Sunday, March 8, 2015

The Rich Johnson Column That The Mountain Views News Refused To Print

Sir Rich
(Mod: Rich Johnson has been writing a weekly column for the local rag since the actual owner was running it. However, this week the paper's reigning autarch, H. Susan Henderson, refused to run his contribution. Why? Please read on.)

Sandra Siraganian for Pasadena Unified School Board - Short column this week but one of my most important. Your intrepid columnist had been slowly and steadily improving from the flu that many of us have been suffering from. That is until Friday, when like a folding chair at a WWE Smackdown wrestling event, the flu knocked me back into the ropes. I have been down for the count in my Batman jammies.

As strongly as I can endorse anyone, I recommend you cast your upcoming vote for Sandra Siraganian to be on the Pasadena School Board. Sandra is qualified for two very important reasons: First, she has experienced the Pasadena Schools as both a student through Pasadena elementary, middle and high school, and as an active parent of two children who went through the Pasadena Unified School System.

Secondly, and I really like this attribute, Sandra Siraganian comes out of the business community.  She has vast experience and considerable skill negotiating successfully in a business to business environment.

I have known Sandra personally for close to ten years. She may be the hardest working professional woman I know. Actually she makes me think of another woman who makes things happen: the editor of this newspaper. Sandra is strong. She is thorough in doing her homework on every issue and endeavor she chooses to be involved in (hmmm, must be that PUSD education). Sandra then becomes confident and passionate about advocating for what she believes in.

Whether or not you agree with her on a particular issue, you know, because of Sandra, that issue will be considered from every conceivable angle. Of particular importance will be her perspective as a parent and a taxpayer.

Please cast your vote for Sandra Siraganian. And have a good week.

(Mod: Because Rich isn't too keen on being censored, he had this column forwarded to me for publication here. Apparently at The Mountain Views News the uninterrupted demonization of Sandra Siraganian that has typified the extremely negative Larry Torres campaign takes precedence over free speech. Of course, the MVN is Sierra Madre's adjudicated newspaper, and therefore receives taxpayer support. Meaning it is obliged to present all opinions in town, even those of a columnist who has written for that paper since before Susan took it. But let's not quibble. Besides, and as Rich put it best, "Why would you print balanced coverage of an election when you can run a corned beef recipe?")

Preserve Sierra Madre Report

(Mod: This went out to the Preserve Sierra Madre e-mail list yesterday afternoon. It catches everyone up on the important news from the Planning Commission last week.)

NEWS ALERT! Planning Commission Takes Major Steps Towards Preservation - There have been some significant steps made toward preservation by the Sierra Madre City Council and Planning Commission in the last year or so.  And one of the biggest of these steps was made by the Planning Commission at their last meeting on March 5th in which they passed PC Resolution 15-01.

To give our supporters a taste of what our Planning Commission did on Thursday night, we will highlight some of the major improvements:

1. A new formula will be used to calculate the "maximum allowable floor area" (how big a home can be built on a given size lot). For those lots over 7,500 square feet, the maximum size home has been reasonably reduced to prevent the mansionization of Sierra Madre.

2. The CUP (conditional use permit) threshold for when a new home or addition will get additional scrutiny by the Planning Commission and surrounding neighbors has been reduced from 4,000 square feet to a 3-tiered formula that is now capped at a much lower 3,500 square feet.

3. In recognition that a 2-story new home or addition has the most potential to adversely impact on a neighbor's views, light and privacy, a CUP will now be required for all 2-story new homes and for all 2-story additions.

To be clear, Preserve Sierra Madre has never been against all development. The measures above are reasonable, balanced and fair to all parties concerned, and for that reason, they have our whole-hearted support.

The first three provisions of the new resolution reveal the purpose and spirit in which these new measures were done and so we will quote them in their entirety:

"WHEREAS, the R-1 One Family Residential Zoning Ordinance (Chapter 17.20 of the Municipal Code), was adopted to encourage development that preserves the small town character of the community and promotes architectural diversity while maintaining neighborhood consistency;

WHEREAS, the City is concerned with an increasing number of existing single-family homes being replaced with much larger, often 2-story homes that are inconsistent with the scale of the surrounding  residential neighborhoods and the overall small village character of Sierra Madre;

WHEREAS, the City is concerned that some of the existing R-1 development standards are inconsistent with the City's community preservation goals and thereby wishes to amend the zoning ordinance;

The three provisions above state about as well as we ever could the goals and purposes of the Preserve Sierra Madre coalition.  We commend the work and efforts of the Planning Commission as well as the City Staff towards this significant achievement.   We also thank all of our supporters for your help in advancing the cause we hold so dear - preserving Sierra Madre for now and future generations.

