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Old 05-26-2011, 10:51 AM  
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Originally Posted by Eddie_T View Post
.... With 46% of Americans not paying taxes we are unlikely to change the situation....
or not....

Yes, 47% of Households Owe No Taxes. Look Closer. - NYTimes.com
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Old 05-26-2011, 11:10 AM  
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Originally Posted by Eddie_T View Post
Variances can present opportunity for graft and personal favor. A friend wanted to build a replica of an old-timey store in his backyard to use a a retreat for cigar smoking and listening to music with cronies. He got help from an official that told him to pour a slab then get a permit to enclose it for a garage. He placed the overhead door on the rear so from the front it was his replica, from the rear a garage. The bewildered inspector said I though this was a garage, he took him to the rear and said it is!

My point, there may always be a way around the system for those in the know but we live in an America where we have to be told we are free rather than experiencing it. And progressives would further encumber us with every legislative session.
I'm selling a home where the previous owner turned the garage into extra living space. I've seen this sort of thing done many times in the past. On one occasion, I saw a house picked up off its foundation, moved 50 feet back on the lot, and raised 5 feet above grade. The attached 2.5 car garage was turned into the mother of all rec rooms. A VERY nice project.

But on this occasion, the original structure in question was a 1-car detached garage. The owner did all the wiring himself - no junction boxes, no conduit, just 14/2 Romex cable and black tape. To get it into the garage, he ran the same 14/2 wire through the air from the main structure to the garage.

He installed a floor. He built a deck, laid directly on the gravel floor of the garage. No moisture barrier, no pressure treated wood, no ventilation, just a particle board deck on top of 2x4 and 2x6 joists on 24" centers. He then carpeted that floor, installed a propane heating unit that vented into the attic of this garage. We found a bed, dresser, couch, and a TV in this garage. Access to the kitchen and bathroom in the main house was arranged; an interior door with a deadbolt blocked off the other bedrooms. The property was used as two apartments with a shared kitchen and living room.

There is a reason why the rules exist. This guy is lucky he didn't die from some combination of respiratory disease from the mold, fire from the shoddy electrical, suffocation from the improper ventilation of the furnace, etc. There is a reason why only "people in the know" can get away with bending and breaking these rules. It's because people who don't know why the rules exist (nor care to learn) are hell-bent on getting people hurt.

And before you say "He's only hurting himself", let me remind you that he was renting it out, and I'm selling this property. Other people are going to have to deal with the situation he created.

I'm a real estate contractor and agent. A lot of agents would call this finished garage a studio, "mother-in-law suite", "guest house" or something else that improved the desirability of the property. They would sell it to someone who might get themselves injured or killed because they themselves didn't know any better.

Yes, there are some stupid building codes. But the idea that building codes in general are a problem is asinine.
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Old 05-26-2011, 11:27 AM  
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Originally Posted by rivalarrival View Post
Yes, there are some stupid building codes. But the idea that building codes in general are a problem is asinine.
I think that the issue is that where the government is concerned it can take something that may be reasonable (such as a basic building standard) initially and basically put it on a diet of beurocratic steroids and make things into the trainwreck that you hear people fussing about. I am not necessarily against ALL types of regulation. BUT it seems that when it comes to government and regulations there is ABSOLUTELY NO SUCH THING AS REASONABLE MODERATION. Therefore, I would like to error on the side of smaller government. I would rather have not enought regulation than too much regulation if those were the two choices. I doubt we will ever see "perfect" levels of regulation.
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Old 05-26-2011, 12:15 PM  
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Originally Posted by rivalarrival View Post
Yes, there are some stupid building codes. But the idea that building codes in general are a problem is asinine.
a great example
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Old 05-26-2011, 12:42 PM  
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We are merely citing symptoms of government control of the populace. Probably not a conspiracy but the media is a willing programmer of minds. One can make the case for the good of any law, but what freedom does it trample? Balance would be nice but is unachievable as can be seen in the diversity of posts in this thread.

Consider the argument for NPR, my congressman said some 30 million in rural areas depend on it for the news. Not so, as most rural areas are served by major media outlets. But suppose it was so, what did it cost to serve that 30 million? From the Washington post:

"The Corporation for Public Broadcasting is the largest funder for public radio stations and gets about $400 million a year from the government. About $90 million goes to radio stations."

Rules just don't prevent stupidity though the media has programed us to believe so. BTW it was the media that drew attention to the homeless people in the shelter. Consider my friend who took out the support column under his cantilevered balcony, if he was wrong the balcony might sag. However he knows cantilevers and has built many homes in upstate NY utilizing them where they are approved.

