Have you heard of Cafayate?
It’s way down south in Argentina. In a wine valley.
It seems to be the nearest thing to John Galt’s hidden valley that exists in the real world.
You can read a little about it here – though not nearly as much as you might want to know if you’re a free-market libertarian.
Jeff Berwick is the author of the report. He issues a free-market financial newsletter called The Dollar Vigilante.
Berwick explains that the people associated with it are “best described as financial freedom fighters“.
The Dollar Vigilante (TDV) is unwilling to live under a corrupt statist system of finance controlled by a few to impoverish the many. TDV began as a way to help foment a movement, long in progress, by individuals worldwide, to rid themselves of government controlled fiat money in favor of assets of real value void of manipulation. It is the hope of TDV that it can help create a community of dollar crash survivors who can survive the collapse of the global financial system and prosper from the new free-market financial system which will take its place.
The world is changing. The nation-state is passing away. Socialism is failing as it must.
Back to tribalism? Or forward to new communities of members freely associating according to their taste? – In “phyles”, to use the Greek word for clans. But not clans in the old sense, not clans bound by kinship or place of birth, but elective clans. You choose the company you want to keep, the type of economy you want to participate in.
A new vision of an emerging world, different from any other.
Not even quite the same as Ayn Rand’s, though she and her Atlas figures who carried an ungrateful world on their shoulders would surely have liked it.
Not only is it incredibly beautiful here but most of the value lies in the community. … Doug Casey often talks about “phyles” – which is an ancient Greek term for a tribe or clan. He is of the belief that nation states as they exist today are a brief abberation and that the world will trend more towards likeminded people living in areas (call them countries if you wish) with other similar like minded people.
This makes a lot of sense and is, in general, the way things are trending. If people like communism, let them all gather together somewhere and create their own communist phyle. A few years later and most of them will be dead from starvation or murder but, hey, at least they got to do what they wanted with other like minded people as opposed to forcing the rest of us to follow their insane socialist/communist ideas.
In Cafayate, “libertarian/anarchist/austrian-economics adherents” are gathering. We – not anarchists ourselves, but libertarian austrian-economics adherents who argue for minimal government – suspect that many if not all of them are atheists too.
It, quite possibly, is the world’s first libertarian enclave!
Galt’s Gulch does exist and it is in Cafayate, Argentina!
Worth reading about, thinking about – and visiting perhaps.
Rick Perry, Governor of Texas and a probable presidential candidate, wrote to the Attorney General, Eric Holder, urging him to take action against Americans who sail with a flotilla to “break the Israeli siege of Gaza”.
Of course, Holder is very unlikely to do anything of the kind. He only enforces the law for or against persons according to whether he likes or dislikes them or their race. But it will be interesting to see what response, if any, he makes to Perry’s letter.
Here is what Perry wrote, according to the Washington Post:
“The state of Israel is a friend and critical ally of the United States, and the only stable democracy in an increasingly unstable and hostile region,” wrote Perry, a vocal supporter of Israel who is considering a run for president in 2012. “These initiatives to breach Israel’s maritime blockade of the Gaza Strip is an unacceptable provocation.”
Under federal law, anyone who “prepares a means for, or furnishes the money for, or takes part in, any military or naval expedition” against a friendly country can be fined or jailed for three years. Perry also suggested that Holder prosecute the protesters for providing materials or assistance to a terrorist organization. …
In his letter, Perry identified two of the ships as “The Audacity of Hope” and the “The Challenger II,” both of which he said were registered in Delaware. Perry also wrote that the ships will depend on U.S.-based Inmarsat for communications and navigation, suggesting that the organization could be held responsible for the protesters’ actions.
“I write to encourage you to aggressively pursue all available legal remedies to enjoin and prevent these illegal actions, and to prosecute any who may elect to engage in them in spite of your pre-emptive efforts,” Perry wrote.
Perry’s letter would make him our favorite among declared GOP presidential candidates, if he declares. True, he’s in the God camp, but so are they all.
