Vol. 12, No. 6 – Dec 19, 2018 – Jan 2, 2019 – Opinion/Editorial

This is my last chance this year to wish you a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year.

• I received some complaints regarding articles in our last issue talking about people who lost their homes in the Thomas Fire. The complaints say that we only published articles about those folks who are happy with how the city (planning and building & safety) handled their plans and permits.

We didn’t pre-screen people who lost their homes to see if they were happy or un-happy. We certainly would be happy to accept any opinions regarding working with the city (good or bad). If you are unhappy, don’t just say city (or Breeze) are idiots, please articulate why. Send comments to opinions@venturabreeze.com. Would love to hear from you.

•I met with Deya Terrafranca, The Museum of Ventura County’s new Library and Archives Director, who will manage their wonderful archives. I like the fact that she plans to make the archive library more accessible to all. The previous director thought of it as his own private collection and didn’t easily share content with the community and the media. It is a wonderful resource of Ventura history. Read the article about her in this issue.

•I expect great things from our “new” city council and city manager. Hopefully the council will let the city manager do his job and they will deal with more macro, rather than micro concerns. A fresh, open minded look at marijuana businesses in Ventura should be on their agenda, as we are losing lots of money to nearby cities.

Hope one of the new members brings a great sense of humor similar to what Mike Tracy provided to the council.

•Time magazine has named a newspaper and four journalists, including Washington Post’s murdered Saudi columnist Jamal Khashoggi, as its Person of the Year.

“They are representative of a broader fight by countless others around the world – as of December 10, at least 52 journalists have been murdered in 2018 – who risk all to tell the story of our time,” Time wrote in an essay titled The Guardians and the War on Truth.

Retired Adm. William McRaven has stated, “I stand by my comment that the President’s attack on the media is the greatest threat to our democracy in my lifetime,” McRaven said, referencing remarks he made about Trump last year. “When you undermine the people’s right to a free press and freedom of speech and expression, then you threaten the Constitution and all for which it stands.”

•After a loss, a star player of the LA Lakers stated, “I don’t got nothing to say about that.” Maybe he shouldn’t say anything at all. And when they introduce the players they say which college they attended.

•Ventura County supervisors want to find out why firefighters lacked enough water early on to fight the Thomas Fire. They have directed staff members to look for answers on what went wrong. The action came after they received a county disaster agency’s review of the emergency response efforts that contains no mention of the water problems that slowed firefighting.

Ventura’s report on the issue is still pending a year after the disaster.

Ventura officials blame the shortage to the rapid depletion of water from tanks, low water pressure in the hydrants, the loss of power and an inadequate number of backup generators. Shouldn’t this be known and dealt with prior to the fires?

Our new City Manager, Alex McIntyre, said the city’s draft report on the response to the fire is coming soon. He needs to deal with an issue that he had nothing to do with but maybe that will be a good thing with a fresh new look.

Trump suggested that “raking” would help stop the scourge of wildfires, so perhaps fire fighters should each carry a rake instead of a hose.

•I’m sorry to see Ventura Unified School District Superintendent David Creswell quit (see article on this issue cover). I don’t think it was necessary, but I feel that he might have been looking for a reason to step down. Ventura has had a tough time filling this extremely important position. In my opinion, school superintendent and city manager are the two of the most important positions in Ventura. Closely followed by the head of community development.

•A two-year analysis by two dozen experts at universities found that the notion that immigrants, like the small group of asylum-seekers who traveled from Central American countries to the U.S.-Mexico border recently, are unhealthy and will bring disease into the U.S. This “is a false argument that is used to keep migrants out,” one of the study’s authors, stated Dr. Paul Spiegel, of the Center for Humanitarian Health at Johns Hopkins.

Measles increased 30% over the last year due to poor vaccination rates, the World Health Organization stated. Experts say that people who skip vaccination due to vaccine fears and poor health systems are to blame.

Over 6.7 million people contracted the measles in 2017, with 110,000 dying of the virus, WHO said in their report. Most of the infected people were children.

The measles vaccine has prevented 21 million deaths since 2000, WHO said, but recent, unnecessary fear of the vaccine has lowered the vaccination rate. The goal is for 95% vaccination. No scientific link has been found between vaccines and autism, as some fear, according to science and medical experts.

Measles is still common in many developing countries – particularly in parts of Africa and Asia. The overwhelming majority (more than 95%) of measles deaths occur in countries with low per capita incomes and weak health infrastructures.

Measles outbreaks can be particularly deadly in countries experiencing or recovering from a natural disaster or conflict. Damage to health infrastructure and health services interrupts routine immunization and overcrowding in residential camps greatly increases the risk of infection.

Health authorities in California have more power to insist that a dog is vaccinated against rabies than to ensure that child enrolled in public school are vaccinated against measles.

• When Clinton lied about having an affair all Republicans screamed “Impeach him.” When Trump lied about having affairs Republicans said “It ain’t no big deal.” Conclusion. Okay for Republicans to have affairs, it seems, but not for Democrats.

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