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Sins of the California Coastal Commission

The February 2009 Viewpoint from Ron Zumbrun has some chilling examples of how the California Coastal Commission "operates", and also refers to a soon to be released documentary film "Sins of Commission" which can be previewed at Web Link

You can download Mr Zumbruns February Viewpoint and view his archives at Web Link


Many websites can give you an idea of what has been happening to coastal property owners, public lands, wetlands, and ESHA. Here is a very good one Web Link

Wow--I went to the "clips" page of the Sins of Commission Web Link and watched the "Confrontation" bit.

I can almost hear the usual suspects here on Talkabout harping on and on about the Coastal Commission having a warrant and having the right to come on some "property rights zealot's" property without the owner being able to film the process. I mean the Commission had a court order.

Sheesh! Did I see correctly? The Coastal Commission inspector was accompanied by someone from the Attorney General's office plus three (3 count 'em--3) deputies?

I hope the film delves more deeply into this type of abuse and gives more examples.

Does Sarah Wan have a part in the movie? :)

What a surprise. Terry Gosset links to a right-wing property wrongs attorney's come-on. How about links to this guy's cases and the sources of his financial support as background info?

This is like George linking to the extraction-industry-supported Pacific Legal Foundation as a so-called "respected" legal voice.

Hi NP,

You may want (or need?) to know more about the CCC, go to Web Link AND you can even request automatic email notices of upcoming meetings of the CCC. AND learn about wetlands AT Web Link

Hi Terry,

Glad to see you are accessing an occasional website not devoted to right-wing property wrongs foolishness. Now for the background studies in history, natural sciences, and environmental management that go with them and, who knows, you might be able to fledge into a meaningful discussion yet.

Mr. Gossett,

Have you ever stayed near a beach in Southern California? I'm old enough to have voted for the Coastal Act, and have lived in California all my life. Just what is your grievance with the Coastal Commission/Coastal Act?

I read some of your links, like Torrance Beach and Wilmington. Do you know anything about these areas? Take Torrance, a couple had an issue with the Coastal Comm. over a fence. People swarm to that location in the summer, it wraps around towards Palos Verdes Penn. Take your home and put it on the west side of this Highway. Over flowing parking lots, cars parked in your neighborhood, trash, traffic, people and more people. Wilmington, that is about the most disgusting smelly place on earth (doesn't even compare to Martinez), and who do think lives around here? Why, the poorest of the poorest, and they get to breath in the disgusting fumes. Darn that CCC for looking out for the people.

Hey "granny",

There is so much you do not know about me. I am an old fat man. I know nothing about you. You cannot believe all you read. Let's talk sometime. I too supported the Coastal Act and MROSD in the 70's, but I started seeing things that bothered me in the 80's, things that really disturbed me in the 90's and today I find much absolutely egregious with both agencies. Do you have any comments on the Zumbrun article?

I have been going to southern cal beaches since 1962, and to our own hmb and san mateo county beaches since 1965. My fav beach in LA is Huntington Beach and I stayed with my aunt and uncle (who arrived in HB in 1922) My uncle was on the council over 20 years and he served as mayor of HB. The town dedicated a 38 acre park to him on Beach Blvd. I totally support the way that HB has developed and maintained their wonderful beaches (best in S Cal IMHO), and even Huntington Harbor was very well done, I was present for that dedication with my uncle. Homes were selling for $38K. You may find this hard to believe but HB actually has showers and actual bathrooms on their beach, with benches, a pier, trails, and many other amenities. I love it. Others do too, people really swarm HB.

So, "granny", what do you know?

Mr. Gossett,

When was the last time you visited Huntington Beach? You can really say you support the old downtown being torn down for high rise condos and buildings? By the way, Huntington Beach is in Orange Co., way different than L.A.

It took the neighboring city to the south around 15 years before they put a bathroom, parking and play area on the old railroad right away.

What you describe above sounds like any form of government from the bottom up.

Terry needs the CCC to take a. good hard look at the private cliff top path/road he constructed over the years that leads down to the beach at the back of his house.

There you go again, people who live in glass houses. Either you haven't read the link provided (possible) or you don't like what it says (probable), so attack the messenger.

Tired, old, transparent, and weak. Another anonymous moronic personal attack skulking from the shadows.

Grow up.


Do you just ask questions? Do you have any answers? I was in HB about 3 years ago, and the beaches are simply fine. Newport and Balboa are the two cities to the south, but they are not nearly as good as my "ideal" which is HB. "granny" -- do you have an "ideal" for what best conforms with your notions for a beach or with the CCC? I said nothing about redevelopment at all (new topic). I have not followed the HB, Newport, Balboa LCPs, but I do check Malibu from time to time. Purportedly, presumably?, they are all in compliance with their LCPs.

Mr. G

I'm just trying to figure out what the issues are on this Coastside. Why is there a need for a "property rights" group to protect who from what? HMB has CDP's, the County doesn't have CDP's. LCP's put together by the Community are now where? This is the most confusing place I have ever lived.

Then you have someone on the Water Board claiming there are three groups, no growth, pro growth and the right growth. No mention about what will happen with water, are we rationing? Do you see how confusing this place can be?


I am in the phone book. Call me. I do not have all the answers, I may *possibly* only have a few perceptions that I am mulling around, but I do have vast amounts of data from many Gov sources at all levels and domains, and I welcome an opportunity to learn about our community. I have only lived in Moss Beach 10 years and this is the most confusing place I have ever lived in 69 years, or have ever read about. When I tell old friends about this place they think I am jesting or writing a novel or simply senile. We coastsiders can do much better than this continual sniping and attacking each other. I am not easily intimidated (so taking heat on "Talkabout" is no big thang). I do not do this to irritate anyone. I do this to help me and others recognize our "predicament".

Basically, I think our community needs to keep trying to do what is right for ourselves, our family and friends, those in need, and our environment. Surely we can do better than what has been "happening" (not much good...) around here the last 10 years! Possibly we have been hijacked by pantheists, or ne'er do wells, or Somali pirates and we are in need of UAVS. But that is a whole 'nuther story. Time for a Change....We started at the TOP, Well, keep going...

"I'm just trying to figure out what the issues are on this Coastside. Why is there a need for a "property rights" group to protect who from what?"

granny, does the word Beachwood mean anything to you? It sure does to us. Violating the US Constitution can be hazardous to one's fiscal health. Do you understand how HMB violated the Constitution?

I think if you did, you wouldn't have asked that question.

"granny, does the word Beachwood mean anything to you?"

That is just about the most insulting question, yes it does, and I have stated before, "mistakes have been made."

not meant to be insulting. You asked a question; "Why is there a need for a "property rights" group to protect who from what?"

Then I asked a question: "Do you understand how HMB violated the Constitution?"

The answer to your's is in the answer to mine.

Beachwood (hint)

"A hero is some one who understands the responsibility that comes with his freedom."

Bob Dylan

Richard Oshen's so-called documentary is a deceitful work. Kathleen Kenny her partner failed to obtain the proper building permits. That's unacceptable anywhere in these United States, let alone California's Coastal Zone. The extortion and bribery she experienced was at the hand of LA County officials, not the California Coastal Commission. To attribute those illegal actions to the commission is as dishonest as Michael Moore is in all of his films.

Kathleen Kenny and her mate, Arthur Starz, have no respect for the law, their neighbors in the Coastal Zone or others that enjoy the coast. Conforming to the Coastal Act and Local Coastal Plans isn't that difficult, especially for small developers that simply want to build their dream home. Kenny and Starz deserve everything they get for failing to obtain a CDP.

Anyone that buys the drivel Zumbrun and Oshen are selling is willfully ignorant of the facts in the Kenney case and likely predisposed to be hostile to the Coastal Commission.

But, it's nothing a little light on the subject won't cure.

"Power Corrupts, absolute power corrupts absolutely"

Lord Baron Acton 1834-1902

Not surprising.

Francis Drouillard is one of the folks that fought the Gualala Fireworks show and using the power of the Coastal Commission to bring outrageous actions like stopping the Fireworks to bear.

He does not live there but apparently owns a vacation home there. Must be nice to have one.

Take deceit to know deceit, I guess. "Respect" for the law is a misnomer when the "law" is a quasi-judicial body with no checks and balances.

"When the people fear their government that is tyranny, when government fears the people that is liberty"

Thomas Jefferson

I have both read Zumbrun's Viewpoint and seen the video "Sins of the Commission".

I would encourage all Californians do the same - before forming opinions. Most of the negative comments I see on this thread so far are completely baseless and inflammatory.

I've always been amazed when someone can form an opinion, and build a passionate defense of that opinion, to the point of personal attacks on others, with absolutely no basis in fact whatsoever.

Whether you love the Coastal Commission, hate them, or are indifferent, don't you think it makes sense to at least have a clue?

Is Francis the one that tried to stop the use of jet skis at Mavericks or is that the Coastal Commission?

I found out. It took me a few queries on Google. It was the Monterey Bay National Marine Sanctuary, a federal group.

Web Link

Web Link

Brian Ginna attacks the messenger without refuting any of the message, Terry Gossett throws out a bunch of philosophical quotes out of any context, and anonymous George suggests serious attention to a self-serving, doctrinaire, right-wing, property-wrongs propaganda piece.

Just another Monday of a long weekend with the local wags and shills for developers having nothing better to do than play on TalkAbout.

"having nothing better to do than play on TalkAbout."

So why do you post 15-20 every night? I have to admit it was interesting to see you struggle with some issues:

Web Link


You say "philosophical quotes out of any context", yet all of my quotes within this topic are from the weblink at the start of this topic. I thought that many of you may not even view the vid clip so I am pasting in some quotes from the link to spare you the effort.

Here is another quote that was shown under a graphic of the Coastal Commissioners in session.

"The California Coastal Commission is the most powerful land use authority in the United States"

Jonathan Zastiff, Professor of Law, UCLA

But, NP, you and I both knew that a very long time ago, right?

Someone please tell me when owing property became a right-wing issue? You all, I presume, live in a house.

"Even when the fire was raging they said we had to have a permit to cut"

Lisa Klessner, Big Sur Property Owner, according to Capitol Weekly

This quote was accompanied by a photo of two deer standing in a stream with a conflagration as a backdrop.

"So why do you post 15-20 every night? I have to admit it was interesting to see you struggle with some issues: Web Link

Brian Ginna, a resident of Half Moon Bay, 1 hour ago"

Mostly Different NPs in your link. They are what they are.

Just because a video contains quotes, it does not mean they are either relevant or in context to the video's purported points. We are all well aware of attempts to wrap the flag and the Founding Fathers around whatever private agenda someone is trying to sell, aren't we?

About those deer in the creek during a forest fire. Taken in the Big Sur area during a fire there? Just curious. There are several famous pictures of just that subject from the big Yellowstone fires, but it's hard to tell a location without a link. We do know photos of someplace else entirely are known to be used to dramatize some property wrongs issues, don't we?

Interseting link Brian posts above. We all know NP ain't right, but I never realized just how deep it goes (figure of speech). Not only does he have gender issues, but the multiple personality thing has got to be tough.

There is enough there to understand why he is the way he is. And he just blows it off (figure of speech). What courage.

No wonder he doesn't contribute. He's too wrapped in his own world.

Relevance is a relative term. For the hundreds of people impacted by a CCC run terribly amuck, relevance of this topic is crystal clear. For the scores of people that are buddy study beneficiaries, or worse, of the CCC, no concern about the CCC is relevant, right, NP?

Anyway, "This land is your land, this land is my land, from California to the New York Island, From the Redwood Forest, To the Gulf Stream Waters, This land was made for you and me"

Woody Guthrie

With a Beautiful photo of the California Bluffs along the Pacific Ocean See Web Link

I seem to remember that the Coastal Commission was supposed to be temporary.

What happened? (Rhetorical question, but readers might want to educate themselves.)

Right on topic is the above-used quotation: "Power Corrupts, absolute power corrupts absolutely"

Only those who enjoy the fruits of this absolute power would question the appropriateness of that quotation.

Right Carl?

As I recall the vote in 1972 that started the Coastal Act was supposed to last for 4 or 5 years, if I knew it would last forever and hurt so many people I would not have voted for it.

Laws do not hurt people. A person with bad intent has used the law to hurt people.

"In the documentary film, Peter Douglas takes delight in describing himself as a "radical pagan heretic" and characterizes property owners who assert their constitutional rights in court as "jihadists". It is submitted that no one, radical pagan or otherwise, should be acting as judge, jury and executioner over the people of California."

Ron Zumbrun, Managing Attorney for The Zumbrun Law Firm, Sacramento

Mr. G

What does the Bagley Keene Act have to do with violating a court order?

Also, I couldn't find any information on the Coastal Comm. only being temporary.


I am not an attorney, but if you google bagley keene act you will find all the provisos from the attorney general's office on the act of 2004.

Also on coastal commission, if you google it, and look at the wikipedia summary, that entry makes a distinction between the coastal initiative which passed with 55% of the vote and the coastal act. Web Link

Mr. G

I already did the above, the Bagley Keene Act has to do with public meetings.


What is this about? Did I say something about Bagley Keene previous to your inquiry, if so where?

For more fuel for this healthy discussion about the den of thieves CCC, go to www.californianightmare.com - lots of info regarding your friendly neighborhood big brother.

- drg

Z-Man -

take a look at www.californianightmare.com where I have a nice little "op-ed" piece about St. Peter of the Coast entitled "Thou Art Peter".

Granny -

Yes, it's true, the CCC was supposed to be only temporary.

Francis Drouillard -

You are living in a dream world. The attorney general was acting as the enforcement arm of the CCC. One might question your motives as well since you are so keen to protect these Grand Inquisitors. Don't worry - they have protection, legal, signed, sealed, delivered. They have the attorney general; they have the local sheriffs' departments; and they have the courts. They don't need your help, though, no doubt, they heartily approve of your jingoism. They are thrilled that folks like you - well-intentioned, and therefore nicely accoutured to travel that proverbial road - are on their side. But look again - that cause that you hold dear no longer belongs to you. They've hijacked it, claimed it as their own.


Dullsville. The right-wing property wrongs crowd has a hard-on against the California Coastal Commission. They pull support for their flailing from everything from Mother Goose to the Torah. In their wealth-seeking slog, they manage to miss any of the real shortcomings of the Coastal Act and the CCC. Thirty years of repeating their erroneous self-serving philosophy without a fresh idea. Boring.

For newcomers to these hackneyed attacks on the Coastal Commission, it is not necessary to depend on the offhand fiction of the ignorant wags so eager to define it for you. The California Coastal Commission is created by Chapter 4 (Sections 30300 and following) of the California Coastal Act of 1976, as amended. (This is the legislation passed to take over from the coastal program created by the passage of Prop. 20 in 1972 by the state's voters, a vote the property wrongs crowd is still crying about.) In Chapter 4, you will find the sections grouped into Articles on the creation of the CCC, its qualifications and organization, its powers and duties, and local coastal program (LCP) implementation costs.

If you don't know what the Coastal Act says and what the Coastal Commission does, you won't know that Terry Gossett's quotes snatched from hither and yon are miles from relevant and that none of the other missles lobbed in previous messages at the CCC and its activities come close to hitting anything. Just more coastal gas from the overdevelopment crowd.

Let's see, Now Pitching's cedibility references are...

...a real name?

Hmmm. I think I'd rather spend my time exploring ideas and links provided by real people. Why bother listening to those who fear attaching their name to their statements.

Of course, I am posting anonymously aren't I! But I'm simply giving you my opinion.

And the hot air and "coastal gas" provided by NP is just that, too: opinion.


Thanks for a great website. The piece on Peter Douglas was very acccurate-- Web Link


Actually the Coastal Act starts with Public Resources Code Section 30000 (NOT 30300), SEE Web Link The code Actually states in Section 30000 that "This division shall be known and may be cited as the California Coastal Act of 1976." nP, relevance is in the eye of the beholder.

Right wing? Property wrongs? Wealth-seeking? Overdevelopment crowd?

You sound like a wind-up toy, NP. My guess is that whoever owns those feet that you've been crouched at, seeker of truth, are also avowed supporters of human rights. You may consider yourself a staunch supporter of human rights, too, for that matter.

All the more shameful, then, that you employ such a double-standard: human rights are only for people who don't own (and/or don't want to own) property.

My other guess? You're a trust-fund baby. You rationalize like someone who has never had to be self-reliant, like a selfish child.

Just so people understand that many other communities also have problems with the CCC, just read one issue and lawsuit against the CCC and Peter Douglas from the town of Malibu, a town of 13,000. Web Link

Right wing? Property wrongs? Wealth-seeking? Overdevelopment crowd?

You sound like a wind-up toy, NP. My guess is that whoever owns those feet that you've been crouched at, seeker of truth, are also avowed supporters of human rights. You may consider yourself a staunch supporter of human rights, too, for that matter.

All the more shameful, then, that you employ such a double-standard: that human rights are only for people who don't own (or don't want to own) property.

My other guess? You're a trust-fund baby. You rationalize like someone who has never had to be self-reliant, like a selfish child. Shame on you, child.

I've read the Coastal Act, NP. Any time the Coastal Commission is brought into a conversation, the outcry from its followers quotes only chapter and verse from the Act, as if it's the only relevant scripture. The trick lies in how and where the CCC chooses to apply the Act.

They're ALL politicians, kid. Use a single standard, hm? Then maybe we can have a grown-up conversation, and you can hold up your end, instead of the process.


If you really want examples of sins of the CCC...

The following is a Coastal Horrors Blog that documents stories and problems with the CCC from San Diego to Gualala to the city of Los Angeles to Orange County to several of the 126 Local Coastal Programs in California.

Web Link

In addition, The Coastal Land Rights Project focusses on the CCC and coastal land use abuses with aggressive legal action and an effective public education outreach. Web Link

This topic is about sins of the CCC, and there are many sins to talk about. I just returned from a HMB CC meeting tonight and much discussion on definitions and interpretations of wetlands (mostly for Beachwood) led by counsel Tony Condotti. Scores of scared people were trying to provide ideas to the Council to save HMB from bankruptcy. Also a staff report was given on the status and maintenance of the Kehoe ditch. Both issues are strongly impacted by the CCC, as was the El Granada pipeline built by CCWD after 4 years and 44 meetings with the CCC before being given "permission" to replace a 60 year old crumbling water line.

Maybe the answer to the State Coastal Commission is the Feds, as in US Federal Judge Vaughn Walker that followed the US Constitution in his Beachwood decision against the city of HMB, and as in the case in Orange County when the "FEDS support Orange County Toll roads against coastal commission radicals in Foothill South Fight" Web Link

My goodness! That is a disgusting waste of time, money, and sheer human energy. 44 meetings! So that citizens can have water. The CCC continues to demonstrate its contempt for people as facilely as the dawn meets the horizon.


Regarding the toll road, I should have first laid out the NY Times piece regarding the CCC's position on the road. Web Link

In the same article Malibu also had big problems with CCC "But earlier this decade, members [of CCC] were back tangling with the city of Malibu over its plan for managing coastal building, essentially dictating to the city what it would do. After several trips to court, the two sides came to a tense accord in 2005.

“The commission basically tells us what to do, and we’re expected to do it,” said Jeff Jennings, the mayor of Malibu. “And in many cases that extends down to the smallest details imaginable, like what color you paint your houses, what kind of light bulbs you can use in certain places.”

To Mr. Jennings, the battle in Malibu was not over development visions, but municipal rights. And as has often been the case, the city came up short when pitted against the commission.

