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MARKETING MATTERS: TARGET MARKET VS. REFERRAL SOURCE

Tips and tricks for business marketing success

By Rama Beerfas

October 2, 2012 (San Diego’s East County) – This is the season for me to be developing marketing plans for many of my existing clients. What I have noticed over the many years I've been doing this is that there is often confusion between the terms "target market" and "referral source." In order to market correctly, these two terms must be clearly understood, so here goes...

EARTHTALK®: HOW HEALTHY ARE PERFUMES?

E - The Environmental Magazine

Written and edited by Roddy Scheer and Doug Moss

September 29, 2012 -- Dear EarthTalk: I’ve always suspected that perfumes and colognes must not be too healthy simply because of the way the smell of most of them bothers me. Am I correct? Is there information available on this issue?                                                        -- Lucinda Barry, Minneapolis, MN

ON THE SILVER SCREEN: BLACK MAGIC KINGDOM (SOLOMON KANE)

By Brian Lafferty

September 28, 2012 (San Diego) – There are times when the life of a film critic resembles that of a miner.  Uncovering gems like Solomon Kane – which would have gone unnoticed and unreleased here were it not for RADiUS-TWC, The Weinstein Company’s newest distribution label – is one of dozens of reasons why being a film critic is life-fulfilling. 

VETERANS EMBRACE LIFE AT SUMMER SPORTS CLINIC THIS WEEK IN SAN DIEGO

By Jamie Reno

The Reno Dispatch

September 25, 2012 (San Diego) -- I've been openly critical of the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) for its massive backlog of disability claims, entrenched bureaucracy, and other problems. The VA has a long, long way to go.

But that doesn't mean I don't recognize that there are many people at VA who are dedicated to veterans, and many programs that help veterans survive and thrive.

HOW ARE OUR VETERANS REALLY DOING?

By Jamie Reno

The Reno Dispatch

OK, let's cut to the chase: How are America's veterans really doing overall? While that question has no simple answer, what I can say is that there are a number of positives to share - but at least one very large negative.

In a briefing last week, the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) candidly shared with the House Veterans’ Affairs Committee what it considers its greatest successes as well as its most urgent problems.

EARTHTALK®: IS EXTREME WEATHER LINKED TO CLIMATE CHANGE?

E - The Environmental Magazine

Written and edited by Roddy Scheer and Doug Moss

September 24, 2012 -- Dear EarthTalk: What is the scientific consensus on all the extreme weather we’ve been having—from monster tornadoes to massive floods and wildfires? Is there a clear connection to climate change? And if so what are we doing to be prepared?                                -- Jason Devine, Summit, PA

ON THE SILVER SCREEN: START YOUR OWN RELIGION (THE MASTER)

By Brian Lafferty

 

September 24, 2012 (San Diego) – On one of my many college days spent in the South Wing of Cal State, Fullerton's Pollak library, I came across Timothy Leary's book The Politics of Ecstasy.  It was a fascinating read unlike any nonfiction I previously encountered before then.  It was a collection of the disgraced Harvard professor’s essays and lectures on the psychedelic drug LSD.  In the chunk that I read, he defends the drug, and cites research and studies that he claims demonstrate its benefits on its people’s minds, lifestyle, and ways of thinking.  He argues that as long as you know what you’re doing, or better yet, if you have a “guided trip” with someone experienced in LSD use, it’s not only safe, but beneficial.

ON THE SILVER SCREEN: NOTES FROM THE GRANDSTANDS (TROUBLE WITH THE CURVE)

By Brian Lafferty

September 24, 2012 (San Diego) – Last year’s Moneyball was a smart baseball movie, a behind-the-scenes look at the world of front office politics.  While slightly laid back and relaxed, everybody meant business.  Not too serious, but plenty of drama.  What happens when you fuse all that with Clint Eastwood-style wit and bit?  You get something like Trouble with the Curve

BIRD TALK: THE CALIFORNIA VALLEY QUAIL

By Greg Dunne

September 24, 2012 (Alpine)--The California State Bird is the California Valley Quail. Over the past two seasons, I have had the pleasure of having a covey of California Quail living in my back yard!

