Yes, that sounds like a parody movie trailer. But unfortunately this is a real story based on real things that happened in real life instead of brilliant satire. The Washington Post has an amazing story about how an Obama lawn sign ignited an intense legal battle in a Virginia neighborhood. Sam and Maria Farran put an Obama election sign up in their yard leading up to the 2008 election. But what seems like a harmless political statement allegedly violated the stipulations of the homeowners association that governs the sleepy Virginia neighborhood where they live.
Comments: Give them a taste of the over-bearing regulations and restrictions that Obama is imposing on the whole country.
Good for the Farrans. There is more than a little bit of Hitler in some of these HOAs. Instead of a reasonable request to promptly remove the sign when the election was over they voted to fine them. It is a sign of the times. Take these Stalinists to court.
By the way, the sign didn´t tear the community apart, the HOA did it. The moral? Don´t threaten a lawyer unless you have a lawyer on staff.
An over-zealous neighbor complained that the sign violated the Home Owners Association rules and they were asked to remove the sign. My guess would be that by the time it got this far, the election was over. So cutting it in two was just spite? And then years later when a remodeling permit for a roof and deck is denied, they claim the HOA is spiteful? And sue?
Don´t pick fights with Home Owners Associations unless you intend to spend the rest of your stay in the neighborhood a fight.
Posters should click the link and read the whole story. No one forced the Farrens to move there. Apparently, they signed the agreement to abide by the rules of the HOA. But, like all Obama supporters, they felt the rules only apply to the other side and they knowingly violated said rules to make their political point. Yes, the HOA in this case probably went too far, but no one is forcing anyone to live there. Don´t like the rules? Move out. Don´t sign an agreement if you´re not going to abide by that agreement.
Aren´t homeowners´ associations elected by the residents? If the majority want political signs, let them elected board members who agree. These are private organizations and there is no law that requires private organizations to allow political signs or any other signs.
I was recently elected to the HOA board of directors in my new community, and I learned of a similar lawn sign brouhaha here in this neighborhood.
Most people don´t want them around; they´re tawdry and obnoxious litter -- and divisive -- political supporters are slow to remove them from street corners after the elections, and they likely don´t do that much good anyway.
Our situation came down to a tempest-in-a-teapot freedom of speech thing and it didn´t really go anywhere.
HOAs bring out the bully in nearly every person who gets any power in them. I will never, EVER own a house where there´s a HOA again. Tinhorn dictators, including the ones who assumed power after they "drove the bullies out."
I would never live in a place regulated to the gills as some of these places seem to be. I´m not picky about my neighbors, although I certainly thought less of the ones with the Obama yard signs! They probably thought less of me and my car with Republican bumper stickers and now....horrors....a magnetic American Flag!!!!
But we´re all live and let live here. I wave to those walking their dogs as I drive in, and they wave back. That´s about it for "community communication".
as a Realtor who has heard a few crazy stories over the years about mandatory HOA´s and condo associations (2 men, a college prof and a retired Air Force pilot, fighting over whether or not a laundry room light should left on 24/7 or not. One would get up at night and check on the other) my advice is READ the HOA/condo docs before purchase. If you´re a Type A personality, realize there has be some flexibility. If you´re passive, realize that occasionally, you may have to be rigid. Above all, let the "battles" be fought somewhere other than your neighborhood.
I hate HOAs and would never buy where one is. But sometimes they can be good too. My friend moved into a neighborhood with an HOA and her next door neighbors were horrible people who made the whole community miserable. Nobody would ever do anything, not even the HOA, because they were scared of the people. My meek little friend brought a complaint and asked for a hearing about all the rules these people break. The man (the father) threatened her and others and went bonkers at the meeting. My friend was scared stiff but carried on and asked why the HOA wouldn´t evict these troublemakers. Finally, the father said, "forget it, we´re moving" and did. My friend was the hero of the community after that. My point is that sometimes they do work to the benefit of good residents.
These HOA´s are a direct assault on liberty and free speech,fredom of expression but if you agree to them,ten you have to obey the rules and regs.It doesn´t surprise me that an Obama supporter started this whole stink.
