San Diego

Orca Profiles in Captivity: The San Diego 10

April 18, 2014 by Source
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By Cara Wilson-Granat

Dame Jane Goodall (famed British primatologist, ethologist, anthropologist, and UN Messenger of Peace) was asked a question. “Why did she do what she did for the chimps she has advocated for all her life?” She answered by sharing a true story.

A captive lab chimp had never lived outside a cage his entire life. Now freed by Jane and her team of researchers and scientists, the frightened primate sat and watched the other chimps in a large zoo compound—free of cages and offering grassy, rocky, chimp-appealing offerings, including the sight and sound of others like him. He was terrified by such a contrast—from darkness to light.

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Sex, Power and Politics in San Diego – Grassroots vs Astroturf

April 18, 2014 by Source

Part 5: The Battle for Progressive Hearts and Minds

bryan GOPEditors Note: Former Assemblywoman Lori Saldaña has an up close and personal story to tell about her dealings with former Mayor Bob Filner and the Democratic party establishment. This is the last part of a five part series running this week at the OB Rag.

Here is Part One which covers her early encounters with Filner, here is Part Two which describes the indifference she met when she tried to alert Democratic Party leadership; Part three talks about the pressures brought about to gain her endorsement of the Filner mayoral candidacy. And Partfour is about keeping the biggest secret.

By Lori Saldaña

As voters look ahead to the next campaign cycle, we increasingly hear of battles over how to fund these elections. These range from discussions over local races to arguments before the US Supreme Court over campaign financing.

The discussions range from proposals for setting up public financing for elections, to arguments in favor of allowing unlimited private contributions from the wealthiest 0.1% of people in the country.

If money is speech, a lot of people have no chance of ever being heard.

Unfortunately, regulators such as the San Diego Ethics Commission spend their time monitoring only who gives money, and how, yet devote no time to asking the question: is this system the best way to serve the needs of the voters and government?

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Sex, Power and Politics in San Diego – Hating the Sin While Supporting the Sinner

April 17, 2014 by Source

filnersexismPart 4: The Aftermath

Editors Note: Former Assemblywoman Lori Saldaña has an up close and personal story to tell about her dealings with former Mayor Bob Filner and the Democratic party establishment. This is part four of a five part series running this week at the OB Rag.

Here is Part One which covers her early encounters with Filnerand, and here is Part Two which describes the indifference she met when she tried to alert Democratic Party leadership, Part three talks about the pressures brought about to gain her endorsement of the Filner mayoral candidacy.

By Lori Saldaña

On Election Day, I trailed Scott Peters on the first ballot announcement in the primary by less than 200 votes. I eventually lost by 700 votes, after being outspent 4:1. Most of his funds were family money.

Dollar for dollar, we ran the most cost efficient Congressional campaign in the state, if not the country. But in the end, personal wealth and internecine party warfare trumped our efforts.

Worse, after the June 2012 primary election, I continued to hear reports regarding Filner’s behavior towards women, including at campaign fundraising events. I did not personally witness these activities, since I had withdrawn from political activity. But they became common knowledge throughout the political community and were discussed by volunteers and others at events, who apparently decided to “hate the sin, but support the sinner.”

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New Chicano Park Muralists Are Honored to Paint in the Park

April 17, 2014 by Source
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Editor: Chicano Park and OB have a long history together. Some folks from OB were at the take-over at Chicano Park on April 22, 1970, and were thus inspired to “take over” the abandoned lot in northeast OB and turn it into Collier Park.

44th annual Chicano Park Day Celebration this Saturday – April 20th

———-

By Brent E. Beltrán / San Diego Free Press

The Chicano Park Steering Committee and thousands of their friends will be celebrating the 44th anniversary of the takeover of Chicano Park this Saturday in San Diego’s Barrio Logan. The theme of the celebration is “La Tierra Es De Quien La Trabaja: The Land Belongs To Those Who Work It.”

