On June 17th, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (FWS) conducted a public hearing in Bozeman, Montana regarding the proposed Grizzly Bear Recovery Plan. That plan would create 32 million acres of "protected recovery zones" in at least six regions, which would be connected by migratory corridors -- one of which is 240 miles long. It also called for the recovery of all grizzly bear populations in Montana, Wyoming, Idaho, Washington, and possibly Colorado, and the eventual connection of "island" bear populations with other grizzly populations across the affected areas.
Obviously, such an ambitious plan is fraught with implications for private property rights, economic development, the security of livestock, and even the physical safety of residents in the affected areas. Curiously, however, the FWS did not bother to inform any of the affected parties. Representatives of natural resource industries and local landowners were not notified of the hearing at all and were denied information about the meeting until they found out about it from independent sources.
However, six weeks before the scheduled meeting, the FWS solicited testimony from self-described environmental groups about the proposed recovery plan. Among those invited to create public policy were the Greater Yellowstone Coalition, the Sierra Club, the Wilderness Society, and Wild Forever.
The FWS tapped Louisa Willcox, a founder of the eco-terrorist group Earth First! and project coordinator for Wild Forever, to preside over the meeting's speaker agenda. In a coordinated fashion, environmental groups asked that roadless areas be kept roadless, that roaded public lands be reduced below one mile of road per square mile, that grizzly bear recovery zones be doubled in size to over 50,000 square miles, that grizzly bear habitat be connected with corridors, and that grizzly bear food sources and habitat be protected from human disturbance.
While eco-terrorists and their allies were treated with respectful attention by the FWS, the original agenda of the meeting was intended to prevent property owners and resource industry spokesmen from testifying. It was only through the persistence of Joe Beardsley, a private citizen, that the FWS was shamed into giving him and a few other local citizens about 30 minutes for spontaneous testimony -- a token concession at best, given the well-orchestrated five-hour tag-team effort by the radical environmentalists.
The June 17th meeting typifies the method of "governance" being devised to implement radical environmental policies across the United States, and the demands presented by the federally approved eco-radicals are in harmony with a long-term design to eradicate private property and industrial civilization from at least half of the continental U.S. That design entails the systematic subversion of the U.S. Constitution and the surrender of our sovereignty to the United Nations in the name of protecting "biodiversity." During a March 7th White House press conference, journalist Sara McClendon asked the President to rebuke the "rumor mongers" who were irresponsible subverting public serenity by spreading stories that the Administration is surrendering U.S. sovereignty to the United Nations. "Large segments of our citizens believe that the United Nations is taking over whole blocks of counties in Kentucky and Tennessee," McClendon pointed out. Amid snickers from the assembled reporters -- which he had abetted with his theatrical display of incredulity -- Mr. Clinton responded, "We're all laughing about it, but there is not an insubstantial number of people who believe that there is a plan out there for world domination and I'm trying to give American sovereignty over to the UN." Having invited the press to ridicule such apprehensions, Mr. Clinton promptly proceeded to vindicate them: "For people that are worried about it, I would say there is a serious issue here that every American has to come to grips with ... and that is, how can we be an independent, sovereign nation leading the world in a world that is increasingly interdependent, that requires us to cooperate with other people and then to deal with very difficult circumstances in trying to determine how best to cooperate?" Mr. Clinton's response might well have been adapted from the 1995 report from the Un-funded Commission on Global Governance, which asserts that a "thickening web of interdependence requires that countries work together ....In an increasingly interdependent world ... the notions of territoriality, independence, and non-intervention have lost some of their meaning. In certain areas, sovereignty must be exercised collectively, particularly in respect to the global commons" --that is, the global environment.
The master plan is called the "Wildlands Project," a grandiose design to transform at least half the land area of the continental United States into an immense "eco-park" cleansed of modern industry and private property. The Wildlands concept is largely the work of Dave Foreman, the principal founder of the eco-terrorist group Earth First! Goreman describes the Wildlands Project as an effort to "tie the North American continent into a single Biodiversity Preserve"; the Project's official publication, Wild Earth, refers to a "long-term master plan" to connect eco-systems throughout the continent "until the matrix, not just the nexus, is wild." Foreman summarizes Wildlands as "a bold attempt to grope our way back to 1492" -- that is, to repeal a half-mellenium of biblical civilization, with its unique blessings of material prosperity, technological progress, private property, and individual rights.
