March 2011

Riptide of funding cuts may mean the end of Scripps library

March 31, 2011 by Source
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By Kendra Hartmann/SDNews.com

With budget cuts rearing their ugly head on a regular basis, news of more casualties falls on almost numb ears. The University of California, San Diego, however, is feeling the threat of tightening purse strings in a whole new way. For the students, scientists and public that frequent the Scripps Institution of Oceanography (SIO) Library, Gov. Jerry Brown’s proposed cuts could mean the end of an era: the largest library in the world dedicated to marine science will likely close this summer.

“It doesn’t make any sense that our 100-year-old unique facility should be terminated,” said Walter Munk, professor emeritus at the UCSD Institute of Geophysics and Planetary Physics and longtime SIO Library user.

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City Partners with Artists to Host “Paint-Out” at the Water Conservation Garden

March 31, 2011 by Source
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Local Artists Capture “Conservation in Bloom”

SAN DIEGO – Join local artists as they celebrate the spring season at the eighth annual “Paint-Out” at the Water Conservation Garden (Garden) from 9 a.m. to 12 p.m. on April 9, 2011. Watercolorists of all skill levels are welcome to participate to capture on their canvases the lush, colorful scenery that springtime “California-friendly” blooms have brought to the Garden.

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Libya is no Iraq

March 31, 2011 by Andy Cohen
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Really? Really people? First you carp at the Obama administration for NOT acting as the conflict in Libya started rolling, and now you’re crying because he has? It’s time to go back on the meds, folks, and time to stop playing partisan politics with serious foreign policy issues.

President Obama absolutely did the right thing with regards to Libya. He is absolutely right to send in the U.S. military to enforce a no-fly zone and to protect civilians from the deliberate and devastating attacks of Moammar Qaddaffi’s army. He is absolutely right to aid the Libyan rebels in their quest to oust the dictator. And any comparisons between Libya circa 2011 and Iraq circa 2003 are just plain wrong. Ridiculous, even.

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Embracing Our Rich Ethnic Diversity

March 31, 2011 by Ernie McCray
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Thoughts Stemming from Viewing “Precious Knowledge”

Lately, I’ve been thinking about the range of ethnicities in our country, of how all human beings innately identify with racial and cultural ties that go back ages and ages in our personal histories. Who we are was set in place in ancient times. It’s natural, the way its supposed to be.

But somehow in the mix some human beings decide that their ethnicity is the ultimate of ethnicities and looks at others fearfully and fitfully.

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Food Inflation Kept Hidden in Tinier Bags

March 30, 2011 by Source
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By Stephanie Clifford and Catherine Rampell /NewYorkTimes.com/ March 28, 2011

Chips are disappearing from bags, candy from boxes and vegetables from cans. As an expected increase in the cost of raw materials looms for late summer, consumers are beginning to encounter shrinking food packages.

With unemployment still high, companies in recent months have tried to camouflage price increases by selling their products in tiny and tinier packages. So far, the changes are most visible at the grocery store, where shoppers are paying the same amount, but getting less.

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Are Homeless People Human?

March 30, 2011 by Christine Schanes
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My homeless friend, Larry, was upset as recounted his recent experience: “The other day I went to McDonald’s, bought a coffee and went outside to sit, drink my coffee and have a cigarette. But, they wouldn’t let me. ?Move-along,’ they said, ?you can’t stay here.’ All I wanted to do was sit and have my coffee and a cigarette. And I had bought their coffee!”

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City Council overly-restricts medical marijuana dispensaries

March 29, 2011 by Sunshine
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I supported San Diego’s Stop the Ban campaign Monday (March 28) by attending a rally in front of City Hall. So many people showed up in opposition of this ban that not all of us could get into the building or inside the council chambers. There were some great messages rolling through the crowd on homemade signs. My personal favorites were: “Patient not pothead”, “Plants not pills”, and “Marijuana is a gateway drug” its punny message surrounded by junk food packaging.

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Aztecs’ season comes to stunning halt. So what happens next?

