By William Walter Kay
The population control movement (or better put: the contraception-abortion-sterilization medical-industrial complex), while little understood and seldom discussed, is one of the most culturally and politically influential movements of the modern world. The population control movement and the environmental movement are so pervasively collaboratively and ideologically conjoined as to be conceptually inseverable. The following articles hopefully may serve as stepping stones across the 200-year wide river of darkness separating the general public from any practical awareness of this deliberate historic endeavour profoundly affecting each and every one of our lives.
Table of Contents
Anglo-American Population Control Movement Thought Leaders 1947-1952
(The dollar figures found in this posting, not having been inflation-adjusted, represent the actual financial quantum transferred at the times mentioned.)
There were two Thomas Malthuses – one pontificating highfalutin pseudo-science to the general reading public, and another anxiously elucidating labour economics to a closed circle of landowning English politicos.
After taking holy orders in the Anglican Church, Thomas Malthus (1766-1834) served as a curate in Surrey from 1798 to 1805. He then became England’s first Political Economy professor, lecturing in this field at the East India Company’s Haileybury College until his death.
Malthus was born unto the landed gentry, to a family of means. This social cohort looked nervously upon the labouring masses, and they were traumatized by the French Revolution. Malthus accused Paine’s Rights of Man of causing great mischief.
Malthus’s Essay on the Principle of Population (1798) defended specific socioeconomic arrangements. His legacy obscures his parochialism. England’s rural elite rested upon a stratum of sharecroppers, tenant farmers, hired hands and domestic servants subsisting on abysmally low wages. Preserving this arrangement was Malthus’s singular aim.
The Essay went through six editions, each unique. His final, most mature statement, A Summary View of the Principles of Population, was reprinted in Encyclopaedia Britannica. Generations of English intelligentsia were graded on their ability to recite these tracts.
Malthus is renowned for his “discovery” of a faux law of Nature: “…the power of population is indefinitely greater than the power in the earth to produce subsistence for men.” (1) In other words, population growth always overtakes agricultural yield.
Malthus was aware history had disproven his discovery. Contemporary agriculturalists and economists easily demonstrated that the ratio between food production and baby production was not fixed by Natural Law. Each edition of his Essay conjured a “rain of refutations.” Defiant Malthusians stood steadfast by their Law.
The backdrop to Malthusianism was an agricultural revolution, commencing around 1700, and accelerating after 1750. Across Europe new crops, novel methods of crop rotation, advanced techniques of animal husbandry, and labour-saving tools brought stark increases in food production. English grain output increased dramatically after 1750, as did wool and mutton output.
These gains were augmented by the Georgian Enclosures (1760-1810), which converted under-utilized pasture and woodland into commercial farmland. Also during this period large drainages converted pestilent marshes into bountiful farms. Such land-use changes were controversial. In the minds of many gentry, too much land and too much food were coming to market.
Malthus did NOT believe the world was overpopulated! He wrote candidly about the “scanty population of the earth.” Consider these quotes from his mature writings:
“…many parts of the earth are as yet very thinly peopled, and under proper management would allow of a much more rapid increase of food… this is unquestionably true.” (2)
There are few large countries, however advanced in improvement, the population of which might not have been doubled or tripled, and there are many which might be ten, or even a hundred, times as populous, and yet all the inhabitants be as well provided for as they are now... (3)
His chief concern was not the ecological carrying capacity of Earth; rather it was with:
“…the natural tendency of the labouring classes of society to increase beyond the demand for their labour.” (4)
(“Labouring classes” constituted “the great mass of society.”)
Here is his chief concern restated:
“…the pressure arising from the difficulty of procuring subsistence [sufficient wages] is not considered as a remote one, which will be felt when the earth refuses to produce anymore, but as one which exists at present over the greatest part of the globe.” (5)
Two entwined phenomena twist through his writings: (a) the supply and demand of labour; and (b) the inviolability of England’s existing property system.
Regarding the latter, there could be no alternative. Here’s Malthus in a nutshell:
“…the laws of private property, which are the grand stimulants to production, do themselves so limit it as always to make the actual produce of the earth fall very considerably short of the power of production. On a system of private property, no adequate motive to the extension of cultivation can exist, unless the returns are sufficient not only to pay the wages necessary to keep up the population, which at least must include the support of a wife and two or three children, but also afford a profit on the capital which has been employed. This necessarily excludes from cultivation a considerable portion of land which might be made to bear corn. If it were possible to suppose that man might be adequately stimulated to labour under a system of common property, such land might be cultivated, and the production of food and the increase of population might go on till the soil absolutely refused to grow a single additional quarter, and the whole of society was exhaustively engaged in procuring the necessaries of life. But it is quite obvious that such a state of things would inevitably lead to the greatest degree of distress and degradation. And if a system of private property secures mankind from such evils, which, it certainly does, in a great degree, by securing to a portion of society the leisure necessary for the progress of the arts and sciences, it must be allowed that such a check to the increase of cultivation confers on society a most signal benefit.” (6)
Translation: England’s property regime restricts the amount of land placed under cultivation. Policies which might qualitatively increase the amount of farmland would also reduce the rural rentiers to the status of mere farmers. An educated rural leisure class is essential for preventing social disorder.
The Berkshire Bread Act of 1795 provoked Malthus into writing the first edition of his Essay. Under this Act, local parish tax funds provided wage supplements for the landless rural poor. This system indirectly proved a windfall for some wealthier landowners as it sustained their employees during seasonal and economic downturns. Independent small farmers paid much of the tax but benefitted little as they rarely employed workers. Despite enjoying some potential indirect benefits, rural elites generally feared these welfare payments would undermine labour discipline.
The 1803 edition of the Essay counselled that the unemployed man must understand:
“…if the society does not want his labour, he has no claim of right to the smallest portion of food, and in fact, has no business to be where he is. At nature’s mighty feast there is no vacant cover for him.”
The 1826 edition reiterated:
“We are bound in justice and honour to formally disclaim the right of the poor to support.” (7)
Again in the Summary:
“…there is no modification of the law of property, having still for its object the increase of human happiness, which must not be defeated by the concession of a right of full support to all that might be born. It may be said, therefore, that the concession of such a right, and a right of property, are absolutely incompatible and cannot exist together.” (8)
If there must be financial assistance given to the labouring classes, it had be so discreditable: “that great exertions are made to avoid it.”
Otherwise, there would be: “a constantly increasing proportion of paupers.”
“…if from the numbers of the dependent poor, the discredit of receiving welfare is so diminished as to be practically disregarded, so that many marry with the almost certain prospect of becoming paupers, and the proportion of their numbers to the whole population is, in consequence, continually increasing.” (9)
Preventing an overgrowth of the labouring classes required positive and preventative checks. Preventative checks suppressed birth rates. Positive checks shortened the duration of life. The latter included: wars, diseases, malnutrition, unwholesome occupations, severe labour, and exposure to the seasons. Infanticide, while common in Malthus’s time, was not something he condoned. Malthus did, however, explicitly condone other positive checks:
“… instead of foolishly and vainly endeavouring to impede the operations of nature in producing this mortality, and if we dread too frequent visitation of the horrid form of famine, we should sedulously encourage other forms of destruction, which we compel nature to use. Instead of recommending cleanliness to the poor we should encourage contrary habits. In our towns we should make the streets narrower, crowd more people into the houses and court the return of the plague. In the country, we should build our villages near stagnant pools and particularly encourage settlements in all marshy and unwholesome situations. But above all, we should reprobate specific remedies for ravaging diseases, and those benevolent but much mistaken men, who have thought they were doing a service to mankind by projecting schemes for the total extirpation of particular disorders.” (10)
Malthus did NOT advocate contraception. In his day, a primitive but effective contraceptive consisting of a vaginal sponge attached to a ribbon gained popularity. Far from hailing this simple, cheap method, Malthus denounced it. The 1817 edition of the Essay declared:
“I should always particularly reprobate any artificial and unnatural modes of checking population, both on account of their immorality and their tendency to remove a necessary stimulus to industry.” (11)
Contraception might prevent the labouring family from reproducing themselves with two to three surviving children. As well, childless labourers were not as subornable as were parents of hungry kids:
“If it were possible for each married couple to limit by wish their number of children, there is certainly reason to fear that the indolence of the human race would be very greatly increased...” (12)
Destitution, redoubled with hungry kids, was the necessary stimulus to industry.
Regarding sexual reform, Malthus promoted: (a) abstinence before marriage; (b) late marriage; and (c) fidelity during marriage. He doubted the labouring classes could heed his advice. In his Summary he concedes that certain sexual vices were effective preventative checks, but his Christian morality prevented him from condoning these.
Another preventative check, quickly and cryptically mentioned, is wilderness preservation:
A taste for hunting and the preservation of game among the owners of the soil will, without fail, be supplied, if things be allowed to take their natural course; but such a supply, from the manner which it must be effected, would inevitably be most unfavourable to the increase of produce and population.” (13)
Translation: Holding large tracts of potential farmland as game reserves reduces food supply and employment opportunities, and therefore supresses population growth as well.
Malthus gave short shrift to the potential for emigration to relieve overpopulation. He wrote dismissively and briefly about the wars of extermination emigration would entail, and he presumed Europeans were unwilling to leave their homelands.
Malthus did not want England’s laborers to leave. He did not want them to stop having kids. He simply did not want them breeding themselves beyond the market demand for their labour.
Not all racisms are equal. The old gut racism – the blind, unreasoning, xenophobic, and bigoted variety based mainly on skin hue – is now mainly relegated to the gutter. Scientific racism emerged in the latter 19th century, not as a narrow conspiracy, but as a self-perpetuating credo espoused by monarchists, aristocrats, and literary salon keepers determined to keep afloat their reactionary counter-humanist tradition upon a steady stream of pseudo-genetic simplisms, pseudo-historical narratives, and pseudo-evolutionary jabberwocky.
Europe’s hereditary landed estate survived industrialization and urbanization. This obsolete class preserved large fragments of their ancient regime. One preservative, French Count Joseph Arthur de Gobineau (1816-1882), fancied himself the illegitimate grandson of Louis XV. Being a Royalist journalist, he freely admitted his theories were: “a natural consequence of horror and disgust with democracy.”
Gobineau’s magnum opus, the two-volume, The Inequality of the Races (1853 and 1855), became the racists’ Bible. According to Gobineau, the whiter one was, the better one was, and none were as white as the Teutons – an imagined race allegedly forming the bulwark of European civilization. Gobineau configured Europe’s aristocracy not as a socioeconomic class but as a racial lineage.
Gobineau blamed Louis Napoleon’s 1870 demise on the Gallo-Roman rabble and the Jewish bourgeoisie. He was profoundly anti-Semitic. A decade after Gobineau’s death, super-celebrity Richard Wagner founded a Gobineau Society whose adherents categorized Europeans into three races: Nordics, Alpines, and Mediterraneans (in order of rank).
Charles Darwin’s On the Origin of the Species by Means of Natural Selection, Or, The Preservation of the Favoured Races in the Struggle for Life (1859) did not dwell on race or policy. Nevertheless, Darwin, a country gentleman, opposed poor laws and vaccination programs, noting that livestock breeders never allow their worst to breed.
Not Darwin, but Herbert Spencer (1820-1903), coined the phrase “survival of the fittest” in his Principles of Biology (1864). This immensely popular guru of “Social Darwinism” railed against expenditures of public or charitable funds on education, healthcare, welfare, or sanitation. The biologically less endowed should fall by the wayside. He opposed unions, minimum wages, and work safety laws. Spencer’s cultivated sadistic insensitivity appealed to tax-hating, pietistic Christians like railroad tycoon James Hill and oil king John Rockefeller Sr.
Darwin returned in 1871 with The Descent of Man to express with equanimity:
“At some point, not very distant as measured by centuries, the civilized races of man will almost certainly exterminate, and replace, the savage races throughout the world.” (1)
After Darwin’s cousin Sir Francis Galton (1822-1911) inherited a fortune at age 22, he promptly quit medical school. This wealthy Victorian dilettante attained prominence with Hereditary Genius (1869). Galton’s revelation, explicated with statistical rigor, was that the children of bankers and cabinet ministers are more likely to find fame and fortune than are the children of share-croppers and ditch-diggers!
Galton concocted “eugenics” to refer to what he sometimes called a science, and sometimes a religion. Eugenicists sought to improve the human stock. Superior breeds should have more children; inferior breeds fewer. Galton encouraged caste sentiment and strong rural communities. To Galton, the life of the individual was trifling compared to the life of the race.
Addressing the Seventh International Congress of Hygiene and Demography in 1891, Galton bemoaned the “overgrowth of population” and vented fears of an explosion of inferior strains of Englishmen. He called for sterilizations.
Galton denounced democracy:
“…it is in the most unqualified manner that I object to the pretensions of natural equality.” (2)
Galton’s disciples discarded any notion of human rights. Lower-caste children were natural born enemies of the state.
Across the Atlantic, eugenicists cloistered around New York’s Museum of Natural History. Planning for this Museum dates to an 1861 meeting of J.P. Morgan, Theodore Roosevelt Sr., James Brown, and scions from the Dodge and Phelps families. At the Museum’s 1877 ribbon-cutting, Harvard President Charles Eliot spelled out its purpose:
“What divinity is worshipped in this place? ...Nothing else than the stupendous doctrine of hereditary transmission [which will] … enhance the natural interest in vigorous family stocks.” (3)
Eugenicists obsessed over the Social Problem Group (chronic paupers and the working poor). This human refuse of hereditary wood-hewers and water-drawers begged confinement in a rightful, lowly place. Like the oligarchy, this economic stratum was treated as though they were a biological race.
Economic racists demanded economic sacrifices for the racial cause. They wanted inheritance tax laws to benefit and preserve families of high social rank. They wanted to spare their peers from losing a dime on programs for the Social Problem Group.
Eugenicists blamed the poor’s hereditary endowments for hunger-related diseases, illiteracy, and for poverty itself. The underemployed were a morally retarded subpopulation growing like a tumour upon society. Charity-mad do-gooders impeded natural selection. By the 1890s eugenic solutions to crime and alcoholism were frequently debated.
Eugenicists ignored the long lines of half-wits and wastrels descending from monarchs and tycoons. They clung to Lamarckian illusions of hereditary transmission. They claimed traits like laziness and nomadism were expressions of single genes.
Eugenicists practiced phrenology – a lucrative form of quackery embraced by, amongst others, proto-environmentalists Ralph Waldo Emerson and Walt Whitman. Phrenologists filled volumes with didactic data on craniology, cephalic indexes, and facial angle goniometry. Phrenologist Count Georges Vacher de Lapouge divided Europeans into roundheads (brachycephalics) and longheads (dolichocephalics) – the former being Alpine Catholics, the latter being blonde, blue-eyed Nordic Protestants. William Ripley developed and disseminated such theories in Races of Europe (1899).
While Ripley’s tome flew off the shelves, scientists debunked phrenology’s empirical underpinnings. The cephalic index could not predict anatomical differences among or between Europeans, Africans, or Orientals. Phrenology went the way of phlogiston and preformation. By the early 20th century, within the serious scientific community, eugenics had become to genetics what astrology was to astronomy.
In the 1890s three young wealthy Harvard-educated eugenicists founded the Immigration Restriction League (IRL) to preserve America’s scarce resources for its existing racial stock. The founders, New England Brahmins all, recruited a national following. Hitherto immigrant-baiting was the preserve of labourers fearing competition. IRL’s journal, Eugenics, Ethics and Immigration, attracted academic acclaim.
IRL’s principal ideologue, Prescott Farnsworth Hall (1868-1921), graduated from Harvard Law School in 1892. Jew-baiting and anti-immigrant activism defined his life. Hall espoused orthodox Galtonist eugenics which he defined as:
“…encouraging the propagation of the fit, and limiting or preventing the multiplication of the unfit.”
Hall had a lifelong influence on the editor of the Saturday Evening Post and on New York University sociologist Henry Pratt Fairchild.
IRL received a boost in 1896 when the Atlantic Monthly printed Restriction of Immigration, by General Francis Walker (M.I.T. President). Walker claimed immigrants caused old stock Americans to shrink from social contact and economic competition. He dreaded southern and eastern European immigration.
