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When all you have is a hammer, everything is a nail
Posted by: McQ on Tuesday, June 03, 2008

And the hammer, in this case, is government's monopoly on the use of force:
Homeowners who don't mow their grass in this northeast Ohio city now face stiffer penalties _ including possible jail time.

The city council unanimously passed a law Monday that makes a second high-grass violation a fourth-degree misdemeanor carrying a fine of up to $250 and as many as 30 days in jail.

The previous law only made the first violation a minor misdemeanor, with a fine of up to $150 but no jail time. The new law is to take effect in 30 days.

"This is the type of action we need to take in order to clean up our neighborhoods and our city," Mayor William J. Healy II said.
Of course the right in question is the right of property, i.e. does the owner have the right to do with his property what he likes as long as he doesn't violate the rights of others?
 
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Evidently not anymore.
 
Written By: shark
URL: http://
My neighbors moved out, lock, stock and barrel, left their realtor a phone number of someone who might be able to get in touch with them, and headed out. 2 months later, there’s 18-inch grass hiding varmints and making the neighborhood look like its going to seed. Home sellers were not happy.

Fortunately, my town has an ordinance where if the grass is more than 12 inches tall, someone can report it, the town will cut the grass and fine the owner for the cost (cost-plus, likely). Yeah, not one of those burning issues, but there are rights of others being violated.

I understand the libertarian view of all this, love the podcast with you and Dale, but sometimes things like this, little things, do affect others.
 
Written By: Doug Payton
URL: http://www.thepaytons.org/essays/considerettes/
My rights ARE being violated when you don’t mow your grass! Yu are lowering MY property values...
 
Written By: Joe
URL: http://
Something tells me this is an attempt to raise revenue by a) hiking the fines and b) increase timely remissions with the threat of jail time. I’ve seen this sort of thing in local traffic enforcement in my community in the past.
 
Written By: CR
URL: http://
It probably has more to do with compliance than raising revenue. There isn’t a lot of money to be made in Code Enforcement, the problem is getting them to comply with an order, not raise general fund or restricted agency funds.
 
Written By: Joe
URL: http://
Next year we can get an ordinance going that mandates we grow wheat for our masters in City Hall.

I don’t see how this is that far removed from that level.
I’ve always maintained you don’t own your property in a municipality, you are granted the right to live on it so long as you pay your property tax and, now, keep the lawn mowed.
 
Written By: looker
URL: http://
Looker, it’s funny...let this be the house next door to YOU and I bet you take a different tack. It’s about getting landlords, as much as home owners, to comply with legally passed and generally supported nuisance code ordinances. Sure when we all lived on 20-100 hectare farms, your long grass didn’t bother me, now that we live on .5 hectare lots, yeah YOUR grass is a problem...and hence code enforcement and nuisance codes.
 
Written By: Joe
URL: http://
But, looker, what of the effect on those very property rights of others? (Not to mention that snakes like my neighbor’s tall grass.)
 
Written By: Doug Payton
URL: http://www.thepaytons.org/essays/considerettes/
fining them for not following a contract they get into, perhaps making this part of the agreement when buying in a neighborhood, like the neighborhood fees already in many places. im ok with that, but fining them for not mowing their lawn i got issue with.
 
Written By: josh b
URL: http://
but fining them for not mowing their lawn i got issue with.
From the grammar and spelling of this little gem, I’d say josh b has yet to have invested USD 70,000-200,000 in a piece of property...get back to me when you have.

I guess we could try moral ’suasion, but if you’re too lazy or indifferent to mow your grass, is my begging or pleading going to do the trick?
 
Written By: Joe
URL: http://
Would you not consider the laws of the community a contract?

Again, while not a libertarian in the truest sense myself, I’m trying to approach this from that angle. What about the rights and safety of those next door or in the same neighborhood?
 
Written By: Doug Payton
URL: http://www.thepaytons.org/essays/considerettes/
"there’s 18-inch grass hiding varmints"

There is a public health argument; habitat for rats, bugs, etc.
My brother in law had a next door neighbor who never, ever, mowed, trimmed, or otherwise maintained his property. It was interesting sitting on his back porch contemplating the wall of vegetation flowing over, under, around, and through the fence.
 
Written By: timactual
URL: http://
It’s hardly onerous to require someone to mow their grass in close quarters. And only a fool doesn’t understand the implications to others of keeping their property reasonably tidy (in close quarters). If you don’t like it, move to the country where no one will care (in most places). I have a house in the city in a historical district no less and I hate several of the rules I’m obligated to follow, but I can (and will) move too.
 
Written By: Grimshaw
URL: http://
There’s plenty of things they already do, and we all already agree to, that make it obvious you don’t really own your property guys.

It’s just another nail in an already built coffin.
This doesn’t shock me at all, it doesn’t even bother me because we’re way down the path anyway and this is small potatoes.

As for your rights, how is your property ’value’, which is a perceived thing in many cases in housing and is subjective (based on appearance, and how your adjoining properties ’appear’, and whether or not you’re near a lake, or a school, or a distillery, or a battery plant, etc) a ’right’.

Suppose we’re not in a neighborhood association community, and I’m your neighbor, and I decide I’m going to roof with a material that’s cheap and cheap looking and inconsistent with ALL the surrounding properties, but meets city code?
Doesn’t THAT infringe on these perceived ’value’ rights you think you have?

Where does ’your value’ right end?

This is a gedankenexperiment, I keep my lawn mowed, house fixed, etc, but I don’t do it for my neighbors, I do it, or not, for me. And as a kid I worked for old people who couldn’t keep their places up, and couldn’t afford to hire someone else to keep it up, and frankly we did a lot of it for nothing because it was a neighborly thing to do.
 
Written By: looker
URL: http://
Well goodie for you Looker, you’re a member of the 95% of us that do the right thing...this is about that 5% that generates about 80% of the headaches.
Suppose we’re not in a neighborhood association community, and I’m your neighbor, and I decide I’m going to roof with a material that’s cheap and cheap looking and inconsistent with ALL the surrounding properties, but meets city code?
Doesn’t THAT infringe on these perceived ’value’ rights you think you have?
Yes it does...BUT there is no legal or regulatory framework in which I can seek redress, is there? Here there is....
As for your rights, how is your property ’value’, which is a perceived thing in many cases in housing and is subjective (based on appearance, and how your adjoining properties ’appear’, and whether or not you’re near a lake, or a school, or a distillery, or a battery plant, etc) a ’right’.
Are you that ignorant? The point of property is that it is a source of wealth and value...IF you diminish my property’s value you ARE robbing me of the essential quality of property.
 
