There are two important new things going on: 1) Mankind is finally meeting the harsh exhaustion of resources problem predicted over 240 years ago.  2) Designed intelligences (DIs) are rapidly moving to world dominance.
These new problems are intertwined with the age-old problem of class conflict. The owning class invests in resources (like oil, minerals, water) that it knows will become more valuable as the supply shrinks and population (demand) grows. As always, the owners view the working class (proles) as necessary things to be rented as cheaply as possible until they can be replaced by automations (DIs).
So the owners see a rising population as a good thing (more proles means cheaper proles; and more demand for the things owners control). However, most owners are aware of the Club of Rome's 1972 computer simulation that shows burgeoning mankind running into a soft wall of starvation, disease, etc starting around 2027. The University of Melbourne did a study to check the accuracy of the Club of Rome study after thirty years. They gave the study an A- .  Most estimates of Earth's carrying capacity put it at less than 8 billion souls.  We are now at 7.7 billion.
Since the turn of the century most workers have become aware that an excess of humanity is causing serious problems for our planet. They have heard of our pushing other species to extinction. Most believe that our burning fossil fuels is contributing to global warming. But, unlike the owners, most proles are not aware of the warnings that humanity would start hitting the limits to growth (shortages of food, water, medical services, etc) starting about 2027.
Why have so few proles become aware of the imminent danger of population overshoot? If they were aware, many more couples would have chosen not to have children. But, as noted above, fewer proles means less profit for the owning class. Among the things that they own or support are the media, politicians and churches. Politicians and the media hardly mention population overshoot. And the churches strongly push couples to have more children, not fewer.
A 2014 joint Princeton-Northwestern study determined that the USA is not in fact a democracy, but an oligarchy run by the rich.  Thomas Piketty (acclaimed author of "Capital in the 21st Century") pointed out that (primarily due to inheritance) wealth has recently reached extremes of concentration that have not been seen since just before the French Revolution, and before the Great Depression. 
Speaking of revolutions, when the mass of proles realize that they have been led to starvation because it was profitable to the owners ... most would expect them to revolt. And, in fact, that is what the owners do expect. That is why our police forces have been militarized. That is why autonomous killer drones are being developed at breakneck speed. That is why the old law that banned our military from attacking US citizens has been dropped.  That is why (as Snowden pointed out) our government is monitoring every keystroke you and I make.