While eugenicists descended from capitalists, eugenicists themselves tended to be rentier-scholars who disdained the peddling classes and abhorred industry. Typical of this milieu, Henry Cabot Lodge, the son of a wealthy merchant, became a Harvard professor, then a Senator. His campaigns to rid America from Roman and Celtic influences were coordinated with IRL lobbyists and publicity agents.
IRL efforts to impose literacy tests on immigrants irked businessmen who viewed immigrants as: a source of cheap labour, as a bulwark against trade unionism, and as settlers on lands alongside their shiny new railroads. IRL pitted academia (including several university presidents) against manufacturers, retailers, and railroaders. The two camps’ only common ground arose from academic immigrant-baiting’s diversion of the union movement’s wrath away from the bosses and toward their brothers in toil. Major labour unions supported IRL proposals, while a few radical unions supported free rights of migration.
Until 1915 big business constituted an impregnable barrier to immigration restriction. In that year, as expected, President Wilson vetoed the IRL’s immigrant literacy test; but then, indicative of the political sea-change engineered by the IRL, Congress overturned Wilson’s veto.
By 1915 eugenics permeated America’s educated caste. Several universities (Harvard, Columbia, etc.) offered Eugenics courses. All universities incorporated eugenics into their Biology, Psychology, and Sociology programs.
The Eugenics Records Office (ERO) began in 1910 with a gift from Mrs. E.H. Harriman (widow of the railway tycoon) of $500,000 and 80 acres of land. Mrs. Harriman sustained ERO until 1918 when the Carnegie Institute assumed its costs.
ERO ran a “genetics lab” at Cold Spring Harbour and commissioned a subsidiary, the Eugenics Research Association, to train clerks in recording histories of dysgenic families. Such histories consisted of old wives’ tales, neighborhood myths, and malicious gossip scripted to prove the hereditary basis of negative traits.
ERO blocked progress in public health. They strenuously contended that the Irish lacked resistance to tuberculosis. They undertook a massive statistical fraud to prove that pellagra was not caused by niacin deficiency but was congenital. (In the early 20th century hundreds of thousands of Americans, subsisting on a corn diet, died annually from infectious diseases after being weakened by pellagra.)
ERO promoted mass sterilization. US state legislatures began passing compulsory sterilization bills in 1897. These were vetoed by governors or blocked by courts until 1907 when Indiana passed the world’s first compulsory sterilization law. Thirty states followed Indiana’s lead. (63,678 Americans suffered forced surgical sterilization between 1907 and 1964). (4)
In 1914, to facilitate the adoption of sterilization laws, Harry Hamilton Laughlin (ERO superintendent and Eugenical News co-editor) drafted a Model Eugenical Sterilization Law stipulating forced sterilization for the: feeble-minded, criminalistic, inebriate, blind, deaf, and chronically unemployed. ERO distributed Laughlin’s law in huge quantities to legislators, clergy, professors, and editors.
ERO’s Charles Benedict Davenport (1866-1944) was for 30 years, mainly due to his radio broadcasts, the pope of American eugenics. (Davenport’s grandfather’s sprawling farm had slowly morphed into downtown Brooklyn.) Davenport’s pseudo-Mendelian Heredity in Relation to Genetics (1911) became the principal textbook for indoctrinating a generation of Eugenics, Sociology, and History students. Davenport claimed Germanic races were genetically predisposed to love bird songs.
Guided by Davenport (but chaired by Stanford University’s president), the Eugenics Department of the American Breeder’s Association struck the: Committee to Study and to Report on the Best Practical Means of Cutting Off the Defective Germ-Plasm in the American Population (a.k.a. the Van Wagenen Committee).
The Van Wagenen Report (1912) proclaimed:
“Racial instinct demands that defectives shall not continue their unworthy traits to menace society.” (5)
The Report called for segregating and sterilizing all: weaklings, inebriates, criminals, and ne’er do wells. Over 10% of Americans should be surgically sterilized. Opponents were brushed aside:
“It is held by some schools of social workers that better schools, better churches, better food, better clothing, better living, and better social life will remedy almost any social inadequacy in individuals. The studies of this committee point strongly in the opposite direction. They prove conclusively that much social inadequacy is of a deep-seated biological (i.e. genetic) nature, and can be remedied only by cutting off the human strains that produce it.” (6)
Because poisons and germs eliminated people of inferior blood, spending public funds on garbage disposal and running water was biologically counterproductive. Likewise, as people were born susceptible to diseases, public health spending was sentimental foolishness. Certain breeds of people were simply born uneducable, unemployable, and accident prone.
The Van Wagenen Report debuted in 1912 at the First International Congress of Eugenics, held at the University of London, with Major Leonard Darwin (Charles’s son) presiding. Leonard was: “living proof that neither scientific genius nor great intelligence is hereditary.” (7)
Winston Churchill was the Congress’s Vice President. Joining Winston were the: Bishop of Oxford, Lord Chief Justice, President of the British College of Physicians, Presidents of Harvard and Stanford University, and Alexander Graham Bell and Gifford Pinchot (a pillar of American conservationism and a future Governor of Pennsylvania). Speakers included: Arthur Balfour, two French senators, and a bevy of famous scientists. The Congress’s stated goal was: “the prevention of the propagation of the unfit by segregation and sterilization.” (8)
Lifelong conservationist, hunter, woodsman, and explorer, Madison Grant (1865-1937) co-founded the New York Zoological Society, then adorned its board for the remainder of his life – for 12 years as President. Grant was a Museum of Natural History trustee, an early member of the Sierra Club, and a co-founder of the Save the Redwoods League. Grant regularly attended meetings of that conservationist fountainhead, the Boone and Crocket Club, to rub shoulders with its founder, Theodore Roosevelt. Grant presided over the uber-green and much emulated Bronx Parkway Commission. Nevertheless: “No cause was dearer to the heart of Madison Grant than the total annihilation of the Jews.”
Educated by tutors in Germany, Grant entered Yale in 1887. A wealthy man consumed with political activism, his Manhattan law office remained ornamental.
For periods Grant presided over the Eugenics Research Association and the American Eugenics Society. He was Vice President of the Immigration Restriction League and a core member of the American Defense Society, which lobbied for the Immigrant Restriction Act of 1924.
Grant self-defined as an anthropologist. He and Charles Davenport, disapproving of the American Anthropological Association, established the rival: Galton Society for the Study of the Origin and Evolution of Man, with a self-perpetuating board drawn from racially vetted Columbia University and Carnegie Institute insiders.
In 1916 Grant authored The Passing of a Great Race. The book sold 16,000 copies and won laudatory reviews, including one penned by Theodore Roosevelt.
(An early convert to eugenics, Roosevelt wrote of the need to “check the fecundity of the subnormal.” He considered racial equality a “thoroughly pernicious doctrine” and he popularized the “race suicide” meme while campaigning to exclude Asians from the USA.)
Grant’s target audience was what Roosevelt called the: “American aristocracy resting upon layer upon layer of layer of immigrants of lower races.” These are a few telling passages from Passing:
“In the democratic forms of government the operation of universal suffrage tends toward the selection of the average man for public office rather than the man qualified by birth, education, and integrity.” (10)
“…the majority, calling itself ‘the people,’ deliberately endeavored to destroy the higher type, and something of the same sort was in a measure done after the American Revolution by the expulsion of the [Tory] Loyalists and the confiscation of their lands, with resultant loss to the growing nation of good race strains, which were in the next century replaced by immigrants of far lower type.” (11)
“Indiscriminate efforts to preserve the babies of the lower classes often result in serious injury to the race.” (12)
Grant seriously contended that the Nordic race arose on Baltic shores 3,000 years ago before going on to form the ruling classes of Ancient Greece, Imperial Rome, and Gothic Europe. Jesus of Nazareth, King David, Alexander the Great, and Michelangelo were Nordics.
New England’s Nordics had been sullied by their own manufacturing class’s importation of Irish and Quebecois labourers – plebeians adhering to obsolete religious codes.
Grant was a howling racist:
“The cross between a white man and an Indian is an Indian; the cross between a white man and a Negro is a Negro; the cross between a white man and a Hindu is a Hindu; and the cross between any of the three European races and a Jew is a Jew.” (13)
Grant borrowed his racial theories from William Ripley and Henry Fairfield Osborn Sr. The latter, the son of a railway tycoon and the nephew of banker-activist J.P. Morgan, presided over the American Museum of Natural History and the New York Zoological Society while participating in various eugenics and anti-immigrant groups. Osborn Sr. wrote the prefaces for the original, and all revised editions, of Passing.
Of these two oligarchs the recap shall go to author Robert Zubrin:
“Grant and Osborn brought another argument to the anti-immigrant campaign: environmental concern. According to these gentlemen, non-Nordic immigrants did not share the resident Anglo-Saxon/Teutonic race’s deep feeling for Nature (a thesis earlier advanced by Haeckel) and thus represented an unendurable threat to America’s remaining pristine wilderness areas. Together with their circle of museum trustees and fellow members of New York gentlemen hunters’ Boone and Crockett Club, the two took the lead in launching such early environmentalist groups such as the Sierra Club and the Save the Redwoods League.” (14)
Circa 1918 racism and environmentalism were one.
In 1921 New York’s Museum of Natural History hosted the Second International Congress of Eugenics, with Henry Fairfield Osborn Sr. and Leonard Darwin as Vice Presidents. Three hundred foreign delegates showed up. American attendees included: Alexander Graham Bell, Herbert Hoover, and Democratic Party kingmaker Averell Harriman.
Averell’s mom, Mrs. E.H. Harriman, the Congress’s principal benefactress, presented substantial cheques to treasurer Madison Grant. Mrs. Harriman co-hosted the Ladies’ Committee along with Osborn Sr.’s wife. They summoned to New York the US Congress’s immigration committees to view exhibits, hear tirades, and then to be dined and entertained, all on Mrs. Harriman’s dime, at Long Island’s Piping Rock Club. (1)
The Museum’s special collection of exhibits was subsequently remounted in the US Capitol Building. The New York Times ran contemporaneous articles headlined: “Tainted Aliens” and “Deterioration of Race.”
The Second Congress’s stated purpose was: “the prevention of the spread and multiplication of worthless members of society.” (2)
The “pedigrees of pauper stocks” emerged as a central topic. One paper, cited endlessly by delegates, stressed the existence of a “definite race of chronic pauper stocks.” The paper protested the “charity madness” which allowed this race to grow.
Craniologist and Jew-baiting Nordicist Count Vacher de Lapouge informed the assembled:
“The earth itself will soon no longer be able to furnish us with its riches. In a few centuries there will be no more metals, no more coal, no more oil, nor enough food.”
“The classes of people which are the least gifted turn on the elite classes, and they are creating a civilization that multiplies their desires far beyond our capacity to fulfill them. A movement has begun among the inferior classes; it is directed against the whites, the rich, the intellectually superior stock, and against civilization itself. The war of the classes is in fact a war of the races.” (3)
Charles Davenport’s speech accused the “false doctrines of human equality at birth and freedom of the will” of distorting criminology and education.
Osborn Sr. complained:
“Rampant individualism, not only in art and literature but in all our social institutions, threatens the deflowering of New England.” (4)
Mussolini’s scientific advisor, Corrado Gini, discussed his recent publication: The War from the Eugenic Point of View.
Before adjourning, the Congress created an International Commission of Eugenics (ICE) into which Rockefeller cash poured. In 1925, ICE re-branded itself as the International Federation of Eugenic Organizations while Charles Davenport replaced Leonard Darwin as its alpha male.
Biographies of Margaret Sanger suffer from agency inversion. Oligarchic dynasties like the Rockefellers, Dukes, Scaifes, Laskers, Sulzbergers, and Duponts, being inheritors of wealth, justified themselves as being products of superior breeding. They disdained and dreaded the mongrels. The oligarchs invented Sanger. She did not recruit them – au contraire.
In 1921 Sanger became the face of the American Birth Control League (ABCL). This League represented several birth control clinics operating in the US Northeast. ABCL rhetoric shuffled maternal health with ethnic cleansing. ABCL’s founding directors included Clarence C. Little and Lothrop Stoddard (a protégé of Madison Grant). Little’s racism was controversial even for the times. He later presided over the American Eugenics Society.
Stoddard’s The Rising Tide of Color (1920) argued that white men were self-destructively reducing famine and disease, i.e. necessary checks to population increase among inferior races. Proper policies would limit the living space (lebensraum) and food supply of the surplus coloured peoples. Stoddard argued Europe’s Jewry had no connection to the Biblical Hebrews. He had a Ph.D. in History from Harvard.
Subsequent ABCL directors included notorious racists like Count Lapouge and Guy Irving Burch. The latter became: a charter member of the Population Association of America, a director of American Eugenics Society, and a lobbyist for the National Committee on Federal Legislation for Birth Control. Burch descended from colonial pioneer stock. He hated the poor; hated Catholics.
The inaugural editorial of ABCL’s paper sloganeered:
“More children from the fit, less from the unfit – that is the chief issue of birth control.”
Denouncing the “dependent, delinquent, and unbalanced masses” Sanger intoned:
“We cannot improve the race until we first cut down production of its least desirable members.” (5)
British eugenicists chose Sanger as President for their London-based Birth Control International Information Center (BCIIC). The BCIIC studied the efficacy of contraceptives. BCIIC funding came mostly from a clique of English patrons. Canadian businessmen Alvin Kaufman, typical of contemporary eugenics patrons, feared socialist revolution and sought cost-effective ways to reduce the number of poor people.
Sanger’s celebrity status facilitated fundraisers such as Princess Alice’s “Malthusian Ball” and a dinner party thrown by Lady Dhanvanthi Rama Rau. Several glittering London fundraisers bankrolled Sanger’s mission to India. Back home, her Indian exploits received reportage from 377 newspapers in 43 states.
The passage of the US Immigration Act of 1924 capped 15 years of activism. The Act reflected the views of fanatical eugenicist Harry Hamilton Laughlin who, amongst other duties, served as the Expert Eugenics Agent for the US House of Representatives’ Immigration Committee.
While there was no formal Jewish quota (restrictions were based on country of origin), blocking Jewish immigration was an intended outcome of the Act. Asians were explicitly barred. Italians were the Act’s main target. During the Act’s first year of operation, Italian immigration decreased 89%. Ultimately 6,065,704 persons were excluded by the Act’s de facto racial quotas.
The Immigration Act stoked heated debates in mid-summer 1924 during the US Democratic Party’s national leadership convention at Madison Square Gardens. It proved to be the Party’s longest (103 ballots) and bitterest leadership contest. The frontrunners were: William McAdoo, who received and accepted the Ku Klux Klan’s endorsement, and Al Smith, a Catholic nominated by Franklin Delano Roosevelt. The Klan’s strident anti-Catholicism thinly cloaked an anti-Irish, anti-Italian racism that resonated in small-town America but not in the big northern cities.
The Klan maintained a major presence inside and outside Madison Square Gardens. After a resolution denouncing Klan terrorism was defeated, thousands of hooded Klansmen celebrated across the river from New York City. Crosses, and effigies of Al Smith, burned through the night. Physical assaults occurred inside the hall.
Klan candidate McAdoo received 40% of the votes on the first ballot and led many subsequent ballots. The convention ground on for days until compromise candidate John Davis (who had received under 3% of the votes on the first ballot) emerged as the winner. Davis lost the November 1924 presidential election to Republican Calvin Coolidge by a landslide.
The Sixth International Neo-Malthusian and Birth Control Conference, held at New York’s Hotel McAlpin in 1925, being the most important such confab to date, received extensive press coverage. Lord Keynes attended, as did American Eugenics Society president Irving Fisher. Margaret Sanger and Baroness Ishimoto joined veteran Malthusians like Charles Vickery Drysdale (president of the Malthusian League, and son of its founder). Race theorists Count Lapouge and Ellsworth Huntington mingled with eminent scientists like Julian Huxley. Supportive messages from Bertrand Russell and Upton Sinclair were read out. Corrado Gini, now head of Mussolini’s Central Institute for Statistics, delighted the assembled.