“When we became a city we wanted to make our own decisions,” he said, “and we see this body of nonelecteds and we feel kind of disenfranchised.”

For the citizens of HMB that must sound terribly familiar.......

Terry, thank you for posting this thread, all the good data you are providing and your efforts to shine the light.


You asked me about southern california? Here is a story that you may enjoy from the Orange County Register entitled "Tyranny on the left-coastal commission" by Steven Greenhut. Web Link

From the Capitol Weekly, "Coastal Commission: Allow people to defend themselves" by Michael Caplin, July 31, 2008 featuring our very own CCC Senior Deputy Director Charles Lester Web Link "Mr. Lester's thinly veiled threats that his staff will use the recent wildfires as a reason to argue that people should not live in rural Big Sur once again reveals the commission staff's bias against the Big Sur community."

Terry -

You are a thesaurus! These are amazingly informative links. Thanks!


P.s. - I can see why np dislikes what you're saying - the truth hurts.

Mr. G

I have enjoyed your links, but calling people in Orange Co. who opposed the toll road "radicals", gee that's funny. Over 650 speakers! Do you have any idea what that road is like? It's like a ghost freeway, only the locals use it. I'll call a friend tomorrow, but I believe there was an appeal.

Does anyone know the when the Kathleen Kennedy issue was heard by the Coastal Commission? I'd like to read the staff report. I suspect it shed light on many of the misconceptions promoted by Brian, Terry and others hostile to the Coastal Act regarding Coastal Commission actions in this case.

There are no misconceptions Francis. You don't need to research the Kenney case, there are several recent local examples of abuse perpetrated by the CCC staff. You have to dig deeper than reading the staff report though. Anything can be written in those without substantiation. One of my favorites was the Terrace Ave case where the CCC staff report stated that toxic runoff could drain into a "wetland". Problem is, the "wetland" was uphill from the property!

Laws of physics are such an annoyance, aren't they?

"I suspect it shed light on many of the misconceptions promoted by Brian, Terry and others hostile to the Coastal Act regarding Coastal Commission actions in this case." I don't recall reading anything from Brian or Terry that is "hostile to the Coastal Act". Please show us what you are referring to Francis.

The staff reports would be interesting to see because much more often than not, the staff runs the Commission. That is one of the problems (another one of) we suffer with them. A staff report will often run over 100 pages.

While looking for that report, Francis, look at the agendas, too. Count the number of items on ant of the agendas. Add up the number of pages of staff reports for each agenda item, then for all items on the agenda for that day. Then, please tell us, with a straight face, that any of the commissioners, let alone all of them, read the thousands of pages required to keep up on a daily basis.

That brings up the question of who really runs the commission?

Francis, get a grip, please.

"Keep it local" -- You response sounds very much like "facts don't matter" or "trust me, I'm from the government." Sorry, but that's no way to support your argument, which appears to be as simple-minded as "developers GOOD, coastal commissioners BAD."

Most actions by the CCC are heard in public and have a staff report associated with them. Perhaps you can provide a link to the Terrance Ave report at the CCC archives. If you're not up to it, just provide the date it was heard and I'll find it.

Dollar to to a donut says you've mischaracterized staff's position on the Terrance Ave case.

"Problem is ..." -- Let's stay focused, shall we? Let's get to a real matter before the CCC, look at the staff report, see how the CCC decided, then compare that to how others have characterized the actions of the CCC.

BTW, many of the commissioners read every word of every staff report. All of them rely heavily on staff, whose purpose is to make sure a project conforms to the Local Coastal Plan (LCP) or the Coastal Act in the absence of an LCP. They don't always go along with staff recommendations, either.

Mr. Drouillard,

You have no clue about issues in Half Moon Bay. You will not after reading a Coastal Commmission's staff report. Do your homework on your own time/dime.

I have no problem with the Coastal Act or the Coastal Commission in theory.

Why did Mark Massara and Mike Ferreira argue on behalf of the Pacific Ridge developer? Because he has been purchased.

I have a problem with a dictatorial Executive Director who has no checks and balances.

I have a problem with corrupt Commissioners. How can someone like Sara Wan be a Coastal Commissioner and at the same time run 3 or 4 shadowy environmental organizations (*think mostly blank websites with no contact info - the preferred method of semi-anonymous slander) which argue against projects that are then judged at the Commission level. I wonder why they took that "Conflicts of Interest Workship" info off the CCC webpage. They used to at least put up the smokescreen that they were "avoiding" conflicts - they do nothing of the sort.

In just the Beachwood case - among other actions, Mrs. Wan appealed the CDP, rendered a verdict on it and then fought AB 1991. Judge, Jury and Executioner.

"facts don't matter" (like the laws of physics) certainly applies to the CC staff. And they are from the Government, of course. I don't think they care if you trust them though.

Check the archives for the July 2007 meeting. Then get yourself a contour map (they didn't include one) or better yet, visit the site and see for yourself.

"Let's stay focused, shall we?" Exactly my point. If you truly want to look, find the agenda from July 2007. There you will see an appeal of a local project. That project was the Gale project and was appealed by staff with commissioner presigned appeal forms. The commissioners that 'appealed' HMB's decision then sat in 'judgment' of the appeal. One of which was the chair. That was the staff report that had "toxic run-off" going uphill mentioned above.

Stevie Wonder could see the corruption. What's your problem, Francis?

"BTW, many of the commissioners read every word of every staff report." You must be smokin something real good.

And you never answered my questions.

Mr. Ginna -- I don't need to know or understand issues in HMB to discuss the deceit promoted by "Sins of Commission," which is the topic of this thread.

Mark Massara and Mike Ferreira had nothing to do with the Kenny case. Other than attempting to obfuscate, I'm not sure why you bring them up in this discussion.

Ms. Wan works to enforce the Coastal Act. She wasn't the only commissioner to appeal the Beachwood CDP (it takes two), and she wasn't the only commissioner to deny the CDP (it takes a majority of a quorum of commissioners).

Ms. Wan made a very good case against AB1991, as did many other individuals, including many from HMB. She and Sarah Christie did a much better job of arguing against the measure than you and others who argued in support of it. (Not that that's a significant achievement by them.)

So, back on topic, how does one justify using the illegal actions of LA County officials to taint the Coastal Commission? That's the fiction Richard Oshen is peddling and I don't believe he's made his case at all.

A Sin of Omission is a failure to do what one can and must do.

A Sin of Commission is to know something is wrong, and do it anyway.

From the documentary "Sins of Commission"

To Mr. Jennings[mayor of Malibu], the battle in Malibu was not over development visions, but municipal rights. And as has often been the case, the city came up short when pitted against the commission.

“When we became a city we wanted to make our own decisions,” he said, “and we see this body of nonelecteds and we feel kind of disenfranchised.”

For the citizens of HMB that must sound terribly familiar.......

IMHO, I think it is time to get the leaders of the 126 "Local" Coastal Programs in a workshop (whether they are Supervisors of counties or Councilmembers of cities) and FIX the Coastal Commission. If that option fails, I would suggest a Federal class action suit against the CCC on behalf of the 126 LCP along 1100 miles of California coastline.

Francis, you attempt to come across as in the know. Please tell us, have you seen the Richard Oshen video "Sins of the Commission"?

Terry -- You've got it exactly backwards. An LCP is reviewed and certified by the Coastal Commission. Once certified, that LCP becomes the standard of review for that area.

One of the problems for the Commission is that many Coastal Permit Administrators do not follow their own LCPs. That is certainly the case in Mendocino County where they frequently fail to enforce key provisions of their own LCP. This is particularly true if they believe the applicant is litigious, in which case they "punt" by approving the CDP knowing that it will be appealed to the CCC. They'd rather the CCC get sued than their Coastal Permit Administrator. I believe that is a significant problem up and down the coast.

Rather than let the foxes "fix" the chicken coop as you suggest, I believe it would be better to require that LCPs be re-certified on a regular basis. I would also suggest that Coastal Permit Administrator's that are frequently overturned by the CCC result in a de-certification of their LCP.

In either case -- your suggestions or mine -- the law would need to be revised.

"Problem is ..." -- The Gale application did not conform to the HMB LCP. They had an alternative that did conform to the LCP, so the appeal was warranted. Although staff recommended a finding of "substantial issue" and "denial" during a de novo review (the LCP being the standard of review), no commission action was taken because the project was "withdrawn."

Where's the corruption on behalf of the Commission? Just because you don't understand a process doesn't mean it's corrupt.

Yep, that gravity-defying toxic runoff was sure some substantial issue.

"The Gale application did not conform to the HMB LCP."

In your opinion? Or in the CC Staff's opinion? What makes you think that either of those is correct?

I beg your pardon? You clearly don't have a clue, Francis.

First of all, you have yet to answer my questions. I wonder why.

Next, I'll add another. What do you know about HMB? More specifically the Gale project? Are you now going to tell us that you read the staff report from the July 2007 commission's appeal? Who are you really, Evelyn Woods? That document is 120 pages without attachments and as recently as 2 hours ago you didn't know where to look for it. Now you offer expert opinions on it? What a joke.

Please explain to us how "toxic run-off runs uphill, once you get to that part if you do.

It is obvious that you wholeheartedly support the commission which tells us all we really need to know. Your blind following, as well as those of your ilk will cease. The commission needs to be revamped and that day is coming, just not soon enough for anyone that has had to deal with them.

Corruption at the commission? Bet your cheeks on it. As I said before, Stevie Wonder can see it. Why can't you?

Again I ask, please tell us, have you seen the Richard Oshen video "Sins of the Commission"?

I am not trying to say that The CCC is always wrong, but I am saying that after reading about scores of issues and stories --SEE--Web Link it is clear that in many cases the CCC has negatively affected people and communities for reaons that are most unclear. That tends to make many people wonder why the CCC is so arrogant, and why the CCC is causing damage not just to people, but even the environment. Remember when we actually had firebreaks? Remember when we could clear brush away from around our homes? What ever happened to common sense? What happened to checks and balances, or the old concept of separation of power?

I would like to pick a local example of a flawed, costly, and very lengthy CCC process and follow it through a a group. It could be Saso Gale, or the El Granada pipelines by CCWD, or the Beachwood/Yamagiwa process with the city of HMB. All three of these examples harmed our community for a period of years, some examples harmed us more than others, some individuals are at the epicenter of harm, some communities are now endangered species (HMB) a a result of CCC actions. So, I wonder, who exactly is THE beneficiary from any of these 3 Local cases "governed", "certified", and "interpreted" by the Coastal Commission?

Brian Ginna -- Apparently, the applicants agreed with CCC staff as well because they withdrew their application. As best I can tell from my brief review of the staff report, the extent of the wetland was not in question, nor was the need for a 100-foot wetland buffer. The issue became whether or not there was a feasible alternative to a home that encroached upon the wetland buffer zone. Were there no feasible alternative, encroaching on the buffer -- or the wetland itself -- would have been allowed to prevent a "taking." Both the City and the CCC found that there was a feasible alternative to encroaching on the wetland or its buffer zone. In other words, the applicant could have developed their property in compliance with the LCP but chose not to.

"Problem is ..." -- I can find any number of piss-willies in the gutter in the Tenderloin district of SF willing to hurl jibberish and insults my way. No need for me to engage you for that purpose.

Terry Gossett -- You raise too many issues to have any kind of enlightening discussion. It seems to me you're saying that the CCC process is flawed because review times are too long and you don't like many of their decisions.

Two things can be done to improve review times -- provide more realistic funding for the CCC and penalize local municipalities that approve projects that don't conform to their LCP.

Regarding the CCC's decisions, there are two things that can be done -- stack the commission with commissioners more to your liking, which requires new politicians in Sacramento, or change the Coastal Act. Good luck with those.

Let's take one issue, say wetlands. I appears to me that you don't place any value on coastal wetlands, or have any respect for state and federal laws intended to protect them. If that's the case, I don't think we'll ever agree on any issue related to wetlands.

Pretty transparent back door you ran out of. Nice. Your analysis of the Gale project is still a joke. Keep reading.

When you don't have the answers, punt?

As I said, you clearly don't have a clue, Francis.

Let's keep it simple. One at a time might work better for you.

Have you seen the Richard Oshen video "Sins of the Commission"?

"they withdrew their application."

And we solved the problem ourselves as a City. Guess you didn't follow it all the way through. Check the news section of the website you are on.

Do you often visit the Tenderloin to find "piss-willies?" That is pretty odd.

"Problem is ..." -- To answer your question, yes, I did. I also had a lengthy discussion about the film's shortcomings with its producer. Anything else?

Brian Ginna -- What on earth are you talking about? How was what problem resolved? What didn't I follow all the way through? What news headline should I look to read? Seems to me my summary of the CCC's actions on the Terrance Ave CDP application were relevant, factual and conclusive.

YOU need to make YOUR case more clearly and more thoroughly, unless you like arguing in circles, which appears to be the case with many participating in this thread.

"Sins of Commission" absolutely misleading in that it blames the CCC for transgressions by LA County officials and failure to comply with building codes by late Ms. Kenny and her mate.

Nothing in that Michael Moore-style documentary establishes any wrong-doing by the CCC. It just assuages the trolls seeking the abolition of the Coastal Act by the not-so-clever use of conflation and innuendo.

I am done doing your homework...here ya go. The Coastal Commmission did not really have a say in the end.

Web Link

Brian Ginna -- Enough of the "I did your homework for you" crap. How condescending of you.

But the developments in this case are interesting. The City of HMB found that the project qualified for a cat ex, even though a wetland is affected.

Something tells me the CCC hasn't seen the last of this project.

Cat ex? Is that something like feline laxative?

Your whole raison d'etre seems to be to try to convince us that Mr. Douglas should be knighted, given sainthood and made President all in one fell swoop (if you want to find me really condescending, you should also read between the lines better).

Wait! I thought that Peter Douglas already was a saint! And that he's next in line for the presidency, is scheduled to replace Nancy Pelosi, and is short-listed for the supreme court. Or am I mistaken?

I mean, what is with all these people - whole communities and cities, damn them all!- up and down california who dare to find fault and question the motives of that Radical Pagan Heretic? Jihadists! Every last one of them! Burn them at the stake! Send them to Guantanamo Bay! Better yet - make them buy property in an ESHA zone, then require them to get permits before making it safe from wildfires! Then, make them stay and watch as their property burns, yelling NYAAH NYAAH, you want a permit, but we won't give you one! Unless, of course, you give us a little cash....

Oh, and by the way, Richard Oshen isn't "peddling" anything - Sins of Commission is a non-profit 501c3.

Francis: I see you haven't done a whole lot of digging. If you're bound and determined to close your mind and take the CCC staff reports at face value ... you'll always have a predictable opinion.

mr. droulliard,

I'm eager to agree with you-the footage that Richard Oshen used for the Kathleen Kenny section of Sins of Commission is misleading, since that footage is of LA County personnel.

Since you have, as you claim, spoken with Mr. Oshen, you doubtless understand that the story is large and that footage of anything-Kenny is extremely small, and have heard Richard apologize for that. If you haven't actually had a conversation with him, well, you might not know what a wonderful, self-sacrificing person he is.

All that misunderstanding aside, let's talk about the more salient point his film brings up regarding Kathleen Kenny and Arthur Starz:

That a small lot, with a 741 square foot cottage, could reasonably be considered to owe any fair and equitable government agency over $2,400,000 in fines.

I hope you'll forgive me for bringing such an uncomfortable fact into your ratiocination?

Brian Ginna -- A "cat ex" is short for "categorical exclusion." But you knew that, didn't you?

My reason for participating in this thread is to point out that Richard Oshen's so-called documentary "Sins of Commission" is a fabrication, much like the statements about Peter Douglas that you attribute to me. Were he more truthful about the Commission he wouldn't have to beg for funding to complete his project.

I must also say that a competent communications director wouldn't have to say "read between the lines." They'd know how to articulate their arguments more effectively, which seems to be a skill lacking in many participating in this thread, including you.


Does this mean that you're unwilling to discuss the $2.4 million fine against Kenny/Starz?

When and where did you see the film?

All 501c3s beg for money, hello? That's reality.


If you wish to 'point out that' Sins of Commission 'is a fabrication', perhaps you will enlighten us, frame by frame, exactly what it is you're talking about?

Oh, and no fair going back to the Kenny footage of the LA personnel; that's old news now. Besides, that's, what, only 3 minutes out of over 80 minutes of film?

"Were he more truthful about the Commission he wouldn't have to beg for funding to complete his project."

Are you talking about Mr. Douglas?

"djn" -- Geez, such handholding is a lot to ask. But hey, I'd consider it if you're to answer a question for me. To make it more interesting, I'll frame it in the context of another issue.

To quote Dr. Timothy Ball:

"How many failed predictions, discredited assumptions and evidence of incorrect data are required before an idea loses credibility?"

Now replace "an idea" with "Richard Oshen" instead of "anthropogenic global warming" and let me know if you think both should be answered the same way.

Please forgive my impatience, Francis, but I'd genuinely like to have your answer as to when and where you saw the film 'Sins of Commission'.

As you may, or not, be aware, a film goes through many edits, and if you haven't seen the most recent cut, you aren't discussing the same film that the rest of us are.

And, since it hasn't actually been released, there's every chance that you are simply looking at isolated clips from the website and disingenuously extrapolating as fits your own agenda?

"djn" -- To be clear, I have not _spoken_ with Richard Oshen. We had a discussion/exchange by email as a result of a comment I left at the website for his documentary. As for the $2.4 million judgment against Kenny/Starz, what of it? They could likely have avoided it if they came into compliance or made a serious attempt to comply.

Were someone knowledgeable of the Kenny case to provide a link to her CCC staff report, or provide the year and month her case was heard, I would be able to provide a more thorough opinion on the matter.

However, were I Starz and I wanted to resolve the matter, I would make an effort to comply with the CCC conditions as I sought their reconsideration of the case. But the success of that approach depends upon what's in the staff report.

Please forgive my impatience, Francis, but I'd genuinely like to have your answer as to when and where you saw the film 'Sins of Commission'.

As you may, or not, be aware, a film goes through many edits, and if you haven't seen the most recent cut, you aren't discussing the same film that the rest of us are.

And, since it hasn't actually been released, there's every chance that you are simply looking at isolated clips from the website and disingenuously extrapolating as fits your own agenda?

Forgive the redundant postings, folks, I keep getting bumped off line.


No one's asking you to hold their hand, just your end of this discussion. You make damning accusations against Richard Oshen and Sins of Commission, but fail to enlighten when challenged. Triangulation, leaps-of-context and obfuscation are an adolescent domain, and not really suited to modern adult dialog.

But, chin up, now, you've thrown that ripe old 'anthropogenic global warming' chestnut onto our fire, so I'll volley back:

What do you suppose the atmospheric carbon-loading is, in metric tons, during a wildfire season that burned in excess of 600,000 acres?

Sara parks - can you believe that woman? All she had to do was to sit in the back of the bus. To comply with the Law. Sheesh!


$2.4 million in fines for a 741 square foot house, and the best you can do is say "what of it"?

I submit, sir, that you have no sense of proportionality, and likely presume that the horrors of Darfur can be lumped in with what 'Now Pitching' dismissed as "right wing property wrongs" wing nuts.

Are you, too, another trust-fund baby?

I think you mean Rosa Parks, drg...

Yeah, her too. Thanks djn.

My oh my! Just look at the uptight property wrongs crowd with their underwear all twisted just because some don't want to subsidize and endure the negative impacts of their schemes and dreams on what remains of the California coast.

