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Do We Really Need Local Offices of Sustainabilty?

Disclaimer: I am trying to be sensitive to the expressed wishes of the management of Red State in how I am presenting this information. In connection with other site links provided with this diary, there could be information interpreted as “conspiratorial”.

This afternoon, I came across this article about recent actions on the part of the commission of Carroll County, Maryland, to abolish the country’s Office of Sustainability. The commission then unanimously voted to drop out of the UN’s International Council for Local Environmental Initiatives (ICLEI). There are approximately 600 local Sustainability Offices located through our nation.

Richard Rothschild, a member of the Carroll Country commission, campaigned and won on this issue, framing it as a matter of private property rights. In an American Thinker article he co-wrote last summer with Scott Strzelczyk, he explained that: “Sustainability has less to do with the environment, and everything to do with economics.  It is an attack on capitalism, and an attack on America’s middle class lifestyle.” In a recent defense of his positions, Mr. Rothschild stated:

“Sustainability invokes government power to enforce activists’ views of environmentalism. They want to replace farmers’, ranchers’ and other landowners’ concept of stewardship with government-centric control. It merges environmentalism and socialism to expand government into every aspect of our lives, including land use, food production, housing, transportation, manufacturing, energy rationing and even health care.”

Further down in the article is linked this video below reveals how it was pushed in rural Richland County, South Carolina, sold as a “Comprehensive Plan” called “Vision 20/20”.  Explained by state legislator Joe Neal – a Democrat – the video provides a diagram that displays how development would be limited to small urban centers and leaving rural communities to die on the vine. The video is only four minutes long and well worth the time.

“The commissioners have already been challenged to a debate on their decision and the other side wants to bring in heavy hitters from the EPA and the Maryland Department of the Environment in an attempt to discredit the commission’s earth shattering (figuratively) move.” Yeah, I can believe the environmentalists would be a bit irritated on this matter. /sarc

I hope that we will have an increasing number of local governments who will begin to review the operations, costs and functions of their own Offices of Sustainability. Even if we the people genuinely wanted these types of policies put into place, the truth of the matter is that if these offices are being funded by the taxpayers it should be reviewed as to whether those expenditures are a luxury or a necessity given our current economic situation.

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