how the introduction of cattle herding and other
forms of animal husbandry were associated with the world's first
epidemics. While some diseases are obviously linked to their origins
such as hoof-and-mouth disease, etc., others are obviously products of
the inability of urban society to create optimum conditions of
health--bubonic plague, dysentary, typhus, etc.

Now none of these problems are rooted in capitalist production.
Civilization in the technical sense was present in slave societies like
Greece and Rome. Throughout the middle ages you had a "natural economy"
based on the production of use values rather than profit, but the
problems obviously continued.

No, none of thosse problems are rooted in capitalist production.  But none
of those problems are rooted in either overpopulation or overtaxing the
capacity of the planet.  The possible transmission of disease from animal to
human is inherent in all societies, not on the growth of population beyond
the natural limits of the earth.  Treatment, mitigation, control of the
disease is a social issue.


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