Agenda 21 Part I: A Global Economic Disaster in the Making
…“Sustainable Development” is a distinctly and entirely socialist idea, and it varies from typical socialist rhetoric only in the metaphors used…
G u l a g B o u n d
Listening to the local news on the radio recently, I heard a report about how newly elected Baltimore County Executive Kevin Kamenetz plans to save $8 million by, among other things, merging the “Office of Sustainability” with the Department of Environmental Protection and Resource Management.
Office of Sustainability? In the county?
According to the story, “The new agency will be renamed the Department of Environmental Protection and Sustainability….”
The Department of Environmental Protection and Sustainability
A county government has its own EPA? You must be kidding.
No, unfortunately not. We’re from the government and we’re here to help.
Baltimore County’s Office of Planning defines “sustainability” as “Meeting the needs of the present without compromising the ability of current and future generations to meet their own needs.” Doesn’t that sound nice!
I checked some of the other county websites. Carroll County’s Sustainability Plan defines sustainability as: “…meeting the requirements of social, environmental, and economic circumstances without compromising the ability for future generations to meet the same need.”
Montgomery County’s says: “To live sustainably, one strives to meet the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs (my emphasis). People living sustainably recognize the fundamental and inextricable interdependence between the economy, the environment, and social equity, and work to promote each to the benefit of all.”
Howard County’s Office of Environmental Sustainability has similar blather. I didn’t look further, but you get the idea.
A curious coincidence perhaps, but these humble county governments’ definitions of “sustainability” look amazingly similar to the UN definition:
- Sustainable Development is development that meets the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs.
Of course it is no coincidence.
This definition was first articulated in a 1987 report of the United Nations World Commission on Environment & Development titled “Our Common Future.” (See p. 24.)
This has come to be known as the Brundtland Commission. It was chaired by Gro Harlem Brundtland, Norway’s socialist former Prime Minister, who also served as vice-chair of the Socialist International.
It is worth mentioning here that Carol Browner, President Obama’s Energy and Environment Czar, also served on the Socialist International’s Commission for a Sustainable World Society, although her name was stripped from the masthead the minute she got that appointment. Why?
The Brundtland Commission included Maurice Strong (Canada’s version of George Soros, an exceedingly corrupt oil billionaire who, like Soros, has called for the destruction of the West), William Ruckelshaus (first head of the EPA – the only American) and luminaries from such enlightened states as Zimbabwe, Communist China, the USSR, Algeria, Saudi Arabia and Cote D’Ivoire. These are environmental paradises to emulate for sure, but somehow they left out the important states of Togo and Burkina Faso. How could they?
In any event, “Sustainable Development” is a distinctly and entirely socialist idea, and it varies from typical socialist rhetoric only in the metaphors used. It demands redistribution of land, resources and private property into government hands. One particularly odious quote:
- Land, because of its unique nature and the crucial role it plays in human settlements, cannot be treated as an ordinary asset, controlled by individuals and subject to the pressures and inefficiencies of the market. Private land ownership is also a principal instrument of accumulation and concentration of wealth and therefore contributes to social injustice; if unchecked, it may become a major obstacle in the planning and implementation of development schemes. Social justice, urban renewal and development, the provision of decent dwellings-and healthy conditions for the people can only be achieved if land is used in the interests of society as a whole.
Emphases are mine. The last sentence makes clear that land must be controlled by government.
But it doesn’t stop there. “Sustainable Development” has become the buzzword for a strategy under development since at least the early 1970s to completely control every aspect of our lives, including resettling entire populations. For example, the 1976 U.N. Conference on Human Settlementscalled for population redistribution:
Recommendation A.1 National Settlement Policy:
- All countries should establish as a matter of urgency a national policy on human settlements, embodying the distribution of population, and related economic and social activities, over the national territory.
Recommendation A.2 Human Settlements and Development:
- A national policy for human settlements and the environment should be an integral part of any national economic and social development policy.
