This is part 8 of a series reacting to the contents of the Jaffe memo. Readers who have been following along may want to refresh their memory and obviously new readers should read what has come before or, barring that, at the minimum find the Jaffe memo linked in part one and read it.
I want to begin this section quoting from a truly ghastly article by a columnist from Canada named Diane Francis, who advocated for a globally enforced one child policy:
A planetary law, such as China’s one-child policy, is the only way to reverse the disastrous global birthrate currently, which is one million births every four days.
Ouch. At least she doesn’t beat around the bush!
For those who balk at the notion that governments should control family sizes, just wait until the growing human population turns twice as much pastureland into desert as is now the case, or when the Amazon is gone, the elephants disappear for good and wars erupt over water, scarce resources and spatial needs.
The point is that Copenhagen’s talking points are beside the point.
The only fix is if all countries drastically reduce their populations, clean up their messes and impose mandatory conservation measures.
She is writing in reaction to the UN conference on climate change being held at the time in Copenhagen. She wasn’t the only columnist to link the environment to population control. Lisa Manterfield in this masterpiece of liberal logic looks to the amount of diapers produced in the world and the burden they are on the environment and, instead of concluding we need a better way of dealing with baby poop, we need fewer babies:
So if environmental impact is proportional to number of diapers multiplied by number of babies, and if diaper reduction isn’t feasible, is the solution a reduction in the number of babies produced?
So you see, my characterization of her position was virtually a direct quote. She continues:
God may want us to value life and reproduce like it’s going out of fashion, but I’m pretty certain that the same God would prefer a planet that is inhabitable for all His creatures. I myself subscribe to the evolution school of thought and firmly believe that if the human race keeps destroying its own natural habitat, we’re going to evolve ourselves right out of the picture, which may ultimately be the best thing for the planet and its remaining species.
Passing over the fact that Manterfield here explicitly links her population control advocacy to her evolutionary beliefs, which is certainly important- and characteristic- I want to make sure it is noticed that population control and environmentalism are being linked closely together.
Now, from these two instances, one might conclude that the world’s leaders hadn’t dreamed of making such a connection, and its only cranks on the outside doing so. One may think, for example, that Francis is trying to get the United Nations to do something it is not already considering. One may think that government officials would never think in these terms. Those who have read through this sustained argument I’m making can think of several examples I’ve provided showing quite the opposite. Long time readers of this blog might recall when I recoiled at the positions of Jonathan Porritt, the GOVERNMENT of Britain’s Sustainability Dude.
From the article:
Jonathon Porritt, who chairs the government’s Sustainable Development Commission, says curbing population growth through contraception and abortion must be at the heart of policies to fight global warming.
In his own words:
“I am unapologetic about asking people to connect up their own responsibility for their total environmental footprint and how they decide to procreate and how many children they think are appropriate,” Porritt said.
“I think we will work our way towards a position that says that having more than two children is irresponsible.
Well, it isn’t a ‘one child’ policy, but its still a ‘two children’ thing. But neither Porritt or Francis are REAL environmental heroes. They should be like Ron Weddington, co-counsel on the abortionist side in Roe vs Wade, who wrote a letter to Bill Clinton shortly after his inauguration, trumpeting the fact that he and his wife chose not to have any children at all. Now, there’s a man. So dreamy.
I loved this report out of New Zealand in 2009 where a politician suggested giving people $10,000 if only they will get voluntarily sterilized. This seems tame in comparison to Obama’s science czar, John Holdren, who put his name to a document that suggested compulsory sterilization and abortion. [See earlier in the series]
The truth is that the environmental concerns and abortion have been wound up tightly together and advanced at the level of governments and the United Nations. They are not the chatter of fringe individuals, but the explicitly labeled goals and objectives of the world’s movers and shakers.
