The area that I live in currently is one of high levels of development. Florida believes building and development is its only growth engine. The norm is for small cities to annex county lands that are undisturbed, and then to slap in a 500 home subdivision. This increases their tax base, which theoretically increases the coffers, which allows them to “do” and “give” more. Along with it come greater infrastructure, bigger roads, more stores, more traffic, and congestion.
It is sad to me that those who would prefer something closer to a rural or subsistence life have no say in this matter. There aren’t any no-growth councilmen or commissioners to speak of.
One of the worst effects of this model is dependency and weakness.
When we have undisturbed lands and lakes and rivers, we have wildlife and plant life that can sustain us. It is there for those that will look and work for it. I believe there is greater value and greater purpose in providing for ones self. Instead, urban sprawl eliminates this possibly outright. Since the lands that we use to hunt are bulldozed and paved over we have to look elsewhere for our food, namely supermarkets or some other commercial provider. Lakes that would normally be layovers for migrating ducks and other waterfowl, and are homes to diverse populations of fish are crowded on the shoreline by the yuppie elite. Their very presence eliminates the possibility of hunting, due to a reluctance of waterfowl to feed or nest there, and primarily due to regulations. Shorelines are taken from us and given to those with a fat bank account. Add in the “watersports” culture and fertilizer runoff and you compound the issue.
We go from an existence where there is wilderness, wild game, waterfowl, fish and aquatic life, peace and quiet, serenity and simplicity, to one where we are packed in to inefficient and poorly built houses and are regulated to the point of oblivion. Most of us couldn’t even raise chickens in our back yards to support ourselves even if we wanted to. Our yards must be manicured, don’t park on the street, no noise past 9pm, no garage sales, no gardening and so on.
We have gone from freedom, independence and responsibility to tyranny, dependence, and weakness, all for the sake of continued growth.
Just a thought I wanted to share. Barring catastrophe and an utter collapse of the materialistic, consumerist, constant growth model of living I don’t know that freedom stands a chance.