COTOBUZZ NEWSLETTER- March 2006 

"We don't make jokes.  We just watch the CZ BOD, The LA Times and the OC Register &   report the facts."--Paraphrasing  Will Rogers  ( 1879 - 1935 )           

CITY OF COTO - LAST CHANCE!

 

 

Simply click on the underlined text for the rest of the story!. 

First Traffic Accident Lawsuit Filed:  Coto de Caza Public Safety Bandwagon is filling up Fast- Hop In! We just received the February 2006 CHP report – as previously reported in the Coto discussion forum, we had our first traffic accident in February.  The good news, is that on an annualized basis, the rate is well below 2002 figures, despite all the artificial roadblocks placed by the Coto de Caza board

From Coto Desperate Housewives to CotoAssasains:   Life Style Versus Character, Deja Vul All Over Again - The Coto de Caza Version on Desperate housewives is so popular, that all the local papers have been covering every new development.  In fact, The CDW made the cover of the March 10, 2006 issue of The Coto De Caza News.  Prior to this, the Coto de Caza board of directors, turned over a board of directors meeting to the producers of the CDW reality TV show.  The same board declined requests from CHP management to hold community awareness programs during board meetings, in crime prevention efforts. 

United Protection Services (UPS) - First 100 Days in Coto de Caza- Part Two In the February 2006 issue of CotoBuzz, we described how the board of directors went about in firing the largest private security in the world, and replacing it with UPS, one of the smallest private security company in the region. The results were soon evident:  In addition to the midnight raid of Securitas' employees by the new company, the transition was a disaster, as described in multiple complaints posted in the Coto Discussion

SHERIFF IS NO HELPA CASE FOR A COTO DE CAZA PRO-ACTIVE VANDALISM PREVENTION PROGRAM - Perhaps the Orange County Register’s columnist may view 20 Coto teens playing with toy guns in local parks as totally innocent.  Maybe even draw a parallel with the banned lemonade stands.  There are many problems with this line of reasoning:

More Choices, One Mission:  CotoBlozz in Three Flavors - By popular demand CotoBuzz has launched additional CotoBlogzz initiatives to suit its growing readership:  CotoBuzz readers can post comments right on the Cotobuzz website, using Yahoo 360, Bravenet.com and Blogger.Com.  The latter includes Podcasting capabilities as well (audio blogs) 

CotoBuzz

Podcasting

Yahoo360

Bravenet

Congratulations to the Orange County Register on its 100th Anniversary! - The Orange County Register's CanyonLife issue  of February 24, 2006 issue of CotoLife includes an invitation to the community that say:  

Breaking News:  The Coto de Caza Master Association IS a business! - In the February 2006 CZ Master Association Newsletter, the Coto de Caza governing body's main communication tool, the Keystone general manager assigned to Coto de Caza writes:  “The Association IS a business”  ( our emphasis),  and goes on to explain what constitutes a successful operation:

Safety Committee Fiasco II – NOW ON DVD  -  Yet One More Coto de Caza BOD Breach - As CotoBuzz readers know, for years we have been advocating a comprehensive public safety program for Coto de Caza.  Days before the most recent fatality, we asked legal counsel to compel  Keystone and the board to either consider any of our public safety proposals or articulate one of their own – we all know what happened.

Coto de Caza Transponder Registration Etiquette In addition to previous  recommendations previously we have advanced, we humbly suggest the following Coto de Caza sports park etiquette, in order to keep your blood pressure down, and minimize your wasted time.

As previously suggested, make sure that you bring a video/tape recorder and stop recording as soon as you step in to the sports park offer.

CotoBart, The Patriot Act, The First Amendment, Doh! - Prominent Senators fought vigorously for months trying to protect US residents making calls to Al-Qaeda members in Afghanistan, Iran, Iraq and Pakistan from government intrusion into their privacy, in what President Bush characterized as a partisan effort to derail renewal of the Patriot Act.

 

COTO DREAMING - In response to a message posted to the Coto Discussion Forum, we wrote:  "your  message below  is very useful to illustrate the contrast between our vision for Coto de Caza and what we have been getting from the Robert Varo & Jerry Mezger board for the last two years":

Coto de Caza Board of Directors, Four Presidents and a Funeral - In the February 10, 2006 issue of the Wall Street Journal, Peggy Noonan’s editorial piece writes in part:

CotoSnitch and Coto Teen Driving - Since the Coto de Caza board of directors headed by Robert Varo/Jerry Mezger,  is encouraging Coto residents to snitch on their neighbors, perhaps at the same time they can snitch on teen drivers? 

Newly Enacted/Discovered  Coto de Caza Laws

The Real Desperate Housewives Stand Up - to the Coto de Caza Board! - The Coto de Caza board of directors decided to fire the chairperson of the Safety Committee allegedly, because board member Jerry Mezger "believed it was illegal" for spouses to serve on one committee.  His reasoning (reminiscent of the FRE), is that this "unduly concentrates power" in a single family.  What is then to stop them from having two board seats he argues? - apparently it is OK for the current board to concentrate their power, given that they are all holding a district delegate seat, as well as a seat on the board of directors!

 

Cumulative Voting – Just the Facts Ma’m -From time to time, an Coto Discussion Forum reader opines that he prefers to hear facts and not personal opinion – so here are some of them with regards to cumulative voting:

 

Paul Young, DnO Group:  FRE or Deadenders? - Secretary Rumsfeld calls the Chinese communist censors LIGGIT - League of Intelligence Generals in Generic Information Technology.  The names he ascribes to the Islamic terrorists are Former Regime Extremists (FRE), although he prefers to use the term deadenders.

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Coto de Caza Public Safety Bandwagon is filling up Fast- Hop In!:  First Traffic Accident Lawsuit Filed

We just received the February 2006 CHP report – as previously reported in the Coto discussion forum, we had our first traffic accident in February.  The good news, is that on an annualized basis, the rate is well below 2002 figures, despite all the artificial roadblocks placed by the Coto de Caza board, including the firing of the Traffic Safety Committee chairperson because she refused to place the board's personal agendas over public safety,  expiration of road certification, refusal to implement a community awareness program, refusal to appoint a  group of volunteers to coordinate all local law enforcement agencies, private security and resident efforts, and publicly calling the CHP “extortionists”, setting a terrible example for Coto teens, a good number of who are in desperate need or good role models.

