The Day After – A Birthday Note to my Dear Daughter

November 10, 2016

Happy 17th Birthday my darling daughter!

When you were born, I saw your divine soul shine through those almond shaped deep blue green eyes, and I thanked God for the gift of you.  You are my personal hero  – who teaches me daily the meaning of love, devotion and dedication.

Thank you for the 17 sensational years we have shared.  The many laughs, thrills, slippy slides, aces, loses, wins, falls, the gold medal moments, burning the candle at both ends, relaxing with a smoothie, hazardous hair days and the success and failures along the way have, like a beautiful work of art made you – - – the girl we all love.

I will never forget the summer after your first year of pre-school when the coach asked what nick name they wanted for their team, after some of the boys suggested, “Monster Truck”, “Hot Lava Lizards”, “Dinosaur Snakes” you looked at the boys, held up your chin up high and said, “Butterfly!”

As you elegantly dare to dream and to fly with the grace of a butterfly, beautiful, elegant and peaceful.  I pray that you will follow your heart and listen to that little voice which, like a compass, will always steer you true north.

As you follow your road of life, you may encounter some Doubting Toms and Debbie Downers who may tell you your not good enough, or not whatever enough.  I hope you will first pray, then have the courage to check in with YOUR voice, heart and passion and fight to stay the course and follow the best path for you.

Yesterday was 11/9 – which is possibly the worst day since 9/11, but today is 11/10.  It is your day.  It is a day that lifts me because I know our planet’s future, although it may appear to be bleak now, will be bright because you will not allow others to be bullied.  You will stand up for racial, economic and social equality.  You will be the light that inspires us all to be the best we can be.  I have faith in your heart, in your soul and in your kindness.   You are the epitome of intelligence, toughness, strength, calm, but most importantly, you are a blessing to all you meet.

Thank you – - – for making our souls and this planet blossom.  I love you to the moon, and back infinity much and may your next year and chapter be an exciting adventure filled with joy, laughter and love – plus you’ll get to officially vote!

Happy Birthday sweet heart – - – celebrate and remember what Albert Einstein said – - “Learn from yesterday, live for today, hope for tomorrow.”  The best is yet to be!

Why Wait to Fill Out Page 8?

Watching the first, second and third Presidential debates made me really sad.

Thank God for Saturday Night Live skits of the debates – they made me laugh instead of cry about what is happening in the Presidential election.

Before my brain goes further into the abyss, I try to refocus and think about our local Malibu City Council elections.

My official mail in ballot is now red white and blank all over – like a work of art just waiting for me to start filling in those ovals with dark blue or black ink only.

Although I have known for some time who I will vote for in the National and Statewide elections, I am still undecided as to how I will vote in our local election – where 3 seats are up.

I have met and/or am familiar with all of the candidates.  I attended the Malibu Times and Democratic Club debates. I was thoroughly impressed with all of the candidates and even contributed to three of the six campaigns.    Overall, all seem to be nice people with good manners and are kind souls, but I am reluctant to cast my ballot just at this moment in time.  Why?

I want to vote for role models who will be independent and inclusive, not bullies.  My vote, like a grade in school, must be earned through hard work, dedication and actions that will make Malibu better for all over the course of the next four years.

Over the course of the next few days, I will continue to notice the little things. Who is putting signs up illegally? Who is taking signs down? How are the people running the campaigns treating each other? Are all running healthy campaigns that my children can learn from and look up to?

I hope that everyone in Malibu will join me in watching.  Will the candidates and their campaigns be respectful and make Malibu better or not?

Will the Rio Olympics Restart Our Collective Hearts?

Our family’s preparation for our trip to the upcoming Rio Olympics are underway. We have made the trek to REI. We bought mosquito repellent hooded jackets and pants. We learned that we can wash regular clothes with chemicals filled with DEET to ward off blood thirsty insects.

As I begin to fill my washing machine with loads of clean clothes and DEET, my mind wonders and my mother instincts kick in. Should we even go to the Olympics? Will the Olympic’s bring the world together in sport and harmony for 15 days, or will it be a catastrophe as predicted by so many news outlets, most recently by a July 1st New York Times article?

Every time we open a newspaper or watch the news we hear about a world in ruin – the Zika virus, Military Coups, Britain exiting EU, Orlando, Pokemon Go accidents, Nice – - the list goes on.

