Monday, October 09, 2006
Census: U.S. gains new person every 11 seconds
Tonight on "360," we are looking mainly at two subjects: North Korea and the continuing Foley/GOP meltdown.

No doubt North Korea's claim it conducted a nuclear test in the far north will occupy a lot of our time in the days and weeks ahead. Tonight we'll start with New Mexico Governor Bill Richardson, who as Clinton administration energy secretary shuttled to North Korea a number of times to deal with that country's nuclear ambitions.

We'll also hear from Robert Kaplan, a visiting professor at the U.S. Naval Academy, who wrote the cover story for the October Atlantic Monthly: "When North Korea Falls." In part, Kaplan argues, if you think putting Iraq back together after the U.S. invasion has been difficult, then beware a complete leadership collapse in North Korea. He says it could result in a Titanic-sized humanitarian disaster, because the peninsula has been isolated and impoverished for decades.

And at 11 p.m., we are airing a fascinating documentary from CNN Presents about life inside North Korea, one of the world's most secretive nations. The documentary was shot by a number of folks with hidden cameras, and some scenes come from tapes that were originally smuggled out of the country.

Also tonight, we are beginning a population countdown clock. The U.S. population stands at 299 million and counting. After births, deaths, military deployments and immigration, the U.S. Census Bureau calculates the population increases by one person every 11 seconds. It is fast approaching the 300 million mark. This milestone is being greeted far differently than when the United States hit 200 million in 1967. At that time, President Lyndon Johnson trumpeted the news as proof of prosperity and growth and opportunity.

But think about 300 million. It is political quicksand: It means contentious debates about transportation, resources, the environment and greenhouse gases and health care and immigration. On immigration, in fact, 53 million of the 100 million gain in population since 1967 has come from recent immigrants, both legal and illegal, and their descendents. With the 300 million mark nearing, you can see why we're watching the population clock on our program.
Posted By David Doss, "360" Executive Producer: 4:55 PM ET
Hi David~
Oh,holy cow! It is frightening to think that the U.S. population has grown by 1/3 or 100 million since 1967!!! That certainly raises lots of issues. At this rate we will run of land for crops that are fed directly to humans. Forget the agriculture for meat. That will take too much land to grow the crops to feed the food animals. That is just one problem for starters. I am looking forward to hearing from 360 how we can stop this probable crises in our own country as well as hearing about the debacle in North Korea. Ugh! Thanks for keeping us informed and nerved racked about the lastest news! . . .Just kidding. I love 360! "It just goes to show you, It's always something!" ~ Rosane Rosanadana SNL
Posted By Anonymous Betty Ann, Nacogdoches TX : 5:33 PM ET
Wow! 300 million?? How sad and shameful. It's time to build the "Great Wall of Mexico", or build a wall around the entire country/nation to keep all the illegals (Mexicans and others) OUT. We DON'T WANT THEM!! It's sad to see your country going to hell right in front of your very own eyes. Try driving through East Los Angeles--scary that we have let them come here and take over our country!! Out! Mexifornia to hell!
Posted By Anonymous Cynthia, Burbank, CA : 5:46 PM ET
Happy Monday David,

The world is really changing and 360 is in the lead to bring it to us. The North Korea situation is really scary, but the idea of another humanitarian crisis looming is even scarier. No one seems to have given this idea a single thought let alone how to handle it; if and when it does happen. Will it be up to the United States? I hope not we can't even take care of our own people and our politicians don't seem to care about anyone but thmselves. If it wasn't for individuals to step up and take the lead in humanitarian crisis nothing would get done, but there is only such individual people can do with out the backing of the governments.
Posted By Anonymous Marcia, Warren Mi : 6:40 PM ET
The movie "Soylent Green" came to mind as I was reading this. Interesting that the timing is almost right. The movie is based on an overpopulated NYC in the year 2022. Scary!
Posted By Anonymous Luz Romero, Torrance, California : 7:44 PM ET
There needs to be a limit placed on the number of children people can have. There is a show on tv that features the life of a family that has 15 children all their own. The family is self sufficient; however, our planet is becoming overpopulated and I see no real need to have a whole basketball team in one family. We are pushing animals out of their natural habitats, people are starving and homeless, it is time to regulate in some way the number of people being brought into this insane world!
Posted By Anonymous Shari Columbia SC : 7:55 PM ET
Compared to India and China we are still okay with 300 million.
Posted By Anonymous Toni Gray, Orlando, FL : 7:56 PM ET
The replay of the CNN Presents is truly lazy reporting.

