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Cover to Staff: Bypass Commissions on Edgewater

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Re: Cover to Staff: Bypass Commissions on Edgewater

Postby Stu Levitan » Fri Mar 15, 2013 10:27 am

Local zoning codes have been held a legitimate function of government for 86 years.
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Re: Cover to Staff: Bypass Commissions on Edgewater

Postby ArturoBandini » Fri Mar 15, 2013 10:32 am

lukpac wrote:How would they prove said legitimacy?
You tell me. I haven't seen any arguments that prove the legitimacy of government yet.

You can refer to something like Hobbes' Leviathan for an argument that attempts to justify government powers, in this case, monarchy. There are other examples of this sort of thinking, but I seldom see evidence of it in modern politicians and bureaucrats - they seem to take their powers for granted.

I'd also consider the Constitution as an example of at least clearly defining the limits of government powers in an effort to justify the limited powers claimed. Of course, these limits have been selectively ignored when convenient for at least the last century.
Last edited by ArturoBandini on Fri Mar 15, 2013 10:36 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Cover to Staff: Bypass Commissions on Edgewater

Postby lukpac » Fri Mar 15, 2013 10:35 am

ArturoBandini wrote:
lukpac wrote:How would they prove said legitimacy?
You tell me. I haven't seen any arguments that prove the legitimacy of government yet.


And with that I think this conversation is pretty much over.
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Re: Cover to Staff: Bypass Commissions on Edgewater

Postby ArturoBandini » Fri Mar 15, 2013 10:41 am

Stu Levitan wrote:Local zoning codes have been held a legitimate function of government for 86 years.
Thanks for linking, seriously.

Should we agree that the Supreme Court truly is supreme? The incontestable arbiter of legitimacy? What are your opinions on Heller? Citizens United?
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Re: Cover to Staff: Bypass Commissions on Edgewater

Postby Stebben84 » Fri Mar 15, 2013 10:54 am

ArturoBandini wrote:And I'm moving in a few months anyway.


I'm assuming that's to fairy tale land.
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Re: Cover to Staff: Bypass Commissions on Edgewater

Postby Henry Vilas » Fri Mar 15, 2013 10:54 am

ArturoBandini wrote: Should we agree that the Supreme Court truly is supreme? The incontestable arbiter of legitimacy? What are your opinions on Heller? Citizens United?


Law is supreme. The Constitution is the supreme law of the land. The Supreme Court, under the Constitution, is the final arbiter of that law. The law can be changed.

While I personally disagree with both Heller and Citizens United, it is the law.
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Re: Cover to Staff: Bypass Commissions on Edgewater

Postby ArturoBandini » Fri Mar 15, 2013 11:03 am

Henry Vilas wrote:While I personally disagree with both Heller and Citizens United, it is the law.
That is a positive statement. My arguments are normative. The difference between what is vs. what should be. It's perfectly OK to challenge the law, even "well established" law.
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Re: Cover to Staff: Bypass Commissions on Edgewater

Postby DCB » Fri Mar 15, 2013 11:55 am

lukpac wrote:
ArturoBandini wrote:
lukpac wrote:How would they prove said legitimacy?
You tell me. I haven't seen any arguments that prove the legitimacy of government yet.


And with that I think this conversation is pretty much over.

Too bad. I was kind of interested in the original question: what qualifies as a 'significant' change that merits review by Landmarks or other commissions?
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Re: Cover to Staff: Bypass Commissions on Edgewater

Postby green union terrace chair » Fri Mar 15, 2013 12:21 pm

Arturo, I've always liked you as a poster and feel that we more or less align on economic issues. But it seems that you are just being obtuse here for the sake of taking a theoretical belief to an extreme that has little practical bearing.

I believe that property rights are paramount. More important in fact than freedom of speech. But what one does on ones property is not done in a vacuum.

Before zoning laws, you could build anything anywhere. Say somebody bought a few houses next to mine in the city, knocked them down and opened up a pig farm. I would be impacted by noise, smell and probably detrimental health issues. The city's sewers would probably not be able to handle all the waste. Maybe our groundwater would be contaminated. That's why we have zoning laws against raising livestock within the city limits.

Same goes for building a factory in a residential area. Or a number of other examples. Neighboring properties impact each other and your property rights cannot be upheld at the cost of mine.

