Private land ownership is also a principal instrument of accumulation and concentration of wealth and therefore contributes to social injustice... Public control of land use is therefore indispensable... (1)
- United Nations "Habitat I" Conference Report, 1976
In one word, you reproach us with intending to do away with your property. Precisely so; that is just what we intend. (2)
- Karl Marx, The Communist Manifesto, 1848
Property is theft! (3)
- P. J. Proudhon, the "Father of Anarchy," 1840
Property struck the first blow at Equality;... the supporters of Governments and property are the religious and civil laws; therefore, to reinstate man in his primitive rights of Equality and Liberty, we must begin by destroying all Religion, all civil society, and finish by the destruction of all property. (4) (Emphasis in original.)
- Adam Weishaupt, founder of the Order of the Illuminati, 1776
According to Karl Marx, "the theory of the Communists may be summed up in the single sentence: abolition of private property." (5) That's pretty plain, and it's directly out of the Communist Manifesto. It has been the rallying cry of collectivists of all stripes - communists, socialists, anarchists, fascists - and has guided the most ruthless and bloody regimes of the past century. Lenin, Stalin, Mao, Ho Chi Minh, Ceausescu, Tito, Gomulka, Castro, Pol Pot, Mengistu, Ortega, and dozens of other Communist dictators and satraps all fervently espoused that Marxian precept and applied it with a vengeance. And in so doing, they produced mountains of corpses and rivers of blood unequalled in all history.
Conversely, the champions of freedom have ever recognized that private property is essential both to human liberty and to the material well-being and economic advancement of all classes of people. "Let the people have property," observed Noah Webster, "and they will have power - a power that will for ever be exerted to prevent a restriction of the press, and abolition of trial by jury, or the abridgement of any other privilege." (6) (Emphasis in original.) Justice Joseph Story, who was appointed to the Supreme Court by President James Madison and became one of America's most revered jurists, put it this way: "That a government can scarcely be deemed to be free when the rights of property are left solely dependent upon the will of a legislative body, without any restraint. The fundamental maxims of a free government seem to require that the rights of personal liberty and private property should be held sacred." (7)
"It is the glory of the British constitution," said Samuel Adams, "that it hath its foundation in the law of God and nature. It is an essential, natural right, that a man shall quietly enjoy, and have the sole disposal of his own property." (8) Moreover, said Adams, "Property is admitted to have an existence even in the savage state of nature... And if property is necessary for the support of savage life, it is by no mean less so in civil society. The utopian schemes of leveling, and a community of goods, are as visionary and impracticable as those which vest all property in the Crown are arbitrary, despotic, and in our government, unconstitutional." (9)
In his famous encyclical Rerum Novarum, written in 1891, Pope Leo XIII stated: "We have seen that this great labor question cannot be solved save by assuming as a principle that private ownership must be held sacred and inviolable. The law, therefore, should favor ownership, and its policy should be to induce as many as possible of the humbler class to become owners." "Men always work harder and more readily," he continued, "when they work on that which belongs to them; nay, they learn to love the very soil that yields, in response to the labor of their hands, not only food to eat but an abundance of good things for themselves and those that are dear to them." (10)
In our own day, this same powerful truth was expounded clearly by the great economist Friedrich A. Hayek. "What our generation has forgotten," he said in his 1944 Nobel Prize-winning classic, The Road to Serfdom, "is that the system of private property is the most important guaranty of freedom, not only for those who own property, but scarcely less for those who do not. It is only because the control of the means of production is divided among many people acting independently that nobody has complete power over us, that we as individuals can decide what to do with ourselves." (11)
It is easy, then, to see why those who have totalitarian ambitions always attempt to destroy private property. Because, like Hayek, they understand that as long as "the control of the means of production is divided among many people acting independently," their plans for total power will remain frustrated. The millions of farmers, home owners, businessmen, shopkeepers, artisans, laborers, and professionals who own their own property form a natural obstacle to tyrannical aspirations. If people are allowed to own their land, grow their food, manufacture whatever products they choose, live in homes of their own, and freely exchange their goods, services, and labor - why, they just might not meekly yield to the dictates of central planners, whether of the fascist, communist, or socialist variety!
So whom do you think the folks at the United Nations and their Insider sponsors choose to follow: Adams, Webster, Leo XIII, and Hayek? Or Marx, Mao, Lenin, and Stalin? You guessed it: Time after time after time, they've chosen the path of power, slaughter, tyranny, and destruction, rather than liberty, morality, and justice. As we will see next, with an examination of a few of the UN's eco-Marxist programs.