The figures obtained from the CHP indicate that residents in the age groups of 40 years and older are slowly getting the message. Whereas the age group of 24 and younger are not.

The figures also clearly indicate  out-of-control increase in accident rates when the board fired the CHP and a mirror image decrease in accident rates when residents forced the board to bring back the CHP

It also proves that the “Coto traffic accidents” are preventable incidents – and not the same as the accidents one finds in highway 405 on the way to LAX as a board supporter incredibly argued. It  also refutes the notion that Coto did not have a traffic control problem as the same person told the LA Times.

Jerry Mezger, a member of the Coto de Caza board of directors has confirmed that the first  lawsuit (of what we expect will be several) was recently filed against the association, as a result of a traffic accident that occurred sometime in 2004.   Depending on the outcome of this lawsuit, an argument could be mounted for malpractice, given the many requests made to the association for pro-active traffic control, including requests days before the fatality in December 2005.

However, it is encouraging that for the first time, the board actually published the CHP statistics in the latest issue of the President’s letter and CotoVoice – something we have been asking for, for years! Even the otherwise clueless OC Register columnist recently referred to “published CHP” figures, as if the CHP had just decided to make this information public!

Hop in; the Coto de Caza Traffic Accident Prevention  Bandwagon is filling up fast!  On the other hand, there are plenty of seats available for the Crime and Vandalism Prevention Bus!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Jan-06

 

 

Feb-06

 

Traffic Collisions = 0

0

 

 

1

 

Total number of Hours of Enforcement

150

 

 

137

 

Total number of Citations

205

 

 

153

 

Total number of Warnings 

41

 

 

16

 

Total Arrests

5

 

 

3

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Jan-06

 

 

Feb-06

 

Counts:                   

Citations

Warnings

 

Citations

Warnings

 

 

 

 

 

 

Seat belt        

30

4

 

17

2

Stop sign       

56

6

 

64

4

Speeding    

99

11

 

59

6

Expired Registration

2

2

 

1

3

License Plates    

3

4

 

1

0

Mechanical Violations   

7

3

 

6

1

DUI - Marijuana

1

0

 

0

0

Suspended license

1

0

 

0

0

Other   

8

11

 

5

0

Arrest

5

0

 

3

0

Sub-total

212

41

 

 

 

Daily Average

8

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Age Breakdown   

Jan-06

 

 

Feb-06

 

 

Citations

Warnings

 

Citations

Warnings

17 years old and under   

29

5

 

32

3

18-20 years old    

29

0

 

27

0

50 years old and older       

29

5

 

25

2

45-49 years old        

26

8

 

11

2

40-44 years old       

22

4

 

18

3

30-34 years old    

18

2

 

10

0

35-39 years old            

18

6

 

8

0

21-24 years old      

17

5

 

15

0

25-29 years old  

11

1

 

10

3

Total

199

36

 

156

13

 

 

 

 

 

 

40 years and older

77

17

 

54

7

24 years and younger

75

10

 

74

3

25-39 years

47

9

 

28

3

Total

199

36

 

156

13

 


Cumulative Voting – Just the Facts Ma’m

 

From time to time, an Coto Discussion Forum reader opines that he prefers to hear facts and not personal opinion – so here are some of them with regards to cumulative voting:

 

Our audit of cumulative voting records kept by Keystone show a number of irregularities:  For starters, the only record available to us was a tally sheet with only CRI'sPaul Young’s signature.   When questioned, a Keystone representative stated that legal counsel had given “verbal approval” to the process used.  Young is chairman of the Delegates and Other Committee, the committee responsible for bringing Coto de Caza the current board of directors and its disastrous consequence.  It should also be noted that the D&O committee is sanctioned by the current board, AND the CZ Master Association website still shows Paul Young as the Chairman, that Young has not been a homeowner, but Jerry Mezger “believes” it is illegal for spouses to serve on the same committee.  So apparently somewhere in Mezger’s gray matter, it is better for a non-homeowner to make decisions about community public safety and how to spend resident’s money, than the more rooted spouses!

 

The current board of directors bowed that if elected, they would not hold dual seats:  As district delegates and as members of the board.  Well, now ALL current members of the board ARE both district delegates and board members.  The net effect is that without free, democratic elections, and with cumulative voting, this most ethically challenged minority has a strong grip on how the CZ Master Association affairs are conducted.

 

Because of the irregularities we have witness with regards to cumulative voting, we sent a proposal to the board to ban this practice.  We also campaigned for election reform at the state level.  Results:  The state legislature approved the spirit of our proposal, yet the board NEVER even acknowledged receipt of our proposal.

 

 

Below is an excerpt of the proposal we sent the board

 

Whereas cumulative voting concept emerged out of corporate law where it was used to protect the rights of minority shareholders: A large corporation would have to accept an individual shareholder representing a minority interest, as opposed to the typical slate of corporate executives.  By banding together with other shareholders with similar interests, they could all cast their votes by share-totals for one candidate to guarantee at least one representative on the board who could speak on their behalf, and

Whereas another use of cumulative voting is to save a director who is a target for removal from the board.  [Illinois General Not For Profit Corporation Act, 805 ILCS 105/108.35(c)(2)] and

Whereas it is common knowledge that cumulative voting is often abused in a power grab to get a seat at the table and then systematically destroy the Association as other board members resign, or are pushed off, to be replaced by like-minded nominees of the rule thy neighbor crowd such as has been done with the current CZ Master Board of Directors, and

Whereas most of the current members of the CZ Master Association Board of directors in what can be described at best unethical move are also district delegates, allowing them to vote themselves into office and pre-empt a valid recall,

Therefore it is here proposed that no member of the CZ Master Association Board of Directors be allowed to hold a district delegate or alternate district delegate position.

 

 


 

Paul Young, DandO Group:  FRE or Deadenders?

 

Secretary Rumsfeld calls the Chinese communist censors LIGGIT - League of Intelligence Generals in Generic Information Technology.  The names he ascribes to the Islamic terrorists are Former Regime Extremists (FRE), although he prefers to use the term deadenders.