Is it too bold to suggest that Terry Gossett read Chapter 1 of the California Coastal Act in order to know the basis for the coastal regulations and the commission charged with enforcing the regulations he finds so inconvenient to his misfiring, doctrinaire, irrelevant, pseudo-patriotic rantings? Really, the simple reading of the Coastal Act might be more of an illuminating influence than all of the scripture of the me-first money-grubbers. An indication that a person actually is familiar with what they are dealing with does wonders to dispel the impression they are only able to operate in the company of glassy-eyed true-believers, such as those on this thread trying to promulgate the notion their "religion" should dictate to all of us.

The faith that some people place in such golden calves - without questioning, just taking what they hear or read as gospel - boggles my mind.then again, I didn't think much of the emperor's new clothes, either.


Now pitching, you shouldn't use this as an opportunity to engage in your underwear fettish.

You like obama? Or is he too right wing for you, too? Because for the last three days, he's been sounding off about how owning a house is the American Dream.

"djn" -- "$2.4 million for a 741 sf house" is your characterization of the judgment. Where did you get that information? If it's as you say it is, then it's a matter of public record, both in CCC proceedings and the judgment against her. Please provide a link to those public documents.

(I've already spent a few hours trying to find the CCC agenda item for anything on Kenny or Wildcrew LLC.)

Dang, I go off for a long lunch and errands and miss a lot of dialog.

Mr Drouillard,

It is clear that you are a smart man and know your way around the CCC. I am not nearly as impressed with the CCC as you are, but I merely try to stay close to smart people, rather than assuming the mantle. However, I do know and greatly respect Mr Zumbrun, and have corresponded with Mr Oshen. I do not know you, but wish you well.

I have lived in swampy east Texas and know my way around wetlands and nature and the big thicket. I am a person very concerned with the environment, but not exclusively, or so much so that it might be a serious or harmful detriment to humanity. (Where have all the fire breaks gone?)

Let me repeat an offer of local issues--I would like to pick a local example of a flawed, costly, and very lengthy CCC process and follow it through as a group. It could be Saso Gale, or the El Granada pipelines by CCWD, or the Beachwood/Yamagiwa process with the city of HMB. All three of these examples harmed our community for a period of years, some examples harmed us more than others, some individuals are at the epicenter of harm, some communities are now endangered species (HMB) a a result of CCC actions. So, I wonder, who exactly is THE beneficiary from any of these 3 Local cases "governed", "certified", and "interpreted" by the Coastal Commission?

I would hope that we all could develop protocols when on Blogs, so that we could remain civil and show our readers that we can even solve problems. To achieve that it is a central protocol we need is to civilly respond to questions....Where have all the firebreaks gone?


Thanks for the correction on Rosa Parks, an east Texas woman.


I, too, thought that cat ex was a feline laxative, and I have often been called a King of the Acronyms by my peers and superiors. (maybe Francis should have used the term "CE" a truer acronym?)

Ah. Welcome to the nightmare, Frannie.

You probably aren't going to find anything looking at the CCC website, since any case in litigation is exempt from public disclosure and Public Records Act requirements. Hence, NO PUBLIC DOCUMENTS.

Frustrating, isn't it?

Innocent until proven guilty is only the standard in criminal cases; this is Administrative law, and that standard is not applied in admin law.

So, am I correct in understanding that you actually have NOT seen this movie you're so adamant in opposing?

No, CE is Common Era, the non-religious history marker vs. BCE - Before the Common Era (instead of BC and my favorite - I'm a Classicist with a serious Latinate bent - AD - Anno Domini - Latin Rocks! (Saxa Latina!)


For things Latinate and how critical it is to get Latin back into schools at a very young level, see www.viafacilis.com and www.cagse.com - do I digress? Do I blow my own horn? Damn straight!


Francis Drouillard,

Please recognize you are debating people who will never cop to the difference between a Roman candle and a scud missle. You will never be able to pin them down, because whenever you nail them on an inaccuracy or get them to a matter they can't frame for use in their babbling propaganda, they'll resort to the gods, mommy, and apple pie--anything to avoid real circumstances in the real world.

The property wrongs crowd could put a new coastal initiative on the state ballot, the same as was done when Proposition 20 was put on the ballot in 1972 after much public frustration over state and local government's inability to deal effectively with the general decline of the state's coastal environment and the inability of people to access the coastline, especially the public tidelands. But they will never do this, recognizing that theirs is a quest to pad their wallets at everyone else's expense and that this is well known. What you see in the comments on this thread is merely a reflection of that self-interest and the assumption that self-interest should have priority over all.

Isn't a scud missile a really really really really really BIG Roman candle?


That "self-interest" moniker is hackneyed, trite, banal. Let's face it: it's obvious. Everybody acts, works, speaks, etc. out of "self-interest." Everyone responding to this string, is doing so from self-interest. Nobody is excepted. Including you, Now Pitching. Christ, would somebody call the Bullpen already?


Someone seems to have a problem, or two. I asked multiple questions of Francis. It was, unfortunately, too much to chew on. I got no answers to any of my questions. So I broke it down, starting over again with just one, "Have you seen the Richard Oshen video "Sins of the Commission"?"

Problem is ..., a resident of Half Moon Bay, 6 hours ago

I finally got an answer, I thought. Here it is:

"Problem is ..." -- To answer your question, yes, I did. I also had a lengthy discussion about the film's shortcomings with its producer. Anything else?

Francis Drouillard, a resident of Another Coastside community, 5 hours ago

In my continued reading down the thread, I ran across this:

""djn" -- To be clear, I have not _spoken_ with Richard Oshen. We had a discussion/exchange by email as a result of a comment I left at the website for his documentary."

Francis Drouillard, a resident of Another Coastside community, 1 hour ago

Which is it Francis? Looks like we have a problem. Either you have short term memory issues, or you're lying. Which is it?

You live in Navato and are fortunate enough to have a place in Galala. Good for you, but what does any of that have to do with HMB? Do you always stick your long nose in the business of others? If so, it would probably be to your advantage to have one story and stick to it. Even as arrogant as you are, it would be better received.

Now back to the one question. Since you had such a difficult time with the first attempt, let's have a do-over:

Have you seen the Richard Oshen video "Sins of the Commission"?

Seems like a small-time money-grubber got nailed with an appropriate "self-interest" label.

The financial self interests of a few overdevelopers are nothing like the everyday mutual interests in quality of living people in communities share. Environmental degradation, in this case of the badly beat up California coastline, for the sake of developer/builder moneymaking detracts from the quality of life and makes everyone's life in the affected areas more expensive as limited resources and ecosystem services become scarcer and more dear.

"You live in Navato and are fortunate enough to have a place in Galala."

Where is Navato? Where is Galala? We are always looking for new places to explore.

Where can I see the complete movie? The site only has some excerpts:

Here: Web Link

Here: Web Link

And several here: Web Link (scroll down the page)

Francis Drouillard, where did you get to see it? Perhaps you could arrange a showing for the rest of us? Perhaps you and the film makers could be there to comment on it?

I'd pay to see it!

I agree, Older Voter, but we have yet to determine whether Francis has seen the movie or not. It seems to be a difficult question for him.

Let's wait to get and answer ... that lasts more than 4 hours. Let us try back tomorrow. That will give Francis the night to sleep on it.

NP - I congratulate you on your singularly myopic assessment of who I am. On the rest of the folks here who challenge the CCC not for what they have done right, but for what they have done wrong. Yours is a very old 'end justifies the means' argument - one of the favorites employed by the self-interest folks you refuse to acknowledge yourself among. So tell us, o magnanimous one, how the CCC escapes your 'self-interest' brand - can you be so wilfully blind? Yes - that was a rhetorical question. You probably think witch-hunts are a good idea, too.

OK, I have a lot of catching up to do. How can property have rights?

I remember reading a book called "Property Matters" that described the relationship between many types of rights, about land, water, and even intellectual property. The book wonders if makers of software can be forced to donate their product to "worthy" (as defined by the government) causes. The book posits that these scenarios are grounded in the same logic as laws protecting endangered species and wetlands: that collective welfare often requires government to regulate, allocate, or confiscate resources. The book asserts that it is a very small step from applying this standard to physical property to extending it to intellectual property.

This observation seems extremely relevant to this discussion about the California Coastal Commission.

After watching the videos I want to know why people have a hard time in understanding the sins of the coastal commission. I also read some of the other references, and it is enough to make you question our government and what the government is really trying to do to all of us. What is the real reason this is happening? Is our government stupid, or out of control, or worse?

"Now Pitching" -- Yes, I see that the crowd rolling here has mastered the art of discussing issues in a manner that ensures hostility and precludes consensus. But small mindend people do.

Private property rights do not override state property rights. You can't use your property in a manner that damages the property of your neighbor, in this case the State of California. Most think the CCC is an unconstitutional abomination, but few know its mandate or how or why that mandate is implemented. They're selfish and parochial, too, and completely unaware or uncaring of the repercussions of their actions on the entire state. You need only flash back to the debates over AB1991 to verify that claim.

FYI -- Novato is a city in Marin County at the north end of the SF Bay. Gualala is a small coastal town in Mendocino County at the border of Sonoma County. The area is referred to as Mendonoma by some locals and it's quite spectacular from an environmental point of view. They've got some great little restaurants, too. The Redwood Grill in Anchor Bay and St. Orres just south of there outshine some of the best restaurants in SF.

But you knew all that, didn't you?

Mr. G

Sorry, but I have to inform you the toll road has been dealt a severe blow; "A decision by the Secretary of Commerce stops the proposed 241 toll road extension in its tracks." You can read the full article in the San Clemente Times, by Rebecca Nordquist. We just can't go around blaming the CCC for everything.

I like you Francis. You have faith in your State Government, including those who have been appointed and those that are paid beaurocrats. Your first impulse is to trust their work, their integrity and their ethics without question. That's a noble inclination. It is also, unfortunately, a little naive, and in conflict with the principles upon which this country was founded. We as citizens have the right to question the actions of our government, especially when it seem that other principles, such as the separation of powers, are being abused or violated.

You seem to be assuming that those of us raising the questions have hidden agendas that include destroying the environment and profiting from development. I have found no evidence of this in the many people that I know personally who share my feelings about the CCC, and it certainly doesn't apply to me. I would encourage you, and others who are afraid of some sort of rampant unbridled development to get to know us better on a personal basis. I think you'll find your preconceptions are mistaken.

I would also encourage you to take some of these case studies seriously, do some open-minded due diligence in a search for the truth. That means that you're going to have to read the CC staff reports with a skeptical mind.


Have you every read a San Mateo County Staff Report? Do you believe everything they write, I don't.

granny - I have read a few SMCo staff reports and have no reason to treat them any less skeptically than I would a CC staff report or any other source of information, for that matter.

By the way, by "skeptical" I don't mean to assume that there is any sort of intentional deception. I mean it in the scientific sense - that you look for supporting evidence of any statements or conclusions and consistency of logic.

"Keep it local" -- You don't know enough about me to make broad statements about my views on governance and bureaucracy, or to suggest how I can become more a diligent, skeptical and open minded person.

However, you may want to practice what you preach, particularly when it comes to Richard Oshen's work.

<Web Link>

You may want to read the above, which should have been linked from Oshen's site but wasn't. Tell me where Coastal Commission staff was factually wrong about their facts (there's room for disagreement on opinions).

Looks like a night's sleep wasn't enough for you Francis. How much more time will you need to answer one very simple question honestly?

Inquiring minds want to know.

While it is true that state gov trumps private property it is also true that fed gov trumps state gov, as in the Beachwood decision.

"particularly when it comes to Richard Oshen's work. "

ANSWER the question, Mr. Douillard -

Where have you seen the film and when?

"mjb" -- That Vaughn decision -- and the city council's actions that precluded an appeal -- sure worked out good for the City of HMB, didn't it? Had they instead chose to appeal that poor decision (with backing from the state AG and CCC), they wouldn't still be figuring out they were going to pay the judgment against them?

"with backing from the state AG and CCC"

What backing? That is simply not true. They only offered a few briefs. Where was/is the $$?

Are you now telling us you have legal expertise and can tell us the probability of a successful appeal? Someone likely to believe you given that you cannot answer a simple question - where and when did you the Sins of Commission film that you say is "deceitful?"

Mr. Drouillard's weblink to the staff report (see a few posts above) and his comments lead me to believe that he has NOT seen Mr. Oshen's movie about the Coastal Commission.

If he had in fact seen the movie he would not have felt it necessary to post the link to the document as if it were NEW information.

Hmmm. "Factually wrong about their facts". Now that IS interesting!

Mr. Ginna -- No shouting. And no silly "gotcha!" questions, either. I outgrew those in the 10th grade.

Mr. Oshen claims that the CCC has a $2.4 million judgment against the Kenny/Starz property, yet provides no evidence of that judgment which would be in the public record if the CCC was involved. I don't believe any such judgment exists. There is, however, a staff report available on another CCC decision regarding a Topanga Canyon property that provides all the details of their action against Wildcrew's Playhouse, LLC, which casts further doubts on Mr. Oshen's claims.

I don't know about you, but after one of two servings of BS, I stop asking for more.

Mr. Ginna -- By backing I mean the AG and CCC would have joined the City of HMB in their appeal against the Beachwood folks. That is an indisputable fact, but I will allow that you may not comprehend its significance.

That doesn't mean they were going to give the incompetent fools on your City Council more money to squander as they bumbled through their suit against the developer. They were offering staff support, which would have been invaluable to the City. But no, they preferred to remain hostile to the Commission and the AG's office. Real smart of them, and you for supporting them.

Francis - At your original request, I very clearly pointed out a very serious factual error in the Terrace Ave project staff report and pointed you to the CCC meeting that covered it. Yet, I have not heard your response on the toxic runoff issue. So I'm sorry, until you help me understand how that tells us the CCC and staff are fairly treating permit applicants, I'm not interested in doing a research project for you on some other random case.

"By backing I mean the AG and CCC would have joined the City of HMB in their appeal against the Beachwood folks. That is an indisputable fact"

No, it is not. It is very disputable. You have no proof.

"give the incompetent fools on your City Council more money to squander as they bumbled through their suit against the developer."

Yes, people like Ruddock, Taylor, Ferreira & Grady did squander countless City dollars and bumble the suit. Finally, we are in agreement.

Quite a dialog going on here. It appears to me that we have a new anonymous expert in our midst. Moreover, our new friend is an outsider, with attitude. Let's bring it down a few thousand feet and welcome our outside expert and his retread dribble.

Who are you, Drouillard? Perhaps a better question or better stated anyway, would be - who do you think you are?

A few observations, from the bottom up, might be in order.

“"mjb" -- That Vaughn decision -- and the city council's actions that precluded an appeal -- sure worked out good for the City of HMB, didn't it?” I sense attitude.

“Had they instead chose to appeal that poor decision (with backing from the state AG and CCC), they wouldn't still be figuring out they were going to pay the judgment against them?” Backing? You call the mention, after the fact, of a possible Amicus Brief backing? Pahleese.

The Commission you so highly regard was a 50% partner of the predatory 2000 Council in denying the Beachwood CDP, and have been MIA in our efforts to deal with the repercussions of that 2000 travesty; other than in opposition.

Further, through all your, what you refer to as discussion you admonish us for not throwing good money after bad (appeal). Yeah, what the heck; it’s not your money, now is it? Walker presented what every expert I’ve spoken with called a “bulletproof” decision; but I guess, aside from being a Commission expert, and an expert on our little hamlet, you’re also a legal expert. We really are blessed to have you in our presence. Where were you when we needed you, Drouillard?

Moving up, I see you are very quick to dish personal insults. You have a very difficult time taking them though. Doesn’t seem to take more than a gentle breeze to get your hair on end. Try Brylcreme (sp?) and some sedatives. Maybe a walk around your neighborhood might help.

I see you’re an expert on the Gale project, too. You really do get around, don’t you?

Personally, I don’t appreciate an outsider, third string arm chair quarterback coming here with attitude, personally attacking members of our community, and offering nothing more than lies and a cancerous attitude. Oh, yeah, I forgot to tell you; I have seen the video. It’s apparent you have not.

I am familiar with the Gale project, Beachwood, and a few other issues here in HMB. It is crystal clear to me that you are not.

Just a suggestion, Drouillard; if you come with attitude, you’ll get it back in kind. Hopefully you’re smart enough to see that’s the case.

I might add one more thing. You offer nothing but arrogant criticism. You haven't earned that right, but I'll make a deal with you. If you get a Cashier's Check, made out to the City of Half Moon Bay, for $18 Million, I'll not only leave you alone - I'll agree with all your rants as if they were my own.

There’s an old saying that seems to fit here: if you mind your own business, you’ll stay pretty busy. Open that ‘expert’ mind of yours and dump that in the mixer.

Have a nice day. :)

Well, I have finally arrived. I lost my home base and now it is found. My Home Base is Little bitty HMB.

Since I AM the undisputed expert of BROADCAST mode, with NO ears, and an ATTITUDE, let's TALK.

Any semblance of dialog, or assertions to same needs an antagonist and a protagonist. The players line up simply, ad hoc, ad nauseum, and take sides and throw bile. I think all you characters have already nailed, stapled and glued that part down firmly.

Next, pick a topic with massive visceral appeal. OK, let us say that would be PEOPLE, and the ENVIRONMENT. Now let us pray. "I am a better friend of Mother Earth than you." and the chorus, "No, you heinous SOB, son of a dog, You are NOT"

OK, I think we need more gasoline.

Of course the alternative to Flame is Water. We have all just witnessed the horrible damage from Flame in our own state and in Australia in the past months. Stop--- Thimk. (;-)

Seen the movie have ya, Flame?!

Flame is my name. Simply LOOK and ABSORB the second frame of this link. Web Link If we continue this failed policy of supporting the Coastal Commission, Flame will OWN all of you people in California.

George -- I see you haven't learned your lesson from the Beachwood case. The next time you ask other Californians to bail you out of a mess you created for yourselves, come hat in hand with some humility and prepared to address the legitimate concerns of others and willingness to reach a consensus.

Being a confrontational little pr*ck that makes adversaries of the AG and the Coastal Commission while insulting your fellow Californians -- as well as other HMB residents -- just plain didn't work.


You are my kinda Flame...Shoot off your mouth with no data, and then use cuss words, and then take on Locals where YOU do not live, or even Know anything or anybody about the area. Francis, You are Waay out there. Cuddle up to to CCC for support..Mark, buddy, where are you?

My kinda guy, a Flamer with NO info, NO integrity, NO balls at all.

So, how is that worKing for you, Francis, so far? ? ?

So, Francis,

You're saying, then, that you were lying to us about seeing the film, Sins of Commission?

Does your religion say that lying is OK as long as it's for the greater good?

And those wonderful restaurants in your area...all developed before the Coastal Act?

"Being a confrontational little pr*ck that makes adversaries of the AG and the Coastal Commission while insulting your fellow Californians -- as well as other HMB residents -- just plain didn't work."

Oh boy, you are a gem. A very self-important one, but still a gem. You do recall that AB1991 passed the Assembly, right?

One more question - where and when did you see the film?

I saw the film and it was good. Howsomever, I choose not to comment further.

Francis is an engineer, folks.

Engineers' livelihoods are fantastically enhanced in a regulation-saturated environment.

We should understand that Francis is covering his own livelihood, here, and in these perilous times, who are we to blame him for lying about seeing this film?

One finger, many pies...sorry, Frannie...I didn't know...

