Del Mar Times

Stick fighting produces acrimony

The cadre of development foes alleges mansionization creates community acrimony, but the cadre creates acrimony by its previously inspired building restrictions. Those restrictions confiscate private property-rights and convert them to public property-rights. The property owner then lacks some property rights. The neighbors own the other property-rights. Development then initiates acrimony among neighbors that a badly written will initiates among competing heirs. The division of property-rights inherently politicizes development.

Misunderstanding property breeds acrimony since property is not a collection of land and structures but a collection of legal entitlements or property-rights. Justice Holmes compares these entitlements to a bundle of sticks. By distributing the confiscated sticks to neighbors and city planners, the cadre and complicit council members control the property-owner. If the property-owner needs unimpeded development, he needs all the sticks. If recalcitrant stick-owners retain their sticks, development stalls. Development proceeds when the property owner trades his dream home for a cadre approved home. Stick fighting produces acrimony, and trading produces eternal hatred.

Recognizing property as a collection of legal entitlements facilitates cadre control of development. Without owning the property, the cadre controls the property through the design review board and through the enacted land-use restrictions. The board and the restrictions become cadre bludgeons.

John Haraden

Del Mar

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