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I had not heard that my house has been declared blighted by the City Council. That may be an assumption made because there was a picture of my property as an example of a location where one of the conditions described as blight exists.
That condition may very well be the fence along my property line which is leaning downhill due to the city road cut being left to steep for stability. if some of those funds could be used to shore up that road cut it would alleviate that particular "blight condition".
So here is a compromise solution. reduce the minimum term for unregulated rentals from 30 days to 2 weeks.
And while the particularly avaricious owners may bemoan the theoretical lost income potential, the reality is that many vacation rentals are occupied only 7 to 14 days a month anyway, as two or three day weekend based rentals are most common.
One will almost always have a better experience as a property owner with guests who stay for a period of weeks. For one thing, they will be cleaning up after themselves to a far greater degree than weekend guests.
There is a legal option currently available to those who wish to rent their homes to vacationers. It simply requires that the term of the contract not be less than 30 days. No special use or other permits are necessary.
At the rates vacation renters will pay, an occupancy of 7 to 14 days in a 30 day period is not a bad return on investment, and you have plenty of time to clean and prep for the next guest.
Interestingly, if you remain 30 days in Colorado you are considered to have taken residence and are required to change your drivers license and vehicle registration. But let's not start enforcing that one, then all those seasonal people would also be eligible to vote!
But now that I've broached the subject of selective enforcement, can we please discard the blatantly discriminatory policy of complaint based enforcement, and simply repeal laws we are not willing to enforce consistently? Applicable at all levels of government!
Sadly it is true, the interpretations have too often given the government far more authority that most reasonable people would have agreed was appropriate.
This is what the founders (and leaders of every generation since) warned about. Any government, by its very nature, will tend to seek greater powers, and since it has substantial power to begin with, it will generally be successful in that effort. During the ratification debates, and especially in the Federalist, the case was often made that the Constitution would be effective in helping to curb this tendency. However it was also emphasized that a vigilant electorate, promptly removing from office those who would expand the powers of government, would also be essential to successful limitation.
In fact the expansions of government power were usually asked for by the voters or lobbyists. In nearly every instance it was for some worthy cause to benefit the people, canals and railroads, trust busting, relief from economic and natural disasters, protection of the environment. Many great purposes were thus advanced, bot all to often the enormous power given was abused, and it was almost never rescinded.
Few will disagree that it now has reached a point far beyond any reasonable measure, although most will favor retaining broad authority in some specific areas that conform with their personal political philosophy while calling for reductions on other areas.
It is so far gone now, as courts and executive actions have become the most active in reassigning authority, that is is unlikely to be brought back into balance by simply electing differently oriented representatives. A constitutional crisis is ongoing, and may well be only solvable, if at all, by a constitutional convention that determinedly reverses the excessive accumulation of powers.
Such a convention is described in article V of the Constitution, and many states (37 last I remember) have now officially entered the debate of whether to convene this convention. If it does advance, and actually attempt to take powers away from the federal government, it will be the most significant such event since Washington declined to keep the Presidency for life.
More information on this fascinating possibility is at http://www.conventionofstates.com/
OK, just the lines then.
The powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the States, are reserved to the States respectively, or to the people.
Dan, you're close about the first amendment as far as you went but missed the more important half "or prohibiting the free exercise thereof".
My selection of quotes deliberately avoided those many which went much further into specific religious establishments.. The certainty is that the nation was founded on principals that are also professed by Christianity, which lead many to deem it a Christian nation. However many of these principals are not exclusive to any religion, but are shared to some extent by most. Some of them are:
*that there is a clear difference between good and its opposite
that being a good person is of the highest importance, a sacred duty
that human dignity is worthy of protection and advancement
that the care of other creatures is ennobles the caregiver
that gratitude for the bounty of creation is due and necessary to righteous living*
“That religion, or the duty which we owe to our Creator, and the manner of discharging it, can be directed only by reason and conviction, not by force or violence; and therefore all men are equally entitled to the free exercise of religion, according to the dictates of conscience; and that it is the mutual duty of all to practice Christian forbearance, love, and charity towards each other.”
~Founding Father George Mason, Virginia Bill of Rights, 1776
Reference to the nation as Christian was important to many authors, though many others, notably Washington, went to some great lengths to assure non-Christians that religious freedom included their practices.
“If I could conceive that the general government might ever be so administered as to render the liberty of conscience insecure, I beg you will be persuaded, that no one would be more zealous than myself to establish effectual barriers against the horrors of spiritual tyranny, and every species of religious persecution.”
~Founding Father George Washington, letter to the United Baptist Chamber of Virginia, May 1789
Most were concerned that one sect or denomination of Christianity not be given preference over another. For quite some time there still existed an unofficial prejudice against the Church of Rome, now called the Catholics, as having been the state established church for centuries before the reformation and subsequent establishment of Protestant sects as state churches.
This reveals the crux of the matter, that there was a distinction to be made between Religion and Churches. Religion was noted as indispensable for morality, and morality for self governance. But it was up to the individual to determine what form his relationship with the Creator would take.
It is worthy of note within the context of the article preceding this thread, that frequent or habitual intoxication was regarded as among the most severe of moral failings. It is clearly the cause of the greater portion of human misery, rivaled only by oppressive governments.
Thank you Russell
Eric, limited government is the basis of the constitution. The document describes what the Federal government may do. Then the bill of rights describes what the government may not do. Number ten is quite explicit in stating that anything not specifically allowed is essentially prohibited to the government, and reserved to the States and the People.
Clearly, not every one of the founding principals of the nation described by the Steamboat Institute are specified in the Constitution, but they are implied, and specified elsewhere in the writings of the Founders and the actions of the People.
For instance, a socialism is not prohibited per se, but the authority to nationalize industry is not given. The protests by the populace over taxes lead to Shays rebellion and the Whiskey rebellion.
As for Rights and Responsibilities, many of the founders wrote extensively about those, although it was often described more in terms of moral conduct, usually with the reverence for religious principals as the basis.To not govern oneself by right principals was to neglect one's responsibilities. Below are just a few examples of hundreds that can be found immediately with the simplest search.
(And while is has become popular to disparage traditional religious principals as modern discoveries reveal that many ancient stories from the Bible are just that - explanation of natural forces, mankind's relationship with the Universe, and basis for social contract by ancient peoples - a close examination of the writings of many of the founders reveal a personal belief system little different from the New Age "Love is the Power of Life" philosophy. They simply remained willing to respect the traditional basis as well).
"Only a virtuous people are capable of freedom. As nations become corrupt and vicious, they have more need of masters."
- Benjamin Franklin
"Of all the dispositions and habits which lead to political prosperity,religion and morality are indispensable supports..." George Washington
"We have no government armed with power capable of contending with human passions unbridled by morality and religion. Avarice, ambition, revenge, or gallantry, would break the strongest cords of our Constitution as a whale goes through a net. Our Constitution was made only for a moral and religious people. It is wholly inadequate for the government of any other."
- John Adams
"A nation, as a society, forms a moral person, and every member of it is personally responsible for his society." --Thomas Jefferson
"We have staked the future of all of our political institutions upon the capacity of mankind for self-government, upon the capacity of each and all of us to govern ourselves, to control ourselves, to sustain ourselves according to the Ten Commandments of God."
- James Madison,
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