Merchants of Despair
There was a time when humanity looked in the mirror and saw something precious, worth protecting and fighting for—indeed, worth liberating. But now, we are beset on all sides by propaganda promoting a radically different viewpoint. According to this idea, human beings are a cancer upon the Earth, a horde of vermin whose aspirations and appetites are endangering the natural order. This is the core of antihumanism.Merchants of Despair traces the pedigree of this ideology and exposes its pernicious consequences in startling and horrifying detail. The book names the chief prophets and promoters of antihumanism over the last two centuries, from Thomas Malthus through Paul Ehrlich and Al Gore. It exposes the worst crimes perpetrated by the antihumanist movement, including eugenics campaigns in the United States and genocidal anti-development and population-control programs around the world.Combining riveting tales from history with powerful policy arguments, Merchants of Despair provides scientific refutations to all of antihumanism’s major pseudo-scientific claims, including its modern tirades against nuclear power, pesticides, population growth, biotech foods, resource depletion, and industrial development.

Merchants of Despair Details

TitleMerchants of Despair
Author
LanguageEnglish
ReleaseApr 3rd, 2012
PublisherEncounter Books
ISBN-139781594034763
Rating
GenreNonfiction, Science, Philosophy, Skepticism, History, Economics

Merchants of Despair Review

  • Bradley Jarvis
    January 1, 1970
    "Merchants of Despair" is sure to insult, anger, or disgust a large number of people (myself included) who consider themselves champions of human activity that minimizes harm to life – and humanity itself - by limiting growth in both numbers and maximum personal power. Author Robert Zubrin, who I personally got to know as an activist promoting the settlement of space beginning with Mars (before I became convinced that limits were necessary), believes in the enabling of unfettered creativity, who "Merchants of Despair" is sure to insult, anger, or disgust a large number of people (myself included) who consider themselves champions of human activity that minimizes harm to life – and humanity itself - by limiting growth in both numbers and maximum personal power. Author Robert Zubrin, who I personally got to know as an activist promoting the settlement of space beginning with Mars (before I became convinced that limits were necessary), believes in the enabling of unfettered creativity, whose results, multiplied by more people exercising that creativity, are on balance extremely beneficial to humanity. Conversely, to limit the size of the population is to be responsible for the effective murder of the unborn; and to restrict innovation (expressed as technology) out of concern for negative consequences is to immorally deprive people of quality of life, beginning with subsistence for much of the world's poor. Zubrin paints an elaborate history beginning with the ideas of Thomas Malthus and extending into today's environmental movement, full of people who have used unjustified, often self-serving beliefs to devalue, abuse, and kill large numbers of people. Some of the most horrendous crimes against humanity, such as intentional mass starvation and genocide have been justified on the grounds of creating a limited population compromised of the most "fit" people. Today's enforced population control, including by economic means, is but the latest example of such horrors perpetrated by believers in limited resources who are at the highest levels of government. Other evils described by Zubrin are restrictions of technologies such as pesticides (such as DDT, that mostly benefit the poor), nuclear power (which is inherently safe, and in its fusion form could one day enable conversion of matter into virtually anything we want), and genetically modified organisms (which could solve the world's food problems and make other species healthier as well). Global warming is portrayed as a potentially good thing, which has been mischaracterized as a threat by those who hate (most of) humanity so we will limit carbon-based energy, thus driving up prices of everything, enriching a few and depriving the rest of use of the tool that's most responsible for our species' survival and dominance over nature. Before I looked into these issues myself, and discovered a large number of good, smart people who care about helping everyone becoming self-sufficient in a healthy way, I would probably have had a positive response to reading "Merchants of Despair." I still share Zubrin's belief that people should not be coerced into doing what one group of people believes is "right," that all people have equal intrinsic value, and that rational discovery and study of the underlying relationships in the Universe, as embodied by science, is the most reliable way to establish a baseline of knowledge for maximizing both our survivability and personal satisfaction with life ("happiness"). Where we primarily differ is that I'm convinced that the stabilizing parts of the biosphere can't be counted on to offset the forces our species – through technology and amplified by population – have exerted on it. We're headed toward a very dangerous place, and we need to acknowledge our responsibility for it so we can do whatever we can to avoid the worst, even if it means radically changing the way we live our lives by limiting the things that are pushing us there.
