Monday, May 30, 2011


Are you concerned with what is happening with our healthcare. It seems there is something in the news almost daily about the battle for people to get the medical care they need, which should be a basic right. For those who are indigent, who have been laid off from their jobs or for whatever reason can't afford coverage, the only healthcare available is a trip to the emergency room. Not only is it bad enough that the Obama healthcare plan has been greatly watered down, but now there's talk about reducing healthcare for seniors with a so-called "voucher" program! The US rates 37th in healthcare, right below Costa Rica. Do we really need to be worse than a third world country!!

If you are concerned, come join us for:

Dinner And Dialogue: "THE DOCTORS WILL SEE YOU NOW!!"

DATE: June 16, 2011

TIME: 6:30pm - 9:30pm

COST: $5 donation requested

LOCATION NAME: El Chaparral Mexican Restaurant, Banquet Room

ADDRESS: 19132 Soledad Canyon Road, Canyon Country, CA 91351

DESCRIPTION: A Community Question and Answer session to explain changes in MediCare, MediCal & Social Security. How do we become more proactive in spite of the economy? What are some of the changes in insurance? From a world view: How lucky are we? What don't we know that WILL kill you? Possible economic and sustainable solutions: What are they? The keynote speaker will be Dylan H. Roby, Ph.D from the UCLA Center for Health Policy Research and School of Public Health. Also presenting will be: William "Bill" Honigman, MD Emergency Medicine; Gene Dorio, MD. Gerontologist and Senior Advocate Co-host of "The Senior Hour" on KHTS radio; Rosalie Brown-Goldenberg, Legislative Ambassador of the American Cancer Association; Stephen R. Dymtrow from Colonial Penn/Bankers Insurance & Casualty; Joseph Odanga from Helping Hands International; and Edward Villalpando a former Supply Chain Inventory Specialist from Kaiser Permanente Hospital. Allan Cameron and Minerva L. Williams will emcee.

CONTACT: Todd Hoover,, 661 295-9318

For more info, please see the: Event Flyer

Sunday, May 29, 2011

MAY HE REST IN PEACE. . . Gil Scott Heron

One of the original “rappers” when political poetry met fusion, blues, jazz, and before it was all “cool” died yesterday at 62 years of age.

Please also check out . . .

Inner City Blues:

“Did you hear what they said?“

“The Revolution will not be televised”

The revolution will come about when your awareness level awakens to those activities happening around you and you will act on them but don't expect them to come because of a television news. Read, Explore, Write, Network, and talk to individuals who are NOT in your comfort zone. We can always learn from one another. . .

May Gil Scott-Heron, now rest in peace . . .as we carry the torch onward . . .

Saturday, May 28, 2011

V Jesse Smith Observes Memorial Day

GUEST POST: Self-Improvement Is The Best Way to Honor Our Troops on Memorial Day
by V. Jesse Smith

As we enjoy the blanket of security which has been provided for us by those serving in our four branches of government, we are called by the edict of appreciation and gratefulness to give special thanks to every man and woman who has served and/or is serving in the armed forces.

We are able to enjoy our freedoms because of men and women who are willing to put their lives on the line in order that we might know what freedom truly looks like. We are indeed a grateful nation. As we reflect on this up-coming Memorial Day what we will be doing on that day, and how we will be spending our weekend, we must never forget what that day truly represents.

Memorial Day was recognized as a federal holiday to honor our military service men and women who sacrificed their lives fighting for our protection. Each year we set aside time out of our busy schedules to remember those who gave their lives fighting abroad so that we could live under the protected blanket of freedom in the United States. It is proper that Memorial Day is a federal holiday and that we remember and honor the soldiers we lost on the battlefield and those who are still serving to keep us free and protected under our Constitution.

But, too many of us take Memorial Day as just a day of rest and relaxation. On that day we barbeque, drink, party and engage in the things that we want to because we live in a nation that allows us to do that because of the security that our military troops provide us.

However, what if we acknowledged our troops in another way? What if we truly went after the dreams that lie within us but was always afraid to go after? What if we took advantage of the small business loans that our government provides us to set up the business we have longed to do? What if we went back to school to improve ourselves by getting a degree in Mathematics, Science or Higher Education which in turn will allow us to fulfill a long-desired passion to want to help and inspire children? Our troops are sacraficing their lives on the line everyday so that we can become a better nation and a better people. Their lives and work must not go unnoticed or in vain.