 

We like to say that truth has never killed anyone, but those in the dark react to it as if it had.  So we know that our satire is hitting home when we in one message (in response to our cumulative article) get a FRE, that the California Bar could use for its final exam – that is, a Fallacious Reasoning Explosion:  Everything from a Red Herring to, Circular Reasoning,  Ad Hominem, Ad Hominem Tu Quoque, Appeal to Fear, Straw Man etc.  So, perhaps instead of FRE, we will follow Secretary Rumsfeld’s lead and use the term deadenders.

 

“The best satire does not seek to harm or damage by its ridicule, unless we speak of damage structure of vice, but rather seek to create a shock of recognition and to make vice repulsive so that the vice will be expunged from the person or society under attack or from the person or society intended to benefit from the attack (regardless of who is the immediate object of attack); whenever possible this shock of recognition is to be conveyed through laughter or wit: The formula of satire is one of honey and medicine. Far from being simply destructive, satire is implicitly constructive” (Harris, 1990).

 

 

 

 


 

From Coto Desperate Housewives to CotoAssasains:   Life Style Versus Character, Deja Vul All Over Again

The Coto de Caza Version on Desperate housewives is so popular, that all the local papers have been covering every new development.  In fact, The CDW made the cover of the March 10, 2006 issue of The Coto De Caza News.  Prior to this, the Coto de Caza board of directors, turned over a board of directors meeting to the producers of the CDW reality TV show.  The same board declined requests from CHP management to hold community awareness programs during board meetings, in crime prevention efforts.

 

Sad to report that our own public safety initiatives were not considered by the board, resulting in a fatal traffic accident in December 2005 – days after we pleaded with the board, and the association’s legal counsel to take some sort of preventative action – which they failed to do.

In April, 2004 the city of Irvine issued the following advisory  There has been a recent increase in the popularity of Airsoft pellet guns and rifles among adolescents within our community. These are typically realistic scale replicas of a handgun or rifle that fire a plastic projectile (pellet) by means of a mechanical spring action”.  On the other hand, SqueezeOC.com’s CYNTHIA RUPE provides a description on adult Airsoft gun enthusiasts as  “ My hands tremble as I grip the heavy automatic electric rifle. "It's just a game," I tell myself, "don't be so nervous."  But the idea of being hunted down and shot at is unsettling, even if it is a game.  With my husband, Jim, at my side, I adjust my gun, pull my protective mask over my face and hit the field for my first game of Airsoft.

Joseph Morabito, former Coto de Caza board of directors recently reported use of these guns by some “ 20 junior high age kids.  Probably clean fun until someone loses an eye from it.  Then parents will be outraged and sue the company that makes the guns and maybe CZ for allowing it on our common area property”, echoing the city of Irvine advisory  “This increase in popularity has raised both legal and safety concerns relating to the possession and use of such pellet guns. Many parents and young people may be unaware of these safety issues and the existing Irvine city ordinance prohibiting the discharge of pellet guns within the city limits. The purpose of this public advisory is to provide parents and young people with accurate information so they are able to make informed decisions regarding the access, possession, and discharge of these pellet guns”.

 

We contacted the Coto de Caza board of directors with this and other vandalism issues, and the only response we have received to date from the board is from Keystone (the property management company)  I will forward your email below to UPS for their review”.  Since we know that UPS, the private security company is under direction from the board to “not be proactive” and respond only if complaints come from LOPR (Keystone’s List of Prominent Residents), the non-response is not surprising.

 

Unfortunately in an eerie parallel with our traffic accident warning,  we recently made a case for proactive vandalism prevention warning that inaction could possible lead to a serious incident – which happened over the weekend.  A teen was hurt by others kids apparently playing the Coto version of the Assassin game.  Members of the original assassin game are promised the following:

At the start of the game you will receive a manila envelope containing the following:

·        A picture of your intended target(s)

·        The home address of your intended target(s)

·        The work address of your intended target(s)

·        The name of your intended target(s)

·        Contact information of your intended target(s)

Upon receipt of these items, your (or your team's) mission is to find and kill (by way of water gun, water balloon or super soaker) your target(s).

 

You can hunt your target down any way you see fit; you can pose as a delivery person and jack them when they open the door, disguise yourself and take them out on the street, etc. 

If you are successful in your assassination attempt, the person you killed will give you their envelope and the person they were supposed to kill becomes your new target. This continues until you work yourself through all the players and retrieve the envelope with your (or your team's) picture(s) and name(s). Then you win. Cash…but first live in fear”

 

Repeated calls to the Orange County Sheriff’s office for details on the Coto incident for this story have been either not been returned, or have been misleading:  For example, in one instance, we were told the incident was being handled by the CHP, which proved to not be correct.

Ironically in an article appearing in the Mar 5, 2006 issue of HealthDay News titled , Safer Neighborhoods Are Fitter Neighborhoods, a correlation is made between health and the perception of crime “Neighborhood crime, or the perception that their neighborhood is unsafe, can keep residents from the exercise they need, U.S. researchers report”

Researchers found:

  • About 19 percent of respondents cited crime or fear for personal safety as a barrier to physical activity;
  • People who did not perceive crime or fear for personal safety as a barrier to physical activity were about 40 percent more likely to meet physical activity recommendations;

We have previously reported that according to data commissioned by CNN/Money, crime rate within Coto de Caza is higher than any neighboring gated or ungated communities.   So perhaps  if the HealthDay News researchers conclusion apply here, we can conclude that in general Coto residents are sick?

We should note that we have been working with various law enforcement agencies trying to define a management tool that residents in Coto de Caza and other communities can use, to determine whether a (crime/vandalism) problem exists or not – similar to the statistics we get from the CHP with regards to traffic management – so far, the agency chartered with the collection and reporting of these figures has not been of much help.

But getting back to the street war games, given the global popularity of their popularity, regardless of age group, there is already buzz that soon the game will be turned into a reality TV show – we know THEN that the Coto board of directors will jump in the bandwagon and do something about it:  Turn over a board meeting to producers of the Coto Assassin Reality TV Show!

 

 


 

COTO DREAMING

In response to a message posted to the Coto Discussion Forum, we wrote:  "your  message below  is very useful to illustrate the contrast between our vision for Coto de Caza and what we have been getting from the Robert Varo & Jerry Mezger board for the last two years":

We value the US Constitution, freedom, democracy, transparency, social capital, diversity, personal accountability and tolerance (tolerance, not  acceptance) .  We do not believe the Constitution should be turned  On/Off at the gates or at the whim of the board or service providers, as if it was just another Coto transponder.

