Editorials

The opinions expressed are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the views of East County Magazine.

READER’S EDITORIAL: ONE STRANGE DAY IN INTERNATIONAL RELATIONS

 

“We are seeing something quite strange, and unique. We are watching national leaders contact each other though the media and do media diplomacy.” – Nadin Abbott

By Nadin Abbott

September 12, 2013 (San Diego) -- Yesterday, Russian President Vladimir Putin had an editorial accepted and published by the New York Times. This diplomacy by newspaper is highly unusual, and the editorial was a remarkable piece of writing.

The first part of the essay made me think back to the end of World War II:

READER'S EDITORIAL: AN ENVIRONMENTALIST'S VIEWS ON THE MAYORAL RESIGNATION AND MEDIA COVERAGE OF THE EVENTS

 

 

By Mike Bullock

I was sent this link to an article about Friday’s events:  http://www.eastcountymagazine.org/node/13831. It seems to me that the article is more balanced that the UT coverage. The article has a link to the audio of both the Filner and the Gloria speech.

Bob was an elected mayor, stepping down to avoid losing all of his personal savings and wealth to legal fees and settlements. His message to his constituents deserved to be printed in the UT as a complete transcript. (I would have liked to have been able to cut and paste from the transcript, which I assumed would be published.) But I forget. The UT is no more a newspaper than Fox News is a news channel. The UT’s purpose is not to inform but to persuade. There are parts of Bob’s speech which the UT does NOT want you, or others, to hear.

READER'S EDITORIAL: LABOR DAY STATEMENT FROM CALIFORNIA LABOR FEDERATION LEADER ART PULASKI

 

By Art Pulaski, California Labor Federation Executive Secretary-Treasurer

September 2, 2013 (San Diego) – “Fifty years ago this week, union workers joined with civil rights leaders and progressive activists to march on Washington for good jobs and equal rights for all. Dr. Martin Luther King’s call for America to “rise up” and demand equality -- both economic and racial -- was a seminal moment in our nation’s history. This Labor Day much has changed since 1963. But sadly, too much remains the same.

READER'S EDITORIAL: CLIMATE CHANGE AND WORLD HUNGER

 

By Jeffrey Meyer

August 9, 2013 (San Diego’s East County) – There is an unprecedented human drama unfolding in Africa that should stop every one of us in our tracks.  It is a vision into humanity's future, where we are heading and how we will exist throughout the remainder of this century.  This is about choices, by all of us and where those decisions will lead us.

READER'S EDITORIAL: DOUG DEANE'S RESPONSE TO THE GUHSD RESPONSE TO THE GRAND JURY REPORT

 

By Doug Deane

August 8, 2013 (San Diego’s East County) – As you know, I was the Chairperson for the Grossmont Union High School District’s 2011 Boundary Study, and I appeared as a witness before the Grand Jury's Education Committee on 11/14/12.  I am disappointed by many aspects of the GUHSD's July 25th response to the Grand Jury's report, and as the Boundary Committee Chair, I believe that I have a responsibility to clarify some misstatements and errors in the GUHSD Response to that report.

READER'S EDITORIAL: ANTHEM SHOULD BE EXCLUDED FROM HEALTH BENEFITS EXCHANGE

 

By Dave Jones, California Insurance Commissioner

July 30, 2013 (San Diego) – In case you missed it, last week I recommended that Anthem Blue Cross and Blue Cross of California should be excluded from California's Small Business Health Benefits Exchange.

On July 1, Anthem will increase rates on small employers 7.2%, the third unreasonable rate increase imposed on small employers this year alone.  The 12-month cumulative increase for these Anthem customers is 17.6%; had Anthem reduced its rate increase to a reasonable level as I requested, policyholders would have seen $37 million in savings.

READER'S EDITORIAL: DRONE MADNESS

 

By Connie Frankowiak, Julian

July 29, 2013 (San Diego’s East County) – The loonies in the U.S. Government now think it is a great idea to arm those drones patrolling the Mexican and Canadian borders and if these drones start slaughtering and maiming their citizens like other countries on the planet then America will end up at war with their two neighbors.

