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Erica Carle
January 12, 2003

There is nothing new about the idea of controlling the environment to control behavior. Pavlov used it on dogs. B. F. Skinner used it on birds. We use it on pets. Parents use it on children. Law enforcers use it on criminals. And we all establish suitable environments to fit the needs of our various activities. But one of the most chilling uses of environmental control is its use by dictators to keep their subjects in line, and in recent years by world shapers and managers to force all of us to conform to their visions and plans. 

Even in this there is no originality. August Comte (1798-1857), the father of sociology advised his followers to make the environment a religious principle among those to be controlled. In the second volume of his System of Positive Polity  he wrote: 

"In order then to regulate or to combine mankind, Religion must in the first instance place man under the influence of some external Power possessed of superiority so irresistible as to leave no sort of uncertainty about it. This great principle of social science is at bottom merely the full development of that primary notion of sound Biology--the necessary subordination of every Organism to the Environment in which it is placed. . . "A sound theory of Biology thus furnishes the Positive theory of Religion with a foundation wholly unassailable; for it proves the general necessity for the constant supremacy of an external Power as a condition of unity for man, even in his individual life." P. 12. 

Comte's goal for sociology was total unity and control of all humankind. United humanity, called the "Great Being" was his replacement for God. In the fourth volume of Positive Polity he claimed the whole earth for his Great Being: 

"The Great Being in its full prime, will take possession of its domain, the Earth, marking its proprietorship by effecting all the improvements compatible with the order of the whole, in accordance with the principle that  particular action must in all cases be subordinate to the general unity." P. 54. 

In conjunction with his setting up the Great Being as the new God, Comte also advocated a return to fetishism and worship of nature. In his rather complicated justification for this return to primitive concepts he wrote in Positive Polity Volume I: 

"Plants are the only organized beings which derive their total nourishment directly from the inorganic world. Other organisms are incapable of vitalizing inorganic matter; they appropriate it only after it has been elaborated by vegetable organisms. Thus the separation between the higher and the lower functions, established so admirably as an abstract conception by Bichat, is borne out by the concrete fact that an immense class of organisms exhibit no phenomena but those of nutritive existence; that is to say, Growth, Death, and Reproduction.

"Viewed objectively, these organisms form the first step in the biological scale, which can never be regarded as systematically complete, so long as they do not form a recognized part of it. From the subjective point of view they subserve a high purpose as the basis on which the elementary existence of Humanity rests. They may thus be regarded as ministering to the necessities of the Great Being, and merit our respect as the principal agents of material providence. On them depends the possibility of combining the whole of living nature in a vast and permanent struggle against the forces of inorganic nature. The worship of Plants, spontaneously maintained for so long a time, arose in a confused feeling of this participation. Grown obsolete since the fall of Fetishism, these simple instincts of reverence will be restored to their proper place by Positivism, which recognizes the duty of appropriating all that is really  valuable in former systems. All that is necessary for their incorporation into the final religion, is to transpose the objective belief to the subjective point of view. Thus transformed, these expressive signs give a new and nobler meaning to the commonest actions of life." P. 481. 


It was more than 150 years ago that August Comte advocated this return to fetishism and nature worship as a means to gain power. Yet, it is as if he whispered instructions into the ears of environmental activists Mikhail Gorbachev, former President of Russia, and Canadian billionaire, Maurice Strong. In 1997  they began promoting their Earth Charter -- a statement of environmental, social, and economic principles which gives control of the earth's resources and decisions about the environment, to an international "global partnership."  Its proponents want the Earth Charter to be the ethical and religious foundation for a world community dedicated to worship and care for "Mother Earth." It also promotes  "equitable distribution of wealth and resources within nations and among nations." 


The Earth Charter is a non-governmental statement, but many powerful international organizations, including the International Chamber of Commerce, are working to have its principles incorporated into the legislation of all countries. 


Nobody wants to live in a dirty, smoggy, polluted environment, but surely that does not mean we have to turn our property, resources and futures over to an Earth Council of bossy, overly ambitious, egotistical nature worshippers and organization fanatics. That would not only be foolish, but downright dangerous.  The Earth Charter provides moral justification for all kinds of property confiscation and violence. According to its Principle 12 we must: 


"Uphold the right of all, without discrimination, to a natural and social environment supportive of human dignity, bodily health, and spiritual well-being, with special attention to the rights of indigenous peoples and minorities. 


"a. Eliminate discrimination in all its forms, such as that based on race, color, sex, sexual orientation, religion, language, and national, ethnic or social origin. 


"b. Affirm the right of indigenous peoples to their spirituality, knowledge, lands and resources and to their related practice of sustainable livelihoods." 


I suggest we pay exceedingly close attention to what is written above. If we rearrange and highlight certain words in the initial paragraph we discover a contradiction. Uphold the right of all, WITHOUT DISCRIMINATION...WITH SPECIAL ATTENTION to the rights of indigenous peoples and minorities.  Does 'without discrimination'  mean that some populations are to be given special attention? 


Section (a) calls for elimination of discrimination IN ALL ITS FORMS, and then lists some forms of discrimination. What is left out in this case is more important than what is included.  In the dictionary we discover other forms of discrimination: 


"to draw a clear distinction; distinguish: to discriminate good and evil; to recognize as being different." 


