2014 Wrap Up: The Tide Turns on Rape Culture, Climate Change and Same Sex Marriage

January 5, 2015 by Doug Porter

startinglinelogoBy Doug Porter

The term rape culture became mainstream in 2014. Practices and behavior in society excusing or otherwise tolerating sexual violence were exposed. Activists around the country took to the streets to push back.

Examples, ranging from the callousness of the San Diego City Attorney’s office accusing a sexual assault victim of trying to bribe a police officer with her underwear to investigations into the widespread accommodation of rape in college fraternities, were given wide media coverage.

The ecological crisis facing the planet was another subject getting increased attention this year. Hundreds of thousands of people marched in New York and other cities, including San Diego, in September demanding action on man made climate change. …

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“Steal Heaven” – Abbie Hoffman Tribute at San Diego REP

January 5, 2015 by Source

The San Diego REP begins 2015 with Herbert Siguenza’s tribute to Abbie Hoffman

By Alejandra Enciso Guzmán / San Diego Free Press

Photo Credit: Daren Scott

Abbie Hoffman was an American political activist who also founded the Youth International Party (Yippies) in 1968 and was known for his successful media events. The Yippies were likely to use ‘guerrilla’ theater or public pranks to bring attention to their causes.

Hoffman’s legacy lives on at the San Diego Repertory Theatre when it stages the world premiere of “Steal Heaven.” The production, which opens on January 10 is by Herbert Siguenza who also acts and co-directs along with Todd Salovey.

“Abbie Hoffman was a political figure of the sixties. Some people called him ‘crazy’ or ‘ultra-radical’ but the things he was saying back then have all come true,” the formerly San Diego based Siguenza stated during a phone interview with San Diego Free Press.

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Not So Happy New Year: Obama Pushing Trans-Pacific Partnership in 2015

January 5, 2015 by Jim Miller

TPP_finalBy Jim Miller

Last week, I wrote about Project Censored’s Top 25 most underreported stories, one of which was “Wikileaks Revelations on Trans-Pacific Partnership Ignored by Corporate Media.”

Coming in at number three on their list, Project Censored notes that what is important about this story is that :

Eight hundred million people, and one-third of all world trade, stand to be affected by the treaty—and yet only three people from each member nation have access to the entire document. Meanwhile, six hundred “corporate advisors,” representing big oil, pharmaceutical, and entertainment companies, are involved in the writing and negotiations of the treaty.

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Protest Outside SeaWorld Research Institute – Sat., Jan. 3rd

January 2, 2015 by Source
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SeaWorld protest organizers are planning a picket outside the SeaWorld research facility on Saturday, January 3rd.

Calling the event, “It’s a New Year & a New World, SeaWorld – Stop Breeding Marine Mammals for Entertainment!”, organizers will hold the picket line from 11:30a-1pm at the SeaWorld & Busch Gardens Reproductive Research Center, located at 2595 Ingraham Street at Perez Cove Way.

The research center is adjacent to SeaWorld San Diego along busy Ingraham Street.

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New Year’s News from OB and Point Loma

January 2, 2015 by Source
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OB Metal Band Album Named One of “Best of San Diego Albums of 2014″ by CityBeat

An OB band, Eukaryst, was named as having one of the “Best of” local albums of 2014. In their latest issue, San Diego CityBeat named the group No. 5. Here is what they say: …

Teen Activist Against SeaWorld Receives PETA Award

A local San Diego teenager who has been very active in the struggle against SeaWorld’s orca captivity, has just received a national award from PETA. Zach Affolter, who has written for the OB Rag, who has been visible organizing protests at SeaWorld, …


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Like the Low Gas Prices? They Could Be Even Lower in 2015

January 2, 2015 by Source

oilpricedeclineBy Carl Gibson / Reader Supported News

Oil prices are currently down by 40 percent from where they were in June, and the economies of oil-exporting countries like Russia and Venezuela are tanking. Coincidence? A simple case of more supply than demand? Cunning moves in a global chess game between a desperate empire and its rivals?

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Senator Bernie Sanders: Fight for Our Progressive Vision

January 2, 2015 by Source

sen-bernie-sandersBy Senator Bernie Sanders / Common Dreams

As I look ahead to this coming year, a number of thoughts come to mind.

