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Mirror columnist Barbara Bishop.

Santa Monica, Columnist, Hot Flash

The Gift Of Gratitude This Holiday Season

Posted Dec. 19, 2014, 9:15 am

It seems like every holiday season, my stress level triples. This season started out the same way. There are always too many things to carry in from my car. Zoey (my rescue pup) peed on the rug again. There’s a small leak in our roof from the rain.

Thomas B. Elias, Columnist

Opinion, California, Transportation, Santa Monica, Columnist

Still Not Too Late For The I-5 Bullet Train Solution

Posted Dec. 14, 2014, 9:26 am

Neel Kashkari tried last fall to make high speed rail one centerpiece of a serious challenge to the reelection of Gov. Jerry Brown. Even though he staged events where he literally paid voters to smash model trains, his depiction of a “crazy train” never caught on as a significant issue.

Santa Monica city water is now used at all city functions.

Environment, Opinion, Santa Monica, Columnist

Water Quality & Santa Monica Water Independence

Posted Dec. 13, 2014, 9:09 am

Water is the issue. We are in an extended drought. The City is focused on water. The goals are setting and meeting water conservation standards, creating opportunities for public reuse of stormwater through regulations, incentives, and rebates, meeting the Council mandated requirement for water self-sufficiency by 2020, and water quality.

Steve Stajich, Columnist

Opinion, Holiday, Santa Monica, Columnist

Five Easy Steps To A Happy Holiday

Posted Dec. 6, 2014, 9:00 am

The holidays are here, so let me be among the hopefully many who will wish you a Merry Christmas. I also wish you a joyful Hanukkah or Chanukah depending on how you chose to spell the holiday, which the AP Style Book shows as Hanukkah even though Rabbi Daniel Zemel told NPR’s Robert Siegel that there seems to be no “correct” spelling of the word. In this, the season of peace, let us all accept either spelling. Do not use “Xmas”. Try not to write “Xmas,” even in a text. “Xmas” is something for a sign on a muffler shop.

Thomas B. Elias, Columnist

Opinion, California, Columnist, Government

Reversal Coming For Unjust California Public Utilities Commission Ruling?

Posted Nov. 30, 2014, 8:56 am

Both the current president of the California Public Utilities Commission and one of its member commissioners admit to improper, unethical contacts with Pacific Gas & Electric Co. over items including which judges should rule on the utility's cases.

Thomas B. Elias, Columnist

Opinion, California, Santa Monica, Columnist, Government

Next Up: A Semi-Sovereign California Movement?

Posted Nov. 29, 2014, 8:02 am

The proposed Six Californias initiative died last fall, a victim of the weaknesses in its own concept and so much skepticism that even a $5 million petition circulating campaign wasn’t enough to get it onto the 2016 ballot.

Steve Stajich, Columnist

Business, Opinion, Santa Monica, Columnist

There’s Sweeping & There’s Pushing

Posted Nov. 8, 2014, 8:38 am

I’m part of a generation that grew up understanding that lots of different things we ate back in the day came from a place called General Foods. Far from fearing or resenting that General Foods had a lot of stuff that its big corporate family pushed onto our own family (Grape Nuts to Jello), I think many people felt back then that it was a healthy thing for big companies to get bigger by absorbing smaller ones.

Thomas B. Elias, Columnist

California, Santa Monica, Columnist, Government, Opinoi

Lame Duck Jerry Brown: More Than A Caretaker?

Posted Nov. 1, 2014, 9:12 am

During his first eight years as governor, Jerry Brown was so imaginative about what state government could do that he won the nickname “Gov. Moonbeam.” It took Brown, then in his 30s, to theorize that a state could launch its own communication satellite. And that a governor should deal person to person with presidents and prime ministers of foreign countries. Common sense ideas today, but visionary in the 1970s.

Michael Edlen has helped over 1,000 clients achieve their real estate goals since 1986.

News, Real Estate, Columnist

Holidays & Real Estate – To Sell Or Not To Sell?

Posted Oct. 29, 2014, 9:41 am

Is it a correct observation or a misconception that it is a disadvantage to list your home for sale during the holiday period? Conventional belief has generally been that November and December are the worst months of the year to have a home on the market.

Mirror columnist Barbara Bishop.

Health, Columnist, Hot Flash

Good Vibrations – A New Kind Of Luxury Lifestyle Brand

Posted Oct. 27, 2014, 7:51 am

Do you know what a Pocket Rocket is? A Rabbit? A LELO? I do now. The other day, I went with a friend to an adult toy store. An adult toy store – I am whispering now. Just writing this story I’m turning red.

Thomas B. Elias, Columnist

Opinion, California, Columnist

Propositions 45, 48: Two Obvious 'Yes' Votes

Posted Oct. 19, 2014, 9:26 am

It’s almost a foregone conclusion that the Proposition 1 water bond on next month’s ballot will pass easily: Every poll shows it with almost a 2-1 lead heading into the vote and the opposition has virtually no money for television commercials.

Thomas B. Elias, Columnist

Opinion, California, Santa Monica, Columnist

Desultory Jerry Brown Effort Raises Questions

Posted Oct. 12, 2014, 10:32 am

Just like this fall, there was a desultory quality – some called it murky – to the way Gov. Jerry Brown campaigned two years ago for his pet Proposition 30, which raised sales taxes a smidgen while considerably upping income tax levies on the wealthiest in order to bail out schools and a few other state services to the tune of $6.5 billion a year.