The point of this series has been to call attention to the very real possibility that measures that many of us would take for granted as benign are actually intended to achieve something that many- if not most- people would regard as simply evil. For example, I began the series pointing out that the minimum wage was originally proposed as a way to reduce the numbers of blacks in America. Gee, funny how that was never taught to me. Does this fact change how we view our feelings on that issue? Maybe, maybe not. It definitely should make us wonder what the real effect of the policy is. Perhaps it isn’t what we imagined.
The environmental movement is another example of ostensibly benign measures that seem to stem from truly sinister motivations. If you’re like me, you’re curious about how on earth one can get from something plausibly valuable, like recycling, to encouraging abortion and requiring governmental limits on child birth to ‘save the earth.’ We will probe this further, but first let’s compare what we’ve already said to the contents of the Jaffe memo and see if there are any similarities.
Some items jump out to me:
- Educate for family limitation
- Compulsory sterilization of all who have two children except for a few who would be allowed three
- Confine childbearing to only a limited number of adults
- Payments to encourage sterilization
- Compulsory abortion of out-of-wedlock pregnancies
Huh. It’s like the recommendations are, like, oddly, like similar. That last one is almost verbatim from the text book that John Holdren helped co-write in the 70s. Thankfully, John Holdren does not currently think the population crisis justifies such a measure. Not so cool: apparently he still thinks compulsory abortion could be justified under the Constitution. One wonders what the framers of the Constitution do if they found our government filled with people thinking such things. But I digress.
Now, don’t you think it is strange that we have all this talk about ‘saving the earth’ here in the 1990s and 2000s and the proposals are nearly identical to the proposals contained in the Jaffe memo, which didn’t give a lick about the environment? I think it is pretty odd. It’s almost as if any pretext will do as an excuse to implement population control measures.
With this in mind, let’s flesh this out a little further by first looking at UN proposals for ‘saving the earth.’
For a real good night of reading, I suggest my readers spend some time looking at the actual reports and initiatives that come out of the United Nations. You may want to start here: http://www.unfpa.org/public/
The UN Population Fund (linked just now) is on the record connecting ‘climate change’ to population control. Indeed, as I write this, it lists as an event an annual meeting on climate change- sponsored by the UNFPA. The real fun comes from actually drilling down into the links. You can almost do this at random, from any UN page, program, or policy; it seems like no matter what your starting point, you will end up with population control advocacy. As an example, when clicking on the climate change conference, there is at the bottom this link, explicitly linking environmental ‘concern’ with ‘population’ dynamics.
However, as the world population has reached 7 billion and this has an impact on the environment, “we cannot respond effectively to climate change without taking into account population dynamics,” said Mark Schreiner, Deputy Representative for the United Nations Population Fund, UNFPA.
But they aren’t really hiding their agenda. Back to the UNFPA home page:
“Family Planning.” The international community has agreed that reproductive choice is a basic human right. But without access to relevant information and high-quality services, that right cannot be exercised.
Now, given what I’ve laid out in this series, you need to ask yourself- has the international community really agreed that ‘reproductive choice is a basic human right’ or is this just what they say in order to ‘save the earth’? Or worse- just a pretext to make sure they are positioned to implement population control measures? ‘Reproductive choice’ sounds just so nice, but Porritt, Holdren, Francis, and the Jaffe memo don’t seem to rate ‘choice’ nearly as high as this statement would suggest. I don’t know; it just seems like ‘choice’ goes onto the chopping block pretty quickly, begging the question: what higher principle is guiding them?
One will look in vain for ‘official’ UN statements that urge abortion to ‘save the earth’ (perhaps this is what bugged Diane Francis, above) but seeing how much they are pushing ‘climate change’ initiatives and how much they are pushing abortion, it seems some suspicion is warranted. Are the stated principles different than the real principles? Could our support for seemingly innocuous and beneficial programs actually be supporting the implementation of something we would detest? Is it wise to take issues on a ‘issue by issue’ basis, acting as though there were no ideological framework pushing those issues to the forefront? Shouldn’t your own ideology come into play at some point?
