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<v Narrator>[birds chirping] This is Tintagel Head on the southwestern coast of England. <v Narrator>There are ruins of a castle here that date from the Middle Ages. <v Narrator>Nearby are the still older foundations of a Celtic monastery <v Narrator>built in the 5th century, in the Dark Ages following the collapse <v Narrator>of the Roman Empire. <v Narrator>Out of this time of chaos and terror emerged the legends of King <v Narrator>Arthur, whose birth popular tradition has long associated with <v Narrator>this place. <v Narrator>It is curious that the ?dream? of Camelot, a society of justice, <v Narrator>peace and prosperity should have arisen in the darkness that preceded <v Narrator>the dawn of Western civilization [waves crashing]. <v Narrator>Perhaps the darkest times call forth the brightest hopes. <v Narrator>[music plays] [video flickers in and out] But the dream of Camelot has eluded us. <v Narrator>It is an ideal always haunted by the failure of men to achieve it.
<v Narrator>Now there are those who say that Western civilization has run its course. <v Narrator>That our efforts to create a society of peace and prosperity have nearly <v Narrator>failed. <v Narrator>That ahead of us waits the prospect of a new dark age. <v Narrator>Around us rise the voices of the doomsayers. <v Radio Announcer>?inaudible? Los Angeles rush by suggestion for Los Angeles limelight ?cars?. <v Radio Announcer>Just what I needed. And we had- <v Narrator>For most people, tomorrow is just another day. <v Narrator>The weather may change. [car honking] Stocks may rise and fall. <v Narrator>There may be rumors of war in faraway places. <v Narrator>But the system keeps on working. <v Narrator>So who are these people predicting an end to all of this? <v Narrator>Some see the crisis coming from Wall Street. <v Edward Cornish>I think the possibility of a very serious economic
<v Edward Cornish>depression is very real. <v Narrator>Others see doom raining from the sky. <v Adm. Gene Larocque>I think that we're just simply going to blow ourselves up as a result of our arrogance <v Adm. Gene Larocque>in a nuclear war with the Soviet Union. <v Narrator>Some see our end in overpopulation. <v Anne Ehrlich>Starvation is a very real possibility. <v Narrator>Others, in dwindling resources. <v David Brower>When you attack in an exponentially increasing rate, resources that are not renewable, <v David Brower>you're headed for trouble. <v Narrator>And for some, all of these dangers are merely symptoms of a civilization that is <v Narrator>winding down. <v Fritjof Capra>The way I see our current situation is <v Fritjof Capra>a way which has been described by cultural historians many times. <v Fritjof Capra>Toynbee and many others have noted that civilizations or <v Fritjof Capra>cultures have the tendency to rise, culminate <v Fritjof Capra>and then decline and disintegrate. <v Malcolm Muggeridge>As people become aware, consciously or unconsciously, that they
<v Malcolm Muggeridge>belong to a civilization, a way of life that's expiring, <v Malcolm Muggeridge>there is a sadness in- that <v Malcolm Muggeridge>they pick up without understanding exactly why. <v Malcolm Muggeridge>And you can find, for instance, in music and in <v Malcolm Muggeridge>works of art, you can find that sadness. <v Narrator>[music playing] Over 50 years ago, the poet WB Yeats described our time. <v Narrator>Things fall apart. The center cannot hold. <v Narrator>Mere anarchy is loosed upon the world [man shouting]. <v Narrator>The blood dimmed tide is loosed. <v Narrator>And everywhere the ceremony of innocence is drowned. <v Narrator>[waves crashing] But is anyone listening to the doomsayers? <v Narrator>The idea that they are is reflected in recent surveys. And in the research of leading social scientists. <v Narrator>At the Stanford Research Institute in Menlo Park, California, Dr. Willis Harman.
<v Dr. Willis Harman>There's a lot of fear, there's a lot of despair. <v Dr. Willis Harman>Uh there's a certain basis for uh for both. <v Dr. Willis Harman>There's a basis for feeling that our present approaches to the problems <v Dr. Willis Harman>uh of the nation and the problems of the world are not gonna solve those problems. <v Narrator>Fritjof Capra, a theoretical physicist at Berkeley, is the author of a new <v Narrator>book on the demise of Western culture called The Turning Point. <v Fritjof Capra>I think it's true that there's a mood of fear in the country and mood of uncertainty. <v Fritjof Capra>Maybe in some quarters, the mood of panic even. <v Fritjof Capra>And I think it comes whenever you are confronted with a no exit situation. <v Fritjof Capra>Whenever you have a situation where you don't know what to do, you think that's the end. <v Fritjof Capra>There's no way out. <v Narrator>South of London in the rolling Sussex countryside is the home of Malcolm Muggeridge. <v Narrator>Journalist, TV commentator, and in recent years, an increasingly <v Narrator>acerbic social critic. <v Narrator>Muggeridge views our age from a Christian perspective that echoes voices like
<v Narrator>William Blake and Pascal. <v Malcolm Muggeridge>I find you know the most in- almost the most interesting thing in life at the end of it <v Malcolm Muggeridge>for me, is this amazing theme of irony <v Malcolm Muggeridge>that runs ?inaudible?, which I see as God <v Malcolm Muggeridge>really talking to us in parables. <v Malcolm Muggeridge>Men are so avaricious, so full of cupidity, so in love with money <v Malcolm Muggeridge>that they can't stop printing it and therefore money becomes worthless. <v Malcolm Muggeridge>And so on! The contradiction that we want to be so strong that we can deal with <v Malcolm Muggeridge>all our enemies. [explosion] We developed this amazing weapon. <v Malcolm Muggeridge>It's a weapon that we can only use by total destruction. <v Malcolm Muggeridge>We're like Samson, you know, when he stands and the only thing ?he used any way? <v Malcolm Muggeridge>can show strength is to pull down the pillars and destroy himself and everybody there. <v Malcolm Muggeridge>That is precisely the position the western world is in, but they won't face it. <v Malcolm Muggeridge>That if and when a war comes, then on- the only means <v Malcolm Muggeridge>of conducting that war will be America's nuclear strength.
<v Malcolm Muggeridge>And America's nuclear strength means ?inaudible? <v Malcolm Muggeridge>destroying the Western world. <v Malcolm Muggeridge>This is why seeing it this kind of incredible logic <v Malcolm Muggeridge>of destruction. But it's not, I hasten to say, again, the <v Malcolm Muggeridge>end of the world. It's just the end of one more little <v Malcolm Muggeridge>effort that men have made to construct a civilization. <v Malcolm Muggeridge>And it's finished. <v Narrator>[birds chirping] [music plays] The English sense of history is shaped not only by the <v Narrator>earliest remnants of our own civilization, but also by reminders <v Narrator>of glories long past. <v Narrator>Near the village of ?Sylchester? and Hampshire is the Calleva Atrebatum. <v Narrator>A Roman city which has now disappeared, save for its wall and <v Narrator>a neighboring amphitheater. <v Narrator>For Muggeridge, it is only history and religion that force our utopian <v Narrator>aspirations into perspective. <v Malcolm Muggeridge>One of Christianity's greatest contributions
<v Malcolm Muggeridge>to mankind, in my opinion, was its pessimism, <v Malcolm Muggeridge>its awareness that man is a foreign creature and that nothing that he does <v Malcolm Muggeridge>or constructs would be perfect. <v Malcolm Muggeridge>It's a very stabilizing view of life. <v Malcolm Muggeridge>But as soon as you lose that, people begin to be blown <v Malcolm Muggeridge>up with vanity over the great technological achievements <v Malcolm Muggeridge>and so on. And they imagine that man is all powerful, that he can <v Malcolm Muggeridge>make such a wonderful life for himself. <v Malcolm Muggeridge>Heroic and glorious. <v Malcolm Muggeridge>And of course, only to face inevitable deception. <v Narrator>Though they may not share Muggeridge's perspective, many people sense that our <v Narrator>hopes for a [city sounds] better world are being challenged as never before.
