Monday, February 8, 2010

Hangin' with the hippies

Lunch at the most excellent High Tide Restaurant Cafe and Crepery. (The hippies thought the name of the restaurant was "High Times" instead of "High Tides." That's why they wanted to go there.)

From left clockwise - Ian "the Hippie" Butler, John "the Hippie" Maybury, Avril "the Hippie" Hughes, Steve "the Hippie" Sinai, and Matt "the Hippie" Levie.

Posted by Steve "the Hippie" Sinai


Kathleen Rogan said...

Spreadin your wealth. Good job, children.

Jeffrey W Simons said...

what was the name of the band you all played in back in the 60s? Matt the Hoople?

ian butler said...

Thanks Steve, I can't wait to try out your bongwater smoothie recipe!

Kathy Meeh said...

See we can all get along. Steve is still alive, and Ian is looking forward to a new recipe from Steve. Why not share responsibility in this city. Let us plan, built and manage the economy, while the others sitting at that table and their friends do everything else. Then share the media.

Scotty said...

Why are you so bitter, Kathy? To quote you: "There's plenty of blame to go around"

Maybe if you unclenched your fist and extended a hand in friendship, we could all work together to try and resolve things. From my perspective, there's very little difference in the way that you demonize those with whom you disagree and the things that you complain about Kathleen doing.

Markus said...

There is difference between Kathy and Kathleen. Kathleen demonizes all to the left of Ghangis Khan, while Kathleen is a bit more selective. I say balance is maintained in the center.

Richard Saunders said...

Amen to that, Scotty.

Kathy Meeh said...

Scotty, in what context did I say "there's enough blame to go around"? There is no reference to "there's plenty of blame to go around" on this article. I believe that reference was in relationship to national and state politics.

In Pacifica, I have a fairly respectful relationship with some of Steve's friends above, at least John Maybury, and I appreciate the good environmental work Ian has been doing, although from my view most of this city volunteer work should be paid jobs-- if the city had a substantial base. And, I don't know how either Kathleen or Lois from the far-right view that.

City council has had 8 years plus to support needed economic solutions for this city, and they have RUN from that responsibility. As far as their personalities very good, friendly, terrific. As far as their undercutting the potential of this city to thrive, that stinks.

So, here we are $150,000,000 in debt-- no plan to dig-out, no plan to thrive. This is an election year, and we already bought that "snake oil" twice, hopefully not again.

Markus and Mark is there any difference? You're right Kathy is actually a Kathleen too.

Richard agrees with Scotty, and they both hide behind pen names. Guess everything is okay as is in the land of "Fix Pacifica".

Kathleen Rogan said...

Don't buy into their argument, Kathy. It's weak and full of holes.

Richard Saunders said...

Extending a hand of friendship would be bad? Working together would what? Show weakness?

A bit of respect for the people of the community would be a good thing.

Not always presuming the worst about other people wouldn't hurt, either.

This site is replete with presumption of the worst about people. It doesn't seem to matter one whit whether there might be other reasonable explanations for something, it seems like it's always decided ahead of time that it's fraud, or delusion, or criminal, or insidious, or malevolent. It's so firmly decided that looking into it, making a phone call, maybe even talking to someone is just a waste of time, or something only ecodemonapologistprogresshaters would suggest as a diversion.

It's unhealthy.

It's one thing to be discerning. It's another entirely to be so cynical that everything the city staff and council does is prejudged to be evil.

Is it about getting some hate on, or is it really about fixing Pacifica?

Kathy went to the meeting, took some notes, and gave a pretty straight-up report on it. That was good.

But disagree about how to go about developing Pacifica, and we're right back to saying the council's work stinks.

Is that what you really want? Is that the best we can offer?

Cast aspersions all you want, but please take a moment to ask yourself what you're really after.

Kathleen Rogan said...

You know it amuses me how you twist peoples words, dick. You still don't get it, people are frustrated. fix pacifica blog has turned out to be a outlet for those frustration, for me and others, a place to see if one can find commen ground or not. Share ideas and solutions. I think if some want to say the "council stinks" let them. Who are you? It's not that the council will lose their job or anything like that, remember, they were elected in. I think I know what this group is after, if you can't figure that out, that's your problem, not mine or anyone else's.

