Editorials

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

READER'S EDITORIAL: STOP THE EFFORT TO PRIVATIZE MEDICARE

 

By Richard Collins, San Diego

December 6, 2016 (San Diego) -- U.S. House Speaker Paul Ryan, Representative Kevin Brady, Chairman, Ways and Means Committee, and Representative Tom Price, Chairman, Budget Committee, who is President-elect Donald Trump's nominee for Secretary of Health and Human Services, are among Republican leaders in the U.S. House who support legislation to privatize Medicare by converting it to a "premium support" system.  I urge your newspaper to editorialize against their efforts to change Medicare to a "voucher" plan that will raise the cost of health care for seniors.

Just because the Republican Party has majorities in the House and Senate and the President-elect, it is not a mandate to destroy Medicare with a "voucher" plan to pay outright subsidies to insurance companies who make big contributions to many members of Congress.

READER’S EDITORIAL: THE NATION CANNOT ALLOW A WHITE SUPREMACIST AS ATTORNEY GENERAL

 

By Patrick Osio, Jr.

December 5, 2016 (San Diego’s East County) -- The Senate will soon consider confirming Jefferson Beauregard III to the powerful post of Attorney General – In the nation’s best interest, it is imperative his confirmation be denied.

READER’S EDITORIAL: THE CLEAR CONSCIENCE OF A GREEN



By Brett Stalbaum, Shelter Valley resident

Photo:  Jill Stein, Green Party presidential candidate 2016

November 12, 2016 (Shelter Valley) -- I come from a fairly conservative family with midwestern roots. My parents were college and nursing school graduates in the 1960s, the first in their families with degrees. They felt stifled by lack of opportunity in their home state, and enjoyed adventure. So they packed up and came to California, carrying me and my diapers. As a northern California kid, I grew up with a love of the redwoods, normally inclement beaches, the Sierra Nevada, the Cascades, and the basins and ranges of Nevada. By 1989, I was a student at San Francisco State University, and was already considerably more liberal than my Catholic - and wonderful - mother and father. The community I grew up in was fairly described as an openly white supremacist one, with a particularly vicious and paranoid attitude toward black Americans. But my tolerant family, as well as our church, also introduced me to multiracial, multicultural, and yes, even multisexual California. I did not and do not know how to be the best ally all of the time, but certainly I have countered the hatred that some whites maintain toward people of color; indeed I have shamed and lost many friends. My concerns then and now are social justice, economic justice, and protecting the planet; although lately an emergent concern for the physical well being of friends, colleagues, and students of color has come ever more to the foreground.

READER’ S EDITORIAL: A MESSAGE TO THOSE WHO VOTED FOR DONALD TRUMP

 

By Claire Pratt, President, Eastlake/Bonita Democratic Club 

November 10, 2016 (San Diego’s East County) -- I join the many who are writing their reactions and expressing their grief about the election.  Tuesday night and Wednesday were shock, numbness.  Last night sleepless again and today tears, mourning.   Here is my written contribution.

READER’S EDITORIAL: FIRE TRUCK USED FOR POLITICKING IN SAN MIGUEL FIRE BOARD RACE

 

By Patrick D. Walker, Deputy Vice President—District X,  CAL FIRE Firefighters Local 2881

November 5, 2016 (San Diego’s East County) -- In reference to your article regarding Santee firefighters' use of a fire engine for political action, it should be known that the same is being done in San Miguel.  Those who oppose the CAL FIRE Cooperative Agreement are using an Engine that the District sold to them (Former Local 1434 / San Miguel Firefighters Foundations) for $1 with the clause that it would not be used for political action, well it clearly is.  Not only are they using it for political action (Displaying at local businesses) they are also sharing the images on Social Media and storing the fire engine at a fire station.  See video.  They are also driving the engine around the District with trucks in front and behind supporting the opposition.  From day one they have done everything to sabotage the CAL FIRE Agreement, this is just another example.

READER’S EDITORIAL: LA MESA COUNCIL RACE CAREENS INTO THE GUTTER

 

By Gene Carpenter and Anthony Mc Ivor

November 4, 2016 (La Mesa) -- Earlier this week, many La Mesa residents found a rude surprise in their mailboxes. It was a particularly vile attack mailer targeting La Mesa Council candidate Colin Parent.  The piece is slick, but  intellectually dishonest and shabbily written.  After three polite debates in city venues, who would use the post for such a vulgar purpose? 

READER’S EDITORIAL: HOW CAN TAXPAYERS’ LAST LINE OF DEFENSE BE MISSING IN ACTION IN GROSSMONT’S MEASURE BB?