First and foremost, against an enormous amount of corporate media noise and distraction, it is imperative that we not lose sight of what is most important and the vision that we stand for. We have got to stay focused on those issues that impact the lives of tens of millions of Americans who struggle every day to keep their heads above water economically, and who worry deeply about the kind of future their kids will have. …

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OB Rag Editordude on KOGO Talk Show Tuesday Afternoon

December 30, 2014 by Staff

The editordude of the OB Rag will be on KOGO radio this afternoon, Tuesday, Dec. 30th, helping out talk-show host Sully as he fields incoming calls on a variety of San Diego and national topics.

Frank Gormlie will be on from 1 to 4 pm on KOGO radio 600 on your am dial.

Any OBcean – or other earth inhabitant – is urged to call in with questions or comments. Gormlie would love to talk about the OB Community Plan. The numbers to call are:

1-800-600-KOGO or 619-569-8255

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Ocean Beach Restaurants Looking to Hire

December 30, 2014 by Frank Gormlie
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Whether it’s the season or the industry itself, it’s unclear, but a whole host of OB restaurants are looking to hire people right now.

At least 5 eateries in Ocean Beach have ads up at various places, including Craigslist. All the following job offers are listed in the OB Rag’s free classified section under “Help Wanted“.

Leading off the group is the Cohn family Restaurant Group, which has two high-end restaurants in the coastal village of OB.

Their latest, the OB Warehouse on Newport Avenue, is looking for everybody: bartenders, all kinds of cooks – saute, grill, prep, and hosts and dishwashers. Interested people should apply online or in person daily between 2pm and 4pm. …

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Stumps Market Gets the Widder Curry’s Goat

December 30, 2014 by Judi Curry
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Doesn’t take much to get my goat any more.

And it has nothing to do with the amount of time I am spending in North Dakota with Cowboy and his herd of goats. No, in this case it has to do with a stupid “rule” that might make a difference in my shopping habits. This is what happened.

I have shopped at Stumps on Voltaire for years. I like their meat, deli and produce departments. I seldom purchase the regular staples, because their prices are higher than I pay at Ralphs or Vons. But their meat is exceptionally tasty; and their prices are better than the other supermarkets.

Over the past years, Stump’s has offered incentive programs that I have taken advantage of – items like Tupperware containers (or similar). Apparently, Stumps now – after a hiatus of many months – has brought back a new incentive program – Chicago Cutlery. …

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2014 Beach Cleanup Results – Fiesta Island Had Most Trash – Not OB

December 30, 2014 by Source
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Yearly totals indicate a troubling trend of inland trash making its way to the ocean

From Coastkeeper and Surfrider Media Release

Condoms. Tampons. Glow sticks. A stethoscope.

These items topped the list of unusual pieces of trash removed from San Diego County beaches during a suite of cleanups hosted in 2014 by the Surfrider Foundation San Diego County Chapter and San Diego Coastkeeper. The environmental groups train volunteers to track the type and number of items they pick up during cleanups, ask them to note unique items and help them weigh the total contents.

This year, more than 7,000 volunteers removed nearly 10,500 pounds of debris from coastal areas, capturing it before it could pollute the ocean.

More alarming than the unusual items, says cleanup organizers, is that volunteers removed nearly 207,800 pieces of trash including more than 75,000 cigarette butts, 23,500 plastic pieces and 17,500 bits of plastic foam (the top three items removed).

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New York State Bans Fracking – Is California Next?

December 30, 2014 by John Lawrence

Fracking CaliforniaBy John Lawrence

In a huge victory for the environmental movement, New York State Governor Andrew Cuomo has banned fracking. I guess President Obama is not the only one that can get things accomplished by executive order. Experts have made analyses that identified contamination threats to water, soil and air, the absence of reliable health studies or proof that drillers can protect the public, as well as diminishing economic prospects. All good reasons for the public to demand a fracking ban.

fracking calif mapFracking is also being delivered a death knell by market forces. Since it costs more to access oil by fracking than it does by conventionsl drilling, if the price per barrel falls below a certain point, fracking becomes uneconomical. Lo and behold, thanks to the Saudis who have been keeping production up, the cost per barrel has fallen to around $60. It has to be higher than $80. for fracking to be profitable.

Hooray and Halleluja! Who would have thought that market forces, the Saudis and the environmental movement would all have combined with remarkable synergy to put an end to fracking?

