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Tuesday, December 14, 2010

The Delphi Technique ...

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Here is a message Pickens County Resident Johnnelle Raines delivered to The Pickens County Council during the December 2010 Public Forum:

I am a 7 year citizen of Pickens County living on property that has been in my husband’s family for 4 generations.

I am here tonight to express my strong objections to this Comprehensive Plan.

The major objection I have is...This plan is NOT representative of the goals and visions of the majority of Pickens County citizens. Pickens County citizens treasure their life, liberty, and property rights. This plan has come as a result of an un-elected group forming committees that had a pre-determined goal. The goal was sustainable development. Sustainable Development that is based on the 3 E’s ... Equity, Economy, and Rnvironment. Equity meaning social justice NOT personal rights. Economy meaning public/private partnerships, NOT free enterprise...and Environment meaning plants, animals and even inanimate objects are valued greater than the human being and his God given rights.

The people who support this plan of Sustainable Development, or so called “Smart growth” must believe that land can NOT be treated as an ordinary asset controlled by the individual. They must believe that private land ownership is an instrument of wealth accumulation and therefore contributes to social injustice. They must also believe that social justice, urban renewal, and providing decent dwellings and health conditions for the people can only be achieved if land is used in the best interest of society as a whole. They must believe in Collectivism not Individualism and therefore they must be Marxists.

In the introduction to this Comprehensive Plan, it becomes obvious this “consensus” they claim that a broad base of citizen participation was achieved in developing these visions is a lie. All one has to do is look over the visions and goals and one can quickly ascertain that these visions and goals are not from the majority voters in Pickens County. Because in the last mid-term election, 75.16% voted a straight Conservative Republican ticket. Conservatives believe in private property rights, less government intervention, less taxes, and capitalism! And this plan "as is" does not reflect those core beliefs. I am pleased that some changes were made in the original version as a direct result of Conservatives of the Upstate’s input. However, more changes are needed. There are still socialistic elements that need to be changed.

Where this plan fails is that it is based on a pre-determined outcome. I have researched many Comprehensive Plans from various other counties across the United States and they all have the same vocabulary in them. They all have extremely similar goals and visions. This is NOT a coincedence! How could all these Comprehensive Plans be so similar? I will tell you why. They are all a result of technique that is being used called the Delphi Technique. This is how that works. First a facilitator is hired. While his job is supposedly neutral and non-judgemental, the opposite is actually true. The facilitator is there to direct the meeting to a preset conclusion... say for example sustainable development. The facilitator comes across as the good guy in a good-guy /bad guy scenario. Anyone disagreeing with the facilitator must be made to appear as the bad guy. To accomplish this, the facilitator seeks out those he knows disagree with the pre-conceived agenda (namely Sustainable Development) and he makes them look foolish, or inept - which sends a clear message to the rest that if they don’t want that same treatment, they must keep quiet. When the opposition has been identified and alienated, the facilitator becomes the good guy and the agenda and direction of the meetings are established without the citizens ever realizing what has just happened. Next, the citizens are broken up into smaller groups of 6 or 7 and each group has its own facilitator who agrees with the preset conclusion to be achieved. The group facilitators steer the citizens to discuss those preset issues employing the same tactics of the lead facilitator. Participants are encouraged to put their ideas and disagreements on paper, with the results to be compiled later. And guess what, guess who does that compiling? Those running the meeting of course...the ones with the already preconceived outcomes in mind they are the ones who compile those results. OOOoh! How do those committee members know that what they suggested was even incorporated into the final outcome? They don’t! That’s the beauty of this Delphi Technique, they only notice that their ideas were not reflected so they assume their views were in the minority and you better keep quiet for fear of ridicule from the rest. This is the crux of our situation with this citizen survey that was offered on the internet to get feedback from our citizens. If 100 citizens fill out surveys that were all ready pre-determined to get the outcome the agenda wants to be compiled later into a final outcome, no one really knows what anyone else has said on their survey except for those who compile the results which of course are those who support sustainable development. I mean really...that the final outcome of those surveys really reflects anyone’s input at all is highly questionable. Did anyone even check to make sure that those 100 surveys taken on the internet from Pickens County citizens were actually citizens of Pickens County?

You may ask why such meetings and surveys are held if the outcomes are already pre-established. The answer is because it is imperative for the ordinary citizens to assume ownership of this outcome and accept it as good for the citizens. If the citizens believe they had input in to making the visions and goals they will support it. The sad truth is they were fooled into believing they did have input but in actuality the plan was pre-conceived with little input from them. I noticed in the plan there were no pictures of citizens actually showing up at the open houses or pictures of people actually visiting the Public Reference Room in the county administration building.

This Delphi Technique is being used quite effectively all over the United States. It has been effective in changing our government from a representative form in which individuals represent the people, to a participatory democracy in which citizens selected at large are blindly led into ownership of pre-set outcomes and they claim a “consensus” has been reached. These citizens believe that their input was important to the result, whereas the reality is that the outcome was already established by the “elite” who think they know what’s best for everyone. I mean people begin to say what could possibly be wrong with preserving resouces? Why not limit consumption and reduce energy? Why not abolish poverty and establish a welfare system? Why not save the planet by trading cars for bicycles. Why not get rid of the free market system for a self-sustaining community? Why not get rid of rural private properties and opt for land settlements located on transit lines where everyone can be equal, live in stack em pack em houses and live happily ever after?

I’ll tell you why not! It ‘s called Socialism! And Socialism produces poverty and not prosperity. Collectivism, which is at the core of Socialism, creates oppression not freedom!

We are all being lured into these ridiculous visions, rules, and regulations for a utopia that will never exist. Utopia is not obtainable. Utopia only exists in heaven.

And how is the government luring us? By promise of funding if we follow along like sheep to the slaughter with these sustainable, smart growth utopian ideas. It’s always all about the money! Our local governments are eager to get those government funds (which are really our hard earned tax dollars)... I have heard it stated at meetings that we need to adopt that plan cause there’s free money out there we need to take advantage of. We need to quit looking at spending money without looking at what the final product is going to be. We need to be looking at Europe and what socialism has gotten them. Is the funding really worth what will happen as a result?

We are sacrificing our freedoms as we know them for a sustainable community that wants our growth only to occur in the center cities and avoid urban sprawl, that wants us to get rid of our use of cars and herd us into mass transit and live in walkable, bicycle friendly communities with private land ownership being highly restricted.

Wake up!!! This is not at all about “saving” the Planet! It’s all about control. Government control! Is that what we want?

And if this Council adopts this plan "as is" and does not recognize that this Comprehensive Plan is a tool for putting us on the path of Socialism you are truly NOT as smart as your constiutents who voted for you think you are, and you are not putting your 75.16% Republican straight ticket voters beliefs first. And I for one will not re-elect a single one of you. I suggest you look at the Conservatives of the Upstate’s Comprehensive Plan because it truly is reflective of what Pickens County citizens believe and want for our future.

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Pickens County Council Delays Vote On Comprehensive Plan ... Sends It Back To Comittee

_______________________________________

From The Pickens Sentinel:

Conservatives of the Upstate President Junius Smith has been one of the most fervent critics of the comprehensive plan, commonly referring to it as “socialist.”
Smith said that part of the plan strips people of personal property rights. He often links the comprehensive plan with Agenda 21, a United Nations-sanctioned plan to organize how humans impact the environment throughout the world. 
Smith has also suggested that the plan incorporate more elements that will foster economic growth. Conservatives of the Upstate leaders have posted an alternative plan on their website, www.conservativesoftheupstate.com. 
The plan promotes private property rights, demands accountability among the elected officials, limits zoning, and adds transparency to government spending. 

Thursday, November 11, 2010

Veteran's Day!

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Thank you to all that have served this nation to protect our liberty!