How about revisiting the concerns and the cures for the energy crisis that got pushed of the page? Alternate, renewable energy and conservation. You can start with speed limits v. tax breaks for the big gas guzzlers. The list is endless.

How about a review of the total failure of 'sanctions' and 'nation building'?

Or how about how the 'religious right' supports the most unholy of unholy Communist China with laws and money and a free to be the POWER in world?

Or how about the spread of Nukes and 'illegal' arms and technology sales and how US policy supports it?
Posted By Anonymous linda, bella vista, ar : 9:01 PM ET
hello david how are you? well its nice to see AC360 Covering from middle east, london, africa and now to asia particularly korea? AC360 always on the go. goodluck to everyone the staff and crew and to Mr. Anderson Cooper welcome back. see you soon.
Posted By Anonymous Jemillex Bacerdo Chicago, IL. : 9:06 PM ET
Wow! I had no idea the US was close to the 300 million mark. I remember as a child, hearing about "zero population".
Although, most mainstream american follows this, 2 children per family, we have many cultures who don't. Its time for change and that involves education on population control, or we end up like China was a few years ago.
Posted By Anonymous ginger, colby, ks : 9:07 PM ET
We must begin to limit the birth rate in our country and abroad. All problems for global warming to disease to war are solely and directly due to populations being to great for the local environments, be that environment natural or man made. We should take the liberal and progressive stance of limiting our population first, show the world what a utopia we can become. Many countries in Europe is far ahead of us in this, they have limited thier population through high tax burdens, fewer jobs, and increased abortion rates. And what has this gotten them, an depressed economy, an unemployment rate over 15%, huge drug addiction rates, and large populations of peoples who are disgruntled and out of touch with their own culutures...just look an Paris. We must be more like our brothers and sisters in Europe or even China. Viva chairman Mao.
Posted By Anonymous Brant, Madison, Wisconsin : 9:08 PM ET
With our rapidly increasing population attention to our communities becomes paramount. Major issues include 46 million uninsured and rising, half that many underinsured, all major cities dealing with century old water, power, and sewer systems. Highway and bridge disrepair will cost billions to address. In addition, increasing poverty and a myriad of social issues. Cap that off with needed attention to a failed Mental Health system that leaves the mentally ill without services and representing a major part of our homeless population and you have some real challenges for our Government and committment from local communities. That means us, Joe Lunchbucket and friends! Yet 7 Billion a month goes to Iraq - that's the money we know about. There is a crisis right here in America that continues to threaten our prosperity and future oportunities for our children. It's time to give those difficult domestic issues the attention that is long overdue. Waiting to effectively address these problems is not an option.
Posted By Anonymous Marc Yacht MD, Hudson FL : 9:23 PM ET
Can't say some of us didn't see it coming. Illegal immigrants have a lot to do with the population explosion! They want to continue, because they see it as a power issue!
Posted By Anonymous Al, San Diego, Calif. : 9:27 PM ET
Like others, I agree that education is key to stabilizing the population. At one point, the United States showed a slow growth model compared to other countries, but it looks like it's becoming otherwise relatively quickly. At what point will we reach our carrying capacity and take drastic action? What actions can we take?
Posted By Anonymous Aruna Rao, Minneapolis, MN : 9:37 PM ET
Hi David,
"Political quicksand? More contentious debates?" I can hardly wait..300 million opinions and counting..The membership to the Great Pool of Know it alls will be growing..I will be watching AC360 but I have to admit after a long day at work I'm sure tempted to let the NEWS go and drift off to CSI Miami..Take Care
Posted By Anonymous Lorie Ann, Buellton,Calif. : 9:38 PM ET
Greetings, David!

I read the comment from Brant in Wisconsin and the "Bravo Chairman Mao". Perhaps he's right and we should the number of children. A good start date would have been about nine months before he was born. I would be willing to accept donations for a one way ticket if he prefers to leave the USA on a permanent basis.

If you don't love it, leave it--(Courtesy of Merle Haggard)

Posted By Anonymous Maggie, Grain Valley, MO : 9:54 PM ET
Noticed the reference to 'The Population Bomb'. Boy, is that a 'red flag' issue that got the big 'boo'. It's in the same 'no-no' file as global warming. The continuous open border thing to 'grow cheap labor' gets the blood boiling. But, the best is the comparison of China's and India's population. Guess some share the goal of making the USA a consumer third world country. True leadership?