Written By: Joe
URL: http://
Grimshaw touches on an aspect of property ownership and its perils, and one I can sympathize with...."Historical Properties." G*d help you if you are in a historical district....the restrictions that can be placed on you astound me. IF, I were to hear that my neighborhood was about to be "preserved" or "honoured" by the designation historical I’d flee it screaming (not like my like suburban island of bliss and calm is ever going to be so considered).

Sure there are limits to what I think is acceptable for the society/city to inflict on me, but mowing the grass isn’t one of them...nor is a trash-free environment nor sufficient sanitary waste disposal, for areas not served by a city/governmental sewer system, an undue burden on a property holder.
 
Written By: Joe
URL: http://
It’s hardly onerous to require someone to mow their grass in close quarters. And only a fool doesn’t understand the implications to others of keeping their property reasonably tidy (in close quarters). If you don’t like it, move to the country where no one will care (in most places). I have a house in the city in a historical district no less and I hate several of the rules I’m obligated to follow, but I can (and will) move too.
Here’s the question as I see it ... why is government where everyone turns to solve this problem?

Because it is easy?

Because they don’t want the hassle of dealing with their neighbor?

Is there probably a way or a path short of government intervention which is being ignored here?

Are there viable alternatives to settling things like this?

And, if there are, why don’t you suppose anyone is taking advantage of them or trying them first?
 
Written By: McQ
URL: http://www.QandO.net
Well, I can’t build on my 62.25 acre parcel ’cause they found 9 "endangered" butterflies on it . . .

 
Written By: Don
URL: http://
If you don’t like the look of a neighbor’s lawn and think it’s affecting your property values, then either ask them to mow it or do it yourself. It’s not the sort of problem that requires a law. It just needs a little individual integrity and common sense.
 
Written By: MichaelW
URL: http://asecondhandconjecture.com
Is there probably a way or a path short of government intervention which is being ignored here?

Are there viable alternatives to settling things like this?

And, if there are, why don’t you suppose anyone is taking advantage of them or trying them first?
Currently, I live in a gated community with an HOA. They take care of things like that, every so often they send me a nasty letter to fix something in my yard. Since I agreed to the HOA thing when I moved in, I’m fine with that.

The gated community has a nice public school pretty much all to itself, my kids have a much better school than I went to (at least, after 1st grade). When my kids get older I’d like to move back to the country and leave the HOA behind . . .
 
Written By: Don
URL: http://
Here’s the question as I see it ... why is government where everyone turns to solve this problem?
Well it’s cheaper...YOU pick up part of the cost of me enforcing my property rights McQ.

I COULD:
1) Mow the offending property myself, and then bill the property owner; and then
2) Seek an injunction or a lien on the property in Small Claims Court;
3) Or simply sue and seek a judgment to compel action on the property owners part;
4) Which would fail forcing me BACK to court to get a lien on the property....

And all those liens, only work when the property holder wants to sell the property, meanwhile I still am mowing his grass or looking at a jungle for a neighbor.

So government is a bit quicker and a bit cheaper, I pay taxes, you pay taxes and then I get the Code Enforcement people to act. Because, in this case, they can also imprison they don’t just get liens on the property, which ONE DAY, may compel action by the property holder.

THAT’S WHY WE TURN TO GOVERNMENT.....My thinking is if you cared, at all, you’d mow the D@mn grass, and that me jaw-boning you isn’t going to make you less of a slug, or a renter...

...and realize this, this is something that may be aimed at slum lords, property leasors. As a renter, I may have no desire, means, or requirement to mow the grass. If it’s not in my lease it’s not on me...it’s on the landlord. As a renter why should I have to pay extra, for a service I’m not required to perform, i.e., lawn service/buy a lawn mower? If the lessee starts performing the duty, you can bet s/he’ll be a long time getting the money back from the land lord, again having to escrow rent, seek a judgment, place a lien, etc., etc., etc....
 
Written By: Joe
URL: http://
Well i would like to receive my gov. issued lawn mower and gov. appointed teenager to push it. I don’t have the cash for a lawn mower or the time to mow as i’m at work paying for my mortgage.
 
Written By: josh b
URL: http://
Here’s the question as I see it ... why is government where everyone turns to solve this problem?

Because it is easy?

Because they don’t want the hassle of dealing with their neighbor?
[...]
And, if there are, why don’t you suppose anyone is taking advantage of them or trying them first?
Well at least in my case, the neighbors have skipped town. The realtor thinks they’re just going to let the bank take over the property. Someday.

Is this an edge condition? Perhaps, but there needs to be a way to deal with this, too. Could neighbors cut it? Sure, though my lawn equipment wouldn’t really be up to the task, and the equipment available to the city did it very well, and in no time flat. Would’ve taken much longer for us.

I understand what you’re getting at, and I agree that if they were still there, talking to them should be a first resort. And it was, when their tree came down in that Atlanta ice storm in 2006 and bent up the top bar on the chain link fence. Talking, though, didn’t work. There needs to be a credible use of force available, or peasants with pitchforks becomes that last resort.

Good government, like good fences, indeed can make good neighbors.
 
Written By: Doug Payton
URL: http://www.thepaytons.org/essays/considerettes/
then either ask them to mow it or do it yourself. It’s not the sort of problem that requires a law. It just needs a little individual integrity and common sense.
Please see above Michael...IF your neighbor says’ "F*ck you, I’ll keep my yard the way I want it." What are you going to do? Trespass on his/her property to mow the grass...I had a neighbor do that this year, decided, that my side of the fence "needed" weed-eating...I can tell you that went over real well at the "Joe" household....or let’s just say you do it, for them, and they don’t call the cops. Then what? You going to keep mowing their yard all summer long? Does the word "Chump" come to mind? How do you figure on recouping your costs? Civilly the best you can get is a judgment and then a lien on the offender’s property. Well what if the nasty neighbor intends to live there 5-10 years? Sure when they try to sell the property, in 5-10 years, they have to settle with you, but until then what?

This is why I’m not a libertarian/Libertarian...in a THEORETICAL sense it works, but only if you’re willing to wait a real long time, for the law and property law and the power of liens to accomplish what needs doing.
 
Written By: Joe
URL: http://
Well i would like to receive my gov. issued lawn mower and gov. appointed teenager to push it. I don’t have the cash for a lawn mower or the time to mow as i’m at work paying for my mortgage.