Anglo-American eugenicists initially adored Mussolini. No European junket would be complete without an audience before Il Duce. Eugenicist publications hailed the new Caesar. (6) While relations soured after 1926, even as late as 1929 Eugenical News boasted of a meeting of the International Federation of Eugenics Organisations in Rome as Gini’s guests.
In 1926 Gini launched a Committee to Investigate Malthusianism. (7) Gini favoured positive eugenics, i.e. helping good couples have many children. Anglo-Americans paid lip service to positive eugenics but emphasised negative eugenics, i.e. abortion, contraception, and sterilization for the labouring masses.
In the late-1920s Italy outlawed contraceptives and abortion. (8) Gini quit international eugenics groups, accusing them of “Malthusianism,” and embarked on a mission to unite pro-natalists in Catholic countries.
In 1930 Pope Pius XI condemned Malthusianism and eugenics. In his encyclical Casti Connubii (Chaste Wedlock) he prayed the number of Catholics “should daily increase.” His successor, Pius XII, opposed abortion even to save the life of the mother. (France’s clerico-fascist Vichy Regime guillotined women for having abortions).
In 1931 Gini summoned a World Population Conference in Rome to preach:
“For too long, students of population problems have based their discussions on Malthusian premises.” (9)
Fascist Italy’s “demographic battle” laid out specific fertility targets. Aggressive pro-natalism accompanied efforts to acquire lebensraum. Italian destroyers escorted convoys of settlers to Libya.
In 1931 Italy’s campaign to conquer North Africa began in earnest. Punitive expeditions, civilian massacres, concentration camps, aerial bombardments, and extensive use of chemical munitions killed over one million local inhabitants in the 1930s. In Cyrenaica one-third of the locals perished while tens of thousands of Italian colonists disembarked.
In a 1927 decision (Buck v Bell) Supreme Court Justice Oliver Wendell Holmes Jr. and seven fellow Justices ruled that persons genetically pre-disposed to social parasitism could be sterilized. The decision echoed with high fidelity views expressed by Dr. Hiram W. Evans, Imperial Wizard of the Ku Klux Klan.
While the market sector, on its own, had made significant advances in contraceptive technology, philanthropists accelerated contraceptive research and development. In 1927 the Rockefeller Foundation funded a study aimed at creating contraceptives: “adapted to the wives of dull-minded natives.” (10)
Biologist and devout Galtonist Raymond Pearl’s possession of sizable philanthropic grants from the Milbank Memorial Fund allowed him to steer the agenda and have himself elected President at the 1927 World Population Conference in Geneva. This Conference gave rise to the International Union for the Scientific Investigation of Population Problems (IUSIPP).
For most of its first decade IUSIPP had George Pitt-Rivers for its General Secretary and Treasurer. Pitt-Rivers, upon inheriting one of England’s largest land estates, had ample time and money to maintain lead roles in the British Eugenics Society and the International Federation of Eugenics Organizations.
(Pitt-Rivers was such a raving Nazi the British Government locked him up in Brixton prison for the first three years of WWII. Pitt-Rivers’s successor at IUSIPP, France’s Georges Mauco, an anti-Semitic ethno-racist Nazi collaborator, held the posting until 1953.) (11)
In 1932 New York hosted the third, and final, International Congress of Eugenics. Davenport presided. Only 73 attended. (International eugenics had fragmented, with Catholic eugenicists holding separate conventions since 1927.) What the delegates lacked in numbers they made up for in pedigree and clout. The Harrimans, Roosevelts, Osborns, Dodges, and other representatives of the social register attended. Henry Fairfield Osborn Sr.’s nephew Frederick Osborn served as treasurer. Margaret Mead and Margaret Sanger were there, as was Guy Irving Burch and Pioneer Fund founder Colonel Wycliffe Draper.
Sociologist Henry Pratt Fairchild lectured on how immigrants were like inassimilable bacteria, and how with 125 million people the USA exceeded its optimum population.
Henry Fairfield Osborn Sr. delivered his famous “over” speech. Henry saw a world wracked with overs:
“Over-destruction of natural resources… Over-construction of warehouses, ships, railroads, wharves and other means of transport, replacing primitive transportation… Over-production both of food and the mechanical wants of mankind… Over-population beyond the land areas, or the capacity of the natural and scientific resources of the world, with consequent permanent unemployment.” (12)
This speech was given during the Great Depression when 20 million Americans were unemployed; hence, the following passage is stunning:
“While some highly competent people are unemployed, the mass of unemployment is among the less competent, because in every activity it is the less competent who are first selected for suspension while the few highly competent people are retained because they are less indispensable. In nature these less-fitted individuals would gradually disappear, but in civilization we are keeping them in the community in the hopes that in brighter days they may all find employment.” (13)
These views were reiterated in Dr. Theodore Robie’s presentation on the cost-effectiveness of sterilizing dysgenic elements: “A major portion of this vast army of unemployed are social inadequates, and in many cases mental defectives, who might have been spared the misery they are now facing if they had never been born.”
Another presentation, “Selective Sterilization for Race Culture” called for sterilizing 14 million Americans.
Franklin Delano Roosevelt’s 1932 election victory followed the Democratic Party’s break with the Klan and subsequent capture of the Catholic vote. Nevertheless, FDR, like his cousin TR, thoroughly embraced both conservationism and eugenics. Every president holding office between these two subscribed to racist supremacist theories. FDR’s formative social contacts unquestioningly accepted the legitimacy of eugenics. As did Congress. As did the Supreme Court.
Germany’s Weimar Republic (1919-1933) forbade contraceptive advertising and elective abortions. The status of birth control plummeted further under Nazism. Abortionists became Nazi propaganda boogeymen. Abortions for Jews remained legal. Sex between Jews and Aryans became illegal.
Nazis practised positive, negative, and eliminatory eugenics. Their sterilization program began targeting invalids but quickly moved on to the feeble-minded and criminals. Nazi race theorists considered “Germans” to be a mixture of several European breeds, hence sterilization facilitated purification.
Eugenics Court judges found it annoying that so many “feeble-minded” Germans excelled at intelligence tests. The accused was usually sterilized regardless of test scores. Between 1933 and 1945 some two million German citizens (almost 5% of all adults) suffered forced surgical sterilization.
This sterilization program ran alongside a euthanasia (medical homicide) program, once again targeting “Germans.” Crews that began these operations in hospital settings soon found themselves redeployed to extermination camps.
The Nazis deluged Germans with Malthusian propaganda. Elementary school math textbooks asked students how much food could be saved by eliminating “useless eaters.” Hitler explained his conquest, depopulation, and colonization of Eastern Europe in trendy demographic terms. In pacified regions of Eastern Europe the Nazis aggressively compelled abortions and sterilizations. Nearer the Eastern Front, eliminatory eugenics prevailed.
Anglo-American and German eugenicists embraced ideologically and collaboratively. Grant’s The Passing of a Great Race profoundly impacted European Nordicists. Hitler called it his “Bible” and reprinted long passages from it in Mein Kampf. (Hitler also used Mien Kampf to praise US immigration policies.) Grant’s book became required reading for Nazis. The forward for the book’s 1937 edition was written by Professor Eugen Fischer who ran the Kaiser Wilhelm Institute for Anthropology, Heredity, and Eugenics while maintaining close collegial ties with like-minded Americans.
In 1934 the University of Frankfurt awarded an honorary doctorate to Henry Fairfield Osborn Sr. who enthusiastically came to Nazi Germany to accept it.
Nazi sterilization proponents were especially fond of American sterilization zealot Paul Popenoe. (Popenoe later became a talk-show celeb in the US after he founded Ladies Home Journal.)
The Nazi’s 1933 Act for Averting Descendants Afflicted with Hereditary Diseases was based verbatim on Laughlin’s Model Eugenic Sterilization Law. The principal drafter of the Nazi law, Dr. Ernest Rudin, in 1932 had been elected president of the International Federation of Eugenics Organizations at the Third International Congress of Eugenics in New York. Rudin dedicated his life to Hitler’s “holy national and international racial hygienic mission.” Hitler made Rudin his Reichskommissar for Eugenics.
In 1935 the Nazis invited 500 raceologists from around the world to Berlin for the International Congress for Population Science. The American delegation included the very pro-Hitler president of the Eugenics Research Association (ERA) Dr. Clarence Campbell, plus Dorothy Swaine Thomas and Warren Thompson – both destined to be Population Council co-founders. The Congress’s keynote speaker, Nazi Interior Minister Wilhelm Frick, was destined to hang at Nuremburg. As the Congress wrapped up, all attendees stood and shouted “Heil Hitler.” (14)
Lothrop Stoddard travelled to Germany to watch negative eugenics in action. He met privately with Walther Darre, then spent a day as a guest judge on the Eugenics High Court of Appeal. He published a favourable review of their system. Stoddard supported the extermination of Jews.
In 1938 Western governments, pressured by the eugenics movement, agreed at Evian, France, not to accept Jewish refugees from Central or Eastern Europe. British PM Neville Chamberlain cut off Palestine as a refuge. American eugenicists kept American doors shut. (15)
In 1939 a bill introduced to Congress would have made an exception to the Immigration Act and allow an additional 20,000 Jewish children into America. Henry Laughlin and Guy Irving Burch led the successful effort to defeat the bill. Burch bellowed: “These 20,000 kids will proliferate into 500,000 Jews in only six generations.” They also turned away a ship (St. Louis) with 930 Jewish refugees aboard, many of whom vanished amidst the Holocaust. (16)
Laughlin, Burch, and other eugenicists founded the Coalition of Patriotic Societies (CPS). This coalition included the KKK. On July 23, 1942 CPS along with the KKK, Silver Shirts, German-American Bund (American Nazi Party), and the Black Legion were indicted for sedition in a DC Federal Court.
Pro-Nazi Anglo-American eugenicists, like the ERA’s Clarence Campbell, were now an embarrassment to the movement. Reform-eugenicist C.P. Blacker of the British Eugenics Society told Campbell that Campbell’s sympathies made him “one of the most dangerous enemies of the eugenics movement.” (17) While reform-eugenicists refrained from calling the lower classes “dysgenic scum,” this did not mean they thought any better of them. (18)
Back in 1934 the Carnegie Institute perspicaciously ejected Davenport and Laughlin from the Eugenics Record Office. Renamed the Genetics Record Office, the organization was re-orientated under new managers.
In 1939 Julian Huxley organised a public statement by Britain’s top biologists denouncing Nazism while still holding out the potential of eugenics to improve humanity. In the same year, the Seventh International Genetics Conference condemned racism, Nazism, and eugenics. By this time, mainstream empirical genetics research had thoroughly rejected eugenics.
Late-1930s Britain hosted an array of “population control” organizations: Eugenics Education Society of Britain, National Birth Control Association, Birth Control Investigation Committee, Malthusian League, etc. In 1935 the pivotal, well-funded British Eugenics Society elected Lord Horder (physician and confidante of Edward VIII) as president. He would hold this position for 14 years. Horder praised the staff of the Malthusian League’s journal, The New Generation, as missionaries spreading the gospel of birth control. Dr. Horder treated indiscriminate child-bearing as a disease of the body politic. British eugenicists treated the poor as mental incompetents. Their immediate challenge was penetrating burgeoning government welfare programs with birth control programs.
Across the Atlantic in the late-1930s the tide shifted in the movement’s favour. In 1936 courts overturned those sections of the Comstock Law which impeded postal shipments of contraceptives. In 1937 the American Medical Association approved of “family planning.” Polls in 1938 showed 80% of American women favoured the use of contraceptives (76% said money issues determined reproductive choices.).
In 1936 Frederick Osborn induced the Milbank Memorial Fund and Princeton University to create an Office of Population Research – the world’s first policy-oriented demography department. Frederick chaired the short-lived Council on Population before embracing, in 1937, the Swedish model of pitching eugenics as an effort to enhance freedom regarding family size. Frederick rejuvenated the American Eugenics Society while running an anti-Mexican immigrant campaign.
Also in the late-1930s, Ernest Gruening, director of the US Division of Territories and Island Possessions, declared birth control to be the only hope for Puerto Rico. Gruening worked with the American Birth Control League to make birth control, including sterilization, available at government clinics. This constituted a rare defeat for the island’s Catholic hierarchy. Similarly, in 1939 a Royal Commission deemed reducing birth rates to be the most pressing need for Britain’s Caribbean colonies. Jamaica became their test case. These Jamaican and Puerto Rican initiatives marked the first time colonial powers assisted fertility limitation.
A 1940 conference merged the American Birth Control League and the Birth Control Clinical Research Bureau into a new group, which soon recast itself as Planned Parenthood Federation of America. The merger moved Henry Pratt Fairchild to opine:
“One of the outstanding features of the present conference is the practically universal acceptance of the fact that these two great movements [eugenics and birth control] have now come to such a thorough understanding and have drawn so close together as to be almost indistinguishable.” (19)
Racism slipped into remission in the USA and UK during WWII. Only murmurs of eugenics remained audible on campus. White supremacism became unacceptable in polite society. Regardless, the movement that had earlier utilized eugenics rose from the ashes. Malthus’s “law” about population outgrowing food production returned with vengeance as a propaganda theme. Crypto-eugenicists deluged bookstores and newspapers with overpopulation alarmism. Spectres of environment pollution embellished the myth-making.
In 1947 Guy Irving Burch, Population Reference Bureau leader and editor of Population Bulletin, co-authored Population Roads to Peace and War (retitled: Human Breeding and Survival) with Elmer Pendell, a Ph.D. economist and director of the pro-sterilization Birthright, Inc. The book accepted Hitler’s lebensraum theory of war at face value: “...if the birth rate is kept high the total population eventually reaches a ‘must expand or explode’ stage.” (1)
The authors saw a world running out of fertile soil. Soon it would be unable to feed its present population, let alone the millions arriving due to the reckless breeding of the poor. The only hope for peace lay in mass sterilization.
Two far more influential books appeared in 1948, both paying homage to Guy Irving Burch; both claiming time was limited due to deforestation and desertification; both bemoaning a decline in human quality; and both laying out the conservationist case for population control, i.e. the economic development needed to support a growing population decimates wilderness and farmland. (2)
Henry Fairfield (“Fair”) Osborn Jr., a man renowned for his passionate defence of wilderness, authored Our Plundered Planet (1948). Fair rejected his father’s overt racism, focusing instead on the need to regulate land development and resource extraction. He also deployed the lebensraum theory of war – overpopulation drives expansionism. Osborn Jr. twisted the overpopulation screw:
“He [Malthus] was not so far wrong when he postulated that the increase in population tends to exceed the ability of the earth to support it.” (3)
“…the problem of the pressure of increasing populations – perhaps the greatest problem facing humanity today – cannot be solved in a way that is consistent with the ideals of humanity.” (4)
Osborn Jr. concludes:
“…the tide of the earth’s population is rising, the reservoir of the earth’s living resources is falling… Man must recognize the necessity of cooperating with nature … the time for defiance is at an end.” (5)
Amidst effulgent praise of bird songs and skunk cabbages, William Vogt’s The Road to Survival (1948) connects overpopulation to war, tyranny, and communism:
“Overpopulation that has contributed so much to past European disorders is a continuing and growing threat.” (6)
Malthusian myth is presented as scientific fact. Earth cannot possibly feed three billion people. The ecological incompetence of our politicians will have famine soon stalking London’s streets.
Vogt opposed industrialization, urbanization, and especially agricultural mechanization. The capitalistic system was ruinous. Industrial development depended upon relentless despoliation of new lands. Free trade subsidized unchecked spawning in Asia. Opening up America’s undeveloped lands to Asians would drag down American living standards merely to reward the Asians’ untrammelled copulation.
Vogt promoted population stabilization through contraception. His main recommendation was that the West: “should not ship food to keep alive 10 million Indians and Chinese this year so that 50 million may die five years hence.” (7)
Backward populations had to be written off:
“There can be no way out. These men and women, boys and girls, must starve.”(8)
Vogt obsessed over the shiftless, feckless mass of undeserving poor. Conservationists should insist that such people be left to die. (9)
Road to Survival, after being selected by book clubs and hailed as a masterpiece by reviewers, became an international bestseller, available in nine languages. Our Plundered Planet sold three million copies in the US alone thanks to endorsements from the likes of Albert Einstein. Every argument and recommendation in these manifestos became the conventional wisdom of educated Americans.
