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Sep 30th
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GT Columns

Editors Note

From the Editor

From the Editor

Plus Letters to Good Times
Understanding Obama
People Taking Up Space

Politics, politics, politics. It’s somewhat of the theme of this week’s News section, where News Editor Elizabeth Limbach interviews Mayor Luis Alejo, Watsonville mayor and now a contender for the 28th State Assembly District. Alejo has some intriguing things to say and it’s interesting to note that about 45 percent of Watsonville’s population is under the age of 25. Let that stat sink in a bit. Elsewhere in News, Assemblyman Bill Monning talks with GT about education, another big issue in these shifting financial times. Learn more about all this on page 8.


It was interesting to hear some comments on the recent article that revolved around the alleged hate crime that took place a few weekends ago in front of The Blue Lagoon in Santa Cruz. Somebody mentioned that the alleged attacker should have shown “more tolerance” to the gay man that was later beaten. I’m not a big fan of using the word tolerance when it comes to that kind of situation, particularly when it’s used in LGBT discussions. Have we looked it up? I found two definitions in the Merriam Webster Dictionary. 1. the capacity to endure pain or hardship: endurance, fortitude, stamina. (Is it just me, or isn’t this what those being attacked feel?) 2. sympathy or indulgence for beliefs or practices differing from or conflicting with one's own. It’s alarming to receive news of such a hate crime in what is perceived as a bastion of liberalness. Coming from a familly that was persecuted during World War II, I think I am, by nature, sensitive to this sort of issue. Perhaps some maturity and grace could have been exhibited from the alleged attacker. That, and some anger management.

Until next week ...

Greg Archer | Editor


Letters to Good Times Editor

People Taking Up Space
At first glance Anna Merlan's article and interview of Gage Dayton about the restoration of Younger Lagoon (GT 1/7) would seem to be a generally positive story about a dedicated young person trying to improve the environment. In many ways this is probably a correct assessment but at the root it is really about land use, conflict, competition for resources and, most importantly, over population.
You don't have to be too old to remember a time when there was no UCSC presence on the bluffs at the end of town. There were no buildings, no parking lot, no Marine Lab, no grad students or highly paid and retirement-eligible professors. There was no one to run off the occasional surfer or break up the family picnics that were popular on the beach there long before surfing was even known in Santa Cruz. Now we are expected to believe that because a group of public employees are locking out the public and making a living off of this resource that we all used to share it is somehow an improvement to our quality of life. The tone of the article suggests that these people should be admired for their efforts and for the evenhanded “mild” manner in which they exclude or control our access to what used to be a shared community resource. Blah, blah blah ...
And so another rant is written. It includes a taste of longtime localist elitism and a shot at the University and public employees in general. It is now set up like a bowling pin for the next angry letter writer to self righteously knock down like a nine pin. The cycle begins again. But that is not the point. When nearly every acre of farm land from 41st Avenue to Swift Street is gone to development and we are desalinating sea water and talking about growing algae in garbage bags in the ocean we have a bigger problem than saving a pond on the West side  of Santa Cruz. When are we going to own up to the fact that over population is at the root of almost every single environmental crisis in the world today? We need to begin to laud the pro-creatively responsible way we do the "environmental mitigators." We can endlessly debate land use issues, fairness issues, economic issues, all to some greater good but unless we acknowledge this overriding issue and begin to act the rest is all just beating around the bush.
If hard pressed I think that even Al Gore would admit that there is no such thing as a real environmentalist with four kids. Please! Can someone just mention overpopulation once in a while? It's a big issue, maybe the big issue. We need to start talking about it or at least talk about why we don't talk about it.
Michael Saunders
Ben Lomond