All Government offices, banks, and the post office will be closed in observance, but Public schools in Liberty are open on regular schedule.

In the United States, Veterans Day is usually observed on November 11. 

However, if it occurs on a Sunday then the following Monday is designated for holiday leave, and if it occurs Saturday then either Saturday or Friday may be so designated.

This year, Veteran's Day falls on a Thursday.

Veterans (that means if you have EVER served in the military) don't forget that you receive the following benefits tomorrow:

• FREE MEAL at Applebee's

• FREE Blooming Onion at Outback Steakhouse

Saturday, November 6, 2010

The "Upstate Never" Asked ...

_______________________________________



The following link references the subject matter of this email.

Be sure to click on the link in the first paragraph that takes you to their recommendations:


Previous communication with you has covered a wide range of issues. One subject frequently addressed has been complacency. You have been advised to be continually vigilant, no matter the progress or how many victories are achieved. An effort has been made to drive home the point that those who view property, and hence our liberties and freedom, as commodities to be forcefully taken from you, never cease in their efforts. We are now afforded the opportunity to see why vigilance and activity are so critical to our efforts.

Many of you have been involved in the reformation of the Pickens County Comprehensive Plan. We have made great progress in helping draft a more "normative" plan. There is however, a special interest that directly opposes this effort of the citizens of Pickens County. They fully intend to see their agenda forced upon us, all through the Comprehensive Plan.

What follows is taken directly from the link provided:

Two Upstate Forever staff - Lisa Hallo (a Pickens County resident) and Laura Garrett (a Pickens County native) - served on the committee. After many meetings and much discussion, debate, and hard work, a draft plan was recently presented to the Pickens County Planning Commission. A public hearing on the draft plan was held on October 11, and Upstate Forever has submitted our recommendations for strengthening and improving the plan (click here to read them).

It is evident many hours were poured into the drafting of this plan.
Some crucial points to consider in shaping of our continued efforts:

First and foremost, the individuals noted above are hired guns. They are poster girls for the term "Special Interest". One of them is not even a resident of Pickens County. She has made this clear to the Planning Commission. The only qualification that can be found for justifying her input is that she is a native of Pickens County. Does this qualify her to make recommendations on how we should live our lives? We on the other hand, are not hired guns. We have never asked for, nor receive any compensation for simply taking an interest in the well being and governance of our county.

The public comment period is mentioned. The statement implies pubic input is closed. Some commissioners, as well as some council members, have made it clear they see no need for further public input. Yet this is the very thing Upstate Forever is attempting to do. All the while, shutting us out of the process. They are simply promoting two sets of rules, a set for them and a set for everybody else. Even more alarming is the fact that they are not even public, but a special interest with special funding. They are simply trying to intimidate the commission into giving them special consideration.

Also mentioned is the amount of time they have put into the plan. This point is repeatedly held up as the reason to approve the plan as originally drafted. Fellow citizens, the same can be said for Obama care, EPA regulations, and any number of other special interest efforts. The amount of time they have put into the plan has absolutely nothing to do with whether or not the plan is acceptable.

If you value the ownership of property, and ultimately freedom and liberty, take the following immediate actions:

The Planning Commission will consider and probably vote on the plan at its next meeting on November 8. If you live or work in Pickens County, immediately contact the Commissioners, as well as your County Councilman to:

1) Express your support for the recommendations as submitted and made by the citizens of Pickens County.

2) Let them know that you strongly oppose any weakening of the citizens input made to the draft plan to date

AND

3) Mark your calendars for the Planning Commission meeting, Monday night, on November 8th at 6:30 p.m.; suit up and show up!

This concerns all of us. If the version of the plan Upstate Forever proposes is adopted, the effects will not miss you and yours!

~ Jim W.
member Conservatives Of The Upstate

Tuesday, November 2, 2010

_______________________________________

PLEASE
VOTE
TODAY!

Thursday, October 21, 2010

What's Wrong With The Pickens County Comprehensive Plan?

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What is Wrong with Pickens County Comprehensive Plan?

1.  Population

Of all places where there needs to be concrete planing for the future; it's population.  

The United States is overcome by illegal aliens from south of our border.  They have come here with the intent to take American jobs and start a new life.  Unfortunately, they've brought thousands of law breakers, diseases, and infestations.  Instead of making all immigrants obey our laws, politicians only care about getting their votes and applying them to their re-election.  This is not to say that we haven’t acquired many fine people from the south.  We have.  Many of our families are peppered with relatives of recent immigrants that have come legally to this country.  However, the last few administrations have failed to protect our borders, and have created a colossal financial and social problem.  Pickens County residents are suffering from job losses on public works and cannot even get help from the school board.  Firm references need to be made to this problem in our comprehensive plan and politicians need to be put on notice that the citizens will not tolerate anyone deliberately breaking immigration laws.

Another king size problem is unwed mothers and unwanted pregnancies.  Yet, there is no reference to some solution in the Pickens County plan.  

Both of the above problems exacerbate the problems with education, welfare payments, deficits, and most other economic problems.  Yet nothing has been planned for the future to alleviate these problems.  Non governmental organizations such as the Appalachian Council of Governments, Upstate Forever, Ten at the Top, Pickens Alliance and Vision 2025 have been around here for a long time, and have failed to help with any of these problems. Instead, they have focused on urban sprawl which draws the line on expansion which is a detrement to property owners.  They have recommeneded bicycle and equestrian trails to eliminate our cars so they can more easily implement global warming initiatives (which is not proven, but rather is the figment in the minds of a bunch of cheating scientists and Al Gore).  They have recommended cities of high rises to herd all the people in; as they have in Europe.  They have further recommended the destruction of the capitalistic, free enterprise system, and private property to be replaced by “natural capitalism” better named as George Orwell’s "1984" or Aldous Huxley's, "A Brave New World"

Thursday, October 14, 2010

Meeting Tonight!

_______________________________________


There will be a meeting tonight ...

We will be discussing several topics tonight.

1)
How to protest your property taxes. This process will be applicable to your car and home in Pickens County although car protests are usually granted ON SPOT by the tax assessor.

2) We will be discussing our plan for upcoming events in the county.

3) We will be discussing recent meetings with the Planning Commission, School Board, and County Council.

Meetings are held (usually) the 2nd Thursday of each month.

Meetings held at:

Blue Ridge Bible Church
769 Belle Shoals Road
Pickens, SC, 29671

6:30PM

Monday, October 11, 2010

Important: School Board & Pickens County Planning Commission Meetings Tonight

_______________________________________


There are two meetings tonight:

Pickens County Planning Commission meeting:

Discussion of The Pickens County Comprehensive Plan.

Pickens County Administration Building Auditorium
222 McDaniel Avenue Pickens, South Carolina
October 11th, 2010 6:30PM

ALSO ...

On Monday, October 11, 2010 the Board of Trustees will meet for a called board meeting at 7:30 p.m. in the Board Room of the Curtis A. Sidden Administrative Building on Griffin Mill Road, Easley.

Prior to the called board meeting, the Board Chairman and Superintendent will be present at 6:00PM in the Board Room of the Curtis A. Sidden Administrative Building to answer questions regarding the proposed Bond Sale.

Thursday, October 7, 2010

Meeting Tonight!

_______________________________________


What did you learn from the TATT meeting Tuesday night? What did you see?

I'll bet we all saw and heard different things.

It would be extremely beneficial to get together and discuss this, for a whole host of reasons.

Lets get together tonight and share our thoughts and go over what we saw and heard.

Junius has graciously offered to let us use his church.

Blue Ridge Bible Church
769 Belle Shoals Road
Pickens, SC, 29671

6:30PM

This is important for all our sakes. If we stay in the fight, it will definitely not be the last time we face this type of scenario. Let's get our strategy down and be ready for next time.

Feel free to leave a comment if you have any questions.

