am borrowing the term Spaceship Earth from R. Buckminster
Fuller, the philosopher, architect, and visionary of the 20th
century, to describe the planet we all occupy. He
pointed out that we live on a spaceship of sorts, hurling
through space at a little over 66,000 miles per hour, in orbit
around our miraculous energy source, a star we call the Sun.
We carry with us on our epic journey through time and space all the
supplies we need to sustain us on our long voyage.
We are the crew of this, our round ship. Unfortunately,
we have become an unruly crew, constantly bickering and
fighting amongst ourselves, wasting supplies, thinking
mutinous thoughts, and making the voyage an unhappy experience
for a great many of our fellow travelers. It’s a hell
of a way to run a spaceship.
pointed out that we are managing things in a way that
threatens our very survival. He suggested that the time
is coming soon when we will have to choose… either we will
learn how to work together –
to man the ship so that it works
for everyone on board, or we will end up on a dysfunctional
piece of rock that works for no one at all.
suggest to you that humanity already possess the knowledge of
how to run this ship in a way that would allow it to work for
everyone on board. We have in our possession a roadmap
if you will – the documented wisdom of those who came before
– showing us the way to proceed... a strategy that would
allow us to transform our relationships with one another, and
with our mother ship, so
that we might avoid disaster, and instead make life on board
our small vessel a valuable and meaningful experience for
every passenger, and for as far into the future as we can
imagine. Miraculously, the roadmap of which I speak is
reduced to a single document
– one that is available to all of us for review and study.
It is called the Universal
Declaration of Human Rights.
document was signed and adopted by the general assembly of the
United Nations on December 10, 1948. It identifies what
we must do if we are ever to find peace and
freedom from fear on board this ship, for ourselves and for our
question is, will we have the wisdom to offer them that
opportunity – the opportunity to celebrate universal respect, decency, and
justice among all nations with no one left out... or will we deny them our
wisdom and cheat them out of their birthright?
much consideration and study, every UN member state signed onto
this roadmap for universal peace. A few abstained from
the voting, but no nation voted against the resolution which
gives us and our offspring our best hope for universal
each government agreed to give their people this chance; to
give them the opportunity to read, study and come into
alignment with the terms and conditions outlined in the
document. Each member nation agreed that every world
citizen has the right to know that this roadmap exists, that
they have a right to read and understand what it says and what
it means, and that they have both the right and the obligation
to strive alone and with others to fulfill its
the leaders of many nations did not keep their word; not even
our own government which sponsored it. The agreement was designed to fulfill the hopes
and dreams of the common people in every compartment (i.e., nation) on our Spaceship. Had their word and our word been
kept, all the peoples of the world would now be at peace with
no one hungry or living in fear. This is how I see it.
An unfortunate and sad commentary. And yet... I believe, it’s
still not too late.
roadmap is still as valid today as it was when it was
originally adopted. But time is running out. What
we need to do is renew our commitment to the promise humanity
made to itself.
If we can do that, we can secure for our children and
grandchildren a bright and hopeful future. If
we fail, we risk losing most of what mankind has learned and
contributed in support of life on Earth. In fact, we risk
the viability of life itself on this fragile ship of ours
if we continue the wanton destruction of our spaceship’s
life support systems, which is what we are now engaged in doing.
It Will Take
just a few words I have offered you the solution to most of
the problems facing all crew members that live on Spaceship
But my saying it doesn't mean that you or others understand or
And so for all members of the crew to come into alignment with
the Universal Declaration of Human Rights will not be easy to
accomplish. Not now, and I expect not without a great deal of
controversy. To succeed will take all the wisdom,
courage, intellectual integrity, dedication, honor and truth
that you as a crew member can muster. For the culture
that we need to transform, now exists in a heavy atmosphere of
fear and mistrust. We will never succeed unless we allow
ourselves to adopt and sustain an attitude of faith and trust
in ourselves and in one another as we attempt to accomplish
the required task.
