Thursday, August 12, 2010

Is Direct Democracy the Answer?

"Is eleven OK? No? Nine then? I, uh, I'm not sure." - Nancy Walsh

I was going to review the items that were covered during Tuesday night's City Council meeting, but what would be the point? There is only one thing that anybody is concerned about right now, and that is the politically driven monkey wrenching of the General Plan Steering Committee. This was a unique moment in the history of our town. The destruction of an already sitting committee merely because those serving on it had the wrong lawn signs in their yards last April is a level of political vindictiveness never before seen in Sierra Madre. It was an ugly act carried out by ugly people.

So why did this happen? The Gang of Four can't really talk about their agenda, which is heavily pro-development. To do so would make their existence as elected officials here politically untenable. Advocating development being right up there with dog napping in Sierra Madre's pantheon of undesirable behaviors. So they have to take alternative routes to their goals. Wrapping themselves in the Measure V flag would be one of them. We certainly have seen a lot of that kind of phoniness lately. Denying that things such as the water rate hike have anything to do with development would be another. Even though that particular fib becomes less and less believable as time goes on. And then there is all that frantic spending, something that could put Sierra Madre's hard won independence in jeopardy while also making us vulnerable to those whose interests this City Council really represents.

So rather than just firing the General Plan Steering Committee outright for not being development correct, they have to go through an entire series of passive aggressive charades. And why must they get their supporters on that committee? Not because it would benefit their interests, of course. But rather because that is the "collaborative thing to do." It would be done in order to make "inclusiveness" happen. That is, "bringing all possible viewpoints to the table."

These supporters, of course, as old school development hands, would have no interest in any out-reach programs designed to incorporate the views of the people of Sierra Madre in the new General Plan. And why should they? Most people in this town would never see any value in putting something like a .99c Store with condos up top on the Howie's site. Most residents like this town the way it already is. And where's the money in that? In the Orwellian world of Mosca and Buchanan, excluding the residents of Sierra Madre from participating in the creation of this most valuable of City documents is called "inclusiveness." You can almost see the pigs flying from their mouths.

One of the most important items on the development agenda is hiring consultants to write this new General Plan. By doing so the elements necessary to achieve development goals would be burned into the city's blueprint, and stay there for the next 20 years. All the while effectively keeping out any preservationist or slow growth viewpoints that could have been included had the vast majority of citizens in this town not been prevented from participating.

Which makes packing the General Plan Committee with opinionated and potentially disruptive characters so necessary. By setting up the Committee to fail in this way, the democratic out-reach process can be quickly brought to an end. Opening the door for the hiring of highly expensive pro-development consultants to do City Hall's dirty work, while excluding the people who actually live and pay taxes in this town. The irony being that it is those taxes that would be used to keep them from participating in the preservation of their own town. Paying the hangman for the use of his rope, as they say.

In other words, what we saw Tuesday evening was power politics in its nastiest form. This was a move designed to prevent the voice of the residents of Sierra Madre from being heard. Why? Because it would result in something the Gang of Four didn't want. And they disenfranchised the 10,500 residents of this town to make sure that couldn't happen.

Direct Democracy

Since the people of Sierra Madre are now being actively denied the right to participate in important matters such as the creation of the 2030 General Plan, it is incumbent upon us to force our way back in. Rioting might appeal to some, but once the exhilaration of running through the streets with a torch and pitchfork is over, there would likely be political and legal repercussions. And besides, it's tiring.

A far better way is to keep money out of the hands of those who would use it to push forward things not in our interest. Defeating the water rate hike is important not only because it helps retired fixed income residents stay solvent during the worst economic downturn since the Great Depression, but also because it would starve City Hall into submission. Where would they be without our money to spend? They'd be powerless. If the Gang of Four didn't have the $300,000 in already budgeted funds needed to hire General Plan consultants, they'd be forced to use volunteers instead. Fiscally restrained City Halls are far more democratic.

Another way to keep City Hall sweet though creative fiscal starvation would be to take away their right to raise rates. Proposition 218 goes a long ways towards that goal, but as we saw just recently, that can be stolen from us. But if we empowered ourselves through the ballot initiative process, making rate hikes possible only if we the people first vote on them, then the City would have to answer to us. Which is how it should be. After all, it's our City and our money.

Another way to accomplish our goal of taking back control of our City Government from developers and their hires would be through the recall process. There are currently members on our City Council who lack the intellect or skill set necessary to do the job 20% of this town's registered voters elected them to do. They have become an embarrassment. How better to improve the quality of our representative government here in town than to recall and replace those individuals with people actually capable of doing the job? Officials who would be far more representative of the concerns of all the people in this town, and not just their cronies. People who think doing their job for the people doesn't mean nodding and smiling anytime the Mayor orders them to, or colluding behind the scenes in obviously scripted and illegal attempts at sneaking through unpopular agendas.

Places Where Direct Democracy Is Working

Here is a partial list of towns currently involved in City Council recalls:

San Jacinto City Council Recall - California 2010. A group calling itself SCRAM (San Jacinto Corruption Recall Active Movement) has put the recall of its very own Gang of Four on this November's ballot. The issue is corruption. Link to this story by clicking here.

Rio Vista City Council Recall - California 2010. Those who support the recall of Jack Krebs, Janith Norman and Jan Vick are upset that these Councilmembers voted to increase the city's water and sewer rates. Click here.

