“From city halls to county courthouses, from the State house to the White House – bureaucrats control our lives. Public servants who often try to become our masters. People whose salaries we pay, but what goods and services do we get? On Sierra Wave’s Bureaucrat Beat, we’ll report what they’re up to.”
The characters on the NBC TV series, “Grimm” are not exactly what you would call bureaucratic. Yikes! Talk about hair raisers. From the police captain who appears to be the Dark Lord to the hairy array of creatures who one minute look like fairly normal humans and the next, wow, they morph into “Wesen”, German for creatures. You may have seen some of them at Vons.
Blutbaden (part-wolf), Hexenbiest (witch-like), Jagerbar (bear-like). You get the picture. Then, there’s the Grimm, himself, a quite handsome police detective, who sees all the dark sides of humans and “handles” them.
We in the Bureaucrat Beat Newsroom have our DVR’s set for “Grimm”. We’re picking up clues on the animalistic. After all, it is the wild side that gets us in trouble and creates bureaucratic controls. If we were, well, more human, we might not need all these rules to keep us well-behaved darlings.
Couldn’t believe the rat-a-tat of comments on our website over distracted driver month! Yikes. Talk about hitting a nerve! Some demanded that we remain free to whip out our cell phones or do whatever, whenever we like, at 65 miles per hour. As CHP Captain Andrea Witmer told the Bishop City Council – when she learned to fly a plane, she concentrated on flying. When you’re in a car, she said, concentrate on driving. But, then, we humans sometimes slide into a slippery state of mind and wake up in a sticky wicket.
Hey, that’s what happened on Wall St. Those deal-doers slipped into the nether world of obscenely expanding profits and never came out until it all fell down. Rules. Regulations.
What? Would you prefer living in China where mothers of newborns are so afraid of the content of baby formula that they insist on buying American products?? No rules. No regulations. Except, of course, the kind that put political rebels in Chinese prison.
The Los Angeles Department of Water and Power has to quit trying to kid us. They like to say that their policy is “not to get all the water they can get.” But, come on. We all know that’s the policy, and in fact, DWP would probably be derelict in its duty not to get all the water it can get. Just knock off the phony stuff. Now, they’re saying their intent is not to get all of Mammoth’s water. Oh, really, then why did they file a suit with that as the endgame? Oh, okay. I guess we could say you don’t really want Mammoth’s water. You just want the water district to find you another source and pay for it – forever! It would cost $2 million a year, roughly. Hey, maybe MLLA and LADWP have
been talking. They think it’s in vogue to squeeze the resort town until millions fall out.
Upon hearing of LADWP’s insistence that they own Mammoth’s water, John Heston, Jr. (son or our esteemed founder) said, “If I make a snowman, do I have to check with DWP first?” Go Heston! He’s retired Green Beret. Not to be messed with.
Our website is fun. The comment section – a real lesson in human relations and far out opinions. Also fun is the fact that people from all over join in the virtual community. Remember Paul Morrisson? He was the Inyo County Administrator in the 80s and also an assistant to former Administrator Brent Wallace who recently died. Morrisson thought we had gone soft on news until he read Bureaucrat Beat.
Paul moved to Banning after he retired, lives in a gated community, plays golf, travels (all over the world) with his partner, Barbara. He still visits the Eastern Sierra. Morrisson said he does not “miss county government, but I do miss all my county government friends,” he said. Morrisson occasionally reads agendas and minutes of Board of Supervisor meetings, and, yes, the same issues and problems continue through the years – unresolved. He noted that 25 years ago Inyo County wanted to build a county office center in Bishop. The beat goes on.
Finally, poor Tombstone, Arizona. A news article shared by one of our readers says the Forest Service has denied the town the right to fix its water system, severely damaged by the massive Monument wildfire last year. The Forest Service says no heavy equipment in a wilderness area even though Tombstone established its water rights way before the Wilderness Act. Have the Forest Service and DWP been hobnobbing?
Bureaucrats, unfamiliar with the shoot-out at OK Corral, now face a lawsuit from the Goldwater Institute which said the “federal bureaucrats are refusing to allow Tombstone to unearth its springs and restore its waterlines unless they jump through a lengthy permitting process that will require the city to use horses and hand tools to remove boulders the size of Volkswagens.” The saddest story of all – when bureaucracy trumps common sense.
With that, this is Benett Kessler signing off for Bureaucrat Beat where we await your words on our lives in the Eastern Sierra and beyond.