Don’t raise the drawbridge; lower the river.

I hear that the latest idea from Santa Barbara City Hall (or somewhere else where commonsense is scarce) is to move an immovable art piece from State Street because of a transient problem.

I’ve got a better idea. Simply move State Street over to Anacapa, Anacapa over to Milpas and Milpas down toward Ventura somewhere. Then exchange Las Positas with Gutierrez (and change the traffic direction). Then, finally, exchange De la Vina with Chapala.

By then, the transients will be so confused that they’ll move to Ventura or Santa Monica or some other city where they have more sense.

I suppose you are now wondering, “Why didn’t I think of that?” The stock answer is, “That’s why they pay me the big bucks.” The alternate answer is, “If we all had great ideas like that, we’d be in City Hall or on the Planning Commission.”

Oh yeah, and here’s another idea in case you think that moving State Street is impractical. Whenever we find nasty, confrontational transients loitering around and harassing legitimate citizens, let’s get them off the street and punish them by forcing them to do something they really hate — put them to work.

First, confiscate their beloved shopping carts and return them to their rightful owners — the supermarkets. Then assign them to roadkill or freeway cleanup, beach patrol of dog litter or hazardous waste sorting. Feed them lunches of baloney sandwiches on stale white bread, like Maricopa County Sheriff Joe Arpaio in Arizona does, accompanied with nutritious broccoli, celery and spinach smoothies.

When their time is served, provide them with mandatory one-way transportation to Oxnard.

— Paul Burri is an entrepreneur, inventor, columnist, engineer, guerrilla marketer and iconoclast. He is available to local organizations for speaking engagements and to local businesses for business consulting and/or mentoring. The opinions expressed are his own. Contact him at, follow him on Twitter: @BronxPaul, or click here to read previous columns.