Union Democrat staff

Abandoned vehicles a problem

To the Editor:

Let's call Tuolumne County ordinance code 10.40 what it really is. Not "Abandoned Vehicle" but "Inoperable Vehicle" or "Derelict Vehicle" or "Yard Art Vehicle" codes to name a few. Yes, yard art vehicles such as the horse drawn manure spreader on Longeway or the "Johnny popper" (old John Deere tractor) on Cordelia. This law has incredible scope which feuding neighbors can use to their advantage.

Let's look at the "Inoperable" portion of 10.40. "Formal: not capable of being used" (Websters). Sounds like forever. Not even I would not want a '64 Chevy pickup in my yard forever ... but it did take 10 years to get it restored. I had to move the vehicle once because a neighbor didn't like it and used this law to get his way. Now, it can stay because it's operable. I should have left it un-painted.

"Backfire: Reference the "Fence of Garage Doors" on Soulsbyville Road. It conceals (or did) two old cars under moving blankets. I assume the blankets were the first attempt to comply with this code. Personally, I'd prefer to see a 52 Hudson Jet than a bunch of mismatched garage doors.

Paul McNaul

Cedar Ridge

Income determined by choices

To the Editor:

Income inequality is primarily a result of individual choices. There is certainly an effect on outcomes because of government policies, but these tend to be unintended consequences of political meddling or the deliberate manipulation of legislation for the financial benefit of the well connected. This is an argument for government to be less involved with the economy, not more. Some seem to believe that the "wealth of a nation" belongs to all the people, but this undermines the morally superior principle of private property which is the only way a nation becomes "wealthy" to begin with. When individuals acting out of personal interest do "business" with others motivated by personal interest, all are benefited and an economy grows. Some will do better than others, but that is the result of individual freedom Life is not fair, but freedom demands that we be left to our own choices. Government's role should be to ensure protection of property rights with laws against the myriad forms of theft so we are secure in our endeavors. The concept of equalizing income by government power is just another form of theft. It is immoral and ultimately will destroy the "wealth of a nation." A recent Facebook post noted that there already exists societies where medical care, food, clothing, jobs, etc. are all equal and only law enforcement are allowed guns...they're called prisons.

Gregory Davies