History

Items that are historically significant in some way. They may be recent history or ancient history, pertinent to local history or something on a grander scale…

Chapter on Collier Park From Future Novel on Ocean Beach

March 27, 2015 by Source
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Editor: Here below is a chapter from a draft of a novel in part about Ocean Beach. This chapter involved a fictionalized version of the events surrounding the Collier Park riot and includes fictional characters, some of whom have vague similarities with actual people. The main character is Jack Moseley, an OB activist.

CHAPTER 3 – THE PARK

Jack and his roommate Blake were picking their way through the piles of wood by moonlight, making their way towards the front door of the old, dilapidated two story building that once was the home for unwed mothers, the Door of Hope. It had closed years ago and lay in ruins at the top of the hill.

It had been a short walk from their house over on Etiwanda Street. Blake had proposed that they take a look at it, and Jack had jumped at the chance to have a small adventure. He took a drag and handed the joint to Blake.

“Wouldn’t this be a great place to have a ‘people’s park’?” Blake asked him, coughing slightly as he handed the joint back. Jack was grinning. Blake filled Jack in on some of the details, as he had met with some local OB ecology militants while Jack had been out of town at a Black Panther convention in Washington, DC, and had gotten the scope on the land. The City was going to demolish the old Door of Hope, clear the land and then sell the huge plot to private developers who will be making apartments here. But the kicker was that years ago, back in the teens or so, Col. DC Collier had donated the land – and a much bigger slice actually- to the City of San Diego for “the children of San Diego”.

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March 28, 1971 – The Most Violent Day in Ocean Beach History

March 27, 2015 by Frank Gormlie
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44th Anniversary of Collier Park Riot Spurs Comparisons

The hour was getting late at the meeting of the Ocean Beach Town Council Board of Directors. It was January 21st in the year 1971 – 44 years ago. The hour was getting late but the meeting was lively as the topic was hot.

The subject was whether the City of San Diego would sell off to developers a large portion of land in northeast Ocean Beach called “Collier West” – so named because it was the western section of a much larger piece of property donated to the public by David C Collier – the “Father of Ocean Beach”.

A older male member of the Board was getting agitated – he started to shake as he half stood up to speak. It was Ray Perine, a slightly balding middle-aged and well-known grassroots activist. Not a radical by any means, Ray cleared his throat.

“If any apartments are built in Collier West, by god,” he said, “the town will rise up and get rid of them!”

Other Board members were somewhat shocked by his tone – while others smiled and applauded. OB Rag reporters were present and recorded what happened and what was said.

There was clearly widespread opposition among local residents and property owners to any sale of the land for apartments and Perine was expressing this commonly-share sentiment among locals. But Perine wasn’t anticipating exactly what happened, for the town, the village of Ocean Beach did rise up – just 5 weeks later.

On March 28th – in the middle of a campaign to “Save Collier Park” by local Ocean Beach environmentalists, other grassroots activists and members of the OB Rag staff – the anti-Vietnam War movement rolled into town and staged a large teach-in and demonstration down at the beach in OB.

It was 1971 – the early Seventies – and the War that had torn the country apart over the last half dozen years was still raging – it wouldn’t end for another 4 years in 1975.

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Donna Frye: An Ode to Open Government – ‘Let the Sun Shine In’

March 26, 2015 by Source
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By Donna Frye

This past week, March 15 – 21, the annual celebration called Sunshine Week took place throughout the nation. It was started over 10 years ago by the American Society of News Editors, with its goal being to –

“enlighten and empower people to play an active role in their government at all levels, and to give them access to information that makes their lives better and their communities stronger.”

From news organizations large and small, the public learned about Sunshine Week and why open government matters. The Des Moines Register ran a series of editorials, guest views and features on the importance of open government. The Washington Post encouraged us to “think about how the federal government can be more open to the public” as they checked “on recent efforts to increase transparency.”And the Sioux Falls Business Journal noted in their headline that “every week should be Sunshine Week in S.D.”

I agree, but it’s too bad that headline was about South Dakota and not San Diego. For the most part, Sunshine Week in San Diego came and went, and almost no local newspapers or media took any notice. Their silence was deafening.

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Talk About a Crack in the Sidewalk – Sunset Cliffs’ Walkways Are A-Buckling

March 26, 2015 by Frank Gormlie
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Enough of us have finally taken notice to mention it. Talk about a crack in your local sidewalk – you ain’t got nothing compared to this.