Understanding Obama
Regarding a recent story, a year ago, if we had read in the paper that employers were hiring again, that health care legislation was proceeding without a bump, that Afghanistan suddenly became a nice place to take your kids, we would’ve known we were being lied to. Back then, we recognized that the problems Obama inherited as president wouldn’t go away overnight.
During his campaign, Obama clearly said that an economy that took eight years to break couldn’t be fixed in a year, that Afghanistan was a graveyard of empires and would not be an easy venture for us. Candidate Obama didn’t feed us happy-talk, which is why we elected him. He never said America could solve our health care, economic and security problems without raising the deficit. Instead, he talked of hard choices, of government taking painful and contentious first steps toward fixing problems that can’t be left for another day. 
Right after Obama’s election, we seemed to grasp this. We understood that companies would be happy to squeeze more work out of frightened employees, and would be slow to hire more. We understood that the banks that had extorted billions of dollars out of us, were lying when they said they would share their recovery. We understood that a national consensus on health care would not come easily. Candidate Obama never claimed that his proposed solutions would work flawlessly right out of the box, and we respected him for that.
But today, the president is being attacked as if he were a salesman who promised us that our problems would wash off in the morning. He never made such a promise. It’s time for Americans to realize that governing is hard work, and that a president can’t just wave a magic wand and fix everything.
Ellie Light
Santa Cruz

Local Talk

What’s your focus in 2010?

What’s your focus in 2010?

To boldly go where no woman
has gone before.
Dawna Eskridge
Santa Cruz | Massage Therapist

 

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Opinion

The Succulent Taste of Slow Reading

The Succulent Taste of Slow Reading

Have you ever read something that made so much sense that you slap your hand immediately and directly to your forehead?

“Why didn’t I think of that?”

Such was my reaction to a column by a statistics expert no less, one Trevor Butterworth, who wrote a column last week in Forbes Magazine calling on the news media to adopt a kind of “slow food” philosophy as espoused by the likes of Alice Waters and her restaurant “Chez Panisse.”

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Astrology

I’ve Been to the Mountaintop

I’ve Been to the Mountaintop

Late Thursday night on the West coast (11:11 p.m.) and early Friday morning on the east (2:11 a.m.), the first new moon of 2010 occurs at 25 degrees Capricorn. It’s also a solar eclipse, signifying something essential, concerning things Capricorn rules (governments, politics, politicians, mountains, ladders, goats, crystals, diamonds, etc.).

The personality-building seed thought for Capricorn is “Let ambition rule and let the door stand wide.” As we build our personality (over thousands of lifetimes of experiencing form and matter), ambition drives us to achieve (ladder to the top). At first fear, instinct, competition and the drive to succeed rule the life. These blind us into believing freedom is gained through accumulation of material objects, through money (Ray 3). There is a Gate (Capricorn Gate) to higher levels of awareness but until the personality is built and there is conscious awareness, that Gate is locked. However, there comes a lifetime when the needed experiences are complete, the personality is strong, when the Gate leading to intuition and freedom opens. Illusions (mental distortions), glamours (emotional distortions) and maya (physical distortions) fall away and the inner spiritual reality is recognized.  Here we are transfigured (essential change) and the rising Sun, the Light Supernal, is revealed. We rest awhile on this Capricorn mountain after our long journey from Aries. The disciple (Scorpio/Sag) becomes the Initiate (Cap). It is then that the cries of humanity are heard rising up.

On Friday, 8:52 a.m. (Pacific time) Mercury turns stationary direct (5:35 degrees Capricorn). Mars and Saturn remain retrograde. Sunday, Jupiter enters Pisces. Monday, Martin Luther King Jr. Day (MLK was Capricorn Sun), “I’ve been to the mountaintop” youtube.com/watch?v=BI_tQ5DdFAk). Venus enters Aquarius, Monday , following by the Sun Tuesday evening. Wednesday is Aries moon.