 

By Priscilla Schreiber, Trustee, Grossmont Union High School District

November 3, 2016 (San Diego’s East County) -- After reviewing statements made in the San Diego County Taxpayers Association's (SDCTA) campaign literature, "Yes on BB", I thought it would be helpful to the voters if I shared my perspective, as the Board member who did not vote to put this bond measure on the ballot.

My comments (not in bold) follow their statements (in boldface):

READER’S EDITORIAL: SELLING OUT SANTEE WITH A DEVELOPERS’ DELIGHT CAMPAIGN

 

By Van K. Collinsworth, Executive Director/Resource Analyst

savefanita@gmail.com

October 31, 2016 (Santee)--Analysis shows 98% of Santee City Council candidate Mason Herron's donors are from outside of Santee; much of these contributors are easily identified as being traffic gridlock producing development interests. (CA Form 460’s are required disclosures.)

In contrast,  Stephen Houlahan has not taken any developer dollars and 76% of his contributors are Santee residents.

READER'S EDITORIAL: PROP B: A RECIPE FOR IRREPARABLE HARM TO SAN DIEGANS

 

By Billie Jo Jannen, Chairman, Campo Lake Morena Community Planning Group

October 27, 2016 (Campo) -- The Campo Lake Morena Community Planning Group has voted unanimously to formally oppose Proposition B – a developer-proposed initiative that would allow over 1,700 homes to be built on what is currently farmland, and does so in opposition to both the county general plan and the wishes of community planners and residents.

READER’S EDITORIAL: SAND MINING AND THE STADIUM

 

By Barry A. Treahy, Lakeside

Photo:  Sand mining in Wisconsin; Wisconsin Watch creative commons image

October 18, 2016 (Lakeside) -- This November election will be interesting.

Two Charger stadium initiatives are on the ballot and one EIR for El Monte Valley Sand Mining remains pending.  Am I looking at a coincidence, that the EIR might be coming out after the Sand Miners see how elections go and whether or not they will be selling sand to build a new stadium?

READER’S EDITORIAL: MEASURE B WOULD BE A PUBLIC SAFETY HAZARD

 

By Mark Jackson, former Valley Center Community Planning Group member

Map by Tristan Loper and Maya Srikrishnan

October 11, 2016 (San Diego’s East County) - The Lilac Hills Ranch development put forward by San Diego County Measure B claims to be good for the region’s housing needs. In fact, it would not make a dent in the county’s affordable housing shortage. It would also endanger the very people who purchase homes in the development in the event of a wildfire. For these and many other reasons, I urge all county residents to vote No on B.

READER’S EDITORIAL: DISCERNMENT ON PROPOSITIONS 62 AND 66

 

By Michael Peddecord, Member, California People of Faith Working Against the Death Penalty

October 3, 2016 (San Diego) -- Discernment is the ability to judge well. In Judaic and Christian traditions, it can be understood as seeking spiritual direction and understanding prior to making a decision. Discernment can also be regarded as a spiritual gift allowing us to judge or appraise a person, statement, situation or proposal.  To achieve this gift, one can be aided by reading scripture and informed texts, prayer, contemplation and discussion of the issue.  Trusted spiritual advisors and religious leaders are also useful in discernment.

READERS’ EDITORIAL: THE POT PEDDLER NEXT DOOR

 

By Jack and Helen Ofield, Lemon Grove

September 22, 2016 (Lemon Grove) - -Measure V on our November 8 ballot would bring up to 15 marijuana storefronts to Lemon Grove, according to Mayor Mary Sessom, serving about 4,000 pot smokers apiece, yielding a mob scene of some 60,000 addicts (more than twice the size of Lemon Grove's population).

READER’S EDITORIAL: BLM SHOULD FINALIZE WIND AND SOLAR LEASING RULE FOR PUBLIC LANDS

 

By Ryan Alexander, president, Taxpayers for Common Sense



September 19, 2016 (Washington D.C.) -- The Bureau of Land Management (BLM) is expected to release its Wind and Solar Leasing Rule in the next few weeks.  The rule would create a system for competitive solar and wind energy development on federal lands. It would also establish megawatt (MW) capacity fees for wind and solar energy projects in order to capture a fair market value (FMV) and a fair return for taxpayers.  View the BLM proposal here.

READER’S EDITORIAL: WHY DID THE SHERIFF’S DEPARTMENT REPORT MEETINGS WITH RESIDENTS WHEN NONE HAVE OCCURRED?

 

By Jan Hedlun, Potrero resident

Note:  Hedlun sent this on Sept. 14 to San Diego Sheriff’s Deputy Chad Boudreau, with copies to Supervisor Dianne Jacob and ECM.  She’s granted permission to run this as an open letter/reader’s editorial.

