Merchants of Despair

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Frontpage Interview’s guest today is Dr. Robert Zubrin, president of Pioneer Astronautics and a Senior Fellow with the Center for Security Policy. A well-known innovator in the fields of aerospace and energy, he has a PhD in Nuclear Engineering, 10 patents, numerous publications, and 8 books, including The Case for Mars and Energy Victory. His latest book is Merchants of Despair: Radical Environmentalists, Criminal Pseudo-Scientists, and the Fatal Cult of Antihumanism.

FP: Dr. Robert Zubrin, welcome to Frontpage Interview.

Let’s begin by you telling us what you mean by “the cult of antihumanism.”

Zubrin: Thanks Jamie.

Antihumanism is a belief system which holds that humans are destroyers, essentially vermin whose activities, aspirations, and numbers must be severely constrained, and that therefore someone must be empowered to do the constraining.  Essentially it is an argument for tyranny, oppression, and ultimately genocide.

FP: Why would anyone choose to embrace such beliefs?

Zubrin: Well, you must understand that such arguments have always been gratifying to those seeking to enhance their power or justify their oppression of others. Therefore they use their positions of influence in society to make them fashionable, or “politically correct,” to use an originally Stalinist term that is now all the rage.

FP: It appears that much of modern-day environmentalism is antihumanist, as you’ve defined it, but antihumanism has been around for some time, right?

Zubrin: Yes. In the book I trace it back 200 years, starting with Malthus, the seminal founding father of the theory of limited resources, and then trace it forward through its subsequent development through numerous interrelated forms, including Darwinism, eugenics, German militarism, Nazism, xenophobia, the population control movement, environmentalism, technophobia, and most recently, the incredibly demented climatophobic movement, which seeks to justify mass human sacrifice for the purpose of weather control.

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.

FP: Tell us about Al Gore’s antihumanism.

Zubrin: Al Gore is trying to turn antihumanism into a global cult. Just have a look at this quote from his book An Inconvenient Truth:

“The climate crisis also offers us the chance to experience what very few generations in history have had the privilege of knowing: a generational mission; the exhilaration of a compelling moral purpose; a shared and unifying cause; the thrill of being forced by circumstances to put aside the pettiness and conflict that so often stifle the restless human need for transcendence; the opportunity to rise…When we rise, we will experience an epiphany as we discover that this crisis is not really about politics at all. It is a moral and spiritual challenge.”

In short, the purpose of the global warming crusade is not to change the weather, it’s to organize a mob in support of totalitarian policies.

It is revealing that Gore chose the words “An Inconvenient Truth” as the title of his book. That phrase could be the virtual chorus line for all the antihuman movements for the past 200 years who used pseudoscientific arguments to demand that people harden their hearts to the human misery the purported to be necessary. I.e.

Thomas Malthus: It is an inconvenient truth that “the Irish must be swept from the land.”

Charles Darwin: It is an inconvenient truth that “the civilized races of man will almost certainly exterminate and replace the savage races throughout the world.”

General Friedrich von Bernhardi (German General Staff, author, Germany and the Next War, 1912): It is an inconvenient truth that “war is necessary because it eliminates the weak.”

Madison Grant (Author, The Passing of the Great Race, 1916): It is an inconvenient truth that “indiscriminate efforts to preserve babies among the lower classes often results in serious injury to the race…It is an inconvenient truth that “the laws of nature require the obliteration of the unfit and human life is valuable only when it is of use to the community or race.”

Henry Fairfield Osborn (1932): It is an inconvenient truth that “overpopulation and underemployment mat be regarded as twin sisters…the United States [with 112 million people in 1932] is overpopulated at the present time.”

Rudolf Hess (1933): It is an inconvenient truth that “National Socialism is simply applied biology.”

Adolf Hitler (1941): It is an inconvenient truth that “the law of existence prescribes uninterrupted killing, so that the better may live.”

Fairfield Osborn (author, Our Plundered Planet, 1948): It is an inconvenient truth that “the problem of the pressure of increasing populations…cannot be solved in a way that is consistent with the ideals of humanity.”

Paul Ehrlich, (author, The Population Bomb, 1968): It is an inconvenient truth that “the population explosion is an uncontrolled multiplication of people…We must shift our efforts from the treatment to the cutting out of the cancer.”