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Missing 12-Year-Old Chula Vista Girl Last Heard of in Ocean Beach

December 30, 2014 by Staff
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There’s a missing 12-year-old girl from Chula Vista whom police are asking for help to find. Autumn Fink has been missing since Monday afternoon, Dec. 29th.

And police were able to ping her cellphone around 8:30 p.m. to determine she was near Robb Field in Ocean Beach. (FoxNews described it as “Rob Roy Park”.) Fink did not give any information about who she was with.

She was last seen Monday at 4:00 p.m. on Monday when she told her family she was going to meet friends at a park in Chula Vista. Police said Fink was in touch with her family until about 8:30 p.m., but that’s when her cellphone either died or was shut off.

Autumn is described as 5-feet, 3-inches, weighing 120 pounds with brown hair, brown eyes, and braces, and has no history of running away. …

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End o’Year Local News from OB and Point Loma

December 29, 2014 by Frank Gormlie
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Hit and Run Victim Talks Katie Conner, the OBcean who was the victim of a hit-and-run driver in OB spoke to a local TV station on the crash that …

OB Surfers Part of Study of Health Problems from Post-Storm Polluted Ocean OB surfers are taking part in a study to evaluate medical and health problems that arise after they surf …
Stolen Christmas Presents Pose Possible Problem for OB Post Office Branch An OB couple are claiming that presents sent to family in Texas were tampered with by possibly by a postal clerk or someone “inside” the OB P.O. …

2nd Fatal Accident in Midway District Near I-8 Freeway Shows Dangers of Stretch

Pt Loma Nazarene Anthropology Prof Part of Study of Gangs and Sex-Trafficking

Police Renew Call for Info on Missing Pt Loma Mom San Diego police have renewed their call for information that could help find a 31-year-old mother of two who vanished from her Point Loma home more than two months ago.

“Backdoor Bandit” Who Robbed 13 Businesses Including Roberto’s in Ocean Beach Sentenced

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The Most Important Stories the Corporate Media Didn’t Tell You in 2014

December 29, 2014 by Jim Miller

Media LiesBy Jim Miller

We live in troubled times but are increasingly ill equipped to deal with them. The average American is awash in a sea of ghastly, contextless headlines punctuated by inane trivia and pointless titillation. Somewhere between the latest massacre and Kim Kardashian’s most recent booty shot we got lost.

Indeed, some studies have even shown that the more news we consume the less we actually know. That’s because so much of what we have come to think of as “news” is really a form of corporate propaganda, a depthless mass of factoids designed to not interfere with the bottom line. Thus we know less as we amuse ourselves to death.

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Restaurant Review : Fig Tree Café at Liberty Station

December 29, 2014 by Judi Curry
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Fig Tree Café
Liberty Station
2400 Historic Decatur Road
Suite 103

San Diego, California 92106

Every Christmas season I go out to breakfast with two friends – Nancy and Stewart – and this year was no exception. We were deciding between the “Little Lion” and the “Fig Tree Café” this year and because Nancy and Stewart had been to the Fig Tree for their $5 breakfast special we decided to go there. Alas, the special was not available for the “holiday” – even though it was now Friday following Christmas. We ordered from the regular menu.

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Photo Gallery: Tracking a Wandering Peregrine Falcon from Mission Bay

December 29, 2014 by Source
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By Roy Little

Peregrine Falcons are well known for their acrobatic ability in the air and high speed dives to stun other flying birds, usually as prey. Not quite as well-known by the public is their long-range migration habit. “Peregrinus” means “wanderer” in Latin. In the Americas they tend to migrate north/south annually along the Pacific or Atlantic flyways.

On November 5, I photographed a Peregrine Falcon at the edge of the Kendall-Frost/Northern Wildlife Preserve in Pacific Beach at the northern side of Mission Bay.

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The New Civil Rights Movement That Can Save America

December 23, 2014 by Frank Gormlie
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Not sure of what to call this new movement, this movement that sprang off of the failure to indict the white police officer in Ferguson, Missouri in the shooting death of Michael Brown, and which is now a nation-wide daily outpouring of militant demonstrations against the murders of Black men and police brutality and violence.

Despite the unprovoked shooting deaths last Saturday of two police officers in New York City by a Black man with mental problems unconnected with the protests, the movement must go on and it must go on daily. The movement cannot allow this shooting or the backlash against the protests to stall its journey.

