The Ballad of Bobcat McKee
I heard Dennis Huber interview Bob McKee this morning on KMUD’s Monday Morning Magazine show. I listened mainly because Bob McKee sounded so much like Bobcat Goldthwait. I thought, “Man if anyone can make real-estate law funny, it’s Bobcat”, but the punchlines never came.
No, the joke was on me. I was listening to the desperate, quavering voice of a millionaire real-estate developer, whining about the fact that he broke the law, then fought the county in court, at tremendous expense to the taxpayers of Humboldt County, and lost. Now he hopes to drum up a wave of popular sympathy that he can use to force the county to let him off the hook.
I’ve heard Bob Mckee interviewed at length on KMUD, at least half-a-dozen times, but I never noticed how much he sounded like Bobcat, until today. Thanks to all of these shows, I know more than I ever wanted to know about The Williamson Act, the law Bobcat violated. It sounds like a stupid law, but it only applies to landowners with large rural holdings, totaling, what, 1% of the total population of Humboldt County?
Well, Bob, we have a lot of stupid laws in Humboldt County. Most of them only apply to poor people. Poor people get punished for violating stupid laws in this county, every hour of every day. Poor people get punished in this county, even when they haven’t violated any stupid laws, and the county gets away with it, because poor people don’t have six million dollars to spend on their own defense. I wonder why we don’t hear much about those people on KMUD.
Personally, I’m glad the county spent six million dollars of the taxpayers money to prosecute Bobcat, and I want them to spend whatever it takes to punish him for his stupid Williamson Act violations. I hope they seize all of his property, demolish his home, take his kids away from him and throw him in jail for it, just like they do to poor people around here every day. It would reassure me greatly to know that we have injustice for the rich, as well as the poor here in Humboldt County.
While I have learned a lot about the stupid Williamson Act, thanks to all of the in-depth interviews on KMUD, and full page ads in our local papers, I haven’t seen anything that leads me to believe that Bob McKee did not violate the law. For all of your high profile, mostly bought and paid for, media coverage, Bob, you really haven’t made your case very effectively.
I know that Bob McKee has a lot of friends down here in SoHum. Every blood-sucking dope-yuppie around here talks about Bob McKee in glowing terms, because he sold them logged-over timber land at a price almost anyone could afford, and they got rich off of that land by flouting the law. Now Bob seems to be saying, “Hey, I helped you get rich off of your criminal behavior, now come help me get rich off of mine.”
It really amazes me how many of KMUD’s programmers have answered Bobcat’s call to action. Bud Rogers even immortalized Bob McKee in a song. That’s how fucking sick we are down here in SoHum. We sing folk songs about real-estate developers. Can you imagine Bob Dylan singing about a real-estate developer?
“Ol’ Bob, he knew how to cut parcels in two.
He sold half to me and he sold half to you
The county, it said he had broken a rule
He spent six million fighting them just like a fool.
Now he wants you to come out and stand by his side
But I think they should just take it out of his hide.”
Those aren’t the lyrics to Bud Rogers’ song, but you can imaging Bob Dylan singing them, at least I can. Musicians should save their folk songs for people who can’t afford to hire their own jingle writers. Really, artists need all of the paid work they can get.
I know Bob McKee donates a lot to KMUD. I mean, it’s pretty widely known, and I have been there at the pledge drive when Bob McKee stopped by to make a donation (and talk about his case, incidentally), but the fact was not mentioned on Monday Morning Magazine.
Dennis followed his half-hour interview with Bobcat, by badgering Humboldt County Supervisor, Mark Lovelace, with a bunch of loaded questions about, you guessed it, Bob McKee’s Tooby Ranch Williamson Act case, as though Bob McKee’s Tooby Ranch Williamson Act case was the biggest scandal in the county’s history.
Bob McKee never made me a great deal on a piece of land, nor has he donated money to support this blog. No, my opinion of Bob McKee was forged when I heard him say, on KMUD, in an interview with Bud Rogers: “Well, you know, there’s a lot of poor people around here these days. I can’t do anything about that. I hate to tell people what they’ll have to pay for a piece of land these days.”
Guess what, Bobcat. I’d love to want to care about your stupid lawsuit, but we have a lot of stupid laws here in Humboldt County, and we have a corrupt, brutal and abusive county government. The streets of Humboldt County are full of victims of injustice and abuse, and there’s nothing I can do about it. I’d hate to tell you what I’d charge to write you a catchy jingle.