Health

The Abuse of Ocean Beach Tenants on Saratoga

July 2, 2015 by Frank Gormlie
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By Frank Gormlie

Mark has lived in his small unit on the 4900 block of Saratoga Avenue in Ocean Beach for 14 years. His is one of the front units in the 8-plex, where a sidewalk and a narrow space separate the two buildings that make up a narrow courtyard. A row of garages that face the alley forms a “T” with the buildings.

Mark’s longevity as a tenant is not the only one. A woman neighbor has been there for 17 years and a buddy in one of the back units has been there for ten years.

Everyone got along in his courtyard neighborhood. Everything seemed fine, until about six months ago when the property changed hands. And a new property management team appeared. It was the Torrey Pines Property Management company that took over, as it was one of their clients that had purchased the units.

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Momentum Mounting for 2016 California Marijuana Measure

June 30, 2015 by Source

MJcaliflagBy Phillip Smith / AlterNet

On June 14, more than 200 people gathered at the Sebastopol Grange for a fundraiser and organizing meeting of local pot growers, the Sonoma County Growers Association.

They were being mentored by their northern neighbors from Humboldt, Mendocino, and Trinity counties, the Emerald Growers Association, which already has lobbyists in Sacramento and is in the middle of the effort to legalize weed in California next year.

The Emerald Triangle is the largest marijuana growing area in the country’s largest marijuana producing state.

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OB Town Council: Drought Remedies, Mallow-Out Campaign, Caves, Grants, Vendors and Park Rangers

June 25, 2015 by Frank Gormlie
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The Ocean Beach Town Council juggled a lot of issues last night at its monthly public meeting – drought solutions, its “Mallow-Out” Campaign, the day after July 4th clean-up, the funding of grants …

It was well over half-way through the meeting when the keynote presentations on the drought and solutions were finally made to the crowd of about forty audience members and a dozen Council members.

Drought Remedies: Native Plants, Rainbarrels, Greywater and Diet

One-by-one several presenters laid out remedies that included learning about native plant gardens, which native plants are good to plant, about installing grey-water systems in your home, and how our diets also contribute to the waste of water.

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Donna Frye Calls for “Massive River Park” at Qualcom Stadium Site

June 23, 2015 by Frank Gormlie
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Donna Frye is trying to upset the apple cart that surrounds all the discussion about the Chargers and the Qualcomm football stadium site. Yesterday – Monday, June 22nd – she called for “a massive river park” at the 166-acre Mission Valley site.

In an Op-Ed piece in Voice of San Diego, Donna Frye – former City Councilwoman for the district that includes Mission Valley – called for something akin to another Balboa Park or Mission Bay Park.

In her piece, Frye dismissed the discussion about whether the Chargers want the current site and all the discussion about commercial and residential development of it, instead declared that it actually is “a big opportunity staring us right in the face – the potential to create a real San Diego River Park.”

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Ronald McDonald’s Unhappy Meals

June 22, 2015 by Source

Ronald McDonald photo

By Jill Richardson / OtherWords

McDonald’s is floundering.

There’s no other way to say it. The global fast food chain has experienced declining U.S. sales for well over a year now. But why?

I’d love to gloat that Americans have finally caught on that the Golden Arches peddles terrible food, but that might not be the case.

Theories for the slump abound.

Some believe the menu is too confusing, slowing down service. Others say that consumers are drifting toward fast-casual chains like Chipotle and Panera, even if their food costs more.

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The Old OB Hippie: Jogging for the Revolution

June 15, 2015 by Source

Old Hippie ob timeIt’s OB Time

The Old OB Hippie Claims He Was the First OB Jogger and Says: Concrete Is Not Good for Knees

By the Old OB Hippie

When I left the college campus with a degree, it was during the heady days of the Vietnam War and the anti-war movement. There had been protests and demonstrations galore against the war for years and they were getting more intense and militant as each year went by. The country was being torn up by the war and how the Pentagon got its way. Students and young people were being turned into radicals. ‘Revolution was in the air.’

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It’s Not Right: San Diego Life Guards Do Not Receive the Same Health Coverage as Firefighters

June 15, 2015 by Source
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Lifeguards Deserve Presumptive Coverage

By Ed Harris / Special to the OB Rag

When a San Diego Firefighter or Police officer is injured or contracts an illness while performing their job, the City provides them with presumptive health coverage. Presumptive coverage includes meningitis, tuberculosis and hepatitis, to name a few.

Since San Diego Lifeguards are part of the San Diego Fire Department, one would think they’d be provided that same presumptive coverage. They are not.