Recommendation A.4 More Equitable Distribution:
- Human settlements in most countries are characterized by wide disparities in living standards from one region to another, between urban and rural areas, within individual settlements and among various social and ethnic groups. Such discrepancies exacerbate many human settlement problems, and, in some instances, reflect inadequate planning. Human settlement policies can be powerful tools for the more equitable distribution of income and opportunities.
They are not kidding. And there is much more.
In 1992, an initiative titled “Agenda 21” was proposed at the U.N. sponsored Conference on Environment and Development, (the “Earth Summit”), held in Rio De Janeiro, Brazil. It states:
- Agenda 21 is a comprehensive plan of action to be taken globally, nationally and locally by organizations of the United Nations System, Governments, and Major Groups in every area in which human impacts on the environment [sic.]
The Agenda is an all-encompassing prescription for regulating every aspect of human activity in the interest of “sustainable development.” Is it not troubling that they couldn’t even get their grammar right? 178 governments signed on, including the United States.
Thank you, George H.W. Bush. However, Agenda 21 was not ratified by the U.S. Senate. President Clinton then defied the Senate’s will by signing Executive Order 12852, which created the President’s Council on Sustainable Development and got the ball rolling. Thank you, Bill Clinton!
While we all would like to assure natural resources are properly preserved for current and future generations, the U.N.’s prescriptions require that nations accept their definitions of “sustainable” and their recommendations for how to accomplish their goals. And it is all simply naked communism.
Let me repeat that, “sustainability” is codeword for communism.
Marxism has only survived because of Marxists’ ability to package and repackage the same odious ideas in flowery or obscure language. Consider the following phraseology. Everything in quotes comes directly from UN sustainability documents:
“Social Justice” assures the right “to benefit equally from the resources afforded us by society and the environment” = equal distribution of wealth = communism.
“Social Justice” assures that “every worker/person will be a direct capital owner” = dictatorship of the proletariat = communism.
“Sustainability” means that “individual rights will have to take a back seat to the collective.” How about that? Individual rights don’t matter, and as you should know, “collective” = communism.
“Public/private partnerships” = Government subsidized competitive advantage, wipes out competing private business, allows for monopoly government control = communism. (Note: “Public/private partnerships” and grants for “sustainability” are features of the Kennedy Serve America Act, the law that created Obama’s civilian defense force, passed in honor of the deceased senator in 2009.)
Here’s another example. The Agenda’s Rio Declaration demands that:
- All States and all people shall cooperate in the essential task of eradicating poverty as an indispensable requirement for sustainable development, in order to decrease the disparities in standards of living and better meet the needs of the majority of the people of the world.(Emphasis added.)
Under the guise of “saving the earth” the socialists have explicitly demanded redistribution of income. What a surprise.
Agenda 21′s Millennium Development Project calls for “developed countries,” that’s you and me folks, to donate 0.7 percent of GDP every year. Lest 0.7 percent of GDP sound like a small number, for 2010 it equates to about $103 billion, an amount that would fund the Departments of State, Justice and Energy, as well as the entire Legislative and Judicial branches of the U.S. government. Alternately, it could fund the Departments of Homeland Security, Interior and Housing and Urban Development! Take your pick. (Source: Office of Management and Budget).
And that is just the camel’s nose under the tent. Be sure, it will only increase. But why do it at all? How have our other efforts worked out for them?
Currently, the United States contributes by far the largest share of any nation to the U.N. Budget. (The two other most influential U.N. Security Council member countries, Russia and China, are not even in the top five). We provide the largest contribution to the International Monetary Fund, the World Bank, and every other similar organization. We provide billions in loans, subsidies and grants to other nations through separate programs within multiple federal agencies and offer private loans subsidized or guaranteed by the government. Has that had a noticeable impact? Seems everyone just hates us all the more!
So, not only is this very anti-American body of foreign, unelected bureaucrats attempting to dictate practically every aspect of our lives, we are footing the bill.
At the Copenhagen Global Warming summit last year, Gordon Brown, British Labor Party leader and Prime Minister from 2007-2010 said:
For 60 years we have measured our progress by economic gains and social justice. Now we know that the progress and even the survival of the only world we have depends on decisive action to protect that world. In the end, without environmental stewardship, there can beno sustainable prosperity and no sustainable social justice. (Emphasis added.)
