Saturday, March 17, 2012
Hate the full-body scans, pat-downs and slow going at TSA airport security screening checkpoints? For $100, you can now bypass the hassle.
The way things are headed in this country, soon there will be two ways to do any governmental task. One will be according to the rules and laws. It will be arduous. The other will be the streamlined route of the wealthy, lubricated by all their money. There will be a private bypass for every public function.
She says when the area’s lake, also considered a common area, flooded in 2009, Moss told her the water was the responsibility of the Homeowners Association, which paid for the required pumping of the lake.
“There was water in my basement for over a month,” she said.
But her son, Jim Epstein, says Moss recently declared the lake is his, and that the Homeowner’s Association must pay him $56,000 to be allowed to use it.
Privatize the gains, socialize the losses. Indeed.
Friday, March 16, 2012
Thursday, March 15, 2012
But is this altogether a bad thing? I love my kids and if they want to live with me while they get their lives launched, and that takes a little longer than it did twenty years ago, I don't see myself complaining about it. If they get married and have kids and are still living in their childhood bedroom I'll start getting concerned.
In an afternoon meeting with The Bee's editorial board, Swearengin and Scott moved the talk far away from the fiscal-emergency declarations and Chapter 9 bankruptcy threats that have made the city of Stockton a national example of financial incompetence.
At the same time, Swearengin and Scott drew a line in the sand for the city's 3,200 employees, implying that the Stockton scenario isn't far-fetched for Fresno for these reasons:
Three years of incessant layoffs, service reductions and penny-pinching haven't done the trick.
The city will struggle to close a $2.1 million general fund budget gap in the fiscal year ending June 30, let alone the huge gap projected over the next five years.
The revenue picture is flat -- sales-tax proceeds up a bit more than expected, property-tax proceeds down a bit more -- and Fresno is stuck in a farm-based economy traditionally slow to come out of recessions.
Read more here: http://www.fresnobee.com/2012/03/12/2757376/fresno-mayor-lays-out-financial.html#storylink=cpy#storylink=cpy
Sunday, March 11, 2012
The truth is, a combination of factors is set to push national home prices down an additional 10% or so before a hard bottom is found. And if Europe's debt mess and fiscal bickering in Washington result in another recession, the drop could be double that.
See below. And the realtors I know are, as always, telling people what a great time it is to BUY, BUY, BUY.
"As boomers downsize because of retirement, finances, health or death, they're expected to release some 26 million homes onto the market by 2030, according to the Policy Center paper. The problem is that echo-boomers, or Generation Y—those born between 1982 and 1995—may not be buying up the inventory, says Pendall, whose retired mother is trying to sell a home and downsize." ---
How can anybody expect them to buy homes? They owe a bazillion dollars in student loans and credit card debt and they just watched the price of housing fall through the floor and stay there. Now they should borrow $250K to buy a McMansion in the suburbs? Say what?
Lawmakers have for a number of years proposed legislation that would stop HOAs from setting rules regarding public streets. The bills stem from resident complaints about being fined for parking their own vehicles on public streets in front of their own homes.
"The reason this bill keeps coming back year after year is because there's a problem we're trying to solve," said Sen. Nancy Barto, R-Phoenix, who proposed one of this year's bills. "HOA communities do not have regulating authority over public roadways."
As I said previously in this space, I've never understood the need for this bill. How can a private corporation assert jurisdiction over a public right of way? Have Privatopian principalities as George Staropoli refers to them gotten so powerful they believe they can annex or declare public roads within their sphere of influence?