Bratton…first district supervisor, 2023 musical saw festival, movies. Greensite… on Wharf Master Plan Phase 2…Public Be Damned. Schendledecker…why work with the dems? Steinbruner…supes budget hearings, land use control, housing shortage real?, Cabrillo housing and name. Hayes…Never cry wolf? A situation of subservience. Patton…Heartfelt. Matlock…Animal magnetism, partying on, and Capone’s vault revisited. Eagan…Subconscious Comics and Deep Cover. WEBMISTRESS’…pick of the week. Quotes…”FOG”
DATELINE June 5
NO WAY GREENWAY AND SUPPORTING LANI FAULKNER FOR COUNTY SUPERVISOR.
This is from a notice Sally Arnold sent this week…
“Together we built a landslide defeat of the Deceptive Measure D proposal to tear out the tracks, kill our transit future and delay trail construction. After that historic victory, we thought that our elected officials would respect the will of their constituents and work toward trail construction and planning for rail service.
But that has not been the case. Some politicians are still trying to stop construction of the trail! This is a threat to the rail and trail that we must take seriously.
Recently, Supervisor Manu Koenig (District 1) wasted everyone’s time grandstanding and refusing to accept the Environmental Impact Report for Rail Trail segments 8 & 9, which were just funded for construction. His failures to listen don’t stop with the Rail & Trail. First District residents are complaining about his focus on his wealthiest constituents rather than the majority of First District residents. Whether it’s Coastal Commission policy, parking programs, bike lanes, housing or zoning – small businesses and constituents are upset with the incumbent.
One strategically placed government official can do a whole lot of damage if they have an agenda that’s not aligned with the will of our community. The Board of Supervisors is a small body (only 5 elected supervisors) so just one troublesome supervisor can make it difficult for the board to get things done for all of us. This is why all of us, no matter which district we live in, should care about the District 1 supervisor’s race.
That’s why, as members of the No Way Greenway Campaign Committee, we are excited to support Lani Faulkner for First District Supervisor. Lani brings a wealth of experience from her successful career in Biotechnology to her community involvement. Lani serves on the Executive Committee of the Santa Cruz Chapter of the Sierra Club, the Community Traffic Safety Coalition, Equity Transit, Friends of the Rail & Trail and the NAACP. Her work on the Democratic Central Committee and with local union leaders has given her the connections and relationships needed to get things done. Her experience working with government agencies is exactly what we need in a local leader.
First District residents asked Lani to run for First District Supervisor because she’s a true part of the community, who raised her family in Live Oak . She makes herself available, knows how to listen and is committed to finding common ground. Lani’s diplomatic approach to problem solving will help our whole community.
This race has direct consequences for not just the First District but the whole County. In a time when we need to bring the community together to solve some of the tough challenges ahead of us, we need a Supervisor who works well with others.
Will you join us in supporting Lani for Supervisor? Lani’s Launch Party will be held on June 11 at DeLaveaga Park, Forty Thieves Picnic area from 2 to 4pm.
Early endorsement and donations are important. You can add your name and support Lani in other ways here: Endorse Lani for Supervisor
Feel free to call us if you would like to discuss this remarkable candidate.
Sally Arnold (831-419-4622)
Matt Farrell (831-331-7496)
No Way Greenway Campaign Committee; click here for background on No Way Greenway.
2023 SANTA CRUZ’S MUSICAL SAW FESTIVAL. Kenny Blacklock sent this notice to fans and newcomers.
“Our annual street jam will take place on Saturday, July 29, from 1-3 pm at The Bookshop Santa Cruz 1520 Pacific Avenue in Santa Cruz around the Tom Scribner statue. However, if the gathering is too large, we may need to move the street jam to the corner of Pacific Avenue and Front Street. Please look for us there if we are not in front of Bookshop Santa Cruz. Our annual potluck and jam will take place on Saturday, July 29, from 6-9 pm in the outer parking lot of Roaring Camp Railroads in Felton. The main event will take place on Sunday, July 30th, 10 am – 5 pm at Roaring Camp in Felton, California. If you are interested in performing at the festival, please contact Art Peterson. The musical saw contest will take place at 11 am. Click here for more information on the contest. For more information about the festival, please visit our website or Facebook page. You can support the festival by joining the International Musical Saw Association. The membership fee is only $5 and can be paid online. Please also consider making a donation of any amount using our donation link. Thank you to everyone who has already made a donation to support the upcoming festival! We look forward to seeing you at the festival!…Kenny Blacklock International Musical Saw Association”.
I search and critique a variety of movies only from those that are newly released. Choosing from the thousands of classics and older releases would take way too long. And be sure to tune in to those very newest movie reviews live on KZSC 88.1 fm every Friday from about 8:10 – 8:30 am. on the Bushwhackers Breakfast Club program hosted by Dangerous Dan Orange.
BLACKBERRY. (PRIME VIDEO) (7.6 IMDB). This is a half true story based on the very real history of the early history of the smartphone. It’s also half funny and cringe producing displaying the relationships of the people involved in the success and failure of that pre-iPhone device. Somehow because it all happens in Canada gives it an extra dimension, but it needed more than that.
REALITY. (MAX MOVIE) (6.6 IMDB). Sydney Sweeney portrays Reality Winner which is the real name of the former FBI translator agent who released classified information relating to the 2016 election. That information connected Trump and Russia and caused all sorts of hell. It’s about how the FBI controlled and conducted her interrogation. An excellent and yet disturbing expose and it’s an adaptation of a play. Go for it.
THE FAMILY. (NETFLIX MOVIE) ( ? IMDB). A well done and rather long saga dealing with the Yakusa or Japanese version of the Mafia. It centers on one young guy and his violent upbringing. He goes to prison for 14 years and returns to learn that the Yakusa and all of his community and day dreams have changed. Toughing, nicely photographed and worth watching.
FIREFLY LANE. (NETFLIX SEWRIES) (7.6 IMDB). Katherine Heigl and Sarah Chalke act as two best friends who support each other through their lives. They’ve got the usual set of issues and family scenes to re-act to but it’s too full of mugging and age old clichés to make a good series. The two actresses/actors aren’t professional enough to lift the series into the watchable category. Don’t go there.
QUEEN CHARLOTTE. (NETFLIX SERIES) (7.1 IMDB). This totally fictitious take on history has unbelievably re-cast the court and especially the marriage of King George of England with a half black cast. It’s listed as a prequel to the Bridgerton series, and I’ve never watched a minute of Bridgerton. Being extra cute and quaint it centers on the wedding gown. It does credit to no one involved, and you needn’t be either.
SPECIAL NOTE….Don’t forget that when you’re not too sure of a plot or need any info on a movie to go to Wikipedia. It lays out the straight/non hype story plus all the details you’ll need including which server (Netflix, Hulu, or PBS) you can find it on. You can also go to Brattononline.com and punch in the movie title and read my take on the much more than 100 movies.
