Bakersfield responds to attack by Caren Ray

October 22, 2014

bakersfieldA columnist from Bakersfield wrote an editorial Tuesday on the “slugfest” between San Luis Obispo County District 4 supervisor candidates Caren Ray and Lynn Compton and Ray’s negative comments about Bakersfield.

At a recent debate and on the Dave Congalton radio show on KVEC 920 AM, Compton said that it would help the economy if the permit process, while following all state and environmental laws, was streamlined and efficient. Compton then said that contractors who have worked in both Bakersfield and San Luis Obispo counties say the process is more efficient in Bakersfield.

Ray responded with a flyer trashing Bakersfield for its “poor air quality” and “urban sprawl” and asking voters not to let Compton turn San Luis Obispo County into Bakersfield.

The Bakersfield Californian columnist Lois Henry responded Tuesday:

“Whoa, whoa, WHOA!”

“I’ve gotta call time out when a political campaign in a totally different county tosses Bakersfield under the bus.”

“Yeah, that’s right, a candidate running for San Luis Obispo County supervisor has put out mailers urging voters to keep her in office so her opponent doesn’t “turn South County into Bakersfield.”

“I would say that hurts, but I actually thought it was kind of hilarious.”

“But it wasn’t funny at all to some of the very voters in that district who incumbent Caren Ray probably hoped to win over.”

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I wish Caren Ray could answer me one question, “In your time in office, either 4th district or AG city council, name me one bureaucracy you have actually eliminated” basically one thing you have done to make doing business easier for regular people and businesses instead of always wanting to create more government.


Thanks for asking a hard but fair question rather than indulging in the gossipy innuendo and irrelevant trivialities that dominate the campaign against her. It may not be totally fair in that she hasn’t been in either office long enough to do much but it is still a good question.

Now for my questions to Lynn Compton, “What role, if any, do you think that planning regulations should play in county government? Which specific rules do you think are excessive and what alternatives would you propose?”

The problem with both of our questions is that real answers would not be simplistic or interesting enough to grab the attention of the average voter. Even if the questions were answered honestly, opponents of the candidates would spin them into deceptive, simplistic “strawmen” issues.

Sometimes I am tempted to wish that voters should have to pass a test to prove they can THINK critically and ignore emotionally-based “reasoning.” Then I remember who would be setting the criteria for such a test and just get more depressed.


Lois Henry’s knikers in a knot? Give us a break. She’s proud of smog, sprawl, traffic and the like — never seen a development she didn’t like. Come on CCN — this is beneath your usual quality work.


While I think it is worth reporting upon this issue, their summary is slanted towards those who criticize Ray. That is where the fault lies. The linked article by Henry is more objective (and honest) than the CCN report.


Caren, your desperation is showing.




It seems every time Caren opens her mouth, it’s to change over feet.

Here we have a clear case of the pot calling the kettle black.


Not sure how wise it was for the Ray campaign to hitch her little stagecoach to Ferrara’s campaign during a time of such discourse and upheaval in Arroyo Grande.

Tony finally had to break down and buy some signs to combat the bright yellow Jim Hill for Mayor signs, and what does he choose?

Why, a stagecoach…the very same theme as the Ray mailer…now how cute is that?


Just think. If Caren Ray wins we will have three supervisors that are divorced and “living” with their out-of-wedlock “partner”. If Bruce Gibson who is engaged in an affair with his subordinate, Adam Hill who is engaged in an affair with someone who directly benefits from hundreds of thousands of dollars in county funds, and the Arroyo Grande “Tea Party” doesn’t bother you, then this comment by Caren shouldn’t bother you.


If you think that being divorced or living with an out-of-wedlock partner are necessarily bad qualities in a person (for political office or otherwise), I would advise you to keep quiet about who you support because that attitude will make a LOT of people question your judgment as severely as many are questioning Caren Ray’s judgment in running this ad.

I do think that Gibson deserves condemnation for the way he ended his marriage but not for the fact that he ended it. Hill has many faults but unless he started in with Torres before he was divorced, that is irrelevant. To my knowledge, Ray was not married when she got involved with her current boyfriend. Their may be other problems with conflict of interest in political actions with both Ray and Hill but they would remain if they were married to their partners.


Being familiar with Bako after having spent many years there I feel Caren is right on. It is a ghastly city with nothing but sprawl of endless boring corporate stores and huge housing tracts. It is a terrible place, just ask anyone from there. There is some far out stuff over there we could emulate but the overall scene is very depressing.

It is the sort of place we should use as inspiration to do the opposite at all stages of area master planning.