<v Narrator>Out of this general ?inaudible? [background noise masks audio] several scenarios emerge <v Narrator>as specific visions of the dangers we face. <v Adam Smith>There are many dangers that can put Western civilization on the line alright we've been <v Adam Smith>living under uh the threat of a nuclear exchange since the 1940s, <v Adam Smith>which would end civilization. And we know that we live under the threat of <v Adam Smith>uh bacteriological warfare, which could end civilization. <v Adam Smith>And now we add to this list of worries a a financial breakdown. <v Adam Smith>And could that end it as we know it? <v Adam Smith>Certainly. Why not? <v Edward Cornish>I would give the likelihood of a serious depression within the 1980s <v Edward Cornish>as high as 80 percent, perhaps even higher. <v Narrator>Edward Cornish is president of a network of futurists and planners. <v Narrator>Headquartered next to a used clothing store in Bethesda, Maryland. <v Narrator>Through speeches and articles in the Societies magazine, he has urged <v Narrator>serious consideration of the forces that could be unleashed by a major depression
<v Narrator>during the coming decade. <v Edward Cornish>The um United States government has no office set up <v Edward Cornish>to deal with a major economic uh collapse of this character, <v Edward Cornish>and um you simply find very little thought <v Edward Cornish>is really being given to it, except for a few uh people <v Edward Cornish>on the fringes of the economic uh profession you might say. <v Narrator>One of those people is newsletter, publisher and hard money advocate Howard <v Narrator>Ruff. <v Howard Ruff>?inaudible? now depression is a word that uh generally in the minds of most <v Howard Ruff>people and in the minds of the economists, refers to a deflationary scenario [jazz music <v Howard Ruff>plays] like we had in the 1930s where prices fall destroying <v Howard Ruff>business profits, businesses in trouble, but wages fall faster and unemployment <v Howard Ruff>rises 25 or 30 to 25 or 30 percent. <v Howard Ruff>And that is the classic definition of of depression. <v Howard Ruff>But if you were to redefine that slightly and say inflate uh depression is a massive loss <v Howard Ruff>of purchasing power throughout the economy, then it's possible under that definition to
<v Howard Ruff>have an inflationary depression. <v Edward Cornish>Howard Ruff uh emphasizes an inflationary depression. <v Edward Cornish>Uh I think that he could be right about this. <v Edward Cornish>I think it's also possible that we would see a deflationary uh <v Edward Cornish>uh depression in which money would become increasingly valuable rather than losing <v Edward Cornish>its its its value totally. <v Howard Ruff>The United States government can stop depressions because <v Howard Ruff>it's politically acceptable to stop depression. <v Howard Ruff>In fact you do it at the demand of the people. <v Howard Ruff>It's fun to print money and bail people out and shovel it out and buy votes. <v Howard Ruff>Stopping inflation, which is a reverse process, involves saying no to everybody. <v Howard Ruff>That's hard. <v Edward Cornish>Now, I think that the government has the power to print money, but what it does not <v Edward Cornish>have the power to do very easily is to create purchasing power, because <v Edward Cornish>what happens when the government starts running those printing presses is people lose <v Edward Cornish>confidence in the money. People become less willing to accept <v Edward Cornish>um paper money uh for their goods. <v Narrator>The final loss of belief in the currency could trigger the kind of hyperinflation
<v Narrator>that ravaged Germany between the wars. <v Narrator>The specter of money worth less than the paper it's printed on still haunts <v Narrator>the vision of those who see inflation as the high road to disaster. <v Narrator>In the end, the door is opened to chaos or worse. <v Howard Ruff>It's during that period where you have no acceptable means of exchange. <v Howard Ruff>Temporarily, you're trying to function with barter, which you can't do for very long. <v Howard Ruff>That's the chaotic period that no one can understand. <v Edward Cornish>If we see a a general collapse of the Western economies and <v Edward Cornish>and we've got to admit that if the U.S. <v Edward Cornish>economy goes into a depression, the likelihood is that other <v Edward Cornish>countries are also going to experience a depression because of the integration of the <v Edward Cornish>world economies. Now, uh with some 160 different <v Edward Cornish>nations around the world who might be be experiencing hard <v Edward Cornish>times and having to cope with uh populations that are suddenly militant <v Edward Cornish>and demanding um some kind of economic satisfaction, that we will see
<v Edward Cornish>increasing military adventurism. <v Edward Cornish>And today, we live in a world where more and more countries have nuclear <v Edward Cornish>weapons. Um so I think that that the likelihood of <v Edward Cornish>nuclear war is unfortunately rather steadily increasing. <v Narrator>[explosion] Nuclear war. To most people, the ultimate catastrophe. <v Narrator>Fears of economic collapse are eclipsed by the growing sense in many quarters <v Narrator>that nuclear war is inevitable. <v David Brower>The one thing that bothers me more than anything else is the new shift of thinking going <v David Brower>on in Washington is that people are saying a nuclear war is winnable. <v Narrator>U.S. Senator Jake Garn has been a longtime supporter of increased military <v Narrator>spending. He is a member of the Senate Select Subcommittee on Intelligence. <v Jake Garn>For many years, some people have said that war <v Jake Garn>or nuclear war was unthinkable simply because no one could
<v Jake Garn>win. The Soviet strategy has always been based on the fact that they <v Jake Garn>thought they could win a nuclear war. <v Jake Garn>They would suffer great losses. <v Jake Garn>They lost 20 million people in World War Two. <v Jake Garn>So their strategy has been one that, yes, we can win a nuclear war. <v Jake Garn>And I think that is the more realistic strategy. <v Helen Caldicott>Now when you've got people talking like that and as I travel around this country, people <v Helen Caldicott>hate the Russians so much at the moment that they would fight with no <v Helen Caldicott>concept of what that means. <v Adm. Gene Larocque>I think uh our government and by and large, the people of this country are much more <v Adm. Gene Larocque>concerned about fighting and winning a nuclear war than they are of avoiding a nuclear <v Adm. Gene Larocque>war. <v Orrin Hatch>The important way to stop nuclear uh proliferation or nuclear weaponry <v Orrin Hatch>or nuclear war is to be so strong that we have a strong deterrent <v Orrin Hatch>effect against the misuse of nuclear weapons or nuclear power all over the world. <v Orrin Hatch>Uh unfortunately, we're not that strong right now. But I I believe we will come back.