My guess is one of the reasons for the HOA´s is to stop people from flying the American flag,having a kid with a lemonade stand without 100´s of dollars in permits first,banning nativity scenes at Christmas.If these are ran by control freak liberals,you´re doomed as a homeowner.
Whenever liberals get a shot at invoking some form of Utopianism,they´re going to do it.
I beg to differ, #14, the HOA did not work to the benefit of the residents; they were afraid to their jobs. What worked to the benefit of the residents was your friend´s willingness to stand up for what she knew was right, even though she was as afraid of those thugs as the HOA (an organization of several people with the backing of law). It was her demand for justice that resolved this situation, though I imagine the HOA members were standing well behind her, shaking their fists at the scofflaws and saying, ´Yeah! You tell ´em´. ; )
Moscow - President Barack Obama´s decision to cancel a planned Moscow summit with President Vladimir Putin next month was brought on by a wide spectrum of US frustrations with Russia, not least of which was its decision to grant temporary asylum to fugitive ex-National Security Agency contractor Edward Snowden. But another issue, one that´s just beginning to come into public focus, may carry the long-term potential to do far more damage to Mr. Putin´s and Russia´s already deteriorating image in the West. That is the widespread impression, based on a new Russian law that bans "homosexual propaganda,"
To most people, climate change means melting snowcaps and helpless polar bears sweltering under escalating temperatures. But most of the world’s populations aren’t likely to see an iceberg in their lifetimes, much less a stranded polar bear in the wild. Which explains why the dangers of these environmental changes haven’t exactly earned high priority on most people’s list of attention-worthy crises. (Does anyone remember Al Gore’s $300 million We Campaign?) The politicization of climate change — the never-ending debate over whether it exists, for example, and the ensuing back-and-forth over its causes, its implications and potential solutions
MOSCOW — Russia on Wednesday faced a mounting campaign against its hosting of the 2014 Winter Olympics in Sochi after passing what campaigners called "barbaric" anti-gay legislation, six months before the opening of its biggest ever sporting event. British actor Stephen Fry called for Russia to be barred from hosting the Games in the Black Sea resort while gay rights campaigners handed over a 320,000-signature petition to the International Olympic Committee (IOC) urging it to condemn the law. Russian President Vladimir Putin in June signed into law legislation that punishes the dissemination of information about homosexuality to minors
Older chocoholics may have a new excuse to indulge their cravings: The dark stuff not only soothes the soul, but might also sharpen the mind. In a study published Wednesday in the journal Neurology, researchers reported that chocolate may help improve brain health and thinking skills in the elderly. The Boston-based team found that older people who initially performed poorly on a memory and reasoning test and also had reduced blood flow to their brains showed improvement after drinking two cups of cocoa every day for a month. The researchers had set out to test whether chocolate
MIAMI — Guards were preparing to serve the first in a series of special meals Wednesday to prisoners at Guantanamo Bay to mark the end of the Muslim holy period of Ramadan, which this year brought a lull in a long-running hunger strike. The military planned to serve lamb, bread, dates and honey as the last daylight fasting period of Ramadan ends, followed by three traditional holiday dinners on Thursday, said a spokesman for the prison, Navy Capt. Robert Durand. There will also be a special hour-long prayer for the holiday known as Eid al-Fitr in addition to the
Justice´s delay isn´t necessarily justice denied for Jill Kelley, the Tampa socialite entangled in the scandal that toppled former CIA director David Petraeus. The Justice Department has asked for a 30-day extension, until Sept. 4, to respond to her lawsuit against the government for violating her family´s privacy, rifling through her e-mails and leaking confidential information about her. And Kelley is fine with the extension, says her lawyer, Alan Raul. The government says it needs the time to sort through the allegations in the 65-page complaint.
A 320,000-signature petition protesting Russia´s stance on gay rights ahead of the Winter Olympics in Sochi early next year was presented to Olympic bosses in Switzerland on Wednesday. The petition, delivered to the International Olympic Committee headquarters in Lausanne by gay rights group All Out, calls on Russia to repeal its anti-gay propaganda law in advance of the Sochi Games. It also urges the IOC to condemn the law and urged Russia to ensure the security of all visitors, athletes and Russian people before, during, and after the Games. Implemented last month, after Russian President Vladimir Putin
Get ready to shell out more money for individual health insurance under Obamacare ... in some states, that is. While many residents in New York and California may see sizable decreases in their premiums, Americans in many places could face significant increases if they buy insurance through state-based exchanges next year. That´s because these people live in states where insurers were allowed to sell bare-bones plans and exclude the sick, which has kept costs down. Under Obamacare, insurers must offer a package of essential benefits -- including maternity, mental health and medications -- and must cover all who apply.