LOU. (NETFLIX MOVIE) (6.1 IMDB). Allison Janney goes into deep and very wet pursuit of her daughter who was kidnapped by the ex-husband/father. Through the Pacific Northwest territory and woods, rivers, storms she chases the two of them. He’s an ex-green beret and deals some surprise plot twists late in the film. Intriguing and mesmerizing, go for it.
YOU HURT MY FEELINGS. (DEL MAR THEATRE) (7.2 IMDB). Absolutely wonderful and deep search into our own relationships and how we deal out and take in honesty. You’ll be reminded many times of similar scenes in your life and how you could have and should have dealt with those awkward and painful times.
MISSING. (NETFLIX MOVIE) (7.1 IMDB). Watching this one is like never taking your eyes away from your cell phone or computer. It’s all a high tech search for a young girl’s mother who disappears. Too electronic, too Gmail, iPhone, and just plain high powered drivel.
BEING MARY TYLER MOORE. (HBO MAX) (8.3 IMDB). This documentary proves to us that Mary Tyler Moore not only changed television but changed the relationship between men and women. It reveals her rare and darker side and also places her among women who made giant strides in establishing a better relationship in the work place especially television.
THE SON. (NETFLIX MOVIE) (6.3 IMDB). Not exactly a sequel to The Father but it’s related. Hugh Jackman and Laura Dern deal with a son who has a psychological problem. He’s into acute depression and how do they help him? Anthony Hopkins appears briefly as the grandfather so we learn of the family history and it’s not pretty. It’s about ex-partners and relationships and the acting is fine.
S.W.A.T. (NETFLIX SERIES) (7.1 IMDB). It’s all about South Los Angeles and the Los Angeles Police Departments problems. Centering on the racial Black issues and how tough it is to have Black cops chasing Black lawbreakers. It has lots of political and logical pressures that could have made this a very important movie, but it isn’t.
If you had no idea the city was holding a community meeting for the public to comment on the revised, partial draft environmental impact report (EIR) for the Wharf Master Plan, it was not for lack of attention, nor are you alone. The “community meeting” itself was held by zoom on May 30th, the day before the May 31st deadline for comments on the draft partial EIR. There was no Sentinel published public announcement of the meeting, nor a prior public notice in the Sentinel of the circulation of the EIR and deadline for comments. Meanwhile, the CEQA process states unequivocally that “Public participation is a mandated and essential component of CEQA”.
The meeting itself was zoom only. All other meetings held by the city are now in public with an additional zoom option. I don’t have to spell out the value of a public versus zoom-only meeting.
The meeting was set for an hour and a half. It was facilitated by the Director of Parks and Recreation and the Wharf Project Manager. The first hour was filled with a presentation from the project manager largely repeating what we already know, including information that can only be described as inaccurate and/or misleading. He incorrectly stated that the 2011 tsunami “partially damaged” the Wharf. The city’s 2014 application for funds from the federal Commerce Department stated, incorrectly, that the Wharf was “severely damaged” by the tsunami. Both claims are false. The Engineering Report that accompanied the Wharf Master Plan (on which the Commerce Department federal grant of close to $1 million was spent) states that “the Wharf was undamaged” by the tsunami “although the harbor sustained considerable damage.” This correction has been brought to staff and council attention many times, but the project manager chose to repeat the misinformation for the public.
Why is this important?
Because the narrative being circulated by the city is that all this new Wharf development, the three 40 feet tall buildings, the added commercial space, the new dock to accommodate 200- ton vessels etc. is needed to obtain grants to maintain the Wharf. Again, this is inaccurate and misleading. In 2021, the city was granted $1 million from the federal government’s Commerce Department for the small % of Wharf pilings that required replacement. That job has been completed. The Wharf is an iconic, historic structure. Funding to maintain its longevity does not require a Pier 39 make-over.
After an hour, when it was the public’s turn, we were told we could ask only clarifying questions via Q&A. They had not activated the “raised hand” function. I started to type my question but before a quarter way through the project manager said to the director, “looks like there are no questions so we can wrap this meeting up.” I scrapped my question and quickly wrote, “how can we speak?” The director said to the project manager, “there is one question” and thus began the public comment half hour. I repeated my question, and they unlocked the “raised hand” function. Four people spoke, three from Don’t Morph the Wharf! and one other community member. She had just learned that day about the meeting. She had submitted written comments on the 2020 EIR and was not pleased at the lack of public notification for this public meeting on the revised draft partial EIR, held one day before the comment deadline.
Not only is the city ignoring public input on the Municipal Wharf make-over that was opposed by thousands, but it also is ignoring the Superior Court ruling in the Writ of Mandate issued by Judge Paul Burdick. On the zoom, I asked why the city is not following that ruling? The project manager’s response was that their CEQA attorney said what they are doing “will suffice.”
Their contracted CEQA attorney lost the 2022 case, Don’t Morph the Wharf! v. City of Santa Cruz. The same CEQA attorney lost in the 2015 case, Save Our Big Trees v. City of Santa Cruz. Their CEQA attorney is incorrect in this interpretation of the Court’s ruling. The resolution (withdrawing the old project approval and decertifying the EIR) was required to be amended, removing all references to areas of the former EIR that would remain valid. The whole EIR must be amended in conformance with the Court’s Order and be recirculated for the public’s review prior to its certification. The city failed to do this, recirculating only a part of the EIR and limiting public comments to that part.
Maybe management staff and the city think there is nothing to lose when it is just public monies being squandered. That, and the public trust.
|Gillian Greensite is a long time local activist, a member of Save Our Big Trees and the Santa Cruz chapter of IDA, International Dark Sky Association http://darksky.org Plus she’s an avid ocean swimmer, hiker and lover of all things wild.|
WHY WORK WITH THE DEMS?
As many of you know, I am co-chair of our local Democratic Socialists of America (DSA) chapter this year. Until I registered as a Democrat for Bernie, I was a Green Party member for my entire voting life. I’m an unapologetic Leftist, an Ecosocialist Feminist.
So with decades of disappointment in elected (mostly neoliberal) Democrats, members of the Squad and the Congressional Progressive Caucus making some notable concessions that hurt working-class people and the environment, DSA again debating a complete break from the Dems, why would I choose to engage with the Democrats (and how)?
Even though our municipal elections are nonpartisan, in this town one really has to be a registered Democrat to run for office and be included in endorsement forums (which kind of makes the label meaningless as you end up with such a broad swath of actual political positions calling themselves Dems). As I prepared to run for mayor last year, I read the CADEM 2022 platform (CADEM – California Democratic Party) and felt reassured that I could run as a Democrat and be consistent with the party’s stated values, my own values, and the national platform of DSA. I feel pretty comfortable joining the CADEM Progressive Caucus and the Left-wing of the Democratic Party.