Re:  Regional Fire Safe Council Meeting/Potrero

September 16, 2016 (Potrero) -- My name is Jan Hedlun and I am a Potrero resident and an elected member of the Potrero Community Planning Group. I was speaking to Bob Buerer who attended the recent Regional Fire Safe Council meeting on Thursday, September 8th who told me something deeply disturbing.

DEAN DEFENDS FOUNDING MEMBERS OF NEW MERCHANTS GROUP

 

By Miriam Raftery

September 15,2016 (La Mesa) – After receiving a reader’s editorial and a call from another local businessperson critical of the new La Mesa Village Association (LMVA), which ECM recently profiled, ECM reached out to Aaron Dean, LMVA  Chair, to respond.

READER’S EDITORIAL: IS THE LMVA REALLY A FRESH START?





Regarding your article "new La Mesa Village Association has big ideas for revitalizing city's historic heart"

By Peter Carzis, Owner, Peter’s Gentlemen’s Apparel

Editor's note: Aaron Dean, chair of the new LMVA, spoke with ECM and provided his responses to concerns raised by Carzis and others.  You can read his remarks here.

October 14,2016 (La Mesa)--I attended the first meeting of this new group. They said they want this group to be a "fresh start" in the village, but yet they boast four Founding Members who are officers and directors of the "old" group that owes the taxpayers and the City of La Mesa $47,900.50.  (Per the city clerk, this amount was turned over to collection and none of the debt has been repaid as of today.)

READER’S EDITORIAL -- FORD’S PUSH ON DISABILITY RIGHTS SHOULD BE A MODEL FOR PHILANTHROPY

 

By Steve Bartlett and Tony Coelho

September 15, 2016 (Detroit) -- The Ford Foundation made history last year when it announced it was focusing its grant making on equality. Now one of the nation’s wealthiest and oldest foundations is making history in a new way: It acknowledged in big, bold fashion that inclusion means focusing on disability as well as race, gender, and class. Indeed, according to the U.S. Census, people with disabilities are the poorest of the poor in America.

READER'S EDITORIAL: HIDING EVIDENCE OF THE MASSACRE

 

By Mark Duchamp, Save the Eagles International

Photo courtesy Ontario Wind Resistance


September 12, 2016 (San Diego's East County) - News of bird and bat deaths at wind farms have reduced to a trickle. Does that mean that a solution has been found? Yes, it has, but it's not what you think. Wind turbines are every year more numerous and the massacre they cause is ever increasing. What has changed is that the cover up is now effective at 100%, or just about.

The following news sheds light on the latest technique for making mortality data unavailable to the public (and the media):

READER’S EDITORIAL: WILDIFRE EVACUATION SLOWED BY PEOPLE TAKING PHOTOS: PLEASE DON’T ENDANGER OTHERS

 

By Ray Conser

Photo courtesy of Troy

September 2, 2016 (San Diego's East County) - One negative factor from this week’s fire on Skyline Truck Trail.

I personally called my neighbors at work to let them know that a fire had broken out close to their homes and that the should head home to take care of their homes, horses and pets.  Most of them had a difficult time getting home because so many by-standers were parked on the shoulders of Skyline taking pictures with their phones that also included several Border Patrol cars, REALLY! If anything they should have been going from car to car getting them to move on and clear the road.

READER'S EDITORIAL: SAN DIEGANS WON'T PAY A DIME FOR THE NEW CHARGERS STADIUM - REALLY?

 

By Tony Manolatos​



August 11, 2016 (San Diego) — Memo to taxpayers:  If voters approve the Chargers billion-dollar-plus stadium tax in November San Diego taxpayers would pay for the new facility in a variety of ways.

Do not believe Dean Spanos, Mark Fabiani and their surrogates. The cost would NOT be born solely by hotel guests. San Diego taxpayers would pay. The total amount is unknown, which is why Dean Spanos’ plan to raise our taxes by more than $1 billion is so risky.

In this open memo to taxpayers, the “No Downtown Stadium – Jobs and Streets First” coalition outlines several examples of costs San Diego taxpayers would incur. The following are in addition to the costs found in the Chargers $1.8 billion measure:

READER’S EDITORIAL: THE REAL DIFFERENCES BETWEEN CLINTON AND TRUMP. READY?

 

By Tom H. Hastings

July 24, 2016 (San Diego) -- So, let’s channel the cranky ghost of George Wallace as he justified his 1968 run for the presidency when he noted, “There's not a dime's worth of difference between the Democrat and Republican parties.” What do we know about that in our day, in this election season?

At the presidential level, we might conclude that:

READER’S EDITORIAL: SAN DIEGO LACKS ADEQUATE RESERVOIRS, VICTIMIZES LAKE MORENA

 

By George Barnett

Photo:  Cabin with former lakefront view now overlooks a barren wasteland.