Check it out.

The concrete walkway at the bottom of Sunset Cliffs just north of Orchard Street has taken a beating from Mother Nature and the sidewalk is ‘a-buckling’.

This was all very predictable.

That is, it is predictable that attempts by government and private property owners along the famous and beautiful Sunset Cliffs to corral nature, prevent erosion and stop the gravitational, tidal and wind forces from doing their thing are bound to fail – eventually.

Also, we the citizens of a City like ours with its dismal history of maintaining of public access-ways shouldn’t be too surprised when nature and the lack of City attention take their toll.

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A Bank Too Big to Jail

March 26, 2015 by John Lawrence

Attorney General Eric Holder will leave office with a perfect record of not having busted a single senior banker

hsbc-logo2By John Lawrence

The bank, HSBC, has been involved in criminal enterprises from dealing with terrorists and drug dealers to advising clients how to escape paying taxes. Yet no HSBC banker has gone to jail.

Dealing with drug dealers is nothing new for HSBC, also known as the Hong Kong and Shanghai Banking Corporation. They have always been associated with drugs. Founded in 1865, HSBC became the major commercial bank in colonial China after the conclusion of the Second Opium War. That’s the war in which European powers forced the Chinese to legalize the drug trade.

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Junco’s Jabs: An Evil Monster Rises from the Depths of San Diego Bay

March 26, 2015 by Source
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By Junco Canche / San Diego Free Press _______________________ Junco Canché Junco Canché, the Chicano Punk Rock Artesano, was born in the US and raised in Mexico. His influences include cartoons, punk rock, manga, and Mayan codexes . Before SDFP, Junco drew cartoons for El Coyote Online, La Prensa News, and the Southwestern College Sun. […]

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Midway Area Gets a “Legal” Pot Dispensary

March 25, 2015 by Frank Gormlie
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The Point Loma Peninsula has a pot shop! The San Diego Planning Commission on March 19th voted 4 to 2 to approve a medical marijuana dispensary in the Midway area of the Point.

The Point Loma Patients Cooperative is the 4th such dispensary to be allowed under San Diego’s stringent requirements. It’s located at 3452 Hancock Street.

The other dispensaries allowed include an Otay Mesa storefront that just opened last week, and 2 more – one in San Ysidro and the other in Kearny Mesa. Both are are expected to open this spring. Allegedly, the City is supposed to allow a total of 36 dispensaries within city boundaries.

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Old Town Mobilizing to Save Historic Trees from City Project

March 25, 2015 by Doug Porter

old town 2By Doug Porter / San Diego Free Press

Old Town residents are scrambling to save aging California Pepper Canopy trees from removal along a corridor bordering State Historic Park and the City Golf Course.

Back in late August Mayor Kevin Faulconer and other city officials staged a press conference in Old Town to announce a major infrastructure project.

The Mayor proclaimed the Juan Street Replacement Project to be “…a perfect example of the city’s one dig philosophy….” In addition to replacing the water main, the street would be repaved and sidewalks would be replaced.

This is story best told with photos.

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San Diego Cops and the OB Rag Finally Agree on Something

March 24, 2015 by Source
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“OB Time” Sees Common Appreciation of Homeless

By the Old OB Hippie

Yup, that’s right. San Diego cops and the OB Rag finally agree on something. And it has to do with the homeless and how things keep getting repeated.

At a recent Ocean Beach Town Council meeting, two high-ranking police officers were seen and overheard shaking hands and speaking with Frank Gormlie, editordude of the OB Rag, back at the rear of the large room at the Masonic Center before the meeting began.

It turns out, the officers were thanking the Rag for publishing an article about how “good citizens” complained about the hippies back in 1968 and their “aggressive panhandling” and “public urination” – which had then been updated and re-worded; everywhere “hippie” was written in the article, “homeless” was substituted in.

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The Uptown Battle for Safer Bike Routes

March 24, 2015 by Doug Porter

CD4_Uni1By Doug Porter

There’s a special meeting of the Uptown Planners today – Tuesday (March 24) to discuss overriding the SANDAG Regional Bike Plan in Mission Hills and Hillcrest. Cycling advocates are expected to face off against various organizations and people opposed to proposed traffic changes in the area.