The UN Gets Into the Act
We begin with "Habitat I," the Conference Report of the United Nations Conference on Human Settlements, held in Vancouver, Canada, during June 1976. The Preamble of this important document, endorsed by the United States and the other participating nations, declares:
Land... cannot be treated as an ordinary asset, controlled by individuals and subject to the pressures and inefficiencies of the market. Private land ownership is also a principal instrument of accumulation and concentration of wealth and therefore contributes to social injustice... Public control of land use is therefore indispensable... (12)The main body of the text then proposes the following Marxist policies, among others:
Recommendation D.l Land resource managementThen there is Agenda 21, the massive environmental manifesto that came out of the 1992 UN Earth Summit. As we saw in Chapter 6, this is a monstrous socialist scheme for micromanaging every square centimeter of the planet's surface - not to mention the air and space above it and the ground and seas below it. This green communist manifesto holds that "land must be regarded primarily as a set of essential terrestrial ecosystems and only secondly as a source of resources." (14) We must develop new social systems, it says, because "traditional systems have not been able to cope with the sheer scale of modern activities." These new systems will "have as their goal both the effective management of land resources and their socially-equitable use." (15)
(a) Public ownership or effective control of land in the public interest is the single most important means of... achieving a more equitable distribution of the benefits of development whilst assuring that environmental impacts are considered.
(b) Land is a scarce resource whose management should be subject to public surveillance or control in the interest of the nation...
(d)...Governments must maintain full jurisdiction and exercise complete sovereignty over such land with a view to freely planning development of human settlements... (13)
Agenda 21 states further: "All countries should undertake a comprehensive national inventory of their land resources in order to establish a system in which land will be classified according to its most appropriate uses..." (16) Moreover: "All countries should also develop national land-management plans to guide development." (17)
Another frightful creature to emerge from the Rio Earth Summit (UNCED) was the Global Biodiversity Assessment (GBA). The GBA is a huge, 1,140-page instrument that claims to provide a "scientific" basis for implementing the Convention on Biological Diversity. "Property rights are not absolute and unchanging," it informs us, "but rather a complex, dynamic and shifting relationship between two or more parties, over space and time." (18) And the UN ecocrats are determined to make any property rights they don't abolish outright as "complex, dynamic and shifting" as possible. "We should accept biodiversity [i.e., plants and animals] as a legal subject, and supply it with adequate rights. This could clarify the principle that biodiversity is not available for uncontrolled human use." 19 Translation: We must assign legal "rights" to animals, trees, bugs, bushes, weeds, birds, fishes, even mountains, and then appoint "custodians," "guardians," or "trustees" (all of whom must be watermelon Marxists, of course) to look out for and speak for these rights.
"Contrary to current custom," says the GBA, "it would therefore become necessary to justify any interference with biodiversity, and to provide proof that human interests justify the damage caused to biodiversity." (20) In other words, under this socialist scheme, a "guardian" or "stakeholder" (someone claiming to represent a plant or animal species on the property) can assert a priority right over that of the actual property owner, and force the owner to "prove" that any activity he contemplates for "his" property will not adversely impact the flora and fauna which constitute the "biodiversity" in that "ecosystem."
Two other alien entities spawned at the Earth Summit were the UN Commission on Sustainable Development and an international NGO with quasi-official functions known as the Earth Council. These organizations coordinate the activities of national councils on biodiversity, which have been established to implement Agenda 21. The Earth Council is presided over by Maurice Strong, Secretary-General of the Rio Earth Summit, a director of the World Economic Forum, a member of the Commission on Global Governance, and a director of the Gorbachev Foundation.
U.S. Pressure From Above
In 1993, President Clinton (CFR) created the President's Council on Sustainable Development (PCSD) by Executive Order. The PCSD joined five Cabinet members with the leaders of the Sierra Club, the Natural Resources Defense Council, the Environmental Defense Fund, and the Nature Conservancy and charged them to "develop policy recommendations for a national strategy for sustainable development that can be implemented by the public and private sectors." (21) They were to use as their guide the UN Convention on Biodiversity, which Clinton signed in June 1993 (but which the Senate has yet to ratify).
In 1995 the PCSD issued its report, Sustainable America, A New Consensus, which stated:
Privately owned lands are most often delineated by boundaries that differ from the geographic boundaries of the natural system of which they are a part. Therefore, individual or private decisions can have negative ramifications... that result in severe ecological or aesthetic consequences to both the natural system and to communities outside landowner boundaries. (22)
That same year, President Clinton demonstrated how such internationalist socialist policies can play out when he brought in a team of UN bureaucrats (at U.S. taxpayer expense) from the UNESCO World Heritage Committee (WHC). Their mission was to close down a proposed gold mine on private property in the vicinity of Yellowstone National Park, which the UN lists as a World Heritage Site. Militant eco-fanatics together with the Clinton-Gore administration had been trying for years to stop the Crown Butte Mining Company from starting operations there. The company had jumped through all of the costly and convoluted state and federal environmental impact analyses and presented no risk to the park or surrounding area.
