Vellie Hall and Gary Baise

In the past, property ownership was simple.  By virtue of ownership, the owner enjoyed sovereignty over his or her own property.  But those days are long gone.  Today more people and more agencies have more to say about what you can and can’t do and how you can use your home, than you, the property owner have.  Many of those changes and restrictions start at the local level.  So wouldn’t it make sense that the people who have the power to either complicate or simplify things are the people who are willing to listen to and work with their constituents? 
On The Commons with us this week are Gary Baise, candidate for Chairman of the Board of Fairfax County, Virginia and Vellie Dietrich Hall, candidate for Supervisor of Mason District.  Both candidates believe it is time for a change and both candidates are committed to being responsive to the citizens and tax payers of Fairfax County.  Gary is an attorney and was at the forefront of the environmental movement, working on reducing air pollution, ensuring the safety of our drinking water and protecting the environment.  Gary has a web site .  Vellie owns her own financial management company that has contracts with the Department of Defense where she has built a reputation for finding cost cutting measures and saving the tax payers millions of dollars.  Vellie’s web page is .  Please join us On The Commons.  We’ll talk about the vision they have for the future of the county and we’ll find out how they plan on making some of the much nee

ded changes.


Evan McKenzie

Most people believe that ownership is absolute.  You work hard, earn the money to buy something and once you have bought, and paid for it, you own it.  That includes property.  And in the old days, that is exactly how things worked but over the years, the notion of absolute ownership has been watered down.  In the case of property ownership, first through local restrictions and eventually through mandatory memberships in deed restricted developments. 
Are these restrictions limited to just property ownership or are there other forces at work to strip Americans of rights and liberties? 
On The Commons with us this week is Professor Evan McKenzie.  Evan is the author of Privatopia: Homeowner Associations and the Rise of Private Residential Government, Professor of Political Science at the University of Illinois Chicago, Law professor at the John Marshall School of Law, a practicing attorney and he still finds time to maintain a blog at  He is a well respected authority, and frequent commentator, on the issues related to homeowner associations.   Please join us On The Commons this Saturday, October 13, 2007.  We’ll talk about the big picture, property ownership and the general loss of our civil rights.  We’ll talk a little about what is being done and discuss what can be done to protect what’s left of our rights.  As always, you’ll want to hear what Professor McKenzie has to say.