With all due respect to Dr. Martin Luther King, our dream for Coto is that our character is measured by our actions, not by our tee times,  our position in Keystone’s List of Prominent Coto Residents, how many academic degrees we hold, or how many times we have been the number one salesperson, or how many venture capitalist are in our palm pilot.

Our dream is that our community will be measured by what we leave behind, not by the number of free movies at the park we were able to schedule or attend.

We believe that actions speak louder than words.  If we want to stake our reputation on honesty, we will let our actions speak louder than our words, not the other way around.

We believe in an honest days’ pay for an honest days’ work.  Not to pay service providers to tell the press how great we are,  or use them to promote personal agendas.

We believe in common sense.  Not on turning to legal counsel to address simple issues, such as whether or not to prepare meeting minutes 

We believe in integrity.  Not on power mongering.  

We believe “there is a way which seems right to a man,  but in the end it leads to death” Therefore we want to stay as far away from any appearance of conflict of interest , not endorse it. 

We believe that our Yes should mean yes and our No should mean no.  If we break the law, we expect to be held accountable, not find loopholes to get away with it.

We believe in law and order, and we believe that values are modeled, not legislated.  When we say we value public safety, we do all we can to promote it.  Not use derogatory remarks when we refer to law enforcement agents, then build road block after road block, such as letting road certification expire, mislead residents that the “Sheriff is coming for pro-active traffic control under revenue-neutral conditions”, then use every possible excuse to discourage volunteerism.  What does that tell our kids?

We believe that we should respectfully challenge our friends and neighbors for the betterment of the community, and expect to be challenged ourselves.  Not encourage neighbor to snitch on neighbor, or moon them if we do not agree with them.

When John Zarian, previous Coto de Caza board of directors president,  told us that perhaps our dreams were Quixotic, and that since the Coto silent majority remained silent, we should simply fold tent, we started to doubt ourselves.  We considered moving, as we have been ashamed to be associated with a valueless, spiritless community.  Then the unfortunate traffic accident happened and the silent majority woke up.  The stream of letters and words of encouragement keep coming in, and now we are once again dreaming about  the Coto we know we can leave our kids.

 


 

CotoSnitch and Coto Teen Driving

Since the Coto de Caza board of directors headed by Robert Varo/Jerry Mezger,  is encouraging Coto residents to snitch on their neighbors, perhaps at the same time they can snitch on teen drivers? 

Message found on new website:

Have you ever been cut off by a teenager

chatting on their cell phone?

Have you watched as a young driver spins his

tires in a parking lot?

Have you wished that you could be notified

if your teenager was driving inappropriately?

Now you can - Visit this website for details:    http://www.reportthisteen.com/

If the website is of interest, you may also want to wat ch this news clip:

http://www.cbs2.com/video/?id=13509@kcbs.dayport.com

But wait; based on the CHP statistics, Coto adults seem to drive as bad as Coto teens! – So we are back to neighbor snitching on neighbor

 


 

Breaking News:  The Coto de Caza Master Association IS a business

In the February 2006 CZ Master Association Newsletter, the Coto de Caza governing body's main communication tool, the Keystone general manager assigned to Coto de Caza writes:  “The Association IS a business”  ( our emphasis),  and goes on to explain what constitutes a successful operation:

1.    “ Economical and satisfactory operation

2.    Accurate and forward looking budgeting

3.    Assessments supporting the operation

4.    Swift, impartial enforcement of regulations

5.    Communication, cooperation and participation of homeowners.”

 

Needless to say, we are confused:  In the past, Coto residents were told by the same manage, to view the budgeting process, as a family budget – now residents are told the association is actually a business!

 

So the first question is:

What kind of business fires the CHP without a suitable replacement, fires the largest security company in the world and brings in one of the smallest ones simply because a “compelling offer and program, fashion and demeanor” that no one has seen?  

Then promises pro-active traffic patrol by the Sheriff, “free”, since the CHP are extortionists – The Sheriff never shows up, and then the board is coerced to bring back the CHP after a traffic fatality.  Then the board lets road certification expire, so that neither the CHP nor the Sheriff can patrol Coto de Caza streets, now the Sheriff are also extortionists since they will charge to provide pro-active traffic control?  

As if that was not enough, as of this writing, the public safety committee was fired, because the committee chairperson and the board  were  "not on the same page"- that is, the chairperson refused to put the board's personal agendas over public safety and to give up her free speech rights.   Not counting the myriad of problems associated with the implementation of a new and improved transponder program, that seems to provide the best service to club members, and anyone on Keystone List of Prominent Residents, and could care less about the average CotoJoe?

As if that was not enough, the same elements described by the general manager seem to be missing in action and /or nonsensical and more appropriate for political wannabees: I do not want assessments to support the operations"  (sounds very much like tax and spend) – I just as soon hold service providers such as Keystone, UPS, transponder consultants, etc. responsible and accountable for their actions and for customer satisfaction, before considering additional taxes!

What about the Swift and impartial enforcement of regulations ?  –  what about residents doing as they please with common property  while Keystone Property remains clueless "The Association is currently not doing any work in that area.  The only work in that area appears to be by the corner homeowner on their own property" - or is it because said owner belongs to the architectural committee? If not convinced, simply  read the last two issues of CotoBuzz for additional documented evidence this "swift and impartial enforcement of regulations" is non-existent,

 

Or what about communication with homeowners?  There is a large body of documentation of breach of fiduciary duty where the money is used for advertising personal and other causes, and independent minded residents are denied access to committees?

 

But now we know Coto de Caza IS a business – for Service Providers!


 

Coto de Caza Transponder Registration Etiquette

In addition to previous  recommendations previously we have advanced, we humbly suggest the following Coto de Caza sports park etiquette, in order to keep your blood pressure down, and minimize your wasted time.

As previously suggested, make sure that you bring a video/tape recorder and stop recording as soon as you step in to the sports park office:

1.                  Forget about what the CC&Rs say, and forget about what you think your rights are.  As soon as you set foot in that office, you have no rights, unless you are on Keystone’s List of Prominent Residents.  How do you know?  An indicator maybe that if you are being asked to pay anything for transponder battery replacement, or even if you have to ask, then you are not on that list.