WASHINGTON — Secretary of State John Kerry and Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel plan to meet here in Washington with their Russian counterparts on Friday for a day of talks that could determine the fate of a September summit meeting between President Obama and the Russian president, Vladimir V. Putin. State Department officials on Tuesday afternoon confirmed the meeting with Sergey V. Lavrov, the Russian foreign minister, and Sergei K. Shoigu, the defense minister. Jen Psaki, the State Department spokeswoman, said the four officials would discuss “a number of pressing bilateral and global issues.” “There’s a lot to discuss,´´Ms. Psaki said.
The story of climate change is largely a story about what´s happening to the ocean. Most of the damage during Superstorm Sandy, after all, had nothing to do with the rain or wind. It was the rising ocean that swamped Staten Island, flooded the Rockaways, and knocked out power and subway service in lower Manhattan for days. People noticed the hurricane sweeping up the coast. But it was the already high ocean that did the damage. Which is why it´s worth paying attention to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration´s newly-completed assessment of how climate changed during 2012.
Texas state Sen. Wendy Davis, a rising star in the Democratic Party, confirmed on Monday that if she doesn´t run for re-election, she´ll run for governor. "I can say with absolute certainty I will run for one of two offices: either my state Senate seat, or the governor," Davis said at the National Press Club in Washington, D.C. "I´m working very hard to decide what my next steps will be. I do think in Texas people feel like we need a change from the very fractured, very partisan leadership that we´re seeing in our statewide leadership right now."
Employer retiree health care coverage, which has been deteriorating for years amid high health care costs and waning employer interest, is headed for bigger changes thanks to the Affordable Care Act, a new study shows. More than 40 percent of employers have eliminated their traditional group health coverage for retirees over the age of 65 in favor of giving these former employees a defined amount of money for them to buy their coverage on the individual Medicare plan market, according to a new survey of more than 540 companies by employee benefits consulting firm Aon AON -0.22% Hewitt (AON).
New Jersey Governor Chris Christie holds a narrow lead among Republicans for the party’s 2016 presidential nomination, but even more GOP voters say he’s the candidate they least want to see nominated. A new Rasmussen Reports national telephone survey finds that Christie earns 21% support when Republican voters are asked whom they would vote for if the party’s primary in their state were held today. Florida Senator Marco Rubio runs a close second with 18% of the GOP vote, followed by former Florida Governor Jeb Bush at 16% and Kentucky Senator Rand Paul with 15% of the vote.
Barack Obama delivered one gaffe after another in his August 6 interview with Jay Leno, but the networks that usually mock every mistake or slip of the tongue made by Republicans ignored the President´s verbal mishaps. ABC´s Good Morning America, CBS´s This Morning and NBC´s Today show, on Wednesday morning, all bypassed the chance to criticize Obama for: downplaying the threat of terrorism; falsely claiming Vladimir Putin once ran the KGB; placing the Atlantic coast cities of Savannah, Charleston and Jacksonville on the Gulf of Mexico; confusing the Winter Olympics with the Summer Olympics. First up, on the
Former Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney jumped into the debate over the GOP’s future Tuesday night, warning congressional Republicans against forcing a government shutdown in their quest to stop President Barack Obama’s signature health care law. Romney addressed more than 200 donors on the shores of Lake Winnipesaukee at a fundraiser for the New Hampshire Republican Party, staged just four miles from the vacation home where he has spent much of the summer with his family. The event was closed to the media, but his office released his prepared remarks.
