Santa Barbara Politics, Media & Culture

Saturday, September 15, 2007

POLITICAL PLAY of the WEEK: Hotchkiss Chutzpah

Like the Political Play of the Week, Chutzpah can be either good or bad, as long at it has an effect.

I was looking to grill up some homegrown red meat for the Play this week, especially if political corpse Jim Anderson indeed made some announcement or gave any hint that he would be running for Third District Supervisor in the Republican vacuum left after Firestone announced eight days ago that he was not seeking a second term. That teaser about Anderson initially was a comment last week at Blogabarbara, but nothing has been reported, anonymous or not, since then. Maybe Jimbo in Lompoc finally realized he actually resides in the Fourth District?

With no red tri-tip beef roasting on the endangered-Valley-Oak-fired, Santa-Maria-style barbecue pit this week, the Political Play this week has to be a lighter fair of Hotchkiss Chutzpah cream puffs.

First-time City Council candidate Frank Hotchkiss (remember him?) dissed a local second-tier political blog by refusing to provide an unrestricted statement to be posted at the invitation of the anonymous blog host. The Bluetooth-implanted Hotchkiss politely wrote that he wanted to spare the readers and Santa Barbara City voters the trouble of knowing and thinking about his views may be for Santa Barbara.

"Too often, political positions are the subject of misinterpretation, misunderstanding and endless bickering. I would rather spare us all of that," Hotchkiss wrote to that second-tier blog.

Real estate profiteer Hotchkiss apparently has nothing to write right now, but promised that he would have something to say during an upcoming candidate forum, without indicating when or where. As of blog time for this posting, only four comments have been entered about Bashful Frank, perhaps as much of a telltale sign as any about public interest in his candidacy and/or in that particular second-tier blog.

I suppose Bashful Frank will not be wearing out too many shoes walking from home to home meeting and greeting with voters in the Golden Triangle precincts. At least Michelle Giddens has a few lawn signs (paid for by Lanny Ebenstein and Jerry the Beaver) for her and her five friends who never met a Mesa McMansion they didn't like.

Upcoming sixth-place vote recipient Frank Hotchkiss insults the voters, fails to take advantage of free publicity (such as it is), and then instead reserves his 10 --and perhaps only-- minutes of fame for the candidates forum by League of Women Voters on October 11.

And THAT is the Political Play of the Week!!!


Anonymous donaldo de Santa Barbara said...

Hotchkiss could still shed some tread distributing flyers to the Golden Triangle Hoods. San Roque, Samarkand, Mesa hoods can be easily tagged by throwing rolled flyers out the Porsche window and onto the electorates driveway. Kinda of quaint and keeping in line with Hotchkiss "we need to plan for more cars" drive-by platform.

9/15/2007 2:19 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I'll vote Ivy League over minor league any day.

At least one sitting council person will lose their seat. There is a very strong field out there running this time, and no one likes the city staff unions buying elections anymore, so will the DemLadies Mafia still rule this one or not?

9/15/2007 2:49 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

He and Michelle Giddens should do us all a favor and drop out of the race.

9/15/2007 2:58 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

citizen stringer is nothing more than a partisan, political mudslinger. Sara, when will you spare us more of this amateur-hour rubbish?

9/15/2007 4:20 PM  
Anonymous been there said...

I'm no supporter of Mr. Hotchkiss, nor Ms. Giddens, but you write as if these people have no right to even run--or anyone else has a right to run another blog. They do. And frankly, I understand the candidate's decision not to participate in discussions when he has the guts to put himself out there, only to be attacked by anonymous bloggers. Yes, I'm protecting myself by remaining anonymous, too, becuase these postings can and do get disturbingly personal, unkind and often, wrong. Who needs it?

9/15/2007 4:21 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

maybe Anderson would run against Joni?

9/15/2007 6:04 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Anderson owns property in the Santa Ynez Valley.

9/15/2007 8:44 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Most posters here would be surprised if they actually listened to the depth of disgust registered among those who do not think like them about what has been happening in the city in the past few years.

