Chicken Little vs. The Green Dragon

The Demons that own 1% of the world’s wealth contribute to fake evangelical groups like the ones that demonize ecologists who are trying to save the earth. These Demon Chickens are going after SWING VOTERS! We must think about THE SWING VOTE if the planet is going to be saved.

John ‘Hidden Bohemian Prophet’.

The US evangelicals who believe environmentalism is a ‘native evil’

The Cornwall Alliance, a prominent group of religious thinkers in the US, explains why it urges followers to ‘resist the Green Dragon’
Leo blog : Cal Beisner founder of the Cornwall Alliance
Screen grab of a video showing Cal Beisner, founder of a US religious group called the Cornwall Alliance. Photograph:

Watching from afar how the environmental debate plays out in the US can be perplexing for many onlookers. Arguably, nowhere is the so-called “culture war” between left and right so heavily fought.

What is often not fully absorbed by onlookers, though, is the underlying role that religious doctrine – or “pulpit power” – plays in the environmental debate in the US. On the one hand, you have the “Creation Care” movement which is prevalent in some quarters of the Christian Church. On the other, particularly among evangelicals, you often see a vitriolic reaction aimed towards environmentalism.

Just last month, a survey of 1,000 Protestant pastors found that 41% strongly disagreed with the statement: “I believe global warming is real and manmade.” The survey also found that 52% of the pastors address the issue of the environment with their churches once a year or less, with evangelical pastors speaking less often on the environment than mainline pastors.

When, in 2007, I interviewed the Bishop of London in the midst of his “fast” from flying, I asked him about this issue. He was scornful of evangelicals who “justify and sanctify irresponsible, anti-social behaviour” though a very literal interpretation of the Old Testament’s “mythological language”.

Much of this debate seems to centre on the interpretation of one of the most contentious verses in the Bible – the so-called Dominion Mandate, or Genesis 1:28:

And God blessed them [Adam and Eve], and God said unto them, be fruitful, and multiply, and replenish the Earth, and subdue it: and have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the fowl of the air, and over every living thing that moveth upon the Earth.

An organisation in the US called the Cornwall Alliance has intentionally and prominently positioned itself at the very heart of this debate. It describes itself as “a coalition of clergy, theologians, religious leaders, scientists, academics, and policy experts committed to bringing a balanced Biblical view of stewardship to the critical issues of environment and development”. Its board of advisors features many religious leaders and thinkers, but includes scientists such as the climate sceptic Dr Roy Spencer. Dr. E. Calvin Beisner, its spokesman, is a prominent media figure in the US, appearing on shows such as Fox News’ Glenn Beck, where he dispenses his harsh criticism of environmentalism.

To better understand this mindset, I recently approached Beisner with an interview request. He agreed, but said that he wanted me to first read the Cornwall Alliance’s latest book called Resisting the Green Dragon: Dominion not Death. Written by James Wanliss, who describes himself as a “Christian physicist”, the book is built on the premise that “without doubt one of the greatest threats to society and the church today is the multifaceted environmentalist movement”. It’s hard to summarise any book in a few sentences, but here are a few snippets to give a flavour of the book’s tone:

The Litany of the Green Dragon provides some certainty for people without God, who drift steadily from their rational moorings, and for whom there is an increasing sense of separation anxiety…

We humans are special creatures, in a class of our own, quite separate from, and superior to, trees and animals…

The Green Dragon must die…[There] is no excuse to become befuddled by the noxious Green odors and doctrines emanating from the foul beast…

This slimy jade road…is paved with all kinds of perverted and destructive behaviours, leads to death itself, and finally, to the pains of hell forever…No Hollywood celebrity bunnies draped over its foul form can deny its native evil…

It is no coincidence the rise of environmentalism as a significant political entity tracks the rising political clout of modern feminism…

Savage wolves have come to be among the church…No one can serve two masters…

The first few chapters in the Book of Genesis are an infinite mine to plumb for riches. All the world has no wisdom that is greater…

So-called “natural” or wilderness areas are not hospitable to man, and God does not consider this a good or natural state…

