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A county’s all-out war on the little guy

… and on private property.

Though I’m trying to move the blog away from knee-jerk reporting of Bad Government News, when S. sent this, I realized it said as much about the resilience of the victims and the obvious fear “their” government feels toward them (armored teams for code violations?) as it says bout the outrageousness of L.A. County bureaucracy.

So read it and weep: “A County’s Private Property War.” You desert rats might want to take special notice.


  1. Big Wooly
    Big Wooly June 23, 2011 1:39 pm

    Who are these people that can destroy a persons life this way? They are not immune, not gods, they are only human. Maybe less so than you or I, to be able to do this to their fellow man.
    Personally, if my life, my family, my home, was ravaged this way, I would find who was responsible, and they would pay as I have paid.

    What would I have to lose?

  2. Kent McManigal
    Kent McManigal June 23, 2011 2:03 pm

    “Code violations” are a particular sore spot for me- and I’ve never even been the target of enforcement.

    Off topic, but speaking of trying to stay away from bad news, I started a new blog: Dispatches From Libertopia. I posted a few items from my other blog that fit in with the theme, but I’m going to try this other perspective and see how it goes.

  3. bumperwack
    bumperwack June 23, 2011 3:46 pm

    The bastards…well, the m1 garand worked well om nazis.60-70 years ago…and you can bet these nazis are nowhere near as tough…bastards

  4. Kyle MacLachlan
    Kyle MacLachlan June 23, 2011 4:18 pm

    Well, after reading through the first page I was rather surprised it had not come up in any comment from the “Enforcers”, but on page three I finally found the always-used last-resort-argument for thougher enforcement of building codes: It brings down the other property values! OH MY LORD!!! That would mean that during the next reassessment the town/ county would loose money because the taxes would be lower! This, in my humble opinion, is the ONLY reason building codes are enforced for private, owner-occupied residences: Stricter building code= higher property value= more tax money.
    When the first building code was written it was intended to be applied only to “non-owner occupied dwellings” (i. e. rental houses, apartment complexes, etc.) as the future tenants had no control over how the place was being built, so this made at least some sense.
    If you own the land outright (even if you’re making payments, as long as you’re not behind) you should be allowed to live in any house/ shelter/ shack…. of your choosing.
    As for the “method of notification” with armed deputies in bullet proof vests, this is beyond the pale and a waste of tax dollars. I’m assuming the Code Enforcement Officer is probably not man enough to go himself so he has to send someone to intimidate the poor folks.
    My heart goes out to every one of these people! I’m currently building my own timber frame cabin all by hand ( I have no electricity on my property; too far away from the road) and if this ever happens to me I don’t really know what I would do. Fight or flight? The building inspector here doesn’t seem too thrilled with enforcing the code either, as long as he sees you’re building it sturdy enough to live in.
    This is also the reason why I moved from a rural county to a more rural county.

  5. naturegirl
    naturegirl June 23, 2011 5:02 pm

    My initial reaction was “yeah, ok, California, that figures”….but now a days I wouldn’t be surprised if this happens everywhere….

    So much for owning “your own land” huh…….

  6. Pat
    Pat June 23, 2011 7:56 pm

    Sorry, Claire, for the continued off-topic.

    To Kent: I like your new blog, I’ve bookmarked it. I don’t sign up for the right to make comments, so can’t answer there. Have you read Victor Koman’s novel, Solomon’s Knife, re another solution to the abortion decision?

  7. Mary Lou
    Mary Lou June 23, 2011 8:49 pm

    Oh. My. God.

  8. Kent McManigal
    Kent McManigal June 23, 2011 9:13 pm

    Pat- Thanks! I haven’t read that book, but the synopsis sounds interesting.

  9. -S
    -S June 24, 2011 7:14 am

    This particularly disgusting display by the thugs demonstrates the fallacy that local government is in any way superior to far-off federal criminality.

    Tyranny is tyranny, and when there is a boot on your neck it doesn’t really matter where the one wearing the boot lives.

  10. Scott
    Scott June 24, 2011 9:47 am

    Validates the definition of the World’s Scariest Phrase-We’re Here From The Government To Help You…

  11. Desertrat
    Desertrat June 24, 2011 10:06 am

    A couple of somewhat lengthy business trips to California back forty years ago showed me that there were far more “You can’t do that!” laws there than in almost all other states. “It hasn’t gotten better with age.”

    At least the State of Texas is uninterested in this sort of thing, and our county governments have no law-making authority over our housing beyond the very minor matter of septic tanks on tracts under five acres.

  12. Matt
    Matt June 24, 2011 12:44 pm

    It’s simple really, it’s not about the code enforcement, it is just a means to an end. Someone in the county decided they want the property in that area. So, they payed off the right peoples in the county to get the code enforcements kicked into high gear and drive the other people off the land. Eventually it will be bought up, parcelled up and sold to “people” that can properly lots of taxes. If not a housing development, it will be used strictly as a water farm with no small wells to disturb the big wells and pipelines to feed water to LA city.

  13. Scott
    Scott June 24, 2011 2:58 pm

    I wonder if it’s a need to justify their existence thing? Pick some easy targets, maybe rake in a few buck in the process, then it’s “Looky, Looky what we done did-we need a bigger budget next year..All them code violations out there,just waitin’ fer us”. I’d guess it’s at least in part a budget thing. Add to it a bureaucrat very seldom can, or will, see past the rules-at least, in your benefit. It seems to me that codes anywhere are little more than cash cows.
    Fortunately, there are relatively few here(Kentucky) and a lot of those aren’t enforced..

  14. Sam
    Sam June 24, 2011 9:44 pm

    Here is a video update on this:

    It is 17 minutes long, but very well done.

  15. Latigo Morgan
    Latigo Morgan June 27, 2011 1:29 pm

    I’ll wager there is a windmill company waiting in the wings, who is associated with the county commissioner, about to make all these folks an offer they cannot refuse to purchase their land.

    Just my cynical guess.

  16. S
    S April 8, 2012 1:09 pm

    Latigo Morgan nailed it, half way.

    It was several solar power faux companies (like Solyndra, these frauds can’t exist without boatloads of tax loot) AND windmills.

    The ugly battle between rural residents and alternative energy mandates in California.

    From the excellent Watts Up With That science blog:

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