Fair Osborn had impeccable pedigree and Olympian social stature. While presiding over the New York Zoological Society, Fair co-founded the Conservation Foundation. This organization, a vanguard of what became “environmentalism,” received funds from the Rockefeller, Milbank, and Mellon Foundations. It redirected some this largesse to the Sierra Club and the Environmental Defense Fund. In 1962 Conservation Foundation directors, led by Julian Huxley, helped European aristocrats establish the World Wildlife Fund.
The Conservation Foundation and several philanthropic foundations teamed up with Princeton’s Office of Population Research to sponsor documentaries popularising their brand of Malthusian conservationism. Many of these documentaries featured Kingsley Davis (grandnephew of Confederate President Jefferson Davis), an American Eugenics Society stalwart and a director of the UN Population Division. In a 1950 Foreign Affairs article, Davis noted:
“Envy and revolt are nurtured not by absolute but by relative poverty.” (10)
The article added that literate masses were more threatening than illiterate ones. Davis elsewhere complained the USA was helping Mexico deal with its overpopulation problem: “by acquiring yearly tens of thousands of impoverished, illiterate, superstitious, non-English-speaking, and in many cases diseased new citizens.” (11)
What the average Asian country needed, according to Davis, was:
“A totalitarian government, highly competent and rigorously committed, ruling a docile mass of semi-educated but thoroughly indoctrinated urbanites existing at a low level of consumption, working very hard, and accepting passively what is provided for them.” (12)
William Vogt rose to prominence in America’s conservationist movement as a bird-loving activist opposing marsh drainage (mosquito eradication). In the 1940s Vogt ran the Conservation Section of the Pan-American Union. From 1951 to 1962 he ran Planned Parenthood Federation of America. Vogt then served as the Secretary of the Conservation Foundation, and as the International Union for the Conservation of Nature’s (IUCN) representative to the UN until his death in 1968.
Julian Huxley (grandson of “Darwin’s bulldog” T.H. Huxley) served as Vice President and then President of the British Eugenics Society. Huxley co-founded UNESCO’s anti-population, anti-growth programs. He drafted, without consultation, UNESCO’s 1946 mission statement, which championed curtailing humanity’s blind reproductive urges while blaming the “age of the common man” for devaluing quality. Warning of resource scarcity, Huxley co-founded the IUCN in 1948. He described industrialism as “the systematic exploitation of wasting assets.” His brother, Aldous, detailed the demographic-ecological double crisis in a UNESCO-sponsored study wherein he fretted about differential fertility rates endangering the West from within and without. (13)
In 1948 an International Conference on Population and World Resources convened at Cheltenham, England with 250 participants; Lord Horder presiding. The Conference founded a provisional International Committee on Planned Parenthood to be housed within Britain’s Family Planning Association and to be funded by both the British Eugenics Society and American heiress Dorothy Hamilton Brush. This Committee became the International Planned Parenthood Federation (IPPF) pursuant to an agreement struck in Margaret Sanger’s suite in Bombay’s Taj Mahal Hotel in 1952. Sanger’s guests were William Vogt, Lady Rama Rau, and a few others, notably C.P. Blacker of the British Eugenics Society (r. 1931-1952).
Blacker described the movement’s new orientation as “crypto-eugenics” meaning the effort to:
“…fulfil the aims of eugenics without disclosing what you are really aiming at and without mentioning the word.” (14)
Blacker conceived of the IPPF as a crypto-eugenics initiative. (15) Blacker, who remained a racist, prophesied eugenics would evolve through three stages: academic, practical, and then religious.
Blacker credited Fair’s cousin Frederick Osborn with coming up with crypto-eugenics. Frederick said eugenicists would get nowhere if they insulted target populations. He complained this approach almost killed the eugenics movement.
In 1948 John D. Rockefeller III (JDRIII) told his fellow Rockefeller Foundation trustees that their efforts to eradicate disease only exacerbated overpopulation. JDRIII believed stopping runaway population growth trumped economic development. Failing to fully win over his fellow trustees, JDRIII struck out on his own. His siblings supported him.
Having been keenly interested in fertility suppression for 20 years, JDRIII would make this Cause the focus of his philanthropy. His father had bankrolled eugenics programs in the USA and Germany since the 1920s. By 1948 JDRIII routinely handed out $1 million a year from his own wallet to the Cause. (1)
One early manifestation of JDRIII’s independent tack was an invitation-only conference held on November 24, 1952 at Williamsburg, Virginia. (2) For a conference organizer JDRIII enlisted the head of the National Academy of Sciences, Detlev Brock (soon-to-be President of Rockefeller University). Brock invited an array of eminent scholars to join the usual suspects: Fairfield and Frederick Osborn, William Vogt et al.
(Over the years Frederick Osborn, a close friend of JDRIII, would serve as: President of the Pioneer Fund, President of the American Eugenics Society, and Vice President of the Population Council. The American Eugenics Society would receive contributions from the Population Council for two decades.)
The Williamsburg Conference transcript contains intriguing lacunae. Whenever debates broke out about undermining Third World industrial development, attendees went off the record. (3)
M.I.T.’s Karl Compton kicked off proceedings with a tale about tribal chieftains in New Guinea who stabilized population by sacrificing one tribal member every time a child was born.
Detlev Brock warned of: “the potential degradation of the genetic quality of the human race.” (4)
Vogt advocated selling population control as a maternal health initiative; adding that because population control could never be a populist movement, they needed to cultivate like-minded foreign elites.
Economist Isador Lubin worried about communists infiltrating the developing world and promising solutions that did not depend on technological change.
Neither JDRIII nor Professor Frank Notestein wanted population control overtly linked to the Cold War. Population control must appear to be a stand-alone, selfless humanitarian endeavour.
(Notestein, a Frederick Osborn protégé, had been appointed founding director of Princeton’s Office of Population Research by Osborn in 1936. Notestein became the first director of the UN Population Division in 1946, and he succeeded Osborn as JDRIII’s right-hand man at the Population Council in 1959.)
JDRIII co-wrote the Population Council’s charter in 1952 and served as President and Chair of the organization until his 1978 death. He was the Council’s main financier.
The Population Council’s official launch was a eugenicist reunion. Among the 31 invites were: Warren Thompson, Dorothy Swaine Thomas, William Vogt, Kingsley Davis, and Frank Notestein.
The Population Council funded research into easier, more reliable, and preferably permanent ways of contracepting the poor. In its first four years, the Council set up national family planning programs in South Korea, Malaysia, Hong Kong, and Sri Lanka. They later established demographic training centers in Bombay (1957), Santiago (1958), and Cairo (1963). Council-funded academic fellowships were administered by Princeton’s Office of Population Research. Council Vice President Frederick Osborn’s fabulous lunches brought together representatives from International Planned Parenthood Federation (IPPF), UN agencies, the Ford and Rockefeller Foundations, and pharmaceutical firms.
Until 1954 all Population Council funding came from JDRIII. In 1954 the Ford Foundation gave the Council a $600,000 grant to establish UN-administered research centres in India and Chile. In 1956 the Rockefeller Brothers Fund gave the Council $540,000 for biomedical research. (5)
In the early 1950s the international population control movement (now American-dominated) suffered setbacks. Efforts to commandeer the UN met resistance from French and East European delegations who accused the UN’s Population Division of “Malthusianism.” Greek representatives considered mass distributions of contraceptives as tantamount to encouraging national suicide. Disputes between UNESCO and the UN Population Division resulted in the latter suffering a 60% staff reduction. Setbacks at the UN paralleled a decline in Western media enthusiasm. American press coverage of population issues in 1954 was half what it was in 1948.
Around this time, Dixie Cup owner Hugh Moore, moved by William Vogt’s writings, started the Population Action Committee together with establishment pillars Ellsworth Bunker and Will Clayton. The Committee’s main success, a pamphlet titled The Population Bomb, played upon fears of atomic bombs:
“Today the population bomb threatens to create an explosion as disruptive and dangerous as the explosion of the atom.” (6)
In 1954 the Committee mailed this pamphlet to 10,000 notables listed in Who’s Who. Over the next decade every politician, businessman, journalist, and professor in America (1.5 million people) received a free copy in the mail.
According to the Committee, overpopulation spread every imaginable environmental calamity; worse, it spread communism. In a 1954 letter to JDRIII, Hugh Moore wrote:
“We are not primarily interested in the sociological or humanitarian aspects of birth control. We are interested in the use which Communists make of hungry people in their drive to conquer the earth.” (7)
During the 1950s Moore bankrolled several population groups including Guy Irving Burch’s Population Reference Bureau (Moore became chairman). Moore took over Birthright, Inc. and renamed it the Association for Voluntary Sterilization. Moore also donated large sums to IPPF.
Moore was hardly the only plutocrat smitten with neo-Malthusianism.
Clarence Gamble, grandson of Proctor & Gamble’s co-founder, provided start-up capital for population control projects. Gamble travelled Asia, enlisting his family, and hiring missionaries to preach contraception. His “Three Villages” project in Japan in the early 1950s debuted the cafeteria approach to contraceptives by offering locals: foam tablets, diaphragms, spermicidal jelly, sponges dipped in salt solutions, and sterilization. As elsewhere in Asia, locals sensed Gamble’s racist agenda and resented him for it. IPPF found it difficult to distance themselves from Gamble due to his large donations. (8)
William Draper spent the 1930s hawking Nazi bonds on Wall Street as a ranking banker at Dillon Read. During WWII he received battlefield promotions to the rank of General. After WWII, as chief economist for the Allied Council in Germany, General Draper obstructed denazification efforts in order to protect his former business clients. After being denounced by his fellow American officers as a Nazi sympathiser, Draper returned to Washington DC only to get promoted to Army Under-Secretary. (9) In this capacity he granted permission to his pal JDRIII to tour Japan and Korea.
In 1958 Eisenhower tapped Draper to head a commission on foreign aid and military assistance. Commission members included a former NATO Supreme Commander, a former Joint Chiefs of Staff Chairman, and the ubiquitous Cold War mastermind John McCloy. (10)
Draper made The Population Bomb required reading for Commission members. One Commission document described the struggle against overpopulation as an “international class war.” (11)
The Draper Report (1959) contended that population control was essential for:
“…decreasing opportunities for communist political and economic domination.”
“…the United States should make promotion of birth control techniques an explicit item of the technical assistance program.” (12)
Eisenhower disagreed and blocked US government funding of birth control. This issue of whether developed countries should fund population control activities in developing countries emerged as a touchstone controversy. Sweden’s allocation of $80,000 for contraceptive distribution in Ceylon in 1959 marked the first time a Western government included family planning in its foreign aid program.
Many developing countries experienced rapid urban population growth. Shantytowns once bulldozed rose again. Hong Kong swelled with immigrants, but British officials doubted the efficacy of any campaign led “by a white government to restrict the growth of a non-white population.” (13)
In November 1960 eminent citizens from 19 countries, including 100 scientists and 39 Nobel laureates, signed a statement urging the UN to act on overpopulation. Using apocalyptic rhetoric and photos of starving Africans, they warned of unrest and war. (Julian Huxley masterminded this project.)
Demands that the US federal government act on overpopulation became an issue in the 1960 election. Kennedy, with an eye on the Catholic vote, stated:
“…it would be the greatest psychological mistake for us to appear to advocate limitation of the black or brown or yellow peoples whose population is increasing no faster than in the United States.” (14)
Hugh Moore established the World Population Emergency Campaign (WPEC) and recruited William Draper as its indefatigable fundraiser. In 1961 WPEC handed out $170,000 in grants. (One WPEC member, a chemistry professor, penned a popular book calling for a world government focused on artificial insemination and compulsory abortion.) WPEC propaganda warned of the surplus millions of people: “who can turn to revolution … or who may explode out of national boundaries.” (15)
The merger of WPEC and Planned Parenthood Federation of America was solemnified on a May 1961 evening at the Starlight Roof ballroom atop New York’s Waldorf Astoria. Three hundred dinner guests came to honor Sanger and kick off the Conference on the World Population Crisis. It was the opioid-addled Sanger’s last appearance. She staggered to the platform and nodded off during speeches. In attendance were: six ambassadors; a bevy of Nobel Laureates; a gaggle of prominent clergy; and Julian Huxley, Linus Pauling, Marriner Eccles (former Federal Reserve Chair), Clare Luce Booth, Eleanor Roosevelt, Lammot du Pont Copeland, William Vanderbilt, Cass Canfield (Harper & Bros. Chair), and Katherine McCormick. (16)
(Katherine McCormick became “rich as Croesus” after inheriting a large stake in the International Harvester Company. Katherine bankrolled the pharmaceutical research leading to the debut of the “pill” at a 1960 IPPF conference in Tokyo. The FDA quickly approved G.D. Searle Corp’s “Enovid.” The Supreme Court’s 1965 Griswold vs Connecticut decision – brought by Planned Parenthood – overturned the ban on birth control pharmaceuticals. Searle shareholders rejoiced.) (17)
The 1960 campaign controversy, plus the fallout from the Draper Report, created a fund-raising bonanza for population control organizations and spiked population coverage in the media. Life magazine ran an overpopulation cover story while CBS aired an hour-long documentary linking overpopulation to communism and mass migration.
American dollars poured into IPPF. The 27 national associations now belonging to the Federation were watched over by a Management Committee upon which Americans held a quarter of the seats.
In 1961 South Korea’s new military junta, responding to American pressure, imposed a population program under which civil servants and military officials could be denied promotions if they had more than three children. Overly prolific parents could be ineligible for medical assistance or denied access to public housing. (Also in 1961, Sweden gave a $400,000 birth control grant to Pakistan.)
Ford Foundation population control funding grew rapidly between 1953 and 1962. A 1953 meeting of Foundation trustees declared overpopulation to be a basic world problem. Over the next six years they threw $2 million at population activism with the Population Council receiving the lion’s share. In 1959 they allocated another $1.6 million for the Population Council including, for the first time, funds for contraceptive research. In 1960 they spent $2.8 million on population grants. In 1961 this increased to $3.4 million. Ford then moved beyond population grant making and directly hired staff to run in-house programs. In 1962 Chairman John McCloy, in a single meeting, approved $10.7 million for domestic and international population control programs. In 1962 the Population Council received half of its $3.1 million budget from Ford, enough to employ 40 professionals and to redirect surplus funds to IPPF. (18)
In 1962 the population establishment again unsuccessfully assailed the UN. The debate in the General Assembly ran for four days, often late into the night.
In the early 1960s the Association for Voluntary Sterilization, Inc. (AVS) appointed a charismatic obstetrician as their medical director before dispatching him on a public relations blitz requiring 100 television and radio appearances a year.
In 1964 AVS sponsored the First Conference on Voluntary Sterilization in New York City with Moore, Draper, C.P. Blacker, Lady Rama Rau, and Colonel B.L. Raina (head of India’s family planning program) attending. Moore railed about the need for mass compulsory sterilization until cooler heads decided this topic was unsuitable for recorded discussion. Another AVS director, a businessman with assets in South America, seconded Moore’s approach while referring to Hispanics as the “morons.” Rand Corporation exec Stephen Enke (soon to be Deputy Secretary of Defense) feared overpopulation would lead to mass migrations. After listening to Colonel Raina boast about performing 40,000 sterilizations a year at $6 per operation, Enke turned to a Ford Foundation official present and said “go to it.” Other attendees dreamed of beaming communications to the hillbillies of Appalachia to encourage voluntary sterilization. (19)
The Mid-1960s Breakthrough
By 1963 the population control movement was a dense, wealthy, savvy, single-minded network deeply embedded into government, industry, science, medicine, academia, and philanthropy. The movement employed a legion of full-time professionals. Well-funded fellowships and mushrooming university departments made demography, population studies, and contraceptive research attractive academic careers. (In contrast, in 1952 all five US demographic research centres collectively subsisted on $160,000 a year.)
The movement had become impervious to ideological challenge and more confident of, and sophisticated in, its strategy. They knew they must not be seen to be race, or class, motivated. They knew they must not be seen as centrally directed; hence, they operated through compartments: contraceptive research, grassroots organizing, government lobbying, and public relations. (1) They knew that only governments could marshal the resources needed to engineer significant fertility declines; hence, they developed pump-priming, capacity-building experimental projects that governments could take over and expand.