We expect there will be a woman president, a Jewish president, even a president not born in the United States (although that would be in defiance of the Constitution), before there will be a self-confessed atheist president.
But maybe, for once, we are being too pessimistic.
America has failed in Afghanistan.
Robert Spencer writes a hard-hitting article about it at Front Page:
Details are still unclear, but it appears that as many as six jihad/martyrdom suicide bombers descended upon the Intercontinental Hotel in Kabul Tuesday night. As many as ten people have been murdered, and the Taliban is thumping its chest in victory. …
The Taliban’s continued ability to commit this murder and mayhem in Afghanistan is testimony to the failure of the American adventure there, the loss of thousands of lives of noble and courageous American military personnel who deserved better from those in command, and the wanton waste of billions of dollars. It was not a failure of power: we were not outgunned or outfought. It was a failure of will, stemming from a misdiagnosis of the problem.
Two American administrations have spoken about bringing democracy and freedom to Afghanistan, and yet have not been able or willing to face the fact that the foremost obstacle to those goals was Islam, which respects neither. …
The Bush Administration sponsored the implementation in Afghanistan of a Constitution that enshrined Islamic law as the highest law of the land, such that no law could be made that contradicted it. The bitter fruit of that disastrously short-sighted decision began to appear early on: in 2006 the Karzai government put a convert from Islam to Christianity on trial for apostasy, a capital offense under Islamic law. When an aghast State Department protested, pointing out that Afghanistan’s shiny new Constitution guaranteed freedom of religion, Afghan officials patiently explained to them that it guaranteed freedom of religion within the bounds of Sharia. … That meant the institutionalized oppression of women and non-Muslims, the extinguishing of the freedom of speech, and – as was clear from the Abdul Rahman case and other apostasy cases that followed it — the denial of the freedom of conscience. Sanctioned by the Karzai government, not just by the Taliban.
Nonetheless, America continued to pour out her blood and treasure for this repressive state, with no clear objective or mission in view other than a never-defined “victory.” What would victory have looked like? What could it possibly have looked like?
Was the Karzai government, or any Afghan government that followed it, ever going to allow women to throw off their burqas and take their place in Afghan society as human beings equal in dignity to men? Was the Karzai government, or any Afghan government that followed it, ever going to guarantee basic human rights to the tiny and ever-dwindling number of non-Muslims unfortunate enough to live within its borders? Absolutely not. The Bush and Obama Administrations, both drunk on the “Religion of Peace” Kool-Aid they have relentlessly peddled to the American people, completely disregarded the nature of Islam as a political system as well as a religion, and hence made no consideration whatsoever of the likelihood that most Afghans would reject the idea of a secular government, free elections, and equality of rights for all people as a blasphemous rejection of the way that a proper Islamic society should be ordered. …
It is not just that America has failed to achieve victory in Afghanistan; America has been defeated. Not by force of arms, but by the nature of Afghanistan. It is not a nation but a conglomeration of primitive warring tribes with one thing in common – the dark superstitions and brutal cruelties of the ancient cult of Islam. There never was any possibility that America could transform that benighted land into an enlightened, modern, free, democratic nation-state. American leaders who imagined they could have been guilty of unforgivable stupidity, ignorance, and obstinacy.
America ensured its own defeat in Afghanistan.
The Taliban is so strong that even Karzai has made overtures to it, as has Barack Obama; eight years after it was toppled from power, its claim of Islamic authenticity strongly resonates with the Afghan people, and provides an ever-renewable wellspring of material, financial, and moral support for these vicious thugs as they bomb girls’ schools, music stores, and other outcroppings of jahiliyya – the infidels’ society of ignorance.
With the withdrawal of the American troops, there will be many more Taliban actions like the one at the Intercontinental Hotel Tuesday night. That is unfortunate. But it is nothing that we ever could have definitively and finally stamped out anyway. The mind that believes that the supreme lord and master of the universe promises him a place in Paradise if he kills in his service and is killed in the process (cf. Qur’an 9:111) will not be dissuaded from this conviction by a few bags of rations and a clean new school for his daughters. The mind that believes that no non-Muslim has any right to rule in any part of Allah’s earth, and that it is the responsibility of Muslims to fight against Infidel polities in order to spread Sharia around the world will not be dissuaded by vague and high-toned promises of “freedom.”
