We’ve been declared by the New York Times to be the happiest people in the country. You wouldn’t know it by reading this column! This week, we’re discussing another seemingly weekly local progressive protest that just pisses most people off (as usual), the $200 million dollar price tag for being politically correct, a bank robbery on Morrissey, a car fire on 17, bum thieves caught at the laundromat, Joe Heston speaks the truth, the city looks for feedback on a new chief for SCPD, Steve Bernal speaks the truth, Steve Pleich loves to run for public office early and often, Mike and Kate sing about Santa Cruz, Hugh’s News, Guerreros, and a few other things.
Downtown “March” Gets Progressively Uglier at the Clock Tower
A planned march to celebrate a national women’s event turned ugly on Wednesday afternoon when a couple hundred people decided to clog traffic at the clock tower on Pacific and Water streets. What started out as a seemingly smaller, peaceful group of mostly older women seemed to turn ugly as a group of angry (no other way to really describe them) UCSC students marched down the hill and joined the women at Louden Nelson, before both groups walked over to Pacific Avenue and down to the clock tower. The UCSC group seemed to be protesting everything BUT the reason for the event, which led to different groups trying to outshout each other for attention, completely drowning out the original “women’s rights” message in a typically boring Santa Cruz tsunami of progressive white noise. As they blocked traffic at the clocktower (and with SCPD seemingly nowhere to be found), things turned ugly when a truck tried to force it’s way through the crowd, who then turned on the driver. Dirt clods were thrown, dude clods in tank tops were held back, and the usual regressive hysteria ensued. But Trader Joe’s was empty! Win!
“Intense conflict, rage at Santa Cruz Women’s Day strike” screams the headline. More in the Senile.
This is What a $200 Million Dollar Declaration Looks Like
Supervisor Ryan Coonerty, who represents the City of Santa Cruz for county matters on the Board of Supervisors recently sent out a letter to the other Board members (and which can be seen as an attachment to the March 7th, 2017 agenda packet). I’m not going to reprint the letter in it’s entirety. It’s far too long and self aggrandizing. But I do want to share a few choice nuggets I’ll just call “reveals”. Stuff you’d like to know but it’s not very forthcoming from the county given their general lack of transparency. He’ll probably claim it’s “taken out of context”. I’ll just say I’m “separating the wheat from the chaff” here. You be the judge. I don’t pander.
Reveal 1: Santa Cruz is officially “on notice” with the Trump Administration
“On January 25, 2017, President Trump issued Executive Order 13768 which gives the Attorney General and the Secretary of Homeland Security the power to declare any “sanctuary jurisdiction” ineligible to receive any federal funds”
“Fifty-six California Counties, including Santa Cruz County, are on a list of “sanctuary jurisdictions” maintained by the federal government because these counties do not honor voluntary detainer requests issued by Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE).”
Reveal 2: The financial cost of that meaningless (to the feds) and unenforceable “Sanctuary City” declaration to Santa Cruz County is estimated to potentially be $200 Million Dollars. Almost 30% of the annual operating budget.
“If the Executive Order were to be enforced against Santa Cruz County, the County would stand to lose approximately two hundred million dollars or 29% of total revenue in the 2016-2017 budget.”
So there you go. It could actually cost us $200 million dollars locally to be “politically correct”.
And then Ryan announces on his Facebook page that the BoS supports his idea of jumping into this public pissing match with Trump and the DHS on a national stage with taxpayer salaried “staff” from the county legal team. When asked about the cost to the community, Ryan claims “no cost” to this but that’s a load of mierda. There’s an “opportunity cost” to this. And he knows it. If “staff” is sitting around with nothing to do, maybe a layoff or 2 is in order here. Or outsource the positions to make them more flexible to the demands of the county. But don’t sell me some bullshit line that there’s no cost here. They could always be doing something else, something more local, pragmatic, and less idealistic. Something meaningful instead of something meaningless.
Here’a few choice, “on point” quotes from that article that I wanted to share here as well:
“Just two weeks ago, the City Council rejected a resolution to make Salinas a sanctuary city as Councilmembers Kimbley Craig, Steve McShane, Tony Villegas, and Mayor Joe Gunter struck it down. Salinas City Attorney Callihan stressed that becoming a sanctuary city does nothing to prevent U.S. Department of Homeland Security Immigration and Customs Enforcement agents from conducting raids, and deporting illegal immigrants. Mayor Gunter is a former police officer. He agreed with Callihan that a sanctuary status would not accomplish anything, and only jeopardize the city’s federal funding.” (I bolded that last part just to make sure nobody missed it – BD). Can Joe Gunter be OUR Mayor?