March 29, 2011 by Andy Cohen
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It was a valiant effort worthy of the team entering the NCAA Tournament ranked #6 in the country. But in the end, they just didn’t play well enough to overcome 36 points from superstar Connecticut guard Kemba Walker, and 24 points from freshman wing man Jeremy Lamb, as the Huskies ended the Aztecs’ season last Thursday night 74-67 in Anaheim’s Honda Center, a mere 94 miles from the SDSU campus.

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Fundraiser for Ocean Beach theater group

March 29, 2011 by Staff

Please come, hear the plans, and help launch a NEW THEATRE GROUP in OB. It’s a fundraiser for the 501 c 3 application for The Vagabond Theatre Project of Ocean Beach.

Only One Night – KARAOKE @ CHESWICKS, 5038 Newport Avenue, MARCH 30th, 2011, 7PM -11PM

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International dance festival inspired by the Wonderland of Ocean Beach

March 29, 2011 by Source
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By Janice Steinberg / San Diego U-T /  March 26, 2011 Back in 1913, the Wonderland Amusement Park in Ocean Beach was a place where San Diegans went to ride on the roller coaster, whoosh down the water slide, and do the daring new fox trot in the dance pavilion. When three prominent members of the […]

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Collier Park Riot Picnic, March 27th 2011

March 28, 2011 by Staff
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Over forty people were in Collier Park Sunday, joining the potluck picnic commemorating the 40th anniversary of the Collier Park Riot of 1971. We have written about this, go here for our earlier post.

With Dave Rice’s mastery of the grill, with Patty’s awesome potato salad, Frank’s popular chicken, Doug’s savory deviled eggs, and everybody’s elses food and drink, the picnic god shined the sun on the gathering that lasted happily into the late afternoon.

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Howard Zinn in San Diego

March 28, 2011 by Anna Daniels
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What an extraordinary weekend! It ended Sunday with a picnic in Collier Park where some of us personally remembered and we all celebrated a watershed event in Ocean Beach’s history. That event of course was the people’s victory over the planned development of the last remaining acres of open space out of the sixty acres […]

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The San Onofre Fukishima Connection

March 26, 2011 by Michael Steinberg
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Two weeks into Japan’s Fukushima nuclear plant crisis, the situation continues to worsen.

Among the headlines in today’s paper is “Breach feared at reactor—radiation high.” The Associated Press reported “Plant operators don’t know the source of radioactive water discovered in at Units 1 and 3.” The utility, Tokyo Electric Power Co., suspected that water found in Units 2 and 4 was similarly contaminated.

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Tweets Twisting in the Night: Did a Desperate “Reform” Group “O’Keefe” the School Board President?

March 26, 2011 by Doug Porter
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For the past eighteen months or so, a shadowy group that claims to be pushing for education reform has waged a relentless campaign aimed at the current members of the San Diego Unified School Board. Their goal, so they claim, is to reform the current method of ‘governance’ in the local school system to allow unspecified changes in education policy to occur. San Diegans for Great Schools main idea boils down to getting voters to approve an initiative that will add four unelected members to the school board.

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EPA Budget Cuts: A Threat To Public Health

March 26, 2011 by Source
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By Nicholas Scott

In light of a recent legislation set forth by House Republicans, the Environmental Protection Agency is facing some of the largest budgetary cutbacks to organization has ever seen. In addition to the slashing of funds, law makers are pushing to repeal The Clean Air Act. The EPA is currently in danger of losing $3 billion dollars, constituting almost a third of its entire budget. While it may be difficult to quantify the ecological benefits that result from the EPA’s regulations, the Agency has indisputably shown great success when it comes to protecting the public health.

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Who runs the FDA? And what are the rules for approving new drugs?

March 26, 2011 by Judi Curry
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I could hardly believe what I was reading in the San Diego Union on Saturday, March 26, 2011. Across 5 columns was the headline, “FDA OKS FIRST MELANOMA DRUG THAT EXTENDS LIFE.” I couldn’t help but wonder what my husband’s oncologist would say about that headline.

