Originally Posted by odoreater
Pretty much, that's what I'm saying. That's the way the world works - they have a job to do and they have to go out and do it. They can't wait around until everyone in the neighborhood can get their full beauty rest before they start working. Starting work at 7 am is pretty standard in the construction business. If they're putting in 12 hour days, are they supposed to come in at your neighbor's place at 9 and then go home at 9 pm just so that you're not inconvenienced? Personally, I don't think starting work at 7 am is all that unreasonable, and it seems neither does the rest of your town, which is reflected in the ordinance that sets the time that construction is permitted.
Maybe it's two-faced, but people realize that allowing construction without too many restraints ultimately increases the value of all the properties in town, which is money in people's pockets, which people like. On the other hand, allowing you to sleep for another half-hour or hour doesn't really do anyone much good other than you. So, given the choice between the two, I can see why people have voted to allow dusk to dawn construction.
I agree with your point about the collective political decision to allow dusk-to-dawn construction. But without any disrespect to your family, the "they've got a job to do and they can schedule that job to suit their own convenience without regard for anyone else" part bogus. They may have a job to do, but there's a right way and a wrong way to do it.
I've got a job to do as a lawyer. At times, it involves dealing with people who are intimidated by the concept of dealing with lawyers. At other times, it involves compelling people through the use of subpoenas, etc. to show up and testify at depositions or trials, turn over documents relating to their personal or business lives, etc. I could be a dick about it and say "Hey, I've decided that this what might help my client's case and if it's inconvenient or uncomfortable for you, tough shit - that's the way the world works." Or I could be mindful and respectful of the fact that - unlike me - these people aren't getting paid to sit in a deposition all day, may be uncomfortable or unfamiliar with the legal process, and may find dredging up old records inconvenient, expensive, embarrassing, or a combingation thereof. I consider it my professional obligation to follow the latter course, to try to take people's schedules into account when I can (sometimes subjecting myself to inconvenience in order to do so), explain why I'm asking (or compelling) them to do something, not asking them to look for more records or divulge more private information than I really need. As I read rdawson's post, all he's really looking for is a modicum of courtesy and professionalism. The contractor could have responded to the request/complaint about the early morning noise by saying, "I'm sorry, we didn't mean to disturb you. Because of the schedule we're on, we really do have to start that early. But maybe we can do some of the noisier stuff a bit later in the morning. And of course we'll stop throwing our trash in your yard." I suspect that if that had happened, we wouldn't even be hearing about this. Instead, they chose to be jerks and be rude to his wife.
Personally, I'd follow the course suggested by several other people here and do everything I could to make their job more difficult and more expensive - which can quite easily be accomplished anonymously. In many, many circumstances, "don't be a dick" is not only a good ethical rule but a good big-picture business practice as well.