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I speculate that those who support Medicare For All lack an understanding of what Medicare is. It’s not free, it doesn’t cover everything and supplemental insurance (not cheap) from private insurance companies is a necessity. Those, like me, who opposed Obamacare, are not against reasonable …

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It sounds like many democrats have still not decided who to vote for in the primaries due to the number of choices or concern over electability. In my view, we should relax and plan on voting for the candidate we think will make the best president on the day we cast our ballots and see what …

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The start of a new year—a new decade! Many of us I’m sure are taking this opportunity to look inward and change the only person we can change, ourselves. Times like a new year, a birthday or the start of spring bring with them an opportunity for a fresh start.  

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A reader sends a halo to Anthony and Francis for the informative agricultural tour of their Foothill Road farm. “Your passion of farming was apparent and we loved the opportunity to go behind the scenes.”

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I wasn’t sure what was going on with the juvenile California condor, but I couldn’t shake the velvety-feathered scavenging raptor.  

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Who was the best teacher you ever had? Can you remember her name? Did he ever contact your parents to discuss your progress? Did she make learning fun or welcome you to the world of reading or push you to explore your limits? Good teachers can be found in all our public schools, but they are…

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A new year means different things to different people. Some people enter the next year ready to change lives, theirs or others, while other people continue along content with things as they are. I tend to use the change of the calendar to reflect on the past year with friends, and talk about…

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Over the past few months there have been opinions expressed concerning out-of-town interests building a hotel that would occupy what is now the railroad parking lot.

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I am appalled that the Carpinteria Planning Commission voted to skip the Environmental Impact Report (EIR) for the Rincon Trail project.

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I would like to commend the Air Pollution Control District for meeting the California Ozone standards. I assume that it was a hard job. I think I have an easier job for them: how about cleaning up the air in the Carpinteria Valley of what marijuana growers have put into our once-clean air?  

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A reader sends a halo to Bill Cross in gratitude for 22 years of providing numismatic expertise at his shop, Bill’s Coins. “Bill, you will be missed, but enjoy your retirement!”

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Thomas Jefferson said, “Peace, commerce, and honest friendship with all nations—entangling alliances with none.” Why does the U.S. have a military presence in Iraq and Kenya where Americans were recently killed? Why does the U.S. have troops at risk in 150 other countries around the world?

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Uninitiated here again. “Star Wars” uninitiated, that is. Which is just to say, I’m not a fanboy. I’m not a master of that universe. It’s just not my thing.

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It’s a new year, and with it comes toasts for health, wealth and happiness. While it’s tempting to sit back and rely on the adage, “All good things come to those who wait,” the only way to capture those elusive well-wishes is to take action. That’s right, you have to do something. Like what?…

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Right at the beginning of “A Beautiful Day in the Neighborhood,” we get a reminder of how dorky, hokey, cheesy and incredibly slow Mr. Rogers (played by Tom Hanks in this movie) was. Yes, yes, he was also tender, kind, and totally wonderful (more on that below). But, man, was he slow.

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A reader sends a halo to Tambra at Albertsons. “The first thing I do when I walk into the store is look to see what register she’s working at, because her warm, friendly and enthusiastic manner makes me feel happier than when I walked in!”

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As the year 2019 ends, things look pretty good in America. Our economy is roaring, the stock market set records, the job market has exploded and unemployment is at an all-time low (also for African Americans and Hispanics). Also, our military is strong again, over 170 federal judges have bee…

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Carolyn Edwards’ statement (CVN Letters, Vol. 26 No. 14) that the current impeachment proceeding is the first in our history that does not have bi-partisan support is misleading. The Clinton impeachment consisted of two charges: Perjury and Obstruction of Justice. Of the 228 Republicans in t…

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I’m not surprised by the news that the Santa Barbara Women’s Political Committee, like the Sierra Club, County Firefighters, and the Deputy Sheriff’s Association, has just endorsed Das Williams for re-election to the County Board of Supervisors. Having known Das Williams since his tenure in …

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Diane and I moved to Carpinteria 20 years ago. When we moved in, we were in the garage assembling some shelves, and as neighbors drove by, almost every one of them slowed and waved to us. Each person walking a dog stopped to say,  “Hi.” I suppose that’s not very surprising, but it was someth…

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We paddled from the broad, craggy mouth of the Albion River in Mendocino in Northern California, and into tall stands of redwood trees towering above the gentle flow of this flatwater runnel. Osprey, mule deer and river otters foraged the shoreline as my friend Craig and I paddled to the flo…

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A reader sends a halo to Whitney. “She is a sweet little girl who made and delivered her homemade cinnamon ornaments to every volunteer at Saint Joseph Thrift Store on Wednesday, Dec. 18. What a kind and thoughtful gesture. We were all deeply touched. Merry Christmas!”