In the thirty years since I started voting, I have not seen a rise in the effectiveness of third-party politics. And as much as I believe in DSA and other Leftist organizations, we simply do not have the membership (locally, regionally, nationally) to become our own effective party or to win elections for or with other third parties. I hope we get there someday, but until then I will try to work within the system that has a stranglehold on the electorate, to reduce harm and move towards universal liberation and justice for all.
As I age, I also feel more comfortable engaging with people from across the political spectrum. True democracy requires listening, negotiation, and consensus building. As much as I think I’m right and want to convince people of my positions, it would not be a democracy if I simply prevailed. Of course those of us on the Left experience what I consider undemocratic silencing, exclusion, and steamrolling by the moderate/neoliberal majority all the time–but I don’t want to do that to others.
And if DSA is a “big-tent” organization working to grow the movement for working-class power, we have to meet people where they are if we hope for them to join us or work coalitionally with us. I think this is true for all of us organizing on the larger left–if we want to change the system, we have to work both inside and outside of its power structures, together.
In the spirit of learning, engaging, and pushing from the Left, I recently attended CADEM 2023, the California Democratic Party Convention, in LA. I was in very good company, including 6 other Santa Cruz County DSA/YDSA members.
The best shirt at CADEM 2023: “The Resistance is not Futile; Welcome to The Rebellion; The Democratic Club of Moreno Valley Welcomes You to The Resistance,” designed by the person using the mobility device (I neglected to get her name, or maybe I just forgot to write it down!).
My favorite things about CADEM:
- Meeting dozens of random people with shared interests. Amazingly, I did not feel like an alien (which is my default social/political mode).
- Spending time with Assembly Members Gail Pellerin and Dawn Addis, Senator John Laird, and other regional delegates and colleagues.
- Meeting the DSA member, anti-capitalist, proudly defund-the-police, and first openly-autistic mayor of Burbank, Konstantine Anthony.
- Connecting with the (self-described) more moderate mayor of San Luis Obispo, Erica Stewart, over parenting teens, community mental health needs, and non-police emergency response.
- Attending the Womens’ Caucus, Progressive Caucus, and Disability Caucus. I especially loved the Disability Caucus, where Mayor Anthony was stepping down as chair and we appointed vice-chair Sascha Bittner to interim chair until the elections are held next month. We were in the room next to the very raucous Labor Caucus, and as you can imagine there were people with speech and hearing issues in our room. Sascha spoke for a few minutes to thank everyone for supporting her as interim chair, and one of the best things she said was that she wanted to lead the Disability Caucus to grow as large and loud as the Labor Caucus. In spite of the small numbers in that room compared to Labor next door, I believe Disability Rights is where we find the most diverse community, working in the most intersectional ways.
- Learning about the film, “Birthing Justice,” a feature-length documentary on racism and maternity, at the Women’s Caucus (watch the full film here). There were so many stump speeches that they ran out of time to show a clip, but the short panel of speakers on the film were fabulous and inspiring.
- A certain number of stump speeches: especially by Barbara Lee, Katie Porter, and Lisa Middleton (first trans mayor of Palm Springs, now running for State Senate). Overall, it did get lengthy and repetitive at multiple caucuses!
- Hearing Nancy Pelosi speak. I’m not a huge fan of her politics, but I respect her for all the hard work she’s put in throughout her career, and how she has talked back to Trumpism. We’re definitely better off for having her than not, given the rise of right-wing conservatism.
Least favorite things about CADEM:
- It’s a bit much, with thousands of people cramming too many events into one weekend. It’s loud, and expensive. I do best with a balance of extrovert activity and recharge down-time.
- Coming home with food poisoning (I’m recovered now, thank you).
Side note: The Progressive Caucus was especially interesting because there was an attempted takeover of the Executive Committee by a slate calling itself, “Progressives Moving California Forward,” that was made up of people who are apparently not Lefties, and even industry insiders. “The Troublemakers Slate,” all of whom are definitely on the Left, overwhelmingly prevailed. This was yet more evidence of the attempt of centrists and even neoliberals to capture the term “progressive” or mobilize identity politics for political gain rather than justice
|Joy Schendledecker is an artist, parent, and community organizer. She lives on the Westside of Santa Cruz with her husband, two teens, mother in law, and cats. She was a city of Santa Cruz mayoral candidate in 2022. You can email her at: firstname.lastname@example.org.|
COUNTY BOARD OF SUPERVISOR BUDGET HEARINGS HAD NO PUBLICLY-ACCESSIBLE INFORMATION
Did last week’s cursory Board of Supervisor 2023-2024 Budget Hearings violate the Brown Act by not providing the public with any access to the agendas or related documents, due to a website that was broken, and is still broken? I think so.
On the Saturday before the Budget Hearings, I wanted to review the proposed County Fire Dept. budget, strangely scheduled to be reviewed as a Consent Agenda Item on Wednesday, May 31. The website was broken, and I could access nothing for either the May 30 or May 31 Board Calendar. I wrote to IT Director Ms. Tammie Weigl, who usually responds right away. However, this time, neither she nor anyone else from IT Dept. responded until sometime during which I was seated in the Board Chambers, uninformed, and listening to staff presentations from Public Safety departments.
I testified to the Board that their website was broken, and no Budget information was available to the public. Not one of them inquired with staff about the problem, however Chairman Zach Friend did get someone in right away when his microphone became unresponsive and he wanted to tell me to stop talking and couldn’t. He muted my microphone, and Vice-Chair Justin Cummings took over until the IT staff could come rushing in to save the day.
Usually, the binder containing hard copies of the proposed Budget is on a table in the hallway, just outside the Board Chambers, but on May 30, it was not. Other people in the audience also told me they had not been able to access Budget information.
After the day’s hearing adjourned, I visited the Clerk of the Board lobby to try the public computer there. No luck finding the Budget information. I asked for help. Staff also could not access the documents supporting any budgetary agenda items, and suggested I file a Public Records Act request to obtain the 2023-2024 proposed County Fire Dept. Budget. Wow.
Again, I wrote to IT and the Board of Supervisors to demand the problem be fixed, and copied the First Amendment Coalition. On May 31, the binder on a table outside the Board chamber only contained copies of the agenda, but nothing of the actual Budget.
No one contacted me about the matter until after the May 31 Budget hearings had concluded. Supervisor Manu Koenig responded that there did indeed seem to be problems with the website calendar, the usual method for accessing Board agendas and documents, but that there was another obscure method to find the information.
Don’t you think that would have been good to post on the website for the public?
The Board does not seem to care. Maybe they don’t want the public to see why the Budget will be $8-$10 MILLION in the red???