The citation comes from a self-consciously self-important website titled “Make Wealth History,” run by two college-age brothers, who claim that:
The lifestyle of the western world is unsustainable – environmentally, economically, and socially. We are living beyond our means, and sharing the earth’s resources unequally. To restore some balance, we need to learn to use less, want less, and be more generous.
I chose the quote above because it captures the simple-minded, emotion-drenched, pompous attitude that animates these people. And just as socialism mindlessly reduces life to a tug-of-war between the haves and have-nots, this shallow, vapid monument to political correctness reveals the utter ignorance of its practitioners.
Image from propaganda video, “The Story of Stuff,” by Annie Leonard, presented to America’s children in public schools
Socialists everywhere and always see life as a zero sum game: if someone is wealthy, he must have taken it from the poor; if we are rich today, it must follow that future generations will be weaker. Current generations greedily sap our resources, leaving less for the future. The sustainable development crowd has transformed this complaint into public policy, using the alarming specter of “Anthropogenic Climate Change” to force the issue.
We have exposed the greenhouse gas myth for the fraud it is, but their entire argument is fatally flawed. The most salient feature of a market economy is its ability to grow and adapt as market conditions change. When any resource becomes scarce, its price increases. This creates a multitude of responses: producers seek new sources of supply, engage in research to find alternatives, or invent methods of using the resource more efficiently. The market accomplishes this smoothly, quietly and without large disruptions, unless government gets involved to manage it.
A salient theme of college courses in environmental conservation is the “greediness” of American consumer society. They constantly repeat the mantra that “America consumes 25 percent of the world’s resources but is only 5 percent of the world’s population.” Barack Obama even reiterated this statement on the campaign trail.
The clear implication is that this is wasteful and unfair. We should only be consuming 5 percent. Going from 25 percent to 5 percent is an 80 percent reduction. What happens to the countries supplying those goods when we reduce our consumption by 80 percent? Do they magically get a wealth transfer? No. Their economic decline will be cataclysmic.
Another way to look at it is that we consume 25 percent of the world’s resources toproduce 25 percent of the world’s GNP. Our economy buoys all the economies of the world through its consumption and production activities. Reducing our GDP to 5 percent would create an economic catastrophe that would make the Great Depression look like a walk in the park.
During the Great Depression, U.S. GDP declined by 27 percent. World industrial production fell 31 percent as a result. Worldwide calamity ensued, culminating in World War II. What would happen if we reduced GDP by 80 percent?
As it stands, the sustainability crowd wants to see carbon-based energy usage reduced by 80 percent. That goal was incorporated in the Cap and Trade bill that thankfully has not yet been enacted. Not quite the same as reducing GDP by that amount, but certain to cause a catastrophic decline in living standards nonetheless. Some analysts have even said that “planned recession” is the only way to reduce “greenhouse gasses” enough to make a difference.
These people are nuts.
If any true environmentalists understood this plan, they would be fleeing for their lives. It will ruin economies and cause widespread hardship. And we have plenty of evidence: every country that adopts the socialist/communist model so far has become an environmental disaster area.
But that is the intention, because socialism’s true objective is power – to the exclusion of everything else. And while the sustainability agenda will certainly destroy world economies, in the process of doing so it will hand absolute power to the people promoting it.
Using the Marxists’ deceptive language, the sustainability agenda has insinuated its way into government right down to the local level and is now firmly entrenched.
The good news is that this is something local tea party activists can focus on and may well be able to stop before it is too late. But make no mistake, that hour draws near.
Agenda 21 Part II: Globalist Totalitarian Dictatorship Invading a Town Near You – With Your Permission
Part I traced the sustainable development movement to longstanding U.N. environmental and population initiatives with unmistakably Marxist goals. They talk about saving the environment, but most of the fine print refers to “equity,” “social justice,” “fair distribution” and other Marxist terms. “Global warming” is the latest scare tactic, but population control never left the scene. The U.N.’s answer: free condoms.
As I said before, these people are nuts.