The drug is known as “Ipilimumab” and will be marketed under the name of “Yervoy.” Let me tell you about my experience with this drug.

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Come one, come all – to the Collier Park Picnic – Sunday, March 27th

March 25, 2011 by Frank Gormlie
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Monday, March 28th, is the 40th anniversary of the Collier Park Riot. On Sunday, March 27th, the OB Rag is having a commemorative picnic at the park, located in northeast Ocean Beach at the intersection of Greene Street and Soto Street, a block north of Voltaire. It will begin at noon – and weather permitting – and will be a celebration of OB, its history, Collier Park itself, and anything else that seems appropriate.

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Ocean Beach Pipe Repair Inches Toward Newport – Won’t Touch Sunset Cliffs Blvd Till After Labor Day

March 25, 2011 by Frank Gormlie
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If you’ve been on Cable Street lately, you can see what’s going on.  The City’s pipe repair project is inching along, and soon it will hit the mainstreet of Ocean Beach, Newport Avenue. Right now, it’s about half a block away. Already local merchants have been complaining of how long it’s taking the work crews […]

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Water prices in San Diego again raise hackles at Council committee meeting

March 25, 2011 by Source

by George J. Janczyn / Groksurf’s San Diego / March 23, 2011 What drew me to the San Diego City Council’s Natural Resources and Culture Committee meeting today [3-23-11] was a report on “Water Budget Based Billing” on the agenda. This seemed timely because the price of water in the city of San Diego has […]

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Interview with Ocean Beach TV series “Terriers” showrunner

March 25, 2011 by Source
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Editor: In TV parlance, a “showrunner” is a person who handles the daily operations of a television series. Here is an interview with Shawn Ryan, the showrunner for “Terriers” – the great 13-episode TV series filmed in Ocean beach last year.

by David Chen / SlashFilm / March 25, 2011

Shawn Ryan is one of the most exciting people working in the entertainment industry today. With an ear for crackling dialogue and a penchant for labyrinthine, satisfying plots, Ryan re-invigorates any genre he touches. He created the hit FX show The Shield, and was the showrunner on Lie To Me, Terriers, and The Unit. His newest show, The Chicago Code, airs on Fox on Monday nights and it’s one of my favorite new shows of 2011. …

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Remembering the 1911 Triangle Shirtwaist Fire

March 24, 2011 by Anna Daniels
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“My girls, my pretty ones, going down through the air. They hit the sidewalk spread out and still.”
~Triangle Shirtwaist Company Assistant cashier Joseph Flecher

At quitting time on a Saturday one hundred years ago, a fire began on the eighth floor and raged through the ninth and tenth floor of the Asch building in New York City where 500 workers, mostly immigrant teenage girls were trapped in their Triangle Shirtwaist Company workrooms. One of the ninth floor exit doors had been locked, the fire escape collapsed, and the elevator, filled beyond capacity with fleeing workers, stopped working. The tragedy was compounded because the Fire Department ladders only reached to the sixth floor, and their safety nets deployed to catch the falling bodies broke under the weight. Yet the fire was quickly brought under control and within a half hour it was all over.

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Why the Collier Park Riot in March 1971 Was a Watershed Event for Ocean Beach

March 24, 2011 by Frank Gormlie
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The following article was originally published on March 24, 2011

Anniversary to be Commemorated this Weekend

This coming March 28th is the 40th anniversary of the infamous “Collier Park Riot” – an event that reminds me of the refrain from Henry Wadsworth Longfellow’s poem, “The Midnight Ride of Paul Revere,” which claimed: “… hardly a man is now alive who remembers that famous day and year, ….”

And like the pre-Civil War America to whom Longfellow penned his famous poem, the Ocean Beach of the 21st century has forsaken its very own history that made it what it is today – a celebrated iconoclastic corner of the hippie counter- culture that has consciously set itself apart from mainstream Southern California. And it is true, that hardly a man or woman now alive who lives in Ocean Beach remembers that famous day when the youth of the community stood up to “the Man.”

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A Hard Rain’s Gonna Fall on California: GOP Quashing Brown’s Special Election?