The one and only thing that could be redeemed from the long-drawn-out and ill-advised misadventure, the colossal and wasteful disaster, would be the lesson that Islam must be understood for what it is: a vicious, rotten, appalling ideology that should be universally and forever despised and rejected.
The foremost lesson of America’s misbegotten Afghan adventure is that our national unwillingness to face the unpleasant truths about Islam, and particularly Islamic supremacism, costs us lives, costs us money, and makes us even more vulnerable to jihad attack than we already were. It’s time not just to bring the troops home from their foredoomed mission, but to begin a searching and encompassing reevaluation of all our national policies regarding Islam and Islamic states.
But under Barack Obama, that is about as likely as the possibility that he will make his next speech from Jerusalem, proclaiming it Israel’s capital and calling upon the Palestinian Arabs to end their jihad.
So the lesson will not be learnt. Or not yet.
What is all the enlightenment of the West worth; what does the ideal of liberty, and the scrupulous protections of it that the Founders of the United States instituted, profit the American people; how does their military and economic strength, their intellectual power, their political predominance serve them if they, who have inherited and own it all, cannot bring themselves to recognize the nature of their enemy, call it by its name, and use their might to vanquish it?
We often agree with Dennis Prager. We disagree with him when he talks about religion. (As we do with most conservative columnists and commentators, candidates and Congressmen.)
We wonder continually at the strangeness of the fact that millions of highly intelligent, educated, sane adults living in this age of science believe in the supernatural.
How poor their arguments are when they talk about it. How blindly they insist that religion is the sole source and guarantee of moral behavior.
Dennis Prager, writing in Townhall on the fairly trivial subject of an airline allowing a man dressed only in women’s underwear to fly, mixes sense and nonsense in a manner typical of religious conservatives:
On June 9, a man boarded a US Airways flight from Fort Lauderdale to Phoenix, dressed in women’s panties, a bra and thigh-high stockings.
No US Airways employee at the Fort Lauderdale airport asked him to cover himself. Nor did any flight attendant ask him to do so. And obviously, no one demanded that he get off the plane.
US Airways spokeswoman Valerie Wunder was asked how the airline allowed a nearly naked cross-dresser to board a plane … She said employees had been correct not to ask the man to cover himself. ‘We don’t have a dress code policy. Obviously, if their private parts are exposed, that’s not appropriate. … So if they’re not exposing their private parts, they’re allowed to fly.’
The decline of American civilization since the 1960s has been so fast and so dramatic that it takes one’s breath away.
That a woman speaking on behalf of a major airline can say with a straight face that her airline allows anyone dressed or undressed to fly on its airplanes so long as they do not expose their genitals perfectly encapsulates this decline.
The only question is: How did we get here?
For one thing, the concept of decency is dying. I suspect that if an adult were to say to a group of randomly chosen American college students that this man indecently exposed himself and should not have been allowed to fly, that adult would be a) not understood — what does “indecent” mean? — and/or b) roundly condemned for intolerance and bigotry.
To judge this man as acting indecently, not to mention to bar him from flying, is to engage in violating the only values a generation of Americans has been taught: not to judge, not to discriminate, to welcome diversity and to fully accept those who are different, especially in the sexual arena.
That is why I think it is very difficult to have a dialogue on this matter. For those who believe in public “decency,” the matter is as clear as a bell — this was profoundly indecent — and for those who do not believe in such a concept, the matter is equally clear — “decency” is an anachronism.
So far, good enough. We agree that the man was not decently covered. It’s possible that some people on the flight found the exposure of most of his body shocking. What he did was not polite. Politeness, which respects the dignity of other people, is necessary to human relations: far more necessary than a saccharine pretense of generalized indiscriminate love.
But then Prager goes on to argue that a “reason for the death of the concept of ‘public decency'” is “the age of secularism in which we live”.