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End of the Year Notes from Editordude’s Desk

December 23, 2014 by Frank Gormlie
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Now that there’s only a week left in 2014, I’d like to take a moment and let you know some of what’s going on behind the scenes, either with us or with Ocean Beach.

The OB Planning Board needs you. First up, however, is a plea to get people to run for the OB Planning Board. Their election isn’t until March, but in order to be eligible to run as a candidate for one of the open seats, you must have been to at least one general meeting over the last year, and you need to have done this by February. There are 7 or 8 seats open this election, depending how you count. Their meetings are the first Wednesday of every month.

So, first, if you are even vaguely interested, check to see which OB planning district you live in.

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San Diego Police: Tell Us About Your Stingray Cell Phone Spy System

December 22, 2014 by Doug Porter

Police gps trackerBy Doug Porter

A lawsuit filed by the First Amendment Coalition aimed at getting the San Diego Police Department to disclose how it uses cell phone tower simulators to collect data has been covered by multiple local news outlets over the past days.

Two things strike me in studying these accounts: a mostly blind eye towards how this latest news fits into a pattern of opaqueness by the SDPD and a lack of understanding about the true nature of the technology in question.

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Stocking Stuffers, Lumps of Coal, and ‘Buy Nothing’ Christmas Gifts

December 22, 2014 by Jim Miller

No_SaleBy Jim Miller

As Christmas approaches along with the end of the year, it’s time to assess some of the best and the worst of 2014.

For those of you out there who just can’t jump on the “Buy Nothing Christmas” train, 2014 is a particularly good year to think about buying your friends and loved ones a book to stuff in their stocking.

This year saw the release of an unusual number of truly groundbreaking books that should inform serious intellectual discourse on the great issues of our day for years to come. So give the gift of knowledge rather than a shiny commodity fetish.

Here are my top five picks: …

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Winter Solstice Celebration in OB – Procession Planned for Newport Ave.

December 21, 2014 by Staff
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Today – December 21st – is the Winter Solstice and there’s a celebration happening in Ocean Beach.

The Puppet Insurgency is organizing it, and it all begins at Coastal Sage Gardening at 6pm, located at 3685 Voltaire Street – up across from the Pt Loma library.

At some point there will be a a procession and caroling down Newport all the way to the ocean!

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Use “San Salvador” Replica to Tell the True Story of What Happened to Native Americans in San Diego and California

December 19, 2014 by Frank Gormlie
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Continuing the Debate: Is the San Salvador Replica a “Symbol of Genocide” or a “Marketing Tool for San Diego”? or can it be used to tell the true story?

In the interests of continuing the debate of the controversy that has arisen over the current construction of the San Salvador , the replica of Juan Rodriquez Cabrillo’s flagship, which is being built at Spanish Landing in San Diego Bay by the Maritime Museum, we offer the following comments.

We’re certain that the building of the replica of the San Salvador, is widely known around town by now, and many even know that most of the construction is being accomplished by volunteers using the “original” tools and methods of the 16th century. There are tours, displays and some PR by the San Diego Maritime Museum.

In fact, the Museum is planning to stage the official launch of the vessel in late February 2015.

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Nuclear Shutdown News, December 2014

December 19, 2014 by Michael Steinberg
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by Michael Steinberg

Nuclear Shutdown News chronicles the continuing decline of the US nuclear power industry. As nuclear power reactors approach or surpass their planned operating life of 40 years, they have become less and less reliable and more and more threatening. What to do about this? A complete and immediate shut down of them all! NO NUKES!

Here’s our December report.

On December 3 the St. Louis Post-Dispatch reported that central Missouri’s 30 year old Callaway nuclear reactor had experienced a sudden unplanned shutdown. As the Dispatch-Post stated,“Power in the [nuclear] core went from 100% to 0” right away.

The 1200 megawatt Calloway nuke plant supplies 20% of the electricity produced by its owner and operator, Amergen—when it’s at full power.

The Nuclear Regulatory Commission commented, “No safety relief valves opened that would have exposed the [nuclear] core to the outside.” This means the nuclear fuel in the reactor supposedly didn’t release any of its radiation into the environment because of the accident.

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Historical Society Takes Trip Through Time With New OB Book

December 19, 2014 by Matthew Wood
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By Matthew Wood

Take a beach stroll through time in our fine neighborhood with a new book from the Ocean Beach Historical Society.