Miss Manners Saunders said...

Saying "excuse me" after you fart during a "Save the Planet" cocktail party? Isn't that just plain polite?

Showing contrition after you back up over a midget in your Prius - isn't that what we should be doing here?

Taking notes at a City Council meeting by digging your nails into the person sitting directly in front of you? Is that the best we can do?

Giving adults your unsolicited opinion on how they should behave themselves? Isn't that a bit presumptuous?

Telling people how to run their city when you have NEVER lived there? Please take a moment and ask yourself if that is appropriate.

Markus said...

Thanks, Kathy (the latter Kathleen in my previous comment). My mistake, but I gather readers got my meaning. Richard, I do agree with you on the subject of working together to come up with some sort of concensus agreeable with most Pacificans. My belief is this kind of blog may just be a forerunner leading the way to open discussions, resulting in open forum debates before the next election. Its not very productive knocking people over spilled milk. We must look ahead to informative discussions to better inform the people to vote in the kind of candidates showing positive outlooks to fixing this town, which I live in and happen to care about. Hats off to Steve for giving all of us this opportunity.

Richard Saunders said...

Markus, agreed. Open discussions may not be the natural result of the name calling we're seeing here, though.

I'm all for venting frustration, up to a point. But the focus of the site, if the name is to be believed, is to fix Pacifica, right? Venting is not fixing. It may be necessary to vent to get to the point where we can get down to finding fixes. But a continuous spew of hostility can be pretty corrosive.

Finding consensus doesn't happen when the focus of the anger is the other participants. That just drives participants away.

Kathy Meeh said...

Markus, what you've said sounds positive and interesting. Meantime, here's some "spilled milk" addressed to Saunders.

What's your point "Saunders" you seem to have no direction and no purpose rather than to act as an irritant, same person as one Anonymous prior. Why are you not productive? I believe you are capable of being productive, but you choose not to be. You seem to consider messing with people and serious issues more fun. Waste of time.

I think Kathleen has a pretty good fix on the general frustration level of Pacificans who want more than "nothing" for this city.

At the core of my own frustration is the fact that the city is not productive, its a taker. Even the "open space" land is unproductive. And, 8 year city council has lead the charge to seal that permanent fate. At best the city has been crippled, and Pacificans are left to compensate financially and physically. Financially through additional fees and taxes; physically through supplemental volunteering and stressful inadequacies. This cycle continues to enable city deficiency.

The city relationship to it citizens may be like having an inept "double bind" parent that at the same time controls what's possible, cannot be reasoned with, and stymies what otherwise would be a bright future (in this instance for the benefit of "all the people".

Richard Saunders said...

Why am I not productive you ask.

Suggesting that people stop tearing each other down isn't productive?

Suggesting that people do like you did and go to the council meeting, read the agenda, and make reasoned, informed decisions about what's going on instead of jumping to conclusions about fraud (a pretty serious charge) isn't positive?

Yes, I put a name on that prior Anonymous because there was more than one, and it seemed to be confusing to some.

I believe that tearing at each other is the surest way to make sure nothing happens. Anger and hostility is not productive.

Nor is it productive to make a lot of negative claims about the city without first considering whether there's really enough to go on, and whether there really might be more to it. For example, the claim that the Recology item was some kind of fundamental fraud wasn't true. It was a contract assignment, per the existing contract, with some clearing of debt and anticipating of future decision points on rate increases. A bit of a simplification, but based on your notes from the meeting, not that far off, yet a far cry from the cry of fraud that started the thread.

Early on I asked a lot of questions about what can be done now to improve the city's revenues without increasing taxes and fees. That's a serious question.

