By Blaine Davis Contributing Editor
I have spent several days recently in various medical waiting rooms in the pursuit of tests and examinations for both my wife and me. (It’s not fun getting older!). With these “hurry up and wait” scenarios, I have consumed reading materials ranging from the usual Hollywood “pulp” periodicals to several non-fiction, historical books, which I have been putting off the final chapters. In the last waiting room, my reading veered to that of Mark R. Levin’s The Democrat Party Hates America. Being a proponent of history and the Spanish-American philosopher and essayist George Santayana due to his aphorism, “Those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it,” Levin’s analysis of the Democrats throughout history provided many examples of their forgetfulness.
In Chapter 4, “Language Control & Thought Control,” Levin attacks their deception of climate change dating back to 1970 and the first Earth Day, or as Levin dubbed it, “Green Holy Day.” He illustrates 18 examples of spectacularly wrong predictions of doom, the first being Harvard biologist George Wald estimating civilization would end within 15 or 30 years (1985 or 2000) unless immediate action was taken against problems facing mankind. Chiming in on this was Washington University biologist Barry Commoner in the Earth Day issue of the journal Environment, “We are in an environmental crises that threatens the survival of this nation and the world as a suitable place for human habitation.”
Yet another erroneous prediction was that of Paul Ehrlich, a Stanford Biologist declaring in the April 1970 issue of Mademoiselle, “Population will inevitably and completely outstrip whatever small increases in food supplies we make. … The death rate will increase until at least 100 to 200 million people per year will be starving to death during the next 10 years [by 1980].”
Ehrlich in the 1970 Earth Day issue of The Progressive, assured that, between 1980 and 1989, some 4 billion people including 65 million Americans, would perish in “the Great Die-Off.” I’m sure that I, along with thousands of other farmers and ranchers, didn’t get the memo, but then again, how many rural mailboxes receive Mademoiselle, The Progressive or Environment journal in lieu of the Farm Journal, Drovers or CALF News?
Ironically, in the middle of America’s breadbasket, North Texas State University Professor Peter Gunter wrote in 1970, “Demographers agree almost unanimously on the following grim timetable: By 1975, widespread famines will begin in India. These will spread by 1990 to include all of India, Pakistan, China and Near East, Africa. By the year 2000, or conceivably sooner, South and Central America will exist under famine conditions. … By the year 2000, 30 years from now, the entire world, with the exception of Western Europe, North America and Australia, will be in famine.”
Levin postulates famine in South America to be partly true, but only in Venezuela because of socialism, not environmental conditions.
In January 1970, Life reported, “Scientists have solid experimental and theoretical evidence to support … the following predictions: In a decade, urban dwellers will have to wear gas masks to survive air pollution … by 1985 air pollution will have reduced the amount of sunlight reaching earth by one half.”
Ecologist Kenneth Watt told Time that, “At the present rate of nitrogen buildup, it’s only a matter of time before light will be filtered out of the atmosphere and none of our land will be usable.”
Since I’m maybe 40 years late to this party, I will forego the Army surplus store and the purchase of my own personal gas mask.
Again, ecologist Kenneth Watt erroneously declared, “By the year 2000 if present trends continue, we will be using up crude oil at such a rate … that there won’t be any more crude oil. You’ll drive up to the pump and say, ‘Fill ‘er up, buddy,’ and he’ll say, ‘I am sorry there isn’t any.’”
Levin ironically notes that, global oil production in 2021 was about 95 million barrels per day, nearly double the global output of 48 million barrels per day in 1970. Like me, the petroleum industry didn’t get the memo either.
As I further my readings of Levin, another quote of George Santayana comes to mind: “A country without a memory is a country of madmen.” Shouldn’t that be our all-inclusive memo?