Not everyone is SUPPOSED to be a property holder josh....if you can’t afford the mower and there is grass to be mowed, you might think about renting....’cuz if you can’t afford the mower from Wallie-Mart I don’t think you’re going to be able to afford the water heater and the new roof. Just a bit of advice, there.

 
Written By: Joe
URL: http://
Kids running around with their pants down around their thighs, lowers property values. Should we throw them in jail?

People with unkempt hair, lowers property values. Should we throw them in jail?

People who can’t afford a descent looking car to drive to work in lower property values. Should we throw them in jail?

People who have multiple kids running around lowers property values. Should we throw them in jail?

People who do all of their yard work without a shirt on can lower property values. Should we throw them in jail?

 
Written By: SkyWatch
URL: http://
Sky Watch, argumentum ad absurdum....nice try though...gang-bangin’ and gang graffiti, should I care? Does it lower my property values? I’m worried about the housing down the street with two shootings, in a year...d@mn Skippy I worry...I saw some graffiti on the city owned wall in my old neighborhood, almost rented the power washer myself to remove it..."Broken window" theory, because it affects my property values. Our first home DOUBLED in value and allowed the purchase of the current home...darn Skippy I worry about what you and yours are doing as it affects my retirement nest egg!

You don’t want to mow the grass, lay around all day stoned, shirtless, fine, buy/rent some property outside the urban services boundary...otherwise assimilate or be litigated.
 
Written By: Joe
URL: http://
Please see above Michael...IF your neighbor says’ "F*ck you, I’ll keep my yard the way I want it."
Then you have to consider a different action/approach. My question is why has government become the first resort and not the last?
 
Written By: McQ
URL: http://www.QandO.net
My small neighborhood has one house that doesn’t do anything to control their dandelions (other than cut them with the rest of their lawn). Everyone’s yard is mostly grass except for theirs.

1) It makes the neighborhood look less neat and trim.
2) The seeds blow into other yards.

I guess me and the neighbors should find a way to throw the owners in jail!
 
Written By: JWG
URL: http://
Fair enough, Bruce, but that’s a very different question than, "does the owner have the right to do with his property what he likes as long as he doesn’t violate the rights of others".
 
Written By: Doug Payton
URL: http://www.thepaytons.org/essays/considerettes/
Then you have to consider a different action/approach. My question is why has government become the first resort and not the last?
OK I’ll talk to them...again as one person pointed out.."they" may have fled, no one to talk to...OR they may be a renter who says, "it’s not my job." OR they may say, "Thanks for your input, now get off my yard...."...generally speaking if the grass is over a foot there is a problem that talking is not going to rectify, McQ. That’s my PRACTICAL point, I mean if someone is saying, "You haven’t edged your lawn in the five years you’ve lived here." I’m going to look at them like they’re crazy and say, "thank you for your input." BUT, if it’s because my grass is 1-3 feet high, as a number of yards near my parish are, I conclude we’re not dealing with the rational or the present....
 
Written By: Joe
URL: http://
I guess me and the neighbors should find a way to throw the owners in jail!

Not under this statue, it’s the length of the grass or lawn, not its composition...

Again address the issue under discussion. Tell me why this is an UNREASONABLE intrusion on your rights, and why my rights aren’t important in this.
 
Written By: Joe
URL: http://
My small neighborhood has one house that doesn’t do anything to control their dandelions (other than cut them with the rest of their lawn). Everyone’s yard is mostly grass except for theirs.

1) It makes the neighborhood look less neat and trim.
2) The seeds blow into other yards.

I guess me and the neighbors should find a way to throw the owners in jail!
nah, just make sure they are getting their gov. issues fertilizer and weed killer.
 
Written By: josh b
URL: http://
"Well it’s cheaper...YOU pick up part of the cost of me enforcing my property rights McQ."

Are you suggesting that your property rights extend onto your neighbor’s property such that you have a RIGHT to him cutting his grass, and that this right exists even without a mutually agreed upon contract?

 
Written By: Augustus
URL: http://
I’d be happy to let any of my neighbors mow my lawn. I’ll even provide the gasoline, riding mower, weed-eater, edger. Short of that, expect my lawn to always be the least-mowed lawn on the street. Least-watered and least-fertilized, too. And, probably, least-lighted at night as well.

If you (being the proverbial neighbor) think my lawn lowers your property values, quantify your loss and sue me.

For Don:
Well, I can’t build on my 62.25 acre parcel ’cause they found 9 "endangered" butterflies on it . . .
Eat them. Nine butterflies shouldn’t be hard to do.
 
Written By: Arcs
URL: http://
Joe, you haven’t answered anything because you still seem to think that property value is a "right". In reality, you want to use you’re actual property rights (i.e. the fact that you own real property from which you can exclude all others) to force someone else to use their real property in a way that satisfies you.

And since you are apparently helpless to comprehend any way to make a deal with the offensive property owner, you think the best course of action is to use force — i.e. you bully him with the police power of the state.

Moreover, what’s so great about keeping property values high unless you’re planning to sell? Seeing as higher property values mean higher property taxes and higher insurance costs, there doesn’t seem to be much advantage to being house rich/cash poor. Maybe the guy is living out his days in the last house he’ll ever own and doesn’t want his retirement eaten up by unreasonable charges. Maybe he grew up on a farm and the tall grass makes him feel at home. Whatever the reason, just because you want to capture a higher market price than you think you can otherwise get doesn’t give you any right to tell someone else what to do with their property, any more than you can make them where attire suitable to your tastes when potential buyers come around.

The fact of the matter is that there are a lot of people that think like you, and the vast majority of them live in communities with an HOA. My wife did that once, and I can promise you it will be the last time. We specifically chose our current house to get away from that tyrannical nonsense. But at least when we were subject to it, we understand that we had contractually agreed to give up some control over our property.

Bruce’s question, and mine, is why would someone have to do that outside of contractual obligation, when there’s no clear cut reason that the police power of the state need be involved?
 
Written By: MichaelW
URL: http://asecondhandconjecture.com
Tell me why this is an UNREASONABLE intrusion on your rights
There is no logical difference between grass height versus composition. My neighbor’s yard makes the neighborhood look crappy. And his weeds spread their seeds to everyone else. Certain bugs and animals are attracted to his yard that would otherwise be more rare. The arguments you are making in regards to this particular law apply to my situation as well.

