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Letters by a modern St. Ferdinand III about cults

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Plenty of cults exist - every cult has its 'religious dogma', its idols, its 'prophets', its 'science', its 'proof' and its intolerant liturgy of demands.  Cults everywhere:  Corona, 'The Science' or Scientism, Islam, the State, the cult of Gender Fascism, Marxism, Darwin and Evolution, Globaloneywarming, Changing Climate, Abortion...

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Wednesday, May 25, 2005

Greenbelt Nonsense and stealing private property


Greenbelt Nonsense and stealing private property  

Big Government and ‘Smart’ Growth – an Oxymoron
Date: April 2005

Control, regulate, redistribute and manage. Land and private property – commodities that cannot be entrusted to the private sector and which along with labor and capital form the core of modern society, is of great interest to the bureaucrats. Control land and you have power. Along with taxation and education it is a core area of government interest in their hopes of domination.

Greenbelts and Smart Growth policies are nothing more than redistribution schemes. Some win, many lose. You will win if you have greased enough political hands. You will lose if you are an ordinary farmer or taxpayer that bears the costs. You lose if you believe that private property is the basis of civilization. Under Greenbelt areas, Government now owns the land.

Greenbelt and Smart growth devotees have a laudable goal. They are trying to preserve land in a natural or agricultural state. The by-product of this policy is however not so encouraging. By limiting growth and freezing development a number of harmful effects are produced- namely denser cities, more traffic, higher taxes and inequitable division of greenbelt lands between winners and losers.

First, Greenbelts force individuals to live in denser communities that take up smaller tracts of land per housing unit. This puts a load on public transport and other services. Toronto and the GTA do not have a mature public transport system, a small almost laughable subway system by international standards and strained finances. A Greenbelt will make these woes a misery.

Second, by increasing the density of urban areas and preventing development, rents will rise and housing costs will escalate. This harms the poor, the immigrants and those who do not have enough income to buy housing or costly services. As wages rise to compensate for increased living costs goods will become more costly. San Francisco with its eco-fascist regulations is a clear example of this.

Third, to pay for increased services and urban infrastructure Municipal taxation will rise. This will put a burden all income earners who will collectively bear the costs of the GreenBelt. However, the poor and middle class will experience the greatest hardship and use the Green areas the least. Again there is an unequal division of costs and benefits.

Fourth, in order to plan and control growth in their enlightened way, government bureaucrats and planning advocates must control property rights. Private property rights and smart growth are therefore mutually exclusive. In Canada the Charter of Rights does not protect private property. This is unfortunate since private property protection is the basis of modern civilization. In the Greenbelt area land prices fall and owners lack the power to sell their land since their private assets are now worthless on the open market. This smacks of Stalinism.

Fifth, there is too much paranoia and political nonsense about Greenbelts. The Census in both Canada and the USA classifies less than 5 percent of land as being developed and less than 2.5 percent as urban. Even in the densely populated areas only about 30 percent of land is actually developed.

Six, the politics behind Greenbelts are rarely reported. It first of all buys the votes of the Envio-groups – the doomsayers and the big government lovers. Under rhetoric such as ‘saving the future’, ‘protecting the ecosystem’, ‘a place for our grandchildren’, various side deals are cut in which most developers and farmers lose while a tiny few win.

For example, Ron Bonnett, president of the Ontario Federation of Agriculture (OFA), has been quoted that ‘leapfrogging’, where some land can be developed in some of the green area but not in other areas, is one of his organization's primary concerns with the plan. "I think there's a concern that if the urban development doesn't take place where it is and it leapfrogs somewhere else, then the problems that we face -- like lack of farm infrastructure inside the GTA (Greater Toronto Area) -- could become a problem outside the GTA.”

In other words some political paybacks will result in some developers being able to profit on some selective properties, while the rest of the land is frozen. In the meantime the farming community, subjected to endless government interference, control and regulation, suffers. There is an old saying that farmers live poor and die rich. Many need to sell parts of their land for development usage to afford retirement. It is hard to understand why these people need to be punished by having their rights taken away.

There exists without Greenbelt acts, a panoply of laws, restrictions, zoning requirements and pro-environmental policies in all urban and exurban areas to make ‘Smart growth’ legislation redundant and overbearing. Without the ability of private property owners to control their own land, Canada is essentially embracing the nationalization of private assets – a concept that has failed on every occasion it has been implemented. There are enough laws already – citizens should stop the expropriation of wealth and the increase in government power. Hopefully a more sensible government will in the future abolish the Greenbelt nonsense.

Good article on Smart Growth Nonsense: ©


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