READER'S EDITORIAL: VETERANS DEMAND DRONE OVERSIGHT

 

By Dave Patterson

July 26, 2013 (Ramona) – Beginning in 2012 the stories about the misuse of drone technology have been frightening.  Starting with the revelation that we have been killing hundreds of civilians and children in places that we are not at war, to the government using the border drones to surveil American citizens.  Worse yet, there appears to be an unholy alliance between our nation and Pakistan because there is now evidence that our drones are killing people that are not terrorists, but instead political enemies of the Pakistani regime.

READER'S EDITORIAL: FILNER AND HIS OPPOSITION

 

By E.A. Barrera

July 16, 2013 (San Diego) – On the continued fight over forcing the Mayor to resign - It is not too smart to call a press conference, like the one Briggs, Frye and Gonzales called yesterday in an attempt to use the media to force San Diego Mayor Bob Filner to resign, then attack the media for asking legitimate questions.

I believe Bob Filner should resign for the good of San Diego, but if he survives this thing, it will be due to his opposition playing such heavy handed politics - from the left and the right - that the public decides this is all just another power grab and there is no difference between Bob and his adversaries.

READER'S EDITORIAL: REFLECTIONS ON KILLING PIT BULL TO SAVE PET

 

By Joel A. Harrison, PhD, MPH

July 11, 2013 (San Diego) – Lee Patisson, a young Navy diver, bitten himself while trying to protect his dog, was recently forced to kill a pit bull that was attacking his pet dog.

According to a San Diego U-T story: “Pattison said he wants to make it clear that he did not shoot the dog without exhausting what he felt was every other means. He tried grabbing its collar and hitting it with his fists. The dog was undeterred. He ran inside and got his shotgun, and struck Bodi [the pit bull] with the butt of the gun five or six times. . . Pattison said Bodi was often tied up on his neighbor’s front doorstep, but the dog was known to break loose . . . He said it was the second time in about a month that the dog had attacked Bolt [Pattison’s dog]. Pattison does not face any charges. Wayne [the dog’s owner] has been cited for failure to keep the dog leashed and failure to protect the public.” (Man Who Killed Pit Bull Says He Is No Hero, July 4, 2013).

EDITORIAL: PUBLIC RECORDS ACT GUTTED IN STATE BUDGET—ASK GOVERNOR TO RESTORE YOUR RIGHTS

 

 

Update June 20, 2013 4 p.m. -- The Sacramento Bee reports that due to mounting public pressure, the Governor will abandon efforts to weaken the Public Records Act.  The Bee also reports that Democrats plan to push for a state Constitutional amendment to assure public access to government documents and require local agencies to pay the costs, thwarting efforts by local governments that have sought reimbursement from the state for costs of complying with the decades-old law.

 

“The liberties of a people never were, nor ever will be, secure when the transactions of their rulers may be concealed from them.”

By Miriam Raftery, Editor, East County Magazine

June 20, 2012 (San Diego’s East County) – A budget now on the Governor’s desk would gut the California Public Records Act, eliminating your right to access  public records.  Donna Frye, president of Californians Aware (CalAware), warns, “This is where we are today, facing a Public Records Act wipe-out unless Governor Brown vetoes that portion of the budget trailer bills and restores all the provisions currently in place.”

CalAware, a watchdog group dedicated to protecting open government, urges  citizens to call the Governor today at (916)445-2841 and ask the following:

EDITORIAL: MAKE SHAREHOLDERS, NOT RATEPAYERS, PAY THE COST OF SAN ONOFRE FIASCO

 

By John Mattes, Much Better Choices

Who should pay for San Onofre fiasco? The answer is obvious. Shareholders collect dividends while ratepayers pay tens of millions of dollars a year for a defunct nuclear plant. It's time for the PUC to step up.

There may be lots of questions yet to be answered about Southern California Edison's permanent shutdown of its San Onofre nuclear plant, but here are a couple about which there's no doubt. Who's responsible? Edison, 100%. Accept no argument that it did the best it could in overseeing a $700-million generator replacement project, but accidents happen. This wasn't an accident: It was the product of what Edison claims was its rigorous oversight of contractors.

EDITORIAL: INTELLIGENCE SURVEILLANCE IS ERODING OUR PRIVACY AND LIBERTY

 

The troubling history of  our U.S. shadow factory -- and how we have lost rights in the name of security                                           

By Nadin Abbott

June 13, 2013 (San Diego) Edward Snowden shook the power elites in Washington D.C. with his revelations that the National Security Agency (NSA) is spying on Americans. He released documents such as the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court (FISA) order to the British newspaper, The Guardian, sending high-level U.S. government officials demanding his prosecution.