My last count, as of yesterday, is nine quail living in my back yard. I remember seeing the new little chicks around the end of April. The chicks are now as big as the adults are, however, you can still tell the juveniles from the adults by the size of the plumes on the top of their heads as well as the markings and feathers that are not as deep and striking as the adults’ markings.

HISTORIC LAWSUIT FOR VETERANS HEADED TO SUPREME COURT?

By Jamie Reno

The Reno Dispatch

September 24, 2012 (San Diego)--My trusted veteran sources tell me that we may soon know if Veterans for Common Sense v. Eric K. Shinseki, the historic lawsuit filed by veterans advocates against the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) way back in 2007, will be heard by the Supreme Court.

FROM THE CHIEF'S CORNER: HIGH FIRE DANGER!

By Fire Chief Dan DiGiovanna

It’s not just the health concerns and power outages associated with hot days…we are stepping right into our first high pressure system of the season and if you ask any fire service authority, all will agree this will be an extremely dangerous fire season according to Fire Chief Sam DiGiovanna.

MEDIA WATCHDOG: IS THE U-T’S PURCHASE OF NORTH COUNTY TIMES AN UNHOLY ALLIANCE?

Merger highlights the decline of independent media

By Miriam Raftery, Editor, East County Magazine

September 19, 2012 (San Diego)—The U-T San Diego’s purchase of the North County Times for $11.95 million dollars has sent shudders across the journalism community locally and nationally.  The deal also includes acquisition of the Californian in Riverside County(no relation to the East County Californian), which was owned by North County Times. 

Demise of one of San Diego’s largest independent media outlets highlights two growing problems: fewer voices controlling the media due to consolidation and a decline in quality including slashing investigative/watchdog reporting and abandoning journalistic standards—most importantly, impartiality.

RENO DISPATCH: KEEP KILLING THE BAD GUYS, KEEP TALKING TO THE GOOD GUYS

By Jamie Reno

The Reno Dispatch

Sept. 19, 2012 (San Diego)-- I'm not a bleeding-heart liberal. I certainly recognize that the violent anti-American protests this week throughout the Middle East and beyond in response to a stupid video denigrating the Muslim religion are a real threat to the United States and need to be taken very seriously.

EARTHTALK®: U.S. CONSUMPTION

E - The Environmental Magazine

Written and edited by Roddy Scheer and Doug Moss

September 18, 2012 -- Dear EarthTalk: I read that a single child born in the U.S. has a greater effect on the environment than a dozen children born in a developing country? Can you explain why?  -- Josh C., via e-mail

POLITICAL REFLECTIONS: AFTER THE CONVENTIONS

By Mark Gabrish Conlan

September 17, 2012 (San Diego) – Well, now we know. The 2012 Presidential election won’t just be between incumbent Democrat Barack Obama and Republican challenger Mitt Romney, but between two starkly different philosophies not only of politics, or how to revive the economy and preserve the capitalist system, but also of life itself and what it means to be human. It won’t be a serious debate over how much government the American people want, or how they propose to pay for it. Nor will it really be about the budget deficit or the national debt, however much Republicans — especially their vice-presidential candidate, Congressmember Paul Ryan —might claim the moral high ground on that issue even though their giveaway tax cuts to the ultra-rich will actually make the national debt bigger, not smaller.

AMERICAN TRIVIA: LADY LIBERTY

By Richard Lederer

September 17, 2012 (San Diego) – The Statue of Liberty Enlightening the World was a gift of friendship from the people of France to the people of the United States commemorating the alliance between the two nations during the Revolutionary War. The statue arrived in the United States aboard the French freighter Isere as 350 individual pieces packed in 214 crates. Lady Liberty was dedicated on October 28, 1886, designated as a National Monument in 1924, and restored for her centennial on July 4, 1986.