Tuesday, October 5, 2010

Ten At The Top To Share "Vision" Tonight In Easley

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A meeting for Ten At The Top will be held in Easley.

@ Dunburks Premeire Events Center

5:30PM - 7:30PM

110 S. Pendleton St
Easley, SC 29640
(864) 423-4344

Monday, October 4, 2010

Events this week ...

_______________________________________


Lots of events this week ...

Tonight

County Council

Pickens County School board

Tomorrow

Tuesday October 5, 2010
Ten At The Top
Pickens County Forum
5:30-7:30PM
@ DunBurks Premier Events in Easley

Thursday October 7, 2010

3rd District Debate

Jeff Duncan (R)
Jane Dyer (D)
John Dalen (I)


Held at Strom Thurmond Institute @ Clemson University 7PM
(In the Jim Self Center)

Obviously, you can't make it to all, but try to make it at least one event.

What's Wrong With Pickens County Comprehensive Plan?

_______________________________________


What is Wrong with Pickens County Comprehensive Plan?

1.  Population

Of all places where there needs to be concrete planing for the future; it's population.  

The United States is overcome by illegal aliens from south of our border.  They have come here with the intent to take American jobs and start a new life.  Unfortunately, they've brought thousands of law breakers, diseases, and infestations.  Instead of making all immigrants obey our laws, politicians only care about getting their votes and applying them to their re-election.  This is not to say that we haven’t acquired many fine people from the south.  We have.  Many of our families are peppered with relatives of recent immigrants that have come legally to this country.  However, the last few administrations have failed to protect our borders, and have created a colossal financial and social problem.  Pickens County residents are suffering from job losses on public works and cannot even get help from the school board.  Firm references need to be made to this problem in our comprehensive plan and politicians need to be put on notice that the citizens will not tolerate anyone deliberately breaking immigration laws.

Another king size problem is unwed mothers and unwanted pregnancies.  Yet, there is no reference to some solution in the Pickens County plan.  

Both of the above problems exacerbate the problems with education, welfare payments, deficits, and most other economic problems.  Yet nothing has been planned for the future to alleviate these problems.  Non governmental organizations such as the Appalachian Council of Governments, Upstate Forever, Ten at the Top, Pickens Alliance and Vision 2025 have been around here for a long time, and have failed to help with any of these problems. Instead, they have focused on urban sprawl which draws the line on expansion which is a detrement to property owners.  They have recommeneded bicycle and equestrian trails to eliminate our cars so they can more easily implement global warming initiatives (which is not proven, but rather is the figment in the minds of a bunch of cheating scientists and Al Gore).  They have recommended cities of high rises to herd all the people in; as they have in Europe.  They have further recommended the destruction of the capitalistic, free enterprise system, and private property to be replaced by “natural capitalism” better named as George Orwell’s "1984" or Aldous Huxley's, "A Brave New World"

Monday, September 27, 2010

Review of Comprehensive Plan as prepared by The Pickens County Planning Commission

_______________________________________

Review of Comprehensive Plan as prepared by 
The Pickens County Planning Commission
by Junius Smith

The Pickens County Comprehensive Plan vision statement is flawed in that it does not mention free enterprise, free market,  capitalism, and more of private property rights.  It states that Pickens County has a balanced, sustainable, and conservative county with growth and prosperity for ALL  our citizens.  This is certainly not true in that we have hundreds of children on welfare and over 800 that are considered homeless.  Other major points are that the economy, and tax base grows and is self sustaining and diverse.  We have 12% + unemployed and the average salary of those not employed by government is between $25 thousand, while the government salaries (on average) are nearly $50,000.  This doesn’t come close to being balanced.   The tax base over the years has expanded mainly in new construction of homes and from reassessment of property values. The Pickens County School District currently has an over 30% dropout rate - which is a direct correlation to the average salary that the average worker draws.  Much of the problems can be traced to a deterioration of family values. unwed mothers, teachers that do not perform, and that God has been removed from the schools and government offices.  All meetings used to begin with asking God for Guidance.  Now we  start our meetings with a moment of silence in order to accommodate atheists, and some religions that do not believe in God, but rather the planet, or some God that most of the people do not believe in.  Our constitutional rights are being violated by judges that write law rather than rule on laws that the people have agreed to over the hundreds of years.  Our constitution begins with “We  the People” not "We the government". 

Even as we speak, the housing market has gone down 30%, foreclosures have skyrocketed, and over 1000 delinquent tax sales of local homes is scheduled.  Textile plants have gone out of business.  Yet county government and the schools have basically continued without losing many people.  The reason for this is that they have been over collecting 5% every year, creating a slush fund at the people’s expense.  Now the County Council is trying to do the right thing by budgeting 100% collectible as should have been done 20 years ago.  As yet the Pickens County School Board has refused to do the right thing and continues to budget themselves a 3 to 5% gain every year.  

Our Comprehensive Plan should include items like this rather than bicycle and equestrian paths.

The county citizens need to be trained in free enterprise economics.  Some of our folks have forgotten personal responsibility and limited government.  They are fooled by United Nations Agenda 21 initiatives, Sustainable Development plans ala executive orders through a former President’s administration.  They don’t recognize how “slick” talking beaurocrats are; who say one thing and mean another, while ripping the freedom of the people through government handouts.  Examples of this are words in the Comprehensive Plan like "preserving" and "protecting".  They may preserve and protect so that you cannot even plant a garden on your property unless the government says so.  We have seen environmental police, ridiculous EPA ozone standards, regulations that forbid your cows from drinking out of streams, and non governmental organizations writing law and forming regional associations so that they can do away with your elected representatives which drives control away from our democratic Republic. 

Come to the Public Hearing meeting at 6:30 October 11, at the County Administration Building in the Auditorium and help us write a real plan for Pickens County! Read the rest of these comparisons between the Free Enterprise plan and the Pickens County Comprehensive Plan as they are posted on our web site www.conservativesoftheupstate.com.

Sincerely,

Junius Smith
President, Conservatives Of The Upstate

Saturday, September 18, 2010

He Often Speaks ...

_______________________________________

Here's how The Easley Progress reported the latest Planning Commission meeting ...

Conservatives of the Upstate President Junius Smith often speaks out against the comprehensive plan. On Monday, he described it as both “communist” and “socialist,” saying there are parts inside the plan that strip away personal and property rights. Smith often links the comprehensive plan with Agenda 21, a United Nations-sanctioned plan to organize how humans impact the environment throughout the world. 

If Texas Can Do It; Why Can't South Carolina?



_______________________________________


Newsradio WAOI in Texas reports:

Texas Sues to Block Bizarre "Global Warming" EPA Rules

The state of Texas today sued the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency in a federal appeals court in Washington DC, claiming four new regulations imposed by the EPA are based on the 'thoroughly discredited' findings of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change and are 'factually flawed,' 1200 WOAI news reports.

Texas Attorney General Greg Abbott says the rules are illegal and if imposed, will cost Texans in higher energy costs and tens of thousands of lost jobs.

"The state explained that the IPCC, and therefore the EPA, relied on flawed science to conclude that greenhouse emissions endanger public health and welfare," Abbott said. "Because the Administration predicated its Endangerment Finding on the IPCC's questionable facts, the state is seeking to prevent the EPA's new rules, and the economic harm that will result from these regulations, from being imposed on Texas employers, workers, and enforcement agencies."

See the full story here:

http://radio.woai.com/cc-common/news/sections/newsarticle.html?feed=119078&article=7606198

Friday, September 17, 2010

Notes On The Pickens County Comprehensive Plan

_______________________________________
Dear Conservatives,

I'm sending you my thoughts on the Pickens County Comprehensive Plan.  These are a few of the thoughts that I gathered from the first reading of the "new" Pickens Plan as compared to the Capitalistic, free enterprise, private property version that was constructed by 150 citizens of Pickens County and viewed by over 15,000 folks on the conservativesoftheupstate.com web site.