In a more religious America, the human being was regarded as created in God’s image, a being that ideally aspires to a level of holiness. As secularism proceeds with the increasing force of an avalanche, however, man is increasingly regarded as just another animal. One way in which higher civilizations have demonstrated the human-animal difference has been the wearing of clothing. Animals are naked in public; humans are clothed. But secularism eats away at such religious ideals. Thus religion-based concepts such as holiness and decency die out.
God’s image with clothes on?
The argument in Judaism is that man was made in God’s “moral image”, but Christians say God was incarnated as Jesus of Nazareth. In Christian art, both “God the Father” and Jesus are usually depicted with clothes on – often a sort of woman’s nightgown or a toga-like garment – but not always. Michelangelo’s God on the Sistine Chapel roof is nude. Where but half-awakened Adam / Can disturb globe-trotting madam/ Till her bowels are in a heat, wrote W.B.Yeats.
Of course, though many a madam will trot or fly over half the globe to view that naked God and Adam, she might not enjoy having an almost naked man sitting next to her on her journey. We think Dennis Prager is right that she shouldn’t have to.
But no, Mr Prager, secularism does not destroy decency or politeness. Most secularists wear clothes and are polite. What they don’t do in the name of secularism is sniff out heretical views, punish apostasy, blow up infidels, hang homosexuals, stone adulterers, incarcerate critics, or torture and burn the nerve-threaded bodies of the living.
Such acts are done, have been done millions of times, in the name of religion. We think they are rather worse than indecent.
From time to time we quote from the daily record, kept by (the excellent, ironically named) Religion of Peace, of deadly terrorist attacks carried out by Muslims since 9/11. The total, which appears daily in our margin, stands now at 17379.
Here is what Muslims perpetrated in just the last two days in the name of their disgusting religion:
2011.06.26 (Meiram, Sudan) – Arab militiamen attack a train carrying Southerners, killing one.
2011.06.26 (Maiduguri, Nigeria) – Islamists massacre twenty-five patrons at a bar by tossing in bombs and firing into the building.
2011.06.26 (Char Chino, Afghanistan) – The Taliban detonate an 8-year-old girl near a checkpoint.
2011.06.26 (Tarmiya, Iraq) – A suicide bomber hides his weapon in a wheelchair. Three others are killed.
2011.06.26 (Mosul, Iraq) – Mujahid car bombers successfully kill six Iraqis.
2011.06.25 (Logar, Afghanistan) – A huge car bomb at a hospital ends the lives of at least three dozen innocents and de-limbs many others.
Here are the answers to the questions we posed in Oppression in Palestine (June 25, 2011). We thank the commenters who played the guessing game.
The Jewish travelogue writer J. J. Binyamin recorded the following account after his 1847 sojourn in Palestine — the plight of the Jews he witnessed being consistent with their sacralized degradation under Islamic Law, and despite putative “reforms” of the Sharia imposed upon the Ottoman Muslim rulers in 1839 by the Western European powers:
Deep misery and continual oppression are the right words to describe the condition of the Children of Israel in the land of their fathers … They are entirely destitute of every legal protection and every means of safety. Instead of security afforded by law, which is unknown in these countries, they are completely under the orders of the Sheiks and Pashas, men whose character and feelings inspire but little confidence from the beginning. It is only the European Consuls who frequently take care of the oppressed, and afford them some protection. … With unheard of rapacity tax upon tax is levied on them, and with the exception of Jerusalem, the taxes demanded are arbitrary. Whole communities have been impoverished by the exorbitant claims of the Sheiks, who, under the most trifling pretences and without being subject to any control, oppress the Jews with fresh burdens … In the strict sense of the word the Jews are not even masters of their own property. They do not even venture to complain when they are robbed and plundered … Their lives are taken into as little consideration as their property; they are exposed to the caprice of any one; even the smallest pretext, even a harmless discussion, a word dropped in conversation, is enough to cause bloody reprisals. Violence of every kind is of daily occurrence. The chief evidence of their miserable condition is the universal poverty which we remarked in Palestine, and which is here truly astounding … It even causes leprosy among the Jews of Palestine, as in former times. Robbed of their means of subsistence from the cultivation of the soil and the pursuit of trade, they exist upon the charity of their brethren in the faith in foreign parts … In a word the state of the Jews in Palestine, physically and mentally, is an unbearable one.