2.  Do as I say, not as I do – even though the board can use derogatory remarks during board meetings against the CHP and others, if your sugar level goes up and you happen to say something like “BS!” – that is considered foul language and you will be thrown out of the office.

3.  You are not in charge – you may think that you are a customer and may act accordingly, because the customer is always right.  Yeah, right.  Fogeddabout it!  Again, you will simply be thrown out.

4.  Suggest you start out the conversation bowing down – kneeling is preferred – then say something along the lines of mea culpa.

Always looking for additional input to make sure we can communicate with the transponder office promptly:  Now if we say we are going to the club, for some reason all the doors open up and you can use any type of fowl language possible – so perhaps instead of going through all this, we can all say we are merely going to the club and that is the end of that – Apparently club visitors ARE on Keystone’s List of Prominent Residents!

 


 

Safety Committee Fiasco II – NOW ON DVD  Yet One More Coto de Caza BOD Breach

Coming to a circus near you, the board wants to bring back a traffic consultant – remember the “expert consultant”  who contributed to the transponder fiasco, so he can advice the new speechless safety committee on how to properly screw things further.

Never mind that the CHP has volunteers advising other community safety committees, such as the one in Ladera Ranch – for free!  Of course, there is no guarantee that the CHP would go out of its way to work with any speechless committee member, but  I am sure the CHP would be willing to work with any Coto resident who is concerned about public safety.

As CotoBuzz readers know, for years we have been advocating a comprehensive public safety program for Coto de Caza.  Days before the most recent fatality, we asked legal counsel to compel  Keystone and the board to either consider any of our public safety proposals or articulate one of their own – we all know what happened.

The CZ Master board of directors have used derogatory remarks, in public, when referring to the CHP, using fallacious reasoning: “because Coto residents pay taxes, so CHP services should be provided for free”  – However, at the same time, the board has refused to take advantage of the CHP’s most respected community awareness program, a cornerstone of an effective public safety program, provided free of charge.  It should be noted that other communities such as Ladera Ranch jumped at the first chance to include  a CHP agent as a member of their public safety committee.

Most people in the community, and a lot more outside of it, by now know that this board has been more interested in pursuing personal agendas over public safety issues, including the trampling of civil liberties. 

Simply consider the most recent event involving the failure to keep up road certification, the promise of pro-active traffic control by the Sheriff at no additional charge, and the  fired group Formerly Known as the Safety Committee.

So now the board wants to bring in a consultant to advice a new Safety Committee – that is,  if the board is able to find other volunteers willing to give up their free speech rights and their spouses.

Not taking into consideration that this  “expert consultant” simply contributed to the most recent transponder verification chaos, it is obvious that the only practical use for this consultant is to provide a way for the board to deliver a positive spin to the Orange County Register – given that certain service providers will do anything as abhorrent as it may be, for a buck.

Therefore, it should be very, very clear to all that a decision to hire an expert consultant to advice the board on public safety issues under no circumstance can meet the best business judgment rule.  This is  yet another breach!

For Reference:  Elements of Effective Traffic Control Plan

L – Leadership

E – Engineering – that is, streets need to be certified for patrol and certification needs to be current

E- Education – self-awareness program to educate residents on the importance of respecting law and order.  .

E – Engagement – coordination between law enforcement agencies and residents

O – organization

 


 

A CASE FOR A COTO DE CAZA PRO-ACTIVE VANDALISM PREVENTION PROGRAM

 

 

Perhaps the Orange County Register’s columnist may view 20 Coto teens playing with toy guns in local parks as totally innocent.  Maybe even draw a parallel with the banned lemonade stands.  There are many problems with this line of reasoning:

 

·        We continue to assert that values are modeled – not legislated.  Given that Coto de Caza is known as a valueless community, allowing kids to play with guns at will, simply continues to validate the notion.  But what can we expect when members of the Coto de Caza board of directors refer to law enforcement agents as "extortionists"?

 

·        The current environment is simply too dangerous for law enforcement agents.  They never know when a gun is real and when it is not – this has led to several fatalities in the area recently.

 

·        This practice, without proper training and protection gear is simply an “accident” : begging to happen.  And just like the Coto traffic “accidents”, these are simply preventable incidents.

 

 

Then apparently once these kids get tired of shooting at each other, they start shooting paint balls or other objects at cars, or simply vandalizing street signs or other association assets.  As the need for adrenalin rush increases, then we have incidents such as the one recently where a number of club carts were driven into the lake on hole number 10 and an individual was detained by law enforcement agents.

 

As if that was not enough, there have been multiple reports of kids setting off fireworks, and law enforcement agents being called to the scene.

 

 

A group of concerned Coto Resident, which the Orange County Register’s columnist has incorrectly referred to as “ a group of one”, for years made the argument that Coto had a traffic control problem and that it would be a matter of time before a tragedy occurred – it did.  But then of course, what can you expect from the same columnist that has defined Coto de Caza as Coto de Caca  ("...Well, not that I don't trust those developers, but if you go online and look up the Portuguese phrase for "preserve of the hunt", you get it -- and I am not kidding about this - "Coto de Caca"-  Steve Sickler, CanyonLife, Behind The Gates 5-27-2005)?

 

The same group of concerned Coto residents have been asking the board to keep track of vital statistics with regards to traffic accidents, vandalism, breach of privacy, and other crimes – they have refused to do so, even after the recent tragedy.  In the Saddleback College's website, they refer to ingredients of an effective crime prevention program as: "

 

"One of the essential ingredients of any successful crime prevention program is an informed public. It is the intent of Saddleback College to inform students and staff, in a timely manner, of any criminal activity or security problems which may pose a reasonable threat to personal safety. Such information will be distributed through this web site, or specific bulletins, and through student publications such as the Lariat. Other media used will be through in-house memos, E-mail, or bulletins and regularly published newsletters and KSBR radio. The college police department also maintains a public log of all reported campus crimes.

Another essential element of any crime prevention program is training and education. The Campus Police Department in coordination with the other college departments sponsor programs on various topics ranging from sexual assault awareness to substance abuse prevention.  Finally, all effective crime prevention programs include some measure of people watching out for one another. All staff and students are asked to be ALERT, SECURITY CONSCIOUS, and INVOLVED

Unfortunately, but not unexpectedly,  our requests to the Coto de Caza board of directors, consistent with the Saddleback crime prevention program, just like the numerous proactive traffic control requests, have gone unanswered.  We know that CNN/Money had listed Coto de Caza as one of the Best Places to Live and Retire in 2004, with a crime rate higher than any neighboring community, gated or ungated.  CNN/Money no longer rates Coto de Caza.