'Imagine', Nixon thought John Lennon was an undesirable, subversive.

WOW, what a goal.
Posted By Anonymous linda, bella vista, ar : 10:47 PM ET
Dear David,

The Atlantic Monthly cover story is a must read! It is incredible that Congress would allow George W. Bush to go into Iraq with only questionable evidence while they all but ignored the eminent threat posed by North Korea. We have wasted so much time and money, and so many precious lives and resources on the war in Iraq that an additional conflict in North Korea is unthinkable.

I don't believe it is a coincidence that the latest nuclear test came one day before South Korean Foreign Minister Ban Ki-moon faces a bid to become the next secretary general of the United Nations.

Thank you for binging up the population "issue." I am appalled every time I see the media "celebrate" the announcement of multiple births that are the result of the use of fertility drugs. It is not a "miracle;" it is a "science project."

When will people begin to accept the fact that overpopulation is a real threat to the world? It doesn't take a genius to realize that the quality of life suffers when an area becomes depleted of its natural resources due to overpopulation, which in turn causes immigration problems and so on. Overpopulation has a negative effect on animals and vegetation as well. How many times have we heard people complaining about the overpopulation of deer or bears? It isn't the overpopulation of animals that causes this problem; it is the overpopulation and selfishness of people that causes these animals to loose their natural habitats.

The religions of the world are partly responsible for this problem by refusing to condone the use of birth control. It is time to break free of these antiquated ideas.

Please, if you feel you must have children, just be satisfied with replacing yourself. More is not always better.

Jo Ann
Posted By Anonymous Jo Ann Matese, North Royalton, Ohio : 2:15 AM ET
How can we honestly argue that our governmetn should set a LIMIT to how many children one can have?!?!?! that is ludicous. What happened to "land of the free"?!?!??! Yes we have problems with unwanted chidlren who are sent to adoptionc clinics, we have problems with homeless people, and we are clearing away acres of land to develop more. But there are many measures that can be taken to fix these problems that do not involve LIMITING THE AMOUNT OF CHILDREN YOU CAN HAVE! that is ridiculous I am sorry. Parents should be responsible, should only have children they can support, this will help more than any government program. Also, who posted that comeent about immigrants? That was an ugly post. I am sick of people who opposed to immigration. What gives you the right to claim land outside of your private property as your own? Why do you think that you own the rest of America and that only people who are born here should be allowed here? Some say "they are taking our jobs". I say that it is the lazy, white-trash people on welfare who got fired from McDonalds b/c they couldn't manage flipping burgers who complain about immigrants taking their jobs. If immigrants can come to America and perform better or work for cheaper than American's then I: say give them the job. It is called competition, it is called capitalism and it is how this country works. American's need ot realize that this country was not created by some "race" of people or a certain culture, that the main reason this country has survived so much is because it is a large melting pot of cultures and backgrounds. It is ludicrous to close off our borders to the rest of the world. That lady who wrote that post about the immigrants, sounds to me like her biggest "problem" is driving through a "scary" part of california. Well what kind of problems do you think you will cause foreigners by denying them access to what we have here??? Did you ever think about that? No you didn't because you value American lives more than foreigner's lives. That is terrible and ugly and people who think like that need to shut up and stop making our country look bad. That's all I have to say
Posted By Anonymous Jason, Pullman WA : 3:13 AM ET
If your statistics are correct and 53 million out of the 100 millon increase are immagrents and thier decendents (legal and illegal), this should tell us all something. I will let you figure it out, it is just plain common sense.
Posted By Anonymous Tim Shelest, Vernon, Arizona : 6:28 AM ET
WOW! Where can a person even start to comprehend some of the issues facing us and our children these days.
300 million....that sounds about right. I work in the healthcare system and I see the issues of illegal immigrants needing healthcare (and receiving it)while Americans who worked hard their entire lives are told they are not able to receive medicaid because they have "too many assets". They are the retired poor and somewhat forgotten Americans. Many go without. What is the solution? I wish I knew.
North Korea...Just the sound of it causes me shutter. In my opinion, a greater threat to the safty of the U.S. then Iraq. Terrorists are a definite issue, but so is the possible annihilation of this country of 300 million. While our attention was focused on the problems in the Iraq region this threat proceeded quietly. Now, what will we do? Again, I echo, I wish I knew.
Thank you AC 360 for keeping us up-to-date on ALL the threats we are faced with. An informed public has the opportunity to make informed decisions the day they cast their vote.
Posted By Anonymous Diane, Ocala, Fl. : 7:47 AM ET
Thinking about the US population change can be mind numbing if you look at rate of growth and draw the slightest conclusion about what the next twenty years could bring. My thoughts on the matter are endless and we're bound to have problems if we are using today's resources to feed tomorrow's population.