“Some Salinans and City Council members supported the idea of declaring Salinas a sanctuary city. I understand their position, but legally, it would have no real effect in terms of protecting anyone in the community from the enforcement of federal immigration law by the federal government. The resolution would not prevent ICE, for example, from coming into Salinas and enforcing federal immigration law,” Callihan said.
OH REALLY? CAN SOMEONE TELL THAT TO THE SANTA CRUZ CITY COUNCIL AND THE BOARD OF SUPERVISORS?
US Bank on Morrissey Robbed on Friday Afternoon
The Morrissey branch of the US Bank was robbed at gunpoint on Friday afternoon around 1PM, when a masked man held employees at gunpoint and demanded cash. No one was injured. The suspect fled with an undisclosed amount of money he took from drawers and stashed in a black cloth bag. Multiple SCPD units responded to the scene, and they were actually able to trace a dye pack in the money bag and follow it for a while. Eventually, they lost the trace in the 400 block of Mission. The suspect apparently remains at large. The suspect is described as a white male in his 20s, about 5’10” with a medium build. He was last seen wearing a black hooded sweatshirt, brown beanie with a black stripe, black sunglasses, dark pants, dirty white shoes and gloves according to SCPD reports.
Car Crashes and Burns on Highway 17
I got a report about a car crashing near Glenwood on Highway 17 on Monday morning. The car, a Subaru, apparently was headed Northbound on Highway 17 when it hit and crashed into a retaining wall near the Glenwood Drive exit and burst into flames. The fire eventually fully engulfed the vehicle, but not before the occupants were able to escape safely. The roads were extremely wet from the morning rain and a number of other minor spinouts were also reported. Slow down people. You move to fast. You gotta make the morning last. Don’t drive like a fool and make an already horrible commute a bigger nightmare for everyone else.
SCPD Finds Stolen Truck and Stolen Merchandise at Local Laundromat
Sunday night around 7PM, SCPD responded to the Seaside Wash & Dry laundromat on Mission Street to investigate a report of a stolen pickup truck. The officer on scene was then flagged down by a man who claimed to be the victim of a vehicle burglary and was detaining the suspect. The victim claimed to have had his vehicle broken into while surfing at Four Mile Beach earlier that day. The victim reported the window was smashed out, and his clothes and several other items were stolen, including his iPhone. He activated the “Find my iPhone app” to track the stolen phone and located it in the stolen truck at the laundromat. The victim and a friend looked into the interior of the truck and saw his property in plain view. When the victim opened the truck and began to retrieve his property, the suspect, a 33 year old male from Watsonville walked out of the laundromat and inquired what they were doing in “his truck.” When they told him they were taking their stolen property back, the man became extremely nervous and then claimed the truck actually belonged to someone inside the business. He tried to get into the truck and drive away but broke the gear shift in the process. While this was happening, the victim was calling 911 to report the incident and the male ran off onto Bellevue Street. The victim and his friend pursued the suspect and detained him until SCPD arrived.
In his possession, the suspect had several credit cards and driver licenses that belonged to several other individuals. He was also in possession of approximately 3 grams of methamphetamine and 1 gram of heroin. Meanwhile, the victim’s friend went back to the laundromat and saw a woman walking up to the truck. She asked the victim’s friend if he’d seen where her partner had gone. He explained what took place and told her to wait for the police. The woman abandoned her laundry cart next to the truck and fled. Soon after, SCPD found the 29 year old woman from Santa Cruz on Bellevue and Seaside Street. She was arrested for two outstanding felony warrants and possession of narcotic controlled substances. In addition to an outstanding felony warrant for his arrest, the male was arrested for vehicle theft, possession of narcotic controlled substances and stolen property.
Joe Heston is the General Manager of local TV station KSBW. He likes to do editorials. He REALLY likes to do editorials. He’s preaching to the choir here for me.
