Plus Letters To the Editor
Spirits seem to be rising here in Santa Cruz County as we move closer toward the end of another year. How has 2013 treated you? More importantly, perhaps, may be to ask: How have you treated it? As the next few weeks unfold, no doubt we’ll all be reflecting a bit on that. And, perhaps, some of the political brouhaha surrounding Washington D.C., and, in effect, the rest of the country. From the fallout on the Obamacare launch to the curiously wide political divide between Democrats and Republicans, it’s hard not to speculate, at times, how it would be if there were more women in power running the show.
On that note—more or less—award-winning writer and author Sasha Abramsky comes to the pages of GT with a political commentary on being financially challenged in America. He seems to point much of the blame on the GOP. Dive into the commentary here.
Over in News this week, GT’s Joel Hersch reports on how one local startup, dubbed Civinomics, hopes to significantly shift how locals engage civically. It all springs from last weekend’s community event, “Civinomicon,” which lured more than 100 people into Downtown Santa Cruz to spark conversations and offer locals a chance to not only learn more about civic process, but also to update them on just how Civinomics hopes to make engaging on a civic level downright compelling.
For cinephiles, this week marks the opening of the highly anticipated new film, Dallas Buyers Club. Film critic Lisa Jensen delivers the word on that, but take note of Good Idea on this page, too.
In the meantime, this week, why not embrace the three S’s: You’re smart, you’re sexy and you’re strong. (If you don’t believe it, who will?) Have fun with that.
Greg Archer | Editor-in-Chief
What is 180/180 Hiding?
Regarding “Halfway There” (online), after the County of Santa Cruz and the Housing Authority denied they were involved with the 180/180 project, Housing Authority Director Ken Cole provided me the memorandum of understanding between the County and his agency to provide the County's clients with Section 8 vouchers diverted from other applicants.
The waiting list is highly impacted. Some applicants have been waiting more than five years. I filed a Freedom of Information Act request with HUD to determine the legal and regulatory basis for diverting vouchers to 180/180.
John Colby | Santa Cruz
Thank you for your focus on happiness and positivity in psychology (GT 11/14). I would add that any survey of happiness-orientation in the mental health field should consider the many contributions of a 40-year-old psycho-spiritual movement historically called "Psychology of Mind," "Health Realization," and finally "Three Principles" psychology. This core work toward unconditional well-being influenced the late self-help author and psychologist, Dr. Richard Carlson, Francis Moore Lappe, Jane Nelson (author of “Positive Discipline”) and many others.
The central message is that happiness or well-being, including creativity, "right action," and the capacity for insight (both personal and spiritual) are innate in human beings—and are congruent with a still or "quiet mind." This paradigm views Thought, as a principle of human functioning, as the central determinant in one's feeling state—regardless of external circumstances and stress. How we think about life and ourselves is how we feel about life and ourselves. But we don't need to "change" our thoughts, we just need to awaken to this relationship, and our innate intelligence or wisdom takes over.
This movement is now global. Hay House author Michael Neill just released “The Inside Out Revolution” about it. Locally, (especially in Santa Clara County government) there have been decades of intense activity around this psychology, and my own nonprofit has now conducted several trainings for Santa Cruz agencies.
Ami Chen Mills-Naim
Education Director, Center for Sustainable Change
On ‘A Change of Plans’ ...
SLVWD got caught trying to take a $6 million loan, (on backs of only 7,500 ratepayers), plus 65 percent rate increase, to build $12 million Dream Campus, also asking ratepayers $4.5 million to increase inter-tie flow with Scotts Valley. Santa Cruz, Soquel increasing connection to S.V., seeking regional water. Sorry S.V.,-S.C.,-U.C.S.C.! We're informed in SLV now, SLVWD waterboard, except Dir. Brown, goodbye! We'll recall or vote 'em out.
ThankDesal Alternatives supports the Soquel District's goal to reduce pumping 31 percent below 2012 levels. The good news from County Water Resources Manager, John Ricker, is that $92 million in infrastructure improvements to Santa Cruz, Scotts Valley and Soquel Creek District will allow water transfers that will get Soquel Creek District 90 percent of the way to their pumping reduction goal. It's $40 million less expensive than the capital costs of desalination, way cheaper than the operating costs, and will last much longer than a desal plant. And it’s far less energy intensive to operate.
Warriors Go The Distance
There’s good news for Santa Cruz Warriors fans. The local team finished its preseason undefeated—its most recent found the team taking on the visiting Bakersfield Jam and strutting away with a 103-97 game. This only stokes the fires for the full season ahead, which officially takes off later this month. Last year, locals embraced the Warriors during its freshman season here, and the energy for its sophomore endeavor continues to rise. Learn more about at nba.com/dleague/santacruz. And catch our Warriors Blog online at gtweekly.com.
Diversity Center Screening of ‘Dallas Buyers Club’
This just in: Santa Cruz Gay Men, the folks behind Fab Fridays, and the Santa Cruz AIDS Project (SCAP) are teaming up to host a special screening of Dallas Buyers Club. It all unfolds at 8 p.m. Thursday, Nov. 21 at the Nickelodeon Theatre in Downtown Santa Cruz. Special screening price is $7.50 per person. The film stars Matthew McConaughey as real-life Texas cowboy Ron Woodroof, who was diagnosed with HIV/AIDS in 1985. After the screening, there will be socializing at a nearby venue. Learn more at diversitycenter.org.
“Sometimes you can only find Heaven by slowly backing away from Hell.”
—Carrie Fisher, “Wishful Drinking”˔
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