Brentwood City Council Recall - California 2010. "An effort to recall Mayor Bob Taylor and other members of the Brentwood City Council began in October 2009 ..." The issue is the seizure of the City's main park for use by developers. Click here.

Mission Viejo City Council Recall - California 2010. Lance MacLean allowed expenditures in the city to exceed revenues by more than $11 million. Supported a 100% pay increase for City Council members. Click here.

Montebello City Council Recall - California 2010. Kathy Salazar and Robert Urteaga were just successfully recalled. They were targeted because of a July 2008 vote to award an exclusive no-bid 15-year garbage removal contract to Athens Services. Click here.

It's certainly nice to know that we have some meaningful options.

http://sierramadretattler.blogspot.com

85 comments:

  1. I honestly believed that we should give the council a chance to represent the interests of everyone in the city. I also believed that Josh "where's the keg" Moran and that nice lady Nancy Walsh would try to bring peace to the town. Those beliefs, unfortunately, were naive. Even the gentleman who runs the News Net agrees that the council is off the rails.

    The truth is that we will likely have to return to the ballot box with initiatives and/or recall petitions. Regardless of whether or not those prove successful, they will force Joe and John to play defense during the remaining years of their terms. Chaos is preferable to an ordered march toward condo canyon.

    Please tell me where to sign.

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  2. Light the torches and sharpen the pitchforksAugust 12, 2010 at 7:44 AM

    You are partially right 7:18 am. But I must say you and all of our fellow citizens in Sierra Madre should have seen this coming. Buchanan in his first go around on the City Council told everyone City Council has a mandate to dispense justice and control in this town. Mosca says the same damn thing. If we want to dislodge them from under their slimy rocks we will have to get our neighbors to help us. Good luck to all of us..

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  3. Two things:
    - We've been forced into a corner.
    - What do we have to lose?

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  4. Just a repeat from yesterday blog:

    RECALL!!!!

    There is a way to throw the bums out many cities are doing it now>>>Sierra Madre would need about 1900 signatures-25%(percent of approximately 7600 registered voters) we got 1748 just on the water protest. I think that is do able after this water rate fiasco. Door to door Sierra Madre residents will rally to save this town!!!
    The recall process below:

    RECALL Process WEBSITE:
    http://www.sos.ca.gov/elections/recall.pdf

    D. CIRCULATION OF PETITION
    1. Who Can Circulate
    The recall petition can be circulated only by registered voters in the
    jurisdiction who are qualified to vote for the officer sought to be
    recalled. (§§322, 11045)
    2. Who Can Sign the Petition
    The recall petition can only be signed by registered voters who are
    qualified to vote for the officer sought to be recalled.(§§322, 11045)
    If a local jurisidiction includes portions of more than one county,
    each section of the petition must include the name of the county in
    which it is circulated, and only registered voters of that county may
    sign that section of the petition. (§11047)
    3. Withdrawal of Signatures
    Any voter may withdraw his or her signature from the recall petition
    upon filing a written request with the appropriate elections official
    prior to the day the petition section on which the signature appears
    is filed. (§§103, 11303)
    E. The number of signatures required TO QUALIFY A PARTICULAR
    RECALL IS AS FOLLOWS:
    1. If an officer of a city, county, school district, county board of
    education, or resident voting district is sought to be recalled, the
    number of signatures must be equal in number to not less than the
    following percent of registered voters in the electoral jurisdiction:
    (a) Thirty percent if the registration is less than 1,000.
    (b) Twenty-five percent if the registration is less than 10,000 but
    at least 1,000.
    (c) Twenty percent if the registration is less than 50,000 but at
    least 10,000.
    (d) Fifteen percent if the registration is less than 100,000 but at
    least 50,000.
    (e) Ten percent if the registration is 100,000 or above8.
    8The number of registered voters is calculated as of the time of the last report of
    registration by the county elections official to the Secretary of State

    F. FILING OF PETITION - DEADLINE
    After approval by the elections official, proponents must submit to the
    elections official, during normal business hours as posted, a petition with
    the requisite number of signatures within:
    1. 40 days if the electoral jurisdiction has less than 1,000 registered
    voters.
    2. 60 days if the electoral jurisdiction has less than 5,000 registered
    voters but at least 1,000.
    3. 90 days if the electoral jurisdiction has less than 10,000 registered
    voters but at least 5,000.
    4. 120 days if the electoral jurisdiction has less than 50,000 registered
    voters but at least 10,000.
    elections official

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  5. Would it be possible for MacGillivray to request at the dais during a meeting that the people raise up and petition?

    They can't recall MacGillivray or Buchanan for that matter, because they have less than 2 more years to go. I'm pretty sure that is the law?

    If MacGillivray tells the residents what is happening to our town....her town.......and they choose not to listen, then we deserve what we get, which will be horrifying.

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  6. Two things...

    Politcal suicide for MacGillivray to call for a recall from the dais and an end to all of our hopes and dreams for representation. The Bobblehead council is hoping to force MacGillivray's resignation from office by their brutish tactics.

    Remember getting a recall petition started, signed by registered voters and on the ballot is only a part of the task. Getting the voters to the polls and voting in favor of the recall is a Herculean feat given the 50%-50% split on almost any issue in town.

    Brown Act violations because the Bobbleheads bobble in unison won't get it for most of the residents.

    The last thing I remember as having bilateral support was the sharp iron fences that gutted the deers who were eating the flowers in the chiropractors garden.