Let’s compare briefly the condition of the Jews under Muslim rule as described by Binyamin with the condition of the Arabs now in the Palestine region (the area that was under British mandate after the 1914-1918 war, and was not handed over to the Hashemites to create the Emirate of Transjordan). The Arabs in Israel have all the rights of citizenship, including representation in parliament. As for the citizens of Gaza, ruled by the terrorist organization Hamas – for whom the heart of many a left-wing sentimentalist bleeds over claims that Israel “occupies” the strip and oppresses the people, that starvation prevails there and shortage of medicine (for which Israel is blamed), so flotillas are organized to bring relief to Gaza by sea – here’s a piece of recent news. It’s from the New York Times, which is not exactly a shill for Israel (read the whole article to find its blame-Israel policy confirmed):
Two luxury hotels are opening in Gaza this month. Thousands of new cars are plying the roads. A second shopping mall — with escalators imported from Israel — will open next month. Hundreds of homes and two dozen schools are about to go up. A Hamas-run farm where Jewish settlements once stood is producing enough fruit that Israeli imports are tapering off.
Note: We found the quotation from Binyamin in an essay by Andrew G. Bostom, titled Understanding the Jihad Against Israel and America. It is packed with information that everyone should know about Islam and its relentless jihad, and we strongly recommend that it be not only read, but printed out and kept for reference.
The people of North Korea are starving.
Frank Crimi writes at Front Page:
While North Korea’s leadership solicits the world’s nations for food aid, the despotic regime continues to deliberately starve its own people. …
The US House of Representatives… voted last week to entirely bar any US food aid to North Korea. The denial of assistance brought cries of humanitarian neglect from some quarters, the most notable being from Jimmy Carter who called the US action a “human-rights violation.” Yet as Republican Representative Ed Royce said, “Let’s be clear, the aid we provide would prop up Kim Jong ll’s regime, a brutal and dangerous dictatorship.”
While that reason alone may have been enough to deny North Korea food aid, there was still an extended list of other justifications. Perhaps chief among these grounds was the growing belief that the North Korean government had actually manufactured its current food crisis. …
North Korea has been manufacturing a food crisis ever since it turned communist. “Communist” is shorthand for “severe shortage of all things that sustain life and make it bearable”.
A recently leaked North Korean police manual … confirmed cases of cannibalism. In one particular instance, a North Korean guard killed his roommate with an axe when he was sleeping, ate part of the corpse and then sold the rest at the market where he described it as lamb meat.
In fact, the situation has become so severe that it has even led to small pockets of public anger, no small feat in this tightly controlled country. Various reports of public resistance springing up in North Korea have arisen over the past year, with some protests turning violent. The outbreak was serious enough for the North Korean government to actually form a special riot control force in 2010 to quell public demonstrations.
These isolated events have led some to speculate that North Korea may soon experience an uprising similar to what has transpired in various Middle East countries, given the similar conditions between the two situations: corrupt leadership, overwhelming poverty, and brutal repression.
However, despite these similarities, it isn’t likely that the North Korean people … will be rioting anytime soon.
For starters, North Koreans may actually be too weak from hunger to sustain a long-term protest movement. Moreover, they have no means of communication by which to share their anger and organize. … North Korea’s lack of the Internet and other social networking infrastructure make a public uprising “quite slim.”
Yet, even if they could organize, North Korean protesters would face a regime that is armed to the teeth and more than willing to use those artillery, bombs and fighter jets on them …
And in any case they need to understand that North Korea is the second happiest country on earth.
Their government recently drew up a “Happiness Index” on which Number One, the land where people live in the greatest bliss possible to humankind, is [North Korea's staunch friend and supporter] China. Next comes North Korea.
However much their existence may feel like prolonged suffering, the North Koreans have been informed that in almost every other country people are worse off than they are.