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Former Congressman Jim Bates Re-enacts Mid-Night Ride of Paul Revere – Sat., June 13

June 12, 2015 by Staff

It’s true. Former Congressman Jim Bates is making his comeback as the ghost of Paul Revere. Bates is actually re-enacting Revere’s midnight ride this Saturday night, June 13th at – of all times – midnight.

He’ll be on a horse calling for a need for the country to mobilize a large scale effort to get the nation off fossil fuels, a type activists call “a U.S. government World War II-scale Mobilization to transition the U.S. from fossil fuels to conservation and safe, clean wind, water and solar renewable energy.”

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Trans Pacific Partnership Fast Track Authority Vote Set for Today – Friday, June 12

June 12, 2015 by Doug Porter
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By Doug Porter

Republican leaders in the House of Representatives have set a Friday deadline for a vote on a bill giving the President fast-track authority on commercial treaties currently being negotiated.

The legislation would allow the executive branch to submit trade agreements to Congress for an expedited, up-or-down vote without amendments was passed by the Senate last month. President Obama has said he wants to complete a 12-nation Trans-Pacific Partnership and send it for approval under that procedure.

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Has the Santa Barbara Oil Spill Finally Reached San Diego? Tar Bars at La Jolla.

June 12, 2015 by Frank Gormlie
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There are now significant amounts of tar droplets at La Jolla – the Scripps Institute of Oceanography beach just to the north.

We have to ask: has the Santa Barbara oil spill reached San Diego?

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Artificial Grass May Save Water, But Does It Endanger People?

June 11, 2015 by Source
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By Lynne Peeples / Huffington Post / June 9, 2015

When Michael and Barbara Fouch first considered replacing their grassy lawn with artificial turf, they researched the growing array of options for the green plastic blades and the infill that holds them in place. They wanted a product that looked nice, but they also wanted something that wouldn’t make any people or pets sick.

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Letter to Mayor Faulconer From OB Planning Board on Climate Action Plan

June 9, 2015 by Source

Editor: The following is a letter from the Ocean Beach Planning Board, signed by its chair, John Ambert, to Mayor Faulconer of their support for the Climate Action Plan.

The Honorable Kevin L. Faulconer
Mayor of San Diego
… The Ocean Beach Planning Board strongly supports the Climate Action Plan draft as released …

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Today – June 8th – Is World Oceans Day

June 8, 2015 by Source
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Today – June 8th – is World Oceans Day, an international celebration officially recognized by the United Nations.

Among the purposes, the United Nations says the day’s intention is to “remind everyone of the major part the ocean has in everyday life” and “information the public on the impact of the human actions of the ocean.”

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Nuclear Shutdown News – May 2015: Fire at Indian Point Plant in NY – and Is It ‘the End’ for Diablo Canyon?

June 5, 2015 by Michael Steinberg
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By Michael Steinberg / Black Rain Press

Nuclear Shutdown News chronicles the continuing decline of the US nuclear industry.

Here’s our May 2015 report:

Indian Point Nuke Plant Fire

A May 8 fire in a transformer at the Indian Point Nuclear Plant caused a fire and explosion, shutting down reactor #3 for 16 days. The Environmental News Service reported on May 9th:

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Auto Emissions: More Deadly Than Auto Accidents

May 29, 2015 by Source
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By Bill Adams/UrbDeZine

A nearby roadway may be putting your household’s health at risk. The same is true of workplaces, schools, and other places where people spend significant time. This health risk is from the elevated auto emissions near high traffic roadways. It’s a health risk separate and in addition to the regional air pollution from auto emissions.

We have come to draw a false sense of security from our collective sharing of regional air pollution and, perhaps, the belief that regulatory agencies protect us. However, research continues to show that air pollution, particularly from auto emissions, has profound effects on health.

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San Diego’s Lawsuit Against Monsanto Shows Just How Hard It Is To Hold Polluters Accountable

May 22, 2015 by Source
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Other cities have sued over PCB pollution, but San Diego’s case is unique.

by Natasha Geiling / Think Progress / March 25, 2015

In a 1970 internal memo, agrochemical giant Monsanto alerted its development committee to a problem: Polychlorinated Biphenyls — known as PCBs — had been shown to be a highly toxic pollutant.

PCBs — sold under the common name Aroclor — were also huge business, raking in some $10 million in profits.

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Sex Trafficking of Minors Hits Close to Home in Point Loma

May 19, 2015 by Source
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Point Loma Democrats Hear about Sex Trafficking

By Lois Lane

The program, “Sex Trafficking of Minors in San Diego,” last Sunday, May 17, 2015, seemed distant from the Ocean Beach and Point Loma audience. We quickly learned that this is one indeed one of our local problems and one of the most profitable illegal activities, greatly out-earning drug dealing. The product is also renewable – you can only sell a package once, but with prostitution, you can sell the same product over and over.