March 23, 2011 by Doug Porter
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Shortly before last fall’s gubernatorial victory by Jerry Brown, word spread through California Democratic circles that the man had a plan that would address people’s fears about the future shortfalls with the State budget. It’ll be gutsy, they were told—a game of chicken that California’s Republicans would lose no matter what path they chose. The deals put together in the back halls of the state capital over the past few years were set to unravel in 2012, leaving the basis for future budgets in tatters.

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César E. Chávez (1927-1993)

March 23, 2011 by Source
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César Chávez is one of the greatest labor leaders and human rights activists in the United States history and the world. He fought for a better life for migrant farm workers, and founded the first successful farm workers’ union. César was the president of the United Farm Workers, AFL-CIO.

César Estrada Chávez was able to accomplish his goals through the philosophy of non-violence that he inherited and followed from leaders like Mahatma Gandhi and Dr. Martin Luther King.

Candidate Barack Obama adopted Cesar Chavez’s motto in life: “Si se puede” (“it can be done”) –

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Understanding the State of Society on the 8th Anniversary of the War in Iraq

March 23, 2011 by Source
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by Jeoffry Gordon, MD, MPH

Our country is at the edge of a precarious cliff that presents the biggest danger to the survival of our democracy than anything since the Civil War…….Or like Wiley Coyote in the Road Runner cartoons – we may have run off the precipice already – but it just has not yet sunk in. The problem is one of domestic social justice and economics.

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Qualcomm will build factory in U.S. if it doesn’t have to pay taxes.

March 22, 2011 by Source
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By John Lawrence / Will Blog for Food / March 22, 2011

In an article March 18, 2011 in the San Diego Union Tribune, Qualcomm said “it would spend $975 million to build a factory in Taiwan to manufacture low-power Mirasol display screens for e-readers and smart phones.”

However, there is a caveat. Qualcomm would like to imply that, if it could repatriate the $9.8 billion in cash it is holding offshore without paying taxes or at a sufficiently reduced tax rate, it would build the factory in the US instead thus creating jobs.

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“San Diego Union-Tribune” Workers Nervous … Again

March 22, 2011 by Source

by Don Bauder / Scam Diego – San Diego Reader / March 21, 2011

Union-Tribune employees are wondering once again just who will own their company, or whether the U-T could be folded into a conglomeration of Southern California papers.

Two management missteps fomented the worry.

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Darrell Issa’s net neutrality double talk

March 22, 2011 by Source
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Darrell Issa has a long history in the tech industry, with close ties that continue today — and have recently gotten him in some trouble . More personally, he’s also a notorious tech junkie, unable to resist fiddling with new gadgets and the tech toys of everyone around him. So if anyone should understand how important net neutrality is, you’d think it would be Darrell Issa. But instead, he’s been steadfast in walking the corporate conservative line, adopting the favorite industry astroturf demand .

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Safety at California Nukes Questioned – Diablo Canyon and San Onofre

March 22, 2011 by Source
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SACRAMENTO, Calif. — State lawmakers called on California utilities Monday to delay efforts to relicense nuclear power plants until the companies complete detailed seismic maps to get a true picture of the risks posed by earthquakes and tsunamis.

State senators raised sharp questions about whether California’s nuclear plants can withstand a major natural disaster such as the one on March 11 that has left Japan scrambling to control radiation coming from some of its reactors.

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6 Sadistic State Laws Conservatives Are Trying to Ram Through

March 22, 2011 by Source
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We’re talking about true legislative sadists looking to go medieval on America.

By David Sirota /AlterNet / March 21, 2011

Supreme Court Justice Louis Brandeis once said that states are the “laboratories of democracy.” Oft repeated over time, the aphorism has helped impart legitimacy to the rough and tumble of state lawmaking. We’ve heard “laboratory” and we’ve imagined staid scientists in white coats rigorously testing forward-thinking theories of societal advancement.

It’s certainly a reassuring picture—but there is a darker side of the metaphor. States are indeed laboratories. The problem is that today, those laboratories are increasingly run by mad scientists.

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