I’m back in my catbird seat as the city grouch. It is a disquieting job, but given the fumbling City Hall someone has to do it.
Back after a long sojourn to a few of my favorite cities abroad, notably Berlin and London, observing how they have changed over the last half century I’ve known them, while enjoying their vibrant present.
But those observation are for a more fitting format reviewing world class cities than the Malibu focus of KBU, however its recent expanded signal from 97.5 to 99.1, now heard from Big Rock to the county line, and read on select websites.
Malibu is really not much more than a seacoast village, despite the fumbling of avaricious real estate developers, and realtors, neophyte politicians and an inept city administration.
Yes, I’m back at my post as city crouch in maladroit Malibu.
Of course not all involved in city affairs are consciously pernicious. A few are well-intentioned dedicated public servants, beyond sadly apparent self serving concerns.
That is not to say Malibu is particularly cursed, and that this unfortunate prime preoccupation with pay, perks and pensions do not permeate bureaucracies everywhere, be they national, state or local. They sadly do.
This is according to former colleagues of mine when I was briefly serving penance in public service. Reviewing with them what I thought was some Malibu malfeasance, they commented the city seemed no worse than other “schlock” governments.
Hence the oft quoted formula recited by government ombudsmen and journalist watchdogs, that A people hire A people, and B people hire C people. Malibu appears to be afloat in a crowded sea of Cs.
But for better or worse, mostly better, this is where our family has lived for decades, on Point Dume, enjoying a pastoral roost, ocean views, public access to the beach, and a landscape of succulents I cultivate.
More personally, this is where we have tried to be good neighbors, trimmed our trees, leashed our dogs, and picked up trash in the city’s neglected encroachments.
Perhaps most proudly, this is also where several of our children have excelled in the public schools, and have kept abiding friends, as I like to think so have we.
But from a municipal perspective, Malibu has problems: among others the future of the Civic Center, overdevelopment, Bluffs Park, Trancas Field, PCH and its indulged city staff and consultants. There persists a real need for oversight, as I raised several months ago in a report made at the behest of a city councilman, and was then ignored.
This is perhaps a good provocative note on which to end this returning commentary.