The discredited work of Dr. Paul Ehrlich, population prophet of doom, and Obama’s lunatic Science Czar, John Holdren, are referred to in U.N. population studies, and Ehrlich was cited in Agenda 21’s Biodiversity Assessment Report under “Gender Perspectives.” That’s right; the feminists have a special perspective on global warming too.
What was that someone said about women and talking?
So the pretext doesn’t matter. They will always find one, because in their minds the solution to everything, poverty, overpopulation, environmental degradation, or even who should win “Dancing with the Stars,” is Socialism. And the way they get there is by creating a crisis.
To promote their socialist nightmare, Marxists must use deceptive language and tactics. In “Sustainable Development” they have found a magic mantra. It has allowed them to insinuate all their socialist fantasies into our legal code, under our noses, with little or no fanfare, scant public debate and graveyard noises from our treacherously AWOL mass media, right down to the local level – with our permission. Agenda 21, a UN initiative that was never endorsed by the U.S. Senate, as all international agreements must be, has penetrated into the ordinances of county and city governments all over America.
They have accomplished this through a little-known (to us) vehicle called the International Council for Local Environmental Initiatives (ICLEI) – Local Governments for Sustainability. Quoting ICLEI documents from this article (emphases added):
Our campaigns, programs, and projects promote Local Agenda 21 as a participatory, long-term, strategic planning process that addresses local sustainability while protecting global common goods. Linking local action to internationally agreed upon goals and targets such as Agenda 21, the Rio Conventions, the Habitat Agenda, the Millennium Development Goals and the Johannesburg Plan of Implementation is an essential component. [Sic]
Chapter 3, Section 1 states, “The eradication of poverty and hunger, greater equity in income distribution and human resource development remain major challenges everywhere. The struggle against poverty is the shared responsibility of all countries.”
As explained in the prior article, this project has everywhere and always been about socialism. They don’t even hide it well.
In his opening statements at the 1992 Earth Summit, billionaire U.N. bureaucrat and compulsive totalitarian Maurice Strong (also Al Gore’s partner in their carbon credit business) said:
Current lifestyles and consumption patterns of the affluent middle class – involving high meat intake, use of fossil fuels, appliances, home and work-place air-conditioning, and suburban housing – are not sustainable. A shift is necessary which will require a vast strengthening of the multilateral system, including the United Nations.
This is perhaps the most concise statement of Agenda 21’s real goals.
Do I have to repeat myself? These people are nuts!
Strong echoes the sentiments of former Soviet leader and secular messiah, Mikhail Gorbachev, who said:
Do not do unto the environment of others what you do not want done to your own environment…. My hope is that this (earth) charter will be a kind of Ten Commandments, a ‘Sermon on the Mount’, that provides a guide for human behavior toward the environment in the next century.
Ironically, while Republican and Democrat alike rush to embrace sustainable development at the local level, even quasi-socialist states like Great Britain are abandoning it. From the London Telegraph:
Hurrah! Our useless Coalition government has finally done something useful by axing one of its more pointless and hateful quangos, the Sustainable Development Commission.
Recall from Tuesday’s article that Agenda 21 was imposed on this country when Bill Clinton, defying the U.S. Senate’s will, created our own version, the President’s Council on Sustainable Development, by executive order.
The Telegraph article pulls no punches:
“Sustainability” is not nearly as politically neutral as its cuddly, warm name sounds. A bit like “multiculturalism” or “diversity”, “sustainability” is one of those weasel concepts which has been foisted on our language and culture by the hard left, linguistically masquerading as something unimpeachably caring and reasonable while in fact advancing a policy agenda designed to increase state control, remove property rights and liberty, and brainwash the gullible into ceding more and more of their democratic rights to UN and EU bureaucrats.
Tom DeWeese of the American Policy Center, a leader in exposing the radical goals of “sustainable development,” has called Agenda 21 “the greatest threat ever perpetrated against the American ideal of liberty.”
Here is a list of the more than 600 U.S. cities, towns and counties currently participating in ICLEI’s Local Governments for Sustainability.