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  • Tracy Black
    January 1, 1970
    First thing I'd like to say is that Zubrin is one of my favorite authors. IMO, The Case for Mars and Entering Space are two of the greatest space advocacy books ever written. Second, I agree with the basic premise of this book, that we are not at all like yeast in a bottle,and that as our population increases, our quality of life improves and we use resources more efficiently. I think the human species is pretty awesome, and hate hearing it described as a cancer on the planet.So I was very excit First thing I'd like to say is that Zubrin is one of my favorite authors. IMO, The Case for Mars and Entering Space are two of the greatest space advocacy books ever written. Second, I agree with the basic premise of this book, that we are not at all like yeast in a bottle,and that as our population increases, our quality of life improves and we use resources more efficiently. I think the human species is pretty awesome, and hate hearing it described as a cancer on the planet.So I was very excited about this book, and I could not have possibly been more disappointed. It was inflammatory, misinformed, cherry-picked, and blatantly false at points. It was like watching Fox News! He uses the words Darwinism and eugenics as synonyms, and implies a connection between Charles Darwin and the Holocaust. One is science, and the other is a social movement created by non-scientists using sciencey word to legitimize themselves. Also, he made some very questionable statements, and when I checked his sources, I found he was citing popular sources instead of academic. That did it! I think I made it to chapter 8.I will still be snatching up any space book he writes, and I hope he starts writing them again. On any other topic though, I don't feel I can trust him to be rational or reasonable.
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  • John Godier
    January 1, 1970
    Dr. Zubrin gives us, in no uncertain terms, an expose of the antihumanist movement and the damage it continues to cause on a global scale. Much of the cynicism and lack of will to promote human achievement that is present in our world today stems from this ideology in whole or in part, made particularly bad now through its infection of the pop culture. Everywhere one looks we see dystopian books and films presenting a bleak outlook for humanity. One needs Prozac to read half of what comes from s Dr. Zubrin gives us, in no uncertain terms, an expose of the antihumanist movement and the damage it continues to cause on a global scale. Much of the cynicism and lack of will to promote human achievement that is present in our world today stems from this ideology in whole or in part, made particularly bad now through its infection of the pop culture. Everywhere one looks we see dystopian books and films presenting a bleak outlook for humanity. One needs Prozac to read half of what comes from science fiction writers these days. And, if we are depicted to have managed to make it out of the solar system, we're the bad guys oppressing some kind of blue alien to steal their resources and ruin their paradise. What comes around, goes around. That attitude now holds us back due its widespread presence in people's minds. Too many people are ashamed of our species, or even hate it. We now have a world that's beginning to flirt with eugenic concepts again. We're not practicing meaningful expansion into space at the rate we once did. We're talking about overpopulation and how it damages the planet, despite the fact that we possess, in so far as we know, the most astounding thing in the universe: a conscious brain that can fix problems even on a planetary scale. This is a book for anyone that wants to be positive about humankind, but needs to be drawn away from the prevailing attitudes that we are something like an evil virus. It's a book for anyone that wants to question prevailing attitudes and ideas. It's a book for anyone that wants a rock-solid indictment of anti-humanism and the damage it does. It's a book for anyone who wants the ammo needed to think for themselves.