City Seeks Community Input for Police Chief Recruitment
As the City begins the process of hiring a new Police Chief, City staff would like to get feedback from community members about priorities for the new Chief. The community can provide input in two ways, by attending one of two public meetings the City will host or by participating in the community survey. Upcoming public meeting dates and times:
- Wednesday, March 15th in the Police Department Community Room (155 Center St Santa Cruz) from 7-9pm
- Thursday, March 16th at the Beach Flats Community Center (1333 Lebrandt Ave. Santa Cruz) from 7-9 pm (bilingual)
Online Community survey:
If you have any questions, please contact the City at 420-5010.
A Calm Discussion About How ICE Works in Monterey County
Spare me the fake drama from city and county electeds, the flaming, fear mongering rhetoric, and the baseless accusations from local wingnut progressives. After I watched this video, I realized how full of mierda the city of Santa Cruz is in dealing with all this. Please watch this video. Learn the facts. Check out the “ICE Office” in the video! It’s a basket for file folders. Hilarious! John Leopold is a fool. Give me the name of the full time, 40 hours per week ICE agent “planted” within SCPD or just STFU. People like Leopold (and Krohn) undermine public safety with their stupid, reckless speculation and lies.
My favorite quote:
“My number one priority in Monterey County is public safety. Public safety for everybody, whether you are undocumented or not. The migrant community in Monterey County is the backbone of our county, of our economy. There is not doubt about that. But I just don’t like giving people false hope. If you call Monterey County a ‘sanctuary county’ I think that is giving immigrants false hope that they are protected. That is not going to stop federal agents from coming in and doing what they want to do. If federal agents come to us and they have a warrant for somebody’s arrest, especially if they are violent felons known to have weapons, we will assist them in the field. That is different than assisting them I the field just doing immigration raids. We will not assist in immigration raids. If you have collateral people, if you serve a warrant say at somebody’s home and you have a serious violent gang member and there are other people in the home, well, we want to know who those people are.”
– Steve Bernal, Sheriff of Monterey County
Moving On to Bigger and Brighter Pipe Dreams
I noticed recently that Steve Pleich is “running” for the 3rd District Seat of the Santa Cruz County Board of Supervisors. The election is almost 2 years away (so it might be too early to “announce” it) but that’s not stopping Steve from getting a jump start on everyone else! The hell with the city council, Steve’s aiming higher now. Now he wants to take on Ryan Coonerty. Good luck there. The Coonerty™ brand is stamped all over Santa Cruz, and is consistently associated with success. Steve’s brand is stamped all over local non profits and city council elections and is consistently associated with losing elections or standing in line at city council meetings to spend 2 minutes complaining about something. I know I’m harsh on Steve but I actually like the guy. I really wish he would apply his time more wisely and productively. Find small successes and build on that. Stop swinging for homers and always striking out. Take a hint from Downtown Chip on how it’s done. Focus dude.
Mike and Kate Sing About Santa Cruz!
This could have been filmed along Pacific Avenue. I’m not jaded. I’m happy!
Back from vacation and catching up on our local shit show from video. This video is almost 10 hours long. 10 HOURS! I just can’t. Skipping to Oral Communications. Gargantuan codependent came forward with her usual passive aggressive attack on SCPD. Suddenly she is an expert on 21st Century Policing. Shouldn’t you be tending to the livestock, knitting a scarf or cleaning out a buggy somewhere? Another speaker condemned the behavior of two Council members (Khron and Brown) for encouraging the crowd of protesters that blew into chambers during the February 14 meeting chanting “Let us speak” I need to buy that guy a beer. Two people came forward requesting that Council support them in erecting a statue in the memory of Madison Middleton. I can certainly support that and what a nice change to see people come forward to humbly ask for support as opposed to the usual line of kooks that step up the mic at Oral Communications. For instance, one speaker accused Richelle Noroyan of “horrific behavior” for speaking to another council member while someone was sharing two weeks ago. You know what is horrific dude? Your mustache. And now onto the 7:00pm session for the Immigration Policies and Update. Chief Vogel and Deputy Chief Flippo gave a presentation on the events of February 13 stating again that they were assured by DHS that no immigration enforcement would occur. There’s a very informative powerpoint with a timeline of the investigation and arrests of MS-13 gang members. Go look at it. Public comment consisted of many individuals sharing their stories, concerns, fears of what took place February 13. I hope they are listening as much as they are talking. The usual group of Monday Morning quarterbacks were present once again telling police how they should do their jobs. I’m bored, I can’t watch anymore of this video.