ICLEI has succeeded in implementing the sustainability agenda through something called the Delphi Technique. All activists need to understand the Delphi Technique. Originally created by the Rand Corporation as a consensus building methodology for scientists, Delphi has morphed into a subversive tactic for imposing malevolent leftist agendas on an unsuspecting public who would never agree if they understood.
A key feature of the Delphi Technique is to identify the “good guys,” i.e. those who go along with the predetermined agenda, and isolate the “bad guys,” thereby removing any obstructionists. It is a sophisticated application of Alinksy’s Rule #13: pick the target, freeze it, personalize it, polarize it.
In order to motivate the “good guys,” ICLEI has created a rating system for counties based on how well they implement Agenda 21. King County, Washington has become the proud test bed for this new system. Listen to this bloviating county executive:
“We are honored to be selected and look forward to piloting this innovative efficiency program,” said King County Executive Dow Constantine. “The Pacific Northwest and King County have a lot to gain by protecting the climate, and I am happy we are going to be using all available tools to measure how we make a difference.”
Note that local governments receiving a poor rating can now be identified as “bad.” For the young “enlightened” couple seeking a place to settle, such a place obviously won’t do. The city/county is also much less likely to receive “sustainability” funds available from federal and state government, so while they are on the hook to adopt Agenda 21 initiatives, they will have to fund it themselves. The rating system thus creates strong financial incentives for local governments to compete to be the “best” and serious consequences for those who do not.
And the above-referenced article about King County, perhaps inadvertently, has exposed the radical nature of this organization:
The STAR Community Index™ (STAR) is a groundbreaking software tool being developed by ICLEI- Local Governments for Sustainability USA, in partnership with the US Green Building Council (USGBC), the National League of Cities, and the Center for American Progress. (Emphasis added.)
You may recognize the Soros funded Center for American Progress. It is run by John Podesta, Clinton administration Chief of Staff and Obama Transition Team director. Podesta is also on the board of the Apollo Alliance, formerly run by Green Jobs Czar, self-described communist, Van Jones.
CAP has been described by Weather Underground Obama supporter Mark Rudd as Obama’s “government in waiting.” Members include Open Society Institute President and SDS founder Aryeh Neier, Van Jones and a laundry list of other radical leftists. The National League of Cities isn’t much better.
Here is another example of the Delphi Technique in application and a revealing illustration of where they are attempting to go with it. The Baltimore County government’s Office of Planning devotes an entire section to developing the concept of a “Green Transportation Hierarchy,” kind of an upside-down takeoff on Abraham Maslow’s “Hierarchy of Needs.”
They identify those transportation modes that contribute to “global warming” ranked from least (pedestrians) to most (our cars).
It doesn’t take a genius to figure out who are the “bad guys” here. It is interesting to note that taxis are preferred over high occupancy vehicles. Do taxis carry more people? Usually not, but taxis are not privately owned, like carpool vehicles using the HOV lanes usually are. The thrust clearly favors public transportation and the ultimate goal is walking and biking, the common modes of transport in communist China.
Yes, they want our cars too.
This is made explicit in the push for “20 minute neighborhoods.” Portland, Oregon is taking the lead in this initiative. Here is there justification (emphases mine):
Desires for sustainable living: increased energy conservation, support for local businesses, active and healthier lifestyles and improving community connections and equity has led to an interest in fostering the development or redevelopment of walkable communities, or 20-minute neighborhoods, in Portland.
Before the 1920s, when autos were rare and few people had access to a car on a regular basis, most people lived in 20-minute neighborhoods by necessity. As cars became more available, proposals to preserve 20-minute neighborhoods entered planning literature. In 1929, the “Neighborhood Unit” by Clarence Perry described successful neighborhoods as those that offer accessibility to the spectrum of day-to-day human needs. He proposed defining these neighborhoods in terms of a one-quarter mile walk.
Despite well-recognized interest in keeping 20-minute neighborhoods in the late 1920s, and beyond, during the second-half of the 20th century, the trend across the United States was toward providing auto-oriented residential and commercial environments.
Yep, autos, the villain. So here’s the pitch:
However, increased interest in improving sustainability—responding to challenges posed by climate change by reducing car trips and decreasing energy use in general, the need for affordable housing and to reduce housing-related costs, the need to stay physically fit and live healthily and wants to support local businesses—has renewed interest in walkable environments or 20-minute neighborhoods.