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More Medical Marijuana Collective Operators Freed from Criminal Charges

April 17, 2014 by Source
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Vista Prosecutor Dismisses Charges Against Laura Sharp and son Nelson on April 16

By Terrie Best / San Diego Americans for Safe Access

San Diego, CA – It has been a great day for legal medical marijuana patients Laura Sharp, her son Nelson and an unnamed co-defendant after a Vista prosecutor dismissed the charges against the trio in the interest of justice and the three walked out amid cheers and clapping from their supporters.

SocalPURE, a non-profit mutual benefit corporation and legal medical cannabis collective was raided back in October of 2013. Laura Sharp, a directing member, her son Nelson and a volunteer were all man-handled by the array of law enforcement who conducted the raid. Several patient members were thrown to the ground, screamed at and handcuffed for more than six hours.

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A Double Standard for Democratic Party Endorsements – Sex, Power and Politics in San Diego

April 16, 2014 by Source

Editors Note: Former Assemblywoman Lori Saldaña has an up close and personal story to tell about her dealings with former Mayor Bob Filner and the Democratic party establishment. This is part three of a five part series running this week at the OB Rag and San Diego Free Press.

Part 3: Endorsement Roulette

By Lori Saldaña

roulette-wheel BBy early 2012 I was campaigning full time, struggling to raise money, and trying to earn the Democratic Party endorsement. The grassroots, progressive delegates were with me, but the more moderate Democratic faction did all they could to block my State Party endorsement.

A short time after I had shared my concerns about Filner he announced his engagement. Privately, I suspected this was done to counter my allegations. When I encountered Filner at campaign events we kept our distance, and I was never introduced to his fiancee.

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Sarah Boot Takes on District 2

April 15, 2014 by Frank Gormlie
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By Frank Gormlie

Sarah Boot and I grabbed a table outside at Nati’s in OB the other day for our interview – but as the sun was playing hide and seek, we later had to move inside. Sun or no sun, Sarah is running for the District 2 City Council seat in the Primary which is coming up on June 3rd. The mail ballots go out in May.

Before we sat down outside, we met in the foyer of the iconic family cafe on Bacon Street. We shook hands, then while leading her into one of the dining rooms, I informed Sarah that Nati’s was the oldest Mexican restaurant in the Peninsula. I pointed to the oil painting hanging prominently on one of walls of Louisa – the famous server who worked at Nati’s for over 50 years – and who I met when I was a teenager when my family came during the Sixties.

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Sex, Power, and Politics in San Diego – Trying to Blow the Whistle on Bob Filner

April 15, 2014 by Source

Editors Note: Former Assemblywoman Lori Saldaña has an up close and personal story to tell about her dealings with former Mayor Bob Filner and the Democratic party establishment. This is part two of a five part series running this week at the OB Rag and San Diego Free Press. Part one covers her early encounters with Filner.

PART TWO: Party Politics

Close-up of a young woman with adhesive tape over her mouthBy Lori Saldaña

I first contacted Jess Durfee [County Democratic Party leader] in August 2011. I recounted the Filner actions and allegations, and urged him to meet with Filner to determine if these were accurate accounts, and, if so, to take action to ensure the behavior would stop.

I reported Bob Filner’s bad behavior to the San Diego County Democratic Party Chairman for pretty simple reasons: I believe women deserve to be treated with respect. I also feared he would ultimately be “outed” with disastrous impacts on others.

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Lori Saldaña: Sex, Power, and Politics in San Diego – the Run Up to the 2012 Election

April 14, 2014 by Source

Editors Note: Former Assemblywoman Lori Saldaña has an up close and personal story to tell about her dealings with former Mayor Bob Filner and the Democratic Party establishment.

PART ONE: Filner Clears the Field

filnersexismBy Lori Saldaña

In December 2010 I termed out of the California Assembly after serving 6 years; 3 terms were then the maximum allowed. In the summer of 2011 I prepared to teach a class in the Women’s Studies Department at San Diego State University on “Sex, Power and Politics,” and, as redistricting was concluded, decided to run for Congress in the 52nd district in California. As I began preparing to teach and run for Congress, I began hearing stories from women who told me they had been harassed by then-US Representative Bob Filner, who appeared to be the only Democratic candidate for Mayor of San Diego.

