Glenn Beck: Dangers of Environmental Extremism

This is a rush transcript from "Glenn Beck," October 15, 2010. This copy may not be in its final form and may be updated.

GLENN BECK, HOST: Well, hello, America. From Los Angeles, welcome to the program.

You remember "The Story of Stuff"? Oh, well, it was great. It was a little cartoon that the progressives at the Tides Foundation brought our children. Over 4,000 or 5,000 schools now nationwide run this. And it's basically telling our children that we stink on ice because we're just destroying the planet.

Well, there is another fabulous progressive project brought to you by George Soros and the Tides Foundation. They played this propaganda to our kids in the schools in hopes that kids become part of the environmentalist movement.

Now, they've crossed another line. With "The Story of Stuff" message, they are now heading in to our churches and our synagogues. They have got a spin-off production, titled "Let There Be Stuff."

It is a six-session curriculum that helps Christians and Jews — Christian and Jewish teens — quote, "explore their relationship between their consumption and their faith, and the health of the planet." A suggested ad for church bulletins reads, "Do you ever wonder what you can do to make the biggest difference in the future of the planet?"

Now, how do you think a Christian would answer that question? Probably something Jesus-related, right? God is a little particular on what your top priorities should be. I'm pretty sure reducing your carbon footprint probably is not very high on the list. However, taking care of His creation would be.

Hmm. Confusing, isn't it?

Well, they're not stopping with "Let There Be Stuff." They are now going right into our churches and our synagogues. It's for the planet, you know?

They want you to join a group. That's the best thing our teens can do is join a group. Is that sulfur, I smell? Yes! I think so.

Joining me now is Cal Beisner, he is founder and national spokesman of the Cornwall Alliance for the Stewardship of Creation. And David Barton, he is the founder and president of WallBuilders.

Welcome both of you to the show.

OK. Let me — let me start with you, Cal, because you went through the curriculum, which is fantastic, isn't it?

CALVIN BEISNER CORNWALL ALLIANCE FOUNDER: Oh, there are many wonderful things in it, all sorts of nice stuff in there, with a bit of other stuff mixed in.

BECK: Yes. Yes.

OK, here's the thing. I want you to understand as a parent or as a Christian or a synagogue-attending Jew that you understand that there is some truth in all of this. And then it's mixed with the teachings of mankind and the philosophy of man and oh, it just becomes all nice, warm and fuzzy.

So, I'm going to — I think literally maybe play devil's advocate today. I want to push back on some of this, because some of this is true and find out exactly where we split good and bad in the "Story of Stuff" project here.

So, Cal, you went through it. So, just let's look at some of the things that you found in the teachings here.

BEISNER: Well, first of all, there is a good bit of good stuff in there. This fundamental idea that we should as people who fear God and who believe in him, we should be taking care of this Earth. That's a good thing.

BECK: Yes.

BEISNER: But, of course, that's really pretty obvious to anybody. Where you start getting the problems is when you start getting into the details. The Apostle Paul told us in First Thessalonians, "Test all things, hold fast what is good." And that's what we need to do with this curriculum.

I'll give you an example real quickly. When — in chapter one, it says, when we drink, we owe a debt. What? To God? To the Earth's great waters.


BECK: I was just at the Earth's great waters today! And worshipping them. That is — I mean, that's American native — I mean I guess you could go there. It's paganism.

BEISNER: It's a difference between thankful for and thankful to.

We're not thankful to the waters. We're thankful to God who made them, for the waters.

BECK: Right.

BEISNER: That's the difference.


BEISNER: In chapter two, it says, we opened our hearts — to what? The creator? To Jesus Christ? No, no, no. We opened our hearts to creation.

This is new age pantheistic thinking. You open your heart. The creation which is itself god begins to fill you and you then begin to sense your oneness with all of creation. This is not —

BECK: Well, let me play devil's advocate here —

BEISNER: This is not Christian thought. This is Hindu thought.

BECK: Let me — let me — let me look at this. If I open myself up to creation and see myself as part of creation, and I am one with all that God created, then I can — I can worship God and say, look at all of the amazing — I mean, how many of us have gone in to the mountains and looked at the mountains and said, oh, my gosh, look at how great your creation?

BEISNER: Last month, my wife and I drove through Washington, Idaho, Montana, Wyoming —

BECK: Yes.