The Olympics open in less than two weeks on August 5. What kind of experience awaits the world? Will the world continue to spiral in demise or will it rise?

Even if we don’t have political leaders or national events that inspire us, thank God for artists and athletes.

Katy Perry just released the official NBC song “Rise” and hopefully, like the paddles used to send an electric shock to help restore the heart’s rhythm, the song and the Rio Olympics will restart and reset our collective hearts.

“This is a song that’s been brewing inside me for years, that has finally come to the surface. I was inspired to finish it now, rather than save it for my next album, because now more than ever, there is a need for our world to unite,” Katy said in a statement. “I know that together we can rise above the fear – in our country, and around the world. I can’t think of a better example than the Olympic athletes, as they gather in Rio with their strength and fearlessness, to remind us how we ALL can come together, with the resolve to be the best we can be. I hope this song can inspire us to heal, unite, and rise together. I am honored that NBC Olympics has chosen to use it as an anthem before and during the Rio Games.”

I remain hopeful and I pray – - – Rio will reveal a world on the rise – filled with sportsmanship, courage, peace and love.

I look forward to bringing reports from Rio in the coming weeks. Stay tuned. . .

Katy Perry – Rise (NBC Olympics video)


Mom Up – Mother’s Day Manifestos not Cards

This Mother’s Day don’t send a card.

Why not create a Manifesto and do something your mother would be proud of.   Show your Mom and the world what you are made of.

Have you evaluated what’s really important in life, or are you too busy working, texting and/or worried about getting to your next task to think about it?  In 2001, the tragedy of 9-11 gave our nation an opportunity to reevaluate what’s important in life. 15 years later we now witness ISIS, the climate changing, Ebola and other crisis.

Working part-time should be a viable option for all men and women, but is it an option at your workplace? Affordable and day care should be in the same sentence, but are they? Really?

Instead of being rewarded for raising resilient loved children, many of us are demoted or driven out of the working world for putting our Nations’ most precious national treasure as our first priority – our children.

The vast majority of woman and men in America can’t afford to quit work and aren’t given the opportunity and to work part-time because they make “minimum” wage, but not a “living” wage.

Is it time to work with Employers and Congress to find ways we can forge a new path for the future, or are Employers and Congress a barrier to change? Perhaps it’s time for a Regime change?

Will our Nation ever put our children first? Our kids don’t have high paid lobbyist working to pass legislation protecting their interests in Washington DC, and our kids don’t have politicians who are “in their pocket” because they donate millions of dollars to a campaign.

All our kids have is YOU.  2015 is the year of the Mother’s Day Manifesto.

Will we do something to make our planet better for our children?

Will we heed to advice of Mother Theresea and, “Go home and love our families”?

While we are home (whether it be for a couple of hours a day or longer), will we work to  make our towns better for our children and all children?

Will you Mom-Up and take action to improve educational opportunities and libraries, clean our environment, and increase arts and culture in our own communities?

Why not create a company and be that Employer who offers fair wages and flexible work schedules?

Why not run for local office, state office or dare I say higher office and be a voice for our children?

What’s holding you back, what’s holding us back?  Time to Mom Up and get it done.


What Can We Do to Protect LA from Dangerous Paparazzi?

Paparazzi Law Charts – Citizen’s Guide

Like bees that pollinate flowers, paparazzi sometimes have a symbiotic relationship with celebrities. However, paparazzi, like bees, can also be known to sting and hurt on occasion.

Yesterday, an innocent person was killed on Pacific Coast Highway in a terrible accident involving a local celebrity.   Whether the Paparazzi caused or contributed to the incident has yet to be determined.  Nevertheless, the pictures published on a well-known website show that at least one paparazzi was on the scene – before, during and possible after the “accident”.  This paparazzi photographed the entire tragic accident as it occurred.  Coincidence or contemplated?  We may never know.

What do we know?  LA and Malibu are magnets for paparazzi.  Many paparazzi in Malibu do their job within the law.  They are respectful of the people they photograph and the people who live and visit our town; however, there seems to be a new breed of paparazzi who act with reckless disregard for the safety of residents, visitors, and children alike.

When I was Mayor back in 2008, I received reports that this new breed of paparazzi: engage in high-speed car chases on PCH, our main street, travel in packs, run red lights, make unsafe, and at times, illegal u-turns in the pursuit of their subject.  This reckless behavior extends into other areas of our community – our residential streets, elementary schools, parks, local shopping centers, and beaches.  A blind pursuit for commercial gain can place people and children in harm’s way.

