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Stop Pamela Comstock, Take Back Santa Cruz
by Surf City Locals
Sunday Oct 21st, 2012 8:50 PM
Pamela Comstock is one of the founding members of TAKE BACK SANTA CRUZ, a group that claims to advocate for public safety, but what has their role in the community really been? VIGILANTISM, PARANOIA, AND LIES.
(Photo: Pamela Comstock campaign sign at 75 River St.)

Pamela Comstock is one of the only candidates to not accept voluntary campaign spending limits. She has raised more money than anyone in this city council race. Her money has paid for nice-looking glossy fliers, but they only tell half the story.

Pamela Comstock is one of the founding members of TAKE BACK SANTA CRUZ, a group that claims to advocate for public safety, but what has their role in the community really been?


Take Back Santa Cruz has spread vicious lies about people with whom they disagree. Their lies have stirred up vigilantism and mob-mentality, and they have refused to work with anyone who has a difference of opinion.

Pamela Comstock, founding member of Take Back Santa Cruz, is not the kind of person this city needs on city council!

Say "NO! I won't vote for Pamela Comstock. I believe in actual community building through dialogue, and mutual support, not by under-handed fear tactics." Then spread the word!

On May 2, 2010, Take Back Santa Cruz sent an email to all their hundreds of members on Facebook accusing an innocent person of rioting. They were very specific, naming him by name and providing the address of his employer and the business he owns. They had no tips from the police, no inside scoop from the DA. In fact they had no evidence at all. The person they accused was never charged for rioting, and, in fact, was never even formally investigated. Take Back Santa Cruz took the law into their own hands simply because they disagree with his politics. Within a day their target’s photo and home address were published in the Santa Cruz Sentinel on-line forums. He started receiving death threats, and even his teenage son was the target of violence and harassment.

A month later, a group of Nonviolent Communication practitioners organized the “Downtown Dialogues” to bring folks together to talk about how violence downtown had affected them, and to seek community oriented solutions. Take Back Santa Cruz was repeatedly invited, but they pointedly refused. Individuals tried to invite them to private conflict-resolution meetings, but Take Back Santa Cruz ignored the invitations. Take Back Santa Cruz even refused to meet with a group of Santa Cruz High students who were organizing a peace forum, citing political differences with the teacher adviser of the group.

In December of the same year Take Back Santa Cruz continued their campaign of paranoid lies, holding a press conference to attack the ever-peaceful, family-oriented DIY Last Night Parade. A Take Back Santa Cruz spokesperson lied on prime-time television claiming that parade organizers had made threats. She linked the parade to the May Day riots, though the parade had occurred for 5 years with nothing but joyful family fun.

Furthermore, from the start, Take Back Santa Cruz has made their mission clear: to get rid of people they consider undesirable. They want wealthy property owners to "take back" the town from folks who are somehow less deserving. When they first started, the ugly rhetoric on their facebook page made this idea clear. Comments like "we need to drive the undesirables out of town" and "we should go downtown and start hitting all the undesirables with sticks" were prominent on their wall. Other comments expressing concern over trading liberty for a police state were immediately deleted. Anyone who disagreed in the slightest was blocked from seeing their page.

Take Back Santa Cruz has engaged in mob-mentality vigilantism and paranoid lying. They refuse to work with anyone who disagrees with their politics. They are reactionary fear mongers. The founder of such a group is not the kind of person this city needs on city council. ON ELECTION DAY, SAY “NO” TO PAMELA COMSTOCK.

When you go to the polls and vote for city council, don't vote for Pamela Comstock. Tell all your friends to say "No!" to Pamela Comstock for city council

Comments  (Hide Comments)

by Jonny
Sunday Oct 21st, 2012 10:15 PM
for more reference material

Was Tough-on-Crime Take Back Santa Cruz Founded by a Corporate Criminal?
by Keep It Real.
Monday Oct 22nd, 2012 10:54 AM
It would be a pleasure if you'd avoid the tactics of exaggeration that you're blaming the candidate for.

"Pamela Comstock is one of the only candidates to not accept voluntary campaign spending limits." you say?

It would just as accurate to say that almost half didn't.

The truth is that three out of eight didn't, and five out of eight did.

Comstock, Matthews, and Noroyan didn't.

Lane, Posner, Fusari, Pinheiro, and Pleich did.

