LJWorld.com weblogs Loyal Opposition

CATCH 22!!!


There is a response in the “Sound Off section of the LJW this AM that occasions a comment

If it is accurate the city wants me to not bag my grass clippings but will issue me a citation if the clippings from mowing the city owned utility right of way in front of my home fall into the gutter. CATCH 22!!!

The problem with regulations is that they frequently lead to unintended consequences. Unintended consequences create an opportunity for selective justice. If trouble maker Moderate creates clippings we can pursue him but if city supporter Ales does so we are tolerant as it is quite impossible to not have clippings fall into the gutter if you do not bag the grass.

Now extend this to all the other thousands of regulations and a glimpse as to why so many of us are anti-Obama administration surfaces. Certainly there are good regulations but the shear volume coming from this administration is costing us all a lot of money, is not confined only to important issues (farm dust) and creates every increasing opportunities for selective enforcement based on politics.

Now I am left to mow the cities grass this afternoon depositing clippings, albeit small in number, into the gutter and ultimately the storm water system. I wonder if the run off from my property which undoubtedly caries small traces of pesticides, fertilizer and animal waste (rabbits) is also going to get me – and potentially the rest of you a citation??

Yes, I do not want my storm water run-off to become a dumping ground for major and deliberate pollution but that is what qualifiers are about. There is just way too much catering to noisy advocacy groups and way too little constructive governance going on.


jhawkinsf 5 years, 9 months ago

If you had waited until you actually received a citation for that bit of rabbit poo than runs off with the rain, then this column would never have been written. Truly an example of a solution in desperate need of a solution.

George Lippencott 5 years, 9 months ago

More like grumpy. If you are going to regulate me write regulations that are clear, precise literal and accurate!!! As a taxpayer I should not need lawyers to understand my obligations to the rest of you.

deec 5 years, 9 months ago

The President doesn't write Lawrence city ordinances.

Ron Holzwarth 5 years, 9 months ago

I wonder how many people were issued a citation because of some lawn clippings on the street in the last five years. Of course I don't know, but I have a pretty good guess in mind.

Regulations are certainly nothing new, there were plenty of them that were in place before the Obama administration.

I think it's very interesting how some people seem to work the Obama administration into so many things that they think is wrong. Here is an example: Someone brought that up while discussing a city ordinance that was almost certainly in place for at least a decade before Obama was elected.

“The best way to get a bad law repealed is to enforce it strictly.” - Abraham Lincoln

Alceste 5 years, 9 months ago

huh? why not point the lawnmower's discharge section AWAY from the curb so it blows it back into the yard/grass/land?

What's wrong with regulations? The military couldn't function without them. Right on for Big Government. While not flawless, it protects me as best it can from the Mr. Charlies' out there who rob and steal and cheat and lie all day long....may of them in the banking community; many and most of them in the business community, and, yes many of them even in the Big Government Alcest believes in. More Government. And impeach all them rat bastar*s on the supreme court....particularly that Roberts guy. Just take a look at the Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission decision! Incredible. http://www.newyorker.com/reporting/2012/05/21/120521fa_fact_toobin

George Lippencott 5 years, 9 months ago

Hi Mr A. And I thought you did your own lawn??!! All mowers that I have owned when clippings are not collected drop the majority of those clippings below the deck and blades. A few, driven by the velocity of the blade escape out all sides of the deck. It does n ot matter which way I go there is a loss out the sides (even when collecting the clippings. We are talking a walk behind mower.

Alceste 5 years, 9 months ago

Alceste does "do" his own lawn but doesn't have a fancy new mower. The cut grass "shoots" out the right side of the mower on my unit.

Even with the fancy "mulch type", I have no clue how you're "shooting" cut grass out onto the street or into the gutter....ok....maybe a blade or two finds it's errant way other than underneath the deck of the mower, but don't ask and don't tell. Eh?

PS: Alceste will happily purchase any used new fangled mower you have that does that deck mulching; Particularly now that Sam Brownback has found yet another way to snatch yet more money from a poor guy.....

George Lippencott 5 years, 9 months ago

You have the picture. Nothing is shooting anywhere - a few clippings just leak our on the edges. If the ordinance has no qualifiers (note first sentence) than even that small amount is a violation.

pizzapete 5 years, 9 months ago

I was raking leaves in my yard a few years ago putting them into piles to bag up. I had more than half the front yard finished when I saw a truck coming down the block picking up leaves from the street. There were many leaves in front of my house on the street and because I saw the truck coming to clean them away I added some of the leaves that were at the edges of the yard. Although I had not added much to what was already there the guy driving the truck made two sweeps down my street and avoided picking up any of the debris on the street in front of my yard. When he came back a third time I flagged him down and asked him why he didn't get the leaves in front of my house. He told me he wasn't going to pick up "my leaves" because I had put them there and that it was illegal to do so. I said we'll aren't you lazy, isn't that your job? I mean you're driving a truck that picks them up? The guy actually got out of his truck, got in my face and yelled at me, and then after a few choice words he indicated he was going to call the cops on me. I said that's great, I'd like for you to explain to the police why you aren't doing your job. Anyway, the police came to the house while I was still collecting more leaves and politely explained that I shouldn't put any leaves in the street, but as I was clearly doing my part to clean them away, no ticket was issued.

George Lippencott 5 years, 9 months ago

A few months ago. But how can you go anonymous once you have been notorious??

Alceste 5 years, 9 months ago

I'm sorry for any grief I may have caused, Moderate. However, just as any good drill Sgt. instructs by common, ableit coarse example., I do believe you now see the wisdom/value/validity to anonymity with respect to internet message boards, eh? Use of one's "real name" means absolutely nothing. In fact, case in point, look at how the LJWorld.com "Well Commons" "articles" attracts posters: In fact, they do NOT because "real names" are required.

In these days of Google, Bing, etc., etc., etc., one must strive for the last vestiges of anonymity.

Sadly, when one participates in government by writing or faxing or emailing, often times all that information next becomes part of the public record and one exposes onesself including name, email address, phone number, address, and whatever else one was required to supply in order to interact with an elected official. SUX.

George Lippencott 5 years, 9 months ago


Well Mr. A your point is well taken. When you trade under your own name all too often you become the issue and not the topic on which you posted. I gather that personally attacking the messenger rather than the message is common place on all forums where one actually takes ownership of their posts.

I understand the dilemma where very knowledgeable contributors would not participate because of name recognition. I also understand that a number of participants thrive on personal attack and demonization of “the other guy/gal” which is much easier when you are anonymous.

I don’t think there can be a balance. It has to be one way or the other.

Commenting has been disabled for this item.