Politics

California’s Drought of Ideas: Why Jerry Brown’s Executive Order Misses the Mark

April 6, 2015 by Jim Miller

texas-farm-droughtBy Jim Miller

California’s epic drought has finally made its way to the front page. Last week, Jerry Brown signed an executive order mandating the first-ever water restrictions in our state.

At the press conference announcing the move Brown observed that, “People should realize we are in a new era. The idea of your nice little green lawn getting watered every day, those days are past.”

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Crushing the Occupy Movement – How Wall Street Used Government Forces to Suppress Political Dissent

April 3, 2015 by Source
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by gulfgal98Follow / DailyKos /March 28, 2015

It has been over two years since the Occupy Movement was brutally destroyed by a coordinated national effort led by the FBI and the Department of Homeland Security. Since that time, much documentation has been released under the Freedom of Information Act. Even though they are heavily redacted, these documents provide a frightening window into how far corporate America along with the federal, state, and local governments acting as their agents were willing to go to destroy a populist social movement like Occupy.

Despite all the documentation we have, there are still many out there who are in denial about these facts. After reading some recent comments that misrepresent what happened to the Occupy Movement, I decided to review how Occupy was so brutally squelched by Wall Street and corporate America using government forces as their agents acting upon their behalf.

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This Land Is Our Land? Not If Republicans Have Their Way

April 3, 2015 by Source

By Joan McCarter / Daily Kos

Vermillion Cliffs, NM

One of the 43 amendments passed by Senate Republicans in Thursday’s (3/26/15) vote-a-rama was a sop to extremist state legislatures in the west who have been pushing states’ rights bills that would allow the states to sell off the federal public lands within their borders. That’s right, congressional Republicans—federal representatives—want to allow states to seize and sell off the nation’s heritage.

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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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SeaWorld Steals a Page from the Scientology Playbook

April 2, 2015 by Doug Porter

…And Meanwhile Easter Sunday SeaWorld Protest Gains Momentum

Pink Protest Poster

By Doug Porter

A book tour by a former SeaWorld trainer critical of the company’s treatment of Orcas has led to the theme park releasing a five year old cell phone video depicting the author using racial slurs during a drunken conversation.

Critics of SeaWorld are saying this action is just another example of …

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Lena Horne: A Great Lady Who Broke the Color Line

April 2, 2015 by John Lawrence

Lena Horne was the first black woman to get a contract with a major Hollywood Studio

lena horrne 1By John Lawrence

Born into a black bourgeoisie family in 1917, Lena Horne was signed up in the NAACP by her grandmother, Cora Calhoun Horne, a college graduate, at the age of two. The Hornes owned a four-story residence in the Bedford-Stuyvesant area of Brooklyn.

The distinguished Horne family included teachers, activists and a Harlem Renaissance poet. Lena’s uncle became dean of a black college.

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Video From 1990: Why Some People Don’t Like Ocean Beach

April 1, 2015 by Source

Here is a must see! It’s a 1990 video about Ocean Beach, just discovered in Paul Avery’s VHS archives. It’s all about why some people don’t like OB. It also contains wonderful – yet grainy – video footage from the summer of 1970 battle against the jetty that the city wanted to build.

The vid also displays some of the attitudes which you, dear reader, will find currently expressed in today’s social media about OB.

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A Public Interest Message About the San Diego City Charter

April 1, 2015 by Source

sandiegocityhallBy Norma Damashek

Maybe you missed the story in the NYT a couple of months ago that characterized certain San Diegans as “aggressively bland…scrubbed of their character… command(ing) so little attention…”

Yes, the description is a dead ringer for our current mayor Kevin Faulconer. But no, the story wasn’t about him.

It was about a new No.1 starter for our hometown baseball team– left in the lurch three years ago by a wily real estate developer who amassed mega-millions through canny downtown redevelopment deals with obliging city officials and then headed off to Texas with his publicly-subsidized loot. For former Padres owner John Moores, the public good was hardly the point of his business plan.

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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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Peninsula Planners Win Appeal of Carleton Row Homes

March 31, 2015 by Source
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Election Results and Debate Over the Controversial One Paseo Project

By Tony de Garate / Special to the OB Rag

The agenda at the monthly March meeting of the Peninsula Community Planning Board (PCPB) called for matters of neighborhood importance: a house remodel gone haywire on Plum Street and a plan to renovate a bridge on Voltaire Street.