1.  The first offensive thing about it was the agenda for the meeting of the Planning Commission. They started the meeting with a moment of silence. This offends anyone who understands the constitution of the United States. Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion,or prohibiting the free exercise thereof.  We have yielded our faith to a bunch of liberal, communist judges who use a letter from Thomas Jefferson to The Anabaptists of the time who requested that their religion be established as the STATE religion.  He refused in a letter saying that there should be a separation of church and state. But that was his opinion; not constitutional law. Now we open our meetings without asking God for guidance.  I suggest if this happens again, that someone in the audience lead us in the Lord's Prayer or some other prayer of faith.

2.  In the overview, it described the plan as having a "consensus" approval of the people of Pickens County which is not true.  "Consensus" is a buzz word from the Agenda 21/Sustainable Development movement. "Consensus" is advocated by the United Nations which gives the Progressives the right to enact law without a vote.  Far more people know about the plan through Capitalistic eyes than in the plan being pushed by mostly nongovernmental organizations represented on this committee.

3.  The Pickens Plan is represented as a "guide"  for future decisions regarding the growth of Pickens County.  "The plan is not a regulatory document. Strict over-interpretation of the Plan should be avoided. Rather,the broader spirit of the plan should prevail."  This is the trap that socialists want you to believe.  Go to Chapter 6-29-540 of the South Carolina Code of Laws and see what happens after the County Council adopts this Plan.

4.  Under the heading of Public Participation, the word "stakeholders"  is coined right out of Agenda 21 of the United Nations Plan.  Stakeholders are the people, that for whatever reason, have signed on to socialism;  most unknowingly.

These are comments from the introduction of the Pickens County Plan. Comparisons of the advisory committee's and that of the Capitalistic plan will follow before the October meeting. 

Sincerely,

Junius
President, Conservatives Of The Upstate

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Ten At The Top To Share "Vision"

Regional Vision Summit
September 28, 2010
Less Than 100 Spots Still Available
Register Today


REGIONAL VISION SUMMIT
Tuesday, September 28, 2010
9AM - 12PM
Carolina First Center

Less than 100 spots still remain for the Regional Vision Summit on September 28, 2010. Be sure and register today. The Upstate is projected to add a quarter million new residents & 200,000 new jobs between now & 2030. What can be done today to ensure that this growth enhances the economic vitality and quality of life for all residents of the Upstate?

As part of the year-long effort to create a Shared Upstate Growth Vision, Ten at the Top invites you to participate in a Regional Vision Summit on Tuesday, September 28, 2010 at the Carolina First Center.

So far, more than 7,000 Upstate residents have provided input as part of this open process. Come hear what we have learned so far, but also be ready to share your thoughts and vision for the future. Most of the Summit will be focused on having dialogue between residents, business and community leaders and elected officials from across the 10-county region about how each envisions the future of South Carolina's Upstate.

Join us on September 28th and help shape your community's future.

Registration deadline is September 24th or when capacity is met.

Creating a Shared Upstate Growth Vision is an initiative of Ten at the Top

Ten at the Top
124 Verdae Boulevard
Greenville, South Carolina 29607
864.283.2315
www.tenatthetop.org

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Neighbors Love Him, Comprehensive Plannners Hate Him

What do you think of this? This is exactly what I told the Planning Commission last night. 


Junius


____________________________________


County Sues Farmer, Cites Too Many Crops
DEKALB COUNTY, Ga. DeKalb County is suing a local farmer for growing too many vegetables, but he said he will fight the charges in the ongoing battle neighbors call “Cabbagegate.”

Fig trees, broccoli and cabbages are among the many greens that line the soil on Steve Miller’s more than two acres in Clarkston, who said he has spent fifteen years growing crops to give away and sell at local farmers markets.

In January, Dekalb County code enforcement officers began ticketing him for growing too many crops for the zoning and having unpermitted employees on site.
The odd thing about this story is that it ends with a profession by neighbors that they LOVE him.
“When he moved here and I found out what he was doing I said, ‘Steve, you’re the best thing that ever happened to Cimarron Drive. And I still say that,” said neighbor Britt Fayssoux.
* credit wsbtv Georgia for the story

The Cities in The County Are Okaying It Without Question!

_______________________________________

This is Rusty, the webmaster at Conservatives Of The Upstate, I apologize for not being able to attend last night's Pickens County Planning Commission meeting. I had to attend the Liberty City Council meeting to report for my own website ATLIBERTYTOSAY.COM.

This said, and hopefully apology accepted ... here's a sample of what I posted about my City Council meeting last night ...

"... first reading of a resolution called The PELCOR Resolution - this is a resolution to commit to cooperate with Pickens, Easley, and Liberty on a joint bicycle trail and corridor."


“PELCOR” RESOLUTION

WHEREAS, The City of Liberty desires that all its citizens be afforded the opportunity to improve wellness, enhance family, and further their knowledge and appreciation for their local communities while contributing to economic growth and;

WHEREAS, The City of Liberty desires to be a part of “PELCOR” which is a proposed loop and series of bicycle friendly trails, roads, parks and riding destinations located in the upstate of South Carolina and;

WHEREAS, The City of Liberty wishes to form and support “PELCOR” or the Pickens, Easley, Liberty Corridor to create a partnership that would connect the three areas through bike lanes while promoting each municipalities strengths and separate projects to better market the entire region, and;

WHEREAS, The City of Liberty has met with representatives from each municipality and feel a collaborative approach from all three regions and from Pickens County in the planning and connectivity portion of this endeavor is better for the region as a whole to attract tourism and promote a healthy lifestyle;

NOW, THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED, that The City of Liberty does hereby further affirm its commitment towards “PELCOR” and towards building partnerships and an area that fosters wellness, economic growth and prosperity for its citizens.

Adopted this Thirteenth day of September, 2010 by The City of Liberty Council.

The resolution was passed following the reading with no discussion.

Councilman Sheriff affirmed that this resolution "committed no funds", but did establish Liberty as a partner in the bike trail project.
I was pretty surprised that there was relatively NO DISCUSSION of this topic whatsoever. Very nonchalant raising of hands to agree with the ordinance and then on to the next topic. Councilman Yates was the only one to ask where the funds would come from for "Liberty's part".

It's quite ironic actually that I went to the Liberty City Council Meeting only to miss the Pickens County Planning Commission Meeting where 
The Pickens County Comprehensive Plan was going to be discussed. The Comprehensive Plan IS committing to multiple bicycle and equestrian trails throughout the county as part of a sustainable development initiative. The Comprehensive Plan is essentially an overview of where County tax dollars will be spent over the next 10 years. I'm sure many of you have been hearing the word "sustainable" as a buzz word quite a bit lately. What many don't realize is that this green buzz word is actually A KEY COMPONENT of socialism. How could a bike trail be socialism? You're saying, "I'd love a bike trail!" If you understand that European countries pretty much raise gasoline taxes so high to encourage the use of bikes - you'll understand where this "path" leads. Once bicycle trails are implemented around the country - the next step will be a politician saying, "Pay up or pedal! The choice is yours!" When people discuss this topic, especially in relation to bicycle or equestrian trails, that on their face seem good for economic development; they seem conspiratorial. Once one considers the land use and land restrictions that follow - one starts to understand the implications of implementing such "sustainable efforts". I have only recently been educated about how all of us are being duped by a "green movement" to implement Agenda 21. (The United Nations numerology for sustainable development.)