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  • Patrick Ritchie
    January 1, 1970
    This is a very important book.It makes a very good companion to Peter Diamandis's Abundance: The Future Is Better Than You ThinkWhere Abundance examines the incredible progress of humanity and shows us we can expect even greater things in the future, Merchants of Despair shows us the dark side of our past when we have let ourselves be led astray by doomsayers such a Malthus, Ehlrich and Holdren. Zubrin chronicles the suffering imposed on humanity by the Malthusians and convincingly argues the fa This is a very important book.It makes a very good companion to Peter Diamandis's Abundance: The Future Is Better Than You ThinkWhere Abundance examines the incredible progress of humanity and shows us we can expect even greater things in the future, Merchants of Despair shows us the dark side of our past when we have let ourselves be led astray by doomsayers such a Malthus, Ehlrich and Holdren. Zubrin chronicles the suffering imposed on humanity by the Malthusians and convincingly argues the falsehood of the Malthusian viewpoint, these arguments and backed by meticulous research & a plethora references.Highly recommended.
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  • Kenneth
    January 1, 1970
    I wanted to expose myself to some bracing contrarianism against the scientific consensus about climate change and pessimistic futurism, but I have to say I just couldn't get into this book, even to engage with a good debate. The author's positions seem to be based more on his animus against progressivism than on an even-handed consideration of the evidence, and his line of argument is tendentious and reactionary. After a couple of chapters, I concluded I had better uses for my time. Sorry I flak I wanted to expose myself to some bracing contrarianism against the scientific consensus about climate change and pessimistic futurism, but I have to say I just couldn't get into this book, even to engage with a good debate. The author's positions seem to be based more on his animus against progressivism than on an even-handed consideration of the evidence, and his line of argument is tendentious and reactionary. After a couple of chapters, I concluded I had better uses for my time. Sorry I flaked out on it - maybe it would've gotten a lot better if I'd given it more of a chance - but there you go.
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  • Ron Housley
    January 1, 1970
    MERCHANTS OF DESPAIRRobert Zubrin ©2012A short Book Report by Ron HousleyRobert Zubrin, a Ph.D. nuclear engineer, offers us a fascinating account of how the anti-humanist philosophy of Thomas Malthus (1798) marked the beginning of organized, establishment backlash against the very principles which the American Founding Fathers attempted to codify and pass down to future generations.It is a story that flies beneath the radar of most citizens today; but it is a story which continues to work its bl MERCHANTS OF DESPAIRRobert Zubrin ©2012A short Book Report by Ron HousleyRobert Zubrin, a Ph.D. nuclear engineer, offers us a fascinating account of how the anti-humanist philosophy of Thomas Malthus (1798) marked the beginning of organized, establishment backlash against the very principles which the American Founding Fathers attempted to codify and pass down to future generations.It is a story that flies beneath the radar of most citizens today; but it is a story which continues to work its black magic in every realm — from destroying historical Civil War statues to appeasing and emboldening terrorists intent on imposing their beliefs on the entire world. The 19th century saw academia set the stage for a Malthusian force to solidify into a culture-wide revolt against science, against reason, against political liberty. The philosophic and moral undermining of America was set in motion almost from the moment of its founding. Zubrin makes it sound like the decline of Western values was spearheaded by Malthus and Darwin; and then implemented over the decades by a litany of powerful figures, most recently Rockefeller; James McNamara; Gen. Westmoreland; even LBJ himself who was persuaded to withhold emergency food from a starving India (1966) until that nation agreed to impose forced sterilizations on its rural peasantry; Rachel Carson; Planned Parenthood founder, Margaret Sanger; and entire United Nations agencies whose goal was to reduce world population. But the real culprits behind what Zubrin calls “Merchants of Despair” were the 19th century philosophers who began a vast rebellion against reason and freedom: Kant, Hegel, Comte, Mill, Marx. Sadly, Zubrin does not highlight this crucial aspect of his own thesis. What turned Malthusian and Darwinian assessments into a mass cultural movement was the philosophers’ organized attack on man’s ability to reason, calling for a return to “faith” and “feeling” as the basis for knowledge. Among the late 20th century Malthusians is Paul Ehrlich, whose “The Population Bomb” I read back when I was in school; millions of free copies were distributed to college students all over the country. Little did I realize what a Malthusian even was; little did I realize that Ehrlich was part of a long history of activists promoting population