Those voices are now heard in the letters section of the NewsPress, which too many here claim they are proud they no longer read. They should because rather than scoff at these alternative viewpoints, they need to know and understand they are forming the majority new viewpoints in this town. And they need to adjust to this new reality.

It is politically dangerous to keep pretending these opposing viewpoints (like no growth, neighborhood protection, degradation of downtown, affordable housing crap, pandering city employees, and lack of basic security for residents, lack of basic municipal services, arrogant city staff, attitudes, over-building, gangs, trash, grafitti, and lack of clear leadership and lack of resistence to noisy special interest groups looking for endless city handouts --- did I miss anything?) do not exist and are a growing new consciousness in this town.

These are the issues voters are concerned about this time around. They are tired of the city only listening to those who do NOT live here, but want to..... at our expense.

The recent city rulings on inclusionary housing are the most egregious, high handed taking this city council has done yet. There is no value whatsoever for Hotchkiss to cater to the dead end voices who are hell bent destroying this city even more with similar attitudes. That is not his agenda and plenty of us are grateful for it.

More than a few dead end liberals or as they like to call themselves now --progressives --- are in for a surprising wake-up call, and it come not a moment too soon.

Forget Measure A - no one is getting one more year to keep destroying this wonderful city we who live here love and want fiercely to protect.

9/16/2007 9:16 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

When you want to kill all terrorist, that is war. When you want to kill all Muslims, that is genocide. My friends are having these discussions after reading a biased NewPress.

It came up that the NewPress featured, "Three Muslims arrested in plot to attack U.S.". Two Christains, were allowed a published letter to the editor, afterwards they received a tongue lashing from Dr. Laura. I do not have the date of the report. I don't know if Wendy McCaw allowed follow up letters or knowing this is a Dr. Laura pet, had her take over in an opinion column. All the lines are blurred in this example.

You may recall when an editorial on pornography at the NewPress was on-line for a few hours and disappeared. The blogs were buzzing over a pornography disappeared. I have not seen Dr. Laura's September 13,2007 column on-line. It made an uproar with my friends and I'd like to read it for myself. Do you know why the disappearance? And why not a word about this matter? Jerry Roberts was involved in that NewPress slam and disappeared, this one is against Muslims. How will we know if NewPress is getting no letters or volumns about this.

As I understand the Christians were standing up for a religion being connected to a terrorist report. It was Dr. Laura that took it further. If the public wants to end Wendy McCaw NewPress bias they would give this a public airing.

If what I hear is part accurate, Dr. Laura may have crossed a line to libel. All say that what she wrote is a disgrace and ignorant towards Christians and Muslims. Specfic towards two individuals who are not American enough to write to NewPress, I'd like to read her exact words. If she is aligning all Muslims to terrorists that means kill them, genocide. If the whole city is going to accept this we deserve Wendy McCaw.

Two Christians were allowed a little say in letters. It was not fair to get a long Dr. Laura grenade without equal space to respond. She will not give them a chanch to restore their reputations. She went on about bin Laden, what is American, the Mayor was mentioned. Wendy McCaw allows Dr. Laura's Mayor Blum remarks.

Wendy McCaw may fail in court. She has won with the public, as no one will speak up on blantant bias. Dr. Laura has a right to opinion, what I hear she is doing to Christians and Muslims is past opinion.

I'd like to know why another NewPress disappeared and why no one stands up for the wrongs or is outraged at this bias?

I would like you to know and for someone to look into the disappeared and what was said and done there. This is off topic and not to be added to thread. Except to ask, why did Dr. Laura's Thursday September 13,2007 disappear and did others read it? What do they think? If Dr. Laura is right, how many antiAmerican Christians are out there and what else will she suggest?

9/16/2007 10:07 AM  
Blogger Rick said...

CS: What's a second-tier blog?

9/16/2007 3:18 PM  
Blogger Citizen Stringer said...

OK, "Anonymous" 9/16/2007 9:16 AM, do you or anyone else really think that the letters published during the last few years in the News-and-Opinion-Suppress really are a fair and accurate representation of the sentiment of all the Santa Barbara voters?

