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FROM CLOSED TO OPEN WORLD: The Extraterrestrial Imperative by Krafft A. Ehricke & Elizabeth A. Miller

FROM CLOSED TO OPEN WORLD: The Extraterrestrial Imperative by Krafft A. Ehricke & Elizabeth A. Miller

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Published by Markoff Chaney
The late Krafft Ehricke (1917-84), the German-American visionary and rocket scientist, developed the concept of the “Extraterrestrial Imperative,” which today has become a focus of LaRouche PAC scientific research and organizing (see Feature in this issue). Ehricke believed that it was the responsibility of humanity to explore space and exploit the resources of the Solar System, in order to sustain the development of the species. There are no external “limits to growth,” Ehricke insisted, because while the Earth is a “closed system,” the exploration of space opens the entire universe to humanity. For Ehricke, human creativity has no limits. The following is an excerpt of a copyrighted, but unpublished, book he wrote in 1971, a year before the publication of the Club of Rome’s counterculture manifesto, The Limits to Growth.
The late Krafft Ehricke (1917-84), the German-American visionary and rocket scientist, developed the concept of the “Extraterrestrial Imperative,” which today has become a focus of LaRouche PAC scientific research and organizing (see Feature in this issue). Ehricke believed that it was the responsibility of humanity to explore space and exploit the resources of the Solar System, in order to sustain the development of the species. There are no external “limits to growth,” Ehricke insisted, because while the Earth is a “closed system,” the exploration of space opens the entire universe to humanity. For Ehricke, human creativity has no limits. The following is an excerpt of a copyrighted, but unpublished, book he wrote in 1971, a year before the publication of the Club of Rome’s counterculture manifesto, The Limits to Growth.

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Published by: Markoff Chaney on Aug 30, 2011
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38 Science
EIR
August 26, 2011
The late Krat Ehricke (1917-84), the German-Ameri-can visionary and rocket scientist, developed the con-cept o the “Extraterrestrial Imperative,” which todayhas become a ocus o LaRouche PAC scientifc re-search and organizing (see
 
 Feature
in this issue). Eh-ricke believed that it was the responsibility o humanityto explore space and exploit the resources o the Solar System, in order to sustain the development o the spe-cies. There are no external “limits to growth,” Ehrickeinsisted, because while the Earth is a “closed system,”the exploration o space opens the entire universe tohumanity. For Ehricke, human creativity has no limits.The ollowing is an excerpt o a copyrighted, but un- published, book he wrote in 1971, a year beore the publication o the Club o Rome’s counterculture mani- esto,
The Limits to Growth
.
1. The Extraterrestrial Imperative
The Extraterrestrial Imperative is a driving orce inthe natural growth o terrestrial lie beyond its plane-tary limits. As such, it is an integral part o the obvi-ously expansionistic and growth-oriented pattern o lie’s evolution. This drive caused lie to grow rom in-nitesimal beginnings into a orce that encompassesand transorms an entire planet through its biosphere.More basically, the Extraterrestrial Imperative ex-presses a “rst message,” a primordial imperative, bredinto the very essence o the universe, driving the evolu-tion o matter rom simplest orms (elementary parti-cles) to highly complex structures (e.g., the intelligentbrain). A vast amount o cosmic energy is released bystellar matter in the initial phase o this process—thetransormation o hydrogen to helium and heavier ele-ments—and bound up in the later phases, involving theormation and evolution o living matter.By these roots, it is possible to identiy the Extrater-restrial Imperative as a basic principle that can be de-rived rom a consistent interpretation and generaliza-tion o recurring phenomena common to evolutionaryprocesses.The Extraterrestrial Imperative is o concrete sig-nicance to us. It oers a lasting solution to the grow-ing problem o keeping the societal, that is, the humanand biological environmental costs o modern human-ity’s lie style and aspirations, within acceptablelimits. It provides a rational and consistent orientationin the wilderness o past and present events, hence asolution-oriented understanding o humanity’s situa-tion at this important crisis-prone juncture. The evolu-tionary road on this planet is paved with many crises.In act, every major advance was preceded by, trig-gered by, and made possible by crisis. However, notevery crisis led to an advance. The penalty o ailingthe test o crisis is death.Taken out o its greater context, and evaluated in anarrow current time rame, each major crisis appeared
FROM CLOSED TO OPEN WORLD
 The ExtraterrestrialImperative
 by Krafft A. Ehricke & Elizabeth A. Miller 
EIR
Science
 