John Davis, editor of Wild Earth, acknowledges that the Wildlands Project seeks nothing less than "the end of industrial civilization .... Everything civilized must go ...." In this bizarre scheme, human civilization must be radically reconfigured, roads must be torn from the landscape, and human populations must be relocated. All of this is to be done, according to Wildlands board member Michael Soul, in harmony with a prophetic vision: "The oracles are the fishes of the river, the fishers of the forest, and articulate toads. Our naturalists and conservation biologists can help us translate their utterances. Our spokespersons, fund-raisers, and grass roots organizers will show us how to implement their sage advice." All of this could be dismissed as flatly ridiculous, were it not for three ominous facts: First, the Wildlands Project can boast scores of affiliates who are developing "Wilderness Recovery Networks on the regional and ecosystem level using the [Wildlands] model ... so that such plans can dovetail into similar plans for adjacent regions until the continent-wide plan is assembled." In other words, Wildlands isn't just a malignant daydream, but an unfolding campaign that is speeding across America like a cancer.
Second, the UN Convention on Biodiversity, which was signed by Bill Clinton in 1993 but has yet to be ratified by the Senate, effectively mandates implementation of the Wildlands Project.
Third, despite the refusal of the Senate to ratify the Biodiversity Treaty, the Clinton Administration is eagerly implementing its provisions through executive action and bureaucratic fiat.
On January 19, 1996, President Clinton issued Executive Order 12986, which stated, in part: "I hereby extend to the International Union for Conservation of Nature and Natural Resources (IUCN) the privileges and immunities that provide or pertain to immunity from suit.... This designation is not intended to abridge in any respect privileges, exemptions, or immunities that the International Union for the Conservation of Nature and Natural Resources may have acquired or may acquire by international agreements or by congressional action." The IUCN is one the UN's major instruments in creating and implementing global environmental policy -- and Mr. Clinton's executive order was intended to insulate it from legal accountability.
Despite its pretensions to being a scientific body, the IUCN eschews the scientific method when doing so is convenient. The organization's Commission on Environmental Strategy and Planning, for example, claims a mandate to "change human behavior" by using a strategy "based less on the facts ... than on the values they hold." Indeed, the IUCN's entire approach to conserving the "integrity and diversity of nature" is based not on facts, but on essentially religious theories of conservation biology and "island biogeography." Those theories are themselves rooted in a version of pantheism -- the belief that nature is God and therefore knows best, and that all human activity leads to "fragmentation" of ecosystems, which in turn leads to a depletion of biodiversity.
The idea that the continent was an unspoiled, verdant paradise teeming with biodiversity before the advent of the Europeans has a certain romance, and it is easy to sell that fantasy to the ill-informed urban and suburban populations who provide much of the political support for radical environmentalism. But fantasy makes a poor foundation for public policy, and top peer-reviewed scientists have dispelled the myths behind the IUCN's "ecospiritual" science. In 1986, B.L. Zimmerman and R.O. Bierregaard published a highly critical analysis of this approach in the Journal of Biogeography. "The equilibrium theory of island biogeography and associated species area relations have been promoted as theoretical bases for design of nature reserves," note the well-respected authors." However, the theory has not been properly validated and the practical value of biogeographic principles for conservation remains unknown." In simpler terms, the assumption that human activity has "fragmented" vast, connected ecosystems has never been scientifically corroborated.
Similar admissions have come from noted conservation biologists who are sympathetic to the IUCN's basic assumptions. In 1992, conservation biologists Daniel Simberloff, James Farr, James Cox, and David Mehlman acknowledged in the Journal of Conservation Biology that even while the IUCN was popularizing island biogeography and the need for reserves and corridors, "the theory was increasingly heavily criticized...as inapplicable to most of nature, largely because local population extinction was not demonstrated..." A similar finding was published by Richard Hobbs in Tree magazine. In other words, there is simply no reliable scientific evidence to support the IUCN's basic assumptions. In fact, over the past half-dozen years, abundant research has clearly shown that in most cases, creating wilderness core reserves and corridors causes critical biological diversity to plummet.
Of particular concern is the fact that the IUCN has conscripted various federal agencies as allies into its war against "ignorant humans," and the IUCN's coalition is developing joint strategies to implement the "ecospiritual" theology through international law. And through EO 12986, the IUCN was immunized from legal accountability for any injuries it inflicts on private property owners in the course of its war against "ignorant humans." In the mid-1980s, entrance signs to national parks and monuments suddenly announced that those areas had been designated as UN Biosphere Reserves or World Heritage Sites. Given that these designations had -- in compliance with UN guidelines -- been arranged in secret without public input, they alarmed the public, and rumors began to spread that our Parks and Monuments had been surrendered to UN control. This is not entirely true: The relevant documents concerning these programs specify that the U.S. maintains sovereignty within the designated areas. How is "sovereignty" defined in this context? It is clear that the federal government bound itself to international agreements stipulating that the United States would manage these lands according to international dictates in order to achieve certain international goals and objectives. In other words, the United States has agreed to limit its right of sovereignty over these lands by deferring to international mandates.