In the early 1960s the population establishment pushed past opponents. Their critical mass began to move bureaucracies. Their contacts with USAID proliferated. Then, on November 22, 1963, exactly two hours and eight minutes after JFK’s assassination, the population establishment captured the White House.
In 1964 Moore, Draper, and Lammot du Pont Copeland (Du Pont President, 1962-1967) formed the Population Crisis Committee (PCC) with a separate fundraising body, the Draper Fund. PCC piloted the movement over a threshold. Led by serial government insider William Draper (who would later be the US delegate to the UN Population Commission 1969-1971), PCC members swarmed the Johnson Administration. Averell Harriman, Robert McNamara, Max Taylor, William Westmoreland, Ellsworth Bunker, Robert Komer, and Marshall Green were each core PCC members.
The extraordinarily wealthy and well-connected Averell Harriman served Johnson in five official capacities including Under-Secretary of State for Political Affairs (1963-1965) and Ambassador-at-Large (1965-1969).
Robert McNamara was Secretary of Defense from 1961 to 1968.
General Maxwell Taylor, a former Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, was Johnson’s Special Consultant, his Foreign Intelligence Advisory Board Chairman, and his President of Institute for Defense Analyses.
General William Westmoreland was Senior Commander of US forces in the Vietnam War from 1964 to 1968 and then US Army Chief from 1968 to 1972.
Ellsworth Bunker (heir to National Sugar Refining Co.) held several ambassadorships. Under Johnson he was Ambassador to the Organization of American States and later to the Republic of South Vietnam.
Robert Komer was National Security Council Deputy Director and then interim National Security Advisor before being dispatched to manage pacification efforts in Vietnam.
Marshall Green, a Yale-educated career diplomat, was America’s point man during the 1961 coup in South Korea and during the 1965 coup in Indonesia. Upon retirement he immediately became a PCC Director.
While not official PCC members, McGeorge Bundy, National Security Advisor, and Dean Rusk, Secretary of State (1961-1969), were known PCC supporters. From 1950 to 1961 Rusk was a Rockefeller Foundation trustee. From 1952 to 1961 he was Rockefeller Foundation President.
The rogue dove George Ball (Under-Secretary of State 1961-1966) said this about his colleagues’ milieu:
“…the people who get excited about population control are often ‘garden club’ types whose only concern about the underdeveloped areas is that the brown and black-skinned population seems to be growing so rapidly.” (2)
PCC party line held that poor nations had to cut their populations to reduce the recruitment pool available to the communists. (3) They saw a holy war between haves and have-nots. President Johnson was on-side. In 1965 LBJ famously quipped:
“Five dollars invested in population control is worth a hundred dollars invested in economic growth.” (4)
The movement’s most consequential lobbying success concerned two changes to foreign aid protocol. Firstly, after 1967 all US food aid became contingent upon the recipient country’s progress on population control; and secondly, USAID could now directly fund population control programs. With population controllers minding the mint, there were now hundreds of millions, and eventually billions of dollars in abortion, sterilization, and contraceptive funding.
In 1967 Draper declared overpopulation to be such a “serious and imminent threat” that it was high time to “push the panic button.” PCC’ers persuaded Congress to earmark $35 million of USAID’s 1968 budget to population control. This allotment increased to $50 million in 1969, to $75 million in 1970, and to $100 million in 1971.
In 1968 the new USAID subsidiary Office of Population received $35 million of USAID’s overall $130 million budget. By 1972 USAID’s entire non-population budget had shrunk to $38 million while the Office of Population’s budget had grown to $120 million. (5)
Philanthropic population control activities transformed apace. Back in 1962 the Ford Foundation, IPPF, and Population Council were the only significant sources of funds for international population control – an undertaking whose combined budget was $4.2 million. In 1966 the Ford Foundation’s allocation of $26 million to population control exceeded the population expenditures of every other foundation and foreign aid agency combined. By 1968 the combined Ford, IPPF, Population Council, Rockefeller Foundation, Swedish Government, United Nations, and now most importantly USAID contribution to international population control was $78 million.
In 1967 the Population Council received a $675,000 grant from USAID. This ballooned to $2.7 million in 1968, bringing the Population Council’s budget to $11 million, enough for 140 employees. In 1968 IPPF received $3 million from USAID and another $368,000 from the Swedish government. Half the IPPF budget now came from governments. American money accounted for 90% of IPPF’s budget. Several major pharmaceutical firms (Ortho, G.D. Searle, and Symtex) joined IPPF’s honour roll by pledging $150,000.
Population control personnel rode the gravy train. Demographers were in high demand at new population centres. Expanding opportunities were chronicled in the annals of the Population Association of America. Population executives, physicians, and academics jetted around the planet, lounging in luxury hotels, flying from banquet to banquet. One exec complained of yet “another day of tremendous eating.” In 1968 the top Ford Foundation official in Delhi had a domestic staff of nine maids, cooks, gardeners, and chauffeurs.
The addition of government agencies to the pre-existing network of foundations, academic departments, and pharmaceutical companies gave rise to a full-blown Population Complex capable of co-opting or marginalizing critics and of constructing free-standing institutions exempt from government oversight. Their always metastasizing in-house social science of demography facilitated unprecedented ways and means to surveil and manipulate great masses of the citizenry. (6)
Professor Paul Ehrlich, an ecologist specializing in butterflies, achieved notoriety in the 1960s by campaigning against the DDT spraying he alleged was destroying butterfly habitat. In 1967 he advocated withholding food aid to India to stem overpopulation. In 1968 Sierra Club Executive David Brower heard Ehrlich on the radio and decided Ehrlich was just the man to re-insert the population question into the ecological conversation. Sierra Club financed Ehrlich’s book: The Population Bomb (1968).
Population Bomb disgorged hysterical Malthusianism, famously stating: “the battle to feed humanity is over.” Global famine would surely strike in the 1970s. Earth’s carrying capacity was 1.5 billion people; the USA’s was 150 million. If India refused to forcibly sterilize all men with more than two children, then India should slip down the drain.
The book obligatorily relays the lebensraum theory of war:
“…if population growth proceeds much further the probabilities of wars will be immensely increased.” (1)
The book betrays the signature fascist metaphor:
“A cancer is an uncontrolled multiplication of cells; the population explosion is an uncontrolled multiplication of people.” (2)
The book fuses ecological and Malthusian arguments. Reckless human breeding not only jeopardizes Earth’s ability to support human life, but the lives of precious wild species as well.
The book’s recommendations range from taxing diapers to adding sterilants to water supplies. Proposals usually target the poor, but racism is eschewed. In fact, Ehrlich argues that because white Americans do so much ecological damage they should be the prime target of fertility suppression. The book instructs on how to proselytize friends and pressure politicians into population activism. Readers should protest bitterly any positive treatment of large families in the media.
Extraordinary publicity, orchestrated by the Sierra Club, made Population Bomb a best-seller. The book really took off in January 1970 after Ehrlich appeared on Johnny Carson’s The Tonight Show. Carson invited Ehrlich back three weeks later to let Ehrlich pitch his new group, Zero Population Growth (ZPG). Invites to other high-profile media venues soon followed.
ZPG’s first executive director advocated compulsory sterilization of all American parents with five children. Such talk had ecologists flocking to the group. Within a year, ZPG had 32,000 paying members.
By 1974 Population Bomb had gone through 22 printings and sold two million copies. Ehrlich became a regular feature on talk shows, college lecture circuits, and Sunday newspapers. A parade of copycat books followed: Hungry Nations; The Hungry Planet; Born to Starve; Breeding Ourselves to Death; and Famine 1975!, each spreading hopelessness, denouncing industrialization, and advocating Draconian fertility suppression.
The endlessly anthologised Magna Carta of Malthusian environmentalism, Professor Garrett Hardin’s The Tragedy of the Commons, also came out in 1968. This essay contends that a finite world can support only a finite population; hence, population growth must eventually equal zero. Freedom of the commons (i.e. liberal access to natural resources, public lands, and oceans) will bring ruin to all. Hardin believed Earth’s carrying capacity was 100 million people and that human numbers should be reduced accordingly. Hardin fretted over dysgenic trends wrought by welfare policies:
“In a welfare state, how shall we deal with the family, the religion, the race, or the class (or indeed any distinguishable and cohesive group) that adopts overbreeding as a policy to secure its own aggrandizement?” (3)
This essay became one of the most frequently cited science papers of all time. Hardin further developed these ideas in a much-read 1970 editorial in Science.
Hardin first garnered notoriety back in 1949 after publishing a biology textbook informing students, via impressive-looking tables, that human population, already needlessly large, was close to its limit. The text also contended human intelligence levels were hereditary. In the 1950s Hardin became Vice President of the American Eugenics Society (AES). (A contemporary AES director, Dr. Otto Frieherr von Verschuer, a decade earlier had supervised experiments for Mengele at Auschwitz.) (4)
Also in 1968, thirty aristocrats and corporate magnates gathered at Rome’s Accademia dei Lincei to discuss “ideas about the global aspects of problems facing mankind.” Co-founders of this Club of Rome, Alexander King (OECD scientific director) and Aurelio Peccei (long-serving agent of the Agnelli dynasty) secured funding from the Volkswagen Foundation and the Agnellis.
The Club’s most famous product, Limits to Growth (1972), made preposterous predictions regarding resource scarcity. All petroleum would be used up by 1992. A strict global population control program was said to be “the only feasible solution.” The Club hired a PR firm, held press conferences, and whipped up incredible fanfare. Four million copies soon sold, many to educational establishments.
Limits was blasted as a foolish fraud by almost every economist who bothered to read it. Peccei conceded the exaggerated scenarios of ecological devastation were intended to jolt people into action. Peccei’s strategic mindset pervaded population control elites who believed an atmosphere of alarm, even hysteria, was needed to facilitate fertility suppression. Photojournalists were dispatched to Asia to snap pictures of abandoned children and desperate mothers. Such dramatic images became staples on television newscasts and glossy magazine covers. Desperate images cried out for desperate measures.
Also rolling off the presses in 1972 was Blueprint for Survival. In this screed (financed by the Goldsmiths) leading British scientists and environmentalists contend that Britain’s population greatly exceeds Britannia’s carrying capacity and must be halved. The book transposes political stability and ecological sustainability. Blueprint implores governments to suppress fertility and stop immigration.
Most environmentalists, especially American ones, dared not make immigration a conservation issue. A minority faction led by Garrett Hardin and Kingsley Davis, both ZPG advisors, were openly anti-immigration. Population-environmentalist zealots bitterly debated whether restricting immigration was a legitimate recommendation or a racist canard.
All environmentalists embraced anti-natalism. Only reducing the birthrate could save the planet. Environmentalists were the anti-fertility hawks.
In the early-1970s this scarcity/overpopulation/environmental mythical tableau would be repeated; restated; and incorporated into books, articles, speeches, documentaries, posters, and lapel buttons. (5) Population Control and Pollution Control melded. To be against birth control was to be for pollution. Author Allan Chase captures the moment:
“Out of the population hysteria came new causes for older conservationist societies such as the venerable Sierra Club. In the conventional wisdom of the era, the conservation of green plants, wildlife, and virgin forests became as one with the crusade to lower birth rates…” (6)
Chase notes how selective environmentalists could be in their chosen battles. Environmentalists were:
“…passionately devoted to keeping trees and the game birds, the primeval forests, the wildflowers and the mountain trout, and the Lebensraum of our lusher suburbs as green and lovely as they ever were for that 10 to 20 percent of our population fortunate enough to be born and to live “out where the sidewalk ends.” (7)
University grads more than any other demographic cohort wore the People Pollute buttons. Malthusian-environmentalism became engrained in America’s educators. A 1971 college curriculum module titled “Man and Environment” disseminated by the US Office of Education to 1.4 million students aimed “to make the student aware that overpopulation is the underlying cause of our environmental problems.” (8)
Population controllers used the Nationwide Environmental Teach-In of April 22, 1970 (Earth Day) to advance their agenda. For example, Hugh Moore: (a) distributed 330,000 overpopulation leaflets; (b) sent a taped show featuring Ehrlich and Brower to 300 college radio stations; (c) sent to college newspapers 20 editorial cartoons highlighting overpopulation; and (d) organized a 200-campus contest offering prizes for slogans linking pollution and overpopulation (the winner: “popullution”). (9)
Between 1969 and 1977 gatherings to coordinate global population control took place at John D Rockefeller III’s (JDRIII) 50-acre Villa Serbelloni estate overlooking Bellagio on the shores of Italy’s Lake Como. Two dozen participated. In June 1977 the assembled deemed the Bellagio image inappropriate. (This proved moot as JDRIII died in a car accident near his family’s 3,500-acre Pocantico estate months later.)
During the 1960s and 1970s JDRIII postured as population control’s international ambassador, but William Draper raised most of the private money. Draper obtained contributions, often in six-figure amounts, from 200 companies. Draper did fundraising drives through Canada and Britain. He contacted the twenty richest families in each Latin American country. This latter task was easy in Mexico, where amongst other duties, Draper chaired Mexican Power and Light Corp. (After 1966, population control programs were imposed on nearly every Latin American country.)
In 1969 another Draper-Moore front, Campaign to Check the Population Explosion, distributed hundreds of thousands of brochures and bought dozens of full-page newspaper ads, endorsed by Nobel Prize recipients, demanding action on overpopulation. (The rift between JDRIII and Moore turned on JDRIII’s pooh-poohing mass appeals such as this.)
In his 1969 report for the UN Association of the USA, Draper bemoaned the fact that the UN agencies charged with spending population control funds had squandered two years merely formulating procedures on how to spend the funds. Draper proposed an altogether new UN population agency, one not controlled by member nations but rather controlled by a board of dedicated population activists serving at the pleasure of the Secretary-General. These recommendations formed the template for the United Nations Fund for Population Activities (UNFPA).
In 1969 Nixon greenlighted the UNFPA specifically to deal with the “crisis of overpopulation.” Nixon established the long-surviving practice of the UNFPA receiving two-thirds of its funds from the USA and one-third from Europe, Canada, and Japan. Many UN members considered UNFPA to be a US front. Brazil and the USSR complained UNFPA decision-making left them out of the loop.
On JDRIII’s recommendation, Pilipino Rafael Salas became UNFPA’s first director. When drafting UNFPA’s principles and procedures, Salas consulted only population control true believers. Soon Salas would be overseeing an agglomeration of several hundred global, national, and regional projects.
In 1970 National Security Adviser Henry Kissinger wrote:
“The US should recommend that the UN Fund for Population Activities undertake a study of world population problems and measures required to deal with them, as a top priority item in the Second Development Decade.” (1)
Nixon ordered Kissinger to coordinate a simultaneous secret National Security Council-led analysis of the same problem as it related to the global struggle against communism. The result appeared in December 1974 titled: “Implications of Worldwide Population Growth for US Security and Overseas Interests” (a.k.a. National Security Study Memorandum 200, or NSSM 200). This report reflected the opinions of the entire security, intelligence, and foreign affairs establishment of the US government.
Written in obscure bureaucratese, NSSM 200 contends that overpopulation causes “adverse socioeconomic conditions” and “revolutionary actions.” Overpopulation renders governments susceptible to radicalization. American industry was forewarned:
“In the extreme cases where population pressures lead to endemic famine, food riot, and breakdown of social order, these conditions are scarcely conducive to the systematic exploitation of mineral deposits.” (2)
NSSM 200 calls for population growth moderation through an engineered mass fertility decline. The presence of democracy within a country should not be a precondition for allocating aid to that country; the presence of a domestic fertility suppression program should be. At the same time, it cautions:
“It is vital that the effort to develop and strengthen a commitment on the part of the LDC (Lesser Developed Countries) leaders not be seen by them as an industrialized country policy to keep their strength down or to reserve resources for use by the ‘rich’ countries.” (3)
As NSSM 200’s final skein was being meticulously woven, the international population control movement descended upon Bucharest for the 1974 United Nations World Population Conference. One-thousand delegates from 133 countries attended. Another 1,400 participated in the NGO Tribune and yet another 400 in the Youth Conference. Nine-hundred accredited journalists brought the story home. At the centre of this excited vortex, the plutocracy deigned and dazzled. Iran’s top delegate was the Shah’s twin sister (both siblings being ardent Malthusians). Japan’s top delegate, the old Samurai Nobosuke Kishi, was a former Prime Minister (and indicted war criminal). India’s team was led by Karan Singh, heir to the last Maharaja of Kashmir, and that country’s current Minister of Health and Family Planning. JDRIII delivered the keynote to the NGO Tribune.
