Do you know what exactly it is that you are debating. Because in his post he is mixing in a lot of different topics so it would seem that he is ranting off into obscurity. Also you cannot prove people wrong about the future today, you could show that their logic/base is flawed and thus so unlikely that it approaches infinity, but you cannot prove them wrong until that predicted future has passed. Like was said above, print it save it cherish it.
A dude 150 years ago knew everything there is to know about technological advances in the modern era? Yea right. Back in his day we did not have the legacy of Norman Borlaug et al. so regarding pop he is completely waaaay off line. If the ranter has never heard of the green revolution then give him the wiki links and remind him that that was just the start of what we are capable today.
If this refers to peak oil its redundant, oil is a cheap energy source, but we have plenty of others. It just means that tech will focus on other fields than cheap plastics.
(and have a theoretical 2 billion more people we can add),
This is a logical problem that most privileged don't grasp. We could easily sustain 10x the pop of today, as long as we treat most of them like shit. Which is exactly what we do today so no difference in world policy there. Pop is only an issue if you expect everyone to have the same high level of living. That is obviously not the case throughout history, that is not the case today and it will not be the case tomorrow. Some will be rich most will be poor.
Heck we could probably support 100x with current tech and a microsoft budget and just a fraction of the unused land in the northern hemisphere. Their life qulaity compared to ours would be dismal but they would live.
Why is that so important to point out? Because we are not talking about a bomb going of but of gradual changes, if such a resource limit exists (which it doesn't, just look at pop per area and see that we are not close world wide) our economy will make amends for it. The multitudes of poor will be worse of, some of the middle will get less, but the rich and the powerful will enjoy better levels as well as better tech.
and if you think you can so blithely wave away the amassed international debt
We had the worst economic crisis in a century recently and we did not see the horrors of the 1920s. We simply have too good infrastructre in place for disasters to hit us as badly as they used to. Even the shittiest places on earth handle natural disasters better today than we did just a few centuries ago. Mass unemployment is bad, but its not a catastrophe, especially if you have some redistribution of assets like a governernement in place.
If a complete economic meltdown would hit (which it wont barring a nuclear war type of event) then we have too much infrastructure etc in place for us to go completely broke. Any half decent dictator could easily with some draconian measures turn a first worl nation completely self reliant in a year. So we are not looking at a complete survivalist wet dream here. Any probable worst case scenario predicts reduced living levels, that's it, no more two car households, no tv in every room, etc
Wow what a great loss...
you really have no concept of how much has been generated in the last ~130 years
and you do? Ignorance. Only by taking the assets of the richest 2% we could easily pay any first, second and third world debt.
Look at euro history, during 14-17th cen warfare most nations went inte debts multitude levels of worse, did they collapse? No. Do they still exist? Yes. Why? Because the nation is not the gov only, its all of the people and all of their possessions. The accumulation of resources does not stop at raw materials only, but also through science and services. We wouldn't have tripled the average life expectance in most of the world if we relied on raw materials only
Previous experience says they'll start to just run the presses flat out in about 2-3 years.
What previous experience? That is soo ignorant on too many levels.
Civilization bouncing back to the current levels in a mere 50 years? Not in even the most optimistic historical models.
Even post WW1 germany which actually did just run the presses did not collapse into a Malthusian catastrophe regardless of what scaremongers back then predicted. Instead they beat the shit out of most of their neighbours another 20-30 years down the line. Because they had the pop to do it. Its the same all over the world.
Try 200 for the least developed places on the planet.
BS the least developed wouldn't drop as far so would not have as far to climb. Do you think africa really needs coca-cola and iPods?
First world countries are extinct due to our dependence on the soon to be gone technology.
Where would the tech go? Sure the cutting edge would be dulled from an catastrophe but the tech know how remains. There are too many organisations in place too keep intranational govs in place. Even during the "dark ages" what really kicked the shit out of people was the plagues and the loss of cohesive governement.
Why would any decent oligark or warlord not pursue existing tech, facilities and people? Just look at the collapse of the USSR.
More likely, that and most of the scientific data we've accumulated in the last few centuries will perish.
How? Are we talking about a stellar collision or an instant ice age or what? Nope, an economic disaster is not the end of tech.
I've said it before and I'll say it again. The single most precious resource is time. And we just keep pissing it away.
The irony of the only true thing said being this and it being said sincerely in an internet debate is just too sweet.