Letters to the Editor
Published: November 16, 2012
Democracy in action
To the Editor:
“Ballots are the rightful and peaceful successors of bullets; and that when ballots have fairly and constitutionally decided, there can be no successful appeal, except to ballots themselves, at succeeding elections.” -- Abraham Lincoln
Our system of government presupposes that differences of opinion among citizens are best settled by the will of the majority and not by arms. This is especially important when voters are closely divided on an issue. In the case of Measure M, the ballots showed that voters overwhelming agree that unification is best for our community. It would be foolish not to trust the judgment of so many people.
Though Michelle and I vigorously opposed Measure M, we are committed to carrying out the decision of the voters to the best of our abilities. Michelle’s candidacy for the Unified Board was wholly motivated by her desire to make unification work, if it should pass. Her election, despite 70% of the people disagreeing with her, was heartening. We thank the voters for their trust.
The most disappointing part of the public debate over Measure M was the need for the Santa Paula Times to defend itself against bullying. The accusation, we think, was wholly unwarranted. The Santa Paula Times graciously printed our letters, even though they often exceeded the usual word limit, and it never failed to print them. As a result, it enabled us to present our case in the public forum, even though its official position differed from ours. These are not the actions of a bully.
Vigorous debate is a healthy part of our democratic process, and it is vital to have an outlet where opposing opinions can be fairly aired. For years the Santa Paula Times has provided such a service. Santa Paula is fortunate to have a resource not available to most small communities, and we should be grateful to those who have dedicated themselves to providing it.
Kevin and Michelle Kolbeck
Book menders appreciated
To the Editor:
Altrusa International Inc. of San Buenaventura held a day of learning to mend books at Blanchard Community Library for Make a Difference Day on October 27, 2012.
Thank you to Sharon Knapp, Judy Heard, Suzie Tsoutouves, Tricia Lemmon, Cindy Caulfield, Mary Mah, Gabe Ramos, Cynthia Cruz, Lynne Dowling, and Sue Leonard for diligently mending books for four hours. Some of the books had to be disassembled in order to return them to near new condition. Many of these books are unique to Blanchard Community Library, so are very important to keep in the collection. Everyone’s endeavors resulted in 61 mended books.
A thank you to Lynne Dowling, Norma Geis, and Sue Leonard for sorting the books needing mending into categories for the workshop on how to mend books.
Thank you to everyone who chose to learn how to mend books at Blanchard Community Library.
Beverly Mueller, President
Altrusa International Inc. of San Buenaventura
To the Editor:
The Veterans of Foreign Wars Mercer-Prieto Post 2043, Santa Paula, California would like to thank everyone for their continued support of our annual Spaghetti Dinner fundraiser. The fundraiser was originally scheduled for October 11, 2012 and had to be rescheduled due to gas line leak.
The fundraiser was rescheduled to the Santa Paula Community Center and was very successful because of everyone’s support. The funds from this event are used throughout the year to support local organizations within the Santa Paula area. They also support expenses incurred by our post when requested to participate in Memorial Services for departed veterans and on special holidays.
A special thank you is extended to all our volunteers, the VFW veterans and their family who donate their time and energy, Pastor Ron and Donna Kent from St. Paul’s Episcopal Church, Vons Market and Tresierras Supermarket. We would also like to thank Don and Debbie Johnson from the Santa Paula Times for their support in keeping us in the public’s eye in support of this event. Special thanks also to Ed Mount and Bernice Pulido for their support with the Santa Paula Community Center.
Gerald V. Olivas, Commander
Veterans of Foreign Wars Post 2043
To the Editor:
The Election is over and the people have made their choices. To the winners for City Council, Martin Hernandez and Jim Tovias, I offer congratulations, and extend best wishes for success in your work for the City.
To those who have supported me over these past four years, I offer my heartfelt thanks. I especially want to thank my fellow Council Members, and everyone in the community who gave me advice, sometimes critical, but always with a vision of what is best for the City. I especially want to thank our wonderful City employees who are always kind and gracious. I offer a very special “thanks” to Lorena Alvarez, Elisabeth Amador, Janna Minsk, former City Clerk Peggy Higgins, and Lucy Blanco who made my job most enjoyable. I extend a special thanks to City Clerk Judy Rice who kept me focused during many of those late night meetings. It has been an honor to serve you, including one year as your Mayor. It was a dream come true for the son of a poor family from Oklahoma who came to Santa Paula to escape the Dust Bowl in the 1930s.
Elections are an emotional time - and this one was no exception. To ponder who did what, assign blame, and seek retribution serves no useful purpose. Ultimately it is our responsibility to support our elected officials and move forward. I ask that you do just that.
Fred Robinson, Councilmember
Congratulations to all of the winners
To the Editor:
To all of the citizens, community people and the residents of the City of Santa Paula, this last Tuesday, November 6, 2012, we the citizens, community, people and the residents of the City of Santa Paula went to the polls to cast our votes and voiced our opinions, thoughts and minds and also decided to elect who we wanted to vote for in a number of areas on who was going to run for which office they were selecting to run for. And we voted for the ones that we wanted to win; we chose the ones that we wanted for the Santa Paula Unified School District that we chose to run it and they are Tina Urias, Tim Hicks, Chris Wilson, Michelle Kolbeck and Diana Ponce Gomez. They were chosen by you, the voters, because you had believed in and had faith and confidence in them for what they had to offer for the School District.