NSSM 200’s official adoption as US foreign policy in 1975 prompted a jump in population-focused foreign aid, especially to Thailand and the Philippines – framed as an effort to combat communism. A follow-up report issued in 1976 by the Inter-Agency Task Force on Population Policy concluded:
“We should avoid the language of ‘birth control’ in favor of ‘family planning’ or ‘responsible parenthood’, with the emphasis being placed on child spacing in the interests of the health of the child and the mother and the well-being of the family and community.” (4)
“In some cases, strong direction has involved incentives such as payments to acceptors for sterilization, or disincentives such as giving low priorities in the allocation of housing and schooling to those with larger families. Such direction is the sine qua non of an effective program.” (5)
The follow-up report also noted that fertility suppression programs were most successful where governments made their positions clear and maintained discipline down the line from the national capital to the village via ample deployment of soldiers and police. (6)
Back in 1968 Robert McNamara resigned as Secretary of Defense to assume the presidency of the World Bank. Pre-1968 any country wishing to borrow money from the World Bank had to present a realistic economic development plan. Post-1968, with McNamara in charge, these plans had to contain a population control component. Governments without population targets need not apply. By the early 1970s a World Bank-UNFPA axis dominated international population control efforts. Lesser UN agencies and financial assistance organizations orbited this axis.
In 1974 the US National Security Council (NSC) commented approvingly on the World Bank’s progress on the population front. At this time a high-level panel, headed by Population Council’s Bernard Berelson, reviewed World Bank’s population policies. Berelson recommended the Bank spend money directly on contraception and improve its relationships with donors like the USA. (The USA already dominated World Bank policy making.) Berelson’s views on voluntarism in population policy surfaced in a 1979 article:
“Thus, overt violence or other potentially injurious coercion is not to be used before noninjurious coercion has been exhausted.” (7)
In 1976 the NSC praised the World Bank as: “the principal international financial institution providing population programs.” Recent World Bank successes in Mexico and Indonesia warranted such praise.
In 1972 the World Bank pressured Mexico into abruptly reversing its fertility policy. Mexico needed World Bank loans. The abrupt policy change coincided with a visit by McNamara. Post 1972, Mexico required government doctors to either sterilize, or insert IUDs into, every woman coming into a government clinic to give birth.
In 1972 World Bank-UNFPA axis provided Indonesia with $26.4 million in seed capital for a population project that one USAID official described as “one of the greatest social engineering feats of modern times.” The project ultimately required building 1,500 structures, hiring 30,000 full-time workers, and activating 100,000 community leaders. (8)
Indonesia’s population control program worked under a National Family Planning Coordinating Board directly supervised by General Suharto. The program involved sweeping systematic female sterilization. Anti-natalist propaganda was broadcast continuously to mothers in maternity wards to facilitate follow-up efforts to individually target these women, post-partum, for sterilization acquiescence. Population crusaders organized “IUD safaris” wherein rural women had IUDs inserted in picnic-like atmospheres. Workers went door to door encouraging women to come. Recalcitrant women were later dragged to clinics at gunpoint. Village leaders beat drums daily to remind women to take their pills. The Indonesia project engineered a fertility decline of 30% between 1971 and 1976.
(By 1984 population control activities consumed 58% of Indonesia’s public healthcare budget. In 1990 half a million Indonesian women had received a Norplant. By 1995 this figure had risen to 1.5 million. Women were not told of the many harmful side effects of Norplants, which include life-threatening ectopic pregnancies.)
US population policy changed little under President Carter. In 1977 his CIA opined:
“World population growth is likely to contribute, directly or indirectly, to domestic upheavals and international conflicts that could adversely affect U.S. interests. Population growth will also reinforce the politicization of international economic relations and intensify the drive of (lesser developed countries) for a redistribution of wealth and of authority in international affairs.” (9)
Washington had to be selective, low key, and wherever possible rely on outside agencies and on the Lesser Developed Countries’ governments themselves.
Tropes about resource scarcity and the “Energy Crisis” were Carter Administration mantras. Carter welcomed into his Administration several staffers associated with the Club of Rome who wrote yet another eco-apocalyptic screed: Global 2000 Report.
Parallels between Nixon’s foreign and domestic population programs are vividly demonstrated by the 1969 grant his Office Economic Opportunity (OEO) gave to the Population Council to make US hospitals conform to the Population Council’s international program of aggressively promoting contraception and of pressuring postpartum mothers into accepting sterilization. According to one insider, the rationale for this grant was “not one which can often publicly be advanced.” (1) (OEO began cooperating with Planned Parenthood in poor US neighborhoods in 1965.) In 1970 Nixon launched a federal population coordinating office and signed into law a $382 million expansion of domestic family planning services. (2)
Also in 1970, Nixon asked John D Rockefeller III to preside over the blue-ribbon Commission on Population Growth and the American Future. The Commission’s report, issued in 1972 after extensive public hearings, complained that welfare-dependent, criminalistics, and financially burdensome subpopulations were multiplying out of control. The Commission recommended keeping America’s population below 170 million. Nixon rejected their recommendation of government-funded abortion on demand.
Domestic population policy aimed at curbing the fertility of low-caste minorities (mainly poor Blacks and Latinos). The number of persons enrolled in federal family planning programs increased sevenfold between 1965 and 1973, up to three million. The federal government’s Aid to Families with Dependent Children (AFDC) distributed birth control products and advice for free. State legislators introduced bills calling for mandatory sterilization of AFDC recipients.
Leaders of the diasporic communities (Black Panthers, Nation of Islam, National Farm Workers Association, etc.) understood strength in numbers and hence viewed government-pushed birth control as a threat. Black leaders in Harlem and Chicago accused the federal government of genocide. Black leaders in Pittsburgh shut down OEO family planning offices.
A counter strategy was pioneered by Louisiana’s Family Health Foundation (FHF) – an NGO running clinics in poor Black and Catholic neighborhoods. Movement hero, FHF President Joe Beasley, was awarded an honorary professorship by Harvard. Beasley chaired Planned Parenthood’s executive committee. FHF received grants from the Ford and Rockefeller Foundations and Tulane University with matching federal grants exceeding $50 million. This money paid for a private jet; two condos; endless parties in the French Quarter; and most importantly, it paid for Beasley’s main innovation: thick envelopes of cash to buy off “Black Power” leaders. (3)
In the 1970s one million Americans were sterilized every year. Many “voluntary” sterilizations occurred under duress. 40% of American doctors believed welfare mothers should be forcibly sterilized. Doctors paid by OEO routinely threatened women with loss of welfare benefits and/or medical care if they resisted sterilization. In a landmark 1974 ruling, Federal Judge Gerhard Gesell noted:
“Over the last few years an estimated 100,000 to 150,000 low-income persons have been sterilized annually under federally funded programs … an indefinite number of poor people have been improperly coerced into accepting a sterilization operation under the threat that various federally supported welfare benefits would be withdrawn unless they submitted to irreversible sterilization.” (4)
Population controllers in Puerto Rico pioneered the practice of pressuring women, immediately post birth, into accepting sterilization. The postpartum technique, developed with Population Council funds, was premised on the belief that it is easier to “capture” women while they lay bedridden in maternity wards. A campaign instigated by the Population Crisis Committee in the 1960s, then handed over to the US Department of Health, sterilized one-third of Puerto Rican women of childbearing age by 1975. The campaign was justified as part of the struggle against communism. (5)
19th century abortions were as likely to kill the mother as the foetus. A revolution in antibiotics and surgical techniques created a situation in the early 20th century wherein affluent men could safely terminate the unwanted pregnancies of their mistresses and daughters. For a hefty fee society doctors would perform abortions – often elegantly mislabelled curettages to skirt abortion laws.
The pro-abortion movement surging in the 1960s was never about safe abortions for the upper crust. Such people already had access to safe abortions. Rather, the 1960s movement was motivated by fears of high fertility remnants (mainly inner-city Blacks and Latinos) swelling the welfare rolls. Black rioting in Watts (1965) and Detroit (1967) emboldened pro-abortionists.
Media and academia stoked fears of Black fertility. A 1965 British Eugenics Review article titled “Toward a New Eugenics” triggered a revival of old-school scientific racism.
In carefully chosen prose, Daniel Patrick Moynihan’s federally funded The Negro Family: The Case for National Action (1965) accused Blacks of reproducing in an unnatural fashion, of being averse to normal family structures, and of basically being violent and stupid. The result was “pathological poverty.” Moynihan recommended ghetto-dwelling Blacks be treated with “benign neglect.” Nixon chose Moynihan as his domestic policy advisor.
Also making a splash in 1965 was an interview printed in US News and World Report of electrical engineer William Shockley (co-winner of a Nobel Prize for physics) regarding inherited intellectual deficiencies. When Stanford University and the National Academy of Sciences rejected his research, Shockley accused them of Lysenkoism and turned to the media where he received a warm reception. Shockley became a fixture on television talk shows and college lecture circuits. He preached not racism but “raceology.” Shockley advocated paying Blacks to get sterilized.
This reasoning climbed the next rung in 1969 when Harvard Education Review published Professor Arthur Jensen’s 123-page How much can we boost IQ and Scholastic Achievement? Jensen contended: (a) intelligence is fixed at birth; (b) Blacks are born less intelligent than Whites; (c) it is senseless to waste vast sums of money on public education on Blacks; and (d) welfare policies, unaided by eugenic foresight, lead to genetic enslavement. Jensen’s hoary hereditarianism attracted media attention. Articles titled: “Born Dumb?” and “Can Negros Learn the way Whites Do?” proliferated. Jensen’s subsequent books, freighted with scholarly citations, expanded on his thesis.
A 1971 Atlantic Monthly article by Harvard Psychology professor Richard Herrnstein again contended that Blacks are genetically less educable than whites. Within hours of this issue hitting the newsstands CBS broadcast a story on Herrnstein’s ground-breaking research. Herrnstein’s follow-up book claimed IQ to be hereditary.
Not everyone within the population control movement supported this tack. Some movement leaders argued, especially as regards to Shockley’s efforts, that it:
“…corroded the popular faith in science that had been essential to the cause of population control.” (6)
On the other hand, this racially tinged class war orientation definitely pervaded the movement. C. Lalor Burdick, a major contributor to Planned Parenthood and funder of contraceptive research, described welfare programs as:
“…breeding pads and free sustenance for the proliferation of the kind of people that hate us and would destroy us if they could.” (7)
Dalkon Shield inventor, Hugh Davis, considered contraceptive use among the middle class to be a genetic fiasco. Davis designed his contraceptive technology to reach:
“…the individual who needs birth control the most – the poor, the disadvantaged, and the ghetto-dwelling black.” (8)
The ubiquitous Alan Guttmacher served as: President of Planned Parenthood, Director of the Population Council’s medical committee, and Chairman of the Association for Voluntary Sterilization’s scientific committee. Guttmacher considered “overpopulation” hysteria to be simply a smoke-screen for anti-communist white supremacism. (9)
Population controllers were the most determined fighters for abortion legalization. Garrett Hardin and other Zero Population Growth officials lent crucial support toward establishing the National Abortion Rights Action League. (10) The Population Crisis Committee declared access to abortion to be a human right.
The population control movement’s position on abortion was best articulated in a July 1977 editorial in New Republic:
“…there is clearly no moral or logical distinction between a foetus and a young baby, free abortion cannot be reasonably distinguished from euthanasia. Nonetheless we are for it.”
Fredrick Jaffe, head of Planned Parenthood’s research division, went on record as agreeing with this editorial statement, adding that governments must allow, and pay for, abortions for the poor because denying the poor abortions is far more costly. (11)
New York State legalized abortions on July 1, 1970. After a January 22, 1973 Supreme Court ruling struck down most restrictions on abortion; most states followed New York’s lead. As soon as abortion became routinized, the “package deal” (wherein sterilization was made a condition for abortion approval) became the norm in America’s teaching hospitals.
In 1977 President Carter rejected full federal government funding for all abortions. Planned Parenthood called him racist and classist.
During the 1980 Republican National Convention, pro-natalist Evangelicals and Catholics nailed proposals for defunding of US foreign aid population programs onto the party platform. After Reagan’s election, however, USAID’s Office of Population kept spinning like a top with supporters in Congress protecting its budget. This all fell sideways at the 1984 International Population Conference in Mexico City.
The Conference was dominated by conflict over the Reagan Administration’s advocacy of market solutions. Countries with population problems, according to Reagan, should solve these difficulties through economic growth. Population growth, in itself, should be deemed as neutral as regards overall development.
Regarding abortion, the US delegation announced in Mexico City that no further US government money would be given to any agency that performed abortions, counselled for abortions, or lobbied for the legalization of abortion, even if those activities were performed by that agency with non-US funds. (1)
On the heels of Mexico City, the Kemp-Kasten Amendment of 1985 defunded UNFPA mainly because of UNFPA’s involvement in China’s abortion and sterilization program.
Funding continued for organizations like Pathfinder Fund that were willing to submit to the new guidelines. IPPF and Marie Stopes International refused to stop supporting abortion providers and suffered complete losses of USAID funds. IPPF’s central body had to reduce its staff from 217 to 157.
Mexico City compelled a major rethink within the non-government population control network. After Mexico City, USAID grantees were subjected to intrusive Congressional audits. Some NGOs were caught secretly using US money to pay for abortions and sterilizations. At the same time, however, while USAID-funded groups could no longer participate in the abortion business, the World Bank and private philanthropists faced no such restrictions. Events in Bangladesh are illustrative.
In 1983 the World Bank-UNFPA axis pressured Bangladesh into establishing a National Population Control Board to prosecute a fertility suppression program. Within months the Army was rounding up Bangladeshis for sterilizations. As per normal, foreign funds poured in to pay for thousands of administrators, doctors, nurses, midwives, lady visitors, drivers, peons; and for a bewildering array of flip charts, slide projectors, trucks, surgical equipment, pharmaceuticals, IUDs, etc.
Mexico City caused considerable turbulence to the ambitious Bangladeshi mission. Congressional investigators caught USAID operatives, in contravention of US law, offering Bangladeshis cash for sterilizations. More consequentially, after USAID cut off the Bangladeshi NGOs that provided abortion services, the Ford Foundation stepped into the gap and, for the first time in Foundation history, began directly funding abortions. (2)
Under President Clinton (1993-2001) Malthusianism returned to the cockpit of US foreign policy. Clinton’s first decrees rescinded the Mexico City restrictions, restored funding to UNFPA, and gifted $75 million to IPPF.
According to Clinton’s Secretary of State, Warren Christopher:
“Population and sustainable development are back where they belong in the mainstream of American foreign policy and diplomacy.” (3)
According to Clinton’s USAID Administrator, J. Brian Atwood:
“If we aren’t able to find and promote ways of curbing population growth, we are going to fail in all of our foreign policy initiatives.” (4)
Vice President Gore dwelled on the environmental ramifications of population growth. Environmentalists everywhere again linked high fertility rates to civil wars and refugee flows.
Clinton’s population point-man, Timothy Wirth, began his career as one of LBJ’s White House Fellows. Wirth worked in Nixon’s Office of Education until he got elected to the House of Representatives in 1975. There, he authored the Indian Peaks Wilderness Act. As a Senator (1987-1992) he famously championed the global warming hoax. Senator Wirth also authored the Colorado Wilderness Bill and co-authored ground-breaking “family planning” legislation.
From 1994 to 1997 Wirth served as Clinton’s Under Secretary of State with a focus on population. Wirth chaired the US delegation to the 1994 UN Conference of Population and Development in Cairo. Wirth left government in 1998 to do a 15-year stint running Ted Turner’s population-obsessed UN Foundation. (Wirth’s wife, Wren Winslow Wirth, runs the environmentalist Winslow Foundation and has been a director of several enviro-NGOs.)