<v Narrator>Helen Caldicott is president of the Boston based Physicians for Social Responsibility, <v Narrator>a prominent anti-nuclear group. <v Helen Caldicott>And so when you have a country gearing up for war, which this country is, and <v Helen Caldicott>so is Russia, it was Einstein who said you cannot simultaneously <v Helen Caldicott>prepare for and prevent war. <v Narrator>Bruce Clayton is an ecologist who has devoted his career to a study of the <v Narrator>consequences of nuclear war. <v Narrator>He favors a renewed military buildup, [explosion] although in his view, that will <v Narrator>hardly guarantee peace. <v Bruce Clayton>I think it's probably reasonable to say that historically uh <v Bruce Clayton>balance of power confrontations degenerate into major wars. <v Bruce Clayton>World War I was an example of that, the Pax Britannia breaking down <v Bruce Clayton>and that our arms race will almost certainly <v Bruce Clayton>develop into a major war sooner or later. <v Bruce Clayton>The other side of that argument is that if
<v Bruce Clayton>we stop arming as as we have and if we do not uh attempt to rearm uh my <v Bruce Clayton>interest being mainly into getting us to do some significant civil defense, which is a <v Bruce Clayton>part of that package, if we don't do it and they continue to arm <v Bruce Clayton>the war comes sooner and we lose it. <v Bruce Clayton>And that is uh those are the the two sides of that particular sword. <v Bruce Clayton>There is no winning in that. <v Bruce Clayton>It's, I think, one of the uh the historical tragedies of human <v Bruce Clayton>nature. And it's a dilemma we're we're caught in. <v Bruce Clayton>And I don't think there's a way out. <v Narrator>[music plays] If the idea of economic depression conjures images of the 1930s, <v Narrator>our mental images of nuclear war can only rely on these pictures <v Narrator>of Hiroshima, Japan. <v Narrator>Yet the almost pristine totality of destruction left by man's first use <v Narrator>of nuclear weapons utterly fails to convey the scale of desolation
<v Narrator>that would be left after a modern war. <v Narrator>[explosion] Indeed the prospect of nuclear war prompts the most chilling question of our <v Narrator>age. What, if anything, would be left after such <v Narrator>a Holocaust? <v Narrator>For Bruce Clayton, a devout survivalist, there will be life after doomsday. <v Narrator>But others do not share his optimism. <v Helen Caldicott>Let's talk about a 20 megaton bomb dropping on a city. <v Helen Caldicott>It would gouge out a crater half a mile wide and 300 feet deep. <v Helen Caldicott>Uh it would vaporize most people and buildings up to a radius of six miles in the center. <v Helen Caldicott>Lethally injure or kill most people out to a radius of 20 miles from the center. <v Helen Caldicott>When I say lethally injure I mean shocking burns and shocking trauma as bodies are sucked <v Helen Caldicott>out of buildings by the uh precious ?inaudible? <v Helen Caldicott>and slammed against other buildings and millions of shards of flying
<v Helen Caldicott>glass bisecting, dissecting and decapitating people with shocking organ <v Helen Caldicott>injuries. <v Bruce Clayton>Certainly there's a lot of flying debris and 20 megaton is a very big bomb. <v Bruce Clayton>One comment should be that most of the Soviet warheads coming toward us are one <v Bruce Clayton>megaton warheads. If you want to talk to people about what a nuclear war will be like, <v Bruce Clayton>you talk to them about one megaton warheads. <v Bruce Clayton>If you wanna scare them, you talk to them about the few 20 megaton warheads that could be <v Bruce Clayton>used in a few places. <v Helen Caldicott>?inaudible? a symposium on the medical consequences of nuclear war, it is predicted that <v Helen Caldicott>within about 30 days after an all out nuclear attack, <v Helen Caldicott>uh 90 percent of Americans will be dead. <v Bruce Clayton>Usually, if you dig into numbers like that, you discover that the person is making the <v Bruce Clayton>calculations, is making assumptions about the behavior of the American people <v Bruce Clayton>that the American people would find extremely insulting. Uh basically, that they're no <v Bruce Clayton>smarter than cows, uh that they're not going to protect themselves and they're <v Bruce Clayton>not going to do anything right at all. <v Narrator>Retired Admiral Gene Larocque heads the Center for Defense Information in
<v Narrator>Washington, D.C. Another anti-nuclear lobby. <v Adm. Gene Larocque>Some people think that they can dig a hole, hide out for several months or even a year, <v Adm. Gene Larocque>and then come out after a nuclear attack and find life pretty much as usual. <v Adm. Gene Larocque>But it won't do any good to hide or try to hide no matter how long you stay <v Adm. Gene Larocque>underground. <v Helen Caldicott>Um there would be no one to come and help you see, because there will be no one to come <v Helen Caldicott>and help. No food. <v Helen Caldicott>Our water will be contaminated. <v Bruce Clayton>The the idea that we would have no food has some basis. <v Bruce Clayton>But survivalists have food. <v Bruce Clayton>It's not hard to put away your supply of food. <v Helen Caldicott>Yeah. The survivalists should be worrying about saving the planet, not themselves. <v Helen Caldicott>I mean, what are they doing? Who do they think they are? <v Adm. Gene Larocque>The trouble with nuclear war and trying to think about it today and predict what is going <v Adm. Gene Larocque>to happen is that it is so much bigger, so much <v Adm. Gene Larocque>more of a cataclysm than the human mind has ever encompassed, that <v Adm. Gene Larocque>no one can really describe it. <v Adm. Gene Larocque>No one wants to face it.
<v Fritjof Capra>Uh just recently, somebody in Washington, I forgot who it was, was lobbying for <v Fritjof Capra>increased military spending and buildup of armament. <v Fritjof Capra>And he said that uh he made an outrageous statement. <v Fritjof Capra>He said you can't fight World War Three with the ships of World War Two. <v Fritjof Capra>You see? The the correct statement is you can't fight fight World War Three. <v Fritjof Capra>Period. Because World War Three means, you know, potentially the end of the <v Fritjof Capra>human race. <v Bruce Clayton>It's a very bad thing that could happen to us. <v Bruce Clayton>I do not minimize it in any way. <v Bruce Clayton>I wonder if giving in to the Soviet Union as <v Bruce Clayton>a way out of having a nuclear war might not eventually be worse. <v Bruce Clayton>We're talking about a nation that has exterminated 40 million of its own people in <v Bruce Clayton>the last 65 years. <v Bruce Clayton>Uh that's getting up to nuclear war level casualties. <v Adm. Gene Larocque>I wish I were more sanguine about people, but I'm afraid that so <v Adm. Gene Larocque>ingrained in the American public and in the many of our politicians is
<v Adm. Gene Larocque>this uh anti Russian anticommunism bit that they <v Adm. Gene Larocque>are willing to blow themselves up in order to save ourselves from <v Adm. Gene Larocque>the Soviets. <v David Brower>I I think that there will be a nuclear catastrophe uh long before the year 2000 if we <v David Brower>continue going the way we're going. <v Helen Caldicott>I personally uh at this time think we'll be lucky to make it over the next <v Helen Caldicott>four years. <v Narrator>But what if we are lucky? <v Narrator>What if Western civilization doesn't [explosion] end with a bang? <v Narrator>What kind of world do we have to look forward to in the coming decades? <v Narrator>This massive report commissioned by the Carter administration is a sober estimate <v Narrator>of what life will be like in the year 2000. <v Narrator>David Brower saw one of the original drafts of the report. <v David Brower>I had a chance to see the first draft of the report and then uh heard from <v David Brower>some of the other people who are watching ?inaudible? the drafts ?what's? <v David Brower>happening and the- it was gloomier than it came out. <v David Brower>Finally, that there were some things that uh are just a little bit too much for
<v David Brower>our people to handle or at least so it was assumed. Fact, you may know that it took quite <v David Brower>a while to get the report published at all. <v David Brower>There were boxes of the report that were already in the basement of the ?council? <v David Brower>environmental quality, but they weren't being distributed. <v David Brower>There was a uh political decision made then, and this was part of the discomfort <v David Brower>of truth. <v Narrator>Among the projections that did make it into the final report, are estimates that 20 <v Narrator>percent of remaining animal species will be extinct by the year 2000. <v Narrator>Each year, an area of crop land the size of the state of Maine is becoming desert. <v Narrator>This trend will continue unabated into the new century. <v Narrator>In addition, 40 percent of remaining forests will be destroyed in the next 20 years. <v Narrator>The increasing concentration of carbon dioxide in the air is expected to <v Narrator>alter the Earth's climate in ways that are still unpredictable. <v Narrator>The gap between rich and poor countries is expected to increase, creating even <v Narrator>greater threats to world stability and peace.