John Holdren and Paul Ehrlich, (authors Global Ecology, 1971): It is an inconvenient truth that “when a population of organisms grows in a finite environment, sooner or later it will encounter a resource limit. This phenomenon, described by ecologists as reaching the ‘carrying capacity’ of the environment, applies to bacteria on a culture dish, to fruit flies in a jar of agar, and to buffalo on a prairie. It must also apply to man on this finite planet.”

The Club of  Rome (authors Mankind at a Turning Point, 1974): It is an inconvenient truth that “the world has cancer, and the cancer is Man.”

Alexander King, (founder, The Club of Rome, 1990): It is an inconvenient truth that “DDT…has greatly added to the population problem.”

All: “It is an inconvenient truth that humanity must be crushed. Science requires it. So harden your heart and join with all enlightened people in support of those doing the crushing.”

FP: Share with us some of the worst crimes perpetrated by the antihumanist movement.

Zubrin: I discuss many of them at length in the book. They include denial of food aid and imposing crushing taxes and rents on Ireland and India during the great famines of the 1800s, promoting the ideologies that led to World War I, World War II, and the Nazi genocide programs, the forced sterilization of tens of millions of people by the prewar eugenics movement and the post war population control movement, the killing of hundreds of millions of people through denial of vital life-saving technologies including pesticides and vitamin-enriched crop strains to the third world, and assisting in the impoverishment of billions by blocking the development of new energy resources.

FP: Most people don’t know how the first Green Party was actually founded. Please enlighten us.

Zubrin: The German Green Party was founded by August Haussleiter. A former SS officer and member of the Nazi Party since 1923, when he stood by Hitler during the Beer Hall Putsch. It was based on such previous works as Ludwig Klages’ 1913 proto-Nazi German “Volkisch” youth movement tract Man and Earth (republished by the Green Party, without comment, as one of its founding documents in 1980) and future Nazi Agriculture Minister Richard Darre’s 1931 book A New Nobility Out of Blood and Soil.

These writers popularized a cult ideology celebrating the natural “authentic” qualities of the good old-fashioned German country people, or Volk (literally “folk,” but also carrying the meaning of “tribe”). According to these and allied writers, the Volk derived their deep and “genuine” souls from their “rootedness” in the land, shared ancestral kinship, and connection to nature. In contrast, Jews, representing corrupt urban modernity and lacking in landed rootedness, were soulless and thus could never be part of the German Volk. Christianity, science, technology, industry, progress, “mechanical and materialistic civilization,” and all else that proposed to raise man above nature, were also to be abhorred. Popularized widely in prose works, fiction, and drama, these ideas formed the basis of the huge back-to-nature Volkisch and related Youth movements that arose in Germany during the late 19th Century.

When, in the 1920s, the new Nazi party raised the pagan swastika flag celebrating the power of irrational animal nature over civilization and reason, the Volkisch Greens flocked to the cause. In the 1970s, as environmentalism became fashionable again, Haussleiter seized the time to organize a political renaissance of this constituency. The result was the Green Party, which true to its origins in “pure race on pure soil” ideology, has taken the lead in the campaign to stop modern agriculture worldwide.

As a result of their activity, the European Union has banned farm imports from third world countries using genetically modified crops. Since the third worlders cannot afford to give up the European market, this has blocked them from implementing vitamin-enriched cereals like golden rice, which could prevent the blinding or deaths of millions of poor children every year.

FP: Crystallize please the major flaws of Darwinism.

Zubrin: Evolution is a fact. However natural selection is a radically false theory of human social development because unlike animals, humans can inherit acquired traits, such as new technological abilities. Not only that, can inherit such valuable acquired traits from people they are not related to. Furthermore, such beneficial acquired traits, which become available to all, are created by human effort during life. Therefore human existence is not a struggle of all against all. Humans benefit from the existence of other people, nations, and races, exactly the opposite of what a Darwinian view would maintain. Darwin says that it is “from this war of nature, from famine and death,” that progress in nature occurs. But this is simply untrue for humans. Human progress is driven by creative activity during life, not by elimination through death.

FP: What is really behind the climate change/global warming movement?

