** Originally posted at Binghamton Political Buzz Examiner.com **
At the Central Baptist Church in Binghamton, NY, on May 15, 2015, the topic of discussion was Sustainable Development. It is an issue that has been gaining national attention but is still a mystery to the majority of Americans. Addressing several of the concerns on Sustainable Development at the event was Tom DeWeese, president of the American Policy Center and author of the book “Now Tell Me I Was Wrong“.
Prior to the start of the event, we were able to get exclusive interviews with several of the speakers at the event. Steven Aldstadt of SCOPE NY, a 2nd Amendment advocacy organization created in the 1960′s, spoke about the recent victory in court proceedings on shedding daylight on aspects of the NY SAFE Act that previously were shielded from even FOIA requests. In addition Mr. Aldstadt spoke about efforts to create transparency on another hidden action mandated by the NY SAFE Act, an issue that potentially violates HIPPA regulations and may include thousands of New Yorkers without their knowledge.
Another speaker at the event was Assemblywoman Claudia Tenney. We were able to exclusively discuss with her the efforts in regard to the Trans Pacific Partnership that President Obama has been recently trying to fast track through Congress, and the potential impact on NEW York jobs. In addition Assemblywoman Tenney discussed the recent revelation that $200 million taxpayer dollars were spent on creating 76 jobs via STARTUP NY, which was heavily advertised during Governor Cuomo’s re-election bid in 2014.
Additional speakers at the event included Ted Shatara of the American for Restoring the Constitution (AFRTC), a local organization of concerned citizens. The AFRTC meets monthly at the Vestal Public Library to discuss current issues and the impact of the Constitution on current legislation. Cathy Sapeta of NYers United for Kids, discussed Common Core. She provided specific examples of how school curriculums are being changed – removing references to James Madison, Dr. Martin Luther King Jr, the Gettysburg Address, and other significant historical moments in American history. The impact of such changes, and the overall impact of Common Core was also addressed. The final speaker at the event, Vic Furman - an advocate for Natural Gas Development in New York, spoke for the Sapbush Road Group Coalition on property rights in a shortened speech due to time constraints.
The main speaker of the event was Tom DeWeese. Before the event we were able to ask Mr. DeWeese about his response to the primary defense given for Sustainable Development (commonly called Agenda 21). Besides this exclusive answer, we also were able to get full video of the entire speech made by Mr. DeWeese at the event – something that no other news media outlet even attempted to obtain.
Mr. DeWeese addressed in detail his position on Sustainable Development, a position he has had and promoted since 1992. He spoke to how a denial of property rights, federal grants and a network of organizations are being used quietly but consistently against Americans and their rights. It is this position that was attacked in a May 2014 Newsweek article that sought to connect “Death Panels”, measles and the Whooping Cough, 9/11 conspiracy theories, drops in unemployment rates, and Agenda 21 as all being “ravings of the tin-foil-hat crowd.” (It should be noted that the main factor in the decrease in the unemployment rate has been the reduction in people counted as unemployed. Also medical review panels, which Obamcare is modeled on, do exist in England called NHS England that limits medications available under government plans)
Mr. Deweese addressed the attempt to delegitimize his views and concerns. He cited examples such as Betty Perry from Utah, and Julie Bass of Michigan. In addition he cited The International Council for Local Environmental Initiatives (ICLEI) itself, on what is Sustainable Development,
“Sustainable development, therefore, is a program of action for local and global economic reform—a program that has yet to be fully defined. The challenge of this new program is to develop, test, and disseminate ways to change the process of economic development so that it does not destroy the ecosystems and community systems that make life possible and worthwhile. No one fully understands how, or even if, sustainable development can be achieved; however, there is a growing consensus that it must be accomplished at the local level if it is ever to be achieved on a global basis.” – The Local Agenda 21 Planning Guide 1996
The concern that Mr. DeWeese and others across the nation have is the lack of definition on what Sustainable Development is, and how it is to be implemented. Any guideline, local or global in nature, that fails to establish these two things lacks credibility, and is prone to abuse and manipulation, according to the opponent of Agenda 21.