Guest Opinion: Dr. Tim Ball
Pope Francis advocates the global warming agenda of the UN Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), with the help of the Obama White House. Apparently, he doesn’t know their ultimate objective of reducing and controlling population generally contradicts Catholic doctrine. The irony is that as a Jesuit, the ideological church police, he should know, but apparently, his personal, political and economic perspective trumps it. He also doesn’t appear to know that population control comes naturally with industrial and economic development.
Coercion of the Pope to the global warming message likely began with John Kerry’s visit to the Vatican, ostensibly to discuss Middle East issues. The Boston Globe researched Kerry during his Presidential run and discovered that,
The Kerry family was traced back to a small town in the Austrian empire, now part of the Czech Republic. There, the paper discovered that before immigrating to America, the Kerrys changed their name from Kohn and converted from Judaism to Catholicism.
His Catholicism caused him much political trouble during his presidential campaign. Now the Obama administration has taken the next step, which is standard in the entire development of the IPCC climate campaign, by involving the top bureaucrat of the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), Gina McCarthy.
EPA Administrator Gina McCarthy told reporters that her aim in visiting was to show the Vatican how aligned President Barack Obama and Francis are on climate change. She said she wanted to stress that global warming isn’t just an environmental issue, but a public health threat, and yet also a chance for economic opportunity.
The last comment parallels the political objective identified by Canadian Environment Minister Christine Stewart, who said,
“No matter if the science of global warming is all phony… climate change provides the greatest opportunity to bring about justice and equality in the world.”
These objectives appeal to a man familiar with the slums and poverty of Argentina. The problem is the more likely objective is to eliminate the people in them. Consider Prince Philip’s quote;
I just wonder what it would be like to be reincarnated in an animal whose species had been so reduced in numbers than it was in danger of extinction. What would be its feelings toward the human species whose population explosion had denied it somewhere to exist… I must confess that I am tempted to ask for reincarnation as a particularly deadly virus.
I recommend the list begin with monarchs.
Religious and political analogies abound between environmentalism and its subset, global warming. Former Czech Republic President, Vaclav Klaus, who gave the keynote address at the first Heartland Climate Conference in New York, warned about the growing trend.
Nevertheless, there is another threat on the horizon. I see this threat in environmentalism, which is becoming a new dominant ideology, if not a religion. Its main weapon is raising the alarm and predicting the human life endangering climate change based on man-made global warming.
Figure 1 shows how, as usual, cartoonists see the trend ahead of most and are able to comment without fear, until recently.
I wrote about similar parallels between religion and global warming by comparing Al Gore to the Pardoner, in Chaucer’s (c.1342 – 1400) The Canterbury Tales. Gore pushed carbon credits like The Pardoner pushed indulgences or pardons, hence his name. Here is Paul Johnson’s description of the Pardoner.
“The Pardoner, a seller of indulgences, is a complete and shameless rogue; but Chaucer, not content with exposing his impudence, shows how good he was at his job and how powerfully he preached against sinfulness. The Pardoner had also been taught to use the figure of death to scare his hearers.”
The opening lines of the Pardoner’s Tale provide the parallel with the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) message.
“My lords, he said, in churches where I preach
I cultivate a haughty kind of speech
And wring it out as roundly as a bell;
I’ve got it all by heart, detail I tell.
I have a text, it always is the same
And always has been since I learned the game,
Old as the hills and fresher than the grass,
Radix malorum est cupiditas.”
(“greed is the root of evils”)
The Club of Rome (COR) took the Malthusian idea that world population would outgrow food resources and expanded it to all resources. They sponsored the 1972 book Limits To Growth, which was a forerunner to the IPCC Reports approach. It used simple linear trends for population and resources to project catastrophic projections. They used computer models to create the illusion of scientific accuracy.
The argument was twofold. Pressure on resources was occurring simply by natural rates of population increase, and developed nations were using the resources at an accelerated rate. The goal was also twofold. Reduce population overall and reduce industrialization that caused the increased demand on resources.
First and foremost of the Club of Rome Neo-Malthusians was Paul Ehrlich, whose 1968 book, The Population Bomb, became the bible for environmentalists. It also convinced most people, even though virtually all its predictions were wrong, that the world was overpopulated. Ehrlich also co-authored a book, Ecoscience: Population, Resources, Environment, with the person, John Holdren, who continues the fight, but from a position of power as Obama’s Science Czar. It is entirely likely that he is pushing Obama, Kerry and the EPA among others on the climate agenda.
What were some of the views on population Holdren set out in the book?
“• Women could be forced to abort their pregnancies, whether they wanted to or not;
• The population at large could be sterilized by infertility drugs intentionally put into the nation’s drinking water or in food;
• Single mothers and teen mothers should have their babies seized from them against their will and given away to other couples to raise;
• People who “contribute to social deterioration” (i.e. undesirables) “can be required by law to exercise reproductive responsibility” — in other words, be compelled to have abortions or be sterilized.