What we did not expect is that the Orange County Sheriff's office seems to create artificial roadblocks for concerned citizens:  Although we can get information from the FBI, from the California Department of Justice and CNN/Money, to date, we have yet to receive anything useful from the Sheriff's Office:  For the last six months, we have tried every avenue, including trying to reach Sheriff Michael S. Carona, the PR office and the Association of Orange County Deputy Sheriffs.  

or or activity.

We did learn from the Sherifss'sRecords department however, that there is no such a thing as a "management" tool to help communities determine where they need to focus their public safety attention. And also, if special reports are required, these will cost you - all this compared to the reporting we get from the CHP: anytime, anywhere, anyhow!

 

The Coto Concerned Citizen's group also made the argument that these “accidents” were really a misnomer, since they could be prevented.  Board supporters argued that Coto did not have a traffic control problem and that  accidents just happen.  Even used the analogy of the CHP patrolling the 405 near LAX.  The latest CHP statistics now speak for themselves in support of the concerned Coto resident’s position:  Coto traffic “accidents” are really “incidents” and they are preventable!  Coto traffic problems are not solely attributable to Coto soccer moms. - as a board member asserted.

 

Given the escalation in vandalism incidents, and the severity, it should now be obvious to even the most skeptic Coto resident that proactive vandalism prevention, including vandalism data collection, reporting and corrective action is a must:  The board’s instructions to UPS, its private security company,  to not be pro-active is simply the wrong approach!

 

Additionally, it should be noted that Coto is going through demographics changes creating a “baby boomer syndrome” and the “prank-age” number of kids is about to explode.

 

Unfortunately, what is not as obvious is the potential for time bombs that may go off.  Simply try surfing popular blog sites used by Coto kids.

 

These key  (vandalism/crime) figures should tell the community that it needs to have more parent involvement, and the need to design after school activates that may be better suited for the community than simply scheduling free movies in the park.  If Coto kids cannot survive the most sheltered life in Coto de Caza, how can we expect them to survive in real life? 

 

The board’s failure to take action with regards to pro-active vandalism prevention will simply allow history to repeat itself.

 

Below is a copy of a Coto Alert posted March 13, 2006 in the Coto Discussion Forum:

 

Hi Friends,
            I want to make you aware of something that's been going on in Coto.  Last night a 13 year old neighbor boy of ours was playing basketball in his friend's driveway in Coto.  A dark colored car (like a small BMW or similar looking car with yellow lights under the headlights) drove by and shot numerous paintballs (bright green) at the kids and struck our neighbor boy in the eye.  It will be a couple of weeks before its known the extent of the damage to his eye.  The doctors say his vision could be anywhere from restored completely or he could be blind.  They won't know until the bleeding and swelling go away.


           When talking with the police, it was discovered that the South Bend guard house had also been shot at last night.  Also, a while ago, another girl was hit in the eye as well with a paint ball while sitting in her car with the windows down in Coto.  So far, the authorities have not found the persons responsible. The shooters have been seen both in a car and on foot doing their damage.


            If you have kids please talk with them to not only help protect them, but to see if someone has heard or seen anything that could lead to finding these persons.  Also, please pray for our neighbor boy that his sight is restored completely.
Thanks so much,

 


 

Coto de Caza Board of Directors, Four Presidents and a Funeral

In the February 10, 2006 issue of the Wall Street Journal, Peggy Noonan’s editorial piece writes in part:

“ Listen, I watched the funeral of Coretta  Scott King for six hours Tuesday, from the pre-service commentary to the very last speech and it was wonderful – spirited and moving, rousing and respectful, pugnacious and loving….there was preaching and speechifying and at the end I thought:  This is how democracy ought to be, ought to look every day – full of joy of argument, and marked by the moral certainty that here you can say what you think.

There was nothing prissy, nothing sissy about it….

So what?  This is the authentic sound of a vibrant democracy doing its thing.  It was the exact opposite of the frightened and prissy attitude that if you draw a picture I do not like, I will have to kill you.

It was:  We do free speech here.

That funeral honored us, and the world could learn a lot from watching it.  The US government should send all six hours of it throughout the World Wide Web and to every country on heart, because it said more than any number of decorous UN Speeches and formal diplomatic declarations”

Perhaps a copy could be also be sent to the CZ Master Association -  the Coto de Caza local governing body-  to the OC Register and the LA Times?  Now, for those who may be so inclined to compared the running of General Motors to that of a HOA non-for-profit corporation, remember that even  GM has been operating in an open democracy:

Prior to Varo/Mezger grabbing control of the CZ Master Association board of directors, they wanted their “strategy’ to remain a secret.  Only those fully supporting their personal agendas would be allowed to   be part of the inner circle.  When we first reported these facts, board  supporters accused CotoBuzz of  “being sensationalist” and that there was “nothing secretive” about this board.  In a posting to the Coto Discussion Forum, dated Fri, 13 Feb 2004 22:32:04, an ardent board supporter writes defending the board’s decision to fire the CHP:   “ … anyone with a modicum of intelligence will understand that radar traps are effective at producing revenue; not conformance. Even Jerry Brown understood that!

It was told to us by Morabito, Glissen, and Rose (way back when) that the CHP was brought in to slow traffic. After INCREASING speed limits, the number of traffic tickets is the same today as it was when the CHP first came in.

Where is the effect? Law enforcement presence effects compliance; traps don't! For God's sake George, I know you are wiser than that!

Befor e you are too critical, give it a chance. We know the CHP didn't slow traffic (66% of their tickets over the last two years were for rolling stops). Let's see what the Sheriff can do”

Of course, as we told CRI’s Paul Young, the “other” in the “Delegates & Other” committee mostly responsible for electing the current board of directors:  Everything that is hidden will be revealed, and it has.   It all comes down to values:  a corporation can choose to be transparent, or shady.  Open or secretive – in the end, transparency and openness leads to trust and credibility – something the current board is sorely lacking.  The current board has created an environment where civil liberties are being trampled upon; personal safety is being compromised, where the accident rates have doubled each year for the last three years and set an all time record for 2005. Where the crime rate is greater than any neighboring community, gated or un-gated,  and where we have experienced the first traffic fatality in over 10 years.

