District vote the right move
All of the members of the Lompoc City Council deserve credit for their unanimous votes to implement district elections. Though there have been tough votes concerning the lines of the new districts, all council members have been unwavering in their support for district elections.
District elections have been successful where they have been instituted in increasing voter turnout and bringing government closer to the people.
Council member Vega perhaps expressed this best at the most recent council meeting, when he said districts will result in greater attention to neighborhood issues and less expensive city council races.
District elections are sweeping California not only because they are the law, but because they result in improved governance. From having attended several of the recent council meetings at which district elections were discussed, there is no question the Lompoc City Council is composed of individuals who care deeply about the community and seek its improvement.
Lompoc is now poised to join Santa Maria, Santa Barbara, Goleta and Carpinteria in voting to institute district elections. District elections will prove successful in Lompoc, as they have elsewhere. District elections will lead to greater representation from all of the community on the City Council.
Tax meat, beat health, climate crisis
With Congressional Republicans rushing to place a new tax bill on President's Trump's desk before Christmas, here comes the respected British publication The Guardian suggesting a new source of tax revenue - meat. Yes, a tax on meat, to beat the health and climate crises.
The concept is hardly radical. We already pay taxes on tobacco, alcohol, sugary sodas, plastic bags, and other consumables that afflict the public health and other social costs.
The revenue would reimburse Medicare, Medicaid and other government health care programs for treating victims of chronic diseases that have been linked conclusively with consumption of animal products. It would contribute to the costs of restoring air and water quality and wildlife habitats that have been devastated by production of these items.
Benjamin Franklin noted that nothing is certain except death and taxes. However, death can be deferred substantially by taxing the very products that make us sick.