[Home]  [Headlines]  [Latest Articles]  [Latest Comments]  [Post]  [Mail]  [Sign-in]  [Setup]  [Help]  [Register] 

Son Volt’s "Union" Joins in the Anti-Trump Clamor

Rep. Elise Stefanik Discusses Schemes, Ploys and Manipulative Games of Adam Schiff…

Sacré Bleu! Trump-Basher Pierre Delecto’s Approval Rating is Now Underwater in Utah

HERE WE GO: SchiffÂ’s Star Witness Who Met with Staffers Claims Trump Quid Pro Quo

Out-Of-Control Pelosi & Schiff Ban Republicans From Viewing Transcripts Of ‘Secret’ Impeachment Hearings Says Report

Texas: Jury Rules Against Dad Fighting 7-Year-Old Son’s Gender Transition

Male-to-female professor wins women’s cycling championship again, taunts female critics

Trans Activists Force Procter & Gamble To Remove Female Venus Symbol From Sanitary Pads Packaging

Senate Leader McConnell Rebuffs President Trump – Introduces Resolution To Keep US Troops In Syria

Mitch McConnell Says He Will Sit Down with Chuck Schumer to Discuss Impeachment Proceedings

Trump defends Gabbard in Clinton spat, says she's no agent

What if the Police Don’t Identify Themselves?

WATCH: SWAT Wakes Up Disoriented Homeless Man, Execute Him for Reaching for His Waistband

https://futurism.com/the-byte/us-army-tom-delonge-ufo-research

Officer Who Shot Atatiana Jefferson Wasn't Asked to Do Wellness Check Despite Neighbor's Request

Ready to Pay $30,000 for Sharing a Photo Online? The House of Representatives Thinks You Are

The Pathocracy of the Deep State: Tyranny at the Hands of a Psychopathic Government

Hillary telling friends: If I thought there was an opening in the primary, I’d consider jumping in

AGW Escalation

Stockholm Syndrome

The IRS Admits it is Targeting the Poor Because it is “Easier and Cheaper” Than Auditing the Wealthy

NBC News Thinks Getting Microchipped Sounds Super-Convenient

Seattle Public Schools Will Start Teaching That Math Is Oppressive

Is Sam Adams' New 28 Percent ABV Beer Legal in Your State?

San Francisco Mint striking Enhanced Reverse Proof silver American Eagle

Louis Vuitton designer declares Trump 'a joke' after Texas workshop visit

184 House Republicans Back Bill to Censure Adam Schiff Ahead of Monday Vote

Greta Van Susteren: Fox News’ Wallace Wants to ‘Smear and Cause Trouble’ with Anonymous Impeachment Claim

Trump Will Win in 2020 *Because* of Impeachment

Florida Cops Went to Absurd Lengths to Entrap Man Who Showed No Interest in Underage Sex

Report: CIA Deep State Actors Linked to Origin of Russia Hoax Lawyer Up

Poll: Iowa caucuses are 'up for grabs' as Pete Buttigieg surges into top tier

Mitt Romney's secret Twitter account Pierre Delecto reveales

Durham’s Trail Leading to SSCI – Ali Watkins Never Slept With James Wolfe – It Was a Cover Story….

New Democrat Icon Mitt Romney Prepares to Unseat Donald Trump

Automotive Pre-Emption

Should You Get A Flu Shot?

Mifsud’s Phones Obtained by Durham Have UK Sim Cards Tying Them to the UK — AND BACK TO JOHN BRENNAN

Napolitano Wrong Again: Schiff Inquiry a Kangaroo Court

World's longest nonstop commercial flight lands in Sydney

Portland Police Review Board Says It's OK For Officers To Lie To Get Someone To Stop Filming Them

The Founding Father Who Told Americans We Have A Right To Military Weapons

A Colorado officer shot an armed man through the window of the man's home, police say

The Gun in Atatiana Jefferson’s Hand Will Be Far from Irrelevant

Gabbard says Clinton 'Russian asset' remarks are part of 'smear campaign' as 2020 Dems voice support

Elijah Cummings' widow expected to run for his House seat: report

‘I’ll Shoot You In The F—king Face’: Video Shows Cop Threaten to Murder 16yo Boy

Cops Walk Up to Family’s Home Unannounced, Shoot Dad in the Back Through a Window

Whoa! LOUISIANA ELECTION.Exit Polls!!!