To all my fans:

If the challengers to the current City Council incumbents did not keep doing stupid things to fumble the political ball, then they would not be selected as the Play of the Week. Conversely, if any of them really did something innovative and politically effective, they also could be recognized as a Political Play of the Week, for a good reason.

The Play is an equal-opportunity designation and calls them as they really are. Barnwell and Falcone were almost selected this week for entirely different reasons, but Hotchkiss declining a chance to write a statement to voters was a bigger blunder.

Merely filing a candidacy as a challenger and then bitching and moaning to the loyal 15% of the electorate does not make an effective Play of the Week.

If Hotchkiss, Giddens, and/or Francisco did something really amazing, they could be recognized as the Play of the Week for scoring points instead of fumbles.

Here is a suggestion: the day after the filings are due later this month, they should send their FPPC financial disclosure forms to all the local newspapers and post the original files at their campaign web sites.

All the candidates, both challengers and incumbents, should volunteer to disclose their campaign contributions, promptly and accurately. That would be worth of quite an end-zone dance for big political points scored that week.

9/16/2007 4:37 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

We don't have to visit Falcone, Barnwell and Schneider websites to know their biggest campaign contributers will be the public employee unions.

Voters -- don't be fooled they are supported by our "police and fire" people.

They are supported by the police and fire UNIONS who will make them pay in the next round of contract negotiations, while they fund their glossy re-election mailings over the next few months.

If you want more of the same, vote for the incumbents. No, thank you.

9/16/2007 5:32 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hotchkiss, Giddens and Francisco. Good, a slate is emerging. The only way to get real change is to vote for all three together.

9/16/2007 5:34 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hotchkiss' decision not to play with the anonymous bloggers, rather to invite civil in-person discussion instead, shows some of the common sense he's been making a cornerstone of his campaign. I don't think I'll vote for him, but I respect his decision on this one. And it has nothing whatsoever to do with the letters that appear in the NP.

9/16/2007 6:17 PM  
Anonymous donaldo de Santa Barbara said...

Some posts seem to suggest that after there's an election we can hold the representatives feet to the fire but we're supposed to give them grace as fledgling politicians running for office? Seems to me our current councilmembers have paid their dues and then some. So why cut Hotchkiss some slack? The CS post was O.K. with me

Anon 9:16 a.m. has some valid points but I've come to find that governement is reflective of "The People." The people being all srewed up is why the government is all screwed up. I'd suggest taking a look in the mirror. Why else would we have a warmonger in the Whitehouse?

I think the city's progressives are doing the best they can given all the competing interests. Otherwise they'd be doing a lot better if everyone gave a little more thought about their expectations while plundering the city and asking for more goodies.

9/16/2007 6:46 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Is your story and photo not stolen from said blog, which you must enjoy?

9/16/2007 7:38 PM  
Anonymous Marilyn said...

Do I detect envy over my fav blog? The Hotchkiss no nonsense style is sunshine. It will make Santa Barbara thrive again.

I am sick of the lies about Wendy having bias, she can do whatever she wants with her business. Call the N-P to get Dr. Laura's Calling a Muslim a terrorist reset, if you have a problem. Don't change the subject to try and hurt Wendy. Dr. Laura would never libel. She's right, the city should impeach Osama bin Laden and be an American city. GET A LIFE.

9/17/2007 12:59 PM  
Blogger MCConfrontation said...

More mudslinging from CS; how shocking. Funny that he/she/it has now broadened the scope of his/her/its focus to include "second tier blog(s)." Is that to suggest that blogabarbara is a first tier blog? Where is this tier system published? I'd like to see how the other blogs measure up to the creativity, production, and content standards set forth by this and other "first tier blogs."

Sara this guy/girl/it has taken pomposity to a new level. He/she/it has made up his/her/its own set of blog standards and is ranking them categorically for us all. Thankyouverylittle, CS. Don't hurt your arm patting yourself on the back.

9/17/2007 2:02 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

um...don't think police and fire support Schneider...

9/17/2007 6:38 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

"Hotchkiss, Giddens and Francisco. Good, a slate is emerging. The only way to get real change is to vote for all three together."

If you want that kind of change you can simply move to Orange County. It's cheaper to live there, too.