You also chose who you wanted to be on the City of Santa Paula City Council, and they were Martin Hernandez and Jim Tovias, whom you chose to represent Santa Paula. You also chose Judy Rice to continue on as City Clerk and Sandy Easley as City Treasurer. And for the city public library, Blanchard Community Library, you voted for and chose Maureen C. Coughlin, Beverly Mueller and Linda P. Spink to be on the Library Board, to be along with the library Board of Directors.
As for these only two measures, well as you know and as I thought that I would predict that Measure M was going to pass - well it did by a big wide majority vote of yes. And as for Measure U, the same way, which I wasn’t too particularly familiar with and also not too aware of either on what was really on the ballot issue, but it passed just like M did, so that is something that will help make the library what it really wants to be, and that is what it is right now - a community-minded oriented library for both the public and the schools, too.
And to all of the ones that ran also, but lost, you made a very good effort and that was o.k. But if you should decided to run again, well better luck next time, because like the old saying: if the first time you don’t succeed, try, try and try again; and for some if they do, regardless of what they run for, will just say the third time is a charm.
But for now I just want to say to all of the winners, congratulations to all of the winners who solely do so deserve to be recognized for the win that they got and deserve. And good luck to you on your way to being where you want to be, and good luck on your journey, too. And best wishes to all who tried and tried and tried, and to you who will do your best and do it for the City of Santa Paula.
Good luck and congratulations. Thank you.
Corruption at the top
To the Editor:
We are learning more every day about corruption and how it is practiced in Washington. Corruption used to be concealed by the corruptor but today it is out there for all to see every day. I can remember the days when one religious organization sold ‘forgiveness’ for cash. However this is no longer practiced or talked about.
Today our politicians are practicing forgiveness for a price every day with gusto. If a politician lies, cheats, steals, embezzles or the like he can buy forgiveness with a contribution to the right people and no punishment comes his way! Recently a loyal Democrat, the former governor of New Jersey, Jon Corzine from Hampton, NY, ex-senator, ex-Goldman-Sachs VP, was the head of an international investment firm that lost $1.2 billion of investors funds - no one could find where the money went - this resulted in his donating a sizeable amount of money to President Obama’s re-election fund - all was forgiven - the whole matter disappeared!
I used to wonder why some smart people gave money to both congressional candidates, Republic and Democrat alike, now I understand! Congress has to approve all Government expenditures and Congress is the first to know where all purchases are going to be made. This gives an opportunity for congressmen to do ‘insider trading’ with this knowledge! Insider trading is against the law for you and I but not for congressmen. This may explain why congressmen spend so much money to get elected. One other benefit our congressmen receive is a lifetime income after serving only two years!
Re: Election year 2012
To the Editor:
Fred Robinson served a 4-year term as city councilman with integrity; thank you Fred! He was part of a team that made tough decisions but brought the city out of the “red”. In this day of dishonest, untruthful and down right liars in politics I’m seeing that it pays off to spin, create illusions and falsify your way into public office. I saw it at the national level and certainly there was some to go around during the city council elections this past year. I do hope Martin Hernandez the best in his four years as councilman but I have reservations about his agenda. He was well supported by the “Mackinnon Fan Club”, the SEIU union and other unions as well; would it be an exaggeration to state that he owes those people a payback? I know of no union that doesn’t support any candidate and doesn’t expect a healthy return for its investment. That’s all fine and dandy but the city councilmen serve the entire city not a section of it. By the way, I’m sure CEDC had a smile on their face last Wednesday morning, who would blame them; they now have an assured vote on that council. The political pundits credit Barack Obama winning re-election because he promised the electorate more ‘goodies”, I believe he’ll give us more of the same. In Santa Paula the city council challengers also promised more; let’s see the decrease in water & sewage rates without resorting to asking other government agencies for a bailout. Transparency was a great talking point 4 years ago for Obama; a S.P. city council challenger seemed to favor this approach as well. Transparency is subjective; over used, minimally explained and exploited except for people of little substance. It seems as if some of the worse politicians trash their opponent, place ridiculous insinuations create lies but nevertheless triumph at the polls. I wonder how the majority can be convinced of the obvious bad character of these politicians, but then again the majority (foolishly) re-elected a president that will turn out to be worse than Jimmy Carter.
Andrew F. Castaneda
Thank you, Fred
To the Editor:
I wish to thank Fred Robinson for the excellent job he has done on the S.P. City Council. I believe he is retiring from Arc in December and since he devoted so much time etc. to City matters, I feel Santa Paula will be the loser without him. I hope he will run in two years, as in my opinion Jim Tovias and Fred were our bet councilmen. I voted for Duane Ashby two years ago, but in my opinion he should have waited a couple of years before running again.
Although I believe the MacKinnon matter could have possibly been handled differently, I believe I read in the S.P. Times that he was looking for another police chief position for 5 years. I believe within the last year or so, at least three chiefs have been hired here in Ventura County. Just because he is a good looking man and donated his time to various causes doesn’t mean he should be allowed to break the rules. In the past, in my opinion there has been too much of that in this city.
Our City Manager was just doing his job.
Kathleen C. Hobson