Zubrin: In the 1970s there was a global cooling trend going on. So the antihumanists said “look, there is global cooling, which is being driven by industry, which is being driven by out of control economic growth and population growth. They have to be put under control. Put us in control.” Then in the 1980s the climate began to warm, so they said “look, there is global warming, which is being driven by industry, which is being driven by out of control economic growth and population growth. They have to be put under control. Put us in control.” The problem is always different, the solution is always the same – put them in control. Its not about weather, it’s about power.

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  • truebearing

    This book should be read by every human being. I can't wait to read it. Zubrin's analysis is brilliant and impressively lucid . This book should be promoted ceaselessly.

    The Left is bent on a perverse alchemy, turning humans into Lemmings, then steering us, en masse, toward a cliff. They have perverted everything imaginable in their effort to eventually deprive people of food, energy, water, and income. They are setting up circumstances where hundreds of millions will die…without themselves being identified as the culprits. They are setting up "global situational eugenics" where people will die from denied health care, especially those the Left decides are unfit to live. People will die from disease when chemicals that kill agricultural pests, or disease carrying insects, are banned.

    • Banastre tarleton

      I agree , these eco creeps are profoundly anti-human and see mankind as the ' ' PROBLEM' ' ……..unfortunately , problems always require a solution , sometimes a FINAL SOLUTION

      beware of these NEO PAGAN GREEN CREEPS

  • truebearing

    The Left has cloaked its evil agenda so they won't be discovered, or held responsible (or so they hope) for possibly billions of people dying of forced "natural causes."

    This is nothing short of evil…. the kind of evil contemplated in the great religions and mythologies of the world where at least one evil being is dedicated to destroying mankind. That evil is running our government and rules the UN. The two cults of death, the Left and Islam, are combining their forces and humanity is in a fight for its life.

    Great interview! It couldn't possibly be more important.

    • Banastre tarleton

      An unholy alliance between Hard Left and Hard Right …a post modern , kinda nazi -soviet pact

  • Schlomotion

    This is laughable. Two weeks ago, Frontpage was defending the English Defense League and British and Norse Volkischkeit. Last week, Paul Schnee and Daniel Greenfield were on here lamenting the loss of Anglo-American Volkischkeit. Now Jamie Glazov is leading a muckraking writer through a dog and pony show about exactly that. The Evil of Volkischkeit in the Green Movement.

    Rather, it is a moneygrabbing opportunity. Zubrin is capitalizing on accusing environmentalists of being Nazis. His charge against them, that that they are, nihilistic, antihuman Volkisch nazis, a claim previously sold by Leonard Peikoff of the Ayn Rand Foundation (in The Ominous Parallels) is precisely the kind of racial ethical value Frontpage has been ESPOUSING for the past half month. Furthermore, the interview insinuates falsely that environmentalists don't also like rockets and space exploration. It also ignores the fact that the rocket program (Mr. Zubrin's meal ticket) came from the Nazis.

    Mr. Zubrin has some fascinating inventions, and maybe this book is just meant for amusement or parlor talk, and like any new publication, wants cheap promotion. However, when it is viewed through the lens of what FPM is trying to achieve by the interview, it simply looks like Mr. Glazov is mining White Supremacy for all it's worth, and after FPM has worn the suit for twenty days and called it handsome, it is trying to straightjacket others with the same suit and call it ugly.

    The sad part is that this book, which is called "well thought out and carefully documented" is being used in a haphazard and fanatical way, just as the goofy Malthusian ideas are, as cheap and tawdry political ammunition. Zionists are using the book to say "environmentalists are Nazis." When what they mean is, "people who oppose Israeli expansionism and the desired War on Iran are more likely to be environmentalists. Therefore, let's attack environmentalism. Let's support big oil, and let's be corporatists."

    • wsg

      Speak in cliches much ? I have spent more than 30 years nose to nose with the "leadership" of the "greens" – read Eco-Socialists – as they like to called. To a person these elitists view humanity as a cancer on MOther Gaia, are anti – individual liberty, ANTI- US Constitution and sure as HE&& anti- Free Market. They do NOT give a hoot about the planet – as to stewardship of nature they view that as a discredited "Christian" concept. Power, control and the seizure of other's wealth is what they seek !

    • Ghostwriter

      Great. Most idiocy from Shlobrain.

    • wsg

      Testing. Apparently I've been banned ?

    • truebearing

      Thank you for such an accurate preface to your comments: "This is laughable." Indeed, you were.

