____________________________________________ MAHARISHI INTERNATIONAL COUNCIL OF NATURAL LAW PARTIES NEWS SERVICE Markt 1; 6063 AC; Vlodrop; The Netherlands Tel.: +31-475-404111 * Fax: +31-475-403642 ____________________________________________ 16 December 1999 ANNUAL NLP CONFERENCE IN THE U.K. - TO NEW ALLIANCES AND NEW STRATEGIES This year's annual conference of the Natural Law Party of the United Kingdom, held in Skelmersdale from 26-28 November, broke new ground in many ways. New alliances were forged with several organisations to work together for the betterment of society, and new strategies were evolved to gain support for the party's policies from a much wider public. Party leader Dr Geoffrey Clements set the tone in the opening session by highlighting how the government has consistently ignored hundreds of scientific studies showing the benefits of Natural Law programmes in health care, education, crime reduction and other areas. "We are not offering hope or faith or empty promises, but programmes that have been shown to work. We know that government leaders are fully aware of these programmes and their benefits. It is a matter of gross neglect that they ignore the facts and do not bring these benefits to the nation," Dr Clements said. Maharishi Vedic Economy Dr Guy Hatchard summarised his newly completed PhD thesis on the "Scientific Validation of Maharishi Vedic Economy: Wholeness on the Move". His research, conducted on economic trends in New Zealand, Norway, the UK, the USA, and Mozambique, shows positive improvements in a broad range of economic indices and quality of life as a result of increased numbers of people practising the Transcendental Meditation and the TM-Sidhi programmes. For example, in 1993 New Zealand and Norway approached the "Maharishi Effect" threshold, with 1% of the population instructed in Transcendental Meditation. At this time their scores rose significantly on the World Economic Forum IMD Index of economic success, which is constructed from more than 200 global statistics. "Successful economy is not based on money or greed but on human potential. The programmes of the Natural Law Party unlock that potential and enliven the all-directional quality of Natural Law - Wholeness on the Move - at all levels of society," Dr Hatchard said. Putting people before profits The next speaker, Ben Humphries, Representative of the World Development Movement (WDM), spoke about the importance of putting people before profits in the global economy. He said that the mission of WDM is to campaign for political changes to bring justice to the world's poor. The aim is to eliminate the root causes of poverty, including Third World debt, World Trade Organisation regulations that favour multinational companies, and the promotion of genetically engineered foods among the world's poorest farmers. In a hard-hitting address, Mr Humphries described the growing opposition by thousands of organisations to current injustices in world trade. He was pleased to hear about the global initiatives of the Natural Law Party to create balance and progress in the world economy. A global political force Dr Reinhard Borowitz, Secretary General of the Maharishi International Council of Natural Law Parties, said that governments are progressively losing their power to multinational companies and economic organisations. "A new globalised approach is vital in politics," he said. "We need global solutions for global problems. The Natural Law Party, which is now active in over 80 countries, is not trying to push through the interests of any one group or section of society. It is a global political force that can unite all positive, evolutionary forces in the world. With its holistic programmes and proven solutions the Natural Law Party can take leadership to solve today's global problems. The essential step to solving these global problems is to raise global consciousness." Amnesty International The Representative of Amnesty International spoke about the organisation's activities in 140 countries where it has human rights concerns. In response to comments from the Conference Chairman, Richard Johnson, that the Natural Law Party's coherence-creating programmes would help relieve stress in world consciousness and thereby help to lighten Amnesty's load, Mr Plant said: "We are delighted to hear that you include human rights in your policies. We hope that the work of both our organisations will progress and that our next Annual Report of human rights' violations will be a fraction of the size!" "Women Say No to GMOs" In an impassioned address, Lynda Brown, campaign organiser for Joan Ruddock, MP, described the progress in the women's campaign in the UK for an outright ban on GMOs. "Women can add great power to the debate," Ms Brown said. "We are asking what kind of science will serve us and our children best in the next century. The GMO debate is a unique opportunity for the first time for us all to be stakeholders in the food agenda for the 21st Century." She encouraged everyone to keep writing to their MPs and supermarkets and to help educate everyone about the issues. "If we don't buy it, they can't sell it," she said. Mark Griffiths, the NLP's Environment Spokesman, responded with an inspiring update on the party's global campaign to ban GMOs. "There has been great progress in Europe, but we must keep the pressure on until the job is done," he said. "Attention is now shifting to the USA and what has happened in Europe in the last twelve months will happen in the US in the next twelve months, and then it will die." Campaign for a Pollution-Free Waste Industry in the UK In its final session the conference took an exciting turn with the decision to join with guest speaker Keith Collins in conducting a nation-wide campaign for recycling of waste in the UK. Mr Collins is a businessman and Director at the London Recycling Consortium. He pointed out that Britain currently recycles less of its waste than any other country in the Western world - only about 8%. The Netherlands recycles 60%. Mr Collins said that in Britain today most domestic and industrial waste is dumped in landfill sites. "The space available for these sites is less and less, they create an enormous amount of pollution and environmental damage." "Incinerators are 'land filling' the sky. You put garbage in and you get garbage out - particulates and dioxins in the air and heavy metals in the toxic ash. The pollution from landfill sites and incinerators is linked with increased incidence of a variety of cancers, birth defects, and disruption of hormones," Mr Collins said. "Not only is there overwhelmingly public opposition to both landfill sites and incinerators, but they are enormously expensive to operate." Opinion polls show that 95% of the population prefer the option of recycling waste. Recycling produces least damage to the environment and human health, while yielding maximum economic advantage since recycled materials can be reprocessed and sold. Taking waste paper as an example, he said that the value of the power generated by incinerators is only one hundredth of the sale value of the recycled paper. Furthermore, U.S. figures show that in terms of pollution, recycling just 1% of waste is equivalent to taking one million cars off the roads. Mr Collins said that using schemes that have already been tried and tested, 40% of waste can be recycled immediately and a further 40% is compostable. The remaining 20% can also eventually be recycled. He gave examples of several towns in North America and Europe that have achieved over 80% recycling within ten years. Following Mr Collins's brilliant and convincing presentation, the Deputy Chairman of the Natural Law Party, John Collins, proposed that the Natural Law Party and Mr Collins's organisation should join together to launch a "Campaign for a Pollution-Free Waste Industry in the UK". The feeling of the Natural Law Party conference was that this could become as big an issue as the party's Campaign to Ban Genetically Engineered Food. New policy documents will be drafted and there will be a joint campaign with Keith Collins's organisation in London during Dr Clements' forthcoming campaign for Mayor of London. Tackling the drug abuse crisis During discussions of the drug abuse problems raging in the UK, William Hite, businessman and author, summarised the contents of his new book, which analyses the problem and presents the Natural Law Party's solutions. "This is a far greater problem than most people imagine," Mr Hite said. "One third of our children will end up addicted to alcohol or drugs. The government has statistics but no understanding of the subject. If the policies in this book were implemented, we cannot imagine how life in this country would change for the better." Mr Hite proposed an independent campaign, supported by the Natural Law Party, with the theme "Keep Drugs out of Families", promoting the use of Transcendental Meditation, coherence-creating groups of Yogic Flyers, and the introduction of Natural Law programmes in health care and education - all proven means to reduce drug abuse. Simon Cohen, a Retired Assistant Chief Probation Officer, endorsed Mr Hite's position and said that consciousness-based education is the only long-term solution. Ideal housing John Renwick, NLP Spokesman for Housing and National Planning, gave a brilliant assessment of the benefits for health, happiness and good fortune for everyone that will come from the introduction of the Natural Law-based approaches to building and planning available through the science of Maharishi Sthapatya Veda.