I had the pleasure of attending the Ignacio Ramos/Jose Compean Fundraiser, earlier this month at the Skirball Cultural Center.
The fundraiser for imprisoned U.S. Border agents was a sell-out. I was delighted to see many Santa Claritans there who contributed the $25 per ticket to see Chris Burgard's Border, the spellbinding movie about illegal immigration, revealing the plight of those who illegally cross the border.
In my teenage years my parents decided to move to Los Angeles.
Having seen the beautiful beaches of Santa Barbara and the luscious trees of Beverly Hills in soap operas, I was expecting to be blown away by California's nature.
Like bloodthirsty spectators at the Colosseum in ancient Rome, many Americans today seek their jollies through carnage and depravity. But instead of lions and slaves going at it for the crowds, now it's violence and titillation-steeped virtual reality video games.
One new "adventure" game that has captured the retail marketplace is Rockstar's Grand Theft Auto (GTA) IV. A financial blockbuster, it has raked in a whopping $500 million in its first week alone.
"Hillary has always been a liar - why all the fuss about her sniper kerfuffle?"
Family men are action heroes. We face a horrible, treacherous nemesis, far worse than other super heroes must face.
We must stand up against the dreaded Domestic Gremlin, a creature not seen, but one that endangers our precious domesticated lifestyle, causing kitchen appliances to malfunction, allowing critters and other unsightly creatures to enter wife- and kid-inhabited living quarters.
Did you buy into an older, established neighborhood in the belief that you would be safe from bulldozers and houses abandoned to subprime mortgages? Did you check the city zoning ordinances and thought you knew what was planned for this neighborhood? Or have you just lived there for 20 or so years in the belief that life would go on as it had been planned when you moved in?
The comedian Yakov Smirnov once said, "In America, its always easy to find party. In Soviet Union, Party always finds you."
Last Friday was a rough one. I'm in the landscape business - married to the housing industry - and as most know, housing isn't the cheeriest spot in the economy right now. It's akin to tap dancing atop a minefield. There's stress, and then more stress - like a "super-unglue" against healthy living.
So, limping home from work, I looked forward to soul-replenishing relaxation with Carrie. We'd light up the fireplace. Pop open the Sauvignon Blanc. And turn on reruns of the BBC series "As Time Goes By."
Most parents will recognize a common excuse used in childhood: "Johnny told me to do it." And the parents' rebuttal, "If Johnny told you to jump off a cliff, would you do it?" This lesson is usually lost on the young child, but it manages to sleep within his consciousness until he is old enough to understand its wisdom.
Now that the talking heads on 24/7 news outlets have a new victim to slay - Barack Obama via his relationship with the Rev. Jeremiah Wright - people are suddenly questioning the patriotism of Wright and the common sense of Obama. Without ...
It's no secret that Ronald Reagan is my hero. For as long as I can remember, I have appreciated the ideals of the conservative movement, and I sincerely believe that if more voters my age (the coveted Gen-Xers) truly understood those values and the long-term implications of the policies generated by those positions, more would support conservative causes and candidates.
Puls•kamp•er•ie –noun 1. the ability to make the people believe you addressed a problem while actually doing nothing. 2. actions taken by a group of people to prevent the true nature of their endeavors from escaping their group, or becoming well know to the public: "The staff members used Puskamperie to keep the facts from reaching the newspapers."
What makes a mother feel beautiful? A pre-Mother's Day TV commercial promoting (what else?) Mother's Day commercialism is currently attempting to answer that question. In doing so, that particular jewelry store ad is venturing into some potentially dangerous psychological territory.
In the commercial, a pretty, smiling woman is seen with her two little girls. They have just polished their Mommy's nails. Not a perfect job, but it's the thought, right?
'What do you want for Mother's Day?" I asked my wife earlier this week. "I don't need anything," she said. "Do you want to do something for Mother's Day?" I asked. "Anything you want to do, we'll do it."
There is not a day that goes by when I do not think about the one person who made all the difference in my life. And at this time of year, the days seem to be strung together by a seamless, bittersweet preoccupation with yesterday. "Bitter" because death brings the weight of days lost; "sweet" because it somehow refines yesterday's memories to help one see just how good things really were. Those memories then become life's joys and lessons that cannot be spoken of enough, and that are held quietly in the heart.
The Santa Clarita Valley Sheriff's Station opened its doors on May 8, 1972, with Sheriff Coffeen officiating at the ceremony. Explorer Scouts conducted tours of the station and included demonstrations of computerized and expanded traffic record systems. Copies of historic dockets and cases dating back to the early 1900s were on display.
Now here we are in 2008, still in the same building. Though the laws and method of operations have changed to fit our current everyday problems and rising crime, our deputies are better trained and equipped to handle whatever comes their way.
With just over two months until the mid-term elections in November, it's time to talk about voting choices. No, I won't be endorsing candidates, issues, or parties. What I will do is suggest some strategies for getting factual information and making wise choices before you enter the voting booth.
Three million dollars. It's a drop in the bucket for a $100-plus-billion budget.
"I just don't get it!" Being on the receiving end of many of my Uncle Earl's tirades, I am now familiar with the lead-in to one of his standard diatribes.
I have opposed the high-speed rail project since its inception and am troubled by Gov. Jerry Brown's single-minded pursuit of it since he took office in 2011.
"Oops!" Gov. Rick Perry infamously uttered during the 2012 Republican primaries.
Smoke slinks across pavement in the darkness, cries from gassed citizens fill the air, people break into a McDonald's to provide milk-based relief to a person hit with tear gas, sound weapons pass levels that cause permanent damage, police shoot pellets at journalists.
Recently I read a study on English language clichés that named "it is what it is" as the most annoying.
Gubernatorial candidate Neel Kashkari pegged it: The high-speed rail is Jerry Brown's Crazy Train. Equally, The Signal named it "the high speed hoodwink" (July 13, 2014).
The Aug. 15, 2015, edition of The Signal contained an op-ed piece by Phil Kerpen entitled "A big new tax coming."
Ah, the 1973–1974 oil crisis. I was 17, driving my blue 1968 VW Bug back and forth from high school and work.
Here's a question: when politicians or public figures are dead wrong about a claim they've repeatedly made, what expectations does the public reasonably have to either an apology or even an acknowledgement that they were wrong in the first place?
By my count, this column is #211. Two hundred eleven times I have put my thoughts into writing and offered them up to the public conversation and critique. I must admit, when I first suggested a column on ethics to the leadership of the Signal I never dreamed it would come to this. This column has become part of my weekly routine. More than that it has become a bit of a master. It has me under its thumb, always reminding me another 750 words will be required, and should make at least some sense.
Undoubtedly, we've all heard it said before: the future is STEM.
"People who run ball clubs, they think in terms of buying players. Your goal shouldn't be to buy players. Your goal should be to buy wins and in order to buy wins, you need to buy your runs."
In California, water is life. Water access and rights have always been a fight for life, with farming interests warring against consumer water districts, while end consumers demand abundant water to maintain a lush Southern Californian suburban lifestyle.