Steering Committee
Preserve Sierra Madre

sierramadretattler.blogspot.com

56 comments:

  1. thank you Rich Johnson for a well reasoned and truth filled endorsement of a candidate for school board. It is unfortunate that those two reasons are probabl why the illustrious editrix of the MVN refused to publish your column.

    Hope you feel better soon. this flu can pack a wallop.

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  2. Thank you Rich for refusing to be silenced.

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  3. Hooray for Rich, your column will be seen by many more people here!

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  4. On the same day yesterday, I received mailers from the Torres and Siraganian camps. I've decided to vote for Siraganian. I have heard it now too many times not to think its true that the Union sent out a letter to its people in an attempt to handpick a candidate who would do the union's bidding. Larry Torres answered that call and the teacher's union will be able to count on his vote in favor of all the rules and regulations that support the teacher's union at the expense of the kids. Siraganian is gong to remain independant. She was obviously not handpicked by the union. She is the only one who has any chance of improving the schools for our kids. I'm also very disappointed that our present Mayor Haradbedian has decided to support the "party" and allign himself with such failed Mayors as Doyle, Buchanan and Stockley.

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  5. Great news from Preserve Sierra Madre. The Planning Commission has taken some great steps to control over-development in Sierra Madre.

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  6. Susan's picked candidates always lose.

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  7. I would remove this from Rich's column. "Actually she makes me think of another woman who makes things happen: the editor of this newspaper."

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    1. I think he is referring to LaQuetta Shamblee.

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  8. Sandra is definitely not a UTP Union puppet, like what's his name.

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    1. Torres is their poodle.

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  9. I always check and see who the Mountain Views News endorses, then vote the other way.

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    1. Democracy at work, good for you!

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  10. If you love Susan Henderson and the MVN you will love Torres.

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    Replies
    1. Censorship and smear politics, all washed down with copious amounts of gin.

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    2. I've heard that Sandra Siraganian tried to buy and ad for this week's edition and Susan never returned her calls. Why does our tax money go to Susan again? I for one am offended that I am forced to support censorship.

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  11. If you love Sierra Madre you will love Sariganian

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    1. That should absolutely be true

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  12. Good you posted this very sincere endorsement of Sandra Siraganian.
    She is not just the best candidate in this race...but will do her job as she always does ...giving it 100% of her effort for the children of Pasadena.....who are far more important than the special interests putting every conceivable effort into defeating this good lady.
    Please everyone VOTE FOR SANDRA. She needs your help to win!!!!!!

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  13. this blog is so two faced - I haven't been a fan of Susan since she screwed over the Dunn's and still have no use for her. but this blog will rip Susan about slanting editorials, agendas and even photos but with Sandi he's all goo goo gaa gaa Why not point out that Sandi does a Sears Portrait studio glam shot and prints a unflattering picture of her opponent or why not point out that Sandi is on the record as stating originally her platform was about protecting property values and not education so Mr Big Time fancy blog, you can't have it both ways and pretend to be neutral

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    1. Who is against protecting property values? Are you drunk?

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    2. I believe that 9:55's way of getting to the point is to careen wall to wall as he/she proceeds down the hallway of life.

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    3. Hey Mod,
      Did you know you're a Big Time fancy blog? Who knew? Wow.

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    4. Larry, is that you?

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    5. I think it is my new socks, 10:01.

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  14. "Of course, the MVN is Sierra Madre's adjudicated newspaper, and therefore receives taxpayer support. Meaning it is obliged to present all opinions in town, even those of a columnist who has written for that paper since before Susan took it."

    So you're saying that if a newspaper receives ad money from a governmental entity and/or prints legal notices it is obliged to print all opinions? Do you have a statute, ordinance, or case citation to support this interpretation of the law?

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    1. Uh oh. The Censors for Larry group is in the house.

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    2. So if there is no specific law against censorship in a paper that taxpayers fund, that is OK for you? I don't think there any laws against censorship in North Korea. That is probably OK for you, too.

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    3. I think there was a picture of 10:02 on yesterday's post.

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    4. What a strangely obtuse response 10:35.

      Read the quote again. Are you saying that Susan must print all opinions, even those supporting, say, North Korea, the Taliban, ISIS, etc. because, after all, "the MVN is Sierra Madre's adjudicated newspaper, and therefore receives taxpayer support … [m]eaning it is obliged to present all opinions…?"

      Show me the law that requires her to print all opinions. If there is no such law, then she has no such requirement.

