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The Alphabet Series 2000: Q is for Question

Observations from the Edge
Robert T. Nanninga
Coast News
July 19, 2000


"Where's Papa going with that axe?" — E.B. White

Without questioning comes complacency. With complacency comes ennui. With ennui comes apathy, and with apathy comes over-reaching city officials, over development, and overpopulation. All of which is now shaping coastal North County in ways few are willing to address. The formation of the United States of America resulted from colonists questioning overtaxation and under representation.

As election season commences, the question we should all be asking ourselves, is why on earth should anyone vote for local incumbents seeking reelection. What have they given us other than more traffic, more homes, overcrowded schools, more sewage to deal with, and a growing sense of unease? Oh sure, there are plenty of shopping opportunities in coastal Southern California, but is there enough water to support our lavishly unsustainable lifestyle.

Contrary to popular belief single family homes, beach resorts, golf courses, soccer fields, strip malls and industrial parks all require water, water that must be imported. If we continue to grow at the pace currently favored by elected officials, where exactly will the water come from to sustain burgeoning populations. We should also ask ourselves who will benefit from predicted water shortages.

Jim Bond, a two-term council member for Encinitas, last week announced his intent to run for a third term. Citing involvement with the Colorado River advisory board and his efforts to maintain adequate water supplies for Southern California, Mr. Bond has decided another four years in office will improve his chances for higher office.

Wanting to secure water resources is noble enough, except when considering that Councilmember Bond has done nothing to reduce the need for imported water. Since being elected Bond, has been a champion of growth, while playing the part of fiscal conservative, creating a deficit that will only be reduced by reducing populations. You think energy bills are high, just wait until Colorado river water becomes available at a premium. Again how would four more years of Bond leadership help the residents of Encinitas deal with the fact that he has constantly sold out their best interests chasing financial gain and political favor?

In Oceanside, Mayor Dick Lyon has the nerve to seek re-election after serving scandal plagued terms, other than trying to bankrupt the city and fight with council members, what has he done to improve the day to day lives of Oceanside's working poor? Reality is that Mayor Dick as served four years to many, and those wishing to give him another four have something to gain from a dysfunctional council. Doug Manchester to name just one. The people of Oceanside should ask themselves if Carol McCauley is any different. Another question to ask is what do they have to loose from not electing council representatives not in the pocket of developers.

Carlsbad's empress of arrogance Ramona "build it and they will come" Finnila is also seeking a third term, as if as vice chair of SANDAG she hasn't had enough time to feather her nest. If her agenda has been about uncontrolled growth and replacing trees with sidewalks and wider roads then her terms has been very successful. The question is shouldn't she give other development groupies a shot at fame and face time? As Carlsbad continues to assault it's natural environment, doesn't it make sense to elect someone other than the Stepford politicians who know only what the building industry tells them.

First and foremost San Diego county must begin challenge the dubious statistics produced by SANDAG in house consultants that say another million people crapping in the ocean will have no negative impact on our quality of life.  We should also ask whether Sourcepoint's specialized information services and tailored growth projections, represent a conflict of interest. Quoting in house sources as impartial researchers as SANDAG is prone to do, should be questioned by residents who are tired of business as usual.

With the campaigns comes campaign forums, which are the ideal venue to ask the tough questions. True to form those seeking re-election will be do their very best to avoiding giving any pertinent answers. Instead they will continue to spin empty talk into what sounds like an answer, all the while trying obfuscate the democratic process, killing time, until the questioning stops so they go back to the growth machine for hand outs and marching orders.

For those of you wondering about the opening quote, without going into much detail, the answer is ...Forty Two.

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