A summary of the board actions with regards to traffic control follows;

  • Fires CHP without suitable replacement – allegedly because they are extortionists
  • As accident rate climbs significantly, the BOD misleads residents into thinking that the Sheriff will be able to do pro-active traffic control for free
  • Refuses to acknowledge multiple public safety proposals
  • Fires the largest private security company in the word and replaces it with one of the smallest ones in the region without evidence of due diligence
  • Coto experiences the first traffic fatality in the last 10 years
  • Silent Majority speaks and coerces the board into brining back the CHP
  • Board continues to pursue personal agendas  and announces use of association resources to hold meeting to discuss how to proceed.  Silent Majority requests the facilities to discuss public safety instead – board refuses.
  • Board appoints a Traffic Safety Committee
  • Board announces that Sheriff can now do pro-active traffic control – but will be expensive – Sheriff is now extortionists as well
  • Board lets road certification expire – meaning that NO ONE can do pro-active traffic controls in Coto roads, but Coto Drive.
  • Board fires the Safety Committee because its leader and others refuse to give up their free speech right and because Jerry Mezger believes it is illegal to have spouses sitting in the same committee (when he and the rest of the board are holding two seats:  district delegate and on the board).  However,  the real reasons he did not want the committee Formerly Known as the Safety committee are:
    1. They refused to promote the board’s personal agenda’s
    2. They have a brain and can think for themselves
    3. They do not need to bow to pressure as if they were teens, so they can be with the in crowd – they are the in crowd!

 


 

Newly Enacted/Discovered  Coto de Caza Laws

Nile's Law - The effort expended by a bureaucracy in defending any error  is in direct proportion to  the size of the error. 

Coto's Corollary– any effort expended by the incumbents in self-preservation is inversely proportional to that expended on improving accountability, transparency, collaboration and the city’s way of life – oops, did we say city?

Nowlan's Deduction - Following the path of least resistance is what  makes  both  people  and  rivers  crooked.

When there is a gap between one's real and one's declared aims, one instinctively turns to long words and  exhausted idioms
 
 Coto’s Deduction  Homeowner’s  apathy directly transforms a homeowner’s associations into a HOA ATM......directly follows that: at all times lawyers are protected, property management companies are protected and homeowners are disenfranchised.

When there is a gap between real and declared aims, one can instinctively turn to special interest groups (that is, personal agendas) .

Osler's Law - The  greater the ignorance, the greater the dogmatism.
 (All knowledge has to be in a manual or guide.)
 
 Coto’s Law – The greater the homeowner ignorance, the greater the opportunism (to promote personal agendas)  - All CC&Rs  are obscure and meant to maintain homeowner apathy

Thoreau's  Ruling - Some circumstantial evidence is very strong,  as when you find a trout in the milk. (1854)
 

Coto’s Ruling – Some circumstantial evidence is very strong, as when you find new amendments and no one knows where they came from. Or when a CZ BOD thinks it is illegal for spouses to serve in  committees because the next step is to then have spouses seat on boards, unduly  concentrating the power (when at the same time, five board members are both, delegates and board members, unduly concentrating the power..)

Cotobuzz’s  Theory of Relative Homeowners’ Association Waste:

E= MCZ2 / Q

 Where:

E=  Homeowner Association Waste in millions of dollars

M=  Association Fees * E Home owners

C=  MP Company Coefficient

Z = Level of influence exerted by foreign activists * Attorney’s Greed * Homeowner’s Ego

Q = Association Board of Director’s Competence  and

 

0 < CZ2 / Q < 1


  Congratulations to the Orange County Register on its 100th Anniversary!

The Orange County Register's CanyonLife issue  of February 24, 2006 issue of CotoLife includes an invitation to the community that say:  

“The staff of the Rancho Santa Margarita News and Canyon life wants to learn more about what’s important to our readers and how we can better serve the community.


Come chat with us, over coffee and munchies, and tell us what you think.


We are sponsoring a community meeting, to be held at the Rancho Santa Margarita Public Library community room, 30902 La Promesa on March 7, at 7 p.m.


All community members are welcome

Public Service Announcement – OPERA PACIFICA - AIDA

 
 

Apparently the staff of the Rancho Santa Margarita News and Canyon life have not been told by Freedom Communications, or their webmaster,  that they are supposed to report community news, NOT advertising passing as reporting, or as we like to call it, “adporting”.  Or perhaps the Orange County Register, just like the Coto News and the Coto de Caza board of directors, prefer to focus on the Coto Life Style rather than on Coto's Social Capital:  Witness the coverage given to the Coto de Caza Desperate Housewives over issues such as public safety, freedom of speech and conflict of interest.  Refer to Lawless, Values-less, Spiritual-less Coto de Caza

For reference, the following Google search engine entry may provide a clue as to what the purpose may be:  The Orange County Register - The Orange County Register - Orange County California's source of local news and information.
www.ocregister.com/ - 86k - Feb 24, 2006

CotoBuzz readers may recall that we filed a complaint against the OR Register with the Freedom Communications board of directors:

"The complaint against the OC Register involves conflict of interest, false, misleading and irresponsible reporting, and collaboration with the CZ Master Association’s board of directors - responsible for managing/governing a roughly 13,500 resident gated community in South Orange County, CA, commonly referred to Coto de Caza - to create an environment where civil liberties are being trampled upon; personal safety is being compromised, where the accident rates have doubled each year for the last three years and will set an all time record by the end of 2005. Where the crime rate is greater than any neighboring community, gated or un-gated, where we  have experienced the first traffic fatality in over 10 years, and recently a miscarriage occurred under questionable circumstance, without any consequences"


More Choices, One Mission:  CotoBlogzz In Three Flavors

March 12, 2006  

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE                                                              

Buzz Aguirre

(509) 355-8895

By popular demand CotoBuzz has launched additional CotoBlogzz initiatives to suit its growing readership:  CotoBuzz readers can post comments right on the Cotobuzz website, using Yahoo 360, Bravenet.com and Blogger.Com.  The latter includes Podcasting capabilities as well (audio blogs) 

CotoBuzz

Podcasting

Yahoo360

Bravenet

What is RSS? :  Syndicated content, otherwise known as Really Simple Syndication (RSS), is a popular way to distribute information from websites. Using RSS, a news site or a blog can feed its news articles or entries to a group of subscribers automatically. 