Ultimately, it is unreasonable to jail the neighbor because your right to own property has NOTHING to do with a "right" to a certain value of that property.
 
Written By: JWG
URL: http://
Joe’s argument:
IF you diminish my property’s value you ARE robbing me of the essential quality of property.
Do you really want to transform the meaning of theft to include declining market value?
 
Written By: JWG
URL: http://
What Joe is suggesting is a guy across town, nowhere necessarily in sight of Joe’s property, is affecting his property rights and should be jailed for failing to mow his lawn.

That’s just as, if not more likely, than the guy next to Joe is affecting his property rights (value) by not mowing his lawn.

Awfully contentious today aren’t we Joe? Got a bee in our bonnet do we?

The problem here is you’re not talking about any permanent loss of value, you’re talking about the extremely temporary condition of GRASS GROWING TOO TALL. You haven’t proven it’s any kind of nuisance OTHER than a temporary, easily correctable, possible, but not certain, eye sore.

This isn’t about varmints, that’s got nothing to do with the ordinance as it’s written. It MIGHT be a hiding ground for them, but it doesn’t HAVE to be, and the effect is identical if they come round to serve their warrant for the grass being too tall.
Not under this statue, it’s the length of the grass or lawn, not its composition...

Again address the issue under discussion. Tell me why this is an UNREASONABLE intrusion on your rights, and why my rights aren’t important in this.
So, what did broken windows, grafitti, power washing, etc have to do with this grass too long destroys real value thing?

And the penalty for grass growing too tall shall be JAIL? and this is okay in a rational country because you’re worried your property value is going to plummet because someone’s GRASS IS TOO LONG. And, more importantly, it’s your right to have them jailed.

O-V-E-R-K-I-L-L

Thank you JWG and MichaelW.
There is no such thing as a ’right’ to a certain value.

 
Written By: looker
URL: http://
Are you suggesting that your property rights extend onto your neighbor’s property such that you have a RIGHT to him cutting his grass, and that this right exists even without a mutually agreed upon contract?
Yes Augustus I am, SAYING, not suggesting, that my neighbor should cut his grass, whether or no s/he and I have a contract...all things being equal...or if we are sharing the usual suburban cul-de-sac living of suburban America. There long grass says to prospective buyers, "Gee these people are not socialized as I was socialized. In fact, these may be white trash lotto winners, living in the cul-de-sac , and I don’t care to live next door to white trash, wife-beating, mouth-breathin’, shoutin’-drunken louts...and so though YOUR home is lovely Joe. I shall take a ’pass’ on buying it because I do not wish to risk living next door to the Bumpus’." As the neighbors can cost me my investment, or reduce the value of my investment, yes, my neighbor needs to mow his grass (as long as our houses are within pistol shot of one another) and if s/he fails to do so, I wish to use the power of the State to compel their compliance. If this bothers your libertarian/an-cap soul, I guess you rent or live in Montana.

 
Written By: Joe
URL: http://
What Joe is suggesting is a guy across town, nowhere necessarily in sight of Joe’s property, is affecting his property rights and should be jailed for failing to mow his lawn.
Are you that DENSE? This tall grass is next to SOMEONE’S property, you daft idjit...if not mine then someone else’s...so if I have the right to compel mown grass, then that person has the same right...this isn’t just about me, and some hypothetical fellow across town...it’s about me or you or anyone...
There is no such thing as a ’right’ to a certain value.
I don’t claim there is...I claim that YOU have no right to diminish the value of my property...I can paint graffiti on your house can I? So, too long grass diminishing my value...I don’t claim that I ought to get 200K from the re-sale of my house, I just say you’re slovenliness ought not knock 5-10K off the value of my home.

Many straw men being erected here today I see in defense of "freedom."

 
Written By: Joe
URL: http://
Then you have to consider a different action/approach. My question is why has government become the first resort and not the last?
What part of the article makes you believe that the government was the first resort?

The fact that this is an increase in the penalty for a second offense?

The fact that such a law exists at all? How do you know that the existence of the law was not a response to the fact that private efforts to persuade these people to cut their yards did not work in many cases in the past?
 
Written By: Terry
URL: http://
Do you have any right to force me to remove the horrific blowup snowmen and reindeer i keep up all year, next to my flamingos and little black boy statues? No more than to throw me in jail for not cutting my own darn grass.
 
Written By: josh b
URL: http://
Well, I think ’freedom’ shouldn’t be curtailed because you don’t like the length of the GRASS.

You’re inferring all kinds of arguments about the effect it ’might’ have on your property value.

But there’s no ’might’ here about the penalty for diminishing YOUR property value perception, there’s ’will’ and the law here clearly says ’WILL’ jail, not ’might’ jail.

I’m not a dyed in the wool libertarian by any means, but this is beyond the pale (ethnic slur alert).

And for the "hang em high!" crowd....the ’escaped’ occupant is NOT going to jail for his/her high crime and misdemeanor offense of "lawn’s too long!", so stop using them as your straw-men. This law hits the people who are available for ARREST.
 
Written By: looker
URL: http://
This law hits the people who are available for ARREST.


Funny I don’t think anyone claimed anything any different...The bailed homeowner came from Mcq suggesting I talk to my neighbor first...which prompted one person to mention that this wasn’t an option in at least some cases, because they had bailed on the property. And again I stand by the claim that if the grass is over a foot long, that talking is a) not possible or b) pointless, because it should be OBVIOUS that it is an eye-sore and so if you can’t see it, talking isn’t going to do much good.
 
Written By: Joe
URL: http://
There is no logical difference between grass height versus composition. My neighbor’s yard makes the neighborhood look crappy.
Forget yards ... what if your neighbor paints his house purple and chartreuse w/pink polka-dot shutters.

Does that hurt your property value?

Is that something for which he should go to jail or the state should have any say whatsovever?
 
Written By: McQ
URL: http://www.QandO.net
What part of the article makes you believe that the government was the first resort?
The assumption, based on this sentence, " ... makes a second high-grass violation a fourth-degree misdemeanor carrying a fine of up to $250 and as many as 30 days in jail.", that the city has assumed responsibility for monitoring grass height.

Why bother with neighbor-to-neighbor dialog when the city has already assumed responsiblity for your neighbor’s yard?

What you consider high and what the city might consider high are probably two different things, so why bother?
 
Written By: McQ
URL: http://www.QandO.net
But, looker, what of the effect on those very property rights of others? (Not to mention that snakes like my neighbor’s tall grass.)
Same argument along the lines of "obese people cost me extra $$$ through increased medicare spending so we must stop them from getting fat somehow"

And I know how well THAT one goes down around here...

