Santa Cruz Good Times

Nov 29th
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From the Editor

greg_archerPlus Letters to the Editor

When you think of fall and the change of seasons, no doubt images of lively festivals come to mind. The brightest of the bunch has to be the Santa Cruz County Fair, which runs through Sept. 18. The theme this year: Dancing With the Steers. (Good one.) There’s so much unfolding at this bold event this year, it’s challenging to list it all effectively—everything from talent competitions to good ol’ traditional county fair fun. Check out for more information.

In other “events”-related news, it’s hard to pass up FashionArt Santa Cruz. What a curious creative beast this is. Now in its sixth year, the engaging “art as fashion” event continues to bloom. This week’s cover story (page 14) highlights some of the people behind the scenes. But mark your calendar: The night to remember is Sept. 24 at the Civic. See for more details and pick up GT next week for even more details.

There are insightful bons mots in this week’s guest column, penned by Tom Honig (page 6). Is the past ... in the past? Or do we continue to drag into the present? Those are a few of the thoughts Honig reflects on, and heads into political waters a bit, noting that, “Republicans are fixated on Ronald Reagan and the ‘80s—which itself was a period of nostalgia. Democrats are harkening back to FDR and JFK and LBJ.” Read on and send us your thoughts at This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it .

In the meantime, it’s the middle of September—yes, already!—so brace yourself: the season of “reflection” is afoot. Relax. This doesn’t have to be turbo-therapy—although sometimes it’s good to buckle up and get over things quickly. But it never hurts to take time to reflect upon the state of one’s life and the world, for that matter. So, as you look back over what has already unraveled in 2011, what stands out thus far? This week, take some time to ponder it all.

Until next time ...


Greg Archer | Editor-in-Chief

Letters to the Editor

Some Clarity About ‘Hope’
As a passenger on the Audacity of Hope I was appreciative of Good Times publishing an article about the International Flotilla II— Stay Human. It is critical to raise awareness about the crisis in Gaza, so thank you for having done so. There was one critical error in the article, however. I will share with you the correction as I noted it on my website: The article did an excellent job of capturing part of my experience aboard the Audacity of Hope, with the exception of one significant error. A misquote was printed, leaving the opposite impression from what was reported. I was incorrectly quoted as saying, “When asked about Israel’s claim that the sea blockade is necessary to keep weapons out of the hands of Hamas, Ellis says she is not aware of evidence that weapons are reaching Hamas, but is aware of evidence cited by numerous human rights agencies that the blockade is punishing a civilian population.”
What I did state is, “I am not aware of evidence supporting a claim of weapons being sent to Gaza by sea, but I am aware of evidence, cited by numerous human rights agencies, that the blockade is punishing a civilian population.” In appreciation,
Debra Ellis
Santa Cruz

Getting Clear About La Bahia
The statements in Local Talk (8/25) reveal a lack of understanding of the role of the Coastal Commission regarding the proposed La Bahia hotel. In this case, the Commission's Central Coast Staff concluded that (1) the existing foundation does not meet current building codes, is vulnerable to damage from a significant earthquake, and denies access to the disabled; (2) demolition of the old building is consistent with the land-use-plan amendment; (3) public views from the wharf, West Cliff Drive and other points will be maintained; and (4) the new hotel will enhance public access to the coast for both locals and visitors.
These are the facts and they do matter. Read the Staff Report on the Coastal Commission's web site. Two votes stood in the way of this project, which was overwhelmingly supported in our community after years of a thorough, open public process, including hundreds of hours of public hearings. Mark Stone and one other commissioner could have chosen to embrace rather than to ignore the report of its own staff. Apparently they do not trust our community to decide what's best for the majority of its citizens.
Robert deFreitas
Santa Cruz

Best Online Comments

On the Miki Dora cover story...
The early memories you describe are both vivid and real. I do remember him coming to Santa Cruz and the stir he caused ... I also followed Dora and the dream I saw him in France in the later years and yes he was trouble ... An icon yes and memories to last a life time good or bad.
—Steve Plant

On Nina Simon and MAH ...
As another non-artist art activist I read the interview with the whole of the allied arts in mind. How to make art relevant to a whole community. If art segregates there is a problem, not the least of which is its sustainability. Is anyone familiar with a think tank on the issue of democratizing art? I should like to compare notes and develop something fresh. The line between formal and informal art is not a healthy one.
—Stephen Scanlon

On Food Justice and FoodWhat?! ...
I am just appalled by how much information the produce farms are putting on their product! I only eat organic foods from Trader Joe’s, Staff of Life and Whole Foods when we need to go shopping. My dad is always picky about the chicken he buys from these places, now I know why. Help keep our farms chemical free!

This is such a great resource for people interested in organic farming, or even for someone who is just moving from home and wanting to start growing there own food. I think it is such a blessing that students have acess to something as productive and green-promoting as this program.
—Shoshana Carver

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