I would encourage Council members, City employees, and Liberty residents to read:



The Denver Post: Bike agenda spins cities toward U.N. control, Maes warns

This next link is more to provide you with visible fact that bicycle trails, equestrian trails, and even widespread parks and recreation initiatives are part of a United Nations Plan called Agenda 21. Locally, Agenda 21 initiatives AS ORDERED by The United Nations and signed into law by President Bill Clinton by executive order, are called Vision 2025 (which Councilman Michael Sheriff heads), and The Pickens County Comprehensive Plan. By state law, each county is required to submit A Comprehensive Plan ...


United Nations: Agenda 21

Friday, September 10, 2010

Fox News: Cities Increasingly Turn to 'Trash Police' to Enforce Recycling Laws

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From FoxNews:

Cities Increasingly Turn to 'Trash Police' to Enforce Recycling Laws

Beware the green police. They don't carry guns and there's no police academy to train them, but if you don't recycle your trash properly, they can walk up your driveway and give you a $100 ticket.

They know what's in your trash, they know what you eat, they know how often you bring your recycles to the curb -- and they may be coming to your town soon. That is, if they're not already there.

In a growing number of cities across the U.S., local governments are placing computer chips in recycling bins to collect data on refuse disposal, and then fining residents who don't participate in recycling efforts and forcing others into educational programs meant to instill respect for the environment.

From Charlotte, N.C., to Cleveland, Ohio, from Boise, Idaho, to Flint, Mich., the green police are spreading out. And that alarms some privacy advocates who are asking: Should local governments have the right to monitor how you divide your paper cups from your plastic forks? Is that really the role of government?

The irony of this story is that our very County Council proposed that we be fined if we didn't meet a 25% recycling goal. (Later reduced to 20%, then later dropped as a plan)

For the full story see:

http://www.foxnews.com/scitech/2010/09/07/trash-police-invade-thanks-government-stimulus/

Upcoming Important Meetings

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There are several very important meetings coming up in the next few weeks. We cannot emphasize the importance of your attendance. These issues are not singularly isolated issues. They are all interrelated and tied together, one way or another.

First is a Pickens County Planning Commission meeting.

The final draft of the Comprehensive Plan is to be reviewed.

We need to be there and get our eyes on it!

A link for your perusal:

http://www.wnd.com/index.php?fa=PAGE.view&pageId=200637

Please don't miss this meeting!


Planning Commission Meeting

Date: Monday, September 13, 2010

Time: 6:30PM

Location:

Main Conference Room
Pickens County Administration Building
222 McDaniel Avenue
Pickens, SC 29671

Get there as early as you can!!

_______________________________________


Next is a DHEC meeting regarding transportation conformity(?).

How ironic we have to drive to get to a meeting about transportation conformity.

* Note: You must register for this meeting!

Transportation Conformity Kick-Off Meeting
September 14, 2010
Peeples Auditorium
2600 Bull Street
Columbia, SC 29201

Agenda
9:45AM Welcome (DHEC)
9:50AM Purpose and Introductions (EPA)
10:00AM Status of Ozone/Air Quality in South Carolina (DHEC)
10:15AM Overview of Designation Process (EPA)
10:45AM Break Out Session – Overview of State Transportation and MPO Process (SCDOT and MPOs)
11:45AM Break for lunch (on your own)
12:45PM Overview of Transportation Conformity Requirements - Roles (EPA)
1:00PM Regional Emissions Analysis/Planning Assumptions/Examples (EPA)
4:00PM Distribution of Report & Coordination (EPA and FHWA)
4:15PM Next Steps (All)
4:30PM Adjourn

_______________________________________


Third, is Pickens County Council meeting. This may be where the final draft of the Comprehensive plan is presented to Council.

A final vote will be taken sometime later.

We need to be there however, and make our voices heard as it is presented.

Pickens County Council Meeting

Date: Monday, September 20, 2010

Time: 6:30PM

Location:

Council Chambers
Pickens County Administration Building
222 McDaniel Avenue
Pickens, SC 29671

Thursday, September 9, 2010

Meeting Tonight!

_______________________________________


Dear Conservatives,

We will be discussing the final version of the Comprehensive Plan for Pickens County as drafted by Conservatives Of The Upstate.

See you tonight at 6:30PM!


Blue Ridge Bible Curch
769 Belle Shoals Rd
Pickens SC 29671

Thursday, August 19, 2010

Concentrating all political power in one person or in a committee ...

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Central planning will eventually destroy individual liberty by concentrating all political power in one person or in a committee; furthermore, it will eventually end our prosperity by laying the dead hand of state control on the economy.

~ 
Robert M. Thornton

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

2011 W-2 Tax Forms & Obamacare

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2011 W-2 Tax Forms and Obamacare

If you go to http://www.thomas.gov, enter "HR 3590" in the search box and look for "CRS Summaries." This is what you'll find.

Title IX Revenue Provisions”Subtitle A: Revenue Offset
"(Sec. 9002) Requires employers to include in the W-2 form of each employee the aggregate cost of applicable employer-sponsored group health coverage that is excludable from the employee's gross income (excluding the value of
contributions to flexible spending arrangements)."

Starting in 2011next year the W-2 tax form sent by your employer will be increased to show the value of whatever health insurance you are provided. It doesn't matter if you're retired. Your gross income WILL go up by the amount of insurance your employer paid for. So youll be required to pay taxes on a larger sum of money that you actually received. Take the tax form you just finished for 2009 and see what $15,000.00 or $20,000.00 additional gross income does to
your tax debt. That's what you'll pay next year. For many it puts you into a much higher bracket. This is how the government is going to buy insurance for fifteen (15) percent that don't have insurance and it's only part of the tax increases,
but it's not really a "tax increase" as such, it a redefinition of your taxable income.

Meeting This Thursday

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Dear Conservatives,

Our meeting this Thursday is very important! We've built a lot of enthusiasmKathy Murphy and David Merck with the Pickens Tea Party meetings, the terrific run by Richard Cash's Campaign without PAC money, the election day victories of some real good candidates, the thousands of great emails that have circulated by our members, and above all our belief in God, have waned.

I have information on how to protest your taxes legally. We will cover this. I have proof that Sustainable Development-comprehensive plan controlled by the federal government is right here in Pickens County; being implemented by the cities. Your property about to be stolen. Preparation for doing away with auto transportation is right around the corner. We will talk about all of this. Please come, Your liberty is at stake.

See you Thursday!

Bring a friend.

Junius Smith

Monday, August 9, 2010

Did You Know?

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From an email forward ...

DID YOU KNOW?

As you walk up the steps to the building which houses the U.S Supreme Court you can see near the top of the building a row of the world's law givers and each one is facing one in the middle who is facing forward with a full frontal view ... it is Moses and he is holding the Ten Commandments!



DID YOU KNOW?

As you enter the Supreme Court courtroom, the Two huge oak doors have the Ten Commandments engraved on each lower portion of each door.

DID YOU KNOW?

As you sit inside the courtroom, you can see the wall, right above where the Supreme Court judges sit, is a display of the Ten Commandments!

DID YOU KNOW?

There are Bible verses etched in stone all over the Federal Buildings and Monuments in Washington , D.C.

DID YOU KNOW?

James Madison, the fourth president, known as 'The Father of Our Constitution' made the following statement:

"We have staked the whole of all our political institutions upon the capacity of mankind for self-government, upon the capacity of each and all of us to govern ourselves, to control ourselves, to sustain ourselves according to the Ten Commandments of God."


DID YOU KNOW?

Every session of Congress begins with a prayer by a paid preacher, whose salary has been paid by the taxpayer since 1777.

DID YOU KNOW?

Thomas Jefferson worried that the Courts would overstep their authority and instead of interpreting the law would begin making law an oligarchy the rule of few over many.

Bike Agenda Putting Us Closer Toward U.N. Control?

_______________________________________


An interesting read forwarded from Conservatives Of The Upstate:

From The Denver Post:

Republican gubernatorial candidate Dan Maes is warning voters that Denver Mayor John Hickenlooper's policies, particularly his efforts to boost bike riding, are "converting Denver into a United Nations community."