 
Written By: shark
URL: http://
I can paint graffiti on your house can I
I don’t know, is that anywhere nearly the same as me not cutting my grass?

Let’s see, you crossed onto my property, and defaced my house, and it will probably cost me more than, say, $20.00 to fix the ’vandalism’, it’s not temporary, and in Ohio, people will still be able to see it even after it snows...
I trust you weren’t writing funny backwards versions of Navajo symbols or bad ethnic words that day and that you were just free stylin with the colors so we won’t wander into the already charted territories of thought crime in property value reduction.

No, come on, we both know they’re not even nearly the same, not even remotely the same.

You’re talking about it being okay to put people in jail because they don’t mow their lawn.
Read, contemplate, repeat.
 
Written By: looker
URL: http://
Sorry, correction, Hopi indians, not Navajo.
 
Written By: looker
URL: http://
Forget yards ... what if your neighbor paints his house purple and chartreuse w/pink polka-dot shutters
.
Yes, mcQ IF the city/county/local government, duly constituted, by election of the people, meets in authorized session, passes an ordinance in a constitutional manner, one that is not "capricious, vague or arbitrary" in its language, has legitimate appeal, is duly published and is uniformly enforced, they can...it’s called democracy in action. It seems in this area, that high grass was a problem and the old ways of remediation weren’t working, local government addresses an issue of some public concern....sorry if that chaps any libertarians, but that’s how government works. It is what the Founders intended, that thru a somewhat laborious process, that YES government CAN deprive you of your life, liberty or property.
 
Written By: Joe
URL: http://
Still and all........ a bit of the overkill dontcha think?

"What you in for fish?"

-Murder!
-Bank Robbing!
-Carjacking!
-................Unmowed lawn!

 
Written By: shark
URL: http://
As to an eye-sore, I can think of several types of grass that are most attractive at about a foot in height on a slightly breezy day.
Just because you don’t agree they belong in the neighborhood doesn’t mean, given the right landscape and setting, that I would agree with you, and doesn’t mean you’d be right.

I can easily envisage such a setting, the right lot angle, the right style house, the right trees, the right facing and fencing...easily, in fact I can almost guarantee it would INCREASE your property value if your place looks across onto it.
It is what the Founders intended, that thru a somewhat laborious process, that YES government CAN deprive you of your life, liberty or property.
The point isn’t that it’s government in action, the point is, it’s government gone out of control.

It’s cannons to shoot flys and it will end foolishly and badly for some poor elderly person, mark my words.
 
Written By: looker
URL: http://
The assumption, based on this sentence, " ... makes a second high-grass violation a fourth-degree misdemeanor carrying a fine of up to $250 and as many as 30 days in jail.", that the city has assumed responsibility for monitoring grass height.
In other words, nothing in the article actually supports your claim that the government was the first resort in this situation. Nothing there prohibits you from walking over, knocking on your neighbor’s door, and trying to persuade him to cut the grass before calling the law. Nothing there indicates that the rules themselves were not passed due to the fact that in some cases the homeowners merely rebuffed any private efforts to persuade them to cut the yard.

Also, if this ordinance functions like the ones in my town do, then the City isn’t going to do anything about the height of the grass unless someone in the neighborhood complains. The City doesn’t have a "Grass Squad" with armored, paramilitary lawnmowers patrolling the streets, ready at a moment’s notice to perform a "no-knock" mulching on somebody’s zoysia.
 
Written By: Terry
URL: http://
The point isn’t that it’s government in action, the point is, it’s government gone out of control.


Well that’s a subjective issue isn’t it, Looker? Obviously the folks in Canton didn’t see it that way, you know the $250,000 price tag and the 2,000 incidents, thing? That’s over 2.5 police, I’d imagine...so if they can halve their cost they can have another cop on the beat. So, bottom-line: to Looker it’s a waste of time, to Canton maybe not so much....but glad that Looker is worried about the people of Canton.
It’s cannons to shoot flys and it will end foolishly and badly for some poor elderly person, mark my words.
It might, it often does, BUT what usually happens is the local fish wrap gazette writes a little story about the "The Poor, Old, Blind Widow Jones, wife of the Town’s Last WWI veteran" being threatened with jail time, and the municipality strikes a deal and/or some Good Samaritan steps forward and mows her grass. To use your argument, then, since ANY law will have aversive consequences on some innocent parties, can we have ANY laws with jail time?
 
Written By: Joe
URL: http://
In other words, nothing in the article actually supports your claim that the government was the first resort in this situation.
That’s right Terry, it was a question asked after the discussion was started and asked in a general sense, not particularly a specific sense (although I think the line I cited supports my assumption fairly well).

In many cases we’ve abdicated our individual power to the collective power of the state, to the point that in this case, they’re monitoring our grass height and threatening us with jail if we don’t meet their standards. I’m asking if that is a trend we really think is healthy.
 
Written By: McQ
URL: http://www.QandO.net
to the point that in this case, they’re monitoring our grass height and threatening us with jail if we don’t meet their standards. I’m asking if that is a trend we really think is healthy.
Do you mean if my neighbor has grass 1 metre tall that I ought to, in the name of Liberty, accept it...Nah...this isn’t so bad.
 
Written By: Joe
URL: http://
"What you in for fish?"

-Murder!
-Bank Robbing!
-Carjacking!
-................Unmowed lawn!
...and there was all kinds of mean nasty ugly looking people on the bench there. Mother rapers. Father stabbers. Father rapers! Father rapers sitting right there on the bench next to me! And they was mean and nasty and ugly and horrible crime-type guys sitting on the bench next to me. And the meanest, ugliest, nastiest one, the meanest father raper of them all, was coming over to me and he was mean ’n’ ugly ’n’ nasty ’n’ horrible and all kind of things and he sat down next to me and said, "Kid, whad’ya get?" I said, "I didn’t get nothing, I had to pay $50 and pick up the garbage." He said, "What were you arrested for, kid?" And I said, "Littering." And they all moved away from me on the bench there, and the hairy eyeball and all kinds of mean nasty things, till I said, "And creating a nuisance." And they all came back, shook my hand, and we had a great time on the bench, talkin about crime, mother stabbing, father raping, all kinds of groovy things that we was talking about on the bench.
 
Written By: kevin r
URL: http://
I was wonderin’ if anyone was gonna go there, kevin r.
 