control and the dismantling of human liberty; little did I realize how essentially aligned he was with the burgeoning statist agenda that was gaining a foothold in our culture.Ehrlich’s falsehoods, like those of Rachel Carson, offered a launching pad for the junk science behind so much of today’s regulatory establishment — regulations purposed with limiting and controlling our formerly free choices. When Ehrlich’s predictions of mass starvation proved false over and over again, it was never apparent why Stanford University wasn’t embarrassed to have him on its faculty. The big lesson for me in Zubrin’s book is that Malthusianism is still pervasive in our culture, responsible for anti-humanist decisions impacting all of us today; who knew?!There is even a Malthusian, “let’s reduce the population” meme behind nuclear energy politics. Without abundant, affordable energy, billions (1.2 billion) in the third-world are still without electricity today. But raising up third-world populations is contrary to the anti-humanist objectives of the Malthusians (“better dead than fed”). And so it naturally follows that the Malthusians would be against nuclear energy, just as they are against any other pro-human technology. Zubrin offers a new sense of perspective on Malthusianism’s goal to control the population: its effects on our energy industry; its effects on our cultural sense of morality; its effects on the vibrancy of our economy; its effects on public policy, where government gets to replace reason with force in dealing with us. We all remember the first “Earth Day,” right? The day deliberately chosen for “Earth Day” was Lenin’s birthday; after all, “Earth Day” activists and Lenin both wanted the same thing: state control of all our lives. But now with “Earth Day,” the agitators could pretend that the “good of mankind” was the goal we all had in common(!). Lenin, indeed.The common thread amongst all the various Malthusian movements (think: deliberately starving millions in India in the 1800’s; eugenics and racial cleansing killing millions in the mid-1900’s; Earth Day and the call to destroy industrial civilization) is a basic anti-humanism. And today we have the majority of Americans under 30 years old calling for outright socialism (think: Bernie Sanders), as if socialism hadn’t failed everywhere it was implemented — killing over 100-million innocents in the 20th century. There are scores of Malthusian-inspired movements, each with different names attached. They want us to turn the lights off; to turn our air-conditioners off; to abandon our internal combustion engines; to leave a smaller carbon footprint; to embrace zero growth; to acknowledge that humans are pollutants; to adopt Malthusian environmentalism; to stop impacting the climate; to condemn GMO foods, even as GMOs saved billions from starvation; to slow down or even stop industrial civilization. Since Nixon, the Malthusian environmentalism has been solidly embraced not only by the “progressives,” but by the “conservatives.”Conservatives were never able to figure out what principles were at play --- so they were never able to offer up a rational alternative to the anti-humanist fervor on the Left. It’s truly horrifying to discover in story after story how entire populations have been forced into starvation, malnutrition, and disease merely because fashionable Malthusian elites (throughout a 200 year history) have implemented the political power to outlaw life-saving innovations, one after the other, right up to the present day. Global WarmingJust at the moment (1971) when Ice Age doomsayer, John Holdren (later to become Obama’s science advisor), was being sidelined by slight temperature increases, the anti-humanist Malthusians stumbled upon their next pretext to stifle worldwide economic growth, and thus to suppress population growth: carbon dioxide. Their new movement (which they would call AGW) did not select water vapor as its target greenhouse gas even though it is thousands of times more impactful --- because they couldn’t figure out a way to control it using political coercion; not so with the far more insignificant carbon dioxide, which they saw as an ideal target to regulate, in their quest to control industrial civilization.This is the type of work which has tones of “conspiracy theory” behind it. But there is conspiracy here only insofar as it is conspiratorial to contend that ideas drive history — for this is a tale of cultural decline driven by bad ideas. What Zubrin hints at but never says directly is that the Malthusian anti-humanist agenda to limit population is all made possible by the mystical, anti-reason resurgence of collectivism which was the product of 19th century German philosophers; and that the Malthusians are just one component of the 200 year decline of Western civilization.So if you are unclear about why today’s college graduates are sympathetic to tyrannical socialism; if you are unclear about the moral perversion of nationalizing health care; if you are unclear about the origins of today’s hate America movement; if you suspect that something has gone wrong with an entire generation willing to turn a blind eye to mass killings in the name of equality (or in the name of population control), then you might invest a little time to explore Zubrin’s book.