So yesterday I went to the march downtown to celebrate International Women’s Day. It started at Louden Nelson and then the march was to go to the Town Clock. This could have been a peaceful and awesome event. But it wasn’t. Because an outside group inserted themselves into the mix. A group of angry, intense UCSC students showed up. My first clue that things were going to go South was people showing up with bandannas on their faces. Seriously, why would you need to hide your face for a march that was about appreciating women for who they are and what they do? This could have been about empowerment, appreciation and cohesiveness. The people gathering at the Town Clock were doing just that. But across the street blocking traffic another group gathered. A group of pontificating self entitled assholes taking advantage of the situation. They blocked traffic, they yelled obscenities at drivers, drivers got pissed and yelled obscenities back. A few people in cars honked their horns and inched forward. There were several altercations one of which made it onto the news. Some cars were able to turn around and get out of the mess. One brave woman assisted people in cars in turning around and directing traffic. She tried to reason with the people that were blocking traffic and they were vile to her. One woman in particular in a red down vest was screaming at the top of her lungs at anyone that challenged her. Possessed much? Seriously girl, your meds seem to be a bit off. I walked away from there grateful that I went. Grateful for the women and men that showed up in peace and unity. So angry kids check this out. I know you have big feelings, and yes there is racism, homophobia and classism in this world of ours. I stand strongly with anyone who wants to change that because it is completely unacceptable. I believe in what you were standing up for. The thing is when you block traffic, stop people from picking up their kids from school, getting to doctor appointments, getting to work you are creating the separation. You are pushing people away from you. You are pissing them off. You aren’t gathering allies, you are creating enemies. I am willing to bet most of the folks on the road yesterday feel very much the same as you. They want peace and they want equality for all. I believe that anyway. There are ways to empower one another without screaming, yelling and stomping your feet. There were people at the Clock Tower that have been marching for human rights for decades, probably before your parents were born. Next time leave your bandannas at home and make some new friends.
by Ernie Douglas
Golden State Warriors:
The GS Warriors had a couple days off after their recent back to back losses against the Wizards and the Bulls. They were pretty determined to not lose 3 games in a row, something they haven’t done in over 2 years. The Knicks played scrappy and kept the game close but the Warriors pulled away in the closing minutes and won 112-105. Then they had to fly to Atlanta for another tough back to back on the road. Scrappy little point guard Dennis Schroeder torched the Warriors in the first quarter for 21 points. This guy always seems to give Curry fits. But then he got into a beef with his coach and got benched. Curry had 24 points and Iggy added another 24 off the bench in their 119-111 win. They flew home to take on the surging Celtics at Oracle, and looked and played tired. Curry and Klay continued to struggle with their shots, and while Curry finished with 23 points and Klay had 25, they collapsed in the 4th quarter, scoring only 12 points as a team as they just ran out of gas, losing 99-86. Now they have to get on a plane again and fly to Minnesota for a Friday game, followed by a back to back against one the league’s best teams. Brutal scheduling.
Upcoming games this week: 3/10 at Minnesota, 3/11 at San Antonio, 3/14 vs. Philadelphia, 3/16 vs. Orlando
Santa Cruz Warriors:
The Santa Cruz Warriors took on Reno at the Kaiser on Saturday night. In their 25th straight sellout at Kaiser Arena, the Sea Dubs won 114-107. Scott Wood led the Warriors with 26 points and 5 rebounds. Phil Pressey had a double-double with 25 points and 13 assists to go with 5 rebounds. Damian Jones, on assignment from the Golden State Warriors, scored a season-high 19 points and grabbed 12 rebounds off the bench. Wednesday night, the team returned to the Kaiser where they defeated the Raptors 905 by a score of 128-122. Phil Pressey led all scorers with 28 points and 11 assists. Cleanthony Early came off the bench to add 25 points. James Southerland added 24 points, while Damian Jones contributed 16 points and 5 assists.
Upcoming games this week: 3/10 vs. Ft. Wayne (at Kaiser), 3/12 at Iowa, 3/14 at OKC
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