Bear those questions in mind as I share with you a quote from the text book that John Holdren and Paul Ehrlich co-wrote, Eco-Science. Holdren, as I have stated throughout, is Obama’s current ‘Science’ ‘czar.’ It is reasonable to wonder if his views are still the same, but honestly, I’m not sure it matters. I might give someone a pass if their silly thoughts were entertained through college or shortly thereafter, but when they get to the point of writing text books, I need more than their word that their views have changed in thirty years. As already noted, Holdren joined Ehrlich in stating that such things as adding sterilants to the water supply or compulsory abortion can be justified under the Constitution- both measures listed in the Jaffe memo- but take a look at their call for a ‘planetary regime’ to handle population ‘concerns’:
Toward a Planetary Regime
Perhaps those agencies, combined with UNEP and the United Nations population agencies, might eventually be developed into a Planetary Regime—sort of an international superagency for population, resources, and environment. Such a comprehensive Planetary Regime could control the development, administration, conservation, and distribution of all natural resources, renewable or nonrenewable, at least insofar as international implications exist. Thus the Regime could have the power to control pollution not only in the atmosphere and oceans, but also in such freshwater bodies as rivers and lakes that cross international boundaries or that discharge into the oceans. The Regime might also be a logical central agency for regulating all international trade, perhaps including assistance from DCs to LDCs, and including all food on the international market.
The Planetary Regime might be given responsibility for determining the optimum population for the world and for each region and for arbitrating various countries’ shares within their regional limits. Control of population size might remain the responsibility of each government, but the Regime would have some power to enforce the agreed limits.
This was written in in the 1970s, but isn’t it interesting to note that the UN has come to be given just these sorts of ‘responsibilities’? The only thing the lacking from the Holdren/Ehrlich plan is the enforcement power. You are a fool if you think that the people who began guiding the UN in this direction and successfully made it this far are not now working to secure for the UN the ‘power to enforce the agreed limits.’
How could a man with such views ever find a place in an American administration? As indicated on the source link, he was to some extent asked about these statements. He did not repudiate them. He simply said that he didn’t think the situation called for such measures. [sarcasm] I for one am comforted. [/sarcasm] The answer to this question is not conspiracy. It is ideology; it is liberalism and secular humanism expressed in action. The reader of this series already has the clues to pull this together, noting that it is not a coincidence that the particular station that Holdren was assigned was not some overtly liberal program, but rather put in charge of Obama’s ‘Science’ initiatives.
We understand from the groundwork I’ve laid in this series that secular humanists believe that ‘scientific decisions’ are not to be fouled up with ‘ideological’ considerations. ‘Ideology’ is the domain of ‘religion,’ and the American Constitution prohibits (in their view) religious views from being expressed in secular society. Since most secular humanists themselves do not possess a ‘religion,’ they believe they don’t have an ‘ideology.’ They believe they are driven solely by the facts on the ground, that is, by Science. Unfettered by ‘religious’ limitations, there is no limit, in their view, to what they can promote in ‘secular’ society, because their every action is, by definition, secular, since they are, secularists.
In this series, and in this post in particular, the reader can see just what kinds of things secularists promoted in the past and are promoting as we speak. It is plain that the secularists continue to believe that the 1st amd objection offered in Harris vs. McRae that objecting to abortion is an ‘establishment of religion’ and that the converse, the supporting of abortion, is value neutral, or rests on wholly secular grounds- ie, not religious, and not ideological, and hence completely permissible. Indeed, throughout the 60s and 70s that very kind of argument was made, and though the majority ruling in that case repudiated that notion, I can assure you from my own experiences that the sentiment is alive and well. Indeed, while the decision was rendered in the early 1980s, the liberal who tried to make that case, Rhonda Copelon, went on to teach law at City University in New York just a couple of years later, where she remained to her death, in 2010. That is about 30 years of transmission of her notions of the separation of church of state, which I am not naive enough to believe she rejected, just because the SCOTUS majority slammed.