It's always a kick to see someone like Drouillard smack down a whole thread's worth of juveniles with the straight stuff of an individual adult. (Got to love anonymous George's accusation of "anonymous" when Drouillard gives both first and last name. Not that the name means anything much when it is a topic and not personalities that is the supposed subject of the thread.)

"Most think the CCC is an unconstitutional abomination, but few know its mandate or how or why that mandate is implemented."

This is why I sometimes throw in references to chapters, articles, and/or sections of the Coastal Act, itself. Not for the kiddies who pride themselves on their ignorance and loyalty to obtuse myths, but for those who may be new to such arguments. To listen to those on the overhyped, simple-minded treadmill of property wrongs, one would never guess the basis or guiding regulations in play for our state's major attempt at coastal protection. Simply reading Chapter 1 of the Coastal Act is enough to blow the contrived, narrow, special-interest assertions about Coastal Act and Coastal Commission "sins" out of the water.

What these piddling little voices really want is to do away with the Coastal Act that interferes with their small-time machinations on their own financial behalf (machinations to the environmental and financial detriment of the rest of us). But they don't know how to say that or to confront the fact that state law would need to be changed for them to have their unfettered way with our coastal environment. Instead, they resort to playground taunts and muddled, misdirected hyper-patriotism out of context and going nowhere.

"FYI -- Novato is a city in Marin County at the north end of the SF Bay. Gualala is a small coastal town in Mendocino County at the border of Sonoma County."

Yes, of course I know these places. In fact, the blockage of the public from nine miles of shoreline at Sea Ranch, just south of Gualala, was one of the several most important bones of contention that led to Proposition 20. It has taken years of slogging work since to get even partial access across the private enclave to that shoreline, but we do now have a decent trail in the park at the northern end and vertical access to the ocean from several small parking lots along Highway 1--all of which I, in return, am sure you know.

But "Navata" and "Galala" sound so unintentionally exotic, so teen-age mystical, that I couldn't help but take a poke at the dolt who could not spell a *couple* of common California place names correctly, thereby indicating it was not a matter of a simple typo. By the way, if you are a fan of geographic names in the West, you might check out George Stewart's semi-classic book "Names on the Land" should you not already know it.

So, NP,

We now know about FD's vested interest in the CCC's status quo.

Tell us about YOUR experiences in dealing with the CCC, won't you?

Got cred?

Will you lookie here; our new outsider third string arm chair quarterback speaks again with his usual grace and dignity.

"I see you haven't learned your lesson from the Beachwood case."

Another example of your ignorance. Unfortunately, I'm not a decision maker in the process. If I had been, HMB wouldn't be in this position. Like I said above, it's crystal clear that you haven't a clue on any of our issues, but don't let that stop you from making an even bigger horse's rear-end of yourself.

"Being a confrontational little pr*ck that makes adversaries of the AG and the Coastal Commission ..." Do you eat with that mouth? Really, is that as adult as you can be? Are you directing that to someone specific?

I do have to admit, I find a couple of your rants funny. It's clear to me that you need no help looking stupid; you manage to do a fine job of that all by your lonesome.

I've said it before, and I'll say it again; it always amazes me how someone can, with no basis in fact at all, form an opinion on an issue, build an ironclad case around that baseless opinion, then attack anyone that even thinks about introducing facts (which, of course oppose the baseless opinion) to educate. I guess it's true that stupid is as stupid does.

You step into our little blogespere (sp?) with major attitude and accusations, while at the same time demonstrating your complete ignorance on the issue(s) you address; and we're suppose to what - bow down?

Your initial comments above - Francis Drouillard, a resident of Another Coastside community, on February 16, 2009 at 8:49 am - start right off with, "Richard Oshen's so-called documentary is a deceitful work.", and you haven't even seen the film. Then, later, you lie about that.

You continue your assault to include Kathleen Kenny, Michael Moore,

Arthur Starz, Zumbrun and Oshen (again), and you haven't seen the video! It is amazing, and that was only your first post; you continue with more posts, broadening your net of cancer and ignorance to include people here in HMB and on our coastside while broadening your demonstration of your ignorance to other local issues.

Fool \ (ful) n, (from Websters); 1) a person lacking in judgment or prudence

2) a: a retainer formerly kept in great households to provide casual entertainment and commonly dressed in motley with cap bells, and bauble b: one who is victimized or made to appear foolish: dupe 3) a harmlessly deranged person or one lacking in common powers of understanding.

Perhaps, Francis Doruillard, you should get away from the screen and run to your local minimart and buy a Lotto ticket because as best I can tell you hit every definition from Websters and that's pretty hard to do. Luck must be with you.

By the way, it might help if you spelled your name the same every time. I realize it’s a pain, but it might go a little way toward credibility – and from where I sit, you have quite a long way to go so every little bit is helpful.

Have a nice night. :)

George at his most typical. Trying to defend his playpen with a sword of feathers. Unable to cop to the fact the legal demagogues of the property wrongs crowd lose most of their cases and survive only with industry support. So insistent that his favored myths and their creators be raised to the level of universal dogma.

From Richard Oshen's website:

"My friends Peg and Dan bought raw, unimproved land in Topanga Canyon, California, zoned agricultural. Although their land is almost five miles from the coast, the California Coastal Commission asserts jurisdiction. Soon after they purchased their land, they began to clear debris from an existing road. That’s when their troubles begin.

In this scene, the coastal commission’s deep rooted disregard for Constitutional rights is evident. The commission knew that, in regulatory law, the court’s presumption of correctness lies on the side of the commission. Dan, to protect himself against false charges, had to document the inspection, since he would not be taken at his word.

Dan informed the commission the he intended to videotape any inspection, which under the U.S Constitution and California’s Bagley-Keene Act*, he was completely within his rights to do. In light of this, shockingly, commission staff was still able to convince a judge to issue a court order prohibiting Dan from exercising his rights to videotape on his own property.

That single act demonstrates the commission’s absolute power, and that they can and will abuse that unfettered power for any reason whatsoever. Their misdeed deeply offended me. I wanted to know who this Coastal Commission was, and how they have amassed such power. It seemed to me that the commission committed a sin, and that’s when the idea to make a documentary film called SINS OF COMMISSION took root."

A few relevant facts the Mr. Oshen left out:

_ Peg and Dan's property is within the Coastal Zone, which was established by the legislature, not the Commission. In fact, areas are routinely removed from the Coastal Zone. It is smaller today than when it was first established.

_ Peg and Dan didn't get any building permits at all. When first notified that their development activities (including tree removal, grading, road building and other construction) required a Coastal Development Permit, they agreed to cease development activity and apply for an after-the-fact CDP.

_ After attempting to establish a site visit, which is routine for any CDP, Peg and Dan's attorney informed commission staff that they would be filmed during the inspection by "an independent film maker." Staff had concerns about being Michael Moore-d. Guess who that film maker was.

_Rather than say "no," staff agreed with the caveat that they be allowed to tape, too. Peg and Dan refused. Why'd they do that?

There's more in the staff report for the project. Make sure to get the exhibits and well as the staff report. (The link to the Exhibits is on the last page of the staff report.)

In my view, there is much he can do to the film to improve its message. He skips over the legal requirements and specific issues that shed a great deal of light on the actions of commission staff and commission decisions.

Francis--just taking on one of your assertions.

"In fact, areas are routinely removed from the Coastal Zone. It is smaller today than when it was first established."

Heh heh. Removal from the CZ was one of the problems with one of the much-disliked-by-LCPers Beachwood solutions!

At the present time in this county the Coastal Zone takes in more area--much more--than when it was first established. Property owners are not notified when their property becomes part of the "zone" and in fact the demarcation here is kinda fuzzy once you get into the hills.

Say folks, is one of the ways Francis spells his name like this "Now Pitching"?

I hope the new CA budget slashes the CCC to $0. Good ridence. Lets spend the money on illegals. At least they do something useful.

Adult dialog! Yay!

Francis, you've brought up a wonderful point, thank you.

Any of us who have dealt with the CCC from the non-vendor side (Francis is the principle in a civil engineering firm, a vendor class that are generally enriched by a more harsh interpretation of the Coastal Act by Coastal staff) comes away from the experience with a much different viewpoint than what is in any given staff report. We non-vendors understand the fallacy of presuming staff to be as infallible as the Pope. A conclusion based on a fallacy yields a false conclusion. (Google 'Nollan 1987 Supreme Court' if you need a higher authority on staff fallibility)

Does this film expand upon the staff report?

Does it go on to address your "relevant facts"?

If he "skips over", as you say in your last sentence, are you talking about a clip you saw on Oshen's Sins of Commission website? Or are you relying purely on the staff report ?

You seem so certain that the film doesn't go further toward addressing your concerns.

We're all convinced you haven't actually seen the film, you know, and are possibly a shill/toadie for Coastal staff.

Have you seen the film?

"We non-vendors understand the fallacy of presuming staff to be as infallible as the Pope. A conclusion based on a fallacy yields a false conclusion. (Google 'Nollan 1987 Supreme Court' if you need a higher authority on staff fallibility)"

Attempts to frame a discussion to one's advantage also lead to false conclusions. Note, here, assumptions slipped in during the framing attempt that Drouillard has a financial interest in the decisions of the Coastal Commission and that he presumes CC staff to be infallible. Of course, Drouillard has said nothing to support those assumptions, and any fallacy would come in the assumptions made about him by djn.

It's all part of attacking the messenger rather than dealing in a forthright manner with an issue. The tactic has some legs in backward HMB, but in the greater world of real adults, it is obviously not worth even a swing to return the irrelevant ball.

Well spoken as the Master of the irrelevant balls.

Kind of tough to realize how superficial and transparent the property wrongs game is, isn't it?

I'm BAAACK--- I am so happy with the progress this smack-down group is making. Rancorous, uncivil, trashy, rants are my cuppa. I'm BAAACK.

OK, what do we need to keep this crapola going? more gasoline? nitro? Dyn-O-Mite? anthrax?

Just Where are we going with this process?....Nowhere!

Where is your concern for our enviroment? for nature? For ESHA? Have we lost our way? OR is the topic of mother nature and the environment simply a venue for rancor and power? Uh, Oh, nearly forgot, and MONEY.

How many of you on this topic are making big bucks shilling for the CCC or for water companies or septic field inspections or for the government or for "fish" or "parks"? OHHH< Is THAT why you are so mad? In these tough times, pardon me, I would not want to get between the pig and his or her government MONEY trough....

An excellent point, NP, about attacking messengers.

Richard Oshen reports that he has a message for California and beyond. He appeals for funds.

His message, the documentary film, "Sins of Commission", was brought to the attention of this forum by someone who has actually seen this film.

Mr. Drouillard and yourself have gone to great lengths to discredit Mr. Oshen, his message, and any who are curious about its content. Yet, it's been established that neither one of you have actually seen the documentary.

The lady doth protest too much, and it's oppressive. Are you book-burners? What is it about this movie (which you have not seen) that you're so afraid of? Why the suppression tactics? Do we only get free speech when it's the opinion you want heard? What is it you're so desperate to quash?

I'm tempted to accuse you of manipulating this discussion to advance your own agenda, but instead, I'll re-direct to the forum-as-a-whole, plumbing for open minds, asking:

Are there any among us who believe that staffers of a government agency would voluntarily admit to their own wrongdoings, publicly?

If so many of us believe that Coastal staff has engaged in repeated wrongdoing, isn't that reason enough to warrant further investigation? Is that an unreasonable demand?

And if further investigation should prove Coastal staff malfeasance, shouldn't the people of California consider Mr. Oshen's film a public service in bringing the matter to our attention?

Who's watching the watchers? Who among us is above reproach?


I love you.


"Are there any among us who believe that staffers of a government agency would voluntarily admit to their own wrongdoings, publicly?"

Only under oath, and even then it's 50-50 which is a far cry from a sure thing. It would then only be about how much pressure that individual employee was feeling at that moment.

'Senator, I have no recollection of that event.' OR

'He made me.'

As an owner of property in the Coastal Zone--and not being of a mind to develop this acreage any more that it is (and has been for the last 30 years) I would like to give my response to djn's questions:

"Are there any among us who believe that staffers of a government agency would voluntarily admit to their own wrongdoings, publicly?"

Not in my lifetime.

"If so many of us believe that Coastal staff has engaged in repeated wrongdoing, isn't that reason enough to warrant further investigation? Is that an unreasonable demand?"

Certainly it should be looked into. By whom is the question. Not anyone that Francis or Now Pitching would suggest. This looking-into is especially important because the commissioners and staff are NOT elected by the people. (Not that election to the position would guarantee better commissioners, but at least they could be removed!)

"And if further investigation should prove Coastal staff malfeasance, shouldn't the people of California consider Mr. Oshen's film a public service in bringing the matter to our attention?"

Definately. When and where can I see it?

A little brush back against Mr. Oshen's work:

<Web Link>


Be forwarned that all anonymous or uncivil comments will be ridiculed or deleted, the former being the method of choice.

NP -- Thanks for the book reference. I'll be sure to check it out. Charles Berlitz claims that many places around the world mean "I don't know" or "I don't understand you" in local native tongues. Not sure if that's true, but it sounds good.

The fire too hot for you here? Figured as much.

Could you answer the question - where and when did you see the film?

And one request too, if I may, Mr. Douillard.

Could you put one of those page counters on your blog so we can see when it registers "000000032" visitors?

Apparently Francis wasn't getting enough praise here, he's gone off to his blogspot to complain about Oshen and "Sins of Commission". There, he has the power to block any dissent he doesn't like.

Let's see if Francis allows my comment through; the one that mentions he hasn't actually seen the film he's trying to suppress...

djn -- Sorry, but I don't see your comment to my post. Are you sure you left one? You may have to try again.

Try not to frighten the horses.

Apparently Frankie is not aware of NP's nightly rants, taunts and general scat-tossing hereabouts. If we followed his "example," this would have been shut down long ago.

You do realize that you are defending a California state agency, right?


The problem so many of us have when we try to have an open discussion about this topic is the intentional misdirection by the subjective attitude that some of us bring to what should be an objective dialog. It's a belief system, exemplified by the last sentence in Francis Drouillard's recent post, above:

"Not sure if that's true, but it sounds good."

There's a legal term for it, too: IPSE DIXIT, which loosely translates to "because I said so".

When did you see the film, Francis? And where?

"Many others that participate in this thread would benefit by following your example." (Referring to NP's example...)

What, you think--we're a bunch of sheeple?

Francis Drouillard posts, 58 minutes ago:

Be forwarned that all anonymous or uncivil comments will be ridiculed or deleted, the former being the method of choice.

Blog page says (12:16 PM Feb 20, 2009):

Comments are not moderated. None are edited. Uncivil comments will be deleted.

Anonymous comments are allowed, but we prefer that you use your real name. Just sayin'.

Disagreement on an issue can be a very good thing. Even passionate disagreement is good. It is good in that it brings out a more robust and complete picture of the issue. Even those that push the envelope work, so long as there is civility.

Lying and personal attacks are a turnoff and harm the position of the provoking side. Some don't care, but most do.

"Sins of the Commission" is a film that shows a side of the Coastal Commission that some hail and others defend. Either way, it created this blog and that affords us all an opportunity to share our thoughts.

Let's try, even in passion, to be civil. We never know what we may learn.

"Problem is..." -- You're spot on with your most recent remarks.

The issue is whether or not Mr. Oshen corrects any misconceptions about the Coastal Commission. In my view he does not. Rather, he perpetuates and enhances those misconceptions.

The issue is not where I saw the movie, or clips of the movie, or if I ate salted and buttered popcorn as I watched the movie. The intent of those questions is to badger, obfuscate and misdirect.

It should be clear to anyone that has made a modest effort to understand an opposing point of view that my comments are directed at claims made by Mr. Oshen on the website for his movie.

<Web Link>

Francis, please go moderate your blog, even though the sidebar states that they are not moderated.

I know of at least three people who have left comments and there are NONE showing at this moment.

You yourself have given the impression that comments will be allowed.

I am a real person and I also have a blogspot blog.

Francis: I can't speak to the accuracy of Mr. Oshen's work, since I haven't seen it. It's clear though, that his premise resonates with a great deal of people who are not profiteers, developers, coastside pavers, or environment-haters. You don't seem to be willing to acknowledge that. Why not?

"Tawdry Glamour" -- Thanks, your comment has been moderated. I'll try to turn moderation off as I intended. (Darned computrifiers!)

Keep it local--

I suppose it's because he thinks we ARE profiteers, developers, coastside pavers, and environment-haters.

"Keep it local" wrote:

"Francis: I can't speak to the accuracy of Mr. Oshen's work, since I haven't seen it. It's clear though, that his premise resonates with a great deal of people who are not profiteers, developers, coastside pavers, or environment-haters. You don't seem to be willing to acknowledge that. Why not?"

My criticism is with Mr. Oshen's work. What difference should it make if it "resonates" with people I don't know? Absolutely none. The only thing that matters are the sparse facts and excessive fabrications in Mr. Oshen's work.

"What difference should it make if it "resonates" with people I don't know? "

Well, again, I'm trying to believe that you're an open-minded person and that you seek the truth. If .... IF .. there are inaccuracies in Mr. Oshen's movie, I'm surprised it doesn't bother you that many others find the idea of an abusive CCC staff credible based on their own experiences.

And if your view really is "What difference should it make if it "resonates" with people I don't know? "....

What in the world is motivating you to post here, and on your own blog for that matter?????? Doesn't add up....

"Keep it local" -- If you can't understand why I'd want to criticize Mr. Oshen for perpetuating myths, then you're a hopeless cause.

And, after several days and hundreds of posts in this thread, I have yet to hear anyone share their experience with the CCC regarding their plans to develop in the Coastal Zone. Nary a one. They simply repeat someone else's bellyaching about the CCC.

Take the Douda couple highlighted on the "Sins of Commission" website. Rather than modify their plans to conform to the Coastal Act, they lawyered up. They didn't think the Coastal Act should apply to them. A few court cases later, they learned the hard way that it does indeed apply to them and their property. Had they expended a fraction of the legal effort to work with staff to bring their plans into compliance with the Act, they'd be enjoying their dream home right now.

Mr. Oshen goes to great lengths to conceal relevant facts in each case he highlights. Instead, he relies on layman's interpretations of CCC decisions that are incomplete, incorrect or downright untruthful.

Take his clip of Mr. Zumbrun. He let that mouthpiece make numerous disparaging claims about the Commission without presenting any specifics. None. No application number, no description of the relevant issues and no names of applicants or commission staff, all of which are in the public record.

With the exception of ongoing legal cases, everything the commission does is in the open and according to state law.

When Mr. Oshen accuses the Commission of being secretive renegades, he should take a good look in the mirror.

"When Mr. Oshen accuses the Commission of being secretive renegades, he should take a good look in the mirror."

Certainly Oshen is being secretive because he hasn't shown some of us his movie.


"If you can't understand why I'd want to criticize Mr. Oshen for perpetuating myths, then you're a hopeless cause."

Ah, well if all you want to do it criticize, and the opinions of other don't matter then I guess I do understand - you're interested in a monologue, not a dialogue.

Still strange that you're preaching to people that you have no respect for.


You won't get specifics out of the blind gunslingers here. The way things work with this crowd is that they fire off in every direction hoping to hit people who point out the irrelevance and vacuity of their true-believing, know-nothing property wrongs dogma. If you seek objective, verifiable support for their blanket accusations against the Coastal Commission (or any other targets of their contrived ire), you will waste a lot of time. They are trying to wing you, personally, and are incapable of dealing with the purported topic of this thread or with your points on matters raised.