The speakers were Ali Serano, Assistant US Attorney, Sergeant Chris Cameron, San Diego County, and Gayle Sollfrank, representing a resource for victims, GenerateHope.

If we don’t think this is our problem, Ms. Serano displayed a printout from that day, showing six active Point Loma links on the primary Internet site (not publicized here).

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Dark Clouds on San Diego’s Horizon

May 13, 2015 by Doug Porter
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By Doug Porter / San Diego Free Press

Developments over the past few days bode poorly for San Diego’s image and civic pride.

One of the main tourist attractions, the football team, the successor to the downtown development agency and the home for Comic Con are all in turmoil.

Controversies have arisen concerning the lone Democrat on the Board of Supervisors and the sheriff’s department is being investigated for civil rights violations arising out of the arrest of a mentally handicapped man.

So many stories, so little time to tell them all:

Sex and Drugs at SeaWorld …. COME INSIDE

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Gov. Brown on Climate Change: “We’re dealing with it and it’s damn serious.”

May 13, 2015 by John Lawrence
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Then Why Haven’t You Put Any Restrictions on Big Oil and Big Ag?

By John Lawrence

Governor Jerry Brown is leading the nation and perhaps even the world in his efforts to do something about climate change and global warming which is causing epic drought conditions in California.

He has mandated that greenhouse gas emissions must be reduced to 40 percent below 1990 levels over the next 15 years. Brown called this the most aggressive benchmark enacted by a government in North America. All well and good.

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Nuclear Shutdown News – April 2015

May 12, 2015 by Michael Steinberg
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Nuclear Shutdown News chronicles the continuing decline of the US nuclear power industry, and highlights the efforts of those who are creating a better energy future.

Here’s the April edition:

By Michael Steinberg /Black Rain Press

Oyster Creek – oldest US nuke keeps shutting itself down

On April 28 patch.com ran “NRC Oyster Creek Nuclear Has Substantial Safety Problems.” Located in New Jersey, the Oyster Creek nuclear plant is the nation’s oldest (sometimes) operating nuke. It started up in late 1969, and is now 45 years old. US nuclear plants were designed to last only 40 years.

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Toxic Turf? Movement Grows Against Synthetic Turf

May 11, 2015 by Source
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By Jenifer McKim /New England Journal of Invest. Reporting/May,9 2015

Artificial turf fields, cushioned with recycled crushed tires and increasingly in demand for US athletic complexes, are getting some serious pushback.

In Swampscott last week, town meeting members approved plans to install a new synthetic field with silica sand, a more expensive product touted as a nontoxic alternative to the small rubber pellets known as crumb rubber ubiquitous on thousands of synthetic fields across Massachusetts and the nation.

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World Carbon Dioxide Levels Pass 400 ppm For First Time Ever

May 7, 2015 by Source
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Global Carbon Dioxide Levels Topped 400 PPM Throughout March In Unprecedented Milestone

By Nick Visser /Huffington Post / May 6, 2015

Average global levels of carbon dioxide stayed above 400 parts per million, or ppm, through all of March 2015 — the first time that has happened for an entire month since record keeping first began, according to data released this week by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA).

Scientists with NOAA’s Earth System Research Laboratory have called the news a “significant milestone” in the growing scourge of man-made climate change.

“This marks the fact that humans burning fossil fuels have caused global carbon dioxide concentrations to rise more than 120ppm since pre-industrial times,” Pieter Tans, lead scientist of NOAA’s greenhouse gas network, told The Guardian on Wednesday. “Half of that rise has occurred since 1980.”

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SeaWorld Cited for Violations of Employee Safety by Cal-OSHA in Middle of Its PR Blitz

May 4, 2015 by Frank Gormlie
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In Another Blow – Mattel Pulls “SeaWorld Trainer Barbie Dolls”

In the midst of an aggressive PR campaign in a gigantic push-back against all the negative publicity it has received and the subsequent drop in attendance and profits lately, SeaWorld has just been cited by California health and safety inspectors for serious violations of employees safety.

Four citations were issued to the Mission Bay facility by the California Division of Occupational Safety and Health- three of them serious – and all toll they carry about $26,000 in fines.

From an inspection that occurred on October 29th of last year, OSHA cites violations of worker safety that include a failure by SeaWorld to keep its employees aware of the dangers posed by orcas; requiring employees to ride and swim with them in the park’s medical pools and for having trainers be with orcas in more shallow areas on pool edges.

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Point Loma – OB Dems Get Lit on Medical Marijuana Regulations in San Diego

April 28, 2015 by Source
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Report of Pt Loma – OB Democrats Meeting Sunday, April 26, 2015

By Lois Lane

This past Sunday’s meeting had a decidedly progressive tone, with a panel discussion on the topic of medical marijuana, and a presentation about the OB Rag.