9/17/2007 7:54 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

What is a second-tier blog?
The one I'm thinking of, it could be said, third rate.
If the mayor & city want to impeach Bin Laden, impeach them.
I better start listening to their meetings.
That's what they talk about?
That's insanity.

9/17/2007 8:28 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

My guess is Schneider will be the only survivor of the three incumbents.

Why doesn't she have police and fire - didn't she vote unanimously with the council to give them everything they wanted in the last union salary negotitations?

Or are they tired of her giving the city over to the homeless and making their jobs 100 times harder? What gives?

9/17/2007 9:26 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Jerry and Helene Beaver have done more good for Santa Barbara themselves than ALL OF the non-profits, current politicos, McCaw lovers and haters, and posters to these blogs have done COMBINED.

They are simply decent, down-home good people who care about where they live and want to help make it a better place.

If you don't believe it, you don't know them.

9/18/2007 11:20 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

9:26: my guess as to why Helene Schneider doesn't have support from the police and fire unions is that Iya (and Loretta) wouldn't like it.

9/18/2007 8:04 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Loretta Redd never pandered to the unions - refused to answer their questionaire last time as I remember.

Is Iya maneuvering to bring Loretta on and dump and displace Helene just so Iya gets to be mayor - what a waste that would be.

Who said little girls were all sugar and spice?

9/18/2007 9:09 PM  
Blogger Sara De la Guerra said...

9:09 -- perhaps a bit too much even though it sounds like perhaps-maybe-probably-not-scenario. Iya could make Mayor on her own if she really wanted and worked it. The problem for her is so could Helene. It depends on if SB wants a quieter-gets-more-done (like Marty) or more assertive-gets-along-with-the-playas leader (like Harriet), no?

9/19/2007 12:03 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

The mayor should be a leader. Neither Iya or Helene measure up. Roger maybe.

9/19/2007 8:15 AM  
Blogger Citizen Stringer said...

One city council election at a time, people, one at a time.

The race for Mayor does not start until November 7 later this year, and then it has three long years to go.

Loretta Redd is not a player nor a playah. Where did that theory come from?

9/19/2007 9:01 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

9:01, By being a weekly commentator in the other daily paper, the Daily Sound, as well as especially having been a candidate in the last City Council race, Redd is a playah.

As for union support, I believe Redd did get money and support from the police/fire unions in her council bid. Nothing at all wrong with that, any more than support from the other public servant union, SEIU.

As for one election at a time, would that were so and candidates assessed solely on present position abilities --- but it's not. It will be interesting to see the endorsement list of the present candidates for council.

9/19/2007 9:50 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Oh please, "quieter gets more done like Marty?". Sara you are flying your flag again for your girl. Marty has been a divisive disaster, this council can barely function.

9/19/2007 12:51 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

You are not counting right - Loretta Redd was the top vote getter last race, had not Terry Tyler filed at the last minute and taken away conservative votes that surely would have gone her way.

House snuck inbetween this two-way conservative vote split and squeaked his way on to the city council.

Loretta's Daily Sound columns are spot on. She is one sharp lady. The city would be lucky to have her talent working for us. And not a moment too soon.

We need a far broader range of opinions in all city policy discussions than we are getting now. It is that simple.

9/19/2007 4:58 PM  
Blogger Bill Carson said...

Redd was a missed opportunity by voters. She is smart and more-than-capable. This city is worse off without her. But since when have the best won?

As for the next will be Iya. (My guess) She's got fire, police, Capps, and the rest of the political ingredients behind her...including some from the other side of the aisle. Schneider may have some women Dems, but will not be able to compete.

9/19/2007 9:12 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Insiders claim it is already in the bag for Iya. This is a shame. She fills the air with nice sounding words, totally lacking of substance. Poor Santa Barbara.

9/20/2007 8:10 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Redd would be a great mayor. Smart, tough, independent thinker. I'd vote for her over Iya who consdescends from the dais in a most queenly way. But is there some rule that the Mayor of Santa Barbara has to be female? There has to be a qualified guy somewhere out there who might be considered Mayor material--especially someone who would stand up to developers before they completely destroy SB.