So at least they’re saved from the pangs of envy while they endure those of hunger. A great relief and consolation, wouldn’t you say?
A guessing game.
In the passage quoted below, guess who the people are, by nationality and/or religion, or position of authority, whichever is suitable to the context. Fill in the blank spaces indicated by dotted lines. (The number of dots is no guide to the number of letters in the missing word.)
Suggest the time period in which it was written.
What would you suppose about the author?
Deep misery and continual oppression are the right words to describe the condition of the …… in the land of their fathers. They are entirely destitute of every legal protection and every means of safety. Instead of security afforded by law, which is unknown in these countries, they are completely under the orders of the …… and the ……, men whose character and feelings inspire but little confidence from the beginning. It is only the European Consuls who frequently take care of the oppressed, and afford them some protection. With unheard of rapacity tax upon tax is levied on them, and with the exception of Jerusalem, the taxes demanded are arbitrary. Whole communities have been impoverished by the exorbitant claims of the ……, who, under the most trifling pretences and without being subject to any control, oppress the …… with fresh burdens. In the strict sense of the word the …… are not even masters of their own property. They do not even venture to complain when they are robbed and plundered. Their lives are taken into as little consideration as their property; they are exposed to the caprice of any one; even the smallest pretext, even a harmless discussion, a word dropped in conversation, is enough to cause bloody reprisals. Violence of every kind is of daily occurrence. The chief evidence of their miserable condition is the universal poverty which we remarked in Palestine, and which is here truly astounding. It even causes leprosy among the …… of Palestine, as in former times. Robbed of their means of subsistence from the cultivation of the soil and the pursuit of trade, they exist upon the charity of their brethren in the faith in foreign parts. In a word the state of the …… in Palestine, physically and mentally, is an unbearable one.
The complete quotation and information about who wrote it will be posted soon.
What is “Agenda 21″?
It is one of the biggest steps the UN has taken towards world socialist government.
Here’s what the UN itself – through its Department of Economic and Social Affairs, Division of Sustainable Development – says about it:
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.
Agenda 21, the Rio Declaration on Environment and Development, and the Statement of principles for the Sustainable Management of Forests were adopted by more than 178 Governments at the United Nations Conference on Environment and Development (UNCED) held in Rio de Janerio, Brazil, 3 to 14 June 1992.
The Commission on Sustainable Development (CSD) was created in December 1992 to ensure effective follow-up of UNCED, to monitor and report on implementation of the agreements at the local, national, regional and international levels. It was agreed that a five year review of Earth Summit progress would be made in 1997 by the United Nations General Assembly meeting in special session.
Ominous buzz-words in there: “comprehensive”; “globally”; “sustainable”; “human impacts”; “environment”.
But 1992, 1997 … that was way back in the last century. Why bring it up now?
Because Agenda 21 is about to be executed in the United States by executive order.
From an article at Canada Free Press, by Dr. Ileana Johnson Paugh:
On June 9, 2011, few people paid attention to the Executive Order establishing the White House Rural Council. …
This piece of legislation from the Oval Office establishes unchecked federal control into rural America in education, food supply, land use, water use, recreation, property, energy, and the lives of 16% of the U.S. population.
Section 1, Policy states, “Sixteen percent of the American population lives in rural counties. Strong, sustainable rural communities are essential to winning the future and ensuring American competitiveness in the years ahead.”
There is no definition what rural America is. In fact, there are no definitions in this Executive Order at all. I emphasized the word “sustainable” because it is part of the “sustainable growth” plan of United Nation’s Agenda 21. Think of “sustainable” as what is acceptable to the federal government.
Why do we need a rural program? Is this not the ultimate trap to force us into Agenda 21 compliance of One World Government? All rural communities already have education, local laws, state laws, hospitals, and an enviable quality of life.
