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Network Takes Aim at GrowthBusters, Allows Anti-Contraception Advocate to Mislead

The Christian Broadcasting Network took a swipe at GrowthBusters last week – the day before our world premiere. I will admit I hope the release of this film generates increased national and global dialogue about overpopulation. So I’m glad CBN felt called to report on our film. We were even discussed by Pat Robertson (9:00 into this clip) on The 700 Club. Of course not all media outlets go out of their way to present facts objectively. We were not contacted by any CBN reporters or producers to react to the views they presented.

They chose to let Steven Mosher of Population Research Institute refute one of the central premises of the GrowthBusters documentary, that population growth is a threat to the wellbeing of all the children and future generations of the world. Listen to what Mosher had to say:
cbn-report

While our film takes a very compassionate, humanitarian view of children, and people in general, Mosher’s reasons for “getting back into the game of catastrophic overpopulation” (as Steven Colbert so aptly calls it in our film) reduce human beings to the role of drones serving a financial purpose. I personally find it reprehensible to base a decision about conceiving a child on the desire to prop up a Ponzi economy.

Mosher has been going out of his way to promote increasing fertility by creating a cloud of confusion and misinformation about population growth. Earlier this year his PRI released a series of videos supposedly debunking the “myth of overpopulation.” The videos include such authoritative and intellectually astute points as the fact that you can fit all 7 billion inhabitants of the Earth into the state of Texas. I kid you not.

If this makes you wonder what makes Steven Mosher get out of bed every morning, especially now that Mickey Mouse Club is off the air, word on the street is that Mosher is carrying out an anti-contraception agenda. He was apparently instrumental in getting the United Nations Population Fund defunded by the United States. In this recent interview he accused sustainable population advocates of being racist and promoting coercion, when in fact they are promoting free, informed choice and access to family planning:
He doesn’t stop there, however. He goes on to proclaim that more people equals more prosperity. Julian Simon would be proud. “We’re better off than ever before,” he states. “It’s prosperity that allows us to deal with those problems and set aside nature preserves…” I guess he imagines a world packed full of people, who have appropriated most of the natural world. But that’s okay because we’ve set aside a little acreage for some zoos.

I think it’s dangerous and against the best interests of future generations for Mosher to mislead the public about the state of world, the impact of population growth, and the intent and motivation of sustainable population advocates. I’d like to see us move toward a more factual and civil discussion of these issues. I invite Steven Mosher to join us in that. It’s too bad Sun News and CBN didn’t invite me to have a conversation with Mosher on the air. I guess they have an agenda, too.

Dave Gardner
Filmaker & GrowthBuster

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Comments (0)

  • Avatar

    Mike Hanauer

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    If CBN is taking a swipe, then we know you are doing a good job. The supreme compliment!

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    Anarchy Wolf

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    I bet you could cram all of those people into texas, of course, it would probably be hell for all of them if you did. These people just don’t get it and just refuse to try.

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    Steven Earl Salmony

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    We face a culture of silence with regard to the growth of the human population on Earth. As a consequence, a colossal, human-induced tragedy is being precipitated in our time. But this is not the whole problem being utterly avoided. Even among top-rank scientists with appropriate expertise, extant scientific research of human population dynamics and overpopulation is being willfully ignored. Attractive preternatural thought and specious ideologically-driven theory by non-scientists, namely demographers and economists, about the nature of the human population have been widely shared and consensually validated in the mainstream media during my lifetime. This unscientific thought and theory is not only misleading but also directly contradicted by scientific evidence toward which first-class scientists have “turned a blind eye” for way too long. That is to say we have two challenges to confront and ovecome. The first is the culture of silence. The second is the deliberate collusion within a sub-culture of experts who have determined not to acknowledge, examine and report on vital scientific research. Some scientists have referred to “the first challenge” as revealing the facts of “the last taboo”. What I am asking scientists to do is address “the last of the last taboos” by reviewing and reporting findings of unchallenged scientific research of human population dynamics from two outstanding scientists, Hopfenberg and Pimentel(2001), Hopfenberg(2003, 2009). At least to me, it appears the denial of the population issue by people everywhere and the denial of scientific research of human population dynamics/overpopulation by scientists with adequate expertise have resulted in a betrayal of humanity and science itself. This failure of intellectual honesty and moral courage among so many so-called experts with responsibilities to assume and duties to perform is as unfortunate as it is unprecedented. A good enough future for children everywhere appears to be at risk on our watch and we are bearing witness now and here, I suppose, to the way silence ‘kills’ the world.

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    Josefa Perez Soto

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    I think Mosher is an idiot, obviously, but I want to point out that when “In this recent interview he accused sustainable population advocates of being racist and promoting coercion” you cannot just dismiss that by saying it’s not true.

    It may not be true for you, now, but in the past population control advocates were far more interested in, say, sterilizing women in India than in getting people in the US (who use far far more resources) to have fewer children or to consume less. Poor people have been paid money–money they had to take in order to feed themselves–to get sterilized. Malthus saw population control as necessary in order to protect the rich, and the UN and World Bank programs of the 1960s were unfortunately focused on the idea that burgeoning populations in the Third World were the MAIN threat to the global ecosystem (even though the First World consumes so many more resources) and that such populations were a threat to Western prosperity.

    It would be good to remind readers of how you are addressing the historic racism and coercion of population control programs–racism and coercion that is a easily historically-established fact–rather than dismissing this portion of Mosher’s accusation out of hand.

    Reply

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    John Ross

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    While our human population is growing, the Earth is NOT growing, but instead slowly shrinking with each volcano and earthquake. More at “If Saving the Earth” via Google.

    Reply

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    admin

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    @Josefa, while it is good to know about this history, I don’t feel a strong need to bring it up. Frankly, those trying to stifle the conversation bring it up more than enough. That was past and while it is good to be on guard, that history says nothing about current efforts and motives. Nothing.

