Thursday, May 13, 2010

Action Alert: Vietnam Veteran Joe Diliberti Vs San Diego County

Ed Note: This piece also appears on Veterans Today’s pages, and we owe them the thanks for the photos, and for their taking this issue as an editorial focus.  I became aware of the story while I was in Ventura, Ca, for the coalition meeting (VVAW, IVAW, VFP, MFSO, and support groups) 2d Veterans & Military Families Conference, just this past month.   After some discussion about it, my friend and VVAW associate Mutt, agreed to follow-up  and submit a piece to VetSpeak on Joe’s dilemma. As powerful as this story is, it is but one example of thousands of similar instances of Veterans clawing and fighting to find peace in this demonic society that we seem to have evolved into....this one, after 40 years!  What I get out of it, is what an example for the rest of us Joe is, and hope that his story will inspire you to personal action.  Here is the appropriate Information and Action link
containing appropriate contact points,  for those of you who wish to take direct action and have your voice heard on this matter.  Also there are action and information links in Mutt’s piece…if you ain’t part of the solution, you’re part of the problem (Photo: Willie & Mutt, Ventura).WH

Marine Holds His Ground

That’s sort of a “dog bites man” story; but Joseph Diliberti, the Marine in question, is holding off a very large and dangerous dog indeed. A County government as bankrupt as it is corrupt, that wants to seize a man’s home of thirty years for what they claim are unpaid property taxes, is a particularly nasty dog. Its demands are bullshit. Here’s why….. 

By Mutt, Field Reporter on Recon
(Photos: Veteran Today)

San Diego, Ca - I guess I have to start at the beginning, which for Joseph was the hard streets of Brooklyn, NY; the sound of which glides thru every word he speaks.
As was the norm back then, Joseph enlisted as the war against Viet Nam raged.  In the Marine Corps, he found a world as tough as Brooklyn’s streets, and he fit right in… until what he saw in Viet Nam repelled him. He vowed at that point to neither war against people, nor be a participant in a society that would glorify such things.  

Thirty-odd years ago Joseph found a remote canyon, far from the city. It was a wet, spring fed bit of oasis amidst the desert chaparral. He built a large tree-house where eventually his daughter was born. Over the years, he studied his small corner of the planet, and started building roomy houses out of clay, which he then fired, creating ceramic, fireproof, and indestructible houses which, frankly, astound. He became a “bush vet” and Rastafarian.

Then, about ten years ago, houses started going up around him. To put things into perspective, you have to understand the nature of San Diego county politics. This is a seething Petri dish of tea baggersfundamentalist crackpots, merc and militia wannabes, and the kind of political hacks who use these elements to get elected.  It has to be seen to be believed.

To them, a guy like Joseph Diliberti, an actual veteran speaking simple truth to the elaborate lies of Empire, is someone to be feared and hated. And to the County who serves these people, another easy victim, someone that is easily pushed around - Big mistake
Fast forward a few years, the area becomes more populated and we have massive wildfires, for many reasons, not the least of which is the balding of fire resistant native species & the proliferation of invasive weeds, which turn the countryside into a vast firebomb.  After the ’03 fires that swept thru the backcountry, ash fell from the sky like snow for days.  Then the usual hysterical response came, which we’ve seen in say, the “Patriot Act”- a really stupid idea, rushed thru the system, so politicians will feel “safe.”

In THIS case, the stupid idea was giving a secretive company, with only a PO Box, a no bid contract to “clear” dangerous weeds, and submit a no oversight bill.

This clearing was to be done based on anonymous “complaints.”  The outfit, Fire Prevention Services, determined what was to be cut, where, and how much to charge. They were fired for cause soon after trashing Joseph's green piece of canyon bottom, AFTER the surrounding area, full of weeds, burned.    

The County paid FPS $25,000 with no documentation of what was cut, how much, and where. The San Diego Rural Fire Protection District, under whom this no bid, no oversight contract was awarded, has let out at various times that the work was performed by 1 truck and two people; or 4 people; and for 1, 2, or 3 days - depending on what day it is.

An LA Times story states that “records” shown to the reporter declared 800 cubic yards were removed. That’s about 140 dump truck loads. No dump trucks were ever seen in the area at the time, much less 140. Joseph can’t see these “records” - indeed NO record, but for the bill.

Ever since this assault on Joseph has taken place, the County Tax Assessor has refused to accept Joseph's actual tax bill, but demanded the entire amount, now with 150% interest - his actual tax payments are in escrow. He will be happy to pay his tax bill tomorrow. But the extortion - No! 

Meanwhile, the Vig - well, this is extortion & racketeering so let's use the right terms - has inflated the original bill to over $65,000! That is nothing short of Mob interest rates, and the County now wishes to steal Joseph's land to make good the payment THEY made to a corrupt, oft-sued, pack of swindlers.  AND along the way, will naturally grab a few bucks for themselves.

What would you do?

Well, WE are doing THIS. These are the sort of people who can’t operate in the light of day. YOU are that light!  While San Diego County goes under  -  the county is known world-wide as “Enron by the Sea” - don’t let them make up for THEIR criminal incompetence by seizing Joseph's home and selling it at auction to be bought by who, the unknown neighbor who sic’d this corrupt company on him in the first place?

The fact these crooks and crackpots are doing it to a Marine combat vet is just frosting on the cake.

 Richard Halsey, of the Chaparral Institute, is NCOIC this operation. He knows every detail. I'm the squad cherry….