This order is taking control over our existing executive bodies in the state and local governments. …
The feds have already curtailed access to water use and public lands in many states through EPA regulations or appropriation of land such as in California and Utah. …
Local governments will no longer be able to set policies without feds approval. Cap and trade implementation will be forced in rural areas and nobody will be able to stop it. Land use, public planning, and food production will be regulated by unelected federal bureaucrats who will set quotas of food production, water use, energy use, and land use. …
There will be more federal jobs, more political appointees, no elected representatives …
Agenda 21 is the program of One World Government to de-grow our economy by controlling every aspect of what we do and how we live. …
Twenty-five federal agencies are charged with total control of rural life: the Departments of the Treasury, of Defense, Justice, the Interior, Commerce, Labor, Health and Human Services, Housing and Urban Development, Transportation, Energy, Education, Veterans Affairs, Homeland Security; the Environmental Protection Agency, the Federal Communications Commission, the Office of Management and Budget, the Office of Science and Technology Policy, the Office of National Drug Control Policy, the Council of Economic Advisors, the Domestic Policy Council, the National Economic Council, the Small Business Administration, the Council on Environmental Quality, the White House Office of Public Engagement and Intergovernmental Affairs, and the White House Office of Cabinet Affairs.
The Domestic Policy Council and National Economic Council will coordinate this executive order. Why do we need to control 16% of the population that lives in rural areas? Because rural Americans still have control over resources, over our food supply, and they are resistant to globalization. Whoever controls the food supply controls the population. …
Global government is real, it is here …
And this commentary comes from the American Thinker, by Scott Strzelczyk and Richard Rothschild:
Most Americans are unaware that one of the greatest threats to their freedom may be a United Nations program known as Agenda 21. The United Nations Department of Economic and Social Affairs, Division for Sustainable Development created Agenda 21 as a sustainability agenda which is arguably an amalgamation of socialism and extreme environmentalism brushed with anti-American, anti-capitalist overtones. …
Those charged with implementing Agenda 21 are advised not to mention it by that name but to say they are carrying out a plan of “smart growth”.
Undoubtedly, residents of any town, county, or city in the United States that treasure their freedom, liberty, and property rights couldn’t care less whether it’s called Agenda 21 or smart growth.
Richard Rothschild points out:
Smart growth is not science; it is political dogma combined with an insidious dose of social engineering. Smart growth is a wedding wherein zoning code is married with government-sponsored housing initiatives to accomplish government’s goal of social re-engineering. It urbanizes rural towns with high-density development, and gerrymanders population centers through the use of housing initiatives that enable people with weak patterns of personal financial responsibility to acquire homes in higher-income areas. This has the effect of shifting the voting patterns of rural municipalities from Right to Left.
The plans to implement Agenda 21 are more of a threat to private property that eminent domain. At least when property is seized under eminent domain rulings the owners receive payment, but with “smart growth” there will be losses without compensation:
Smart growth municipal plans, required by statute, enable municipalities to change zoning laws and engage in other regulatory actions that devalue property, restrict off-conveyances, and otherwise erode property values without payment of any compensation to the property owner. …
Agenda 21 is a direct assault on private property rights and American sovereignty, and it is coming to a neighborhood near you.
P.S. The UN must be destroyed.
Geert Wilders has scored a victory for freedom. He has been acquitted of “inciting hatred”.
We agree with Mark Steyn’s comments:
The court ruled that some of Wilders’ statements were insulting, shocking and on the edge of legal acceptibility, but that they were made in the broad context of a political and social debate on the multi-cultural society.
“On the edge of legal acceptability,” eh? As for the latter part — “the broad context of a political and social debate” — the genius “jurists” are effectively conceding … that the Dutch state was attempting to criminalize the political platform of a popular opposition party. That’s the sort of thing free societies should leave to Mubarak & Co, and even then, you can only get away with it for a while before people draw the obvious conclusion.
Nevertheless, as in all these cases, the process is the punishment. The intent is to make it more and more difficult for apostates of the multiculti state to broaden the terms of political discourse. Very few Europeans would have had the stomach to go through what Wilders did …
And at the end the awkward fact remains: Geert Wilders lives under 24-hour armed guard because of explicit death threats made against him by the killer of Theo van Gogh and by other Muslims. Yet he’s the one who gets puts on trial.