Written By: Joe
URL: http://
Joe-

My neighbor cooks stinky ethnic food all the time, and the constant funk can’t be good for the neighborhood’s property values, much less my own.

Jail time? Because they won’t stop.

You know- and I love ya Joe, in an annonymous commenter to annonymous commenter kind of way- there’s a 3rd option at play here. If the nuisance is so bad, or you feel you’re in such danger of losing a lot of value you can always cut your losses right now and move.
 
Written By: shark
URL: http://
Alice woulda had some real nasty words for Obie on the side if he’d busted the boys for failure to mow the lawn.
 
Written By: looker
URL: http://
Looker is worried about the people of Canton
Nah, Looker isn’t...he thinks the people of Canton will end up changing the law, and possibly mayor ’Officer Obie’ and some of the council before this is over.

I watched an overzealous mayor & council get replaced locally for this sort of behavior. I bet this story isn’t done yet by a long shot.
 
Written By: looker
URL: http://
To use your argument, then, since ANY law will have aversive consequences on some innocent parties, can we have ANY laws with jail time?
As much a straw-man as any of the arguments that have been used to oppose the great lawn mowin law of Canton here.
But kinda weird to go in that direction.

Again, we’re talking about tall grass here, not father rapin, mother stabbin and litterin, or have we lost sight of the concept of a punishment meant to fit the ’crime’.

 
Written By: looker
URL: http://
Well Shark, here’s the thing..."stinky" food may not get the town council to act, but $250,000 bill for UNMOWN grass pretty much gets the council/voter’s attention...

Again it’s democracy, as long as a lot of folks complained and you could define stinky food, and had a system of enforcement and appeals, and the ordinance was applied uniformly, you could....

I’m NOT a libertarian....I’m a UTILITARIAN who sees the utility of many libertarian ideas...libertarians seem rooted in some form of absolutism that just doesn’t work for me...you have a "right" to property because private property makes for a better, cleaner, more just society, not because it is some God-given right...

So I have no problem with local governments passing nuisance codes that address a host of issues, to include stinky food. I might question how exactly we will measure stinkiness, just like my town is trying to address dogs barking...my neighbor’s dog barking at 3.00 Am IS a nuisance and I really want to make them get rid of the dog, or make it shut up...but the problem has been how EXACTLY to make this idea work, and to date, no one has come up with a satisfactory way of doing it. so my local government isn’t addressing it...that too is democracy in action, "we can’t find a way to meet this need, that will address the many instances that occur in a large urban community."
 
Written By: Joe
URL: http://
I watched an overzealous mayor & council get replaced locally for this sort of behavior. I bet this story isn’t done yet by a long shot.


Well then Looker, the problem was self-correcting wasn’t it?
Again, we’re talking about tall grass here, not father rapin, mother stabbin and litterin, or have we lost sight of the concept of a punishment meant to fit the ’crime’.
Have we? The Crime was costing the city $250,000 per year, the punishment, $150 fine wasn’t solving the problem, so the city upped the punishment, trying to change the pay-out matrix in a manner designed to induce compliance. I think we ARE making the crime and punishment fit....


 
Written By: Joe
URL: http://
That’s right Terry, it was a question asked after the discussion was started and asked in a general sense, not particularly a specific sense...
Come on, McQ. The title of the post asserts that the only solution considered was government. The question is nothing but a restatement of the title of the post.

The problem with the question is that it contains a smuggled assertion that is not particularly supported by the article or even the ensuing discussion. In fact, most of the commenters are really asking "What happens if the dude living next door just tells me to "go to hell" when I suggest that he needs to cut his yard?"

You don’t have to particularly want to get the local government involved in getting my neighbor to cut the grass in his vermin-infested yard to pass or support such an ordinance. Nor do you have to want to call the cops every time the idiot guy across the street decides to work on his jacked-up truck or straight-piped bike for several hours and you can’t even hear your stereo on the other side of the house while he is doing it to support a noise ordinance.

Calling people who disagree with you "statists" seems to be a libertarian trope that is nearly as reflexive as the left’s "You must be a racist!" trope.

 
Written By: Terry
URL: http://
Yes Augustus I am, SAYING, not suggesting, that my neighbor should cut his grass, whether or no s/he and I have a contract...all things being equal...or if we are sharing the usual suburban cul-de-sac living of suburban America. ’

That’s not a "yes" to my question. You changed the question and then answered the re-phrase. If you’d care to re-load and have another go at the original question, please do so.

"If this bothers your libertarian/an-cap soul, I guess you rent or live in Montana."

No, I own a home in Kennesaw, Ga. I’d rather have neighbors that let their grass get too high than busy-bodies who want to control everyone else so much they continually invite the government further and further into our lives.

Rather that shuffling off our problems onto government, we’d come out ahead handling them on our own. If your neighbor won’t cut his grass, knock on his door and ask him to cut it. I have NEVER had a neighbor that let his yard get trashy that either wouldn’t positively respond to several neighbors at once asking him to cut it, or was in violation of some other law that already existed that could be used as leverage to get him to do the right thing.

Pretty please, with sugar on top, please stop turning to government to solve your problems when your rights haven’t been violated. Doing so lowers the property values of the whole damn country. THAT is something we could use a law against :)
 
Written By: Augustus
URL: http://
The problem with the question is that it contains a smuggled assertion that is not particularly supported by the article or even the ensuing discussion.
Its hardly a smuggled assertion - the fact is in many cases that first resort for almost any problem one can think of is to turn to government for a solution.

You tell me - why is this city council involved in jacking up the penalties on an existing law if it isn’t the government who has primacy on the question of lawn heights and what is or isn’t acceptable?
 
Written By: McQ
URL: http://www.QandO.net
"Rather that shuffling off our problems onto government, we’d come out ahead handling them on our own. If your neighbor won’t cut his grass, knock on his door and ask him to cut it. I have NEVER had a neighbor that let his yard get trashy that either wouldn’t positively respond to several neighbors at once asking him to cut it..."
What’s stopping you from doing this even with the law in place? You seem to be making the same bad assumption that McQ is, that just because a law is in place it is necessary to to immediately resort to using it whenever a possible application comes up.

If you find the neighbor’s kids playing in your front yard, do you immediately sic the cops on them just because there is a law against trespassing?
"...or was in violation of some other law that already existed that could be used as leverage to get him to do the right thing."
How is this any different? The government is involved either way.
 
