The Gorbachev Global Brain Trust
By James Donahue
A gathering of about 400 of the most influential people in the world occurred in San Francisco in
September, 1995. They met for the purpose of establishing what host Mikhail Gorbachev called a "global brain trust" of elite
people that he hoped could lead the world into a new "global civilization."
The purpose of the gathering, Gorbachev said, was to "launch a multi-year process, culminating in
the year 2000, to articulate the fundamental priorities, values and actions necessary to constructively shape our common future."
Many issues were discussed, including a looming ecological disaster, world pollution and world hunger.
But in the final analysis, the forum’s main theme was population control.
"We shall have to address the problem of controlling the world’s population," Mr. Gorbachev
A writer for The Interim, who covered the event, said: "nowhere was the theme more evident than in
the discussions around religion." He wrote that Christianity was blamed for the population dilemma."
In fact a summary of the conference noted: "there was a very strong agreement that religious institutions
have to take primary responsibility for the population explosion. We must speak far more clearly about sexuality, about contraception,
about abortion . . . because the ecological crisis . . . is the population crisis. Cut the population by 90 percent and there
aren’t enough people left to do a great deal of ecological damage."
Writer William F. Jasper wrote that Gorbachev asked the group to consider establishing a global Brain
Trust "to focus on the present and future of our civilization." He said it was important "because the main reason why we are
lagging behind events, why we are mostly improvising and vacillating in the face of new developments, is that we are lagging
behind in the thinking and rethinking of this new world.
"Of course, this idea of a Brain Trust can only succeed if endorsed and actively pursued by people
who are widely respected as world leaders and global citizens," Gorbachev said.
Jasper then added: "This is a theme Gorbachev has been playing in concert with similar motifs in which
he has called for ‘non-governmental commissions of wise men’ and ‘Councils of Elders’ to solve the
world’s intractable problems."
While the idea was profound at its time, it lacked a basic necessity. There was no universal way of
creating such a group of "elders" and giving them both the authority over and the acceptance by the people of the world. That
the concept of a Brain Trust appeared to include all 400 people in the meeting, it also smacked of being so encumbered by
sheer numbers that it would be impossible for the members to agree on much of anything.
The point to all of this is that a lot of very wealthy and prominent people were present at that meeting.
And they were people who were present to collectively take a strong hard look at the state of the world and to understand
the disaster we were creating through a problem of runaway population.
Gorbachev saw it in 1995. Henry Kissinger warned world leaders about this problem thirty years earlier.
Both men proposed plans to attempt to curb the population problem. Was anybody listening?
You will be shocked to hear the names of some of the people present at that meeting. And you might
wonder why they have not used their great wealth and influence to do anything to repair the world’s ecological crisis
and stop overpopulation. Instead, many have donated their wealth to help feed more children so they can grow up and breed
more starving generations.
The numbers included Bill Gates, once considered the world’s wealthiest man; Rupert Murdoch,
Ted Turner, former President George H. Bush, former British Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher, Robert Muller, Matthew Fox,
Carl Sagan, Shirley MacLaine, Vaclav Havel, David Packard, George Zimmer, Jane Goodall, Zbigniew Brzezinski, John Denver,
Dennis Weaver, Jane Fonda, Milton Friedman, Saul Mendlovitz and Alan Cranston.
Also there were Deepak Chopra, Rigoberta Menchu, Maurice Strong, Alvin Toffler, John Naisbitt, Senator
George Mitchell, Dwayne Andreas, Tony Robbins, former secretaries of state James Baker and George Shulz, President Askar Akaey
of Kyrgystan, former President Oscar Arias of Costa Rica, Prime Minister Tansu Ciller of Turkey, Czech Republic President
Vaclav Havel, former Canadian Prime Minister Brian Mulroney and South African Vice President Thabo Mbeki.
They all heard, they saw, they knew.