    I really appreciate the dialogue here.

    Dave Gardner
    Filmmaker

    Reply

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    Tanya.m.

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    Vasectomies , offered to two billion men, world wide, available to anyone who does not want to be a daddy would slow down the unwanted children.
    In return for their selfish and honest decision, let’s give each one of these men 40 fruit and nut trees, jobs planting orchards, and a two million calories credit card as a thank you gift.
    Trillions of new food trees around the world, the world will benefit from. Choosing to not have unwanted children, th world benefits from.
    Let’s start to grow trees, we can sell the clones for this program. The food will mature in about 8 years, paying for the program. Pecan trees give more calories per acre than most agriculture. They also live for hundreds of years. Apples have great longevity as well.
    Men with ten children will benefit the most , and should be offered this service first. He can work less and provide more. If he trades food stamps for seeds he can grow enough food for the entire neighborhood and include his family .

    Reply

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    Steven Earl Salmony

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    Petition Presentation, Town of Chapel Hill, NC, November 21, 2011.

    Opening remarks…….

    In Chapel Hill and around the world, it is all the same: many too many people can be found in too many places destroying the natural world for personal economic gain. Many human-induced pressures on Earth’s finite resources and its frangible ecology, that directly result from the unbridled global growth of overconsumption, overproduction and overpopulation activities by the human species, put demands on the natural world that can overwhelm any efforts to achieve a sustainable future for children, not only in Chapel Hill but elsewhere on the surface of our planetary home. If we are to halt the reckless destruction of Earth as a viable resource base as well as the irreversible degradation of an already polluted environment and a warming climate, we must accept limits to growth.

    We must start somewhere soon to chart a sustainable course. Endless economic and population growth appear to be unsustainable. Let us consider now and here ways we can humanely, fairly, equitably and realistically define limits to economic and population growth in Chapel Hill, while there is still time to do so. Once the comfortable and friendly size of Chapel Hill is lost due to economic and population growth pressures, Chapel Hill’s quality of life and special characteristics will be impossible to regain.

    Perhaps we can “think globally” about the predicament seven billion human beings present to the viability of Earth as a fit place for human habitation. Then we choose to”act locally” in ways that move us in the direction of a sustainable future for children everywhere and for life as we know it. Thank you.

    TO MAYOR MARK KLEINSCHMIDT, MEMBERS OF THE TOWN COUNCIL, TOWN MANAGER ROGER STANCIL AND WHOMEVER ELSE THIS MAY CONCERN on Monday, November 21, 2011:

    A Petition to Define Limits to Economic and Population Growth in the Town of Chapel Hill, NC

    Whereas the Town of Chapel Hill appears to be outgrowing the comfortable and friendly size that has made it a wonderful place to live, raise children, work and retire; and
    Whereas increasing traffic congestion, crime and other social ills are presenting worrisome trends that result from human population growth which will eventually degrade Chapel Hill’s eco-friendly environs, deplete its limited natural resources and conceivably ruin what makes our town beautiful and special; and
    Whereas the Town of Chapel Hill has established limits and the Great State of North Carolina has boundary lines that separate it from adjacent states; and
    Whereas the USA has borders that confirm the limits of authorized human activity under its regulations and laws as well as distinguish itself as a separate nation; and
    Whereas Earth is round, bounded and finite with frangible environs not flat, unbounded and unperturbed by human production, consumption and population activities of the human species worldwide; and
    Whereas there are well-known biological and physical “rules of the house” in our planetary home that are categorically different from the manmade laws which regulate day to day production, consumption and population activities of human species, but are no less important to citizens of Chapel Hill, the State of NC and the USA as well as to the global citizenry of the human family, precisely because the biophysical reality of God’s Creation places immutable limits on the unbridled global growth of human overproduction, overconsumption and overpopulation activities; and
    Whereas a billion human beings were added to family of humanity worldwide in the last dozen years (1999 to 2011); and
    Whereas in the month of October 2011 the seven billionth human being joined the human community; and
    Whereas there are more human beings in November 2011 existing on resources valued at less than two dollars per day globally than were alive on Earth in the year of my birth (2.3+ billion in March 1945); and
    Whereas we have heard many times, understood well enough, and can reasonably be expected to at least consider acting in a morally responsible way upon a shibboleth of humanity that goes like this, “Think globally, act locally,”

    Now, Therefore, It appears appropriate to Propose and Present this brief Summary of a Program for Action.

    As a part of the town-wide envisioning process to consciously and deliberately manage economic and population growth in the Town of Chapel Hill between now and 2020, leaders, planners and stakeholders will assure that the maintenance of the unique character and the quality of life in Chapel Hill, as we enjoy it now, is protected and preserved for the children and future generations. To accomplish this goal, various scenarios or different elements of a single scenario will be developed with the hope that the following steps will be examined for their efficacy.

    Because overpopulation is ultimately a local issue, set an optimum/maximum population size for the Town of Chapel Hill in 2020. This goal can be fulfilled by adopting growth-management policies related to limits on the number of new residential dwelling units and to additional eco-friendly curbs on commercial developments per year between now and 2020. Zoning regulations can be promulgated to further restrict the size of residential, commercial and industrial buildings within the town limits. The reality-oriented adoption of “soft caps” on economic and population growth will make it possible for the Town of Chapel Hill to sensibly acknowledge and adequately address the considerable and potentially unsustainable growth pressures that are readily visible on our watch.

    Steven Earl Salmony

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    b phillips

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    There is a good debunking of Mosher and the Population research institute (should be called the anti-contraception and misinformation institute) here: “Population research institute: misleading videos to further their religious agenda”
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=23S4xxhuqHk

    Reply

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