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Editors Note

From the Editor

From the Editor

Plus Letters to Good Times
Altered States
No New Water for UCSC
Good Signs

When we sought to find several inspiring stories for the New Year, we didn’t have to look much farther than UC Santa Cruz. It seems that there is always something innovative unfolding at the university, so this week, News Editor Elizabeth Limbach shines the light on five interesting UCSC individuals and/or projects that are worthy of your attention. But beyond that, these projects happen to be fascinating and are poised to bring more attention to the Central Coast. There’s a man who’s eager to alleviate blindness—yes, it’s true—and another team busy researching a cure for cancer. Gamers will appreciate a forward-thinking UCSC game designer. Meanwhile, farming is actually fun for one group while several Long Marine Lab researchers can’t stop making new discoveries here in the Bay. Find out more details in this week’s cover story.

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Local Talk

How can Obama improve in 2010?

How can Obama improve in 2010?

Keep to his word, legalize gay marriage, and save the planet.
Yarrow Ricki Jones
Santa Cruz | Checker

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Astrology

Saturn, the Taskmaster, Retrogrades

Saturn, the Taskmaster, Retrogrades

Mars and Mercury remain retrograde. On Wednesday, Jan. 13, Saturn (in Libra) also retrogrades. Saturn represents society’s structures, ways of thinking, time, discipline, the father and the Teacher. H.P. Blavatsky, in her Secret Doctrine writes, “Saturn, Shiva (Hindu) and Jehovah (Hebrew) are One.” Esoterically Saturn is (transmits to Earth) Ray 3, the Divine Mind of God. Saturn and Ray 3 are also the Law of Economy. Numerologically 2010 is number three, correlating with Ray 3 and Saturn. In 2010 we will experience the continuing restructuring (reorienting) of money and finances.
Saturn influences the rules, regulations and all physical structures in our lives. It rules our bones and teeth, defines boundaries, sets limits (of/on self and others), creates disciplines. Saturn, along with Taurus, can say “No!” without worry. However, when Saturn is retrograde outer limitations become wobbly. We can become confused about boundaries for, as in all retrogrades (and with Mercury and Mars retro), our focus is inward. We see only interior realities.
However, as Saturn is more of a social planet, when retrograde, all social and societal structures and organizations worldwide are reviewed, evaluated, examined and analyzed. During Saturn retro we return to and assess previous choices and commitments. We change our minds. During retrogrades we work with the past, never assuming new commitments or responsibilities. If we must, we then review data multiple times very carefully, understanding when the retrograde is complete, new data and information emerge.

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Editors Note

From the Editor

From the Editor

Plus Letters to Good Times
High Times
Making the Most of the Coast
Spending Locally
Holiday Deadlines

So long 2009, hello 2010—and a new decade, too. If you haven’t already been waxing philosophical as the year and the decade draw to a close, the time is certainly ripe for it now. In this issue, we take a look back over the last 10 years and pluck out (only) 10 things that stood out and deserved mention. There’s so much more, of course, so send us your thoughts ([email protected]) on the issues that held us captivated during 2000-2009 and we’ll print some of your insights. But be sure click to this week's cover story and look at the local standouts.

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Astrology

The New Year of 2010

The New Year of 2010

Happy New Year of 2010, everyone! Two years to the countdown, yes? 2010 begins under the light of a blue Capricorn/Cancer full moon (revelation, Initiation); the shadow of a lunar eclipse (much in matter simply dissolves away); Mars (the Nine tests of Scorpio) retrograde (activities are internal and hidden); Mercury retrograde (thoughts are withdrawn); and a void-of-course (no connections) on the very first day (Jan. 1). It’s a most unusual beginning to a new year. 2010 will be a year of internal reflection, great tests (Mars), surprising revelations with unfulfilled aspects of our lives surfacing in forms we may not recognize. Our energy will feel withheld, suspended, pending and internalized. 2010 offers constant change and transformation symbolized by four major planets in cardinal signs (Aries, Cancer, Libra, Capricorn). Cardinal signs initiate new realities, cannot stand back to mull things over (mutable signs), or stay with “business as usual” (fixed signs).

