"It can't be the Bible," explained one downtown property manager, "since most politicians in the city lie and steal."
"I beg to differ," offered a counter girl at Lola's Bake Shop.
"Bishop Daniel Flores and District Attorney Luis Saenz used the principles of the Good Book to shut down 8-liners in Cameron County as they were taking God's money out of the collection plates," she continued.
"Yes, but those same machines were sold to a company connected to Carlos Masso and now take God's money in Starr County," explained a rider using the free Wi-Fi on the Metro Connect bus to McAllen.
"How to Win Friends and Influence People" by Dale Carnegie was credited by Tourist Bureau guru Bean Ayala with helping many become successful, while "The Art of the Deal" by Donald Trump was cited by those who want rapists and drug dealers deported.
While the above books have their adherents, no book has effected public policy, public mobility and the public's wallets more than "The High Cost of Free Parking." Using principles found in this Donald Shoup classic, displayed prominently on the desk of City Planner, Ramiro Gonzalez, city leaders decided that downtown shoppers now pay double the old rates and those who work in downtown businesses pay a monthly rate to park in lots several blocks from the work place. In theory, as the book claims, this "turns" downtown parking spaces more frequently so that those who want to spend real money downtown can find a place to park.
Of course, City Attorney Mark Sossi and other highly-paid city administrators can park in any parking spot for free.
The City of Brownsville has now extended its money-grubbing policies to those who might wish to ride a bicycle to City Plaza. The "free" bike rack has been ripped up, replaced by a rental bike rack. To rent a bike, city riders must download a Zagster app, providing credit card information.
Speaking to John, from the Zagster Help and Support Desk, we learned that "no rates have been set for Brownsville yet but that the rates will be comparable to other cities. We selected Fort Wayne, Indiana randomly for a price check, finding the cost to be $5.00 for single use with an additional $3.00 per hour after the first hour. The monthly rate is $45.00, but a yearly membership is only $300.00
Every day, Brownsville learns something new from the book "The High Cost of Free Parking."