The publication, part of the “Images of America” series, shows rare photos from the beginnings of OB, following through its growth into a destination spot as it finally settles in as the sleepy beach community we know and love.

Knowing that it is part of a number of publications highlighting neighborhoods throughout the country gives the book a bit of a cookie-cutter feel. But you can’t argue with the content, which is mostly photographs with sparse but descriptive captions that give bits of history along with explaining what you’re seeing.

Most of the focus is on the first half of the 20th century, but it manages to give a glimpse into the future that will be with a smattering of updated pictures to show a contrast between past and present.

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Cuba Sí! Decades of Failed Foreign Policy Come to an End

December 18, 2014 by Doug Porter
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By Doug Porter

A mutual release of prisoners Wednesday, Dec. 17, marks beginning of the end of the United States embargo against the island nation of Cuba. Cuba released jailed American Alan Gross along with an unnamed non-American intelligence ‘asset.’ The US released three Cubans accused of running a spy operation in the South Florida expatriate community.

The Associated Press reports the two governments are starting talks on normalizing full diplomatic relations; trade and banking ties are will be at the top of the agenda. Observers expect each country to attempt to open embassies in each other’s capitals during 2015.

While these actions are not part of any overall shift in US foreign policy, the repercussions throughout the hemisphere will be reminiscent of the establishment of normalized relations with China in the 1970’s. It’s a big deal. A really big deal.

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Call for Volunteers by OB Town Council for Food and Toy Drive

December 18, 2014 by Staff
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Daily Sign Up Links (inside)

The Ocean Beach Town Council has put out a call for volunteers to assist in the annual Food & Toy Drive.

Beginning Tuesday, Dec. 16, volunteers are asked to join the Town Council and other residents as they receive, sort, wrap and distribute care packages for 80 and more local families and senior citizens. It begins at 5pm and runs to 9. And it keeps happening through every day this week into Saturday.

The center of all this holiday giving is at the Masonic Center -1711 Sunset Cliffs Blvd.

The call includes volunteers helping them in delivering the donations.

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Let’s say “No More” Violence Against Women

December 18, 2014 by Ernie McCray

By Ernie McCray

Stop Violence Against Women

It’s sad that there’s such a notion as “violence against women,” but it’s heartening that, seemingly, we, as a society, are now looking into such an unsavory practice as though we want to do something about it.

A catalyst for a big part of our interest in the subject has been the National Football League (who would have ever dreamed that?) with their “No” to violence against women television PSA’s, featuring present day and ex-pro football players, motivated by that horrible tape we saw of star running back, Ray Rice, punching his wife out in an elevator, one of the nastiest sights anyone could ever see.

“No more boys will be boys,” one of the athletes says.

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Ocean Beach Being Considered for National Surfing Reserve

December 17, 2014 by Frank Gormlie
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We have just found out that Ocean Beach is right now being considered as a National Surfing Reserve.

Research is currently going on to identify iconic California surfing spots that could have the National Reserve status. It is being conducted by World Surfing Reserve cofounder Brad Farmer, who along with Michael Blum, are doing the research into the potential sites. It’s apparently a 10-year process.

Surfing sites at Malibu and Santa Cruz have already been declared World Surfing Reserves.

Just what are the criteria to being a National Surfing Reserve? They include historical and cultural significance, surf break quality, community interest, economic and recreational value, and the presence of environmental threats. Ocean Beach has all of these, doesn’t it?

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SeaWorld WATCH: CEO and 108 Workers Let Go, But No Orcas

December 17, 2014 by Frank Gormlie
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These are bad days for SeaWorld: plummeting ticket sales and profits. And worse – the CEO was fired, 108 workers at the San Diego theme park were laid off, part of 300 nation-wide.

Yet, no orcas have been let go or laid off. You know things are getting bad when even the U-T San Diego – a staunch supporter of SeaWorld – asks “Will SeaWorld free Shamu?“.

Amidst continuing protests at their front gate, SeaWorld announced a week ago that CEO Jim Atchison was resigning. At this point it’s fairly universally accepted that a lot of SeaWorld’s decline is because of changing attitudes of consumers about orca captivity – much of that prompted by the “Blackfish” documentary -which was highly critical of its treatment of killer whales.

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