Filner did a good job of clearing the field.

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Fukushima Meltdown – US Sailors Sue Japanese Electrical Company

April 14, 2014 by Source

050629-N-5060B-006By Kathleen Gilberd

Three years ago, a massive earthquake led to a triple melt-down and explosions at Japan’s Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant. In the wake of the disaster, the US aircraft carrier Ronald Reagan was sent to Honshu Island, where the reactor is located, to render aid as part of Operation Tomadachi (Friendship). With the ship as close as a mile off shore, sailors worked 18-hour days to rescue civilians in the radiation area.

Now sailors from the Ronald Reagan have filed a one billion dollar class action suit against the Tokyo Electric Power Company (TEPCO), owner of the nuclear plant, alleging that they were exposed to dangerous levels of radiation, far in excess of what TEPCO told the Navy to expect. There are over 100 plaintiffs in the class action, which was filed in San Diego on February 6

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Press Conferences and Vanity Shovels Cannot Hide the Truth About San Diego’s Crumbling Infrastructure

April 11, 2014 by Doug Porter
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By Doug Porter / San Diego Free Press

Newly elected Mayor Kevin Faulconer’s been on quite a tear lately, putting forth a smiling face at press conferences in various neighborhoods around the city. Yesterday cameras rolled as the mayor and local politicos including Councilman Todd Gloria posed and preened over a gateway renovation project on 25th Street in Golden Hill.

Hizzoner says he’s making good on campaign promises to direct more monies (50% of revenue growth, as I recollect) toward street and infrastructure repair. He proudly announced yesterday that $22 million of the anticipated $35 million growth in next year’s inflow would be dedicated to that cause.

It played real well on TV. Sadly, the truth of the situation is that revenue growth, which will likely come from an improving economy, can’t even begin to address the $1 billion hole San Diego faces when it comes to the basic the basic physical and organizational structures and facilities needed locally.

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Carl DeMaio’s À la Carte Campaign

April 11, 2014 by Source
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Editor: OB and Point Loma plus much of the Mission Beach and PB areas are within the 52nd Congressional District that Democrat Scott Peters now holds. His main opponent in the upcoming election is our old friend Republican Carl DeMaio, former mayoral candidate for San Diego. (We call him ‘friend’ because he always gives us so much to write about.)

By Lucas O’Connor

Carl DeMaio is running for Congress. You may have heard. And even though he’s had the misfortune of writing down and voting on major issues for more than a decade, so far his campaign is predicated on hoping that nobody notices in spite of article after article after article after article chronicling his career.

The attempts to fake a newfound moderation on social issues have been well chronicled, but if you don’t believe him, don’t ask him… He refuses to talk about civil rights issues even as the Republican leadership Carl’s running to empower continues going along with Tea Party extremists and holding votes on exactly those issues. It’s not clear if anyone’s really sat down yet and explained to Carl that you can’t actually be an à la carte Congressman, but he seems committed to trying anyhow.

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OSHA Wins Case Against SeaWorld Involving Death of Orca Trainer

April 11, 2014 by Source
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From OH&S / Apr 11, 2014

OSHA has won the appellate case involving its enforcement case against SeaWorld of Florida LLC following the death of killer whale trainer Dawn Brancheau on Feb. 24, 2010. A 2-1 decision issued April 11 by a panel of three judges of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit found that SeaWorld “recognized its precautions were inadequate to prevent serious bodily harm or even death to its trainers and that the residual hazard was preventable.”

“The remedy imposed for SeaWorld’s violations does not change the essential nature of its business,” the majority opinion written by Judge Judith W. Rogers states. “There will still be human interactions and performances with killer whales; the remedy will simply require that they continue with increased safety measures.”

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Surf Film Festival Looking for San Diego Venues

April 11, 2014 by Source
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By Promise Yee

The California Surf Festival will be showing three epic surf films at three locations in San Diego County this spring and summer. This is the sixth year for the film festival that screens surf films with amazing cinematography and compelling story lines.

“Half the surf movies out there don’t have storylines,” Sam Zuegner, California Surf Museum operations manager, said. “We focus on the other ones.