Steve Stajich, Columnist

Environment, Business, Opinion, California, Columnist

Alas, Plastic Bag; We Knew Ye Well

Posted Oct. 11, 2014, 9:42 am

Maybe at the top here we can agree that there are two general categories of environmental legislation. First, there’s a kind of proper ‘Boy Scout’ action that has a wonderful quality of engaging the public and offering high visibility while it is enforced.

Thomas B. Elias, Columnist

Opinion, California, Santa Monica, Columnist

New Initiative Law In California Makes Far Too Few Fixes

Posted Oct. 11, 2014, 9:32 am

From the rhetoric Gov. Jerry Brown employed on it, you’d think a law he signed early this fall would clean up the initiative process for all time.

Susan Cloke, Columnist

City Council, Opinion, Santa Monica, Columnist

Traffic: The First Question For Santa Monica City Council Candidates

Posted Oct. 8, 2014, 1:53 pm

The Santa Monica City Council members to be elected on Nov. 4, 2014 will be responsible for guiding and shaping the city. Their decisions will affect each of us in practical ways – such as our daily travel in the city; the number of parks we have and how they are used; how we spend the public dollar and the social benefits that can bring; and the image and character of new development in the city.

Thomas B. Elias, Columnist

Opinion, California, Columnist, Politics

Republican Nominee Neel Kashkari's Fire May Give Him A Future

Posted Oct. 4, 2014, 6:45 am

No candidate likes to admit in October that he has virtually no chance to win the office he’s running for. So it is today with Neel Kashkari, the Republican nominee – read: sacrificial lamb – who is Gov. Jerry Brown’s reelection opponent.

Thomas B. Elias, Columnist

Opinion, California, Santa Monica, Columnist, Education

Teacher Tenure Becomes Key California Campaign Issue

Posted Sep. 13, 2014, 7:30 am

For three months, the time bomb that is the Vergara vs. California court decision lurked in the background as two of this fall’s major political contests gradually took shape.

Mirror columnist Barbara Bishop.

Health, Santa Monica, Columnist, Hot Flash

The Must-Do Weight Bearing Exercises For Women Over 50

Posted Sep. 2, 2014, 9:06 am

I have been consistently weight training for more than a year now. I tried it when I was younger, but it never really worked out.

Thomas B. Elias, Columnist

Opinion, California, Santa Monica, Columnist, Government

Signs Indicate California Recovery Will Last

Posted Aug. 30, 2014, 8:55 am

There are still skeptics who maintain the California economy remains in recession, that talk of economic recovery amounts to whistling past the proverbial graveyard when unemployment remains above 7 per cent.

Thomas B. Elias, Columnist

Opinion, California, Columnist, Government

Tesla Has California Walking A Tightrope

Posted Aug. 24, 2014, 8:55 am

And so California government now walks a tightrope, put in that position by one of the latest in the large corps of successful high-tech startups this state has spawned over the last few decades.

Thomas B. Elias, Columnist

Opinion, California, Santa Monica, Columnist, Government

Changing Local Election Dates: Democrats Seek More Domination

Posted Aug. 17, 2014, 8:51 am

No one knows better than Democratic Party politicians that voters who tend to support them are at high tide in November general elections during even-numbered years when offices like President and governor and U.S. senator are at stake.

Dr. Mao Shing Ni

Health, Santa Monica, Columnist

Face Mapping: The Window To Your Heath & Wellbeing

Posted Aug. 14, 2014, 8:05 am

Next time you look in the mirror, you may see yourself very differently. “Face mapping,” a practice that began more than 5,000 years ago in China is now becoming more and more popular among health and beauty practitioners to help diagnose, prevent, and cure disease.

Thomas B. Elias, Columnist

Opinion, California, Santa Monica, Columnist, Government

No Getting Away From Corruption In State Government?

Posted Aug. 10, 2014, 8:36 am

To some, it seems almost as if California has lately become New Jersey West. Incidents of possible corruption and conflict of interest are seemingly exposed at least once a month these days, with almost no consequences for anyone involved.

Mirror columnist Barbara Bishop.

Health, Santa Monica, Columnist, Hot Flash

The Weekly Hot Flash: Meditate To Calm “Waves Of Evil”

Posted Aug. 5, 2014, 8:56 am

Do you ever have those days where you’re so stressed that your insides feel like they’re bubbling up and are about to explode? I have. I call them “waves of evil.” I usually get them right before my period, or when I’m really tired. And it seems as if nothing can stop them. And I feel sorry for anyone who happens to cross my path when I’m in this state. Until recently. I discovered mudra and meditation.

Thomas B. Elias, Columnist

Opinion, California, Santa Monica, Columnist

Anti-Citizens United Prop. 49: Hobson's Choice For Voters

Posted Aug. 3, 2014, 8:48 am

Whichever way Californians vote this fall on Proposition 49, which aims to convince Congress to pass a constitutional amendment overturning the U.S. Supreme Court’s Citizens United decision on political fundraising, they will send a dangerous message to the rest of America.

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