READER'S EDITORIAL: THE WIND DEBATE

 

By Supervisor Dave Roberts

June 13, 2013 (San Diego)--On May 15th, the Board of Supervisors approved an ordinance that establishes a rigorous process to install wind turbines. By a 4-1 vote, Supervisors agreed to strict guidelines. Our action did not approve a single, specific project.

My vote to adopt the ordinance came after much careful consideration.

As Dr. Dan Silver of the Endangered Habitats League said during his testimony, "wind energy presents a conundrum."

On one hand, I am very supportive of renewable energy to reduce greenhouse gasses.  On the other, I am concerned about the significant, unmitigable impacts of large wind turbines.

READER’S EDITORIAL: TO EVERYONE IN THE EAST COUNTY CONCERNED ABOUT EDUCATION

By Bill Weaver



May  24, 2013 (Alpine--originally written May 14, 2013) -- I am disappointed to report that new information has recently surfaced that indicates that Propositions H and U Bond funds have been grossly misused by the GUHSD, and that this misuse has been the subject of a cover-up by the GUHSD Trustees and Administrative staff.  A "smoking gun" has been discovered that points toward unethical and non-transparent behavior by District staff, presumably under the direction of the Trustees.



You will see from the content in the attachment that District bond construction funds have been mismanaged at best, and GUHSD fiscal policies and decision-making are a train wreck. The attachment shows that the District's ongoing bond management practices and accounting procedures have cheated taxpayers and burdened the district with unsustainable district "OPEX" Operating Expenses.

READER’S EDITORIAL: SILENCE IN OCOTILLO

 

By Jim Pelley

Photos:  Red Tail Hawk at Ocotillo. Thank God the turbines were not spinning! – Jim Pelley

May 22, 2013 (Ocotillo)--It’s been (1) week now since the blade throw at the Ocotillo Wind overseen by Pattern Energy. Wow! What a difference, we forgot what it was like without these wind turbines turning; it’s a breath of fresh air. Not seeing/hearing the turbines turning weather they are generating power or not is a huge difference and now that they are not turning it reminds of some of main reasons we moved to Ocotillo.

READER’S EDITORIAL: STOP POISONING OUR COMMUNITY! HERBICIDE SPRAYING IS WIND INDUSTRY’S TOXIC SECRET

 

 

“Pattern Energy is going to pollute what it couldn't destroy… Monsanto’s Roundup is an herbicde cousin  to Agent Orange--the defoliant sprayed in Viet Nam that harmed a generation of veterans and their children… This herbicide—a neurotoxin--is going to get carried downwind. Did Pattern fail to notice that there is still a community with children here in spite of its industrialization of the area with 112 turbines and a substation?”

By Linda Ewing, Ocotillo resident

Photo: Sahara mustard, a “weed” the BLM wants to eradicate with toxic herbicides

May 14, 2013 (Ocotillo) -- Herbicide Mitigation? What is that? I heard these two disturbing words and felt panic.

I knew instinctively that it was going to have something to do with this Ocotillo Wind Energy Facility because nothing good has come from this controversial project since the day Pattern Energy uttered its first words of deception to the town of Ocotillo. Since the day the company first tried to convince us that its massive 438 foot-tall industrial-sized wind turbines were good for the economy.  And yes, the very same day we realized that human lives were disposable and irrelevant in the statistical world of giant wind turbine developers.

READER'S EDITORIAL: HAPPY MOTHER'S DAY?

 

By Iolanda Scripca

She just hoped she wouldn't die alone but made sure to leave her door unlocked so someone, anyone would find her...

May 12, 2013 (San Diego)—I wonder if there is a definition for the words "forgotten mother?" If not I was thinking to add to all the dictionaries of the world – your definition...and mine.

Sometimes I wonder if I am one of those mothers or heading in that direction.

EDITORIAL: AN ILL WIND BLOWING: SUPERVISORS SHOULD JUST SAY “NO” TO INDUSTRIAL WIND AT WEDNESDAY’S WIND ORDINANCE VOTE

 

 

By Miriam Raftery, Editor, East County Magazine

May 3, 2013 (San Diego’s East County) Updated May 7, 2013 – On Wednesday, May 8, San Diego County Supervisors will vote on legislation that could have devastating impacts across East County and the entire San Diego region. 