On July 31, 2008, the LA Regional Paparazzi Task Force convened it’s first meeting at LA City Hall. The Task Force included local cities such as: Los Angeles, Malibu, Beverly Hills, Calabasas and West Hollywood along with the LA County Sheriff to consider what, if anything, can be done to insure all people and especially our children are respected and protected. The LA Regional Task Force received comments from individuals, law enforcement and legal experts. When panelists were asked if they would be willing to follow through and go to court to pursue paparazzi issues, a task that would take time out of their busy schedules, the panelist testifying seemed reluctant to commit. On that same day, LA Police Chief William Bratton commented that the paparazzi have become less of a problem thanks to celebrities such as Britney Spears, Paris Hilton and Lindsey Lohan leading more moderate lifestyles.

On September 29, 2008, the Task Force convened in Malibu and heard testimony from a local elementary school principal which attested to the problem when paparazzi visited schools especially during drop off and pick up.  The task force produced sample ordinances which could be enacted in the future pertaining to school safety zones.  The Task Force recommended that a Citizen’s Guide be made available to the public. This Guide outlined current laws that could be enforced and is attached at the top of this blog and is entitled Paparazzi Law Charts – Citizen’s Guide.

Just this past Friday when I was picking up my children from a school bus stop, a paparazzi was there in a car driving, taking pictures and literally stalking a local celebrity Dad who was picking up his very young child.  My kids were startled by this stalker and we talked about the incident afterward.  What can they do if they are thrown in the middle of a show down?  I told them to get out their phones and video tape the assault so they could have a record of the behavior.

Little did I know, only a day later a fatal accident would occur which may or may not have involved paparazzi stalking a star.

Should we all just go about our business and say nothing more about this?  Or, is it time that we all start talking about this issue and think about what we can do to protect the people in our community and the world.   What will you do to keep our kids and community safe?   Please share your thoughts and join in this dialogue.

Soccer – Can We End the Silence on Violence? Stand up and get kicked off the field!

Girls Gone Wild

Soccer season is in full swing – literally!

My daughter, a soccer player who was out of the game due to a mild concussion injury, wanted to support her team in a game against a school in LA.

We arrived at the game just around half-time because of LA traffic. My daughter ran out to join her teammates in the halftime circle on the field and forgot to bring a jacket. It was a nippy night, so I got a jacket out of the trunk of the car.

After I parked the car, I walked over towards the team to bring my daughter her jacket and couldn’t help but hear the opposing team coach screaming at her team. I overheard her say things like hurt them and hit them and started to wonder what in the world are these coaches saying to our girls? The screaming coach also accused our team of doing anything to win like throwing elbows and kicking players.

I stood there shocked and in disbelief. What is the price of victory? Violence?

When I saw another coach leave the huddle of hatred and walk over towards the 50 yard line to go into the score box, I asked him his name and told him he was a witness to the violent attitude permeating from the screaming coach.

As I walked back across the field, I passed the Referee’s who were in the middle of the field still waiting for half-time to be over. I told them I was concerned about the safety of the players had and asked where I could file a complaint. They told me to speak to the Athletic Director (“AD”). I then left the field and tried to find the AD. I was told he was there earlier, but no one knew whether he was still there.

The game commenced and I started watching.

A few minutes later, our team coach came over to me and asked me to leave the field because the opposing coach had complained about me. I was again in disbelief. I was threatened and told to leave the game simply because I wanted to file a complaint about a coach perpetuating violence?

I told our coach that I would leave and then walked away. On my way out, I finally found the AD told him what I had overheard.

As I left the game, I thought about what I had witnessed on the field this past season. After one game in Santa Monica, one of our players showed me and her mother the black and blue marks on her legs that she had gotten on the field that day. I also remembered the time my 11 year old was punched in the face by another 11 year old club soccer player. That player was red carded and asked to leave the game.

Now I was asked to leave the game? My crime, overhearing a screaming coach and wanting to stop the circle of violence.

On my way out, I made a vow. The silence on violence must end. Our world needs everyone to speak up, share their stories and be safe.

If you witness a Coach screaming at players and urging violence what will you do?

November 4, 2014 – Not Just Another Sunny Day in LA.