“When you see the world’s best, you’re watching an artist.”

The California Surf Museum, located in Oceanside, holds the film festival as a community outreach each year. The films share the beauty and history of the sport.

“We want to make sure we’re a well-rounded museum,” Zuegner said. “It’s a fundraiser in part, but it’s more community outreach.”

“We want to give back to the community. There’s no other surf film festivals.”

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Cal State San Marcos to Study Surfing’s Exercise Value

April 11, 2014 by Source
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From a CSUSM press release

On any given day along San Diego County’s 70 miles of coastline, thousands of surfers may be spotted in the ocean, riding waves or patiently waiting for the next one.

A new study underway at California State University San Marcos seeks hard, scientific data on whether amateur surfing is more than just fun — whether it also provides a dynamic physical workout.

A research participant at California State University San Marcos simulates paddling on a swim bench modified with a surfboard. Photo courtesy of the university A research participant at California State University San Marcos simulates paddling on a swim bench modified with a surfboard. Photo courtesy of the university

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More Photos From City Council Hearing on District 2 Appointment

April 9, 2014 by Frank Gormlie
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Here are more photos from the San Diego City Council hearing on appointing the District 2 representative held on Monday, April 7, 2014.

Union leader Ed Harris was ultimately appointed from an initial field of 20 applicants. Many of the applicants were from Ocean Beach and Point Loma.

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Lori Saldaña: “The Night I Decided to Stop Going to Sea World.”

April 9, 2014 by Source

Seaworld-Orlando-Shamu-1514By Lori Saldaña

I was born in San Diego, and my family began attending Sea World back in the 60s when it had a Japanese Garden and pearl divers (I still have a pearl ring, a birthday gift one year).

Then, it was a very different place than it is today: quieter, smaller scale, and more about Pacific Rim culture than theme park shows. We went often, and not just as casual visitors. Since my father was a journalist, and Sea World knew the value of cultivating relationships with the media, we would often attend special events throughout the year, including a lavish annual kick-off party that marked the start of their summer season, complete with a preview of the newest Shamu show.

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Democrats’ Revenge: San Diego City Council Appointment of Ed Harris Tilts Council Left

April 8, 2014 by Frank Gormlie
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Appointment of Democrat Is Complicated even with “Super-majority”

The Democrats on the San Diego City Council took revenge on their Republican colleagues yesterday by appointing another Democrat to the Council. As of 5pm Monday, April 7, there are now 6 Democrats to the 3 Republicans on the Council after they choose Ed Harris, a lifeguard and union head – and Democrat, to take the seat to represent District 2.

This retaliatory measure was, in no small part, revenge for the defeat of the Democratic candidate in the last mayor’s election, where David Alvarez lost to Republican Kevin Faulconer. Faulconer vacated his seat for the 2nd District when he stepped up to the mayor’s floor of City Hall.

With a 6 to 3 tilt, the City Council now leans left, …

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BREAKING: Ed Harris Selected by City Council to Represent District 2

April 7, 2014 by Frank Gormlie

Ed Harris, lifeguard and union head, was selected by the San Diego City Council to take the vacant seat for District 2 left when Kevin Faulconer was elected mayor.

It took two ballots for the 8 Council members to coalesce around one applicant with at least 5 votes. The replacement selection was the only item on the docket, and the Council Chambers were filled with the applicants, their supporters and community people.

Twenty people had originally filled out the paperwork for consideration, but when Council President Todd Gloria gaveled the meeting to order around 2:05 pm, there were only 17; Richardo Flores, Don Mullen and Wayne Raffesberger had all withdrawn their names. (See the list.)

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The 20 Who Wish to Serve the People of District 2

April 7, 2014 by Frank Gormlie
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Today is a big day for 20 people. This is the day that the San Diego City Council will decide who of that twenty will sit in District 2′s seat for the remainder of Kevin Faulconer’s term, until December of this year.

At 2pm today in Council Chambers, the Council will take up the matter – supposedly the only issue on their docket – and listen to the 3 minute spiel each applicant has, then will begin taking votes. The first applicant with 5 votes – a majority – wins and takes their seat immediately.

