[Hpn] Steve Argue In The Race, Says Rent Control Is The Number One Issue

steve argue steveorchid@yahoo.com
Wed, 7 Aug 2002 11:45:26 -0700 (PDT)

Steve Argue Running for Santa Cruz City Council, Says
Rent Control Is Number One Issue:

   In Santa Cruz rent is too high and wages are too
low for much of the working class.  The high rent is a
form of modern serfdom where working people are forced
to turn most of what we earn over to gouging landlords
who use it to do things like buy more property and
party hard off of our labor.
   Current rent control in Santa Cruz covers only
trailer park residents.
   My opponents in this election who are incumbents:
Christopher Krohn, Tim Fitzmaurice, Mike Rotkin,
Cynthia Matthews, and Catherine Beiers have not taken
any action towards instituting across the board rent
control.  Their lack of action shows them to be
politicians of the wealthy landlords so I urge you not
to vote for them.
   The working class and the poor have nothing in
common with these career politicians of the Democrat,
Republican, and Green Party.  The entire system that
funds them, and backs them through favorable articles
in the corporate owned media is one that is anti-poor
and anti-working class.  I am proud to say that the
corporate owned media is completely and totally
hostile to my campaign and I encourage people to check
out non-corporate media such as 96.3 FM, Indy Media
(on the Web), or independent papers such as the
Partisan, the Industrial Worker, the Organizer, Street
Spirit, Internationalist, Socialist Worker, or
Worker's Vanguard to find out what's
really going on.
   The System we live under is nothing but a system
hell bent on destruction.  It is a system of war,
ecological destruction, and exploitation.  The wealthy
who run this system will do anything for a profit. 
They are only held in check to the degree they are by
the movements of the people in the streets; by the
unions; by the environmental movement; by the
movements for racial, gender, and gender preference
equality; and by the armed resistance of those who
will not be colonized by the United States such as the
people of Vietnam and Cuba. 
   While my candidacy calls for rent control as a way
to slow the rent gouging of the landlords I also say
the entire rent system is a form of theft and that the
greedy landlords should have their property
expropriated in a worker's revolution that
redistributes the ownership of housing and production
while guaranteeing the political rights of those who
do not take up arms against the new society.  Through
such a revolution we can guarantee that all will be
housed, have medical care, free education including
higher education, and saner environmental policies
based on needs rather than greed.
   High rent is also the biggest problem facing
downtown merchants.  Yet instead of blaming the greedy
landlords for their problems many of the downtown
merchants, coupled with the corporate media and their
errand boys in City government, are scapegoating the
poor for their problems.
   While refusing to institute rent control these same
City politicians have chosen to keep a whole series of
laws on the books against those who have become
homeless.  One of the most insidious of these is a law
that makes sleeping in a vehicle, tent, or outside an
illegal act.  This law makes the very act of sleeping
after not paying our feudal landlords their monthly
tribute, illegal.  Rotkin, Matthews, Beiers, and
Fitzmaurice have all voted for the sleeping ban during
their time in office.  Krohn has voted against it.
   Also under the sleeping ban people are not only
arrested and ticketed for being homeless, but the
police also often slash tents and sleeping bags with
knives.  This contributes to a situation where the
homeless often freeze to death, as did "Happy Camper".
 "Happy Camper" was a skilled construction worker who
built houses for most of his life while he lived in
Boulder Creek.  When he could no longer work as a
result of injuries he became homeless.  Many know him
from where he sat on the north end of Pacific Avenue. 
He is no longer with us, he froze to death one cold
night.  "Happy Camper" was not taken care of in a city
that claims to be so good to the homeless.
   Instead of slashing sleeping bags and tents and
giving out tickets the police should be giving out
blankets to help keep people alive.  It's my goal to
fight for this kind of change in office.  A first step
towards ending police abuses against the homeless will
be ending anti-homeless laws and firing Police Chief
Steve Belcher. 
   Instead of passing rent control and ending police
abuses the current City Council has passed a series of
laws for the downtown area that severely limit where
musicians; other street performers; political tablers;
and panhandlers can do what they do.  In addition they
are considering another law against leaning against
buildings and they are outlawing blowing bubbles and
playing hackey-sack.  I do not think the solution to
our problems lie in stripping our City of its flavor
and turning it into Carmel by driving out the poor.
   Instead we need rent control.  We need rent
strikes.  We need unions independent of the Democrats
that use our real power by striking and shutting
businesses and government offices down.  We need mass
action and we need direct action.  Also we need you to
join a revolutionary organization that is willing to
run for office and and fight for the people and the
planet in the streets and in our unions.  That is why
I urge you to join the Rosa Luxembourg Club of the
Peace and Freedom Party, register to vote with the
Peace and Freedom Party, and to support my campaign
and the campaign of Thomas Leavitt for City Council.
   Also boycott the businesses that asked for the
new harassing laws that will be selectively enforced
against the poor.  They include: Borders, Artisan,
Jackson's Shoes, The Hat Company, Jon Michael Studio,
and Santa Cruz Jewelry and Gift.
   Support Steve Argue For City Council: Come to
weekly planning meetings at 332 Dakota Unit B at 10:30
AM Saturdays. (Location will change in September do to
a large rent hike.)  Checks can be written to Steve
Argue For City Council and sent to Steve Argue at 332
Dakota Unit B, Santa Cruz CA 95061.  Call (831)

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