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  • Alan Cook
    January 1, 1970
    This book is about people who hate people. Enough so that they want to get rid of a lot of them, including those who are "different" and those who are "inferior." The founding "prophet of modern antihumanism" was Thomas Malthus who lived 200 years ago. He argued that human reproduction always outruns available resources. As a result, millions of people were starved during British rule in India, and also the potato famine in Ireland because of high taxes, even though the Irish grain exports could This book is about people who hate people. Enough so that they want to get rid of a lot of them, including those who are "different" and those who are "inferior." The founding "prophet of modern antihumanism" was Thomas Malthus who lived 200 years ago. He argued that human reproduction always outruns available resources. As a result, millions of people were starved during British rule in India, and also the potato famine in Ireland because of high taxes, even though the Irish grain exports could have easily fed them. Charles Darwin (yes, that Charles Darwin) drank the same Kool Aid. He purported to show that some ethnic groups were inferior to others and should be eliminated. This led to the birth of eugenics. Many of today's progressives, including Al Gore and Paul Ehrlich, feel the same way. They have predicted several times that worldwide famine will decimate the human race (if we don't get rid of a lot of people first). Their predictions haven't come true--technology has increased the food supply faster than the birth rate--but still they persist. American tax dollars in the form of the US Agency for International Development, are used for forced sterilization and late-term abortions for people in places like Africa. The Chinese one-child policy has resulted in the same atrocities. DDT was banned, resulting in millions of deaths by malaria in Africa.The genocide practiced by Hitler was applauded in many parts of the world. Starvation is a key component of the policy of the haters. Genetically modified food products such as golden rice are banned, even though they are superior in nutrition and prevent problems like blindness due to vitamin A deficiency. And yet everything you eat, except wild animals and some fish, has already been genetically modified for thousands of years. The global warming crowd hates nuclear power, even though it doesn't pollute. Why? Because it would improve human existence and lead to more children being born. Rich countries are rapidly overcoming pollution, so the obvious thing to do is to help make poor countries richer. But that's not how the haters think. They want a Precautionary Principle in force, which means no innovation can be permitted that cannot be proven in advance to be completely harmless. At the least this is unscientific, since nothing can be proven to be harmless--at most it is tyrannical, because if implemented to its full extent it would take away all human freedom. My novel, "Good to the Last Death," tackles the haters in a fictional format.
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  • Bill
    January 1, 1970
    The author shows how an antipathy to population growth has led opinion leaders to promote policies that endanger human lives while claiming to promote conservation and environmental protection. As a result, millions of young women in India have undergone dangerous sterilization procedures without adequate concern for their health and safety. (There are current lawsuits being pursued against this grisly practice.) Hundreds of millions have died from malaria as a direct result of the banning of DD The author shows how an antipathy to population growth has led opinion leaders to promote policies that endanger human lives while claiming to promote conservation and environmental protection. As a result, millions of young women in India have undergone dangerous sterilization procedures without adequate concern for their health and safety. (There are current lawsuits being pursued against this grisly practice.) Hundreds of millions have died from malaria as a direct result of the banning of DDT despite approval of the pesticide by a scientific panel put together by the Environmental Protection Administration. Other similarly anti-human activities are detailed in the book.Although many may bristle at the accounts presented by the author, he documents every point and presents data to affirm his conclusions. This is an important book for anyone who is interested in the priority of human rights.
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  • R.P. Nettelhorst
    January 1, 1970
    Excellent book; together with The Rational Optimist by Matt Ridley and Abundance by Peter H. Diamandis and Steven Kotler, this book serves as a corrective to the pessimism so prevalent in the thinking of so many. The world is not getting worse and worse; it is getting better, and could be even more wonderful in the future.This is a book that everyone should read.