An example of this process in action unfolded in 1995, when George Frampton, Under Secretary of Interior and past president of the Wilderness Society, invited a delegation from the United Nations into Yellowstone National Park for the specific purpose of declaring Yellowstone a World Heritage Site "in danger." The declaration was intended to stop the development of a gold mine located about five miles from the northeast corner of Yellowstone National Park. This effort was undertaken, as environmental analyst Alston Chase observed, because "U.S. law would not prevent a planned gold mine near Yellowstone National Park...." "As ratified by Congress, the provisions of the World Heritage Treaty have the force and statutory authority of federal law," insisted Yellowstone Park Superintendent Mike Finley. Finley failed to explain why the Park Service automatically assumes that the provisions of the World Heritage Treaty, which lacks federal implementing legislation, nonetheless have the force and statutory authority of federal law. He also declined to enlighten the public as to why the Park Service waited two years before requesting a review of the mine by the World Heritage Committee -- then did so only after it became apparent that the state and federal environmental studies would likely find no environmental problems with the mine development. Declaring Yellowstone as a World Heritage Site "in danger" did much more than merely shut down a gold mine; it also opened the door for the federal government to redefine land-use policy for all private property in what was called the "Greater Yellowstone Ecosystem." The same has happened elsewhere. In 1993, Everglades National Park was recognized by the World Heritage Committee as a Heritage Site "in danger." resulting in the shut down of scientifically sound agricultural conservation practices on the land surrounding the park. Vice President Gore and the radical environmental organizations have indulged in high-octane rhetoric about the threats to an "international heritage site belonging to all people" that have supposedly resulted from irresponsible use of surrounding private property. In a fashion reminiscent of the Soviet Union, the eco-bureaucracy punished a scientist whose findings were at odds with public policy regarding the Everglades. Dr. Curtis Richardson of Duke University, who had been given a federal contract to study the magnitude of the pollution problem in the Everglades, was suddenly terminated in 1991 after his study concluded that the "Everglades have been, and are now, receiving excellent quality water." Upstream farming, in other words, was not significantly contributing to the problem. Had the Park Service accepted Dr. Richardson's findings, it would not have been able to justify the "in danger" status for the park. Accordingly, it dismissed the study, fired Dr. Richardson, and -- in a gesture worthy of Stalin -- barred the researcher from entering the park.
These are attempts to implement the UN Convention on Biological Diversity, which was signed by President Clinton in 1993, but which has not yet been ratified by the Senate.
The Biodiversity Treaty would permit an undefined and unaccountable global bureaucracy to regulate all human activity that presents potential harm to biological diversity. The text of the treaty itself was merely a skimpy framework. The Senate was asked to authorize the creation of implementing "protocols" which would be written later and be binding upon the signatories. The specific terms of the treaty were to be explained in detail in a 1,140 page Global Biodiversity Assessment (GBA). The GBA documented that the Biodiversity Treaty is a testament to the pantheistic worldview championed by the IUCN and its allies -- and that it is militantly hostile to any monotheistic tradition, and to the Bible-based Western worldview in particular. The biblical worldview, according to the GBA, "is characterized by the denial of sacred attributes of nature..." By way of contrast, the UN study continues, "the worldview of traditional societies tends to be strikingly different from the modern worldview. They (IUCN proponents) tend to view themselves as members of a community that not only includes other humans, but also plants and animals as well as rocks, springs and pools. People are then members of a community of beings -- living and non-living. Thus rivers may be viewed as mothers. Animals may be treated as kin." The Biodiversity Treaty is intended to eradicate Western culture and exalt a wordview in which humans enjoy no special status in nature.
Hours before the scheduled vote, three groups provided the U.S. Senate with a draft copy of the GBA, along with maps depicting the impact that implementation of the Wildlands Project would have on the U.S. Senate Majority Leader George Mitchell (D-ME) responded by quietly removing the treaty from floor consideration. This was particularly dramatic in light of the fact that the UN had consistently lied about the GBA, repeatedly telling the Senate that no draft of the document existed and that there were no plans to create one.
But the Clinton Administration, the UN, and its radical eco-allies are not about to be deterred by their defeat in the Senate and have continued to attempt to implement the treaty through other avenues. Elements of that treaty have simply been written into administrative policies governing the Park Service, The Fish and Wildlife Service, the EPA, and the Bureau of Land Management. The Clinton Administration has also arranged public subsidies for radical environmental groups that are agitating for implementation of local and regional versions of the Wildlands design. The World Heritage program is explicitly carrying out the elements of the Wildlands Project.