Have you seen "The Wrestler"? How about "Slum Dog Millionaire"? Without honing in on specifics and examples, those films are just as relevant to this thread as Oshen's latest in a long line of political attacks against coastal regulations that get in the way of childish twits wanting theirs and to heck with everyone else.

Locally, we get a healthy degree of mirth out of these buffoons, always ready to make fools of themselves while trying to impress one another. Coming from a simple-minded political philosophy, as they do, it is funny to watch them miss, entirely, the weaknesses that do exist in the Coastal Act and in the Coastal Commission's implementation of the Act with regard to its stated purpose of protecting the values of the coast for all the people of the state.

Well, now, NP, why don't you share your insights into the many weaknesses that the CCC embodies and embraces?

I await the real truth with BAITed breath.

"I await the real truth with BAITed breath."

Jump to Jack Nicholson dressed in military officer's garb and sitting in witness chair...

All you are fishing for is readily available with effort and an Internet search facility, including the California Coastal Act, as amended to date; and a world of basic information on the subjects covered by the Act, from coastal natural science to governmental jurisdiction. I know it is easier to buy into politicized hash fed to you in a documentary film preying on lazy true believers. But for real information to fill the vaccuum between your ears, you will have to build a knowledge base and then apply it to relevant information. No one can do this for you if you are starting from next to nothing, which you so clearly are.

In the mean time, I'll lob a fresh one in here:

Abuse of discretion.

The Coastal Act's definition of "development" is a prime example. The wording is so broad as to allow ANY conceivable human activity to require a permit. Growing a few tomato plants, for example: Unpermitted development. The word 'exempt' is no longer in the CCC lexicon.

Cutting back brush for a fire break is NOT development. It's WRONG to require the burden of running the CCC permit gauntlet in order for an owner to protect lives and property.

Clearing chaparral is hot, HARD work that never ends. It never ends because chaparral is practically impossible to eradicate, a fact that is touted in pretty much every mention of its place in the fire ecosystem of our Mediterranean-like climate. Humans move much slower than wildfire.

Chop it, burn it, it still comes back, a celebration of the coastal life force. Need a job, kid?

It comes down to HABITAT.

Coastal staff has unilaterally designated all coastal sage, chaparral, oak savannah and grassland (native grass or not) as ESHA, which stands for 'environmentally sensitive habitat area'. Basically, that's the entire coastal zone, except for Sara Wan's house, and no, I'm not joking.

That's right, ALL, at least in the Santa Monica Mountains, where every staff report seems to have Dr. John Dixon's Memorandum attached as a main exhibit, like so much boilerplate.

The Dixon Memorandum has never been subjected to public scrutiny via public hearings or the voting process, yet it is given the full weight of law. It was addressed to CCC staff in 2003 to give them three extremely broad criteria for determining if a property could be designated ESHA. Dixon spends 24 pages to explain the 40 words of the Coastal Act that cover sensitive plants, animals and habitats, complete with 103 footnotes to give it the appearance of a peer-reviewed paper.

Spend the year it will take to track down every paper, article, resolution and personal communication Dixon cites and you'll understand that he's drawn all of the wrong conclusions and is running a con job. In the academic world, it's called research fraud.

So, what's bad about an ESHA designation?

You're limited to 10,000 square feet of use, no matter how large your property, and that includes driveway and turnaround for fire trucks.

Anything over that 10,000 square feet has to be deed-restricted or deeded over to a conservancy, and you have to sign a piece of paper saying you give up all use and enjoyment of that property in exchange for a permit to be able to 'develop' in ESHA. No matter how large your property. Talk about a land grab.

And you still get to pay the property taxes.

Remember, humans are native to Mediterranean habitat. That's why so many of us are here.

Święta krowa!

Does Francis know Dr. John Dixon?

Let's move beyond the property rights framing.

This is about privacy.

Do the homeless have a right to privacy? To exclude others from using what they own, be it a bicycle or a fork or a quiet moment alone?

Do I have the right to my own private property? To say, "No, you can't use my bike" and be secure in the knowledge that it's mine and I get final say? And if a stranger takes the bike anyway, doesn't that constitute theft?

Every individual creature needs a defensible space that is controlled only by that individual. Call it self-esteem, call it habitat, it's about privacy, and privacy is about control. If we don't have full control, we don't have full privacy.

And full privacy, dear people, is a HUMAN right. Like the right to own and control property, be it a bicycle or a butte, is a basic human right. None of us has the right to steal.

You want my bike? Make me an offer. It was for sale when I bought it.


Re: abuse of discretion

This is a very good way to describe alot of what is going on with the CCC. In HMB we have a wetlands definition that is about a paragraph long. Since it is unique, in that it is different from the definitions used by the US Fish and Wildlife Service and the Army Corp of Engineers (who have federal jurisdiction for wetland delineation), it is, apparently, wide open to interpretation by the CCC staff. As such the applied definition has morphed over time in the direction of being more inclusive (more things are wetlands).

One might reasonably wonder: why is HMB's definition different? And why is the interpretation so inclusive? I believe that the answer is to help provide the latitude to develop quasi-legal arguments that development is impermissible.

The only recourse to such interpretation is a legal challenge in the courts, which is expensive and therefore not realistic for the "little guy".

The Gale project that was referred to earlier is another example of this. Besides the CC staff's "toxic runoff" challenge, they also used HMB's definition of feasible alternative to bolster their recommendation of denial, as our friend Mr. Droulliard pointed out. The feasible alternative exception for a single family home is not in the Coastal Act - it's in HMB's LCP. Yes the CC staff felt that they are more qualified to interpret its meaning than elected officials in the City that wrote the ordinance.

"Abuse of Discretion" in its most arrogant form.

Back to John Dixon, state biologist for the CCC.

That's right, STATE biologist. You'll have to hire your own, at a hefty price, if you intend to apply for a permit from the CCC.

Dixon's Memorandum is based, so he claims, on the fundaments of Conservation Biology.

Conservation Biology, described by conservation biologists as a blend of such diverse fields of study as sociology, biology, and political science, has intentionally replaced the word "extirpation" with the word "extinction". Extirpation describes an absence in an area; extinction describes non-existence. Subtle, huh? I love you, Al Gore, but you lost me at "50,000 species extinct every year". Come back!

Sociology uses the SUBJECTIVE standard; Biology adheres to the strict OBJECTIVE standard; political science, well...ask Little Bo Peep, I can't help you there.

Using sociological methods to answer a biological question is like giving hearsay the same evidentiary weight as DNA, like accepting opinion for fact. You'll NEVER find a peer-reviewed paper that contains the phrase "...if we're to be believed.." accepted into any hard-science journal, not with a straight face. Yet, there's Dixon, referencing this plaintive supplication in his footnotes as though this were a remedial second-year theology class.

Two of the scholars that he cites, a pair of chaparral/fire ecology experts, actually were published in a 2007 New York Times editorial (with a UCLA professor) making the outrageous claim that "...wind-driven fires are not fuel-dependent..." in a California wildfire.

Following that logic, why then isn't the bay in constant flame?

Another favorite of Dixon's is Dr. Michael Soule, who claims that humans need interaction with "...large mammalian carnivores..." so that humans can "...learn HUMILITY."

This is conservation biology? Sounds like Eugenics. Or a 70's encounter group.

Why are we being forced to use this standard? Who hired this guy?

Keep It local:

Thanks for the background.

Was Mark Massara involved? Bloody cheerleader! It's my cozy belief that Sierra Country Club membership is a prerequisite to being hired as Coastal staff...but just try to get at those personnel records or, for that matter, a membership/amount donated list from the Country Club. And did you know that Peter Douglas is the only human hired by the state never required to take the Civil Service Oath? That means he's not sworn to uphold the state or federal constitutions. Think about that.

They can only make conjecture and flawed Population Viability Analyses (PVAs), then cover their trail with jargon-laden epistles to each other. The burden of proof has really shifted from its original foundation.

Press on.

Thank God for the California Coastal Commission. Were it not for them, us of the riff raff would not have any access to the beaches or any view of it. People who owned real estate along the shore would claim the beaches as their personal property, erect all kinds of barriers and try to keep us lesser mortals off "their" land. Thank you Coastal Commission and all the voters from way back when who had the foresight to come up with it.


You must be smoking crack if you think the Coastal Commission cares anything about the environment. Those "fat cats" are making $$$$$$$$$$ on denying people their rights. Some federal grand jury needs to look into the total disregard for the U.S. constitution. Even though I hate Judge Walker's decision, he was right!!!!!!!!!!!!


"NP" -- I must admit that up until a few years ago, you would not have been able to distinguish me from those defending Oshen's film. I also bought into all of the anti-CCC propaganda and myths. I too dreaded subjecting my development plans to their review. I too resented the requirement to obtain botanical reports, wetland delineations, etc. before my application was considered complete. (I was especially concerned because all but a small fraction of my property is ESHA.) Wetlands? Yech. Fill them. What good are they? Fire hazards? Mow them down? Osprey nest? They'll find another tree. Rare and endangered grasses and flowers right where I want to build? Hire some goats! Yeah! That'll show those lousy gummint bureaucrats!

Then I started attending CCC meetings. And reading staff reports for projects with issues similar to mine. I was highly impressed by the manner in which the Commission handled numerous permit applications, appeals, enforcement actions and public comment.

Then I started reading our LCP and the Coastal Act. Say, wait a minute. The property next to mine is owned by the State Lands Commission. Don't they have property rights, too? Don't they have a right to protect their land and the resources thereon? Don't they have a right to prevent their neighbors -- private property owners -- from performing activities that harm state lands and resources? Of course they do!

Back to my conversions. I was also impressed with the accessibility of staff and even some commissioners. You can ask them questions! They describe the law and discuss their concerns! They offer suggestions! In my case, the suggestions they offered proved to be invaluable to me, and provided new focus to my development plans. I must say the result is a substantial improvement over what I originally planned. I get to keep much more of the natural habitat and wildlife it supports, something I didn't even notice before.

CCC staff aren't trying to stop development. Their job is to make sure your development is compatible with the Coastal Act (or LCP). I have found that most developers that bellyache about the Commission just don't think the law should apply to them.

There are ways to improve the Coastal Commission, but eliminating them isn't cure. Restoring their funding to levels that enables them to fulfill their state and federal mandates is the first step.

I suspect that most of those that support Oshen's work are social and fiscal conservatives. So am I. As a Michigan redneck from a small backwoods town, I also appreciate the natural environment and efforts to conserve it. I remain stunned at how hostile California Republicans are towards environmental causes. In my view, that hostility ensures their minority status for years to come.

And no, I don't believe that working to stop global warming as our Governor wants makes you green -- it makes you a gullible fool. But that's another issue.

Sounds like you've got "yours" or are trying desperately to get it and keep nature's wonders to yourself. Good luck with that. Go Coastal Commission! And keep up the good work for all the rest of us who don't own beach front property. Thanks to you the coastside is not totally paved over yet or reserved for the select monied few who, I suspect, are the biggest complainers.

Tim -- A quick quiz for you: how much are Commissioners paid for their work? And, of those Commissioners that lean towards the environment how many are on the take? How about those that lean towards development?

Who has more money to spend on lawyers and graft, the environmental groups or the developers? And finally, with the exceptions of Nollan and Dolan, how many times has the Coastal Act been found to be unconstitutional after judicial review?

"Grateful" -- Thanks for the kind words. My wife and I haven't achieved our dream home in the coastal zone, but we're well on our way.

As for those that complain the loudest and are the most harsh critics of the CCC, it has been my anecdotal experience that they're extremely wealthy liberals that do not believe the law applies to them. Not that there's anything wrong with being extremely wealthy ...

I have two neighbors that fit that mold. Between the two of them they've razed about 200 acres of natural habitat. If it wasn't a redwood it was cut down and its roots pulled.

Two summers ago my wife and I saw wave after wave of small mammals and birds passing through our property from their direction. That was the result of clearing and grubbing 20 acres under the guise of creating a fire break. I can only imagine the accumulative damage they created in clearing 200 acres.

As my wife asks, if they're afraid of forest fires why didn't they just buy property where there weren't any trees? There's plenty such land available, even along the coast.

Please note that Mr. Drouillard, in his 12-Step confession, said: "Then I started reading our LCP and the Coastal Act...."

Need I point out that "his" LCP is not the same as the LCP used in HMB or in OUR county's unincorporated coastal areas.

I believe "his" area is north of here.

I would caution readers to wrap their heads around just how the CCC works and the role the various LCPs were originally to play but anyone who has struggled this far in this discussion is either knowledgable or totally deluded.

"djn" -- Sorry to hear you're so easily overwhelmed by Dr. Dixon's work.

One of the CCC's mandates is to protect ESHA's within the Coastal Zone. It matters not that you want to remain ignorant of the significance of coastal habitat and how important it is to a healthy coastal environment.

All of the California Coast is potentially ESHA. Mapping it takes a lot of data acquisition and a lot of analysis. When that data is absent in an area proposed for development, what do you do? Ignore it and proceed with development? Or require that the developer gather site specific data for every development proposed?

Maybe the later, but that's an unfair burden to place on a developer when simple guidelines can be derived to better determine if further ESHA studies are justified.

Get your arms around that and you may acquire a better appreciation of Dr. Dixon's so-called "boilerplate."

All -- A few comments about the CCC's definition of development.

I've heard all the arguments -- personal opinions actually -- regarding what should and should not constitute "development" under the Coastal Act. The definition of development under the Act is relatively broad by necessity.

It's a matter of semantics. In my view, they could have as easily used the word "activity" instead of "development."

The definition of "development" in the Coastal Act is routinely challenged in court and those challenges routinely fail. Why? Because property owners, in this case State Lands, has a right to protect their property from the adverse effects of activities or development performed on neighboring property.

Say you're a property owner with a neighbor performing activities that diminish your use and enjoyment of your property. Let's presume further that those activities are otherwise fully lawful.

Do you have a right to stop them from performing those activities because it diminishes your use and enjoyment of your property? Or should you just get used to it?

Prawo Jazdy -- And, what? I wear boxers instead of briefs, too. What conclusions should be drawn from your exceptional sleuthing?

"Keep it local" wrote:

"The feasible alternative exception for a single family home is not in the Coastal Act - ..."

The exception is not limited to single family homes. See Section 30233 for one.

Note that the Commission uses this clause to allow development that would otherwise prevent property owners from reasonable use of their land. Otherwise, as established by the SCOTUS, the Commission's actions would constitute a "taking."

Say you purchased a parcel that turns out to be 100% ESHA, and that you had a reasonable expectation of developing the land for its intended use. (It's fairly simple to establish the latter.) They only way to comply with the Coastal Act (or LCP) and prevent a "taking" is to invoke Section 30233.

There are other hairs to split in this scenario, but generally speaking, the presence of wetlands or ESHA won't preclude development of your property unless the CCC (or LCP administrator) is willing to purchase your land.

Mr Drouillard, please take a deep, calming breath.

A couple of thoughts about several of your offerings:

"Two summers ago my wife and I saw wave after wave of small mammals and birds passing through our property from their direction. That was the result of clearing and grubbing 20 acres under the guise of creating a fire break. I can only imagine the accumulative damage they created in clearing 200 acres."

Having worked in the woods for most of my life I really have to question that the "wave after wave of small mammals and birds" was caused by the specious firebreak activity. Unless, of course, the activity included a (controlled or not) burn or nuclear bomb.

Even in the days of D8s, arches and draglines I never saw such a mass movement of animals. Did you happen to reference the solunar tables at this point? Or had you been...uh...testing out that main cash crop of the northern counties?

"One of the CCC's mandates is to protect ESHA's within the Coastal Zone."

And who decides what is ESHA? ("All of the California Coast is potentially ESHA.")

Oh, you answered that! John Dixon and his ilk. Because the individual property owner cannot afford to hire the experts required to refute Dixon's boilerplate.

Francis, this Talkabout topic will make a great addition to your CV when the CCC is in need of a new commissioner!

JA śmieję się!

I have no idea what a personal style of underwear (if any at all) has to do with this discussion. (But for the record I prefer V_______'_ S_____)

However, LCPs to have something to do with the CCC, which is one of the topics of discussion. Or at least I thought it was.

You don't want to discuss LCPs? LCPs are inconsequential? Wy jesteście nudni.

I was simply pointing out that they are not all the same for each area or each county for that matter. They are not boilerplate. That could be a good thing, since each area has different needs and concerns and it could be a bad thing if an area'a LCP has been badly formed by activist fringe groups posing a normal people.

Ma dobry dzień!

(Clay, you can go to Web Link to check that the above "foreign" words are not verboten... Trust me they are not.)

"Ranger Bob" -- Is it your contention that clearing and grubbing over 20 acres of dense woods and thickets along the coast doesn't result in the loss of habitat? If so, you're either joking or a much bigger fool than your comments suggest.

If clowns like you spent a fraction of the effort learning about the environment and the Coastal Act as you do making up wild conspiracies involving state employees, you wouldn't sound like a such frustrated ignoramus.


Of course you already know this, but just because the words "feasible alternative" appear in the Coastal Act doesn't mean the usages apply to the Terrace Ave case. They weren't looking to dredge, fill or anything of that sort.

You're missing the points being made here:

1. Coastal Act and LCP language is being stretched, apparently to fit a political agenda.

2. The CCC has an incredibly out of whack accumulation of power. In spite of not being elected, they can dictate the language that goes into LCPs and local electeds have little recourse. They can enforce their interpretation of LCPs through permit conditions that are not negotiable and through fines. And they can appeal local decisions, hold a hearing of their own appeal, and deny permits based on their own "evidence" and arguments. Quite incestuous, don't you think? Not very American.

I too have attended several CCC meetings and read staff reports. I've seen cases where things seem reasonable, but I've also seen clear cases of abuse. I don't hear anyone arguing that biological reports should not be required and habitat should not be protected. It goes over the line when CC staff augment analysis from professional biologists with their own, adding in unscientific arguments (like toxic runoff defying gravity).

I didn't realize that you actually have a dog in this fight, in that you're trying to get your own permit approved. I can see how this might colour your opinion. As for me, I have no dog in the fight, as I already have a home and have no intention of additional development. I'm also not a "California Republican" or an "extremely wealthy liberal", as if that actually matters. They would make strange bedfellows by the way, if you are actually right.

"Keep it local" -- Sigh. NP is correct. You, along with others here, make broad statements you can't back up. Then, when facts are presented to refute your argument you change the subject.

"1. Coastal Act and LCP language is being stretched, apparently to fit a political agenda."

And that works both ways, doesn't it?

"2. The CCC has an incredibly out of whack accumulation of power. In spite of not being elected, they can dictate the language that goes into LCPs and local electeds have little recourse. They can enforce their interpretation of LCPs through permit conditions that are not negotiable and through fines. And they can appeal local decisions, hold a hearing of their own appeal, and deny permits based on their own "evidence" and arguments. Quite incestuous, don't you think? Not very American."

The number of factual errors in that statement is high, even for this list. The Coastal Commission enforces the Coastal Act. They have no other powers. They do not dictate LCPs. They certify LCPs that conform to the Coastal Act. Most conditions they require for approval are necessary for an application to be brought into conformance with the standard of review. If it's in an area with a certified LCP, then the LCP is the standard of review; otherwise it's the Coastal Act. Yes, they can appeal permits approved by the local Coastal Permit Administrator if that project is in the appealable zone (between the first public highway and the coast) or an ESHA is involved. That is good, because many municipalities fail to enforce their own LCPs. HMB is one notorious example of such a municipality, as are the Mendocino County Board of Supervisors. Such appeals are subjected to a public hearing to determine if the appeal is based on a substantial issue. That means they must convince other Commissioners there is a basis for appeal. The Commission routinely fails to find substantial issue, particularly when appeals aren't based on provisions of the LCP or Coastal Act.