On this Memorial Day, each of us should ask ourselves what we are doing to improve our lives. As you read this article, think about what you always wanted to do in life but never did it because either you were afraid or did not have the resources to do it. Think about what you have always wanted to do in life—whether it was writing a book about something dear to you, starting a business, going back to school, becoming a Doctor, Nurse, Medical Assistant, License Vocational Nurse (LVN), Paralegal or Lawyer—and then ask yourself why haven’t you done it. What’s been stopping you?

American soldiers are giving their lives everyday so that we can live our life every moment. Let us not dishonor them by not doing something to improve our lives everyday. How do you improve yourself? Self-improvement is done by attending seminars that will teach you how to do something; it is done by you learning something new everyday that will improve your physical, social and economic condition in life; it is done by you not constantly focusing on the problem, but you coming up with the solution to the problem. Jim Rohn, a powerful motivational speaker, said it best when he said “Don’t ask for less problems, ask for more skills…don’t ask for less challenges, ask for more wisdom.”

As you start that business that you have always wanted to start, you might very well be in the position to offer a job to some of our troops when they come back from Afghanistan, Libya or Iran. If you write that book that you have been longing to write, it could be the book that our military personnel need to remain inspired, motivated and uplifted while they are engaged on enemy battles.

Yes, the best way to honor our troops on this Memorial Day is to do things that will improve yourself so that you can become a blessing to them as they have been a blessing to us.
About the Author: V. Jesse Smith is a national motivational speaker who conducts Leadership and Self-Improvement seminars throughout the nation encouraging people to live their dreams by improving their skills. He is the president and founder of Heights of Greatness Leadership Institute and can be reached at or (661) 992-9052.

Thursday, May 19, 2011

Are we really surprised to hear that the former Governator has sired a child? I am not.
Is this a little titillation? No. Is this a disappointment? No.
In the beginning of Schwarzenegger’s announcement for governor, the public decided to allow him a pass when Maria said, “trust me” and stood by her man and this is after 15 women came forward, some with pictures. Voters gave him a quick wink, an augh “He’s the terminator” and voted him in office anyway.
We believed he had married one of our finest from the famous Kennedy family and Arnold would walk and talk straight. It is called “a second chance”. I saw the ladies of “THE VIEW” hammering away and listened to the exchange between Chris Matthews and Bill Maher about Arnold, see reference sites below.
I am wondering where was the press and political staff that they kept all of this a 14-year secret?
And no one from his staff knew? We learn from the LA Times that, in 2001, “. . . according to Garry South, the strategist for then-Gov. Gray Davis, word got around that Schwarzenegger was mulling a challenge – so South began circulating copies of a Premiere magazine exposé detailing the actor’s alleged groping of women.
“His lawyer sent me a letter threatening to sue me for libel, and he also threatened to sue for copyright infringement if I sent out any part of his letter,” South said.
SO how could the woman stay employed and pregnant in the household knowing her relationship with Arnold while having a presumably very private and close relationship with Maria, I guess we will hear from the tabloids. To hear he has financially assisted the staffer and child however has been great news.
But to hear that this illicit affair occurred with a member of the household staff blows protected sex, “fidelity”, family values and harassment in the work place to an all-time high.
But as they say, Karma will swing you back again and so in January, the housekeeper retires and Schwarzenegger tells the truth. We heard that Maria left but we never knew why.
Life goes on but we hear that The LA Times promised to reveal the truth and hence the news comes forward. As for the girly man, “The Gropenator”, this man vetoed “marriage equality twice”.
He owes Californians’ an apology for putting his political ambitions before his family. There are years of fatherhood that the child has lost. Hope Arnold can live with the hypocrisy and be the manly man to those involved.
As for Maria and the rest of the family, we wish Maria a speedy recovering in reaffirming the family love, stability, trust and moving on with a stellar journalistic career, her Minerva service awards or whatever she decides to do.
Chris Matthews with Bill Maher
“The View” Ladies

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Thoughts of Yesteryear
The following story was part of a Volunteer Profile of the Month for January 2004 for "The Mighty Oak", a monthly newsletter of the Santa Clarita Valley Senior Center. The newsletter wrote, "Mary and her husband Art moved here in 1998. Art saw a newspaper ad for needed home delivered meal drivers and wanted to volunteer. Mary decided to be his navigator, so off they went to see the person in charge. They have been delivering meals ever since. She's been teaching tap dance at the Center since '99. Here is her story:"

In retrospect, I had the most interesting and exciting childhood because of my parents, although at the time, they were just Mom and Dad.

