March 27, 2012
“Holdren told me the controversy was no big deal, ‘just a blip.’”
At his Senate confirmation hearing in the early months of 2009, the current White House science czar John P. Holdren stressed that he does not believe achieving “optimum population is the proper role of government.”
Countless of his statements and writings are testament to the fact that Holdren does indeed believe that government, at both the national and international level, should be the entity enforcing population policies. Regardless of the question if you agree or disagree with his statements on the “optimum” population size, the fact that he deceived the Commerce, Science, and Transportation committee of the US Senate in regards to his beliefs, should prompt serious outrage, not to mention formal steps to be undertaken to remove John Holdren from his current position.
If one concurs, one could write to both the majority and minority members of this committee with this article attached, urging them to convince Congress to hold Mr. Holdren accountable for his words at the confirmation hearing on the basis of which he was appointed. You may also write your representative in Congress while the going is good.
At his confirmation hearing before the Commerce, Science, and Transportation committee of the US Senate, Holdren (from 120 minutes, 30 seconds onward, transcript available here) answered several questions. One of them was posed by Senator David Vitter (R-LA) in regards to John Holdren’s advocacy of an optimum population for the United States in his treatise Population and the American Predicament: The Case Against Complacency, written in 1973:
Senator Vitter: “In 1973 you encouraged a “decline in fertility to well below replacement” in the United States because “280 million in 2040 is likely to be too many.” What would your number, or the right population in the US, be today?”
John P. Holdren: “I no longer think it’s productive, senator, to focus on the optimum population of the United States. I don’t think any of us know what the right answer is. When I wrote those lines in 1973 I was preoccupied with the fact that many problems the United States face appear to be being made more difficult by the rate of population growth that then prevailed. I think everyone who studies these matters understands that population growth brings some benefits and some liabilities. It’s a tough question to determine which will prevail in a given time-period. (…).”
To illustrate that Holdren’s search for an optimum population is not some ancient preoccupation, is illustrated by a 2006 Powerpoint presentation in which Holdren states under the header “Population”:
“Lower is better for lots of reasons: 8 billion people in 2100 is preferable by far to 10 billion.”
So, we don’t have to go back as far as 1973, do we? Just a couple of years prior to his confirmation hearing in the senate, that Holdren was quite clear in his advocacy for lowering the number of people to reach an optimum population of 8 billion by 2100.
Again: irrespective of your position on this matter, the fact that Holdren told the Senate Committee that he no longer thinks “it’s productive (…) to focus on the optimum population of the United States” is in clear contrast to his own writings a few years prior to his confirmation hearing. Stating that “population growth brings some benefits and some liabilities. It’s a tough question to determine which will prevail in a given time-period.” is also deceptive, as Holdren has made clear on several occasions he considers population growth to be an absolute liability as opposed to a benefit.
And we don’t have to go by a single remark buried in some PowerPoint presentation. There are many more instances in which Holdren’s remarks before the Senate do not correspond to his stated position on the matter.
Read the entire article HERE.