I asked questions about people's views on what a commercial/retail development would bring at the quarry. How long before it showed revenue. What kind of model supports the notion of what could go there, that kind of thing. It's one thing to want it. It's a whole nuther thing to have it actually happen. Project proponents seem to always put the best possible outcome on it when selling it to the public. The people being asked to buy into it (voters who have to approve the zoning change, for example) need to ask, "What's the catch?" They get to question and challenge, hopefully without being called communists or Pacifica-haters.

If I ask you what you mean by something, or how you see that working, maybe it's because I don't see what you're seeing. Maybe I see it another way. Regardless, it's an opportunity to explain and maybe bring some to your way of seeing it. It's not an attack. It's an effort at civil discourse. Being civil doesn't mean always being agreeable. It's about respectfully putting ideas out there, discussing them, and seeing if there's any more agreement at the end of the day than at the start.

ian butler said...

I find Mr. Saunders posts to be a breath of fresh air. He has made his points clearly and remained respectful, even while under attack.

Unfortunately, every time someone tries to find common ground on this site, they get called a "waste of time" or "council apologist". If Fix Pacifica wants to be more than a fringe group, you will need to learn to welcome voices like Richard Saunders into the mix.

Scotty said...

Being civil. What a concept.

Jeffrey W Simons said...

Unfortunately, being civil and finding common ground are 2 strategies the no-growthers have used for years to make sure nothing gets done. Have any of you even read the report by the Rockaway Quarry Steering Committee from the 1980s? It laid out exactly what the city "wanted" through open hands and working together. And the result is . . . ?

Sometimes hostility is warranted towards our government and its defenders. Sometimes other explanations ARE just distractions from the truth. I find Mr Saunders to be a bunch of stale air, pushing the same old "can't we all just get along" rhetoric while he slices and dices any idea for progress and financial stability in the city.

We tried getting along. It doesn't work with people who refuse to listen or compromise, or even understand the history and basic issues of Pacifica.

Let me give you a good example. I attended the Financing City Task Force meetings. I asked the hard questions and the City Manager answered them. I saw all the information being given out, and I went to City Council and said 1 cent for a long period of time was too big a sales tax for this economy. The businesses are hurting and won't support it. People are struggling and won't support it. It would give Pacifica the largest sales tax in the state of California. I advised that 1/2 cent for 3 years while the City Council worked to build our economy would be a show of good faith, and they would get more support.

But no. Pete Shoemaker (PSD co-chair) gets up there and says 1-cent is what we need, and we need it indefinitely and BOOM! That's how they went. It was like they didn't even listen to what I had said.

So Measure D goes down in flames, and what does Julie Lancelle do? Blames the opposition. Casts us a Rovian meanies. Is that getting along or being open-minded? Really that is what led to the Fix Pacifica website.

Fix Pacifica is more than a "fringe group" based on our web traffic. I think calling voices like Richard Saunders out for being the same old tired no-nothing crap is healthy for the community if it wants to survive.

As for civility . . . let me share some of the behavior I have witnessed first hand from the people calling for "civility" . . . calling the police on their opponents (yes Ian Butler has done that), following people around and getting into their personal business (Ian again), trying to file false police reports on developers (as disgraced former planning commissioner Todd Bray did to Don Peebles), ganging up on one person and yelling at them outside City Council meetings (Nick Leone, Andrew Leone, Nancy Hall).

Its funny watching the bullies cry about people learning to get along with them.

Bark Nuggets said...

I haven't been on this site for too long -- a month maybe -- and I'm unaware about it's founding or past relationships among posters.

Given that, I've very surprised (and disappointed) at the level of animosity and vehemence directed at those with opposing viewpoints.

If you want people to be receptive to your points of view, schoolyard name-calling and demonization is not the way to do it because most people just kind of "turn off" when confronted with messages full of anger and hate.

Richard Saunders said...

Jeffrey, so you didn't persuade the council to go with you on the 1/2 cent issue. You got informed, you made your case. Is it news that not everyone who believes they're well-informed and absolutely right doesn't get their way at city hall? Civics 101. You know that. The reason I started posting here was that I read your lessons-learned post, so I know that you know this.

You said, "We tried getting along. It doesn't work with people who refuse to listen or compromise, or even understand the history and basic issues of Pacifica."