With the specific issue above addressed, I'll also add that there seems to be a witch hunt going on on both sides. This poster points the finger solely at TBCS. But in reviewing posts here on Indy, I see posters previously claim and then retract claims that TBSC was working with police and confiscating and destroying homeless gear. (And I appreciated that retraction Mr. Norse.). I see another poster inferring that TBSC actually conducted the Mayday street vandalism/riot. (Well, he/she didn't realllly say that, they just implied it by stating "I wouldn't go as far as saying they HIRED the people who did it but...".)

Isn't the truth crazy enough? Let's keep it real and try to fix these differences instead of exaggerating and villifying the other side with lies and half truths.

And lets let a person be a person and not a community. Just as one homeless bike thief meth-head shouldn't be painted as representing all homeless, or one anarchist doing vandalism on a Mayday march be painted as representing all anarchists, then neither should a candidate like Comstock, like her or not, be portrayed as representing all members of TBSC.
by Robert Norse
Wednesday Oct 24th, 2012 9:11 AM
Perhaps Keep It Real is a member of or close worker with Take Back Santa Cruz.

If so, can he clarify (sorry for the endless repetition) whether TBSC has co-operated with police in their "snitch on your local homeless camper in the rain" campaign? I find it hard to believe that they haven't, given their position opposing "illegal" (ie. ALL homeless) campsites (since all city campsites on public property are illegal).

We had a somewhat tangled discussion some time ago about whether TBSC in their "clean-up" expeditions took the care that Save Our Shores supposedly takes (according to Steve Pleich) in warning its members not to destroy homeless campsites. Analicia and Dexter Cube--Pamela Comstock, for that matter--never responded with a clear "yes we do" or "no, we don't" that I recall.

Refresh the memory of this old guy if you have any new info.

Though I can neither confirm nor deny the other facts, KIR has, I concur that being specific and accurate and not tarring a whole group with the sins of one person is most important.
by Ed Natol
(ednatol [at] Wednesday Oct 24th, 2012 1:18 PM
Even though Comstock, Matthews, and Noroyan have turned down the cap on total spending (and an interesting conversation would be why a majority of the women running (and none of the men) felt they had to). Everybody running has agreed to limits on what somebody can donate. I think it's 300 for a person and 700 for a group. What the numbers so far tell me is that Pam seems to enjoy quite a bit of support in town. The next report is due in the next few days, we'll see where the numbers fall.
by Keep It Real
Wednesday Oct 24th, 2012 5:05 PM
For starters Mr. Norse: I'm a member if hitting 'like" on facebook qualifies as membership. Other than that, I have no communication or participation with the group, nor have I attended any of their gatherings.

For closers? Please stop the inane game playing. You know as well as I that a group such as this doesn't keep track of its members, or have any ability to monitor what the group members may or may not have done. You know this because it's the same answer you give when pressed for information on Huff members and activities. So please, stop calling the kettle black and trying to imply there is a cover-up, when we both know that the reality is more accurately a lack of record than a coverup.

As such, nobody could ever accurately be able to answer your question. A question which, by the way, is the sleazy equivalent of "Have you stopped beating your wife yet?". Sleazy because, other than your unsubstantiated claim, which I believe you or Ms. Johnson attributed to an anonymous homeless person but then later retracted your claim, lacks any evidence of fact.

So let me ask you in kind: Can you provide ANY credible evidence that TBSC ever "confiscated and destroyed homeless gear", as you claim? Or by gear, are you merely referring to the hundreds of pounds of trash thats been hauled out of illegal camps? Of course, Ms. Johnson claims there are no hundreds of pounds of trash, so even that isn't a possibility.

Sorry, but I find you to be what you like calling others: A troll. You make false claims with no evidence, then seem to think others need to disprove your lies and fantasies. I feel no need to. Your politics and agenda have been soundly rejected by the vast majority of the citizenry of Santa Cruz, and your influence and credibility are both scant at this point due to your tactics. Trolling, I believe they call it.
comstock's big cash advantage is not a sign that she is enjoying 'quite a bit of support in town,' it is an indication that forces are attempting to buy the election

comstock is trying to buy her council seat with an unfair financial advantage

rich business owners open up their wallets when they know that they wont have to pay for their own security downtown with council members like pamela

