RE: Rules & Regs Violation
From: truddick (
Date: Tue, 11 Apr 2006 05:27:51 -0700 (PDT)
Message: 2
Date: Mon, 10 Apr 2006 15:59:11 -0700
From: "Fleck" <foam4u [at]>
Subject: [C-L]_ RE: Rules & Regs Violation

"...Part of the question deals with why we had the rule - mainly aesthetics.
We're urban town homes and dishes look really unsightly. (The rules includes
solar panels, ham antennas, etc.) We've got access to loads of other
delivery systems for media. Our high speed internet access is built into our
HOA dues."

I'm conflicted about chiming in here, but like others, I'm hungry for more
insights.  Has anybody in this cohousing group talked to this violator in an
attempt to figure out the reasons for a satellite dish?  If so, why aren't
we being provided with any attempt at a fair representation of those
reasons?  If not, it seems to me that it would be the first step to
resolving the issue.

I'm also a little confused at the "media is media" conclusions.  You have
"loads" of delivery systems?  Most of us have one cable provider, telephone,
broadcast, and satellite-does your city provide more choice than that?

Satellite and cable (including digital cable) are not the same, there are
clear differences in programming and operation.  Restricting access to media
has the potential of preventing residents from accessing a range of
information sources, which in some cases could compromise an education or

There's also the question of the provider.  If your cable monopoly treats a
resident shabbily, under your rules, the only recourse would be broadcast-or
quitting your community.  Forbidding dishes automatically endorses
Time-Warner or Comcast or whoever owns your city at this time-the same way
that your ban on solar panels contributes to the profitability of your local
electric company by requiring your members to stay "on grid" entirely.  A
member of your community has two choices if conscience chafes at the social
irresponsibility of multi-million-dollar golden parachutes for the CEOs of
these companies, or at issues regarding pollution, nuclear waste,
censorship, or the dumbing-down of American media.  Those choices are to
live with it, or move out of cohousing.  (A brief nod toward option three,
petition for a rules change; doesn't sound to me like your group would be
open to that thought).

Your co-house, your co-rules (to co-opt a phrase popular among parents in
these parts).  But, offered for perspective: personally, I find the
homogenized, designed-by-committee look of many cohousing projects
reminiscent of Pete Seger's "Little boxes on a hill."  If you want to
discuss aesthetics, I'd much prefer to live in a place where colors clashed
a bit in exciting ways, where a variety of materials and treatments (all
earth friendly!) were visible, where some real visual diversity might creep
in.  Moreover I would find a small satellite dish on the side of a home less
visually offensive than the tangle of wires that snakes through a
neighborhood.  That's not to say that cohousers should reject all rules
about appearance-but beyond basic notions of scale and upkeep, I personally
would prefer a much less restriction.

"De gustibus non est disputandum" but here we are, not only arguing taste
but regulating it.
  !    _    Thomas E. "TR" Ruddick
  !   !_)   Nunquam Vadis Levis!
      !  \

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