While Russia seems to be praching fertilty, and almost paying its women to have more kids, the US seems to be doing just fine without such propaganda. Will the government ever draw the line like China did, or is that a little too socialistic?
Posted By Anonymous Schuyler, Berlin, Germany : 7:55 AM ET
It's not our birthrate that's the problem. It's the greedy materialistic lifestyle we live that's taking a toll on our resources.
Posted By Anonymous Paula , South Bend, IN : 8:14 AM ET
I just can't belive all this talk of population control and limiting how many children a family can have. How about keeping the illegal alien's out and deporting the current ones please. Would any of us let a criminal into our homes to take up residence all of a sudden? I think not. Just as there is seperation of church and state, let's keep the government out of family decisions where it has absolutely no business of meddling in.
Posted By Anonymous Dave, Charlotte, NC : 12:14 PM ET
Actually, if the US Census used Stats Canada's method of counting everybody present in the country (including illegal immigrants and travellers and students) then the US is already above 300 Million, maybe in the range of 320 Million.
Posted By Anonymous Gary Dee, Portland, Oregon : 12:25 PM ET
Well, hey!

I've already done one "slam" in regards to this post, so I may as well go for broke. (Congrats Jason, WA!)

Tell me, what is it about "immigrant" and "illegal immigrant" that people can't quite figure out? This is an excellent starting place, and the majority of LEGAL Americans agree. Get it? Less people, less boiling over of the melting pot. I've worked different areas of the problem and there have been some really tempting solutions, as I see it. Take from it what you will.

1. First question. Where do residents of Mexico get the idea that we "took" the southwestern states away from them? No one seems to know when they took it away from the American Indian.

2. Anchor babies. Have them here? Fine, go for it. However, when you're sent home, you take the baby, or leave it here. Your choice.

3. We seem to be running out of troops for the God knows how many places we're assisting. Place the illegals in the military. If they survive the required terms, give them citizenship. Not their families in Mexico. Same privileges as any American Soldier. You want to be an American? This is how it's done here.

4. Let's bring those from Darfur, Chad, Congo and other areas of desperate need to America. Give them welfare, Medicaid, whatever they need. Oh yes, we can't forget education. The biggest success would be when they were given employment, at a lower rate than illegals receiving.

5. I am on "welfare", Medicaid, a very small disability check, trying to survive. I am NOT LAZY, DENSE, AND I DON'T WORK THE SYSTEM! Actually, I'm well educated, quite experienced, loved my job, made a damn good salary. Then a little word with a big meaning entered my life. That word is TERMINAL. Because I had to leave the work force early it lowered my income condiderably. I went from middle income to below poverty level a very short time. Can you guess why? So much was going for free care, etc. to keep those not entitled to all they needed. Talk to senior citizens, the unemployed, those who need hundreds in scrips every month. Talk to the woman who a single mom.

There are dozens of ideas out there. I think the first thing we need to do is replace 95% of our current government. If you're unhappy with your current government, for God's sake, vote for someone, don't just stay home. Just another way to sell out your country. Or maybe you'd rather the illegals get to vote in your place.

Posted By Anonymous Maggie, Grain Valley, MO : 12:56 PM ET
Hey Maggie,
I 100% agree with your previous post. If only the politicians had the gumption to do even one of those ideas.
Posted By Anonymous Brant, Madison, Wisconsin : 1:18 PM ET
Thank you Brant,

Most people don't have the guts to agree with me. I am so NOT politically correct. Yeah, I've been to Wisconsin, colder than--well it was cold!