That’s the Netherlands, 2011. Shameful. As for the Islamic imperialists, they’re taking their case to the logical venue [the United Nations Human Rights Committee], arguing the ruling meant the Netherlands had failed to protect ethnic minorities from discrimination.
Meanwhile Muslims everywhere in Europe (and all over the world) continue to do their utmost to incite hatred of non-Muslims, especially Chritsians and Jews, as they have done for some 14 hundred years.
However, there does seem to be a turning of the tide in European public opinion on “multiculturalism”, which is to say Islam in Europe.
Opposition to immigration, particularly from Muslim or predominantly Muslim countries, is on the rise. …
Wilders, 47, is one of the most outspoken critics of Islam and immigration in the Netherlands.
His Freedom Party is now the third-largest in parliament, a measure of support for its anti-immigrant stance, and is the minority government’s chief ally. …
Wilders told reporters after the ruling. “This is not so much a win for myself, but a victory for freedom of speech. Fortunately you can criticize Islam and not be gagged in public debate.”
The ruling could embolden Wilders further. He has already won concessions from the government on cutting immigration and introducing a ban on Muslim face veils and burqas. …
Some Dutch citizens have started to question their country’s traditionally generous immigration and aid policies, worried by the deteriorating economic climate, higher unemployment, incidence of ethnic crime and signs that Muslim immigrants have not fully integrated into Dutch society.
Similar concerns have helped far-right parties to gain traction elsewhere in Europe, from France to Scandinavia.
And there is also this report at Hudson New York:
The Dutch government says it will abandon the long-standing model of multiculturalism that has encouraged Muslim immigrants to create a parallel society within the Netherlands.
A new integration bill (covering letter and 15-page action plan), which Dutch Interior Minister Piet Hein Donner presented to parliament on June 16, reads: “The government shares the social dissatisfaction over the multicultural society model and plans to shift priority to the values of the Dutch people. In the new integration system, the values of the Dutch society play a central role. With this change, the government steps away from the model of a multicultural society.”
Why has it taken them several decades to wake up?
Immigrants will be required to learn the Dutch language, and the government will take a tougher approach to immigrants to ignore Dutch values or disobey Dutch law.
They had actually been bribing Muslims to immigrate into Holland, and only now see what was wrong with the policy:
The government will also stop offering special subsidies for Muslim immigrants because, according to Donner, “it is not the government’s job to integrate immigrants.” The government will introduce new legislation that outlaws forced marriages and … will impose a ban on face-covering Islamic burqas as of January 1, 2013.
If necessary, the government will introduce extra measures to allow the removal of residence permits from immigrants who fail their integration course.
The measures are being imposed by the new center-right government of Conservatives (VVD) and Christian Democrats (CDA), with parliamentary support from the anti-Islam Freedom Party (PVV) …
That’s the one Geert Wilders leads.
Polls show that a majority of Dutch voters support the government’s skepticism about multiculturalism. According to a Maurice de Hond poll published by the center-right newspaper Trouw on June 19, 74 percent of Dutch voters say immigrants should conform to Dutch values. Moreover, 83 percent of those polled support a ban on burqas in public spaces. …
The Interior Minister’s change of mind is perhaps the visible sign of a deep-sea change in the minds of the Dutch people and maybe of Europeans generally:
Interior Minister Donner… has undergone a late-in-life conversion on the issue of Muslim immigration. In September 2006, while serving as justice minister, Donner provoked an outcry after saying that he welcomed the introduction of Islamic Sharia law in the Netherlands if the majority wants it. He also said Holland should give Muslims more freedoms to behave according to their traditions. …
Fast forward to 2011 and Donner now says his government “will distance itself from the relativism contained in the model of a multicultural society.” Although society changes, he says, it must not be “interchangeable with any other form of society.”
Meaning, Holland cannot be allowed to become an Islamic country.
The trouble is, try as he might, and try as all the leaders of Europe might, they cannot command the demographic tide to retreat. Unless something unpredictable happens to stop it, a Muslim majority will emerge in Europe before the middle of the century.