This meeting is, I think, symbolic of a larger battle going on over the future of transportation in the city. While all the organizations involved give lip service to the Climate Action Plan’s goal of 18% bike mode share in Uptown by 2035, there are individuals who come across as negative about actually doing anything to achieve the goal.

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Witnesses and Photos Sought of Ocean Beach’s ‘Most Violent Day’ in History

March 23, 2015 by Frank Gormlie

OB Collier-Pk-riot-2-edIt’s coming up on the 44th anniversary of the most violent day in the history of Ocean Beach – the March 28, 1971 Collier Park Riot. After San Diego police charged a peaceful gathering of hundreds of OBceans, young people and students, street fighting between cops and civilians broke out – and for hours a riot raged in north OB, from what today is Collier Park, all the way to the beach, about a mile.

It was the day that Ocean Beach was – in a real sense – like Ferguson, Missouri.

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“OB Gothic” Photo Contest Extended to ‘OB Exposed’ May 22nd

March 23, 2015 by Frank Gormlie
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Due to its interest, the OB Rag’s “OB Gothic” photo contest has been extended all the way to May, to the OB Historical Society’s annual photo shindig and contest, “OB EXPOSED! – Photographic Impressions of OB and PL” – held this year on May 22nd.

You may recall that inspired by the OB Historical Society’s presentation on OB’s cottages back in February, the OB Rag began a photo contest of the best “OB Gothic” image earlier this month.

The only rule is that the photo be taken in Ocean Beach.

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Ocean Beach Not on ’17 Best U.S. Cities for Hippies’

March 20, 2015 by Source
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A few years ago, a home-search website did a survey and came up with :

17 Best U.S. Cities for Hippies

But Ocean Beach – the original hippie town of San Diego – did not make the list. A lot of those places you’d expect, like Boulder, Portland and Berkeley are on the list.

Here’s what they said in their intro:

While some may think all the hippies have burned out or faded away, the truth is they’re still out there, still busily making love, but not war. We here at Estately set out to find communities where they’re heavily concentrated, as well as providing ideal habitat for the next generation of flower children.

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San Diego Finally Allows 1st “Legal” Pot Shop 19 Years After California Voters Passed Measure

March 20, 2015 by Frank Gormlie
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The City of San Diego has finally allowed the opening of the City’s very first medical marijuana dispensary. (NBC7 )

This opening of the first “legal” pot shop in San Diego comes 19 years after California voters passed Prop 215, making medical marijuana legal.

And the County of San Diego has only allowed one dispensary to open to date – a storefront opened last summer in an unincorporated area outside El Cajon.

The shameful history of nearly 2 decades for both the City and County of San Diego that viewed together initiated delays, stalls, and outright resistance to the spirit of Prop 215, stands in deep contrast to the wishes of the state’s voters.

On this issue at least, the implementation of the medical marijuana law, our local governments have been very undemocratic as they have quite openly stymied what the voters, the people, wanted.

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The Ocean Beach Entryway Park and Robb Field Are Finally Connected

March 19, 2015 by Frank Gormlie

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAFinally, the parks are connected!

The OB Entryway Park and Robb Field finally have no fence between them. The last obstacle – an orange plastic web fencing that had been installed where a chain-link fence once stood – has fallen apart and pedestrians and bicyclists are now moving through one park to the other.

On Wednesday, March 18, the OB Rag checked and could see that the web fencing had mostly fallen off the short metal posts. Bicycle tracks and foot prints could clearly be seen in the dirt leading from the OB Entryway into the grass in Robb Field.

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A Housing Market Divided

March 19, 2015 by Source

Deregulation won’t solve California’s seemingly intractable affordable housing crisis on its own.

content_California-housing-affordability-vs-USBy David Dayen / Capital & Main

Housing markets get discussed in the media mostly through the channel of prices. Rising prices are considered good for the economy. They can connote increased sales, which would lead to more construction and real estate-related jobs. They also give homeowners more equity in their homes, and the consequent “wealth effect” – studies show personal spending jumps when people perceive an increase in their wealth – can benefit the economy.

But there’s a darker side to rising home prices. They harm affordability, particularly for first-time homebuyers.

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Federal Report on San Diego Police: Mediocre on Criticism – Light on Sanctions

March 18, 2015 by Frank Gormlie
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DOJ Report Fails to Address Racial Profiling by San Diego Cops

A Federal report on the San Diego Police Department was just released Tuesday, March 17th, taking the Department to task on a lack of accountability for officer misconduct and a lack of adequate supervision of officers, while making 40 recommendations for improvement.

