EBTP at the One Bay Area Agenda 21 Meeting
07 May 2011
Memo from Heather Gass:
Saturday was a great day for freedom!!! Over 26 brave EBTP members and others we did not even know stood up against an army of well trained environmental activists and beat them at their own game. The fake visioning meeting for "One Bay Area 2035" was systematically dismantled by the few brave patriots who dared to question them. Let me tell you it was a bit nerve racking at first, but once we got started it was cathartic and fun!!
Let me give you a bit of background information first. For those of you that do not know "One Bay Area" or "You Choose Bay Area" from Adam ... It is a taxpayer and privately funded venture designed to form a "Consensus" about what our housing and transit should look like in the year 2035. This visioning workshop was billed as a public workshop and boy did they hear from the public!!! This all a result of the passage of SB375 and AB32. Just to give you a quick idea of what they are about you can read through this web article from California Green Solutions ... SB375 Supports Walkable, Sustainable Development.
Without reading I'll give it to you in a nutshell; the visioning process seeks to gain consensus from the public that we need a predetermined plan for future development that primarily takes into consideration CO2 emissions. The meeting was funded, sponsored or supported by the MTC (Metropolitan Transportation Commission), ABAG (Association of Bay Area Governments), the Greenbelt Alliance, and TransForm, among others. The outcomes of this visioning process are designed to draw a consensus to fund ... wait for it ... wait for it ... Public TRANSPORTATION and OPEN Space Conservation!!!!
First I want to say that we did not go in there without preparing. We met ahead of time and strategized on how we would handle ourselves down to the minute detail. We developed a plan and implemented it. We registered for the event, showed up and questioned them mercilously about the details of their plan. Here's where their plan breaks down. Their plan for the future is to "stack and pack" housing near mass transit so we the people are not a burden on our environment by breathing and emitting CO2 from our cars. They want to limit building to existing urban growth boundaries, which are arbitrarily set by City Councils. They base their utopian model on high density housing with shops underneath, no parking, but lots of bicycles and walking (?????)
What these people don't seem to understand is that people move to the Suburbs to get away from this type of Urban lifestyle. As a realtor I see this every day. Young earth minded eco-friendly brain-washed urbanites that have recently had kids and suddenly realize San Francisco is NO place to raise kids. There is no place to send your kids to play within eyeshot from your home. There is no easy way to grocery shop with a screaming 2 year old. They carry the groceries 10 blocks from the store to a high rise or three story walk up having no elevator. Sounds great doesn't it? NO!!!
The 20- or 30-something crowd without kids rightly fully think living in the city with other singles packed and stacked is fun and so is partying the night away until the sun comes up. Then reality or kids hit you and you suddenly realize that this lifestyle has no room for kids and family. Don't get me wrong ... I've been there. When I was 20/30 I felt the same way, but once you have kids you are forced to stop being selfish and to think about your child's welfare and not just your own. That is why most of the transplant urbanites come to the suburbs of Contra Costa County. They know that we have great schools and freedoms not found in the city. The freedom to get in your car and take your kid to Karate, Soccer, Little League, Ballet or Spanish class and park right in front while you wait for an hour or two bored out of your skull, but loving it because that is what's best for your child. The last thing these warrior moms are thinking about is CO2 emissions and carbon footprints.
The first speaker was there to go through a broad visioning process and get the crowd to buy in to a predetermined outcome. We were all handed clickers and asked questions. The group was being guided through the questions by the facilitator who was following a power point presentation. The questions started off benign ... are you male/female. Then got worse ... What is your ethnicity? That's when one of our members asked "Why does that matter?"
Then we were asked to rank a list of items from 1 to 5 (1 being high priority and 5 being low priority). The list included things like:
After the break they brought a geeky guy from "Greenbelt Alliance" to pinch hit and he was a tougher nut to crack. He absolutely would not entertain any questions. He wouldn't even tell us what the mission statement was of his organization. Anyway during his presentation some guy who I don't know jumped to his feet and went up front and addressed the crowd. He said "I used to work for them! I left the Greenbelt Alliance because they oppose building on any property and repair of any roads!" He went on to say other stuff I can't remember, but I got his info later when the meeting was over.
Then they broke us up into small groups based on where we lived in the county. They made us all get up and move to other tables. This is when we realized that there were at least 4 of them at each table. At my table I had one attorney who represented builders and transit, someone from Transform, a developer and the table facilitator. In addition there were 3 college students from SF, me and another one of our members who is from Russia.
They pulled out maps of the county and a list of place types (urban, suburban, city center, transit center, etc.) with pictures and asked us to plan our future cities. No information was given other than the picture of the place types. I told them this is a ridiculous exercise and their whole plan was to stack and pack and I would not participate in this exercise. Since we wouldn't participate, and none of the other people that were there were from Contra Costa, I wouldn't let them continue to plan a community they had no knowledge of personally. The idea that someone who knows nothing about your community can plan your future is disturbing to me.
Then they brought out these index-size colored cards. They asked us to each pick 4 (out of 8 or 10) of the cards based on how important they were to us. We did this exercise two times with different cards. The cards had stuff like:
What I learned is that these meetings are rigged. There is no real public input. All options given are designed to lead to a predetermined end solution. There is a lot of money at stake ($200 billion). All of this planning can be derailed by lobbying your local city council members not to implement these plans. We must get involved locally. We must get people elected to local planning commissions, city councils, water boards, etc. We can derail these meetings by speaking out, asking questions and holding them accountable. These meetings are going on all over the Bay Area and all over the Country!!! Agenda 21 is designed to abolish private property rights by rezoning and eminent domain. It is also designed to force us out of our cars by advocating legislation that would penalize car owners by raising parking fees, bridge tolls and other things associated with driving. To use our codes and statutes as a punitive measure against one group of citizens is un-American and illegal I think?
If you have gotten this far in my recon rant and this has not inspired you to take action then I don't know what else to say, but go back to sleep and don't worry things will be taken care of by the government!!! One day (in 2035) you will wake up in subsidized government housing, eating government subsidized food, your kids will be whisked off by government buses to indoctrination training centers while you are working at your government assigned job on the bottom floor of your urban transit center village because you have no car and who knows where your aging parents will be but by then it will be too late! WAKE UP!!!!
If you want to get involved, join The East Bay Tea Party or some other group fighting against Agenda 21. Search for "Sustainable Community" workshops in your area. Get a group of people to strategize and attend together and help us stop the spread of this cancer in our Country!!!
Other links and information:
For those of you who want more specific details about Agenda 21 and these workshops, please contact me, Heather Gass (firstname.lastname@example.org) directly.
Please visit our Green Tyranny Reform section for more on our position on this issue.
Last Update: June 24, 2011 17:00 PDT