However, here is the response sent from The First Amendment Coalition:
The Brown Act requires, in relevant part, “At least 72 hours before a regular meeting, the legislative body of the local agency, or its designee, shall post an agenda containing a brief general description of each item of business to be transacted or discussed at the meeting, including items to be discussed in closed session. A brief general description of an item generally need not exceed 20 words. The agenda shall specify the time and location of the regular meeting and shall be posted in a location that is freely accessible to members of the public and on the local agency’s Internet Web site, if the local agency has one.” Govt. Code § 54954.2(a)(1).
When agendas are posted on an agency’s website, they must comply with specified formatting requirements. See Govt. Code § 54954.2(a)(1).
According to the Brown Act, “No action or discussion shall be undertaken on any item not appearing on the posted agenda,” with some exceptions I assume are not relevant here. Govt. Code § 54954.2(a)(3).
I understand from your question that certain materials for the meeting in question were not available on the agency’s website within the required time. I’m not clear if the agenda itself was unavailable or only certain supporting materials.
I assume the agenda & supporting materials were physically posted in a location that is freely accessible to members of the public at least 72 hours before the meeting. If that is incorrect, please let me know.
I don’t know of a Brown Act case addressing the question whether a board’s action is invalid because the agenda or supporting materials were not digitally available on the agency’s website although they were physically available at a location accessible to the public. However, I can share some information about the statute & general case law.
Under the Brown Act, in certain circumstances, “The district attorney or any interested person may commence an action by mandamus or injunction for the purpose of obtaining a judicial determination that an action taken by a legislative body of a local agency in violation of Section 54953, 54954.2, 54954.5, 54954.6, 54956, or 54956.5 is null and void under this section.” Govt. Code § 54960.1(a) (emphasis added).
“[A]ction taken” means “a collective decision made by a majority of the members of a legislative body, a collective commitment or promise by a majority of the members of a legislative body to make a positive or a negative decision, or an actual vote by a majority of the members of a legislative body when sitting as a body or entity, upon a motion, proposal, resolution, order or ordinance.” Govt. Code § 54952.6.
Therefore, if an agency took action at a meeting in violation of the agenda posting & notice requirements of section 54954.2, it is possible a court might declare such action null & void.
Section 54960.1 apparently refers to any “violation of Section … 54954.2,” without qualification. Therefore, if the agency took action in violation of any of the provisions of section 54954.2, including but not limited to the website posting requirements, it is possible a court might find such action null & void.
Before going to court, the plaintiff must make a written “demand of the legislative body to cure or correct” the allegedly unlawful action “within 90 days from the date the action was taken” if it was not taken in open session, or within 30 days if it was taken in open session, as appears to be the case here. Govt. Code § 54960.1(b), (c)(1). The legislative body must respond to the cure & correct letter within 30 days of receiving it. Govt. Code § 54960.1(c)(2); see also Page v. MiraCosta Community College Dist.,180 Cal. App. 4th 471, 500 (2009) (“To state a cause of action for violation of section 54960.1 of the Brown Act, a petitioner must allege (1) that a legislative body of a local agency violated one or more enumerated Brown Act statutes; (2) that there was ‘action taken’ by the local legislative body in connection with the violation; and (3) that before commencing the action, plaintiff made a timely demand of the legislative body to cure or correct the action alleged to have been taken in violation of the enumerated statutes, and the legislative body did not cure or correct the challenged action.”) (citation & quotation marks omitted).
If the agency does not cure & correct the alleged violation, the deadline to file suit is 15 days after receipt of the legislative body’s response, or 15 days after the 30-day response deadline expires if the body does not respond, whichever is earlier. Govt. Code § 54960.1(c)(4).
Please refer to the statutes to confirm the exact process & time limits, which are strictly construed & mandatory.
Although the text of the Brown Act does not expressly contain such a requirement, courts have held plaintiffs “must show prejudice” from a violation to justify setting aside agency action as null & void. Olson v. Hornbrook Community Services Dist., 33 Cal. App. 5th 502, 517 (2019).
I hope this is helpful.
Well, the one good bit of news came from Supervisor Justin Cummings, who actually responded to my plea for an After Action Review of the 2020 CZU Fire with County Fire Dept. Volunteers, who were instructed by CalFire to not respond to fires. He said he is working to get this critical review done, and wanted to let me know my request was heard. I am hopeful.
Please write Supervisor Justin Cummings to urge him to require an After Action Review and Analysis of the 2020 CZU Fire with Santa Cruz County Fire Dept. Volunteers…some of whom were dismissed by CalFire because they chose to stay and protect their Community during the fire. Justin Cummings email@example.com
And one last issue…why wasn’t County Fire Dept. given the same level of administrative importance at the Budget Hearings when all other Public Safety Departments gave staff reports as Regular Agenda items?
As District Attorney Jeff Rosell stated in his presentation, the California Constitution Article XIII Section 35 states:
- Public safety services are critically important to the security and well-being of the State’s citizens and to the growth and revitalization of the State’s economic base.
- The protection of the public safety is the first responsibility of local government and local officials have an obligation to give priority to the provision of adequate public safety services.
- In order to assist local government in maintaining a sufficient level of public safety services, the proceeds of the tax enacted pursuant to this section shall be designated exclusively for public safety.
Don’t you think that fire and emergency medical response is included in “Public Safety”? I do.
More next week on the dismal County Budget.
REMOVING LOCAL LAND USE CONTROL FOREVER?
Last week, the State Senate approved SB 423. If the Assembly passes it, we are doomed to a tragic permanent loss of local land use discretionary control. Here is what you need to know about this bill, and why it is important that you contact our State Assembly members to urge them to vote NO.
SB 423, introduced by Senator Scott Wiener, permanently streamlines multi-family housing approvals to have ministerial approval, removing the current sunset date of January 1, 2026 for such. “This bill would authorize the Department of General Services to act in the place of a locality or local government, at the discretion of that department, for purposes of the ministerial, streamlined review for development on property owned by or leased to the state.
The bill would, among other modifications, delete the objective planning standards requiring development proponents to pay at least the general prevailing rate of per diem wages and utilize a skilled and trained workforce and would instead require a development proponent to certify to the local government that certain wage and labor standards will be met, including a requirement that all construction workers be paid at least the general prevailing rate of wages, as specified. The bill would require the Labor Commissioner to enforce the obligation to pay prevailing wages. By expanding the crime of perjury, the bill would impose a state-mandated local program. The bill would specify that the requirements to pay prevailing wages, use a workforce participating in an apprenticeship, or provide health care expenditures do not apply to a project that consists of 10 or fewer units and is not otherwise a public work.
This bill would define “objective planning standards” to exclude specified standards, including local building codes, fire codes, other codes requiring detailed technical specifications, and standards that are not reasonably ascertainable by the local government within specified time limits, as described.
