MAILBAG: City view policies promote some disputes

Editor’s note: The following were written in response to Chasing Down the Muse, “What about the right to a view?" March 20.

Like you, we have our view severely impacted by trees and hedges.

I am frustrated that the city makes it difficult to impossible to improve your home with unbelievable restrictions but has no restrictions on trees "” and no effective restriction on hedges. To attempt to “enforce" the hedge ordinance you have to spend hundreds of dollars and take a highly adversarial stance with a neighbor who you do not really want to fight with.

I believe that there should be a simple and inexpensive administrative procedure where there are clear view rules and an administrative person can look at a situation and make a determination without the adversarial fighting between neighbors "” or with people far away.



Laguna Beach


Issues over views pre-date humanity


The age-old tug of war between “tree will" and “view will" so vividly portrayed by Catharine Cooper in her provocative commentary has not only a history but a prehistory as well.

Don’t Lagunans, like people everywhere, love trees because their evolutionary ancestors lived in trees and we are still homesick?

The race only became fully human when some of us, weary of swinging, came down from the trees and started throwing rocks at those whose trees were blocking the beautiful ocean view from our beachfront cave.


Laguna Beach


Federal progress on medical marijuana

Speaking at a press conference Feb. 25 with Drug Enforcement Agency Administrator Michele Leonhart, U.S. Atty. General Eric Holder told reporters that ending federal marijuana raids is “is now American policy."


This came in response to DEA raids carried out by the Bush administration.

In response to a question about DEA raids at medical marijuana facilities in California, including Laguna Beach, Holder said, “What the president said during the campaign is consistent with what we will be doing here in law enforcement. He was my boss in the campaign. He is my boss now. What he said in the campaign is now American policy."

Medical marijuana refers to the use of cannabis "” marijuana "” as a herbal therapy. In China it’s believed its been used as a medicine for 4,000 years.

Medical marijuana is available either in herbal or synthetic form in Austria, Belgium, Canada, Finland, Israel, Spain, the Netherlands and 13 of the United States.


Laguna Beach


AIG should pay price for misusing bonuses


The lurid AIG “performance bonuses" should have been renegotiated by the board of directors in view of economic conditions affecting the company’s financial viability.

This boardroom matter that was mishandled there is being mishandled again in Congress through a proposed punitive tax on bonuses "” a measure that puts an unnecessary and terrible stigma on all bonuses.

AIG has gone a very long way toward creating worldwide economic chaos. Their current arrogance and stupidity and string of bad decisions is unforgivable.

The penalty should be removal of the board of directors to change the direction of the present AIG culture.

AIG has poisoned the water in the well of performance bonuses and compensation that drives Americans to achieve to a higher level.

Bonuses were never intended to be awarded for mediocrity or failure, or to be routinely awarded as an incentive to employment retention.

They were reserved for rewarding performance exceeding all expectations.

Better-guided businesses should learn from AIG’s costly mistakes and restore some measure of respectability to corporate compensation through payment of honestly earned “performance bonuses.”


Laguna Beach


There is little help for veterans in need

I am a disabled veteran and I’ll always be proud to be a United States Marine. How about us? How about the guys coming home to ridiculous grocery prices? How about the fact that my disabled vet/POW pass is honored by the state but is not honored at the city or county parks?

On top of that, I’m dealt with in a curt, condescending way.

I called six county offices and [only] one bothered to call me back. I mean, $25 to $50 a night for camping in my own county?

I live on an amount that is 50% below the poverty level.

I have not seen so much as a mention of what vets face in our own communities after being honorably discharged from active duty.

Also, with the total absence of veterans’ housing in Orange County, I feel “thrown away." The police that I’ve dealt with on so many occasions have been respectful, understanding, compassionate and nothing short of wonderful.

I salute the police who maintain some semblance of order here. And you know what? A lot of them are ex-Marines.


Laguna Woods