If substantial issue is found, the local permit is voided and the application is subjected to a de novo review by Commission staff using the LCP or Coastal Act, as applicable, as the basis of review. Approval or denial is then based on a public hearing. Hardly the secretive process you so adamantly claim.

CCC staff frequently ferret out bogus claims by applicants. Foremost among these "no EHSAs here!" Some people go to great lengths to make that claim. A formerly common practice in Mendocino County was to hire goats to eat every plant on a property before obtaining a botanical report. Thanks to these dishonest individuals, botanists must now inspect properties during "bloom," which requires a minimum of 3 site visits, 1 each in April, May and June. The net effect has been to increase the cost of compliance because botanists must do more field work. All thanks to the dishonest developers you want to accommodate.

As for your unAmerican comment, I believe it is very patriotic to follow state law and protect the natural resources of the State of California, which belong to all Californians. You don't need to own property in the Coastal Zone to have "a dog in the fight."

Prawo Jazdy -- I don't mind discussing LCPs, but I prefer doing so with someone that can think above a 4th grade level.

It should be abundantly clear to anyone that knows anything about the Coastal Act that LCPs vary up and down the coast. Otherwise, we wouldn't need LCPs, would we? The standard of review would be the Coastal Act everywhere, wouldn't it?

"Is it your contention that clearing and grubbing over 20 acres of dense woods and thickets along the coast doesn't result in the loss of habitat? If so, you're either joking or a much bigger fool than your comments suggest."

Um, no. Can't you read? My contention is that when you saw the mass migration of wildlife and connected it to the "loss of habitat" you were probably mistaken. Or, less charitably, exagerating. You quickly lose credibility with people who actually live amidst the wildlife.

Having watched plenty of habitate being "lost" or "realigned" or "restored" over many years, I can say that I have not seen that sort of movement except at the front of a blazing wildfire.

So we are down to what YOU saw and what I saw. Guess we'll have to leave it at that.

To paraphrase someone who has posted here: if clowns like you spent a fraction of the effort learning about the environment as it really exists, you wouldn't sound like a such frustrated ignoramus.


Regarding your statement--

"It should be abundantly clear to anyone that knows anything about the Coastal Act that LCPs vary up and down the coast. Otherwise, we wouldn't need LCPs, would we? The standard of review would be the Coastal Act everywhere, wouldn't it?"

I recall being at a Coastal Commission meeting held at Stanford about 3 years ago, and at the start of the meeting, the Chair stated that that meeting would be historic of all the meetings of the Commission. She did not spell out the reasons, but as the day ran on it was imminently clear why that meeting was so important. The CCC started making rules for all the LCP, For example, the 10,000 sq ft per parcel rule for housing, stables, wells, etc which is less than 1/4 acre (even if your parcel was 500 acres), the assertion that coastal prairie terrace grass was ESHA with no further proof, the proposal for limiting the allowed square footage of your home in the coastal zone , and more. Rich Gordon, Supervisor of San Mateo County spoke at that meeting and very clearly pointed out it was the authority and responsiblility of SMC to operate their own LCP, and that CCC was out of line in telling the Supervisors, and all LCP. how to run the details of their LCP. Rich said it nicely, politically, but firmly.

"The Coastal Commission enforces the Coastal Act. They have no other powers. They do not dictate LCPs. They certify LCPs that conform to the Coastal Act. Most conditions they require for approval are necessary for an application to be brought into conformance with the standard of review. If it's in an area with a certified LCP, then the LCP is the standard of review; otherwise it's the Coastal Act."

These simple few sentences describing basic facts about how things work under the California Coastal Act provide information that blows the premise and most of the unfounded ranting by the property wrongs crowd in this thread out of the discussion. Failing to know (or acknowledge) what underlies what they are talking about and barking up the wrong tree are long-established hallmarks of environmental degenerates on the San Mateo County and Half Moon Bay coast.

Here is a little hint that can save the kiddies babbling on about principles of population biology and other matters they don't understand a lot of time and embarrassment. If you don't like the findings on which the Coastal Act is based, and you don't like the several bureaucracies established by the Coastal Act and how they are supposed to operate according to the Act (California Coastal Commission; California Coastal Conservancy), and you don't like the Local Coastal Plan (LCP) system that the Act establishes, and you don't like the legal basis for the Act, and you don't like the natural sciences and other areas of professional expertise the Act involves, and you want to be free to conduct activities on your property that have negative impacts on your neighbors, and you want to deny all citizens of the state some of the rights and resources they hold collectively, and you want to block the public from access to public property on the coast, *change or do away with the California Coastal Act*!

Revolutionary stuff, eh what? Knock out the Coastal Act, and you will have developed the experience and muscle to go after the half dozen other major state and federal laws (and the bureaucracies associated with them) involved with coastal protection in California. Good luck with this, and with dealing with the backlash from citizens of the state that may, in the long run, provide us all with the stronger coastal protections that we need.

"......They do not dictate LCPs....."

If you really have read many CC staff reports and attended many meetings, then with that statement alone you severely damage your credibility. You are either a poor listener/reader, not a very good critical thinker, or you're trying to blow smoke up my behind.

You accuse me of making broad statements I can't back up, but I've offered specific cases and specific facts, yet you fail to address or even acknowledge them.

As facts you offer only long recantations of CCC generic process, as though reality could never deviate from that. I'm sorry Francis, I tried, but I can only conclude that you are not interested in the truth. My advice to you is to seek a healthy dose of introspection. Perhaps wait until after your permit is approved. Good luck with that.


I too think I met you in class. I was speeding and I think you were too.

Prawo, I checked many authoritative credible know it alls, and I believe I am more popular than you are (as a name of a person), expecially in the Coastal Zone--- I know it is hard to believe when you look at the statistics, but sometimes truth is stranger than fiction-+-+-+ Especially in the "C+O+A+S+T+A+L Z-O-N-E "

Prawo Jazdy

Web Link

Greczy is the # 662,857 ranked last name in the United States

Laslo is the # 34,071 ranked first name in the United States.

I think Clay deleted one of my prior comments--why, who knows...


I may know you. Were you in one of my classes? And a very good day to you too.

too many windows open (7), lost my train of thought, basketball is ON--dinner is smelling good, found and just posted my "deleted" comment ---me bad--

Clay, good.

Talkabouters are not all the frustrated ignorami, piss-willies, gullible fools, immature confrontational little pr*cks and hopeless causes some people make them out to be.

Talkabouters can do their research! (Or read every one of those "Fw: Fw: Fw: Fw: Good One!" emails.)

Say did you hear that one about the mother of octuplets who named them all Prawo Jazdy?

I love you Prawo.

Just think we can have fun and laugh in communities outside Half Moon Bay, but it is extremely rare to crack jokes, in HMB, the Coastal Zone. Wonderbar.

Druillard says "All of the California Coast is potentially ESHA."

Are you suggesting that everyone in the coastal zone move out, or just offering your own move? How about visits to the coast? Should that stop too?

If I had the inclination to merit each comment you've made here so far, I'd say the ratio of garbage to real is 99:1. That may be generous on the real side and only my opinion.

You live in a house, or at least that's what you implied. So you paid a 'developer' (oh those evil creatures) to develope. You don't have a lot of good things to say about them, but you support them financially. I'm just trying to wrap my head around your mindset here.

You've gone off on many tangents, all very supportive of the Coastal Commission and their staff (topic) and feel you have all 126 LCP's under control. Cool

You proffer to be a Coastal Act expert. I do not see it that way. I say there's a huge spread between the Act and the Commission's interpretation of said Act. Maybe that's why they get sued so much.

In the end it boils down to interpretation. The Coastal Commission and their staff have one way of seeing the Act and most everyone that has had to deal with them has another.

I guess that's why we have courts and why lawyers make so much money. They end up being the only winners.

I still can't believe your mindset that produced the quote "All of the California Coast is potentially ESHA."

Are you really Peter Douglas in disguise?

Just got a notice in the mail from CCC about the Midcoast update. Says I can find the staff report on their website. Only no can do. Anybody got the staff report? Please post it here or give us a link that works.

As I read all this commentary, I am struck with alarm and fear of a government body so out of control that it is hurting not just individuals, but whole communities, (like HMB). Many of the 126 Local Coastal Programs are being seriously impacted by the Coastal Commission.

It would be very informative to compile a list of the projects that have been delayed, stopped, and penalized by the Coastal Commission. The documentary identified a small house of about 700 sq feet with penalties of over $2 Million. How much did it cost to delay the El Granada pipeline for 4 years? Somewhere between $1 and $4 Million? How much did HMB pay their lawyers for Beachwood for all the lawsuits and wetlands interpretations? $5M... Folks we are talking real money. Stop. Think. Multiply that by 126.

Much of the delay and costs are due to the Coastal Commission. So, could we protect the envioronment better AND for much less cost? I suggest, yes we can.

El Granada Grandad,

No surprise, been there tried that. Cannot find staff report for Midcoast LCP or HMB LCP on the CCC website for the agenda for March 11-12 in Monterey.

Hey, what a kick. All of us on this blog could show up to Actually see the CCC in Action on March 12. We could even comment and tell them what is bothering us. We could ask them for an accounting of all the costs and penalties that they have levied on all the 126 LCP in the past 5 years.

You can ask, but ...

I'm sure they'd love to hear all our comments. I've only seen them in action a few times, but I don't remember seeing them afford ant type of oral communications for items not on the agenda, which means we would be sol.

Asking them for an accounting? Now that's funny. We .. judge them?

No, I think our best bet is to talk with every single town that has ant Coastal Zone property. It's time to network. It's time to get together. It's past time to stop those thugs. The best way is to unite.

It's simply a matter of time.

I'm not as funny as you, but I'm funny too. I seem to have a lazy finger. It doesn't want to stretch to the y and settles for the t.

Sorry for the typos above.

You are correct. The CCC meeing notice says "A copy of the staff report in this metter is available on the Coastal Commission's website at Web Link" but it ain't there.

When you finally scroll down to the North Central Coast District you find five items under the heading "6. LOCAL COASTAL PROGRAMS (LCPs)" and only one of those has an attached staff report and that's a 32 page document for Pacifica.

I like the idea of attending the meeting. Unfortunately I think Sarah and others would just blow us off as it is rumored they blew off Richard Oshen when he tried to interview them.

After all, we don't elect these people. Why should they talk to us?

Keep watching item Th6-b and Th6-c. They'll provide a link to the staff report as soon as it's complete. It should be available the Friday before the week of the meeting.

The Commission is very good about allowing time for public comment. Fill out speaker slips before you enter the meeting. State so if you want to address a specific agenda item, and indicate whether or not you support or oppose the application (or staff's position). Depending on the number of speakers on any given item, you'll get 1 to 3 minutes while that item is heard.

If you have several speakers on one side of an issue, and wish to give your time to a spokesperson from your group, make that clear to staff collecting speaker slips as well as the chair. They Commissioners appreciate it when you use your speaker time efficiently. The chair will ask that person how much time they need, but don't expect much more than 5 or 10 minutes for your group.

For general rants, you'll get two to three minutes during the public comment period, which occurs prior to commissioners breaking for lunch.


Thanks for the guidance on how to interact with the CCC during their meetings, very accurate and thorough. You also said "All of the California Coast is potentially ESHA."

My question to you is "Can you tell me species or habitat which the CCC does NOT view as endangered?"

"Then you need to move" asked:

"Are you suggesting that everyone in the coastal zone move out, or just offering your own move? How about visits to the coast? Should that stop too?"

in response to my statement "All of the California Coast is potentially ESHA."

"Then you need to move" -- Do you always take statements out of context that you don't understand? Do you really need to make straw men to make a point?

If you re-read my post you'll see the concept is pretty simple. Either require everyone to obtain biological and botanical reports for their projects, or require them only when there is a reasonable possibililty that an ESHA exists.

In order to enforce the Coastal Act -- which is state law -- the Commission must protect ESHAs. In order to protect ESHAs, they need to know where they exist. Unless you want the state government to fund the necessary studies and map ESHAs along the entire coast, the burden is passed to the developer to acquire that data. Since most developers have an incentive to ignore ESHAs or minimize their importance, Commission staff is still needed to evaluate those reports. (Yes, there are some unscrupulous botanists/biologists that knowingly submit faulty or incomplete reports.)

A good architect/engineer knows how to accommodate site constraints such as size and height restrictions, property line setbacks and bluff and ESHA setbacks into their design. In other words, they know how to make development conform to the site rather than changing the site to conform to the development.

That's what the Commission and the Coastal Act require -- development that conforms to the site rather than the other way around. It's the only way to protect complex natural ecosystems while accommodating property owners within the Coastal Zone.

I don't know why so many here have such a hard time grasping that relatively simple concept. Perhaps they were weaned too soon.

"Property Matters" -- Sure, I can answer that! Humans for species and certain overdeveloped areas for ESHAs.

All kidding aside, other state and federal agencies establish the status of threatened and endangered plant and animal species. Cal Fish and Game and the California Native Plant Society maintain list of endangered and threatened species.

However, the Coastal Commission is charged with protecting all plant and animal species within the Coastal Zone, not just those that are threatened or endangered. You must steer clear of ESHAs entirely, AND minimize your accumulative impact on the remaining habitat.

Recall, it's about maintaining a healthy coastal environment, which benefits all coastside residents and visitors.

Dear, dear Francis,

you stated "All of the California Coast is potentially ESHA."

Taken out of context? No, I don't think so. Just quoting you and you did say that didn't you? Francis Drouillard, a resident of Another Coastside community, on February 21, 2009 at 8:30 am

Peter Douglas had-has a similar view. He declared, through his henchmen (Commission) that chaparrel is ESHA. That particular plant is a dominant weed covering a large portion of S. CA, which effectively makes any development darn near impossible.

That's why I asked if you are Peter Douglas.

It is very evident that you are a die hard commission supporter. It is also very evident that you haven't yet seen "Sins of the Commission", yet you are at no loss for words and desparaging comments on the film. "My criticism is with Mr. Oshen's work." Francis Drouillard, a resident of Another Coastside community, on February 20, 2009 at 2:23 pm - How do you know when you haven't seen Mr. Oshen's work?

You take an NP approach to your arguments, in that when someone opposes your view you belittle them as best you can. "I don't know why so many here have such a hard time grasping that relatively simple concept. Perhaps they were weaned too soon." Francis Drouillard, a resident of Another Coastside community, 2 hours ago

There are many other examples strewn throughout this thread. I just pulled your most recent.

You have had, and will continue to have a very difficult time opposing something you haven't seen, but you haven't let that stop you so far. Merely shows your ignorance and your blind following of the Commission and their staff.

Sheeple is the word that comes to mind.

I want to jump in here and respond to Mr. Drouillard's posting that begins with this sentence: "Keep watching item Th6-b and Th6-c. They'll provide a link to the staff report as soon as it's complete."

Thank you for your advice about how to address the CCC. Your posting lays out the proper way to go about addressing a commission of this sort as well as many other governemnt agcencies and boards. Including local planning commissions and supervisors.

HOWEVER, something you may have missed that has happened over and over again locally is that the public is allowed to speak but the commission or board does not listen.

What we get out of taking a day off work and appearing before this commission or board might be a summary in the minutes of what we said with the response, "Comment noted."

This may not be your experience in localities where you have attended meeting. This HAS happened here.

"Comment Noted" -- If you want your comments added to the record you need to get them to staff before the staff report is completed. Otherwise, the only record of your public comment is the video archives.

If you want commissioners to adopt your position you have to make compelling arguments based on the Coastal Act or the LCP, whichever is the standard of review. Even then, don't be surprised if some Commissioners listen and some don't. It's just human nature.

"Then you should move" -- If you want to know my specific beefs with Mr. Oshen and his movie I have that info at my blog:

<Web Link

I will add more as I find relevant staff reports from the CCC archive and any judgments that are available online. Hopefully I'll get those for Trish and Milo Douda, and, if they exist, the same for Kathleen Kenny and Arthur Starz.

I think I was speeding, and so are you, Francis. Slow down.

It is time for mere humans to share in the bounty of the habitat.

Web Link

Despite the fiery rhetoric, I don't know anyone that wants our coastline to even remotely resemble anything like Miami's. In the early 1070's, that concern, among others, spawned Prop 20.

One point of contention above is Prop 20, a CA Constitutional Amendment ballot initiative that appeared in 1972. That was the starting point of where we are today.

Prop 20 would create a temporary commission that would develop a statewide plan to preserve, protect and insure public access to the coast. The commission would expire four years later. From Prop 20: “Act terminates after 1976. This measure appropriates five million dollars ($5,000,000) for the period 1973 to 1976”.

Originally, the commission was limited to 1,000 yards inland (Coastal Zone) “…between the seaward limits of state jurisdiction and 1,000 yards landward…” (from Prop 20). Since then, the Commission has expanded their jurisdiction up to five miles.

Peter Douglas felt it his job to broaden Prop 20 and make it permanent, and in 1976, with the passage of the Coastal Act, was successful.

Some time it is useful to stop and listen to the shrill cacophony and think, what the hell. Web Link

Typo - 2nd sentence should read, "In the early 1970's..."


now when i am working. i am talking with people in the country and they tell me their septic tanks are the next target of the commissars , prior to that it was watershed, and prior to that williamson act, and prior to that rm zoning.

i think the tempo and scope of attack on rural people by our own government is at an all time high. what do the commissars want us to do? where are we to go?

The August 2003 CCC staff report for CCWD about the El Granada pipeline is classic. Appellants were Carol Cupp and Commissars Reilly and Desser, and Ric Lohman. Look it up. The 54 year old leaking pipeline was ultimately replaced at great cost to the ratepayers AND to the Coastal Commission. The 144 page staff report is embarrassing, and costly to those of us in the coastal zone.

It is time to stop these buffoons. Let us take over our own LOCAL Coastal Program.

As the article in the Chronicle so aptly states IT is Time for a overhaul of the Coastal Commission..

Web Link

Please listen to Ron Zumbrun explain why the Coastal Commission will never learn. It is a sad tale that continues to haunt, and possibly destroy, us all.

Web Link

One of the featured couples in the film, Peg and Dan, bought a 40 acre raw land parcel, zoned agricultural, in Topanga Canyon. They loved the splendor and wanted to build an organic garden on their newly purchased property, but …

One of the reasons they bought it was because it had an existing road (asphalt) on it. It was “a bit slid over” and there were “a few blockages” on it (the road). They were in the process of clearing the road off when they got a letter from the Coastal Commission (11-09-06). It was a Notice of Violation of the Coastal Act. They sought advice.

They were told they would need:

1) an oak tree plan

2) an oak tree report

3) a drainage erosion control plan

4) mitigation plan

5) restoration plan

6) biologist report, and more.

When Dan asked who pays for this, he was told (as we all are) “you do”. Now remember, he was clearing an existing road (asphalt) – nothing more, nothing less. Little did they know what the cost would include.

Dear Francis,

Not only are you commenting on a film you haven't seen; now you're trying to direct traffic to your web site?! You are a brazen somebody.

“"Then you should move" -- If you want to know my specific beefs with Mr. Oshen and his movie I have that info at my blog:

No, I think I'll stay here, thank you.