Existing law authorizes the local government’s planning commission or any equivalent board or commission responsible for review and approval of development projects, or as otherwise specified, to conduct any design review or public oversight of the development.
This bill would remove the above-described authorization to conduct public oversight of the development and would only authorize design review to be conducted by the local government’s planning commission or any equivalent board or commission responsible for design review.
By imposing additional duties on local officials, the bill would impose a state-mandated local program.
The bill would include findings that changes proposed by this bill address a matter of statewide concern rather than a municipal affair and, therefore, apply to all cities, including charter cities.
The California Constitution requires the state to reimburse local agencies and school districts for certain costs mandated by the state. Statutory provisions establish procedures for making that reimbursement.
This bill would provide that no reimbursement is required by this act for specified reasons.”
Please contact your State Assembly member to urge a NO vote on this dangerous piece of legislation that would forever remove local discretionary control of developments in our local communities and throughout the State.
ARE CALIFORNIA’S HOUSING SHORTAGES OVER-BLOWN?
Many are wondering how the new Regional Housing Number Allocation (RHNA) mandates by the State can be justified. Who decides what the ultimate number of housing units must built in the State and what factors are used to determine those mandated numbers?
The analysis below claims the numbers are not built on well-researched reason:
And, here is another analysis by CalMatters staff that would indicate the same conclusion. Commentary: Five things I’ve learned covering California’s housing crisis that you should know
I have written AMBAG Planning Director Ms. Heather Adamson again to ask about the criteria for the models she has described as being used to determine the RHNA building mandates, and who in the world is controlling these puppeteer-like tactics? Stay tuned for her answer.
WILL CABRILLO COLLEGE BUILD STUDENT AND STAFF HOUSING ON CAMPUS?
Cabrillo College may soon be deciding whether to build on-campus housing, but it remains to be seen how it would be financed and how it would be managed. The Board may be making this decision next Monday, June 12. Here is the link to the presentation provided on January 9, 2023
This could be a real asset for boosting the declining enrollment, but in my opinion, would be especially valuable if coupled with expanding the nursing program. Applicants for that program currently wait several years to be accepted for enrollment at a time when there is a shortage of qualified nurses.
Keep your eye on this proposed 640-bed housing complex at Cabrillo College.
WILL IT BE CALLED CABRILLO COLLEGE OR SOMETHING ELSE?
The saga continues as the hand-picked Name Exploration Task Force Committee, which has met four times to find a new name for Cabrillo College, will soon provide a list of 3-5 name suggestions to the Board of Trustees to review. The Name Exploration Committee is also searching for the independent funding necessary to make such a change, using NO funding from the College bank accounts. Will they hold true on that promise?
We had all better keep a close eye on that.
The Task Force reviewed 351 suggested names on April 7 and were asked to return on April 21 with their top 10 choices. The group met, and were scheduled to meet twice again in May to whittle down the 85 choices members wanted.
Shouldn’t this name change issue be decided by an official public vote at the ballot box?
COUNTY CONTINUES TO ALLOW DEMOLITION BY NEGLECT OF CRITICAL HISTORIC RESOURCES
A few years ago, the Santa Cruz County Historic Resources Commission developed and recommended to the Board of Supervisors that the County adopt a Demolition by Neglect Ordinance that would enforce preservation on historic structures, such as the Redman-Hirahara House and Farmstead near Riverside Drive in Watsonville, to be protected from the elements causing degradation and prevent further collapse of historic structures.
Shockingly, the Board of Supervisors refused to adopt the Ordinance.
Thanks to their inaction and disrespect for historic preservation in general, many historic structures are in peril. The worst example is the Redman-Hirahara House. This is a cultural resource with an incredibly rich story that should make the Pajaro Valley swell with pride.
When the Japanese American citizens were imprisoned during WW2, many lost their homes and farms because they could not pay the property taxes while they were away in the prison camps. However, the wonderful citizens of Watsonville prevented that travesty from happening to the Hirahara family by paying their property taxes for them. As a result, the Hirahara family still had a home (designed by famous local architect William Weeks) and farm to come back to after they were released from the prison camps. They converted their barn into apartments for their less-fortunate friends, and provided a place for them to re-establish.
How has Santa Cruz County celebrated this amazing story?
The Board of Supervisors cannot even be bothered to adopt a Demolition by Neglect Ordinance that would offer a shred of protection to the home, and stood idly by as the barn fell down and continues to deteriorate.
Please write the County Supervisors, and demand they adopt a Demolition by Neglect Ordinance. It is the least they can do.
Board of Supervisors firstname.lastname@example.org
This photo, taken last week, shows the continuing sad state of disrepair the owners are allowing to progress while the County Board of Supervisors continues to reject approving a Demolition by Neglect Ordinance that would prevent such travesties from occurring. This house is on the National Historic Registry.
This recent photo shows the total collapse of the historic barn that once served as an apartment for Japanese-American families who returned to find their homes and farms had been taken. The Hirahara family provided apartments for these families to live in while getting re-established. Cabrillo College Archaeology Dept. surveyed the barn’s contents decades ago and determined it should be on the National Historic Registry.
Meanwhile directly across the street on Lee Road, the same property owners, the Tut family, enjoy the lucrative hotel, restaurant and fueling station businesses, and the County smiles on the Transient Occupancy Tax (TOT) and sales tax revenues associated.
Please write the County Board of Supervisors to insist they adopt a Demolition by Neglect Ordinance that would protect this and other valuable historic and cultural resources from rotting away before our very eyes. The Redman-Hirahara House and Farm are in Second District Supervisor Zach Friend’s jurisdiction but he could care less.
Board of Supervisors email@example.com
BIG CHANGES COMING IN THE WATSONVILLE SLOUGH AREA NEAR FEDEX
If you have passed by the southern area of Watsonville on Highway One, you likely saw extensive grading activity near the Slough. This area is destined to become a large 155,847 Sq Ft new warehouse for what may be the largest beer distributor in California, and that is currently lodged on Riverside Drive nearby. Supposedly, it will create up to 2,100 jobs, but the business currently has 137 employees.
Approved by the Watsonville City Council on April 11, 2023, work quickly got underway, evident in the photos below.
Excavators staged along Manabe Ow Road.
Rubble collected from the former farming area that will now become a large new warehouse for beer and Monster drinks, but that requires environmental mitigations for red-legged frog, western pond turtle, Burrowing Owls, and tar plant with all earth disturbances overseen by Native American Observers.
BEAUTIFUL DETAILS ON INFRASTRUCTURE MAKE A DIFFERENCE
This detail in the Manabe Ow Road concrete bridge crossing the Slough is lovely, and appropriate for the habitat.