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    5. The word I used was "obliged." I used that word on purpose. Susan can print whatever she likes, but since she takes public money there should be a sense of obligation to those who pay her way to allow them to speak their minds. After all, it is a paper the people helps fund. She is under no legal constraint to publish any certain things. After all, she did not publish anything about Larry Torres' arrest and conviction for driving drunk. News suppression in little town newspapers is hardly unique to Sierra Madre. But for the record I did not say she broke the law. Being a skunk is not a crime.

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    6. Fair enough, Mod. Thanks for the clarification.

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    7. 11:04 - the Taliban and ISIS are paying taxes in Sierra Madre? You know this for certain?

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    8. 11:04 has started the happy hour early.

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    9. Read the first part of the sentence (question) for context, 11:47.

      In fact, let me help you: Questioning whether "Susan must print all opinions, even those supporting" various nefarious entities neither states nor implies that those nefarious entities pay taxes in SM. I'm happy to help you understand!

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    10. So you created this phony little strawman argument, and then knocked it down all by yourself? My, aren't you a busy bee!

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  15. Is anybody going to the Larry Torres happy hour John Harabedian is hosting today?

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    Replies
    1. I hope the police will be there.

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  16. I have Never seen this much contention over a school board election! Why? Why is it so important for big special interest to defeat Sandi?
    I think they fear more exposure of illegal dealings that have plagued Pasadena recently .
    Why?????? Something very wrong here. I got a canned call from Bill Bogard ....mayor if Pasadena telling my family to vote for Larry Torres? This is expensive to do these calls. What is at stake here?
    It sure is suspicious to us.
    Vote for Sandra Siraganian! !!!!!! Obviously a lot of bad people want her to lose this election. Again ....WHY???????

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  17. 11:16 Maybe it's some of the tweets she reportedly made that make people question her true views.

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    1. 11:35
      We still have free speech in California?
      Some of us are opposed to big intrusive tax grabbing for padding their own pensions and salaries. .....GOVERNMENT

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    2. I'm against big government corrupt bullies.

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    3. She absolutely has free speech rights. Perhaps she should exercise those rights fully, including sharing the reported tweets again and explaining the viewpoint behind them. If the tweets were not hers or do not properly convey her views, she can say so. Then everyone can make a more informed choice--free speech triumphs!

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    4. Who exactly are you talking about? Whose tweets? Did Larry tweet something inappropriate from the drunk tank?

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  18. Bill Bogaard called? You should have asked him how he slept through a decade long series of embezzlements that cost the taxpayers of Pasadena over $6 million dollars. Bogaard is a good reason for limiting a Mayoral term to one year like we do in Sierra Madre.

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    1. There is a lot of dirty money behind Torres.

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  19. Susan should have put Rich's column in her paper today. That way there would have been something worth reading.

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  20. Although I have absolutely no problem with the Tattler running my column, for the record I didn't forward it to John. Sandy asked if she could reproduce the column and I encouraged her to do whatever she wanted to with it. Obviously she chose to send it to John. Susan is under no obligation to run anything in the paper she chooses not to. I'm disappointed she chose not to run the column.

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    1. I was in a similar position, Rich. Remember, I wrote for that paper for a while after Katina Dunn sued Susan for misappropriation of property. A case Katina won, as you know. I soon found that large portions of my columns were disappearing. Susan would reply that it was a space issue, which was not the truth. I finally got sick of it and went out on my own. The result is The Tattler, a blog that has now attracted over 3 million hits and a far larger weekly readership than the limited press run MVN receives. My suggestion? You should go out on your own. While I was glad to post this column here this weekend, how can you be sure that you are going to reach your readers on any given weekend? Particularly when the topic is as important as this one? Can you really trust Susan to do so?

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    2. It is a disappointment to me, too that Susan declined to print Rich's column. At the Kiwanis debate, Susan told me that no one has sent her anything about Sandi, and if some one did, she would print it because she "tries to be fair." Pat Alcorn

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    3. As we have all seen over the years, Susan is not a truthful person.

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  21. On the Mountain Views News Facebook page there is one "like" for its endorsement of Larry Torres. And that "like" is from the Mountain Views News.

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    1. Harri S. Henderson

      LOL LOL LOL LOL LOL
      Almost as big a hoax as Joe Mosca

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    2. Self liking is about as pathetic as a human being can get.

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  22. Oh, does the MVN have a Facebook?

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    1. Of course. Susan goes there to talk to herself.

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    2. MVN Facebook has fewer readers than the MVN. If that is indeed possible.

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