      Environmentalists don't like rockets or space exploration. look at what has happened to NASA under Obama. Furthermore, the enviro-Left wants to de-industrialize, not seek real progress. Rockets burn carbon based fuels too. No environmentalist supports that. If there was an algae powered rocket …maybe.

      Apparently you couldn't concentrate long enough to read the entire interview. Mr. Zubrin included far more than the Nazis in his book. And he wasn't saying environmentalists are Nazis, he's saying both are anti-humanist. in your fevered mind you were too busy concocting non sequiturs to make the obvious connections. You seem to have cathected on the Nazis because you have such sympathy for them.

      You certainly failed miserably at anything remotely resembling an effective rebuttal of Zubrin.

    • Mark Musser

      The rocket program was far surpassed by the development of the nuclear bomb (trying to figure out how to send rockets with conventional weapons to bomb England was a massive waste of time and energy). The Soviets had the best tank in the T34 on the battlefield (the Germans later copied it with the tigers but could not make enough of them). England used radar to help stem the tide in the Battle of Britain. Superior intelligence set aside the Nazi submarine wolf packs. The so-called Motorization of the Wehrmacht is an oxymoron. The Nazis invaded Russia with 1 horse for every 3-4 men. This is why the panzer divisions always outstripped their supply lines. Many German soldiers walked across the Russian steppe. In short, the whole emphasis on Nazi technology is overblown. They lost Einstein to the Americans precisely because of their cockamamie volkisch ideas.

  • ctyankee

    Zubrin quote from the above article:

    Evolution is a fact. However natural selection is a radically false theory of human social development because unlike animals, humans can inherit acquired traits, such as new technological abilities. Not only that, can inherit such valuable acquired traits from people they are not related to.

    I agree strongly with the above statement. Before starting a career in IT, I was working on a PhD in "Ecology and Evolutionary Biology" (EEB); I left the program with an MS and disillusionment with some of the "scientists" of the day.

    The problem that I observed starts when a well-known scientist publishes a book for popular consumption. True scientific papers go through a Peer Review process before they can be published. Although Peer Review can be affected by the biases of the academic powers that be, solid empirical or statistical evidence is required for publication.

    Take, for example, Dr. E. O. Wilson's scientific papers on the social behavior of Slave-Maker Ants. There is an inherent assumption that the social behavior in question is genetically determined and therefore subject to the Law of Natural Selection. The genetic basis of social behavior is probably much stronger in social insects than in human beings.

    After Dr. E. O. Wilson published books on "The Insect Societies" and "Sociobiology", he published his book "On Human Nature". In his trilogy, Dr. Wilson published more and more speculative ideas; books such as these do not require scientific peer review in order to be published. His theories on "Human Nature" rested on the assumption that human social behavior is genetically determined and subject to the Law of Natural Selection. It's important to point out the so-called "Survival of the Fittest" depends more on leaving viable offspring than length of survival of the individual. Longevity past reproductive age is irrelevant to evolutionary "Fitness".

    I can offer other examples of books by eminent scientists that are written for the popular press:
    The Selfish Gene by Richard Dawkins (most famous for being an outspoken Atheist).
    Broca's Brain by Carl Sagan, or Carl Sagan's statement on The Tonight Show, "There is no Right to Life!"

    • Guy

      No one is stopping you from publishing your own book to refute them. Not sure why you are complaining about the peer review process when citing books those scientists published on their own. It’s funny that you cite Carl Sagan too, who was a great proponent of human space flight like Zubrin himself. I like Zubrin’s one-way to Mars idea, but I think his bitterness with the lack of progress in space flight has pushed him off to the edge a bit here.

    • Western Canadian

      “The problem that I observed starts when a well-known scientist publishes a book for popular consumption. True scientific papers go through a Peer Review process before they can be published. Although Peer Review can be affected by the biases of the academic powers that be, solid empirical or statistical evidence is required for publication.”

      If solid empirical or statiscal evidence was actually required for publication, the shabbty efforts of porr grade ‘scientists’ (MM) would never have seen the light of day. Instead, peer reviewed has all to often degenerated into PC reviewed.

  • Last King of Babylon

    I too can hardly wait to purchase his book. In the meantime, for more on the nonsense of global warming and socialism, etc., read the essays "Whose Global Warming," "Nasa Scientists against global warming," "Entropy and the fate of Civilization," and many more on the site

  • Goemon

    If there is a devil, then surely that Serpent of Old is the master of the anti-humanists and schlomotion. One day we may find ourselves in a concentration camp where schlomotion is whacking us with a cattle prod for the sake of Gaia.

