Garrett Hardin Quotes
39 Sourced Quotes
Each man is locked into a system that compels him to increase his herd without limit — in a world that is limited. Ruin is the destination toward which all men rush, each pursuing his own best interest in a society that believes in the freedom of the commons. Freedom in a commons brings ruin to all.
At this late date in the post-Christian Era, it might be questioned whether the Bible should even be brought into an ethical discussion. I argue that it should. Many people who do not explicitly call on the Bible for backing are nevertheless influenced by what they believe the Bible says. (Everyone knows about the Good Samaritan, even though they may not be able to remember what Samaritans in general were.) It is considered good form to speak politely of Scripture: revere it, but don't bother reading it seems to be the rule. Above all, don't read it thoughtfully.
A coldly rationalist individualist can deny that he has any obligation to make sacrifices for the future. By contrast, those who, for whatever reason, regard the resources at their disposal as an inheritance from the past that they feel obliged to pass on to their descendants, have a better chance of producing future generations prosperous enough to be able to continue to wrestle with the problems of increasing the quality of life.
Why are ecologists and environmentalists so feared and hated? This is because in part what they have to say is new to the general public, and the new is always alarming. Moreover, the practical recommendations deduced from ecological principles threaten the vested interests of commerce; it is hardly surprising that the financial and political power created by these investments should be used sometimes to suppress environmental impact studies. However, I think the major opposition to ecology has deeper roots than mere economics; ecology threatens widely held values so fundamental that they must be called religious. An attack on values is inevitably seen as an act of subversion.