Thursday, October 02, 2008


Change is a word that being thrown out a lot these days.  Barack Obama popularized the trend during the Democratic primaries and he used it to overcome Hillary Clinton, something I didn't think was probable.  I have written about change recently as well, mainly due to the disgust with our current government.  But I think my definition is different than Obama's.  I require a change in government that means more freedom, more responsibility (both personal and by government), less government (in all areas, defense, entitlements, etc.).
When Obama speaks of change, I am not sure what he means.  I have not seen anything in his platform that constitutes real change.  Yes, his platform differs from John McCain's in some minor ways, but neither candidate has solutions to the government's problems.
On the Encinitas city council, change here would be getting back to responsible government.  When we first moved here, the city seemed very well run (and for the most part, still is).  Yet it has started down the slippery slope of corruption and greed that the federal government has been sliding down for decades.  Corruption in the sense that certain council members seem to want to hide from decisions, meet in closed sessions.  Greed in the sense that the council tries to pass illegal and/or unethical taxes (i.e. the water tax from a few years ago).  Greed in the escalating salaries, benefits and costs of running the city.  The goal of the council should not be to have your name on as many plaques on as many public properties as possible, but to serve the residents of your city.  In my mind, only one (possibly two) of the current council members does this, Teresa Barth.  Hopefully more will join her.
Do I think that the other council members are bad people. No, they seem likable enough and I have never seen evidence of major wrong-doing.  The issue is the age-old problem of power and money corrupting those who hold it.  A lot of what they did for the city was good.  But after years of building small parks (Moonlight Beach), they feel the need to build a huge, overblown park that nobody wants (Hall property).  After having a small, but usable public works facility, they feel the need to overpay for a dilapidated car dealership.  That kind of service we don't need.

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