Ending a war is a good thing. Killing civilians a bad thing. Deliberately targeting civilians is murder, and is never morally licit, even in pursuit of a good thing such as ending a war. The tens of thousands of Japanese non-combatants we killed 68 years ago this week with two nuclear bombs were not “collateral damage” of military strikes. They were the intended targets. We hoped that mass murder would bring the Japanese emperor to surrender. It worked, and American and Japanese soldiers’ lives were probably saved by it —
Last month we learned that Megyn Kelly was leaving her daytime anchor gig to take over a Fox News primetime slot. According to an “exclusive” Drudge Report flash this afternoon, that time slot will be 9 p.m. ET. “Superstar newswoman Megyn Kelly has landed the 9 PM slot, top sources reveal,” the Drudge Report wrote. “The shock announcement is set for later this month.” Fox’s 9 p.m. hour is currently helmed by Sean Hannity, leading to speculation over whether he could be out of a primetime gig. There are many possible outcomes from this lineup change,
In a rare diplomatic snub, President Obama is canceling plans to meet with Russian President Vladimir Putin in Moscow next month. The decision reflects both U.S. anger over Russia´s harboring of National Security Agency leaker Edward Snowden and growing frustration within the Obama administration over what it sees as Moscow´s stubbornness on other key issues, including missile defense and human rights. Obama will still attend the Group of 20 economic summit in St. Petersburg, Russia, but a top White House official said the president had no plans to hold one-on-one talks with Putin while there.
In a move some claim is tantamount to social engineering, the Department of Housing and Urban Development is imposing a new rule that would allow the feds to track diversity in America’s neighborhoods and then push policies to change those it deems discriminatory. The policy is called, "Affirmatively Furthering Fair Housing." It will require HUD to gather data on segregation and discrimination in every single neighborhood and try to remedy it. HUD Secretary Shaun Donovan unveiled the federal rule at the NAACP convention in July. "Unfortunately, in too many of our hardest hit communities, no matter how hard
Retired 68-year-old US Army general and former NATO Supreme Allied Commander Wesley K. Clark has won yet another esteemed decoration — he is dating 30-year-old Shauna Mei, the founder of online retailer AHAlife.com. Clark, who was married to Gertrude Kingston Clark for 45 years before filing for divorce last year, is spending time with the young New York-based entrepreneur, who graduated from MIT and worked at Goldman Sachs as an investment banker before launching her luxury e-commerce site. Clark and Mei were spotted together recently in the Hamptons,
President Obama is slated to deliver a speech later this month commemorating the 50th anniversary of the March on Washington in which Martin Luther King Jr. gave his famous “I Have a Dream” speech. Obama will deliver his speech from the steps of the Lincoln Memorial — the same place where King spoke 50 years ago. The Let Freedom Ring ceremony will be held Aug. 28. "It’s obviously a historic, seminal event in the country. It’s part of my generation’s formative memory and it’s a good time for us to do some reflection,"
National Security Agency leaker Edward Snowden extended his 15 minutes of fame Wednesday, as headlines tied his saga to President Barack Obama’s decision to cancel a planned summit meeting in Moscow next month with Russian President Vladimir Putin. But analysts said the talk of Snowden’s role in the cancellation obscured a more basic reality: The U.S.-Russia relationship is now so frosty that it didn’t appear the two presidents would actually accomplish enough to merit such a high-profile meeting. After four years, the much-vaunted reset in U.S.-Russian relations has devolved into a chilly standoff over issues like the Kremlin’s support for Syria
Nanny State: If any question remained about the Obama White House´s appetite for running everyone´s life from Washington, it should be settled now. This administration even wants to dictate neighborhood makeup. Like your neighborhood? Don´t get used to it. The Obama Department of Housing and Urban Development might decide it wants to dictate changes. HUD is, according to Fox News, considering "a new rule that would allow the feds to track diversity in America´s neighborhoods and then push policies to change those it deems discriminatory." The proposed rule, disclosed last month by HUD Secretary Shaun Donovan at
Speaking from Egypt Tuesday night, where they are hoping to broker a peaceful transition period between the country’s ouster of former President Mohamed Morsi to its next phase of nascent democracy, Senators John McCain and Lindsey Graham warned that concessions on both sides needed to begin immediately or Egypt’s government would “fail.” “I didn’t know it was this bad,” Graham said. “These folks are just days, weeks away from all out bloodshed.” “There is only one way that we can bring about a peaceful Egypt, and that is a process of negotiation and reconciliation between major players,” McCain said.