“THE DESTRUCTION OF NEIGHBORHOODS”
by Tom DeWeese, ©2016, American Policy Center
(Jan. 5, 2016) — “Imagine no possessions, I wonder if you can…” John Lennon wrote these words for a fantasy song to glorify his understanding of the road to peace. John may not have understood the true origins of his thoughts, but we know it as Communism. Barack Obama knows that too and is determined to make sure you understand the consequences of “no possessions.” In government-speak it’s called the Affirmatively Furthering Fair Housing Rule.” (AFFH) Once it becomes a reality you will be able to fully appreciate John’s statement – imagine no possessions.” For if AFFH is allowed to stand, the concept of private property is about to die in America.
The Affirmatively Furthering Fair Housing Rule is federal enforcement of Sustainable Development Smart Growth Cities. Until now there was at least a pretense that Smart Growth development was a local process. That, of course, is what the American Planning Association (APA), Non-governmental Organizations (NGOs) and your city council have assured citizens. Now, through the revelation of AFFH, it is clear that such development is a top-down dictatorship, overseen by the department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD).
Announced July 16, 2015 by HUD Secretary Julian Castro, the excuse for the 377 page ruling is to promote and assure discrimination and achieve balanced and integrated living patterns for all citizens. To achieve that goal, AFFH is specifically designed to move people out of rural areas into mega cities and tightly control who may stay in reduced suburbs. Exactly as we’ve been warning about Smart Growth policy.
To achieve its goals, AFFH requires agencies and communities that apply for HUD grants to detail income levels, religion, color, and national origin of every single person living in every neighborhood of the community. They will then determine any imbalances and, if necessary, force a massive shift of people into such neighborhoods to achieve the desired balance. This is nothing less than social engineering!
Worse, the AFFH rule will effectively eliminate local government rule over development. Where once there was at least the pretense of local communities making their own decisions and could spend the HUD grants as they determined best for their communities, now, under AFFH, HUD will control those decisions to its satisfaction. And the local governments will be forced to comply. The result is the destruction of local representative rule. Communities must supply updates to HUD on the break down of its communities every five years to check on and assure progress.
So what does this mean to average American citizens – in plain English? It means the destruction of neighborhoods, loss of control of their own property and loss of property values. If government funded high rise apartment buildings are forced into neighborhoods of single family homes, the value of the properties will fall. It’s possible that, should a neighborhood find itself in a shortage of residents representing certain ethnic backgrounds or income levels, then a homeowner trying to sell their home may find they can only sell to someone representing that imbalance. Imagine the affect that will have on the already depressed real estate market.
For those who live in ethnic neighborhoods of their own choosing, being close to family and friends that share traditions and outlooks, it means being forced into neighborhoods where they are not wanted and where they do not want to be. It means a loss of freedom of choice and loss of the right to be secure in their home. In this day of constant accusations of racism for nearly every act, does no one see the irony of the built- in racism in a regulation that assumes those of certain ethnic origin or economic level are oppressed and unhappy simply because they live in a different kind of environment from that of the enforcers? What could make them feel more lost and hopeless than to be forced into living in government controlled housing in a neighborhood where they are shunned and resented?
This past September the United Nations made a big deal out of its new 2030 Agenda as it vows to eliminate poverty by 2030. Of course the only remedy to poverty offered in any UN policy is redistribution of wealth. That means taking from those who created their wealth (wealth translates to whatever amount you may have in your pocket or bank account at the time) and give a portion to someone who has failed to create their own wealth. However, the missing ingredient in these so-called solutions is a plan to actually help people build their own wealth. Take just a small amount today to feed someone in need and tomorrow they will need more. Again and again and again.
Taking from a producer time and again will cause two results. First, the producer eventually loses their wealth. If government takes enough then the person who once had wealth will have none and will in fact need assistances themselves. Result = more poor, not less. Second, the producer will finally learn that it is a waste of time to keep trying to produce and will stop producing. Result = again, more poor, fewer opportunities. No solution to get people out of the poverty cycle. Moving them into your neighborhood will not stop poverty. It will make you poorer as your property values decrease.
The fact is, America became the wealthiest nation on earth in a very short time precisely because of the ability of every American to own and control their own property. Ownership produces equity – that is a process to build wealth. 60% of small businesses in America were financed by the equity in the owner’s private property. And eventually 60% of Americans were employed by companies that were financed in that manner. Private property ownership is the path to building wealth and eliminating poverty.
However there is no mention of such a plan in the UN’s Agenda 2030. Instead we see quotes like this one from the National Audubon Society’s Peter Berle: “We reject the idea of private property.” Those promoting these policies tell us that private property ownership is a social injustice because not everyone owns private property. So, they plan to make it impossible for anyone to own property – just to keep us all equal.
Professor Paul Ehrlich of Stanford University explained the goal best when he said, “A massive campaign must be launched to de-develop the United States. De-development means bringing our economic system into line with the realities of ecology and the world resource situation.” Ehrlich, by the way, is the father of the discredited population explosion theory that drives much of today’s environmental movement.
As a result of current Smart Growth policies, federal subsidized low income housing is taking the place of single family homes, thus eliminating the ability of low income Americans to buy their own property and achieve their own wealth – what was once called the American Dream.