Who are these people who wish to serve the people of District 2? Here is a brief run-down of these individuals taken from their publicly-available application (in alphabetical order):

  • Stephanie Antin – a professional businesswoman who has lived and been active in Pacific Beach for 15 years; she has a BA in communication from Tulane U in New Orleans;

and many more …..

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Ernie McCray: Speaking Straight from the Heart

April 7, 2014 by Staff

Ernie McCray Unsung Hero

Recipient of the Phi Delta Kappa Unsung Hero Award

By Staff

On April 3, Ernie McCray was honored by the San Diego Chapter of Phi Delta Kappa, an international association for professional educators. The Kappan awards bestowed earlier in the evening were for individuals and organizations that have made a substantive difference for those wishing to become educators and for children within the school system.

Ernie’s award came later in the evening, after the recognition of Partner in Education, Educator of the Year, and Leadership. Those of us who know Ernie would be hard pressed to sum up his presence and contributions in just one category– he is known by thousands of students, parents and colleagues as an extraordinary educator; he has been a tireless advocate for peace and justice in the streets and in our schools; you can find him from time to time on a stage, acting and reading his poetry; and he has a following on the San Diego Free Press and OB Rag where he contributes essays and poetry. Unsung Hero is a pretty good fit and that was his award designation.

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SeaWorld Attendance Drops Amid Blackfish Controversy

April 4, 2014 by Source
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By Hugo Martin / LA Times / April 2, 2014

Amid ongoing controversy over its killer whale shows, SeaWorld Entertainment Inc. reported a 13% drop in attendance for the first three months of the year.

The attendance numbers were included in a notice to the Securities and Exchange Commission that SeaWorld was buying 1.75 million of its own shares from Blackstone Group.

The notice said attendance for the three-month period that ended March 31 dropped to about 3.05 million visitors from 3.5 million in the same period in 2013.

In previous reports, SeaWorld officials noted that attendance numbers may change with the shift of holidays in the calendar. Easter, for example, took place in the first quarter of 2013, but in 2014 the holiday falls in the second quarter.

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UCSD Graduate Students Strike After Just Demands Not Met

April 4, 2014 by Source

Strikers disrupt classes and block public thoroughfares in protest against unfair labor practices while upper level administrators continue to receive exorbitant salaries and enjoy a culture of lavish living

By Daniel Gutiérrez

Grad student strikers and their allies block a pedestrian walkway at UCSD.

Graduate students at the University of California, San Diego represented by the United Auto Workers Local 2865 initiated a two-day strike Wednesday, April 2nd, that will end today Friday, April 4th. The strike at UCSD is part of a statewide action occurring at all the campuses of the University of California for these reasons.

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Point Loma High School Takes Honors as Best Surf Team

April 4, 2014 by Source
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from Surfer Today

Point Loma High School has conquered the San Diego stage of the 2014 Oakley High School Surf Team Challenge, held at Seaside Reef in Cardiff, California.

Ten teams of four surfers each from area high schools competed in the fun rippable swell on offer.

But at the close of the final, only one team could claim the honor of best San Diego area High School Surf Team and this year’s honor went to Point Loma High School.

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UCSD Grad Students Protest Controversial Employment Policy

April 3, 2014 by Source

UCSD grad students protesting.Doctoral students rally against the 18 Quarter Limit

By Daniel Gutiérrez

La Jolla, California — Students at the University of California, San Diego stormed the Office of Graduate Studies Tuesday, April 1, to protest a controversial employment policy implemented across the University of California.

The “18 Quarter Limit” restricts doctoral students by only allotting them 18 quarters to be teaching assistants, readers, or graduate student researchers. Such positions, if secured, reduce a graduate student’s tuition from roughly $5,200 a quarter to a mere $196. The action came on the eve of the two-day strike that will be held April 2nd and 3rd at UCSD.