<v Narrator>At Stanford University, biological scientist and population expert <v Narrator>Anne Ehrlich was one of seven outside advisers to the Global 2000 project. <v Anne Ehrlich>It's not reasonable to have a world where as many as an eighth to a quarter <v Anne Ehrlich>of people simply don't get enough to eat every day. <v Anne Ehrlich>Uh while another quarter of the population are living high off the hog and have more than <v Anne Ehrlich>they need. <v David Brower>The general tendency right now seems to be that if Global 2000 indicates we're going to <v David Brower>run out of resources, then the answer is to use 'em up still faster. <v David Brower>That's the current policy right now in this administration. <v Anne Ehrlich>The rich countries are simply going to have to come to terms with the poor countries. <v Anne Ehrlich>They're going to have to come to terms with the fact that we all live on one small <v Anne Ehrlich>planet, that we all must share the same resources. <v Anne Ehrlich>If we don't, the result is going to be more wars, chaos, uh <v Anne Ehrlich>destabilization, uncertainty and poverty. <v David Brower>I think the the nuclear catastrophe is coming by a quite an apparent route to
<v David Brower>my way of thinking, and that's that we are making demands on the world's resources that <v David Brower>cannot be met on a limited earth and that there's going to be a quarrel, there's already <v David Brower>a quarrel about who's going to get to what's at the bottom of the barrel. <v Bob Foster>I don't see- under the present uh <v Bob Foster>format of this world much escape from <v Bob Foster>an eventual nuclear war. <v Narrator>In a desolate corner of southern Utah, Bob Foster and a small group of friends <v Narrator>have found a retreat from a doomed world. <v Narrator>Like most survivalists, Foster sees a kind of inexorable force <v Narrator>bearing the world toward disaster. <v Narrator>For these people, the question is not if, it is only how <v Narrator>and when. <v Narrator>And the only hope left for Camelot is here in the wilderness <v Narrator>among the rocks where those who are prepared have established their refuge. <v Bob Foster>[music playing] We're cutting homes back in to uh formation known as Hatch Rock.
<v Bob Foster>Uh it's about 400 feet high. <v Bob Foster>It's uh probably a half mile long, a quarter of a mile through. <v Bob Foster>The rock is very tough, tenuous sandstone, <v Bob Foster>uh very stable. We want to set up uh some large <v Bob Foster>areas wherein if we do face any kind of a <v Bob Foster>a national, economic or military disaster, we could uh take <v Bob Foster>people and help see them through the tr- the trouble time. <v Bob Foster>Uh without going into pure socialism, uh per say, uh we're <v Bob Foster>trying to establish a new and a different system, <v Bob Foster>which we think uh meets the Bible admonition <v Bob Foster>that we are our brother's keeper. <v Bob Foster>And if our brothers, through their errors destroy the world that they're in, <v Bob Foster>we want them to have uh an alternate choice.
<v Ron Boutwell>Here we are now in the ?basic? condominium unit. <v Ron Boutwell>You can see that it's uh fully furnished and includes four ?man? <v Ron Boutwell>years of food in each unit. <v Ron Boutwell>Food is stored in the walls, areas in the furniture, under the bed and in the ceiling <v Ron Boutwell>areas. Uh we have here the hide a bed in addition to the private <v Ron Boutwell>bedroom area. <v Narrator>What Bob Foster is doing out of a religious motivation, Ron Boutwell, <v Narrator>a lawyer turned land developer, saw as a viable commercial enterprise. <v Narrator>?Terene Ark One? <v Narrator>will be, when completed, a 250 unit condominium project <v Narrator>built underground. [Ron in audibly speaking] Its location was carefully chosen <v Narrator>in regard to factors that Boutwell illustrates from a U.S. <v Narrator>map with overlays. <v Narrator>Panic population movement, annual snowfall, and seismic zones <v Narrator>are among the considerations which determine the best place for surviving a broad range <v Narrator>of catastrophes. <v Ron Boutwell>A very popular overlay is the high priority nuclear target zones.
<v Ron Boutwell>For those people that believe that nuclear war is likely, don't locate <v Ron Boutwell>near a high priority target. <v Ron Boutwell>The last overlay map, which is I think is probably the most important, is a <v Ron Boutwell>population overlay map showing the population density of the US. <v Ron Boutwell>The bottom line of survival is security and uh a breakdown <v Ron Boutwell>of law and order is generally uh the worse problem <v Ron Boutwell>that you can experience. And the more people, the worse that problem will exist. <v Ron Boutwell>With this composite overlay, it shows uh that there are only a <v Ron Boutwell>few places in the United States that are free from those various considerations. <v Ron Boutwell>One is this tech area in Texas and another area is the area we are here <v Ron Boutwell>in southern Utah and this other area in Arizona and Mojave Desert, California. <v Narrator>The project is designed to be completely self supporting for periods up to a year. <v Narrator>It is claimed to be impervious to nuclear blasts and fallout, as well as to a danger <v Narrator>Boutwell considers even more significant: other people.
<v Ron Boutwell>I do feel that one of the big problems that is occurring is oncor- ongoing is <v Ron Boutwell>the breakdown of law and order. <v Ron Boutwell>And that will occur and and be a byproduct of whether we have a nuclear war, an economic <v Ron Boutwell>collapse, natural disasters and even without those it's occurring now and it's gonna <v Ron Boutwell>get worse. <v Kurt Saxon>By the end of 1982, everyone will know that the end <v Kurt Saxon>of civilization is at hand and people will panic all over the planet, not just <v Kurt Saxon>here. <v Narrator>Kurt Saxon is the self-proclaimed father of the survival movement. <v Narrator>Taking his inspiration from the character of John Galt in <v Narrator>Ayn Rand's novel Atlas Shrugged, Saxon left California <v Narrator>and moved to Harrison, Arkansas, where he set up a mail order business in survival <v Narrator>literature. [inaudible talking] Security <v Narrator>for Kurt Saxon is only possible in isolation from large urban populations <v Narrator>that would be displaced by war or famine. <v Narrator>He's counting on his Harrison neighbors and the surrounding terrain to provide
<v Narrator>an effective buffer between himself and mobs of city dwellers. <v Kurt Saxon>The area would be impassable with only a little effort on the part of the locals. <v Kurt Saxon>Uh we could put dynamite up around the cliff and just block the road in 3 seconds. <v Kurt Saxon>Or else we could go up further and put dynamite under culverts and wipe the road out <v Kurt Saxon>altogether. It'll be sort of like the black plague in the 14th century <v Kurt Saxon>from 1348 to 1361, the plague ravaged <v Kurt Saxon>this planet and wiped out half of the people in Britain. <v Kurt Saxon>And the intelligent ones [clears throat] and the affluent left the big cities <v Kurt Saxon>and went out into the countryside and partied and told witty stories until it was all <v Kurt Saxon>over. And that's all I've done. It's as simple as that. <v Malcolm Muggeridge>Uh when a war is about to break out, as I remember very well, in 1914 <v Malcolm Muggeridge>and 1939, you had this vague apprehension. <v Malcolm Muggeridge>This fear that people had and some people even think to themselves, they must