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  7. Get your walking shoes readyAugust 12, 2010 at 9:16 AM

    The fact that Buchanan has less than two years in office, that's he'll have no "legacy" after eight years in office, and that the Tattler dogs his every idjit meaningless sleep inducing pronouncement is why he's becoming so brazen in his opposition to MaryAnn. It's certain that the large contingent of the Bobblehead Council cheering section in the audience were there to be supportive of the coup d'etat of the GPSC. And Mosca's quiet conversation with Levin at the dais? He wanted to know if he could appoint the five new members to the GPSC right then and there. Sandy's answer? It wasn't on the Agenda. Save September 14th as the date to pack the Council Chamber. We've got a city to save!!!

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  8. MacGillivray wouldn't call for a recall.
    However, a call for the folks to petition for the other options may be the prudent way to go!
    Kurt and Don started Measure V, while they were the two minority sitting councilmembers, and they WON their fight.

    My fondest memory is the picture of Kurt Zimmerman and Kevin Dunn jumping in the air at City Hall, fists in the air, as they saw the final vote for Measure V come in.
    This in contrast to John Buchanan over at a No on V "victory" party, thinking they had won the No vote, fist in the air, celebrating.....HOLD ON A MINUET- Buchanan.....that was just the highly "questionable" absentees that came in.
    When precinct 3 and 4 came in....the YES votes prevailed. Even though Buchanan, Doyle, Mosca and company tried to have a recount, Measure V still prevailed.
    The efforts of Watts, Zimmerman,Dunn and SMRRD
    won under unbelievable odds. $170,000 + lies and shinanigans and the people saw through it.


    We need to fight again, Sierra Madre.
    Get the Tattler message out to everyone and anyone you can.
    Copy off copies of articles, spread them around to friends and neighbors. Organize groups to spread our message. Stand in Kersting court or other areas in town with large signs to get our message out to everyone.
    We don't have the massive funds that the BIA and the CAR and the crooked politians who support development will donate against us.
    However, we can still do it, as we proved in 2007.
    As we proved with our water-rate protest, which the city CHEATED us out of. CHEATED our city clerk, Nancy Shollenberger and cheated WE, THE PEOPLE.

    Old Kentucky challenges every loving soul reading this to spread our message and stand with us and fight!

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  9. People do not forget the truth.August 12, 2010 at 9:30 AM

    COMMUNICATION: must be door to door as was done in the water rate hike and needs more people to get out. Must be ORGANIZED and people actually have to knock on doors and have 3 facts per person, which is a slam dunk.
    FACTS PRESENTED: Carry laptops with CD of Denise explaining so graciously her plans to go door to door to bring inclusion and the CC response, etc...and other lovely sound bites.
    PROTEST: Again at Kersting Court taking away our rights as citizens to maintain our quality of life by undoing the GENERAL PLAN.

    The voting booth is a hell hole. We are too illiterate and it was already proven that dead people send in the ballot. Sierra Madre is Sierra Apathy. People are tired of this and rather praise the CC and pretend they are all good boys and girls.

    This time let's get it right.

    They have it comin.........

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  10. EXTRA! EXTRA! Watch for Susan's swiftboat assault on the GPSC in Sunday's edition of the Looney Toons Views Adjudicated News and Fish Wrap. Guaranteed to be a propagandist piece par excellence.

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  11. Remember...steady and constant pressure at the speakers' podium can gnaw through the toughest political hide.

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  12. I hear Susan was on the phone with City Hall all day yesterday getting some "research" for her attacks this week.

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  13. Josh treats women as if they were his chicks in a bar brawl and he were breaking up.

    Ever notice his disrespect towards MaryAnn and then Barbara Lee.

    Obviously not the first women he minimizes. Not the last until he is held accountable. Unfortunately, he will only get worse.

    This is our City Councilman/boy/child/
    And who in town does he represent?

    Boys?. Peter Pans?

    "Iron John" by Robert Bly

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  14. Marriage wise Joshie is a two time loser. You can only wonder what his problem is.

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  15. I've heard a lot of things coming from the Sierra Madre Council in the 30 plus years I've been following Sierra Madre politics, however never have I heard such personal attacks as I've heard from Josh Moran. His disrespect of MaryAnn Macgillivray is appalling, as well as his attacks on the members of the GPU Committee. He is an embarrassment. Kudo's to MaryAnn for not taking the bait. He's hoping for an uncivil moment when it's he that is being uncivil -- as Mosca was last year. The torch has been passed.

    As for recall? Too soon. No proof of Brown Act violations, Henderson is still beating her vindictive drum,(and people are believing her) and Mosca's adoring fans are still adoring for now -- they have to see his mean side.

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  16. I think what people are going to see is that after two months of water outreach the Council will decide to go with an increase just a percentage point or two less than the original boondoggle and call it "having listened to the people". New bills going out in October and November? Isn't that what Karen said? My money says they'll be prepared with the new rate.

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  17. Susan is going to be challenged with her lies and hate. Too many people are on to her now. Especially the ones who signed the petition.

    Many shop owners have respect Denise.

    They watch the Meetings.

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  18. On the heels of the water rate increase will be the bond issue for the streets. Mosca is intent on bankrupting the town. To what end? a bankrupt Sierra Madre will be most amenable to takeover by Arcadia - a natural fit, so to speak. Arcadia gets the water, Sierra Madre famileies get to send their children to Arcadia schools - what could be more natural? Mosca will run for political office and Sierra Madre will be a neighborhood rather than an incorporated town. Via Con Dios, as they say...

