Saturday, March 15, 2008

City Counsel in Jackboots?

The proverbial fur is flying since Garry Brumback strong-armed the city counsel members into doing things his way. Rumor is that behind closed doors, Herr Garry and his brown-shirt boys plot destruction of rights of the peace-loving and happy-go-lucky Baytonians, all the while polishing their jackboots in giddy abandonment.

I seem to remember the many people who sat in judgment of our past city government because they (apparently) could not make a judicial decision of anything and were guilty of causing the city to fall into a slum. Now, they are being proactive in making a difference and also willing to rescind, amend and flat-out open things up for discussion and is it me, or are we hearing some of the same folks griping?

Let's take a look at our rights being violated (perceived) and the new ordinances that have been voted into law...logically, if possible.

We can claim that because it is our property, we can dang well do what we want and this sounds good, but suppose our neighbor decides to cross OUR lines of propriety. I mean, we do have standards, right?

We may feel like what we do is perfectly fine and dandy, while half the people on our street think we run down the neighborhood or deflate property values and prays we will move back to the hills with our hillbilly kinfolk.

We can be indignant and say everyone else is wrong, claiming it as our right to do what we want with our own property, but by putting the shoe on our other foot we can readily see that some folks don’t cipher the way we do. We can scream socialism, communism and fourteen-otherisms, but the bottom line is some of our behavior may actually scream out to be regulated by our neighbors. If I stack a pile of tires and lumber by my house and the city inspector shows up with a citation, it is because my neighbors object to it, not because the jack-booted city council is making their rounds.

I’ve never organized or ran a garage sale, but I’ve sat in my car, twisting my neck and head out the window trying to negotiate around a covey of cars on the semi-narrow streets of my neighborhood on numerous occasions and I wasn’t “all that” patient either.

One time in particular, the traffic became impassable when a lady literally parked in the middle of the street, unloaded her kiddos and walked away from her car amidst the cacophony of car horns. It didn’t faze her in the slightest (I wanted to use a Taser on her, but thought it would be rude). The next weekend, the same house resurrected the sale and when I became aware of it, I redirected my vehicle down another street.

Do I think all garage sales should be banished? Why, no, but I do think folks should consider the effect continuous garage sales have on their neighbors and since this is taken for granted (the obvious eludes some), it needs to be regulated in my opinion.

I ran a lawn service out of my house here in Chaparral Village (middle-working-class neighborhood at best) for about 10 years and I had a trailer with equipment on it. At the end of each mowing day, I would unload the trailer, putting the equipment out of sight in my garage or out-building and physically pushed the small trailer to the back of my property.

I did this for security AND for the sake of the neighborhood. I must have pushed that trailer 500 times. I could have thrown a tarp over it and chained an angry and vicious rottweiler to it I guess, but I found it in my own best interest, to just move it.

I considered renting a storage space for my trailer, but I felt it would be more cost effective (more money in my family's bank account) to keep the equipment here.

It is my estimation that these many new ordinances are not to penalize the random homeowner for mild infractions, but to give the city power to back up the complaints of citizens who are tired of the 2 boats, 6 cars (2 in the yard) the permanently stored lowboy, weekly yard sales (yard sales? I thought they were garage sales) etc. etc.

I talked to a nice lady on the Jenkins Park trail yesterday and she, like so many, also expressed distrust of our city council’s decisions and we chatted for about ten minutes. I played the devil’s advocate in a friendly way and explained that any attempt by city council to change the status quo was going to run into opposition and criticism and that they are willing to make adjustments if the new ordinances do not work as planned.

And…I told her that it was my opinion that so many of the outspoken critics are just that – outspoken critics with nothing to offer but complaints. They never offer anything constructive, but delight in playing arm-chair city manager or mayor.

By the way, I think Garry Brumback and Mayor Don Carlos wear Crocs, but don’t hold me to that.


Anonymous said...

Enjoyed it, Bert! And I concur...going to polish my boots ;) LOL! Dagny Taggart


Just one small thing..that would be HERR Gary,not Heir Gary,would it not? I mean to stay in with the whole jackboot theme. :O) Sherry Adams


I feel a little vomited in my throat Wait No, I feel a lot of vomited in my throat (outspoken critic)


Another good one BB! Paisley Adams


I agree its way past due for the city council to take action, the council has been so politically correct, and suck up to certain groups, that this city is now a GHETTO. its time to stand up .and have the guts to clean this city up. why you think all them homes are being built on garth and wallisville. THEY ARE GETTING OUT OF GHETTO BAYTOWN. there are (certain) neighborhoods in this city,that people avoid even driving through. if it is not stopped now it will get much worse. some streets you can hardly get down for the cars parked all over the road. some of these places must have 5 familys in one house. every yard looks like a trash dump. baggy pants gang-bangers all over the street. so many loose pit-bulls running loose, you would get dog ate if you got out of the car. its just like CALIFORNIA the politically correct spineless morons let the trash take over. now they are leaving CALIFORNIA by the millions, leaving the mess they allowed to happen behind them. steve wright


I agree the garage sale ordinance and the parking ordinance were overdue, but the litter ordinance still needs work. Making ends meet by running a small business is hard enough and they don't need more permits, more expenses, and face very stiff fines if someone else litters on their property. Putting fences around dunmpsters is just dumb! Fences rot, fences fall down, fences get grafitti, gates break down, etc etc. Just creating another eyesore!

Hey Bert, I really like your articles but of course you are going to praise the new Manger because you have his ear, my friend. But other people around this town have concerns too and it would be nice if the city would listen to everybody and not just ones who get to write weekly articles in the newspaper. You may also want to remember that the garage sale ordinance and the parking were both re-worked quite a bit (by city council) before they were passed. So you may want to give the city council a little credit instead of giving the Manager all the credit. Afterall, I thought a city Manager worked under a city Council. mc frugal

Anonymous said...

Dear Mr. Baytown Bert,

You wrote about the lawn service you had for 10 years in your blog dated March 15, 2008. But I think what you failed to tell your readers is that you didn't pay taxes on that money. Did you Baytown Bert????? Did you? Every single year?? Now tell the truth. I know you will. You're such an upstanding, honest citizen.
I look forward to reading your answer in your next blog.

Warmest Regards,


P.S. Don't forget - you may be watching Baytown, but Big Brother is watching you!

Cordie Kirkland-LeCompte

Anonymous said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Anonymous said...

Why would you write a letter to me like this? Bert


Well, Mr. Baytown Bert from reading your blog you seem to fall into the "Watchdog" category. And I think that someone should be "watching the watchdog". Interesting how a baited question about taxes got a response from you. Or was it that I questioned your character?

So you ask why.............and I reply BECAUSE I CAN.

Cordie Kirkland-LeCompte


I gather you are full of venom and have nothing constructive to say to me. What happened to you to become like this? Bert


"Full of venom" why don't you just come right out and call me a snake? I know you want too. Nothing "happened" to me, I am just challenging your righteousness. Hasn't anyone every done this before? You ask for it all the time.

Cordie Kirkland-LeCompte

It can only happen while shopping!

As the big man is my witness, every word of this is unquestionable and void of hyperbolic incredibility. With that taken into consid...