<v Malcolm Muggeridge>look 'round and find somewhere where they can take refuge. <v Malcolm Muggeridge>But of course, the catastrophe of a great civilization coming to an <v Malcolm Muggeridge>end is not something that you can you can escape from. <v Malcolm Muggeridge>It's going to- they know in their hearts that it involves everybody. <v Jake Garn>Now, I think those who talk about doomsday, who talk about total failure of <v Jake Garn>the economic system and nuclear attack are vastly overstating <v Jake Garn>the problems. I'm far more optimistic than that. <v Jake Garn>And I'm confident that we can address those problems. <v Jake Garn>And I don't share the fears of many of those people. <v Howard Ruff>As long as the system is functioning, I prefer to work within the system and I expect the <v Howard Ruff>system to keep functioning. And I think those people that have headed for the hills, have <v Howard Ruff>they have given up. They've said the war is over. <v Howard Ruff>Uh the conspiracy or the communists or whatever have won. <v Howard Ruff>They probably don't vote. <v Howard Ruff>Uh they probably uh are they're not devoting themselves to constructive <v Howard Ruff>work and bringing about change. I can't conceive of a Kurt Saxon forming a political
<v Howard Ruff>action committee, a nonprofit foundation for education, a lobbying group testifying <v Howard Ruff>before Senate committees, all the things of which I'm doing. <v Kurt Saxon>I don't believe in any political or social solutions. <v Kurt Saxon>I never really did. <v Kurt Saxon>And uh what Howard and his <v Kurt Saxon>school of thought is doing is like if you have a terminal cancer patient, <v Kurt Saxon>now, Howard goes in there and fluffs up the pillows and maybe gives them a little shot of <v Kurt Saxon>dope and they feel fine for a little while, but it's not gonna work. <v Howard Ruff>Now, there's a lot of very good people in the survivalist movement. <v Howard Ruff>A lot of concerned Americans. <v Howard Ruff>They're frightened and they have reason for that fright. <v Howard Ruff>This is a very frightening environment out there. <v Howard Ruff>So in no way am I sitting in judgment on the motives of the mess that people are caught <v Howard Ruff>up in that. I do sit in judgment of some of the motives of the leaders of this group. <v Narrator>If there is any ambivalence in Howard Ruff's attitude toward the survival movement, it <v Narrator>was evident that his fourth annual Ruff Times convention in San Diego. <v Howard Ruff>The great political bias is still inflation and that ultimately this
<v Howard Ruff>is and will be until the end, a political issue <v Howard Ruff>and the end is not yet in sight. Thank you [applause]. <v Narrator>?While? over 5000 subscribers gathered to hear Ruff extoll political solutions <v Narrator>to our problems, on the other side of the convention center in the exhibit area, <v Narrator>the survival merchants were hawking the items people will need when those political <v Narrator>solutions fail. [music playing] [people chattering] <v Man 1>?inaudible? [people chattering] <v Woman 1>-fact dry and you reconstituted lukewarm water for about 15, 20 minutes. <v Man 2>What we're about is we're talking about the the foods and the <v Man 2>uh the needs of people to take them through a period of, say, a year where they can't <v Man 2>uh they the uh regular channels of distribution
<v Man 2>of food maybe be eliminated. <v Bill Pier>If there's an economic disruption, it's probably gonna last a year or so, and therefore <v Bill Pier>we better prepare for that long. <v Bill Pier>And I think it will cause some problems and the social problems <v Bill Pier>that will cause it to be kind of violent, at least for a period of time. <v Man 3>Diamonds are very portable, easy to carry, and they're the greatest form of concentrated <v Man 3>wealth in the world. Therefore, in times of disaster, there's nothing better to have <v Man 3>than diamonds. <v Man 4>The reason you want to buy a Krugerrands is because before too long, <v Man 4>when the dollar goes down to zero, you're gonna have something to barter with. <v Man 4>You're gonna have something of value um against the dollar bill and you're gonna be able <v Man 4>to buy goods and services with it. <v Adam Smith>It seems to me the flaw in the doomsayers argument is that they assume <v Adam Smith>that everything will remain constant except the one variable <v Adam Smith>that they pick. For example, that the United States will fall apart and have <v Adam Smith>total chaos and total disaster. <v Adam Smith>But if you have a bag of silver coins or a couple of Krugerrands, that the butcher shop
<v Adam Smith>will be open and the ANP will be open and that they will take your Krugerrand at the ANP. <v Adam Smith>I just don't think it will happen that way. <v Narrator>For Adam Smith, author of several best selling books on the forces which shape the <v Narrator>economy, the survivalist attitude may be in the end as <v Narrator>dangerous to the country as any economic or military threat. <v Adam Smith>I find that the divisiveness comes out of <v Adam Smith>uh from people who are the least informed and and who value <v Adam Smith>uh community ties the least. <v Adam Smith>That is to say, I think if you trust your neigh- you know, if you want to save yourself, <v Adam Smith>is it the answer to stock your basement and get a shotgun to defend <v Adam Smith>yourself? Who is who is it that's coming to get you? <v Adam Smith>I I would much rather trust my neighbors. <v Adam Smith>And be able to depend upon them and then to trust my town and then my state <v Adam Smith>and then my country, than really to
<v Adam Smith>depend on actions that are so lonely in which I tried to save <v Adam Smith>only myself. <v Orrin Hatch>Well, although there are some conservatives among the hard- hardcore survivalists who <v Orrin Hatch>who, like Howard Ruff, feel that we are going to have to ?gotten to go? <v Orrin Hatch>very hard times and it may be difficult to save this country and bring it out of the <v Orrin Hatch>economic mess it's in. An awful lot of the survivalists are uh the hardcore <v Orrin Hatch>radical left of the 60s. <v Orrin Hatch>And that hardcore radical left has never had any guts. <v Orrin Hatch>Those people wouldn't stand up for the country at that time and they're not doin' it <v Orrin Hatch>today. And frankly, I think that's where a lot of that impetus comes, that Jim Jones type <v Orrin Hatch>syndrome of people who want to look for some messiah who uh instead of looking <v Orrin Hatch>towards the resiliency and the strength of this country uh to pull us out of the economic <v Orrin Hatch>morass we're in. <v Narrator>For many survivalists, that kind of idealism, [inaudible talking] fails to account <v Narrator>for some basic truths about human nature. <v Joel Skousen>Ultimately, I may say I'm pessimistic. <v Joel Skousen>Ultimately, I do not believe we'll be able to turn things around. <v Joel Skousen>So you could say I was one of the doomsayers in that sense.
<v Joel Skousen>Um but that's because I have uh a belief, knowing human nature <v Joel Skousen>as it is, that people have become suckered into a self-indulgent <v Joel Skousen>type of lifestyle, which they right now are in the majority, and they have more voting <v Joel Skousen>power and will never, ever relinquish that love and desire for <v Joel Skousen>self-indulgence. That's what makes me ultimately pessimistic. <v Adam Smith>Well, I hope they're not right. <v Adam Smith>Maybe it is naive idealism. <v Adam Smith>I don't know. I don't think this country will survive without idealism. <v Adam Smith>I think it has to have a noble image of itself really, or it won't <v Adam Smith>survive. <v Narrator>Though moments of national idealism that may have [rocket launching] become scarce in <v Narrator>recent years, there are events that seem to reignite a communal spirit. <v Narrator>A [rumbling] sense that an age of greatness has npt yet passed. <v Narrator>That the fight is by no means over. <v Narrator>The first flight of the space shuttle provided such a moment. <v Narrator>For some ?people?, it was far more than a symbolic event.