According to Builderonline.com, which reports on trends in the building industry, homebuilders are no longer planning to build starter homes for young families or low income buyers. They only plan to build single family homes for the rich and federally subsidized apartment buildings for the rest of us. Why? Because the housing industry is being taken over by the federal government through plans such as AFFH. It is setting the standard for the future of housing.
In cities around the nation, such as Portland, Oregon, Boston, Massachusetts and Seattle, Washington, their Smart Growth plans are forcing them to end the availability of single family homes. In July, 2015, Seattle mayor Ed Murray and the City Council called on community leaders to develop a Housing Affordability and Living Agenda for the city. One of the main recommendations was to get rid of single family homes. Smart Growth forces an artificial line around the city outside of which no growth may take place. As the population grows, density grows. Eventually the city has no where to grow but up – into pack and stack high-rise apartment buildings. That is what has happened to Seattle. Now home owners will begin to see Eminent Domain used to take their single family home and replace it with the high-rises. It is the end of private property in Seattle.
One of the great outrages coming from the enforcement of such policy is the National Association of Realtors (NAR). This is the national organization that has set itself up as the champion of private property ownership and the idea that home ownership is the root of the American Dream. Yet, the NAR has sold its soul for a few grants and it is now a major promoter of Smart Growth policy. Every realtor in the nation should rise up against the NAR and threaten to leave it if it doesn’t stop promoting Smart Growth policy. If realtors continue to be cowed by the NAR they will soon wake up to learn they will have no product (homes) to sell. The future of every realtor in the nation is at stake. They could and should be a powerful voice in stopping this destruction of property rights. But today they remain silent and ignorant of their own organization’s actions, to their own peril and that of every homeowner in the nation. The NAR and its member realtors take a walk of shame everyday that they let this outrage go forward.
However, some members of Congress are trying to stop AFFH. Representative Paul Gosar of Arizona introduced a bill in July to ban funding for AFFH. His bill passed the House 229 – 193. Then Senator Mike Lee of Utah introduced the “Local Zoning Decisions Protection Act (S.1909). His bill has six co-sponsors including Presidential candidate Marco Rubio. The plan was to get both bills passed in their respective houses, then merge them together in a conference committee and add the final version to the Transportation, Housing and Urban Development Appropriations bill (THUD). That bill was considered to be “must –pass” legislation making it more likely that Obama would have to sign it or see HUD shut down.
Unfortunately the plan didn’t work. House Speaker Ryan and Senate Majority Leader McConnell once again betrayed efforts to rein in the Obama juggernaut by eliminating the language from the massive trillion-dollar omnibus spending bill passed in December. In fact, the final spending bill actually increased HUD’s budget by $2.6 billion, assuring it has plenty to enforce AFFH.
However, in a conversation I had with Lee’s legislative director, he assured me that S.1909 is still alive and that the Senator is determined to stop AFFH. It is vital that Americans who see the danger in AFFH take action now to stop it. We must flood Capitol Hill with calls supporting S.1909 and express our strong opposition to AFFH.
The American Policy Center has also prepared a petition addressed to Senator Lee to encourage him to continue the fight. With thousands of signatures he can use the petition to show other members of the Senate that he has strong support for S.1909. Readers can sign the petition here. If American private property rights are to be saved then we must stop AFFH!
Clearly HUD’s plan to enforce the Affirmatively Furthering Fair Housing Rule is a major tool for killing private property and de-developing the United States. It is the enforcement of social justice. It is pure social engineering designed to reorganize human society, just as was promised with Agenda 21.
The one growth industry coming from Agenda 21, the 2030 Agenda, and the AFFH rule is government. It is getting bigger with each new rule and grant. The obvious result of such massive growth is corruption at all levels of government. When people have no say in how their lives are being engineered government rushes in to fill the void and dictate the rules. It’s a pretty hopeless feeling to stand alone against such a behemoth.
For twenty years the warnings have been issued. We warned that Agenda 21 is the reorganization of human society. That local planning is the enforcement of Agenda 21. That Smart Growth will force people off their land and into cities of stack-and-pack high-rise tombs. That Sustainable Development will control your food and water; transportation choices; family size. And that shortages and misery are your future.
We warned that our American form of representative government will be replaced by non-elected regional councils and dictated to by a central government. That Free Enterprise will be replaced with fascist-style public-private partnerships as international corporations will use their influence with government to stomp out mom-and-pop stores; government agents will join in group hugs with Non-governmental organizations (NGOs) and corporate presidents as they carve up the goods of our once free society.
I’ve delivered all of these warnings for more than 20 years. And frankly I’m weary of it. I’ve been laughed at by elected officials and ignored by national news shows. I’ve been called a conspiracy theorist and a liar. As we tried to warn Americans of these dire consequences, they have been easily diverted and maneuvered with the chosen issue of the day; totally engrossed in a presidential election that is a year away; sniping at who said what; who offended whom… Meanwhile, the real issue of the complete destruction of our society, our values and our way of life are ALL encompassed in Agenda 21. And it moves forward almost unabated, as Americans would rather think about something else.
Well, America, get ready to receive your due! Barack Obama has just nationalized your home. Along with that, he has put your local government in chains and he and his central government will now make the rules in your local community. If you do nothing now then it won’t matter who you elect to city council or county commission. It won’t matter how loud you scream. Imagine no possessions. I wonder if you can! Ignore this warning to take action today or you’re going to learn.