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  19. Really disturbed to hear a resident address the City Council and claim she "trusted the Council implicitly."

    Wonder what she'll say after she gets a much, much higher water bill next year.

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  20. This City Council is about as civil as a nest of rattlesnakes. Talk about broken campaign promises.

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  21. Josh Moran is the "spawn of Satan".
    Nancy Walsh is a mean-spirited old bat.
    Joe Mosca is a "corruptocrat" sleazy politician.
    John Buchanan is a corruptocrat sleazy politician.

    MaryAnn is a promise keeping genius who we should be more than thankful she stays on that horrible council of corruptocrats!!!!!!!!!!!!!

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  22. Evil lurks on the CCAugust 12, 2010 at 10:48 AM

    10:05 yes!!!! 10:00 Yes!! 9:49 yes!!
    Thank you!!

    Uncivil Josh.
    Mean and cruel and nasty Nancy.
    Neither knows compassion or empathy.

    Denise you are a better person than any of them and everyone in town knows this. The CC has weak and superficial excuses.

    Denise, you are a rare gem. We will not let them bury you alive.

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  23. The entire General Plan Committee are all rare gems.

    They are some of the finest citizens of this town.

    It's just heartbreaking to see what is being done to them. They have worked so hard for this community's future.

    The sight of Denise Delmar and Deb Sheridan leaving city hall the other night, after they were ignored and shot down by the gang of 4, almost broke my heart. The women were visibly shaken.

    Mosca, Moran, Buchanan and Walsh, you 4 people are mean and unfair.

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  24. Mosca seems to believe that this is not a democracy, and he can do whatever he wants and noone can do anything about it. He's well on the way to becoming our Richard Nixon.

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  25. What the council did to the general plan steering committee the other night was give a vote of no confidence.
    Because they could not say what they meant, it just has to stand as a general indictment of the five people on the committee, regardless of who they are.
    Is there a harder working, more efficient chair of a committee anywhere? The other committee members represent Sierra Madre's interests well, the developers as well as the preservationists. To say otherwise is to completely ignore who they are. So what is the real reason for the vote of no confidence?

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  26. what does this tell you?August 12, 2010 at 11:25 AM

    Chair Delmar offered that council the opportunity
    to involve every single person in Sierra Madre,
    and they turned her down.

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  27. Mosca's supporters are too invested in the illusion of who he is. They will not follow city business, because then they would have to admit he is a person of questionable character. If they were to give time and energy to investigate, they would have to go through a harsh period of psychological adjustment. For the most part they won't, any more than Susan Henderson's supporters will open their minds to the knowledge that she is a con artist. The illusions live because the facts are not examined.

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  28. channel 3 watcher when it's workingAugust 12, 2010 at 11:36 AM

    Denise Delmar was damned if she did, damned if she didn't.
    Make a big Americana party!
    OK, she planned that.
    Make something for the people too shy to come to public gatherings.
    OK she did that.
    But no we don't want togo to people's houses. Do not go to people's houses, keep it public.
    What?
    Oh, so Walsh Buchanan Mosca & Moran want SOME people involved, but not ALL people.
    Stinks.

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  29. The upside of Walsh's being on the council?
    Great quotes for the Tattler.

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  30. Buchanan and Mosca don't want to bring everyone into the general plan process. They want to keep everyone out. The big developers need them to set up a General Plan that works in their interests, not ours. Which is what these people are working very hard to do.

    When that turkey is cooked, we will not be the people invited to eat.

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  31. You miss the point! The Bobblehead Council WANTS the GPU Committee to fail! If it succeeds they have no reason to hire a consultant. Their plan has been - all along - to hire a consultant. I suspect they were as surprised as anyone to find Denise Delmar rise fully formed from the clam's shell. She is remarkable not only for her organizational skills, knowledge, and experience, but for her indefatiguable good nature. Denise Delmar is pure joy to behold once she takes to the podium.

    Bobbleheads! Beware! If you succeed in your plan to take the GPSC from Denise, look for her as a candidate for City Council at the next election! You know what? Let's just plan on taking out papers in January 2012. Denise Delmar for Sierra Madre City Council!

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  32. Joe sure was pushing "a planner" and that the committee should just stick to plain language and then bring in "a planner" and "legal language" This IGNORES the fact that A plan EXISTS. IT"S OUR PLAN AND IT EXISTS.

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  33. John Buchanan has said many times on the dias and off, that this is not a general plan "update" because there are too many technical requirements now . He wants a consultant to write it the way he wants it, and will not settle for anything less. Why are they trying to keep Danny out of the mix? The idea was to hire a "planner" to work in the department while Danny spent his time with the General Plan Update. Now, it has been turned around to hire a "planner" so Danny can spend his time in his department. Something fishy here.

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  34. Good point, Chris!
    A plan does exist. Just not the one that fits the BIA agenda.

    Sierra Madre! you have a city council who works for the BIA the CAR and the crooked pols.
    The same plan that is destroying nearly every community in California and most of the United States.

    It's very sad that we don't have a council majority who represents the majority of residents, not just a few greedy people or naive people or Joe "groupies".

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  35. Why beat around the bush. Buchanan wants the General Plan written to BIA/SCAG specifications. Which is why the people need to be kept out. It is the holiest of holies for the big money boys he sucks up to.

