Mission Rio – Day 5

As the first full day of the 2012 ICLEI “World Congress” kicked off, my goal was to listen and learn. In any war, intel on the enemy’s strategies is crucial to success. So with dozens of workshops filled with panels of the world’s foremost “sustainable living” experts there was no better way to truly get the inside scoop on the who, what, when, where, and why of this “crisis.” After all, ICLEI is the organization that literally started the sustainability movement and has implemented sustainability measures in over 1,200 cities in the world.

I am here to tell you that the only thing you need to know about the “Sustainability” movement is that every leftist cause ranging from social equality, green energy, wealth redistribution, gender equality, global warming, growing the welfare state, etc., can be part of the movement. Now I am not just giving you some generic interpretation—these were the words uttered by numerous panel members. The greatest part of the experience is the covert operation of letting these leftists think I am a fellow leftist so they speak candidly on these issues.

However, the best part of the day was where I simply walked up to other attendees and asked them if they could help me define “sustainable living.” I was told it meant: reducing the amount of food we eat per day; reducing the amount of water we drink; wearing absolutely no deodorant (no one actually said that but smells speak louder than words!); reducing the number of children you have; reducing the amount of money you make; increasing how often you ride a bicycle instead of a car (or even better, just get rid of your car altogether). More resounding, though, was the lack of anything to do with property rights, economic freedom, individual rights, or free markets.

-A.K. Kamara

Collegiate Coordinator