TOUR THE CITY’S RECYCLING CENTER
Visit the Santa Cruz City Recycling Center at the Resource Recovery Facility, 605 Dimeo Lane, any Friday from June 16 through August 25 at 10 am and 1 pm. This action-packed 90-minute tour gives insight on how the City recycles 36 tons of material every single weekday. Visitors will also experience the new food scraps processing operation that is reducing methane emissions from the landfill and learn about the Household Hazardous Waste Program.
Pre-registration is required. Tours are limited to 20 people. Children must be at least 8 years old. Youth ages 8 to 18 must be accompanied by an adult. Carpooling is encouraged as parking is limited. Reserve your spot here – it’s free!
Questions may be addressed to: firstname.lastname@example.org
MAKE ONE CALL. WRITE ONE LETTER. ATTEND ONE PUBLIC HEARING. JUST DO SOMETHING THIS WEEK AND MAKE A BIG DIFFERENCE.
Becky Steinbruner is a 30+ year resident of Aptos. She has fought for water, fire, emergency preparedness, and for road repair. She ran for Second District County Supervisor in 2016 on a shoestring and got nearly 20% of the votes. She ran again in 2020 on a slightly bigger shoestring and got 1/3 of the votes.
Email Becky at KI6TKB@yahoo.com
NEVER CRY WOLF? A SITUATION OF SUBSERVIENCE
Whenever I wonder why more people aren’t protesting, I think of debt. We owe, we owe, so off to work we go. The income gap widens with constant reminders of homelessness and sick friends/relatives reminding us of the fragility of our lives and the expenses of medical care. Workplaces warn us that we represent The Corporation, even when we speak out as citizens. It is news and some laugh when a Jan 6th protester gets fired because of their illegal actions, but the same holds true for lesser, legal protests on the other side of the political spectrum. Most people find they can no longer afford to protest. The wolf is in the house…and no one is saying anything!
Even if you aren’t protesting, if you are a federal employee, your work is subject to political whims.
I was working with some brilliant grants officers with the US Department of Agriculture (USDA) just before the last president was elected from the Republican side of the aisle. These employees had good experience navigating the complex Washington DC bureaucracy to help disperse and manage federal funding for the most competitive proposals. Republicans ordered that their USDA office move from DC to Kansas City, and all of those grants officers left, retiring early or finding other jobs. They couldn’t leave their communities, their homes, or their histories behind.
Similarly, but with Democrats at the helm, someone, for some reason, ordered our regional Bureau of Land Management office to move from Hollister to Marina. This put the main office many more miles distant from most of the land their staff managed and, if a BLM employee wanted to stay with the agency, now they had to move or commute a long distance to work.
You can speculate about why those administrations moved the agency offices. We are lucky to have a US Government Accountability Office report showing that the rationale for the USDA move was ludicrous, and so was clearly politically motivated. We don’t have any such study about the Central Coast BLM office, but I’m guessing that it was similarly politically motivated…but why?
Shut Up or Move!
Politically motivated office moving isn’t the only way a public employee might be ordered to pack their bags for a new location or leave. State and Federal public employees working for organizations like State and Federal Parks, the Bureau of Land Management, and State and Federal Wildlife agencies are very shy about saying anything substantive at all about their work. Saying the wrong thing to the wrong person can get you transferred to an unpleasant area doing unpleasant work.
You have to understand that in order to disentangle anything one of those employees says on record.
I want to present a couple of puzzling quotes from the media from some State and Federal employees working on issues crucial to conservation in California. Two things to keep in mind: 1) democracy depends on an informed citizenry, and a free press is key to that; 2) reporters sometimes get quotes wrong or use them out of context.
State Wildlife Agency Speaks
The first quote is verbatim from a recording from KCBS 740 a.m. from 6/2/2023; you can listen to it here. The story was on the remarkable documentation of one of the state’s most endangered wildlife species, a wolverine. The reporter, Holly Quan, asked how the State is monitoring the wolverine population, and this is the reply from California Department of Fish and Wildlife’s (CDFW’s) David Gammons:
“That’s the $10 million question right there. It’s a pretty difficult thing to do. Estimating the number of any wild animal is a difficult thing to do whether it’s a mule deer where there is a lot of them or something like a wolverine that’s a very rare species.”
The wolverine is protected under California’s Endangered Species Act. CDFW’s mission is to “manage California’s diverse fish, wildlife, and plant resources, and the habitats upon which they depend, for their ecological values and their use and enjoyment by the public.” CDFW has a long history of underfunded monitoring programs and too few well-trained wildlife biologists to adequately manage the State’s increasingly dwindling wildlife. Mr. Gammons not only did not answer the reporter’s question, but also failed to help the public to understand how woefully inadequate the funding is for his agency to do its job. Shame on Ms. Quan for not following up to get a better answer from him.
Federal BLM Talking
Here’s another puzzling paraphrase and quote. This is from a Lookout Santa Cruz article published on 5/30/2023 by Christopher Neely. Mr. Neely asked Zachary Ormsby, BLM’s Central Coast Field Manager, about how he plans to move forward with controversial management dilemmas, including poor access planning and, given expected high visitor numbers, a lack of a science-based approach for wildlife conservation at Cotoni Coast Dairies.
Neely paraphrases the beginning of Ormsby’s answer here:
“The federal government will consider public comment and sentiment on the plan and alternatives, but BLM has the power to unilaterally decide the path forward, Ormsby says. Ormsby says a parking lot is not guaranteed or required before BLM opens the land to the broader public.”
And this is a direct quote:
“My perspective is that we’ll come up with a plan and list of options that will allow this community to move forward with confidence and comfort without filing any more appeals,” Ormsby said. “The common element among all the groups is that we love this land. The only thing we’re trying to reconcile is that we all love it collectively.”
Huh? What Did BLM say??
The paraphrased part seems like a quote from BLM’s legal counsel, basically “We can do anything we want.” The second part is more puzzling. It says a lot that he starts with ‘my perspective,’ which gives him an out for potentially not representing BLM. That last bit about ‘love’ is impossible to disentangle- enjoy trying!
Cotoni Coast Dairies is protected as a part of a National Monument as well as being part of the National Conservation Lands network. Both designations come with a regulatory framework that provides strong protections for the primary purpose of these lands: conservation. The land in question lacks the requisite science plan, which should work in tandem with a management plan, allowing management to adapt approaches to protect wildlife from the impacts of public visitation. There are no (ZERO) staff assigned to the property. There is ample evidence that the current, overstretched staff cannot adequately manage the property, even without public use.
As with the prior CDFW example, BLM’s Mr. Ormsby lost an opportunity to stress the importance of more staffing and more funding to adequately protect the property. Instead, he intoned that it would be just fine to allow the public to access the property without those resources. His dodginess isn’t unique: it would seem that there are unwritten dodginess policies coming from at least as high as the BLM California’s state director, Trump-era appointee Karen Mouritsen. All planning documents for Cotoni Coast Dairies have been reviewed at her level and none reference key conservation policies providing National Monument or National Conservation Lands protections or other policy protections for sensitive wildlife and plants. That is considerable politics, amazing with its official subservience to even prior administrations. That’s how far this culture of fear reaches.