Posted By Anonymous Maggie, Grain Valley, MO : 1:37 PM ET
The population issue sincerely scares me. Our world is limited in size and resources yet many people refuse to see it. I know many people who have decided that in our overpopulated world they shouldn't have kids. The reason i find their decision unfortunate is that the people I know who have decided this are people with Ivy League degrees, and high intelligence. While these bright individuals have decided not to have more kids for the betterment of the world the rural suburbanite lowbrows continue to pump out kids like their wives are clown cars. We're outgrowing our world and dumbing down our species all at the same time. Aren't humans great?
Posted By Anonymous Daniel, Atlanta Georgia : 2:26 PM ET
Brant, Maggie, Daniel -

You're right. There are solutions out there our politicians are ignoring. Daniel makes an excellent point. It sounds bad, but I have the same feelings. The people who are responsible enough to realize there is no longer a charm to having a huge family are the most intelligent and, therefore, the people you'd actually want to reproduce. We have to stop giving poor women welfare checks every time they pump out a baby. I can't afford a Mercedes. But I'm not going to buy one and expect everyone else to pay for it. Jail time for men who don't pay up. (Or they get snipped. It's their choice.) Tax breaks for those who have up to 2 kids but tax them if they have more. (Why not? They use more roads, schools, oil, etc.) Bigger tax breaks to people who adopt. FREE BIRTH CONTROL for everyone who wants it. If you think your God doesn't like birth control, imagine what he thinks about a dead Earth. We have to be more responsible for our actions. This isn't about government limiting the amount of children we have. It's about us limiting the amount of children we have. We have to do something about immigration. It's not that we don't want immigrants, but there absolutely have to be limits. I'm not a Republican, so don't call me one. And if you have the extremist left wing attitude that the world just needs a big hug with rainbows and unicorns, you need to be slapped in the face with the reality of what our future holds.
Posted By Anonymous K, Minneapolis, MN : 4:00 PM ET
For Kay, Minneapolis.

Thanks for actually reading and giving your opinion. Is it possible we might be on the same page? There must be some way to get this going, outside of agreeing. Got any ideas?

Again, Thanks,

Posted By Anonymous Maggie, Grain Valley, MO : 7:12 PM ET

This is just my opinion, but I think replacing our government is the first step. I think the days of career politicians are over. Stop them after two terms. I don't care if it's a Bush or a Kennedy, get rid of them. Let's elect normal people who don't have a s-load of money to buy their way into office. I think any politician who lets big corporations dictate their policies should be jailed. I think pork-barreling should be banned. Let's also start thinking of electing politicians based on their common sense and not their party loyalty. The smartest and most reasonable Americans sit right in the middle. Let's find a new political party who can represent us. Let's make political nepotism a thing of the past. Even on the state level. And for God's sake, let's stop letting one religion (or any religion) dictate our laws. (This should be a world-wide goal for every country.) I consider myself a Christian, but the only way we're all going to get along is to respect the fact that people believe different things. Also, the people of this country better start realizing that the world has changed and we have to change with it. Yes, this country was founded on some nice thinking. But thanks to some serious crazies in the world, we can no longer be so relaxed about things like privacy. If you want to see who I've been making phone calls to, I couldn't care less. If you want to pat me down and search my bags at the airport, go right ahead. If you don't want this, you are more than welcome to get on a special plane with others who haven't been searched. Have a nice flight.

I also think there is something seriously wrong with our news media. What the hell happened in the past few decades? It's so tabloid now they should really be ashamed of themselves. Hey Anderson, why are two of the top news stories on today about a witch doctor shopping at Wal-Mart and Barbra Streisand using the f-word? Are you serious? Why is this news worthy? Why are we still talking about that crazy runaway bride? Let People magazine handle that. YOU'RE CNN!

This is just me ranting Maggie. I don't know how our country or world will change. These are all just my opinions and I'm sure some of them seem pretty silly. But at least I'm willing to admit that.

Posted By Anonymous K, Minneapolis, MN : 12:27 PM ET
If there are 86,400 seconds in one day, and a new person is added every eleven seconds, that's 7,854 people per DAY, multiplied by 365= 2,866,710 people per YEAR. A decade would be 28.7 million people, call it 29 million for increases in immigration.
Times 10 again for the century, and the US population will roughly DOUBLE by 2100. That'll still only give the US a population of 600 million, and if the rest of the globe continues to increase at 20th century rates, that'll be well over 12 billion people, maybe as many as 20 billion on the high end by 2100, that is, providing that famine or other massive catastrophe doesn't strike.

Numbers numbers, but worthy of some thought and consideration...
Posted By Anonymous Bert Medford OR : 8:33 PM ET
You can tell the story of the insurgency all you want and certainly make your point without exploiting US Servicemen and women by showing graphic video of them being shot. It was obviously done for shock value and personal gain both politcal and financial. Your news organization is a disgrace to American media. Your level of professionalism has sunk to that of a tabloid.
Posted By Anonymous Dave, Durham, NC : 3:22 PM ET
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