Post Sustainability Institute
Considering that its policies are woven into all the General Plans of the cities and counties, it's important for people to know where these policies are coming from. While many people support the United Nations for its peacemaking efforts, few know that they have very specific land use policies that they expect to see implemented in every city, county, state and nation. The specific plan is called United Nations Agenda 21 Sustainable Development, which has its basis in Communitarianism. By now, most Americans have heard of sustainable development but are largely unaware of Agenda 21.
In a nutshell, the plan calls for governments to take control of all land use and not leave any of the decision making in the hands of private property owners. It is assumed that people are not good stewards of their land and the government will do a better job if they are in control. Individual rights in general are to give way to the needs of communities as determined by the governing body. Moreover, people should be rounded up off the land and packed into human settlements, or islands of human habitation, close to employment centers and transportation. Another program, called the Wildlands Project spells out how most of the land is to be set aside for non-humans.
U.N. Agenda 21 cites the affluence of Americans as being a major problem which needs to be corrected. It calls for lowering the standard of living for Americans so that the people in poorer countries will have more, a redistribution of wealth. Although people around the world aspire to achieve the levels of prosperity we have in our country, and will risk their lives to get here, Americans are cast in a very negative light and need to be taken down to a condition closer to average in the world. Only then, they say, will there be social justice which is a cornerstone of the U.N. Agenda 21 plan.
Agenda 21 policies date back to the 1970's but it got its real start in 1992 at the Earth Summit in Rio de Janeiro when President Bush signed onto it. President Clinton signed it later and continued the program in the United States. Agenda 21 is 'soft-law' and did not have to be voted on by the Congress. A non-governmental organization called the International Council of Local Environmental Initiatives, ICLEI, is tasked with carrying out the goals of Agenda 21. Over 600 cities in the U.S. are members, and that number is growing. The costs are paid by taxpayers.
It's time that people educate themselves and read the document and related commentary. After that, get a copy of your city or county's General Plan and read it. You will find all sorts of policies that are nearly identical to those in U.N. Agenda 21. Unfortunately, their policies have advanced largely unnoticed and we are now in the end game. People need to identify their elected officials who are promoting the U.N.'s policies and hold them accountable for their actions. Only when we've identified who the people are and what they are trying to do will we be able to evaluate whether or not we approve of the policies they are putting forward. Some people may think it's appropriate for agencies outside the United States to set our policies and some people will not. The question is, aren't Americans able to develop their own policies? Should we rely on an organization that consists of member nations that have different forms of governments, most of which do not value individual rights as much as we do? It's time to bring U.N. Agenda 21 out in the open where we can have these debates and then set our own policies in accordance with our Constitution and Bill of Rights.
Ok, you say, interesting, but I don't see how that really affects me. Here are a few ways:
No matter where you live, I'll bet that there have been hundreds of condos built in the center of your town recently. Over the last ten years there has been a 'planning revolution' across the US. Your commercial, industrial, and multi-residential land was rezoned to 'mixed use.' Nearly everything that got approvals for development was designed the same way: ground floor retail with two stories of residential above. Mixed use. Very hard to finance for construction, and very hard to manage since it has to have a high density of people in order to justify the retail. A lot of it is empty and most of the ground floor retail is empty too. High bankruptcy rate.
So what? Most of your towns provided funding and/or infrastructure development for these private projects. They used Redevelopment Agency funds. Your money. Specifically, your property taxes. Notice how there's very little money in your General Funds now, and most of that is going to pay Police and Fire? Your street lights are off, your parks are shaggy, your roads are pot-holed, your hospitals are closing. The money that should be used for these things is diverted into the Redevelopment Agency. It's the only agency in government that can float a bond without a vote of the people. And they did that, and now you're paying off those bonds for the next 45 years with your property taxes. Did you know that?
So, what does this have to do with Agenda 21?
Redevelopment is a tool used to further the Agenda 21 vision of remaking America's cities. With redevelopment, cities have the right to take property by eminent domain---against the will of the property owner, and give it or sell it to a private developer. By declaring an area of town 'blighted' (and in some cities over 90% of the city area has been declared blighted) the property taxes in that area can be diverted away from the General Fund. This constriction of available funds is impoverishing the cities, forcing them to offer less and less services, and reducing your standard of living. They'll be telling you that it's better, however, since they've put in nice street lights and colored paving. The money gets redirected into the Redevelopment Agency and handed out to favored developers building low income housing and mixed use. Smart Growth. Cities have had thousands of condos built in the redevelopment areas and are telling you that you are terrible for wanting your own yard, for wanting privacy, for not wanting to be dictated to by a Condo Homeowner's Association Board, for being anti-social, for not going along to get along, for not moving into a cramped apartment downtown where they can use your property taxes for paying off that huge bond debt. But it's not working, and you don't want to move in there. So they have to make you. Read on.
Human habitation, as it is referred to now, is restricted to lands within the Urban Growth Boundaries of the city. Only certain building designs are permitted. Rural property is more and more restricted in what uses can be on it. Although counties say that they support agricultural uses, eating locally produced food, farmer's markets, etc, in fact there are so many regulations restricting water and land use (there are scenic corridors, inland rural corridors, baylands corridors, area plans, specific plans, redevelopment plans, huge fees, fines) that farmers are losing their lands altogether. County roads are not being paved. The push is for people to get off of the land, become more dependent, come into the cities. To get out of the suburbs and into the cities. Out of their private homes and into condos. Out of their private cars and onto their bikes.
Bikes. What does that have to do with it? I like to ride my bike and so do you. So what? Bicycle advocacy groups are very powerful now. Advocacy. A fancy word for lobbying, influencing, and maybe strong-arming the public and politicians. What's the conection with bike groups? National groups such as Complete Streets, Thunderhead Alliance, and others, have training programs teaching their members how to pressure for redevelopment, and training candidates for office. It's not just about bike lanes, it's about remaking cities and rural areas to the 'sustainable model'. High density urban development without parking for cars is the goal. This means that whole towns need to be demolished and rebuilt in the image of sustainable development. Bike groups are being used as the 'shock troops' for this plan.
What plan? We're losing our homes since this recession/depression began, and many of us could never afford those homes to begin with. We got cheap money, used whatever we had to squeak into those homes, and now some of us lost them. We were lured, indebted, and sunk. Whole neighborhoods are empty in some places. Some are being bulldozed. Cities cannot afford to extend services outside of their core areas. Slowly, people will not be able to afford single family homes. Will not be able to afford private cars. Will be more dependent. More restricted. More easily watched and monitored.
This plan is a whole life plan. It involves the educational system, the energy market, the transportation system, the governmental system, the health care system, food production, and more. The plan is to restrict your choices, limit your funds, narrow your freedoms, and take away your voice. One of the ways is by using the Delphi Technique to 'manufacture consensus.' Another is to infiltrate community groups or actually start neighborhood associations with hand-picked 'leaders'. Another is to groom and train future candidates for local offices. Another is to sponsor non-governmental groups that go into schools and train children. Another is to offer federal and private grants and funding for city programs that further the agenda. Another is to educate a new generation of land use planners to require New Urbanism. Another is to convert factories to other uses, introduce energy measures that penalize manufacturing, and set energy consumption goals to pre-1985 levels. Another is to allow unregulated immigration in order to lower standards of living and drain local resources.