"This is all very well-disguised, but it will be exposed," Maes told about 50 supporters who showed up at a campaign rally last week in Centennial.

Maes said in a later interview that he once thought the mayor's efforts to promote cycling and other environmental initiatives were harmless and well-meaning. Now he realizes "that's exactly the attitude they want you to have."

"This is bigger than it looks like on the surface, and it could threaten our personal freedoms," Maes said.


Read the full article here:

Bike agenda spins cities toward U.N. control

Monday, July 26, 2010

An Op-Ed: Freedom

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Freedom
by Junius Smith


It seems that many have forgotten their history of the United States. Many of us want European style government. Remember how it was in the 1600’s? Our ancestors could not worship God as they wished. So ... they braved all sorts of adversity just to get here. Many died, but half of them starved to death after arrival in the first year trying to emulate European common store house methods. The next year they went to the old fashion free enterprise way of growing your own and eating it yourself. None starved in the second year.

As time went on, others came to the new land, many as indentured servants. The price of the trip was at least seven years of servitude in which they were the “slaves” of the people who paid their way. Most thought this was a small price to pay for freedom and the experiences that they had faced in Europe.

By and by the first negroes came to America. They for the most part after they had been captured by Muslim Arabs, European ship owners, or the local tribe chieftains who sold them to slave ship owners like John Newton who wrote “Amazing Grace” before he was saved by the Holy Spirit After arriving in America, many went to the potato farms in the Colony of Maine, where for one reason or another, they did not work out and were sold to farmers in the south.

Southerners made a large investment in slaves, which was declared a legal investment by the United States Supreme Court headed by John Jay as Chief Justice. The South, especially in the coastal areas, began to make huge investment in human labor . First it was in rice, then in Cotton. Many families entire wealth was in the land and the slaves. In fact one of the largest slave owners in Charleston, South Carolina was an African American.

Contrary to what many have said, The War for Southern Independence was not fought solely over slavery, although that was definitely a factor. As my old professor of Economic History, Jack Williams, later to become the President of Texas A&M said the first day of class, “the wrong side lost.” The wharfs in New Orleans, Charleston, and along the Mississippi river were stacked with bales of cotton that the Northern States had slapped a tax on before shipping to New York. The North had a strangle hold on the South who could not meet the payments for their plantings and the money owed to the North for the slaves. War of the worst kind followed.

For four long years and over 680,000 dead and severely wounded; the two sections of this nation struggled in a death grip. The South ... with its bravery. The North with its industrial complex and bigger populous. In the end, Abraham Lincoln set all the slaves free in the South, and the entire South was in ruins. He is given credit for freeing all the slaves, but he did not. It was not until the 13th Amendment to the Constitution was ratified on December 6, 1865, as there were many slaves in the Northern states. Some do not remember, but the State of New York flirted with secession because of their ties with the South.

There was no freedom for the war participants in the South. Carpetbaggers and scalawags stole farms, land, and other properties for the taxes that people couldn’t pay. Unqualified slaves were put in office by them. Corruption and ugly incidents rained supreme. Folks would not go out on the streets after dark. The North did not help with rebuilding, they just feasted over what was left.

Time passed and the South slowly began to recover. Yet, for the most part, southerners and African Americans managed to get along in their misery. It was not without problems, and God knows both races struggled with schools, rest rooms, buses, water fountains, and equal opportunity. Slowly but surely, progress began to be made, but not without some agony. My own uncle, Brian Butler, can be found in Springwood Cemetery in Columbia; shot in the back of the head by an African American as he departed from a bus to the arms of his waiting wife after he had participated in World War I.

Incidents like this have happened from time to time and forgiveness has been accomplished by many, but there are those on both sides,especially black leaders that feast on the black population for money. Only through some real soul searching and good old fashioned love of God can these attitudes change.

Here are some ideas that I have. The African American population has had more opportunity for advancement than any other race at any other time in history the past 50 years. I do not think everyone will agree to this because there are some that profit from not believing it. But just look at a few facts. One of the wealthiest women in the world, Oprah Winfrey is black, so is Barrack Obama, so is Condi Rice, Judge Thomas, the basketball player Lebron James and 88% of the NBA, 80% of the of the NFL, millions in management positions, thousands in political arena, millions that have their own businesses. There is no place in the world where blacks have more authority and income. It is not even close. Americans should remember that their ancestors came to this country to worship God, and He has made nearly all of us rich.

If we do not follow God and the free enterprise system that has been so kind to us, obey the Constitution, and follow the Golden Rule, we will do just as the other 23 cultures that have vanished before us. The Government will spend more than we can produce. All we are owed by this country is opportunity and we should work hard to maximize our efforts.

This planet has been in the process of change ever since God created it. Nothing is sustainable forever. There have been floods, earthquakes, tidal waves, volcanic eruptions, hurricanes, and many more natural disasters. There will be more. Sun spots can change our climate at the speed of light. One tilt of the axis and the earth will go back to prehistoric days. Man should be good stewards of the planet, but the nature of man is to be selfish. Pray for a quick return of Jesus the Christ, but even then it will be for only a thousand years ...

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Thank you!

_______________________________________


Thank you to all conservatives that came out to support our movement for the understanding of Agenda 21 with County Council.

They are getting the message that we DO represent Pickens County and that we DO NOT want what is in the Pickens County Comprehensive Plan.

We do need MORE to show up and more to attend meetings - the more people we can show Council - the greater the impact of our message.

Read up on Sustainable Development and Agenda 21 - you can follow the links at the top of this page.

Attend Conservatives of the Upstate meetings - every 2nd Thursday of the month at the Blue Ridge Bible Church.

Attend County Council meetings - speak if you wish on the subject or come to listen to others speaking.

Write your County Council - whether in Pickens South Carolina or anywhere - we MUST resist this!

Make it known to you County Council and State Government that you are educated on Agenda 21 and oppose it!

Monday, July 19, 2010

County Council Meeting Tonight

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There will be a Pickens County Council Meeting tonight at 6:30PM.

Pickens County Administration Facility
222 McDaniel Avenue, B-1
Pickens, SC 29671

Phone: (864) 898-5856

Normally the first Monday of each month is reserved for the public forum ... but that meeting fell on the Independence Day holiday this year. The public is encouraged to come and speak if they so choose.

We are asking that all conservatives attend tonight.

Thursday, July 15, 2010

Regular Meeting To Be Held Tonight ...

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Dear Conservatives,

There will be a meeting tonight at the Blue Ridge Bible Church at 769 Belle Shoals Rd. This is our regular July meeting because our air conditioner was off last week. We will discuss what our approach will be at the County Council meeting Monday Night. Those of you who are not living in Pickens County can benefit greatly from this meeting as we will discuss the Comprehensive Plan. Time for the meeting is 6:30PM. Hope we will have a good crowd there.

Junius Smith
President, Conservatives Of The Upstate

Thursday, July 8, 2010

Over-collection ...

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Dear Conservatives,

Since our meeting place is out for this week, I thought I would give all of you some food for thought ...

1. The County Council has over collected $20 million dollars over the year and still owes it to the taxpayers of this county.

2. The School Board has over collected by $40 million and has made no move to repay.

3. Reassessment has netted the County and the School Board a whopping 523% increase since 1985. At this time, that amounts to $62.5 million every year in additional taxes - most of which is associated with reassessment over collecting. Both were limited to 1% for a while and that law was changed to 0.

4. The school board put in a $500-600 million building program (with interest) without a vote of the people; violating the 8% of appraised value of taxable property constitutional rule. In setting up the dummy corporation, which is the engine for the plan, they changed from bonded indebtedness to an operational expense which is the responsibility of the State; due to the sales tax swap. Yet, when they could have gotten the taxpayers a refund, they were not interested and keep on illegally collecting 40 mills.