normal, working citizens cant afford to donate to candidates they like at the same rate the rich business interests have donated to comstock
by Ed Natol
(ednatol [at] Wednesday Oct 24th, 2012 9:28 PM
The Sentinel reported that Pam collected 31,800 on over 250 donations. That's about 125 dollars per person. That might be higher then the other candidates, I don't have any of those numbers, but that's not that high. Well within the reach of "normal, working citizens". As an example - I've given 50 to Comstock, 50 to Noroyan, and 100 to Hammer. I'm not a business owner, 1 percenter or what ever labels you want to drape people with. I'm a "normal, working citizen".
by j jon jonny
Thursday Oct 25th, 2012 2:08 AM
maybe 90 people gave comstock $325 and 160 people gave her $30, which sounds more likely, and would indicate the massive extent to which business and the wealthy could be backing her

netting 90 wealthy individuals would be quite a coup, and the other 160 low amount donors could be easily chalked up to the rabid take back santa cruz membership

more telling is who 'lined up for her', according to the recent sentinel article. in it she was listed as receiving donations from more high profile business interests than the other candidates ---- count for yourself ---- including--->

'Charles and Tom Canfield, who own Santa Cruz Seaside Co, former Councilman Louie Rittenhouse, Redtree Properties' managing partner Doug Ley, developer Joe Appenrodt, Tysseling, Lighthouse Realty President Peter Cook, Downtown Corp. head John Huffman, Sun Shops owners Marshall and Kathryn Miller, and philanthropist George Ow and family members, and politicos county Treasurer Fred Keeley, council members Lynn Robinson and David Terrazas, Scotts Valley Councilman Dene Bustichi, county Supervisor Neal Coonerty, and former California Secretary of State Bruce McPherson.'

---- from ----> Business, politicos line up behind Santa Cruz Council foursome----

most alarming about your response to me, ed, is your total disregard for those voters who have absolutely zero spare cash to donate. do they deserve to be silenced by the big money of those on comstock's lists ? you know very well that some huge percentage of the population cant aford to donate anything at all, especially in this economy

i prefer the attitude towards money that fusari and pleich took. people may write off pleich's fundraising efforts as 'bohemian,' but fusari probably could have raised a ton of cash if it were his perogative due to his and his wife's family's longtime connections in town. but he obviously chose not to

good for jake
by jonny r
Thursday Oct 25th, 2012 12:02 PM
any organization that professes to 'clean up' areas with homeless encampments should be required to demonstrate what precautions they take to protect the possessions of those who are living there

take back santa cruz wont answer any questions on that topic. they remove pounds of what they call 'garbage' and the conversation ends there

also it has never been documented as far as i am aware, that take back santa cruz has posted fliers or has done any outreach in the encampment areas before they go in and remove everything
by Ed Natol
(ednatol [at] Thursday Oct 25th, 2012 12:42 PM
Maybe 45 people gave her 700 and the rest gave a dollar each.

"most alarming about your response to me, ed, is your total disregard for those voters who have absolutely zero spare cash to donate. do they deserve to be silenced by the big money of those on comstock's lists ? you know very well that some huge percentage of the population cant aford to donate anything at all, especially in this economy"

You do realize that there are many ways to support a candidate with something other then cash? Everybody running would love to have someboby come by and phone bank for 2 hours. Not everyday, just once in the campaign. Then there's walking precincts, doing doorhangers, even standing on the corner on election day waving a sign helps in a small way. However, whining online will probably prove ineffective.

At least somebody did try to flyer. I'll give two quick tips for next time, so whoever does it won't waste all their time. First off negative rarely works. In most cases, such as this one, it makes the target end up looking better. If you want Steve to be on council, print a flyer telling me why. Secondly, and very important, since screwing this up wastes your paper, money and time. Did those flyers get into the hands of voters? Sure, you could hit every car on the westside, but unless that car is owned by a registered, likely voter, you could just dump all the flyers in the river for all the good that effort will do you. Unless, of course, that you're just looking to smear her. In that case, then keep on keeping on.
by Keep It Real
Thursday Oct 25th, 2012 1:37 PM
(This thread is geting confusing as posts appear, disappear, then reappear..but so be it.)

Jonny R: My opinions differ than yours. I do consider it trolling when one makes insinuations and accusations without benefit of any evidence and then expecting others to disprove the claim. I also don't agree with your opinion that there is some requirement to go into a public space and remove trash from a camp that is illegal in its existence in the first place. Besides which, the photograhic evidence of the cleanups by TBSC (the cemetary) and more recent ones by Coastal Cleanup and the Sheriffs Office of illegal camps has shown me that there are thousands of pounds of trash being left by illegal campers and being cleaned up by these groups. I say more power to them and thank them for the cleanups.