• A transnational “Planetary Regime” should assume control of the global economy and also dictate the most intimate details of Americans’ lives — using an armed international police force.”
Most Americans would oppose such measures, so Holdren had a solution to bypass them, using the shield of the Constitution.
Indeed, it has been concluded that compulsory population-control laws, even including laws requiring compulsory abortion, could be sustained under the existing Constitution if the population crisis became sufficiently severe to endanger the society.
Who concluded that such laws “could be sustained”? The answer is Holdren and his cohorts. But they also control the justification for action, because Holdren decides when “the population crisis became sufficiently severe to endanger society”.
Holdren disavowed all these beliefs at his Senate confirmation hearings and in additional press releases, which said in part,
“This material is from a three-decade-old, three-author college textbook. Dr. Holdren addressed this issue during his confirmation when he said he does not believe that determining optimal population is a proper role of government. Dr. Holdren is not and never has been an advocate for policies of forced sterilization.”
Notice that Holdren doesn’t disavow his view on overpopulation. He only says, government shouldn’t control it, especially with forced sterilization. Clearly, he still thinks overpopulation is a problem.
In a larger sense, it doesn’t matter because major policy positions and global conferences continue with incorrect claims about overpopulation. It is central to the Principles of Agenda 21 set out in, what else, a Synthesis Report. It triggered the UN international population conference in Cairo in November 1994, with Vice President Al Gore leading the US delegation. One interesting comment about the Cairo conference, that shows some things haven’t changed, was this cryptic note.
Despite dire predictions that the conference would be the focus of attack by Islamic militants, there were no violent incidents.
Little else has changed either. Proponents of the IPCC and their anthropogenic global warming (AGW) hypothesis continue their crusade (pun intended) by inveigling the support of authority figures, like the Pope and by inference, associated groups. These are classic, appeals to authority, like Lord May’s use of the Royal Society to persuade other science societies to support the AGW cause.
Most members of the Societies didn’t know what their leaders were doing and many demanded retraction or at least restatement. Many of the parishioners are rebelling against religious involvement. A few years ago, members of the Catholic Church of Scotland, who were annoyed that their bishop had directed priests to preach against global warming, approached me. Their view was biblical,
“Render to Caesar the things that are Caesar’s, and to God the things that are God’s.”
The Pope apparently did not think through his commitment to the IPCC claims as expounded by the Obama White House. Likely, he was easily persuaded, because so much of the false claims fit his socialist ideology. He tried to walk back his commitment by jokingly suggesting he was not promoting population control. He said,
“Some think, excuse me if I use the word, that in order to be good Catholics, we have to be like rabbits…but no,”
He later backtracked on this comment.
Wednesday, he seemed to pull back from that statement. Speaking of his recent trip to the Philippines, where he presided over the largest mass in history, he said “it gives consolation and hope to see so many numerous families who receive children as a real gift of God. They know that every child is a benediction.”
He called “simplistic” the belief that large families were the cause of poverty, blaming it instead on an unjust economic system. “We can all say that the principal cause of poverty is an economic system that has removed the person from the center, and put the god of money there instead.”
This comment appears to show further lack of understanding, created by an idée fixe.
Ironically, both the IPCC and the Pope fail to recognize the proven dynamics of the Demographic Transition. This theory basically shows that population decreases naturally when industrial economic development is allowed. The key is it must be allowed without interference from government or the church as this author explains.
As with all models, the demographic transition model has its problems. The model does not provide “guidelines” as to how long it takes a country to get from Stage I to III. Western European countries took centuries though some rapidly developing countries like the Economic Tigers are transforming in mere decades. The model also does not predict that all countries will reach Stage III and have stable low birth and death rates. There are factors such as religion that keep some countries’ birth rate from dropping.
The good news is, most Catholics are not listening. In Catholic countries, the population rate has declined considerably. Reportedly, the best measure is the Total Fertility Rate (TFR), the expected number of children born per woman in her child-bearing years.
Taken globally, the total fertility rate at replacement is 2.33 children per woman. At this rate, global population growth would tend towards zero.
Fertility rates for four predominantly catholic countries are;
Poland – 1.41
Hungary – 1.41
Italy – 1.48
France – 1.98
But the Pope doesn’t need to worry; Italy, France, and other European nations are offsetting the decline with Muslim immigrants with higher TFRs.
Apparently, the Pope could learn from the French philosopher Montesquieu. He reportedly said, whenever he was tempted to talk about something on which he had little knowledge, he remembered his personal guideline. Never talk to other men about his wife, because they might be more knowledgeable on the subject than he was. Maybe the problem for perspective is that the Pope doesn’t have a wife.