by Doug Casey, International Man:
International Man: The “15-minute city” is an urban planning concept rapidly spreading in North America and Europe. They aim to make everything—where people work, shop, get their education, healthcare, and leisure activities—just 15 minutes away.
The idea is for bureaucrats to restrict—and eventually prohibit—car use because everything is within walking or biking distance. Phasing out hydrocarbons, in general, and cars with internal combustion engines, in particular, is a primary goal of the carbon hysterics.
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Critics also argue that 15-minute cities will eventually allow for total surveillance and control of people’s lives, as governments will inevitably pair them with an ESG social credit system and central bank digital currencies.
What is your take on the 15-minute city concept?
Doug Casey: It’s social engineering taken to a new level—trying to reform the way humans act and live. In fact, it’s social engineering that’s expressed in the form of civil engineering, putting people in the kind of houses, environments, and locales that the elites—strike that, I mean parasites—prefer.
It’s as if the whole human race is taking a role in the Jim Carrey movie The Truman Show. But that’s way too benign. The way they’re trying to reform the cities and force people to stay in place in certain areas, it’s more like the panopticon, which was a type of prison where all people could be observed easily by the guards at all times.
Of course, keeping everybody within a 15-minute radius of their home sounds convenient, homey, and small town-like. But it just makes things much more convenient for artificial intelligence to monitor where everybody is. Not just in their vehicles, either, because the next step along this path will be to make it desirable for everybody to have a chip implanted so individual bodies can be monitored. The 15-minute city concept is just a step on the way to something much more dystopian.
International Man: 15-minute cities received a big boost from the Covid hysteria as many city councils and mayors sought to redesign city spaces amid the lockdowns.
The concept has spread to many areas in North America and Europe, with plans to transform parts of the biggest cities into numerous 15-minute city zones. We have already seen this happen in Ottawa, Oxford, and other large cities.
What is really going on here?
Doug Casey: It’s all about control, but it won’t be sold as a military “you must do this” type of control. It will be a soft, “do it for your own good” type of control. And, of course, it’s part of the general climate insanity for the supposed good of Mother Earth. The idea is to get people to stay out of their cars and, for that matter, stay off of planes and even public transportation.
It’ll be sold as a great way to get to know your neighbors, walk, and maybe bicycle. They’re trying to return the world to medieval times where nobody went more than 15 minutes from their house. Because not only weren’t they supposed to but there might be dragons over the next hill.
International Man: The global elite don’t want the plebs to be as mobile as they used to be.
In recent years, we’ve seen more and more travel restrictions. The Covid hysteria set a precedent for using lockdowns as official policy and introduced many confusing travel restrictions. The carbon hysteria also serves as a pretext for all sorts of proposals to limit and restrict travel. The trend now in motion is gaining momentum.
How do you see 15-minute cities within the context of this trend?
Doug Casey: People are far easier to control if you know where they are at all times. And the elite—again, they’re parasites that don’t produce anything or serve a useful purpose—want the plebs to stay in place, not just physically, but psychologically, economically, and politically.
They’d prefer to live in a world where places like St. Mark’s Square in Venice, Machu Picchu, and the Grand Canyon aren’t overwhelmed with the hoi polloi because they’re back observing their 15-minute travel zones and adhering to requirements that allow them to expend only so many pounds of carbon.
It’ll be much more convenient for the parasites from a personal living point of view, in addition to affording them vastly more control.
International Man: The World Economic Forum (WEF) has promoted 15-minute cities.
Why are they interested in this topic?
Doug Casey: In the past, the United Nations provided the premier forum for governments to get together and palaver about how to restructure the world. But the UN—fortunately—is fading into obscurity. It’s now really no more than an expensive club for mid-level government officials to vacation in New York while playing big shot and connecting with other ambitious bureaucrats.
The World Economic Forum is for the real power people.
The WEF, however, needs a reason for existing. These people are into power and money. They naturally like to socialize with each other, scratching each other’s backs and seeing themselves as masters of the universe. Now that they’ve gotten to know each other at the WEF and have clearly taken the reigns over at least the Western world, they’re no longer there just to socialize. They have lots of big plans for the plebs.
The concept of the 15-minute city is one of the many prongs of attack that they’ve launched to essentially take over the world, as outrageous as that sounds.
International Man: Given everything we have discussed, what can the average person do to safeguard his sovereignty in general and his freedom to travel in particular?
Doug Casey: First of all, try to relocate to a rural area where you’re much more in control of your own life, and you’re not surrounded by thousands of people who might rat you out as a non-conformist and could easily turn hysterical.
The second thing is to get as rich as you can because having assets helps insulate you from both the parasitic elites and the capite censi.
And third thing you can do is to resist any way you can. Speaking out and letting other people know that they aren’t alone in thinking what’s going on is actually evil. But recognize the risks of doing so.