Thursday, April 5, 2012

Crime and Punishment

I updated you a few weeks ago on Anthony's brother. John had caused our collective blood pressure to rise when he pulled one of his usual stunts.

We now know the outcome. So the situation was: (1) John hadn't done his community service and was facing jail time (we hoped) (2) he was trying to weasel out of it all. And as usual, he dragged Anthony into it.

We should have known. John didn't "get out of it." No, not quite. But instead of facing jail time, they put an electronic anklet on him and sentenced him to house arrest. Well isn't that just fine and dandy.

So who do you think looks after the jerks who get sentenced to "house arrest?" Well, the owners of the "house," that's who.

Suddenly, Anthony needs to sign papers to the effect that the authorities can use the phone line to monitor John. And John, of course, now has to live in the house. Not HIS house. Nope.

Doris's house. The house Anthony is desperately trying to get into shape for sale. Because everything in it is a mess or needs repair (read major repair). And this is the legacy he's been handed.

So, let's review:

Doris slowly gets old and demented. She takes her time. The doctors warn her. Anthony tries talking to her. She resists all attempts to help her. She gets older and crazier. The house, which was not in great repair to begin with, starts to really fall apart. She resists. She is angry and hostile when anyone tries to help.

Along this road, Anthony has to take care of a multitude of things. He has to do most of them by stealth, because Doris will get angry if she knows he's helping. He gets her bills set up for automatic payment. He takes her to her GP by trickery for check-ups. He tries to get her to take her gout medication (and fails). He picks her up from the hospital when she ends up there. He routs the homeless guy from the property after Doris lets him come to live in her bed, of all places. He monitors her bank accounts to make sure she has needed cash, that John isn't overtly stealing (we knew he was but it was little bits and pieces), to keep her investments in order. He pays all taxes, property and income. He sets her up with a social worker who checks on her condition from time to time.

And finally, after it's clear she can't live on her own anymore, because she is going to get herself killed, he devises a plan to gently, calmly trick her into a posh dementia ward. It works.

Now, Anthony has to deal with the banks. Even though he has everything properly documented, they refuse to recognize his power-of-attorney. He spends hours and hours of time talking to them, negotiating, arguing.

They still won't give it up. He's still working on it, but honestly, Doris is going to run out of the one fund of money that he can access, soon. Maybe the banks will relent after she ends up out on the street, and the story front-page news?

Meanwhile, her broken-down house is Anthony's problem. He can't sell it as is. It needs work: asbestos removed, roof fixed, the knob-and-tube wiring ripped out and replaced. The insurance company calls to say they won't cover the house any more unless the electrical safety authority inspects and passes it.

But John has to serve his time there! Society has deemed that it's too expensive to keep people like him in jail! There's no room in the jails anyway! So why don't we let the "family" house these criminals?! Great solution, society.

Thanks. So John is there. We can't cut the electricity. We can't get insurance for the place. John's sentence is going to last a few months. Who's paying for the utilities so John can watch TV all day, invite his druggie friends over, and relax? Well, at the moment, it's Doris. But what happens when her cash runs out? And when HER residence needs to be paid? And HER house needs to be fixed?

On top of all this ridiculous crap, we have discovered that Doris's old little shack is actually in the "heritage" section of Kookytown. So we can't tear it down and build a nice rental property. We can't sell it for that purpose either. In fact, the outer appearance of the home can't be altered. What a load of crapola. If you saw Doris's house, you'd know it's not of any heritage value. Not one speck. But tell the Kookytown government that.

So I guess Anthony is supposed to pour money into this property to fix it in the faint hope someone will buy it. And pour he would have to do. It would take a quarter-of-a-million to bring it up to modern standards. It's a tear-down. That's all it is. The house across the street is abandoned. That's because it's a "heritage" house too. And the owners don't have the money to fix it and they can't sell it.

So it seems pretty obvious no one will want to buy Doris's house. Not unless we can somehow fix it, or get permission to tear it down.

 All I know is, it's Anthony who's been handed this mess. Why? Why does everyone in Anthony's family hand him a big mess? They don't take care of business. They just let everything slide. They act with absolute selfishness and reprehensibly, to the max. Because good old Anthony will fix everthing.

I'm bloody sick of it.

One day, I'll tell you about all the other stuff that Doris has handed over for Anthony to fix.

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