Lastly I close with this. I am now reading all of your posts in this thread in the voice of Ron Swanson and they make a lot more sense.
Image

For further consideration, Ron Swanson on local government:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cuLDL8xpmVw
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Re: Cover to Staff: Bypass Commissions on Edgewater

Postby Ducatista » Fri Mar 15, 2013 12:32 pm

green union terrace chair wrote:Lastly I close with this. I am now reading all of your posts in this thread in the voice of Ron Swanson and they make a lot more sense.

I'm stealing that idea.
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Re: Cover to Staff: Bypass Commissions on Edgewater

Postby Stebben84 » Fri Mar 15, 2013 12:35 pm

DCB wrote:Too bad. I was kind of interested in the original question: what qualifies as a 'significant' change that merits review by Landmarks or other commissions?


I'll bump this because I think it is a good question.
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Re: Cover to Staff: Bypass Commissions on Edgewater

Postby ArturoBandini » Fri Mar 15, 2013 12:44 pm

green union terrace chair wrote:Before zoning laws, you could build anything anywhere. Say somebody bought a few houses next to mine in the city, knocked them down and opened up a pig farm. I would be impacted by noise, smell and probably detrimental health issues. The city's sewers would probably not be able to handle all the waste. Maybe our groundwater would be contaminated. That's why we have zoning laws against raising livestock within the city limits.

Same goes for building a factory in a residential area. Or a number of other examples. Neighboring properties impact each other and your property rights cannot be upheld at the cost of mine.
All of the issues you've defined are a result of improper or incomplete designation of property rights. I understand the motivations for zoning laws, but I think that the same results with fewer negative externalities (in the long run) could be achieved by treating more things as protected by property rights.

For instance, consider the objection that a city sewer could not handle the waste effluent of a pig farm. This is a valid point. But isn't this problem based on the implicit obligation of the city to provide sewer services? In a scenario of hard property rights, the pig farmer would be either denied access to the sewer system or held liable when his property (pig shit) caused damage to the private property of the sewer operator.

And don't single me out for talking about theoretical situations here - do you think it is realistic that an pig farm of significant scale (enough to threaten the sewer system) is likely to pop up within city limits? Or is this just a theoretical exercise to prove a point?

Finally, while you are praising zoning laws for preventing absurd cases like urban pig farms or neighborhood oil refineries, don't forget about the low-level everyday harm that they do in more mundane cases. For instance, the supply and affordability of housing. Or the single-use land development patterns that have created asphalt wastelands like West Towne Mall, meanwhile in my suburban neighborhood there is nowhere in walking distance to buy milk or beer. Granted, these problems might be addressed by revising zoning laws instead of repealing them entirely, but the direction of change needs to move toward freedom of choice, not more control for bureaucrats.
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Re: Cover to Staff: Bypass Commissions on Edgewater

Postby Stu Levitan » Fri Mar 15, 2013 1:12 pm

Stebben84 wrote:
DCB wrote:Too bad. I was kind of interested in the original question: what qualifies as a 'significant' change that merits review by Landmarks or other commissions?


I'll bump this because I think it is a good question.


It is a good question, but with only a vague and imprecise answer. "Significant" is more than "minor" or "incidental." Yes, that's admittedly a subjective determination, as with many other legal questions. The assumption is that reasonable citizen commissioners, working with professional staff, following a public hearing or meeting, will be able to distinguish what is significant from what is not in a manner that honors the ordinance and reflects the broad community standard.

Oh, and Artie -- yes, there have been pig farms within the city limits during the era of municipal sewerage.
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Re: Cover to Staff: Bypass Commissions on Edgewater

Postby Stebben84 » Fri Mar 15, 2013 1:24 pm

Stu Levitan wrote:"Significant" is more than "minor" or "incidental."


Since that is a bit vague, what would be examples of changes which would be minor that wouldn't need Landmark's commission approval? Any of the one's that occurred here?

I am truly interested in all this stuff.
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Re: Cover to Staff: Bypass Commissions on Edgewater

Postby Stu Levitan » Fri Mar 15, 2013 2:15 pm

I'm afraid I don't know how significant these changes were, since Cover prevented staff from writing a report and bringing to us. Staff of Landmarks and UDC thought they were significant enough for commission consideration.
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