On November 4, 2014, you have the power to decide who will be LA County’s 3rd District Supervisor – either Bobby Shriver or Shiela Kuehl.

Why should you care?

For the 1st time in 20 years, this is a competitive race and the new Supervisor will oversee your tax money – a $26 billion budget. The new Supervisor can put LA on a course to prosperity and fiscal fitness, or poverty with outrageous government spending.

For the past year, I have had the honor of listening to, and debating against and with both Shriver and Kuehl. I respect both for their dedication and service to our community whether it be locally or in Sacramento, but they have very different leadership qualities and qualifications.

Who will be able to reform County Government? We need reform in areas involving the department of children and welfare services, the Sheriff department, homeless, Veterans, those in custody, Campaign Finance, and Pensions to name a few.

Who will keep government spending in check?

Who will be able to best build and increase partnerships with Business and Non-Profits to promote economic recovery and provide public services?

Who will implement creative smart solutions with measurable results?
Do you want civility and professionalism in local government, or do you want a Supervisor who demeans or belittles local “part-time” office holders who try to make our communities better?

Do you want to elect someone who will encourage others to participate in democracy, or do you want a Supervisor who discourages and attempts to “scare” others from running for office?

Do want a Supervisor who will cut bureaucratic red tape and work to insure that jobs stays here in LA, or do you want a Supervisor that calls states like Nevada a “fool” for creating an environment friendly to businesses?

I want a Supervisor who will act independently, offer innovative solutions to complex problems, and who has a history of helping those in need.

I want smaller, smarter government, not big bullying government.

I believe Supervisor candidate Bobby Shriver will deliver not just good Government, but cutting edge Government. Shriver will make LA County a beacon of light for our State, our Country and our planet and put LA on a true-north course towards prosperity and progress, but he can’t win without YOU! Help make it a sunny day in LA and join me in voting for Bobby Shriver on November 4. Thank you for sharing, caring and voting!

Register to vote visit:

To register to vote by mail visit:

Back to School – Back to Voting. Why your vote will matter on November 4, 2014.

Even though I lost the LA County primary election on June 3rd, I still haven’t lost my desire to help make LA County better tomorrow than it is today.

It’s easy to talk the talk, but who will walk the walk when it comes to investing in Children and Education?

While Bobby Shriver served as a local Councilmember and Mayor for the City of Santa Monica, he put money into education.  Unlike Sacramento, which cut funding to education, Bobby helped to secure at least $441 million dollars for local public schools — even during the Great Recession. This funding has made a world of difference in education for so many families and children.

Bobby voted for eight city budgets that gave $8 million dollars a year to public schools, including paying for a master lease for playgrounds could be used after school hours. In those same budgets, the city of Santa Monica included $37 million dollars a year for school-based and community programs for Santa Monica Public School students. In May 2009, Bobby also voted to approve $81 million dollars of redevelopment funds for the Santa Monica High School joint use.

Bobby also voted to place propositions on the ballot and the voters of Santa Monica voted to support giving half of the proceeds of an increased city sales tax of 1/2% to Santa Monica public schools. Prop YY is now averaging $7.5 million dollars per year directly to local schools.

Bobby listened to the local community and invested in children. He also put into these measures oversight and other protections to make the accounting publicly available. His smart local approach is what he will bring to the entire 3rd District as the next Supervisor.

87% of people in LA County didn’t bother to vote in the Primary election in June.

Now the question is, who will you be voting for on November 4 and why?

I will be voting for Bobby based on his record of service.  Will you be joining me?

Politics and Priorities

Since I began the quest of running for LA County Supervisor, I have read many pages and reports – from the Santa Monica Mountains Land Use Plan to the Report of the Citizens’ Commission on Jail Violence to the Blue Ribbon Commission on Child Protection.

As I parse through these pages of reports, my jaw rarely drops to the ground and my blood pressure rarely rises to the roof, but it did yesterday.

After reading the April 18, 2014 “Road to Safety for Our Children – Final Report of the Blue Ribbon Commission on Child Protection” there can be only one conclusion: children are not a priority of at least 3 members of the current Board of Supervisors. How can I say this?

After the Child Protection Commission (hereinafter “Commission”) held 15 public hearings and interviewed more than 300 stakeholders they found, “A recurring theme in our hearings was the children, youth, parents, relatives, foster parents, and community groups, who should be at the center of planning, feel devalued and unheard.” p. I. “The children for whom this report was written deserve to grow up free from abuse and neglect and to realize their full potential. It is our responsibility to make this possible, now.” p. vi.