"George" -- You need to look at the staff report. It wasn't merely clearing along an existing road as you say. Don't believe staff? How about photos provided by neighbors that were included in the staff report? Think those were Photoshopped? How about a legal judgment? That, too, is included, and it refutes their claim of vested rights, which directly addressed whether or not the road was existing.

As a civil engineer, I can tell you what was sought from WildCrew's Playground LLC is normal for any grading project anywhere near a park or an ESHA.

Who should pay for those reports? The developer, of course. The alternative is to dump that responsibility on the state, which means larger state government and less control over your property.

Hmm...regarding the Wildcrew's Playground hearing:

In the video archives for this hearing, Lisa Haage, head of CCC enforcement, states "...it's an existing road, and we don't dispute that..."

There's no mention of measurements in the staff report.

The staff report claims the site is in or near ESHA, as delineated on a map from the 1986 LCP.

I finally found a copy of that document. It contains NO SUCH MAP.

BTW, 'George': check the Exhibits from staff for this staff report-original notice of violation is dated 7.12.05, does NOT mention ESHA.

It certainly appears that this case represents a retroactive ESHA designation.

Is that constitutional?

Ever heard of Beachwood?

"djn" -- Exhibit No. 6 shows an ESHA map. It's on page 90 of 121 of the exhibits, which is a separate PDF linked to from the staff report. The link is on one of the last few pages in the staff report.

It's pretty clear to me that the property borders waterways as well as oak woodlands and savannahs.

EHSAs don't need to be mapped to qualify for protection. It's up to the owner/developer to delineate ESHAa and show that their proposed development does not harm those ESHAs.

oh brother: only in this thread; I'll go back and read it again.

It's an odd double-standard, that the staff report and the Notice of Violation (signed by Peter Douglas 11.09.06) each claim that the purpose of the N.O.V. being recorded on a property's title is necessary in order to serve as a warning to 'potential buyers' that there is a problem with a property....

...yet, if you look at property in the coastal zone, there's no mention that your potential investment can be all but lost if coastal staff decides to retroactively designate a property ESHA.

It's indentured servitude, if not some other form of slavery, to be required to pay taxes on property you're not allowed to use. Who has the cash to buy 'open space'?

How about if we grant the power of Eminent Domain onto the CCC? Then they can declare exactly as much ESHA as they can afford to buy.

IMHO, the Coastal Commission blows big time. They do not want to tell us what is acceptable, but prefer to have us offer something so that they can reject it. They do require that a maximum of 10,000 sq ft (less than a 1/4 acre) is maximum for All improvements of a parcel (home, well, stables, barn, green house, garden, garages, outhouses, and so forth) no matter if the parcel is 1 acre, 10 acre, 100 acres, or 1000 acres. All of this malarkey sounds like a form of eminent domain to me, or at least a taking.

"Francis"--No scale on that map; neither does it show alleged development location(s); neither does it exist in any legitimate, legal document. PERIOD. Put up the link, if you have proof otherwise, which you don't. Again, PERIOD.

And, ESHAs DO need to be mapped; the designation of a property as ESHA by coastal staff, using Dixon's Memorandum as proof, is NOT legal, because it isn't a law, nor has it been subjected to legislative or public hearings and voted upon.

It's a wish list that has an aesthetic posing as an emergency.

Unfortunately, it's going to take someone hundreds of thousands of dollars in litigation to force the CCC to uphold the OTHER laws of this state and nation.

The CCC, of course, doesn't have to spend a dime out of their precious budget; they have the Attorney General's office take care of that, at GREAT expense to California's taxpayers. Call it a hidden perk.

If you other folks would like to do some reading, go to any meeting agenda on the CCC website and count the lawsuits. Ballpark figure? $20-50,000 per month for each side in legal bills.

That's a lot of money that could be buying a lot of property for the public.

mjb- a taking, yes. and taking, and taking, and taking...

Peter Douglas' greatest fear?

That his Coastal Commission would have the power of Eminent Domain forced upon them.

Then it would be "put up or shut up", because if we disagreed with their decisions, they'd have to either buy the property or leave us alone.

That would put the burden of overzealous, over-reaching regulation where it belongs, on the taxpayer.

Do you want a park every 100 feet? PAY FOR IT. It's that simple.

How bad do you want it?

Here's a big 'what if' to consider.

If the SCOTUS decides that ESHA has, in fact, been a taking all along, that would open the door for California to find its recent brush with bankruptcy looking like a walk in the park.

Sooner or later, California, it WILL get to the Supreme Court.

What if the constitution is upheld and California is forced to pay for decades of statutory takings?

At least we'll have nice parks, I suppose. The best money can buy.

"djn" -- Wildcrews needed a CDP for the work the performed, whether or not EHSAs existed. ESHAs do exist on this property, which means they become a factor in evaluation any proposed development.

Were this not in the Coastal Zone, they'd still have to get permits to do the work they did. You simply cannot perform extensive grading in the mountains without a grading permit. There are several good reasons for those requirements.

It is important to note that the Commission has not told Wildcrews Playground LLC "you cannot develop this land." Rather, they've told them "you need a Coastal Development Permit do develop this land."

If Wildcrew's ever gets around to submitting the CDP they promised, then the Commission might start imposing conditions, but only if they're necessary for the proposed development to conform to the Coastal Act.

The Commission's actions are founded in state law. Period. You can mimic slimeball attorneys like Zumbrun all you want, but you'll still get the same result he achieved. You just won't get paid like him.

"slimeball attorneys like Zumbrun"

Francis - take a deep breath, and ponder this for one second. Do you honestly think it was a wise move to post that? Going a little too far, perhaps?


I have given you ever possible benefit of a doubt in your claims on this topic since I do not know you, but now I would like to request a retraction of your scurrilous claim against a good friend of mine, Ron Zumbrun. I am simply astounded. You profess to care for the environment, you enter a discussion on a blog, using your real name, and then say something so outlandish. You dismiss issues that have happened to my community that you know nothing about. I do not lightly get into personal issues, but I do request you to apologize to Mr Zumbrun, a man with an impeccable reputation.

The Coastal Act says repair and maintenance of a road or driveway within 50' of ESHA requires a permit.

Otherwise, it's EXEMPT activity and not considered development.

"Extensive grading"?

As has been pointed out, there is not a single measurement called out in the staff report, nor in the exhibits; accurate measurement that might shed light on the proximity of this alleged development to mapped ESHA (which doesn't exist), or on the cubic-yard/square foot "extent" of any grading alleged.

You told me to go read it, Frannie, and now I have. It says you're wrong, toadie.

The original Notice of Violation, dated July 12, 2005, makes NO CLAIM of ESHA; therefore, that ESHA designation was retroactive.

Why? Because without that retro-designation, Wildcrew's Playground's activities were EXEMPT under the Coastal Act, and they would have had to be left alone.

It would appear that coastal staff got a bit vengeful over being expected to put up with someone daring to film their inspection AND question their judgement. It would also appear that they've stepped on a real hornet's nest in trying to cover something up, and my guess is that the rest of us are going to eventually be footing the bill.

Sounds like Coastal staff might well be guilty of, and should at the very least be investigated for, that federal crime we've been seeing mentioned elsewhere:

Honest Services Fraud.

Of course, Francie is going to insist any investigation be performed by the Coastal Commission, but we all know he's going to say that, don't we. Shill.

PS--Peter Douglas is a lawyer, too....the kind that refused to swear to uphold the Constitutions of California AND the United States as a condition of taking his job, in a state that requires EVERY EMPLOYEE to swear that oath.

Slimeball? Or saint?

"djn" -- Francie? Is that supposed to upset me in some manner? Is that how you win arguments? How old are you, 10?

Your interpretation of state law and its constitutionality is seriously flawed.

The subject property is not exempt from the Coastal Act.

The owners have already admitted to some development activity that requires a CDP. Evidence provided by neighboring property owners clearly shows develpment that requires a CDP, as do photos taken from neighboring park lands. A state judge agreed that there was sufficient evidence of development activity, and issued a warrant for a site inspection.

Unless you agree to those facts, and agree that they have meaning and relevance, it's pointles to continue any further discussion with you on the issue. It'd be like arguing about "Sins of Police" scripted by residents of the LA County jail.

...and speaking of lawyers, how about that Mark Massara of the Sierra Country Club?

At last count, that Club claimed 1.3 million members, WORLDWIDE.

That's a pretty slim figure, folks. Shall we extrapolate, and presume they're evenly spread across the 50 states, plus maybe 10 other countries?

That gives us less than 22,000 Sierra Club members in California.

With a current population of 36 million, what we're seeing is a private interest group (P.I.G.) that gets deferential treatment at CCC hearings, even though it apparently claims to represent only one out of every 1,662 citizens in California.

That's .0006% of our population, if my calculations are correct, who have a full-time paid lobbyist, Mr. Massara, practically attached at the hip to the Coastal Commission.

Take a look at the CCC website, find the archived video of CCC hearings. He's there, working for a private interest group that anyone can join.

While you're at it, may I recommend you look at all of the litigation the CCC has been involved in in recent years, and count how many lawsuits the Sierra Club has brought against the CCC; I suspect that, if you looked at every angle, you'd find that every one of them coincides with a Commission vote that went against staff recommendations.


Mr Douillard,

I am waiting for your response. Have you ever met Mr Zumbrun? For someone quick to rail at others, what standards do you apply to yourself?

My apology,

I did not mean to misspell your name Mr Drouillard. Mistakes do happen. When they do, I find it most helpful to simply acknowledge same, and apologize. How about your own belief structure?


-Does this mean that you're admitting that your argumentative approach is pointless, and you're intending to go away unless I agree with you?

Why on earth would I agree with a confirmed liar? When did you see the film? Where did you see it? What were the conversations you had with the film maker, Richard Oshen?

Do you call someone at the CCC to help you with your diatribe in this thread?

You know, folks like you remind me of my Grandma. She'd have my aunt in the car, and a couple of us kids, and we'd go for a drive, over to the 'good side of the tracks, and see how the other folks live'.

Envy. Jealousy. Covetousness. A distinct schadenfreude, should any problems befall anyone who had it, as we perceived, 'better' than us. Your approach is typical of this kind of person.

FWIW, Francis is a name that's been in my family for several generations. In fact, it's one of my middle names. That's why I occasionally call you by one of its diminutive forms, to try to encourage you to NOT take yourself so seriously, the same as I do to myself.

"Shall we extrapolate, and presume they're evenly spread across the 50 states, plus maybe 10 other countries?"

You can, if you wish, but that would only serve to further expose you as ignorant and possibly stupid.

"That's .0006% of our population, if my calculations are correct, who have a full-time paid lobbyist, Mr. Massara, practically attached at the hip to the Coastal Commission."

Aside from the lie about Massara's status, your math is pitiful and blows away any cloak of credibility to which you might aspire. Even using your vastly incorrect estimate of 22,000 SC members in California and an estimate of a total population of 36 million, the SC would be .06 percent of the population. Anyone who can't come within a factor of 100 on such a simple calculation should be recycled through grammar school.


Attack, attack, attack. Welcome back. Do you have anything else to say about the topic of the Coastal Commission?

Granted, my math deserved the offered caveat, which is why I offered it.

Your turn. Exactly how is the Massara status a lie?

And why should the opinion of .06% of the population be given such deference?

Correct the rest of the gross errors in your messages and show that you have the ability to comprehend data--with such poor quantitative and information-research skills I have my doubts that this is possible--and I might toss a few more facts your way just to rub your nose in your mistakes.

Aw... NP is just trying to put forth that if any makes an error then all data they offer is wrong.

What IS Mark Massara's status?

Oh, here, I found something: Web Link But does it give us his status? Is he just a surfer and attorney and the Director of the Sierra Club's California Coastal Campaign?

Wikipedia also says: "This article is orphaned as few or no other articles link to it. Please help introduce links to this subject in articles on topics related to it."

Did you know that the Sierra Club has signed an agreement with Clorox?

It allows Clorox to put an 'approved by..' on a new, green line of products in exchange for giving the Sierra Club a share of profits.

How does that work?

Isn't the SC a non-profit? That would make this a 'love-offering', then, for tax purposes?

And isn't Clorox one of those bad-for-the-environment outfits?

The SC has litigation pending in how many courts in how many states?

Sounds expensive. Any objective accountants out there?


I think you found something very interesting about Mark Massara's wikipedia entry. It sure looks like this wiki-piece is an autobiograpy?

For anyone interested, try to find the type of organization that the Sierra club claims to be, it is very difficult to ascertain just who club sierra really is. Club Sierra has tentacles reaching out everywhere. Club Sierra is many types of organizations, cross-threaded, with lots of legal clout, even hammering on our own California Coastal Commission. Is Club Sierra the main hammer? I think yes.

The Sierra Club in NOT a non profit.

"Note: Contributions, gifts, and dues to the Sierra Club are not tax deductible. They support our effective, citizen-based advocacy and lobbying efforts." (from Web Link)

There was also a link to "Additional financial and regulatory information." But, sadly it was Site Not Found. Go to above Web Link)

to check it out.

Hey, if you join you get a free 1892 Rucksack!

Here's another link at the Sierra Club that, while off topic, might be of interest to those who now hold BofA and Citibank stock: Web Link

It amazes me how quickly some folks will resort to flaming attacks, comments about potential age (as if being older means you're smarter - it actually can mean you are more than willing to NOT look at the obvious - especially when it's staring you in the face) or intelligence (people do make mistakes - it doesn't mean they're stupid unless - contrary to evidence that they may refuse to accept - they persist in the mistake-making. Comments by NP about "rubbing your nose in it", or by Francis "how old are you, 10?" Or by djn "You act like a child" aren't necessarily helpful. They detract and distract. It is overwhelmingly clear from this thread that thousands of people - not just developers, or wealthy people as np would have it - have suffered at the hands of the CCC - and nothing that Francis says will dissuade people from believing that their negative face-to-face encounters with the CCC happened, even if he says they did not, or could not happen. Obviously, bad things have happened. Serious. Grave. People have violated their neighbors' privacy - very 1984-esque - just to make sure they are conforming to CCC guidelines - five miles in from the coast. Djn, all your good points potentially go by the way side when you allow such ambassadors of the king's new clothes to sidetrack you from telling us about important info. But Francis, if you aren't peter douglas, you are one of his good cronies. Yours is a stream of pure propaganda that closes eyes ears mouth - yours and others - to the abuses of an extragovernmental agency. So here's to you, to np, and to djn. Perhaps the three of you would stick to facts, and refrain from mud-slinging.

OK, in ten minutes here is what I have found.

Go to the official Sierra Club site, and try to figure out if the Sierra Club is tax deductible, non-profit, or what? Good Luck .. Web Link

Next, go to wikipedia and try to figure out just who the sierra club represents and who they are-- Web Link

NEXT, go to the sierra club foundation Web Link

Confusing isn't it.

That is just what Club Sierra wants. Your money and your confusion.

Enough about what you and I think about the Sierra Club. What does the Secretary of State of California have as a response to a query, who is the Sierra Club--

Read for yourself.

Web Link


I am still waiting for an apology on behalf of Mr Zumbrun. Is your behavior on this blog typical of how you respond when you are doing your official work as an engineer? If So, how is that working for you so far? Do you do a lot of work in the Coastal Zone?

Mr. Ponzi

That shows that the Sierra Club has been an active Corporation in California since June 17, 1892.

I'm not certain I'm comfortable with the ramifications. Thanks for the link.

Anyone out there know how to look up engineering contracts the state may have, or have had, with Opac Engineering?

Sorry, Terry, I'm no help on this one.

One thing we won't find in a Coastal Commission staff report is the opposing viewpoint, presented by property owners or their representatives.

The February 2007 CCC hearing referenced above for Wildcrew's Playground, LLC, a featured story in "Sins of Commission", was the first hearing to be videotaped and archived by the CCC, and each one since then is now similarly archived.

Perhaps that's because Richard Oshen forced the precedent when he showed up to film the proceedings.

It's dry, it's bureaucratic and it's boring, but if you pay close attention to what is being said by Ronald Zumbrun (who represented Wildcrew's), you'll hear a much different story than that presented by Coastal staff.

Mr. Zumbrun points out to the Commissioners that the staff did not include important historic aerial photos, submitted to the CCC by Wildcrew's and showing an existing asphalt road predating the Coastal Act by decades, into the exhibits for the hearing, among other things.

If this is true, then that staff report is incomplete, and therefore substandard.

No one is required to swear in at a CCC hearing. No oaths are taken. Although one might presume otherwise when in the jaws of the CCC, it is not, in fact, a criminal hearing.

If it were, the CCC would be required to prove your guilt, and with more than just 'substantial evidence'.

If it were, you'd be considered innocent until the CCC proved you guilty by an overwhelming preponderance of actual evidence, instead of hearsay and conjecture.

Oh, and the guy giving the staff's presentation? That's Patrick Veesart, who became head of enforcement for the CCC in the southern district in early 2005.

Before that, his job was as an organizer for the Sierra Club.

If you happen to see "Sins of Commission", that's him conferring with Mark Massara just before Wildcrew's came up on the docket, and then, later, Massara gets up to urge the CCC to record the Notice of Violation "..as a baby step...", suggesting that what is actually called for is a "..CDO.." and restoration orders.

A "CDO", for those of you unfamiliar with the CCC's enforcement tactics, is explained in Exhibit 26, the 6/12/05 Notice of Violation letter to Wildcrew's from the CCC: a "Cease and Desist Order" carries fines ranging up to $6000 PER DAY if the activity persists, and fines up to $15,000 PER DAY if one "knowingly, intentionally" does so.

That explains how Kathleen Kenny and Arthur Starz, another case featured in "SIns of Commission", found themselves with a $2.4 MILLION fine hanging over their [741 square foot!] home.

At the CCC's insistence, fines are not held in abeyance while litigation plays out.

The fines, we're told, don't go to the CCC. They go into California's General Fund.

Follow the money?

Another problem with state agencies in general is what is known as the "presumption of correctness".

That means that the Superior Court system is required to presume that if a state agency employee makes a statement, a judgement, or a discretionary choice, it is automatically correct and must be upheld.

The net effect of this "presumption of correctness" is a property owner's practical assurance that the state will prevail in the first round of litigation.

That means that taking on the CCC in litigation, for those determined enough to see it through, will almost certainly take at least one Superior Court and one Appeals Court decision. The CCC is not known for refraining from the appeal of any decision that doesn't go their way. Why should they? They're represented by the Attorney General's office.

Ball park figure for a private citizen to fight the CCC? Upwards of $1,000 per page.

Pages of submittals in the first stage? Hundreds.

Terribly expensive. Most, as the CCC is well aware, cut bait, absorb their loss, instead of trying to stop injustice.

Most, as the CCC is very well aware, simply can't afford to argue. They must love those odds.

One might be given pause, then, to consider whether the CCC is not, in fact, engaging in predatory behavior, especially with their ESHA designations.

Everyday criminals are provided with free legal council when the state accuses them of a crime, if they can't afford representation.

Considering the "presumption of correctness" and its ramifications, shouldn't the state pay for those who can't afford to defend themselves against the staff of the CCC?

So, the loyal supporters of the Coastal Commission dried up abruptly and completely in the past 4 hours. Did this thread hit a nerve? What can we deduce from that? Did someone hit a sensitive and political truism? Was it with Club Sierra? or with the inner details on the operation of the CCC? or was it simply "they" are not being paid enough to stand up to the truth? Have you ever noticed that people suffering injustices are much more willing to go that extra mile than someone on the payroll.

