Monday, March 26, 2007

The CZ Master Homeowners Association and the Stanford Prison Experiment

The CZ Master Homeowners Association and the Stanford Prison Experiment

March 26, 2007

After studying the Varo/Mezger CZ Master Associaiation board of directors for over five years, our conclusion is that the CZ, as well as most HOAs are a classic demonstration of situational power to influence individual attitudes, values and behavior.

In 1971, a team of psychologists designed and executed an unusual experiment that used a mock prison setting, with college students role-playing prisoners and guards to test the power of the social situation to determine behavior. In the research, known as the Stanford Prison Experiment, extreme, swift and unexpected were the transformations of character in many of the participants that this study -- planned to last two-weeks -- had to be terminated by the sixth day.

The major results of the study found that many of the normal, healthy mock prisoners suffered such intense emotional stress reactions that they had to be released in a matter of days; most of the other prisoners acted like zombies totally obeying the demeaning orders of the guards; the distress of the prisoners was caused by their sense of powerlessness induced by the guards who began acting in cruel, dehumanizing and even sadistic ways. The study was terminated prematurely because it was getting out of control in the extent of degrading actions being perpetrated by the guards against the prisoners - all of whom had been normal, healthy, ordinary young college students less than a week before.

Obviously, the analogy in this case is that the guards are the members of the CZ master association board of directors.

How else do you explain allegedly smart businessmen firing the CHP to protect buddies from DUI Citations?

How do you explain the firing of the largest private security company in the world, and replace it with one that needs hand holding?

How do you explain the firing of the public safety chairperson, simply for refusing to sit down and shut up – then use the “spouses cannot be members” excuse?

How do you explain the road certification expiration fiasco and then with a straight face blame it on a missing tickler file?

How else do you explain the actions of a board going beyond their RMR (repair, maintain and replace) responsibilities and attempt to get control of someone else’s property arguing unfair trade practices, and starts to license intellectual property it does not own?

How else do you explain the deployment of mounted security officers to patrol horse trails and private security guards to help kids cross the street when the community has one of the highest crime and vandalism rates?

Get the point?

Hello All: I thought I would provide all a good laugh. While we were building our home in Reno , we bought a patio home in a little gated community with the intention of later turning it into a rental. We have since moved into our new home. In the mean time for the three years we lived in our patio home there was a pigeon problem in our little cull de sac as a result of a nest at my neighbors home next door. This pigeon problem grew to about 60 or more pigeons going from home to home and all over the common areas and little front yards which are all maintained by the Association. I tried to get the HOA to deal with this since the problem was not confined to any one home and we never did have a nest on our home; but they refused even though the mess caused by these pigeons in the common areas and streets was substantial. I have the pictures ready for the judge. Finally, since pigeon feces can cause diseases that are air borne, I could wait no more so I hired an exterminator to get rid of these pigeons at a cost of $400. The exterminator mentioned to me that his father raises falcons and feeds the dead pigeons to the falcons, which was fine with me as long as these flying rats were gone. I also spent another $250 pigeon proofing our patio home.

After many letters and e-mails, I went to an HOA Board Meeting to reinforce that I expected reimbursement for ridding the community of this menace. I have already filed a complaint with the state of Nevada under their Ombudsman’s program which must occur before Small Claims Court can be pursued. What was really troubling is that this HOA Board budgeted $100 for pest control in 2007 for a community with 335 units, private streets and lots of common area. In any case, they basically told me to pound sand. But, the best part is that one of the dopes on the HOA Board actually accused me of selling the dead pigeons for profit to feed them to falcons. This guy accused me of making money out of this deal, like I have nothing else to do but broker dead pigeons. This character was such an idiot that after laughing hysterically, I just stormed out declaring that I would see them all in court to get my money.

Of course, this case really isn’t about the money; but rather the Association’s fiduciary responsibility to enforce the CC & R’s and maintains the health and safety of the community as stipulated in our governing documents. This is a young HOA Board focused on keeping dues low which I appreciate; but they just don’t understand that they have to deal with basic issues. These homes are really detached condos requiring common action to deal with pest control in the common areas. In any case, I am starting to think that some otherwise smart people once elected to an HOA Board experience diminished IQ the longer they stay on the Board. We have certainly seen that in Coto with Varo & Mezger who are definitely number one and two on the HOA Board Dope List. Joe Morabito


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