July 13, 2016 (Lake Morena) -- East County Magazine did a recent piece on Lake Morena and whether water levels were maintained too low to be a viable source of water for fire-fighting.  In the article, Billie Jo Jannen is quoted as saying if there’s a safety issue it needs to be examined.  Billie Jo is quite right.

READER'S EDITORIAL: SMOKE-FREE OUTDOOR DINING--GOOD FOR HEALTH, GOOD FOR BUSINESS

Click here for a list of La Mesa smoke-free restaurants.

By Dani Womack

Pastor Dani Womack is the Community Life Pastor at Crosspointe Life Church and Chairperson of the La Mesa Collaborative.

July 11, 2016 (La Mesa)--Summer is finally here and what better place to enjoy being outdoors than San Diego County! La Mesa has invested millions to renovate their Downtown Village, putting a priority on outdoor seating in public spaces and local restaurants have joined in by growing their outdoor dining patios. Many cities throughout San Diego County and the state have passed local laws restricting smoking in outdoor areas such as parks, beaches, farmer’s markets, and outdoor dining patios.

READER’S EDITORIAL: TO BE OR NOT TO BE? SAN MIGUEL FIRE PROTECTION DISTRICT

 

By Charlene Ayers, Ranters Roost

 July 9,2016 (San Diego's East County) --Charlene Ayers, founder of the Ranters Roost discussion forum, offers pithy analysis and barbed views on the San Miguel Fire Protection District board meeting July 6th, at which the board voted 4-3 to end its partnership with Cal Fire and return to being a free-standing district.  Below are parts 1 and 2 of her posts, reprinted with permission. Part I includes other agenda items Part II focuses on the decision to break off from Cal Fire.

 

PART I

To be or not to be…

The meeting was to start at 5:30 p.m.  I got there at 5 p.m. because Cal Fire likes to fill the seats with their employees.  There were only 10 seats left.   There was not the usual sea of dark blue taking up the room, just lots of folks, families, in plain attire.

READER’S EDITORIAL: “GREAT DEAL OF NOTIFICATION” TO PUBLIC ON SAN MIGUEL FIRE DISTRICT BOARD PLANS TO WEIGH STAND-ALONG CONTRACT FOR FIRE SERVICES

 

Board member responds to Robert Perry's editorial: Discussion and possible vote July 6

Photo: Large crowd at a prior SMF meeting on financial issues prior to the contract with Cal Fire

By Theresa McKenna,  Board Member, San Miguel Fire Protection District

As I relayed in my phone conversation with Mr. Perry recently, I personally believe there has been a great deal of notification to the public on this specific topic.  In fact, significantly more notice has been given to the Community than was ever made by the prior Board that voted to contract out fire suppression services.

READER’S EDITORIAL: SAN MIGUEL FIRE TO VOTE JULY 6 ON SPLITTING WITH CAL FIRE: PUBLIC INPUT NEEDED

 

 

Update:  San Miguel Fire Protection District board member Theresa McKenna has responded to Robert Perry's editorial to detail how much notice and discussion has been held on this issue. Read her remarks here.

By Robert Perry, community resident

Photo:  Protest at station closed due to budget gaps back when San Miguel was a stand-alone station, before contracting with Cal Fire. Opinions ran hot on both sides of the partnership deal at that time.

July 2, 2016 (San Diego’s East County) --With zero public input and zero community discussion (thus far) the San Miguel Fire Protection District has an action item on the agenda for the board meeting of July 6, 2016 to "discuss and may approve returning to a stand alone District".  View agenda.

The district has contracted with CAL FIRE the past four years after facing a structural deficit of their own making.  There is one more year of the contract.

READER’S EDITORIAL: BORDER FIRE SURVIVOR ASKS SUPERVISOR JACOB AND AGENCIES TO HOLD TOWN HALL MEETING ON FIRE ISSUES IN THE AREAS THAT BURNED

 

By Jan Hedlun

Potrero Resident and Wildfire Survivor

June 28, 2016 (Potrero) --I have heard that local and government agencies involved in the Border Fire are already patting themselves on the back, saying they handled everything perfectly without having sat down with community members for input.  I notice they are holding meetings to tell each other what a good job they’ve done; meetings that most of us recovering from the wildfire did not hear about and could not get to.

I just saw on a Facebook post that today the San Diego County Board of Supervisors are going to “chat about how to provide assistance to victims of the fire at their meeting today." * Chat? Didn’t they have a multitude of meetings after the Cedar (2003), Harris and Witch Fires (2007) that dealt will these topics?  Didn’t they come out with resolutions back then?

I’ve not heard from anyone that Supervisor Jacobs or other authorities have been out here to ask people face-to-face what happened and what could be improved upon. Don’t you think they would want to know all the facts from the people that were involved before holding all these self-congratulatory meetings?

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