5. The County and the School Board are believed to be installing sewer and water lines without a vote of the people as required by the constitution.

6. There are no qualified elected representatives on the dummy corporation board resulting in taxation without representation.

I could go on and on, but if this isn't government out of control ... please tell me what is!

Have a nice July,

Junius Smith
President, Conservatives Of The Upstate

Some Notes On The Pickens County Comprehensive Plan

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1. The Pickens County Comprehensive Plan that Dr Stone wants to return to, as first written by the Advisory Committee, had not one reference to the capitalistic, free enterprise system, non interference with private property system. Enactment of this plan brings communism to Pickens County. It speaks of regionalizing problems making our elected leaders irrelevant, seizure and control of property, and ultimate tax increases.

2. Section 6-29-540 When the local planning commission has recommended and local governing authority or authorities have adopted the related comprehensive plan element set forth in this chapter, no new street, structure, utility, square, park, or other public way, grounds or open space, or public buildings for any use, whether publicly or privately owned, may be constructed or or authorized in the political jurisdiction of the governing authority or authorities establishing the planning commission until the location,character, and extent of it have been submitted to the planning commission for review and comment as to the compatibility of the proposal with the comprehensive plan of the community.

3. Along with this and other laws, the planning commission has total power over private property. All you have to do is read the comprehensive plan. This is why we have rewritten the plan in a capitalistic and free enterprise language. Please don't think you can win the game on enthusiasm. Talent and preparedness always win in the long run. Those that depend on emotion wind up with disappointment.


Sincerely,

Junius Smith
President, Conservatives Of The Upstate

IT HAS BEEN HERE A LONG TIME . . .

_______________________________________

Conservatives Of The Upstate Member David Merck wished for this to be passed along ...

If you want to learn more about Agenda 21, comprehensive planning, etc. -- check out the following sites if you haven't already. They are the best I know of on the subject! I have had these sites on my list of favorites for several years.

Freedom Advocates

Soveriegnty International, Inc.

Freedom 21

Agenda 21 is not headed our way -- IT HAS BEEN HERE A LONG TIME and is being pawned off on us in an incremental fashion by those who are willingly blind, woefully ignorant, and wantonly clever!

Wednesday, July 7, 2010

July Meeting Postponed One Week

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Dear Conservatives,

The meeting tomorrow night at the church is postponed until next Thursday because the air conditioner has blown a capacitor and must be repaired. Besides that, it is too hot. See you next week at the church at 769 Belle Shoals Road at 6:30 PM. Please read all you can about Comprehensive Plans, sustainable development, and Agenda 21. For some really indepth reading, go to green-agenda.com/index.html

Sincerely,
Junius Smith
President

Monday, July 5, 2010

Keeping Fuel Prices Permanently High?

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UK's Committee on Climate Change ...

The UK's Committee on Climate Change believes that the government should step in to keep fuel prices permanently high, a move that should force drivers to buy something more efficient. The commission suggests that the government sets minimum prices for both gasoline and diesel fuel. As the committee's chief executive David Kennedy remarked, "We know that people buy more efficient cars if the petrol price remains consistently high." But Kennedy's thoughts are not supported by the UK's Automobile Association president Edmund King. As King said, the committee's plans are "unrealistic." "People are already moving to more fuel efficient cars so there is no need to punish them by keeping the cost of fuel excessively high," he said. There are other ways to easily convince buyers to make the right choice.

Sunday, July 4, 2010

Thursday, July 1, 2010

July 2010 Meeting

_______________________________________

Thursday July 8, 2010

Conservatives Of The Upstate
Meeting at 6:30 PM @ 769 Belle Shoals Rd Pickens, SC 29671
________________________________

The July 2010 meeting has been postponed one week and will be held on July 15, 2010.

The Complete Conservatives Of The Upstate "Comprehensive Plan"

_______________________________________


Pickens County Vision Statement


Pickens County is a beautiful county in the upper northwest section of the upstate of South Carolina. The county provides many opportunities for its citizens to participate in the American way of life. Through capitalism and a free economy many of our citizens have increased their wealth and happiness.

There are certain basic principles and goals that foster a well rounded life.

* Private ownership of property that is protected by the Constitution of the United States and the State of South Carolina. Agricultural property is highly valued and is to be controlled by the owner.

* Natural and cultural resources are protected by good training and religious care. The government is discouraged from buying private property since it is removed from the tax rolls, and puts a greater burden on the taxpayers.

* Pickens County citizens have control over taxes and fees and plan to keep them low for economic prosperity. Taxes will not be raised without a vote of the people for any reason.

* The people of Pickens County will create an atmosphere of accountability from our elected officials.

* Pickens County strives for quality education. There are kindergarten, elementary, and secondary schools that provide the county with good results and some outstanding graduates. There are technical schools, adult education, and university programs. New construction will provide $400,000,000 in completed and renovated structures which should put a stop on any new structures for the next ten years. The county is limited to 8% of the appraised value of county property for construction of new schools which it now exceeds. Our vision is that the system will be modified to produce more quality students without increasing costs.

*County government is elected by and for the people. County Government will provide fire protection, law enforcement, and road construction and maintenance. Only elected officials can vote to spend county funds. All spending will be recorded on the internet. Non Government Organizations with anti capitalistic and free enterprise philosophies from outside the county are discouraged from influence in government activity. Activities not associated with county functions and setup by towns or cities or private organizations are not to be funded by the county.

* Zoning will be limited and instituted only after careful anaysis and two thirds vote by the County Council.

_______________________________________

Land Use

Vision Statement

The people want a Constitutional guaranteed vision of the private ownership of property without government interference. Good stewardship of the land is the responsibility of the property owner and the voluntary agreements that he makes with neighbors and the county government.

Land Use Element

Goals and objectives

1. It is not a function of government to dictate the use of private property.

2. There will be no seizure of private property without due process and fair market value compensation. The county or a private company must obtain the owner’s permission to use easements or right of ways on private property . Property lines begin where the recorded deed indicates they do.

3. The County needs to develop a plan to reduce complicated codes and permitting procedures. State laws require proper building codes.

4. Private enterprise should be encouraged to use abandoned sites.

5. County government will not involve itself in speculation and land development.

6. Small towns composition and layout will be determined by the people of that town.

7. Land for Governmental use will be purchased at a fair market price.

8. Shorelines along Jocassee, Hartwell, and Keowee will be managed by the Corp of Engineers and all other shorelines will be managed by private property owners. If county, state, or federal government wants to inflict regulations on the property owner, they must compensate the property owner a fair fee.

9. Specific zoned areas will be zoned at the will of the property owners by vote of the property owners in that zoned area.

10. Non governmental organizations are discouraged and out of the county NGO’s are forbidden to influence land use in Pickens County.

11. Study county wide land use, but be careful not to infringe on property rights.

12. Stop implementation of Sustainable Development, Agenda 21, and comprehensive plans after the order of those developed by Maurice Strong.

13. Meetings of appointed boards and commissions concerning land use cannot act without a two thirds quorum.


_______________________________________


Priority Investments

Vision Statement

Our Vision is to foster coordination and cooperation among all of Pickens County’s local governments.

Priority Investments Element

Goals and Objectives

1. Work with other local governments to study priorities for the various services offered by the county.

2. Promote cooperation between municipalities.

3. Study how to attract new businesses and industries.

Lowering taxes is the number one priority - exemplified by the state law on the subject.


4. Study new and old water and sewage lines and power and communications infrastructure with industry and property owners to see where modification and new construction is needed.

5. Study who funds long term transportation and provide a traffic plan for our road ways and growth.

6. Encourage coordination of public facilities and services.


Cultural Resources

Vision Statement

Our vision is to honor and preserve those resources owned by the county, and promote the unique heritage of Pickens County that serves our residents and visitors.