Walkable communities are defined specifically, too:
Some studies have shown that a 20-minute walk equates to approximately 1 mile walking at a fast pace; however, the average person could walk between ¼ to ½ a mile under safe, conducive walking conditions, (e.g. sidewalks and short blocks).
To emphasize the importance of short distances for walking, we used an analysis area with dimensions of 500 by 500 feet and used the frequency of intersections and the presence of sidewalks as factors in walkability.
They want to herd us into ¼ mile neighborhoods. And population density is specified as well: a minimum density of 12-18 households per acre. Welcome to the Soviet Union!
How many times do I need to say it? These people are nuts!
The country is awash in this crap. The Maryland State government is virtually bursting with “Sustainability” initiatives like Governor O’Malley’s Smart, Green and Growing. The state Department of Natural Resources hosts a Sustainability Network page, where you can link to organizations promoting sustainability in every county in the state.
The Maryland state government created a new “Sustainable Growth Commission” in 2010. The year before, it passed the “Smart and Sustainable Growth Act of 2009,” which requires county planning officials to take a special course. You can see the study guide here . The guide is a road map to the “sustainable” future, which will force us all into cities, crowd us close to public transportation, bike paths and into “walkable neighborhoods”:
…encouraging shorter drive times, locating housing closer to work, minimizing shopping trips, and giving our kids real options to walk and ride bikes to school, parks and playgrounds…” while reducing our “carbon footprint.
But the drive to push us into cities would not be complete without an equally aggressive effort to chase us out of the country.
Earth First! is a radical environmental group branded by the FBI as domestic terrorists, a fact they are proud of. Believe it or not, Dave Foreman, Earth First’s co-founder who pioneered in the use of tree spikes (left), has been an intimate partner in development of the “sustainability” agenda.
We must make this place an insecure and inhospitable place for capitalists and their projects… We must reclaim the roads and plowed lands, halt dam construction, tear down existing dams, free shackled rivers and return to wilderness millions of tens of millions of acres of presently settled land.
This is getting old: these people are nuts!
The goal is to make 50 percent of the land in every state inaccessible by man (except, of course, the “good guys”.) According to Tom DeWeese, much has been accomplished already:
Today, there are at least 31 Wildlands projects underway, locking away more than 40 percent of the nation’s land. The Alaska Wildlands Project seeks to lock away and control almost the entire state. In Washington State, Oregon, Idaho, Montana parts of North and South Dakota, parts of California, Arizona, Nevada, New Mexico, Wyoming, Texas, Utah, and more, there are at least 22 Wildlands Projects underway. For example, one project called Yukon to Yellowstone (Y2Y) – creates a 2000 mile no-man’s land corridor from the Arctic to Yellowstone.
An excellent video by Dr. Michael Coffman explains it all. The six minutes are worth your time. Just click on the picture:
If I haven’t convinced you, Dr. Coffman’s video should. (Link to Taking Liberty.) The metastasized cancer of Agenda 21 must be ripped out root and branch from our body politic. Local governments and state legislatures must be confronted and forced to repeal the myriad laws, ordinances, zoning codes and regulations that advance this globalist agenda. It simply must be tackled now. This is a perfect issue for local Tea Party groups and must become a focal point of our efforts to reclaim our country.
The Wildlands map is particularly stunning, showing exactly how they plan to herd the entire U.S. population into tiny urban centers and put most of the country completely off limits (except for the “good guys” of course).
Question: Can we fit?
Next: Agenda 21 Part III: Globalist Totalitarian Agenda Demands the Extinction of Man – Except for the “Good Guys”
James Simpson is best known for his exposé of the Cloward-Piven strategy of manufactured crisis. He is a businessman and a former White House (OMB) staff economist and budget analyst.
In addition to RightSideNews, his writings have been published in Big Government.com, American Thinker, Washington Times, WorldNetDaily, FrontPage Magazine, Soldier of Fortune, Examiner.com and others venues. His blog is Truth & Consequences.