Friday, March 28, 2014

Agenda 21: Coming to a Neighborhood Near You Courtesy of Hud's Fair Housing Rules--Part II

Last year I wrote a post about how the Department of Housing and Urban Development was promoting Agenda 21 through new fair housing rules.  In that post, I cited HUD Secretary Shaun Donovan's speech at the NAACP convention last June in which he promised to counter a "subtle" form of discrimination against minorities and the underprivileged: 

For anyone unaware, Agenda 21 is a 1992 United Nations' policy document that calls for using radical environmental initiatives to destroy the wealth and affluence of Western nations--particularly the United States. Agenda 21 proponents call for an end to private property ownership and national sovereignty. People are to be packed into densely crowded urban areas which the document calls "human settlements" and much of the U.S. is to be rewilded into national forests and nature preserves. Western wealth and affluence are the enemy of global environmentalism, and the processes which produce these, including individual rights, national sovereignty, the Constitution and our entire way of life as Americans has to be destroyed for the goals of Agenda 21 to be fully implemented. The latest and most disturbing effort I have seen to implement the "sustainable" living initiatives is the new HUD Fair Housing Rule announced on July 16. 2013,  HUD Secretary Shaun Donovan, speaking at the NAACP convention on that date, announced a new series of Fair Housing initiatives designed to counter what he calls a "subtle" form of discrimination against minorities and the underprivileged:
Today, it’s about more than just addressing outright discrimination and access to the housing itself. It’s also about giving every community access to important neighborhood amenities that can make a tremendous difference in a person’s life outcome. I’m talking about good schools, safe streets, jobs, grocery stores, healthcare and a host of other important factors. To help families gain this access – HUD is working to strengthen our stewardship of federal dollars to maximize the impact they have on communities in advancing fair housing goals. As all of you know, HUD’s programs provide funding to partners at the state and local level. As part of the Fair Housing Act—for members of the protected classes—these partners have an obligation to affirmatively further fair housing opportunities – otherwise known as AFFH. But as you and many others, including the Government Accountability Office, have noted, this has proven largely to be a meaningless paper exercise without any teeth. The process has long been broken and we’re determined to fix it and help it reach its full promise. That’s why I am proud to announce that this week we will publish a new rule to bring affirmatively further fair housing into the 21st century. This rule focuses on the traditional tenets of discrimination – and also gets at the essential issues of access to opportunity so imperative to 21st century equity. Specifically, this new rule will: • provide a clear definition of what it means to affirmatively further fair housing; • outline a standard framework with well-defined parameters; and • offer targeted guidance and assistance to help grantees complete this assessment. Perhaps most important—for the first time ever—HUD is providing data for every neighborhood in the nation, detailing what access African American families, and other members of protected classes, have to the community assets I talked about earlier – including jobs, schools and transit. With this data and the improved AFFH process, we can expand access to high opportunity neighborhoods and draw attention to investment possibilities in underserved communities. Make no mistake: this is a big deal. With the HUD budget alone, we are talking about billions of dollars. And as you know, decades ago, these funds were used to support discrimination. Now, they will be used to expand opportunity and bring communities closer to the American Dream.
Having worked in real estate finance for 15 years, I can say for a certainty that Fair Housing laws that have been in place for over 40 years protect minorities against discrimination in housing choices. There are laws against redlining (refusing to lend in neighborhoods comprised of primarily one ethnic group), laws against refusing to lease or sell to people of a specific ethnic group, and numerous fair lending laws. Donovan knows perfectly well that minorities in the US who are well qualified--with good credit and high incomes--are able to purchase homes wherever they choose and obtain excellent financing. The issues come into play with borrowers who have poor credit history, sketchy job history, or both. What Donovan is talking about is not traditional Fair Housing laws, but rather the type of mixed income housing that Smart Growth, Sustainability and New Urbanism require. Because Agenda 21 requires that people live very densely together, it seeks to make high income people neighbors with low income people--an arrangement which usually is pleasing to neither group. Plus, Smart Growth and Sustainable development city plans have the effect of making housing units very expensive, which hits low income and lower middle income families hardest. So rather than improving the situations of lower income people, Smart Growth policies tend to make their housing situations worse.

This morning, The American Thinker had an excellent article on Donovan's enforcement of this new initiative.  In Westchester County, NY, HUD has forced the community to build 750 new units of housing designated for low income minorities or else face fines.  Two years into this project, with 206 units built,, HUD is now saying that the county has failed to show how the new housing will end discrimination.  HUD is insisting that half of the new housing have three bedrooms, which will greatly increase the cost of the units in  a part of the country which already has some of the nation's highest property taxes.

Perhaps more seriously, Donavan's HUD is claiming that it should be illegal for landlords to refuse to accept Section 8 vouchers to offset the cost of rental housing.  As all landlords know, Section 8 tenants are notorious for destroying property.  The tenants are passing along the cost to the government and typically leave the properties trashed.  To force landlords to accept Section 8 vouchers is a huge attack on private property rights.  This has nothing to do with racial integration--rather it is a progressive forced income integration that only a liberal socialist would even want.

I have worked on Section 8 housing financing in my previous life as a mortgage broker.  The tenant's portion of a rent bill can be as little as $16.00 a month for an apartment costing about $500.00 a month.  The government (you) is/are paying the difference for the tenant.  Expanding this program to make it mandatory in all communities is not only bad for landlords, it's also really, really bad for taxpayers.  And expanding it to include some of the most expensive and exclusive zip codes in the the interests of diversity is purely ludicrous.  Not only is Donovan's agenda an assault on private property rights; it is an assault on common sense and fiscal responsibility.
Even though George H.W. Bush signed onto the principles of Agenda 21 and every U.S. President since has upheld and furthered its objectives, without a national climate change bill, those initiatives have not moved very far forward. That makes what the Obama Administration is doing now so crucial--and so scary. By using HUD as a hammer to proactively charge developers of communities with discrimination if they do not comply with Smart Growth and sustainable housing initiatives, the President is implementing Agenda 21's housing policies without the need of Congressional approval. HUD's new rule can even be used to bully states like Alabama that have passed laws rejecting Agenda 21. By using Fair Housing laws as an enforcement piece, the President can make sure that his radical initiatives for remaking this country are enforced in every city and every state, regardless of what we the people think.
We need to stand up and pull the mask off his policies and expose them for what they are--a radical attempt to remake our society. The Obama Administration is using federal agencies to push a globalist agenda that is at odds with personal liberty, the Constitution of the United States, the Bill of Rights and all of the freedoms that these documents afford us. We need to demand that our Congressional representatives hold him accountable for his actions. And we need to do it sooner rather than later, while we still have freedoms to protect.
Find out more about Agenda 21, what it means, how it is being implemented, and what you can do about it by watching this video:  Agenda 21: Bankrupting America into Utopia One City at a Time.

Read The Planner and see the real cost of trading liberty for security

Alexandra Swann is the author of No Regrets: How Homeschooling Earned me a Master's Degree at Age Sixteen and several other books. Her novel, The Planner, about an out of control, environmentally-driven federal government implementing Agenda 21, is available on Kindle and in paperback. For more information, visit her website at

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