My father was an accomplished classical musician who had studied in Mexico City and decided to find his fortune in New York City in a time we now know as the Roaring Twenties -- the Jazz era. He quickly had to adjust from playing Bach, Liszt, and Chopin and replaced it with the 12th Street Rag, Sheik of Araby, Charleston, etc. No jobs were available, so he joined the U.S. Army, was placed in Special Services (even played at the White House), and was offered a career if he became an American citizen. He declined the offer, wanted to see the world (Australia in particular), spent some time in Cicero, IL after his stint in the military, and headed for California.

My mother was reared in Tucson, studied music at the University of Arizona, and decided to come to Los Angeles where a brother was already here, to become a piano teacher.

Inevitably the two met in L.A. which in the early 20's was a mecca of the theater. Vaudeville was big in those days -- the only difference was that Spanish was the language. It was the counterpart of American vaudeville with only the best of the musicians, singers, dancers, comedians, and even recitations by the best actors. Work was plentiful and exciting, and the two musicians were married in 1922.

Then, I came along the next year, followed by six more siblings in the next nine years. Mother always loved the theater, and soon I was being taught to sing and dance. There were three theaters on Main Street where Spanish language movies were shown and vaudeville also flourished. I was six years old when I first performed onstage, but I had no fear because my father played in the orchestra pit and Mother was in the wings. I can still see that huge spotlight and the blackness of the audience that I knew was there because of the laughter if I did a comedic number, or the sniffles if I did a heart wrenching tango. Mother even taught me some off-color songs. I had no idea what I was singing as long as the audience liked it. If there were contests for non-pros, I usually won 1st place!

Then came the stock market crash of 1929. I still remember the crowds gathered around the bank in our neighborhood. The Depression hit hard, especially for those in show business. Somehow, Mother managed from the few jobs Dad was able to get. Vaudeville lived for awhile, but started to die during the early 30s. Remember, we now had talking movies. During the 1932 Olympic Games in Los Angeles, Mother entered my sister and me in a talent contest sponsored by the May Company. I don't remember any money prize, but we were both entitled to a complete physical exam. We won 1st place, and received an engraved silver cup. Once during one of these "contests", I remember getting a disappointing 2nd place with a prize of $5.00, which probably fed the family for a week. First place went to a young violin virtuoso! We had no carfare for the trip back home.

Mother, sister, and I trouped around Southern California putting on shows with circus people -- just any group of folks in order to make a few bucks. In a desperate move to earn more money, Dad accepted a job offer in the International Section of Shanghai, China for a year or so. In the meantime, Mom did what she knew best. In the days before the invention of CDs, cassettes, or portable phonographs, dance teachers needed piano players to conduct classes. Since there was always a piano in our home, one ballet/Spanish teacher had students come to our home for lessons. I just watched them, and soon picked up what the students paid for. A tap dance teacher needed a pianist, and the trade-off was free tap lessons for me. By the time I was thirteen, I was tired of the constant traveling on old cars, always working on weekends just to make a couple of extra dollars. I longed to be like all the other teens I knew.

Dad finally came home on the last ship in 1936, a few days before Shanghai was bombed by the Japanese. Things finally got better as he always had gigs at fine hotels such as the Coconut Grove. Eventually, he landed steady work at the two nightclubs on Olvera Street in Los Angeles: La Golondrina and the Paseo Cafe, where he worked until his retirement.