According to the Earth Charter, discrimination between good and evil should be eliminated, and one should not recognize differences. The fact that these are not specifically stated in the Earth Charter is unimportant because the Charter states that discrimination in ALL ITS FORMS must be eliminated. Now study the Earth Charter in relation to recent events. For example, "White farmers in northern Zimbabwe evacuated families from their homes Sunday as rampaging black mobs attacked and looted more farms amid a week of violence. . . About 300 family members had fled from about 100 raided farms by Sunday." MILWAUKEE JOURNAL, AUGUST 13, 2001, P. 7A. 


"The government of Zimbabwe has targeted 95% of properties owned by 4000 white farmers for confiscation under its land reform program. It says the land seizures are an effort to correct colonial era imbalances in land ownership by taking white-owned farms and giving them to blacks. Those refusing to leave their land were arrested." MILWAUKEE JOURNAL/SENTINEL, 8/17/02. 


Is this Evil?   According to the Earth Charter we don't think about that. We ought not recognize a distinction between good and evil. Also we must. 


"(b) Affirm the right of indigenous peoples (NOTE: not all people) to their spirituality, knowledge, lands and resources and to their related practice of sustainable livelihoods." 


So much for the Zimbabwe farmers. What about South Africa? According to a September 15 article by Anthony C. LoBaido on, South Africa is in line for the same land grab of white-owned farmland. Laws are already in place to allow blacks to confiscate white-owned farms. A representative of the white farmers explained. 


"Basically, the new ANC laws say that any black can make a verbal claim to white-owned farmland by saying their ancestors were taken off that land by force. It is up to the white farmer to prove that he owns the land. 


"We saw the ANC faithful chanting 'Kill the Boer, kill the farmer,' at a recent funeral for a top ANC leader. The Marxist intellectuals have set the ideology for killing whites and taking all they own. Now that ideology is being marketed to the black impoverished masses. The South African army and police are now a joke under ANC rule. Who can stop what is coming?" 


What about the United States? Consider that some Mexican Americans and many illegal immigrants from Mexico believe that they represent indigenous people. They claim that that the southwestern part of the United States should belong to them. Those who accept and support the Gorbachev/Strong Earth Charter including many sociology professors, the United Nations and the International Chamber of Commerce appear to agree with them. 


The Earth Charter covers many things: world religion, ethics, and values; production and worldwide equitable distribution of wealth; human reproduction; health care; education; the arts and sciences; technology; and government. 


Mikhail Gorbachev and Maurice Strong see the Earth Charter as a replacement for the Ten Commandments. No wonder there is such a strong effort to remove the Ten Commandments from public buildings, and Christian morality from public schools and from the minds of U. S. citizens. Already they are being replaced by the concepts of the Earth Charter and worship of nature and Comte's Great Being, Humanity. 


In closing, I expect you may wonder why the International Chamber of Commerce and large corporations have become involved  in international control of resources through sustainable development, promotion of the Earth Charter and world management through the United Nations, the World Economic Council, the Gorbachev Foundation, etc. If we return to Comte's plan it is easy to explain. In Volume 1 of his Positive Polity he wrote: 


"In a settled state of society, government, strictly so called, is a mere extension of civil influence. Ultimately, therefore, political power will fall into the hands of the great leaders of industry." P160 


And in his Catechism of Positive Religion we find: 


"For this industrial hierarchy to have social efficiency  it is presupposed that the patriciate is so far concentrated that each patrician administers all that he can really superintend...Our existing disorders are most aggravated by the jealous ambition of the smaller capitalists and their blind contempt of the people. When the conduct of this class shall be in sufficient degree regenerated, under the joint stimulus of circumstances and convictions, its heads will be absorbed into the patriciate and its mass into the proletariat, so doing away with the middle classes..." P. 237. 


Recent generations of Americans have been naive,  trusting, and intellectually lazy. They have believed that everyone who talks love and brotherhood is sincere and is motivated by good intentions. They have joined organizations without understanding where their leadership is taking them. They have forgotten such warnings as found in Matthew 10:16 -- 


"Behold, I send you forth as sheep in the midst of wolves: be ye therefore wise as serpents and harmless as doves." 


More wisdom, less invasive psychology, and less submission to organization fanatics might be good antidotes for what ails us. 


SUGGESTED KEY WORDS FOR FURTHER RESEARCH:  Earth Charter, World Economic Forum, Mikhail Gorbachev Gorbachev Foundation, Sustainable Development, Green Cross, Green Yearbook, Business Action for Sustainable Development, State of the World Forum, World Business Council for Sustainable development, WBCSD, Business Action for sustainable Development, BASD, Yearbook of International Co-operation on Environment and Development.

2003 Erica Carle - All Rights Reserved

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Erica Carle is an independent researcher and writer. She has a B.S. degree from the University of Wisconsin. She has been involved in radio and television writing and production, and has also taught math and composition at the private school her children attended in Brookfield, Wisconsin. For ten years she wrote a weekly column, "Truth In Education"  for  WISCONSIN REPORT, and served as Education Editor for that publication. Her books are available through Education Service Council, P. O. Box 271, Elm Grove, Wisconsin 53122. GIVE US THE YOUNG--$5 Plus $2.00 P&H WHY THINGS ARE THE WAY THEY ARE--$16 PLUS $4.00 P&H BOTH BOOKS -- $25 Total