How ’15-minute cities’ somehow became evidence of a huge global conspiracy

By The Big Story

In today’s Big Story podcast, it’s such an innocuous term, intended to define a metropolis with neighbourhoods that are walkable and livable for citizens. It’s been around for a long time as a theory, and it’s one well worth discussing. Except you can’t discuss it anymore, at least not rationally.

Peter Guest is the acting business editor at WIRED, where he wrote about the acrimonious public debate surrounding the concept of “15-minute cities.”

“We talked to people who are saying, ‘hey, I’d like more bike lanes in my area of London,’ and they’re being sent pictures of the Warsaw Ghetto [that say] ‘this has been tried before,’ he said, “that’s the kind of rhetoric which is out there.”

First in the United Kingdom, and now in Edmonton, plans for pilot projects, or even just consideration of the “15-minute” model have been met with cries of a global world order seeking to control the people. It’s ridiculous, but it’s also par for the course nowadays, when just about anything any government announces is jammed into a universal conspiracy universe — featuring everything from climate lockdowns, anti-vax rhetoric and the “great reset.”

So how did we get here, and is there any way back?

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