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Laura Capps epitomizes collaboration, community and capability. Collaboration that results in effective action isn’t easy. I served with Laura on the SB County Women’s Commission for several years and saw firsthand how she respected and harmonized sharply disparate North County and South Cou…

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The left—I am not talking about moderate Democrats—has been trying to impeach the president since the day he was elected. I am not worried about that. Our forefathers actually anticipated this event, that one party would try to take over. I say this because this is the first impeachment in o…

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About two weeks ago I’d loaded the van with nine boards (five custom, three on speculation and one personal), filled the tank and merged onto Highway 101 northbound at 6 a.m. Five-and-a-half hours later, with one stop for gas near King City, I pulled into the Sunset District of San Francisco.

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Warm Christmas memories lure me into the holiday mood as I turn the calendar page to December. I envision baking cookies with grandchildren, forgetting the mess and the arguments that can happen between two small boys wanting the same big cookie. A vision of the perfect tree all decorated wi…

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Those words were whispered into my ear, followed by a soft kiss placed upon my cheek. I stirred but kept my eyes closed, remembering instantly that this was not Christmas Morning. There was no hurry to jump up today, no surprises by the fireplace, no stockings to unstuff. Not yet. But it was…

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The holiday season is upon us, and that can mean many things—visting with friends and family we don’t see often, wearing our stretchy pants to meals, or perhaps following a family tradition that is so old its origin has become something of legend.

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As I sit here eating my pancakes and considering holiday gifts for my family, I continue to be saddened by the thought of children and their families from our southern border being held in cruel conditions. No happy holidays for them. On the contrary, fear of what each day brings—fear for th…

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I liked Mike Wondolowski’s informative article “We cannot afford to fail” (CVN, Vol. 26, No. 11) on the need for action on the climate crisis, but I disagree that sea level rise is our community’s biggest climate threat. The most immediate and dangerous threats are heat and denial of the mag…

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A reader sends a halo to Principal O’Shea and the entire CMS teaching team who make themselves available to students before school, after school and on email. “They go way above and beyond to foster student success.”

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It’s short-sighted to fret over cannabis farming in Carpinteria. I get that it’s new, and there’s a whole century worth of reefer-madness stigmatization to overcome.

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It seems that Carpinteria may be the “cannabis Love Canal” because of the high density of marijuana production without adequate regulation to protect students and residents from the putrid odor that is causing many to suffer serious allergic health conditions. Those of us who are not allergi…

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I’d waited six months for this moment and was hoping for an easier time of it, but sometimes you just have to put your head down and lay into it.

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I recently crossed paths with one of the biggest and most beautiful coyotes I’ve ever seen while walking my dog on the Bluffs just after sunrise. It was tall and sleek, with a thick, shiny coat and direct stare.  We walked towards one another until I turned so as not to trap it in a narrow s…

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Mike Wondolowski is president of the Carpinteria Valley Association (CarpinteriaValleyAssociation.org), a local organization dedicated to maintaining the small beach town nature of our community. In his 30 years of involvement in planning issues, he has witnessed visionary successes, as well as decisions that were later widely regretted. When not stuck indoors, he can often be found enjoying Carpinteria’s treasures including kayaking and snorkeling along the coast, running or hiking on the bluffs or the Franklin Trail, or “vacationing” as a tent camper at the State Beach.

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A reader sends a halo to Kerry at Jazzercise for always being there for her clients. “She brings her beautiful smile and keeps us moving.”

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Carpinteria is well served by our two water-related agencies, but we are also dependent on governmental agencies external to our direct control. I worked for the Office of the California Legislative Analyst (LAO) and did forensic audits/analyses on many state and local agencies and their pro…

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As a local mom, I’ve thought a lot about cannabis farming in Carpinteria. It’s now a fact of life that cannabis is legal. I never thought cannabis was a big deal, because it has been around in Carpinteria ever since I was a kid and before that. It’s funny that now that it’s legal it has now …

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I understand that Laura Capps is running for County Supervisor as a campaign ethics reformer. If only her deeds matched her words.

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The current plans for the Carpinteria-Rincon Trail project will impact paragliding and hang gliding in the Carpinteria, Santa Barbara and greater SoCal areas.  I am a representative of the paragliding and hang gliding community in Santa Barbara County, and myself and other members from this …

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There are all sorts of ways to scare someone. You could jump out at them. You could gross them out. You could make them feel unsafe. Or you could give them an itchy, eerie, creepy feeling—make it a skin-crawling spook fest.

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Both ends of California have had an unpleasant welcome to the holiday season. Northern California dealt with the wind-whipped Kincade Fire in Sonoma County, while blowtorch-like winds in Southern California fueled the Maria Fire in Ventura County. I thank all first responders for fighting on…

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A reader sends a halo to GranVida Senior Living for generously opening their beautiful lobby for the public to drop off non-perishable items for the Carpinteria Woman’s Club annual Food Drive.

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On Thursday, Nov. 28, America will celebrate Thanksgiving. Many of us will get together with family and friends. Thanksgiving is also a time to give thanks and count our blessings. Included in this should be a thank you for President Trump. He has given America a period of peace and prosperi…

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In last week’s “Letters” in CVN (Vol. 26, No. 9), I saw some slight reason for hope. Across a few of the pro-cannabis letters there was an acknowledgement that “yes” there is a cannabis odor, and that the odor itself can be bothersome (I might be more forceful, but it’s a start). This simple…

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