It's a right, it's a hard-won privilege, and yet it's often taken for granted. Did you know that the government that actually impacts your life on a day-to-day basis more than any other is your local government? It's true!
Did you see the massive coverage of the five Santa Clarita City Council candidates splashed across The Signal's Sunday Opinion page last weekend? How could you miss it?
Yes, spring HAS sprung in the Santa Clarita Valley. The hills are a beautiful, beckoning green, wildflowers adorn the hillsides with a blaze of color. It is the most wonderful time of the year! Thursday marked the official start of spring, but we've been celebrating spring in the SCV now for a few lovely weeks. Symphony's Family Concert
Because of the wide variety of friends that I have made over the years, I often find myself in the company of people who do not necessarily agree with my politics. Whether it is hanging out at a Super Bowl party or at fundraising events for elected officials, I always seem to attract people to conversation about politics. And many times these people are my political opposites.
During a recent trip to San Francisco, I accidentally discovered that a vast array of eager, pleasure-oriented female (and male) "dates" is easily available through that city's Yellow Pages.
Probably the most eye-opening aspect of the governor's 10 percent across-the-board state budget cuts is the immediate release of 22,000 dangerous felons onto the streets of California. If Gov.Schwarzenegger's intention was to scare our state legislators into action, let's hope the action taken doesn't initiate abject pandemonium.
Santa Clarita has an oak on its city seal and has long been a "Tree City, USA," holding annual arbor day events to promote local tree planting. This year's Arbor Day celebration will be held on April 12, and we hope to see you there again at our Friends of the Santa Clara River booth. It is wonderful that the city promotes this event and acknowledges the importance of urban forests. Now the city needs ...
This past Friday, Carrie and I made a quick trip to Brooklyn to visit our two sons living in New York. Jon had kindly arranged for us all to see Patrick Stewart playing Macbeth at the incredible Brooklyn Academy of Music. So it was to be a wonderful weekend, full of fun with our boys and with seeing fabulous Stewart in that riveting Shakespeare play.
Another week of governmental inactivity in Washington D.C. has passed. Granted, 2008 is a presidential election year, and substantive legislation traditionally takes a backseat to politics, but the United States House of Representatives has literally fallen asleep at the switch.
As we heard in the debates, there are many "hot button" issues this campaign season. Having been elected twice by the voters to work on tough issues like water supply and the cleanup of the Whittaker-Bermite property, I respectfully offer that public office isn't about one issue, it's about handling everything so residents can enjoy their daily lives.
Quality of life is the key issue in this election for city council. My campaign is about not only maintaining but continually improving our quality of life here in Santa Clarita which is why I have earned the endorsements of Congressman Buck McKeon, Council member Marsha McLean and Mayor Pro-Tem Frank Ferry.
I had the honor of spending 25 years protecting the public as an LAPD officer. While serving in the San Fernando Valley I witnessed the deterioration of a place that had a strong sense of community to one that is now gang-infested, fear-ridden and in many areas lacking hope.
When we think about local public health and safety, we picture our sheriff and fire departments, our hospital, and the county health department. We check the county's health ratings before we enter our restaurants; we count on first responders to be there for us when emergencies strike; and we need sufficient operating rooms and hospital beds to provide timely health services.
Given a chance to write about a single issue of importance, what do I choose? Is there one single issue facing our city that transcends all others, or are we just faced with a number of important issues?
After listening to what seems like a decade's worth of presidential debates and after having come of age, politically, during the blow-out sale at Bush's big government bonanza, I was recently taken by the chin and clued in that before impressive speeches about health care reform or nuanced discourses on entitlements reform are given, a more vital subject must be addressed.
Seemingly disconnected things. One spurious. The other more serious. Both point the same way to freedoms lost, never to be regained.
In 2006 I came up against a holiday deadline crunch, so I turned my column over to Turpy, the beloved eight-year-old Golden Retriever/Chow mix who had turned up at our doorstep as a puppy.
When Charles Darwin penned his final draft of On the Origin of Species in 1876 he gave the world a game-changing worldview. Up until that time it was generally held that the only explanation for the reality of things was the intentional activity of a higher power, usually understood as supernatural and divine. Darwin's theory of evolutionary natural selection offered a way out. He declared that he could explain the reality of our world, and everything in it, without God.
Politics is not for the faint-of-heart or easily discouraged. It's a long game with many moving parts and players. It has all the intrigue of a mystery, all the sport of any game, and strategy that would rival most military coups.
If you have children or grandchildren in school in Santa Clarita, I hope you will join me for the Literacy & Arts Festival on Saturday, Dec. 7.
So let's get some things straight right off the bat: Yes, Obamacare's rollout has been an unmitigated disaster. And yes, some people have lost their insurance plans despite President Obama's assurances that if they were happy with what they had they could keep it.
It is becoming more evident everyday. Our society is fracturing into little cliques of discontent. We are becoming a factious people. Cynicism might be nominated as our national hobby, and the criticism it breeds has turned us into a passionate yet mediocre debating society.
We turn up our collective noses at the brutality of Ancient Rome's gladiatorial combat games. These bloody, brutal and deadly contests were decadent displays of an indulgent, yet morally primitive culture, we tell ourselves. Athletes were slaughtered for the entertainment of the Roman citizens-sacrificed for their amusement. Every gasp in disgust at what the ancient Romans did in the Colosseum suggests that we somehow think we are better than that.
I love buying a new car. Yes, I know. Buying a used car makes better financial sense since new cars lose about 30 percent of their value when you drive them off the lot.
It would appear that there is some confusion as to the purpose of the essays that appear under my name on the op-ed page of the Mighty Signal.
Much has been written over the past few months regarding the GOP establishment's attempts to quiet the Tea Party/Conservative wing of the party.
Santa Clarita's community gardens are feeding local families - and not just the families of gardeners. Just like America's "war gardens" and "victory gardens" during World War II, Santa Clarita's gardens are providing pesticide-free, healthy food for families.
When smoke clears on this unfortunate period of American political polarization and congressional debauchery, we will learn the man most responsible for our modern dysfunctional political intercourse is George W. Bush's infuriatingly effective propaganda master, Karl Rove.
Veterans Day. 11/11. A special day, a time to honor our country's heroes. Those who have served this great nation have done so in times of peace and in times of war. They protect and defend our country and allow us to live our lives with the freedoms we all expect, enjoy, and all too often take for granted. We can live the American Dream thanks to these brave men and women. These fine citizens ...
At the very core of Liberalism is the idea that good deeds can only be achieved by legislating them. Strong arguments can be made that these "do-gooder" policies achieve the opposite and actually serve to hurt those they intend to help.