Bike-hire schemes part of ‘a UN conspiracy’
US Republican candidate claims bike schemes like London's are designed to restrict personal freedoms
Could Boris Johnson's newly-launched London bike-share scheme be part of a global conspiracy designed to restrict personal freedoms and increase the power of the United Nations?
That appears to be the view of American politician Dan Maes, a member of the Sarah Palin-endorsed Tea Party, and front-runner to become the Republican candidate in Denver's gubernatorial election.
Maes has taken umbrage with a similar bike-share scheme to London's, which operates in Denver, claiming it is "converting Denver into a United Nations community".
His beef is with the excitingly-named International Council for Local Environmental Initiatives, which promotes sustainable development and green transport, and counts Denver and the Greater London Authority among its 1,200 members.
But Maes believes that the organisation has a more sinister aim, which is to persuade communities to sign up to UN-endorsed agreements. "If you do your homework and research, you realize ICLEI is part of a greater strategy to rein in American cities under a United Nations treaty," claimed Maes.
According to the Denver Post he told a rally that the plan was "very well-disguised, but it will be exposed".
Maes said that the current mayor of Denver's efforts to promote cycling - and presumably those of London mayor Boris Johnson as well - appeared harmless and well-meaning. But he warned: "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 went on: "These aren't just warm, fuzzy ideas from the mayor. These are very specific strategies that are dictated to us by this United Nations programme."
Approached by The First Post, neither Transport for London nor the Mayor of London were prepared to comment on Maes's views. ·
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