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I watched this The 11th Hour movie several times trying to understand the new message, but the new message is still the old message as presented in Al Gore’s movie An Inconvenient Truth. The 11th Hour has more of a Koyaanisqatsi like emotional undertone, but without the haunting music. All of these movies have moments of fabulously beautiful photography — with the usual overly short viewing times — even though the theme is global environmental destruction created by modern human beings. The monetary cost, and environmental impact itself of making these movies is enormous, but if they were effective in bringing the problems under control it would be well worth the cost. Unfortunately, both of these new movies sidestep the problems, and therefore make it easy for them to totally ignore, and therefore to fail to even mention the possible solutions. This blackout technique is standard with all propaganda media, and therefore on the Trustworthiness Scale all of these movies rate as TST~4 which is dubious, pretentious, and not very trustworthy.

The problem isn’t that people are greedy, destructive, and basically evil, as is implied in these movies; the real problem is that there are just too many people. The solution to that problem is obvious, and that is to limit human population. However, population control is a forbidden topic to the media moguls. It is far worse to mention than the list of common words which are prohibited, and quaintly beeped. Population policy is a topic which arouses real conflict, and hostility because it appears to be linked to intentional homicide. But what is worse so far as the media is concerned is that it can’t sell advertising in the newspapers, or movies or TV or even on the internet, and therefore it is a topic to be avoided.

The largest organizations in the world, the Catholic Church, and the country of China, have dealt with the issue of population control in opposite ways, and both have endured a torrent of criticism for their actions. China has implemented, and enforced a one child per family population policy which has mostly contained their population explosion. The somewhat fewer people now living there are without doubt much healthier than they would have been without the population controls, and are experiencing an economic growth of a magnitude never seen before in human history.

The church has taken the opposite population policy, and has encouraged its people to maximize their child bearing capabilities. In the developed world people have responded to their church’s commands by simply not obeying, and by dropping out of that archaic system. In third world countries the church still has some leverage, and many people are reproducing maximally, following the church’s directives, which is driving those countries into unending poverty. There is no way out of poverty for those poor countries because any resources which do come their way get immediately converted into new poor, hungry babies which soon grow up to be poor hungry adults. These new adults are encouraged to continue the cycle of maximally exploiting available resources to make new babies. This policy maintains the excess population, and soon leads to the despoliation of available resources, to social conflict, and to war. That social chaos distracts everyone from positive economic activity, like growing food, which quickly brings on famine, disease, death, and more war. With the natural variabilities in the environment like rain for the food crops these stresses often spill over into disaster. Because, these excess people, which the church has ultimately created, have some ability to move into other countries these other countries are soon overrun with the offspring of these downwardly mobile, and desperate people. This seems to be what is now happening in the South African riots with foreign born people coming in and perceived as stealing jobs from the local people, and being killed by the locals in self defense.

Neither of these movies comes anywhere near these real issues, maintaining instead a steady drone of guilt laid upon those people who happen to have been born into a rich community. In the end their recommendations are as feeble as is their thinking, and that is to go to lame movies about the environment, to join wimpy, save the local butterfly, organizations, and use compact fluorescent light bulbs to ease their guilt. And, if they are rich enough, and feel really guilty to buy a new Toyota Prius.

The concluding message is accurate enough — The Earth will get along just fine when humans are gone. It will still be orbiting the sun, and fluids will still be running down the mountains, and forming lakes, and some sort of green stuff will still cover the surface of the Earth. — From beginning to end this movie is redolent with this neo-defeatism. It gets itself painted up with some pretty colorful language by some really eloquent pundits, but ultimately the conclusion of their approach is going to be devastation brought on by an atomic war. That conflict, even on an atomic war scale, is a natural process of bringing things back to balance. All of those atomic bombs are like huge boulders of stored energy we have rolled up to mountain tops, and balanced there upon a cliff. Nature will release all of that energy back into the environment at some future date. We humans do have a way out of these problems but it is one which no one wants, and that is to pick some population which the whole Earth can sustain on the energy which is provided on a daily basis from the sun, and to move as quickly as possible to that sustainable living style with two children per family, and a stable population.