The Jaffe memo and the Holdren quotes and the arguments raised in the Harris vs. McRae case should not be dismissed because they are from a time period 30-40 years ago. I mocked this kind of dismissal in part 1, for good reason: that is NOT that long ago. But now adding a little common sense, we recognize the obvious fact that people in the 70s and 80s are often still alive, and still in positions of power and influence. Moreover, we see that the things they advocated in the past are now with us in the present.
We must, must, must, dig into the ideological foundations of these people and probe to what degree particular policies are extensions of their ideologies. We must, must, must, not accept the premise that OUR values are not allowed public expression because they are ‘religious’ but THEIR values are allowed in every case, because they are NOT religious- indeed, they aren’t even ideological, they are SCIENTIFIC.
I must take a moment to speak to this scientism in a bit more detail.
The argument could be made (and I have heard it made) that Holdren was not advocating for such measures, per se. Similarly, the Jaffe memo is not necessarily advocating for any of the items on their list. And other people, like Peter Singer (who recently suggested every person in the world should be sterilized, and thus end the human race), Ezekiel Emanuel, and Cass Sunstein, likewise are not necessarily pushing for the ‘options’ they consider. They are merely scholars and scientists and academics, carefully examining different ideas so that we can push only the ‘best’ policies in the public sphere.
This is a bit like ‘bio-ethicist’ Jacob Appel ‘carefully’ considering whether or not it is now time to have a market in fetal body parts. After all, we’ve concluded that the fetus is not a person and indeed is a part of the woman’s body, and that a woman can do whatever she wants with her body, so who could oppose such a notion? And think of all the good it could do!
On his logic, Appel is quite right. But is it really value-less? You cannot read the above article in light of my series without noting one of the last comments:
Someday, if we are fortunate, scientific research may make possible farms of artificial “wombs” breeding fetuses for their organs — or even the “miracle” of men raising fetuses in their abdomens.
You can suppose that Appel is in the camp that whatever science can do, society should do- or at least consider. What is the moral marker on all of their tellings? Appel says, “A market in such organs might benefit both society and the women who choose to take advantage of it.” It is essentially a utilitarian perspective, “the most good for the most people.” But they mask their ideology as the promotion of a scientific worldview that is not religious, and due diligence, intellectually, requires the careful examination of every proposal a utilitarian (like avowed utilitarian CDC director Thomas Frieden)
But I come from a different school of thought. Let me put it this way: if someone were to ask me, hypothetically, for the best ways to skin a man alive- scientifically, in the name of knowledge and for the ‘common good,’ I would not accept the premise. Science can offer answers to the question, but my morality would never allow me to engage in the ‘academic’ exercise. First of all, I would know that the person asking me the question is almost certainly a wicked, evil person, unless he is a dupe, which isn’t a great alternative, either. Second of all, I know from history that the results of this ‘hypothetical’ ‘scientific’ exploration may very well be used by some person, or agency in the future. Merely ‘scientific’ pursuits of knowledge for knowledge sake have been employed in ways that scientists themselves later deeply regret (see: the atom bomb).
In short, my values prevent me from doing experiments on other persons. That’s because I believe that persons have intrinsic value- given to them by God, and not by the will or whim of people. But all the people I’ve cited in this article believe that humans are the final arbiters of what constitutes a ‘person.’ If Jacob Appel had lived in 1940 Germany, you can be sure that he would have happily engaged in the vivisection of Jews, Romas, and blacks. Why? Because the scientists at that time and place (not even more than a hundred years ago, mind you) did not believe those folks were actually persons. The unborn are not persons- cut them up, and sell their pieces. What’s the big deal? Besides, we have the common good in mind.
As I set the stage for the next part in this series, the pressing question is completely ideological: what is a person and who decides… what value do people have, and who decides? All the people referenced in this post believe that human society itself decides when a person is a person and what value they have. This is not a ‘Scientific’ determination. It is the realm of religion, ideology, and morality. Is it a conspiracy driving the attempt to silence what religionists believe on this question, while advancing the notion that secularists can believe whatever they want on what a human is and a human’s value, and behave accordingly, unchecked by limits, since they are not ‘religious’?
Does it matter?