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  36. Yes, exactly right, 11:57

    Perhaps Danny Castro is too decent and honest for the gang of 4? That's what I think!
    Perhaps he was too helpful to the hard working and dedicated members of the Canyon Zoning Committee, another 5 highly QUALIFIED and highly HONEST canyon residents.
    They just didn't happen to agree with the sleazy developer types....Lambdin and the hideous Tim Hayden, who I believe now resides in his car up there.
    John Herrmann, Caroline Brown, Jim Monachino, Michael Howard and Sherry Robison are of the same quality as the General Plan Committee currently in place.

    They don't want Danny to help this GP committee.
    Why?

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  37. I like it. The Ark of the Council. Therein resides the General Plan, that none may see except the anointed ones.

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  38. The Sheriff's Dept posted Tim Hayden's former Holly Trail abode with a notice this week. It now is owned by Deutche Bank. Strangely enough it appears that water and power are bandited in from it to the 41 Vista Circle garage that has no sanitary connection or utilities. Look for this supporter to be appointed to the General Plan Steering Committee. One of Mosca's "key" supporters.

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  39. It is not too soon for recall per the state of Calfiornia. The local officials or council members only have to be in for 90 days..May , June, July the 90 days have passed. Look it up don't be fooled by the dirts that want to confuse you Sierra Madre you can recall them and they are doing it at alot of other california cities and succeeding. Out them for good and they will never blacken another unsuspecting community again. This is still America even though Joe, John, Nancy and Josh seem to think they are omnipotent and the residents have no rights. Yes we stopped the Downtown Specific Plan before when they were exposed and put in Measure V. So we don't have a newspaper on our side but we still have a tight knit community that talks to their neighbors and ferociously loves and will defend their Mayberry!!!

    Take them to the matresses!!!

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  40. YES!
    You're right 12:11.

    Hayden was in attendance at the infamous "Order of the Fly" (Mosca for Mayor) secret meeting at the Mosca/Bosse home last year.

    He is another adoring aging man who is a "mosca groupie". Pathetic.

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  41. 12:15, I share your anger.
    However, TIMING is everything, friend.
    Please be patient.....we have several options.
    We will give it our best thinking from our best thinkers.
    Whatever we choose to do, we must WIN.

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  42. I am a third generation Sierra Madre resident and extremely happy to be raising my children in the town that I love so much. I would like to know when the idea of development became so unappealing to everyone. You write that most people don't see value in having new retail/living space downtown, specifically at the old Howie's spot, but I do. I love Taylor's meats, but it would be nice to be able to do a little more shopping locally, and pretty much anything would be better than the mostly empty eyesore that is there now. I recently stumbled across this blog and maybe my comments are a little off topic, but I just wanted to say that there are some (probably more than you think) Sierra Madre residents who love this town and would welcome some development.

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  43. And that, 12:15 pm, is why we won the water rate increase protest! Think again. Just remember that lovely woman, Mrs. MacGillicuddy, who so "trusts the Council". And Laurie Cooper who will go to the "matresses" for any proposal the Council puts out there. Hardcore Sierra Madre seniors, civic organizations, and old time residents don't want to believe we're being duped by "our own" even though two of the Council have lived in Sierra Madre less than 10 years.

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  44. Amy G - nobody is against carefully considered growth. What many fear is the wholesale overdevelopment of large portions of the downtown area. If you need to see what I mean, visit Glendale or Pasadena. Everyone would welcome new construction that would improve the lives of those living here. But that sort of thing would not accomplish that. Thanks for posting!

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  45. Amy,
    I moved out of Arcadia because it was being over developed. That was 20 years ago.
    During Measure V, I was a petition carrier.
    Hundreds of people signed for Measure V...so our town wouldn't turn into Pasadena, Monrovia or Arcadia and most other places. It was on the ballot in 2007 and it was PASSED, by the people of this town.

    We are NOT AGAINST development, Amy.
    We are AGAINST OVER DEVELOPMENT, we don't want to live in "ant colonies", next to rail stations.

    Measure V WON, Amy, it WON, won in spite of out of town money in the amount of over $170,000 to defeat the people's wishes.
    It WON.

    We are trying to keep Sierra Madre small, that is why our homes here are more costly, that is why we paid more for them, that is why we want to live here.

    SMRRD who fought for Yes on Measure V stands for
    SIERRA MADRE RESIDENTS for RESPONSIBLE DEVELOPMENT. Key word here, Amy.......RESPONSIBLE.

    I work at the racetrack, Santa Anita, and all during Measure V, folks from Arcadia and other surrounding towns, told me "please don't let developers destroy Sierra Madre, it's such a nice little town".

    I hope you will reconsider your positionality on this issue. It's not in our favor.

    Our current city council.....ONLY ONE current sitting member had a YES ON V sign on her lawn.
    MaryAnn MacGillivray had our sign, I know because I got a phone call from someone on her staff who put in the order, I delivered and put up her sign right away, as I was proud she was supporting our cause. Now I'm very proud!
    Mosca and Buchanan had NO on V signs on their lawns.

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  46. August 12, 2010 12:46 pm post

    Truly you are right under Measure V (2-30-13 2 stories, 30 ft heighth , & 13 units per acre) ---Howies Mkt and the Skilled Nursing Facility and other projects could be developed nicely and with a profit and keep the ambience of this town. Only the greedy grabbers or certain investors would it not make enough money for because thier purpose is not to preserve this town but to make their money and go!