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  • Mikel
    January 1, 1970
    I can not praise this book enough! It is the most important, life changing book I have ever read with the exception of religious texts. Everyone must read this book!!! Even if you never read non-fiction this should be your one exception.
  • Garret Seinen
    January 1, 1970
    Without a doubt, the first book I've read in a long while that I had a hard time putting down. The way he ties the environmental movement to the failed eugenics movement brilliantly documents the actions of generation of manipulative individual who hate human beings. Well worth a read.
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  • Philski
    January 1, 1970
    Excellent book linking "anti-humanist" movements from the eugenics movements of the 1800-1900's to the current organic and global warming movements. Including some key players who link these various movements.
  • Christian Weiss
    January 1, 1970
    The books draws the historical line of anti-humanism from Thomas Malthus to diverse contemporaries. It clears up with many common misconceptions, especially that of overpopulation. This in particular shows up in every generation in a slightly different disguise.I personally would have liked a more thorough investigation of the philosophical concepts behind anti-humanism, but this was cleary not Zubrin's intent. He focusses clearly on "symptoms", which he does thoroughly, giving a multitude of re The books draws the historical line of anti-humanism from Thomas Malthus to diverse contemporaries. It clears up with many common misconceptions, especially that of overpopulation. This in particular shows up in every generation in a slightly different disguise.I personally would have liked a more thorough investigation of the philosophical concepts behind anti-humanism, but this was cleary not Zubrin's intent. He focusses clearly on "symptoms", which he does thoroughly, giving a multitude of references for each chapter, thus making the book a big source for further reading.I find the focus on eugenics a bit too large, because the roots of modern-day anti-humanism are in my understanding somewhere else. Also, I think the popular topic of animal rights should have been addressed.
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  • Art King
    January 1, 1970
    There was a time when humanity looked in the mirror and saw something precious, worth protecting and fighting for—indeed, worth liberating. But now we are beset on all sides by propaganda promoting a radically different viewpoint. According to this idea, human beings are a cancer upon the Earth, a species whose aspirations and appetites are endangering the natural order. This is the core of antihumanism and this book tells its story.
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  • Garrick Anderson
    January 1, 1970
    Essential.
  • Edward Podritske
    January 1, 1970
    Robert Zubrin brings together in a single articulate volume the similarities among Malthusian theories, the eugenics and population control movements, Nazi Holocaust, environmentalist crusades, biotechnology fear-mongering, global warming alarm and the assault on fossil fuels.He describes the purveyors of these hideous ideas and their apparently irrational followers in his subtitle as the "Fatal Cult of Antihumanism". In the context of the human species the common theme of all the activists, pol Robert Zubrin brings together in a single articulate volume the similarities among Malthusian theories, the eugenics and population control movements, Nazi Holocaust, environmentalist crusades, biotechnology fear-mongering, global warming alarm and the assault on fossil fuels.He describes the purveyors of these hideous ideas and their apparently irrational followers in his subtitle as the "Fatal Cult of Antihumanism". In the context of the human species the common theme of all the activists, politicians and crazy protest mobs is anti-life.Zubrin, a nuclear engineer, seems optimistic about the ability of science and technology to solve human problems but may not recognize fully the force of ideas (good or bad) even as he addresses the anti-humanist theme.However, he does recognize the nature and magnitude of the risk in his conclusion:Humanity today thus stands at a crossroads,....On one side stands antihumanism,...disregarding its repeated prior refutations,...demand...controls upon human aspirations. On the other side stand those who believe in...creativity to invent unbounded resources,...rather than regret human freedom, insist upon it. The contest between these two views will determine our fate.He is correct. The struggle is life or death.