In 1995 Wirth paid a special visit to Peruvian President Alberto Fujimori and announced an additional $15 million in public health aid for Peru. (USAID had effectively just taken over Peru’s public health system.) In the immediate wake of Wirth’s visit, Fujimori launched a USAID-funded genocidal campaign targeting Quechua-speaking (Inca) women. Teams conducted “ligation festivals” in village after village. Women were subjected to repeated home visits, verbal abuse, and threats of withdrawal of food aid. Subsequent investigations revealed that over 90% of the 314,605 women sterilized had been pressured or tricked into having the operation. (Many were told it was a reversible procedure.) (5)
Wirth led an unsuccessful effort to impose global population targets at the 1994 UN Conference on Population and Development in Cairo. In the run-up to Cairo, Clinton’s National Academy of Sciences led an equally unsuccessful effort to have the world’s science academies endorse their population control agenda. A Declaration on Population drafted by the American, British, and Swedish academies urged governments to integrate their population control programs with their sustainable development programs. The Declaration envisioned “zero population growth” within the lifetime of the signatories’ children. Several African science academies refused to sign.
Cairo attracted 20,000 attendees. The mainstream media ploughed in. Ted Turner’s CNN broadcast a timely series of documentaries and news features. The New York Times ran 20 stories from Cairo. Rather than recycle tired overpopulation jargon, journalists framed Cairo as a populist uprising for reproductive freedom.
European delegates insisted abortion be treated as a basic human right. Unsafe abortions (read: restrictive abortion laws) were said to be the world’s number one maternal health problem. In a rock-bottom compromise, the Europeans agreed to minimize the need for abortions – through more contraception and sterilization.
In the 1920s the Imperial Japanese Government rebooted efforts to breed an immense and pure Yamato race – the divinely destined overlords of Asia. Positive eugenics formed part of this enterprise. The five-child family became the national standard. In the 1930s birth control advocates and abortion providers were repressed. Margaret Sanger ally Baroness Ishimoto was arrested and interrogated about her American friends. Her birth control clinic was closed. Pro-natalist policies boosted Japan’s population from 55 million in 1920 to 72 million in 1940.
For lebensraum the Imperial Government set its sights on Eastern China. Military operations began in 1931 and assumed genocidal proportions in 1937. By 1945 twenty million Chinese had perished. One-hundred million had been displaced.
During WWII, despite suffering three million fatalities and having millions of men overseas, Japan’s population did not decline. Right after the war, between 1945 and 1950, 12 million Japanese babies arrived. American occupiers then launched the next war in utero. They began this demographically, conducting five censuses in five years.
US General Crawford Sams ran the Occupation’s population operation. Prostrated by defeat, the Japanese Diet acceded to General Sams’s demand that abortion and contraception be legalized. The 1948 Eugenic Protection Law empowered commissions to compel sterilizations and to adjudicate on petitions for abortion. The Diet rationalized this program as a means to stem “inferior descendants.” Sams shepherded the bill through to enactment while cautioning his colleagues that the process must be seen as a domestic, Japanese-driven initiative.
In 1949 Warren Thompson joined Japan’s occupation authorities to help coordinate the birth control campaign. Thompson oversaw an immediate fourfold increase in the number of articles on overpopulation in the Japanese press. After Prime Minister Yoshida met Thompson, his cabinet agreed that birth control was indeed the fundamental solution to Japanese overpopulation. Economic hardship became legitimate grounds for abortion. Twenty-seven different contraceptives were approved, and a law declaring Japan “extremely overpopulated” was passed. (1)
In 1950 the Rockefeller delegation arrived in Japan. Their influential report argued that of all Asian countries, Japan was the most vulnerable to fertility suppression. The report suggested:
“Occupation authorities could protect and promote the ‘dissident extremes’ who were already demanding such an initiative.” (2)
Supreme Commander of the Allied Powers in Japan, General Douglas MacArthur harboured presidential ambitions back home, and wary of the Catholic vote, he rolled back some of the Japanese media hysteria about overpopulation, and he banned certain contraceptives. His cancelling of Margaret Sanger’s scheduled Japanese tour provoked a hostile newspaper column from Eleanor Roosevelt. MacArthur countered that allowing Sanger into Japan would leave the USA open to charges of genocide. (3)
MacArthur’s reticence notwithstanding, the Occupation’s fertility suppression campaign was a resounding success. Japan’s birthrate was quickly cut by 50%, mostly through abortions and condom use. By 1955 Japan had 40% more abortions than live births. (4)
Population Control in India from the Famine of 1876 to the Population Emergency of 1975
In the century leading up to the Population Emergency of 1975, Hindu elites and British administrators repeatedly expressed a desire to curb the reproduction of low-caste Dalits (Untouchables) and Muslims. High-caste Brahmins gazed upon the teeming lower castes with worry and distrust. Bengali elites explicitly urged contraception onto Muslims so that Hindus could out-reproduce them.
The Malthusian views of Robert Bulwer-Lytton (Viceroy of India, 1876-1880) manifested in his management of the 1876-1879 famine. Indian grain exports and abundant crops in non-drought-affected Indian regions provided Bulwer-Lytton ample opportunity to adopt humanitarian famine-relief policies, but he chose not to. According to his top lieutenant, Sir Evelyn Baring:
“…every benevolent attempt to mitigate the effects of famine and defective sanitation serves but to enhance the evils resulting from overpopulation.” (1)
During the famine, Bulwer-Lytton situated relief camps near mosquito-infested marshes and ditches. Labourers were paid one pound of rice for one day of grueling labour. 94% of camp labourers died. Several million Indians died prematurely because of the 1876-1879 famine. This travesty returned on a grander stage in 1896-1902 when the death toll doubled. (2)
Dire fears of overpopulation echoed in the assemblies of the Maharajas since at least the 1880s. Maharajas had been funding the British eugenics movement since at least the 1920s. In a complementary fashion, India’s alleged overpopulation had long been a marquis phobia among the international birth control movement. Lady Rama Rau (wife of the Governor of the Bank of India) was a leading carrier of this phobia. At a 1933 birth control conference in London, attendees were advised not to frame the Indian overpopulation issue merely in terms of how it threatened Western interests but as a domestic malady.
In 1940 the India Congress Party’s National Planning Committee complained: “Disparity in the natural increase of different social strata shows a distinct trend of mispopulation.” The problem, in their view, was that only the upper castes availed themselves of contraception. This revelation led Congress Party officials to openly contemplate forcibly sterilizing “hereditary defectives.”
In 1952 Prime Minister Nehru presented to India’s parliament the world’s first explicit domestic population limitation policy. A Central Family Planning Board was established. Nehru said India had to limit its population growth but stressed this alone would not solve India’s economic problems. Militant factions within his government counselled for an exclusively population-centred crusade.
In 1954 the Ford Foundation gave the Population Council $141,000 to establish a demographic research centre in Bombay. In the mid-1950s the Rockefeller Foundation and the Harvard School of Public Health spent $1 million conducting fertility suppression experiments on several Punjabi villages. (3)
By 1956 the Central Family Planning Board (under Colonel B.L. Raina) had a budget 20 times larger than first envisioned. In 1958 25,000 sterilizations were performed with “acceptors” each receiving $6 to undergo the operation.
By 1959 473 rural and 202 urban clinics were up and running, advertised by a nationwide publicity campaign involving 500,000 posters and hundreds of radio programs. In 1960 funding increased 600%. Mobile vasectomy camps in Bombay sterilized 15,000 acceptors. In 1962 158,000 Indians were sterilized via vasectomies or tubectomies. By December 1965 over 60,000 IUDs had been inserted in Punjab.
Indian officials anxiously watched the creeping penetration and power of the American foundations. The number of Ford Foundation personnel in Delhi rivalled the number of US embassy staff. Ford dispatched platoons of consultants and used its medical research funding to curry support among Indian doctors.
On the day after Nehru’s daughter, Indira Ghandi, was sworn in as Prime Minister in January 1966, she changed the name of the Ministry of Health to the Ministry of Health and Family Planning. (4)
Over 40 million Indians, 8% of the population, depended on US grain shipments. When Indira took office, India was short 20 million tons of grain and lacked money. She flew to Washington to beg. President Johnson told colleagues:
“I’m not going to piss away foreign aid in nations where they refuse to deal with their own population problems.” (5)
Secretary of State Dean Rusk insisted on a massive effort to control population growth. Indira agreed. The agreement stipulated sterilization and IUD-insertion quotas for each Indian district. Hospitals would have to commandeer wards for sterilizations and IUD-insertions. (6)
Colonel Raina stiffened his administrative machinery. War metaphors abounded. Ford Foundation officials abandoned medical models in favour of military-style camps and mobile clinics. The UN’s population team called for a tenfold increase in sterilizations. Ford and UN officials pressured hospitals to reserve more beds for sterilizations. 887,000 sterilizations were performed in 1966-1967. (7)
By 1967 42,000 Indians had received family planning training, including 7,000 doctors. In Kerala State doctors received two days training before performing sterilizations. In many mobile camps in rural India sterilizations were performed by paramedics with two days training.
Minimum performance standards were imposed on doctors – typically 150 vasectomies and 300 IUD insertions per month. Doctors were paid on a piecework basis. Sterilization “acceptors” were paid the equivalent of a labourer’s daily wage. Motivators (middle men) received an equal amount for each acceptor recruited. Businessmen set up their own sterilization camps. Tata Industries paid employees 80 days’ pay to get sterilized.
Population Council sent a million (non-sterilized) IUDs to India before a local factory was constructed. In uncooperative Indian states, IUDs were smuggled in as Christmas ornaments. The new IUD plant, built according to Population Council specifications and with Ford Foundation funds, ramped up production to 20,000 units a day. In Delhi half the IUD recipients complained of prolonged bleeding. While memos about this medical fiasco circulated among population organizations, Indian women were kept in the dark.
India’s food situation worsened after the 1967 monsoons failed. One-hundred million faced famine. Annual per capita income fell to $12 in drought-affected areas. In drought-ravaged Uttar Pradesh (India’s most populous state) population controllers met sterilization targets by a constant whipping of staff. Higher payments, free fertilizer, even land grants were promised. (Promises were often broken.) Villages were denied irrigation water if they did not meet quotas. Starvation forced submission to sterilization. 1.8 million Indians were sterilized in 1967-1968. Infections from dirty medical equipment ran rampant. (8)
While India achieved food self-sufficiency in 1971, the 1973 OPEC crisis left Indira at the mercy of the World Bank’s arch-Malthusian Robert McNamara. In 1973 Indira appointed Karan Singh (heir to the last Maharaja of Kashmir) as her Minister of Health and Family Planning. He remained Minister until 1977.
Mobile camps again spread across India. Three million were sterilized in 1973. By boosting incentives, Gujarat State sterilized 223,060 acceptors in 60 days. During this period about half of male sterilization acceptors complained of severe pain and 20% developed infections. Nearly half of all IUD acceptors suffered severe bleeding. Singh admitted this was inhumane but countered that high fertility had to be treated like an epidemic.
After 1973 sterilizations fell dramatically as Indira shifted resources. UNFPA tried to fill the gap in 1974 with its largest grant ever, $40 million. Family Planning now swallowed 59% of the Health Ministry budget. Due mainly to the UNFPA grant, sterilizations rebounded in 1974-1975 to 1.4 million.
In June 1975 Indira suspended the constitution, invoked emergency powers, and began the arresting of 100,000 political opponents. (9) This created optimal political conditions for coercive population control. Indira placed her son, Sanjay, in charge of the Population Emergency. A raving anti-communist, Sanjay spouted talking points prepared by the Population Reference Bureau. (Sanjay physically slapped Indira around, in front of guests.) (10)
During the Population Emergency sterilization became a prerequisite for: land allotments, irrigation water, ration cards, medical care, home loans, electricity, promotions, raises, even rickshaw licences. Policemen and train conductors were given sterilization quotas. Teachers expelled students if their parents did not submit to sterilization.
Failing all else, authorities resorted to physical force. The town of Uttawar held out until threatened with aerial bombardment; then every male resident was sterilized. In some cities beggars were simply rounded up and sterilized. In other cities unmarried men were dragged to the clinics. In 1976 over 8 million sterilizations (6.2 million vasectomies, 2 million tubectomies) were performed. (11)
Sanjay amplified a trend long present in population control circles: an effort to arrest urban sprawl. Sanjay demolished whole neighborhoods, then required persons seeking rehousing to submit to sterilization. In Delhi alone, several hundred thousand were driven from their homes. Hundreds died resisting. Police fired live ammunition on protestors. Sanjay and his pals could be spotted sporting designer shades while cruising their sports cars through slums slated for demolition.
Foreign donations poured in during the Emergency Period. The World Bank increased its support. McNamara praised India’s resolve. Sweden increased its funding for Indian population control to $17 million. USAID rushed in laparoscopic equipment. The Family Planning Association of India, which received 90% of its budget from London, ran 100 mobile clinics. Foreign money built 19 sterilization annexes to hospitals in Mysore State alone. (This barely supplemented the 500 sterilization wards paid for by the Norwegian government in the years leading up to the Population Emergency.) (12)
Indira lost the 1977 national election by a landslide. Her party performed especially poorly where the sterilization program had been most severe. Newspapers now freely reported on Emergency Period abuses.
After a seven year lull, the Janata Party government reintroduced ambitious population control targets and offered cash for sterilizations. In 1984 over four million men were sterilized and two million women accepted IUDs – a 270% increase over 1981. Foreign donors supported India’s revived program with $53 million in new aid in 1984. (13)
Commentaries on China’s one-child policy tend to neglect the role of the Western powers. There are exceptions. Ravenholt, for one, believed China’s population program resulted from Western pressure and that Western experts helped design and implement China’s program. (1) According to Mosher, the intellectual impetus for China’s program came from the West and Western Malthusians greeted China’s foray into population control with euphoria and relief. (2) The United Nations Fund for Population Activities (UNFPA) and International Planned Parenthood Federation (IPPF) by their own accounts supplied China with much money and personnel.
Kissinger secretly visited China in 1971. Nixon followed with a formal visit in 1972. At this time the US foreign policy establishment was in the throes of overpopulation hysteria.
China began free contraceptive distribution around 1971. In 1973 population targets became part of their Five Year Plans. In 1975 Zhou Enlai delivered his Four Modernizations speech.
Of the four modernizations – agriculture, industry, defence, and science/technology – the fourth was the most basic. Crucial to achieving the fourth modernization was technology transfers from the West. This presumed good trading and diplomatic relations with the West. China’s breach with the USSR must be placed in this context. China’s embrace of Malthusianism must also be placed in this context.
Pre 1977, China’s population program developed without direct foreign assistance. In 1977 IPPF arrived and the Chinese government began pressuring woman pregnant for the third time to undergo abortions.
(a) The USA recognized the People’s Republic of China;
(b) China registered 8 million abortions and 13 million IUD insertions – a 44% increase over 1978;
(c) Deng Xiaoping floated the one-child policy, adding: “In order to realize the Four Modernizations, we must control population growth in a planned way.”
(d) UNFPA, on its first China mission, granted $50 million for consultants, conferences, fellowships, and institutes.
China wanted to spend all aid money on technology. China used the need to improve its demographic data collection as leverage for more computers.
In 1980 the Fifth National People’s Congress ratified the one-child policy. The World Bank extended its first loan months later. (Between 1981 and 1996 China received $22 billion in World Bank loans. (3) This included hundreds of millions of dollars in interest-free Population-Health-Nutrition loans.) (4)
In 1981 IPPF and UNFPA upped their support. In 1983 UNFPA established three more training centres. Ultimately UNFPA would train 70,000 Chinese technicians. China always sought more equipment.
IPPF and UNFPA faced incessant demands to control China’s population from Tokyo. UNFPA obtained $12 million from Japan only by pledging to spend it all in China. (In the 1980s Japan was the second largest contributor to population programs in developing countries. Japan channelled its aid through NGOs.)
1983 witnessed by far the most coercive phase of China’s population program. Population point-man General Xinzhong Qian attempted to impose a regime wherein:
(a) All women with one child were to be inserted with an IUD, the removal of which was a crime;
(b) No woman could bear a second child within four years of her first;
(c) Parents with three or more children were to be sterilized;
(d) Unauthorized pregnancies were to be aborted; and
(e) Unsanctioned babies were non-persons in the eyes of the state.
