Tuesday November 16, 2010

Bill Clinton applauds population growth in Philippines

By Matthew Anderson

MANILA, Philippines, November 15, 2010 ( – Former U.S. President Bill Clinton has praised the Philippines for its large population, reportedly telling a crowd at a Manilla Hotel this Wednesday: “You have a huge population, which is positive, and you have massive natural resources.”

The former president’s remarks come at a time when the country is debating a new bill that would fund the widespread disbursement of contraceptives, including the pill and IUD. The “Reproductive Health Bill” (RH Bill) is part of an effort to reduce the poverty of the Philippines by slowing its population growth. The Catholic hierarchy in the Philippines is strongly opposed to the bill.

Clinton’s statements come as a surprise given that his wife, U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, has been pushing for the RH Bill to be passed in the Philippines. Last year during a visit to the Philippines, Hilary Clinton told reporters there, “I believe strongly that family planning is an important aspect of development. And I’ve seen this around the world, and I think empowering women to be able to make choices … provides a much stronger basis for human development.”

Noting the discrepancy between Hillary Clinton’s and Bill Clinton’s views, Steven Mosher, president of the Population Research Institute (PRI), told LifeSiteNews that Bill Clinton’s statement seemed “almost schizophrenic.”

“For him to say that the large population of the Philippines is an asset, which it is, when the American administration has been saying you have too many people … you almost suspect Bill and Hillary are playing good cop, bad cop. One takes one position and the other takes the opposite to mitigate the negative impact on the first.”

Mosher pointed out that Clinton was previously known as the “the most pro-abortion, pro-population control president we had ever had” until Obama. Mosher also noted that while in office, Clinton was extremely supportive of population control. “In terms of expanding the scope of population control operations and in terms of giving them more money he did everything he could,” said Mosher.

One of Clinton’s first presidential actions was the overturning of the famous Mexico City Policy, which prevented U.S. dollars from funding abortions overseas. Also, Clinton increased funding to the United Nations Population Fund, which Mosher said has been “complicit in, and involved in China’s one child policy.”

Mosher suggested that Clinton’s remark shows that he really does understand the benefit of a large population.

“This is probably a rare moment of candor,” Mosher said. “He understands peoples are assets. He understands that babies are not just burdens they’re blessings. … He may have gotten a little off message by saying what every economist in the world knows: a young and growing population is a definite asset for economic growth.”

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