But before Crown Butte could begin operation, the UNESCOWHC "scientists" came up with a finding that allowing the project to go forward would be ecologically disastrous. That was the only pretext President Clinton needed to issue an executive order stopping all new mining permits within a 19,000 acre area of federal land near Yellowstone. The UNESCO delegation went even further, seeking to review all policies involving mining, timber, wildlife, and tourism within an area of nearly 18 million acres surrounding the park, including millions of acres of private land. They and their U.S. enviro-Leninist allies want to create the "Greater Yellowstone Ecosystem," an enormous "biodiversity reserve." This is part of the UN's global Wildlands Project, aimed at "re-wilding" literally half of the U.S. land area.
Wildlands are constructed of habitat zones called "core areas," in which human activity is increasingly restricted and ultimately (virtually) eliminated. The core areas are then linked to restrictive "buffer zones." These areas are then connected by networks of "wildlife corridors."
It's important to recognize that this U.S.-UN eco-entanglement didn't begin with Bill Clinton and it won't end now that he has left office. George Bush the Elder (CFR) occupied the White House in 1992, and his main representative at the Earth Summit that year was EPA Administrator William Reilly (CFR), a militant greenie. Before coming on board the Bush team, Reilly had served as president of both the Conservation Foundation and the World Wildlife Fund-U.S. And he had served as executive director of a land-use task force chaired by Laurance S. Rockefeller, which promoted Marxist land-use controls and expropriation.
Reilly's contempt for private property was evident not only from the EPA policies he promulgated, but also from his own words. In his introduction to the 1985 book National Parks for a New Generation, for example, he advocated "greenline parks." Under this concept, closely akin to the UN schemes, privately owned land adjacent to federal or state parks could be declared part of the park system by executive fiat and its use restricted to conform to park purposes - in blatant disregard and violation of constitutional protections against such abuse.
In addition, Reilly argued that the "mainstream" American attitude toward property rights in land has been "the right of citizens to exercise dominion over land they own," but if "parks are to be protected ... the tradition of park stewardship must gradually be extended beyond park boundaries, to domains where mainstream attitudes about private property and freedom of action still prevail today." (23)
This "watermelon Marxism" - green on the outside, red on the inside - has been promoted and supported continuously in the highest levels of our federal government, through both Republican and Democratic administrations, by the CFR Establishment. And the same one-world coterie also has continuously provided the "pressure from below" as well.
More Establishment Radicals
Take, for instance, watermelon Marxist Jeremy Rifkin, whose book, Entropy: Into the Greenhouse World, we mentioned in the previous chapter. It was published by Bantam New Age Books, a division of Bantam Books, one of the largest Establishment publishing houses and was highly praised in the CFR press. And who is Mr. Rifkin? A radical activist in the Vietnam anti-war movement, he was a founder of the Johnny Appleseed Brigades. In 1976 he headed up the Peoples Bicentennial Commission (PBC), a thoroughly Marxist operation funded by the usual tax-exempt foundations and the federal government. He has lectured for the KGB-front Institute for Policy Studies (IPS) and written for the radical socialist Mother Jones magazine. All of which, of course, has qualified him to join the august company of savants who participate in the Gorbachev State of the World Forum palavers. It also guarantees him Insider foundation funding for his Washington, D.C.-based Foundation on Economic Trends.
And what type of economics does Comrade Rifkin espouse? Because of the worsening greenhouse crisis, he says, in Entropy, "For the first time in our country's history we will have to deal with the ultimate political and economic question - redistribution of wealth." (24) (Though rest assured it is not his or Mr. Rockefeller's wealth he wants to redistribute.) Under the system he favors, "The long-accepted practice of private exploitation of 'natural' property is replaced with the notion of public guardianship." (25)
This is also the message of Peter Bahouth, the former head greenie at Greenpeace. Now he is director of the Turner Foundation, where he ladles out millions of dollars to his comrades at Greenpest, Fiends of the Earth, the Environmental Defense Fraud, and other eco-fascist extortionists. The Turner Foundation insists that property rights are responsible for a host of problems associated with urban and suburban sprawl and further insists that state governments must impose more restrictions on property rights. "States must insist localities determine... defined urban growth boundaries," (26) says a recent Foundation statement. Indeed, says the Foundation, "politically potent bubbles about free markets and property rights must be popped." (27)
The Turner Foundation, of course, is the eco-hobbyhorse of Citizen Ted Turner, whose multi-million dollar palatial estates on several continents are not to be counted among the private property bubbles to be popped by Turner's Greenpest lackies. Turner, Rockefeller, and other members of the ruling elite smugly believe that their money and political clout will protect them from the Marxist programs they are foisting on us lesser folk of the middle class. As Marx pointed out in his Manifesto, his immediate target was "not the abolition of property generally, but the abolition of bourgeois properly." (28)
Yes, it is the property of the bourgeois - the middle class that is the principal target of Marx and his present-day disciples. We have already seen the "future" envisioned by these one-world corporate socialists. It is an Orwellian nightmare world in which Soviet Commissars luxuriate in their Black Sea villas and the upper-level Communist nomenklatura enjoy pampered, privileged lives - while the vast majority of the Russian people exist in misery and grinding poverty.