BEISNER: — just incredibly beautiful. And all through it, we were thanking God over and over again for the beauty of that.

BECK: Right.

BEISNER: But you said "one with." No, we're not one with. God made creation. And he made us. We're part of creation. But we're not one with creation. That's Buddhist thought. That's Brahman, it is the world soul and everything is one. It's one-ism.

BECK: I could —

BEISNER: One-ism instead of two-ism.

BECK: Right. I could play devil's advocate saying we're splitting hairs because I know that I'm separate from creation. I know I'm not part of the tree and the tree is not part of me, but we are all part of God's creation. God created — he created that, and he created that and created that. I — man created the camera, but God created the elements that made — went into the camera. You know what I mean?

BEISNER: But we're not just splitting hairs when what we see is pantheism being brought in churches saying that God is the universe and the universe is God, instead of God made the universe. That's not splitting hairs.

BECK: Yes.

BEISNER: That's a fundamental doctrine of historic Christianity called creation ex nihilo, creation out of nothing. Otherwise, you think that God made the universe out of himself. Well, that's Buddhist and Hindu thought, not Christian.

BECK: OK. So — OK, so now let's go to the next piece, chapter three.

BEISNER: Take another example here. We're told in chapter three that all sorts of things that we produce and the processes we use to produce them are poisoning us. You know, that's just one example of many throughout the curriculum, where frankly they are — they are pushing alarm, they are trying to scare children.

What they're not mentioning quite simply is as economies grow, as they develop through the years, we actually have cleaner and cleaner, healthier, more beautiful environments in which we live.

What we see is that when you live in a primitive, subsistence agriculture sort of society, you are exposed to all kind of disease carriers.


But as you get wealthier, you can eliminate that and you can have a cleaner life. That's why we live longer.

BECK: The one thing that people always — it kills me, they always say that, well, our water isn't as pure as it used to be. Have — I mean if you just read history, there is a great book called "Conquering Gotham" and it's about the — have you read it?

BEISNER: Parts of it.

BECK: About the Pennsylvania Railroad coming in to New York and how they — what they had to do to build tunnels and everything else. And just the description of people, the way they had to live, getting on the ferry boats and coming across water with their dead animals and human waste, and garbage and — I mean just, it was filthy. Now, it wouldn't be tolerated. Clean it up.

BEISNER: Glenn, 200 years ago, average human life expectancy in the United States was under 35 years. And it was — it was under 30 years for most of human history until 1800. Now, it's around 80. People are living longer.

You can't reconcile that with the notion we're making a worse and worse environment in which to live. The best measure of the environment, bottom line measure, is human health and longevity. Those are improving over time, not diminishing — which shows we have improving environment.

BECK: OK. Next?

BEISNER: Another example of the alarm that they're trying to use. They refer in chapter three again to massive climate changes. Now, you've looked at this enough — in fact, you and I first met at the First International Conference on Climate Change.

BECK: Yes.

BEISNER: And this is an unproven hypothesis. In fact, if anything, in the last year, it has been just thoroughly trashed by climategate and other things of that sort. But they are bringing this forward, giving it to kids as if it were proven and that should scare kids to death. Now, that's not so.



BARTON: I don't see a problem. I mean, if you don't believe in massive climate change, move to Texas and live there a while. But I think what you're on to, and what you got, it's just not anthropogenic. There's climate change but it's not man caused. We're not what caused the climate change —

BECK: The only thing constant in life is change.

BEISNER: That's right.

BARTON: That's right. That's why we have averages.

BECK: I mean, where was the dinosaur, the woolly mammoths, giant SUVs that they were driving? How is it we've had — we've had Ice Ages. And yet, there were no SUVs. This is ridiculous.

BARTON: That's right.

BEISNER: The real climate change deniers are not the people who deny manmade climate change, they are the people who assert manmade climate change as if the climate didn't change before. The climate has always been changing.

BECK: If you want to really protect against climate change, you would understand that it always changes and you would develop a society that can withstand the changes.

BARTON: That's right.

BEISNER: The Cornwall Alliance has just released 12 lecture set of DVDs called "Resisting the Green Dragon," the environmental movement we call the green dragon. And in that, Dr. David Legates, who's climatologist at the University of Delaware, has a lecture specifically on global warming. People can see about this and sign up for a free 19-minute introduction to that.

