October 3, 2012 -- This is the second in a series of posts that provides the answers to questions by candidates in the November 6 race for Santa Monica City Council. The answers from the candidates will be posted in the order they were received.
Candidate Profiles --
Name: Jerry Rubin
Profession: Peace Activist
Birth place: Philadelphia, PA
Running for: City Council
1. How long have you lived in Santa Monica?
In what neighborhood do you live? Nearly 30 years. My wife Marissa and I and our two cat children Polly and Sunny live in Ocean Park.
2. Describe yourself in 10 words or less.
An honest, dedicated, independent thinking, Santa Monica and Earth loving activist.
3. What was your first job?
Selling women's shoes for my uncle Gene in Freehold New Jersey when I was 13-years-old followed my Philadelphia paper route stint from 11 to 12-years-old.
4. Describe your history of community involvement, if any, in 75 words or less.
Organized hundreds of peace, environmental and other community oriented events and projects for the past 30+ years. Helped start the Santa Monica Disabilities Commission. Co- founded Santa Monica Treesavers , and currently, with my wife Marissa, organize an annual Tree Hugging Day in Santa Monica. Also founded the Activist Support Circle in 2005 as an ongoing support group for progressive activists helping to guard against activist burnout.
LIMIT YOUR ANSWERS TO THE FOLLOWING QUESTIONS TO 50 WORDS OR LESS:
5. How would you rate the current City Council? What particular decisions stand out for you that made you form that opinion?
We have an excellent and hard working City Council. We also have many excellent City Council candidates now running, so I'm confident the next Council will also be excellent and hard working. I know because I attend most every Council meeting.
6. What is the most frequent complaint you hear on the campaign trail? What do you plan to do about it? Personally:
Why aren't you soliciting campaign contributions?
Are you really serious about your candidacy?
Politically: What can we do about traffic and parking?
Can we please close the Santa Monica Airport?
7. Do you agree or disagree with the following statement:
There are already enough jobs in Santa Monica, so the city doesn't need more commercial development.
Of course we need more jobs, and more people hired who are local.
8. Should Santa Monica residents be allowed to vote on major development agreements? Why or why not?
Of course they should not be disallowed, but a comprehensive open and participatory community process is much better.
9. Do you believe developers have undue influence on City government?
I don't think any community group, business entity, or individual really has undue influence.
10. How would you solve the traffic problem in Santa Monica?
To start with, I would have the City initiate an educational outreach campaign that would encourage people to take the Big Blue Bus more and drive less.
11. If Santa Monica has the authority to shut down the airport, should it do so? ABSO**^##>* LUTELY!
12. With which statement do you agree more:
- Tourism is an important part of Santa Monica's image and a major revenue source and should be encouraged.
- There are too many tourists in Santa Monica and businesses are catering to tourists at the expense of locals.
- Tourism is extremely important to bring in needed revenues, and a fantastic way to meet diverse and interesting people from all over America and around the world.
13. True or False: Santa Monica has become Beverly Hills by the Sea.?
Not nearly. I certainly do not think that is a fair or accurate description.
14. With which statements do you agree. You can pick more than one. Affordable Housing:
- Creates blight and brings crime.
- Pays back hotel and restaurant union workers for their political support in the past
- Creates more tenants to vote for Santa Monicans for Renters' Rights (SMMR) candidates
- Addresses a legitimate need, especially in Santa Monica.
15. In the past ten years, the number of laws passed by the Santa Monica City Council has increased from 32 in 2002 to 48 last year. This is:
- A reasonable response to the concerns of residents.
- A council that tries to please everyone
- A council that believes it knows what's best for the city and likes to impose its will.
16. Santa Monica's contribution to employee pensions has risen from $10 million a year a decade ago to $40 million and growing today. To help pay for its growing contribution Santa Monica should:
- Lay off workers Generate more cash by increasing development
- Increase local taxes
- Other Hire less consultants and use our expert residents to volunteer on various ad hoc project task forces.
17. Do you support Measure ES, a $385 million bond to build and improve Santa Monica-Malibu Unified School District facilities?
18. Has Santa Monica successfully addressed the homeless problem?
No city has, but Santa Monica has done and continues to do more than most.
19. Do you believe Santa Monica is a segregated city?
No, but I do believe there are race issues and concerns that need educational and other positive community solutions.
20. Do community groups play an important role in Santa Monica?
Community groups, neighborhood organizations, and City advisory boards and commissions play a crucial role.
21. Which of the following statements do you agree with. Santa Monica is:
- Doing enough to encourage biking
- Not doing enough to encourage biking
- Doing too much to encourage biking
22. Do you support a law banning smoking in apartment and condo units?
Yes I do. I am also very appreciative of our City's ongoing efforts to prohibit smoking in many areas, and really deal with the terrible health effects of second hand smoke.
23. What is your favorite place in Santa Monica? Least favorite place?
I love the Children's Tree of Life in the Palisades Park. And, I love Paul Conrad's "Chain Reaction" sculpture in our Civic Center. I really do not like Ben and Jerry's on Main Street….. much too tempting!
24. What is the last piece of music you bought?
A few CDs from our great Promenade street performers.
25. If you were emperor with absolute authority for a day and could do one thing for Santa Monica, what would it be?
I would get all Santa Monica residents and visitors to form a giant "Circle of Unity and Appreciation" around the entire city.