I feel you've/they've lost any right to demand postings or policies or advance notices when they're presence is illegal in the first place and they're trashing our public spaces in the second place.
by jonny r
Thursday Oct 25th, 2012 3:35 PM
please read the US constitution

their presence in nature is legal

it seems self evident that we need to decriminalize life and living immediately

take back santa cruz is not educated enough as an organization to carry out a clean up of an area where people sleep, they have proven that in the media

that take back santa cruz hauls out 'mounds' of trash is evidence that they are hurting people, they need to prove to the public that they are doing it in a humane fashion, and they have not

you say:

"I feel you've/they've lost any right to demand postings or policies or advance notices"
freedom of speech is also in the constitution, maybe you forgot about that. i never 'lost' that right, nor did they

at least you are keeping it real. you dont believe in the constitutional rights of others, and you arent hiding it
by jonny
Thursday Oct 25th, 2012 4:09 PM

individuals cant give 700, only organizations can, and that would be very scary if 45 organizations were behind comstock, and giving her the maximum allowed, it would be like something expected from noroyan, an insider who may have many special interest political debts to repay later after a successfully bought election

ed, why should people with more money than you have more influence on the election ?

are you ok with people who inherited their money having more of a say over elections than those working for minimum wage ?

dont you think whoever distributed these fliers must have done so at least in part out of a personal economic frustration ? wouldnt they just try to buy the election ---- like comstock is ---- if they were on the same economic playing field ?

there will always be a segment of our society that will never have access to a decent income, no matter how hard they try, and that means there is a permanent part of society that has less influence over elections. a democratic system isnt working as well as it could in a case like this, right ?

your suggestions remind me of those who want to require people to take an 'intelligence' test before they can vote and participate in the electoral process. people shouldnt have to jump through hoops to have equal access
by Ed Natol
(ednatol [at] Saturday Oct 27th, 2012 11:28 AM
Pam has been bought and sold by the people that truly run this town. On the other hand indybay has stayed true to itself and doesn't want any of your tainted money...
by jonny r
Saturday Oct 27th, 2012 1:02 PM
people please dont vote for indybay for santa cruz city council, its a great website, but it is not running for office

progressives will probably vote for pleich, posner, pinheiro, and fusari, because among other things they represent a fresh start, and of course, they arent tainted by big money

pleich, posner, pinheiro, and fusari also scored well on water issues:
by non-fusari voter
Monday Oct 29th, 2012 11:08 AM
May want to do a little homework before making endorsements. Fusari was standing by the clock tower waving a Romney/Ryan sign in one hand and a Tea Party sign in the other.
by RazerRay
Tuesday Oct 30th, 2012 9:19 AM
Facebook is a Stock Market FAIL!
Their artificial intelligence isn't too bright either.

Pamela Comstock for RIOT PORN Star!
by RazerRay
Tuesday Oct 30th, 2012 9:40 AM
Let's REALLY keep it real.

Take Back Santa Cruz presence is a threat to the economic survival of what's left of a resident working Class in Santa Cruz and a threat to the physical survival of the homeless.

In that, it's more than legitimate to say they're a reactionary vigilante organization

Funny thing tho... The Working Class members of TBSC are unaware of TBSC's overarching agenda... Gentrified Development of Santa Cruz in the interest of property development interests such as the lower Ocean Street project modeled after ... Wait for it... Redwood City.

At one time the TBSC's AND the city's info in regard to the project led to an image of an arch cribbed from an artist's rendition of the Redwood City arch, without modification. It still read "Redwood City".

If Lower Ocean IS redeveloped, all the TBSC residents of lower Ocean will no longer be able to afford to live there. They're just too stupid or greedy to know it.
by Chris brown
Wednesday Nov 28th, 2012 10:17 AM
Since when is it not a right to protect children on the beach from dirty needles?.... Or human waste? TBSC rocks and it's about time something is done for the children of this county, my grandchildren are 6th generation in this county, and they have just as much right to safe streets, clean water and a clean beach! Drug addicts are dumping hazardous needles and taking dumps in our creeks and rivers, which flow onto beaches, needles everywhere and untreated human feces. Enough!!!! What don't you get?
by frank
Tuesday Dec 18th, 2012 6:45 PM
He is telling the truth how do I know because the a-holes are doing that to me!
by TBSC victim
Thursday May 5th, 2016 9:24 PM
Still true and worse than in 2012. Time has not improve them but made them uglier and more hateful and bigoted.