I have described is the strategy I would pursue if I were the
Chief Administrator of the Executive Branch of the Government
of the United States.
accomplish what I propose we need to do, cannot be accomplished
through deceit, lies, fabrications, violence, secrecy or the
propagation of illusion. It can only be accomplished
through truth, honor, dignity, compassion, courage, and love.
It’s not something one person can accomplish alone; it’s
something we will all need to accomplish together.
are those who will say that to attempt such a thing is pure
folly… an act of naïveté.
say, that anything else we might try is pure folly, and an act of
naïveté... and also a clear path to self defeat. What I propose is the
best chance we have to secure a world that works for everyone,
and therefore a world that works for us. To stay the course we're on, or to adopt the
course that many others are suggesting, is to pursue our own defeat
in a world that will eventually work for no one at all.
men and prophets throughout the ages have offered similar
strategies to what I am suggesting, only to be ignored and/or
betrayed. What I am proposing is a refinement of what
has been offered before, and yet it is true and consistent with all
the best ideas that were offered before. It is more clear and more
doable than anything yet suggested to humanity in the entire history
of mankind. It is an answer and a gift that for too long has remained
ignored and unseen even though it has been right in front of
our eyes all this time. This window of opportunity is now
open. It is an idea whose time has come, but only if we are willing to make it come.
is time to let go of the limited past and choose instead a
better future in freedom,
peace, and sustainable success. There are no
guarantees. I believe what I am telling you is both true
that the universe is waiting to support this effort; that
peoples everywhere are tired of war, hunger, pestilence and
fear. My solution is the only viable solution on the
It is the only course of action that can take us where we need
to go, because it is the only destination to which the common people of
Spaceship Earth truly want to go.
am a candidate for President of the United States and this is
the framework of my platform and my proposal for the next
administration and others that follow.
To successfully embark on this adventure requires a critical
mass of humanity being willing to accept this challenge with
honor and courage. Be what you hope for. If you
understand what I'm telling you, vote for me, even though you
don't even need me anymore.
Universal Declaration of Human Rights outlines what each
citizen and organ of society must strive for if we are to
succeed as a species. And yet that alone does not quite
For the Universal Declaration of Human Rights while laying out
the goal to be achieved requires a better understanding of the
responsibilities of citizenship.
For we cannot succeed
unless we are willing to be responsible citizens. What
does that mean? It means that you may have to change
your attitude; you may have to let go of illusions and
misunderstandings whenever you discover them because you
surely will discover them once you embark on this journey.
We live in an atmosphere awash in lies. You must now seek truth with integrity in all that you do; you
must strive to do your best… your very best as a crew member
on this ship if we intend to survive and prosper.
offering you a choice. Some of you have prayed for help.
I am here to help. If you think that I am arrogant, I
say no… that is not a good enough response. I am not
saying that you must believe anything I say. But for you
to be honorable, you must allow for the possibility that what I am telling you
is true. It is your responsibility to search, to
question, to think, and to read... with honor and intelligence
in order to discover for yourself if maybe, just maybe, what
I'm telling you is for real.
willing to suspend your fear and mistrust long enough to be honest with
yourself and with those you love. In the end, no one can make
you vote for me. No one can make you vote for anyone.
But when you do vote, I suggest you vote with honor… and
that means, first be open to learn something new; do not
align yourself with a party, or an ideology, or a past
decision you have made… but align yourself with your own conscience, after
honest investigation, and do so with as much integrity as you
can muster. You asked for this in the silence of your
hidden hopes and dreams, and now the opportunity
is here. I am not your savior. I am not even your
leader. But I am a friend if you want one. …and
as one American poet once said, “the only way to have a
friend is to be one.”
don’t need me to do this. You can do this without me.
But if you want me to try, I’ll
do my best not to disappoint you.
“We are not going
to be able to operate
our Spaceship Earth successfully nor for
much longer unless we see it as a whole
spaceship and our fate as common. It
has to be everybody or nobody.”
R. Buckminster Fuller
"I have a dream that my four little
children will one day live in a nation where they will not be
judged by the color of their skin, but by the content of their
character." — Martin
Luther King, Jr.