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  47. Amy: Please come to the City Council meetings and discover the truth for yourself. Take a ride down the train lines and look at the new apts and see all the empty buildings. Look at the mountains along the 134 and see all the homes built. Is that what you want for Sierra Madre? The developer does!!

    As for Howies, there are many people in town who wanted a condo built there with mixed use and underground parking. Is that what you would want for that corner. OVERCROWDING and IMBALANCED in our small and charming town???

    There are many people who moved here to invest-build-and take the money and run. How many are interested in making this village their HOME.

    Money makes people crazy. Keep Sierra Madre a jewel. Please attend the City Council on Sept 14. You may be enlightened.

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  48. It seems as though Amy is so like many Sierra Madrians who believe the mantra of the Big development crowd that we are all ANTI-development. I don't think there is one of us who thinks there should be no development in Sierra Madre. We'd love to see Montecito developed into a small area of shops, and, yes a small grocery store. But consider what would happen if Howies were to be developed as proposed, with shops and condos? The traffic and parking nightmare alone would keep people out of town completely. We'd like to see more people shopping downtown, not less.

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  49. Hayden seems like a lost person who was easily swayed by Joe like so many others. Joe knows who to brain-wash. The most insecure and the most illiterate.

    Emotional deceit.

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  50. I agree that any development in Sierra Madre should be done responsibly, and that much of our town's appeal is it quaintness. I am definitely not qualified to debate the merits of Measure V, nor am I here to do so, but if I remember correctly it was a close vote and it seems as if it still a divisive issue for many. It almost seems as our town has two political parties: the one that voted for measure V and the one that didn't. Old Kentucky- whether I agree with your position or not, I'm glad our town has so many people like you, who are willing to work for what they believe in.

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  51. Amy G:

    It feels good to a lot of people to be in the laps of any City Council.....that is until a citzen realizes that the Council does not give a ratzass about anyone except themselves and the builders and the people who put up the money to get them elected.

    There are many good people in politics in the world who do care about their city and country. It takes time to get to know them and follow their record. The current CC has a record and SM has a history of develoopment that goes way back.......please look into 1 Carter, Measure V, Deuxmaxias v. Henderson, and Stonehouse just to get yourself caught up a little bit. you owe it to yourself and your children.

    Evil lurks all over SM. Even your neighbor could be very involved in taking the money and running and you may not know it. People here are very quiet and scared to speak out. Thank you for speaking out. Welcome to the Tattler.

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  52. Hey, Kentucky at 12:46

    Don't forget Josh Moran, who didn't even live in Sierra Madre at the time, came to the podium to push against Measure V, pushed for the DSP and NO on V. I think he worked for Judy Webb Martin's "coven" at the time.
    Then, 3 years later the little liar is telling folks he supports Measure V? I don't think so.

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  53. The reason the Go4 talks up Measure V is it makes them sound slow growth. It's there "watch the birdie" trick. But once all the parts of the development agenda are in place, they will "regretfully" have to face up to the realities of running a town with a small tax base and do away with it. They'll promise untold riches in sales tax collections in exchange. A tax model that has failed dismally in so many other cities, btw.

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  54. Thanks, Amy. I am just one of many, many hard working volunteers here in Sierra Madre.

    Most of us are very nice people. Decent people.
    We love our families, our town and we love America. We value our freedom to live in places like Sierra Madre.

    However, if we are not watchful and informed, the dark side you are reading about in all the news stories, local, statewide and national will take control and all will be lost or very much "changed" and not for the better.
    I don't want that to happen and I know you don't either.

    Thanks for posting on the Tattler. Please visit often.

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  55. We have the town that we do today in part to the 1996 general plan.
    We need to defend it.
    According to the CA gov website about general plans,
    http://www.opr.ca.gov/planning/publications/General_Plan_Guidelines_2003.pdf
    there are only 2 parts that need to be updated, the housing element and the EIR.
    We did the housing element in the best Sacramento tradition, with $50,000 for Karen Warner.
    The EIR I heard a year or more ago was also budgeted for at $50,000.
    So another direction we could take is just to tell the council to BACK OFF and keep the 1996 plan as it is, warts and all, until a more qualified and more reasonable council is in place.
    And yeah, ok, SB375, AB32, so since SIERRA MADRE IS GREEN AND SUSTAINABLE AS IT IS NOW, we can add something that points that out.

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  56. It's a target for the Go4August 12, 2010 at 1:48 PM

    1:33, I beg to differ about the Go4 talking up Measure V. It's more like Joe & John get tight littlefaces and say 'Well it's the law" and don't think they don't resent their losses in that.
    Moran can be seen on Neuroblast arguing against Measure V, and Walsh made statements against it when she campaigned.

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  57. I like your comment 1:44, especially the part about just leaving the GP from '96 in place until we get a more qualified and fair council.

    I'm sure MaryAnn MacGillivray agrees with you. Just don't associate her with this current council. Gotta be an embarrassment.

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  58. Amy,

    Did you know that the owner of the Howie's market site submitted plans to build 70+ condos above newly constructed shops on the busiest corner of Sierra Madre?

    That property now might seem an eyesore to you and other residents, but its preferable to the re-development proposed, don't you think?

    Also, the reason that the Measure V vote was so close on election night was because the California Association of Realtors, the National Association of Realtors, the Building Industry Association and other pro-development interests spent over $170,000 on an advertising campaign that misled the voters.