The fruits of the Green Dragon are not good, but evil…Humans are urged to surrender as many liberites as judged fit to save the world, which is pretty much all liberty that makes life worth living…

Christians must resist Green overtures to recast true religion, nor allow themselves to be prey for teachers of pagan heresies…

So having read the book – and watched some of the lectures on the accompanying DVD set – I began by asking Beisner why the Cornwall Alliance chooses to attack environmentalism with the kind of harsh, strong language – “foul beasts”, “native evil” etc – expressed in the book:

We look at the environmental movement as a whole and particularly at the kinds of positions espoused by the top leadership of the largest environmental NGOs around the world. What I would say is that those definitely tend to be un-Christian in their world view – either secular and atheistic on the one hand, or spiritual, but not Christianly spiritual, and pantheistic on the other hand. There is a clear rejection of Biblical teaching that humanity should have dominion. And sin tends to get defined by environmentalism as our use, or abuse, of the Earth far more than in terms of our violation of the revealed laws of God in, say, the Ten Commandments. The solution to human problems tends to be “don’t touch this, don’t handle that”, which is precisely the kind of thing that the Apostle Paul warned, rather than pointing to the gospel of redemption through the atoning death of Christ of the Cross. Environmentalism, as a movement, is an alternative world view and a substitute for Christianity.
My principal concern about environmentalism is a religious, logical, ethical concern. My secondary concern is that its science and economics are often flawed in ways that would point us towards policies that are especially destructive and harmful to the world’s poor and, secondarily, everyone else.

I then asked Beisner why, in his view, the Dominion Mandate appears to take precedence over all else:

There are two reasons. One positive and the other negative and apologetic. The positive reason is simply the placement of that sentence in the overall text of scripture. Genesis 1:28 comes at the climax of the first chapter where we read of God creating the Heaven and the Earth, light and darkness, sea creatures, land creatures, and, finally, humanity made in His own image. And then He gives humanity this mission, this stipulation, as to its purpose on Earth. Its placement there makes it, hermeneutically, a very important verse for our understanding of the role of Mankind from the beginning of scripture. And you see that point being picked up again and again at various points in scripture.
But I also mentioned a negative reason. Lynn White‘s 1967 article, The Historical Roots of Our Ecological Crisis, is probably one of the half dozen most important articles for laying the foundations of the modern environmental movement. It has been cited thousands of times. The thesis of the article is, because of Genesis 1:28 claiming that God instructed Man to subdue and rule the Earth, Judeo-Christian religion, and, in fact, all Abrahamic religion, has promoted an exploitative, no-responsible attitude of humanity towards the Earth and its resources; that we can use it any way we please without regard to the harm to fellow Man and other living creatures. White argued in that article that we would deliver the Earth from ravaging exploitation only by means of a thorough repudiation of that heritage. That has made dominion a major issue in environmental theorising.
What I find ironic is that White didn’t present any proof that any Christian or Jewish scholar ever interpreted it in that way. So part of the task of Biblical theologians applying scriptural teaching to environmental stewardship issues is to correct White’s misrepresentation of the Christian Church and the verse, and to point out that coming as it does, where it does, in Genesis, we need to learn from God’s own example what dominion and rule entails. Man’s dominion over the Earth should reflect God’s dominion over the Earth so as to glorify God and to give benefit to our fellow human beings and, indeed, all the rest of life on Earth. As God went through creation week, He created abundance, beauty and flourishing life. That’s the kind of thing humanity ought to be doing.

Throughout the book, the concept of “growth” is always spoken of in positive terms. I asked Beisner whether everything can just “keep growing”, say, human population, without any form of restriction?