The medical marijuana topic had some high-powered speakers – Terrie Best from the San Diego Chapter of Americans for Safe Access; Alex Kreit, Associate Professor and director of the Center for Law and Social Justice at Thomas Jefferson School of Law, and Ebon Johnson, director of the Green Nectar Dispensary.

Cynara Velazques, a club member, served as moderator. The guidelines stated that the topic was past the “for/opposed” stage, and was meant to provide information about the current law. Some interesting highlights: …

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Climate Mobilization Coalition Gears Up for Next Action – Meetings Every Saturday in OB

April 28, 2015 by Source
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Local Climate Mobilization Coalition meets at People’s Co-op every Saturday at 10:00 a.m. — Here’s Report of April 25th Meeting

By Colleen Dietzel / Special to the OB Rag

Since early February this year the Coalition for Climate Mobilization has been organizing a series of events to build the movement leading up to the United Nations Climate Change Conference in Paris in November. (See OB Rag coverage of March 15th event.)

The Climate Mobilization Coalition’s goal is a call to the United States Government to immediately commence a national World War II-style mobilization to transition the U.S. from fossil fuels to sustainable energy, including solar, wind and water.

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Midway Planners Savor First Area Medical Marijuana Dispensary

April 27, 2015 by Frank Gormlie
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Report of Midway Community Planning Group

By Tony de Garate / Special to the OB Rag

Like it or not, medical marijuana is coming to the Midway area – and police are calling on its citizenry to prevent the area from becoming overrun with rogue operators.

Only one Midway dispensary has gained legal status so far in the 13 months since the San Diego City Council approved regulations to allow storefronts to legally sell medical pot. But with its abundance of industrial areas that are devoid of churches, libraries, parks and residential housing, the community reeks of dispensary-friendly zoning — and potential opportunities for non-certified medical pot merchants who want to fly under the radar, police say.

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There’s Too Many Stabbings in Ocean Beach of Late

April 14, 2015 by Frank Gormlie
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4 People Stabbed in 3 Weeks

By our count, there has been at least three stabbing incidents of late in Ocean Beach – and that’s three too many! 3 incidents in which at least 4 people were stabbed.

No. 1: There was the stabbing as a result of a fight between some homeless people late Saturday, March 22nd. The fight had taken place it appears in Saratoga Park. The suspect was arrested, according to Community Relations Officer David Surwilo, and the victim was fined.

No. 2: A second stabbing took place also recently

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Court: Navy Sonar Training Injures Whales, Dolphins and Other Sea Animals

April 2, 2015 by Source
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by Big Island Now Staff

A U.S. District Court judge has ruled that the National Marine Fisheries Service wrongly approved U.S. Navy training exercises in the Pacific Ocean that would cause widespread harm to whales, dolphins, other marine mammals, and endangered sea turtles.

The Navy’s planned exercises involved the use of explosives, sonar, and vessel strikes over a five-year period, causing an estimated 9.6 million instances of harm to ocean mammals and other marine life.

It was concluded that the training exercises would impact millions of marine animals with injury, death, and disrupted essential habits like mating, rest, and communication.

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Nuclear Shutdown News – March Edition

March 31, 2015 by Michael Steinberg
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By Michael Steinberg / Black Rain Press

Nuclear Shutdown News chronicles the continuing decline of the US nuclear industry, and highlights efforts of those who are democratically working to bring about a renewable energy future. As nuclear plants in the US are approaching or surpassing their 40 year operating life, their ability to operate properly and safely lessens, creating more and more problems across the nation.

Here’s our March report:

Diablo Canyon – Last Nuke Plant in California

On February 20 a Federal Court of Appeals in Washington DC rejected an attempt by Pacific Gas & Electric and the Nuclear Regulatory Commission to quash a lawsuit filed by environmental group Friends Of the Earth (FOE). According to FOE, the suit alleges that the “NRC illegally allowed PG&E to alter Diablo Canyon’s nuclear plant license.” …

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Students Successfully Petition San Diego School Board to Pressure SeaWorld on Animal Sancturaries

March 27, 2015 by Source
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Students from Point Loma High Cinematic Arts Class Part of Presentation

Statement of PLHS Cinematic Arts Teacher INSIDE

By Martha Sullivan

On March 24th, the San Diego Unified School Board voted unanimously 5-0 to “encourage Sea World to explore animal sanctuaries for their animal entertainers”. The resolution was sponsored by Trustees Kevin Beiser and Richard Barrera. The Board had been petitioned by local students – including some from Point Loma High School -.

Several students spoke to the Board about what they are learning in school in regards to the treatment of animals, what is humane and what is not.

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