    Also, most of the residents, which, I've spoken to who opposed Measure V, now admit that it was a good idea.

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  59. 70+ condos, underground parking under both Howie's and the public parking lot (which ws going to be sold to the developer), and a traffic signal at Sierra Madre Blvd and Baldwin; it was also going to require a variance because the west wall was to be built to the sidewalk; and not to forget FOUR STORIES high.

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  60. No one needs to doubt what the development plans for Sierra Madre were, or take anyone else's word for it.
    The library holds the documents at the reference desk. The DSP, Downtown Specific Plan, and the DSP EIR, the Downtown Specific Plan Environmental Impact Report.
    Remember that the DSP EIR took a fight to get released to the public. Mosca and Buchanan made a mighty effort to stop the release of that information.
    Anyone who cares about Sierra Madre should give that material a look.

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  61. I haven't noticed any pipes bursting lately. We past all that now?

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  62. unlike Bill Clinton, Josh Moran inhaled - probably a little too often given the mind slips and paranoid attacks he levels against those who freak him out

    obviously he's intimidated by strong women, intelligence or anyone who has their facts and comprhension of those facts in order

    he's definately living up to his rep as a party brat frat boy who despite his personal and professional failures, he determined to prove that you are wrong and he is right, regardless of the facts and despite what a majority of the people may want in the city

    Buchanan is in this only for himself and his employer So Cal Edision who will profit from Buchanan's hell bent agenda of cramming development down our collective throats

    Ms Walsh is the Gladys Cravis of the Council, except she's not funny

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  63. and 1:29, don't forget that Moran, despite not living in Sierra Madre and arguing against Measure V (because he was a realtor), the same dolt advocated for a boycott of businesses, including those in Sierra Madre just because those businesses advertised in a paper that provided a balanced view of Meaure V and he didn't like it

    I heard that during the election Moran denied making such a claim and the old dirt website is gone, but I know and several others know that Moran is a liar for him to deny that he called for a economic boycott of Sierra Madre businesses

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  64. The pipes bursting that's because over the last 30 years we have very little of it or almost none. The replacement of the downtown pipes with a larger circumference are onlu to facilitate the water flow needed for the 400 plus units that was proposed in the ,we thought buried Downtown Specific Plan, and the fire sprinklers that have to be added to all new development. this is not about failing infrastructure.

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  65. Amy, imagine Sierra Madre with a new 130 + condos in downtown and with a ordinance that allows other buildings in downtown to build up 2 - 3 additional stories with condos, that's what would have already been in place had it not been for the valiant efforts of citizens to stop or slow down the agenda of a handful of developers, Councilmembers and a real estate salesperson coalition.

    The problem with development in downtown is that there is not a rush or even a smidgen of interest of retailers, restaurants or whatever looking at Sierra Madre, otherwise we wouldn't have vacancay's left and right in downtown.

    What Mosca, Buchanan, Moran and Walsh want to do is just build something or have consultants tell us what we should allow to be built and then have it built and then what?

    It'll magically be rented?

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  66. Like I said previously I didn't come here for debate, but yes, I was aware about the plans for the site at Howies, maybe not the exact number of units or precise details but I had an idea of what was proposed there. And this is where it seems I disagree with some of you; I think it would be preferable to what is there now, an empty building. I hope this doesn't sound facetious but I also think we already need a traffic light at the corner of Baldwin and Sierra Madre Blvd, the poster at 2:51 mentioned that as one of the downfalls of the development, and I have heard that from others as well. That being said, I understand and respect that many other Sierra Madrians feel differently. Thanks for letting me share my views, and to those who suggest that I go to a council meeting and better learn what is going on with the city, I thinkI'll do just that.

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  67. I should add that you are all right in saying that empty buildings are not what anyone wants, and I have seen the empty spaces all over Pasadena and other town so the poster at 3:45, your point is very well taken.

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  68. One of the elements in the vigorous smear campaign that has gone on against slow growth advocates is to equate slow growth with no growth.
    Why does "no growth" even come up?
    Who in their right minds would want nothing at all to grow?
    So 'Be against no growth' is a fiction.

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  69. Amen Sir Eric:
    "The destruction of an already sitting committee merely because those serving on it had the wrong lawn signs in their yards last April is a level of political vindictiveness never before seen in Sierra Madre."

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  70. Well 4:35, as my uncle the farmer used to say: "It truly is a beautiful farm son, but you need to know that a lot of it is cabbage."

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  71. In reply to Amy in regards to traffic light at Baldwin and Sierra Madre Blvd.

    I am totally opposed to a light at this corner. Reasons.

    1. We have 4 nearby elementary schools, St. Rita's, Bethany,Goodin, Sierra Madre Elementary.
    Kids on skate boards, walking, running, etc.....

    2. The Blind School people.

    I don't want cars trying to race to beat a yellow light and hit a child or a blind person.

    Sierra Madre has a maximum population now.
    We will be very hard pressed and over taxed to add hundreds of more people living downtown.
    However, that won't happen for at least a decade, because.....the United States of America and the World are in DEFLATION. It will not improve, for a long time. There just isn't enough production/jobs anymore. We will go that way of Japan, in a two decade deflation.
    They don't have enough younger population to fill the work force.
    So, Amy, these over built "ant colonies" will be empty, just like they are in Monrovia.
    So, perhaps the development council will make the empty buildings a Section 8. That's what they have had to do in Monrovia.
    Is that what you really want?