That straight away is terribly anachronistic as population shrinkage is going to be the next big challenge and begin around 2050. In and of itself, the total size of population is irrelevant ethically. You are certainly going to face challenges from either a growing or shrinking population. Where environmentalists start off as fundamentally mistaken is their vision of human beings. They see human beings as, primarily, consumers and polluters. Whereas the Bible teaches that humans, who are made in God’s image, are producers and stewards. Obviously, it’s not automatic. There needs to be education and moral commitment, and those things are furthered in my understanding through people being reconciled to God through the atoning work of Christ on the Cross and their faith in Him. As the late Julian Simon used to put it: “Every mouth that is born into this world is accompanied by two hands and, far more importantly, a mind.” Those two hands and a mind are capable of producing far more than that mouth can consume. That’s why, over the past several hundred years, each generation has also been wealthier on a per capita basis. We produce more wealth than we can consume. And that’s a good thing.

I put it to Beisner that the book uses disparaging, negative terms when speaking of socialism, Obama, Democrats etc. Only Adam has more citations in the book’s index than Al Gore, who has more than Satan. I asked him whether he aligns himself more along Republican lines, either politically or ideologically:

I’m pretty disgusted with all political parties. They’re all gutless, pandering to people’s desires to have the state meet their needs rather than through their own efforts. That would apply equally to big businesses rent-seeking and lobbying, trying to get governments to give them a competitive advantage over competitors, as it would to those people who want government handouts of, say, housing or food support. From my Christian understanding – and I understand that I have brothers and sisters of Christ who don’t share my views – God ordained the state, which by its nature is a monopoly of legalised force, to enforce justice. And justice means rendering impartially to everyone his due, according to the righteous standard of God’s moral law. He did not ordain the state to dispense grace. That’s the role of the Church. When the state starts trying to dispense grace it necessarily transgresses the bounds of justice and winds up doing more harm than good. This is the very beginnings of my theological foundation of my reasoning in support of a much more free-market approach to economics, as opposed to a governmentally managed, centrally planned, neurotically arranged market.

We concluded the interview by talking about the Cornwall Alliance’s source of funding and support. It is often accused of being a front group for fossil-fuel interests. A report by The Wonk Room examined these claims more closely last year. It noted that the Cornwall Alliance has close personal connections to a right-leaning “public policy organisation” called Committee for a Constructive Tomorrow (CFACT), which has received funding from oil companies in the past. (Beisner is on CFACT’s board of advisors.) CFACT is probably best known now for promoting and funding the climate sceptic Marc Morano and his noisy website ClimateDepot (of which I have written about before). In one of Beisner’s lectures on the DVD set, Morano can be seen listening attentively in the audience. So I asked Beisner to put it on the record, once and for all, how the Cornwall Alliance is funded:

We’re supported primarily by individual donations. Some of those come via a cheque made out directly to us. Here in the US, for a variety of different reasons, you can make a donation to one charitable foundation via another foundation and the receiving foundation does not know who you are. Sometimes it’s just as simple as, ‘Hey, Jesus, said don’t let the left hand know what the right it doing.’ Some people don’t want credit, or anyone trumpeting their name. Or they might want to avoid the appearance of a conflict of interest. But we make sure that I, as the spokesman, don’t know where these types of donations come from. For that reason, I don’t have to feel beholden to any donors.
The largest cheque we’ve ever had from an identifiable person is, I think, $5,000. There have been no corporate donations and certainly no oil money. [Laughs.] I wish. But, frankly, if an oil corporation was to offer us money I would turn it down because it would automatically compromise our ability to have public integrity. We are championing causes simply because we believe they are true. We’re actually in the process of working out a statement for our website that says all this. But, frankly, we’re very small. I’m the only full time person. [The latest accounts of the James Partnership, the Cornwall Alliance’s parent organisation, can be viewed here as a PDF.] Probably the most important support we get is from the generosity of our chairman Chris Rogers who provides so much staff and equipment for which he doesn’t charge. He’s a very dedicated Christian man who gives sacrificially of himself. David Rothbard [CFACT’s president] and I became friends in the early 1990s with a mutual interest in these issues. And, essentially, we think very similarly and we help each other out with information and recommend each other to others. CFACT is not a financial donor, though.

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About Royal Rosamond Press

I am an artist, a writer, and a theologian.
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1 Response to Chicken Little vs. The Green Dragon

  1. Reblogged this on Rosamond Press and commented:

    SCOTA ia a church for lovers of The End Time.

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