I finished high school, met and married Arthur (now 62 years of matrimony and going strong) during the days of high anticipation of better times for the Depression kids. We started our family, and then came December 7, 1941! We had two sons when Arthur was drafted into the Navy. Fortunately for us, he was sent to so many schools that by the time he was to be sent overseas as a radioman/gunner on a torpedo bomber, Japan had surrendered after having sustained large casualty numbers. So, we began the struggle to start anew after the war. We somehow managed without complaining since everybody else was adjusting to the hopeful prosperity that lay ahead. We had three more sons, I eventually had to find work for additional income, and was lucky enough to land a job (swingshift, ugh, with kids ranging from 1 to 10 years). I started at the bottom rung, eventually became an executive secretary to the regional manager of a large trucking firm, and stayed employed at that company for 32 years. I continued working until I was 65, retired, and joined a tap class at my local Community Center. Here I was again, performing in recitals that I had done so long ago.

As a young girl, I fell in love with American music. I recall walking past a house that had a radio -- we didn't have one in those days -- and remembered hearing Bing Crosby sing, "Did you ever see a dream walking?" And of course, during my teen years, didn't we have the most wonderful music? It was the Swing Era!!! Once all her kids were grown and gone from home, Mother (always the resourceful person she was) studied hard, passed the tests, and became a successful real estate broker. During the trying times when Dad was in China, we almost lost our home. Some friendly, anonymous person reported our situation to the local welfare agency. We received welfare -- money, food, clothes -- until Dad came home and it wasn't needed anymore. When she was able to (after starting her new career), she checked the family account and repaid IN FULL every cent that L.A. County had given us when it was needed. I'm always proud to mention that!

How many of us have ever wondered, "what if" something different had occurred on our lives? Me too! When I was 9 or 10, Mother entered me in yet ANOTHER contest. The prize was a scholarship to a dance studio in Hollywood. Could it have been the Meglin Studios, from which so many child move actors trained? I recall a large upstairs studio, somewhere on Broadway. There were about twenty other kids competing, with only a pianist, a drummer, and a judge in the room. All we had to do was walk, skip, or hop in a circle, but had to be quick to adjust to a change in tempo. Well, guess who won the scholarship? The dance studio was in Hollywood, we lived in East L.A., and I couldn't go to the dance studio alone. Mom and I always used street car transportation. I remember the red street cars that were open in the center, and how glamorous and new everything looked in Hollywood back then. When we came home, I was told that we could not afford the fare, so I had to drop out. Sometimes I think about that, but not too often.

At this time in my life, I would not change anything, except for the tragedies of wars we've had to endure, but over which we have no control. My generation made so many sacrifices during WW2, and our country is still in another war??? I am proud of our sons, they are all college grads, and the combined five have given us 10 grandchildren and 2 greats. In these last years, Arthur and I are so lucky to be in comparatively good health, enjoy golf, and are so happy to live in the Santa Clarity Valley since 1998. We live in Friendly Valley which offers so much to its residents, and enjoy their Little Theater where we both participate in productions. I am especially grateful to the Senior Center for allowing me to teach tap dance and pass on to others what little I know. I'll continue to do it until I'm not physically able.

Thanks, Mom and Dad, for those great genes you passed on to me.

Mary M. Alvidrez

Thursday, May 12, 2011


Marcy Winograd For Congress 2011 team contacted us today and asks for Volunteers to help in the Volunteering for Harbor Area Phone Banking and Precint Walking assignments at 1300 South Pacific Avenue, San Pedro, CA 90731 (310)508-9234 and email

Janice Hahn (LA City Council) and Debra Bowen (Secretary of State) who both recently won their current positions in the 2011 Midterm Elections are running against Winograd.

Winograd, a Los Angeles high school teacher, has run for this position twice, losing to Janice Harmon who let the position to work with the Woodrow Wilson Foundation less than four months after winning the position.

For more information regarding the campaign contact:

This posting doesn't indicate the endorsement of the Democratic Club of Santa Clarita Valley we are just providing the information.

It is estimated that it is costing $1.5 million to have this special election since Harmon walked away. What we haven't been advised, is why did Harmon walk away after such a big fight with Marcy in the 2010 Midterms?

There is conversation that Debra Bowen, "the celebrated geek", is highly needed as the Secretary of State and needs to continue her campaign promise to the California people to keep the California voting process as clean and possible. Janice Hahn is from the legendary Los Angeles Hahn political family so many wonder why is she jumping so soon for the Congressional seat.

There is much to pay attention to in these moving parts of a dramatic contest of well qualified, polished and charismatic political women. There are no rookies here.