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  72. That three hundred thousand dollars for a general plan general consultant, not the housing element, not the eir, would be nice as dedicated to the paramedics.
    Yep, we could do that.

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  73. The pro-development crowd has to work very, very hard on public relations, because in so many towns all over the country, the traffic, density, strain and drain on resources, have made residents unhappy. There is a lot of regret anywhere that over-development has taken place.
    So developers are now always on the defensive.

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  74. Old K, CLIMB stands for Center for Living Independence for the Multi-Handicapped Blind, so those people live there as well as learn there.
    It'll be interesting to see the impact on them when the parking demands for Dr. Sami's expansion and the three restaurants across the street start.

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  75. Unfortunately developers should be on the defensive.
    Look at the hillsides.
    Why was that beautiful land ripped up for mansions?
    Surely there are plenty of places for multi-millionaires to live.
    Not so many for wildlife.

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  76. 1:44, excellent idea.
    Let's keep the 1996 GP, with that new housing element, a new EIR, and a little chapter on how green we are.

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  77. Old Kentucky,
    your reasons for not wanting a stop signal are the exact same reasons I thought one might be necessary. I have no idea what is actually safer (considering my ignorance I probably should never have brought it up), but I always try to avoid that intersection, especially right after school lets out because it always seems so chaotic and unsafe to me. As far as the development downtown I also agree that right now would not be a good time for new retail/living all I am saying is that I am not opposed to the idea.

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  78. If you think thay corner is chaotic now Amy, wait'll the Mayberry Mafia drops in a couple hundred condos and a few chain retailers.

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  79. Howies (if that owners plan is allowed to be built) will be 72 units residential over retail with the one of the last public owned parking lots included and where is that traffic going to spew out of. Can you imagine the congestion not to mentioned the wonderful mountain vista that will be blocked. That is part of Sierra Madre's uniquiness .too. So Amy let's develop Howies to Measure V standards (2 stories 30 feet and 13 units per acre ...seems as tho you did not live here when all the fight to protect Sierra Madre was going on. Sierra Madres value lies in it's being a small town (Our Mayberry). I would suppose that is why Amy moved into this small town. And regarding the stop lights ...did you know Sierra Madre is famous for not having any stop lights. And did you know that is why your property is so valuable up here. Sierra Madre is the one City that devalues less than any other city in the foothills. Stayed higher in the early nineties when property values went down and has now in this down turned economy has not had the decline as other cities. But if you want stop lights you can move to Pasadena, Monrovia etc

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  80. When we were fighting for Yes on V....a group of mothers of school children called me.
    This was their concern, they convinced me that it would be a problem.
    When the traffic is heavy (work hour), it is a few extra minuet wait, but this has never been a serious issue with most people, and the people it is,like yourself and actually me, avoid SM and Baldwin during these hours.
    People don't like traffic lights in Sierra Madre. I held your view, Amy, until those Moms convinced me of their real fears.
    I have to be against it.

    I mentioned I worked at Santa Anita, I know a lot of people who live in Arcadia and Monrovia.
    Many of them come to Sierra Madre because of the small town atmosphere, they come often.
    They visit Beantown, Starbucks, The Only Place in Town, Lucky Baldwins and the other nice little restaurants and shops here in town.
    These people come here often. They spend their money, and they all have told me, they will not be visiting Sierra Madre if it turns into Arcadia and Monrovia. Parking here is already an issue. We don't need more residents downtown taking up parking spaces. It's going to hurt the good business places downtown.

    Like these other posters have been saying....there are plenty more good arguments against BIG DEVELOPMENT than for it. It's pretty simple.

    OLD KENTUCKY'S FREE FINANCIAL ADVICE:
    The economy is in MAJOR DEFLATION, it will continue. This has not happened in the U.S. before, hold your cash.....it will increase more than stocks in the next decade.
    Do not invest in speculative development. You are highly likely to loose your bankroll.
    Of course for those of you who have money to throw away.....please come to Santa Anita and bet in the same mutual pools Old Kentucky bets in, I need your $$$$$$$$. Better to give it to me than fly by night developers! LOL

    Have a great evening everyone.

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  81. One more reason for no stoplights:
    it would require all of the slanted parking spaces to be eliminated or reformed.
    They wouldn't work with a line of cars waiting for a light change.

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  82. Wonder who Amy G. was talking to when posting the following:
    "I just wanted to say that there are some (probably more than you think) Sierra Madre residents who love this town and would welcome some development."
    More than who thinks? They won the last election.
    On Measure V:
    "but if I remember correctly it was a close vote and it seems as if it still a divisive issue for many."
    Almost very vote in Sierra Madre is close. It's a small town. One of the more infamous ones: Building Industry Association attorney Bart Doyle beat long time resident Lee Cline for a council seat by SEVEN votes.
    Attending city councl meetings:
    "to those who suggest that I go to a council meeting and better learn what is going on with the city, I thinkI'll do just that."
    Be sure to make comments from the podium.
    "I also agree that right now would not be a good time for new retail/living all I am saying is that I am not opposed to the idea."
    Which form of the "idea"?

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  83. I had to reject an "Amy" post last night. The language was ugly and targeted one poster in particular. It was a troll after all. My apologies. Even The Mod gets fooled once in a while.

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  84. Mod, no doubt s/he slipped up after a few drinks, huh?

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  85. Liquor has been the downfall of many a dirt.

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