The Palace of Malice

On February 7, 2008 the Los Alamos County Council voted to destroy the physical symbol of the Independence of Los Alamos.

On December 21, 2010 5 Members of the Los Alamos County Council, 2 of whom voted in the affirmative in the above cited action, voted to destroy the liberties and rights of the citizens of Los Alamos and to vacate the Charter which was the codification of the Independence of Los Alamos.

The Palace of Malice, akin to Nero's Golden Palace and destined to become home to Ozymandius, will be built upon a foundation of legal chicanery, ruthless manipulation, self-aggrandizement, wanton destruction, and the wholesale abuse of Public Trust and authority --- but at what cost, and borne by whom?

Reality Check -- No community of any size can long survive the destruction of its heritage, the dissolution of its freedoms, and the permanent division of its citizens.

Thursday, October 21, 2010

40) The First Decision

To achieve any goal, you must make a first decision -- the decision to achieve the goal.

The Municipal Building petition has achieved its purpose to place the future of the Municipal Building and the future of Los Alamos in the hands of the citizens.  It is fitting that it do so, for the Municipal Building is the people's building -- as the agora of ideas and ideals where people come together realize their dreams, hopes, and aspirations for their County, its two small towns, themselves, their progeny, and for those who will inherit a future that those now deciding will never know.  This, indeed, was the purpose of the founding generation of Los Alamos when first they imagined, then realized, a town and county that would be more than a company town -- a town, now two, and a county with its own destiny to fulfill.  Not for nothing is Marjorie Bell-Chambers book, "The Battle for Civil Rights - How Los Alamos became a County" adorned with a full photo cover of the Municipal Building which was raised as the embodiment of that early vision. 

Rebuilding the Municipal Building is both the right thing to do and the practical thing to do. How often in life do those two things converge? 

No goal is ever achieved without first having made the decision to achieve the goal. This vote decides to begin the work.  Though there are those nay-sayers who, desperately grasping at straws of detail and minutia, will try to convince whomever they can that it can't be done, the fact is if we have a will to do this, then we can do this. Having thus decided to begin the work, and having also thus decided the nay-sayers and cynics be damned, we can then meet what ever hiccups we may encounter as we work diligently to accomplish the goal. 
Lao Tse wrote, "When the best of governments act the people say: We ourselves have done it".  This is the true essence of the word "community", for it entails setting aside some small amount of personal preferences (site use), conveniences, and tastes (the architectural aesthetics or the view) for a purpose which effects equally all of our citizens.  We now have it within our grasp to restore a true historic landmark. In its re-building, we can repair those flaws which it may have had. In its rebuilding we can restore the vision of Los Alamos with its own separate destiny and repair those flaws of policy which have created an unwarranted stagnation.  By voting to put the Municipal Building back where it was, as it was, re-built, restored, better construction, we, ourselves, will be re-invigorating the dreams, hopes, and aspirations of the Vision for the future of Los Alamos to which the Municipal Building has been, and can again be, the embodiment -- a Vision re-built, restored, better construction.


  1. I respect your point of view, but it is not compelling to me. The municipal office building does not hold all that much drama and emotion for me. I will be voting "no" in order to save the place for community uses that I do have a much stronger attachment to, i.e. public gatherings, festivals, celebrations, etc.

  2. So let me get this straight -- your fun is more important than the independent right of self-government of your town. Would you prefer Los Alamos become a federal preserve again?