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Comments by Eckermann

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Posted on January 10 at 9:27 p.m.

I was going to "wallow" about 14noscams use of the word "subjective" (of which I believe he/she and I must hold different definitions). However, JarvisJarvis, in deference to your desire to have the very last word, there you have it. Indeed, enough bashing a simple target such as an inferior and poorly produced publication that is the Santa Barbara News-Press. Enough of shooting at ducks in a barrel. Indeed, let us cease wallowing and move on something else.

On Protestors Blast <em>News-Press</em> Headline

Posted on January 10 at 6:46 p.m.

14noscams, having raised two children and interacted with all their friends, and having grandchildren (one of whom is bilingual), I have spoken to children a great deal. One of my daughters, when she was first beginning to speak discovered the power of nouns but could not yet pronounce the stuff she wanted. She took me by the hand and opened the refrigerator and pointed at stuff and asked me, "What is that? (articulated as "Zat?") Each time I told her the name of the item she indicated she corrected me and told me the name she had given it based on her limited ability at pronunciation (Apple juice was "due", Peanut Butter was "pima", Oatmeal was "meal", and so forth). She quickly taught me her language so that she could communicate and then just as quickly learned how to effectively use the English language at a very high level. She has been praised for her writing skill. If communication were subjective, none of us would be able to communicate with any other person. Communication works because we agree on its form and on the meaning of words, otherwise it is all babbling and gibberish. It took a long time for my bilingual granddaughter to utter her first sentences (in either English or Spanish). When she did, they were clear and precise and complete and absolutely understandable. I am told that her Spanish contains a clarity of pronunciation that is rare among Spanish speaking adults, much less children. My theory as to why this is so is that she (at 4 years old) has discerned the need to differentiate between the pronunciation of the two languages that she speaks. If a 4 year old can be precise with her language anyone can. Therefore you are wrong that requiring people to be clear in their communication is discriminatory. Unless of course, ignorant laziness is a new protected class.

On Protestors Blast <em>News-Press</em> Headline

Posted on January 10 at 3:44 p.m.

Ignorant illiterates create words like "noun-ification" because their vocabularies are so limited that they have never encountered the word "transmute."

On Protestors Blast <em>News-Press</em> Headline

Posted on January 10 at 8:12 a.m.

Back when I went to elementary school, the word "illegal" was an adjective, not a noun. So it would seem to me that any editor with any allegiance to the English language and proper usage of it would have qualms about creating the noun "illegals." Secondly, if it is illegal to enter the United States without proper permissions and authority, it is also illegal to hire and employ a person who has illegally entered the Country. Consequently, if it proper to refer to the immigrant as an "illegal" would it not also be proper to refer to the immigrant's employer as an "illegal?" I would imagine that freedom of speech allows us to use imprecise language, however the use of imprecise language is not effective communication. If a newspaper is not in the business of precise and effective communication, then it is left as solely a medium for the distribution of auto advertising.

On Protestors Blast <em>News-Press</em> Headline

Posted on January 8 at 4:38 p.m.

Caltrans hoodwinked the rubes on SBCAG (including Mayor Schneider) into local money going to pay for a State highway project. Then Caltrans hoodwinked the rubes again by siphoning off federal funds for the same project. You can practically hear the laughter pouring out of Caltran's Sacramento headquarters from here. The local irony in all this is that all this local money is going to make a faster commute for a bunch of workers who live in Ventura, who don't vote for any of the SBCAG Board members. Finally, why the North County rubes bought into this mess at all is a mystery. In the long run the highway will be widened and there will be an ever shrinking pot of local funds to pass around among the local jurisdictions to maintain local infrastructure. The biggest blessing would be if Caltrans walked away from the project and left SBCAG with a windfall of all that money to use on local roads and for local transportation projects. But that won't happen.

On Bark Like a Dog, Walk Like a Man

Posted on January 6 at 7:29 p.m.

My earliest American ancestors founded Jamestown, Virginia and there progeny later migrated to Kentucky. My Pennsylvania ancestors came from Southern Germany and kept to themselves on the banks of the Susquehanna River and preserved their culture as long as they could until their progeny trooped off to Ohio and abandoned the old ways. My Irish ancestors settled in Ohio and South Dakota, where they were discriminated against in both places for being papist drunkards (which they might have been). They all came here from England, Ireland, and Germany to escape poverty and repression, just as modern immigrants do today. Considering my ancestors' experience, I have a hard time judging the hard-working folk standing in line to get drivers licenses that have heretofore been denied them. Let's all get some perspective folks.

On Protest Planned over <em>News-Press</em> Headline

Posted on December 31 at 9:25 p.m.

Great insight John Adams! If the Republicans could not win during a low turnout year when the incumbent was facing a manufactured scandal and the Republicans were kicking butt all over the rest of nation, then the hopes for Republicans in this district are pretty dismal. Maybe the Republicans should move to Fresno or maybe Texas, I hear housing is cheap there.

On Dies Family Awarded $2.5 Million Settlement

Posted on December 30 at 1:47 p.m.

Since a drivers license is not a right, it would be a simple matter to make receipt of one contingent on providing written and signed consent to be tested for blood alcohol level at any time one is driving a vehicle. Revocation of consent would then constitute revocation of the license. Another law could be passed that would define what constitutes reasonable suspicion of driving under the influence of alcohol, which would justify the test to which the driver previously consented by virtue of applying for a license. Finally, there should be a law that after the 2nd DUI conviction the driver loses his or her license for 5 years and after a 3rd conviction the driver loses the license for life. There are simple legislative solutions to drunk drivers getting off due to some legal technicality that some lawyer then exploits.

On Dies Family Awarded $2.5 Million Settlement

Posted on December 29 at 7:49 p.m.

I wonder how much of the 2.5 millions the lawyer got. I would bet that it was at least 10% and maybe as high as 50%. Also, and by the way Mr. Stoll, there was no admission of liability whatsoever. That is the way settlements work. The litigant goes after the deepest pockets rather than the those most liable (in this case the taxpayers rather than the drunk driver) and the deep pockets make a calculation of the costs of litigating versus the cost to make the prosecuting party walk away and offer some amount around the break even point. The defendant pays off on the condition of admitting absolutely no liability. I've played this stupid game before and it has nothing to do with truth and justice and everything to do with money. The ironic thing would be if a huge amount of this settlement went to pay for Stoll's college aged child partying at some Ivy League university.

On Dies Family Awarded $2.5 Million Settlement

Posted on December 17 at 9:45 p.m.

This is a Kabuki dance in which the City of Goleta and Venoco are partners. If you look at the final statements reported, both the City's lawyer and Venoco see room for "discussion." All State Lands did was give Venoco some negotiating room. I would bet that the outcome of this will be Venoco agreeing to an " end of operations" date as part of accepting a permit to produce 421. If you're not used to it, it's difficult to watch a Kabuki dance. It moves slowly and according to time honored tradition. Keep your eye on this one though. The plummeting price of oil and the pending development of properties west of the plant only make the Kabuki more complex and interesting.

On State Lands Approves Ellwood Oil Well

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