Cops Mistake Powdered Milk for Cocaine, Innocent Man Thrown in a Cage for Months


Status: Not Logged In; Sign In

United States News
See other United States News Articles

Title: Government Bullies Want to Seize This Man's Home Because of Overgrown Grass
Source: Reason
URL Source: https://reason.com/2019/07/10/gover ... me-because-of-overgrown-grass/
Published: Jul 10, 2019
Author: John Stossel
Post Date: 2019-07-10 07:44:19 by Deckard
Keywords: None
Views: 44

If governments can oppress, they usually will.

Jim-Ficken-IJ

(Institute for Justice)

The city of Dunedin, Florida, wants Jim Ficken's home.

Ficken's mom died, so he went to South Carolina to take care of her estate. He asked a friend to look after his house.

But then the friend died, and no one cut Ficken's grass. When it grew to 10 inches, Dunedin officials started fining him $500 a day.

The fine is now about $30,000.

"I was shocked," Ficken says in my latest video. City officials say they will foreclose on his home if he doesn't pay the fine, and Ficken doesn't have that much money.

"Do you have $30,000 lying around?!" he asked me.

"The city has gone nuclear!" complains his lawyer, Ari Bargil. "$500 per day for the violation of having tall grass…. They could have done what their own ordinances permit them to do: hire a lawn service to come out and mow the grass. Then send Jim a bill for 150 bucks. But they didn't do that."

Why not? Bargil and Ficken say it's because Dunedin's officials just want money.

Dunedin's politicians wouldn't talk to us. Instead, they spent $25,000 on a public relations firm that told reporters, "Dunedin has no desire to impose large fines… (only to) ensure that Dunedin is a high-quality community."

The cost of "high quality" keeps going up.

Eleven years ago, Dunedin fined people $34,000. Today, they want about that much from Ficken alone. Last year Dunedin collected $1.3 million in fines from residents.

"It's pretty apparent that code enforcement is a major cash cow for the city," says Bargil.

"I got violated for a lawn mower in my yard!" says one resident who has been fined $32,000. "They violated me for a hole the size of a quarter in my stucco…. They find people they can pick on…and they keep picking on them."

She started crying as she recounted: "I can't tell you how many sleepless nights I've had because of the city of Dunedin. Just try to think of what to say to them, just to have them leave me alone."

"The city is just a bunch of bullies, and they expect people not to stand up to 'em because to stand up to 'em requires expensive legal help," says Ficken.

Ficken managed to get expensive legal help for free from the Institute for Justice, a law firm that defends individuals abused by governments.

All across the country, "private citizens are being essentially extorted by their governments and fined incredible amounts of money for really, really small violations," says Bargil.

You can be fined for not trimming plants, the way Ficken was, but you can also be fined for trimming too much. A city in North Carolina fined a local church $100 per branch ($4,000) for excessive tree-pruning.

And in places such as Dunedin, if you can't pay a fine, they'll take your home.

"The city attorney of Dunedin last year sought permission to foreclose on 18 properties," says Bargil.

That violates the Eighth Amendment, says the Institute for Justice. The Amendment not only protects us from "cruel and unusual punishment" but also from "excessive fines."
The founding fathers, says Bargil, "recognized that the ability to fine is the ability to cripple. It's one of the ways, other than incarceration, that government can really oppress."

If governments can oppress, they usually will.

We should be grateful for the Eighth Amendment's protection against excessive fines.

And what's more excessive than politicians taking your home because you didn't cut your grass?

(1 image)

Post Comment   Private Reply   Ignore Thread  


[Home]  [Headlines]  [Latest Articles]  [Latest Comments]  [Post]  [Mail]  [Sign-in]  [Setup]  [Help]  [Register] 

Please report web page problems, questions and comments to webmaster@libertysflame.com