But significantly, the Department of Justice report does not address the serious claims that other recent reports have made about how the San Diego Police Department in fact practices racial profiling in its stops and searches of motorists, as well as in its shootings of civilians.

Overall, then, the Federal report is mediocre in its criticisms of the Department and light on its sanctions. No one person or officer is brought to account. No one is punished. No heads are rolling. The officer misconduct is not much more than a few bad apples tarring the reputation of a great, even “progressive” police department.

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San Diego Sues Monsanto for Polluting Bay With Banned Carcinogenic Chemicals

March 18, 2015 by Source

Lawsuit says toxins manufactured by agrochemical giant ‘have been found in Bay sediments and water and have been identified in tissues of fish, lobsters, and other marine life’

By Sarah Lazarre / Common Dreams

San Diego Coronado Bay Bridge

San Diego authorities filed a lawsuit on Monday (March 16) against the agrochemical giant Monsanto, accusing the corporation of polluting the city’s bay with carcinogenic chemicals that are so dangerous to human health they were banned in the U.S. more than 30 years ago.

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The Rep’s Oedipus El Rey: A Greek Classic Meets Chicano Mysticism

March 18, 2015 by Doug Porter

Photo: Daren Scott

By Doug Porter / San Diego Free Press

We are fortunate to live in a city where theater and the performing arts flourish. San Diego’s offerings are enriched by companies large and small; those that hew to tradition and those willing to stretch the limits of artistic expression.

The San Diego Repertory Theatre has been at it for nearly four decades, “promoting a more inclusive community through work that nourishes progressive and social values.” The current production of Oedipus El Rey speaks to those values through a modern day adaptation of Sophocles’ classic Greek drama, first performed in 429 B.C.

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Petition to Make the Intersection of Catalina and Cañon Street Residential-Only

March 17, 2015 by Source
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A local online petition in Point Loma has been making gains. Its a petition to make the intersection of Catalina Boulevard and Cañon Street residential-only. And it follows the tragic death of a 7-month old baby who was injured – her father was also injured – by a motorist as they crossed Canon in a pedestrian crosswalk.

PETITION

At 6:25am on March 2nd, 2015, seven-month-old Juniper Aavang was struck while in her stroller by an SUV travelling North on Catalina Boulevard, as it turned onto Cañon Street, Northeast-bound. …

COME INSIDE TO SIGN THE PETITION. Here is the text of the Petition:

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What We Lose with a Privatized Postal Service

March 17, 2015 by Source

zzpostofficeAmerica’s founders recognized that commerce requires a common infrastructure.

By Katherine McFate / Other Words

Did you know that when you ship a package through Federal Express, the U.S. Postal Service often carries it the last mile?

Last year, the Postal Service delivered 1.4 billion packages for FedEx and UPS. In fact, it delivers the last mile for almost a third of FedEx packages. The 618,000 Postal Service workers also delivered nearly 66 billion pieces of first-class mail — that’s more than 100,000 pieces per carrier.

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More On Civic San Diego: The Push-Back Begins and Just Who Are the Stakeholders?

March 17, 2015 by Source
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Editor: Our online media partner, the San Diego Free Press, has of late been shining a spotlight on Civic San Diego. In doing so, it has been providing much needed observation, commentary and discussion on the activities of this separate organization, a nonprofit that is unaccountable to the voters of the city, but that is in charge, apparently, of San Diego’s future.

Here inside is Doug Porter’s Pushback on Civic San Diego Accountability: Here Comes the “Uncertainty” Ploy published on March 16th and Anna Daniels’ Civic San Diego and Its Stakeholders published today, March 17th.

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Extreme Weather Watch: February 2015 Sets Records for Snow and Cold

March 16, 2015 by John Lawrence

weather5By John Lawrence

Many records for snowfall and extreme cold were set in February. Some might think this is a sign of the nonexistence of global warming, but they would be wrong.

Maybe the terminology should be more appropriately “climate change,” but global warming still holds if the average surface air temperature sets records as it did in 2014 despite extreme cold in the northeast US.

It remains to be seen if extreme heat elsewhere in the world will make up for the extreme cold over much of the eastern half of the US in 2015.