Media coverage (from Orange County Register and the Los Angeles Times for example) of un-incorporated communities such as Dove Canyon, Ladera Ranch, Coto de Caza, etc. have made it clear that there is a severe lack of courageous,  competent, experienced community journalists willing to hold politician’s accountable to their constituents.  CotoBuzz continues to fill such need. Read More:  http://www.atwebo.com/cotobuzz/2006/CotoCZPressRelease.htm


Spouses

The  Real Desperate Housewives Stand to the Coto de Caza Board of Directors

 

The Coto de Caza board of directors decided to fire the chairperson of the Safety Committee allegedly, because board member Jerry Mezger "believed it was illegal" for spouses to serve on one committee.  His reasoning (reminiscent of the FRE), is that this "unduly concentrates power" in a single family.  What is then to stop them from having two board seats he argues? - apparently it is OK for the current board to concentrate their power, given that they are all holding a district delegate seat, as well as a seat on the board of directors!

 

Of course we all know that Jerry’s “belief” that it is illegal for spouses to volunteer in association committees is simply an excuse.

 

The real reasons he did not want the committee Formerly Known as the Safety committee are:

 

a.      They refused to promote the board’s personal agenda’s

b.      They have a brain and can think for themselves

c.      They do not need to bow to pressure as if they were teens, so they can be with the in crowd – they are the in crowd!

 


 CotoBart, The Patriot Act, The First Amendment, Doh!

 

Thursday March 2, 2006

Prominent Senators fought vigorously for months trying to protect US residents making calls to Al-Qaeda members in Afghanistan, Iran, Iraq and Pakistan from government intrusion into their privacy, in what President Bush characterized as a partisan effort to derail renewal of the Patriot Act.  Their efforts failed and according to AP, “The Senate on Thursday gave its blessing to the renewal of the USA Patriot Act after adding new privacy protections designed to strike a better balance between civil liberties and the government's power to root out terrorists”

On a related story, “ In a contest between Americans' knowledge of "The Simpsons" and what they know about the First Amendment, Bart and Homer win hands down.

About 1 in 4 Americans can name more than one of the five freedoms guaranteed by the First Amendment (freedom of speech, religion, press, assembly and petition for redress of grievances.) But more than half of Americans can name at least two members of the fictional cartoon family, according to a survey.

The study by the new McCormick Tribune Freedom Museum found that 22% of Americans could name all five Simpson family members, compared with just 1 in 1,000 people who could name all five First Amendment freedoms”

Might this study have been conducted using a large population of Coto de Caza residents?  This might explain why members of the Coto landscaping and architectural committees as opposed to the recently fired safety committee – readily agree to give up their free speech rights, so they can “play” with the current board of directors?

And of course, Coto de Caza board of director’s Jerry’s Mezger reasoning for denying spouses their right to membership in association committees is that (in a slippery slope fallacy), they will then be able to hold two seats on the board, unduly concentrating power – very different from the current concentration of power by having members of the board of directors ALSO being district delegates.

 

 


United Protection Services (UPS) - First 100 Days in Coto de Caza- Part Two

In the February 2006 issue of CotoBuzz, we described how the board of directors went about in firing the largest private security in the world, and replacing it with UPS, one of the smallest private security company in the region. The results were soon evident:  In addition to the midnight raid of Securitas' employees by the new company, the transition was a disaster, as described in multiple complaints posted in the Coto Discussion Forum.

When we reached the call center regarding  a suspicious looking car with a "for sale" sign parked outside our home for a couple of days, the agent told us that the reason the car was not cited by UPS was because its owner was on "Keystone's List of Prominent Coto Residents".  Board member, Jerry Mezger denied existence of any such List and Kevin Edmonds, UPS supervisor denied the call center agent ever saying such a thing.

A few days later, for sale signs started popping up at the intersection of Vista del Verde and Coto de Caza Drive.  When we asked a UPS representative if we could post signs, he told us it was "illegal" - we asked him why then, for sale signs had been there for days, we we were told that UPS employees "had not seen the signs", but now that he knew about it, he would take them down.

A few days later, for sale signs started popping up at the intersection of Vista del Verde and Coto de Caza Drive.  When we asked a UPS representative if we could post signs, he told us it was "illegal" - we asked him why then, for sale signs had been there for days, we were told that UPS employees "had not seen the signs", but now that he knew about it, he would take them down.

Since UPS employees cannot see these sings, should the board pitch in for special glasses?

As we waited for him to take down the sings, he was visibly upset and told us he would report us, because we "detained him" as he was on his way to more important calls.  He also told us he had caught our conversation on tape.

We asked UPS and Keystone for a copy of the tape - no response!

There seems to be a pattern here - if you have not seen it, we will describe it further in Part Three!

 


CotoBuzz Newsletters RSS Version http://www.vicjohnson.com/wp-rss2.php

 


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COTOBUZZ VISION - Fighting Coto Resident Apathy One Resident At a Time!

COTOBUZZ is a change agent to transform the historically confrontational, antagonistic Coto culture by maximizing resident involvement and facilitating communication between the board, residents and service providers, and eventually develop a sense of community and civic pride while maintaining the Coto Life Style we all have come to love.

Forward this newsletter to your Coto friends and neighbors. Ask them to sign up for their own copy (free) at www.cotobuzz.com  You are receiving this newsletter because you have confirmed your subscription at www.cotobuzz.com, you are a CZ Master Association delegate, service provider or interested party.  To cancel your subscription, contact:

  • Buzz cotobuzz@yahoo.com   

  • P.O. Box 154                    

  • Trabuco Canyon, CA 92678 

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Coto Discussion Forum Alive and Thriving

Currently, the forum can be accessed by the CZ Board, residents from the Estates, Villages and CZ Masters.  Subjects covered include CZ Board of Directors Performance, or lack thereof, CZensorship, PerCZeption is Knowledge, the Dead Oak Trees, Cumulative Voting, the Brewing Revolt, Security, etc.....  Get your Swiss Knife (the right tool for the right job) - join the Coto Discussion Forum

 

When participants violate the Cotobuzz guidelines, they will be BUZZED three times.  The third BUZZ will come along with an automatic ban from the discussion forum for a period of one month.

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