POLITICAL REFLECTIONS: TERRORISTS' VETO II - HERE WE GO AGAIN

By Mark Gabrish Conlan

September 21, 2012 (San Diego)--I probably could have gone through my life blissfully unaware of the existence of a scrap of film called Innocence of Muslims — a.k.a. Innocence of Bin Laden, a.k.a. Desert Warriors — if the U.S. ambassador to Libya, Christopher Stevens, and three other U.S. Embassy staff members hadn’t been killed in an attack allegedly inspired by a YouTube trailer for this movie. It’s a film almost no one has seen — and that includes the attackers in Libya and the mobs who stormed the U.S. Embassy in Egypt — but that hasn’t stopped either the protesters against the film or the mystery people who made it, who appear to be  members of the Copts, an Egyptian Christian sect who lost their protector when Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak was driven from power and now fear both official discrimination and private retribution.

IS THERE ANY OBJECTIVE JOURNALISM ANYMORE?

By Jamie Reno

Several years ago I wrote a story about my two best friends - one a Christian conservative Republican ex-Marine, the other an agnostic liberal Democrat college professor. In the piece I described how much I admired both of them but always seemed to find myself in the middle. 

Well, they're still my best friends... and I'm still in the middle. My liberal friend still thinks I'm too conservative, and my conservative friend still thinks I'm too liberal. 

See more:

BECOMING GREEN: GETTING STARTED WITH COMPOSTING AND CLEANUP

By Jackie Hanson

September 12, 2012 (Lakeside)--Hi, I’m Jackie! I’m retired, but I keep busy tending a sizable property (that I try to coax into various gardens with mixed results) and caring for many animals (chickens, ducks, goats, horses, cats, and a dog).  I’m also an artist and aspiring interior decorator, and I have so many plans and ideas that I can only hope to live long enough to bring them to fruition!

I’ve decided to write a column to share with anyone who’s interested in getting better at living less wastefully.  I’m calling it “Becoming Green” because although I try to be a good steward of the earth, I am far from fully achieving that goal.  In fact, I’m probably a lot like you, trying to do my bit to recycle and waste less water, but fighting an uphill battle, with bad habits that are hard to break and a busy life that distracts me from doing more.

EARTHTALK®: ECO-FRIENDLY AND NON-TOXIC CAT LITTERS

E - The Environmental Magazine

Written and edited by Roddy Scheer and Doug Moss

September 11, 2012 -- Dear EarthTalk: Which are the most eco-friendly and non-toxic (to people, cats and sanitation systems) cat litters? ­                                                                       -- Sam Barnes, Macon, GA

It makes sense that environmentally enlightened cat owners would want cat litter made from natural products that will not potentially compromise their health or that of their beloved pets. Many mass market cat litters contain significant amounts of silica dust which has been linked to upper respiratory issues in cats and even humans. Likewise, the chemical fragrances in many cat litters can also be toxic to cats.

ON THE SILVER SCREEN: WORLD OF WONDER (SAMSARA)

 

By Brian Lafferty

September 7, 2012 (San Diego) – There are two people who have had the biggest influence on me as a critic.  The first is Duncan Shepherd, who authored film criticism for the San Diego Reader from its inception in 1972 until he retired in November 2010.  I didn't really know Duncan that well as a person.  I saw him at pretty much every screening, but I was too shy to approach him.  He was the type of critic who preferred to keep to himself, who expressed himself best in writing rather than with the spoken word.  I didn't read his criticism until I started writing for East County Magazine, but I immediately noted his frequent, adept commentary on cinematography.  If you wonder why in every review I write these days I talk about image, this is part of the reason.

FROM THE CHIEF'S CORNER: FLASH FLOOD SAFETY TIPS

By Fire Chief Sam DiGiovanna, East County Magazine’s “In-House Fire Chief”

September 5, 2012 (San Diego’s East County) – We continue in our summer “monsoon season” which can quickly and unexpectedly bring flash floods. More people lose their LIVES in floods than in any other weather-related event. 80% of flood deaths occur in vehicles, and most happen when drivers make a single, fatal mistake - trying to navigate through floodwaters.