The Dilemma of Submission
History reflects poorly on those saying anything like “I was just doing my job.” State and Federal conservation personnel have access to great power, but they walk a tight rope with the political nature of their jobs. If either Mr. Gammons or Mr. Ormsby suggest that their agencies aren’t able to execute their mandates, there might be reprisal. On the other hand, I’m sure that both of these individuals have good intentions and want to be on the side of wildlife conservation. What can they do?
There are outside organizations that can help, but are they doing enough? I’m very impressed with the work of the nonprofit organization Forest Service Employees for Environmental Ethics. BLM has a similar organization, but one that seems a lot less functional, the Public Lands Foundation for American Heritage. CDFW’s Mr. Gammons unfortunately has nowhere similar to turn, but there are two nonprofits left that are pointed primarily to wildlife conservation in California.
Defenders of Wildlife and The Wildlife Society are two organizations that might help speak out for the heartfelt concerns of public wildlife conservation employees like Mr. Gammons and Mr. Ormsby. I’m sure that many public employees who support conservation are members of these organizations. You might consider supporting them, too! If you have to choose, I suggest you support Defenders of Wildlife. At least the local chapter of the Wildlife Society has proven much more dysfunctional in my experience, refusing to advocate for what is a mandated, routine update of California BLM’s sensitive wildlife list, whereas Defenders of Wildlife has an excellent track record of tangible wildlife conservation outcomes in California
Grey Hayes is a fervent speaker for all things wild, and his occupations have included land stewardship with UC Natural Reserves, large-scale monitoring and strategic planning with The Nature Conservancy, professional education with the Elkhorn Slough National Estuarine Research Reserve, and teaching undergraduates at UC Santa Cruz. Visit his website at: www.greyhayes.net
Email Grey at email@example.com
#156 / Heartfelt
My Sunday papers on June 4, 2023, included an article from the San Jose Mercury News. I am linking the article, as it appeared elsewhere. Here’s the headline on that article I am talking about: “Taylor Swift delivers heartfelt Pride speech to fans, slams ‘harmful’ anti-LGBTQ legislation.”
In other and related news, yesterday’s edition of the San Francisco Chronicle had an “Insight” column, by Ash Zemenick, that also spoke to issues of diversity. Zemenick backed up, with biology, what Rabbi Elliot Kukla said in an article featured in one of my recent blog postings. Zemenick’s column was headlined, “Biological sex, no matter definition, is not binary.”
LIFE (in all of its manifestations) is not “binary.” It’s not “we” versus “them.” It’s not “You” versus “Me.” We are all in this together, despite all the differences. It is “diversity,” not “division,” that best explains our human situation. That’s true in “politics,” as in every other case. Take it from Hannah Arendt, the great political theorist, who spent most of her life explaining that the origins of totalitarianism spring from an effort to suppress this truth, and from our inability to recognize (and tolerate) and celebrate “plurality.”
Plurality and diversity, let it be said, do call for a celebration – and a celebration of our diversity is exactly what happened yesterday, in my hometown of Santa Cruz, California. Celebration was the name of the day!
I am pretty sure that the first official “Pride” celebration in Santa Cruz County was held in 1975. I remember voting, as a brand-new County Supervisor, to have our Board issue a proclamation recognizing “Gay Pride.” My recollection is that the vote was 3-2, so there was not, really, unanimous agreement.
It’s great to see some progress on the diversity/plurality front – and that truly is a “heartfelt” observation. I’m with Taylor Swift on that.
Gary Patton is a former Santa Cruz County Supervisor (20 years) and an attorney for individuals and community groups on land use and environmental issues. The opinions expressed are Mr. Patton’s. You can read and subscribe to his daily blog at www.gapatton.net
Email Gary at firstname.lastname@example.org
ANIMAL MAGNETISM, PARTYING ON, AND CAPONE’S VAULT REVISITED
Many ears perked up when Fox News host, Geraldo Rivera, claimed to have a plan to prevent the Former Guy from seeking the presidency once again. Simple…all President Biden has to do is pardon him to dissuade him from his Revenge Term campaign! Of course, Joe has already laughed off that idea with no comment, and critics immediately jumped on Geraldo for even suggesting such a ludicrous plan. Not to be discouraged, Rivera later commented any pardon would come with a price - a pledge not to run again. More responses showed few being in favor of that aspect, especially MAGATs who still insist Trump did nothing wrong, but with many saying he did the crime(s), so do the time! What…and miss out on a great birthday party?
According to Politico, Trump’s latest campaign gambit is a promise to celebrate America’s 250th anniversary with a lengthy, spectacular birthday party…if he wins. Wow, who could pass on that? In a new video, Donny says on “day one” he would convene a task force to plan “an entire year of festivities across the nation,” beginning with the “Great American State Fair” on Iowa’s State Fairgrounds. He also suggested a “Patriot Games” competition for high school athletes, but beyond that he hasn’t much to suggest that would fill a whole year. Nevertheless, he says, “It’ll be something…it will be a record year,” lasting from Memorial Day 2025 to July 4, 2026. In all likelihood the planners and personnel hired to handle this extravaganza will be those insurrectionists who will have received his pardons, and they will see to it…demand…that you have a good time as they expound their fascist rhetoric, outright lying, and racist blather. Sounds like a lot of trouble…so let’s have a simple celebration for the occasion where the party favors will be bobbleheads portraying Trump in his orange jumpsuit, along with the red, white, and blue-frosted cake and ice cream.
The Former Orange Cheeto-In-Chief (or is that Cheat-o?) has several new opponents in the surging crowd of GOP candidates, who will probably kill each other off as happened in 2016, The Don seeing himself standing alone at the end. He has chosen, along with the media, Ron DeSantis as his primary challenger, tagging him several new monikers as he lashes out at the nerviness of this guy who he graced with his support to become Florida’s governor. Chris Christie will be joining the scrum from New Hampshire, just across the bridge from New Jersey…simply follow the diversion created by his leftover orange traffic cones to reach the town hall. An adviser for the former governor’s super PAC, ‘Tell It Like It Is,’ says, “…he will run a ‘non-traditional’ campaign that is highly focused on earned media, mixing it up with the news cycle and engaging Trump.” He will need to use his ‘no-nonsense, in-your-face, Jersey tough-guy schtick’ says Steve Schmidt, “…the one where he yells at people to sit down and shut up, and quash the sycophantic streak that had him smooching Mr. Trump’s backside for years.” Schmidt feels that in 2016, no Republicans went hard at Trump because no one took him seriously…this time they are too afraid of him, so Christie could make it interesting. “You come at the king, you best not miss,” but if everyone is too chicken – too strategic, how does that work?