<v Narrator>It was a major step toward the solution of some of our most fundamental problems. <v J. Peter Vajk>The uh Apollo voyages to the moon and these various deep space probes <v J. Peter Vajk>in the last 10, 15 years have taught us that the solar system's resources, <v J. Peter Vajk>of minerals of energy in the form of sunlight are just immensely vaster <v J. Peter Vajk>than we could ever conceive of all of human civilization using for millions or hundreds <v J. Peter Vajk>of millions of years. <v J. Peter Vajk>We have the technological capability in the next 20, 10 or 20 years in the United States <v J. Peter Vajk>to start developing those in a large scale fashion. <v J. Peter Vajk>I think nothing would serve as a more vigorous and convincing <v J. Peter Vajk>um proof that the future is open and unlimited- <v Narrator>[inaudible talking] J. Peter Vajk is a scientist specializing in development of <v Narrator>outerspace resources. <v Narrator>His 1978 book is called Doomsday has been Canceled. <v J. Peter Vajk>I I think it's intrinsic to human nature. <v J. Peter Vajk>And for that matter, to any living being we know of on here on the Earth to
<v J. Peter Vajk>always be reaching out, to explore, to try new possibilities. <v J. Peter Vajk>And uh the space um exploration and exploitation, it's possible the next generation <v J. Peter Vajk>or so, I think is simply part of the natural trend of everything that human beings <v J. Peter Vajk>have ever done o- on this earth. Everything that life has done on this earth. <v Willis Harman>The so-called technological optimist uh has a view of the picture <v Willis Harman>of the future in which uh we solve our problems by not losing our <v Willis Harman>nerve, by continuing technological growth, continuing economic growth, which means <v Willis Harman>continuing consumption. Solving the associated problems somehow by more tech- <v Willis Harman>technology. <v J. Peter Vajk>It's become rather clear that if you allow for some technological innovation <v J. Peter Vajk>and substitution of materials which are commonly available on the earth to use <v J. Peter Vajk>those in new ways for the purposes for which today we use scarce materials <v J. Peter Vajk>that with the single exception of fossil fuels, this planet Earth has enough resources <v J. Peter Vajk>to sustain an American kind of standard of living for a population of 10 to 20 billion
<v J. Peter Vajk>years uh people for several million years. <v Anne Ehrlich>He's going to do it with mirrors. <v Anne Ehrlich>I can't imagine how he thinks it's going to be done. <v Narrator>In fact, Vajk has in mind something like mirrors. <v Narrator>One of his solutions to the energy problem is solar powered satellites. <v J. Peter Vajk>One of the concepts that I'm most interested in and working on is the idea of solar power <v J. Peter Vajk>satellites. It's the idea of putting very large arrays of solar collectors into space <v J. Peter Vajk>where the sun is is constantly shining. <v J. Peter Vajk>Converting the uh the solar energy in space into uh microwave or laser beams <v J. Peter Vajk>to transmit it down to the ground and use it down here, <v Malcolm Muggeridge>'Cause the dreams of materialists are the most fantastic and absurd <v Malcolm Muggeridge>of all dreams. They exceeded in idiocy, even the wildest, <v Malcolm Muggeridge>most superstitious fancies of the past. <v Malcolm Muggeridge>And, of course, the materialists of the Western world have seriously <v Malcolm Muggeridge>believed that by uh going on raising our
<v Malcolm Muggeridge>gross national product and by developing inventions of different kinds <v Malcolm Muggeridge>and the marvelous new technology and discovering new sources <v Malcolm Muggeridge>of energy that we can take the American <v Malcolm Muggeridge>way of life, which has come become to be the sort of pattern of successful <v Malcolm Muggeridge>materialism and spread it through the whole world. <v Willis Harman>Uh when you look closely into this, it's essentially the faith that <v Willis Harman>we will solve the problems of modern society and the global problems by <v Willis Harman>the kinds of approaches which uh we're the generation of those <v Willis Harman>problems in the first place. So there's a certain problem with that argument, as I see <v Willis Harman>it. <v J. Peter Vajk>F- for many people there- I think there is a sense of uh deep seated sense of guilt <v J. Peter Vajk>about all the things that humanity has done wrong and evil in the last 20, 30, <v J. Peter Vajk>200 years, however far back you care to push it. <v J. Peter Vajk>And some sense of um, well,
<v J. Peter Vajk>if bad things happen to us, we've got 'em coming. <v J. Peter Vajk>We deserve them. And uh that to me is is I <v J. Peter Vajk>think that really comes down fundamentally to a religious viewpoint of what your personal <v J. Peter Vajk>religious view about why human beings are on Earth and where where are we going <v J. Peter Vajk>and what's the purpose of civilization? <v Narrator>[Willis talking in background] But in Willis Harman's view, it is precisely the loss of a <v Narrator>religious perspective that lies at the heart of our current dilemma. <v Willis Harman>The key core trend in there is the secularization of values that started <v Willis Harman>at the end of the Middle Ages. That is the shifting of values that dominate that <v Willis Harman>the most powerful institutions in society, shifting away from the religious traditional <v Willis Harman>base and uh over to uh pragmatic uh <v Willis Harman>?utilitarianism?. <v Malcolm Muggeridge>The very success of the technological side of all this <v Malcolm Muggeridge>is itself the cause of its ultimate destruction. <v Willis Harman>We're trying to run a very, very complex system, having debunked
<v Willis Harman>uh intuitions, spiritual insight and and the various unconscious <v Willis Harman>ways in which we do handle very complex situations. <v Willis Harman>And we've tried to do it all with cost benefit analyses and rational analyses. <v Willis Harman>And that's part of the reason we get the feeling that it's out of control, because we're <v Willis Harman>not approaching the problems with the right kinds of tools. <v Narrator>[inaudible speaking] Marilyn Ferguson is the author of a new book on cultural change <v Narrator>called The Aquarium Conspiracy. <v Marilyn Ferguson>Somehow it's in us as human beings and certainly as societies to keep on doing <v Marilyn Ferguson>what we're doing even if it doesn't work. <v Marilyn Ferguson>That like the saying we have better the devil you know than the devil you don't know. <v Marilyn Ferguson>But many people are saying, no, wait a minute. <v Marilyn Ferguson>If what we've been doing isn't working, doing more of it isn't going to help. <v Marilyn Ferguson>Doing it better or harder isn't going to help. <v Marilyn Ferguson>It's like a a cartoon that I saw in The New Yorker uh where the king is <v Marilyn Ferguson>talking to his counselors and he said, I could still fix Humpty Dumpty if I just had more <v Marilyn Ferguson>horses and more men. <v Narrator>[music plays] But many of the same people who reject our faith in the ability of
<v Narrator>technology and continued growth to solve our deepest problems, see <v Narrator>our salvation in another direction, one in which they believe we're <v Narrator>already headed. <v Fritjof Capra>The way I see our situation is from an evolutionary perspective, <v Fritjof Capra>uh a perspective that has been described very often by cultural historians. <v Fritjof Capra>Uh what they point out is that civilizations or cultures have the <v Fritjof Capra>tendency to rise, you see, if you draw a curve, they would rise, culminate, <v Fritjof Capra>then decline and disintegrate, and they will then be <v Fritjof Capra>replaced by a different culture. <v Fritjof Capra>But this different culture, the new culture is rising while the <v Fritjof Capra>old culture is declining. So here we have now a new culture rising where <v Fritjof Capra>the other one is declining. And I think we are sort of just about <v Fritjof Capra>here where the mainstream culture <v Fritjof Capra>is going down. And the new culture, which I like to call the rising culture,
