Here are some bullet points:
- Humans are programmed to achieve the greatest benefit for the smallest effort http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Principle_of_least_effort
- Distribution is no small task, and always creates a certain amount of waste in the supply chain, even if the system is relatively efficient.
- The distribution problem is is currently exacerbated by greed and political motivations.
- Even those who are well off are currently struggling to pay their food bills (I am referring to the American "middle class").
- Populations, human or otherwise, tend to grow toward the limit of what resources can support, so more food = more people = still suffering
- Somebody commented that poverty leads to highest birth rates. That may have some validity, but I tend to think of the larger causal factor being that of education. Maybe I am wrong, but I feel education leads to lower birth rates. Does anybody have statistics to show weather the greater causal factor is poverty or education?
The only bullet points above that has to do with ethics are education and the exacerbation of the distribution problem by greed and politics. Any measure which mitigates these should be whole heartily embraced. I agree that a deeper compassion and understanding would probably work toward that effect, but at the same time, suffering is a fact of life.
I don't want to sound to skeptical or cynical or whatever. I do hope that we can eradicate human suffering in all forms, and I have hope that this is possible. But I also think that putting on rose colored glasses and pretending everything could be fine and dandy "if only... " is not a realistic outlook. Life is difficult, and it always will be. We must change what we can and live with what we can't. I do agree with the basic assumption that the current food/wealth inequality is un natural and not wholly based on techinical difficulties. A social/spiritual revoution should be able to make a large dent in current inequalities.
I believe the strength of both democracy and capitalism are that they are driven by the people and therefor reflect society. Unfortunately, our society has gotten a little soft, so we need a social revolution in which personal responsibility, charity, and hard work are honored as the greatest virtues. Somehow, having the largest pile of useless crap has taken over as the highest ideal, and that needs to change.
Sorry, I probably should have gone to bed an hour ago. I will stop now. May we all have peace and happiness in abundance so that we may share it with those who are less fortunate.
Sotthī hontu nirantaraṃ - May you forever be well.