When you say it doesn't work, how do you mean that? From your post above, it sounds like you're saying that you're not getting your way, ergo it doesn't work.

I do agree with you on this -- it's hard to get along with people who refuse to listen. In case you haven't noticed, I read your posts carefully, and those of others, especially the ones I may take issue with. There's common ground to be found, but not if we're not hearing each other.

Jeffrey W Simons said...

It's not a matter of not persuading council, its a matter of that was just one example of them not listening. I saw it happen with the "mega homes" ordinance . . . council chamber packed with residents opposed to the ordinance who gave very articulate reasons not to move forward with the ordinance (Rick Lee and Dave Blackmon were probably the best) and its not that City Council just decided to vote a different way . . . they never mentioned A SINGLE POINT made by the opposition or tried to counter it.

Its not a matter of "getting my way", its a matter of making reasoned and articulate points in regards to the financial future of Pacifica, and the leaders just going about their merry way only listening to their select "advisers". They are completely insulated from reality as long as they have groups willing to do their bidding, spread their word, fulfill their agenda, and earn re-election.

And I listen, but not to complete nonsense.

Jeffrey W Simons said...

As to "common ground" I again cite the 1980s Rockaway Quarry Steering Committee report. In fact, Don Peebles based a lot of his development plan for the quarry around that report, because that was where community consensus was built, right?

Except half the people who came to that "common ground" turned their backs on it the minute a developer bought the property and planned to give exactly that to the community.

Because they weren't interested in finding common ground and moving forward. They're interested in "preserving" the coast and seeing no development.

Jeffrey W Simons said...

And you seemed to miss my point about Measure D. It wasn't that council refused to listen. They refused to listen and what many of us said would happen DID happen, and then mayor Julie Lancelle demonized the opposition.

Why aren't you railing against her to find common ground and treat people with different ideas with respect? Jiminey Crickets, you ever had a disagreement with Jim Vreeland? See how much he respects you by crossing him or not agreeing with him. Try having a debate with Pete Dejarnatt.

You seem to be willing to put the onus on private citizens to follow a certain set of guidelines you don't feel the City Council has to follow.

Anonymous said...

Very good points, Mr. Simons!

Kathleen Rogan said...

Excellent points , Jeffrey. I don't buy Bark&Saunders arguments one bit. They would by the same rules, NEVER!

I am quite shocked that some would follow another around/stalking and try to ruin their reputation just because they dont like you and then post on the blog on how to get along and why. Creepy. I don't think these are true tolerant democrats. Who really are these people?

Anonymous said...



Anonymous said...


In case you missed this:
Youtube video

Kathleen Rogan said...

Yes. I have seen it. Cute.

Now they are talking about what if there was a cyber attack on these green cars. OMG! I think I have it figured out!! Waaaahh!! They will get GM to build all gov computer cars, force us to buy and drive them and when we don't pay our bills they will...........calm down, I'm just joking.

Richard Saunders said...

Kathleen, your first sentence gave me a chuckle on that one.

Who's stalking, trying to ruin reputations? What's that about?

Jeffrey, I see a lot of people make "reasoned and articulate points" all the time in front of public boards and still fail to win over the people elected to decide. It seems that you're describing the situation the loyal opposition finds itself in, whether it be at the city level, county level, or national level.

As someone who ran for office, you've experienced first hand some of what it takes to try to put a philosophy of governance into practice. Being articulate and well-informed is a starting point, but ultimately it's about winning a seat at the table. You described some of the intermediate steps often used to achieve that.

I haven't experienced the same thing you apparently have with some of the electeds. It sounds like you've had some rough interactions. I'll take your word for it. Not having seen it, however, I have no idea what kind of interactions preceded (and whether it was personal, or if there was something else going on, I wouldn't presume to know). But you make it clear how you feel about having experienced it.

About that quarry occurs to me, that was a long time ago. It wasn't updated after the 80s? Things change. I've seen many plans from the 80s go the way of the dinosaur (e.g. the Bypass) when looked at through more recent eyes.