A plague of pessimism and catastrophising stalks the land

People disdain the idea of naively optimistic pollyannas, but as a species it turns out we are far too ready to believe in bad news stories

30th August, 2020
A plague of pessimism and catastrophising stalks the land
While images of face-masked crowds during the pandemic can make us believe the world is coming to an end, science shows that things are not always as bad as we think. Picture: Getty

Last month, the Lancet medical journal reported new research from the University of Washington estimating that by the end of the century the global population will be two billion less than previously predicted. In the long term, this may prove to be the most significant story of the year, yet I suspect you have read little or nothing about it.

The world today is home to almost eight billion people. Until recently, the expert consensus...

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