But not long after the meeting was gaveled to order, accusations were flying, and heads in the audience were spinning — all because of a project nowhere near Point Loma – more on that later. But first …

PCPB wins Carleton Row Homes appeal

Board members reveled in their successful appeal of Carleton Row Homes, four residential units at 3015-21 Carleton St. in Roseville, earlier in the day.

Rejecting the recommendation of its own staff, the San Diego Planning Commission voted 5-1 to deny a “map waiver” request to classify the units as condos.

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Ocean Beach Planners Agenda for Wed., April 1 – New Officers, a South OB Crosswalk and the One Paseo Project

March 31, 2015 by Frank Gormlie
Thumbnail image for Ocean Beach Planners Agenda for Wed., April 1 – New Officers, a South OB Crosswalk and the One Paseo Project

The OB Planning Board will hold its monthly meeting Wednesday night, April 1st, over at the OB Rec Center. The Center is located at 4726 Santa Monica Avenue and the meeting starts sharply at 6pm.

The Board needs to certify its recent election, elect new officers and review an update on the “Crosswalk Project”. And there will be a “forum” on the very controversial One Paseo Project.

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Chapter on Collier Park From Future Novel on Ocean Beach

March 27, 2015 by Source
Thumbnail image for Chapter on Collier Park From Future Novel on Ocean Beach

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.

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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.

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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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OB Town Council Pushed to Join Climate Action Campaign

March 26, 2015 by Frank Gormlie
Thumbnail image for OB Town Council Pushed to Join Climate Action Campaign

All eyes were on Nicole Capretz last night at the monthly Ocean Beach Town Council meeting. She was proposing that the Council join the Climate Action Campaign that she helped found and ensure that the City of San Diego lives up to its commitments under the Mayor’s new climate action plan.

Capretz addressed the Board and the audience of near 60 people on the topic of climate change, the City’s plan, and her group’s efforts to hold local government to be responsive, in terms of creating a viable, legally-binding roadmap for San Diego to follow.

“There is no greater risk to the human race,” she said, “than climate change.” Capretz has been a veteran of City Hall. She years ago, worked for Councilwoman Donna Frye, and more recently for interim Mayor Todd Gloria. She added:

The quality of life will be okay for current generations, but not for the next generations.

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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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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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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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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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Show Down at UCSD’s Che Cafe – Rally vs Eviction: Tuesday Morning, March 24

March 23, 2015 by Staff
Thumbnail image for Show Down at UCSD’s Che Cafe – Rally vs Eviction: Tuesday Morning, March 24

The student collective that runs the Che Cafe up at UCSD fears that the university will actually attempt an eviction the morning of Tuesday, March 24th. So, they’re holding a rally before the eviction – all really early in the morning.

The Che Cafe Collective is asking friends, alumni and supporters to show up at 5 a.m. to show solidarity in front of the anticipated eviction action at 6 a.m.

Need a refresher on what’s going on? See this report by Andrea Carter and this from last November.

Here is the text from the Che Cafe Collective statement:

UCSD has vowed to carry out its eviction of the Ché Café Collective on Tuesday morning at 5 a.m.

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

March 20, 2015 by Source
Thumbnail image for Ocean Beach Not on ’17 Best U.S. Cities for Hippies’

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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Climate Action – or Inaction – at Point Loma Democratic Club Meeting – March 22

March 20, 2015 by Frank Gormlie
Thumbnail image for Climate Action – or Inaction – at Point Loma Democratic Club Meeting – March 22

The March meeting meeting of the Pt Loma Democratic Club is about climate action (or inaction) on the San Diego region generally and the beach areas in particular. The PL Dems will be hosting the Climate Action Campaign organizers.

The meeting is on Sunday, March 22nd from 4:00PM – 5:30PM and will be held at the Point Loma Assembly, 3035 Talbot St, San Diego, CA 92106.

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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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Conversion to Renewable Energy is Going Too Slow to Avoid Catastrophe – Part 5

March 18, 2015 by John Lawrence

Chris Tse via Flickr

Talking About Capitalism and Climate Change

By Frank Thomas and John Lawrence

In a title not usually expected at a scientific conference, University of California San Diego geophysicist Dr. Brad Werner presented a paper entitled Is the Earth Fucked? at the Fall Meeting of the American Geophysical Union (AGU) in December 2012.

Dr. Werner explained that the title represented the expression of depression by scientists working in the field of the public’s inability to respond to what scientists are telling them about global warming.

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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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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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