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Undertaking the creditable task of linking the planetary dangers of war, resource depletion, environmental overload, and ""population expansion,"" Falk has produced a thin but dense book which like Charlotte spins its ideas over and over -- a different place and pattern for each chapter, but the same gestalt -- and the ideas simply don't bear multiple repetition, however grave the topic. Falk's general approach is that it's the spread of wealth which threatens the world: despite squibs about capitalists greedy for private gain, faulty governmental regulation, etc., he holds a high GNP and ""a material culture"" at fault for the mess and rarely fingers tangible culprits. Though he remonstrates against ""apolitical"" approaches, his discussions of war settle for mournful recitations of platitudes -- up through the last chapter he is still pressing his epiphany that vested interests won't voluntarily divest themselves of power. The reader keeps reading out of an increasingly morbid desire to find out just what Falk has to recommend. Having identified over and over again the deficiencies of the U.N. and of world-law schemes, he proposes a U.N.-type ecology congress, a vaguely revivified U.N., and our ""financial support to such organizations as the World Law fund. . . . "" Take heart at environmental teach-ins; await the coming of ""transitional elites""; meanwhile, ""encourage global awareness"" and pursue proposed research topics, e.g., ""Find out what techniques were used so that North Vietnam has the lowest birth rate in Asia.

Pub Date: April 1st, 1971
Publisher: Random House