Cultural Resource Element

Goals and Objectives

1. Study easier, healthier access to cultural resources without infringing on private property rights.

2. Investigate the feasibility of pedestrian pathways for fitness or walking tours through communities. Schools have obtained far more land than is needed, these pathways and trails can be constructed on that property.

3. Further study the county recreation master plan.

4. When promoting lakes, mountains, and natural resources for tourism and recreation, private property rights are to be the first consideration.

5. Develop resources through private industry, private clubs, and businesses for youth in the areas of recreation, sports, art, culture and entertainment.

6. Promote healthy lifestyles, natural resources, available recreation, and safe communities with low incidence of crime. Properly fund the sheriff’s department in the area of crime.

7. All accesses to any public facility or trail must be permitted by property owners if private property is involved.

8. Promote art and cultural opportunities in the communities.

9. Promote the participation of private enterprise in art and cultural activities.

10. Review with property owners historic sites such as grist mills, homes, and churches provided it doesn’t interfere with private ownership of property.

11. Amass data on potential historic sites, but never interfere with constitutional rights of owners.

12. Study a development plan for cultural events, and the potential for a civic center.

_______________________________________


Transportation

Vision Statement

Our Vision is to improve transportation networks for the purpose of traffic safety and efficiency, scenic enjoyment, promoting tourism, and to explore local and public transportation systems as a means to foster our growing population and economy.

Transportation Element

Goals and Objectives

1. Study long term transportation and traffic plans for our roadways and growth.

2. Study the feasibility of a public transportation plan that can be funded with more cost to the tax payers.

3. A public transportation plan should be self supporting.

4. Study congestion and improve circulation on county roads.

5. Study possible pull off areas at scenic locations as long as they do not interfere with private property rights.

6. Study how to beautify road ways and have well attended public meetings on any decision.

7. Encourage the Sheriff's department to teach bicycle safety.

8. Study the feasibility of bicycle lanes with signage, rest areas, parking, lane delineation without infringing on private property.

9. Study the use of heavy rail routes for industry infrastructure.

10. Study transportation improvements.

11. In any study for transportation; we intend to be mindful of the constitutional rights of the property owners.

_______________________________________


Housing

Vision Statement

Our Vision is to encourage the private development of a broad range of housing to meet the needs of our residents.

Housing Element

Goals and Objectives

1. Study housing needs of the people and offer advice and assistance to private enterprise to make construction easier.

2. Lower taxes on all homes and use the same advantages in the housing industry that are used for industry.

3. Stop reassessment and implement "point of sale" valuation. Allow new homes a three year moratorium on taxes to inject fairness into the system.

4. Require a vote from the people to raise property taxes.

5. Provide a study for nonprofit developers.

6. Improve overall housing and quality of life by studying reasons for foreclosure.

7. Amend late payment of taxes to say that late payments will be increased to eliminate taxpayers who use the system to avoid paying taxes on time.

8. Be mindful of institutions that lend money at especially low rates as exampled by Fanny Mae and Freddie Mac.

_______________________________________


Population

Vision Statement

Our vision is to encourage balanced, rural and urban population, featuring a free market Pickens County quality of life.


Population Element

Goals and Objectives

1. Investigate the requirement for future community facilities, and economic development based on the impacts of expected population growth.

2. Attract population through the quality of life in Pickens County and anticipated low taxes and a free market.

3. Optimize educational opportunities for all citizens and promote a new system for the public schools to go along with the new facilities.

4. Encourage private enterprise to sponsor or promote activities for the youth.

5. Work with churches to train youth to avoid unwed pregnancies.

6. Lower taxes on Senior homes, whether for first homes or vacation homes to increase jobs and economic activity.

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Natural Resources


Vision Statement


Our Vision is to continue the joint stewardship between local governments and private property owners.


Natural Resource Element


Goals and Objectives


1. Cultivate natural resources on government owned property so that the private property owners have a good example to follow without laws that infringe on the private ownership of property.


2. Work with the local water authorities to project future needs of residents and business, and working with water authority help develop a plan to meet those needs.


3. Develop materials to teach property owners to reduce erosion and improved water quality without infringing on their rights as property owners.


Example: Contouring of the land and the planting of grasses that prevent erosion which wasn’t mandatory, but was followed by most farmers.

4. Encourage farmers to use good land management policies.


5. Encourage developers to create open spaces and parks in their developments.


6. Adopt night sky lighting standards for government buildings.


7. Strengthen a tourism industry by marketing the county’s natural beauty and recreation opportunities.


8. Study the recreational potential of several areas in Pickens County.


9. Study the long term impacts of various environmental/ecological issues in the county.


10. Study the placement of air quality monitoring stations in the county.


11. At no time will the county government perform studies on private property without the consent of the owner.


Economic Development Element


Goals and Objectives


1. It is not the job of the county government to use taxpayer money for stimulus. Reduce taxes to grow the economy.


2. Study business and commercial growth in certain area. Make recommendations to business as they ask for permits to build.


3. Promote planned tourism with Pickens County as a destination.


4. Promote the individual identities of communities.


5. Attempt to recruit knowledge based industry such as software development and high tech manufacturing.


6. Study the feasibility of attracting “Green” energy for its low impact and high wage realizing that the few jobs that have been created have cost the tax payers large amounts of dollars.


7. Lower taxes on industry to attract them to Pickens County.


7. Attract members for the workforce in the county by offering education and raining in our local schools.


8. Encourage Tri County Tech to create more programs for training for existing as well as new industry.


9. Build cooperation and coordination between all of the educational facilities to increase the desire of industry to locate in Pickens County.


10. Work with Colleges and Universities to foster programs that benefit private industry.


11. Market our many attributes for having homes in Pickens County.


12. Promote a capitalistic, free enterprise business environment conducive to growing the economy using the expertise of fellow Pickens County economist Hugh MacCauley.


13. Support small business development and growth.


14. Encourage a Pickens County-based, for profit media source.


15. Encourage Pickens County as a retirement center by reducing taxes on Seniors.


16. Encourage recreational activity and venues for healthy recreation and related economic growth by establishing areas on the excessive school properties for the convenience of the citizens.


17. Promote some methods of alternative farming as a local industry and encourage the establishment of local distribution. Never infringe on the rights of property owners to use their property as they see fit unless government is willing to pay a fair market price to purchase said property. Use training


18. Use voluntary training programs to help farmers produce more efficiently.


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Community Facilities


Vision Statement


Our Vision is to provide through a vote of the people strategically located and high quality sewer, water, solid waste, fire and emergency services, along with cultural/educational community facilities, to meet the needs of the residents of Pickens County.


Community Facilities Element


Goals and Objectives


1. Address the water needs for future residents and businesses by developing a plan that includes solving future problems. Property owners must voice their approval by 2/3 vote by petition on any properties affected.


2. Study a long range plan for water resources in Pickens County.


3. Try to develop better coordination and communication with and between water districts.


4, Investigate feasibility of alternative, sewage treatment systems which consider water recycling.


5. Encourage county, municipal government,and special service districts in conjunction with property owners to adopt a countywide master plan for roads, water use, sewage, recreation and fire /rescue services.


6. Expand resources for emergency services, and law enforcement as the population grows.


7. Support the growing needs of law enforcement for training and resources.


8. Enhance within budget priorities interoperability of communication among all emergency response agencies.


9. Obey all laws on the books or get them changed.


10. Coordinate a public use facility sharing program with the Pickens County School District.


11. There should be no future school sites during this ten year period.


12. Study the need county community building with various functions.


13. Encourage the development of farmers markets.


14. All contracts and/or inducements with private industry or public entities will be posted on the internet


15. Study the development of a County Agribusiness Incubator.