We treated that and the problem is that, unfortunately, too many people just — they hear it and they take it in.

BECK: Right.

BEISNER: They don't think critically.

BECK: Here's what interests me on this particular thing. I don't know of a single person that wants to see — we all live here. We share it.

BARTON: That's right.

BECK: I don't want — I don't know anyone who thinks we should poison our rivers or we should poison our children, we should poison our skies, we should trash — I mean, I don't know a single Christian that I know that thinks anything other than it is our responsibility — we'll be held responsible on how we treat our children, how we treat our wives and husbands, how we treat our neighbor, and how we treat our home. How we treat the gift that the Lord gave to us and said, you have dominion over this.

Well, that requires responsibility. So, I don't know anybody who thinks that. And yet, that's the way we're made to look and feel, that we just — we just want to trash the place. Nothing could be further from the truth.

BEISNER: The greens want to make us feel we're supposed to be servants of the Earth. And that is exactly the opposite of what the Bible says. In Genesis 1:28, we read, God blessed Adam and Eve and he said to them, be fruitful, multiply, fill up the earth, subdue it and rule over it, and over the fish of the sea and birds of the air and over all the animals and the creeping things on Earth.

We're supposed to rule the Earth. Not serve it. And we're supposed to rule it to make it increasingly fruitful.

BECK: You know what's amazing is the progressives think that they're the only one that can rule with kindness and meekness and gentleness. And yet, they never do. But they think they are the only ones. When they say, oh, how dare you say you were supposed to rule over it? Yes, benevolent rule.

BEISNER: And there's another important distinction here, too. St. Augustine pointed out that when God said that man was supposed to rule over the Earth, he never said that man was supposed to rule over man. The progressives want to have themselves ruling over other people, forcing all those other people to be servants of the Earth. God says all people are supposed to be rulers of the Earth.

BECK: We have so turned everything — it's a pyramid.


BECK: We turned it all up side down.

Can I — let me go here. How much time do we have in this break? I want to talk to you — we have enough time here. I want to talk about something that I found, as I was preparing for 8.28.

David, you know, I prepared for a year just reading as much as I can. I just kept going over the Moses story and the Exodus of — you know, the Israelites and the time they spent, Jeremiah and all of it. I get to the god of ancient Babylon. And I see what happened in ancient Babylon. The god of ancient Babylon was Baal, B-A-A-L.

And this jumped out at me so much, it was like oh, my gosh. What it was — ancient Babylon and the Tower of Babel — and we'll do a show on this but let me give you the highlights here. Basically, the king says, you know what? We're all just going — we're all going to be one.


BECK: And it's the first socialism.

BARTON: Yes, totalitarianism.

BECK: Yes, totalitarianism. And the god of ancient Babylon, Beal was the god of weather and war and commerce. So, in other words, and the reason why, is he who controls the weather, he who knows what's happening with the weather then can make money because of the plantings and everything else, and also can wage war, because if you know what the weather is going to be like, you're not getting trapped in a snowstorm or anything else.

And I thought to myself, this is the same god. We are now worshipping or the environmentalists are now worshipping the ancient god of Babylon, the god of weather.

BEISNER: Exactly.

BECK: And they're saying, you got to worship the god of weather that way there won't be war and that way there'll be commerce and we can all live. It's repeating itself from the very beginning.

BEISNER: And it really is ironic because their whole assumption behind all of the environmentalism is that the earth and particularly its climate system, is very fragile. It's all unstable.

So, for example, changing the proportion of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere from 27/10,000th of a percent to 39/10,000th of a percent can cause catastrophic climate change. That doesn't make sense in terms of what we read in the Bible which tells us that God made the heavens and the Earth. When he was finished making it, he looked at it and behold, it was very good.

Now, if I were an architect and I designed the buildings so if you leaned on one wall, all the feedback mechanisms magnified the pressure of your weight on the wall and the building collapsed, we'd all say, that was not a wise architect, right? Why are we saying that the God that designed this creation made the climate system so that tiny change in atmospheric chemistry could send all — all of it to catastrophe?

BECK: Back in just a second. Well, that's assuming there is a God, and we all know of course...


BEISNER: Oh, yes.

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