I think I see what hit a nerve, I think it was the link between Club Sierra and Bank of America and Citibank. Yukkk.

Peter Douglas speaks from time to time.

At one point, he speaks about ESHA (Environmentally Sensitive Habitat), stating that ESHA’s are “absolutely protected under the Coastal Act; a wetland, or a rare and endangered plant or species, so you have to delineate the wetland because our charge is to protect that resource. That’s what the Coastal Act was all about. That’s what the public wants; that’s what the law requires.” At face value, I support that. We all know, however, that there’s a lot more to it than that.

Douglas has expanded his interpretation of ESHA to include all chaparrals, oak woodlands, native grasslands and much more. Unless it’s already developed, that covers just about everything, according to one of the speakers. Another speaker (former Mayor of Malibu) identifies a parking lot that is, according to the Commission, an ESHA, because he put trees on it.

The Commission declared all chaparral, sage scrub throughout the Santa Monica Mountains as ESHA. The ex Mayor called it ESHA by airbrush.

To DJN, I've been buried and haven't had a chance to view that report. I'll try to get to it later this week. You're posting some good stuff, btw.

I got in just a while ago and pulled up this thread. There are some outstanding comments; very good dialog by a number of people. It just shows that the Commission has touched many lives in a bad way.

It's good to see Club Sierra and its tentacles mentioned. There have been so many good comments from so many on this thread.

I have to agree that Francis's fingers bang out some pretty offensive stuff, from time to time, but he's not the only one. He is consistent in his support of the Commission and his rhetoric (unfortunately). Zumbrun, a "slimeball"? Like Terry, I find that comment very offensive and frankly, childish. I suppose you rate Massara pretty high though, huh Francis?

I am new to this thread. As I morph from the original theme of Sins of the Coastal Commission from Terry to that of granny to NP to Francis to Brian to djn to George to Club Sierra to drg...

I marvel, what diversity and beauty we share in this precious land. But, then as I morph (as I am inclined to do) into the horror of what we are enduring from this Coastal Commission it is totally overwhelming to me and the victims of the actions of the Coastal Commission. Morphing, I start with what I see --- images of lives and homes and dreams being lost and replaced by draconian visions and proclamations by Mr Douglas, a self described "pagan heretic", a mere staffer, for "appointed" members of the Coastal Commission. Who made the Coastal Commission, and Mr Douglas, KING of all of our Coast? Whoever did, can Morph them the hell back to where they came from.

I was unable to morph any further. I want to go back to our rich, healthy, human past. Our forebears did a pretty good job of protecting our coast, at least as good as Peter Douglas.

"djn" -- You seem obsessed with that so-called CCC judgment against Kenny. Produce the paperwork. If it's not publicly available it's not enforceable, so if it does exist, you should be able to find the paperwork. Ask your good buddy Richard Oshen to produce them if you must. If he's telling the truth, then it shouldn't be a problem for him.

Once we have that we can see if the CCC fined Kenny for building a Kaczynski mansion. Barring that, try to find _any_ action taken by the CCC against Kenny or Starz. Can't find it? Maybe it doesn't exist.

On another note, it's both humorous and sad to see the blind leading the blind in this forum on issues related to the Coastal Act. All you're doing is setting yourselves up for one disappointment after another.

Terry and George -- The umbrage you take is selective, which shows your bias. Try being a little more consistent and I'll try to be less offensive. Unless it's the truth or minor disagreements with me that offends you. In that case, I really don't care how offensive you find me.

It would be helpful to have a little background on Franics Drouillard. I expect this would help us in framing our discussion of the sins of commission.

Francis, do you often think that others a just a little "slow"?

Do you feel sorry for those who are not university educated?

Do you feel you have accomplished much good in your life and will continue to do so?

Do you think those on this thread who appear critical of you are in actuality very jealous of you?

Do you feel you are being mistreated or misunderstood here on Talkabout?

Have you posted at coastsider.com yet?

You are a card, Francis. Speaking for myself, I'd have to say that when you speak of consistency most might say I'm a poster child; add persistent, and my picture becomes even clearer.

I've been dealing with all City issues daily (which would certainly include your Commission) for going on five years. I live here and have for 30 years.

You, on the other hand, have been dealing with one facet of our City's issues since February 16, 2009 at 8:49 am, although you attempt to make it appear so much more.

You speak of truth as if you carry the flag of truth, yet you introduce yourself to our community with lies, some of which are repeatedly noted above. Your little fingers have banged out such offensive garbage that I don’t think the stench washes off in the shower.

Further, questions you don’t particularly care for, those that address your knowledge and tweaked Commission ‘facts’ go unanswered, yet you expect yours to take center stage. As a recent example, I asked, “I suppose you rate Massara pretty high though, huh Francis?”; you seemed to have missed or disregarded it – as you have a tendency to do.

You don’t care for Zumbrun. OK, that’s fine; but slimeball? Is that an example of the extent of your vocabulary? Is that the best you’ve got? Pathetic.

Personal attacks from your ilk are nothing new. We identified that pattern years ago. It goes something like this; when the facts of an issue don’t jive with your mindset, attack the individual personally. We see it all the time and have for years. That just widens the gap and demonstrates your character, or lack of.

Try to be adult here, Francis. Starting with an apology for your childish Zumbrun comment would be a good start.

Have a nice day.

PS: I will continue to post points from the film, but have a very busy schedule until tomorrow. It’s been a crazy three weeks, but it’s coming to an end, so I should have more time, for those that may be interested. That might include you, Francis, as it’s blatantly clear you haven’t seen the film.

A failure to communicate sometimes is due to different philosophies at each end of those in "discussion". So let me tell you one aspect of my philosophy on this topic. First, I believe we (individuals and agencies) all make mistakes. Second, I believe we need to acknowledge errors, review them, correct them, and move on.

Whether you are talking about mistakes regarding airplane crashes, auto crashes, bridge collapses, or comments on a blog. Failure to adhere to simple communication protocols, especially when addressing a review of errors, creates a "stress test", and as the fervor grows so also does the stress and response. Not good.

I presume we are looking for a constructive ending to this dialog, but then I may be wrong with that hopeful perception. I wonder if the Coastal Commission is trying to be helpful by acknowledging errors, reviewing errors, and correcting errors. I think not.

Mr. Gossett -- I'm not looking for a constructive ending to this dialog as I don't believe it's possible. With the exception of NP, all that you and others do here is rationalize your ignorance of or contempt for (or both) of the Coastal Act and the actions of the Coastal Commission.

Whenever you're confronted with facts that refute your positions you change the subject. That type of mis-communication is self serving and intentional, and does nothing to achieve any type of resolution at all.

I believe Francis is more than just a little self-conscious and perhaps a tad too sensitive because of his profession.

Bridges make freeways possible, freeways destroy habitats, habitats really can never be recreated.

Reconciling that can be painful for some.

A most prescient observation, Brian Ginna. Brings to mind the old protest slogan, "if you're not part of the solution, you're part of the problem".

When in litigation, the failure to counter a point of contention, intentionally or not, concedes that point to the opposing party. It's more or less treated like an admission of guilt.

Having said that, I'm fair game.

Batter up!

Actually, Brian,

Habitat can absolutely be recreated. It happens all the time.

There was a special on one of the cable channels sometime in the past year or so, with the topic 'after humans are no longer here'.

They looked at ancient ruins, of course, but the real surprise was a study of the city (name escapes me) near the Chernobyl reactor meltdown in Ukraine. (was it Chernobyl?)

Short version: A mid-sized city was permanently abandoned, and now, twenty-some years later, they discover that the entire place has reseeded itself, and that the trees are breaking up the concrete and asphalt; vines are pulling the siding from structures; animals are everywhere. And it's all healthy, even thriving.

The study suggests that within a century, one may be hard pressed to find the location of the former metropolis. In just ONE century.

No mention of this habitat as sensitive or fragile, much less endangered.

The marvel is how absolutely resilient the Earth is, has been, and forever will be. To believe that she can't get along without us is such a marvelous conceit, wouldn't you say?

We see the evidence ourselves, if we'll only look for it.

The sections of old Route 66 that I used to walk along in the 1970s are still there, and I go to visit some stretches, out of nostalgia, from time to time. Except for one or two spots, I'd have to dig down to find the broken pavement, but I know where to look. Thirty years? Thirty-five? And it's almost entirely disappeared.

And speaking of 'sensitive', when did that become such a good thing?

Well, that certainly was exhausting for me...

Whoops! Sorry!

What I meant to say was:

I know, me too!

While we're awaiting further baiting,

getting our thrust up for another dust-up,

let's pause to consider

the Public Resources Code.

Its failure to mention (a point of contention)

a definition of 'resource', anywhere in its discourse;

nor does it say, though you might look all day,

how a 'viewshed' can be publicly owned.

One of the more compelling interview snippets in Richard Oshen's new film, "Sins of Commission", is with the recently retired Captain (and Vegetation Management Officer) of Los Angeles County's Fire Department, Scott Franklin.

Captain Franklin makes the charge that wildfires in LA County have increased in frequency, size and intensity, beginning about fifteen years ago.

(That's about the same time Conservation Biology was embraced by the CCC, resulting in the designation of, by now, everything as ESHA)

Flames atop fuel beds have gone from ten feet high, in the 1990s, to walls of death that are now fifty feet high, Franklin says.

He says that the Commission doesn't have anyone who understands the dynamics of wildfires; wildfires that are now raging with the equivalent force of "...the Hiroshima Bomb, every HOUR..", from the public safety perspective, and that the approach is criminal.

"They're loving the Chaparral to death". And in the process, gigantic fuel beds continue to be created. Property owners (including the state, on its public properties) are either obstructed or forbidden from managing their own brush in order to protect themselves and their communities.

What can we say about an agency, of a government sworn to keep us free from harm, that not only concocts, issues and enforces fuel preservation requirements, but does so in some of this nation's most heavily populated areas?

I say they're dangerous.

And if you cut it without their permit, you face fines of $6,000 dollars for every day that passes until you've payed to restore it to their satisfaction.

There are no known cases of them showing the slightest mercy.

"And if you cut it without their permit, you face fines of $6,000 dollars for every day that passes until you've payed to restore it to their satisfaction."

I-I'm s-sorry, sir. But it's the law. Th-they made it a l-law and we have to throw the b-book at you.

(One of the ploys of the eco-frauds is to pass a law. Then their hands are tied! They can't show you any mercy because IT'S THE LAW! [not that they wanted to show you any mercy, tee hee])

Folks it is not just fire danger from stupied Coastal Commission policies that defies common sense. Other counties can also participate in idiocy. Agencies make errors and mistakes, but admit nothing, and keep on taking.

Here is another example from Property Matters--

Monterey County California, 1996

The Coxes have owned an 11 acre goat breeding farm for over twenty years. In 1987 they get a dairy license and start selling goats' milk, and cheese. In 1992, acting at the instigation of neigbors wanting to protect their viewshed, the county amends the zoning laws minimum size for a dairy and it is now 40 acres. Goat breeding is still legal but milking is not.

From Defenders of Property Rights, Property Rights Reporter, 3, no. 3 (May-June 1996)

One more quick example about the Coastal Commission-- In a published opinion, the appellate court held that the Commission did not have jurisdiction to deny a permit by Martin and Janis Burke living on Torrance beach, for a fence. Note that two people had died in separate incidents attempting to climb bluffs to utilize caves. Go to Web Link

You said "eco-frauds".

I so love that, because that, if anything, is the point that comes across in the film, that our love of the environment is being used against us, for things that have only to do with gaining and maintaining power.

Power that no upright citizen would ever call into question, because these people were at the cutting edge of the movement, thirty-odd years ago, and insist that they're still cutting-edge today.

'Cutting edge', i'm guessing, must be newspeak for "we make it up as we go along".

If the Coastal Commission has done such a great job, why, after more than three decades, do so many of California's beaches get such low scores?

What's more important, that a beach home keep its chaise longue a specified distance from the high tide line, or that the water is safe to swim in?

And Santa Monica Bay won't just heal itself, you know. It might take government intervention.

OK, a local example from Mendocino County, by Marshall Sayegh, on the Ultra control of local communities by the CCC--- with a few comments on Gualala for Francis, who can then tell us all his side of the story.

Web Link

OK, I think I understand. The Coastal Commission is a mighty force, the most powerful agency on land use in this USA. Some say the CC is doing a fine job, yet we continue to read about many lawsuits, many of which are due to actions by the Coastal Commission, and many directly against the CC and which they also then do not win.

IF the mightiest force in the land is losing a lot of lawsuits, do you think that possibly they are making a few mistakes along the way? I like the idea of getting lists from all the Local Coastal Programs about all the costs due to the Commission directives and actions for a class action lawsuit.

Flame on.

"We must take change by the hand or, rest assured, change will take us by the throat."

-Winston Churchill

That's the closing quote on your link, Property Matters, thanks for that.

Did you know that the CCC now requires a permit to put in a garden, because even in agricultural zoning, they consider gardening 'development'?

I don't think the LA Times was aware of that when they recently featured the story about the resurgence of the 'Victory' garden as a reasonable response to our current economic climate.

Oh, wait, I forgot.

The LA Times doesn't do Coastal Commission critiques.


If the CCC can't be fixed, and fixed soon, the odds of the Supreme Court forcing California to repay thousands of individual property owners run dangerously high.

Reimbursement for local communities could be forced with the same decision.

It's a real possibility, because it's just a matter of time before the Coastal Commission loses at the Federal level again, opening the door to thousands of lawsuits, for billions of dollars.

It's as if Peter Douglas and his Coastal Commission can see the writing on the wall, and have exponentially accelerated their overreaching, to make certain any such SCOTUS decision will have to come down to the horrifying choice between upholding human rights or literally bankrupting the state of California.

They're gambling with our future.

The Coastal Commission prefers risk over reform. That's why it fears legitimate dissent, like what we're reading on this thread.

I wonder what they make of Richard Oshen's film, "Sins of Commission"?

Well, if one saw the complete film Sins of Commisssion, one could easily judge by their reaction to a request for an interview or comment. Several Commissioners shied away quickly, and ran for the door. That speaks volumes to me about the Coastal Commission. A bunch of happy fat cats.

I know this topic is about the CCC, but many other places in the USA are having similar issues with government agencies. The Property Rights Foundation of America website has many examples regarding violations of private property rights, some involving wetlands and habitat. Web Link

I have been reading a great article on what people in the state of New York are doing about "No Growth Zoning", Simply fascinating, we are not alone. Web Link

"Property Matters" -- See page 13 of 195:

<Web Link>

In my opinion, the private (and secretive) Gualala Festivals Committee did a more to galvanize local support for the Coastal Act and the Coastal Commission than they did to advance their cause.

"private (and secretive)"

Is there something wrong with that? You mean they did not let you in on their private discussions?

I will hand it to you - you are funny, even if not intended.

When and where did you see the film that you have criticized here repeatedly? Will you admit that you have not see it?


I saw page 13 of 195.

It's a letter that YOU signed and sent to Peter Douglas.

Thank you so much for helping to illustrate the extent of self-referencing that's long been the strategy to shape environmental policy in the Coastal Act, and in the flawed decision-making processes of the Coastal Commission.

It's blatant, pious propaganda that proves nothing beyond the shameless intent of a few selfish harpies to silence legitimate dissent with the shrill cacophony of the self-righteous. The citizens of the Gualala, and the Golden State, deserve better.

Please see 'IPSE DIXIT', above.

Oh, and another thing:

When did you see the film, and where?


Self-referencing is basically the only tool folks like Kevin Lansing and Barry Parr have in their arsenal. Mr. Drouillard is no different.

Create an opinion, point to it as "fact," and then argue that anyone who does not agree is either a shill or moron. "Real" facts be damned (or disregarded or ignored).

Brian Ginna -- The GFC improperly presented themselves before a state agency as representatives of Gualala, which they were not. If you think such fraud is acceptable, then there's not much I can do to enlighten you.

In criticizing Mr. Oshen's work, I link to both the clips he provides on his website and any relevant material I can find that refutes his assertions.

Which brings me to a question for you -- how many times does he have to be caught telling lies before you question his other claims?

Mr Drouillard,

I too am an engineer, yet I subscribe to many sources for information, I cross check many "valid" sources as a way to assure veracity and accuracy. Then I may also take surveys of the "population" to reconcile my perceptions with reality. Otherwise my perceptions may become skewed relative to reality. Apparently you do none of the above.

I find it striking that you only have cited one reference, repeatedly, as a basis for all your assertions on this topic--the Coastal Commission. Your approach to "discussion" and belief structure seems to approach the same belief structure as is usually found in religion. So now I ask, is the Coastal Commission your God?

..and the Sierra Country Club improperly present themselves before the same state agency as representatives of this state's citizens, by your logic. Care to agree?

Brian Ginna:

How many times does he (Francis) have to be caught telling lies before you question his (Francis') other claims?

Terry Gossett -- You're an engineer. Whoop dee doo.

FWIW, CCC staff reports contain many sources of information to support their findings. They also include letters from folks that support staff findings as well as those that oppose them. That you find those fully documented and referenced reports less convincing than a film maker's assertions he can't back up -- well, that's your problem.

BTW, your name doesn't show up at the BORPELS website. You might need to check on the status of your professional registration.

We must have really hit a nerve by bringing up the self-referencing syndrome.

But, Francis, the inclusion of opposing findings in a staff report's exhibits means nothing.

The Commissioners don't read the reports, or look at any evidence.

Vetting all of that is the job of Commission staff, and they don't offer opposition views in their hearing presentations.

Still upset?

Mr Drouillard,

I am someone whom I would perceive you might possibly admire or at least like somewhat, that is part of why I keep typing away. I was a government engineer, but I am not in BORPELS. Classified stuff is not usually in open source literature. Thanks for checking. I am not a pro, I am more like your CCC buds, just out there winging it, but from the underdog position, rather than from the top dog position. I find merit in putting a bright spotlight on government agencies, especially those that so clearly impact us citizens so greatly. As our President said, Transparency is good.

I'm cutting this thread off. It's outlived its usefulness.

Thank you.

Terry -- I agree, transparency in government is good, particularly with a quasi-judicial (as intended!) state agency such as the Coastal Commission. With very few exceptions, all of their decisions are made in hearings open to the public.

They simply are not guilty of the crimes espoused by Richard Oshen. Every one of his claims I've looked into have been intentional mischaracterizations of events and conditions or outright fabrications. In every case I've examined, he's defending and rationalizing the bad behavior of scofflaws.

So, although I am all for transparency in government, I'm also opposed to interference with governance based on false assertions.

I challenge you to find any other state agency that is more open and more responsive to the public than the California Coastal Commission.

Speaking of common sense,

did you know that John Dixon, the CCC's staff biologist, bases his argument for ESHA in the Santa Monica Mountains area on the need for the highest possible [local!] mountain lion population?

It's in his footnotes, citations of authority which he likely presumed would never be investigated.

Where's the sense, in such a limited area, surrounded by an estimated 17 MILLION humans, of insisting that large mammalian predators such as cougars must provide the deciding environmental factor?

The real common sense happened long ago, when these creatures were driven from human habitat for reasons of public safety. Nowadays, the CCC has a well-established record of refusing so much as a FENCE in the area.

It's an urban/rural interface, not an urban/wilderness interface, sillies.

There are plenty of genuine, established wilderness areas in California. They have titles like 'National Forest' and 'National Park'.

What you have in the Santa Monica Mountains is a 'National RECREATION Area'. As in families and children, enjoying themselves. These thugs read it like this: re-creation.

Here, kitty-kitty...

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