Survival of Spaceship Earth – A film from 1972

Just before the UN Conference om the Human Environment in Stockholm, June 1972, the propaganda film Survival of Spaceship Earth premiered, featuring Maurice Strong, Dame Barbara Ward, René Dubos, Dr. Margaret Mead, Dr. Harrison Brown, Walter O. Roberts, and John D. Rockefeller III talk about their favourite subject – population control. The messages was the same as now: “we” (us ordinary folks) are too many, we consume to much, we move around too much, we pollute too much, we reproduce too quickly. 

The multinational corporations that created car-dependent urban sprawl, plastics, one-use packaging, petrochemical-dependent agriculture and medicine, ocean trawlers, leaded petrol, toxic dumping, environmental degradation, and an ever growing war industry, they are completely innocent. It’s us stupid people who fail to resist their ubiquitous 24/7 advertising who are the problem, whereas they are our saviours.

The film is available on youtube.

TRIGGER WARNING: The film is very crude and contains some grotesque and frightening scenes. It was intended to shock its audience. 

Note the how the Thalidomide children without limbs are used as poster children for environmental degradation when in this case it was a harmful medication given to pregnant women in the late 1950s and was banned already in 1961. (Of course environmental toxins can also cause birth defects but these tend to be of a different type.)

John D. Rockefeller III, in Survival of Spaceship Earth, proudly telling the story of how he got to lead the Rockefeller Commissionen on Population and the American Future and getting very angry at President Nixon for rejecting the Commissions proposals to curb population growth

Here you can read the report: Population and the American Future: The Report of The Commission on Population Growth and the American Future (1972).


Read more about the background in Rockefeller– Controlling the game by Jacob Nordangård

Related posts:

The Stockholm Conference 1972

Comments 4

  • I would like to restate my question:
    Is there a demographic problem?
    Is there a problem with resource economy?
    Is spontanious industrial growth — libertarian style — sustainable?
    I fully agree on their moral of monstrous double standards, but still, the challenge is breal, isn’t it?

  • Accually, is the view on “the human predicament” told by the film basically wrong?
    Should we feel moral panic? Are the Rockefellers & Co sinister psykopaths longing for murder and genocide?
    Many religious people reacted, for sure, with such moral panic, but for a reasonable humanist there are unquestionable problems with exponential economic and demographic growth.
    Do you think the film express an objectionable moral?
    Is personal human freedom regarding reproduction absolute?

    The second question I have regarding the film and the spirit around The Environment conference in Stockholm 72 is this: Why was the population issue swept under the carpet? From the 1980-th untill recent population issues (nativity, mortality, migration) has been almost taboo.

    A third refrection: For a great part of the world population growth has slowed down and even reversed (Japan, Italy). Never the less, we still have the problem of exponetial economic growth (real material economic growth) in already present very high population.

    • I think the article explains the problem. It is YOU and your children that are the problem not he ones that created car dependency, urban sprawl, agro-business, the petrochemical industry and Big Pharma (Standard Oil). I think their moral is disputable to say the least. How about cleaning up in their own room before blame ordinary people for the mess. Did John D III downscale his own living? How much energy did his household consume? Did he commute with a bicycle to his office in NY City? Why didn’t he and Blanchette get sterilized as a good example for the rest of the world if bringing more children to the world is the most concerning issue? No, it is because they think that their kind is better and smarter and therefore has the right to live privileged lives, act as stewards of the planet and tell other people how to live and behave. And at the same time they want to solve the problems with even more technology and energy consuming measures (and earning money on the transformation).

      It has always been about Population Control. The Population Agenda morphed into the Climate Change Agenda. It is the same policy. Carbon reduction. Carbon is life.

      They know that the old system is doomed and want to replace it with a technocratic control grid with quotas. Let’s not fall into the trap and accept their solutions as inevitable.

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