Resistance to those designs has been steadily growing. Americans have organized to block any new designations. The Clinton Administration's blatant effort to subvert the rule of law concerning the land-use policy in Yellowstone angered conservative members of Congress. Earlier this year, Congressman Don Young (R-AK) introduced H.R. 901, the American Lands Sovereignty Protection Act, a bill intended to preserve the sovereignty of the United States over public lands and acquired lands owned by the United States, and to preserve state sovereignty and private property rights in non-federal lands surrounding those public and acquired lands. Buffeted by public outcry, UNESCO and the U.S. Park Service have furiously back-pedaled. Paragraph 14 of the World Heritage Operational Guidelines -- which mandates the use of secrecy in nominating sites and excludes local participation in deliberations -- was mysteriously excised from UNESCO's January 1997 revision of the Operational Guidelines. The U.S. Park Service also conducted a literal whitewash of the whole operation: It quietly painted over and reversed all the Park Service entrance signs which had included World Heritage Site or Biosphere Reserve designations.
The means that have been used in pursuit of the UN/IUCN Wildlands Project have been unconstitutional and conspiratorial. The secrecy is understandable as, when informed, local citizens have been able to effectively stop their implementation. The role of informed citizens in throwing obstacles in the path of the march to global governance has had success. But stopping the march to global governance won't happen unless principled Americans unite, get the facts straight, and expose these endeavors as lethal threats to our independence and constitutional order.
Everyone from Bart Simpson to Bill Clinton to Bob Dole has popped up in the advertising pages of some of the country's most posh magazines sporting milk mustaches. But these and other milk ads have some dairymen foaming at the mouth because they are forced to subsidize them.
For several decades, the U.S. Department of Agriculture, or USDA, has levied assessments on producers and processors of milk and other commodities to finance more than $1 billion in generic advertising by national and state promotion boards. The more memorable add campaigns include: "Beef: It's What's for Dinner" and "Pork: The Other White Meat," as well as the famous dancing California raisins.
Though the ads may be cute, many farmers question their effectiveness and say the assessments deprive them of money they could spend on ads they believe would better promote their individual commodities. Under USDA regulation, dairy farmers must pay 15 cents for advertising and promotion on every 100 pounds of milk sold. John Kinsman, a Wisconsin dairy farmer with 36 cows, pays approximately $800 a year for the ads. "If we had control of our own money, we could do a much better job of reaching markets, talking to consumers and letting them talk to us," says Kinsman, president of Family Farm Defenders, an agriculture-advocacy organization representing 2,000 farmers. He says that some dairy farmers especially object to the mustache ad featuring controversial basketball star Dennis Rodman. "Looking at the moral and ethical behavior of that man, they feel this is a terrible use of their money," he says.
It appears that the farmers have little recourse. A June Supreme Court decision found the payment requirement constitutional. The 5-4 decision, written by Justice John Paul Stevens, says the USDA's forced payments for the ads do not violate free speech rights. Pointing out that there are procedures for referenda to end forced advertising for specific commodities, writing that "the mere fact that one or more producers 'do not wish to foster' generic advertising of their product is not a sufficient reason for overriding the judgment of the majority." In the dissent, Justice David Souter argued that under a long line of precedents, "compelling cognizable speech officially is just as suspect as suppressing it," Needless to say, he probably won't be appearing in a milk ad anytime soon.
Aug. 18, 1997. In a cover story in the July 14th issue of Business Week, Federal Reserve Chairman Alan Greenspan is given credit for directing a booming economy. His "core values" haven't changed, Greenspan assures confidants, but the economic rules supposedly have. Notes Business Week, "In Greenspan's brave new world, heightened global competition is restraining U.S. wage growth...." And President Clinton "shares Greenspan's view on the New Economy." Over the long term, Greenspan "is betting that as the world moves into the 21st century and the New Economy takes root, more of the old economic rules will fall apart. That will require a shrewd central banker to figure out what's going on. And by all indications, Alan Greenspan wants to be a witness to that revolution." Aren't we lucky to have a central banker to look after our best interests? We are even told that the Fed keeps track of some 14,000 data series so as to know how and when to manipulate. And to think that some folks believe this would best be done by a free market adjusting with an "invisible hand." That used to be what Alan Greenspan thought too; the old Greenspan would have castigated anyone who thought government would be our savior from high prices. As he wrote in 1966, the "abandonment of the gold standard made it possible for the welfare statists to use the banking system as a means to an unlimited expansion of credit...." Continuing in this vein Greenspan noted: "In the absence of the gold standard, there is no way to protect savings from confiscation through inflation. There is no safe store of value. If there were, the government would have to make its holdings illegal, as was done in the case of gold.... The financial policy of the welfare state requires that there be no way for the owners of wealth to protect themselves." Business Week also promulgates the mistaken notion that government has grown tight fisted, yet, the government's spending is headed this year to an astronomical $1.65 trillion which, even taking inflation into account, represents more than all federal budgets from 1800 till 1941. Yet not all of their reporting is faulty. It is no doubt accurate to say that central bank policies -- accompanied by White House internationalist agreements -- have favored our global competition, thereby holding down American wages. For this, however, are we really supposed to be thankful?
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