Amid the extreme cold and snowfall records in the eastern half of the US, February also set a record for carbon dioxide levels in the atmosphere. For the first time in February the earth’s average carbon dioxide level was above 400 ppm. Last year, the monthly average didn’t go above that level until April, which was the first month in human history with carbon dioxide levels that high.

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San Diegans Mobilize for Government Action on Climate Change

March 16, 2015 by Frank Gormlie
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On a hot afternoon last Sunday, March 15th, 250 San Diegans rallied and marched – and called on the US government to act on the climate change crisis.

About 150 demonstrators had gathered by 2 pm at the San Diego Civic Center Plaza, as the band the Swamp Critters encouraged them through song to come out and protest. Organized by a loose coalition that involved OB’s People’s Food Store Cooperative and the OB Green Store, as well as the Sierra Club, 350.org, and a couple of Democratic clubs – from Pt Loma and La Jolla, the protest was part of a series the coalition plans leading up to next November.

After a few speakers, the group pushed out of the Plaza, down 3rd Avenue and Broadway, taking the short walk in the streets to the Federal Building. A few police cars escorted the peaceful march the few blocks that then gathered for a second rally. Once in the shade of the massive Federal Building, another band welcomed the crowd. A dozen people got up and danced to the music of Captain Viejo before a few more speakers thanked and exhorted those present to continue the struggle.

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The Battle Over Trans-Pacific Partnership: Elizabeth Warren Strikes Back Against the Wolves In Sheep’s Clothing

March 16, 2015 by Jim Miller

stop-tpp-700By Jim Miller

Just as the folks in the New Democrat Coalition (NDC) were gearing up to marginalize the progressive wing of the Democratic Party leading up to the 2016 election, Elizabeth Warren struck back with what even CNN reported as “a push to kill major trade negotiations” being championed by President Obama and previously supported by Presidential hopeful Hillary Clinton

And it’s a very good thing that Warren has elevated the debate over the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) to the national media because proponents of this deal have done everything they can to keep the details secret.

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The Morphing of Civic San Diego and the Need for City Council Oversight

March 16, 2015 by Anna Daniels

diceFocus on March 18th Public Safety and Livable Neighborhood Committee Meeting

By Anna Daniels / San Diego Free Press
This past October, Reese Jarrett, newly hired President of Civic San Diego (CivicSD), appeared before the Public Safety and Livable Neighborhood Committee of the San Diego City Council. The committee chairwoman, District 9 council member Marti Emerald, directed a number of pointed questions toward CivicSD staff, followed by additional questions from District 4 council member Myrtle Cole.

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San Diego’s Climate Mobilization – Sunday March 15th

March 13, 2015 by Source
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San Diego organizers are planning a “People’s Climate Walk and Rally for Mobilization” this Sunday, March 15th. And local OBceans are playing an important role in the event. In concert with demonstrations and rallies across the country, it 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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Ben-Moshe Family Purchases ‘Newport Avenue Antiques’ Building – to Be Replaced by Wine Testing Room

March 13, 2015 by Frank Gormlie
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The Ben-Moshe family has bought yet another Newport Avenue property to add to their generous collection of downtown OB storefronts – this time, it’s the ‘Newport Avenue Antiques’ building, located at 4836 Newport. The Ben-Moshes – through their IAC Management, LLC – purchased the 7,500 square foot parcel for $1.3 million in cash.

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Scott Peters and the “New Democrats” Take Aim at the Warren Wing of the Party

March 13, 2015 by Jim Miller

…And Other Sordid Tales

Scott Peters Between the HeadsBy Jim Miller

This week a “right to work” bill that will gut the union movement in Wisconsin is likely to hit Governor Scott Walker’s desk and no doubt he will sign it.

While there is much discussion in Democratic circles of how Walker is doing this to position himself even more solidly on the right to please potential Republican primary voters, there is much less discussion about how this latest assault on workers’ rights helps speed the runaway train heading toward plutocracy that is the United States.

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Ocean Beach: Support Your Community Plan – Go Vote on Tuesday, March 10

March 6, 2015 by Frank Gormlie
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Early next week, OBceans have a chance to show their support for the Ocean Beach Community Plan, a document that represents the blueprint for development and public facilities in OB, a plan that has been in existence for nearly 40 years, recently updated – and that has weathered an attack by the influential San Diego Planning Commission.

If you’ve followed the the twists and turns of the Community Plan Update process of last year, then you know of what I speak.

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