August 26, 2011
EIR
Science 39
unsolvable, oten suggesting that basic limitations tourther evolutionary growth and advances had beenreached; when in reality, only a transition rom existingto larger rames o reerence took place. In other words,growth-oriented transitions tend to give the “optical”illusion o a limit to growth.Consistent with this phenomenon, limits to growthviews are widely held today. Analyses, viewing human-ity’s present situation out o its greater context, abound.Consequently, reactions to immediate exigencies and totransitory outward maniestation o our industrial civi-lization have resulted in a maze o divergent, or outrightcontradictory, interpretations. They engender doubtabout the uture. They encourage a rash o doomsdaypredictions whose, in part computerized, messages im-press the descendants o the Age o Enlightenment asdid re and brimstone predictions righten the souls o a simpler era.Now, as then, the messages imply or proclaim help-lessness to avert what lies ahead, short o almost ranticsubmission to the dictates o the threat to give up mucho the hard-won progress, or else. Now, as then, themessages create withdrawal and guilt syndromes.Shocked by the alleged inevitability o a righteninguture that is not at all inevitable, minds withdraw roma misunderstood present into a nostalgically gloriedpast that never was.It becomes ashionable to subject progress to a cyn-ical and pessimistic attitude that is ar more dangerousto the uture o our children than was the earlier un-critical acceptable o its more supercial maniesta-tions to our generation. Once again, there is a risingtendency to view the human as incorrigibly bad, or atleast as highly suspect, compared to some innatelygood and noble entity—and where God is no longerthe all-encompassing reerence, there is still the natu-ral environment, the “unspoiled” wilderness, to pro-vide the contrasting purity to which any guilt complexnecessarily must relate.In its wake, there is a prolieration o demands tochange “human nature.” Some wish to rely or this ona return to rigidly controlled societies—and this isindeed a return, since these are the earliest societalstructures, tailored to crude behavioral and primitivesocio-economic conditions. Others preer “social en-gineering,” a collective term or a wide spectrum o methods by which it is claimed, or hoped, to etter andcontrol the human mind. They range rom psychologi-cally rened behavioral manipulation to blunt lobot-omy—the surgical removal o parts o the ront lobeso the brain. By any standard o vigor and condence,these demands and methods can be interpreted only asexpressions o extreme cultural atigue and sel-aban-doning capitulation beore what appears to be an oth-erwise unmanageable, hence, a catastrophic uture. Itis the old delusion o saety through fight rom re-sponsibility.Can such a death wish, such crisis, beall societiesso soon ater a Renaissance that brought them reedom,enlightenment, humaneness, and knowledge beyondthe wildest dreams o those who took the rst steps outo medieval darkness ve centuries ago? Possibly, butnot necessarily. Healthy societies—those that reuse toyield to the deadly lullaby o no-growth and the utilityo struggle or progress—will be able to overcome thesinking eeling. They will inherit the uture. Indeed,either we grow and overcome our problems, or ourproblems will grow and overwhelm us.Can a society with claims to enlightenment, and inpossession o the knowledge and means to ascertainacts and their consequences, ignore the needs o thebillions who have not yet passed through the industrialrevolution and those who will be added to the world
Courtesy of Krafft Ehricke
Krat Ehricke: “Talk about no-growth and dynamic balance. . . ironically contains the seeds o vast environmentaldestruction, because a mankind suering and perishing romlack o technological progress and vital growth in productivitywill destroy the environment in the paroxysm o mortal crises”

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