Dear Readers -

I am happy to have heard the President’s inaugural address. I actually didn’t have any particular hopes of a second inaugural speech in particular, so one can imagine my surprise to see the President make history in his extension of gay rights to the civil rights discussion on a par with women’s rights and minority rights. This can never be removed. I am certain that California will be honoring marriages for all couples after the Supreme Court ruling on Prop 8 later this summer, and that is going to have an enormously beneficial economic impact here in the Palm Springs area. Not only is Palm Springs a gay friendly zone, but the price points remain lower than LA and San Diego, and so this will be a major competing voice in locations for same sex marriages.

At first, there will be a big wave of them as the law changes, but even after that, because of our temperate climate, we will be seeing these weddings and all their related happenings occurring with some frequency. Palm Springs will step up to and beyond a Las Vegas wedding site, and that is going to help the restaurants, caterers, hotels, wedding planners, florists, party rentals, and reception halls and meeting rooms. This is encouraging, and a great way to look into 2013.

I am considering several professional options including a possible candidature for office here locally, and depending on decisions at The Desert Sun, this may be my last blog for the paper. I encourage the reader to consider the paper as part of our beloved community no matter what your views, to support it wholeheartedly, and in particular, try their new online service which is being offered at a nominal cost. I believe a digital only version can be had for 10 bucks a month! Quality writers and editors can only be a part of the paper if the paper is supported with subscriptions and advertisements. This paper has been the choice for advertising for me anyway.

Everything is going digital these days. Now schools are coming into being that offer courses online for free. It is hoped that this new business model (called a MOOC) is going to add millions of new students to a more educated world. Scott Hines, the Mayor of Rancho Mirage, and some other partners have founded World Education University on this model. is their website.

Before I go, I guess there are a few local events of economic importance beyond the change in weddings held here locally, and that would be this issue of the new mall downtown, the Desert Fashion Plaza. As I see it, the project is essentially funded, and the new ballot measure will not derail the project, only delay it. After waiting over a decade in fights with the Wessman partners, a few more months won’t kill this, and remember the money is already there. I don’t think the persons originating the petition have won any popularity contests, but a careful review is better than a sloppy one if we word this in the most positive sense.

I also would like to note that the hotel mentioned as a tenant in the new mall is just that, a tenant. Tenants do not own the building, and tenants come and go. Remember the PanAm bldg in NYC? It’s the Met Life bldg now. The owners of a bldg and the tenants of a bldg are two separate things. I wouldn’t put all my eggs in a basket over any one tenant regardless of who they are. Mr Wessman is hyper-aware of this. Is the public?

I also found it ironic that after the whole fight concerning the Latino bookshop, and the need to get them out against their will, that it would be a local hotel owner that would delay the DFP mall project for six more months or a year. So, there was no hurry to be throwing people out of their shops it would seem in hindsight.

I enjoy writing for this and other publications, and I look forward to being a part of the community here locally for a long time because I love this desert valley.

Questions and comments?