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Dec 17th
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From The Editor

Greg 1editNotePlus 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.

            Onward ...

Greg Archer | Editor-in-Chief


letters

 

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

Happiness Reconsidered
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
Westside, SC
Education Director, Center for Sustainable Change

Online Comments
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.
SLV Citizen

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.
Rick Longinotti


Letters Policy
Letters should not exceed 300 words and may be edited for length, clarity, grammar and spelling. They should include city of residence to be considered for publication. Please direct letters to the editor, query letters and employment queries to This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it ." All classified and display advertising queries should be directed to This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it ."  All website-related queries, including corrections, should be directed to This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it ."


photo contest

POW-caveman

SKY’s The Limit  Hitchin’ a ride—Flintstone style, spotted here at the Boardwalk. photo//sheri levitre. Submit to This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it . Include information (location, etc.) and your name. Photos may be cropped. Preferably, photos should be 4 inches by 4 inches and minimum 250 dpi.


good work



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.

good idea



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.


quote



“Sometimes you can only find Heaven by slowly backing away from Hell.”
—Carrie Fisher,  “Wishful Drinking”˔


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Giving and Giving, Then Giving Some More

2014 is almost over. Wednesday, Dec. 17, the Jewish Festival of Light, Hanukkah, begins. We are in our last week of Sag and last two weeks of December. Sunday, Dec. 21 is winter Solstice, as the sun enters Capricorn (3:30 p.m. for the west coast). Soon after, the Capricorn new moon occurs (5:36 p.m. for the west coast)—the last new moon of 2014. Sunday morning Uranus in Aries (revolution, revelation) is stationary direct (retro since July 22). Uranus/Aries create things new and needed to anchor the new culture and civilization (Aquarius). We will see revolutionary change in 2015. Capricorn new moon, building-the-personality seed thought, is, “Let ambition rule and let the door to initiation and freedom stand wide (open).” Capricorn is a gate—where matter returns to spirit. But the gate is unseen until the Ajna Center (third eye), Diamond Light of Direction, opens. Winter solstice is the longest day of darkness of the year. The sun’s rays resting at the Tropic of Capricorn (southern hemisphere) symbolize the Christ (soul’s) light piercing the heart of the Earth, remaining there for three days, till Holy Night (midnight Thursday morning). Then the sun’s light begins to rise. It is the birth of the new light (holy child) for the world. A deep calm and stillness pervades the world.The entire planet is revivified, re-spiritualized. All hearts beating reflect this Light. And so throughout the Earth there’s a radiant “impress” (impressions, pictures) given to humanity of the World Mother and her Child. The star Sirius (love/direction) and the constellation Virgo the mother shines above. For gift giving, give to those in need. Give and give and then give some more. This creates the new template of giving and sharing for the new world.

 

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