World Council of Ethics

The World Council of Ethics
by Penny Kelly


    I was introduced to the concept of a World Council of Ethics over 1981-82 by a group of teachers who asked me to start this Council and to work to see that it became active and respected globally. The members of the Council were to be the wise men and women of their time, and they were charged with three things.

     The first was to develop an effective ‘voice for good’ that would fill the gaps left by collapsing governance systems. It would stand up for truth, honesty, love, cooperation, peace, trust, integrity, fairness, and other principles necessary for an intelligent and evolving population. It would be a guide for all people in the ongoing business of everyday decision-making and make it possible for people to avoid lengthy and destructive arguments among themselves. 

     The second was to review decisions being made and actions being taken by whatever forms of business, governance, education, technology, and science existed over changing times. It would also write or produce media that would make those reviews public in an ongoing effort to educate both general population and those in positions of leadership as to the wise and productive use of power and resources.

     The third was to review and work to prevent the development and use of any form of business, governance, science, education, or technology that would allow greed-based use of resources, or promote pain, war, or malicious destruction.

     The main Council consisted of approximately 30-40 people, both men and women, with a core group of about nine people. They did not live near one another, nor did they go to work in an office. Each person came from a different area of the world and had a specific background of expertise. When they were not on location, they met via the global network to discuss current issues and matters having to do with business, government, education, science, and technology.

     Their task was to evaluate what was happening on the planet with an eye toward assessing these developments for potentially dangerous use or destructive applications. To do carry out their tasks, a core group of 4-5 Council members would travel to the location where the development, project, and/or technology was unfolding. Once there, they did not stay in a hotel, each stayed with a local family for up to 3 months, often staying with several families over this period of time. This gave them direct access to more intimate information, ideas, background, and events surrounding the development of the project. This would make it difficult for family or villagers to lie or present heavily biased information simply because the entire family was present and aware of everything surrounding the project. Young children and others in the family were a very key asset in discerning the truth.

     During the time spent with members of a family or neighborhood, Council members would meet with the individuals or groups involved in promoting the project. Then they would move to a different location to stay for a time with the individuals or groups who would be impacted by the project or development.

     They would read all written materials associated with the project, ask many questions, watch demonstrations of how any technologies would work, insist that the business, scientists, or inventor use the science or technology on himself or his neighborhood, talk to people unrelated to the work in order to assess the public acceptance and usefulness of the project, watch the effects of the project in the short- and long-term, and make arrangements for continued input and
assessment over time.

     They would then put out an advisory paper or video that discussed the considerations to be mindful of regarding the project. In the paper or media produced, they would make specific recommendations for all to follow. This advisory piece was posted on the global network and sent to all who might be affected by the decision. 

     For example, if a technology had both good and bad applications that were possible, the Council had the right to pursue multiple paths. One might be to impose laws forbidding the development of applications that could be used for war, fighting, destruction of local resources, etc. Another might be to recommend that the rights to the information be licensed only for developments that were positive and to nullify projects that had destructive outcomes.

     In the beginning, the impact of The World Council of Ethics was minimal, but because of the wisdom and value of the ethical assessments they produced, eventually they were afforded more and more cooperation, respect, and eventually the right to suspend a decision or refuse or modify permission to build or operate a particular technology. They could institute useful educational projects and had the right to call public meetings to discuss their findings, the conclusions they came to, and the recommendations they made. They could also temporarily put holds on research or technology if they felt it prudent to
do so. If a group of people were in strong disagreement with the findings, conclusions, or recommendations, the Council also hosted numerous discussions in which all could be reviewed and re-assessed. The process was ongoing.

     The World Council of Ethics came into existence in response to the difficulties experienced by millions of people who came together in an effort to assure that never again would business, governments, science, technology or education misuse resources, promote egregious greed on the part of a small percentage of people who then misused their power, or create weapons of mass destruction to be used against any nation or group. In essence, the Council began as the legal arm of the general population, created to counterbalance a failing and corrupt court system used by government and business institutions. Much later they evolved to become a guiding force behind the ongoing development and evolution of the human race. ♦

The World Council of Ethics was assembled from a group of 14 people around the planet in February of 2021. They began working together immediately and although their work is not public yet, the goal is to produce a Document of Ethics that can be disseminated to Local Councils working to restore order based on wisdom, personal responsibility, and a spirit of regeneration across the U.S. and the world. We hope to have that document available by spring 2023.