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  • Jay
    January 1, 1970
    If you're looking for ammunition to refute the global warming alarmists, the "Frankenfood" scare-mongers, the "pro-choice" (by which I mean pro-abortion) zealots, or liberal leftists in general, this book is great source material. Bob Zubrin, a trained nuclear scientist, methodically deconstructs the arguments the left makes in support of all these harmful policies, and manages to remind us that if we can defeat these cruel initiatives, mankind's future is awfully bright.Along the way he also we If you're looking for ammunition to refute the global warming alarmists, the "Frankenfood" scare-mongers, the "pro-choice" (by which I mean pro-abortion) zealots, or liberal leftists in general, this book is great source material. Bob Zubrin, a trained nuclear scientist, methodically deconstructs the arguments the left makes in support of all these harmful policies, and manages to remind us that if we can defeat these cruel initiatives, mankind's future is awfully bright.Along the way he also weaves a narrative showing that Malthusianism, Darwinism, Nazism, and the modern "Green" and environmentalist agendas are part of a consistent, antihuman impulse that treats humanity as a plague, a blight upon the earth that gave humanity life. This goes a long way toward explaining why leftists are so intolerant, so filled with rage and hatred and the desire to stifle and control--and all too often, exterminate--their fellow men. Even without this overarching theme the book would be a gem simply for the data and clear arguments it contains; but with it, it supplies many missing puzzle pieces for the conservative who knows innately that leftist goals are wrong, but has trouble articulating why.
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  • Alexander Biersack
    January 1, 1970
    The first 2/3 of the book are excellent, the conclusion is - in my opinion - wrong.Spoiler Alert, don't read on if you don't want to knowRobert Zubrin suggests in the conclusion that we turn to fuel from plants. Although I agree to all he wrote to build up to this point, I believe the conclusion humanity has to take is nuclear power. This will bring abundant cheap and clean energy. Even hydrocarbons can and will be produced in nuclear power plants.Turning corn or other crops into fuel is terribl The first 2/3 of the book are excellent, the conclusion is - in my opinion - wrong.Spoiler Alert, don't read on if you don't want to knowRobert Zubrin suggests in the conclusion that we turn to fuel from plants. Although I agree to all he wrote to build up to this point, I believe the conclusion humanity has to take is nuclear power. This will bring abundant cheap and clean energy. Even hydrocarbons can and will be produced in nuclear power plants.Turning corn or other crops into fuel is terrible for the environment and for humanity. Palm oil or wood and all other biomass is no different.It needs fuel to plow the fields, to harvest, to produce fertilizer and so on. The energy balance is most likely negative.It requires lots of land, which accelerates the destruction of rain forests.It takes away agricultural land from food production, which results in higher food prices and thus kills poor people by hunger.It causes more air pollution as burning wood or other plant material is not as clean.People who believe in CO2 having a negative effect on climate in particular should go for nuclear.
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  • Amy
    January 1, 1970
    I learned a lot from this book about the environmental movement's eugenics/Nazi origins. This is not well known but was not terribly surprising to me either, once the evolutionary process of the anti human movement was described in the book. Zubrin is not always philosophically consistent, as evidenced by his identifying some of the more traditional leftist causes as positive, rather than coercive. He also appears to be in favor of ethanol as a fuel additive/replacement and insinuates that high I learned a lot from this book about the environmental movement's eugenics/Nazi origins. This is not well known but was not terribly surprising to me either, once the evolutionary process of the anti human movement was described in the book. Zubrin is not always philosophically consistent, as evidenced by his identifying some of the more traditional leftist causes as positive, rather than coercive. He also appears to be in favor of ethanol as a fuel additive/replacement and insinuates that high gas prices were the cause of the recent financial crisis, rather than one of a number of exacerbating factors, but these issues did not detract from my enjoyment of the book as an interesting source of factual historical information. I also enjoyed the book because it was a Christmas present from a nice friend.
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  • Quinndara
    January 1, 1970
    Eye opening, informative book that details the history and development of Eugenics in America and Europe and how Malthusian concepts underlie population control and the environmental movement. It is well documented and references pan out.
  • Bogdan Vana
    January 1, 1970
    It is a breath of fresh optimism for the future that so many today try to paint bleaker and bleaker as time goes by.
  • Seth
    January 1, 1970
    I hope to write a review of this later.
  • Nancy
    January 1, 1970
    Very well cited read! Pulls together important info that is beyond politics!
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