Salon interviews Fred Pearce, author of The Coming Population Crash. In response to a question about the effect a shrinking global population will have on our economy:
We have to harness older people as a resource. Their wisdom and knowledge is a huge resource, whether it is middle-class professionals becoming consultants when they retire, or looking after grandchildren so their own children can work. They are the social glue running things. All of this needs to be harnessed. Yes, the old will have to work longer. Why not? We will need to work harder on medical technology to ensure that the old stay fitter longer. Much of the reproductive revolution happened by keeping young kids from dying. Now we need another revolution to keep the old fitter for longer.
(Image from from Thierry Bouet's photo series)