<v Fritjof Capra>is going up. The mainstream or declining culture <v Fritjof Capra>is composed of uh most of our social institutions, including <v Fritjof Capra>the universities, government, the corporations and so on. <v Fritjof Capra>The rising culture is composed of the various movements that originated in the 60s and <v Fritjof Capra>70s, like the uh consumer movements, the ecology movement, <v Fritjof Capra>the feminist movement, the uh human potential movement, <v Fritjof Capra>the holistic health movement and so on and so on. <v Fritjof Capra>It's a large number of movements. <v Fritjof Capra>And they are these forces, these cultural and social forces, <v Fritjof Capra>are engaged in this profound cultural transformation. <v Marilyn Ferguson>There is the theory of ?dissipated? structures by a Belgian physical chemist named Ilya <v Marilyn Ferguson>Prigogine who won the Nobel Prize in 1977. <v Marilyn Ferguson>That theory says that in all open systems, which can be a person, a society, uh <v Marilyn Ferguson>an amino acid, an egg in all systems that exchange energy with the environment, <v Marilyn Ferguson>that those systems under stress, if the stress gets great enough and the fluctuations
<v Marilyn Ferguson>of energy, perturbations, Prigogine calls it, gets great enough, then the <v Marilyn Ferguson>system itself will break apart and it will reorganize itself at a higher level of <v Marilyn Ferguson>order. <v Willis Harman>Uh the social movements of the 60s provide a kind of uh force for all of this. <v Willis Harman>Uh the indications of a very fundamental change in our basic beliefs about the nature of <v Willis Harman>the human mind, human consciousness, its relation to the universe and so on. <v Willis Harman>All of that is also an indication of something happening at a very deep level. <v Marilyn Ferguson>[music plays] We're all on the same. <v Marilyn Ferguson>And yet sometimes you meet people that <v Marilyn Ferguson>?hear the same beat? and recognize the same grammar [continues speaking]- <v Narrator>The transformationists see change occurring on various levels. <v Narrator>At a daylong conference at the Irvine Bowl in Laguna Beach, California, those <v Narrator>concerned with the personal levels of transformation explored the ideas <v Narrator>they see altering our assumptions about human nature, about religion and
<v Narrator>science and our relationship to the universe. <v Marilyn Ferguson>We see a tremendous upsurge in interest in spiritual experience, <v Marilyn Ferguson>peak experiences. <v Marilyn Ferguson>Um Americans are more interested than ever before, according to all the surveys in this <v Marilyn Ferguson>kind of experience. They're much more interested in having <v Marilyn Ferguson>a sense of community, having a sense of connectedness with other people and a sense of <v Marilyn Ferguson>being a part of God if you if you wanna put it that way. <v Narrator>On the political level, the transformationists see the need for new assumptions to <v Narrator>reshape the very foundations of government and society. <v Fritjof Capra>In our social and political situation, we find ourselves in a world <v Fritjof Capra>which is globally interconnected, where all phenomena are mutually interdependent. <v Fritjof Capra>And the world view that we are still applying to describe this world is <v Fritjof Capra>the 17th century mechanistic world view uh <v Fritjof Capra>constructed by Descartes, Newton, Galileo and so on, a world view
<v Fritjof Capra>which does not offer an ecological perspective. <v Fritjof Capra>And is-it is this ecological perspective that we need most of all. <v Fritjof Capra>So most of our sciences and most of our social institutions, including <v Fritjof Capra>the uh universities, the government institutions <v Fritjof Capra>and so on, are locked into this Cartesian mechanistic worldview <v Fritjof Capra>and are therefore unable to understand the most urgent problems <v Fritjof Capra>of our times. <v Narrator>The language of the transformationists seems to echo the words of a statesman spoken <v Narrator>during another crisis. <v Narrator>The dogmas of the quiet past are inadequate to the stormy present. <v Narrator>As our case is new, he said, so we must think anew. <v Orrin Hatch>I don't know anybody back here who feels that way. <v Orrin Hatch>Who really is looking at the present political scene. <v Orrin Hatch>The new ideas, the new economic ideas, the new government ideas are coming from the <v Orrin Hatch>conservatives. The new conservatives that we have in the Congress. <v Fritjof Capra>These historians then describe that the
<v Fritjof Capra>dynamics of transformation is such that the decline in culture, <v Fritjof Capra>instead of changing its views and adapting itself to the new situation, on <v Fritjof Capra>the contrary becomes ever more rigid, holds on to the old ideals, <v Fritjof Capra>and uh you know entrenches itself in the old views. <v Fritjof Capra>And that's what we are observing now. So we have a a in America and the United States we <v Fritjof Capra>are in politically now we have a conservative, what they call a renaissance. <v Fritjof Capra>And what I see as as sort of the last hurrah of of these conservative ideals, <v Fritjof Capra>because these are outdated ideas. <v Marilyn Ferguson>At the end of a novel called Captain Newman, M.D., there's a little story. <v Marilyn Ferguson>The narrator is saying, my father used to tell of an island population <v Marilyn Ferguson>who got word that a great tidal wave was coming and there was nothing they could do about <v Marilyn Ferguson>it. The tidal wave was going to sweep over the island. <v Marilyn Ferguson>So the philosophers went off on a hilltop to talk about the whole thing and to wonder at <v Marilyn Ferguson>the meaning of it all. And the theologians went off to consider what God had to do
<v Marilyn Ferguson>with it and perhaps to pray, and the Hedonists went off to eat, drink and be merry. <v Marilyn Ferguson>And one man gathered all the smartest people on the island to talk about how to live <v Marilyn Ferguson>underwater. And that's where we are, I think it's that we <v Marilyn Ferguson>see a lot of threat. We see economic threat. <v Marilyn Ferguson>We see, in a sense, threat uh from possible nuclear <v Marilyn Ferguson>disaster. We see environmental threats. <v Marilyn Ferguson>And that the only answer is to work as if there is an answer. <v Malcolm Muggeridge>And then there are, of course, also these tools formationists, <v Malcolm Muggeridge>these people who think that they can bring about a type <v Malcolm Muggeridge>of human being who will be able to deal with the circumstances <v Malcolm Muggeridge>that the breakdown of our civilization would create and <v Malcolm Muggeridge>establish a way of life, very rather like the people because I remember <v Malcolm Muggeridge>very well, Berlin in the war, which was <v Malcolm Muggeridge>reduced literally to a great pile of rubble.
<v Malcolm Muggeridge>And in that rubble, you suddenly notice there were people living. <v Malcolm Muggeridge>People's uh ?best?, making little houses for themselves and continuing their lives. <v Malcolm Muggeridge>But they were they were transformationists of the kind. <v Malcolm Muggeridge>And of course, it was all tragic. <v Malcolm Muggeridge>Um now, insofar as man has a future, it <v Malcolm Muggeridge>is because he sees himself as belonging to eternity <v Malcolm Muggeridge>and made in the image of his creator. <v Malcolm Muggeridge>If he loses this sense, if he tries to <v Malcolm Muggeridge>create or invent or achieve a future solely <v Malcolm Muggeridge>in terms of his dimensions, of his mind, of his possibilities, <v Malcolm Muggeridge>he will only succeed in making one more hell on <v Malcolm Muggeridge>earth rather than a heaven on earth. <v Narrator>[music plays] [waves crash] Heaven on earth. In an age of faith, men awaited the literal <v Narrator>fulfillment of that ?inaudible?, but in a secular rage, the dream is
<v Narrator>not lost. It goes by another name: Utopia. <v Narrator>And if humanism makes man the arbiter of his own destiny, then a man made heaven <v Narrator>on earth is not an idle fancy, nor is doomsday inevitable. <v Narrator>It is not surprising, therefore, that the supposed doomsayers of this program regard <v Narrator>their visions as warnings and not promises. <v Narrator>They share the humanist faith that ?long? <v Narrator>on ?us? or at least most of us will choose life rather than death <v Narrator>and continue down the road toward a better world. <v Adam Smith>They simply have to be more intelligent and more alert and <v Adam Smith>more disciplined. <v David Brower>We have the capability of undoing most of the problems we've created. <v Anne Ehrlich>If we do get together, look at this- at the sort of future <v Anne Ehrlich>that Global 2000 and other studies have put forward for us and decide <v Anne Ehrlich>that what we want is a sustainable world, a system that we can live with indefinitely <v Anne Ehrlich>and really put our minds to solving the problems, it probably can be done.
