Your land is my land, too

“In love, as in gluttony, pleasure is a matter of the utmost precision.”

—Italo Calvino, Italian journalist, writer and essayist

Frequenters of this Place will note that I have little patience for the fatuous nature of the masses who reside among the loony political left. (Or the indecisive ones who can’t decide on an ideology, for that matter.) For the uninitiated, this includes the group that believes guns are good in the hands of everyone but law-abiding citizens, that the term “abortion” is contained somewhere within the U.S. Constitution, that the death penalty is wrong, and, of course, that one is only entitled to property rights if he or she A) is the first one there, B) is not a corporation, C) can’t afford to pay the taxes and/or D) a liberal—which is probably redundant given the first three categories.

That brings me to the topic du jour. There’s a group calling itself “Save Donner Summit” ( It apparently has objections to development in and around said area.

Or so sayeth its website: “Donner Summit is one of the truly historical landscapes of the Sierra Nevada, treasured by many throughout California, Nevada and the world. Visitors, hikers, skiers, naturalists, historians, climbers, train buffs, second homeowners and residents alike have enjoyed and continue to enjoy Donner Summit’s unique environment and offerings. Donner Summit with its irreplaceable resources is now at risk.”

Indeed. Although I’d argue that the risk is not necessarily from the proposed development.

You may recall the recent fires that swept through the area. Hardly the work of the Big-Box Marts and developers, huh? Oh, that’s right. It was the fault of those pesky bureaucratic types who know better than us, the knuckle-dragging property owners those bureaucratic types are supposed to serve.

Although, everything is apparently in need of “saving” from the big bad developers in the Truckee Meadows. (For reference, you may wish to visit and, but I digress.)

As proof of this myopic mentality, I happened to catch this little tidbit in an Aug. 27 Sierra Sun, Letters section: “Our family is new to the Serene Lakes area, as we bought our home in March 2007. I believe strongly that the homeowners of Serene Lakes are quite united that we do not want the development of Foster/Syme [the Donner Summit Developers] to despoil our beautiful environment.”

Apparently, said reader is of the opinion that her new home didn’t despoil or otherwise disturb the tranquil environment or wildlife or prior homeowners when it was built, either.

Perhaps one of these like-minded people could explain how they can’t quite see the irony—or perhaps hypocrisy—in telling a developer not to inconvenience them, when they themselves live in dwellings that, at some point, inconvenienced their neighbors. Like the birds, the bears, the deer and the coyotes.

Much like taxes where only liberals pay their “fair share,” apparently only liberals live in homes that didn’t disturb the wildlife, Mother Nature, the neighbors who homesteaded before or contribute to global warming. No. That, apparently, is all the developer’s fault. Or something to that effect.

Also apparently, it is too much to ask of people who wish to live in “unspoiled” wilderness to buy it themselves and ensure it never gets developed. That way, anyone who comes along later is just plain out of luck. Anything else seems, ah, what’s the word—gluttonous?

And that perhaps brings us back to Calvino’s assertions.

If you wish to consider the developers’ point of view, visit and decide for yourself.