Letter from the Soviet Union

When I was a kid, back in the Jurassic period, and I complained about rules and such, my mother usually made a lame joke about how if I didn’t like it, I should move to Russia. :rolleyes:

Well, apparently I have, without my knowledge. Consider this item from our homeowners association newsletter. The name has been changed to protect the guilty, but is otherwise a direct quote.


Two questions.

What are the chances that the above paragraph was written by a googly-eyed college student who doesn’t know any better? 99%? I’m guessing 100%.

When will I be “reassigned” to the gulag? :frowning:

Soon, I hope.

Is there a homeowner’s association board or something you can join? Something where you can fight the machine from the inside, so to speak?

If not, you could always move somewhere where there isn’t a homeowner’s association. (The right to move being something you’d most likely NOT find in the Soviet Union.)

Yeah, but I’d actually have to buy the house; I’m currently a renter.

Even a renter has rights! You have the right to remain silent, for instance, and…and…well, that pretty much covers it.

With all due disrespect, the OP makes about as much sense as the anti-“Bushco” ravers who make comparisons to Nazi Germany.

Not that I’d ever live in a development that had a homeowners’ association, but since you’re just renting I can’t see what the big deal is. You’re not likely to run afoul of the rules by making any outside improvements.

And I’d take the bet that the paragraph you object to was written by a college student. Much more likely that it was written by some 40ish resident with lots of time on his/her hands. And it’s pretty mild stuff based on the horror stories I’ve heard about homeowners’ associations.

As I’ve mentioned many time, I live in a neighborhood filled with Soviet immigrants. Your comparison of homeowners associations to the government of the USSR is ludicrous. Does the homeowners association have secret police who have the authority to arrest you at will, torture you, and imprison you for the rest of your life? Do the rules of the homeowners association allow Jews, homosexuals and other groups to be discriminated against, and give them no legal recourse?

Finally, will declaring your intent to leave result in all your assets being seized, a lengthy stay in prison and increased covert and overt surveillance on your friends and family? Or are you free to leave?

I’m not getting the problem The HOA is saying:

  1. It’s expensive to keep this place up.

  2. It’s made more expensive by people who don’t follow the rules, because we have to spend money to fix the problems they creat. (Examples: People who don’t put their garbage in the dumpster, so it ends up strewn all over the parking lot and someone has to clean it up. People who don’t keep their cars in their garages, so they leak oil all over the parking lot and someone has to clean it up. People who let their pets shit all over the common area lawns, and someone has to clean it up.)

  3. If you are one of the people who’s behavior is causing us to incur these additional costs, we will fine you rather than spread the cost amongst all the homeoners, most of whom are not to blame.

  4. So if you get a fine, don’t be surprised. This is why.

The problem with this is what, exactly? That you’re not allowed to crap up the complex? Or that you might be fined for it if you do? Damn those totalitarian bastards! :rolleyes:

Homeowner’s associations are justed legalized extortion. For a nice monthly ( or sometimes anual, but certainly mandatory) fee, you get harrased about such stupid things as the height of the trees on your property, and get denied the right to park a car on the street in front of your house…wow, such a bargain. I personally wonder how such idiocy can be legal. Ooooooooo…they cut the grass on the divider between the sidewalk and the street…color me unimpressed.

Seems like every new development in California has one of these dumbass organizations.
They are a plague that makes it even harder than normal to find a house in this horrible housing market. I wonder if the mean house has hit $600,000 yet.

Yah… you know what else would make this like, totally fascist?
Zoning laws!
Man oh man, they better not ever enact those , commie pinko bastards!

Zoning laws are as subject to abuse by tyrants as any other law: Killeen Considers New Zoning Laws to Fight Clinic.

Yes, any law is as subject to abuse as any other law.

The whole thing sounded Orwellian to me. And oddly communist “for the good of the majority” and fascist “you must obey zee rules” at the same time.

I guess the crux of the matter was this statement:

Um, what? Not in this Republic, they’re not. Shouldn’t the rules be designed to protect me from the majority?


So… not based on anything other than a gut feeling, you call it orwellian and communist? In case you’re wondering, our legal system says that. “For the good of the majority you will obey the laws and not do things like drive drunk

Law is predicated on protecting the majority from a destructive minority. Laws are prohibitive and punitive.
The constitution and bill of rights on the other hand, delineate rights and freedoms.
In general, anything not forbidden is allowed.

You are wrong.
Your local homeowner’s assocation is certainly not a republic.
If they want to run it , legally and by charter, as a democracy, oligarchy, or totalitarian regime, well, as long as you sign the contract, that’s your own dumb luck.

Long story short: If you buy into a HA, you follow their rules.
Don’t like it?
Don’t sign the contract.

Not soon enough.

I understand that, and agree 100%. But it’s the Pit, and I was bitching about the fascists running this particular one.

Okay… it’s the pit, but if you agree 100 percent with what I said, where’s your rant? What specific actions was the HA taking that were wrong?

The problem that is getting increasingly difficult in some markets to find housing that has not been corrupted by these choads. It’s a pretty easy scam, they must make a killing, and the homeowners can’t do jack shit about it. The area where my gf lives has maybe 500 homes times 15$ a month in fees=7500 a month to some shmucks who get to act as mini-tirants. Assuming they pay the bloke who mows the little strip of grass 3000 a month ( generous of them, especially for an unnessesary service), they still get 4500 a month for doing nothing.

The “covert and overt surveillance on your friends and family” part, at least, is likely…

Acting like mini-tyrants is wrong. Here’s some of the bullshit I’ve been warned about: hanging chimes on my patio, planting an herb in the wrong part of the backyard, and hanging Christmas lights too early. You also can’t display a political sign in your yard, window, etc.