At stake is a proposed wind ordinance that could open wide vast tracts of East County for industrial wind development, putting residents across our County at risk of a catastrophic wildfire or deadly Valley Fever spores that can blow 70 miles or more.   There are many more reasons to oppose this ordinance, as well as the proposed gutting of Boulevard’s community plan, but these are two of the most compelling.  These and other disturbing facts are detailed below.

If you share these concerns, it's important to contact all five Supervisors.  It's especially important for San Diego residents to tell their Supervisors that you care about what happens to East County, since some Supervisors have shown an arrogant disregard for public health and safety outside of their own districts. Of course, a wildfire that originates in East County and burns into San Diego, or deadly Valley Fever spores that blow into urban areas, should clearly be of concern to all County residents and their representatives. You can contact Supervisors here and scroll down to learn more.  It's also important to show up and speak out at Wednesday morning's meeting at 9 a.m. at 1600 Pacific Coast Highway, Room 402.

EDITORIAL: TIME FOR LEADING PLAYERS TO TAKE ACTION TOWARD REOPENING EAST COUNTY PERFORMING ARTS CENTER

 

By Miriam Raftery, Editor, East County Magazine

April 23, 2013 (El Cajon) – This afternoon, the spotlight will shine on the El Cajon City Council as it considers whether to enter into discussions with the Grossmont Union High School District on a potential partnership to reopen the East County Performing Arts Center (ECPAC).  The plan potentially could also including building a state-of-the-art, multi-use facility adjacent to ECPAC, filling a community need for meeting space as well as an additional entertainment venue to create a broader cultural hub for the community.

It’s time for city leaders to take center stage and provide leadership to reopen ECPAC, the jewel of East County’s cultural community.  Shuttered in disrepair for several years, the darkened theater has negatively impacted businesses downtown as well as arts lovers across our region. 

A partnership with the school district could be a win-win situation, though there are challenges that must be explored and overcome.

READER'S EDITORIAL: FATAL VALLEY CENTER ACCIDENT CRASH SHOWS NEED FOR SAFER ROADS

By Dorothea Boughdadly, Director, Hoofs and Woofs Animal Rescue, Valley Center

April 18, 2013  (Valley Center) – It’s so sad that people die  and it's so preventable.  Valley Center Road looks like it goes straight ahead, but it does not.

Vesper Road goes straight and Valley Center Road curves to the right.  Very confusing to those new to the area.  And sadly, very deadly.

READER'S EDITORIAL: SEQUESTRATION WILL LEAVE SENIORS HUNGRY

4 Million Senior Meals to be Cut Nationwide, 100,000 meals in San Diego Alone

By Paul Downey, President/CEO, Senior Community Centers

March 28, 2013 (San Diego)--Sometimes I am really glad to live almost 3,000 miles from Washington DC. The latest “raging” chest-thumping, finger-pointing debate is whether President Obama cancelling tours of the White House are politically motivated or a true result of sequestration. This is a bit of Nero fiddling while Rome burned.

READER'S EDITORIAL: A DECISION IN YOUR FAVOR

 

Court rules that CA Public Records Act applies to public officials’ private e-mail accounts

By Lou Russo

March 24, 2013 (Alpine)--In a Superior Court in California on March 19, 2013, a decision was filed which should make every Californian happy. The Honorable James P. Kleinberg decided that you, a citizen of California, have the right to view the records of public servants concerning the public’s business, in any form, regardless of where they are stored. Let me quote from the decision:

“[It is] unlikely the Legislature intended to render documents confidential based on their location, rather than their content.”

READER'S EDITORIAL: DID YOU KNOW--CAL FIRE HIDDEN FUNDS AND NO OVERSIGHT FROM THE LEGISLATURE?

By Assemblyman Brian Jones

March 20, 2013 (San Diego’s East County)--Did you know that Cal Fire bureaucrats have joined the ranks of state agencies hiding taxpayer dollars?  It’s sad, but true – recent Cal Fire headlines are less about the brave duty of firefighters and more about secreting taxpayer dollars away in a non-profit association.

Not only did Cal Fire hide $3.5 million, but they did so while Governor Brown and the Democrat-controlled Legislature slapped a $150 fire tax on rural residents from San Diego to the Northern California border.