Former VP Mike Pence has thrown his helmet into the ring finally, after riding into town at the helm of a Harley-Davidson motorcycle last week, surely catching the attention of Senators Hawley and Graham, and Tucker Carlson, all from the MAGAT Hang Mike Pence Squad. As satirist Andy Borowitz writes in The New Yorker, “…political insiders are questioning whether he has more to offer the nation than unbridled sexual magnetism. He hopes to convince voters to elect him leader of the free world, but risks being perceived as little more than a smoldering piece of beefcake. Sex sells, but Mike Pence might just be too smokin’ for the White House.” Pence has managed to unite both the right and the left on one thing…nobody wants to see him as president, but CNN is taking another dive by having him on a town hall ala the Trump fiasco. That presentation brought decent ratings when it aired, leaving such a stench, that afterward ratings plunged and the broadcaster has been unable to recoup its former lackluster position. Pence has always pushed his extreme agenda in both Congress and the Indiana statehouse, and after beating the drum for Trump’s four-year tenure, he campaigned for election deniers in the mid-terms last year. Now he’ll attempt to out-Trump The Don, seeking a national abortion ban, cutting Medicare ending Social Security as it exists currently. Now Trump is having a hissy over Mikey’s being absolved of any wrongdoing by DOJ after the discovery of classified materials in his Indiana home. So, may as well go home, Mikey…nobody likes you…take that job as a car lot dancer!
GOP presidential contender, Nikki Haley, got her moment in the sun on a CNN Town Hall last Sunday and among her various claims needing clarification or outright refutation, she falsely claimed crime is at an all-time high (not so, indicators show a decrease), and that all medications on drugstore shelves come from China. In this vein, since most masks during the COVID-19 siege were made in China, she claims the vaccines used during the pandemic originated there, reaping huge profits for that country after introducing the plague to the world? She advised opponent DeSantis to just pick up the phone and call Disney in his silly vendetta which has proven to be no advantage to him so far. Haley also underscored the importance of supporting Ukraine in its defense against Russia, and she continues supporting gun rights for our citizens who need to have protection for their families – especially with the terrible crime rate! Her comment that the “women’s issue of our time” is a continuing theme in her speeches – transgender kids in the locker rooms! This anti-LGBTQ rhetoric falls in line with other GOP lawmakers who have made this a key focus of the 2024 race. CNN moderator, Jake Tapper, pressed her on the issue, her tepid response being “the country needs to take care of these kids and be ‘humane’ in discussions about trans issues. I want everybody to live the way they want to live, but stop pushing your views on everybody else.” No mention about taking away reproductive rights and institutionalizing forced births as a possible “women’s issue of our time.” Step away from the podium, Ms. Haley!
No word from the DeSantis campaign, or from CNN, about a CNN town hall appearance after his Twittering with Elon campaign debut flamed out, from which he is still trying to recover. Since Chuck Todd has announced his departure from NBC’s ‘Meet the Press,’ CNN could surely use another non-confrontational moderator to assist in handling the expanding horde of GOP hopefuls ready to spout their drivel while avoiding significant follow up questions. Elon has probably approached RonDe about a second chance to pull them both up from the flames, but nobody’s going there! The New York Times reports that since Elon Musk’s takeover of Twitter, advertising from U.S. customers has dropped 59% lower than sales in the same period last year – the five-week stretch from April 1 to early May. Current and former employees say the ad sales staff worry that advertisers have curtailed spending out of concern over hate speech and pornography increases on the social media platform, with cannabis and online gambling causing some anxiety. Musk’s sporadic changes to the site, as well as “inconsistent support from Twitter and concerns about the persistent presence of misleading and toxic content,” are having a detrimental effect.
Twitter post – Workers in Europe: “I will be taking the summer off because I need a little suntan.” Workers in America: “I will be using one of my three paid vacation days to undergo open heart surgery.”
The US Extreme Court said it will consider whether a California attorney has a free-speech right to trademark the phrase, “Trump Too Small,” a phrase that arose during the 2016 presidential primary. It originated with taunts between Trump and Marco Rubio following The Don’s dismissive name for the Senator as “Little Marco.” Rejected by the US Patent and Trademark Office because federal law disallows trademarks that usurp a person’s name without their consent, the Biden Administration is asking that this be upheld. Solicitor General Elizabeth B. Prelogar says attorney Elster is free to use the phrase however he wishes but the government can afford no protection that would accompany trademark registrations. Be the first on your block to get the t-shirts that will surely appear, but this fight isn’t over by any means.
Another fight that flared up seems to be waning, with House Speaker Kevin McCarthy’s position being safe for the time being. GOP conservatives were outraged with the deal McCarthy made with President Biden in negotiating the budget brouhaha, with the Freedom Caucus preparing to burn him at the stake, though criticism came from both sides of the aisle at the saga’s outcome. North Carolina’s Representative Dan Bishop told reporters that expelling McCarthy “has got to be done. I’m fed up with the lack of courage, the cowardice, and I intend to see to it that there is somebody who’s prepared to say what needs to be done.” Questioned about who could have negotiated a better deal, Bishop only said, “Nobody in the Republican conference could have done a worse job.” It should be suggested that perhaps next time, if there is a next time, Henry Kissinger could come forward with his new assistant, George Anthony Devolder Santos, both of whom were instrumental in the Paris Peace Talks to end the Vietnam War. How quickly we forget the successes past!
Dale Matlock, a Santa Cruz County resident since 1968, is the former owner of The Print Gallery, a screenprinting establishment. He is an adherent of The George Vermosky school of journalism, and a follower of too many news shows, newspapers, and political publications, and a some-time resident of Moloka’i, Hawaii, U.S.A., serving on the Board of Directors of Kepuhi Beach Resort. Email: email@example.com.
EAGAN’S SUBCONSCIOUS COMICS. View classic inner view ideas and thoughts with Subconscious Comics a few flips down.
EAGAN’S DEEP COVER. See Eagan’s “Deep Cover” down a few pages. As always, at TimEagan.com you will find his most recent Deep Cover, the latest installment from the archives of Subconscious Comics, and the ever entertaining Eaganblog.
“Derive happiness in oneself from a good day’s work, from illuminating the fog that surrounds us”.
“It is not the clear-sighted who rule the world. Great achievements are accomplished in a blessed, warm fog”.
“It’s impossible to know what happens in the fog of war”.
“Most of us live in a fog. It’s like life is a movie we arrived to 20 minutes late. You know something important seems to be going on. But we can’t figure out the story. We don’t know what part we’re supposed to play or what the plot is.
Kim Luke, (AKA Madame Luke when she emcees the Sin Sisters Burlesque Show) just put up this video, and I found it worth sharing 🙂
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