But the Pratt House billionaires already possess greater wealth and enjoy more luxury than their Soviet counterparts could ever dream of, you say. True, but the Communist elite enjoy something that the top Insiders crave more than wealth and luxury: power - raw, unchallenged power. The power of the master over the slave. The power of the tyrant over the masses. Blocking their path to totalitarian power is the middle class. Thus the ongoing attack on middle class property by the would-be global overlords and their watermelon Marxist minions.
1. Preamble to "The Vancouver Action Plan: 64 Recommendations for National Action," conference report of "Habitat I," the United Nations Conference on Human Settlements, Vancouver Canada, May 31 to June 11, 1976. For text, see
2. Karl Marx and Frederick Engels, The Communist Manifesto, 1848. American Opinion edition with introduction by William P. Fall (Appleton, Wis.: 1974), p. 20.
3. Pierre Joseph Proudhon (1809-1865) quoted in John Bartlett, Familiar Quotations (15th and 125th anniv. Edition) (Boston: Little, Brown, and Company, 1980), p. 527.
4. Abbé Augustin Barruel, Memoirs Illustrating the History of Jacobinism (Fraser, Michigan: American Council on Economics and Society, 1995), p, 410. This 1995 single-volume (846 p.) edition is a reprint of a four-volume English translation published in 1798 by T. Burton, London.
5. Marx, p. 19.
6. Noah Webster , "Examination of the Leading Principles of the Federal Constitution, 1787," October 10, 1787, p. 48, quoted on the Potomac Institute web site: https://www.securepaynet.net/domains/searchresults2.aspx?ci=16811&prog_id=262300&isc=gppgrs02.
7. Joseph Story, Wilkerson v. Leland, (2 Peters, 657), at http://www.lonang.com/exlibris/story/sto-334.htm.
8. "The Boston Gazette," April 4, 1768 quoted in Vern a M. Hall (compiler), The Christian History of the Constitution of the United States of America: Christian Self-Government With Union, American Revolution BiCentennial Edition (San Francisco: Foundation for American Christian Education, 1985), p. 453.
9. Verna M. Hall (compiler), Christian History of the Constitution of the United States of America, (San Francisco: The American Christian Constitution Press, 1960), p. 248A.
10. Rerum Novarum: On Capital and Labor (May 15,1891), in The Great Encyclical Letters of Pope Leo XlII (New York: Benziger Brothers, 1903), pp. 237-238.
11. Friedrich A. Hayek, The Road to Serfdom, (Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1969), pp. 103,104.
12. Preamble to "The Vancouver Action Plan: 64 Recommendations for National Action," conference report of "Habitat 1: the United Nations Conference on Human Settlements, Vancouver Canada, May 31 to June 11, 1976. For tex t, see http://www.unhabitat.org/content.asp?ID=924&catid=10&typeid=25&subMenuId=0.
13. Ibid., "Recommendation D.1 Land resource management."
14. Daniel Sitarz (ed.), Agenda 21: The Earth Summit Strategy to Save Our Planet (Boulder, CO: EarthPress, 1993), p. 63.
15. Ibid., p. 65.
16. Ibid., 180.
17. Ibid., 180.
18. V. H. Heywood (exec. ed.), Global Biodiversity Assessment, published for the United Nations Environment Programme (Cambridge, Great Britain: Cambridge University Press, 1995), p. 767.
19. Ibid., p. 787.
21. William Norman Grigg, "Sunset on the West?" The New American, February 5, 1996, p. 30.
22. Sustainable America, A New Consensus, President's Council on Sustainable Development Report, 1995, p. 113.
23. William Reilly, National Parks for a New Generation, (Conservation Foundation, 1985), quoted in "Environmental Activist to Head EPA," Human Events, January 14, 1989, pp. 23-24.
24. Jeremy Rifkin, Entropy: Into the Greenhouse World, (New York: Bantam Books,1989) p. 237.
25. Ibid., p. 245.
26. Was onTurner Foundation website: http://www.turnerfoundation.org/, but it is nowhere to be found. The website asks for grants. It is worth the visit...
28. Marx, p. 19.