Back in April, India's Supreme Court heard a case about a surgeon in the state of Bihar. This surgeon performed 53 operations in about two hours in conditions that can only be described as appalling: "assisted by unqualified staff, with no access to running water or equipment to clean the operating equipment."
The "patients" were left "crying out in pain [and though] they were in desperate need of medical care, no one came to assist them."
But what's most appalling is that butchers like him are acting at the behest and with the support of the West.
The operations were sterilizations and, as the U.K.'s Observer has reported, they were paid for, in part, with British aid money.
State and local officials in India used the approximately 250 million dollars to target poor women. Actually, "target" is too benign a term: Poor women were bribed, berated, and threatened if they didn't undergo sterilization. Then, to add injury to insult, the sterilizations were often performed "with reckless disregard for the lives of poor women."
The UK's Department of International Development cited the need to combat climate change as justification for its support of programs like the Indian one. I'm not making this up, folks. It, like other western agencies, sees population control as a key to reducing greenhouses gases.
Needless to say the "population" they are seeking to "control" doesn't reside in London's tony Belgravia district. They are the poor living in what used to be called the "Third World."
It's important to understand the worldview that makes these outrages possible. It's not a mere concern for the environment, although it is disguised as such.
It is the product of an anti-human ideology. This ideology is the subject of "Merchants of Despair," a book by Robert Zubrin. What Zubrin calls "antihumanism" sees "the human race [as] a horde of vermin whose unconstrained aspirations and appetites endanger the natural order." Given the threat posed by humanity, "tyrannical measures are necessary to constrain humanity."
Now, this may sound like rhetorical overkill, but that's because most of those advocating and imposing "tyrannical measures" are too discrete to actually call people "vermin."
Most, but not all. A few years ago, James Lovelock, the originator of the "Gaia" hypothesis, told New Scientist that, since humanity was already too numerous and too stupid, Gaia herself would have to "cull the herd."
Many who sincerely object to Lovelock's rhetoric still share his anti-human worldview: They agree with his ends - that is a lot fewer people - and the need to take decisive measures. In the end, their squeamishness counts for little, especially to the women in Bihar and others like them.
Again, I'm not being harsh: Abuses like these are well-documented. The UN's Family Planning Agency is a serial offender, which prompted the Bush administration to cut off its funding. The outcry was predictable, as was the restoration of funding in 2009.
The unwillingness to challenge the whole "too many people are the problem" idea makes what happened in India and countless other places inevitable. The worldview and the incentives all point in this direction: The scope of the abuse is only limited by our ruthlessness.
In other words, it's not limited at all.