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So They Are All … All Honorable Men

April 2, 2014 by Source

honorable menBy Norma Damashek / NumbersRunner

San Diegans are no dummies. We know what happens to politically independent, outspoken, public-minded individuals who are brash enough to shake things up. They get maligned, noogied, humiliated, sent packing. Open your mouth too wide in this city and… you’re dead meat.

So we’re polite and genteel. Why look for trouble? Yes, the public gets screwed over and over again but we’ve learned to turn the other cheek. Forgive and forget — that’s our MO.

We swoon over the nice guys, especially the ones with agreeable manners. Like our avuncular ex-mayor Jerry Sanders, our puckish council president Todd Gloria, our sunkissed mayor Kevin Faulconer — honorable men beyond public reproach. Even when they’re plotting to pull the rug out from under us.

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March Madness Bringing out “The Thinker” in Me

April 1, 2014 by Ernie McCray
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by Ernie McCray

My highlight of the 2014 March Madness Tournament was the Arizona Wildcat win over the San Diego State Aztecs in the Sweet 16. What a great game.

It was, however, a bittersweet win for me because, although I used to play for the U of A and the school is in Tucson, the town in which I made my debut as a homosapien, the Aztecs are my team too as San Diego is the town I came to when I decided that my “running around looking for shade trees” days were through. So my rejoicing after the game was somewhat tame. But I did do a little jig. For about an hour.

But no matter who ended up as the victor it would have been a win-win situation for me in that I absolutely love both teams and SDSU had an opportunity to reach the field of eight teams for the first time. That would have been wonderful for them. But It’s going to happen someday at some time. I like that their coach feels the same way and tells his guys so. Such stated beliefs would be music to an athlete’s ear. It’s how hopes are inspired, especially when the notion is realistic as it is with the boys from Montezuma Mesa.

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City’s Decision to Install “No Turn on Red” Signs at Voltaire and Catalina Is Flawed – Signs Should Come Down

March 31, 2014 by Source
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Editor: In January our Judi Curry warned readers that the City was no longer allowing right turns on red at the intersection of Voltaire Street and Catalina Boulevard. Geoff Page – a former member of the Peninsula Community Planning Board – vowed to get to the bottom of it. So, here is his the result of his research and analysis.

‘No Right Turn On Red’ Signs at Busy Intersection Should Be Removed

By Geoff Page / Special to the OB Rag

It has taken longer than I hoped but I do have the story about the No Right Turn On Red sign installed at Catalina/Famosa and Voltaire last September.

The road to this information was much longer than it should have been, considering the subject matter, and it required patience and aggressive persistence. The shame of it is that this isn’t a scandalous expose; this is information about placement of traffic signs. The signs are on southbound Famosa at Voltaire. Famosa becomes Catalina once you cross Voltaire. The turn restriction is from southbound Famosa to westbound Voltaire.

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A Green Balboa Park Centennial Celebration for 2015

March 31, 2014 by Source

By Lori Saldaña / San Diego Free Press

green globeAs George Santayana famously observed: “Those who cannot learn from history are doomed to repeat it.” But in the case of the Pan-American centennial planning, organizers need to learn from the history of the event to help them re-create its grandeur and appeal, and make the 2015 Balboa Park centennial a celebration of innovation, rooted in the first Exhibition’s origins.

Here’s a brief statement of the original events’ main theme: “The purpose of the Panama-California Exposition is to illustrate the progress and possibility of the human race, not for the exposition only, but for a permanent contribution to the world’s progress.”

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Continuing Scandal: No Consequences for Balboa Park Centennial Screw Ups

March 28, 2014 by Doug Porter
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By Doug Porter / San Diego Free Press

The mismanagement of efforts to stage a year-long centennial celebration of the 1915 Panama-California exposition continues to make headlines today.

A City Council committee order an audit of public funds spent by Balboa Park Celebration Inc. yesterday. A follow-up hearing on April 23 was set by Councilman David Alvarez to measure progress toward production of records and along with information on the shutdown of BCPI.

Voice of San Diego drew upon its network of movers and shakers (a side benefit of continual fund raising) to produce a report on centennial efforts including points of view from insiders and those close to the soon-to-be-defunct nonprofit celebration committee.

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