The government builds on control rather than moderating. It builds on auto insurance laws to require purchase of health insurance. I don't know what it draws on to justify salt and fat police, or what kind of light bulbs can be manufactured. ( I have almost enough incandescent bulbs stored to last my lifetime and am considering more for flea market sales). When I look at the 2015 kick-in of the "Independent Payment Advisory Board" for Obamacare I recall media and dem vilification of those who saw rationing and death panels.
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Old 05-26-2011, 06:12 PM  
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Kent, Ohio
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Originally Posted by YelloJeep View Post
I think that the issue is that where the government is concerned it can take something that may be reasonable (such as a basic building standard) initially and basically put it on a diet of beurocratic steroids and make things into the trainwreck that you hear people fussing about. I am not necessarily against ALL types of regulation. BUT it seems that when it comes to government and regulations there is ABSOLUTELY NO SUCH THING AS REASONABLE MODERATION. Therefore, I would like to error on the side of smaller government. I would rather have not enought regulation than too much regulation if those were the two choices. I doubt we will ever see "perfect" levels of regulation.
No, we'll never see "perfect" levels of regulation. Somebody will always be pissed off that they aren't allowed to build a bar with a firing range in the basement, or a factory chicken farm in the middle of a residential area.

But the fact that it's still perfectly legal to turn your garage into a death-trap of an apartment tells me that we're still on the right side of the line you're talking about, the right side being "under-regulation". Opening up regulation to allow anyone to build anything they want with any haphazard building method they want "Because it helps the homeless" is not an appropriate answer to the problem the OP demonstrated. That level of de-regulation is far too exploitable.

Allowing charitable organizations to shortcut the variance process would be a partial answer. Waiving the cost of the variance process for charitable organizations would be another partial answer. In the case of handicap access, are there any organizations that offer similar services? Work out an arrangement with them to refer handicapped homeless to them and take in able-bodied homeless from them. Such an arrangement might be an answer. A grant from state organizations to conduct the necessary modifications might be the fiscally responsible answer - what does the average homeless person cost the state in law enforcement costs, medical costs, etc. that it won't have to pay because of this private organization?

The way I see it, if they aren't committed enough to work through a relatively straightforward zoning and/or building code issue, how committed are they to actually helping the homeless? It sounds to me that they just expect everyone to do everything for them, while they stroke their egos and tell anyone who will listen about how much love they have for their fellow man.
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Old 05-26-2011, 06:27 PM  
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Originally Posted by RedJeepXJ View Post
You don't know how often I see that kind of crap. Just yesterday, I found a 12/2 cable, wrapped in a split loom, with a 2-wire plug on the end of it, plugged into an exterior outlet.

That *exterior* outlet had a typical *interior* duplex cover plate on it. The outlet itself had been installed in a hole cut into the wood siding, but the screws had pulled out, and it was hanging out. There was no box in the wall itself.

Going back to the cable plugged into that outlet, it ran into a shed - no conduit. They got smart in the shed again - there were boxes for the lights, a switch, and a GFI outlet. Of course, the ground for the entire circuit was disconnected as there was no ground prong on the plug.
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Old 05-26-2011, 06:31 PM  
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Kent, Ohio
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Originally Posted by RedJeepXJ View Post
You don't know how often I see that kind of crap. Just yesterday, I found a 12/2 cable, wrapped in a split loom, with a 2-wire plug on the end of it, plugged into an exterior outlet.

That *exterior* outlet had a typical *interior* duplex cover plate on it. The outlet itself had been installed in a hole cut into the wood siding, but the screws had pulled out, and it was hanging out. There was no box in the wall itself.

Going back to the cable plugged into that outlet, it ran into a shed - no conduit. They got smart in the shed again - there were boxes for the lights, a switch, and a GFI outlet. Of course, the ground for the entire circuit was disconnected as there was no ground prong on the plug.

This sort of problem is going to exist regardless of how much regulation is in place. But without some sort of regulation, there's no means of even saying that it's wrong.
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Old 06-07-2011, 06:29 PM  
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Rand Paul has the guts to say it:
If it doesn't play; right click and select watch on youtube.
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Old 06-07-2011, 08:07 PM  
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Mistakenly thinking a corporation can be taxed we drove employers out of the country and vilified them.
Nothing like that caused the semi conductor industry to ship all it's manufacturing to Asia. They did it for PROFIT.
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