Any outcry against Caren on this will be just political opposition, she tells the truth.


Caren tells the truth?

Perhaps you did not receive the recent mailer with a picture of the AG City Council riding on a stagecoach. In bold print it states, Arroyo Grande supports Caren Ray.

Really? Arroyo Grande? ALL of Arroyo Grande?

I drive around town and see signs for both Ray and Compton,

so just how does Arroyo Grande support Ray?

Would very much like to hear Caren’s response.


I too was offended by that postcard mailer. How dare she say that the whole city supports her for Supervisor?

If they had just added the word “council” in that comment, then it would have all made sense and tied into the back of her postcard. She’s a teacher, right? Maybe she should be editing her own mailers.

Good luck Caren for having the backing of all 5 AG City Council members. They have lost the trust of many in Arroyo Grande, so why should we now trust you?


Seriously?!? Compton’s mailers are just fine with distortions and words inserted into quotes that were never said, but you have a problem with Ray’s mailer.

Apparently it is OK to photo shop things onto your opponents for mailers but the use of hyperbole is way over the line. That is sarcasm for the record.


Oh, and let’s not forget, Caren claims that bringing more national chains to AG is one of the things she’s proud of.

Replacing the mom and pops with national chains, sucking the profits off to headquarters who-knows-where, and losing the multiplier affect of those profits circulating within the community is not something to be proud of.


I grew up in Bakersfield but have made San Luis Obispo my home. Both places have their merits and their drawbacks. I am definitely confused what one has to do with the other in terms of local politics.Insulting a city that does in fact fund a great deal of SLO industry (hi have you met tourists? They’re here 52 weeks a year throwing that Bako oil/ag/industry money at our businesses)

Ghastly is a really insanely melodramatic word to use when you’re talking about the place. Just sayin


I don’t want to live in Bakersfield, either. That doesn’t mean I want a county supervisor slamming Bakersfield and the families who live there for their choice on where they call home.

The worst thing about her slam was that it was in the context of a very close political race, when she really should not dump yet another controversy into her already-spilling-over, bubbling pot of controversies.

One would think she had her eye on taking over the position of SLO County BOS’s Resident Doofus, Adam HIll.

Mr. Holly

Caren Ray ought to take a step backwards and take a look at the financial impact that the folks from Bakersfield have on our local economy.

I think she certainly could have thrown a better substance than this onto the wall that may have stuck.

Shame on you Caren but after all it’s politics.


That was not what she said or the article. Has it occurred to anyone that the reason that people come to our area from the valley is because it is not like Bakersfield?

Even the local person who raised a flag with the Bakersfield paper has retired here. I wonder why. Im sure its not because they were able to get a bigger home for the money.


Your absolutely right AGDon, people come to our area because its different – there’s an ocean, dunes, and its not HOT.

Brilliant deduction.


That doesn’t mean she should slam Bakersfield and it’s residents calling it home, to make a cheap political point in an election.


Reading the comments, she didn’t slam Bakersfield residents — unless you consider criticism of their planning and growth policies a slam on them. The ad may have been stupid because of the ease with which her intent could be distorted but I agree that some of Bakersfield’s negative qualities does have to do with their approach to growth and planning. Now whether or not our area goes too far in the other direction (overly laborious regulations and bureaucratic tendencies to delay things to death) is another matter for debate.


To begin with, Caren Ray shouldn’t have taken Lynn Compton’s comments out of context.

Compton never said “Let’s turn SLO County into Bakersfield.” Shame on you, Caren.

Caren Ray just tries to sensationalize something for attention–kind of like she did when a kid shot a BB through her window (“Oh no! I’m being targeted! I’m such a victim…”) and then again when she mocked Compton’s railroad hobo-themed fundraiser. (“Oh no! My opponent’s mocking homeless people!)

Ray’s campaign looks increasingly desperate as they grasp for something–anything–to bash Compton about.


I love it when someone uses distortion and out of context comments to complain about another person doing that. Good laugh


AGDon….go paint some stagecoach posters. Its not gonna be a good day for you here.


The main exception I take to your comments is that Compton and/or her supporters are doing the same thing with the “Ray wants to kill Prop 13” campaign. Some of her supporters on this site have also turned me off with the irrelevant comments about her “Hash Harrier” background.

Both sides in this campaign have disappointed me. I am inclined to let the partisans on both sides fight it out at the ballot box and write in “Diogenes” for county supervisor.


I understand, but keep looking.

Ray is evasive, but Compton outright lies and thinks it’s cute or smart or something.

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