    • Banastre tarleton

      That's right …eco creeps are the abandoned child of Nazism …minus the discredited racism and nationalism


    I haven't yet read the article, will read it entirely and completely. Dr. Zubrin is my hero. And I have a PhD in Mathematics, fluently speak 5 languages, published papers and books. On January 2011 I asked by email to Dr. Zubrin what should I study in order to help with Mars settlement, he answered back with Aerospace Engineering.

    And here we are, I graduate BSc in Aerospace Engineering in December 2014, already registered in MSc, that I should finish in December 2014, and have plans for a second PhD in Aerospace Engineering soon after. Initiated to Aerospace research already. All of it from University of Central Florida.

    I share so many opinions with Dr. Zubrin, and am a regular visitor of his page. Will comment back once that I finish the article.

    • Banastre tarleton

      and why do we need to know your resume …why not just comment on the article ? sheeeeeeesh

      • ILIA TOLI

        This is not my resume, though I keep my resume under 1 page all the time. This is my visiting card, so that you know that it's not the uneducated desperate people who follow this site. And the name is there so that you can verify that I'm real, though unbelievably awesome I am.

        • tarleton

          oh you're real alright …an over educated child


    Now I have read the article. Beautiful, as ever from Dr. Zubrin. Must go and buy a few more books from Dr. Zubrin now that I am still in Spring-Summer break. In a week I start Summer semester with 12 credits in Aerospace Engineering and plenty of research plans.

    • Banastre tarleton

      then why not just write a book about yourself ….maybe titled ' ' just cannot get enough of me ' ' or maybe ' ' i'm the greatest thing since sliced bread ' '

      • ILIA TOLI

        I have written books, and you can't understand them. They are in amazon already. Math and Cryptography. Cryptography is the Dan Brown thing (the real one, not amusing bedtime stories), in case you don't know the meaning of the word. I will write another book on how to get to Mars and what to do there. I will write it readable, even for people of your education and smarts.

        • Banastre tarleton

          jeeeeeees…I'd rather have 3 teeth yanked than read a book written by a creep like you …you sound like one of Barat's pseudo intellectual inbred countrymen ……..BEGONE FOUL CREATURE


    you sound like an educated idiot and a insufferable jerk …next time you send a probe to mars please go along for the ride ….we should send all dorks like you off to explore other planets …we'll even have a going away party for you …but you will definately NOT be invited


      I will not invite you in the party, you're too sexy for my party. And don't worry, I'm all-in for the one-way Mars going, alongside with millions of others, no matter what it costs to us. It's not that I'm yearning to get rid of you, it's just that I want more for all of us.


      And please learn how to write properly in English. If somebody else reads our rantings, he'll get it wrong who's foreign-born of us two.

  • pyeatte

    You should look into the DGR (Deep Green Resistance, They want to eliminate ALL power production, no solar or wind included – by any means necessary. In other words, complete de-industrialisation.

  • WilliamJamesWard

    Over regulation is the key to successful greening of America and the World. If they achieve their
    goals and live to see the end of their activities, the Earth will have another era of cave dwelling
    misanthropes. Question every regulation that exists and look for it's benefit for living beings
    and if none exist then militate against it. Consider the advancement of man and realize that is
    you and your posterity, as I have experienced people of the last generation working hard to
    bring about a better world and place for their own and made sacrifices for this, it is sinful to
    roll back advancements and look on today as wrong outside of the merchants of death who
    hate for hate alone and from there move against all we love and all our hopes………..Willam

  • David Van Lant

    I'm glad to hear the author is opposed to the murderous schemes that have been launched in the name of progress. I might by the book for the historical information. But given his starting point, he will likely be more or less powerless to shine much light in that darkness. "Evolution is a fact. However natural selection is a radically false theory of human social development because unlike animals, humans can inherit acquired traits, such as new technological abilities… Therefore human existence is not a struggle of all against all." The masters of mayhem did not need the theory of natural selection to justify serial mass murder. The idea that there is no higher reality that matter and DNA is all that is needed. The theory of natural selection simply made the task of justifying the piles of corpses all that much easier.