A cry of tyranny
August 20, 2002
There are so many issues that Slow Growth Initiative has brought up that I think are important, but i will only hit a few.
1) The right to vote on any and everything.
2 ) Property rights or property privileges?
3) The district attorney’s duties
4) More regulation
5) Emotion-based decisions versus fact-based.
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1. No one should have the right to tell anyone what to do with their life, their liberty, or their property, as long as it does not injure another. If I want to paint my barn purple with black polka-dots, that is my choice. And people, no matter how many signatures they collect, should not be able to meddle in those respects.
2. The SGI people feel that the ability to get a permit, to build, is a privilege that should be regulated. To me a building permit is a possessory interest for a piece of real property. Anything that effects an interest of my land is my business, and only my business, as long as it does not injure another. Thomas Jefferson once said: “The true foundation of republican government is the equal right of every citizen in his person and property and in their management.” I agree with him wholeheartedly.
3. SGI proponents feel the district attorney should be supportive of them or at the very least neutral, and they are wrong. The district attorney’s job first and foremost is to uphold the Constitution of the United States, then the constitution of the State of Nevada. From there he has a duty to uphold their respective laws. If something violates those sacred documents it is his sworn duty, whether he likes it or not, to uphold them. No amount of pressure from either side should cause him to waiver from his oath to do just that.
4. More regulations. Need I say more? I am already regulated to the brink of insanity. I can’t move the stream on my property because the Army Corps of Engineers says so. The state of Nevada says they own the riverbed that the ranch has been paying taxes on since before I was born. If you want to build a house, first you have to worry about your zoning, then you need a development right, then you need a water right, the blueprints have to be certified by the county and an engineer, the government regulates the rate of your loan, the size of the home regulates the tax charged, the height is regulated … get my point? Regulations are everywhere, do we really need more?
5. Everyone agrees that making important decisions without all the relevant facts is unwise, for it would be based too much on emotion. Yet the SGI proponents want the voters to do just that. Ask anyone how many water basins are there in Douglas County? How many of us could accurately state that there are four? Let alone, name them: Carson, Truckee, Eagle and Walker. And the issue of growth control is and should be tied to water availability.
Alexander Hamilton, arguably the main writer of the Constitution, once wrote: “To bereave a man … to confiscate his estate, would be so gross and notorious an act of despotism, as must at once convey the alarm of tyranny throughout the whole nation.”
Mr. Hamilton, I cry tyranny!