Cardinal signs remove hindrances and obstacles that inhibit forward growth, change and progress. Here is the 2010 dialogue we can expect from the cardinal signs: Aries says, “I’ll initiate the new realities.” Libra says, “I’ll get everyone to participate.” Capricorn says, “I’ll reshape and redesign leaders, governments and our entire civilization.” We, too, individually and collectively, will be summoned to reshape our world. We will need to be practical in all areas, explore and search in all directions for solutions to world problems that create greater resilience and equanimity for all peoples of the world.

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Editors Note

From the Editor

From the Editor

Plus Letters to Good Times...
Matters of the Art
A Harvest for Second Harvest
Obama’s Nation
Holiday Deadlines

We have published a few days earlier this week because, well, there’s so much to share before our New Year’s issue.  At the top of the list is, of course, the obvious—the holidays and the fact that the year is racing to an end. But first, there’s plenty of celebrating to do—whether you’re doing it for spiritual or religious reasons, or just gearing up for a festive time on New Year’s Eve. It’s certainly been one whopper of a year, so, in my book, it doesn’t hurt to celebrate just getting through it.

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Page 83 of 92

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Reflecting Glass

Composer Philip Glass’ first trip to Big Sur was by motorcycle; little did he know that he’d establish a music festival there six decades later.

 

Rosh Hashanah

Rosh Hashanah, the Jewish New Year, occurs this year during Libra, the sign of creating right relations with all aspects life and with earth’s kingdoms. We contemplate (the Libra meditation) forgiveness, which means, “to give for another.” Forgiveness is not pardon. It’s a sacrifice (fire in the heart, giving from the heart). Forgiveness is giving up for the good of the other. This is the law of evolution (the path of return).

 

The New Tech Nexus

Community leaders in science and technology unite to form web-based networking program

 

Film, Times & Events: Week of September 26

Santa Cruz area movie theaters >
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Wurst Case Scenario

Venus Spirits releases agave spirit, Renee Shepherd on planting garlic, Sausagefest 2014, and wine harvest in full swing

 

Do you think you are addicted to technology?

Santa Cruz  |  Unemployed

 

Best of Santa Cruz County

The 2013 Santa Cruz County Readers' Poll and Critics’ Picks It’s our biggest issue of the year, and in it, your votes—more than 6,500 of them—determined the winners of The Best of Santa Cruz County Readers’ Poll. New to the long list of local restaurants, shops and other notables that captured your interest: Best Beer Selection, Best Locally Owned Business, Best Customer Service and Best Marijuana Dispensary. In the meantime, many readers were ever so chatty online about potential new categories. Some of the suggestions that stood out: Best Teen Program and Best Web Design/Designer. But what about: Dog Park, Church, Hotel, Local Farm, Therapist (I second that!) or Sports Bar—not to be confused with Bra. Our favorite suggestion: Best Act of Kindness—one reader noted Café Gratitude and the free meals it offered to the Santa Cruz Police Department in the aftermath of recent crimes. Perhaps some of these can be woven into next year’s ballot, so stay tuned. In the meantime, enjoy the following pages and take note of our Critics’ Picks, too, beginning on page 91. A big thanks for voting—and for reading—and an even bigger congratulations to all of the winners. Enjoy.  -Greg Archer, EditorBest of Santa Cruz County Readers’ Poll INDEX

 

Apricot Wine for Dessert

Thomas Kruse Winery, a participant in the new Santa Clara Wine Trail, has been around for a long time—since 1971, to be exact. When our little group arrived to try some wine at the Kruses’ low-key tasting room, Thomas Kruse and his wife Karen were there to greet us. Theirs is a small operation, and they’re proud to offer quality wine at affordable prices. “Because we are small and low-tech, it’s easy to relate to the whole winemaking process,” says Karen—and the Kruses take pride in making wine “just like it has been made for centuries.”