9/20/2007 9:33 AM  
Anonymous SB Men's Political Committee said...

If anyone stands up to developers, it certainly must be Iya. She says "no" to big projects all the time and certainly never would flip her position on big development projects that ruin neighborhoods.

Redd also is such a political and community activist, a true woman of La Gente and down with all the little people, with all her work on city projects, her years of public service, and never turning down a seat on a committee or commission.

And then I woke up.

Iya panders so much to developers she even flips her votes to pander some more, and gets the prize for the most talking without saying anything, even more than Das.

Redd is a big carpetbagger crybaby who could not even stick to her seat on the city water commission, even to maintain a modicum of involvement in city affairs. Throwing bombs into the city structure through her editorials is just a lazy way to garner publicity behind the ruse of working for that newspaper.

Also, considering how the comments here drifted early from the original subject of wannabe council candidate Frank Hotchkiss, that seems like a testament to how interested anyone really is in his candidacy. They're not.

9/20/2007 2:24 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Nope, you did not call this one right. The discussion drifted because Hotchkiss is a shoe-in. Nothing more to discuss. SB wants an Ivy Leaguer on the city council; not more bush leaguers. That argument is long over so it is now down to second tier candidates.

Yup, Iya fills the air with words .... all signifying nothing. after the smokescreen clears.

I like politicians - those who exercise the art of finding compromise at worst, consensus at best.

Local politics needs more true politicians, not social reformers marching to their own drummer. Hotchkiss's theme of common sense reasonates deeply and not a single sitting council person can lay claim to that motto.

Their theme is ..... let's find another way to stab you in the back.

9/20/2007 6:39 PM  
Anonymous First District Streetfighter said...

Should each candidate just adopt a cliche phrase as a campaign theme, so thus that cliche becomes the policy and what actually is done then becomes meaningless?

Das Williams = Truth and Justice

Helene Schneider = Peace, Love, and Understanding

Dale Francisco = Bitch and Moan

Bob Hansen = It's the Armory, Stupid

and more...

9/21/2007 8:50 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Daily Sound on Friday - 9/21 - reviews the first city council forum and the Kiss of Death Award goes to Brian Barnwell for his "housing, housing, housing" stand. And late again, as usual.

Here is a clue, Brian. Voters already have housing and they are not interested in any more being built in their neighborhoods. I don't know who you think you are appealing to with this agenda.

Name one neighborhood that is begging for more housing to be built within their midst, and I will show you were you are going to get your voters. Can you spell z-e-r-o?

It is time to realize only developers, who infected/corrupted city staff but good, are the only ones demanding more housing, housing, housing. You are boxing yourself into a clear defeat if this is your only platform agenda, because there are not enough votes among them to counteract the neighborhoods you long betrayed.

No charge for this clue. And voters don't trust you anymore so it won't even matter if you try and change your stripes .... again, Barnwell.

Tell your wife to line up a job for you with the Chumash. It will pay more and give you a lot less grief. Your term is over.

Francisco was the clear winner of this chamber of commerce forum, followed by Hotchkiss and Michelle. Das and Helene looked weak and have little to defend in their record.

9/21/2007 5:40 PM  
Blogger Sara De la Guerra said...

5:40 pm! Every election our readers get so passionate and say things they wouldn't say to their mother much less to someone like Brian Barnwell in person....let's leave Brian's wife out of it. If Hotchkiss and Michelle have all that -- they won't need your help here.

9/21/2007 6:44 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

After reading all of these inane, off topic comments, I can see why Hotchkiss wanted to spare us from all this.

Second tier blog? I didn't know blogs had levels. So what tier does that make this blog? Is Sara the Blog-rater? I cast down all others beneath me! Yikes

9/22/2007 8:37 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

SDLG, The whole reason we have a secret ballot in America is to say things we might not tell our mother or tell the candidate directly to his or her face.

While always appreciative of your sensible cautions and editing, I appreciate even more the value you provide for anonymous political blogging allowing candidates a view into those voters secret thoughts while there still is time to do something about them.

A fine line exists between candor, callousness, caring, constituents and candidates. Thank you for your professionalism.

9/23/2007 8:33 AM  

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