Written By: Terry
URL: http://
... you have a "right" to property because private property makes for a better, cleaner, more just society, not because it is some God-given right...
Well, no. At least not in the Lockean sense, and certainly not in the concept of English and American jurisprudence.

First of all, you can’t have a right to property, because "property" is nothing more than a bundle of rights. Thus, a parcel of dirt is just dirt. If John Locke works that parcel of dirt (develops, improves, etc.) he creates exclusive rights to the dirt and its fruits. Some would say that his God-given right to defend himself and the products of his mind/labor/etc. are what create the rights in the dirt, but that’s no matter here.

If Jim Blackacre identifies, develops and generally improves an adjoining parcel of dirt, he creates property rights in that parcel. One day it may behoove the parties to recognize the boundaries of each other’s parcels (i.e. each to recognize the rights to exclude the other from said parcel). Perhaps they write that down in a contract, or perhaps it develops over time through custom and usage such that a community of similarly situated persons and parcels eventually blossoms.

So what’s happened? Nothing more than each person willingly recognizing the others’ rights to particular parcels of land. At some point one of these fine citizens gets the idea to call the bundle of recognized rights by one name — "property." Now, they can use one word instead of saying
"If you’re looking for the mill just go to end of that parcel of dirt in which John Blackacre owns specifically recognized rights that we’ve all agreed to abide by for sake of mutual peace and prosperity so as we don’t have to constantly fight to the death to defend the fruits of our labors ... and make a left."
Secondly, property rights were not developed because they were deemed to "make[] for a better, cleaner, more just society" because maintainers of particular parcels of land wanted their rights to exclude others from that land, and from the fruits thereof, explicitly recognized. Although you correctly identify some of the positive consequences of recognizing property rights, you are putting the cart before the horse.

Finally, nothing contained in these concepts allows you to use your property (including the gain you expect from it) to impinge upon my property. Certainly if enough people organize and decide that "Because everyone likes red barns, and thus land with red barns on them are more valuable, all barns shall be painted red", and if they are game enough to try, they can physically force me to paint my barn red as well. But their actions are not grounded in property rights (they’ve obviously ignored mine). Instead they are grounded in mob-rule and might-makes-right. In the modern era, that mob may instead that grass must be cut to a certain length (or else it’s the hoosegow for the offender) or that, because of the extreme dangers of global warming, all grass must be eliminated entirely and replaced with some non-offending, non-water-using, and yet aesthetically pleasing substance (or else it’s the hoosegow for the offender).

So be it if that’s the society one wants to live in. It’s not what I envision to be a a paradise of free men, nor what IMHO the founders of this country envisioned either.
 
Written By: MichaelW
URL: http://asecondhandconjecture.com
Ohio likes 4th degree misdemeanors -

cock fighting
Driving under the influence
Touching a nude or seminude dancer in a nudie bar
Marijuana possession
Public indecency
Not mowing your lawn (second offense) - By the way, it’s not a foot long, it’s 8 inches that triggers this.
Littering (second offense)

Looks like Arlo would have had to explain he didn’t mow his lawn twice in Canton Ohio instead of putting his envelope under that pile of garbage once in Stockbridge Mass.

And let’s get this straight Joe, it doesn’t COST them $250,000 a year because they HAVE to take care of it, it costs them because they CHOOSE to take care of it. A big difference.

If they choose to paint houses that aren’t painted every 5 years, they can probably run up a big painting bill too.
If it’s costing them that much, up the fine...obviously they aren’t collecting fines very well, or they’re overcharging (or being overcharged) for their lawn mowing.
I’d come and mow lawns in Canton for $75.00 a pop if it’ll save em money, and they can keep the other $75.00 and everybody will be happy.

Jail time? Please.

And the continued appeal to ’vermin infested’ - assumes facts not in evidence, nor relevant to the law as written - 8 inches in height, 2nd time, no vermin required, can get you up to 30 DAYS time in the slammer. 30 days, you won’t be in the local lock-up for 30 days, you’ll go to the county.

You guys who think this is cool ought to be Libertarians, because you’re obviously smokin something.
 
Written By: looker
URL: http://
Suppose there was a factory in your neighborhood that emitted an ugly but harmless smoke from it’s smokestacks. Could the citizens insist that codes, regs, and laws be written to control this odious smoke? Suppose that same factory had effluents flowing into the river which while doing no harm smelled horribly. Could the citizens again petition for more codes, regs, and laws to limit this noxious odor? If the sight and smell of the smoke and effluents can be controlled why then could unsightly homes (grass/paint) not be controlled?
 
Written By: tom scott
URL: http://
If the sight and smell of the smoke and effluents can be controlled why then could unsightly homes (grass/paint) not be controlled?
Smoke and effluents most likely would be a health risk, for one thing. We’re talking about 8" high grass being worthy of jail. I don’t see them as equivalent problems.

And I don’t think anyone is arguing that you can’t do that, they’re asking is that an appropriate role for government?
 
Written By: McQ
URL: http://www.QandO.net
You tell me - why is this city council involved in jacking up the penalties on an existing law if it isn’t the government who has primacy on the question of lawn heights and what is or isn’t acceptable?
Your original (still unsupported) accusation was that the government was used as the "first resort." Even if the government was used as the last resort, it could still have "primacy" on determining the issue. After all, does government have "primacy" on property rights because it can "jack up" the penalties for trespassing?

 
Written By: Terry
URL: http://
I don’t know, are we talking about fining the company for the violations or are we talking about jailing the owners/managers/workers for 30 days?

GRASS, +8 INCHES, TWICE can = JAIL for up to 30 days.

Wow, sounds like a great country doesn’t it!

Read the words aloud and repeat.
JAIL TIME for not keeping your lawn lower than 8 inches twice in some set time period (wonder how long THAT is).


 
Written By: looker
URL: http://
And let me ask you ’property value oriented’, city rights, cost to town crusaders a question -
if it’s such a freakin great idea, why is CANTON OHIO the only city in the country doing it?

And why did it take 221 years to enact such a brilliant plan into law?
 
Written By: looker
URL: http://
There are good and bad reasons for this law - property value is a bad reason, it "looks bad" also not a valid reason.

Controlling vermin - valid reason.
Fire Protection - valid reason.

In other words Public Safety is a valid reason to enforce action on a property owner.

I have a home that is essentially located in a National Forrest (the forrest border is nearby) Fire threat is an essential concern and if your weeks are cleaned and controlled not only can you be fined, but the state will come and clean up the weeds and bill you (and it ain’t cheap to hire union workers at government rates to clean your weeds). No jail time is proposed but eventually if you don’t pay the state will take your house - makes perfect sense.