In 1983, 16 million women and 4 million men were sterilized, 18 million women had IUDs inserted, and 14 million abortions were performed. (5) Also in 1983, General Qian shared the UNFPA’s Population Award with Indira Ghandi, and IPPF welcomed the Chinese Family Planning Association as a full member. Qian, however, already isolated and denounced in China, was ousted in December 1983.
The Chinese program seems to have had more of a specific negative eugenics component than is generally acknowledged. This may have involved targeting troublesome ethnic minorities such as the Tibetans and Uyghurs, and of aborting abnormal babies. The latter eugenics component required ultrasounds. Australia donated 200 ultrasounds in the 1980s. China acquired another 2,000 ultrasounds before a joint venture with General Electric allowed them to manufacture them domestically. Ultrasounds caused an excess of female foetus abortions.
Starting in 1982 reports of abuse and infanticide appeared regularly in the Chinese press. The anti-abortion movement in the West seized upon these stories and supplemented them with their own investigations. Western government support for China’s one-child policy gave the Western pro-life movement the perfect opportunity to attack all population-focused foreign aid. In 1984 pro-life groups compiled graphic press clippings and editorial condemnations into a briefing book for President Reagan.
Throughout the 1980s and 1990s pro-lifers piled calumnies onto China’s program. These attacks have been called disingenuous and defamatory (6). Exactly how widespread and long-lasting the coercive aspects of China’s population program were remains controversial. Investigations undertaken by British and American teams did not corroborate claims made by Western pro-life groups. Horror stories were likely aberrations.
China’s population program evolved. After 1983, due to stubborn resistance in rural areas, families with one daughter were allowed to try for a son. Much of China appears to have had a de facto two-child policy since 1984. After 1983 the numbers of abortions, sterilizations, and IUD insertions soon stabilized at half the 1983 rate. (7) Finally, during the period of the official one-child policy (1980-2015) China’s population grew from 1 billion to 1.4 billion; a growth rate obviously far greater than would have occurred under an actual one-child policy.
Did China put on a population control show for Westerners in order to realize the Fourth Modernization?
Nigeria groaned under General Ibrahim Babangida’s dictatorship from 1985 to 1993. USAID and the World Bank-UNFPA axis took advantage of this situation to conduct a massive fertility suppression operation.
This operation put the lie to “family planning” propaganda. While the initiative was sold as a family planning affair, a contemporaneous USAID-funded survey showed Nigerian women typically wanted eight children. There would be no planning for families of that size. The World Bank and USAID’s family plan for Nigeria sought a fourfold increase in contraceptive use.
This attack on Nigerian fertility concealed US government involvement. According to a timely US State Department report, previous efforts to suppress Nigerian fertility:
“…have repeatedly been attacked on the grounds that population programs are a form of foreign intervention and that they are imperialist, neo-colonialist plots to keep Africa down.” (1)
A USAID-funded team from Pentagon contractor Futures Group fanned out across Nigeria in 1987 to prepare the propaganda offensive. Soon anti-natalist messaging inundated Nigerian radio and television. Pop stars sang anti-family lyrics. The propaganda offensive involved 3,000 “interventions” in television, radio, and folk media programming appearing alongside crafted and surreptitiously inserted newspaper and magazine articles. Nigerians were to believe they were experiencing a spontaneous value change. (2)
Pathfinder Fund and Carolina Population Center were also involved in this endeavor, as was Johns Hopkins University, which received a $15 million USAID contract for: “population communication promoting smaller family norms.”
USAID created a two-volume manual contending that Islamic teaching approved of family planning. These volumes, disguised as Nigerian government research, were planted in Islamic colleges across Nigeria.
In 1988 General Babangida signed both a domestic population policy and a related bilateral agreement with the USA.
The World Bank committed $95 million exclusively for Nigerian family planning over the 1987-1990 period. Nigerian consultants were paid directly with World Bank funds. USAID kicked in another $67 million. Private foundations and a few other Western governments ponied up substantial sums. UNFPA chipped in $35 million. (3)
The World Bank’s main influence came during debt negotiations. Nigeria’s $6 billion debt to the Bank required constant rolling over. New loans were rarely earmarked for population control; however, all loans were granted on condition that Nigeria prosecute a population control program.
Before 1991 abortion was unthinkable in Nigeria. In 1991, immediately after the World Bank approved an emergency $78 million loan, Babangida announced abortion would be allowed in certain circumstances.
Babangida stepped down in 1993 in the face of a mass uprising. His replacement immediately trashed the detested bilateral agreement with the USA.
80% of infectious diseases afflicting humans are carried by insects or small arthropods. Insects eat crops and destroy livestock. Thus, insecticides greatly improve conditions for human population growth. (1)
Synthesized in 1874, DDT’s potential as an insecticide became apparent in the 1930s. The US Army used DDT extensively as a de-lousing body-wash during WWII with negligible side effects.
Before WWII, malaria plagued the rural South. In 1946 the US Public Health Service began applying DDT to the interior walls of homes. 1952 saw only two confirmed cases of malaria in the USA. (2)
Ceylonese authorities began spraying DDT in 1945. In two years, incidence of malaria fell 75%. In South Africa cases of malaria dropped 80%. India cut malarial deaths to almost zero. (3)
Malthusians configured DDT to be the fifth horseman of the apocalypse. Fairfield Osborn Jr.’s Conservation Foundation took the lead in marshalling anti-DDT pseudo-science:
“…the Conservation Foundation provided research support and a public forum for some of America’s leading scientists who wanted to make science socially responsible. In the mid-1950s, it helped fund the work of scientists such as John George, Roger Hale, Robert Rudd and George Woodwell who were concerned about the environmental impact of massive aerial pesticide spraying. Rachel Carson used much of this work in Silent Spring…” (4)
Robert Rudd enjoyed a full-year Conservation Foundation scholarship while he wrote Pesticides and the Living Landscape (1956). The Conservation Foundation directly published John George’s The Pesticide Problem (1957).
In 1958 Aldous Huxley rallied the masses against DDT. Best known for his novel Brave New World, Aldous was a staunch eugenicist and chronic Asia-phobe. He penned a glowing review of one of Madison Grant’s books and a vigorous attack on an anti-eugenicist play. His political orientation is encapsulated in this quote:
“…society must be organized on a caste basis. The rulers and their advisory experts will be a kind of Brahmins controlling, in virtue of a special and mysterious knowledge, vast hordes of the intellectual equivalent of Sudras and Untouchables.” (5)
His Brave New World Revisited (1958) centred on how Third World overpopulation led to communist revolution. One of the primary causes of this overpopulation was DDT:
“We go to a tropical island and with the aid of DDT we stamp out malaria and, in two or three years, save hundreds of thousands of lives. This is obviously good. But the hundreds of thousands of human beings saved and the millions whom they beget and bring to birth, cannot be adequately clothed, housed, educated or even fed out of the island’s available resources. Quick death by malaria has been abolished, but life made miserable by undernourishment and overcrowding is now the rule…” (6)
In 1958 Rachel Carson was dispatched to write an anti-DDT diatribe. The mendacious fraudulence of her Silent Spring (1962) goes beyond cherry-picking discredited data. Carson distorted studies with brazen dishonesty. For instance, in 1960 the average American ingested 30 one-millionths of a gram of DDT a day. Contrary to Carson’s allegations, no study showed any association between human illness and DDT ingested at this dosage. Likewise, the wild birds Carson claimed were being wiped out by DDT spraying were actually increasing in numbers according to Audubon surveys. Despite being a tissue of lies, Silent Spring received unprecedented hype from mainstream media. The book sold over two million copies. Its release is often touted as the herald of “environmentalism.” (7)
The most egregious DDT lie came from Environmental Defense Fund co-founder Charles Wurster. He claimed DDT residue annihilated ocean phytoplankton. Wurster’s laboratory experiments used DDT at a concentration of 500 ppb. The maximum solubility of DDT in seawater is 1.2 ppb. Wurster used an alcohol mixture as his medium. (8) Despite its patent nonsense, Paul Ehrlich published an essay in Ramparts magazine titled “Eco-Catastrophe” based on Wurster’s research. (Ramparts had a huge following among campus activists. Its devoting of an entire issue to ecology in 1969, with Ehrlich’s Eco-Catastrophe on the cover, constituted a coup for the neo-Malthusians.)
OECD Science Director, and later Club of Rome co-founder, Alexander King weighed in:
“My own doubts came when DDT was introduced for civilian use. In Guyana, within two years it had almost eliminated malaria, but at the same time the birth rate had doubled. So my chief quarrel with DDT in hindsight is that it has greatly added to the population problem.” (9)
In 1970 the National Academy of Sciences declared:
“Indeed, it has been estimated that, in little more than two decades, DDT has prevented 500 million deaths due to malaria that would otherwise have been inevitable.” (10)
The 1971 EPA investigation of DDT involved seven months of hearings led by Judge Edmund Sweeney. After sounding out 125 expert witnesses, Judge Sweeney concluded:
“The uses of DDT under the registration involved here do not have a deleterious effect of freshwater fish, estuarine organisms, wild birds or other wildlife…DDT is not carcinogenic.” (11)
Sweeney recommended DDT remain in use.
Without reading Sweeney’s report, EPA Administrator William D. Ruckelshaus (a Draper Fund co-founder) banned DDT. Thereafter USAID, to the great relief of the Europeans, stopped funding projects that used DDT. US producers stopped manufacturing DDT.
Preventable malarial deaths, not to mention miscarriages, were soon again measured in millions per year.
After a few difficult start-up years (1966-1968) an Office of Population (OP) took shape within USAID. Physician Dr. Reimert Thorolf Ravenholt, OP’s first director, retained this post until 1979.
In 1966 Ravenholt could not afford a secretary. In 1969 he had a staff of 80. When OP received its first dollop ($35 million) in 1967, some wondered if this could be spent within a year. Ravenholt assured them he could spend it all and more. He shovelled millions at NGOs, pharmaceutical companies, and universities.
Thanks to Ravenholt, the budgets of International Planned Parenthood Foundation (IPPF), Population Council, Association for Voluntary Sterilization, Inc. et al ballooned tenfold; then hundredfold. Ravenholt used NGOs to do end-runs around Third World governments. He was not above smuggling contraband contraceptives.
Ravenholt cavalierly conducted mass medical experiments. He distributed huge quantities of unapproved, defective, and banned drugs, Dalkon Shields and other IUDs. He shipped cargo containers of Depo-Provera before it was approved by the FDA. He purchased vast amounts of Syntex at deep discount after the FDA declared it unsafe. (1)
A bellicose Malthusian, Ravenholt repeatedly said a quarter of the world’s women should be surgically sterilized. Here’s a post-retirement Ravenholt holding forth on health strategies for Africa:
“A main case in point is the powerful interventionist prevention of infant and child mortality by the many means our society readily offers: grants of food, potable water, antibiotics, immunization. How could these be harmful? Quite simply, they are enormously harmful to African societies when the deaths prevented thereby are not balanced by prevention of a roughly equal number of births. It is the population excesses resulting from well-intentioned but population unbalancing interventionist activities which are largely driving today’s killing fields in Africa. Many infants and children rescued from preventable disease deaths by interventionist programs during the 1970s and 1980s have become machete wielding killers.” (2)
As OP Director, Ravenholt talked incessantly about distributing greater quantities of birth control pills; or orchestrating better mass sterilization programs. His business cards were printed on condom packages. At one dinner party for demographers, to the horror of those attending, Ravenholt stomped about the room making pumping motions with his fists as if he were operating a manual abortion pump. (3)
Ravenholt funded a Johns Hopkins University program that trained thousands of Third World doctors how to operate a laparoscopic device that could shoot plastic bands around fallopian tubes. Armed with this equipment, Ravenholt boasted, one doctor could sterilize 90 women a day.
Ravenholt inundated the Third World with contraceptives. He had condoms dropped from helicopters over Manila’s ghettos. When personally in Manila, Ravenholt rolled up his sleeves and elbowed his way into surgical operations at sterilization clinics. (4)
Ravenholt physically assaulted the Director-General of WHO. He also punched a research director whose study did not turn out Ravenholt’s way. (5) He cut off funding for the Pan American Health Organization because they assigned an: “unduly large emphasis on the introduction of maternal and child health activities into family planning programs rather than the reverse.” (6)
Ravenholt’s personal relationships with women were typical of elite population controllers:
“When I would go to a meeting of the Population Association of America, these various universities would sic their youngest, most negotiable women on me, to ensure that they would get a larger share of the grants. I was sitting on a $150 million budget. It was wild.” (7)
Ravenholt left OP in 1979. By then OP, with a $200 million budget, was the largest contributor to UNFPA and IPPF, and provided almost the entire budgets for NGOs like Pathfinder Fund.
Ravenholt is gone but not forgotten:
“While today’s program differs from his, especially its emphasis on reproductive health, its programmatic underpinnings remain Ravenholt’s.” (8)
This posting is a work of secondary research. The Pentateuch of population control movement history are the five books listed below. This posting is mainly a condensed extraction of these five texts. While there are 168 footnotes attached to this posting every sentence warrants at least one footnote. In short, this is not an original work and credit for any interesting facts or clever turns of phrase found within it rightly belongs to the authors of the following five publications:
Chase, Allan. The Legacy of Malthus: The Social Costs of the New Scientific Racism. Alfred A. Knopf, New York, 1976. (686 pages)
Connelly, Matthew. Fatal Misconception: the Struggle to Control World Population. Harvard University Press, Cambridge, Massachusetts, 2008. (521 pages)
Malthus, Thomas Robert. An essay on the Principle of Population and A Summary View of the Principle of Population. Penguin Books, London, 1985. (304 pages)
Mosher, Steven. Population Control: Real Costs, Illusory Benefits. Transaction Publishers, New Brunswick, USA, 2009. (300 pages)
Zubrin, Robert. Merchants of Despair: Radical Environmentalism, Criminal Pseudo-Scientists, and the Fatal Cult of Antihumanism. New Atlantic Books, New York, 2012. (328 pages)
Eugenics, Social Darwinism and Conservationism 1853 to 1918
Anglo-American Population Control during the Fascist Era (1918-1945)
Anglo-American Population Control Movement Thought Leaders 1947-1952
1948 to the Mid-1960s Breakthrough
The Mid-1960s Breakthrough
Mobilizing the Intelligentsia 1968-1972
Global Population Control and US Foreign Policy 1969-1977
Domestic Population Control in the USA 1965-1977
From Mexico City 1984 to Cairo 1994
1960s to 1990s Growth of the Global Contraception-Abortion-Sterilization Complex
Population Control in India from the Famine of 1876 to the Population Emergency of 1975
Population Control in China 1971-1989
Population Control in Nigeria 1985-1993
Banning DDT 1956-1972
Dr. Reimert Ravenholt: the Very Model of Modern Major Malthusian
Gilbert, Geoffrey. World Population: A Reference Handbook; ABC-CLIO, Oxford, England, 2005
Guttmacher Institute https://www.guttmacher.org/fact-sheet/induced-abortion-worldwide
Grazia, Victoria. How Fascism Ruled Women. University of California Press, 1992
Hendricks, Mellissa. Raymond Pearl’s Mingled Mess, Johns Hopkins Magazine:
International Union for the Scientific Study of Population: https://iussp.org/en/about/history
Lear, Linda. Rachel Carson Witness to Nature, 1997, Henry Holt, New York p551
1967 Amendment to Foreign Assistance Act of 1961: https://www.gpo.gov/fdsys/pkg/STATUTE-81/pdf/STATUTE-81-Pg445.pdf
Paehlke, Robert. (Ed.) Conservationism and Environmentalism: An Encyclopedia; 1995, Garland Publishing, New York.
Southern Poverty Law Centre, Garrett Hardin https://www.splcenter.org/fighting-hate/extremist-files/individual/garrett-hardin
USAID Family Planning Timeline:
Weil, Patrick. Georges Mauco: Expert in Immigration, Practical Ethnoracism and Fiendish Anti-Semitism; Berg International Press, Paris 1999.
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