EDUCATION TOUR: BACK TO SCHOOL TIPS

Education News and Notes

By Anat Tour

September 4, 2012 (San Diego’s East County)--Staying up, sleeping in! Driving your kids to play dates, going to the beach, day camps, sleep away camps, Disneyland, Sea World, Ah…all that fun and now it’s back to school. In this month’s column, read about the top 10 tips for going back to school.

POLITICAL REFLECTIONS: RALPH REED'S - AND THE REPUBLICANS' - RESURRECTION

By Mark Gabrish Conlan

September 4, 2012 (San Diego) – Guess which major Republican political leader recently made the following statement in Tampa, Florida, the home of this year’s GOP convention: “There was one candidate who stood in front of Greek columns and vowed to heal the planet and cause the oceans to recede.” If you guessed Mitt Romney, you’re half-right — he did rip off that line in his big speech accepting the Republican nomination for President on August 30 — but the line was actually delivered four days earlier on April 26, the day before the convention was supposed to start, by Ralph Reed.

PURPLE MOUNTAIN SAGE: STORM OVER HEAD

 
By Sharon Courmousis, Sacred Rocks Reserve
 
September 1,2012 (Boulevard)--Do you remember your last storm? Those who live in the mountains get to experience the power of nature up close, sometimes too close. As clouds build from the vast openness of the sky, turn ever darker, the lightening begins touching the earth randomly. Thunder pounds us with larger and deeper sounds than any other thing in nature. Clouds darken the sky as I await the storm. The smell of rain is in the air. Birds flap and flutter and prepare to run for cover. The dusty leaves of sage and Manzanita seem to open wider as if inviting a cool drink, sensing the coming rain.

EARTHTALK®: SUSTAINABLE FURNITURE OPTIONS

 
E - The Environmental Magazine
Written and edited by Roddy Scheer and Doug Moss
 
September 1, 2012 (San Diego's East County) -- Dear EarthTalk: Are there certain brands or retail stores where sustainable furniture options can be had? And what should I look for when shopping for greener furniture?  -- W. Cary, Trenton, NJ

POLITICAL REFLECTIONS: "LEGITIMATE RAPE"

By Mark Gabrish Conlan

August 30, 2012 (San Diego) – Just when you thought the political season couldn’t possibly get any weirder, Missouri Congressmember Todd Akin — the Republican nominee for U.S. Senate against Democrat Claire McCaskill — told a sympathetic local TV interviewer that he didn’t think the federal government needed to pay for abortions for victims of rape or incest because he didn’t think victims of rape or incest could get pregnant. “From what I understand from doctors, that’s extremely rare,” Akin said. “If it’s a legitimate rape, the female body has ways to try and shut that whole thing down.”

ON THE SILVER SCREEN: FAST FOOD DAMNATION (COMPLIANCE)

By Brian Lafferty

 

August 31, 2012 (San Diego) – Compliance made me feel uncomfortable and unclean, but that’s exactly how it wanted me to feel. My chest kept pounding and it wouldn’t relent. A part of me wanted to look away, but I couldn’t avert my eyes. It was a grueling experience emotionally, and when the film wrapped up, it took a few days for me to shake it off. Chills coarse through my body as I write this, and my stomach feels weird.

 

Those are just several reasons why Compliance is one of the best films of the year.

 

FROM THE CHIEFS CORNER: WHAT TO DO BEFORE, DURING AND AFTER AN EARTHQUAKE

August 27, 2012 (San Diego's East County)--With the recent Earthquakes and the anticipation of more aftershocks it’s a good time to review what to do before, during and after an earthquake says East County Magazine’s in-house Fire Chief Sam DiGiovanna.

EARTHTALK®: CO2 IN THE ATMOSPHERE

E - The Environmental Magazine 
Written and edited by Roddy Scheer and Doug Moss 
 
August 28, 2012 (San Diego's East County) -- Dear EarthTalk: I read that CO2 in our atmosphere is now more than 300 parts per million. Doesn’t this mean that we’re too late to avoid the worst impacts of climate change?                                                                                                                          -- Karl Bren, Richmond, VA
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