So yes I think the threat of Jail Time is both excessive and inappropriate in this case - on the other hand, the state taking and selling your property based on public safety issues is also appropriate. Jail time is a little too close to debtors prison which always came with the ’if you are sitting in jail how do you solve the...’ un-mowed lawn.

btw, When I bought my house I looked for one that didn’t come with an HOA - since almost all developments built since the 90’s have such associations my choice of home was limited... I’ve never regretted the decision since every HOA eventually becomes a rent payment on top of your mortgage.
 
Written By: BIllS
URL: http://bills-opinions.blogspot.com
weeks are = weeds aren’t

makes alot more sense that way...
 
Written By: BIllS
URL: http://bills-opinions.blogspot.com
Your original (still unsupported) accusation was that the government was used as the "first resort."
Well we can argue about this all day, and I don’t intend to ... you think it is unsupported, I don’t. We have different takes on this. Such is life.
Even if the government was used as the last resort, it could still have "primacy" on determining the issue.
The question remains should it even be involved in this business? I contend it shouldn’t - that the legitimate function of government has nothing to do with determining a grass height standard and jailing those who don’t comply.

Would I be wrong in assuming you think it should be in that business and enforcing those sorts of penalties?
 
Written By: McQ
URL: http://www.QandO.net
"Is there probably a way or a path short of government intervention which is being ignored here?"

Well, there are those homeowners associations, but they are a pain in the posterior, too. And they can be even more arbitrary. Call it government, homeowner’s association, or vigilance committee, it amounts to the same thing; you have to do things you don’t want to do to keep the neighbors happy. I am sure the Neander Valley Homeowner’s Association had disputes, too.


"It’s not the sort of problem that requires a law. It just needs a little individual integrity and common sense"

Assuming, of course, that everyone is reasonable and cooperative.

"gov. issued lawn mower and gov. appointed teenager to push it."

Teenager? Man, are you out of date. The only teenagers I have seen doing yard work in the last 10 years or so all speak Spanish and live far from home.


"Could neighbors cut it? Sure"

If they want to be guilty of tresspass, and liable for damages.


"Kids running around with their pants down around their thighs, lowers property values. Should we throw them in jail?"

Yes!


"My question is why has government become the first resort and not the last?"

Experience. Maybe not mine, personally, but I like to think I can learn from the esperiences and mistakes of others. For example, if I knock on my neighbor’s door and complain, I may start a feud or a fight. If a police officer does it, the guy may suspect who complained, but he doesn’t know, and he probably won’t make much of a fuss.

 
Written By: timactual
URL: http://
Call it government, homeowner’s association, or vigilance committee, it amounts to the same thing
Homeowner’s associations you expressly join, contracting to pay the dues and abide by the rules. They raise funds from and enforce rules exclusively on those who’ve voluntarily signed up.

And vigilance committees... well let’s see. They’re voluntary organizations that tend to disband once the problem is solved.

So both of those things are different from government.
 
Written By: Linda Morgan
URL: http://
Forget yards ... what if your neighbor paints his house purple and chartreuse w/pink polka-dot shutters.

Does that hurt your property value?

Is that something for which he should go to jail or the state should have any say whatsovever?
Here’s a question back at you: Is there anything your neighbor might do to his property that you would find unacceptable and, after a personal attempt to convince him otherwise, would have you resorting to involving the government? In short, where would you draw the line, if any?
 
Written By: Grimshaw
URL: http://
"So both of those things are different from government."

And they are similar to government in that they are an expression of the will of the people (theoretically, anyway), an organization founded to do things that individuals cannot do for themselves, or to do them more efficiently. They are all, of course, coercive. And they are all at least somewhat voluntary. Just as you do not have to move into the neighborhood if you do not like the HA, you can emigrate if you do not like the goverment.

The point is that wherever (or whenever) you go, as long as you live in a society with other people, there will be some rules and an organization with the means to enforce them. Call it government, Thing, tribal elders, etc., take your pick.



" what if your neighbor paints his house purple and chartreuse w/pink polka-dot shutters."

I saw a house like that when I lived in W. Va.—violet with purple trim and yellow shutters. It looked like an Easter egg. I rather liked it. The neighbors must have at least tolerated it, as it stood undamaged and unvandalized for a number of years that I know of.



 
Written By: timactual
URL: http://
Of course the right in question is the right of property...
In Switzerland the grass would have the right not to be cut.
 
Written By: unaha-closp
URL: http://warisforwinning.blogspot.com/
this is beyond the pale (ethnic slur alert).
Just for reference (or perhaps merely out of the perverse pedantry with which I am occasionally afflicted), the ’pale’ of ’beyond the pale’ has nothing to do with skin color. A pale is a fence and at one time represented the outer edge of a settlement, thus something from beyond the pale is something outside of civilization/civilized behavior.
 
Written By: Achillea
URL: http://
Achillea - well aware of where the expression came from.

The ethnic slur I was alluding to was that of being Irish(barbarian and outside the confines of the Dublin ’pale’) as opposed to be English (civilized, law abiding and within the confines of the palings).

Two for one ethnic slur for those who read it to refer to skin color.
 
Written By: looker
URL: http://
What’s stopping you from doing this even with the law in place?
Nothing. That’s what I do anyway. In fact, I wouldn’t invoke the law if it were in place.
You seem to be making the same bad assumption that McQ is, that just because a law is in place it is necessary to to immediately resort to using it whenever a possible application comes up.
Nope. That isn’t correct. I am saying the exact opposite. You got it 180 degrees wrong.
If you find the neighbor’s kids playing in your front yard, do you immediately sic the cops on them just because there is a law against trespassing?
No. I’d probably play with them. You’re 180 degrees from comprehension again.
How is this any different? The government is involved either way.
Because you’ve invited government to encroach EVEN FURTHER than they already are.

In your righteous crusade to protect your property rights by forging a weapon that, in a system that so highly values precedence for future guidance, can be used to force others to behave in a way that doesn’t decrease that value, you are in turn inviting every busybody onto your property as well. God Forbid you have a fat ass, ugly wife, retarded kids, or some other undesirable condition that decreases their property value and your neighbors in turn use that force upon you.

Government solutions to problems that do not involve the actual violation of rights more often that not create problems that are worse than the original problem trying to be solved.
 
Written By: Augustus
URL: http://

 
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