MEDIA WATCH: OPPOSE PROPAGANDISTS AS MEDIA OWNERS; SIGN A PETITION ASKING THE L.A. TIMES NOT TO SELL TO THE KOCH BROTHERS

Sign petition:  http://act.couragecampaign.org/sign/latimeskoch/#1

By Miriam Raftery

March 18, 2013 (San Diego) – For weeks, rumors have abounded that the respected Los Angeles Times newspaper and its parent Tribune Company may sell to would-be buyers whose goal is not journalism, but propaganda. On March 17, U-T San Diego owner Doug Manchester told MSNBC news that the billionaire Koch Brothers, major financial backers of the TEA Party, are interested in buying the Times empire, which includes the Chicago Tribune as well as the L.A. Times

READER'S EDITORIAL: HOURS LEFT TO SAVE SOCIAL SECURITY

 

By Fred Griesbach

American Association of Retired Persons (AARP)

 

March 19, 2013 (Washington D.C)--In a matter of hours, the Senate could vote to cut your Social Security benefits.

President Obama is pushing a budget deal that would include a proposal called "chained CPI", a benefit cut that would take money straight out of your pocket – and some Senators want to take it.

Their vote could happen at any moment, so your Senators need to hear from you right now. Tell your Senators to keep your hard-earned benefits safe and say no to chained CPI.

READER'S EDITORIAL: BETTER OPTIONS TO IMPROVE SAFETY IN EL CAJON INSTEAD OF RED LIGHT CAMERAS

By Jim Lissner

March 9, 2013 (El Cajon)--Anyone who watches the crash videos circulated by the red light camera Industry will notice that most of the crashes occur many seconds into the red.  The Texas Transportation Institute (TTI), with sponsorship by the Texas DOT, studied 41 crash videos obtained from red light cameras and confirmed what the public has been noticing: "With one exception, all of the right-angle crashes occurred after 5 seconds or more of red."  They also reported that the average was 8.9 seconds into the red.  (Link to the study:  http://thenewspaper.com/rlc/docs/04-alternatives.pdf. See pages 5-15 and 5-16.) 

READER'S EDITORIAL: SEQUESTER HARMS SAN DIEGO; BIPARTISAN SOLUTION NEEDED

By Congressman Scott Peters (D-San Diego)

March 12, 2013 -- Two weeks before the sequester took effect, House leadership called a recess and sent us home. As a former Port Commissioner and City Council president, that was foreign to me. I could not believe, with the amount of work still to be done, we were sent home. And, even more frustrating, that we were sent home without being allowed to vote on a single alternative to the sequester, because leadership didn’t agree with the legislation. This, in my opinion, is not representative of the democratic process that the United States is regarded for.

I used my time at home to send a message back to Washington. I worked with our port commissioners, scientific research community and maritime workers to tell Congress that the negative effects of the sequester will be felt in San Diego through layoffs, furloughs, stifled research and decreased GDP.

READER’S EDITORIAL: SMOKING BLUNDERBUSS—ILLEGAL FAILURE TO CONSULT WITH TRIBAL PEOPLES DOOMS GIANT SOLAR AND WIND PLANTS ACROSS WEST

 

By Robert Lundahl

March 10, 2013 (Solana Beach) — Chris Clarke's recent article deconstructs a video clip from the film, "Who Are My People?" http://www.kcet.org/news/rewire/solar/filmmaker-blm-lax-on-native-consultation-over-solar-projects.html It is important for the public (us) to get our heads around the idea that the federal government is legally responsible to Native people. 

In this case to uphold processes involving consultation when construction projects impact historic grounds, where there was a village, burials, where there is an area historically, or in the present day used by Native peoples, in spiritual or traditional practices. 

READER'S EDITORIAL: THE COMING STUDENT LOAN FREIGHT TRAIN

By Jake Christie

March 2, 2013 (San Diego’s East County)--I could’ve called it a “bomb” or a “fiasco”, but I prefer to call the mess that is the American private and public student loan system a “freight train” because the light at the end of the tunnel is an oncoming high-speed double diesel pulling 25 cars full of heavy loads.  The numbers surrounding the student loan mess are horrifying; the total student loan debt out is one trillion dollars, which is the entire US government budget in a year. Of that amount, $76 billion is in default, though Allan College of StudentLoanJustice.org put out a press release* doubting that figure because even defaulted loans have interest piled on top of them.

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