Do note that all participation in candidate contests can fulfill certified class credits and scholastic needs. Make sure you ask the candidate's campaign or field managers for details . . . Peace out, Minerva

A. Eugene Huguenin

We received s notice today from the governor's office that Attorney A. Eugene Huguenin, 68, a Democrat of Rancho Murieta is the new appointed member of the California State Public Employment Relations Board. He has owned his own law firm since 2001 and was a consultant for CTA l973 until 1979. The message continues that:

Huguenin was a staff counsel at the CTA from 1979 to 200 and a commissioner on the Fair Political Practices Commission from 2005-299. With the approval of the state Senate, his confirmation and compensation will be $128,109.

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

The Playboy Jazz Concerts on the Greens is starting up in Santa Clarita Valley to celebrate the summer days ahread check it out at

Monday, May 9, 2011

Obama on Usama

We need to give thanks to the men and women who put their lives on the line in the effort to give the fatal blow to those that would try to kill the American dream with random acts of terrorism.
With the death of UBL you might trust that Memorial Day will be even more outstanding and well attended ceremony by local Americans.”

I believe we can all agree that taking options require setting a goal, strategically getting the best information that you can acquire, questioning the strategical options to accomplish the mission, seeking out the opinions of the “best of the best” available to you. Because of the thoroughness required you will be placing Plan A, Plan B and Plan C in place in the event that “Plan A” is compromised. You know that taking a commitment and riding out the consequences of the decision made requires responsibility and steadfastness. We can be proud of hope we have seen in the campaign promise of President Barack Obama to its fruition.

Steve Croft of “60 Minutes” was able to facilitate Obama providing us that “the mood was intense . . . everyone listening, and monitoring in real time. Obama continued, “that one of the great successes of this operation is that we were able to keep this a secret, be cautious and optimistic” at the same time. He offered that any leak not only would compromise the mission, but also, kill the men who were involved.

Nervousness did come into play. Though the strike’s timeline was intended to take 40 minutes, and although short, he said it seemed like a long time.

Obama says that “there are no doubt that we killed Usama bin Laden”. The treasure trove of information is being analyzed and hopefully will lead to high value targets, plots, how they operate, and their methodology of communicating.

Obama exclaimed that the graphic photos of bin Laden being shot in the head would not be used so as not to incite propaganda and make his kill into a “trophy”. Obama says Usama bin Laden got the justice that he deserved. However, we do not need to spike the football and the graphic nature of the photos to create or increase security risks for the troops still in the area.
He stated that in July troops will be drawn down and Americans will be involved in the training Afghanistan has to secure and stabilize their country and to remove our footprint in the country. American soldiers will leave Afghanistan.

In lieu of Pakistan saying that this is an American trick with Al Qaeda members, the signal is that those that are affiliated with terrorist organizations are going to be on the losing side and that they will have more sense to get involved in the political process rather than the methodologies that they have been engaged in.

The hope is that those members of Al Qaeda and the Taliban will not find the country a safe haven for more activities but learn how to get involved in the political building of the country.
Obama said that “We don’t think that a photograph in of itself matters”. He offered that “it was a joint decision to bury him at sea. We tried to consult with experts in Islamic law and ritual that was appropriate and respectful of the body.”

When the mission was over Obama says that he “walked out with my team and said we got him”. His aides and congressional leaders were then told what happened. He congratulated the situation team members who rode out the 45 minutes with him. Obama says that he did not even tell his family members and his closest White House aides. The fact that they were surprised is true.

So now we can wonder whether or not the legislature will continue to supply billions of dollars in aid to the Pakistani people. Even though Pakistan is one of our allies, the fact that we have been able to kill more terrorists on Pakistani soil than any other country raises the country’s loyalty quotient.

But now more than ever we must work more effectively than we have in the past. And in the months to come, Obama says that there were will more assaults.
Obama has subsequently met family members at Ground Zero, visited fire fighters, went to Fort Campbell, Kentucky to meet the helicopter pilots, Special Forces personnel, and the Navy Seals face-to-face.

Unfortunately, American citizens won’t be able to know who the “American heroes” were who did the actual deed but we can say that “Justice was done” and we can soberly move forward with the continued promises of American hope that Obama said “begins with us”.
See you on the 2012 President Obama’s campaign trail. . . more fired up than ever before . . .