<v Helen Caldicott>And I'm done if I'm going to let let those guys blow us all up. <v Helen Caldicott>I've got three kids who I want to survive. <v Helen Caldicott>I'm a physician um and lots of other physicians feel the same way so we're gonna <v Helen Caldicott>educate everybody. <v Narrator>In a real sense. The survivalists are not doomsayers either. <v Narrator>They are simply utopianists on a much more exclusive scale. <v Bob Foster>We're hoping to establish a Garden of Eden out here. <v Ron Boutwell>All those people that uh suggest that saving only a small group of people is <v Ron Boutwell>is fruitless. I think you forget that this this world started from a small group of <v Ron Boutwell>people. <v Kurt Saxon>There will be survivors no matter what. <v Kurt Saxon>And they'll uh go on and <v Kurt Saxon>uh make us a base. <v Kurt Saxon>And mainly what I'm doing is uh disseminating 19th and early <v Kurt Saxon>20th century technology, which the layman can apply to <v Kurt Saxon>his own needs. And will give us a very comfortable lifestyle <v Kurt Saxon>until we build up our science and technology so we can just go right
<v Kurt Saxon>on and explore the universe. <v Kurt Saxon>Finally. <v Narrator>[Fritjof speaking inaudibly] The transformationists certainly aren't doomsayers. <v Narrator>The decay of our civilization is for them the seedbed of a better world. <v Fritjof Capra>Many things are dying. Other things are being born. <v Fritjof Capra>And so there's there's ground for hope and optimism and enthusiasm. <v Fritjof Capra>And I find myself active in this rising culture. <v Fritjof Capra>So I'm very enthusiastic about the things that are happening. <v Willis Harman>An analogy that makes a lot of sense to me is the analogy with the metamorphosis of the <v Willis Harman>caterpillar into the butterfly. <v Edward Cornish>What we need, I think, are people with artistic vision <v Edward Cornish>who can imagine a better world, who can cre- paint pictures <v Edward Cornish>of a better world, who can create model cities where we can actually understand <v Edward Cornish>and feel, people who can uh explore new ways of <v Edward Cornish>of behaving as human beings, who can create new value systems for <v Edward Cornish>us. And these people can create, I think, a new vision
<v Edward Cornish>which we can then use as a kind of lodestar <v Edward Cornish>or uh ideal. <v Narrator>These are the dominant voices of our age. <v Narrator>They speak a message of optimism, of faith in ourselves, our system, <v Narrator>our potential. The faith that human reason and resourcefulness <v Narrator>will always save us in the end. <v Narrator>Western civilization is not about to perish from pessimism. <v Narrator>[birds chirping] There is at least one voice, however, who fears we are doomed by our <v Narrator>optimism. <v Malcolm Muggeridge>The point being what it um- what it amounts to is <v Malcolm Muggeridge>human beings imagining that they are in <v Malcolm Muggeridge>complete control of their own destiny [music plays loudly]. That men are sufficient. <v Malcolm Muggeridge>All this is untrue. <v Malcolm Muggeridge>Men are not self sufficient. <v Malcolm Muggeridge>God is necessary. <v Malcolm Muggeridge>Take that away, fill in- fill his mind with mad dreams of
<v Malcolm Muggeridge>his own achievements, his own power, his own pleasures, and he's ?finished?. <v Malcolm Muggeridge>Of course, there's one satisfaction that I find when I think <v Malcolm Muggeridge>of all these things and that is this: that although it's true <v Malcolm Muggeridge>that the end of a civilization and the chaos in the dark age that follows <v Malcolm Muggeridge>is the thing to be dreaded, what would be even more dreadful, infinitely <v Malcolm Muggeridge>more dreadful would be if this materialist dream that people had <v Malcolm Muggeridge>of men creating a perfect way of life for themselves on the basis of their <v Malcolm Muggeridge>own materialism, if that dream had come true, it would have been infinitely <v Malcolm Muggeridge>more terrible. And the complete discrediting of that dream, the obvious <v Malcolm Muggeridge>fact being born in a ?inaudible? <v Malcolm Muggeridge>by everything that's happening that it can't be is to me a source of <v Malcolm Muggeridge>infinite relief and even happiness. <v Narrator>[waves crashing] Perhaps the only authentic doomsayer we can present is an old man who <v Narrator>sees the coming of a new dark age.
Program
The Doomsayers
Producing Organization
KUED
Contributing Organization
The Walter J. Brown Media Archives & Peabody Awards Collection at the University of Georgia (Athens, Georgia)
AAPB ID
cpb-aacip-83-11xd2d5d
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Description
Program Description
"The Doomsayers brings together on television for the first time (to our knowledge) the major arguments concerning the future of Western Civilization. Included are discussions of possible man-made catastrophes such as nuclear war, economic collapse and overpopulation. These scenarios are juxtaposed with visions by technological optimists, transformationists, and those advocating business-as-usual piecemeal solutions to problems. Ultimately all of these viewpoints are shown to be essentially linked by their assumptions about the inherent solvability of man-made problems, and are in turn contrasted with a religious perspective represented by journalist Malcolm Muggeridge, who argues the inevitable demise of a civilization based on material and humanist assumptions. The viewer is thus given the opportunity to clarify his or her own beliefs about the future against the fabric of ideas presented in the program."--1981 Peabody Awards entry form.
Broadcast Date
1981-11-18
Created Date
1981
Asset type
Program
Genres
Documentary
Topics
Social Issues
Rights
KUED
Media type
Moving Image
Embed Code
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Credits
Producing Organization: KUED
AAPB Contributor Holdings
The Walter J. Brown Media Archives & Peabody Awards Collection at the University of Georgia
Identifier: cpb-aacip-d018d99c371 (Filename)
Format: U-matic
Duration: 0:58:45
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Citations
Chicago: “The Doomsayers,” 1981-11-18, The Walter J. Brown Media Archives & Peabody Awards Collection at the University of Georgia, American Archive of Public Broadcasting (GBH and the Library of Congress), Boston, MA and Washington, DC, accessed June 26, 2022, http://americanarchive.org/catalog/cpb-aacip-83-11xd2d5d.
MLA: “The Doomsayers.” 1981-11-18. The Walter J. Brown Media Archives & Peabody Awards Collection at the University of Georgia, American Archive of Public Broadcasting (GBH and the Library of Congress), Boston, MA and Washington, DC. Web. June 26, 2022. <http://americanarchive.org/catalog/cpb-aacip-83-11xd2d5d>.
APA: The Doomsayers. Boston, MA: The Walter J. Brown Media Archives & Peabody Awards Collection at the University of Georgia, American Archive of Public Broadcasting (GBH and the Library of Congress), Boston, MA and Washington, DC. Retrieved from http://americanarchive.org/catalog/cpb-aacip-83-11xd2d5d