“Nearly four months have elapsed since the Commission issued its interim recommendation on which everyone seemed to agree: performing medical screening exams on detained children under the age of one.  The Commission highlighted this urgency of implementing this recommendation given the vulnerability of this population.  The Deputy Director of Strategic Planning for the Department of Health Services indicated that DHS could implement it within existing resources.  And still, four months later, this recommendation has not been acted upon.” at p. 12.  How could the Board fail to act at least on this one simple recommendation?

There is the need, there is the money, but it appears there is no will to implement this uncontested need to perform medical screenings.    Instead, the Board of Supervisors asked that Report be further studied and brought back in May.

Ask yourself, if another recommendation had been made involving environmental special interests or maybe some big oil company interest, do you think the Board would have failed to act?

It’s time to elect public servants who will make these children a priority.  They can’t vote or contribute any money to a candidate’s campaign, but in my humble opinion, they matter.

When children’s lives are at stake, I believe it is time for action, not further study. It is time for respect, not dismissiveness.

The Commission unanimously concluded that a “State of Emergency” exists in the current child protection system.

Reform will only take as long or as little time as 3 votes on the Board of Supervisors decide it will take.

If elected to serve the 3rd District, I will implement the recommendations made by the Blue Ribbon task force, and not ask for yet another study.

LA County voters will be given the opportunity to vote for 2 new Supervisors in the June primary and in November this year.

I hope and pray that the newly elected Supervisors will make protecting children a priority.

To Be or Not To Be Ruled by Money – That is the Question.

Los Angeles, we have a problem.

The 2010 Supreme Court’s 5-4 Citizens United decision removed limitations on corporate spending in federal elections. It also eliminated the requirement placed on candidates to disclose their sources of funding to the public. Spending for the 2012 election cycle exceeded all estimates and expectations at $7 billion, according to FEC Chair Ellen Weintraub.

That kind of money can only be acquired from the wealthiest of donors, the special interests of big business and/or their lobbyists. Are elected officials beholden to big money interests as a result?

The “trend to spend” has spiraled out of control.

In July 2012, I got an e-mail from the Obama campaign with “good news and bad news.” The “Good news” was that June was the best fundraising month and more than 706,000 people stepped up and pitched in for a grand total of $71 million raised for the campaign and the Democratic Party. The “Bad news” was that Romney and the RNC pulled in a whopping $106 million in 1 month.

From Obama:
“We’re getting outraised — a first for a sitting president, if this continues. Not just by the super PACs and outside groups that are pouring hundreds of millions of dollars into misleading ads, but by our opponent and the Republican Party, which just outraised us for the second month in a row. We can win a race in which the other side spends more than we do. But not this much more.”

Then my President asked me to contribute more money to stop the madness.

With all due respect, another shot of heroin won’t stop the pain. Isn’t it time for our political process to come clean and stop sucking money away from hard-working Americans?

How can we continue to reward those who would spend millions just to be elected while schools are closing, public safety officers are reduced and people are loosing homes to foreclosures.

Is anyone else getting sick of the amount of money being poured into local and national political campaigns? When will enough, be enough?

In May 2013, over $7 million was spent in the race for LA Mayor (and 70% of Angelinos didn’t even bother to vote).

At the local level in LA County, if a person accepts Voluntary Campaign Limits in Proposition B, which passed in 1996, then they can spend no more than $1,971,921; however, there is no limit now because one candidate did not agree to the Voluntary Expense limits.

On April 2, 2014, the Supreme Court issued its decision in the McCutcheon vs. FEC case which eliminated aggregate individual campaign funding limits.

Before today, an individual could donate $123,200 per election cycle (more than twice the annual median income in the country).

After today, one individual can write a single check for $5.9 million to any candidate, political party and political committee.

If the Citizens United case is a precedent, our political system will be flooded by enormous amounts of special interest money coming from a very small number of exceedingly wealthy individuals.

If you believe Democracy is not a Spectator Sport, then join the hundreds of thousands of Americans of all political persuasions who are fed up with an increasingly polluted campaign finance system and are actively organizing for change and do two things:

1) Learn about the issues. Good websites to start with are, and

2) Talk to your family and friends about this issue and help us stop the insanity.

The future is yours, or maybe it’s not. You decide.